Monday, December 31, 2018

lizzie's quilt, a 40 year finish and farewell

On Sunday night, about a week before Christmas Eve, I decided that I should make my sweet neighbor girl a quilt for her 18th birthday. It was a crazy idea, no doubt, but I forged ahead anyway. I'm not sure that I would recommend making a quilt in such a hurry the week before Christmas ever again, but I'm glad that I managed to pull it off. A deadline is a good thing! I gifted it to her on her birthday, which is on Christmas Eve. She was very surprised and loved it, which made it all worth it. I have heard reports that she's been using it a lot already. Hurray!
I made the label and THEN pieced it into the backing. I loved that method....because as soon as the binding was done, the quilt was done, done, done. Can't beat that! The blocks are 9" finished. Each rail was cut 3 1/2" x 9 1/2". All the top and binding fabric and some of the backing fabric was from my stash. (woohoo!) The quilt finishes about 63" x 81".

And now, for something completely different.....
My husband took some time over Christmas break to finish his Batman latch hook project. He is pretty sure that he got it for Christmas in 1978, making it a 40 year WIP. Hahahahahaha! I love that he actually took time to finish it, although we aren't sure where to put it now. :) He finished it for an honorary finish it up Friday project. Isn't that adorable??? I snapped a pic of him showing my boys how to latch hook, which was beyond precious. I give him 5 gold stars for his finish.

I've been looking back and it's been quite a year! I don't have a ton of accomplishments to highlight, but it's been a good year nonetheless. I did a fair amount of teaching/speaking and I did a decent amount of quilt making. Most importantly, I feel like I was able to be more PRESENT with my family this year than I have been in the past. It isn't always easy, but it's always worth it!

-I completed 14 quilts this year, which feels pretty reasonable. Out of those 14, 8 were primarily from the stash, 4 were primarily from scraps, and 2 used fairly equal amounts of scraps and stash. (The geeky side of me loves to see the breakdown of the finishes in this way. Always interesting!)

-I had a goal to use more stash this year, and I think I accomplished that. Hurray! I also added a lot to the stash, because I'm still living and breathing. Hahahahaha! It's just the way things go!

-I worked on several scrap quilts this year, too, but most of them are pretty intense, so they will take a lot of work to finish. I usually enjoy the process, so it's all good!

-I made the decision to wrap up my business this year, which was HUGE. (You can read more about that here, if you missed the announcement.) It was a very hard decision to make, and I'm sure I'll be dealing with the emotions of that for months to come. Change has always been difficult for me, so I shouldn't be surprised....but here's to the next chapter, whatever it may bring!

This is extremely difficult and very bittersweet, so I'll make it quick and to the point. Thank you for being a part of this amazing ride. It's been unbelievable. I loved being a part of your lives. Thank you for reading. Thank you for your comments. Thank you for all of your support over the years. I'll forever be grateful. For one last time....

Happy Monday to you! xoxox

104 comments:

tink's mom said...

Wishing you joy and happiness in this next chapter of your life. Enjoy your time with your family.

Kathleen said...

Thank you, Amanda! Your quilts and your Friday Finish have been a great inspiration to many. I am sure the new year will bring unexpected opportunies and wish you well in whatever comes your way.

kelgurl said...

Best wishes for whatever the future brings for you. I’ve loved reading your blog all these years. Happy new year, Amanda!

Jeni Baker said...

Wishing you all the best my friend!

Beth Strand said...

I will miss you but will continue to look back at your blog for inspiration. I wish you all the best!

katybee said...

I love your last minute birthday quilt. Such lovely Caribbean blues in a midwestern winter.
Thank you for your blog all this years. You've taught me a lot and been an inspiration. And all the best to you in whatever direction life leads you. I'm sure you have wonderful adventures ahead but you will be missed.

Robby H. said...

Thank YOU.

Unknown said...

Thank you and Happy New Year I hope it holds lots of fun things for you. I am sew glad that I got to meet you once. I, for one, will miss you. But I respect your decision and family always comes first. Hugs!!

Teresa said...

