Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Busy Season


It's a very busy time right now in Allie-land, the animals are frantically storing up for the coming winter, bucks are fighting and doing what they do, [these two actually got their horns locked together for awhile], all of creation is busy with a purpose...and then...there's me.

I've come to the conclusion that I'm really busy, just not accomplishing anything.  How can that be???  I remember reading, when my boys were small and I was homeschooling, that we need to stop sacrificing the important at the altar of the urgent....I need to take those words to heart again.  

When I first started homeschooling, I could not begin my day until the house was sparkling.  Back then, it seemed important, lol.  But no homeschooling was getting done.  Having two active and creative little boys was keeping things messy.  So, I stopped with needing perfection, and got right to school in the morning - and made cleaning a team effort.  Our house was not sparkling anymore, but the boys were learning!  I made the important stuff the priority.

But now that they're grown, I'm doing it again.  With three grown men on three different shifts, I could spend all my time just cleaning the kitchen.  That gets filed under "urgent", as I love a clean kitchen.  But honestly?  How "important" is it?  Is it ok to clean it just once a day?

YES.

What other important things have I been neglecting?  My sewing.  Christmas is coming, and I'd like to have a few extra dollars in my pocket, so designing patterns is important.  But it hasn't been "urgent".  I haven't got very far with my balcony window design...


There are several blocks to go.  I did get my Sweet Country bound and on the wall.


But you know what?  I was in a hurry, and I'm not happy with it.  The love block is crooked, I have pleats in my quilting, and the binding is too narrow.  It became "urgent" when I decided to enter it into a quilt show, and I was sloppy and it didn't get entered.

Time to take a breath, and figure this out, time to make deliberate choices instead of rushing around urgently, putting out fires and reacting instead of thinking.

I have a limited amount of energy, that's a fact.  Between arthritis, fibro, and some connective tissue disease, I need to make thoughtful choices.  Monday is Mom day, that's the day I take her grocery shopping and running around, nothing else gets done - then I need Tuesday to recuperate.  Stitching rejuvenates me, designing gives me energy, so Tuesday is sewing day.  Wednesday I'll clean the whole house, then the rest of the week I can recuperate and sew.  Deliberate choices, designed to make the most of what I can accomplish.

I'm designing my days as I design my patterns, with much thought and prayer.  I'm not sure how I got back into this mess of unplanned days, but it's wearing me out and it's time to stop.  I've learned that I need big chunks of time to get things done, I'm not one of those who can just take 15 minutes to sew - I wish I was!!!  But I don't handle transitions easily, so taking a whole day to do nothing but clean makes sense to me.  Having whole days to just sew makes sense.  

I'd love to hear how you schedule your days - can you easily grab a few minutes here and there to stitch?  Or do you need big chunks of time as well?  Let me know in the comments!

Love,
Allie







22 comments:

WoolenSails said...

I hear you and i am in the same place with too busy and getting nothing done that I want to.
I only have one guy, but with two cats and a dog, seems I have to clean constantly and it is wearing me out.
I usually clean on mondays and fridays so the week is mostly mine and the weekend, but I am always cleaning in between and always doing laundry, it is never ending. When Bill was away, I could clean once a week, maybe because I pick up after myself;) What I do is work on projects and relax, then get up and clean something or throw a load in. I cannot just sit still for hours, so this way i get things done and move around so I am not sitting in one position too long. Yesterday it was paint a few coats, then clean something then sit and work on my punch. Would love a day where I could just sit and relax and not have to get up to clean.

Debbie

BillieBee (billiemick) said...

At this point in my life, 15 minutes at a time is my norm for sewing. However, if I have a good book that I can listen to while I sew; I can stretch it to 30 minutes. Then I realize ouch, that's my back screaming at me.

It's just the two of us now, so things are definitely not urgent. This week is doctor appointments. I have 3 appointments and Mick has one. We pretend these are vacation days and go out to eat afterwards. I'm very careful in the planning of appointments. Always make them right before lunch time...giggle.

