And it's January


I looked up this week and it is January. How did that happen? December whizzed on by like no one's business. Logically, I know that this is how it works. That time between Thanksgiving and the new year is jam-packed with holiday things, end-of-year things, school things and, in our house, some birthdays and, most years, some travel. But, still. That went fast.

The girls went back to school yesterday and it was time. I was also sad to have an empty house. Funny how that works, huh? Jane is skating into the second semester of her senior year of high school and Kate is nearing the halfway mark of her high school career. If I really start thinking about how fast time is moving, I want to scream, "STOP!" I don't though. These young women are delightful and mature and ready for their next steps. I am proud of the individuals they are - kind, creative, generous, smart, interesting. I know they are moving on to great things (college for Jane, driving for Kate) and I love being their mom. I would like it if they would keep their rooms clean, but I realize that is my fantasy, not theirs.

I spent the first few months of the year working on my new book, Make Your Own Medallion (shameless plug and Amazon affiliate link). It has been winging its way into shops and mailboxes in the last week or so and I cannot wait to see what you all do with it. I'm immensely proud of this accomplishment. It was a long time in the making and I am thrilled that it is finally out in the world. One of the quilts was accepted into QuiltCon and will be hanging in Pasadena in February. Talk about a bucket list item checked off! I won't be there (insert sad face emoji), but I hope to see photos of it on Instagram (please tag me if you take one!). Back to the Make Your Own Medallion, though. I promise much more information and details soon - it obviously deserves its own post. I also have some fun project ideas up my sleeve using the book and hope you will join me. It's going to be fun!

I sewed some other quilts this year, too. They were all gifts or charity donations or added to the Harris family collection. I was horrible about documenting most of them. I want to do better at writing about my process and taking photos of what I make this year. Sure, there are snippets of most, if not all, on Instagram, but I do miss the pre-IG blogging days for that reason. If I had to choose a craft-related resolution, I think that would be it: more documentation. But I don't really do resolutions so I am just going to make a bigger effort to document my projects in 2018. That, to me, seems doable.

Knitting has become my downtime craft of choice these days. I love how I can knit and talk or knit and watch TV wherever my family is instead of being squirreled away in the studio by myself. I have found that sewing is good for when the kids are at school and Fatty is at work or I have a day with little commitments. It reminds me of how I used to sew when the girls were sleeping. I still do that, of course, but it's me sewing on a Saturday morning while the two of them sleep in. Times have changed! Knitting works best when they are awake, when they need me, when I have to wait for them. I also love that I knitted 2 2/3 sweaters for myself last year, 2 wraps and a lot of socks. And the yarn. We won't talk about the yarn. Gotta work on knitting through it all before I start clicking "buy" again.

Fatty continues to be my best friend. We traveled many places in 2017 - some together, some as a family - with big plans for more travel in 2018. He still reads all the time, rides his bikes often and makes me laugh daily. We watched some good TV and saw some great films together this year. The ones I am not interested in, he watches on his own or with his buddy (thank you, Pope). Life is fun with Fatty by my side and I can't wait for more good times ahead.

The collage of photos above is my best nine from Instagram. I think it is a pretty good representation of my year - my book! quilts! knitting! the girls! Fatty! champagne and french fries! I am generally over there, posting one photo (if not more) each day. It's also the home of my gratitude practice, where I post a photo and a list of things I am grateful for each day. There aren't any hard and fast rules as to how much I post except that I try to find three things to be thankful for even on the crappiest of crappy days. In the process, I have become a happier person. It's truly been transformative and I don't plan on stopping soon or, really, ever. I don't always list my constant gratitudes (family, friends, shelter, food, freedom), but please know I include those of you who take the time to read what I write, support what I do and follow along with my creative pursuits in that group. Thank you for sticking with me all these years, especially when through the times when it is more silence than not. I appreciate it deeply.

And so we go, my friends. Onward! Here's to a beautiful 2018.

Hello 2016

2015 best nine by house on hill road

Happy New Year!

