2012 Year in Review

So I had plans for the some blog posts that I just haven’t had a chance to get around to, such as post about my lovely Renfrew cowl neck shirt that I made to wear to holiday parties (and did wear…a lot). I will do a full post later, but here are a couple of photos in the meantime.

sheri_morgan_party

waffle_party

I also really wanted to write a “year in review” post to highlight some of my accomplishments this year with gardening and crafting.

As many of you know though, my mom has not been well since June. I wrote about it here. She never got much better after that and just before Christmas, she took a turn for the worse. She is currently in what the docs are calling “end stage liver failure” and there is talk of hospice care.

It’s hard to focus on anything besides that right now, but I noticed when I picked up my copy of the $64 Tomato the other night (to try and distract myself), it got me all excited to garden again.

Winters in Seattle are tough, with all the rain and darkness. Gardening represents summer, a sunny and warm time. To me, it also represents growth, hope and pride. It has been hard to not have it as an outlet right now.

So I am forcing myself to write this post right now. There was definitely good and bad in 2012. In my personal life, I had a lot of loss; my mom’s illness and the deaths of too many friends, including my good friend, Damon and my friend and photo mentor, Neil.

My hope is that by writing this it will help me to focus on some positive accomplishments from last year and also on what may lie ahead.

My goal when I started this blog was to write about an entire gardening season, from planning your garden to putting your garden to bed and everything in between. I made it through the whole year and blogged about almost everything I wanted to. Since I started this blog in February, I have published 46 posts. Some of them were guest posts, so thank you Flower, Sarah, Mary, Celina and Kate for guest blogging. I have had 5,417 unique visitors since February, from 10 different countries.

I got to be a host for Seattle Tilth’s Urban Farm and Chicken Coop Tour and participate in their Harvest Fair with chicken poop bingo.

I grew close to 200 pounds of food this year. We ate and shared most of it and preserved the rest.

I canned 6 pints of spicy carrots, 3 pints of beets, 7 half pints of jalapeño jelly, 9 half pints of strawberry jam, 4 pints of sauerkraut (my crowning acheivement), and 4 pints of dilly beans.

I froze 3 quarts of beet chili and 2 half pints of pesto and made one garlic braid out of 13 bulbs of garlic.

I continued to sew and made one Colette Patterns skirt, three Colette Patterns dresses, and two Sewaholic Renfrew tops. I also made a variety of other things for friends, family and pets, including oven mitts and potholders, cloth napkins, a hat and a couple of dog beds. I even participated in my first craft sale and sold a few things (mostly napkin sets).

I also learned how to knit in November and made my first scarf. Knitting has been great for those long waits in the hospital. It’s a great way to pass the time and take my mind of things. It also seems to be helpful in opening up conversations with nurses. They all seem to be interested in that fact that I am knitting and get a lot of comments from them like, “You should sell that”. Ha ha.

One of the best things to happen in 2012 though, is that Matt and I adopted a puppy. We are so lucky to have been able to adopt Wyatt. He is the sweetest puppy. Puppy therapy really is the best.

As for 2013, I plan to continue gardening, sewing, knitting and writing this blog and plan to cover some of the gardening subjects I missed last year, such as watering and pest management.

One thing I am really looking forward to is doing Meg of Grow and Resist and her fellow blogger Oh Briggsy‘s cookbook challenge. I am trying to keep some normalcy in my life right now, so it will be a nice distraction, give me something to look forward to and get me out of my cooking comfort zone. They have picked some really great cookbooks too. The first one is a French comfort food cookbook, the second is Asian Dumplings, and one of them is Jewish comfort food. All things I don’t cook, so it will be a nice challenge and broaden my cooking horizons. Flower and I plan on cooking together, picking two to three recipes from each book, having a little dinner party maybe and then blogging about it. So be on the look out for that starting this month, if all goes well.

As for my mother, I hope she can get better and if she can’t I hope she can find some peace. That’s all I can really hope for right now.

8 thoughts on “2012 Year in Review

  1. Your year has been full of lots of accomplishments and change. These things definitely change you, but I never imagined that after it all, there were such positive changes because of it for me. You are a person of substance and these things that you are doing are your legacy. I know that sounds corny, but reading your blog has helped me so much this year. You are my sewing and gardening inspiration and it is motivational to read along and see how far you’ve come. Your choice in color patterns is so refreshing. It has inspired:

    1) A sewing group, where we are getting together monthly(ish) to trade tips and tricks while working on things. I have a serger and 2 machines to sweeten the pot as well as interest from people of all levels. These along with a ton of fabrics and accessories were my mothers and I am making a bunch of things for myself and the rest of her family to remember her by. I haven’t been able to touch them until recently and I feel her with me every time I sew. It is amazing.

    2) A (cook)book club, where we will use locally sourced items and pick one cookbook for each season to cook from. It is great to come together with a bunch of people and get their take on your favorite item.

    I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for putting yourself out there and sharing your gifts. I’d also love to pick your brain about cookbooks,etc.

    1. First of all Crissy, thank you so much for your kind words. You have always been so sweet and amazing that way. I guess we inspire each other, because I feel the same way about you! Second of all, can I be invited to these things you are doing? They sound awesome!

  2. Hi Lilly!

    Just read this post after it was recommended at the bottom of your 4/24 Collette post. Thanks for the shout out! I had a great time doing the dandelion tea blog post last year.

    I just wanted to check on you with regard to your mom. My dad passed at the end of 2011 and I just wanted to offer to be a listening friend if you ever want to talk. I know that everyone’s experiences are unique, but talking with friends (and even strangers) who had lost parents really did provide some comfort to me when I was in the thick of things.

    Anyway, just wanted to put that out there. I hope I get to see you soon! It was great to talk with you while you were in town. Call me any time and I will do the same!

    <3
    CQ

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