Monday, October 13, 2014

Day 13: Patching up things

We've been battling some bug over the past week, but I still got a few things done.

I sashed my quilt!

I caulked the bathroom.

I puttied some holes in the wall (some were smaller than others). Hopefully that means I can paint tomorrow.

I tried to match the paint in our living room. How can one house have four different colors of yellow paint?

One key I'm finding is to read my list early in the day. That motivates me to tackle projects when I have a little bit of time. When they are already on my mind, they don't seem daunting.

We hit the used book sale today and bought a large box of books for $5. After doing some math and writing, we took the rest of the day off to read. It rained during the afternoon, but it wasn't cold. Ah, fall.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Quilt so far

Should it be a throw or a tree skirt?

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Day 9 - Whoops, missed a few days!

The last couple days were down days in this household because various members got sick, and finishing a quilt is low priority compared to caring for sick kiddos.

I have a few bags of kid's clothing next to the door to donate - that'll be high on the list tomorrow! I'm beginning to move fall clothing into the closet and summer clothing into storage.

I began dealing with the sock monster (a large-sized moving box full of unmatched kid and adult socks). I'm about 80% done with that - I'd love to eliminate the box and come up with a sorting scheme that makes sense.

I'm going to be tacking the quilt this weekend. Since we use the guest room for school and sewing, I have to clean it up each night during the week. Leaving it out for the next few days should save some time.

I hope to also spackle and paint some holes this weekend. If we're full of energy, we'll also return unneeded lights to the home store.

Monday, October 6, 2014

Day 7: Sashing the quilt

I made progress today on my quilt! It will most likely be a 4x4 quilt (unless my 6-year-old successfully convinces me to make it 6x4...) and I'm about 75% of the way through sashing.

I've been working on saying "yes" to my kids unless I must say "no", so when my daughters asked to help me today I let them. Anna learned to iron (she pressed a few seams on the sashing) and Molly helped arrange the blocks.

I chose a good stopping point. I know exactly what to do next so there is no mental block.

Unfortunately, reading about how to sash and sew a border for the quilt is leading me to a bunch of wonderful quilting blogs with shiny, new patterns. No new projects this month!

The fireplace is repaired and we're planning our first fire for this week!

I exercised. I found some good online pilates videos for free and am enjoying the variety.

Otherwise, this was a good day for playing in the leaves with my toddler and taking a nap. The weather change is hard.

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Day 4 - Burning through that list!

I've been hitting the 15 minute projects today! It has been a busy day, with classes for my kids in the morning, a party afterwards, and then swimming, but I've been using bits of down time to wrap up projects.
I've been squeezing in projects here and there all day! First, we repaired our fireplace as told to by the chimney sweep. We only bought the supplies about a month ago. *blush* The hardest part was finding the putty knife!

Then, I worked on the hole in the bathroom. It'll be nice not to have that staring me in the face!
 I was able to fit in two chapters of Mother's Rule of Life while my son napped this morning!

Off to exercise before cleaning the school room (that counts as upkeep, unfortunately, and not a project). If I can clean it fast enough, I'll sew and iron some sashing for my quilt, but I'm not going to hold my breath.

I'm focusing on simple meals so that I have more project time. They still taste good and are probably healthier than many of my complicated ones!

Tomorrow is a rest day, so no more projects after that until Monday!

Day 3 - Projects to Tasks

I've gone through my rooms (quickly), opened closets (without judgment), collected projects, and even finished the first three 15-minute-or-less projects (listed shoes for sale online, hung pictures over my dresser, and learned how to properly dispose of used batteries ).

Today I'm going to work on turning projects into tasks, like the method of Getting Things Done.

A project is the big picture: what will the end result look like?

A task is manageable: what can I cross off my to-do list today?

"Finish quilt" is a project; cut sashing pieces is a task.

"Lose weight" is a project; exercise for 25 minutes is a task.

Look through your list - is each of your projects a project? Is it measurable? Can you define finished?

The short projects don't need to become tasks - they already are tasks - and turning them into tasks may take more time than it is worth. However, I'll come back to tacking short projects efficiently later.

For my quilt project, the tasks are:

 - cut sashing
- sew on sashing
- iron squares
- sew squares together into rows
- cut border
- sew border
- learn how to do the next step, then task it

Although I sort of want to finish PiYo, there are some workouts I just don't like. They don't work with my body type (long torso, recently pregnant) and I don't want to do them. So I'm not going to. However, I'm not going to buy any more workout DVDs until I finish a "PiYo Equivalent." So instead, I'm using Amazon Prime pilates/yoga workouts for my core for the month.

My exercise task is ten 15-minute segments per week.  That means I can exercise five times for 30 minutes, a few times for 45 and once or twice for 15, or twice a day for 15. I need to find 15 minutes, not an hour.

I plugged in the power drill battery today so I can tackle those tasks on Saturday!

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Projects Done! - Day 2 - Collect

It was already on my mind this morning as I was woken up by the burglar alarm at 6:55 am! No, not a burglar, just hubby, who had forgotten the code, and toddler, who was crying, "Too loud! Too loud!"

After turning it off and comforting the little one, I ran back upstairs and grabbed my notebook to begin Day 2 - Collect

Today is the day to make The List. Don't be creative! Don't be exhaustive! Just write down the things that exhaust you the moment you walk into a room! This task should take less than 15 minutes. If it doesn't hit you over the head immediately, it doesn't belong on this list.

We have a hole in the wall where Someone broke the toilet paper roll out twice. Each time I brush my teeth, shower, or take care of business, I see the hole and think, "Wow, I really should fix that!" I've even bought a drywall patch kit to fix the hole. It would relieve stress to take care of that.

On the other hand, we have a dirt patch in our backyard. We vaguely plan on putting bricks there. I haven't bought bricks. I do not know how to put them in properly. I rarely see the problem and don't really care about it. Tackling this project would create stress with few positives.

After walking through your house, sit down and write a sentence justifying each project. Some of mine are:

"Reattach curtain rod so that it doesn't break more and so that the kids can sleep better."
"Sort girls' clothes to donate so that someone else can use them and so that the girls can more easily keep their room clean. It'll also save me time washing clothing that was left on the floor and never worn!"
"Finish the quilt into a tree skirt so we can use it this Christmas!"
"Keep building my core muscles because then I can sleep better and not have back pain!"
"Read Madita to increase my ability in German."

Some of the sentences were lame:

"Fix ceiling. Yeah right." 
"Decide what to do with the crib so I no longer feel guilty when I look at it.

I have no clue how to fix a ceiling. You can barely see the patches. This is not getting done this month.

Put a star next to any project you can do in less than 20 minutes. If you need to buy anything for the project, it does not qualify! Recaulking a hole in the bathroom will take 5 minutes - once I buy the caulk! But, for now, it doesn't make the short list.

Finally, choose the easiest project and do it today. Why wait for tomorrow? 

For me, it is listing a pair of unworn shoes on e-bay. (And, who knows, maybe it'll snowball and I'll list my craigslist items, too!)

What is your project to finish today?