Keeping On

comments: 64




Hello, hello! I truly hope you are all healthy and well and staying safe. I am thinking of you and wishing you all every good thing right now, wherever you are and whatever your circumstances. These are hard days.

Here we are, keeping-on keeping on. Mimi is doing what Mimi does best — that is, whatever she wants at (almost) all times. For the record, I have zero problem with this. She jumps on her mini-trampoline, writes a letter to one of her friends about her trampoline, does some math problems on the computer, and reads quietly to herself every day at 3:00 (on that I do insist, just to get some quiet). She climbs her tree, she shouts across the street to our neighbors, she is nervous that I've ordered her a new bike without training wheels, and declares she has no interest in learning to ride it. We have gone nowhere but the loading dock at the post office for two weeks now. Well, occasionally we do go walk around the block. I don't enjoy it. She helped me work on cleaning up the front garden and did a surprisingly great job at pulling the stuff I told her to pull. So it goes. She is amazing and carries on without fear or frustration, cheerfully accepting the changes and taking everything in stride in a way that I find humbling and inspiring. She and her friend FaceTimed the other day and just played their toy pianos for each other for a half an hour. I didn't even really hear them talk. They had a fine time.

Andy (cardiac nurse) toggles between home and work, leaving the house in the dark, coming home in the dark, busy at the hospital all day. Empty busses. The sound of crows through the night sky in an empty downtown. The sound of a streetcar bell ringing four blocks away. He gets home around 9:00 p.m. and goes straight to our neighbor's guest house to shower and change clothes before coming home through the mud-room door, which we haven't used in years. Our neighbors are wonderful, and are letting us use the guest house as a place for him to transition between the outside world and home. His shift was cancelled today and a continuing-education class next week was also cancelled so he is home for the next eight days, and I am grateful. So grateful. It is stressful. There have been many tears (mine) and a lot of stress and a lot of worry and a lot of sadness and then just a whole hell of a lot of trying to do everything right when so much is out of our control.

I know people around the country are also sewing masks at home and some people have asked me about that. I am no expert here — I don't pretend to know if they are effective or who is using them. I know that OHSU is not accepting them right now. JoAnn's has collected patterns here and will collect your finished masks for distribution directly "to medical professionals who can best decide how to use them." This article also has information about making masks. I am going to try to make some this week in case they help.

I spent last week assembling and packing up all of the Things of Spring kits to ship off to you. Thank you again so much for your orders. The kits are sold out and I wish I had made more. I always hold out ten or so kits until I know what everyone has received theirs without a problem (and there is always a problem because I always screw something up) and I will trickle those ten back into inventory soon. Don't judge my handwriting on your postcards because it's insane. I know. I was stressed and wanting to get everything out as fast as I could, before our stay-at-home order became official. I do hope you enjoy cross stitching the kit and that it gives you some hours of peace and quiet. I will make the PDF available in the next couple of days as soon as I get organized. ***Update: Here it is! Thank you!

Until then, make pretzels!


For now, Maggie (and Foxie) are staying cozy and warm. If you'd like to make someone a rabbit for Easter, I've made Maggie's pattern available for free for you. Please enjoy making her and send me your pictures when you're finished, or tag them with #maggierabbit or #missmaggierabbit on Instagram. I love seeing them so much. You can't imagine.

Stay well, my friends. Wishing you every good thing in these hard days. XOXO


Thank you so Much for Maggie'pattern from France

I never leave comments but feel I need to today, especially with the times we're in. I have been following your blog for about 6 years now. I actually check every day to see if you have posted and when not I like to go back and read older posts. Why? Because through your blog you've brought so much beauty, happiness and joy. I had worked in healthcare (very stressful) for almost 20 years. I was an administrative manager and oversaw up to 28, 24-7 staff and was often working right along with them. I was also in the military. So needless to say, I know stress. The past 6 years your blog (and my beautiful daughters) have taken the edge off. Made me stop, breathe and look to beautiful things and of course the ideas you have. I just purchased my first 2 cross stitch patterns from you and am eager to start them. My daughters keep asking when I'm going to start them as well! As for healthcare...while my heart was with my staff who were incredibly dedicated and worked extremely hard, it finally took a toll and I was in a car accident coming home from working 3, 16 hour days in a row with little sleep. I wasn't worth it for me and my daughters and completely changed paths. While I am no longer under that extreme stress daily, I still look every day for a new post and yes, go back to older posts for inspiration and beauty. Alicia, thank you for sharing your beauty. I read once "Beautiful minds inspire others. Wear that badge proudly sister!
Be well and stay safe,

Praying for safety for Andy, peace for you and blessings on your kind neighbors. X0

Tell Andy thank you for being on the front line. You have wonderful neighbors. Thank you for a wonderful blog

I started sewing masks in earnest for family, community essential workers, and healthcare professionals yesterday. They’re getting desperate in our local Seattle area hospitals now. My friend is a transplant nurse in Portland and she thinks the cloth mask acceptance by the hospitals there is just a matter of time. It’s scary. On the positive side I’m having fun using up some character fabric for the outsides of masks, thinking about how the Star Wars or Snoopy ones might go over.

