Tuesday, December 31, 2019

2019 recap & 2020 goals

New Year's Eve seems like a good time to reflect back on the previous year and look ahead to the next.  Yvonne of Quilting Jetgirl hosts an annual planning party and it's a great way to record goals and share them with others.

2020 Planning Party

2019 Goals ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

It's worth nothing that I set my 2019 goals before being notified that I was chosen as an Island Batik Ambassador for 2019, so that commitment was not factored into any of my set goals.

Goal: Maintain Commitments
I was successful here.  I participated in Stash Bee for the 4th year and was a Hive Mama.  I kept everyone in my hive on track as best I could and I was only late once in completely my block, and that was only by 2 days.  For a variety of reasons, I could feel my enthusiasm for Stash Bee waning and have decided not to participate in 2020. Hopefully the break will rejuvenate me and I will return in 2021.  I was also on time with all my Island Batik Ambassador projects.
My Stash Bee quilt, 2019
Goal: Balance Old Projects with New Ones
I did reasonably well here.  The PhD (projects half done) program with Gail is a big help because she requires that anything you start in that year be completed before the end of the year so that you are not creating new UFOs.  I finished 14 out of 25 of my unfinished projects (17 total, because one became 4 separate quilts), and started and completed 10 other projects.  That 10 does not include the monthly Island Batik projects (11 in total) and a few Island Batik bonus projects.  

Where I was unsuccessful here was finishing more projects not necessarily started prior to 2019 but that used up fabric I already had.  This is largely due to the Island Batik projects taking up so much of my sewing time--a trade-off I was happy to make.   

One of the older UFOs I finished this year
Goal: Limit Buying Fabric
I actually did really well here!  I only remember going fabric shopping 3 times during the year, and one of those was specifically to supplement for an Island Batik challenge and one was to get more white for my stash due to Stash Bee blocks.  It has meant actively not going to quilt shops, both locally and when I travel, so as to avoid temptation.  And I admit, getting two amazing shipments of fabric from Island Batik did mean I still got the thrill of new fabric. 

Goal: 25 Charity Quilts
This was a huge increase from previous years' goals of 12 charity quilts.  I didn't quite make it to 25 but I came close: 22, which is 6 more than last year's record-breaking that led to the lofty goal in the first place.  I'm calling that a success!

Here's the breakdown:
2 Carolina Hurricane Quilts
7 Project Linus
1 Quilts of Valor
12 waiting to be taken to a local children's hospital
Postage Plus, one of the 22 donation quilts I made this year
Goal: Involvement in Online Quilting Community
I continue to read and comment on a wide assortment of quilting blogs.  I love the Finish Along and have been participating since I discovered it in 2019. I wasn't consistent with One Monthly Goal but I did link up several times.  I participated in one blog hop that was not affiliated with Island Batik and two that were.  My Quilt-Along participation was down from previous years with only the disappearing 9-patch QAL with Julie of the Crafty Quilter, plus one I just started but haven't posted anything yet.  The main reason for fewer QALs was the time commitment to Island Batik.  I did start posting as The Darling Dogwood on facebook and am using facebook much more for quilting conversations than I had before.  I also blogged a record number 85 times (this is 86!) compared to 62 posts in 2018.  So I'm calling that a success.

4th of July blog hop for Quilts of Valor

2020 Goals

If you've read Jim Collins' book Built to Last, you are familiar with the concept of the BHAG, or Big Hairy Audacious Goal.  I'm starting 2020 with my own BHAG: Complete 52 projects.

Goal: Complete 52 projects
I don't always get consistent sewing time so this will not be one a week, but of course will average out to be.  I'm hoping this will help me balance commitments to Island Batik, donation quilts, sewing for family, friends, and myself.  My theory is that with 2 completed quilts or projects, there is enough for all of those.  

Goal: 20 Donation Quilts
Twenty-five turned out to be too many, but twenty seems doable, especially if I completed twenty-two in 2019.  And if I'm completing 52 projects, it seems like a good balance if half-minus-one of those are donations.

Goal: Find Alternative to Project Linus
My favorite quilts to make and to donate are quilts for kids and babies.  With the Charlotte chapter of Project Linus shutting down this year, I need a new location.  My plan is and always has been to support of one of the local organizations that Project Linus donations went to, and I've decided I want it to be one of the children's hospitals.  But I haven't actually contacted anyone to find out what they need and how to drop off.

Goal: In-Person Quilting Community
I've been lacking an in-person quilting community.  There is a Modern Quilt Guild chapter in my metro area and I'm pretty sure I'll be able to attend the monthly meetings. I'm hoping it turns out to be a good fit for me.

Goal: Online Quilting Community
I want to continue to be active in the online quilting community, including increasing my involvement.  I'd like to join a few blog hops and possibly guest post a few times.  If you are hosting anything or know of any fun opportunities, I'd love to be considered!  I also want to increase my quilting-related presence on facebook and possibly pinterest as well.

Goal: Learn EQ8
Possibly the goal I'm most excited about, after the BHAG of 52 finishes.  My husband gave me EQ8 for my birthday/Christmas (I'm a December birthday so it's easy to combine) and I want to learn how to use it.  I've done a few tutorials and played around a bit.  I've signed up for some virtual classes and am looking forward to making some of the quilts in my head come to life!

So that's my look back at 2019 and my look ahead to 2020.  Happy New Year to you and yours!


  1. You did very well this year; looking forward to 2020 on the blog circuit with you!

  2. Wow, 22 donation quilts is super impressive; way to go! I hope that you have a wonderful 2020 and that you enjoy working on your goals for the year.

  3. You had a great year, and you have some good goals for the next year. So -- when is your birthday in December? I'm a December too, so inquiring minds want to know :-)

  4. Great job on the charity quilts front, Em!!! You did great on all your BHAGs! Happy new year! Looking forward to seeing what you make in 2020!

  5. Wow, you did all the PhD stuff and the ambassador stuff in one year! That's a lot of stitching. You must have incredible time management skills. Congrats on all the achievements in 2019 and good luck with all your 2020 goals.

  6. Great goals for 2020! I love your postage plus!