It’s a dirty little secret in the sewing community that sometimes we do things beyond sewing. Gasp! I know! Could it be true? Are we cheating on our sewing machines?
Today we are sharing some of the highlights of our year, and inviting you to do the same! And yes, in 2020 those might be smaller highlights than normal, but it’s all about perspective.
Gillian: One of the highlights of the year was watching our cats’ behaviour change and expand because we were home more often! Our two cats spent 8 years living together in a distrusting truce, but over the last 9 months they learned to walk right by each other without anyone ‘fraidy-peeing themself. I think having us around 24/7 made them feel more relaxed. As our older cat’s health failed this fall, the younger cat started expanding her territory and venturing downstairs for the first time. Frank passed away on Christmas Eve, breaking our hearts, but it is a joy to watch Clay gaining confidence. This morning she joined me on the couch for the very first time! This year has taught me to be grateful for the small things, and to treasure what I have, so cats brought a lot of joy. Spoiler for 2021’s highlights: we are now looking for a pair of kittens!
Andrea: Walking in the countryside has been a joy in 2020. During the two national ‘confinements‘ (lockdowns) here in France, we were only allowed to exercise for an hour a day, and only in a radius of 1 kilometre from our homes. We live just a few miles from town, but are so lucky to be able to walk in the fields and woods right from our doorstep. We really scoured that 1 km circle in depth, discovering all sorts of little paths through the woods and along streams that we had not dared to explore beforehand. We got to know all the local donkeys and horses, munching away on their grass happily unaware of what problems their humans were going through. We even became avid observers of wildlife – you regularly see deer, hares, kites, herons and buzzards. After decades of living right in the centre of a town you cannot help but be entranced at the site of a herd of deer speeding towards the horizon, safe in the knowledge that the local hunters could not shoot them – at least not this year.
Chris: I think one of my highlights this year has been gaining newfound trust in friends, as well as trying to be grateful for each day that I’m still on this earth. Here in San Diego, or at least in the area where I’m currently at, you’re often times hard pressed to find people who wear masks or are courteous enough to give you some space when walking around. It’s hard feeling like my health and well-being are not in my hands but in the hands of the government and also the every day people around me who aren’t careful. It’s definitely made me appreciate each day in a new way. This also extends to friendships. I value friends who have taken this pandemic as seriously as I have, and give me the space (6 feet of love and trust people lol) I need to feel safe, not only physically but also mentally. I only go to and from work, and get supplies for sewing and food when needed, so for me these day-to-day things stuck out the most.
Chloe: My highlight for 2020 is how much freedom and happiness this year actually gave my kids (including Le Fur Bébé), despite being weird and disrupted. My eldest started high school and is enjoying freedom of identity, personality and movement that comes with being a big kid. My youngest and his friends used the incredibly quiet streets of our lockdown to roam around on their bikes and scooters exploring in a way that they didn’t previously with all the usual traffic. And all three of them all feel calmer, happier and more centered now that we spend almost all our time working from home. Especially the rescue fur child who as you can see, is now living his best life!
Our highlights are surprisingly the positive results of this year’s strange events. What was your top highlight of 2020? Let us know in the comments below!
I split up with my co-parent & partner of almost 13 years at the end of 2019. We couldn’t divide the household right away due to money issues, & then Covid hit. I finally took the leap & moved into my own place in July. This is the first time I’ve lived alone in over ten years (though I do have primary custody, so our daughter is with me five days a week) & it’s just as awesome as I remembered. I’m pretty introverted so I love having my own space. & although my apartment is a bit strange (the landlord is a rabid Trump supporter, which is pretty unusual in lefty Portland; he owns the whole block & has named it “Hank Reardon Plaza,” after a character from Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged”–also, the only heat source is a huge vintage gas furnace in the corner of the living room), I am living my dream of living upstairs from a shop in a busy urban commercial area. I am pretty agoraphobic, leaving my house is a huge source of stress & anxiety. It’s really hard for me to do basic things like go to the grocery store or school pick-up & drop-off (when school was still happening in person). Living in a mixed use area really helps. It’s strangly a lot easier for me to cope with going outside when all I have to do is step out my front door to be right in the middle of a bunch of shops, restaurants, food carts, etc. Even on days when I can’t handle going outside, I have huge floor-to-ceiling windows in my living room that overlook the street, so I can watch cars & people going by, check out the comings & goings at the bike shop, & keep an eye on the Little Free Pantry that was just installed across the street. I also have a double living room, & I use half of it as a sewing space. It includes a nook that was perhaps at some point a large closet, though it has a window & no door. It’s the perfect size for my sewing table, & there’s plenty of space for my extra sewing machines & dressers full of fabric too. Don’t go thinking it’s large because it’s not. It’s maybe 5′ by 4′. I make ample use of the vertical space. But I can tuck myself away in there with my machine & sew, & it feels very cozy, but still enables me to keep an eye on my daughter when she’s here.
It’s really been the little things this year. I am unendingly grateful we got to spend January visiting family in Europe, as in Australia our government has closed the borders, so you need a permit to leave, there is no guarantee of a flight back, and you have to hotel quarantine for two weeks on return. Being able to spend that time with loved ones was precious.
Knitting. My mum destashed and I got lots of squishy woolly goodness as a result.
Frendships – one in particular, a woman whom I never would have thought would become a good friend has become one. I am lucky.
I’ve gotten really into crossword puzzles! There’s a bunch of cool women doing interesting things – Inkerator is a subscription of feminist puzzles, and Stella Zawistowski does free puzzles Wednesdays on toughasnails.net because she thinks even the hardest puzzles out there are not hard enough!
Whoa! Feminist puzzles?! Could you please share information about how to connect with that? I tried Google and could not locate Inkerator. Thanks!
So sorry! It’s Inkubator puzzles! https://inkubatorcrosswords.com/
https://inkubatorcrosswords.com/ sorry it’s Inkubator!
I really enjoyed this post! Living in perhaps the most isolated city in the world (Perth, Western Australia) has an upside – we have had zero community transmission but our borders have been firmly closed. My son got home from NYC by the skin of his teeth, which was lovely. I do worry about family and friends scattered round the world though, many of whom have had Covid.