Friday, March 1, 2013

Go Outside & Play

At some point in the last year or so, this image crossed my path on the internets:
go outside & play
found through this blog
I really like it, because it is something I frequently want and need to do.  Having come across it over the last year, it was particularly something I wanted to do while in the midst of grad school. The message is also quite relevant to my grad school studies, so I was feeling especially attached to it, and felt the need to somehow recreate it.

For some unknown reason, the first thing that popped into my mind was "I could cross-stitch that!"

Um, really? Because the last time I cross-stitched something I think I was in junior high. It was a Maine-inspired triptych. Puffin, pot buoy, and . . . something else . . . a pine tree? Lobster? Who knows. Regardless, I needed to cross stitch this. Or something close to it.

It is somewhat detailed and I knew I wouldn't have the time or patience for a lot of detail. I was in grad school, and teaching - I barely had time for the dog, let alone embarking on such an ambitious project as cross-stitching a whimsical print I had found on the internet. Yet, it apparently needed to happen. So I pulled out my trusty graph paper and plotted my version, picked up the appropriate materials at Jo-Ann's, took a standard "before" photo . . .
graph paper -
my saving grace in plotting knitting and cross-stitch patterns
requisite materials: embroidery hoop, cross-stitch fabric,
assorted embroidery floss, wicked sharp needles.
and promptly stuffed everything in a bag for later because who was I kidding, I really did not have time for it.

That's a lie.

I ambitiously started it in late spring, and periodically worked on it in the few weeks between the end of the school year and my three-week grad school stint in Boston ("city grad-camp"), then again before school started. It did, however, spend more time stuffed in a bag than not. But by late fall I knew I had to finish the dang thing. Which was ideal an ideal time to finish it, because this was also when I was winding things down with my final semester of grad school, and I clearly wasn't busy at all, writing an action research report and preparing a presentation of my research.

But, lo and behold, it got done.
I rallied after Christmas to finish the cross-stitch, and earlier in February I finished it by stretching the fabric over an 8x8 inch canvas, stapling it down against the wooden frame, and using some wide ribbon to hang it with.

I now wake up to this every morning, hanging on the wall at the end of my bed. A gentle reminder of one of the important things in life.

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