Annual Family Calendar


Every year for the past 13 I have created a family calendar. It is a 13 month calendar since I normally do not finish it until January – that would be because of all the Christmas orders and the busy holiday season. This year was a bit different in that I received a stack of ornament orders at the end of December, but I somehow managed to complete my calendar before the end of the month! Yay!

I kept it simple this year:

  • I used some of the photography of one of my sister-in-laws, as well as my own. She and my brother are around the farm at different times of the day and year than I am and she captures some great pictures.
  • With 23 nieces and nephews – I pulled from this past year’s images and created a sepia closeup of each.
  • I added a scripture per month.
  • 19×13 inch matte 2-sided photo paper.
  • HP large format printer

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Years ago I met an amazing woman who was to become a close friend and confidant. She was a regional director for an international IT consulting firm. Her career accomplishments were impressive (the drop jaw type of thing), so you might be able to imagine my astonishment when I first saw this laptop toting, international project manager extraordinaire, during a weekend visit, whip out her cross stitch needlework and cozy up by the fire. I guess I thought that was a “country” thing. I came to discover it is actually a family thing. Laptops, smartphones and leather briefcases can’t stop that.

Her mother’s vintage needlework…




Her own cross stitch pieces tend to be large and detailed…



And her daughter has also picked up the love.



I enjoy seeing women pass down their joy of needlework from generation to generation. Some of my own nieces are showing an interest, and I find that exciting.

The Gifts I Love to Give

Our boss bought an old restaurant across the pond from our rented office this year. He then renovated it into a state-of-the-art IT facility with all sorts of amenities, not the least of which is a huge back deck that will be in much use next summer, I am sure.

We moved in Thanksgiving week. This view is looking from the old office across the pond to the back (and deck) of the new place.

I love giving these types of gifts (that capture an important moment in someone’s life) more than any other. It is probably why I have continued doing this for over 30 years.