Wednesday, May 4, 2016

A to Z Reflections Post

I'm going to try not to be as wordy as previous years (but no promises). I did two challenges this year, my Jane Austen Alphabet Cross Stitch project, which is now complete:
Austen Alphabet28
I haven't gotten it framed yet...heck, I still haven't gotten last year's framed either, so there is no telling when it will get done. Thanks to my friend Tiff for her suggestion of the blue fabric over the brown...she made the right choice I think!

There is really nothing more to add on my second challenge, My Disney Collection, other than I have realized that my OCD apparently isn't strong enough to focus me in one particular direction. I like to think I have a Duck Room and a Princess/Villains room, but it's more like a Duck/Stitch/Parks room, a Mickey Bathroom, a Disney-themed kitchen, a living room filled with various objects, and a Princess and Villains bedroom. I don't think as a whole, they look so bad, it just looked a bit hoarderish when I divided them up into categories. Best I can do on this front is a few overview pictures of two my main Disney-themed rooms in my house, the Duck Room:
And my bedroom/Princess-Villains Room:
Please forgive the unmade bed, I was in a hurry and I guess it's a good thing I'm not in a relationship...that bedroom would be hard to explain! These rooms are honestly the only hoarder-like spaces in my house, it's more subtle everywhere else.

There were a TON of great bloggers this year and most finished the entire challenge, so congrats everybody! It would take me forever to name all the ones I liked, but just a few highlights...

My bestest friend Kate over at The Suddenly Kate Show did a Disney list and blew me away! I had no idea she was going to do a Disney challenge, but I couldn't wait to check her blog every day! I'd like to think it was me that influenced her, but that's probably just my Asper-ego blowing out of proportion again.

Charity's Writing Journey did an amazing job with her Astronomy-themed list and almost every topic she hit on was one of my favorites!

FanGirl Stitches did several different cross stitch projects as well as a Harry Potter-themed challenge over at her Travel Like A Geek blog. Since she is the designer of my Austen Alphabet, special thanks to Roslyn...I owe you yet again girl!

Tama at Stitching Daze did a whole list of amigurumi patterns (and I'm still reeling over the variety!). I can't knit to save my life, but she's got me wantin' to try somethin' awful!

Stephanie Faris did a gripping list of mysterious events, some I'd heard of, some I hadn't, but each equally interesting.

Geoff at TanGental did an beautiful picture tour of London (like I needed another reason to want to go).

Tails from the Road did a great A to Z on travelling with your little one (or at least a little one in my case). Since I'm planning a puppy and me road trip, I think they taught me a lot! And since I mentioned my little rug-rat, here he is in his favorite position on the couch (normally, his head is buried too, I still haven't figured out how he doesn't suffocate himself):

Crafting Paws did a fantastic job stitching the DC A to Z. I learned a ton about characters I'd never heard of from the DC world (side effect of being a Marvel girl), and I was completely in awe of her clean stitching...I'm totally jealous!

Another great Disney list at Writing for Murphy and I really enjoyed the Murphy-point-of-view!

Then there were the fabulous educational blog topics (which I LOVE), like Part-Time Monster's Witchy Women, Modhukori's Greek Mythology, Rob Powell Writes' Plantagenet's List, Onomastics Outside The Box and Characters from Dante's Inferno, and last but not least, AJ Sefton's People of the Dark Ages.

There were dozens of others I read faithfully (although I'm horrible at commenting on, so please forgive me), and I'm sorry if I didn't mention you...I had to cut off somewhere! And a super-massive THANK YOU to everyone who offered kind comments to me! I'm never sure how to respond, but I did try to respond to everyone.

Thanks again to the moderators this year for hosting, and a special thanks for NOT forcing "pimping" our blogs out as they have done in previous years. That has always been a HUGE pet peeve of mine and I didn't even notice it this year. I know some of the bloggers do the challenge for the attention and to garner more followers, but me and most of the people I know do it simply for the fun and/or challenge of it and I think that SHOULD be the reason to do the challenge in the first place.

