Another Year Closer to 40

January 26, 2013

Yuck.  I don’t mind my birthday, but I do not like that the number is getting dangerously close to 4-0.  Thankfully I have the most adorable little boy to keep me young.

happy birthday to me

making cookies

pretty cookie

And that’s been the excitement.  Bill’s parents were in town visiting and it was nice to have a crowd for my big day.  We had a lovely visit with them that just flew by.  It didn’t help that I worked which always makes the weekend pass in a blink.  The weather was absolutely gorgeous and we got lots of outdoor time.  We walked and played with Joshua in the back.  It was a lot of fun.

I requested sugar cookies for my birthay, with icing!  They are my favorite and we don’t have much time to make them.  Bill and his mom spent a bit of time rolling them out and decorating.  They were delicious.  I felt a little guilty eating them because of all the time and effort put into making them look so nice, but they were so good.  I told Bill I wanted cookies instead of a cake, but he didn’t listen and surprised me with a beautiful and delicious cake from Sweet Tooth Confections.  It’s the bakery that did Joshua’s birthday cake.  My birthday cake was awesome!  A white cake with whip cream frosting and strawberries.  My favorite combination.  Although usually I go buttercream frosting, but the whip cream was a nice change of pace.  Anyway, I was really surprised!  Bill had some co-conspirators which made it easier on his end.  My in-laws babysat (and picked up the cake) while Bill and I saw a movie.  What a treat!  I chose Lincoln which was really good and thought provoking.  We took it easy in the afternoon and then all of us went out for dinner.  It was a really great day.  I couldn’t have asked for anything more.

Bill’s parents left on Tuesday and we took Joshua to have his one year portraits taken.  I can not wait to see them!  I’ve seen a preview of two photos and am loving what I saw so far.  I know that I am not going to be able to narrow it down to a reasonable number of pictures.

On Wednesday, Bill left for Tahoe on a work ski trip.  Must be nice (she mutters jealously).  Joshua and I had a lot of fun by ourselves.  He’s such happy little boy, I really don’t remember him crying once.  I let myself chill out while he slept althought I did get some laundry done at night.  That was the extent of my productivity but at least it was something.  I thought about doing something crafty, but I didn’t actually get to the doing.  I have so many projects that I’m close to finishing, I just have to carve out some time.

I’ll leave you with this photo I took a week ago as I was leaving work.  The sky was so beautiful I had to pull out my phone and take a picture.  Cheers!



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My First Knitting Project

January 10, 2013

I had a couple of friends over last week for knitting and Downton Abbey.  We starting from the first season and doing some knitting while we hang out.  If we chatted a bit less, we’d probably be through the first season, but the chatting is oh so fun.  To top it off, I’ve been making progress on a project that’s been languishing.  In the course of our chatting, I realized that I’ve known how to knit almost as long as one of my friends has been alive.  That makes me feel old.

first project

first project 1

A couple of days later, I found some photos that show my first ever knitting project.  It was some kind of feather and fan blanket.  I guess my mom taught me how to do the pattern.  It seems like a rather challenging project for a first, but I don’t remember ever doing a hat or scarf.  At least not in those early years.  I distinctly remember sitting on our red couch knitting that blanket during football games.

I’m hoping that somewhere, I have a better picture of the blanket.  Clearly, these photos are really of my cat, Maggie.  Such a sweet kitty.  Anyway, it’s kinda cool to see some of my early work.

As for later work, I’ve been working on my colorwheel quilt.  Bill bought me the fat eighths kit four years ago and I’m finally getting to it.  The timing is perfect though, because I’m going to hang it in Joshua’s room.  I think it’s perfect for a little one.  I pulled out some of the more floral fabrics and used some stuff from my stash instead.  There’s still some flowers in it, since my boy is going to appreciate nature.  Sewing the quilt has been fun and I’m really excited about how it’s coming together.  I think I should be able to finish it this weekend.

colorwheel quilt

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Happy New Year

January 3, 2013

interesting moss covered trees

I cannot get my head around 2013.  It just sounds weird to me.  Twenty-thirteen.    I don’t know why, but it just seems like the future instead of the present.  Now I have Huey Lewis and the News in my head…  ”So take me away, I don’t mind/But you better promise me, I’ll be back in time”.

Not surprisingly, I have spent the last few days thinking about my plans for 20-13.  I’ve been reading the book The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin and I finished it on New Year’s Eve.  Ideal timing, actually, because on the second to last page she talks about goals vs. resolutions.

“You hit a goal, you keep a resolution.  ’Run a marathon’ makes a good goal.  It’s specific, it’s easy to measure success, and once you’ve done it, you’ve done it.  ’Sing in the morning’ and ‘Exercise better’ are better cast as resolutions.  You won’t wake up one day and find that you’ve achieved it.  …Also, what happens once you’ve reached your goal?  Say you’ve run the marathon.  What now–do you stop exercising?  Do you set a new goal?  With resolutions, the expectations are different.  Each day I try to live up to my resolutions.  Sometimes I succeed, sometimes I fail, but every day is a clean slate and a fresh opportunity.  I never expect to be done with my resolutions, so I don’t get discouraged when they stay challenging.  Which they do.”

That paragraph has really stuck with me.  I think that my idea of monthly goals in on track.  Not that I really even thought about those in 2012.  Well, I did but they were fleeting thoughts.  So this year I am going to make some resolutions.  And set some monthly goals.  And we’ll see how it goes.

My Resolutions for 2013:

1.  Spend more time outdoors.  (Playing, exercising, relaxing…)

2.  Eat healthy meals.

3.  Boost my energy.  (I stole this from the book.  Get more sleep, exercise…)

4.  Free myself from stuff.  (Declutter, use stuff I have, declutter…

5.  Finish some projects.  (The garage, my mystery quilt, my underbed storage…)

6.  Be in the moment.

7.  Take care of business.  (Important family legal stuff, retirement planning, etc.)

8.  Be more organized.   December kicked my butt.  With Joshua’s birthday and Christmas, I have  to plan better.

So that’s where I’m at.  I hope that you all are having wonderful starts to your 20-13.

P.S.  I highly recommend the book The Happiness Project.  What I really liked was that it was an already happy person trying to find ways to be even happier and looking at the effect her changes made on the happiness of those around her.  Who can’t stand to be happier, right?   It didn’t feel preachy, either.  Just thought provoking, IMHO.

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About Me

Welcome to my spot on the web where I talk about needlework, crafts, and [many] other random things.

A few tidbits about me: I met my husband in college, flirting over tuba letters in the Penn Band. Our dog, CJ, and our cat, Sabrina, round out our family. I'm a sewist, knitter and needlepointer, and an occasional scrapbooker. I love organizing, reading, making jewelry, and hiking. A Chicago girl at heart, I am an avid follower the Cubs, Bears, and Blackhawks.

You can email me at mlynapier [at] pobox [dot] com. Thank you for stopping by!

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