Back up to speed.

It’s been a quiet on my end lately. We’ve been flying under the radar for the past several weeks. Because honestly, 2021 was not the “fresh start” we were hoping for to move beyond 2020. 

The week after Christmas and the weekend following New Year’s found my husband, son and I working hard to complete the renovations at our cabin which had dragged on since last July. We spent days working long hours putting in sweat equity to finish the job, followed by building a myriad of shelves so we could move everything back into the storage area on the lower level. It was a lot of hard work.

We arrived back at our home on Jan 3rd to discover water spilling out from under the baseboards in our living room. Sure enough, a pipe had burst! It took a leak detection company several hours the following day to determine where the broken pipe was which ended up being in the concrete slab under our home. What we didn’t fully realize at the time was that the damage was extensive. Most all the wood floors in our home were ruined along with much of the drywall, which had soaked up a lot of the water like a sponge. The plumbers had to demolish our guest bathroom in order to cap the broken pipe and reroute the pipes up through the walls, over the ceiling in the attic and back down across the hall into the laundry room. There was damage to every room in our home except for two bedrooms.

There was no choice except to hire a mitigation company to move almost everything out to the house and put all our furniture and belongings in storage while they set up huge fans and dehumidifiers to dry everything out. For the next three weeks we dealt with demolition, estimates, contractors, our insurance agency and third party insurance adjusters. What I had hoped would only take a couple of weeks has dragged on for five weeks already with more weeks to go before the work is complete and we can move back in. Renovations have finally begun as of yesterday. At least that’s progress.

Let me just say this: moving (again) was not what I had on my agenda for 2021. 

And in the spirit of full transparency, this hasn’t been an easy time, although I don’t think anyone is having an easy time during this pandemic and we are no exception. There have been plenty of ups and downs and trying to adjust to life in a state which has remained locked down for months on end. We haven’t set foot in a church since last March. Yes, we are grateful to watch church services on YouTube and attend our Life Group meetings via Zoom once a week. But I miss worshipping in church, singing praise and worship music and hearing the pastor in person. I miss seeing our friends and socializing with them. I miss hugs. Eating inside a restaurant has not been allowed since last April or May (who can remember?) and even outdoor dining has been banned since early December until last week when that ban was finally lifted. Still, I don’t enjoy sitting outside in chilly temperatures eating meals which turn cold within minutes. Salons have finally been allowed to reopen (thank goodness!) but gyms remain closed. I miss going to Pilates classes.   

Still, we’re trying to remain positive and focus on the good things. While we went from one renovation zone to another, we did finally finish up the new addition at the cabin and we’ve been able to live in the cabin full time while the main house is unlivable. Although our insurance company would have covered the cost of a hotel room, I cannot imagine what it would have been like for us to live in a hotel room with five cats and a dog during COVID!

A few weeks ago I read someone’s blog (wish I could remember who’s blog it was so I could give proper credit.) But the author wrote these words which describe exactly how I’ve been feeling: “How is it possible that my mind has been so overwhelmed yet so under-stimulated?” Well, I’ve decided to push through and make positive changes. To that end, I’ve thought long and hard about my ONE WORD for 2021. My WORD for 2020 was JOY. But honestly, I had to go back to my blog post from last year to even figure out what my ONE WORD was and I’m sorry to say, there wasn’t a great deal of JOY happening in 2020. 

My Personal App quilt by Kimberly Einmo

So this year, I have chosen the word CREATE. I want to create more. I need to create more! I want to get my creative mojo going in high gear. I can honestly say I think I’m finally back up and on track once again. I have plenty of projects and deadlines and admittedly, I was overwhelmed when I made the list to prioritize everything I need to do. But I’m already tackling things, one by one, and feeling productive and good again. It feels good to feel good again!

How about you? How is 2021 going for you? Have you been struggling? Have you been successful at turning things around? I’d love to read your comments and know how you are. Do you have a word for 2021? Would you care to share?

Above all, please know I’m sending good thoughts and prayers your way. Here’s to a better year…..for all of us. 

  1. My word is “continue”. I will continue to hang on because I know there will be new beginnings, continue to believe our country will come back, continue to believe there will be new adventures, ‘cause if I don’t the depression wins and I can’t let that happen.

