Wednesday, December 30, 2020

2020 year in review

When thinking about looking back on my year, as far as quilting goes, I wasn't sure what to expect.  I felt like I quilted a fair amount, but I also felt like I spent a lot of time not quilting when I could have been.  This was a strange year, filled with a lot of uncertainty and worry.  I did my best to set things aside I couldn't control and just go quilt.  Some days it worked, others it didn't.

But there is no other way to find out how well I did than start looking, right?

I've been good about linking my finishes on the sidebar over there (for those of you seeing the "mobile" version of my blog, you'll be missing those sidebars, but they're there, you just need to change your view to "desktop" version), but I'll recap those first because they're easiest!

In all, I finished 19 quilts this year.  They may not have all been started this year, but they were all finished this year.

Six of them were for Project Quilting challenges:

All of these were donated to a local group that work with foster kids and families.  Links to these individual quilts are over there in the sidebar.  They range in size from something like 70x70 to 12x18ish.  A couple of these I really love and had a hard time letting go, but I started them with the intention that I would send them off to a new home, so it was okay.

Next up were the quilts finished for Guardian Angels group - the above mentioned group that works with foster kids and their families.  I had made a goal for myself to make one quilt, from the stash, per month last year in June or so.  With the addition of the Project Quilting quilts, I made it and then some!

This donation was coordinated with Confessions of a Fabric Addict's Hands2Help quilt donation project.  Her year runs a little off from a calendar year, so these are just the quilts finished in 2020.  There were a few more finished in 2019 that were part of this "year."  In all, I ended up donating 17 quilts!

But there were six more quilts I finished this year!  Two I even kept for myself!

First up, there was 16-year-old Emily who got pregnant way before she was ready.  Her parents were super supportive, though, and love little Willow more than anything else.  I think it's a competition between mom and grandma who can post more pictures of that little cutie!  So of course Willow got a quilt.

And then there was the lightning inspired quilt for my high school friend Becky.  We had lost touch after school, but the magic of facebook brought us back together and gave me a peek into her life of baking as a hobby and two sweet kitties.  And in just a short bit of time, while longarming, this idea was born and I ran with it.

Next up was a quilt for my dad.  My mom being a quilter, I've been pretty hesitant to make quilts for family members.  I don't want to step on toes, but when I found this actual pattern (I'd seen it online previously) in a quilt shop in January, I went for it.  And while I originally planned for a Christmas gift, I was very glad I'd opted for a birthday (July) gift instead when he fell off a ladder, broke his hip and scared the bejeezus out of all of us the following month.  (He is doing fine now, and walking without aid of a cane even!)

He liked it, but I don't think my mom (self-appointed quilt police) will let him actually use it.

Soon thereafter, the eldest niece on my side of the family announced she was pregnant.  Though she is married, she wasn't quite ready to be a mom.  But I think this little guy (yep, a boy, due in May) will have plenty of company being a "quarantine baby" and my niece is super excited now that the shock has worn off.  Of course, he needs a quilt from me!

There were two more squirrels to chase this year - both quilts I kept for myself and both quilts I did as together-apart challenges with my friend Colette.  (Who used to live close, but decided to move away to live closer to a lake...pffttt!)  First we made a colorful Bear Paw quilt:

She started off way ahead of me, but we finished them within a week of each other.  I caught up, but only because she got busy on other projects.  Such is the way of quilting, right?  This quilt is currently on my bed as an extra layer because I'm too lazy to put an actual under-the-quilt blanket on there just yet.  No cat has complained yet.

A few months later, we decided on Well Suited.  I'm not sure where hers stands, but I do remember her opting for a different variation for a reason I cannot remember now.

This one went straight to my couch, as the fall colors were perfect when I finished it, but has been replaced with a Christmas quilt now.  It feels good to use the quilts as they are finished!

There were also a lot of tops created that have yet to be quilted...a few of them random squirrels I chased quickly like a madwoman and others that were part of a quilt-along.

Many of these are on the list to be quilted in 2021.  (Finn is just filler, but so cute!)

Tiny stars also made random appearances...

...this may not be all I made this year, but you get the idea.  This is where I plan to head after this blog post is finished!  I have six stacks of about 9 fabrics each left, so maybe I can get through that stash I snagged from my mom before 2021 hits?  MAYBE I can even get this finished in 2021?

I made some fun toys and pajama pants...

