2012...

...was a challenging year for me.  Henry's autism diagnosis, starting early childhood school, therapies, fixing up our house, moving to Maryland and then selling our house--whew!  It was a year of personal life growth for sure.

But, it was also the year of creative growth, too.  I feel lucky to be among such talented company in the Cocorico, Pastiche, and Ringo Pie Bees.  The monthly themes challenged me to my limits, but my sewing skills kept growing to match what I imagined for my design. 

pastiche mosaic


cocorico bee

You'll notice that these mosaics are a little thin for bees that I've been in all year.  I still owe 4 bee blocks for 2012.  Luckily my bee-mates are patient with me. 

ringo pie bee


This was also the year of the Farmer's Wife quilt. I wish I could say that I've finished it, but that is not the case. Maybe I can finish it by spring?

First half of FW, backlit


 I did a little knitting this year. Most of it was very tiny, but I do have the one big shawl to warm me up.

knitted 2012


I finished a couple of quilts to cuddle up in, but I did gave them all away except for one (my AMH voile quilt is covering my lap as I type this (bottom right).

finished quilts 2012


And, lastly, there are some other sewn items that I'm proud of from the year.

other 2012


2012 was supposed to be the year of the finish.  I had nine items from 2011 that I wanted to complete.  Unfortunately I only finished of those nine!  So, I officially declare that 2013 will be the year of completion.  All projects from 2011 will be done this year as well as some from 2012.
Really.
I mean it this time. 

I'm grateful for this space to share my adventures in sewing.  Occasionally I need a space where I am a mom but I'm a person, a designer and a sewist first.  Thank you all for joining me over the last year.

Please, take a minute to tell me what you made this year that you are most proud of.  Do you have any specific plans for 2013?

Busy

The last week has been a whirlwind.  The boxes hid my tree for a few days,

where is the tree?


but it sure was nice to set up my new craft space and see my fabrics again.

red and green unpacking


We took a break from unpacking last weekend to go to DC.  Henry loved his first Metro ride,

first Metro ride


his first visit to the Smithsonian (Natural History Museum, Oceans exhibit),

first visit to the Smithsonian


and playing on the mall near our Metro stop.

view of the Washington Monument


Gift opening was fun but we have to limit the number of gifts so he doesn't get overwhelmed. 

openining gifts


Henry never seems to tire of the holiday treats.  He has been begging to decorate Christmas cookies since October.  We bought some gluten free graham crackers and found a few GF treats to stick to the frosting.  He had so much fun that we will do it again this week.

decorating cookies

But, first, we have a visit from my brother and niece.  It is so nice to see family in our new home.  It makes it all seem more real.

So, I'll be staying busy until after the new year.  Henry will start school on the 2nd and I'll get a little time to myself.  I look forward to catching up with more blogging friends then. 

I wish you all a Happy New Year!

Our House

We are (somewhat) settled into our new home in Maryland.  We are renting a lovely place on a culdesac with a playground next door.  The neighborhood seems very friendly.  Henry will start school after the new year and we are looking forward to seeing what the programs here can offer him.  We finally got our moving truck three days ago and we just got internet yesterday.

in front of the new house

We put our Wisconsin house on the market the same week we moved out.  In fact, we didn’t allow it to be shown until the day after we left.  As we drove through Pennsylvania, we got a call from our realtor that the very first person that saw the house put an offer on it.  The past three weeks have been busy with negotiating and banking and paperwork, but we just closed on that house yesterday.

I have a special relationship with our house after all of the renovation I did on it.  A few of the posts about home renovation are here, here and here.  I loved our yard and garden, too, (with posts here, here and here).  I didn’t blog about the weeks of work I put in at the end.  Things just got too busy.  Anyway, I’m glad our house will have another family to love it now. 

I made this ornament of our Wisconsin home.  I think it still needs a little more embroidery before it goes on the tree, but I'm a little too schmoopy to work on it now. 

ornament of our old house

I feel grateful for the six plus years we had in our Wisconsin home and I look forward to the good things to come here.
Wishing you all a cozy place to celebrate the holidays with loved ones.

Embracing imperfections

We took this picture last week Thursday.  It is the last one before drove off late on Friday to move to Maryland.  I put a lot of work and heart into this house and on that final day, I really struggled with leaving some projects unfinished.  Thankfully my friend, Tina, gave me a good talking to.  We delegated a few projects to friends and neighbors and left some just be.  It was a good thing, too.  Ben started work on Monday and we've been swamped ever since.

house and family


Anyway, in the spirit of accepting imperfections, I thought I'd share a few pictures from my Baptist fan quilting adventure.

I marked every single line on the quilt, which took a *lot* of time.

baptist fan quilting


Here is the template I made by tracing the curves of a dinner plate and marking where the fans started and ended as well as the square lines for the quilt.

baptist fan quilting


I ran out of the plastic template material so the inside curves were made with paperboard.

baptist fan quilting


I used these marking pencils from Joann Fabrics.  I can't say that I love them.  The leads broke often and it took three washings to get the blue out.  I'll need to try a different marking tool next time.

baptist fan quilting


Even with the curves marked, my sewing lines are a little rough when you look closely.

baptist fan quilting

baptist fan quilting


Thankfully, after a wash (or three) and taking a step back, the quilt looks crinkly and lovely. 

donation quilt


I hope that showing some of my imperfections will inspire someone else to jump in and try some fan quilting.  I planned from the beginning to give this quilt to charity so I didn't sweat the mistakes as much.  Let me know if you try it out.