    • My word… ENDURE! Don’t give up now, wear the mask(s), wash the hands, keep my distance, get vaccinated, and…. stay in the Word.

      Mark 13:13b ….But he who has ENDURED to the end, this one shall be saved.

      Linda, what a hard, hard 2021 you’ve had. Let’s keep Jesus in our boat (Matthew 14:22-33) and WE will get to the other side.

    • Linda, I completely understand. Depression is a slippery slope. Hang in there…one day at a time…and keep looking forward. Sending a little prayer for you right now!

  2. Oh wow. Bless your heart. Water is the worse to deal with. Working on one of your quilts so will send you a picture when I finish it. Hugs from Utah.

    • Roxie – Oh, that’s so sweet that you’re making one of my quilt designs! I will certainly look forward to seeing photos when it is done! Bless you!

  3. My word for 2021 is Appreciate

    I am going to appreciate that every day is a new beginning a fresh start. What happened yesterday or the days before are not going to taint my beautiful new day.
    I am going to appreciate the love of my 2 boys (men now) and my gorgeous grandchildren, numbering 4 with our latest addition last week.
    I am going to appreciate my friends who have loved me throughout the years, in good times and bad.
    I am going to appreciate my husband more for his good qualities, not his bad after 40 years of marriage we have weathered many storm’s together and seen the beautiful growth of our family.
    So Appreciate the big things and the small things and remember a new day is a fresh start

    • Linda — Oh, I love your word, Appreciate! There truly is much to appreciate in this life! Thank you for the gentle reminder and how wonderful that you have much to appreciate, too!

  4. OMG! Can’t believe all you’ve been going through. Take care of yourself!!! It will feel good yo get back to creating. Hang in there!

  5. Wow Kim, you’ve had a full plate and still appear so pleasant for all of us in your video’s. You obviously are a strong woman and very resilient. I’ve been through have a pipe burst in the house with fans and blowers going for 7 days. It is not fun. It’s a blessing you had somewhere else to go versus an hotel room. Hopefully, the house will be better than ever when you finally get to return and you can find that time to really create. I also feel the need to create this year as it is such great therapy and such a positive endeavor. I am an artist and a beginner quilter but also would like to learn to knit and crochet. I am a caretaker for my husband who has Parkinsons so I am pretty much homebound and thank God for my talents and hobbies. I also sing and am a cantor in my church. I’ve sung right through the pandemic for whoever happened to show up for Mass. I look forward to it. When I sing I pray! Tomorrow 2/10 -2/28 I will be the cantor for a 9 night novena to Our Lady of Lourdes and St. Bernadette. I will keep you and your family in my prayers. God Bless. -Mary

    • Hi Mary — Oh, how I’d love to hear you sing! God loves to hear worship and prayer through singing! Bless you for sharing your talents with so many people. And bless you for taking care of your husband; praying for him and you both!

  6. Wow! 2020 was bad enough, but it sounds like 2021 is not much better for you. But, God saw fit for you all to complete what you needed at the cabin, so you had a place to go when the pipes froze. So one good thing to say Thank you Lord.
    We also went through two weeks if renovation in our home. Nothing like yours though. It started out as changing the floor in the living room and ended up as:
    Spare bathroom- new paint and lights and towel bars and thorough cleaning of tile floor.
    Hallway-paint and crown moulding
    Luving room-new floor, paint and crown molding.
    Dining room-new paint, flooring and crown molding
    Kitchen- new paint, flooring, wood toe kicks and crown molding.
    Laundry room- new flooring and crown molding.
    All trims, baseboards and doors are getting painted. Some of it is completed, but doors need to be painted yet.
    Lots done in two weeks time while our daughter came from Colotado to help. She is an amazing wonder.
    Sorry about long post

    • Never apologize for a long post — I love reading about your life and things going on. You are blessed your daughter came to help — and how lovely that your home will now be refreshed after all the hard work!

  7. So sorry to hear of your terrible troubles. Prayers coming your way. Stay strong. Things can only get better going forward. Create, create, create!!

