Sunday, January 3, 2021

2020: Quiet, Busy and Full of Good Changes

(Clark and his favorite window yesterday morning)

2020 was a dumpster fire for a lot of people, I'm grateful every day that this year allowed me to go with the flow and the flow has guided me in the direction I needed to go. I just re-read my 2019 recap and I continue to have a similar feeling of hope, gratitude and forward movement. 

I had a conference booked that I was speaking at and it's cancellation was a nice break, Convergence has been moved to 2022. Being the speaker for the Kalamazoo Guild was moved back to 2021 and on to Zoom.  I've had plenty of advanced notice for my 2 seminars with the Michigan League of Handweavers that we are doing a virtual conference this year, so 2 more Zoom seminars this summer. 

I had a job that I liked but I wasn't getting enough hours. When it closed on March 17th I applied to Home Depot that evening. Talbots was only supposed to be closed for 2 weeks but no one truly knew what would happen and I figured THD would be a good temporary job. It's difficult to get in a groove working from home (artworking for me) full time then getting sent back to work and re-adjusting so I just wanted to keep that momentum of having a day job. Instead THD hired me in full time with benefits under a specialist position. It's been fun learning all about doors, windows, moulding. Being around builders inspired me to finally fix my garage roof myself, which is almost done but 95% better than it was before I started!

I was not going to make masks when this pandemic started in March, I didn't want to get sucked in or stuck making them out of guilt. When I did finally make my first few masks, I figured out what my base cost and pattern was that I'd be willing to make masks for who knows how long. Over 350 masks later...I'm still picking away at making some and it helped pay off my last credit card debt (debt free, whoo hoo!)

I didn't know I'd ever sew this much in my life. I'm thankful to have 2 machines and know how to take care of them to keep them going almost daily for 10 months! Getting back into sewing has led me to making some things for us around the house: pillow covers, a lunch bag of my own design, gobs of masks and Nightmare Before Christmas pants.

Knitting! Knitting has always been a comfort thing to keep my hand busy. I've been knitting since elementary school and I always wanted to keep my knitting simple so I never taught myself color change outside of stripes. I decided to buck up and do checkers in a hat to see if I liked color work. With all the knitting I've been doing, color changing came much easier for me than I expected. I guess I can look forward to some more interesting designs in my future. 

I didn't know that I needed it but this year I've taken a break from jewelry-making, or being worried about making jewelry to sell and send to galleries. Since I no longer work in clothing sales, my jewelry-wearing needs have changed completely. I'm no longer wanting new pieces that match curent color trends and outfits. The Evil Eye Earring and Bangle Set (and it's fancy version) was the last big inspired beading I've done.  I like big earrings to go with masks but bangles and necklaces do not bode well moving doors around.  I just moved the beads I keep for jewelry making in the living room back to the studio and out of the way. I can now work on beading leaves for the front panel of the large Leaf Me Alone weaving. I'll make jewelry again...when I feel like it. It always comes back and I have plenty of stock pieces to move and sell.

Like at the beginning of last year I just got a new warp on my loom for 2021. Last year's weaving isn't finished for hanging just yet (and has a second panel I have to work on) but I have a need to always have something going on my loom so I am able to weave whenever I feel like it (usually at around 6 AM/first thing in the morning with my coffee).

As with last year, I am so very thankful for Bryan, he's the best person for me to hunker down for months on end. We've binge watched tons of TV, ordered in from our favorite local resteraunts and made a lot of food too. I'm so thankful that I have someone in my life that is easy to be with, understands my need for space, is kind and respectful and... just gets me (and the cats).

(Christmas Eve no-makeup couch photo)

(Bryan and Liois snuggling)

(Morgan touching the knitting)

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