Friday, February 8, 2013

WIP Tracking: February Update

We’re about six weeks into 2013 and I thought it’d be fun to check in and talk a little about how my WIP tracking is going.

I’m happy to report that I’ve finished FIVE quilts this year. Five quilts in six weeks! I have to admit that this spreadsheet is probably the sole reason I have been so productive this year and how I’ve been almost 100% good at sticking to my goals (that pixelated heart quilt snuck in there before I knew what I was doing – more on that later). The nerd in me gets really excited to cross each item off my list. It really is quite motivating.


Another thing that I think has helped me this year is creating more of a balance in my life. As a full-time working mother of three little ones, it’s difficult to find/make time for myself. I used to try to eke out sewing time anytime I could get it, which unfortunately meant I wasn’t always focusing on the other things in my life that need attention. I read an article several months ago about multi-tasking and how it can make you less efficient. The article really struck a chord with me. I’ve found myself trying to do 50 things at once and it’s no wonder why I stress out so easily. While multi-tasking has its benefits, it often tends to deprive my mind of the ability to put all my brain-power into one thing and really “be present.” So, I’ve made a few small changes this year.
  1. I no longer try to sew on the weekends. I choose to “be present” with my family as our time all together is so rare and precious. I may sew a little bit Sunday nights after my kids are asleep.
  2. I only sew when my kids have gone to bed for the night. I choose to “be present” for my kids when I get home from work. Some days, that means I sew from 7:30 to 11. Other nights, I sew from 7:30 to 8:30.
  3. I don’t sew at all on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Saturdays. Mondays and Wednesdays are my longer days at work, so I don’t even try to get in any sewing time. Those days are busy enough.
  4. I don’t sew on the nights when my husband is home. I choose to “be present” with him and enjoy our time together.
Basically, I only sew Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday nights, with maybe the occasional Sunday night thrown in for good measure.

At first, it was hard to decide not to sew this day or that day, but over time, I’ve found it easier to not even plan on sewing during the times I mentioned above because then I’m not disappointed if it doesn’t work out. It also makes me a lot more productive during the sewing time that I do have. I make a plan of attack for each sewing session and spend less time trying to figure out what I’m in the mood to work on. Plus, other tasks don’t get delayed because I’m trying to finish just one more thing… (Dinner and bedtime were often delayed because I didn’t stop when I should have.)
 
Overall, I’m really pleased with how 2013 is shaping up to be. I’m well on my way to finishing the projects I started over the last two years. (Pretty much six to go!)
 
On the fabric-buying front, I’ve been really good with my use the stash goal. I’ve made a few purchases, but most were using gift cards, and they were for projects for which I needed more of a specific fabric to finish it up.
 
If any of you have started tracking your WIPs, I’d love to hear about it. Any tips that work for you that you’d like to share?

5 comments:

Katie B said...

I'm really, really impressed Brooke, both with your progress and with your sewing schedule. I know what you mean--there are days when I get stressed out trying to squeeze in sewing time, and that's silly! And I can tell you're getting a lot done even though you're eliminating those days!

thepalmierifamily said...

I can't believe how organized you are. I'm sure it does mean better sewing time. I wish I had a room in my house where you can't hear the sewing machine, but it's too small. Then I could sew after the kiddos and hubby are in bed. :( As is, I iron and cut my fabric during that time, and then before my husband gets home around 10-11 a.m. from work, if I have time, I get some sewing in. Not a great way to do it. I like your way better. Fun to see your projects. :) Julie

Katy said...

I'm kinda in love with your idea of the WIP spread sheet! I keep looking at my piles of WIPS, and I have lists where I've written them down (only to misplace the list). And the nerd in me gets a little excited with lists as well. I'm off to make my spreadsheet! Katy

Sincerely, Stacy said...

You're a true super hero! This working wife and mom and fellow crafter can't tell you how much she appreciates this post! Thank you for sharing your structures.

Barbie Mills said...

I've really wanted to be present with my kids too, even though I'm with them all day--it's hard to do! I also need to figure out a schedule that will work for me. It hasn't happened yet.
I love your spreadsheets, they are awesome. =)

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