Wishing you much happiness and success as you begin this new phase of your life. I have enjoyed your blog.

Kat said...

Thank you for enriching my quilting life with your blog, tutorials and eye candy! You are so talented and so enjoyable to read, I am really going to miss your ‘story’! All the best to you and your family and thank you again for being so generous with your time and talents!

Kathy@KayakQuilting said...

Thank you for everything you have done for the quilting community! Your weekly linky party was a key motivator for me to finish projects and connect with others on line. I am inspired by your use of scraps and hope to follow in your footsteps this year!! All the best wishes for 2019!

Debby said...

Thank you for introducing me to so much in the quilting world through your Friday link ups! My favorite day of the week for so long. You are a treasure and I wish you all the best

Lilpuddin said...

I've been reading your blog for several years, and I'm grateful for the inspiration you've given me. Thank you for sharing your talent and love of quilting. I've made quilts from your books and blog, and they've brought me such joy. Thank you again, and I wish you all the best with your new adventure!

mereth said...

Thankyou so much for all the inspiration over the years. I hope everything goes well for you and your famil
y too. The blogging world will certainly miss you.

Stacy said...

Thank you! I have loved reading your blog for 12 years (I think). Best of luck and again THANK YOU!!

Karen O said...

Yours was one of the first blogs I found summer of 2011. So inspiring! And it was wonderful to meet you in Shoreview not long ago. I admire your dedication to your family. Blessings in this next chapter.

Warm Quilts said...

How special Lizzie must feel with that gorgeous quilt! And, congratulations to our husband on finishing the latch hook rug - was it really that far back when those kits were popular?! What a nice finish to the end of the year projects. May you find contentment with your new found free time and much happiness in the New Year.

Warm Quilts said...

Apologies, oops . . . should have read "your" husband.

Sarah said...

Best wishes to you and your family! And thank you for all the inspiration over the years!

Kerry said...

Thank you so much for sharing all the lovely quilts and indeed your time too - a lot is spent preparing, photoing, editing etc. Plus tutoring, book writing - don't know how you managed to fit it in with a family too!
I wish you all the best for the future.

Happy New Year and many more

Kay said...

I love aqua and all shades of teal , they have been my favourite colours since I was a child so your final quilt to show is absolutely perfect for a send-off.
Thank you for all the inspiration over the years. Sunday Morning Quilts will always be my favourite quilting book. The Gumdrops quilt was the first one I ever made.
Happy new year to you. x

Janice said...

Happy New Year to you all and thank you for providing so much inspiration and colourful quilty goodness over the years. I’ve always enjoyed your blog and will miss it. All the best to you with the next stage of your adventures.

http://blackeyedsewsan.wordpress.com/ said...

You WILL be missed-it is that utter relief once you make a major decision like this. Retirement is that same feeling & basically that is what you are doing but you have so many avenues still open to you-a new beginning to be sure~You are/were 1 of my favorite blogs!Susan

Katherine Murphy said...

Oh Amanda I will miss your posts so very much! You have inspired me to be brave and make time to sew. Thank you so very much! It’s been a real gift!

Jean said...

Your work and work process inspires me, and I will miss your blog. Thank you Amanda for sharing your gifts with us. Best wishes and cheers to new adventures!

Mabel Goddard said...

Wish you a Happy New Year 🎈🎆🎊 and wonderful things to your new path💕

Barbara M. said...

Wishing you and your family peace, love and joy in the new year! I too will miss your posts. Thank you for the creative inspiration and the joy of viewing your quilts. Wishing you much happiness in the next step on your journey. Enjoy!!!

southcedar said...

Thanks for so much inspiration, and thanks very much for leaving the blog up!! I refer to your tips and ideas all the time. I admire you for making a difficult decision and for putting family first. Our time with children is so very fleeting! Best wishes in all your next steps.

Lee said...

Awww! As always, a beautiful post and a wonderful way to ‘wrap everything up’! All the best for 2019 and your next chapter!! ❤️

FlourishingPalms said...