It hardly seems possible that we are a full six days into 2016, but we are. For some reason, it doesn't feel like a new year to me. I'm still cleaning up Christmas and the girls have just gone back to school. I had been looking forward to some quality time in the studio (I have plans! That I am excited about!), but the time has not materialized yet. Soon, I think. Actually, I know. I will make the time if I have to.

2015 was a strange year for me creativity-wise. I think it was a bit of a low valley instead of a high hill. I started the year off just having shelved a large project that had been consuming most of my creative time and energy. Last January, I found myself directionless and now, with the benefit of time, I can say that I was truly floundering. I didn't know what I wanted to do and, even if I had, I wasn't sure how to go about it. I gave myself permission to just do what spoke to me and, surprisingly, that was making quilts using kits and other people's patterns with whole fabric lines where I didn't have to make a single design decision. Those quilts were mostly donated and actually showed up on the blog (here, here and here). A couple of those remain unquilted and there are still some kits hanging around the studio. While I know some people look down on quilters that use kits or make something exactly as they see it in a book or on the cover of a pattern, I do not. There is a place for them. For me, having the decisions made for me allows my mind to rest and lets the ideas percolate. Going through the motions of cutting, sewing, pressing is familiar and satisfying even if I am not the one who put those fabrics together in that pattern in the first place. It's restful and I needed it.

Something shifted in the summer. I will thank my first mini quilt for that. All of the sudden it was not so daunting to design something, especially something so small! And from that little bit of kindling, a bigger fire started to grow. I made six large quilts of my own design in the second half of the year, plus two minis! Not too shabby, huh? I haven't blogged any of them, save the two minis, so I am going to start this year doing just that. I do not want to let them go undocumented. I love having a visual record of what I have made with all the details (that I tend to forget) about the project. Some will turn into patterns for sale. I've been slowly working on that this fall, but plan to ramp up my efforts with the new year. I also sewed a couple of skirts, some shirts and a dress. I began knitting again in September. It all feels right.

Some years I have big goals and plans, but I'm taking 2016 as it comes. My one tenet this year is to work hard: at life, at making, at creativity, at being a mom and wife, at being a friend, at being fully me. It'll probably involve a lot of quilts, some garments, knitting or hand sewing in the evenings, maybe some painting. I hope it will be filled with a lot of laughter, time with my family, cooking good food, reading good books, less driving, more walking. I plan on continuing my daily gratitude practice because it has brought an incredible amount of joy to my life the last couple of months. Or, really, made me see that the joy is there, but sometimes I just need to look.

I have a good feeling about this year. Let's do it. Onward!

The great studio clean out

I am extremely lucky to have a large space in our home to use as a studio. It's great to be able to spread out and work on projects and leave them in progress if I need to. The problem with a large space? It's very easy to spread out and leave projects in progress if I need to. Also known as: I make big messes. Or: I rarely clean up completely before I move on to the next thing.

Studio clean up

I have spent a good chunk of my available sewing/creative time in the last week going through the studio and just organizing my fabric. The main push for this was the color theory/color palette class by Anna Maria Horner on Creativebug. After watching that, I just knew I had to get my stash organized by color if I really wanted it to work for me in the best possible way.

Studio clean up 2

I started slowly, one shelf at a time, sorting and arranging the fabrics where they were. Because some of my stash was organized by designer, it seemed easiest to just arrange each designer's fabric into color order instead of overwhelming myself with pulling everything off the shelves. So, that is what I did. First, Anna Maria. Then Heather Ross. Then Carolyn Friedlander and Lizzy House. Finally, Denyse Schmidt. After many hours, all these designers' lines that I have, in part or in whole, are all mixed up with each other, but still separated by designer. The end goal is to get all the designers mixed up, too, but I am really getting tired of organizing fabric. For now, this is where it sits and I am good with it. It is so much better than it was before. Eventually, I will take the final step and mingle it all together.