...and this year would not be complete without a few masks, right?

Not all I made are in there, but this is quite a few!  Many went to friends and family, but that's okay with me.  If I can keep a few people safer with my sewing skills, I'm going to run with it.  And it allowed me to revisit some parts of my stash that are often neglected.

There was also a front porch/front yard quilt show that brought a few friends to visit in May.  Outdoors, safely spaced, of course!

(This was such fun, I may decide to do it again...if I shoot for May 2021 (Memorial Day weekend again), I have plenty of time to finish a few more quilts, right?!)

I set a challenge for myself to read a book a week.  I got derailed a few times and only read 37, but here, compliments of Goodreads (and a bunch of screenshot finagling on my part) is a collage of some of those books.  (I may yet finish #38!)

When quilting, I couldn't read, but found comfort and information in podcasts.  Previously I had tried quilty podcasts, but found myself distracted and wanting to SEE the quilts they were referencing.  Music is good, but sometimes you just want something different.  When I happened up on some science podcasts, I found my niche.  This Week in Virology has become a favorite and a wonderful source of actual information (not speculation or theories or accusations) and Science Katie is now addicted.  (And if you want quickie updates on the virus, choose those labelled "clinical update with Dr. Griffin", as he goes over current treatments and info rather than the real sciencey researchy stuff the others go into - and they've been separated out from the remaining podcast recently, which is good for non-science folks!  Also, they're short.)

And lastly, but most importantly, we rescued this handsome dude:

He and the other cats are still working out their relationships, but we are so glad to be his forever humans.  As we are with all the other fur-babies we adopt.  Life is so much more interesting and full with fur-babies, no matter their distractions or costs.

And with that, 2020 is nearly a wrap.  I truly hope 2021 will prove to be a less dramatic year, but only time will tell.  In the meantime?  I've still got my quilting to keep me sane.

Happy quilting!


Carol R. said...

I finished more than I think I did, but not as many as I would have liked. You accomplished a LOT! Happy New Year :)

Preeti said...

When I think of you I think cat-lover and a prolific quilter. Every time I visit your blog you have sewn and quilted a storm. But that is not all. Many can churn out quilts. Your work is gorgeous. I love all of your quilts and the love and effort you put into each one of them shows. The Bear Paws are just colorfully perfect. I remember the extra work you put into the castle quilt with the dolls. And the blue triangles quilt is just so chic and so modern. I wish you continued creativity in 2021. Selfishly, it means that you will continue to brighten my days and inspire me :-) Big Hugs to you and a Happy New Year to you and yours!!!

---"Love" said...

I honestly do not see how you have had time to work at TSC at all! That's quite a list of finishes! I can't even imagine getting so much quilting done, and I'm a stay-at-home retired old lady! You really are one motivated quilter, and I'm sure those receiving all those pretty donation quilts will love them! Hope 2021 will be a year with less problems than 2020 has had for all of us. ---"Love"

Cathy said...

I’ve really enjoyed your posts this year - filled with feline and quilty goodness! You seem to lead a well-balanced life!! Good luck with all your endeavors in 2021, and have a happy and healthy New Year!

A Left-Handed Quilter said...

WOW - you have quilted up a storm!! BEAUTIFUL quilts - every single one of them!! I agree with everyone else - I don't know how you do it all and work, too - you continue to inspire me. And I love you fur babies - and their antics. I hope you and your family have a VERY HAPPY NEW YEAR!! - ;))

Ruth said...

Congratulations on a year of very productive quilting! You are very determined and sometimes when one is busy, one can also get a lot of things done! I'm keeping my eye out for the Christmas fabric sale as I want to get some more while it's available. I know I'm nuts, but I do love Christmas fabric. I need to do a 2020 year review, but with my sister here I'm not doing much blogging and no quilting as she is staying in my sewing room. I usually sew early in the morning and she is still sleeping in there (she's a night owl and I'm a morning person). Best wishes in the New Year!!!

a good yarn said...

Good grief Katie - you are no slouch when it comes to quilting! What a fantastic array of quilts you worked on this year and so many donated to needy groups. I'm sure those who received them felt special that someone they don't know went to the effort of making something for them. Your blog is always a joy to read including the cameos of your kitty-kat helpers. I don't doubt that 2021 will be another year of fabulous quilts and projects. Best wishes for the New Year. Happy Stitching!

Sue said...

Beautiful projects! Happy New Year.