I love the week between Christmas and New Years. It’s always been a time of reflection and planning for me. 2012 has been such an incredibly busy year. The clinic has grown so much…it’s hard to believe it will have been 3 years since I opened it in February. Here’s a pic of my awesome staff at our Christmas party. I’m very proud of them and all the hard work we’ve been doing. However, hard work has its downside. When building a thriving business, sometimes that doesn’t leave a lot of time for things like hobbies, family, and other things that bring passion and joy to our life. 2012 found me running from the get go with tons of speaking engagements Jan through April, busy volunteer work as outgoing President of our state veterinary medical association, and the regular day-to-day craziness with appointments. You would think it would have settled down in the summer, but this was the summer to beat all summers in terms of allergies and my little patients were extra miserable resulting in lots of extra hours. I tried my hand at gardening again this year, just in time for the summer with the least amount of rain in Indiana history. I kept it going until I was gone for a week for a meeting in July and then it all died while I was gone (thank you hubby….). Then fall approached and my dermatology resident was off for 5 weeks studying for his board examinations (which he passed!!!! YEAH!!!) so that meant one dermatologist doing the work of two. Let’s just say I don’t remember much of October and November…and here we are at the end of December. This year has flown by and we’re ending it with a bang. We have about 9 inches of snow on the ground right now, which is beautiful…but makes it a bit difficult to do the daily chores that come with taking care of these beautiful ladies.
Then, what would a vacation be without a trip to the ER for surgery? I tell you, I’m not sure why my animals can’t ever have dermatologic issues that I can fix, lol. Poor Edward woke me up crying on Friday morning. For the life of me I couldn’t figure out what was wrong with him until I accidentally touched his face and he cried again. Well, I opened his mouth and voila! He split one of his upper left molars in half (dangling…ewww!) and slab fractured the other with the pulp hanging out. Now, as a veterinarian I have a pretty strong stomach but there are 2 things I do NOT do…maggots and teeth. I have a long-standing history with hating dentists (not their fault…something ALWAYS goes wrong when I have work done), so yes, I’ve transferred this phobia to my animals. So poor Eddie had surgery to remove 2 teeth (each with two roots…ouch!) on Friday along with a cyst he’s had on his rump for a bit that I was going to have removed when he had his dental in March. It’s been a rough 48 hours with him, but I think things are looking up today. Here’s the poor patient on Friday night.So, what have I accomplished on the quilting sewing front this year? Well…I started the year with a “thank you” quilt for the Executive Director of our state veterinary medical association. She was a huge help to me while I was President and she is all about family, so I made her a photo quilt. With some help from the resident quilt police 🙂Work on the Swoon quilt commenced, but I only have 3 blocks finished (this one will be showing up in my goals for 2013!) March brought the exciting arrival of Scarlett, my Bernina 830 LE (you can read all about it here). I’ve had a lot of fun getting to know her this year! I spent 3 days in August at a Bernina retreat and made some great friends (and bought a lot of stuff, lol). I really love this machine and still have so much to learn. I made a fun little banner to welcome her to her new home with my embroidery module. Next up was the completion of a fun little table topper. Nothing exciting, but something bright and summary 🙂I started the HoopSisters Mystery Quilt project in June and this is as far as I got 🙂 This is a fun project, but all of a sudden I lost patience with all of the thread changes and didn’t really care for the colors and was just kind of “meh” on the whole thing. Next, I completed the top on a quilt kit that the hubby had purchased for me Christmas 2011. He brought it back for me from Glacier Quilts in Montana. Finishing it and quilting it are on the list of goals for 2013. Oh yes…I almost forgot, we added a new addition to the helper cat household in July. This is Moose (aka “bad kitty”). He was a rescue with some serious eye issues but has grown into a huge boy (10 lbs at 7 months old!) and his lack of vision in one eye doesn’t slow him down in the slightest. Next up was a baby quilt for our neighbor the end of July. This was the first quilt I have tried the “endless embroidery” option on using my 830 for quilting. All of the quilting was done in the hoop repeating a design over and over. It was a good thing to try with a baby quilt, but I sure wish I’d had my MasterHooper then. I felt like the quilting was too dense and it’s not my best work, but the baby’s mom loved it, so that’s what counts.In August, Mom and I decided we were both going to make a Farmer’s Wife Sampler quilt out of our stash fabrics. Each month, we each pick 5 blocks from the book (alternating months of who picks the blocks). We took a break over the holidays because I fell behind while my resident was out of the office, but I’m eager to get back to it in January. It’s fun working on this together and texting each other pics of our blocks as we go. It’s even more fun to lay them out in person when we get together. She and Dad are in Florida most of the time now and I sure miss them!Then I finished Mom’s “Florida Quilt” using the Jelly Roll Race technique. I used Vintage Modern by Bonnie & Camille for Moda. This was my first attempt at a pieced back along with my first Jelly Roll Race quilt. I really love the way it turned out, so I’ll be making more of these.Then, before you knew it, it was October and time for Halloween. I fell in love with this embroidery pack from Claudia’s Creations called “Pillow Talk”. It has designs for every season and so far I’ve made the Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas pillows. I just make the 16×16 pillows with an envelope back and toss in a pillow form. The Halloween one was great because I used fabric on the back that glows in the dark (the smiles glow in the dark even though it’s a little hard to see in the pics).I also made a fun little Halloween quilt that I could never get the cats off of long enough to take a full picture of the front and back, lol.In November I made a Thanksgiving pillow (with Simon acting as Vanna White) and a little Turkey Table Topper (that I didn’t finish until the day AFTER Thanksgiving thank you very much!).And we wrap up the year with my favorite season. Even though it was incredibly busy this year, I always LOVE the holiday season. I love the decorations, picking out presents that I know will bring a smile to loved one’s faces, and just the joy of the season. This Christmas was especially fun with a 7 month old kitten in the house tearing up the ornaments, decorations and tree as quickly as I could put them up.Don’t let that angelic face fool you…He’s all mischief and trouble. My embroidery machine got a work-out over the month of December. I made several holiday pillows using the Pillow Talk design to give for gifts. In fact, I made so many I didn’t have time to make one for me this year! That design takes over 2 1/2 hours to stitch out! Then I cut up a little Maxine panel with funny sayings and made little hand towels out of them for family members. I found this nifty little snowflake stitch on my machine and went to town. This is the one I made for my Mom and Dad since they’re in Florida more than Indiana. They were good for a giggle when their recipients opened them 🙂And last, but not least, the last quilt of 2012 is meant for my neighbor. I finished sewing the binding on last night and just need to put the label on today and wash it up. More pics to come of that one.So, as I look back at all I accomplished in 2012, I realize I managed to do more than I thought I did 🙂 As crazy busy as things were, I still managed to try some new techniques and create a little sewing time for myself and the helper cats! I hope you guys had a great 2012 as well and I plan to be posting a lot more next year (stay tuned for the 2013 goals post). Happy New Year!