Monday, March 31, 2014

ALYoF - March Finish!

Woohoo!  Another month, another last minute finish for A Lovely Year of Finishes.  I posted about my March goal over here (Link # 31), and man oh I glad that I was able to achieve a fully finished quilt from a handful of blocks!   I'm in love with everything in this here goes:



(I'm so head over heels for that backing fabric!!  must get more!)

And now it's already in the washer getting scrubbed up so that it can be used!

Pattern - Movement in Squares by Wendy Sheppard
Fabric - Joel Dewberry Notting Hill, Kona Solids (white, grey, pink, orange), backing fabric - Ludovika from Ikea
Batting - Soft n' Crafty
Thread - Piecing: Gutterman; Quilting: Aurifil

Friday, March 28, 2014

today I shall quilt...

and tomorrow...and probably Sunday too!  It's getting pretty close to the end of the month ( 3 days left!) and I need to do some serious stitching in the next few days to finish up my March ALYoF project!  About 2 weeks ago I had reached this point:

and now I need to get borders on, backing finished, and then get it based and quilted and then bound!  By the end of the day on Monday...woohoo! 

and once I have that quilt in a good spot...I've finally decided how I want to finish my X Plus I'm going to take this:

and add borders and the same stuff as the quilt above...hopefully I'll be quilting this one by Sunday!

and if I figure out a backing fabric...I do have this one I could get finished up as well:

and then...if all else fails, I do have this stack:

to work on from the quilt I started on Tuesday.

So today...I shall quilt...unless I decide to piece..and then tomorrow I shall quilt!

Wednesday, March 26, 2014

Wellness Wednesday...Ep. 8

Welcome to recovery week!  Before I get to talking about my recovery week plans...let's revisit last week: 
  • Wednesday: Rest Rest
  • Thursday: Rest Rest
  • Friday: Rest Rest
  • Saturday: 13.1 miles Half marathon! (recap here)
  • Sunday: Yoga for Runners Rest
  • Monday: Rest Rest
  • Tuesday: Yoga for Runners

  • Well...I have a bit of good news.  Made it to the doctor on Monday and had x-rays done of my foot and ankle...and no stress fracture!  He thinks the normal routine of Rest, Ice, Elevation...the usual...will help.  I also got some stuff for my zombie toe.  So it looks like (hopefully) when this recovery week is over, I should be able to resume some running!  Now...on to what the rest of this recovery week will look like (hopefully):
    • Wednesday: Rest
    • Thursday: 30 mins bike
    • Friday: 20 min walk
    • Saturday: 30 mins bike
    • Sunday: 2-3 mile run
    • Monday: Rest
    • Tuesday: 2-3 mile run

    I'm really trying to decide what direction to move in my next half isn't until I want to work on shorter distances and really work on incorporating a mix of cross training.  I figure I won't make any real plans until after I can actually start running hopefully Sunday!

    Tuesday, March 25, 2014

    12 hours...

    I took today off from work...I need to stay off my feet (that's the main excuse I'm using) but I also just need a day to recharge my batteries...and thankfully for me...I have nothing on my work schedule until I plan to relax and sew and do whatever I want for the next 12 hours (give or take...the family might want some attention at some point!).  I already have an easy to put together dinner off I go!  I'll update here periodically to see what I accomplish!

    4:45 pm update:

    piecing along! (no pic right now)

    12:15 pm update:

    I'm enjoying myself so far!  I've decided to work on whatever I want, not necessarily anything that "needs" to be I pulled out my layer cake of Shelburne Falls (Denyse Schmidt) and some other pieces to coordinate (a lot of DS Quilts) and using the pattern Lazy Sunday Quilt from May Chappell:

    I got to cutting:

    and now I'm going to take a bit of a break, get off my feet, and maybe do a bit of hand stitching...and then head back upstairs later this afternoons to start piecing this one together!

