New Beginnings

The start of the year brings with it a sense of renewal and hope…a new beginning. This past year was filled with ups and downs. Some exciting adventures like taking our little man to the Great Wolf Lodge for his 4th birthday, just because a few months later, and then again over the winter holidays (It’s been non-stop requests to go back). We drove to Utah with a toddler and an infant to visit grandparents. We celebrated birthdays and anniversaries and each other.

I went back to work after 7 glorious months off following the birth of our baby girl. It was a rough transition for all of us. We had all gotten used to a lot of after school snuggles and fun times together. To make the transition more interesting, my mentor and friend resigned her position. I came back to a new office, as the department had relocated in my absence, and a new boss (who is also an amazing colleague and friend), which certainly made the environment just feel different. My grandmother was diagnosed with Large B-Cell Lymphoma in December, and it quickly took its toll. She was a pillar in the family with so many activities revolving around her. I was extremely lucky to have been able to develop such a great relationship with her and have her help my mom care for my kids. Not everyone gets to have adventures with their great grandmother. We lost her just 8 months later, shortly after her 78th birthday. She is sorely missed. With so many changes, we all felt the strain of trying to balance family, school (for both myself and hubby), and work while trying to find our new normal.

My sewing also had a major transformation! Following the 2016 discovery of wonder clips, pdf patterns, and the serger (I was a little late to the party), hubby surprised me with a cover stitch for my birthday! No more piles of mostly finished garments just waiting for the day I finally just sucked it up and hemmed. This thing is amazing! I love being able to give my clothes that final professional looking finish! Then came wonder tape, which just blew my mind! How did I not know about this for so long??? My most recent discovery has been pattern weights. I used to pin my paper patterns to my fabric and then cut out each piece, which took forever. Then, one day, my friend Laura (one of the brilliant minds behind 42 Custom Fabric) sent me a sample of their new weights. If you have not checked them out, you must do so ASAP! Cutting out fabric now takes half the time! Simply place the pattern piece on the fabric, place the weights on the pattern piece, and cut away. It’s that easy. I think I may try printing A0 patterns next…

2018 will bring with it many adventures. I look forward to growing at work and embarking on some new projects. School is slowly coming to a close. We are all extremely excited for graduation – I finish graduate school classes in March (though I won’t present my capstone until June), A in May, and hubby in August. A will then start kindergarten in July and M will start preschool in September. With all the craziness, I have challenged myself to make sure to take some time for me. What does this look like? Well, I’m going to make sure I get at least 1 garment done a week. I have too many patterns I haven’t tried and too much fabric piling up. So for the next year, my goal is to try one new pattern a week (52 patterns in 52 weeks) with at least 10 of those for me! I’m looking forward to challenging myself with new fabrics and gaining new skills.

I started this challenge with a bang using some delicious So Sew English Fabrics French Terry to make myself a new sweater. I used the Halla Cozy Wrap Cardiganwith the cross front sweater option, and I absolutely love it! I think I may need to make myself a couple more! I think I may want to try the button closure version next (not as part of the challenge). It can be easily dressed up or down depending on the fabric.


After a very trying travel experience, I’m currently sitting in the Salt Lake City airport getting ready to catch the red eye to DC for a school workshop. I fully intend on wearing my new sweater one of my days away. Like having a little piece of home with me. I can’t wait for Sunday so I can go back home. I know I should focus on learning as much as I can and enjoy the quiet, but I already miss my family like crazy!

Next week – going to try athletic wear. I need some additional motivation to stick with the exercise.

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