Thursday, January 12, 2017

2016 • Year in Review

To say "what a year" would be a very immense understatement.  The past month has been a whirlwind of stress, heartache, sorrow, and a bit of rejoicing.  On the 22nd of December, at about 2:30 AM, my father was taken to the hospital via ambulance, and would spend 16 days in the ICU as the sickest patient on the floor.  On January 6th, the day after my parents' 46th wedding anniversary, my dad passed away and went to be with the Lord, surrounded by his family and friends.  It was a long journey, but we never expected him to go so soon.  Much heartache and sorrowing has occurred, and will continue to occur, but we are rejoicing over the fact that he is in heaven and is pain-free, never to have another sorrow or pain.  Praise the Lord for that.

It has been such a short amount of time since it happened, and has been so incredibly busy and stressful that my mom and I really haven't had a chance for the truth of the situation to actually sink in yet.  It will soon though, I suppose, and that will not be an easy time.  In the mean time, we have enjoyed having family around us almost constantly, which has been such a huge blessing.  It has been a time of unification and closeness with my siblings, and that has been wonderful.  But nothing can or ever will fill the void that is so suddenly evident.

My dad worked from home for the past 30 years, up until he retired 3 years ago, and hence was always home (practically speaking).  My siblings and I were homeschooled, so those two facts combined made for a parent-child relationship like no other.  We were such a close family, and in the past years since my siblings left home, my parents and I were such a threesome, that it is going to be an unbelievable adjustment for Mom and I to suddenly find ourselves as a twosome.  God is so good and gives just the right amount of grace as we need it, but it is still an incredibly hard thing to realize and accept.

I'm so thankful that the Lord gave me the best dad I could ever imagine.  He was loving, supportive, thoughtful, encouraging, taught me how to work, how to write, and pretty much everything that I know.  I love him so much, and always will.  And I'm going to miss him so very much!!  <3  I love you, Dad!!!  I'll see you again someday.

(July 2016)

The rest of this post was written in early December, and I'll leave it as-is.

This year brought about the opening of a vintage shop, going to our first Civil War reenactment with Sarah (and all three of us winning awards for our outfits!), multiple weddings and bridal showers to work in/photograph, learning how to quilt, taking a couple of custom orders in my Etsy shop on top of good sales there this year, plus seeing the Lord work in marvelous ways in so many people's lives, including my own.  In short, the Lord is so good.  :)

Now on the blogging side of things; it seemed like I hadn't made very many things, and especially had not blogged about very many, but I was happily surprised when compiling my usual collage!  There are quite a few of them there!  The photos in the collage are of projects that I blogged about in 2016 (except for the last picture in row #3; that was a custom order in my Etsy shop).  All but 2 of them were made in 2016.  Shown in the collage are my mom's and Sarah's Civil War dresses; I did about 85% of the sewing on my mom's dress, and Sarah's was a joint effort between the three of us, so I went ahead and cobbed that for my picture too.  ;)

     first row: 1  2  3  4  5  6
second row: 1  2  3  4  5  6
    third row: 1  2  3  4  5  6
  fourth row: 1  2  3  4  5  6

Not shown in the collage are some aprons, baby and little girl's dresses, and 1860s undergarments
On top of all of these projects, I also made 7 dresses, 10 blouses, and 4 skirts that have not yet been photographed and/or blogged about, as well as 2 quilts, more UFOs than I would like to admit, and some other smaller projects.  So I guess it was quite a productive year after all!!  :) 

My mom sewed up a storm last year as well, but there is a sad lack of evidence thereof on my blog.  We are terrible about getting pictures of her outfits, so she doesn't appear on here as often as she should.  We'll have to remedy that in the coming year!!  :)

     first row:  1  2  3
second row:  1  2  3
    third row:  1  2  3

On top of these outfits, she made 7 dresses, 6 blouses, a quilt, aprons, various 1860s underpinnings, a few UFOs (she has a whole lot more perseverance than I, haha), as well as other random projects.

So all in all, it was a great year sewing-wise, and I can't wait to see where it goes in the next year.  There are already plenty of sewing plans in the works, and fabrics in the stash that are just *begging* to be made into just the right things, so there will be no lack of sewing around here.  ;)

Lastly, thank you all for your wonderful support and sweet comments on here!  You don't know what an encouragement and delight you all are!!  I look forward to another year of blogging, Lord willing!  It is so much fun, and I hope that it provides some good inspiration for all of you, and especially those who are learning to sew their own clothing.  My whole mission in having this blog has always been to encourage those who are new in the realm to see that they too can sew anything their heart desires, with a little time, a little fabric, and a little patience.  :)

And moreover, I appreciate your prayers and thoughts for my mom and I as we begin this perilous journey without our husband/dad.  It's a new experience, and not an enjoyable one, but we are of course so thankful to have each other.  We're a team, we have an amazing family, and we have the Lord, so I know we can get through this.

