To go along with that, I've always liked the notion of New Year's Resolutions. Not that there is anything magical about January 1, but it just seems like a good, fresh time to make new goals. I'm doing a bit of that this year, too.
First, I must say that 2011 was quite a year for me in quilting. One of my struggles with being active online is seeing how much everyone else is doing. The productivity out there is amazing...and sometimes overwhelming. I'm constantly feeling inferior in that realm, but with a full-time job, grad school, and family, I can only do so much, right?
I ended up finishing nine quilts this year. That's *almost* one a month! I don't know about you, but I'm pretty tickled with that. Maybe double-digits next year? I'm already ahead of the game with two ready to quilt tomorrow. :)
I haven't blogged about my two most recent finishes, though one of them is pictured in block-form in the top mosaic. I finished a quilt for my best friend and one for my dad in December. The former for a birthday, latter for Christmas. I still don't have pictures loaded yet, but they're coming. :)
Of course, top that off with three online Bees, multiple swaps, including the post-Summit pouch swap, several Christmas gifts including pouches and iPad cases, and dozens of mug rugs and other small items. I think I've been quite productive, all things considered. :)
Of course, the best part about looking back is to see how much I grew in my quilting skills this year. I've gone from being very nervous and unsure about color, fabrics, and patterns to being very confident and even being able to help others. I've gone from strictly using fabric collections to branching out on my own color combinations. I'm even working on two quilt patterns right now. Both are still in the paper stage, but I hope to share them soon.
So what about 2012???
1) Blogging versus sewing...more sewing, less blogging and less worrying. I've spent days and nights fretting about how many followers I have, how to drive in more traffic and how to please everyone and, well... I'm done with that. It's amazing how easy it is to fall into what I call the popularity trap and constantly compare myself with other bloggers. My plan? Focus on sewing and sharing my projects. I've met so many new people thanks to this blog and that is what I want to continue. So, I guess this first goal is really an attitude shift. More about people, less about numbers. I'm good with that.
2) Host a quilt-along. Despite how #1 may have sounded, I have no intention of neglecting this blog. One specific thing I want to do here is host a quilt-along. I've participated in two of these and am getting ready to start my third. I just love them and would like to host one of my own. Still not sure of all the details, but those will work out eventually. (BTW - if you have an suggestion, be sure to share it!)
3) Projects for my home. Ever since I dusted off my sewing machine, I've wanted to make some placemats. Yes, placemats. I know it sounds silly, but I think they dress up a table beautifully. I still haven't done any. Not one. 2012 will see at least one set of placemats. Of course, I'd also like some other things, like fabric baskets and organizers, and maybe even some curtains. I love making things for other people, but my house needs a bit of attention.
4) Family Quilts. Each of my boys (hubby included) now has a quilt to call his own. I want to add a couple - or maybe even three - quilts that are just family quilts. They will hang out in the living room or on the couch in the basement, ready for any impromptu snuggling that may come about. Oh yeah, and one more for me. :)
5) A raincoat. I want to make my own raincoat out of laminated fabrics. A class will be needed, for sure, as I've never sewn a garment. I just think having a raincoat that I made myself would be the coolest thing ever. (Wow - how old did that sound?)
6) Knitting. I learned to crochet in elementary school and sort-of taught myself how to knit a couple years ago. But I couldn't tell you how to cast on to save my life right now and I never got beyond a simple knit stitch. Time to move forward.
7) Cross-stitching. My first crafty love. My mom taught me in fourth grade and it's time to go back. I have Amanda to thank for my rekindled interest. She's made what I thought was an outdated craft fun again. I've thoroughly enjoyed digging through my old DMC floss and I can't wait to keep going. Plus this (with the knitting) will get my butt back out of the sewing room and into the living room with my family.
8) Crochet. My second crafty-love. My grandma taught me this one and I've let it slip. I recently stumbled across amigurumi and I am intrigued. I'd like to make a couple of cute little animals to have on my desk at work. And at least one for grandma. I think she'd like that.
OK - so, wow. That's a big list. Not sure how many I will hit, but it will be fun trying. I hope you'll stick around and see how I do. :)