I'm collecting dust right now so you can tell housework is not a priority for me except for a clean kitchen!!

Nancy J said...

I do a little sewing at a time, a little cleaning at a time, and a LOT of resting all the time. Everything now seems to be harder or take longer, and I'm very sure age is what makes it that way. I managed a lot better when younger, and could spend a whole day either sewing, cleaning or gardening. I accept how I am and fit things around meals, grocery shopping and the many doctor's or hospital visits. The last 2 weeks, I have had 2 Dr's visits, Hugh had 1, he has had 2 hospital appts, we both had an X-Ray, my ribs and his hand, another pre-op appt. at the hospital today, and cataract surgery next Tuesday. I need to take my knitting. Love your embroidery, and the way you re-arranged times when the children were home. So thoughtful, and your words are a bright lift to our cold morning. 3.5C at the moment. Many hugs from NZ.

KaHolly said...

I've been sewing a little here, a little there, but it adds up. I'll pin something and set it at the machine, then I'll be walking by, so I'll stop and sew it, then set it on the ironing board. I try to set myself up for each next step before I walk away. I might even do two steps at once!

em's scrapbag said...

I too need to slow down and make deliberate choices. Hard to do but so important.

Anonymous said...

With 3 adult kids at home, all making messes and leaving it for me to clean up (sigh)... I'm where you are. Time to take my craft time a priority again. The house will never be clean! I cleaned off the table yesterday, and I'm getting my sewing machine out again. I'm no longer babysitting or working outside the home... And I really miss my craft time. I've begun to crochet again, too! I'm picking my battles. I clean my bathroom, the kitchen, get trash out.. And make sure my own laundry is done. I do my chores, then it's my time to play. ;) Hsc Tory

Jeanette said...

I hear you Allie. i do my cleaning on Mondays but the rest of the time i seem so out of whack & can't get myself organised. I know how you feel with the arthritis & fibro. I used to be organised but somewhere along the way i lost direction & i am finding it so hard to get myself back on track. Hugs,xx

Cathy said...

Oh Allie, you have such a beautiful scene outside your windows. I know how it is to have so little energy. A day out shopping takes every thing out of me. I try to have some hand stitching to do in my recliner while I recuperate. I will keep you in my thoughts and prayers hoping you start to feel more energized and have some fun with your quilting. Hugs

Jenny of Elefantz said...

You are not alone, dear friend. I go out one day and then I'm done in for the next two days. Honestly, I do more now than when the kids were at home. Back then I had others to hang up the washing, do the dishes, vacuum, bring in the washing etc etc...in short I had others to share the chores with.
Do what's best for you...and God will show you what that is.
Btw, you are amazing.

Donna Pheneger said...

Good Morning my friend. I also find I must schedule my days. Having Alzheimer's, like any other disease, I find I have to schedule my days or else the day is wasted. I actually have a written schedule for every day and it must be planned. I learned this a few weeks ago in my class. As with home schooling, a spic and span home is not a priority!
I have a day planner that I've created - I call it my brain. :-) Everything's in there like appointments and then my daily schedule next to it. I'm flexible but if I get too flexible, my day is shot.
There's always time for stitching though!

Michele McLaughlin said...

I am so glad you wrote about this. It's been my frustration for a long time. Maybe we all need to share a special "I'm sewing; get your own dinner" day of the week. If only it was so easy! I love the photo of the bucks! Wowsa! Showed that to my husband! Have a wonderful day!

Lin said...

It sounds like you have a plan, sticking to it is usually my problem. However, I do feel that I am blessed with the ammount of time I can spend sewing. Mornings are always time for the house but mostly the garden - it's large and need a lot of work. My husband usually dozes after lunch so I get 1-2 hours to sew before we spend another hour or so working in the garden. I always make sure that I have hand sewing to work on in the evening as we watch TV together. xx

Cozy Thyme Cottage said...

Doing the 100 day 15 min. sewing challenge helps me. When I have time sometimes it turns into longer. So many things to do that it is hard to get it all done but if I do 10 or 15 min. at each one I do better. Fatigue from Chronic Lyme or some other reason and age slows me down. Glad you figured out a plan for you that gives you peace about it. Nancy

Linda in Calif. said...

