Fastest Summer Ever

comments: 27

Fair 3










Missouri Star 2

Hello, dear friends! I'm so sorry I've been absent here for so long! Summer has been so wonderfully busy and full of joy. We have been doing lots of things and also lots of nothing, and it has been just perfect. Pool days, fair days, lazy days, work days. Many afternoons at our favorite Thai restaurants playing Uno and eating pad Thai. Many afternoons riding bikes up the road and getting hotdogs, playing videos games, going to movies, getting boba tea. Days at the pool, nights jumping on our neighbor's trampoline. Campouts with air mattresses on the living room floor, playing video games, having Zoom chats with Uncle Mike, watching more movies. I have been working a lot in my office, developing a new collection of cross-stitch kits for beginners and children along with a few other things. I have not been cooking or working on my cookbook, at all, but I am truly hoping to get back to it as soon as the weather cools down and school starts (it's just too hot to cook like I was, and I've been spending all my time on these new kits and patterns). We haven't been doing anything particularly special, but somehow it's all felt special. I can't believe school starts in a week. For the first time ever, I am not ready for it. None of us seem to be. Summer rules. This summer, the summer of perfect weather here, although my heart is absolutely breaking for Maui, and Yellowknife (I am a big fan of the show Ice Lake Rebels), and other places in Oregon and Washington that are suffering with wildfires. The sky is smoky here today for the first time all summer, and we have a fluorescent red sun setting in a hazy sky. Many of you are looking or have looked at that same kind of sun this summer, I know.

What have you all been up to? Andy is making a quilt for Amelia (after he finishes the one he is making for himself, which will probably be next week when his batting gets here — the man made an entire quilt top in about three days!). I started a new knitting project for Amelia because I found out that our ballet school, which is moving this fall to a new building, will now (hopefully, if the rumor proves true) allow us into the building to wait for our kids, and I will need something to keep my hands busy while waiting again. It has been years since I've been able to wait and watch while she dances, and I am thrilled (especially since she'll now be dancing three days a week, wow). I making her a Novice Sweater by PetiteKnit in Feeling Good yarn in Mineral Pink. I'm doing a women's XS because we are there now. We are there. Has anyone been knitting anything new? Do you have any good TV to recommend? I've watched everything, literally everything that has seemed even remotely appealing to me and I have nothing left to watch, so please send your favorites. Nights are darker earlier. Fall is suddenly approaching. Amelia's needs new clothes and she got bangs cut yesterday at the salon. She starts fifth grade on August 29. Dearest darlingest girl.

I hope everyone is well! I have so many new projects to show you and plans to tell you about. Once school starts I will have my regular working time back and I will show you everything I have been doing. I made about a dozen digital quilt blocks (this one is a Missouri Star block) in InDesign yesterday and I absolutely love making these blocks. This is the only kind of "quilting" I have done, myself! It's rather satisfying, I must say!


So glad no news has been ‘looking after self’ news and that you and your family are having chilled creative holidays, all good nourishment for the fall.

Elizabeth says: August 21, 2023 at 06:06 AM

So glad you've had such a wonderful summer! That photo of Andy and Amelia sitting at the table just got me right in the heart. I've been reading your blog since Amelia was born. She's grown into such a lovely young lady! And Andy is looking at her in the sweetest, most loving dad way. What a tender moment. You have such a way of capturing them. Thank you for sharing (now and all these years)!

A great show for you to watch on Netflix - Heartstopper. I first heard about it on a podcast; asked a couple of friends who were astounded that I hadn't watched! I am now totally obsessed! It's the cutest British coming of age series (2 seasons w/ more to come) and it addresses all the teenage angst, same sex romances, bullying, parental issues, etc. I binge watched and am now so sad it's over (for now). I think you'll love it!

Show recs…..Monk! Lots of seasons! 2000s nostalgia! Also, Avatar the Last Airbender or the Studio Ghibli movies. Gilmore Girls is a go-to for me this time of year, at least the first couple seasons.

You girl is growing so fast. I can only recommend British shows: All creatures great and small, The Detectorists, Shetland, Slow Horses.

Martha Jones says: August 21, 2023 at 01:17 PM

Alicia! I have been reading your blog for years but don’t know that I have ever commented. Soooo thrilled you are designing cross stitch patterns for kids! My daughter (also getting ready to start 5th grade!) has really gotten into cross stitch this summer and I love it. I can never finish any project but she just puts her head down and gets things done! I can’t wait for the new patterns/kits to be available!

Jessica Adams says: August 21, 2023 at 06:51 PM

Forgive me if you've watched this already, but I highly recommend you watch Detectorists. It's British. It's quirky. It's sweet. It involves rival metal detector gangs who are looking for Saxon gold. It's everything.