Studio clean up 4

And because projects like this tend to snowball, I am also going through the shelves that hold larger cuts of quilting cotton and garment fabrics. I have no need to shop for quilt backs! I also like to wear blue - so many of the garment fabrics are navy or a close cousin. I had no idea how many possibilities there were in my own stash. Sad, but true. Also, exciting! It's like shopping for new fabric with the stuff I already own and I'm excited to think about making quilts and clothes based on what I already have on hand. I also stacked all the quilt tops that need quilting with their backings in one area. I hope that this will get me to finish a few before I start more.

Studio clean up 3

I have found many blocks, piece of patchwork and quilts in progress! I'm excited to revisit some of these ideas and see where they go. Hopefully, into some finished quilts! But also inevitable in a huge clear out like this, I have found a lot of things that I don't want or need any longer. I am slowly going through the pile and have been offering up a few things a day on Instagram. Some of these are items I would just like to go to a welcoming home so they are free. Other things, mostly fabric and patterns, have some kind of value so I am selling those. My goal is to finish this week so I can get back to sewing. There is nothing like a clean space and a fresh palette to get the ideas churning! In the meantime, I will be back this week with a tutorial or two that I finished up before I made the mess even messier. See you soon!

This September Friday

Beginning of a block by house on hill road

On Sunday, I used this block that I designed a year (or two?) ago to demonstrate paper piecing to my local guild. I'm hoping to find some time this weekend to finish it - those colors are really speaking to me right now. First, I have some commitments to take care of. I've been working away, quietly and not so quietly, behind the scenes, sewing up a sample for Quilt Market. It's been fun and challenging and exhausting and gratifying and mind blowing all at the same time. I will wrap it up today and send it off to be quilted. I'll share when I can - it's a really cool quilt.

In the midst of all of this, my favorite machine broke. Not once, but twice! Seriously, I picked it up from the dealer and had to turn around and take it back the next day. It's been sitting there, ready for me all week, but I can't find a spare hour of drive time in my schedule to go get it. I'm thankful that I have another machine to use, but I was grumbling about how little I enjoy this one. Turns out, we are friends again. I am grateful.

I've been reading. Right now I am in the middle of X by Sue Grafton. Each book in this series is like seeing an old friend after a long time. You just pick up right where you left off! My recent favorite was Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng. I read it in a day, or more specifically, a five hour car ride. I loved it. If you are a reader, check out this cute project that Lindsay alerted me to. Books and food. Win!

Has anyone watched Anna Maria's Creating Color Palettes class on Creativebug? Go! Do it! It's about an half an hour long and had my mind jumping in the best ways. I now want to rearrange my entire fabric stash, which, truthfully, could use a good reorganization. I'm also excited to take the time to watch Cal Patch's new class on drafting patterns for knits. The change of seasons always makes me want to sew garments (and knit them, too!). I'd love to increase my skill set at the same time.

Podcasts! Of course I love Modern Sewciety. Stephanie is the sweetest and has great guests. The b-side always has me laughing out loud. Recently, I binge listened to all of the Crafty Planner podcasts. Sandi does an amazing job interviewing her guests. Each episode had me thinking about why I do what I do and examining my process. Good stuff. Any other podcasts you might recommend? They don't have to be craft related - I like good stories, too. This American Life, anyone?

And finally, I am working on getting some quilt patterns out into the world. If anyone would be interested in testing them for me, I would be appreciative. Let me know in the comments and I will email you to discuss!

Enjoy the weekend, friends.


Tune In: American Patchwork and Quilting Radio

American Patchwork and Quilting Pocast guest Erin Harris Aug 2015 v2

Popping in to let you all know that I am honored and super excited to be a guest on Pat Sloan's American Patchwork and Quilting Podcast this coming Monday, August 24th. The show airs at 4:00 pm EST and you can listen to it live by clicking this link. I hope you tune it!

In other news: both girls are back in school! I'm taking some time to get into some kind of a routine and hope to be back here next week with some pretty things to show and tell. Have a great weekend!


July 31

July 31 2

August 1 2

August 1

August 1 3

Secret sewing by house on hill road

Summer. So lovely and bright, but so hard to get a hold of, if that makes any sense.