  8. Oh my! I am so sorry. I hope the repairs/renovations go well and quickly. Sending hugs and prayers your way.

  9. Kimberly sending good thoughts and prayers your way. It has been a tough year and even tougher beginning of year. We ended and started the year with COVID but it was a mild case. That is a big HA HA. Then with my husband’s medical problems asthma, bladder cancer, all kinds of infections we are surviving. My word was Create but now I think Survive is a better word. Latest infection is in his 2nd toe on Right foot. He walked into my sew room barefoot and got a pin stuck in it, OH OH! Now we have to wait for tests and results. Hopefully it’s not in the bone but if it is hope it responds to antibiotics. We will Survive and keep creating. Now you can change stuff in the house. Glad things are moving along. Prayers and Hugs from Houston TX!

  10. I’m so sorry the damage was so very intensive to your home, but thankful you had somewhere to go. Hope you can move back before to long. Looking forward to hearing that your insurance took care of you they way they should!!!
    Create is a good word for you and all quilters!! I’ve been trying out some new things, and so thankful to have my stash and access to you and other quilters online.
    Wish you and your family a much better 2021!!

  11. I wondered where you were… ha. Wow we all count our blessings when we hear of your horrible experience. I hope you have good home insurance and none of your sewing machines etc made out with no damage… and what about the kitties?

    I broke my femur, wrist along with a concussion on Nov 20. Hence I spent Thanksgiving with the hospital people. I had a rod inserted in my hip, screws actually attach my leg to my hip!!!! plate in the wrist.. it was an experience for sure. I sat for 8 wks doing nothing couldn’t do handwork. It did revive me…and I am now cleaning and organizing my sewing studio. I’ve been here for 2 yrs and still not had it done.

    Having people take care of my pets, as I’m a widow. But the son is here with his family (wife a RN which is a plus!!!) and they took very good care of me, along with drs, nurse, PT and OT.

    I won’t bore you with more details…. but I’m in a positive mood and my word is ORGANIZE — should be getting the vaccine in the next week or so, so life will get better. I know the feeling, I miss seeing friends church, and life out and about. But thankful for my health and good family around me..

    God Bless,

  12. Beautiful blog Kimberly. So sorry about your renovating problems, we’ve been there (slab leak). Being transparent is hard but very appreciated and understood since most of are feeling the same emotions. This year will mean a big change for my hubby and I as we will be selling our hone of 20+ years (2 levels) and moving to a rental for a bit to decide where we want to move permanently We’ve talked for 5 years about going to AZ but kept postponing as i don’t want to leave my sisters. Finally my husband of 38 years is willing to give Temecula a try so I can stay near them. I’m so thankful So this year will be a year of change for us. I’m picking a positive word….my word is Patience. I know it took a lot if patience for last year but I’m sure this year will take even more. Wish me luck❣️

  13. So where are you living during all this trauma at your home?
    So very sorry…I agree, thought 2021 would be so much better, but it isn’t…Hard to create during all this happening in our lives.

  14. I am so sorry for everything you’ve had to endure from the burst pipe. Several years ago I came home to a burst pipe in my apt. and it was a mess – many weeks of stress. I can only imagine what would be like in a home. You’ll be in my prayers.

  15. 2021 is amazing so far. Our financial advisor gave me and my husband the green light for me to retire 12 years early! Can’t wait for 5/10/21.

  16. Oh, and we’re living without a bathroom for two weeks while our one and only is being renovated. Thanks to the good Lord for kind-hearted neighbors.

  17. Wow…what an ordeal you have been through already,this year. My little frustrations pale in comparison. I hope you will come to a full resolution of your home water repairs soon. My mother had a sign in her kitchen that read “Seven times down, eight times up!” That has been my motto for many years, now. The word I have chosen for this year is Persist. Onward and upward, Kimberly!!! We can do this!!!


    • Karen, I love that word PERSIST. That was a word I was also considering because it is so full of hope. Thank you very much for the encouragement. It sure made me smile today!

