Finished. And the cats have already claimed it for their own.



2009 in review

Remember that list from the beginning of the year? It seems it's nearly time to check in and see how I've done. Now, let me explain how we're going to do this. We're going to stay on the positive side of things and ignore all the items that didn't happen. Cool? I have a tendency to harp on myself for the things I don't get accomplished every day, and I'm finding it's not the healthiest way to go about life. (Stay posted, that's likely to become a goal for 2010.) So here's what I can check off:

1. Marry Fred! - Done, and awesome.

2. Plan and pull off an awesome, personal and meaningful wedding. - Check. Loved every minute of it.

4. Play my horn every day.
- Not quite every day, but I'm going to call this a humongous success anyway. I played my horn nearly every day, and it was so worth it.

9. Wear skirts more often.
- I did wear skirts more often, and I liked it!

10. Learn to design my own patterns.
- Hard core. See #11.

11. Design and sew my own wedding dress.
- Yes!!!

12. Let my hair grow out.
- This was simple, but I'm pleased.

15. Give a recital.
- I played more than a dozen with my brass quintet. That's not exactly what I had in mind when I came up with this goal, but I'm going to say it counts.

19. Make an inspiration board.
- I made a wedding related inspiration folder on my computer.This was only a small part of it. Close enough, and really helpful.

23. Take a trip to somewhere I've never been.
- Banff, with Bala. Can you tell I spend a lot of time with them? Just wait till 2010!

24. Finish the quilt I got fabric for
a year ago. - I'm so close, and I've got a few days left yet! I'll get back to you when I'm done.

27. Put things away a little quicker. (Dishes, laundry, etc.)
- Yes again, especially toward the end of the year. More of this in 2010.

28. Go camping.
- I did this! Fred and I got a tent and camped out when we hiked Katahdin this summer.

31. Make
better use of my extensive driving time. - I'm currently on a Jane Austen book-on-tape kick, and it's lovely.

32. Bag a couple of the local
peaks. - Katahdin, in the bag.

33. Blog more often.
- Check.

Alright, 16 out of 33 isn't too bad. And I've learned a couple of things in this process:

1. Lists are great, but I have to refer back to them every so often. I totally forgot a couple of items I had listed as goals, so they never had a chance.

2. Some things feel like a great idea in the first half of the year and then totally fizzle during or after the summer. My year still works on a September to May cycle.

3. Goals work better when there's a measurable result. "22. Smile a lot more." is too vague to measure, so in the end you can't really count it one way or the other.

4. Life happens. As my dear friend and superhero says, excuses aren't just excuses. Sometimes they're really good reasons too.

All in all, it's been a good year! 2010, coming up . . .



Christmas is kind of tricky at our house, mostly because it's the busy season. We don't get to prepare for it in quite the same way most everyone else does. I drive by all kinds of cozy looking homes and sparkling decorations and busy shopping malls as I hustle to this or that gig. The gigs are of the fun sort, usually, but by the last weekend before Christmas we're all starting to look a little haggard.


That being the case, Fred and I have decided to celebrate the 12 days of Christmas. Come December 25, at least after he plays the one morning service he got called for, we're off the clock for a while. Our Christmas begins on Christmas. We haven't figured out what that means or what we'll do with the time, but I'm seriously looking forward to it.

Gingerbread House

Nevertheless, I just can't wait till the 25th to put up decorations. We decided not to get a tree because as soon as we put it up the cats begin to take it down. Instead we went with this for an alternative:


Cute, huh? And see, we hung the candle holders in the shape of a tree, get it?

Alternative Christmas Tree

And I made my very first non-graham-cracker gingerbread house! With window panes and a wood pile and everything!!

Gingerbread House

Forgive me, I feel like I'm short on coherent sentences these days. I'm going to go move my haggard self outside to shovel the foot of snow that blew in last night. (That sounds like a complaint but it's not. I love snow and I'm happy to go shovel it. That sort of work makes me feel more alive, know what I mean?) Anyway, I wish you a merry last couple of days till Christmas!



You know those moments when you think God must be smiling at you? The way the sun peaked in from behind my curtains when I woke up this morning made me happier than mornings usually do. Dust motes are lovely, and hard to photograph.




Shop Update

Prodded by a couple of custom orders (thanks!!) I've decided it's time to open up shop again. This lady was an experiment, made from another felted wool sweater, and she turned out beautifully. I'll add new elephants every couple of days and there will definitely be more sweater elephants coming. I think they're my new favorite design!

Personalized Elephant Softie