It's a gorgeous quilt, Amanda Jean! Though the design is simple - which I love - it's the colors that really make it special. Bet you'll be getting your hands on some Kona Splash, just like me! I'm glad you're slowing down your life pace a little bit, to spend more time with family, and especially to make what you love, rather than making what you must make. That surely feels great! Every blessing for a wonderful, burden-free 2019.

Lesley Gilbert said...

I've always enjoyed reading your posts - wishing you all that you wish for yourself, in 2019 and the coming years :)

Leslie Kohn said...

Amanda, Good luck to you in the future! I have learned so much from you and you have inspired numerous quilt ideas for me. I will miss your posts!

This was a lovely post....I loved the story about your husband finishing a WIP. I read that portion of your post to my husband (maybe he will be inspired to learn to quilt?). Best wishes to you and your family. Happy New Year and enjoy all your new adventures!

Ginger Marien said...

I wish you joy and peace in the next chapter in your life. Thanks for sharing so much with all of us.

Anne said...

I, too, would like to offer my thanks for all that you have shared in this space and in your patterns and books. I've learned so much from you, and reading your blog has been both a joy and inspiration. May the Lord bless you and your family in this New Year and going forward!

Donna said...

A big huge thank you, Amanda! You've inspired me to no end with your scrap love. You appreciate the potential of those little gems as much as I do!! Wishing you the very best.

Carolyn Jones said...

Happy New Year! I'll miss your quilts and inspiration....hopefully you will still post a picture now and then. Enjoy your 2019!

Sharlyn said...

Thanks for all the inspiration! Enjoy your new adventure :-)

Donna said...

Happy New Year! Endings are new beginnings but it is bittersweet. I will miss your posts but wish you the best in your new chapter. It took me a while to settle in to "retirement"- retiring old schedules and activities while developing new ones. Enjoy this new journey. You won't regret it! Best wishes for your new path!

Pamela Arbour said...

I enjoyed your last post. I will miss them. I do hope you will check in occasionally, maybe once a month or at the end of the year at least to let us know how things are going. I wish you the best and truly understand your decision.

Nancy @ Grace and Peace Quilting said...

Thank you for all you've done for the quilting world!!! Sending you quilted love, ~Nancy

Rachel said...

Thanks for all your inspiration and quilting ideas!! I've been a long time fan of yours, although I not a frequent commenter. You'll have a GREAT time with your next chapter, that I'm sure of!! Love your books as well!! Happy 2019 to you!!

piecefulwendy said...

Thank you, Amanda for all the quilty fun and encouragement you have given us. Enjoy the time with your family! Hope we hear from you now and again, or maybe bump into you at the MN Quilt Show!

Susan said...

I am going to miss your blog posts. I will be praying for you as you transition into whatever is next.

Melissa Corry said...

Wishing you so much joy and happiness in this new chapter!!!

kupton52 said...

What can I say other than "thank you, so very much"! Happy New Year...I wish you peace and prosperity and only good things for you and yours. Enjoy your family time and I hope the next leg of your life journey will be successful and satisfying. I've been a reader and enjoyer of your blog...not a commenter...but that doesn't mean I haven't enjoyed my time here. Blessings for southeastern WV.

Paula said...

Best wishes on your new adventure! Thank you for the years of wonderful blog posts and sharing your work. Yours was one of the very first blogs I found when I started reading blogs several years ago and I loved the Friday posts. There was such a wealth of ideas. I'll miss your blog, but hope you find contentment in your new direction. By the way, latch hook projects make great pillows. :0)

ZoeH said...

Will miss your posts. They have been inspiring and have learned so much from them. God’s best to you and your family.

artsycraftsyivy said...

I will so miss your blog. I loved reading about your makes and your life. Always such a positive and authentic voice. Congratulations on this next chapter. Enjoy!!!

CapitolaQuilter said...

Best of luck in your next chapter. If it's any indication on how sentimental I felt reading your last post I can't even imagine the level of emotions you must be experiencing. Thank you for being a pillar of the quilting community.

Liz said...

You've got so muvh ahead of you that you don't even know yet! Change is exciting! I'll miss your posts as they've been a bright spot every Monday. Next chapter here you come. Go get 'em, Tiger! Happy New Year & best of luck to you! <3

Laurie said...