Loved your post this morning. It gives me a pause to reflect on what I should/need/want to be doing. Since I work full-time I have to be careful of how I utilize my couple hours of free time each day. I think like you I need to make a plan. :-)

B J Elder said...

Allie - isn't it interesting how our time to do things seems to get away from us? Also, when we are feeling like we can do more than we, in reality, should be doing it catches up with us. I'm glad you are working to get back to a more scheduled plan to accomplish what is needed, to not worry about what isn't truly that important, and having time to let your body recover and to also do your creative things. The past few years I've not had much sewing time. Not that there hasn't been "time", but when it is there I'm too tired to trudge up the stairs and work on things. I'm doing two things that should change some of that.... one, I'll be doing a different 'job' soon that should free up more hours/time of day for other things and two, I'm going to move my sewing room to the main level. The room will be smaller, but I will still be able to get in all the things I need in it. This will make it so much easier to go to and sew/create. I have to remind myself of fibro care things I learned many years ago when it decided to take up residence in me. I'm glad you are making good choices for you. You know best how you can manage and accomplish things.... whether it is the full day devoted plan or the 15 minutes here and there. We all have to do what works right for us. HUGS my dear friend and happy stitching.

Kathy said...

I'm a lousy housekeeper. There, I've said it!! When I start tripping on dust, I clean. It just took me a week to deep clean my living room because I can't or won't keep at it to get it done at once. Mostly because deep cleaning involves washing the hardwood floors and I don't push furniture back in place until those areas dry for a day, and then I move on to the next floor area. And I did the curtains too. But it's clean now! So basically, I clean when the spirit moves me and the body is willing. For sewing, I like chunks of time, and then I usually lose track of time!

Little Penpen said...

I tend to put out fires too! Every once in awhile I get motivated and give the house a good cleaning, but it sure doesn't stay that way for long. I have to plan my sewing. I prefer large chunks of time, but lately I've been sneaking into my sewing room and doing a little stitching while watching the evening news. I just don't have a lot of energy these days, either.

Karen said...

I am a poor one to ask how I schedule my days. Now that I am retired, I just take it as it comes and doing what I feel like doing.

Dorian said...

I, too, am a homeschool mom (I have a 5 and 13 yr old still doing school, my 2 older ones are done) with arthritis and fibro, plus 2 other bone issues. It sure does get a lot harder to do things not only as we age, but with the diseases of the body too. Town day (we live 30 miles outside of town) is to get all our errands and shopping done, and the next day is rest day, I have to recupe. My house will never be 'spotless' at this rate, not with 2 boys, a teenage girl, 2 grown men and three dogs residing in it :) But thats ok, as you say, it's important for a clean house, but not urgent. Sewing has taking more and more 'back seats' and I'm happy if I can squeeze in 20 or 30 mins worth. My good friend directed me to your blog recently, I'm looking forward to 'getting to know you'.

Mia said...

Well, I love your bound. It is a simple and beautiful quilt. And your balcony window design is great! I do not a lot of free time as I am a working woman. But I do try to find some hours once a week to stitch, paint or make crafts. Kisses, my friend.

Fiona said...

I think we all have to rework our priorities once in a while. I tend to be the opposite of you.... straight to sewing in my PJ's if I could and maybe a short break to do a bit of housekeeping. Whatever suits us is ok...
Hugz

QuiltGranma said...

I do not know if you have heard of the Flylady website, but one gets encouraging posts that direct you to work on a specific area each week. For instance the bathroom. Today we will spend 15 minutes decluttering... or cleaning counters and sinks till they sparkle... In 15 minutes each day we can get some cleaning done, and do not let Mount Washmore topple! It is humorous, yet guides one to get up and DO SOMETHING. Just an idea here. Then with that out of the way, let's get sewing, shall we? (over the whole month the whole house eventually gets cleaned, and we are not worn out in the process of doing too much in one day.)

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