With everything that's going on...

I just can't keep up!

Of course it doesn't help that we have all been sick. Really sick. Sick enough that Justin's mother had to come and help out for a couple of days. Especially me and Aislin. We have spent the last two weekends in bed, coughing and basically dying. We had to take Aislin to the hospital this weekend too, as she was running a fever of 102 degrees.

I started back to school full time also. Even though my classes aren't as demanding as I feared, it still takes some time to study and keep up with everything. I'm still teaching two classes in addition to school and kids and house and husband. I'm pretty tired.

I guess I should update about the county fair last month. I placed first with TW's Knotwork Bookmark, Crossed Wing's Cardinal, Paw Printing's Queen Anne's Lace, Christmas Ornament 2004, and the Whiskey Creek Ink box that I made for my mother. I placed second with Just Nan's Winter Blues, TW's Jeanne Love's Angel, a beaded ornament, and a purple and silver bracelet. Not bad for my first fair! And I finally have some things framed that I can hang around my house!

I did manage to finish another project for my mother. It's called "Marilyn's Garden" (see sidebar under recently finished) and it will be her Christmas present this year. Yep, her name's Marilyn.

I hope to finish a few more WIP's because, frankly, I'm sick of looking at them. It really does feel good to finish things that have been sitting around yelling at me. I try to give them all some attention, but having so many projects going really limits the time I can spend on each one. Maybe I should pull them all out and put them in order as to the time it will take to finish each one. Then I'll start with the ones closest to being finished. Then again, not many stitching goals I put together come to fruition.

Finally, I need to catch up on SBQOTW. That's one thing that I really need to keep up with. Anyway, here goes...

For September 7th: Which way do you stitch (/// and then \\\ or \\\ and then ///)? Can you (or if you haven’t done it before, do you think you could) change the way that you stitch temporarily if it is asked of you?

I learned to stitch from my mother when I was 13, and have always stitched /// then \\\. It's as natural to me as driving or breathing. I don't think I would have any problems switching, it would just take some thinking and conscious effort on my part to keep it going. Otherwise, I would probably switch back to the way I naturally stitch.

For August 31st: What do you use to hold your fabric while you stitch? A hoop, a Q-Snap, a scroll frame, something else, or do you stitch in hand? Have you always used just the one thing or have you tried one or more of the others? Which do you like best? Why?

I started stitching with a hoop, and used that method for years. Until I discovered scroll frames. I always hated to rings and the squished stitches that the hoops left, and it takes a lot of time to iron them out. Most times they don't come all the way out. But scroll frames leaves a lot more stitching area exposed, and I can move from one section to another pretty easily. Plus the stitches stay put and there is relatively little ironing to do on a finished piece. I still use a hoop on smaller things, like ornaments though. I guess old habits are hard to break.

For August 24th: What’s the largest project you’ve ever done? What’s the smallest?

The largest project I've done is my sister and brother-in-law's Wedding Sampler by TW. It took a year of constant stitching and, even though it's 8" x 10", it's a huge project for me.

The smallest project I've ever done was a little saying "Cross stitcher at work, Do not disturb." It was done over 1 with just backstitching and it's so tiny that I'm going to make it into an ornament. I hope to make it bigger one day, to hang on my craft room door.

For August 18th: How often do you wash your fabric for each project? Do you wait until the very end until to wash it or do you wash it more than once?

Honestly, I don't normally wash my fabric. Not even finished pieces. Since most of the floss is cotton, I'm worried it will shrink or bleed. I did wash a bunch of older pieces in the washer on delicate, and they turned out fine. They were so dirty from sitting around for so many years that they really needed it. But otherwise, no I don't wash them because I'm very careful to keep my hands clean and handle the piece carefully.

I guess that's it for today. Aislin is crying in her bed. Poor baby is still not feeling well.

She needs her Mommy. But then...

...who doesn't?

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