Wow, good luck on your future endeavours, I am truly going to miss your blog posts. Your posts were so genuine and human. Enjoy the new road ahead.. Best to you and yours ..❤️. Canadian newby Quilter .

Ellomee said...

Thank you for being such an inspiration! Best wishes to you in your future endeavors! May 2019 bring you much happiness!

Marga (MarPie) said...

Thank you too for being a part of my life too.
Hope your blog will stay to read for years to come.
Have fun in everything you are going to do, and most of all stay healthy.

Warm regards from Holland,
Marga

Kristin said...

Amanda Jean-- I'm going to miss you soooooooooooooooo much!!! You are truly an inspiration! Your style speaks to me and sometimes without even realizing it, I was making things designed by you. I've followed you for years and years. If you have a change of heart and want to return to the world of blogging or pattern designing, we will all be right here for you! AND-- if you ever want to visit Madison again, I'm sure that Mad City Quilters or Blue Bar Quilts would love to host you! xoxoxoxoxoxoxox BEST WISHES FOR THE FUTURE!

Rebecca Chianese said...

I would like to buy your trees in a PDF I had it in my cart but it won’t let me buy now. Is there anyway to still purchase. I got so busy with the holidays etc that I didn’t finish the purchase. I hope you return to the Villages again. Your class was awesome! Rebecca Chianese
609-532-7869. Rchianese26@gmail.com. Thank you

Aliceart said...

Wishing you all the best on your journey to a more fulfilling life. Make that Batman latch hook project into a pillow, and it can go any where!

Debbie Lou said...

Thank you for all you have done and shared with us. Wishing you all good things in the New Year and onward. Happy New Year!

Nancy in NV-wheres the dude at blogspot said...

Thanks for all the fun and inspiration. Whatever you do from now on-make it a great one. Happy New Year to you and your family.

Zakiyah Pierce said...

Well, interesting enough, it is my first time reading your blog. Well wishes to you.

donna said...

Thank you for sharing your talent! Thank you for all of the inspirations!

Anne / Springleaf Studios said...

Wishing you all the best for this next adventure in your life. Your blog will be missed. Thanks for all the inspiration over the years.

Kay said...

May this new chapter open for you with new adventures that are fulfilling. May you be at peace with your decision - no regrets. New chapters often hold unexpected and pleasant surprises that we may not have discovered if we didn't take the brave step through the door. Happy New Year!

KaHolly said...

I am very, very sad. You have been a major influencing source of inspiration and motivation for me over the years. Good luck as you turn down a new path.

Marlyn Anderson said...

Sorry to see you leave, but understand why. I've only been reading your blog for several years. I totally enjoyed meeting you and getting to know you a bit more at a Lake Beauty retreat a couple years ago. You have inspired me to set time aside for quilting each day. I've often wondered how you get so much done each month, especially since you seem to use such small pieces of fabric.
Enjoy whatever lays ahead of you.

Leonie_O said...

Your annoouncement that you were finishing up was the catalyst for me to finally take the plunge and make my own scrap vortex quilt.
I began on Christmas Eve and finished the piecing yesterday. It is 42 1/2" by 54 1/2"
I would send you a photo but I don't know how. Thank you so much for all your hints and tips over the last couple of years (I only found your blog 2 years ago).
Happy new year from Australia and I hope you have a wonderful retirement!

Smultronbo said...

I wish you good luck and tons of joy with whatever you decide to do onward from now. And thank you tons for all the inspiration you have shared over the past. I havent been so active here lately but I've read your blog for quite some time. Take care and enjoy life. Time flies far too quickly. <3 GLHF!

Penny Huck said...

Thank you for sharing your creativity with us. I've saved so many ideas and pictures. Sometimes life just leads us down a different path and we have to follow. Enjoy your family an your new endeavors.

Charlotte M. said...

Your husband wins for the oldest WIP. Wonderful that he finished it. Wishing you all the best in the new year and in your future endeavors. I will still see you around Instagram.

Material Girl said...

