Monday, January 18, 2016


In my spare time I like to sew. Quilting is my favorite. I have a sewing space set up in my basement, and covering up a set of shelves filled with holiday decorations and camping gear is a flannel-backed design wall. I put up quilt blocks that are in progress so I can see how the quilt is shaping up. This is how it looks right now:

These weren't meant to be quilt blocks. I had taken one of my sewing machines to the local Maker Faire the past fall to demonstrate how to sew things using antique treadle sewing machines. I was making these blocks just out of scraps to show how the machines worked. However, they seemed so happy and colorful that I couldn't throw them away, so I'm going to make more and turn them into a quilt. It's wonky and haphazard, but it's also colorful and exuberant. The quilt will be a happy mess.

I have these up on my design wall because I'm in the middle of another, less-fun quilt for my nephew. I hate this quilt. It's boring to put together, boring to look at, exactly what my sister wants but nothing like what I usually do. It's work. But I put these up on the wall to remind myself that when I'm done with her quilt I can go back to creating my beautiful chaos. This design wall is motivation.

I'm doing the same thing with my kids' school year. We're at the halfway point. I remind myself we're in the downhill. And when I drop them off every day and feel a lump in my throat and the tightening of anxiety in my chest, I think about summer. I look at which museums we'll buy memberships for. I peruse the reciprocal museums that will let us in with a membership to our local museum, museums that are only a day-trip away. I think about the county and state parks we'll go to, the walks to the library with a stroll around the duck pond after. When we're done with the school year we can get to creating our happy mess of a summer.

This is my motivation.

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