Well, 2017 has been a hell of a year. There’s been lots of upheaval and some huge changes, but some happy memories made at the same time. It’s been hard picking out my 2017 highlights, but I’ve tried to go for a mix of life events and sewing-related stuff.
I moved to another country.
The biggest thing that has happened to Chris and I this year has been moving to the US. We basically packed up our lives in the UK and flew to Seattle with two suitcases each. Since then we’ve settled in pretty nicely over here. Moving to a new place is hard, no matter whether it’s a new town or a whole new continent, but I’m pleased that we’ve done it and I’m proud of us both for making a go of it. And – NEWS JUST IN – I have a job! I’ll be starting 2018 as internal communications manager at a tech company in Seattle and, as much as I’ll miss my lie-ins and the extra sewing time, I’m excited to get started.
I’ve seen some new places.
Now that we’re here in the States we want to see as much of the place as we can. There’s so much to see here and with five trips back to the UK between us this year we’ve barely even tickled the surface, let alone scratched it. But we’ve had some fun times going to New York and San Francisco, and it’s been great getting to know Seattle and its many dining establishments. We’ve been camping in the Cascades too, which has been awesome as the countryside here is stunning. I want to see more, and I know that in 2018 we’ll continue to do more.
I joined the Girl Scouts.
When we moved here I knew that I would have a lot of downtime while I was waiting for my work permit to come through. I was a Guide leader in the UK so I thought I’d carry things on by finding a Girl Scout troop. And I think I really landed on my feet. My Scouts are juniors in high school (so 16-17) and they’re a great bunch. They’re really outdoorsy and always up for trying new things. I’ve done a whole load of stuff this autumn that I never thought I’d do, and there’s plans for a canoe trip in Minnesota/Wisconsin next summer. They’re certainly keeping me busy.
I’ve met some lovely new people.
When you move somewhere new, it’s important to make new friends! Through Girl Scouts I’ve made some good friends, particularly the troop leader, Hope, who has made me feel so welcome. I even spent an enjoyable Thanksgiving with her and her extended family when Chris was away, which was really kind. I’ve also made some friends in the Seattle sewing community through the Make It Happen sessions at Drygoods Design and general blog chat. Claire, of the lovely Belle Citadel blog, took me under her wing when I was having a tough time and now we’re having sewing and baking sessions galore! Without wishing to gush too much, I am so lucky to have found these people – it makes the mental upheaval of moving continents so much easier.
I taught my first sewing class.
I’m not likely to make a career out of it any time soon, but in November I taught some of my Girl Scouts how to make their own Grainline Scout tees. I had a great time doing it – even the prep! – and the results were pretty good, if I do say so myself. It was also fun to revisit an old favourite pattern and I’ve since made another with the leftovers from a length of fabric I had. More on that next week!
I’m enjoying reading everyone’s top fives – it’s cool to see what everyone else has been up to this year. If you’d like more, there’s a nice post on Gillian’s blog where everyone is sharing links to their posts. Check it out!