I always enjoy this time of year, of reflecting back on the past and looking forward to the future. I was startled to realize this is the fourth year of my blog! You can read my past yearly reflections here: 2010, 2011, and 2012. As I browsed through my posts and remembered the projects I worked on, a few themes stand out.
2013 was a year of stitching by hand. I think I was drawn to the meditative and calming aspect of working with my hands. In the evenings I would sit and hand quilt my ocean waves quilt. Then later in the year, I started the travelling quilt, which I continue to sew on wherever I am travelling!
I also started knitting more in 2013. A friend started a ladies’ knitting group, and it was always nice to have some type of knitting project to bring and knit while talking and visiting. Knitting is so tactile, I’ve really enjoyed the texture and feeling of the yarn and needles.
Knitting also led me to dyeing wool with natural fibers I gathered locally. In 2013, I experimented dyeing with willow leaves and coffee grounds. The process is very laborious, but rewarding. I hope to continue to learn and experiment more. I’ve been saving up avocado skins to try dyeing with, they are supposed to make a pale pink color.
I also found myself drawn to designs and quilts that have triangles. It started of course with my ocean waves quilt, then continued with my half square triangle quilts, and also showed up in my travelling quilt. I wondered why I was continually being drawn towards quilts that use triangles. From my book on zentangle, it says because triangles rotate on a center point, they indicate change. And when I think back over 2013, I think change is the best way to describe the year.
Blossom Bar, Rouge River, 2009
Think of a white water river trip. A river has rapids and flat water. The year of 2013 was a class III+ rapid. It was filled with joy and excitement, just as rapids can often be fun and adventurous. I got married and went on an adventure filled honeymoon. Many friends and family also got married, had babies, went world travelling. These were happy and joyous events that I will remember with fondness. But rapids can also be heart-stopping scary, overwhelming, and hard. 2013 was also filled with indescribable sadness and challenges. We lost a close family member in a tragic accident. Another family member had a bad injury. The list of change continues: friends moved out of the area, I started a new job, I turned thirty . . . 2013 was a year of change.
Relaxing on the Rogue River, 2009
So my hope is that we’ve rowed the rapid, navigated the rocks and holes and waves. We picked our line and went with the flow. Now it is time for a calm stretch. The time on a river trip where you sit back, soak in the sun, start a water fight, sing a song, play the harmonica, admire the turtle basking on the shore. I am looking ahead to 2014 as a time to heal and rejoice in this beautiful world we live.
As part of looking ahead to 2014, I have several projects I want to start and to finish.
I hope to finish hand quilting my ocean waves quilt in time for our September county fair.
I am going to continue to participate in our Out of the Box collaborative project. I am looking forward to continuing to work with a great group of quilt artists, working to produce a beautiful quilt and making time to visit and strengthen our own friendship.
Screen shot of my first etsy item for sale once my shop opens!
And yes, if you’ve read my previous reflections, you’ll see this one seems to continue to be present, but it is still real and true, I want to open an etsy shop! I got really close in 2013 . . . I have to just spend a little more time getting the billing and packaging side of the business set up, and I’ll be ready to open!
What else? I have a few baby quilts that need finishing . . . What projects do you want to finish or start in 2014?
As a friend said and I am going to share here because I thought it was a nice way to put it, “May every sunrise hold more promise. May every sunset hold more peace.” Happy New Year!