Why the quilt blocks are #1 on my Finish List

I didn’t grow up around a big extended family that did a lot of stuff together. Jeff’s family is different. His mom had lots of brothers and sisters who supplied lots of cousins and they now have lots of kids. It’s a big family. Thanksgiving dinner is a perfect example of  how big–tons of people gathered at Jeff’s Aunt Beanie’s house each year to talk and eat and play and shoot guns. We love it. My kids love it (the kids are not shooting the guns, fyi.)

But there is another special time of year for the women in Jeff’s family–Girls Weekend. I don’t even know when it started, but all of the sisters in the family and their daughters and girl cousins (and their girls) started getting together for a weekend trip in the late summer or early fall. There’s lots of cooking and talking and usually some swimming and shopping and the best Rice Krispie treats.

Several years ago (quite a few based on the number of quilt squares I have) there was an idea to draw two names and everyone would embroider a quilt square using a white square and a set of embroidery iron on images. (Cause there are enough people on this trip that if those who are old enough to, actually make a square, they could create a pretty big blanket!) Everyone went home with 2 squares so you could do your stitching and bring them back next year. The first year I wasn’t the only one not done by trip weekend. Some people were finishing up that weekend. But as we have discussed, I’m not a good finisher. So bad at finishing that I’m still working on the first set. It’s not because I’m super slow at embroidering. And it’s not that I’m bad at it. I knew how to do it before we started. It’s just that I don’t take time. I’m bad at finishing because I don’t plan. I just put it off until later and then later never comes and then it’s 5 or 6 years later and I’m still not done and there are more squares each year. It’s just a big pile of guilt waiting to be stitched.

quilt squares
Waiting to be stitched...

So now I’m planing. Planning to finish. And today’s plan is to finish square one and get square two on the hoop.



It was Finish it Friday–yesterday

Yep. It’s Saturday again (instead of Friday) and again I find myself trying to decided if I’m ok with giving up the alleteriation of “Finish it Friday” for the ease of posting on Saturday. Is that really in the spirit of Finish Year? Probably not.

Here’s a quicky list of this week’s progress:

  1. Quilt square progress: really worked on this last weekend. Not far from finishing square one. (Working on a post about why these are even on my list.)

    Quilt Square in Progress
    Almost there! A few flowers and french knots from being FINISHED.
  2. Declutter and organize: Follow up from last week-used the treadmill. Walked 2.5 miles while watching Netflix. Decided that I need to watch a sitcom instead of a drama while walking until I’ve been at it for a while!
  3. Have not started James yet.
  4. Nothing on Photoshop or yarn.
  5. Nothing on the apron this week.
  6. No real work on painting the bathroom. Probably won’t be until the spring.
  7. Finances: Got most of my tax stuff entered online. This week’s task: get medical receipts from doctors and pharmacies. Only got lunch out once this week (because we had no leftovers.)
  8. Did NOT read “Maximize Your Mornings” last weekend. Correlation with my not-so-maximized-mornings this week? Um…maybe.

This list stinks. Not a week of much progress except for the square and most of that was on Saturday and Sunday.  Feel good about the taxes, but that really didn’t take that long. Definitely feeling like I was off this week. Sooooo. On to the upcoming week and getting back to the list. Cause these things aren’t go to finish themselves.

Finish it Friday–I remembered!

Yay me! It’s Friday and I remembered to “finish” and post a list update ON Friday. Because Finish it Friday sounds so much better than Finish it Saturday. I like alliteration.

This week flew by at mach speed and ended well. I can sum up the whole week by saying I’m glad that next year, both of my school age children will still be on the same school year calendar (any chance of that NOT being the case was put off for at least another year) and that I’m also glad that Will did not break anything after a fall on the stairs at school. I really was an “all’s well that ends well” kind of week.

As far as my list goes, I really don’t feel like I made much progress, but lets take them by the numbers:

  1. Quilt square progress: nada. I may work on them tonight after I post this.
  2. Declutter and organize: I did some work in the garage and made room to use an old treadmill we’ve had sitting in there while we tried to figure out where to put it.
  3. No progress on the Bible study.
  4. Uncovered some “learn to knit” stuff in the garage while decluttering. As in a pair of needles and about 2 inches of stitches on one needle. I guess that’s as far as I got last time. I didn’t even get past casting on. I also looked into the Photoshop classes on www.lynda.com. I’ll need some PLANNED, uninterrupted  time to work through the class.
  5. I bought the supplies to make Ginny the dish towel apron. She picked out a cute towel with hearts and owls and a cute ribbon for the ties. Can’t wait to get it made!
  6. No real work on painting the bathroom. Probably won’t be until the spring.
  7. Finances: I’ve been better at keeping up my grocery receipts and entering them in the spreadsheet. So far so good there. I’ll be evaluating at the end of January to see what I can do better. Also need to start collecting all my tax info, like doctor and pharmacy year end receipts.
  8. Need to get a better Bible reading schedule. No magic formula needed here. Just gotta do it. A new Good Morning Girls study starts Monday. I need to download the study guide and be ready to start and FINISH! I also found this cool, free e-book called “Maximize Your Mornings” over at www.inspiredtoaction.com. I glanced at it earlier and I’m looking forward to reading it this weekend.