Happy new year! I wish you happiness and health. I will miss your blog but thank you for all that you have shared. Farewell.

Niki Katie said...

Thank you Amanda Jean for all the joy and inspiration you have given me over the years. My family gave me your Sunday Morning Quilts book many years ago and I have followed you ever since. Your creations, passion, love and language have fed my soul and I wish you joy and love in your next step of being in the moment. Best wishes from sunny Brisbane, Australia

Lisa S. said...

One of my favorite quilts ever was made from a tutorial on your blog. That quilt is 10 years old now. My son still loves it! You’ve touched many with your words. Thanks for everything and best wishes to you!!

edith csokmay said...

We always think we have more time to do "everything". Then you get a post like this one and you realize things don't revolve around you or your schedule. As much as I'm going to miss reading your posts and seeing what your next great quilt looks like (BTW - Lizzie's quilt Love it !!!), I am absolutely thrilled for you. What a difficult challenging decision. But you are following your heart, good counsel and God's leading into the next phase of your life. Enjoy the time, enjoy that journey.

Thank you for sharing your talent with us through the quilt alongs - the patterns - the books. We are all better for having been able to spend this little bit of time with you.

Godspeed, God bless and again, thank you.

Rebecca Chianese said...

Thank you for your creative genius and affirmation to use scraps! I love your book “ Leave:No Scrap Behind”. I am still working on the quilt from last years’ class in the Villages. We will miss your creative genius! Enjoy your family! They grow too quickly! Rebecca Chianese

Nita said...

Wishing you much peace and happiness. Thank you for all the years. Sunday Morning Quilts is still one of my favourites.

Deb Cox said...

just wanted to say a big thank you also my dear and the future is yours. good luck with it and always know you will be remembered. brilliant, absolutely brilliant.

Carol E. said...

I am going to miss your blog. But... I think that you and your family will love the New Life. Thanks for the inspiration over the years.

Carol E. said...

P.S. I love that your husband finished his UFO! Tell him Congrats from all of your followers.

Miaismine said...

Hello Miss Amanda,
You were one of the first blogs I followed and I have enjoyed learning about you and from you. I'm so grateful for the inspiration you have given me! I'm equally grateful that it appears that your blog will remain up though you will not be updating it? Fingers crossed!

I'm blessed by knowing that you will be growing in many other areas of your life, experiencing new adventures and having more family time! You are doing you. What a great example you are setting for other women. Take good care, blessings to you and your family! Hugs!

Beth said...

I've been reading your blog for so many years that there's no way I'm going to say "goodbye"--that sounds way too final. Let's just say, "bye for now" Who knows what the future holds? And it is more important for me to say, "Thank you", for your help and encouragement over the years. Your generous spirit has been a gift to many people and I am surely one of them.

Di~ said...

I love you.

Melody Srygley said...

THANK YOU!

eileen said...

Thank you for all your ideas, your tutorials, your books, your insights ! We will miss you, but hope you enjoy your change in goals, and time for you and your family !

Deborah S said...

Thank you, thank you, thank you for all you have done these past years as a business woman, blogger, quilter, and teacher to the quilting community. Thank you does not even begin to adequately convey the appreciation I have for you and all you have inspired me to do. Good luck in that next chapter - many new adventures await you I'm sure!

Cool Lizzie said...

What a jewel you are, Amanda! I have followed your blog for a long time and have your scraps book, which I turn to frequently for inspiration. Thanks for sharing your life and your process with us all, and I'll think of you so fondly going forward! Happy times to you!

Bunny said...

Your blog and books have been a great source of inspiration. Thank you so much! If ever you change your mind and come back to blogging, we'll be here waiting!!
All the best in your endeavours ahead.

Super Mom - No Cape! said...

Thank you for all that you've shared over the years. Best wishes for an awesome transition to whatever you decide to do next!

Sandra-Home Again Handbags said...

God Bless from Fort Wayne Indiana. Thanks for the inspiration.

AnnaMarie H said...

