Thursday, May 16, 2013


I have not blogged in a long time and I do not have a real reason.  I could always blame it on time and filling my time with other things than doing house projects.  House projects are what launched me into the world of reading blogs.  4 1/2 years ago I bought a 80+ year old house and learned how to do most if not all the work from the internet in the form of blogs, how-tos and youtube.  What would I have done if less than 15 years before?  In the begging (first 4 months) I had constant projects and things to do simply to make the house "live-able".  As it often happens the projects slowly decreased and eventually almost stopped.  Lots of things happened between then and now, including finishing graduate school.  Meeting my boyfriend, a new job, a new car and many trips.  The only constant was continuing to look for ways to make myself happy.  Key phrase "make myself happy, not "be happy".

Over the last 6 months I have focused a lot of my free time on working out and fitness.  A little back story...about 6 months ago my friend told me about a workout plan she has been and told me there was a Groupon so I should come try.  It was basically an all women's bootcamp.  It is for all fitness levels so it feels accessible, but it is definitely hard.  I could not walk for the first week and would not have made it through without the moral support of my friend. 

The class (yes that is what I call it because there are no workout machines) has new sessions every 5-6 weeks.  No workout is the same and nutritional goals change all the time.  For the first 5 weeks I did the program I did not change my diet at all.  I lost a couple pounds, but nothing noticeable.  The next session was my first BRIK, which is the most intense phase of the program.  It involves being weighed and measures, completing periodic fitness tests and having a coach review your food journal.  This is where I saw big results and became hooked. 

With so many thing in life we cannot control and frustrations at work growing it was so nice to have an outlet.  I must say that I never believed in working out relieving stress, but now I realized I was just doing the wrong workout.  Running/walking or elliptical just leaves you time to think.  With my current workout I have no time to think, I have to focus on instruction to keep up and just survive.

I though I should do a before and after even though I am pretty early on in the process.

And here is the progress I have made so far.

I doubt anyone is really reading this blog because I don't update very often and it has become pretty random, but I am changing directions.  I am going to start to write about daily life and whatever that entails as an outlet.  No one's life is completely one-sided and at this point I don't have enough DIY in my life to make a DIY blog float.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Cross stitch present 2012

If you go back through you will notice that I have made a couple cross stitch projects for my boyfriend's mom.  This year is no different, except for the fact that it is not Lady Vols themed. 

I was at Hobby lobby and saw the most amazing thing...a modern use for cross stitch.  TANGENT ALERT.  I love the activity of cross stitiching but most premade patterns are a little grannyish for my taste and house.  I end up making gifts and Christmas decorations. TANGENT OVER!  Hobby Lobby carries a cross stitch make up bag kit.  Perfect!

I chose the bird makeup bag in the middle, the one on the lower right is the size of a coin purse.  The project is printed cross stitch and the makeup bag is already sewn.  You are able to unzip the bag and lay it flat to do the stitching (I wish I had taken a picture).

I always stitch with the lightest color first and work my way darker, unless there is a lot of white fill in and then I just do that at the end.  I work with the light color first because colors often bleed and the white stays whiter if it is used first.  Here is the first progress picture:

In hindsight you can kinda see how the case opens.  I stitched all the white flowers first.  In the beginning the stitching went pretty fast because it was printed and I did not have to spend as much time referring to the pattern.  I will say that I did use the picture on the cover to guide me when I was not sure about the printing on the canvas.

I completed all the white flowers and then started on the background.

I decided to not use the red thread included in the kit and opted for a sky blue instead.  I thought it was nice to have a sky background.  As a result of the change in threat color I decided to use a full cross stitch instead of the half stitch the kit suggested.

Here is the final progress shot:

I am a bad blogger and never took a full after shot.  The pic above does not have the black stitching and as a result you can see a little bit of red.  I promise that was all covered up in the end.  I also finished the inside of the bag with self adhesive felt.  I wanted to finish the interior to make sure that pulling items in and out of the bag would not affect the stitching.

My boyfriend's mom love the present and because she stitches as well she appreciated all the work that went into it.

Monday, January 14, 2013

It has been a long time.....

I am on the verge of abandoning this old  blog. (It is not that old, I am just lame.)  I have been doing lots of projects mostly for Christmas gifts so I did not want to post them or had not finished them before Christmas.  Additionally I have started a boot camp class that meets 5 days a week and kicks my butt so little is accomplished after it.  It is hard and takes up a lot of time but is definitely a worthwhile activity.

This is just a compiling of all the crappy iphone pictures I took in the process.  I am lame!

The first project was Coors Light ornaments for my uncle.  We decided to exchange ornaments at Thanksgiving after drawing names.  I should explain that he very much enjoys Coors Light and these were made to be cute and funny.  Here are the various attempts.

I also made a Patriots fleece blanket for my boyfriend's brother.  Now after pictures, but here is a during late in the evening.

I will post a couple more in the next few days.  The pictures and extent of documentation will be similar to this.  I am lame and keeping it real.