  18. 2020 was better to me than 2021 so far. On Jan 2 I was hospitalized for a stomach ache which turned out to be a rare belly artery disease. I will continue to fight with God and my prayer warriors behind me!!
    Now the good part! My old cast iron sewer pipe backed up and we lived “camping style “ for 6 days. Yes, 6 days. Won’t go into the gross details but….again fought through and came out the other side. I’m not sure what my word is for this year but I sure like yours!!!
    Be well and be safe. Keep giving us all that beautiful Kimberly spirit!!! I know it picks me right up ❤️

    • Colleen — Praying for YOU, my friend! I’m so sorry for the tummy troubles (praying for healing for you!) and for all you had to endure “camping style!” A positive spirit and can-do attitude does wonders, doesn’t it? Hoping things turn around for you soon!

      • “Don’t give in- Don’t give up”

  19. See if you can tune in online to KSBJ Radio at 89.3 FM – wonderful Contemporary Christian music all the way from Houston, Texas.

    • I appreciate this very much! I found the station on the web. You’re right — great music! THANK YOU.

  20. Kimberly I’m so very sorry for all you and your family have gone through and continue too. I wish I could give y’all a hug and pray with you. But alas I can’t. Please know I send a huge hug to you all and my continued Prayers and Love. ????

    • Dorothy, I’m feeling YOUR hug. THANK YOU. You are so kind and I’m so glad we’ve got FB and social media to keep in touch. Please know I’m sending good thoughts and prayers for you right back at ya!

  21. Prayers to you, Mr. Kim and your son. Having experienced flooding during Hurricane Harvey and then again during Hurricane Imelda I truly know what you all having been dealing with…it’s is overwhelming, frustrating, tiring and with the Pandemic on top of everything else just plain exhausting! As a nurse, for the past 42 years, I am so very tired of fearing Covid. It’s exhausting worrying about staying healthy for me, my family, my colleagues and my patients…wearing a mask all the time both at work and any where else I go is very tiring. My ears hurt, my nose is constantly sore. I want to wear makeup again and feel “normal.” I want desperately to go to sewing and embroidery classes with my friends, go out to eat with my children…even just going to their house and remaining distant is difficult! The one thing that has kept me sane is praying and sewing! I am so blessed that I was able to purchase my wonderful M7 Continental and also own a MC 15000 and an S9. I have an arsenal of machines to entertain my sewing and embroidery whims. It’s fun to have 2 machines embroidering at the same time while I’m sewing on my M7! Over the past summer all the virtual classes offered by Janome America and Janome Canada were my lifeline! I can’t thank you enough Kimberly for your wonderful workshops, online support and helping those of us with basic knowledge build our experience by having your sew along virtual classes! They have been a lifesaver! I can wait for the end of March for the Virtual Home workshop!
    Keep your head high and stay strong and keep your creative juices flowing as you have no idea how many of us you have helped through this pandemic with your positivity, your beautiful spirit and your gorgeous smile! You have been a blessing to thousands of us! Janome put the perfect person in the role you have as National Educator and representative. We adore you and we are here for you if only in spirit and prayer! Create! God gave you a wonderful talent, a wonderfully supportive family and a host of people who love and support you…even if it’s from a distance! Take care of yourself! We will get through this…together!

    • Robyn — First of all, God bless YOU. YOU are a frontline hero and what you have done and continue to do to treat people who are hurting is AMAZING. You are an angel on earth. THANK YOU for your service to humanity! I’m so happy to know you have such an amazing arsenal of Janome machines to nurture and feed YOUR creativity. It is so important! And if I have had any small part in helping you through the pandemic and stressful times, we’ll I count myself doubly happy. I forwarded your lovely comment to the folks at Janome headquarters to let them know how much all their efforts are appreciated as well! I’m so amazed at what Janome has been able to accomplish during the past 11 months in putting together all the free Facebook LIVE events with so much information and inspiration! I was honored to be a part of it! THANK YOU — so very much — for your kind and encouraging words!!!!

  22. I think my word for the year is FINISH. I started pulling out tops that were completed up to five or more years ago and finally quilted them. The pile is very high though so it is time to finish, finish and finish some more!

    My sympathies for your current troubles. However, you are a strong woman with an even stronger faith. It might feel like the burden is too heavy but you have supports around you to help lift the burden and get you through. I do believe that this will all get better, eventually.

    • Oooooh — I LOVE the word FINISH! And I admire YOUR can-do attitude to finish the tops you have created! What a great feeling of productivity when you are able to finish those quilts, one by one! THANK YOU for your encouragement and heartfelt words.

