December, 2021

The way you spend Christmas is far more important than how much.
– Henry David Thoreau

The impact of 2020 has caused so many changes in our lives; however, I have not allowed 2020 to keep me from enjoying December. Time with family and friends will look different this year, but we will still enjoy each other’s company online and socially distanced.
This month, I have been busy crocheting projects, making gifts, embroidering, and just having fun making stuff. I closed down shop last week, and started concentrating on cleaning up and reorganizing my workroom for next year. So far, I have purged three bins of fabric scraps and crumbs. It was a three step process for purging the contents of these bins. I emptied into donation bags. Then I dumped the contents of these bags on a table to view and access if I still wanted to keep any. The fabrics that caught my eye were put in another bag, for me to review more closely. I realized that even though these fabric pieces were still good, I just didn’t find any inspiration or joy in making anything with them. I replaced all the fabric in the bags and donated them to a thrift shop, where hopefully someone else can enjoy using them.
As part of my organizational plan, I have made some fabric nesting baskets and notebook journal pouches. I have also been crocheting amigurumi birds. I found tutorials by Meetang &Co.. She makes the cutest, small sized amigurumi. She provides English translations, and demonstrates step by step procedures. It was so much fun following her directions for making tiny birds. I made some red birds, blue birds, and a sparrow. I also made an elephant using the tutorial by Kittens and Crochet.
Some scraps and embroidery stitching were used in making some bird gift tags. In pulling out some of my bins, I rediscovered my supply of rubber stamps. These were used in decorating brown mailing paper to use as gift wrapping. I had forgotten how much I like to use rubber stamps, so I have added rubber stamping to my 2021 Projects List. I don’t yet know how or what I plan to do with the rubber stamps, but it will be fun finding out.
With some of my good-sized remnants, I made a few pouches. One was a zippered pouch to hold art supplies. This one is a gift. The other two were notebook pouches for my journals. I love the side-zipper that opens the back pouch. And there are three front pockets. The free pattern is by Debbie Shore. She has so many great tutorials. I adjusted the pattern to fit the size of my journals.
The last thing I did, before closing shop, was to prepare my materials and supplies for the Temperature Quilt I am planning to make in 2021. The idea came after I read a post by Mary, on Zippy Quilts. My friend, Joy, who works at the Mesquite Bean, helped me pull out fabric. I chose some fabric from their website, and Joy pulled other fabrics and sent me photos from which to choose. She is so good about helping me out. The pattern, by Canuck Quilter Design, recommends using solid colors. I chose to use a mixture of solid and patterned fabric. Since I live in Texas, the fabric will mostly be in the hot colors, so I wanted to add some patterns. Instead of using fabric swatches, I took photos and added them to a color key based on the template provided in the pattern package. It took two days to cut and organize the fabric. I also made a fabric bin to hold the background fabric that I cut for the quilt. I am looking forward to this year long project.

This will be my last post for the year.
In closing, I want to thank and share my appreciation to all my blogging friends. You are a valuable source of support and inspiration.
Have a safe and blessed holiday.

“Time Has Flewn”

“How did it get so late so soon? It’s night before it’s afternoon. December is here before it’s June. My goodness how the time has flewn. How did it get so late so soon?
Dr. Seuss

Even though this pandemic has made it seem like the Groundhog Day movie, it is hard to believe we have made it to December. With hope and a little prayer, maybe we can finally see our way through this.
In the meantime, we celebrate in new and different ways. A Thanksgiving Zoom with siblings did my heart a world of good. Planning and isolation since Halloween, made it possible for me to spend some days with one son and his family. An added bonus for this holiday was the social distanced visits with each of my other two sons and their families. Being able to see all five of my grandchildren was a perfect ending for November.

During my visit with my granddaughter, we were able to craft, play games, and make a gingerbread house. With each piece of candy that went on the house, one piece found its way into our mouths. The back side of the house is plastered with flattened Starbursts. 🙂
My granddaughter did an excellent job of hand stitching a Christmas book. After looking at all the buttons and fabric pieces I had taken, she designed and stitched a beautiful little book. My favorite page is the melted, Texas Snowman.
My DIL lives in a neighborhood where items are swapped or given away for free. She had picked up two bags for me. One had some craft and quilting books. The other had fabric remnants and scraps. I have already put some of that fabric to good use. She said if I was interested in more, she could have some bags ready for our next visit. I think this may be a new gold mine for me.

Some of my small projects I’ve completed so far include placemats, fabric napkins, fabric nesting baskets, and tea towels. There were remnants from a superhero quilt I made for one of my grandsons. I used these pieces to make three nesting storage baskets for my baby grandson. Last month, I had purchased some fabric to make my brother some placemats. There was just enough fabric left to make two small nesting baskets.

As I was looking through my stash, I realized that my supply of yardage and larger remnants is running low. I have bins filled with scraps, but I have plans for these. Some fabric has already been cut and organized by size. I was encouraged by what I saw as I assessed my craft/fabric storage room. I think organization is doable.

Today, I started looking for fabric for my 2021 year long project. Mary gave me information about a temperature quilt. The free pattern by Canuck Quilter Designs looks like it is going to be a fun project. Since I live in Texas, most of the quilt is going to be in the yellow to red range, but I think it will still be a nice quilt to make. I love looking at Zippy Quilts…so many ideas. Check out Mary’s Little Jewels post. I think this quilt would be perfect for using up my scraps. I also like her post, A Quilt for a Man (or anyone).

Before we know it, 2021 will be here.
Let’s hope it is a better, more just, peaceful, healthy, and a safe year for everyone.