Hello 2017!

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Hello there stranger! It’s been such a long time since my last post!

I didn’t mean to stop blogging. I love my little blog and I love the community I have built up with it over the last 4 years. I’m made some amazing friends and I love looking back at old posts that have captured some wonderful memories. Somehow, life got in the way however, and we drifted apart a little. A lot of the faces have changed since we last caught up, and I’m sad to have lost touch with some of the amazing bloggers I got to know, but with the New Year I am looking forward to a new challenge and meeting some new faces.

2016 was an amazing year for me. I got to travel to San Francisco, Orlando and Seattle. I became an auntie, I changed jobs to become a Business Development Manager. I have thrown myself into voluntary work, including completing my 5th blood donation and spending my Christmas with an isolated elderly person in addition to my weekly volunteering with the Royal Voluntary Service. I also ran three 10k races for Macmillan Cancer Support. Oh, and I discovered a love for geocaching (but more on that later…)

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As you can see, Continue reading

November 2015 Goals

November already! Is anyone else finding they blink and a whole month has gone? We’re getting scarily close to Christmas now! I hope you’ve all had a good few months – sorry I missed my monthly goals again in October! I was only getting round to updating my goals by the middle of the month so I decided to hold off a couple of weeks so that it lined up with the beginning of the month again! Hopefully things will get back on track now! Anyway, here is the summary of how I faired with my September goals, and the goals I am setting for the month of November. Enjoy!

September/October Outcomes:

Once Upon A Time Sampler – I had really hoped to get that banner in but I have been so off cross stitching recently…I think the Barcelona Sunset took it out of me! At the minute I am just about keeping up with the monthly designs (not that it was finished when I took the photo but it is now, I promise!) which isn’t too bad, if the banner has to be added as a late addition then so be it!

November Sampler

Cut Thru’ Caravan – I was really hoping to make serious progress on this over the last few months but since I lost my cross stitch mojo it’s just not got anywhere! Sadly I’ve accepted that it isn’t going to be ready in time for Christmas (it would have been a tight squeeze anyway!) so it has been put to one side for now while I focus on other Christmas gifts and I will complete it for Christmas 2016 instead! Continue reading

September 2015 Goals

Blimey, where are the weeks going??? Once again, we are in the middle of the month before my goals are going up and it’s been four weeks since my last post again! Time seems to be galloping ahead without me at the moment but I’m desperately trying to rein it in and get posts up more frequently! But for the meantime, here are the outcomes of my August goals, and the goals I have set myself for September.

August Outcomes:

Once Upon a Time Sampler – In August my aim was to get the two remaining frames stitched in as well as the design for the month and I completed this so I was thrilled that it is almost up to date! I even managed to make a tiny start on the banner at the top…can you see it? Also, a sneak peek of the September design there too – this month is Black Beauty!

Sampler Edit

Cut Thru’ Caravan – I also managed to finish the page of the Caravan pattern that I was working on! It is coming together nicely but I am starting to realise that meeting my deadline of Christmas doesn’t look likely to happen – especially with all of the other presents I still need to make! Continue reading

The Yorkshire Spoolettes Blogger Meet Up!

Hello! I hope you’ve all had a wonderful week? I know I have because on Wednesday I went to my first ever blogger meet up! When I lived in Hull there didn’t seem to be much of a blogging community, so I was thrilled when I heard that Ali from Thimberlina was arranging a sewing bloggers meet up in Dewsbury…just ten minutes down the road from where I now live!

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And look how many people turned up! At various points throughout the day there was a total of 15 people there which was wonderful! It was great to be introduced to a like minded community of sewers…I learnt a lot from them! In the photo above we have, left to right – Margaret, Katrina, Corrine, Rachel, Amanda, Ali, Jeanie, Katharine, Nee, Me, Fiona and Dee. Not all of the ladies are bloggers but for the ones who are I will link up the blogs below…make sure to check them all out! Continue reading

April 2015 Goals

Hello!

Last month I set myself some monthly goals to try and achieve everything that I wanted to in March. By setting myself the deadline of the end of the month I hoped that I would feel motivated to complete everything on my list to get it all done. Overall it didn’t pan out quite as I had hoped! However, I’m not going to let that put me off setting monthly goals; here I have written a summary of how my March goals worked out (or didn’t!) and what I want to achieve in the month of April. Hopefully although I didn’t get as much done as I was hoping to last month, I will still be able to achieve big things this month!

March Outcomes:

Once Upon A Time Sampler – Last month I set myself the goal of stitching the four remaining frames on the bottom of the sampler. Unfortunately I didn’t get all four done but I did manage two so that it something! Easter Weekend also spurred on my productivity with this project as I dedicated it to stitching this month’s design so I feel like I am off to a good start with this one in April, even though I didn’t manage to do everything I wanted to with it in March.

Storytime Sampler

Barcelona Sunset – Again, I had hoped to get a bit more of this done than I did. You can see from the photo below that I did make progress, but I was hoping to have that big gap in the middle filled in by the end of March! I just really wasn’t in the mood for cross stitching in March for some reason, but I do seem to have been bitten by the bug again the last few days so hopefully April will see a lot more productivity! Continue reading

23 Before 23 – The Review

For those of you who have been with my blog for a while, you will know that for the last few years I have done a challenge every year, setting the same number of goals as the age I will be on my next birthday. Last year I turned 23, so after my 22nd birthday, I set my 23 before 23 goals. As we all know, 2014 was absolute chaos for me, so I didn’t end up dedicating any time to my goals at all! However, I am going to review them all the same, but I’m not expecting any spectacular results!

