I read a number of blogs – mostly quilting and sewing blogs – using Bloglovin’ as a reader. Because of that, Bloglovin’ sends me an e-mail message each week of the top blog postings most of which come from beauty and fashion, interior decorating or travel blogs. There’s usually one “list” in the bunch – “Top 9 things you can do to clean your house quickly”, “Ten things to make your new year fabulous”, “Twenty reasons why you should travel more”. It’s pretty big right now with the new year. I’m kind of drawn to them because I like lists. So, of any of the highlighted blog postings in those e-mail messages, I usually click through the “lists” to the blog to read more. Invariably, I’m disappointed. The nine things I can do to clean my house quickly – wipe down the counter, make my bed – are all things I do anyhow. Really? Do some people not do this? The ten things to make your new year fabulous were a bunch of regurgitated chalkboard quotes about how “I’m more than I appear”. And, quite frankly, I can give you about 100 reasons why I should travel more but I don’t because I have yet to read a blog list that tells me how I can make more money without having to work harder so that I indeed can travel more. I’ve kind of read, seen, or known most of this all before.
And the quilting community is really no different. We cycle through things that are popular; regurgitate them ad nauseam, and then move on to something else. And because it’s all online it moves at breakneck speed. Oh, I’m guilty too – I just need to say one word to remind myself of that – SWOON. I’m really not trying to be a negative Nancy here and I’ll turn this back on myself in a second. Because, you see, we are a bit like pack animals. We make New Year’s resolutions upon posting a new calendar. We want to have pizza delivered during NFL football games. We rise and fall to the latest fashion trends.
Conformity can be good – in fact, I kind of like to conform (except when I have to wait an hour for my pizza and it arrives cold). But, this year, this 2015, I want to have ONE, just one, original thought sometime in the next 12 months. It’s not a resolution and it’s not a goal (because I don’t like long-term goals, you know that of me). It’s simply a desire and because I’m saying it here, someone out there will hold me to task on it. Because, you see, I’m a tracer, a copier. I implement other people’s design. I follow a pattern and execute a product. Now, I hope you’ll agree with me that sometimes that product is very good but it’s still someone’s else’s design. I guess I’ve put my own spin on it – color selection, block layout, size but I want to create something that is all mine.
Of course, I anticipate it will be absolutely horrible or simplistic or overly complicated but I MUST make this initial step (saying it) so that I actually do it.
And now for some pictures: The current buzz in quilting – probably because we’ve all started a new calendar – is getting things finished and using up scraps. Well, I’m not going to be the one to NOT follow along. My daughter did not disappoint this Christmas and continued her tradition of getting me a quilting book.
This is a great book – I only wish my scraps and my stash looked as good as what these designers had to pull from. I’m just going to say that I haven’t been quilting long enough to have that attractive of a stash/scrap pile.
And regarding getting things finished: I had so many little balls of leftover yarn from all those mittens that I made this guy:
(I still have a bunch of little balls of yarn.) He’s a cover for a Kindle. See:
I haven’t crocheted in years and this little project really tested my ability. I’m happy with how he turned out though. Probably won’t be much more crocheting coming from this camp though. It hurts my hands in ways knitting does not. Hmmm, wonder why that is.
I have a bunch more little balls of cotton yarn from knitting way too many dishcloths when I first taught myself to knit so I’ve been making some hot pads/trivets.
I wouldn’t use them for actual hot pads as in grabbing a warm pan because they are rather thick but they are quite good at placing beneath a hot dish on your table or counter.
You may remember my “resolution” from 2014 to rid myself of 5 things each day. It has worked splendidly. My mid February, I had cleaned out much of our living and sleeping spaces. We made two full carload contributions to Goodwill (thrift shop), filled our trash bin several times over and gave useful things away to friends and family. And then I started on the basement and things screeched to a bit of a halt. Can you blame me; it’s creepy down there. But with Mr. LB’s help, we have tackled it with renewed fervor!! I aim for 5 things a week right now. I can’t tell you how much stress this has eliminated in our lives. Clearly, we had collected way too much stuff and, clearly, we didn’t need it. There isn’t one thing that I no longer have that I regret getting rid of!! I highly recommend this plan to everyone!!
Life is good,