Category Archives: Cross Stitch

I Will Walk Ten Thousand Steps

One of my favourite presents for my birthday (apart from the Pandora ring, bright pink skechers, the Bakedinbaking club subscription, etc) is my fitbit.  I have set up my daily step goal, try to keep active during the hours of 9am and 6pm, set exercise goals for the week and keep track on my sleep.  There is also a facility to keep a count of weight, food I am eating and water I am drinking.  I haven’t used that yet but hopefully will.

Still one of my favourite things
Still one of my favourite things

At the moment I have set up the following per day:

  1. Steps 10,000
  2. Active Minutes 30
  3. Hourly Activity goal – 250 steps each hour between 9am – 6pm
  4. Active Minutes – 30 minutes
  5. Weekly exercise goals – 15 min plus on 5 days
  6. Time Asleep goal – 7 hrs 30 mins – suggested bedtime 10.15pm wake up time 6.00

Even though I am particularly active, I do have a job which involves sitting down so I do have to make sure that I put in extra walks.  I find it very hard to achieve my goals of 250 steps each hour on the days I work as well.

Another “fun” activity with the Fitbit is the challenges which you can do with your friends.  Every week I take part in the workweek hustle and weekend warrior with my Son, Jordan.  I don’t stand a chance with the workweek hustle as Jordan works in London and he uses public transport.  I work in a village which I can only get to by driving.  Weekends can be better as I do try to include a longer run at the weekends.  One of the weekend wins I had does make me laugh.  Jordan had got back to London and was feeling quite smug as he thought he had won.  He didn’t realise I hadn’t updated my steps.  I did have to get up out of bed and walk downstairs for good measure.  He was so upset the next day when he realised and goes out to beat me now! I did only win by 145 steps so it was a good job I made the extra effort!

A few weeks ago I had a very busy week at work and I didn’t achieve my steps two days. I only went to zumba one day and didn’t go running at all.  By the weekend I was so tired.  I decided that it would be a good idea to have a week of making sure I met my 10,000 steps and to see what activities I need to do to accomplish it.

3 walks – 3,000
5,900 House
1,338 other
4,731 House
3 walks – 12,350
2 walks – 
2 walks – 5,000
1,000 house 
2 walks-6,700
Normally I work Monday to Thursday but this week I swapped to Tuesday to Friday.   The table shows that my count for work is low.  I try to do some exercise in the mornings before going to work but this week I opted to stay in bed.  It did mean that I had to push myself after work to get in the extra steps.  Not too much of a problem on zumba day but Thursday I found that I was 1,000 under and it became dark at 9pm so I thought I would have a little game with myself and see how long it would take to get to 1,000 steps.  I cleared the dinner table (late dinner that night) and took the plates one by one to the kitchen, emptied bins (one by one again), went up and down the stairs around 5 times and swept the bathroom and kitchen.  All in all it took me 40 minutes.  Next day I thought I would walk for the same amount of time.  I did 5,000 steps in that time.


A lunch time walk along the beach
A lunch time walk along the beach

Although last week, I didn’t do any DVDs, I had previously found that the Gillian Michaels DVD I do only uses 900 steps for a 20 minute routine.  Walking 10 minutes uses 1,000 steps.  Whilst I could think I would rather walk, the DVD is quite a punishing routine and one that I know if I do regularly, my body shape will improve (well only if I stop baking!).  I do think that I will continue to do everything I can to do the 10,000 steps but I also recognise that it is important to do the exercises that aren’t going to have too much of an impact because they are just as important.

The other lesson is to make sure I get up early to do some of those steps in so that I am not trying to gain the 10,000 in the last hour of the day so I can sit down and make progress on my cross stitch challenge!
Day 2 of my stitching
Day 2 of my stitching

I’m Sew Excited


Well this is quite a challenge. Why? It is because I am well known for starting a cross stitch project and not finishing it.

I started cross stitch in my 20s when Chris bought me a small kit for a stocking filler. He had to show me what to do as it did look double dutch to me but I soon got the hang of it. I was soon investing in bigger projects and every cross stitch magazine going. I joined round robins and found quite a community of people taking part. If this wasn’t enough, Chris set us up with a cross stitch website selling cross stitch kits from home. That was quite fun for a while too. When I went back to working again we closed the website down. I was now 40 and all of sudden I needed glasses for close work. I was also addicted to the internet so cross stitch was hard to fit in. I have tried to get a project in every now and then but never managed to finish so I am determined that I will complete this.

Now just choosing a project has been so difficult. I have spent 3 evenings over the last two months going through Sew and So’s site and have had so many different sorts in my shopping cart. Should I stitch for someone else? I did have threads so was I being a coward looking at a cross stitch kit.  How about Christmas stitching which is my favourite; look a completed design and one that comes out many years (word is children will not share this with any children they may have!).

IMG_20151130_215458 (1)

Thinking of Christmas, I started looking at Heritage, DMC and anchor designs. How about Country Companion or Tatty Ted? I have a few uncompleted Country Companions and I don’t know why as they are fantastic but have actually finished this lovely Tatty Ted.

Beautiful Tatty
Beautiful Tatty

Determined I was going to make my purchase on Friday before 1pm so I could have it delivered Saturday, I found my latest Sew and So brochure with a code for free needles, and a Bothy Threads kit from their Sew Dinky range caught my eye. I had stitched a Lowry kit from their range many years ago so thought I would have a look.

A very early stitching
A very early stitching

I found a Christmas kit in the range so put it in my trolley. Still not satisfied I searched for another hour. Time was ticking by but I was still determined I was going to make the purchase by 1pm. Finally after reading reviews and falling in love with Gorjuss range in the Bothy Threads collection, I thought I would actually stitch something for myself. Another big choice as there were so many designs but I wanted to fit it in with something I liked too. In the end I chose Sweet Tea cross stitch kit. Order in and delivered Saturday.


Cross stitch is like choosing a book and the excitement of opening the package, sorting the threads (some dedicated stitchers will say sorting through the threads for the different colours is fun but not me) and starting it is exactly the same as starting a new book for me. I am pleased to say that the kit came with the material, needles, two thread cards with all numbered threads attached (hooray for me), large charts (I can see them), one for the cross stitch and one for the back stitching plus some beading and one french knot and also a sheet explaining where to start and the strands needed for the cross stitch and back stitch. They have given lots of advice so any beginner could stitch this kit. After reading it, I hope I don’t have too many problems. I have even joined Bothy Thread’s facebook group so I can hopefully get tips and encouragement.


I plan to put the first stitch in tonight whilst watching Andy Murray win a gold medal! Will keep you posted with updates of how the project is coming along.