UFO History

By the time I was 10, I was interested in art. I had an aunt who painted, and I went with her to her art class a few times. I tried painting. Not bad. That's about the same time I began cross-stitching as well. For AWANA (church program for children), everyone had to complete a "project", document what they did, how they chose it, and present the finished piece to receive credit. I still have those ballerina slippers, although my work has come a long way since then. By the time I was 13, I had actually completed some decent paintings, but again, as an assignment, this time for school. A "How-to" project. I checked out a book froom the library about drawing flowers, practiced, then drew them (not sketched, I might add, sketching comes later) on canvas, and painted. As I recall, I used BOTH acryllics and oils, so you can just imagine. This is also in the drawer of "Elizabeth's projects" mom keeps, I don't know why.

I learned how to crochet from the same painting aunt, and made an afghan for mom (she still has and uses), and my first baby blanket as a gift. By now, I was hooked. I was a Crafter. I had cross-stitch patterns, aida cloth, and floss; yarn, crochet hooks, and patterns; and I still had that old paint set, quickly drying up, never to be used again. By the time I was in high school, I had made two more baby blankets and attempted a cross-stitch baby birth announcement. My very first UFO.

This thing was huge. I mean, gargantuan, especially for someone who has up til then only done basic patterns (always counted cross-stitch though). Mixing colors, and half- and quarter- stitches. My cousin was having her first baby, and she was making her own cross-stitched announcement, but I had to do one too! It would have been 16" x 24" IF I had completed it. I didn't. I don't think I even finished 1/4 of it. But, in typical adolecent form, I quickly moved past my failure, and continued crafting.

Intro: scrapbooking. As a school project (wow, that really seems to be a theme for me, huh?), we were assigned a history of Chattanooga, TN, but not just an essay: A Photographic Essay. I, and my partner, had a list of historical places of interest, and we were to capture them on film, and document how these places had been important to out city. Age: 16. Addicted to scrapbooking for life. We used another cousin's stamping supplies and created a beautiful book of ...well, pictures and "newspaper clippings" (micro-fiche printings, crumpled up, and dyed with tea) I still have that book, and will endeavor to take some pictures of it to add here.

Still cross-stitching, crocheting and now scrapbooking my way through high-school, I hit my first major roadblock. Coming home from a baby-sitting job, my car, a 1989 Ford Taurus, caught fire in the garage. Gas leak + spark from shutting down engine = loss of garage and serious smoke damage to house. More UFOs created. 1)An 8" x 10" angel, almost completed, down to only the backstitch, could not be recovered. Too badly stained. 2) A baby blanket for a friend, needed to be washed multiple times, more yarn purchased, and about 30 of 176 2" squares thrown out and redone. Completed two years later, and my poor friend never did get a baby blanket.

Now a college student, I joined a sorority, and quickly got caught up in socials and formals, meetings and philanthropy events.  Through it all, I was the chapter Historian, faithfully taking pictures of all events, and anyone I could get in the picture.  For two years, I worked by myself. My third year, I had an assistant, ans we completed the BEST scrapbook I had done up to that point, and got it to the chapter president.  Who was miffed that I had not included pictures of her and her friends, so she literally ripped pictures out of the book, then cut and glued (yes, GLUE) her own pics in.  And glued more pics to the back cover.  When I saw the book at Spirit Week, I was sure "spirited"!  But I took the book to my local scrapbook store, in tears, and showed the girl behind the counter.  Several hours later, an entire bottle of Un-Du, and who know how much $$$, I had salvaged most of the book.  That was the last scrapbook I made for the chapter. Of course, as a college student, I only had a teensy bit of money, so I was only getting singles printed of my pictures, so now, I have no good pictures to complete my own college scrapbook. My father-in-law has agreed to teach me how to scan my negatives so I don't have to spend quite so much money on that UFO. 

Since college, (6 years ago), I have continued to create works of art, and plenty of UFOs.  I learned how to quilt, and now have a few unfinished quilts and quilt tops.  I have 6, yes 6, cross-stitch projects started, but not completed.  I have one that is finished, but needs to be framed and displayed.  I recently completed two baby blankets out of my UFO pile for friends who just had babies, so that's something.  But then I discovered I could make my own "taggie" blanket, and at the same time, my local Wal-Mart was clearancing fabric.  Several yards of fleece later, 4 completed tag blankets, and about 10 pinned, ready for the sewing machine. Not finished.  AND, I also got flannel and cotton at that clearance, and began making blankets to donate to Angel Tree for the Baby Angels this coming Christmas. 

I have projects coming out the ears.  My 1 bedroom apartment is not meant to hold all of these supplies PLUS my husbands video games (of which HE has 6? systems and 30? games).  And a dog.  And you know, one day soon, I would like to get to work on another project: a Baby for myself!  Something has to give!  Well, the apartment is one thing, and we plan on moving by the end of May, look forward to hearing all about that!  In order to consolidate some of the Rubbermaid totes storing my various and sundry crafts, i have agreed to give one up.  The caveat being that I will complete the UFOs involved, and then donate my supplies to a fellow cross-stitcher.

But I will also work on whatever floats my art boat at that time, so who knows what I'll work on from day to day.  Now, you can return to your regularly scheduled post about today's craft!.