Stitch from Stash – June 2015

Month: June

Spent: $0

Earned: $4

Balance Forward: $81.46 + $25 + $4 = $110.46

June, and the end of SFS-A!  It was a pretty good month for me – I finished this pattern from Plum Street Samplers as a Father’s Day gift for Manly.

From this (at the May checkin)…

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To this!

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Stitch From Stash has been fun for the last six months, but I’m not planning on joining Group B for the rest of the year.  I thought it would be encouraging to have some other stitchers cheering me on, but it’s ended up feeling like just another responsibility that I have to slog through.  I’ve worked through some of my stash, and I have my supplies organized where I can find things easily now, so it’s definitely been beneficial – I’m hoping that carries through to working on more projects during the second half of the year.  Good luck to all the other stitchers!  I hope you have a fantastic Group B session!

Stitch from Stash – May 2015

Month: May

Spent: $12.00

Earned: $0

Balance Forward: $68.46 – $12 + $25 = $81.46

I didn’t do a huge amount of stitching this month – I started this pattern from Plum Street Samplers as a gift for someone.

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I also picked up the colors I was missing for this Princess pattern from Tiny Modernist.  I haven’t started stitching yet, but that’s on tap for this weekend.

The BIG thing I did this month was to finally sit down and take stock of all my DMC stash.  I had reached the point where I had skeins of thread in my project folder, in my drawers, in my thread holders, in a big plastic ziplock bag, in my jewelry box … you get the idea.  I sat down with a DMC Shopper’s checklist and slowly sorted through everything, put multiples into thread binders, put singles onto Stitchbow holders and in a three-ring binder, culled out some really old Anchor skeins that don’t match the current DMC color numbers, and then put everything in numerical order.  It took hours – way longer than I expected, but at least it’s DONE now, and I have an inventory of what I do and do not have for future products.  Organizing for the win!

Stitch from Stash – April 2015

Month: April

Spent: $0

Earned: $0

Balance Forward: $68.46

In April, I did not pick up a needle and thread, not even once.  And because of that, I don’t feel like I even earned my allowance.  So nothing spent, nothing earned – my balance for May will remain the same as what I started out with in April.

It was just one of those busy months – we hosted Easter dinner for our family, then had an unexpected death and had even more family in from out of town for that, then a 1st birthday party for Finale, then a 1st birthday party the following weekend for a friend, and now this weekend is M’s birthday.  I feel like I’ve been running around trying to vacuum and keep the bathrooms clean in every spare moment!

April Moon, Day 13: Sometimes I wonder

… if I will ever grow up.

… if I ever want to grow up.

… if I’ll ever run an entire 5k.

… if I’ll ever see a healthy weight on the scale.

… if I’ll ever stop crying over my kids growing up.

… if I’m a good enough parent.

… if I’ll ever get a full 8 hours sleep again.

… if I’ll ever find that missing sock.

… if I should go back and finish my Ph.D.

… if I should have gone into accounting in college.

… if I am spending my life doing something that is worthwhile.

… if I should call out of work and spend the afternoon sunbathing.

… if better camera lenses would improve my photography.

… if I’m going to get old and regret it.

… if I spend too much money that I should be saving for retirement.

… if we’re all just faking it.

April Moon, Day 12: My favorite part of the day.

I can’t decide, really, whether my favorite part of the day is my drive into work, or right now, the magic hour between the kids’ bedtime and mine.

The drive into work is my time.  Absolutely silent, no radio, no one talking, no noise except the air outside the car window.  The sun is up and shining but the world is still fresh and damp as the night lifts away and hands over time to the light.  I have my coffee, I’ve had my shower, and the hours stretch before me filled with possibility.  My hair and makeup are done, and my clothes are sill fresh and crisp.  I have a gorgeous commute – I pass through a poplar forest at the edge of a river where the water is still and swampy and I’m technically on a bridge, although it feels like it’s just a raised roadbed.  Right now, the tree trunks are still stark grey against the dark water and it feels like watching a herd of zebras, the light making the trees and shadows into a swirling tangle of stripes.  The leaves have just started to bud out, the lightest cake frosting of lime green touching the tips of the branches overhead.  The summer is actually the time I think is the least pretty – with all the green all around, the trees blend back into the forest, just more branches in the tangled underbrush.  But in the fall – Oh!  in the fall! – those leaves blaze out into the most amazing yellow and it takes my breath away as I drive in and then back out in the afternoon.  Forget flowers – they are pitiful imitations of the color that those trees put forth in their glory.

