Wednesday, January 20, 2016

Thoughts for the Year Ahead

And a review for the year past.

First of all, I need to confess that I missed the deadline for the 2015 Finish Along. Poop!  I was so mad at myself.  I had 5 of 8 finishes off my Q4 FAL List.  Last year was my first time linking up with this Finish Along, and it is definitely a good way to shame motivate me into some sort of focus.  Without further ado here are the links, as I know you all want to check them out:

1.  Shift.  Callum's Bento Box quilt

2.  Fairy Steps and Half Hexie Wheelchair Charity Quilts

3.  Stardust Wheelchair Charity Quilt

4.  Creamsicle Wheelchair Charity Quilt

5.  Brady's stocking

and I even finally made one for Dayna, but it wasn't on the list.  There were a few squirrels that got made during that last quarter!

So I did not finish Dayna's grad quilt, but that is well under way to being done this month, nor did I finish the Autumn Half Hexies quilt, which won't get done until early summer since I didn't bring it with me to Florida.  The cows quilt did not get finished either, but the flimsy will be done this first quarter of 2016.  I think 5/8 is decent.

Musings about the 2015 journey

When I look back at my Quilts of 2015 page, I realize this was the year of my own design.  Seven quilts were my own design, three placemat designs, and three makeup bags, one of which is published on Moda Bakeshop. That was one of two quilty goals last year, both of which I realized: getting a pattern published and taking a class in person with Angela Walters.  I also designed a brand new block for the Fabri-Quilt block hop, and opened a Craftsy store, where that pattern is free, and has been downloaded over 150 times!  I made 11 quilts for charity, 10 of which were wheelchair quilts that went to seniors in my county.  I joined up with linky parties new to me and expanded my circle of quilt blogger friends.  I always dreamed of one day meeting some of my closest ones in person, and that dream came to life when Julie of Pink Doxies and I got together that summer.  I was a part of the New Bloggers Quilt Hop, learning a few more tricks of the trade, and how-tos, as well as expanding my circle of quilt blogger friends.  As a former teacher, I believe wholeheartedly in lifelong learning, and I am proud of myself for taking on some challenges in the quilting world, thus growing from the learning that ensued.

So, half way through January, what are my plans and thoughts for 2016?

As a teacher, I had to write a professional growth plan, where I would make yearly long range plans with strategies as to how to realize these goals.  Good times...not.  Yet PITA as it was to write up and go through the interview about, that plan did provide a focus to each year, and a way to evaluate growth.  Therefore this post is going to hopefully do that!

Over the past few weeks, I have been keeping my notebook beside me, making a list as things come to me.  Here is what I envision for this next year, which is the fourth year since I left teaching, how can that be?

Quilting Goals
Main goals
1.  Submit a pattern of my own design to a quilt magazine.
This would build upon the designing I did in 2015.

2.  Open up an Etsy Shop where I can have a few quilts and "the" yoga mat bag for sale.

3.  Quilt a quilt for someone else.
I am not sure if I want to get into the longarming business, but there is only one way to find out.

4.  Expand my Craftsy Store.
I have one pattern ready to go but for a couple of graphics, so I just need to go through this tutorial and it will be available.  I have two more patterns that need typing and graphics.

5.  Make at least two quilts for charity.

6.  Finish watching Small Changes Big Variety, a Craftsy class I bought last summer but haven't finished.

7. Do a pantograph design on a quilt.

Personal Goals
1.  Walk 80 km per month, or thereabouts.
This is what I usually did all of last year, so that should be easy to achieve.

2.  Do Ashtanga yoga 3 times per week, and Yin yoga once or twice.
I started doing this last summer, and found an improvement in strength, flexibility and state of mind.  If I lived closer to the studio than a 50-minute one-way drive, I would be doing this 5 or 6 times per week.

3.  Watch more TV.
You read that right.  I am not a TV person at all, yet there are some shows that I love, and must make more of an effort to keep up with.

4.  Do more hand work.
This could be knitting or hand-stitching of some kind.  It could also be done while I watch TV, since it is easy to look up, and I don't need to look down when I knit.  Part of the reluctance to watch TV comes from feeling like I am 'wasting' time where I could be creating something.

5.  Read more books than I did last year (only read 24) and read at least one classic.
There's something to be said for NOT having a Finish Along quilts list, for just going where your whim takes you.  This is how my reading life evolves, and I love it.  However, I'd love to reread The Great Gatsby or Great Expectations, or read Pride and Prejudice (yep, never read it) Rebecca, or another of the great classics I haven't read but should.

Well it took 2/3 of the month for me to actually post this, even though it has been in the draft stage for a couple of weeks!  This post is going to be entered into a Craftsy Contest for affiliates.  You will notice a couple of Craftsy links which should provide me with a few bucks should you click through those or the one on my sidebar and then purchase something.  Thank you to those that have done this; wow, I more than doubled my November earnings, which you would laugh out loud were I to disclose them, but ha, all the pennies add up, and the adding up gets me more classes or fabric from them, right?!

In the meantime, I should be back in a day or two with a finish off my list!


  1. Terrific goals, Sandra. I expect you will achieve most, if not all, of them. You seem to be one of those 'boundless energy' people. :D

  2. I am very impressed by your goals. I have some goals for 2016 too but I am not sharing them on my blog. Then I may have to fulfill them :-D
    Honestly, I need some quilting/designing mentoring sessions from you. OK, just one. I will send you an email.

  3. My dear sister....your accomplishments are nothing short of astounding, how many times do I say this? Hear me, girl!!!

    Your goals are great, doable, and I KNOW you'll rock them. Congratulations on your 2015 accomplishments and here's to 2016!! Etsy store here you come!!! How much more prodding do you need? Just do it!!!

  4. Congrats for your finishes. Sorry you missed the deadline. I think those are great and do-able goals. You can do it!!

  5. I read your goals with interest and don't see why you won't be able to complete them. Congrats on your 2015 finishes.

  6. Sandra, these are great goals and I look forward to reading about each one of them being completed. I use to read all of the time, but since I started quilting more, I've slipped on my reading time. You remind me that maybe I should turn the machine off some and pick up a book.

  7. Great goals I look forward to more of your original designs!

  8. Well done with the completed makes, 5 out of 8 is pretty good. And well done with your list of goals, both accomplished and those for 2016. Go girl!!

  9. 5 out of 8 is a great accomplishment...and you are well on your way with design and free motion quilting so I'm sure you will shine as brightly in 2016 as you did in 2015.

  10. That is some accomplishment. 5 out of 8 is not just decent, it's marvellous! Well done! Your new goals are wonderful. I know you will have fun.


  11. I'd say 5 out of 8 is fantastic! It is only three months you know ;) Glad you decided to show them again, they all deserve a second look!

    Looks like 2016 is going to be a great year for you! :) I'm thinking you will be calling it mission accomplished in relation to that list come this time next year :)

  12. Sounds like great goals to me. I used to set a little goal each month, but realized I wanted more freedom to do what I wanted and to celebrate all finishes (not just ones in a specific goal post). So my goals are a lot more general this year. I love seeing all of your finishes. I hope you have a great year.

  13. Your year in review is so impressive Sandra and it's exciting to see how many of your goals you met. The year ahead looks like it is going to be a great one for you too!

  14. I really like the idea of these goals... I really do... a life after PGPs (In school they're called Professional Growth Plans)... still setting goals... ha ha... anyway... making me think.


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