Elizabeth says: March 26, 2020 at 11:04 PM

How kind of you to give out the bunny pattern!! I am hoping to get it made up for my granddaughter just turning 7 next week...or whenever I get it done...but I have a "stash" here so will use what I have. Thank you...I have already gotten her a couple things, but wanted to make something too!!

Alicia, thank you so much for Miss Maggie. I am expecting my first grandchild in September (a girl!) and will get to stitching her soon.
Blessings to you all.

Hello Alicia, I’m so happy that Andy is home. It’s a hard time and especially difficult for the families of medical workers. My mom is home too, finally and stay for more than a week, she’s 71 but still work in the hospital and I was so worried for her. I still do, actually. Thank you for sharing Miss Maggie pattern, I will definitely do one, as a company for the Doe and the Fox. I love this toys so much! Best wishes to your family, I hope it all will be over soon.

Sending you tons of LOVE! .. please hang in there, someday everything will be ok.

I have only just discovered your lovely blog (been a big fan of your shop for some time). You were actually my entire inspiration for my own creative journey a few years ago. I found your granny square crib blanket pattern on Pinterest during a very stressful time in my life and it was the lifeline I needed. I recently found your on Instagram and now your blog. What a breath of fresh air... Thank you so very much for the free pattern! I would love to learn to sew them!

Thank you, thank you to your whole family! You all have important jobs to do, whether caring for others in a hospital or boosting morale by shipping kits to people at home. Hugs to you, Alicia! Stay well.

Robin Langston says: March 27, 2020 at 11:41 AM

Thank you for the darling rabbit pattern. I may just have to make 1 after finishing some masks.

There is a very easy & free pattern for a simple pleated mask on

Thank you so, much for the free rabbit pattern--I have Mr. Basil.

Thanks so much for the free Maggie pattern. I'm thinking I'll make it for my niece for Easter - we're in day 3 of full lockdown here in New Zealand so will be something fun to make. Also about to start cutting out a new quilt.

Thank you for taking the time to blog during these hard times, your words always inspire me and lift my mood! And I love reading all the comments made from your readers. Jude Walkers post really spoke to me today! I have made many Maggie's and thank you for the free pattern because mine is getting worn out. I received my cross stitch kit (thank you it is just lovely) so I will balance my days and nights with reading, cross stitching, sewing quilts and making bunnies!!

Alicia, your post made me cry today...the thought of that guest house...who would have ever viewed something as such as the most important triage for our families...

To you, I say be well blogger friend...I'm keeping you and Andy and Amelia in my thoughts <3

Those pretzels look amazing. And thinking about the mask making too, and want to find ways to help but not sure... Thanks for these sweet bits today.

Hello. Thank you so much for the Miss Maggie Rabbit pattern! :)

Thank you so much— I’m just stress-knitting right now (simple beanies for our clinic staff team— primary care doc here), because I can’t focus on anything fancier, but the pattern is lovely for the future.

Amy in Texas says: March 29, 2020 at 03:39 PM

Thank you to you and Amelia for sharing Andy with those who need him. I can't imagine how stressful it is for him and y'all.

Thanks also for offering Miss Maggie Rabbit. I've printed out the pattern and look forward to stitching her up.

Greetings from quarantine in Australia. Schools closed last week so I am working from home and your little blog is always top of my list of distractions. We are also walking and dancing a lot, lots of crafts and games to pass the time. Trying not to go to the shop for groceries because I really feel like making carrot cake haha

Thank you for the links to the mask patterns/tutorial. I have often enjoyed your blog for the beautiful photography and family inspiration. You came through again when I thought about your site for creating my own mask to wear to work. Thank you from a nurse.

Pamela Kay Cox says: March 30, 2020 at 06:18 PM

That was incredibly generous of you to share your rabbit pattern with us. A sweet change from masks, and other sewing. Please don't stress. Your blog has blessed me since I started reading it a few years ago. A tidy little peaceful corner in blog land.

Your posts are always so calming and inspirational. A few years ago, you wrote about buying a bread machine so I bought one. I use it all the time but it is particularly useful now that we are in lockdown and our family still needs fresh bread every day. Thank you for prompting me to buy that useful machine!

You also wrote a post many years ago about buying a milk frothing machine to make hot chocolate. I also bought one of those and we use it all the time too but particularly now when the comfort of a hot chocolate is especially important.

I have loved your blog for many years and have taken so much inspiration from it. I have also been lucky enough to get some of your kits and have loved them. I wish you all good health and happiness during this difficult period.

such strange and scary times. Stay safe all of you. xx

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.