On the flip side, I have my time now, here at the end of the day, at the end of all things.  The errands have been run, we’ve battled our way through dinner, the dishes are washed, the kids bathed and storied and nursed and tucked in and finally asleep, I have my last cup of reheated coffee from the morning’s pot going cold again in front of me as I type, and I have my own bed beckoning from upstairs.  We’ve worked out a sleep schedule (finally) that allows me more than a few consecutive hours.  Baby gets nursed/bottled/rocked/patted/whateverittakesdon’tjudgememan to sleep on the couch, and she hangs out with Manly until he comes to bed around midnight-ish.  At that point, he handles last diaper change and a final bedtime bottle.  I go to bed earlier and have a couple hours of blessed alone sleeping time (i.e., no one is kicking me in the face touching me), and then I usually get another few hours before she wants to nurse early morning.  Or before Smaller wakes up to pee and then starts yelling for me to come turn her bedtime music back on and wakes me up anyway.  Or before Mini can’t breathe from miserable allergies and wakes up needing a drink and medicine.  Or someone pees their bed, or their diaper, and I have to deal with it.  After that I may or may not get up and work out or stay in bed and desperately try to will myself back to sleep before my alarm goes off.  Off-tangent — tl;dr, my sleep still sucks most nights.  But right now, I’m okay.  I’m still hopeful that TONIGHT will be the night everyone sleeps through and therefore I will be able to sleep through.  One day, it WILL happen.  But I’m relaxed and I’m happy and it’s a good hour.

How can I choose?  I think it’s a good thing that I have multiple favorite parts of the day.  I haven’t even touched on that first blessed cup of coffee with milk and cream in the morning.  Or my running time.  Or the feeling when all three kids come running when they hear the door open when I get home at night.  All those moments are fantastic in their own ways.  I can’t pick one favorite without implying that the others are not as good, and that simply isn’t true.

I love my life.

April Moon, Day 11: Trying not to talk about it.

There’s this thing about blogging with prompts – no matter what the prompt is, your mind goes straight to whatever is bothering you the most at the moment.  So despite trying not to talk about it, here I am, talking about it.

  • We had a death in the family last week, someone I was not close to, but whose funeral required the presence of Manly’s entire extended family.  We ended up hosting some people at our house, and spending the majority of the weekend with guests.  Which is all fine and good, except I really didn’t have the time right now to shoehorn those obligations into my rather crowded schedule.  And honestly, I’m a bit resentful at the deceased (whom I was not fond of anyway) for interfering with my life.  That doesn’t make me feel good about myself.
  • The baby turns one next week.  It hit me that after that, I will never have another baby in my house.  She’s the last one.  And that makes me very sad, although I know that NOT having another baby is the right decision for my family and for me.  The internal conflict doesn’t make me feel very good.
  • Shark week started today, and my scale is up 7 pounds from where I want it to be.  The Bad Voice in my mind is telling me how worthless I am and how I’ll never lose the last few pounds because I’m a fat cow who prefers easter chocolates over starving. I know it is temporary, but it doesn’t make me feel good about myself and I’m struggling with self-love right now.
  • My mother called and told me they might not make it to the baby’s birthday party because of my father’s *thinghehastodo.*  Except, I scheduled the party SPECIFICALLY around my father’s work schedule so that he could attend.  It makes me so ANGRY because the thinghehastodo is a consequence of one of his hobbies.  And he refuses to see that this thing is a CHOICE that he is choosing to prioritize it over his grandchildren.  I feel like my dad has always chosen to put his desires in front of me and it hurts that he’s doing it all over again with my kids.  So now I have to deal with my own hurt, and set it aside at the same time to help them deal with theirs.  It makes me so angry because not only does he do this, he guilts my mother into (a) choosing to stay with him rather than travel here by herself and (b) calling to tell me rather than talking to me himself.  Manly says I should confront him about it, but there’s really no point.  He views himself as the most important person in the relationship and it’s only what he thinks/feels/says that matters, not anything about how his actions affect me.  Of course, I’ve been crying, so I have puffy post-ugly-cry eyes and a sinus headache to top off the emotional hurt now too.

There you go.  I’m a hot mess of hurt feelings in a shame spiral right now.  Not talking about it anymore.

April Moon, Day 6: Thunder

When I hear thunder overhead, I think of rain.

Summer rain, not winter.

The wind whipping the clouds along, pushing them, riding them in while we scramble to push lawn chairs and plastic balls into the shed before they blow away.

Warm, fat, heavy drops hammering my head and shoulders as I run between the car and the house.

Sitting in the car, in the house, in the office watching the droplets roll down the windows outside.

Canadian geese on the pond preening and washing in the sudden shower.

The wooden slats of the front porch swing at my godmothers’ house where we pushed off, back and forth, laughter and stories spilling out for an hour while we waited for the clouds to clear.

Thick, silken, humid air afterwards, wet enough to dampen your clothes even if you stayed out of the downpour.

The pinging of the tin roof at the old home place across the road from the farm (at my own house, the metal vent leading down to the kitchen stove).

The squish of my toes in the muddy earth after it’s over, the earthworms wriggling away from me back down into their tunnel homes.

And the sudden golden break of the sun back through the clouds after it’s all over.