    9:10 am update:

    I started with my cargo duffle that I've been working with off and on over the past week or so, first I had to fix the pocket flaps...not sure what I was thinking, but I positioned them incorrectly...(correct position on left):

    and then I put it all together (assembly of this thing is pretty easy once you get the major pieces constructed):

    Details: Pattern - Cargo Duffle by Anna Graham of Noodlehead; Fabric - Juliana Horner; Canvas - home decor fabric from Joanns; Interfacing - Pellon SF101, 987F (fusible fleece) and 808 Craft Fuse; Thread - Mettler; Zipper - Coats Coverall Zipper

    Monday, March 24, 2014

    Newberry Half Marathon Recap and future plans...

    Wow, 2 days later and I'm still trying to put it all together in my mind.  So I figure I'll just dive in...

    The race was held Saturday morning in Newberry, SC.  The pre-race was typical of just about any other race...there were a few options for packet pick-up, so I picked mine up Friday evening in Newberry.  It was a nice drive out and I saw a good chunk of the course, so all was good.  After we got home and ate dinner, I laid out all of my race stuff per my usual routine:

    and tried to get some sleep.  I was up around 5:15 the next morning and ate, drank some more water and got ready to go.  Once we got to the actual starting location, I started to feel a bit nervous.  Thankfully I ran into a friend of mine who was running her first half, so I had someone to chat with before the race started:

    Right at 8:00 we were off!  There were just over 300 people registered, and it was a good turn out.  I started out really really's been taking me a while to get good and warmed up the past few long runs, so I wanted to make sure my legs were feeling good early on.  Unfortunately by going out slow, I made myself a bit nervous and overanxious because I was at the tale end of the runners.  I had to really take a few minutes to remind myself that I was in it for the long haul, and that it was too early in to be worried about time and where I would finish.  Once I got over that and got warmed up, I was doing pretty good.  I passed a few people, played leap frog with some others, and pretty much stayed with the same couple of runners for the duration of the race.  The course was really pretty, lots of good scenery, the race organizers did a good job setting up aid stations, marking the course, and in the general set up.  I will say, I thought the course was going to be a bit flatter, it felt like all I was doing was running up and then down hills.  Of course, the true hill was saved until the very end...around mile 12...a nice, long hill, massive climb...I walked it.  There was zero chance I was going to run it that late into the race.  Thankfully once you got to the top, there was a pretty continuous down slope to the finish.  I was really glad to see my family and friends at the finish line, made the whole thing worth it! 

    Now...I finished faster than my first half marathon, so I set a new PR for it (and bonus...a new PR for the 10K distance as well!), but I finished at least 10 minutes slower than I thought I would.  I was a bit disappointed in that.  Actually...I was a lot disappointed.  I know I shouldn't be, and I am incredibly proud of myself for going out and running it as well as I did...but in the end...I just wish I had finished a little better.  I would 100% run this race again, and I hope they do it again next year.  It was a really good experience!

    Future plans...I have already signed up for a fall half marathon (Rock n'Roll Savannah), so I have a few months before I even need to really think too hard about that one.  There are a few shorter races I'm thinking about signing up for in between.  But I have a few issues to work out first...the top one being I need to heal up some!  My lovely toe problem (now referring to it as my zombie toe) hasn't really gone away, so need to get that taken care of.  In addition to that, I think I'm suffering from some tendinitis in my other foot, and it is incredibly I'm actually going to bite the bullet and visit the doc.  We'll see how that goes.  And last...the training plan/program that I've used for both my half marathons is missing something.  I have improved, my pace is getting better, and I recover faster from long runs...but something just feels like it is missing.  Now...this could be because I haven't been the greatest on keeping up with my cross training and diet.  So that's something I will be working to improve.  I'm going to peek around a bit and see if I can't find either a different program, or some additional cross training options.  And I really really really need to reverse some of my negative food trends!  Lots of stuff to think about!

