Tinker Around

Welcome to my blog. It is full of basic projects and tutorials for things that I have done and feel like others out there would benefit from learning too. Be sure to take time to leave me a comment. Thanx, Pam

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Wow!!! Ever feel like you are so far behind that you will never, Never, NEVER get caught up?  And, I am finding that a lot of this feeling is brought on by ourselves!  Stop and think about it...that to do list...who says that all that stuff has to get done?  Who says it has to get done today?  For the crafter/artist, who bought all that stuff for those projects that now have to be done?

I have found that lists are great...if you will actually go back and look at them.  I sat down the other day and just started listing everything that popped into my little brain for a "to do" list.  I listed stuff like the 400-500 cake balls that I am making for my son's wedding in December, craft projects, paintings, outdoor chores,...

Then, I went a step further and broke the projects down into sizable pieces.  Let's do a couple here.  
Cake balls.  Now, that is a large job that won't get finished in one day.  I will start baking them weeks before, and I actually did over 100 last week and they are in the freezer waiting to be dipped. So, I deleted the Cake Balls and typed in... bake all the chocolate cakes and mix/chill for cake balls.  This gets typed out again for the vanilla and for the lemon ones.  Then, I also type out -> Roll out chocolate (do for each flavor) balls and freeze.  Don't forget to go back later and put them into baggies.  Last, I put the dipping.  -> Dip all cake balls.  This time I won't put the flavors because I am having a dipping party with friends.  Anyone who comes to help gets to take home a dozen cake balls.  So, now you see how cake balls is broken down into a sizable task.  And, as you do a step, do not delete it from the list...go into fonts and down at the bottom use the strike-through and just mark it off the list.  This way, you can actually see that you have accomplished something.  

Let's do another one.  I teach painting classes at my home on Mondays.  So, I am forever tracing out patterns and then painting up the projects. My list for this would look something like the one below.
Draw off patterns for Spring classes.
Prep all the surfaces for Spring painting classes.
Transfer patterns and pull paint colors.
Paint samples up for the Spring classes.

Again, do the strike-through when I finish each step.  The idea is to get to mark one to three things off my list each day, depending the size of the task.  So far, I am happy with what I have accomplished and I have been doing this for two weeks.  When I am in the art/craft room and see some project that I had forgotten about, I add it to the list and don't stress over it.

Another thing, I saved that list to my computer with a shortcut to the main screen so that I see it every time I turn on the computer!!!  Here is an actual portion of my list and what it looks like...

Dust before spaghetti dinner.
Wrap Christmas gifts.
Clean living room carpet and Andrew’s room carpet.
Fix fence.
Fix kids leaky bathtub faucet.
Trim the bushes out front.
Make poster for seating at wedding.
Finish wedding afghan.
Finish Griffin’s afghan.
Get shoes for wedding.
Pull patterns for “cute” Halloween for 2013.
Copy house pattern that is Christmasy.
Make shrugs out of leftover yarn.
Make pacifier holders with fabric and ribbons.
Make seasonal towels.
Make my placemats.
Make my bird towels.
Paint the candle/toilet paper wrappers on canvas paper.
Purchase hummingbird, Kirklands.
Sell magazine rack.

So you see, there are things on the list that really don't matter until sometime next year.  But, if it is something that is going to keep coming to the front of my thoughts of something that has to be done, I find that I can let it go if I have it written down.  Your task might be sewing a quilt.  Break it down into bite sized steps so that it isn't so overwhelming.  It is actually fun to go into the file each day and cross things off.  And it can be chores that are seasonal, just add them back in when it is time to do them again.

I hope that you find this helpful.  It seems kinda basic and simple.  I know that folks make written lists all the time, and to be honest with you...that is what I used to do.  But then, I very seldom got to mark off everything, or never got to really add everything that needed to be done.  How often have we made a list and just looked at it...felt so overwhelmed that we didn't do anything that was on it?  Well, I hope that this encourages you to get something done each day! 

My list is three pages long and I am off to tackle another project this morning.  Dunno when I will be back on again, but I hope it will be sooner than this last time.  We have had a lot going on.  Things were added to the list that we didn't plan on...our fence fell over into the yard from high winds, we sold a car, I had surgery for a tumor in my colon (everything turned out fine in the end) and that put things on hold for a few weeks,...it seems never ending doesn't it?  

Hope that you have a wonderful Thanksgiving and pray that this finds you safe and well!!! - Pam

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