Free Time – Life Balance

One of the biggest changes for me, now that I am no longer working out of the home is to allow for time to make myself work-ready and to commute to the office. For me the loss is a couple of hours each day.  I am not special in this loss of personal time.   It is the personal price that millions of people pay as part of being gainfully employed.  It is time the working person can never get back.

I use my commuting time to plan my day or decompress and shut down at the end of a day.   When I push the button on the garage door, that is the line of demarcation of work time and personal time.   I don’t take home paperwork, my computer or say to anyone at work to call me at home.     I have traveled that road before of letting work take over my life and have no desire to do it again.    When I am on the clock I am 110% in, but when I am off-the-clock  I am guard my private time preciously.   It isn’t easy and I like so many others have struggled with this situation.

When I accepted this job, RangerSir and I talked about this.   We discussed what the realistic expectations were.   We discussed what was most likely to suffer and what each of us might do to limit the impact of my new job on personal time.

I have done several things to ensure that I don’t let work creep occur.    I am trying to cultivate new habits to ensure I don’t just go to work and come home and veg, because I  found I was falling in that pattern.    In January  I enrolled in a creative class with weekly assignments because I love to learn and I thrive on creativity.   With regular assignments I am forced to carve out time for myself.   It seems that once I have found the rhythm of making self-time, it seems I have found  time for other things as well.   I  have queued up several books at the public library, because I am back to reading daily.   I had wanted to make a baby quilt when my newest Great Nephew was born, but I had never started the project.  I felt I had no time.    Now the top is pieced and I am busy machine quilting it so I can go to baby Harrison.

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I had never imagined I would find the time to make a baby quilt, though I really wanted this special baby boy to have one.   Now suddenly it is well on its way. 

Are you caught in the never ending rat race of letting your work encroach on your personal time?    Are you not being yourself, but instead using the exhaustion of work  preventing you from finding enjoyment in life?   If so, I hope you take a little time and think about how you can find some time for you.  You are worth it.   Maybe you can’t be as lucky as I am, but even if all you get is a few minutes to yourself, it will be worth it.   Once you claim those first few minutes hopefully you can claim a few more and a few more.

It is something we all need not just with work and personal time, but holistically more life balance.

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A Gift of Love done

amber-doneI have finished the baby quilt I made.    I had lots of fun doing it, and sharing the progress with all of you.    It was a project of love.   I have now given it away to be used by a little baby girl  who will be here soon in the loving arms of her father, mother and big brother.

It was lots of fun to get back in quilting.   Now I am wondering if I can find more time to sew and quilt.   I have plenty of fabric to do so.

Making the Back Look Good

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I have finished quilting the planned areas of my baby quilt.    I did some diagonal lines on the edges and some stippling in the main body.   It went pretty well, but my time away from quilting showed and my stippling isn’t up to what was at one time my standard.  When you quilt breathing is as important as when you exercise.   I found myself holding my breath it caused some of my movements not to be as smooth as I would have liked.

Now is the time to turn the quilt over and decided if I need to add some more to make the back as nice as the front.   Normally one does not worry too much about this but when you use a pink/fustian/yellow colored thread on a white on white backing you artistic choices are out there for everyone to see.    I have decided a little outlined quilting on the sashing between the rows of blocks that have been stippled quilt will create a unified look.    It will put a little straight line in the middle of the quilt creating balance of curve and linear design.

Keep watch for the back side.

Time to Get on the Stick and Quilt

quiltI have made what seems to me  like zillions of baby quilts over the years.    All my contemporaries and even their children are  done with little ones.      I have not made  a baby quilt for years.

A business associate found out this spring that she was unexpectedly expecting another second child.    I was by accident one of the first people she told via text, picking the wrong Diana in her contacts to break the news too.   I knew at that time I was going to be making another baby quilt.   This little one was a blessing this family had wanted and thought was not going to happen.

This baby quilt  has sat on the back burner for months and now is the time to get on the stick and get it done.   I have found my favorite baby quilt pattern with notes written all over it, pulled out my stand-by baby quilt fabrics, got my ruler and cutter ready, and oiled my sewing machine.   Daylight is burning and I have to put the pedal to the metal.