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

August 2015 Goals

So sorry I’ve been MIA for a few weeks now! July turned out to be a really stressful month in the end and unfortunately something had to give to help me maintain my sanity (or what I had left of it anyway!) Blogging just wasn’t a priority for me while I had so many other things demanding my attention but luckily I now seem to be getting myself back on track. As always, while I was on my blogging summer break I have been busy with all sorts of things that I have ready to share with you! But for now, I’ll recap on those goals I set way back at the beginning of June! Plus I have risked setting some goals for the remaining two weeks of August (when did it get to the middle of August???) so we will see how I get on with those this month…

June/July Outcomes:

Once Upon a Time Sampler – This one was a success! I managed to get the frames for June and July filled in with no problems…it stitched up really quickly! I do love working on the little design each month to give me a break from my bigger projects!

Barcelona Sunset – My aim for June was to finish stitching the lizard (achieved!) and to stitch half of the wall (not achieved.) However, although I didn’t get the wall stitched in, I did make a start on the backstitch. I know, I always go on about how much I hate backstitch! But in comparison to stitching the solid grey mass of the wall, backstitch seemed favourable! I have completed three quarters of the backstich for the whole project now which is really spurring me one! So I didn’t completely achieve the goal in June, but I did beat my overall target for the project (to finish by the end of August) by finishing it at the end of July! I never thought I’d see the end of it but I am thrilled with the result!

Goals 1

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June 2015 Goals

Hello!

I hope you’re all doing well 🙂 I can’t believe June is here already! Where is 2015 going??? Almost half way there already! Anyway, here is the roundup of my May goals so you can see how I did, as well as my goal setting for June – these lists seem to be growing and growing!

May Outcomes:

Once Upon a Time Sampler – In May my aim was just to fill in the square for that month and I managed that without any problems. I seem to fly through these at the beginning of each month then it gets shelved and almost forgotten until the next month comes round! It’s a shame because it is such a lovely project and I do want to dedicate more time to it to get all of the extra elements in but until the Barcelona Sunset is out of the way it will have to wait!

Storytime Sampler

Barcelona Sunset – This month I wasn’t too far off my goal. I still had some of the third quarter to finish off which I did, then I wanted to complete half of the next quarter. Ideally, I wanted to get the lizard stitched in so that I just had the big grey wall at the bottom to finish off this month. I didn’t quite make it there due to illness and various other things taking up my time in May, however, I’m really pleased with what I achieved. If I hadn’t been full of cold for the last five days I would have managed to fill in that grey section that I’m working on, and I would have felt satisfied with that, but I’m prepared to let it go because I still feel rubbish! Continue reading

May 2015 Goals

Hello!

A little later than anticipated but here is my round up of my April goals and how I did! Also, goal setting for May too!

April Outcomes:

Once Upon a Time Sampler – No progress on this one sadly! I didn’t manage to get those last two frames in because I was spending all of my time working on my Barcelona Sunset as that is my priority right now. I am staying with my parents this weekend though so I am packing my sampler with me since I obviously can’t work on my Mum’s present! I have saved this month’s design to stitch while I am here but if I get that done before the end of the weekend I might have time to add a frame too.

Storytime Sampler

Barcelona Sunset – I am so close to finishing this quarter right now! i just have a block of grey across the bottom that no matter how much I stitch it just doesn’t seem to get any smaller! However, I should be on track to finish this quarter by the end of next week at the very latest (since I am losing this weekend!) so then I’ll be ready to tackle the final one. 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

15 Lists for 2015

Recently I posted my 23 Before 23 Review, and I did promise you that I would share how I have set my goals for 2015. This year I chose a different method for coming up with my goals for the year. For the last two years I have used my birthday in December to mark the start and end of my yearly challenge, with my 22 before 22 and 23 before 23. I do love this way of setting goals, and having a birthday in December helps since it pretty much runs on a calendar year anyway! However, last year was so chaotic that I found my 23 before 23 challenge was neglected, and it didn’t really work for me when I had so much else going on.