<3  Thanks for stopping by, folks.
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  1. Oh Esther, I'm so sorry. I cannot imagine what you and your family are going through but it sounds like you had a really wonderful relationship with him, which is such a blessing. My thoughts are with you all at this very difficult time. (Your makes are amazing, you've achieved so much!) xx

  2. Esther,

    I am so sorry to read of the loss of your father. The pictures you have shared are so beautiful. I cannot imagine how painful your loss must be. Please know that you and your mom are in my prayers. May the peace and love of Jesus carry you through this difficult time!


  3. I'm so sorry for your loss! What a terrible time to lose a parent, especially when you all are so close. My heart aches to read this news, and we will certainly lift up your family in prayer. Grace and peace for the long journey ahead. Memory eternal!

  4. What a wonderful collage! Wow, just wow. But I know the feeling of not feeling very productive at times, and it is a very good exercise to look back on a compilation of achievements like this. It sure does change one's perspective.
    I am so very sorry to hear of your family's loss. I am so glad you had such a wonderful father and that he is at peace now.
    Hugs to you, Andrea

  5. Oh, my dear, sweet friend. I'm so very sorry for your loss. I'll continue to pray for you, dear one.

    Ever so much love,
    Michelle <3

  6. Esther

    So sorry to hear about the passing of your dad. I can see by your sweet words and pictures you had a wonderful life with him. I know it will be hard when it all sinks in, but you have your mom to lean on and she you. You really have been very productive this year with your sewing. Love your blog.


  7. I am so sorry to hear of your loss. You and your mother will be in my prayers and I know the Lord will give you both strength in the weeks ahead. He is out of pain and in eternal peace.

  8. I'm so sorry to hear about your dad! I can't imagine what you and your family must be going through right now. Thinking good thoughts for you.

  9. I'm so sorry about your dad. Sudden loss is so hard to deal with, even with the hope of heaven in mind. It is hard to watch loved ones in the hospital, but I hope it gave you the chance to tell him how much you loved him.


  10. Heartfelt condolences, Esther. I'll pray the Lord gives you His special blessings.

  11. I am so sorry for your loss. You and your mother will be in my thoughts.


  12. I am very sorry for your sad loss. Your Father sounds like a wonderful man. You and your Mom and family will be in my thoughts and prayers. Lovely to see your beautiful sewing. You are such an inspiration. Your Father must have been very proud of you. xx Karen

  13. Dear Esther, I will be continuing to pray for you and your mom, along with the rest of your family. I so enjoyed the collages of your dad with all the family and the ones of you! What sweet precious memories ave yes! Praise you Jesus that one day, you'll be able to see your day again!! What a comfort that is to those who love the Lord! The pictures of your dad and mom are so precious!!
    I couldn't decide what of your projects was my favorite... They were all wonderful and you off course did a magnificent job on them all! The list of what your mom made me smile! She is so sweet looking!!!
    Can't wait to see what you accomplish this coming year my dear!!
    Blessings to you all!

  14. Dearest Esther, what a beautiful tribute to your Dad. I pray you can hold onto the happy memories that you shared together. xxx

  15. I am very sorry about your loss, Esther. My thoughts are with you and your family.

  16. Dear Esther, I'm so sorry for the loss of your beloved father ~ I can only pray that you will find comfort knowing he is with his Heavenly Father, and that you have your loving family to be with you in your time of sorrow. I pray that you and your mother will able remember all the precious times you shared with him with peace in your hearts. Blessings for you and your family, and may God see you through this next year. ❤


  17. What a loving tribute to your father. I enjoyed seeing all the photos. Very touching. You and your mom are often in my thoughts.

  18. Dear Esther, I'm so sorry for the loss of your dear father. Praise the Lord you have the peace knowing he is rejoicing with the Savior in heaven, and you'll be able to be reunited with him one day. How sweet it is that we can weep, not as those that have no hope, but as those that do. I pray God will bless you and your sweet mom this year, and that God will give you comfort during this time.

    I enjoy your posts. What a talented seamstress you are, and how I love all the dresses you make! :)

    With much love in Christ,

  19. Oh, Esther, I have been out of the blog world for several months now and I haven't visited your wonderful blog in months. I am so sorry for your loss. It looks like your Dad had a wonderfully full life on earth with an amazing family to carry on his memory. I'm wishing you and him all the peace in the world and in heaven.

    And what a roundup of amazing projects! As always, you and your mother's creations are incredibly inspiring.

    Happy new year!


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