  23. All I can think about right now is, What a Blessing your wtr leak has been for you, your family and all of us!
    Dooooo WHAT you say???!!! Lol
    You and Mr Ken work so hard, your bound to have needed a well deserved break (no pun intended). Sooo—- First off, to be able to stay in your own beautiful cabin is a great blessing instead of a hotel room, and then, you post the most amazing Works of God in the photos you share, we can’t help but be still (which I’m sure you both needed even though you have contractors and others to deal with)
    You have given a gift you didn’t know you were giving by letting us all admire His work and be able to take a little break from this crazy world, and just be still, for even just a moment.
    Thank you for the beautiful sunsets you post, they run a close second to ours here in West Texas! Lol

    • Susie — Your comment literally brings tears to my eyes — in a GOOD way! 🙂 You are right, of course. We are blessed to have this cabin and to also have this time to regroup. I’m actually amazed when I look at all the times Kent has made us laugh through these trying times. He’s my rock here on earth and GOD is my rock of everything! We do try to take time to appreciate the beauty around us, of which there is so much. Thank YOU for your comments and encouragement and for the RIGHT perspective! God bless!

  24. After 2020 l have serious illness for six weeks they still don’t know what was wrong then my dad died in May and then I had neck surgery in October because my hands were going numb I had that surgery then the office got where I work part time dad on 30 December I thought 2021 would be a fresh start it has not been I got Covid on 8 January my best dog my best friend died a week ago he had a massive tumor in his chest (Payton) my heart has been ripped out by this but I’m trying to get back on track little things keep happening to go on wrong but I pray that it all gets better because I don’t know how much more I can take!

    • Dena — right now, I’m praying for YOU. You have been through so much stress, heartache, illness and grief. Please hang in there. One day at a time. Cast your cares on HIM. Know that I and others are praying for you. Take heart…..I do believe things will improve! Bless you!

  25. Of all the words in the earlier comments, ORGANIZE is the one I need to adopt!

  26. Kimberly so sorry about your home! Our neighbor came home to the same thing several months ago and I felt so sorry for them. Glad you have the cabin to go to. Not sure on my word for the year but I need one! We are all OK but so tired of COVID! I know we will all be glad when our new normal starts!!!

    • Oh Judi….me TOO! So ready for the pre-COVID life or something a little more close to the old “normal” again. Hang in there, my dear.

  27. Patience to endure the rough times. Not always easy when things drag out for long times. Patience to deal with myself when I used to get things done quicker. Patience to deal with hearing about politics, world news etc.
    Patience to be able to be around people which I need so much as we all do as quilters.
    Patience to deal with people who do not seem to care when. My ETSY orders are charged to me on the order date Yet never processed. No contact numbers or emails to be able to rectify their errors. Ha ha ha. Costly though.

    • Suzanne –
      Patience IS a good word! I’m right there with you! Although I think I’d be reporting that Etsy vendor to anyone in authority who might be able to do something!

  28. Bummer…but sometimes you have to step away from the bad to see the good. You can’t have a rainbow without the rain, a valley without the mountain, or chickens without the raccoon. Your misfortune was also someone elses fortune…the people that you employed in these hard times put food on their tables…and you also had the financial resources and physical/mental strength to rebuild your dreams. It gives meaning to that old expression….someone’s trash is also someone’s treasure. It just depends on which side of the glass we are looking through. Don’t dwell too long in the rain, bring skis for the mountain and get eggs from the grocers. And then Believe.

    • Marcia — you are the BEST. LOVED your comment — there is so much TRUTH in your words! I learned long ago that “all sunshine makes a desert” and we need the rain (or snow!) sometimes! Things are indeed looking up and I’m looking ahead to good things this year and beyond! Love you!

  29. Keep looking for the silver lining!
    Sending loads of positive vibes your way…

  30. Faith,, Faith the Lord has us in His hands and eventually, all will be well!
    I am so sorry to hear about your leak and all the rest of the mess,, not an easy thing to endure in normal times but even worse in Covid times! I am glad to hear you mojo is back and you are seeing the sunshine in this big closed up world,,,,, we all need more sunshine and hugs!