Being someone who lives their life by lists (goals, to do lists, shopping lists…) when 2015 was approaching I once again turned my thoughts how I was going to measure my annual aims and achievements. While I do love the ‘x before x’ idea, having a set number of goals in a very specific time frame (i.e. from one birthday to the next) ended up feeling like a competition against myself to get them finished, and in the final few months/weeks before the deadline I seemed to try and race through as many as possible just to get them crossed off the list, rather than doing them for fun, which is obviously the idea in the first place! 2015 is definitely going to be far less chaotic for me, so it would probably have proved a successful year had I done a 24 before 24 challenge, but I have decided to do something a bit different instead. Continue reading

March 2015 Goals

Writing my 23 Before 23 Review last week has got me motivated to set some goals for myself. I’m the kind of person who works much better if I have a deadline and I am super productive if I set myself a challenge. I have set myself some long term goals to achieve this year which I will blog about shortly, but I have also decided to set myself some shorter monthly goals too. These monthly goals will sometimes be ones that help the general progress towards my long term goals, or will otherwise just be shorter goals or jobs that I want to complete before the end of the month. I have tried to pick a range of goals from different areas of my life such as crafts, reading, fitness and blogging, to help inspire me to achieve everything that I want to achieve by breaking it down to regular milestones each month.

Crafts:

Once Upon A Time Sampler – So far I have been making good progress with my sampler and keeping up with each month well. This month I want to stay on track and complete the design, I also want to add the bottom row of 4 frames which I am still yet to add. So far I have stitched the first 8 frames, so if I can add the last of the frames this month, it only leaves me the banner at the top to complete at a later date ,then I am definitely on track to complete each design per month! If I can keep up with my plans, this will be the first year that I don’t have to play catch up…fingers crossed anyway!

Once Upon A Time Sampler

Barcelona Sunset – February was a good month for this project! I have been working on a ‘2 month’ basis for each quarter of the project, meaning that I had given myself February and March to get to the half way point. Luckily though, the quarter that I chose to do featured a lot of the sky, and as this feature large blocks of the same colour, as well as some blank areas, it stitched up a lot quicker than expected. This meant that I flew through this quarter in only one month! I was thrilled to watch the progress but the project is starting to take its toll now. I’m struggling to find the motivation to press on with this project, and as the remaining half features a lot of colourful areas that will require a lot of colour changes I know that progress will be slow. However, I don’t want it to go on the back burner since I am working to such a tight deadline, so this month I just want to complete half of the next section to feel satisfied. Continue reading

2015 Reading Challenge

Hello!

As you might remember from my 23 Before 23 Review, I mentioned that I had committed myself to a reading challenge with some of my colleagues from work. My colleague Marie spotted the Popsugar 2015 Reading Challenge on Pinterest before the new year and decided that she was taking part, and from then on the number has grown across our office of people getting involved. I wanted to sign up to the challenge initially because I had got out of the habit of reading. I have a pretty reasonable commute to work (averaging around 45 minutes each way but can be well over an hour depending on traffic) and shortly after I started work I put this time to good use by reading. I got so into reading on the bus that I managed to fly through 7 books in 2 weeks but then as the mornings and nights grew ever darker I just felt sleepy on the journey and couldn’t really pick myself up enough to read. Since taking on the challenge though, I am getting back into the routine of reading on the bus once again and I am (slowly) making a dent in the massive backlog of books that I have to read!

Here is the list of criteria for the challenge, and I have highlighted those that I have been successful in fulfilling so far:

Reading Challenge update 1

Click image for source

I have made the decision to only count one book for each of the criteria (meaning that I have 50 books to read to complete the challenge!) whereas some people have opted to tick off all of the criteria that their book meets. To me this feels a little like cheating myself to do it this way, so I’m playing hard and fast by my rule! I have allowed myself to relax a little bit about the seriousness of the challenge though. Usually, if I set myself a goal I will work at it no end until I achieve it, but I fear that this may take the fun out of the challenge so I am approaching it with a relaxed plan, and my challenge is not to cross all of the books of in 2015, but to see how many I can cross off in 2015. I don’t want to force myself to read books for the sake of them, so I am using this as a checklist to manage my attack on the book collection that I already own as an excuse to get some reading done! And any that I don’t cross off in 2015? They’ll simply roll over into 2016 instead!

As you can see from the image above, so far I have managed to tick two of the criteria off the list and I am working my way through my third. The first book that I read was The Winter Book by Tove Jansson, meeting the criteria of ‘A book that was originally written in a different language’ as it was first published in Swedish. It is a collection of short stories for adults spanning the whole of her adult fiction writing career, from her first collection The Sculptor’s Daughter, published in 1968 to seven of her later short stories, the latest dated 1996.  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.

mothers-day-card

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