Saturday, September 14, 2013

What I've Been Doing While I Should Have Been Doing Something Else

Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. –William James

Have you ever asked a child to do something they don't want to do? They fuss and whine and complain and drag their feet and try everything they can think of to get out of it. And after all that time and energy they put into not doing the thing, they could have done whatever it is three times over. I do that sometimes, too. I think that is why it is so frustrating for me when the Not-So-Little Bugs do it :wink:.

I've been dragging my feet on the quilting on P.'s beautiful String Ring Dresden for a while. Now don't get me wrong. It's not that I don't want to do this project. I volunteered for it, after all. It's more that I'm scared that I'll mess P.'s quilt up. It is intimidating to quilt for another quilter. I'm a bad, bad friend and she has been very patient with me. The quilt has been at my house for nine months. For the first five months, I ignored it. When I couldn't ignore it any longer, I broke down and started quilting. I got almost to the half-way point and then I lost my mojo. In trying to get it back, I pulled something else out that I thought I'd just work on for a bit. But it turns out that this project was bright and shiny and oh-so-distracting, so I worked on it for just a bit more. After six weeks, I decided it was time to put it away. But I didn't quite. I was the perfect covert dragging-my-feet opportunity and I took advantage.

I kept the little embroidered labels out to work on when I have a few minutes of sitting and waiting. I knew that Grandma Week was coming up and they'd be perfect for when the adults all sat around and talked after the kids had gone to bed. And because I knew Grandma Week was coming up, I decided I didn't want to get in the middle of quilting and have to stop. I embroidered all of the block names and the quilt name in their reds and blues.

After I finished the block titles, I knew that I couldn't work on filling in the details, because that would look too much like avoidance. I decided to keep that "get out of quilting free" card for another time. But except for that really dry spell for the last three weeks of June, I sew almost every day. I needed something else that would get me out of quilting, but not be too obvious. I puttered around with some half-square triangles. And then, just to break up the monotony, I started a completely new quilt. I think that might have been an outright tantrum against finishing the quilting.

Fabric Auditions

Call Backs

Final Casting


Dress Rehearsal

The performance has been put on hold, though. I stashed the project away to be finished after I finish P's quilt. I finally got up the gumption, put on my big girl Machingers and am quilting again. With any luck, I'll be finished in a week. Photos coming soon. Unless I decided to procrastinate again.

Also, I am officially out of places to stash projects, which {hopefully} means a few more finishes. Soon. Ish.


Colleen said...

I've been there. Fear is the cause of most of my procrastination. Good for you for getting on it. Better late than never!

Paulette said...

You are too funny. A bad friend? Never! I said I didn't care when you got around to it, and I really meant it.

I think any one of us could tell a similar tale about some thing(s) we have or are currently procrastinating on for whatever reason. I could rattle off a handful of them myself, and I'm sure I've repressed the memory of even more. Well, think of all the things you DID work on while you weren't quilting. They are amazing.

I should have requested you make a few boo-boos in the quilting on purpose, and leave it be, do not unpick. Maybe that would have taken the pressure off. There still may be time, so you can still do it. You have my permission. In fact, I recently read an older blog post or watched a video by quilter Leah Day and she said something like, "don't you dare unpick" and that made me feel a lot better. I mean, if a quilting teacher tells you to let the stitches fall where they may, well, who's to argue with that?

In case you have any remaining guilt, you are hereby officially absolved. Now go quilt, silly! :)

PS - I can't wait to see what you do with those luscious squares and rectangles.

Shay said...

You and I went to the same school of procrastination. Im fabulous at getting distracted and making excuses. What can I say ? Its a talent.

Im sure that now you're committed you'll finish that quilting and it will be a gorgeous quilt.

Jean C. said...

It is hard sometimes... just "getting to it". As they say.... Githerdone!
LoL... Best do that b/4 moving onto something else and making another mess!

Annelise said...

Elizabeth!! Do you know how often I think of you? Very! I am terrible at keeping in touch, but my heart still aches for my old Springville neighborhood and Spring Creek ward, and the wonderful friends like you I had to leave behind. I visit your blog regularly and start to leave a comment then think it would be more suited for an email, and then I never get around to that and and and excuse excuse excuse. Anyway, I hope you are doing well, and I am glad that I can continue to see all of the beautiful things you create :) xoxo