Fatty and I went to Switzerland! It was amazing - full of good food, good people, amazing scenery. It was a fast week, full to the brim with fun, but re-entry is always hard. Schools starts next week. Books are purchased, along with new uniforms, a fancy graphing calculator and 14 sewing machines for the arts elective that my friend, Jill, and I teach. Exciting stuff! There have been volleyball tryouts and auditions for the school play are next week. Summer reading is almost complete! It doesn't seem like time to go back, but I can tell that in some ways, we are all ready.

It's been quiet on the sewing front, or I should say, on the show-and-tell sewing front. I did a little secret sewing for my friend, Kim, and her new fabric line, Good Hair Day. More details on that in the next month or two.  The studio is getting cleaned out. Scrap bags and a fabric destash coming up soon! Otherwise, I've been lying low. I picked up a stomach bug somewhere along the way and am still battling it a bit, hopeful that it is almost gone.

I have found myself reaching for my big camera instead of my iphone more these days. There is something about the light that makes me want to capture it as best as I can. Turns out, I had missed using it. I am happy to be doing something about that.

Reading. Always. Loved The Vacationers and The Rocks (affiliate links). Both are set in Mallorca - I had no idea so that was a fun coincidence. Anything you care to recommend?

Double lucky

Double lucky - house on hill road

I found my first two four-leafed clovers on Sunday morning while walking the dog. I am always on the lookout for them, but had never been lucky in the past. Minutes before, I had decided to stop looking. And then I looked down and there they were. I feel like this is symbolic, but of what, I am not sure.

I didn't mean to be away from this space for so long, but I haven't felt like I've had much to share. I've been head down, getting things done. First it was the end of the school year, swiftly followed by the girls leaving for camp. Since they have been gone, I've spent my time between some secret sewing and a nice visit from good friends. I've read a few books and cut out two more skirts. There are myriad quilts in various stages littering the sewing room, but I am not going to touch them or the skirts or anything else for that matter until the secret sewing is complete. I'm hopeful today will be the day.

It's been hot here. I moved the sewing machine downstairs to the family room and placed it so my chair would sit over the air conditioning vent. Brilliant, if you ask me. It's a little bit of a pain to have to walk up two flights of stairs to find whatever little tool or thing I am used to having at my fingertips, but, really, I could not stand to be up in that heat any longer. Bonus: extra steps. Fatty told me that I might as well set up camp in the family room for the entire summer and I think I probably will. There is a TV, streaming music, access to food and drink, plus I get to be around people instead of by myself. As much as I appreciate my sewing space, it is nice to be part of the action instead of all alone.

Lately, when I take Hazel outside before we go to bed, I have been greeted by the most amazing sight. The fireflies are numerous and active. The yard is black and quiet, punctuated by hundreds of sparkling lights. They skirt the ground and hover in the highest trees, flickering on and off, flitting here and there. I stand and stare for a few moments, soaking it all in, appreciating the wonder of what I see. The dog trots up the stairs, and we go in, locking the door behind us. I silently say a prayer of thanks for all that is good at the end of my day.

Where did April go?


Oh, hey.

It's been a whirlwind couple of weeks and things don't look they are going to slow down in the foreseeable future. I keep thinking that if I can get myself to May 9th, I will be able to breathe a little bit. And, heck, I might even be able to sew something. That'd be fun.

In the meantime, the peonies in the yard are inching their ways towards blooming. Of course, the ones at Whole Foods are already flaunting their wares so, naturally, some jumped in my cart. We've got lilacs, too. And I bought some geraniums for my pots. The sun is shining bright and, as always in the week leading up to the first Saturday in May, the general mood is festive around town. I don't like complaining about the weather or the seasons, but, man oh man, I was ready for winter to go. I needed spring.

I don't leave town again until July. JULY. This is very exciting. I've got some projects I'd like to tackle and farmers' markets to visit. School is winding down and I couldn't be happier about no homework on the horizon. I think the girls are with me on this. Actually, I am sure they are.

I've got a few books sitting here that I can't wait to share with you all. Good quilty inspiration! I'm thinking reviews and giveaways once a week on Fridays until I have nothing left to share. So, I guess I will see you then.

