Every so often I get comments either in the comment section or in my email. I think others might want the answer to those same questions so I answer them here on the blog. Today is one of those days.
First off I want to thank and commend all the wonderful response that I’ve gotten from blog readers wanting to help Tina and the others who are dealing with the aftermath of the California wildfires. (Read about that in this post)
I still find it so heartening to know that Tina was someone who donated to charity..and now it’s Tina that needs help…but even in her own person tough time she’s still working to help others through the distribution of quilts. What a wonderful lady!
I can’t imagine one day having this and the next…nothing.
I’ve had people email me wanting Tina’s address as they want to send quilts. Some are taking Tina’s message to their guilds and the guilds are coming together to help. Wow…I love you guys.
Quilters really are the best.
I got a letter with a check from blog reader Judy in Vermont. Judy writes that she doesn’t have quilts to give but help Tina so she sent a check to me to help with postage and costs to get things to her. This is a “it takes a village project”…I’m glad Judy jumped in.
If anyone else is interested in helping, drop me an email and I’ll pass on Tina’s information to you.
Both of the topics I’m tackling today in this “ask Jo” edition are very different but both have the theme of then and now…changing seasons of life.
Some of you heard that I was thinking of caving in and doing Bonnie Hunter’s mystery.
I got all sorts of comments from blog readers…most of them were “I caved too” comments.
I got a comment from Gretchen that had me thinking. Let me first say that Gretchen is a long time blog reader and comments often. I’m not for a minute bothered by what she said…she just had me thinking. This is her comment…..
“If you want to participate in the mystery quilt then go ahead, do what you want to sew. I did think you had a really good post last spring, or whenever it was, about why not to participate. You put into words what I’ve thought for years about not participating in mystery quilts. I suggest you reread what you wrote in that post and then really decide if you want to make this years mystery quilt. I’m not being snarky or rude, I just remember what you said about wanting to make quilts you really want to make.”
I went back and read that post. You can find it here. You can read the post too. I commented that I often get pulled into the hype and don’t end up making the quilts that are the “desire of my heart”.
Well I recently read a book about decluttering your home, Decluttering at the Speed of Life by Dana K. White. I’m reviewing the book coming up. The book really had an impact on me. One of the chapters is about decluttering your hobby or craft room. Oh my if anyone ever needed that chapter it’s me.
I also recently talked to Mary from Country Threads about having so many quilts to sew and so little time to sew them all. Mary said she still struggles with that even in retirement.
All of this got me thinking….Do I really want to do the mystery? What quilts do I really want to be sewing? Does it make sense to keep my embroidery supplies when I so rarely embroider? Should I declutter my wool? I never use it! NEVER.
This is the conclusion I came to.
At this point in my life right now, I need things to be easy. It’s hard for me to find the time to start a project with a different technique. It’s hard for me to pull out “ALL OF MY WOOL” and work on a wool project. It’s hard for me to pull out that wonderful art quilt Abilene that I bought.
I love it. I want to make it. I have the kit but in order to make it I almost have to do it over a two day weekend when I have nothing else going on. Those times are hard to come by…and that’s completely okay with me. I treasure Hubby time and family time that cuts into my weekends…(Auctions too)
I have bought other books and magazines with the hope that I’ll make a quilt. I don’t. The quilt will call for pieces that 1 1/4″…I don’t have that size in my scrap users system so in order to make a quilt that is 1 1/4″ based, I’d have to pull out ALL OF THE FABRIC for it. Cut it all and then put all of the fabric back. I don’t have the time for that.
This is the season of my life….I have to do things that don’t take up too much time and energy as I’m still juggling so many different parts of my life.
May I also say this:
I LOVE BONNIE HUNTER’S DIRECTIONS AT A GLANCE. They make quilting so much easier for me. They make my life so much simpler.
When I saw that the first clue was red and white four patches. It so tempted me as I knew I could easily do that. I had the first 140 done without cutting a single piece of fabric….I just pulled from my scrap users.
It was easy to grab a hand full of reds and whites to cut over naptime to finish the rest of them.
Best yet…while I pulled pieces for that, I ended up cutting up the entire fat quarters as I decided to make Bonnie Hunter’s new Hunter’s Star quilt.
I could cut the pieces I needed for clue one and I could cut the rest into strips for Hunter’s Star. This way I didn’t have to put the fat quarters away and I almost have the quilt cut out. Perfect.
Little mess…little extra time or effort added. PERFECT. This is exactly what I need in order to be able to craft.
Was making Hunter’s Star a whim…yes. But it’s a quilt I’ll enjoy making and most of all, in my busy life, it was easy to cut out. It was easy to get going on…and best of all, I love the quilt. I love red and white. I call that a win.
Will I get to those other quilts?….some yes…some no.
With my recent health issues, I’ve taken a little more time to think this all through- likely more than most people do. If this cancer ends up getting me prematurely, would I be happy with the quilts that I’ve sewn. Is there one I really wish I’d have made? I couldn’t think of a single one.
I’ve decided more important to me than “what I sew” is simply “that I sew”. I love the finished product but more so I love the time at the machine.
This is the season of my sewing life right now….Maybe someday I’ll tackle those “other projects”. Maybe my Hawaiian Sunset quilt will get finished. Maybe I’ll actually do a wool project. Who knows?? For now, I’m taking the easiest route to get me to the sewing machine…and I’m going to do some decluttering along the way.