2014 – The Good

2014.  Uh, blech.  So many things went more than a bit awry in 2014.  Work was, well, anyway…  My health was…. well…

Let’s focus on the good.  As always, thanks for reading and sharing and caring about me.  This is really a highly-censored personal journal for me, but I love there is a bit of an audience, especially since I abstain from almost all social media.  I love this outlet, I love sharing my projects, and I hope to make the blog fuller and more personal next year.

Here are some of my personal highlights (in no particular order):

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My stepkids.  This year we really got close.  I think this year they finally got me completely.  My SS realized that my smart-ass comments were meant to be funny, not that I am an idiot.  And sometimes he even found them funny.  And my SD started saying she loved me – all the time. W.O.W.  For years, people, including my stepkids, have reassured me that they are in fact “my” kids.  This year it felt like that was true.  In sharp focus I can see what they have gotten (at least in part) from me – including a fierce sense of humor, some kick-ass irreverence, a respect for the absurd, and the importance of looking past the appearance to find substance.  And they totally see the value I bring and they like to be around me.  The kids and my husband are awesome – and now I totally realize that they are more awesome with me.  I guess I will always be a little sad that I never had my “own” kids. But that is almost completely tempered with the sheer awesome heart-pounding joy of being a loved, admired, accepted stepmom.  ‘Cause that shit is hard.  And the kids, my husband and I earned it – through time and patience and acceptance and love and work.  I wouldn’t trade being their stepmom for anything – not even kids of my own.  Not. fucking. anything.  And that makes me a parent and that makes them my kids.

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My marriage.  This year has gotten stronger.  I feel like this year we have crossed a line into something that feels completely like forever family.  The steadiness of my husband’s support and love and encouragement is truly my cornerstone.  I can’t imagine not having that.  From outside our marriage looks “unconventional” – with me being the wage earner and stepkids and all that – but it is completely old skool conventional in that we totally have each others’ backs, he is my best friend, the person I want to see every day for the rest of my life.  Our marriage works.  Gawd, what a magnificent thing.  In an amazing moment a couple weeks ago, my step kids told my husband and I that we “were made for each other”.  It took my breath away.  That they know we will always be there for each other and a team for them is what my parents gave me growing up.  And that I gave the kids that gift – even if in a blended family – was so gratifying.  And now I get to tease my husband that he is so weird that he was made for *me*.  And he teases me right back.  Love that man.

IMG_1663My house. Ok, now this is getting a bit trite.  Kids, husband, home.  As I told my husband the other night when we went out for sushi, I am quite suburbane.  Proving it with this post.  But our home has been a challenge.  Things wearing out, no longer functional and no money to replace them.  This year ushered in new appliances, new downstairs bath with a working subfloor, and lots of little things fixed that have been bugging me.  Our house is not a castle… it is old and quirky (like us), but it is waaaay more livable than it was not too long ago.  One thing I do love about my husband and I is that we can see the joy in the small things.  And all of the little fixes and upgrades in our house this year,along with the general eclectic awesomeness, have brought us lots of joy.

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Quilting.  Now we get to it.  I have never, ever, ever immersed myself in a hobby like I have in quilting this year.  I have been a knitter and a jewelry maker – but they are nothing compared to quilting when it comes to total consumption of one’s soul.  I have spent too much money on fabric, and have too many times lingered at my sewing table when I should have been living my life (or at least showering).  But I do think quilting has saved my sanity this year.  My brain has always been very loud with worry.  I practically invented making a mountain (or mountain range) out of a molehill.  Work, finances, and my health beat a million bass drums of pounding worry into my brain.  Quilting shuts them up.  Amazingly.  I have gotten better and faster.  I have partly slayed the demons of fabric buying and unfinished projects, and what I have left is a passion that brings me so much joy.  This year I finished *60* projects!  That is 5 a month.  Lots of baby quilts for friends and charity, lots of pouches, lots of things for my home.

This upcoming year I am facing a lot of scary things.  The turn of the calendar doesn’t make those things go away.  But the four cornerstones of my kids, my husband, my home, and my quilting give me a strength of sorts.  I am scared, but not beaten.

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