    Wednesday, March 19, 2014

    Wellness Wednesday...Ep. 7

    I am now just 72 hours away from my half marathon!  My brain is in overload here, so let's just dig in to the plan and what I did:
    • Wednesday: 30 mins bike 30 mins bike
    • Thursday: 3-4 mile run 3.6 miles run on treadmill
    • Friday: 30 mins bike Rest
    • Saturday: 6 mile run 6 mile run
    • Sunday: Rest, maybe some yoga Rest
    • Monday: 2-3 mile run Rest
    • Tuesday: Rest 2.7 miles on treadmill, a lot of walking
    The last runs I did were quite the mixed bag.  The Thursday run was great, but I may have overdid it speed wise because come Saturday's run, my legs were just kinda meh.  And yesterday's run was terrible!  I'm hoping that I've got the bad runs out of my system and will be fine on Saturday.  It's now a mental game...every little "owie" feels magnafied in my brain, my legs feel like lead...and I'm just plain tired.  A lot of this is nerves, and I remember feeling similarly before my first half last fall.  So I just have to hang in there and rest up, eat right and hydrate!  On to this week's plan:
    • Wednesday: Rest
    • Thursday: Rest
    • Friday: Rest
    • Saturday: 13.1 miles
    • Sunday: Yoga for Runners
    • Monday: Rest
    • Tuesday: Yoga for Runners
    Yeah...not too exciting.  But post race will be recovery time.  I'm going to aim for taking a full week off from running, might add some bike in sometime next week, and just stretch and roll and recover. I'll post a race recap early next week to let everyone know how it went! 

    Saturday, March 15, 2014

    oh what a day!!!

    Worldwide Quilting Day 

     Oh my oh my!  Worldwide Quilting Day!  I'm kind of excited, as I have all kinds of plans for my sewing today!  I need to do some work on my Movement in Squares quilt, I started cutting out the pieces for a new Cargo Duffle for my sister, and then I want to make one for me as well.  Guess I better get moving, as before I can sew, I've got to get my last long run in before my half marathon next week!

    What are your sewing plans for today?

    Friday, March 14, 2014

    March ALYoF - in progress

    Just wanted to drop in and give a bit of an update on my March A Lovely Year of Finishes goal (originally posted over here).  I have made all the remaining blocks and last weekend got it to this stage:

    and I'm so loving it!!!  I just need to add the border and this will be a quilt top!  Now, as a reminder, my March goal was to get this one fully complete, so I still need to get backing prepped, get it basted and quilted and then bound!  Thankfully I still have half the month left to get it done!

    Wednesday, March 12, 2014

    Wellness Wednesday...Ep.6

    10 days to go until my Half Marathon!  So let's just go ahead and jump in to what was accomplished over the past week, and what I plan on doing for this next week.  Last week's plan with what I actually did in red:

  • Wednesday: 3-4 mile run 3.9 miles treadmill
  • Thursday: 30 mins bike rest
  • Friday: 3-4 mile run 4.09 miles treadmill
  • Saturday: rest, maybe a little yoga for runners Rest
  • Sunday: 11-12 miles 12 miles
  • Monday: Yoga for runners Rest
  • Tuesday: 3 mile run Rest

  • Funny story...I was all set to run yesterday, the universe just decided I shouldn't!  I got up early (4:45) got all my stuff packed up and made it to the gym at work by 5:45...unfortunately not all of my clothes made it with me, my shirt was hanging by the front door at the I had to turn around and drive all the way home, nearly ran out of gas on the way, made it to the gas station on fumes, finally got home, with only about 20 mins to get back out the door so I wouldn't be late for a training session at 7:30.  In the midst of all of this, I tell Girl what was going on as I'm rushing out the door, and she thought it was kind of funny.  Apparently she thought I was losing it, because she called me 20 minutes later as I'm headed back to work...and said...Mom, this might be a stupid question...but why is your shirt still hanging up here...through my laughter I explained that I put on something different and I was indeed dressed! Somewhere in all of this I also managed to break my while there was quite a bit of laughter...there was that too!  Best laid plans and all of that! is my plan for the next week as I am firmly in taper mode, so I'll be taking it nice and easy going in to the last week of running prior to the race!
    • Wednesday: 30 mins bike
    • Thursday: 3-4 mile run
    • Friday: 30 mins bike
    • Saturday: 6 mile run
    • Sunday: Rest, maybe some yoga
    • Monday: 2-3 mile run
    • Tuesday: Rest
    Catch you later!

    Saturday, March 8, 2014

    leave me be...i'm sewing!