So, no major progress this week, but baby-steps are better than nothing!

Letter to my crib

Dear Crib,

I’m going to miss you. I’ve been looking forward to you leaving, but now that you have been reduced to a pile of boards and springs on the floor, I have to admit, I’ve shed a couple of tears. We’ve been together for over twelve years and now our relationship is over. At least our relationship as we’ve know it. Thanks to Pinterest, I now know there are a variety of uses for you and your parts.

The CPSC tells me that you could have killed my babies, but I love you anyway.

I remember picking you out of the JCPenney baby catalog. I also remember finding a high percent off coupon that did NOT have a furniture exclusion that made you way more affordable. I guess you were my first big coupon score.

I remember putting you together WAY before you were put to use. You were decorated with my hand made 3 sided crib skirt. You are sturdy. You held all three of my sweet darlings as they slept until well past their 3rd birthdays. None of them were anxious to climb out and leave you, though two of them did that at least twice. Ginny was so comfortable in your four walls that she never even tried to climb out, not once.

It took a while for Will to start sleeping in you, after he started sleeping in you (on his…gasp…tummy!) you held Will through 4 addresses. This could be why you needed some help when we pulled you back out for Sydney. My Papa (along with my Dad) took all of your rails apart and reglued you back together. He gave you a facelift and covered all of the teeth marks that Will left when he teethed along your edges. My Papa’s loving hands made sure you could hold my girls past their 3rd birthdays.

You have heard Jesus Loves Me and the “Nighty Night” song more times than I can count. You’ve heard lots of crying and have even held me up some nights as I leaned across your side to comfort someone for the umpteenth time that night. You’ve held Will through colic when sometimes I couldn’t hold him any more. You held Sydney and her wave machine as she was swaddled like a burrito. You held Ginny and her “Silky” blanket.

You really are the last big “baby” item to leave the house. The bouncy seats and high chairs are long gone. Ginny is even drinking out of a regular cup most of the time. With you goes the last signs of babyhood and we move headlong into the preschool years, filled with learning and growing and becoming a “big girl.”

You were meant for a season, and that season has passed. I’ve enjoyed the past 12 years with you. Pardon me as I go check and make sure Ginny is still in bed.

Will in the crib

Sydney in the crib

Somehow this is the ONLY picture of Ginny I can find in her crib–lots of pictures asleep–just not in her crib!

Finish it Friday…on Saturday

So, as I’m drifting off to sleep last night I realize that it’s Friday and I didn’t post anything for “Finish it Friday.”

Ever so briefly I entertained the idea of getting up to post something. I think we all know what the final decision was there since you can see that this is posted on Saturday.

Here’s what I’ve go so far as my list is concerned:

1. In response to Jon Acuff’s post Tuesday Task I typed out my Finish List on paper. I think it will hang in my bathroom where I can see it in the mornings.

2. I worked this week on the quilt squares. I also went to the store and got some more embroidery floss when I decided I was missing a few key colors.  (Finish list #1)

3. I found what will be my first sewing machine project. It’s easy and will make Ginny a very happy girl. Of course, her’s will have a “G.” (Finish list #5)

Dish Towel Apron


4. I started keeping better track of our grocery spending. I was not the greatest couponer last year, and can do much better. I found a spreadsheet created by Stephanie over at Couponing 101 and started using it in Google Docs.  This certainly covers the “goals should be measurable” part of SMART goals. (Finish list #7)

5. This wasn’t on my official Finish List, but we’ve been wiggling the toilet handle in the master bath for a few weeks now (to make the water stop running.) No one had made the trip to Lowe’s to get a new flap, so we kept jiggling. Yesterday I had HAD IT and in my frustration suddenly remembered the fact that we had an extra flap stuffed somewhere in the linen closet. Took the time RIGHT THEN and FINISHED IT. Took 15 minutes and now there’s no more jiggling.

I think that the spirit of the Finish List is that some things should never make it to the list. Some things just need to be done and we can move on.

Plan for next week:

1. More quilt squares.

2. Spending part of today decluttering.

3. Make a decision about a Photoshop class I found.

4. Track my finish the Bible goal.

Not too bad for week #1 of Finish Year.