Thank You soooo much for your blog. I have followed it faithfully and learned a lot from your stories and tutorials. Good luck to you and your family.
Now that you have closed your business you might have extra time for quilting, but something always comes up to take up that extra time. Again, thank you for taking time to write the blog and best of luck to you and your family.
Have fun with your new adventure and Happy New Year!

Tracybug Creative said...

The quilt is just perfect! I made an aqua Ragged Squares quilt for my oldest on New Year's Eve as I thought of your retirement and all that your blog has meant to me. Thanks for teaching and sharing and being so generous with your time. May God bless your next season of life as abundantly as he has blessed this one.

Mama Urchin said...

Thank you! I'm so glad this blog made us into friends and I hope we might see each other soon! Congratulations on all you have accomplished here!

Kay Nelson said...

Amanda Jean, I have made so many of your quilts, I own your books and fabric, so needless to say you have been such an inspiration! Thank you so much for that! I’m glad you will still do IG so this isn’t really a goodbye, just more time for you to create and be with your family. That is good!!! You will alsways be my incentive to throw no scrap away.... Kay

Anita Dualeh said...

Blessings and divine direction to you as you "reinvent" yourself.

Alison Wood said...

Really sad to say goodbye though we have never met: your blog is one of the very few I have stuck with. I love your use of scraps and enthusiasm for making, and Finish it up Friday galvanised me into finishing projects in a way that nothing else has done! I completely understand your need to spend more time with your kids now: I have older children, sort of grown up, but they definitely needed me around more in their teens than as little ones, and you never get that time back again. I am glad to have your books and that we will still be able to look back at your blog for the future. Thank you for being so generous and sharing your ideas - I have loved following you, and I will now HAVE to learn how to do Instagram! Best wishes for the future to you and your family.

Melanie said...

Love your whole blog post. From the last minute sewing - such a generous heart - to your husbands finish. Him joining all your crafty Finish it Up Fridays - at least for one, the last time. I wish you all the best for 2019. It will for sure be strange in the beginning but I hope a lot of amazing, lovely things will develope for you over time. xo

Russ & Beth Burright said...

I will miss reading your blog as a part of my daily routine! Maybe now I'll go back and start from the beginning! I will be spending my time this year making each quilt from your books and reveling in my scraps! Thank you for the inspiration!

Barbara Forde said...

Going to miss you. Loved the blog....I checked for updates nearly every morning. Best of luck.

Jessica Christensen said...

The quilt is beautiful. I'm sure Lizzie loves it.

You have a beautiful legacy here on the blog, so I hope you will leave it up for us to revisit and for those who have yet to discover it - who will do so to their joy. I have a large number of "Amanda Jean" quilts to finish up. Thanks for all the inspiration and encouragement. You are wonderful.

Marjorie Levy said...

Wishing you much happiness and joy ahead. Thanks for all of the information you shared with us over the years!

Michelle Carter said...

Happy New Year. Your blog has been a great source of inspiration and I continue to reference (and gift!) your books. I'll miss your updates but wish you much happiness as you begin your next adventure.

Giselle said...

Amanda Jean I find you when searching a way to finish a quilt top my aunt hand pieced about 30 years ago. I have learned a lot from you. Thank you. Enjoy your family. Best wishes from Brasil.Giselle

loraine everard said...

thankyou for all the wonderful blog posts, and tutorials. You have inspired me over and over again! Enjoy the time with your family, it truly is the most important thing.Good luck in the future, you will be missed! xxx

Kaelyn Angelfoot said...

Very stunning quilt and congrats on getting it done so quickly! I think my fastest one was three weeks for a baby shower but that was before I had a toddler. And thank you for sharing the hubs' 40 year WIP, suddenly I don't feel so bad about that cross stitch project I started 15 years ago and haven't finished yet ;)

julie freyberg said...

Amanda Jean....I will miss your blog immensely, thank you for all the good ideas, tips and memories.

Stephanie said...

Just wanted to say thank you for this blog and all your contributions to the quilting community over the years! Sunday Morning Quilts was the first quilt book I ever looked at it really opened my eyes to what was possible! Wishing you all the best with whatever is next. I will be following you on Instagram and will think of you whenever I organize my scraps!