Friday, January 29, 2016

New Year, New Hopes

Happy New Year Everyone! This is my first post of 2016 and I come into the new year with hopes of one better than 2015 and a new outlook.

It's no secret that 2015 was difficult. A lot has been untold in the blog because I was just too busy to take the time. 2015 saw a new job with a challenging learning curve, the death of my beloved dad, an engagement, a 40th (yikes!) birthday and dealing with an estrangement from my mother. There is nothing more hurtful than a parent saying the most terrible, hateful things and not being one bit happy for you especially when your biggest supporter and protector is no longer around. By the end of the year, I was a stressed out, anxious and incredibly sad shell of my former self who was trying hard to get back into the light.

So 2016 is about time...and relaxing. To let the little things go because too much time and energy goes into something that doesn't really matter in the first place. To rediscover those things that give me joy and stick with them. I don't have any resolutions but I have little goals.

Blog once a month.
Stitch at least one hour 3-4 times per week.
Reorganize my stash and sell off those things I no longer want or see myself stitching.
Declutter my apartment.

With the new year, came a new start. I've been wanting Chatelaine's Embroidered Elegance I for a while and when it finally went on sale I treated myself to the pattern and the kit for my birthday. I started it on January 12th and its a delight even though it's slow going.

I also had a few finishes this month. Mind you, most of the stitching was done last year.

My first finish was Lizzie Kate's A Little Grey Hare. This has sentimental value now. When my dad passed away, I had to pack in a matter of hours and grabbed the first kit I could find that just had everything in it. To keep my mind busy, I stitched on this during the nine days of morning and completed all the stitching. Since I had no beading needle, I had to keep those off and I forgot about it until a couple of weeks ago and I found a beading needle and the beads and finished it off in no time. I'm sending this off to a finisher to be made into a pinkeep like the model. Even though I have the want for stitching, I don't have the brain or energy for finishing work right now.

And I finished my Lizzie Kate Holly & Hearts Mystery Sampler which has been a WIP for a long time. I am glad this one is finished. In retrospect, I think it took me a long time because I prefer traditional christmas colors versus the pastel palate in this sampler. I think I would like it finished as a little quilted table mat in the future. For now, it will hang out with my larger finished projects in the closet.

I also finished a couple of other pieces but one is a surprise and the other I forgot to take a picture of.

I recently bought the new Jolly Happy Soul pattern by With Thy Needle and Thread. I just couldn't resist that cute snowman! The pattern calls for R&R Olde Towne Blend and I knew I had a piece with a project started on it so I could compare the color with fabrics in my stash for Jolly Happy Soul. So off I went looking for that project and unsurfaced my Anniversaries of the Heart. I set it aside due to the over 1 verse in Block 4 and just feeling overwhelmed about how I was even going to go about personalizing the blocks. Seeing it made me fall in love with it all over again so I decided to start Block 5 (Pink Hill Manor). Here is the progress on Block 5
and how it looks as a whole so far.

So this is my blog post for January! I made it! I am hoping to have more finishes in 2016 and will start a journal to keep track of my finishes as things got a little confusing last year.

I hope everyone has had a good start to the new year.

Until next time!


Robin in Virginia said...

Valerie, it was good to see your post this evening! I wish you a joy-filled 2016. Your finishes are lovely as is your WIP. Enjoy your weekend!

Barb said...

I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your father. Things like that put a stop to everything. Your stitching is lovely and I hope you have a much better 2016!

CalamityJr said...

So glad to hear from you and see your beautiful stitching. Love your 2016 attitude; hang in there, and remember that if you need to vent we're here for you. Have a blessed year.

cucki said...

I am so sorry to hear about the passing of your father.
Your stitching is lovely and I hope this new year is a better year for you
Hugs x

Hazel said...

Valerie!! I completely missed your engagement post. Big congrats. Sad to hear of your dad passing and your mum being funny with you. Poor thing. Sending big hugs and I think I'll try and make sure I post at least once a month too. Love your stitching. You've been busy. Xx

Julie said...

Sending {warm hugs}, its always hard to loose a much loved parent. I hope your heart heals and you find that this year brings you comfort and relaxation time.
Lovely stitching you have been doing.

Ann at Beadlework. said...

Lovely to see you posting Valerie. You've been a busy girl:-)
I hope 2016 brings you much happiness.

Stitchinowl said...

It's nice to see you posting again. Thanks for the photos of your lovely stitching. I am sorry you have having issues with your mom. Hopefully, things will smooth out eventually.

Melissa said...

It's great to see your post, Valerie! I am sorry to hear 2015 has been such a stressful year - both the worst (death, estrangement) and the best (engagement, new job)! You know those tests that have to score what has impacted your life? I think you hit the jackpot.

I hope 2016 will bring you a relief from all that stress. I am liking the stitching that you've been doing! All the best for 2016!

Blu said...

It's good to see you again. I'm so sorry for your loss and that 2015 was so bad to you. I hope that this year is much better.

Margaret said...

I'm so sorry to hear of your father's death and your estrangement from your mother. I hope 2016 brings happiness and no more stress or sadness. I love your stitching finishes, and your re-earthed Anniversaries of the Heart looks great!

gracie said...

So nice to read your post. The year is new so on to better times!

Jackie said...

So nice to see you post Val! It looks like you have goals and routines that will feed your soul/help get things in balance.

I'm at the tail end of AotH and really need to pull it out and finish it up! I probably have about 10 hours left.

Sending you a hug and best wishes for a better year!

LoriU said...

So sorry about your dad :-( Our prayer are with you!

Congratulations on your you have a wedding date in mind?

Carol said...

You have had a very stressful 2015, Valerie. I feel like my year was the same, but am hopeful that 2016 will be better in every way--for both of us! We deserve it, right?!

Your stitching is lovely and that little gray hare is so sweet. I need to stitch him before Easter!!

I owe you an email and will try to get one off soon! I seem to be way behind in everything this year!! Haven't even changed my blog header from my January header yet :)

Anonymous said...

Sending you all kinds of good thoughts for 2016!!!

Meari said...

It's been a while since I've been to your blog.

So sorry to hear about your Dad's passing. I know that had to be tough. :( I also know you've helped your parents over the years and find it sad to know your mother was so hurtful towards you. ((hugs))

Your stitching is beautiful. Looking forward to seeing progress on your Chatelaine.

Happy Belated 40th. It's not so bad... really.

Catherine said...

So much went on in 2015! Here's to the new year bringing new things and better experiences! Beautiful stitches!

Kaisievic said...

Valerie, great post. It is so comforting to share your troubles with your blogging friends, I find, and I am so very sorry to hear that there were a lot more downs than ups in 2015 for you. However, 2016 is looking brighter with the fabulous 40s underway and the happy event of your engagement. Lovely stitching and I look forward to watching your new projects grow over the year. lots of hugs, Kaye xxx

Kaisievic said...

P.S. I am sorry, I should have offered my condolences upon the passing of your beloved father, so hard for you, I know, Blessings, Kaye

Kaisievic said...

Valerie, oh dear, I have only just made it to your blog this morning and it is already the end of March! So sorry. Also sorry to hear about the estrangement with your Mum, hopefully, with time, that situation will improve. Glad to see you stitching again - beautiful pieces, that must soothe your soul. How are the wedding plans going? hugs, Kaye