Today we are to “ Introduce [ourselves], [our] projects, and any goals [we] have for the year!”

OK, well, I’m Carol, a retired environmental scientist and community college instructor, who took up stitching in graduate school (in Florida). I started with crewel, began needlepoint when a friend asked me to complete an eyeglass case she had bought, and moved on to cross-stitch while living and working in San Francisco (needlepoint and crewel were too awkward to work on when traveling and I was flying a lot back then; cross-stitch kits were MUCH more portable, at least until I started on BAPs!). I’ve been a cross-stitcher ever since, pretty much limited to white or antique white evenweave and DMC but occasionally branching out to overdyeds (in both fabric and threads). I have taken online needlepoint and freehand stitching classes, and participated in “Take A Stitch Tuesday” for three years. I also do blackwork, which I really love (odd considering how much I dislike backstitching in cross-stitch!).

Other needlecraft that I do are quilting (or at least piecing) and knitting. I joined a quilt guild about 6 years ago and soon became their webmaster… but I haven’t progressed much in the quilting realm, although I did participate in several years of the online Crazy Quilt Journal Project. As a sideline to that, I also participated in several years of the Bead Journal Project, playing with adding beads to fabric, especially to the crazy quilt blocks I was making. I started knitting as an undergraduate (was taught by a roommate my Senior year!) and have knitted off and on (mostly off of late - there is one afghan UFO on my needles that I really need to consider a WIP... ooops) ever since.

Last year was not a successful year for me in stitchery. we were on the road in the south for five weeks in the first three months of the year and when returning, it was hard to get back in the stitchery swing-of-things. Then I broke my wrist in mid-October and have been one-handed ever since. So I’d guess that 2016 was my worst completion year ever! I want to remedy that in 2017 so I decalre this year to be a starting-over, "Get It Done" year.

I have a number of unfinished project: some UFOs, two projects interrupted by the broken wrist, two traveling pieces, and some crazy quilts and beaded pieces that need to be “finish-finished” (I’m not even going to count all the needlepoint and cross-stitch pieces - or that afghan - that have accumulated over the past three decades and need to be framed or turned into pillows or ornaments or…. ). Here is a list of the pieces that I think I will work on getting done this year:

1. “Love Is” by X’s & Ohs (by Jo Gatenby). It was meant to be a Christmas gift to a niece who was married last April and was only half done when I broke my wrist. I would LOVE to have it finished before their first aniversary...

2. “Save the Stitches” by Elizabeth Almond, a blackwork piece that I was half-way through at the beginning of 2016 and haven’t touched since…

3. “Palm Tree Elegance”, a needlepoint kit that is my traveling piece. I last touched it in Louisville, KY in July and it is probably 1/3 done. No road trips planned for this year, though, so it may well sit in it’s bag for all of 2017, untouched.

4. A small cross-stitched piece of Biltmore House that I bought when we were in Asheville, NC back in 2014. It has stalled out since a major frogging back in July of 2014.

5. My 2015 Crazy Quilt/Bead Journal blocks which need to be assembled into a top, backed and bound.

6. My “Take a Stitch Tuesday” journal of stitches (2012, 2013 and 2014) which needs to be assembled into a book…

7. My 2014 Crazy Quilt Journal Project, nine blocks of which are assembled. The remaining three need to be attached and the quilt backed, tied and bound.

8. My 2013 Crazy Quilt Journal Project which needs to be backed, tied and bound.

9. My 2013 Bead Journal Project which needs to be backed, tied and bound (and maybe have the sashing redone as it is a tad wonky!…)

10. A “Chinese Coins” quilt top which needs to be backed, quilted (AAARGH!) and bound…

11. My 2012 Color Palette/Crazy Quilt/Bead Journal Project which needs a hanging sleeve and label

12. My 2011 Bead Journal Project which needs to be assembled into a small book (I have the cover started...).

And, as if this weren't enough (remember, I left out a lot of the longstanding UFOS in my stash), there is the most overwhelming project of all — my craft space! It is a DISASTER! It needs to be totally reorganized and (gasp!) purged. There are threads that need to go back into their respective storage containers; beads, buttons and ribbons likewise. And this doesn’t even begin to account for the growing pile of papercrafting supplies that are over-running my space. I fear that this could mean I won’t get started stitching until well into 2017 but if I don’t start NOW, it won’t get done. I know me… I hate organizing (as my chaotic office can testify — it’s been in disorder since we moved in here in 2003!) and I really have issues with purging! But it has to be done, sooner rather than later, and it is something I can do one-handed… I know, one step at a time, or in this case, one cabinet or table or pile at a time…

So there you have it. My projects and my (probably unattainable) goals for the year…

P.S. I forgot! I have one kitted up Long Dog sampler on order and I have started downloading the patterns for a 12-part mystery band sampler. Both are SALs on a Facebook group I belong to. WHAT was I thinking?