1. Make a dress – This one is still on the list! I’m ashamed to think of how long I have had the supplies ready and just not made any progress with it! It is a little more tricky now, as never having made clothes before, I want my Mum to help me through the steps to make sure I’m doing everything right (Mum’s know best of course!) but now that I have moved out, we haven’t yet managed to arrange a day when she can come over and help me through it! I’m hoping to get a day arranged soon though so I can make a start on all of the dressmaking projects I have in mind!

2. Complete 10 cross stitch projects – Looking back at this, ten projects was probably rather ambitious! At the beginning of the year I was on a bit of a roll and manage to complete 4 projects, which you can see in my 2014 Project Gallery, and at the end of the year I went on to finish my Once Upon A Time Sampler and my Liberty kit, which can be seen in my 2015 Cross Stitch Projects post. I don’t think I completed anything in between that I haven’t included, so I’m going to say that I managed 6, which I don’t actually think is that bad! This year there is no way I will achieve 10 as the projects I am working on are so big. However, if I can finish all of the projects that I have got planned for this year, I will be very happy to call that an achievement.

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2013 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 29,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 11 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

The Overwhelming Generosity of Bloggers

Through the blogging community I have made some amazing friends. I never expected a global virtual community to feel so close-knit, and yet this is how I have made some of the closest friends that I have! I think it is fascinating to talk to people from around the world and to experience their lives through their eyes, and it is one of the reasons why I love reading (not just writing) blogs.

While being part of the blogging community, I have been very lucky and won some very generous giveaways, but this week I was lucky enough to receive two prizes in the post, not from giveaways but from bloggers who wanted to thank the supporters of their blogs. I am an avid believer that you can’t get without giving, and I dedicate a lot of my time reading and commenting on other blogs, not out of the expectation that they will return the comment (although many do) but out of the belief that blogging is a community. I often strive to find new bloggers who have the same interests as me, and take the time to follow their blog and comment on their posts, because I know how much those first few statistics meant to me and how they motivated me to keep going. I also believe that I still have a lot to learn about blogging, and by reading other blogs, I can pick up a lot of tips and techniques that have helped me shape my blog. Half of the pleasure of blogging is being introduced to new blogs, new people and new ideas, and the advantage of blogging means that you have the opportunity to discuss these ideas with the writers…it’s not an opportunity to be wasted!

So I would like to say thank you to everyone who has supported my blog, whether it has been right from the beginning or if you are a more recent reader. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Angela and Azura Chan who sent me the following gifts:

Cute crafty goodies from Angela

Cute crafty goodies from Angela

An adorable bundle of goodies from Azura Chan

An adorable bundle of goodies from Azura Chan

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Getting Swap-Bot Savvy

As many of you already know, I absolutely love receiving post! So when I saw Wisher’s blog about Swap-Bot and Postcrossing I knew that I had to find out more!

When I first signed up to Swap-Bot, I was a little bit daunted about signing up to swaps. There are three different types of swaps and you receive ratings for your swaps. There is also a lot of swap jargon used that can be incredibly confusing the first time you encounter it! Some of the swaps are also very strict about who can join, requiring a certain rating average or to have completed a certain number of swaps. This was pretty overwhelming and put me off signing up for anything for a while in case I did something wrong, but Wisher wrote a great jargon buster with clear guides as to what everything means. This made me feel a little more comfortable with the instructions the swaps and I soon found plenty to sign up to!

I have now completed 14 swaps on the site! This means that I have sent off my side of 14 swaps that I have taken part in, although I still haven’t received some of the items from my partners yet and some of my 14 still have to reach their destinations.

The first swap that I took part in was the Hello! I’m from…Round #4 swap, which involved sending a bundle of goodies from your city to tell your partner about where you’re from. I still haven’t heard if my parcel has reached its destination yet, but it was a huge package and it is travelling all the way to Canada! So fingers crossed it reaches its new home soon, and similarly, I’m still waiting to receive my package from Alaska! I am looking forward to receiving my collection of 3 postcards, magnet, map, thee bottle caps, local paper, pen/pencil, traditional recipe and flag from so far away though!

The second swap I took part in has been completed though so I have some photos to show you! I wanted to take part in a heart mail art swap but I didn’t have a high enough rating. Luckily, the organiser was kind enough to organise a private swap just between the two of us to help me get my rating up. She picked an owl theme for our mail art and this is what I sent:

Front

Front

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The Big Blog Exchange

I have taken the plunge and signed up for the Big Blog Exchange. The exchange offers the chance for 16 bloggers to swap lives and blogs for ten days. They are only taking sixteen bloggers from all over the world but I am determined to give it my best shot! If you like reading my blog I’d really appreciate it if you could take the time to vote for me here:  http://www.bigblogexchange.org/blog/30001 you only have to enter your email address and click the link in the confirmation email, thanks for the support 🙂

xx