    • Thank you so much, Irene! I do have faith — and that truly helps see me (us!) through every situation!

  31. My word is “positive”. I will remain positive that this will be over. When, I don’t know. I am positive that my day will be just that for me.
    Bless you Kim for keeping us on a positive note.
    Hope you’re in your home soon. ??

  32. My word is RELAX.

  33. Oh my. You really have persevered Kim. I think as hard as it is to read of others trials and tribulations, it is also inspiring to be reminded that we are not alone in what ever we are dealing with. We can and do rise up again, often stronger and wiser. Thank you for the words, and you are so right. Even in a “dark” year, there is Joy. It is a reminder that we need only to stop and truly look with eyes and minds open, to see it is still around us. I cannot wait to see what you create next, and share! Sending lots of love and thoughts of strength from (COLD) Vermont!

  34. I really can’t use one word for this year except HEALTH. I pray that we can be healthy and live through this horrible virus. Was your sewing studio destroyed? I remember when you were designing and getting all the right cabinets and layout for your sewing oasis.

    I am beginning to create, in fact with your encouragement I am going to teach a class for my guild on (of course) how to use patterned fabric. I am now the president of our guild and that is pushing me to inspire all our members.

    You have always inspired others. Thank you for sharing, emotionally this must be taking a toll on all of you, but knowing you your home will even come out better when all is rebuilt. Take care and sending you only good vibes and prayers.

  35. I’m not one for New Year’s resolutions, but I do have four areas of life that I am focusing on this year. One is health: I am determined to catch up on all the tests and exams I need. I fell behind when David was sick and then after he died and I moved twice, and then the pandemic caused many appointments to be canceled. But I am on track, and have had my eye exam, mammogram, dexascan, and finishing up some dental work. I still have more things to schedule but at least I started. Second is finances. I will be retiring from my 36 years at Penn Libraries sometime in the next six months so I need to figure out my source of income and whether to make changes in investments. It’s probably my least favorite subject but it must be done! I need to update records, among other things. The third area is organization. I’ve been working steadily on reducing the amount of stuff I have in my apartment, and organizing what I keep. It feels good to get rid of clutter and most of it is donated so I am happy about that, too. But I hope to finish this project in 2021, because it helps me so much to have a place for everything and everything in its place. And finally, the fourth area is creativity. Because of the extra time I am putting in at work (managing in a pandemic is at least twice as hard and stressful and time-consuming as my regular work) and spending most of the time at home on sorting through all the stuff, I haven’t spent nearly as much time on reading and sewing and I really want to make sure I get back on track with that. So I have set aside more time for reading already, and am in a color mastery study group with a few members of my small quilt guild, and once I finish the home organization project, and RETIRE, I know I will have much more free time for quilting and reading. So, with those four big areas of life improvement, I guess a good word for me for 2021 is RENEWAL. Renewing my good health habits, renewing my commitment to financial stability, renewing my organized home habits, and renewing my spirit through two important sources of inspiration, reading and sewing. Thanks for sharing your story, Kim. I am so sorry for all the hassles you have been having. It definitely has been a really long, hard year. I think of this as 2020 extended, to be honest. I had a flood in my apartment from the kitchen next door, which ruined my wooden entry floor, and I have a leak in all three wet rooms – kitchen sink, master shower and hall sink – so I need to get some plumbing done but also want to renovate, although that will have to wait until after I retire. I don’t have time to choose designs or work with contractors until I’m home and not gone to work all the time. All the best to you and Mr. Kim and your sons and your furbabies. It’s the attitude that makes all the difference, isn’t it? We can’t change what happens, we can only change how we react. Love, hugs, and hopes for a much brighter future very soon, Emily

  36. Oh, Kimberly! I’m just catching up and didn’t realize all you have been through these past weeks. I am so sorry! I hope things are getting straightened out and you have the time and energy to get creating! My word for the year is Conquer…. conquer the UFO backlog and to get through my house and declutter. I’m organized and not a pack rat but I still want to go through things and streamline so as to not leave a lot of ‘junk’ behind. I’m nit going anywhere but I have things that only I may care about but don’t need or use.

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