Postcard from my kitchen table


I left last Wednesday morning for QuiltCon and was back this morning at 2:30 a.m. Six extra hours of airport time had me very thankful that I packed some handwork from my Alison Glass applique class in my carry on. I started the day with one plus appliqued and finished with only 1.5 left to go. I have a lot to say about this (wool! over-dyes!), but I don't think I can string the words together right now. The whole weekend was great and fun and inspiring and overwhelming and exhausting and filled with friends (new and old) and lots of things to think about and creative exercises to try and more things to make. There is a lot of stuff swirling around in my head and I'm going to drink (more) coffee, wait for the dryer repair guy, stitch the remaining pluses and try to make sense of it all while attempting to ascertain just what groceries are needed and what to make for dinner. Then, maybe, I will unpack. Look for more snippets (or postcards, if you will) over the next week or so as I ease back into my days.

The Modern Sewciety Podcast


When Stephanie Kendron of The Modern Sewciety asked if I would be a guest on her podcast, of course I said yes. I have been listening to the podcast since the beginning and love, love, love it! I often have it playing while I am sewing and find myself trying to join the conversations so it was so much fun chatting with Stephanie about quilting and blogging and more. I hope you'll pop over and listen to our conversation.  Amber Johnson from Gigi's Thimble is also a guest on this episode, talking about her new book, Vintage Vibe.

Have a great weekend!


Looking back and stepping gently in to the new year


Well, hi there. Happy New Year.

I hung up my new calendar on Friday, just one day into the new year. We traveled home from Colorado on New Year's Day, arriving a little weary, but gratefully, at nine p.m. I have spent the last few days getting the house in order, doing copious loads of laundry, reacquainting myself with my kitchen (including a deep clean of the refrigerator) and settling in to the new year. Right now, the girls are upstairs getting ready for their second day back at school while Fatty is dressing for a day at work. I'm on my second cup of coffee and have a running metal list of all the things that need attending to today. I'm too lazy at the moment to put it on paper so chances are that I will forget something.

As is natural when the calendar page reads January, I have been thinking quite a bit about the last year and the year to come. I don't spend much time dwelling - no regrets here - but I do think about how I can change and adapt to be a better version of myself. Some years it is clear cut - I know exactly in which direction to head. Other years, it's a bit fuzzy. 2014 was one of those years - fuzzy all around - which has left me feeling like I am still in a bit of a cloud. It's hard to explain the feeling I had for most of the year. I felt like I was waiting (for what, I am not sure) and adjusting to small changes constantly. It was a year of reaction versus a year of action. While that may not sound too good, I am good with it. Again, no regrets.

I made a lot of things. And most of them did not make it to the blog. There were quilts and clothes undocumented. I did put most of them on instagram as I worked on them, but I also wish I would have taken the time to get out the big camera for photos and to sit and write about them in this space. This is something that I want to change in 2015 - more blogging! But, on a positive note, I am very happy that most of the clothes I did sew get worn often. That I consider a huge win.

Of course, I also did a lot of work that wasn't shared here or on IG that was for the book that I was working on for most of the year. Nine months of working on it and, in the end, my publisher and I decided not to publish it. Maybe that deserves a post of its own - I'm not sure. Regardless of my initial disappointment, I don't regret putting the work in and I don't regret the decision to let it go. I know it was the right decision for many reasons.

2014 was the year that I taught my first few quilting classes. Along with a friend, I also taught sewing to a group of 8th graders from Kate's school. It turns out that I enjoy teaching! It is so much fun. I really felt in my element when I could share my skilss with others and loved seeing things click for people. I hope there are more teaching opportunities in 2015.

In the spring, I went to Sew Down in Nashville. It was a great weekend away, with like minded quilters, in which I was able to connect with longtime friends, meet some new ones and learn from some amazing teachers. Likewise, in October, I traveled to the Catskills for a creative weekend with Heather Ross and Denyse Schmidt. Again, it was great to make real life connections with other creative people. I thoroughly enjoyed both of these experiences and cannot wait for more of them in 2015. QuiltCon!!!