About the only suggestion I would make for next year is that there were a couple blogs that had topics concerning subjects that I'm a self-professed expert on (not hard to figure out what) and I found myself getting quite angry at their continual printing of misinformation or outdated facts (I tried commenting corrections at first, but I had to just stop reading them altogether because it was pissing me off). It got me to wondering how many other bloggers did the same about subjects I'm not knowledgeable on. Here I am thinking I'm learning something completely new, but how do I know if they truly new their stuff or was just making it up as they went along? I can't really think too hard on that because it really gets me bent out of shape, but I have also never noticed this in all the years I've been doing the challenge, so it was a completely new conundrum. I doubt it's feasible to have a "fact police" squad out there checking the information in the blogs, but maybe there could be a way to report a blogger who obviously is printing bad info continuously (everyone makes mistakes, but if post after post is wrong, there is obviously a problem). Did anyone else notice this or was it just me?

And I guess that's it for this year! Can't wait until next year and I already have several ideas lined up in my head (not all Disney related, believe it or not!).


Tiffstitch said...

Great post and congrats again on completing 2 challenges. You were leaning towards the blue too, and it does look fantastic all stitched up. I'm interested to see where you might go next year and thanks for the links to others A-Z posts as well.

Caitlin @ Naughts Cross Stitches said...

Congrats for finishing your challenge. I have to write my reflection post. I get what you mean I often find myself getting annoyed at people suggesting bad options for cross stitch. Or any crafts. You learn to do it right, not with some of the bad shortcuts people suggest.

Heather said...

Great job this year Keiley! I had to go to some of the other blogs and check them out too I don't know how you kept up with them all!

Bea said...

You did a terrific A - Z that was really enjoyable. Give yourself a pat on the back! And thanks for the links to the others.

Cross Stitch Claire said...

Congratulations on finishing the challenge. I've enjoyed reading your daily posts although I haven't commented before now. I am in awe of your Disney collection, I never knew they did so many different things!

Kate N said...

You are hilarious keebs! You totally influenced my decision to go Disney and what amazed me was the number of Disney ideas I thought of after the letter had passed. I can imagine the Austen on brown??? Whaaaat! The blue is fab.

I loved reading your challenge posts as i do every year and am looking forward to April 2017 already :)

Linda said...

Love the pictures of your rooms Keiley. Your finished piece looks great. I sure wish I could take better pictures.


Justine said...

Congratulations on finishing the A-Z challenge! Your Austen alphabet looks brilliant. Thanks for the links which I'll check out, all of them new-to-me blogs.

demeter83 said...

How have I never seen the Austen one before, that's stunning!
Love the Disney collection

craftingpaws said...

Congrats so much on finishing the challenge and thanks so much for mentioning my blog!
I really enjoyed reading posts each day and your alphabet turned out terrific. I also really love your collection of Disney items, so many cool things.

diedre Knight said...

Congratulations on completing two challenges! That's quite an accomplishment. I didn't get to near as many new blogs as I'd have liked. As the piles or work on my desk grew ever higher I began to get pretty anxious as time went on, but I was determined to see the challenge through. I'm glad you did too!

djinnia said...

love the cross jane austin cross stitch!

congrats on finishing on two blogs. I could barely magage one.

thank you for visiting my blog. i had fun with my theme.

Nilanjana Bose said...

Beautiful Jane Austen alphabet piece. And a great reflections post. Congrats! Everyone enjoys the A-Z in their own way and has their own rationale for taking the challenge. Thanks so much for visiting my blog.

Random Musings said...

Obviously it depends on the subject matter, but I do think some things are open to interpretation. For example, blogging. I've read some tips posts where I cringe at the "bad advice" but in hindsight, just because something doesn't work for me doesn't mean it can't work for others and vice versa.
I loved your finished craft piece, it was beautiful :)

Vickie said...

I have loved watching your JA project!!!! Your Disney items were amazing!!!!!

Jo who can't think of a clever nickname said...

Just binged on your A-Z posts! Great work on completing both parts of the challenge, the stitching and the writing.

You have the most incredible home with all the Disney memorabilia in it! A person could spend several days just looking at each shelf!

I did consider doing the A-Z but I'm doing a letter a month on both my blog and the Hallowe'en blog already. Maybe I'll cheat and copy'n'paste the posts one year LOL

Lissa Johnston said...

I saw the blog of the person who did the DC characters cross stitch and thought that was so original and quite a tall order. Now I see this is a thing, and others also have accomplished this monumental feat for the challenge. Very impressive and fun.

I don't know specifically what errors you speak of in the blogs, but these are the ones that cry out for comments and input. Otherwise how are people unfamiliar with the topic (like me) supposed to know there are opposing viewpoints? You would be doing us a service :)

Lastly, very curious to know what you considered 'pimping out' last year. This is my first year so I don't have any context.