Making plans for the year to come.
I think it's natural to get reflective at the end of each year. I like to dedicate December to thinking about what I have accomplished in the past year, and what I would like to accomplish in the next.
Knitting wise, 2012 was "The Year of Mindless Knitting" for me. It was an emotionally challenging year, and when I'm having a difficult time emotionally, I always fall back on simple knitting. At the end of a really tough day, I just don't have it in me to follow a chart or do a bunch of math. Thus, this year I think I cranked out more garter stitch than every other year in my knitting career combined. I made a whole entire afghan out of garter stitch, plus several full-length scarves.
In past years, I have pushed myself to learn new knitting techniques, design patterns, or try new items (like socks or lace work) to improve my skills. But skills wise, this was the year of resting on my laurels. I barely learned anything this year when it comes to knitting. I did pick up several cool new cast on and cast off techniques, though, so the year was not a total loss.
One goal I did reach was to learn spinning. I have been wanting to learn how to spin for years, and I decided early on that 2012 would be the year. I took a two-hour class on the drop spindle in January, and by March I had produced a fairly decent skein of two-ply yarn with the drop spindle.
I didn't make the jump to buying a wheel and going full-out, though. It turns out that I just don't enjoy spinning yarn the way some people do. But you know what? That's okay. I tried it, I have the skill, and I'm not out a lot of money. I am of the opinion that your time and effort is never wasted when you're learning something, so I'm happy with the experiment overall.
Another target I hit was stash management. I'm exiting 2012 with only about 12,000 yards of yarn. Which is a real accomplishment, given that I started the year with 27,000 yards! A lot of the stash reduction was donating unwanted yarn to various knitting charity groups. But once again, it totally qualifies. And I love having all that storage space freed up.
Looking forward to 2013, I would like to end the year with only 5,000 yards of yarn. It's an ambitious goal, but I think I can do it!