Thursday, November 27, 2014

Endings, Closure, Finishes

With just three projects left to finish, I gave more thought to why its become important to me to make lists and finish what I start. And wow, did I ever come up with a lot of reasons.
  • It clears out my stash
  • There is only so much time in a lifetime to do everything one wants to accomplish
  • It helps me downsize my home
  • In my younger days, it was easier to start projects
  • It teaches me how to release things, circumstances, and people in my life 
  • It gives me peace of mind
  • It helps me with my values of re-cycle, re-purpose, re-use and re-gift
  • I love making lists
Finishing up projects sets a pattern for releasing the more significant things or people in my life, and over the years, I came to see that. Someone in my life pointed out that I was a good pioneer, a good risk-taker and initiator, but that I never stayed around to see projects to the end. With that insight, I have worked hard at changing this behavior.

Right around that time in the late 70's, Kenny Rodgers sang The Gambler "who said the secret to survivin' is knowin' when to hold 'em, know when to fold 'em, know when to walk away and know when to run". And I am still learning.

I surprised myself when the first of my projects was the holiday stocking I started using fabrics from my friend Virginia's Mother, because it was for me. I admit that I am usually the last person on my list. Holiday stockings are incredibly easy to make and most can be made without an official pattern and usually turn out. As I finished this one, the thought came to me that I 'should' make a lot of them from my holiday scrap bin and give them as gifts to family members. However, that is too easy for me at this stage of my life, so I might hang onto it for a time when my skills are lessened.

The next thing on my list was to fold more dollars for the seven money trees I am making. Its a seriously boring, time-consuming job that takes 140 bills for all the trees, or 20 bills on each one. Its going to be a novelty gift for the Grandkids so I want to keep at it, even if its a project that stops and starts. I folded all the money on hand for it...and until my hands really hurt from creasing the bills. I put together one of the trees and then called it for the day. Seriously boring. If money really grows on trees, then the truth of it is, that a person still has to work at making that happen, even as a gift! I am not sure what I have here, and the next part of the plan is to put bills, pins and bows on styro forms until I figure out what more is needed. 

The third project left for this year is the apron and it is not finished either, so I will wait for a photo of it when its completed. It had only been cut out when I left it. I made the pocket & sewed its button on, sewed the front and back together and then made the straps for the ties and the neck piece. All that is left is to add the neck strap, open the sides for the ties and sew the top button on. That will be enough for another session.

As most of us know, the term UFO refers to projects we stopped working on. I have a quilt project that is a UFO, and maybe I need to look at whether or not I will really ever go back to it. Maybe I should name it for what it is...which means I really do have to look at it again. I need to ask myself if it is something I really want to work on, if its worth my time to work on it, or if it needs another home.

FINY - finish it next year (there is hope)
GIA - give it away (hopeless)
MACCI - make a commitment & complete it (do it now)

If I am really using my quilting to learn my life lessons, then this one is huge. It requires knowing myself, assessing my skills and interests, and making a decision. Its not a light-weight lesson. And it is about time.