Also it's good to have you back after your summer semi-hiatus. 😊

Signed, Sealed, Delivered is probably my all-time favorite show. Hallmark Channel. Watch the episodes and movies in order so you get the development of the relationships- so cute! Someday, I hope to find myself an Oliver...

I'm north of the river from you and I agree, the weather this summer was the best it has been in many years. Not too many days over mid-80s, and cool nights for sleeping. I'm ready for fall, though. Sweater weather is so cozy!

Jenny Swanson says: August 25, 2023 at 01:32 AM

That all looks such fun!

Would you like some squares for the "400 different fabrics" quilt? If so, any preferred size and fabric type?

Can't wait to see your new designs! Great idea to have kid's patterns too!
It isn't easy to find simple and cute designs for kids. I love your idea for Amelia's quilt and I have some fabric squares to send you soon. Can't wait for cool fall weather and rain too!

Loved: Bear, Indian Matchmaking, Only Murders in the Building, The Challenge World, The Challenge UK, America's Got Talent (just watch the talent and fast forward the rest), LA Fire (real firefighters, not a dramatic repro) . . . obviously not an intellectual list, but it's been too humid here to be very intellectual. I have missed your posts but I'm happy that your summer has been perfectly summery!

Yay! I can't wait for the beginner cross stitch patterns! My brother told me to watch Cunk on Earth and it's been pretty entertaining so far. I think you would enjoy it.

"All Creatures Great and Small" (2020) is a favorite in my home--it's a really soothing show, and it has 3 seasons out all ready so there's plenty to see. Amelia could probably watch it with you, although there are some war flashbacks, romance, and of course all the things that come with being a veterinarian. This show is probably the best (the only!) good thing that came out of 2020 and I rewatch it all the time.

But, but what about the river place with the big rocks that you went to every year? I loved those times. Made me feel cool and relaxed and happy. Glad you enjoyed your summer. We had a good one too. I love watching My Life is Murder with Lucy Lawless Just a happy show.

Glad you're back!! I became mesmerised by The Amazing Mrs Maisel

"Midnight Diner: Tokyo Stories" on Netflix. I actually haven't watched it yet! but it has really fantastic reviews and the clips I've seen seem great. It's about all these different kinds of people, including some eccentrics, who go to a restaurant open from midnight to 7AM and form a community of sorts. Plus, the food looks wonderful. Hope the opening of the school year goes well!

I do enjoy your site snd was afraid that you had quit osting. Thank you for letting us into your life !!!
And I concur that Midnight Diner on Netflix is one of my favorites. I have watched it over three time and now I believe Imight be able to sing the opening song !!

Ah, she is growing up so quickly! So glad you had a great summer!

TV is rather dull these days. Of course, we don't do Netflix or Hulu or any of those type things. Instead, I like some Youtube: Kuro Live in Hokkaido; Cardsu; Choki; Surprise Gardening; WanLife; Hamimommy; Haku's Garden (which is great for houseplants). They are all Korean and Japanese gardening or homemaking channels. They are utterly charming. There are some nice minimalism and sewing/knitting channels too but you probbly know many already. Sounds like you had a near-perfect summer. Hope the smoke clears out soon We had it June from the Ontario fires and it was absolutely dreadful.

Susan from Tsawwassen says: September 01, 2023 at 01:00 PM

Glad you are back! Have missed you and your posts! The summer has been amazing and can't believe it's September. My favourite month. The Canadian geese have been flying over the house for past couple of weeks. They knew it was coming.

Can you get access to BBC iplayer in the USA?

If so, may I recommend "Mortimer & Whitehouse - Gone Fishing". It's not acted and not scripted, just a lovely show about the friendship between Paul and Bob.

Another wonderful show is "Searching for Italy" with Stanley Tucci, also made by the BBC. Deliciously tempting food and history thrown together with a genial food loving host. What's not to love?

On YouTube we love Sailing Zatara. Mare of Easttown. Bloodlines. Calling the Midwife. Shrinking. Bad Sisters. Little Fires Everywhere. Big Little Lies. The Last Thing He Told me.

Just a "Thank you so much" for continuing to post! I so look forward to your photos, your patterns and kits, all of it! My daughter is making a quilt from one of your patterns I purchased several years ago. She is 29 :)

Just a "Thank you so much" for continuing to post! I so look forward to your photos, your patterns and kits, all of it! My daughter is making a quilt from one of your patterns I purchased several years ago. She is 29 :)

Just a "Thank you so much" for continuing to post! I so look forward to your photos, your patterns and kits, all of it! My daughter is making a quilt from one of your patterns I purchased several years ago. She is 29 :)

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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