It’s that time – a new year, a fresh start.  I love the beginning of the year and what better way of starting out 2009 than with a new project?  Hence the blog.  I’ve been thinking about it for some time, and have read other people’s blogs, and I felt that I could bring something a little different to the mix. 

I’m not one for New Year resolutions, but I do love the chance to review the past year and decide on new directions, or areas of focus.  This time of regular reflection is one that I think most of us actually need, whether we are aware of it or not.  Over the past few years I’ve been learning a lot about managing my time more effectively so that I can fit things that I have to do around things that I love to do.  Yes, that way of putting it is deliberate!

All too often we put the things we love doing behind everything else!  We have a huge sense of duty to fulfil all our obligations before we reward ourselves.  I was brought up thinking that I could only read a book for pleasure once everything else was done and dusted, and how often I ended up totally frustrated that I hadn’t had a chance to read my book.  In the end, I would sneak off and surreptitiously read, hiding somewhere so that I wouldn’t be discovered.  This way of thinking about things that are important to us is the wrong way round, and I’ve only recently realised that.

Now, at the beginning of a project, I like to give a bit of thought as to what I am intending to achieve with this particular project – is it a present, a set of scarves for sale, a series of samples exploring a particular technique, a piece of artwork for an exhibition, or just a ‘what if I do this with this yarn’ experiment?  This gives me a loose framework that I can start with and adapt as I work through the project. 

I know we’re not all the same animal.  I find shortish time-based lists useful, but long rambly lists just freak me out.  Some folk don’t like lists in any shape or form. 

So for an evening, or an afternoon in between Christmas and New Year, I sit down and reflect on what I’ve done this year, what has happened in general, and what I’d love to do at the beginning of the next year.  I don’t know where my projects will take me in weaving or in life terms, but I do love the sense of adventure.  To me there’s something magical about beginnings, and that’s highlighted at the start of a New Year.  So here’s to 2009.