Personally, I spent a lot of my time trying to manage my time and schedule. I did not expect that when Jane started high school, I would be the one who had a hard time adjusting. Two kids and two schools means splitting my time in a way I haven't had to before. It also means a whole lot more driving and awkward phone calls to parents I don't know every time there is a social event or sleepover. The extra driving did bring about the return of carpool and waiting room knitting so that was a win. But, still, I think one of my biggest challenges is finding the balance between letting the girls sink or swim. It's hard to watch them struggle even a tiny bit, but I know that they need to spread their wings at the same time. I guess that's parenthood, right?

I often choose a guiding word for the year, but so far I have come up empty handed. What I truly want for 2015 is to let go and just live my best, to surrender to love and light, to be present in all I do, to enjoy the moment instead of worrying or thinking about what is to come, to work on the things that bring me joy. Is there a word for that? If so, I'm at a loss as to what it would be. But, I do think that somewhere through the clouds, there is a path. I'm going to try to follow it, one foot in front of the other.

There they were


I spied one through a restaurant window while Fatty and I were walking the streets of New York. My initial thought was one of disbelief. Really? A peony? It's not the right season. And then it hit me like a thunderbolt. Of course! It came from the other side of the equator where it is the right season.

Since then, I have been on the lookout close to home without any luck. And then yesterday, there they were! Peonies in December! They instantly made my day brighter. Happening upon them was one in a string of little things that made for a great day: sparkly silver shoes, meeting with good friends, a mini chocolate cupcake, a pretty gift, the peonies, getting all the presents mailed off, finishing the shopping. I still have quite a bit to do, but if it is the peonies in December that make me feel festive, well then, thank you universe for that.

Our tradition


We went downtown yesterday afternoon to blow our glass ornaments for the year. Fatty took the girls to do this eight years ago as a surprise for me and I have joined them every year since. It's hands down my favorite holiday tradition. I love that we make the time to go (always challenging - this year no exception) and that it is an outing. Talking to the artists, deciding what colors and combinations to use (also always challenging - we have a lot of ornaments!), looking at the glass in the gallery, watching the blowers at work - it's all part of the experience. And at the end, in addition to the memories, we have four more gorgeous ornaments to hang on the tree. I bet we will get to the point where they may even need their own tree. That would be just fine with me.

Holiday Mess


Yesterday was a challenging day on many levels. The work we are doing in the house was going on in three places at once, four if you include the carpentry on the driveway. I wasn't prepared to have a bunch of people here so I was scrambling around trying to organize the Christmas presents and move my clothes out of my closet in the short window of time before Jane had to be picked up from her first two final exams. Also, the house is dirty, dirty, dirty, but it is pointless to clean while painters are sanding woodwork. And believe me, as much as I would prefer a quiet house, I do want the work to continue on at a fast pace so they can finish it up. Still, the disruption is hard for me. I tried so hard to go with the flow, but at one point I found myself sitting on Kate's bed, crying big, ugly tears. This is not the kind of holiday mess I want.

I got over it. I made dinner reservations. I took Jane out for lunch then read my book while she studied. I crawled in the guest bed in the studio and napped. When I woke up, I worked on the quilt back which didn't not go as expected. Measure once, cut once, make a ton of mistakes. In the end, I had my Tim Gunn moment and made it work. Today I will buy batting and tomorrow I will baste. I think I will pick up gingerbread house kits for the girls to do while we are at a holiday party. Maybe I will even get to buying the last few little Christmas presents and get everything wrapped. That just leaves the hats. I am still knitting, although the pace has slowed considerably. I'm not worried - there is still time.

Right now remembering my mantra of last year and reclaiming it. All is calm, all is bright.

I would like a whole forest


I made three of these trees a number of years back. I have no idea where the smallest one has run off to. Run off being correct because, although the trees do not have legs, there is a cat in this house who loves small wool things that she can carry in her mouth. I hid the little tree from her one year, but she found it and now has hidden it from me. Figures. I would really like to make more, a whole forest of white soft trees, but I never get around to it. Maybe this is the year.

