You know how when you used to be in university, you would spend the weekend carousing and dancing and falling down hills and then on Monday morning you had a whole bunch of bruises that you weren't sure of their origins? Was this just me?
I feel like that now, except for the drunk part. And the carousing and dancing and falling.
It started when I was pregnant. I became severely clumsy, which is strange for me. I may have a semi-giant frame, but I have pretty good awareness of space, and also great balance. But when I got knocked up, I started running into things, kicking things, banging my head. One day I slipped off a step at work and bashed backwards into a wall. And almost every day I rammed my thigh into the radiator outside of our work bathroom - I started to feel like someone was moving it so that I would run into it, because my body seemed to not remember it was there.
But now I've entered a whole new realm of self-injury - mystery bruises. I don't remember getting them, but each morning I find at least one new bruise somewhere on my body (usually on my arms). And they aren't even little bruises. They're always bigger than toonies, often bigger than the circumference of a coke can.
I'm not sure if I'm getting them while carrying strollers and carseats, or while trying to maneuver said items into the car, or while playing with the kid or tussling with Tess. All I know is I'm not having as much fun getting them as I did when I was in university. Or maybe just a different kind of fun.
People who know me know I'm a hobby knitter. I've knit little sweaters and hats and vests and blankies for most of the wee ones our friends have welcomed in the last few years, and I love love love doing it. I was ready to (and actually started to) knit a little sweater dress for M too, when we did a little closet-cleanup and SB saw some of the quilts my grandmother, aunts, and great-grandmother had made for me.
"Why don't you make a quilt for the baby?" he asked innocently. It was at that moment I realized he has far higher esteem for my crafting abilities than I do, and also that I am just crazy enough to believe him and embark on my first quilting project. Just like that.
Generally, if I can find good enough instructions, I can pretty much make anything. It may have a few quirks and kinks, but for the most part I can get a project done if I have something to tell me step by step how to do it. So I did some googling.
I found the Moda Bake Shop, which is at once instructive and inspiring. There are tons and tons of sewing projects on there, and you can also find pre-cut fabric bundles through many online retailers that takes all the guess work out of choosing fabric patterns and cutting fabric pieces. I chose a baby quilt, ordered some fabric, and away I went.
My fabric arrived like this:
Isn't it beautiful? It's called a Jelly Roll, and mine was full of fabric from the Moda Central Park line by Kate Spain.
Here are some of the fabric swatches while I was trying to pair them up for the quilt blocks:
Currently, I am finishing the last part of the quilting portion of this project. This is the second to last step, people! I have been working on it since January, when I hoped to get the bulk of it done before M's arrival (only she arrived a week early instead of like most first babies, who arrive late), but now it's almost done! And while I pieced together the blocks using the sewing machine, I did the actual quilting by hand! Like my grandmother used to do!
For some reason I feel more proud of this project then any of my knitting projects. And for some reason I feel like when it is finished I am going to experience a major let-down - this project which has been so exciting and creatively invigorating will be over. And while there will be satisfaction in a work accomplished, and excitement over starting a new project, there will never be another first quilt, and it will never be close to complete ever again.
Once it's done, I'll take a photo of M playing on it. But for now I am basking in the anticipation of it being almost done.