Before we get too far into 2013, I wanted to take a few minutes to record a few highlights from 2012.
This was the year for lots of firsts.
- Rang in the New Year madly wrapping up book projects and photo shoots for my first book, Handmade Hostess.
- Moved. A lot. Said good-bye to our friends + family in Los Angeles and moved to Bellevue. Lived in a high rise for the first time in my life + enjoyed walking to cafes, restaurants, and the library.
- Turned in the manuscript+ 160 pages worth of photos and illustrations for the book before I had even unpacked all of the boxes.
- Celebrated the launch of my first fabric line with Andover Fabrics, Storybook Lane.
- Had my first booth at Quilt Market — which was harder + at the same time more rewarding than I ever imagined possible. Spent a lot of time hanging out with my parents + brother getting ready for the show. Won 2nd Place Single Booth!
- Came home totally exhausted, depleted, and melting in our apartment sans AC. Had the most uninspiring summer ever.
- Poured myself into the design, illustration, and publishing of my first set of sewing patterns.
- Shipped orders all over the place from right down the street all the way to Australia and New Zealand. Finally learned my way around the post office and got a grip on my shipping box situation.
- 8 months after moving to Bellevue, moved to a much more peaceful spot next to a forest. Settled into our first home.
- Cut up 20 bolts of fabric for hundreds of kits. (While moving.)
- Got my first press mentions in Fat Quarterly, Better Homes and Gardens Quilts + More and FabShop News!
- Started design on my next fabric collection.
- (Partially) renovated a house – ripping up carpets, tearing out an old bathroom, and generally making a mess.
- Entertained our first house guests over Thanksgiving.
- Fell asleep on the couch on New Year’s Eve after a long day of pulling out nails and sanding trim. Fell in love with this house + my husband a little more.
When I see everything all written down like this, I feel a little less lost. It sure looks better on paper! I am going to tell you very honestly there have been a lot of days this year when I could not see it.
I hope you take some time to record your accomplishments for the year and your hopes for 2013 — even now 2 weeks in. You’re not too late. Some years when I write it all down or see other people posting about their big milestones, I feel a little bit depressed. Like maybe the stuff I did wasn’t all that great. I’ve had years where my biggest accomplishment was “survived.”
However, even on those tougher years, I have to admit that it was my year. I made the choices about what mattered most.
I know some of you have such huge outside demands on your time that it’s very hard to carve out time for yourself. There are children to care for, sick family members, or long hours at a demanding job. If that’s you and you wrote down “survived” then I raise my glass and give you a little toast. Sometimes “survived” is a big deal and very much worth celebrating.
But maybe this is the year you want to move past “surviving” into “thriving.” And while I don’t have everything all figured out, I can tell you that I have learned that it just takes doing the thing — again and again until it’s done. Everything on this year’s list was hard. For each celebration, there were a whole bunch of setbacks and good cries, but if you want something badly enough and are willing to choose it every single day, I think there are very few things you cannot accomplish. In fact, I know that is exactly what some very wise women told me when I started down this road.
It takes a while to believe they are really talking about you. You have something special + unique to contribute, too. This year, I want to spend more time here talking about dream building + getting it done, because I know most of us (myself included) want to be more effective in our lives.
Here’s to 2013… I hope you’ll share the journey with me.