After spin class yesterday morning, I spent a good chunk of time in the studio. I worked on the quilt back, trying to figure out how to make the most of the length of Liberty that I have to use. I love this part of quilting - the puzzling of how to waste as little fabric as possible and how to fit dissimilar parts together in a good, easy, clever way. I came up with a plan and started implementing it. It was toasty upstairs and Scout hung out with me. Neither one of us really wanted to be downstairs where there was a hole in the wall and lots of cold air. By noon, we had a new door and it is lovely.

I cast on another hat while waiting for Kate at guitar lessons. This one is red. I'm using Purl Soho's Super Soft Merino Hats for Everyone, for those of you that have asked, with some modifications (mostly adding length). I don't plan out what I am doing, but rather think about who I am knitting for and then go from there. I got two rows past the ribbing and called it a day so I can think a bit about what my next step will be. More puzzling. Just what I like.

Daily view


The window guys were back yesterday, working outside in the cold. It was around 40 degrees, but it felt much, much colder. I offered coffee and told them to come in and warm up as needed. Today, they will be back again, this time to install an exterior door. Can you say cold?

I finished a quilt top yesterday. I knew it would be a fairly fast sew, but I am surprised at just how fast it was. I will show and tell after the holidays. Mind you, it still needs a back and to be basted and quilted. I'm undecided if I should go with straight lines which is time consuming or free motion loops which are faster, but I am out of practice.

Hats are being knitted. About 1 a day - I carry a bag of yarn in the car with me and find myself knitting in the carpool line and at guitar lessons. Big needles and bulky yarn means a very small time investment for each one. About an hour? I finished up yesterday's while watching "Santa Claus is Coming to Town" on TV with the family last night. You should have seen the four of us, smashed into the smallest room in the house that only has two chairs. The girls were on the floor, in their new flannel pj's. You would have thought they were 3 and 5 instead of 13 and 15. I loved every second.

Back home


Jane didn't have school so my day was a little upside down in a good way. She helped me clean out the sewing machines and projects at school and we grabbed lunch together. I dropped her at the library to study, did a quick run to the grocery and then we picked up Kate. When both girls were busy working, I snuck upstairs and cut into the Liberty I bought in New York. I was chomping at the bit to start making and over the course of the evening, in between helping with Algebra II and making dinner, I managed to sew a few seams. Today, more of the same.


Work table

I sent a text to Jane the other night when she was late coming out of play rehearsal that just said, "Bueller?"

I imagine you all saying the same thing to me, wondering where I've been. I don't think I have ever gone a whole month without posting since I started this blog 8+ years ago.

Life is busy. And good. And sometimes a little messy. I'm in the thick of it.

Kate turned 13! And does not want her picture on the internet. Duly noted. We gave her an electric guitar and she was surprised. I do not think she expected it at all and I love that. She is coming into her own in a beautiful way. I am so impressed with the strong, smart, funny, confident, thoughtful person she is growing into. And I am now the mother of two teenagers. Talk about feeling old and young all at the same time. Fatty's birthday was yesterday (I won't mention his age. ;) ) and Jane's follows right after Thanksgiving. It's birthday season around here and I love it.

I'm also working on things that I cannot show you. That is not fun - for me or for you. It's some good stuff! I am trying to balance the work with some selfish sewing, but I'm coming to the point where that will no longer be possible. Still, there are two quilts and two quilt tops to photograph this weekend. And a whole post to write on Liberty feathers. You read that right - LIBERTY FEATHERS. Hang tight.

I am posting on instagram, mostly showing pictures of my food or my knitting. It's the first time I have picked up needles and yarn for over a year. Wouldn't you know it is just like riding a bike? The start was a little rough, but I am in such a groove at the moment and I remember why I love it. The cape grows row by row as I sneak a little knitting in while I wait in the carpool line, at night in front of the TV, while my sauce simmers on the stove. I'm nearing the end, having wound the second to last skein yesterday. I'm looking for some cute, teenage approved, easy hats to tackle next. Suggestions welcomed!

I'm reading. I've got a list to share. (It's coming, Teri, I promise!)