As I get older, the years go by faster and faster and tend to blur together. Sometimes it seems nothing much changes, but New Year's Eve gives an opportunity to look back and try to put some meaning to it all. There were a couple of major events this year, each of which had a rippling effect. The cruise to Alaska was one. I spent a fair amount of time planning that, and the trip itself was wonderful. Mom and I both enjoyed the adventure of being on the ship, and the places we visited: Glacier Bay, Juneau, Sitka and Ketchikan. Recently, I put together a photo book using Blurb.com to commemorate our trip in printed form. This was a bit of an adventure in itself, and I really like the way it turned out. The downside was that I came back with Disembarkment Syndrome, a really rare condition in which you continue to feel like you're bouncing around on the waves. It's not life-threatening, but it is tiring, and it affects how much other activity you can do, both because of the fatigue and because it throws off your balance. It usually goes away eventually, but no one knows how or why or when. (six 1/2 months and counting for me)
The other major event was getting a mid-arm quilting machine and frame. It was just about a year ago that it clicked with me that I really wanted one, and that not having to baste my quilts and wrestle them through the sewing machine would inspire me to get more done. I started doing research, and when I tried the HQ Avante, and realized that the 8 foot option for the frame would fit in my living room, that was it. I got mine in March, and embarked on a wonderful learning experience. I still have a long way to go, but with each quilt I improve. The unanticipated benefit was that in doing all the research on the machine and techniques, I got re-inspired to make more quilts, and explored different styles. As of tonight, I completed 5 quilts this year (last year was only 2 small wallhangings), 2 fleece throws, plus quilted one for a friend. There's also 1 quilt and 1 throw that are almost done, but I'm just not going to make it. They will have to be early finishes for 2011.
The end of the year is also time to reflect on those we've lost and to remind ourselves to live life to the fullest while we can. Procrastination on writing a paper or doing housework is one thing, but don't put off doing the things you really want to do. That's actually why my two major events came about: I didn't want to put them off for some future time. Will there be anything like that in 2011? Who knows?