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Happy 2014!

January 2, 2014

New Year 2014Happy New Year from Minnesota!

We’ve had a fabulous time here with friends and family (and quite a bit of crafting on my part), and I’m looking forward to writing a post summing up our trip when we’re back in PA. Today, however, I thought I’d look back at 2013 and ahead to the new year.

2013 was a big year for me professionally, as I completed most of the coursework for my PhD. I presented my work at two academic conferences and helped put on our own conference at my home institution. In the fall, I started teaching graduate students in addition to undergraduates by co-teaching with a new TA, sitting on a panel for students considering PhD programs, and giving a guest talk in a former prof’s class.

I continued to dance my little heart out, traveling to dance events in Boston, Virginia Beach, and State College and attending two of them in Pittsburgh. I learned how to dance balboa and have been really loving it. Sweetie and I continue our not-very-fun academic living arrangements, but I have a new apartment in a great neighborhood, and we had visits from several dear friends over the year.

This year I’ve sewn more than ever before and have found a new little knitting community at my LYS. I’ve split my crafting time more evenly between knitting and sewing, and I dedicate at least an hour every day as well as every Sunday that I’m not with Sweetie to creative stuff that keeps me sane. I’ve completed 15 knitted projects including 4 sweaters this year and 19 sewn projects since May when my sewing really took off.

As I keep going, I want to work along the same trajectory I’ve been on in 2013: focusing on quality construction, excellent fit, and finished projects that suit my wardrobe and lifestyle. Speaking of lifestyle, mine has shifted in a way that will affect me for most of the remainder of my PhD. I’m now only on campus a couple of days a week, so that means my wardrobe is at two extremes: comfortable clothes for working from home that I’m not embarrassed to step outside in when I need to run errands and dressier outfits for teaching. Of course, I’ll always need garments for those in between tasks and going out dancing, but I’m very aware of this new split in my lifestyle.

As always, I’m trying to take more, better, and timelier photos of my work. I’ve done a better job this year, but I still have a backlog of projects that need to be documented, and I want to make sure to snag Sweetie for a few photos each time he visits so I can share them here. I’m also trying to keep chipping away at those UFOs I have around. I’ve been trying to tackle them a little at a time, but goodness there are a lot of them!

If you’ve made it to the end of this crazy long post, here are some things you can look forward at RedKnits this winter:

  • Dale of Norway sweaters: because, as my former LYSO says, it’s good to always have one on the needles.
  • Gray coats from Colette for the whole family! By which I mean Sweetie and me.
  • The 2014 Ravellenic Games: what will I knit this year?
  • My 2nd year PhD cardigan. Finally.
  • Some Negronis for Sweetie. And probably lots of other things, too. Because I can’t say no to him.
  • A huge Amy Butler bag for my upcoming travels. Because I’m incapable of packing light.
  • …and more UFO finishes than you can shake a stick at!

Happy 2014, everyone!

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