    Well...that's my plan for this weekend at least!  I have a lot of sewing I'd like to accomplish, and it's been awhile since I spent quality time just sewing and ignoring everything else.  We've been running around so much the past few weekends, so we have declared this weekend our stay home and not leave the house weekend.  (truth...we'll leave the get food and stuff...but we made zero plans to do anything else!).

    So if you need me...I'll be in my sewing space...playing with this stack of fabric

    among other things!

    Wednesday, March 5, 2014

    Wellness Wednesday...Ep. 5

    Welcome back to Wellness today's episode, I revisit last week's half marathon training plan, take a look at this week's, and talk about my current running shoes.

    Last week's plan and what I actually did in red:
    • Wednesday: Rest Rest
    • Thursday: 3-4 mile run 3.25 miles on treadmill (could be closer to 3.5, depends on whether I use my foot pod or the treadmill for distance)
    • Friday: 2-3 mile run 3.77 miles - should have made it legs DO NOT like running two days in a row
    • Saturday: rest Rest
    • Sunday: 9-10 mile run 9.7 mile run - was great until about mile 7 and then it felt like my legs were encased in concrete and I slowed down significantly.  Plus my GPS is all hosed up (thinks yesterday was last wednesday, so I'm very thankfully I run a backup GPS) and logged my miles wrong.
    • Monday: yoga for runners Rest
    • Tuesday: 3-4 mile run Rest
    definitely far from perfect but in general feeling much better about where my training is at!  The long run was pretty good, and the weather was probably very similar to what conditions will be race day.  I'm hoping this week's long run goes as well or better...and considering it will be my last run above 6 miles before the half marathon...well, my confidence could take a major hit! is my plan for this week:
    • Wednesday: 3-4 mile run
    • Thursday: 30 mins bike
    • Friday: 3-4 mile run
    • Saturday: rest, maybe a little yoga for runners
    • Sunday: 11-12 miles
    • Monday: Yoga for runners
    • Tuesday: 3 mile run
    and now...running shoes.  I'm having a few issues with my current shoes.  When I first started running a year ago, it was in a pair of Saucony's that I had picked up at some cheapo shoe store and was "ok" for the most part.  When I got "serious" about running, I actually went to Fleet Feet and got appropriately fitted for a pair.  I went through many shoes until I tried on a pair that just plain felt great...the Nike Vomero 7.  I loved them.   Unfortunately I let them age a bit too much and the cushioning was pretty shot by the time I finished up my first half marathon last September.  So I went back to Fleet Feet and got a new pair.  Nike had released a "newer model" in between and when I first tried on the Vomero 8, I was pretty I bought them.  There are days I regret that decision and days I don't.  The Vomero 8 took close to 50 miles to break-in, so my early runs weren't the most comfortable.  But I stuck it out...and miles 50-150 were pretty good.  And then I started to notice that they just don't feel as nice (I have about 180 miles on them).  The fit feels a little bit off, the toe box feels too small at times, I'm just not loving them right now.  HOWEVER...I refuse to replace them this close to a race.  I don't want to try and break-in a new pair right now, and the Vomero 8's are actually not that bad.  Something just feels a bit "off" before and after running (I must state that I have ZERO issues while running in them).  So my plan is to head back to Fleet Feet after my half marathon and talk to them about the issues I am having and see if I can't find another make/model that just feels better.  (I feel very Goldilocks and the Three Bears here...I want it "just right").  I'll let you know how that goes! 

    I must note that I purchased all shoes mentioned above myself.  No shoes have every been provided to me, and no one has ever asked for my opinion on them or to share an opinion on them.

    Sunday, March 2, 2014

    ALYoF - March goal

    Wow...March already...this first part of 2014 has flown!  For this month's goal for A Lovely Year of Finishes I'm going to take my movement in pink quilt from this starting stack of blocks:

    and turn it into a 100% finished quilt!  That means make the other half of the blocks, get the top assembled...and then get it backed, basted, quilted and bound!  I'm excited and a bit nervous about this goal as I have a lot of things going on this month (who doesn't?) so I'll really need to add some stitching in during the work week.  Guess I better get started!