What Can You Get Done in 30 Minutes?
Many people ask me how I get so much done considering how busy I seem to be. A good part of it can be explained by yesterday's Parting Shot. I try to use my free time wisely. Sherry in Little Rock had this to say in yesterday's comments, and it was a great experience to share:
"Seeing your sewing machine at work reminded me of an epiphany I had years (and years!) ago when I was taking a home ec class in high school. Until that time, I wouldn't start to sew at home unless I had several hours to devote to it. But, I finally realized that, even with just a 50-minute period to sew at school (including getting everything out and putting it away), I seemed to finish my projects faster than I did at home. It's so easy to let an hour get away if you don't realize how much you can get done."
It really is amazing what you can get done in a short time period, and those little time periods really add up. Small tasks like organizing project supplies so that all the thread, notions and tools will be waiting when you're ready to sew don't take long, and you'll be able to sit down get right to the sewing if everything is organized. I often break down making a garment into smaller tasks that can be managed in short time periods. For example, my daughter's Christmas dress has an accompanying tiered underskirt. Last week sometime, I cut out all the rectangles for the tiers. The whole process didn't take more than 30 minutes. Earlier this week, I serged all the edges of the triangles and joined each tier's pieces together. That didn't take more than 30 minutes, either and I even hemmed the bottom tier on the serger. Putting together the skirt took a larger chunk of time, maybe an hour, but because I did a little bit of prep work several days in advance, I didn't have to spend 2 hours or more of continuous time making the skirt.
I even divide other tasks into smaller pieces to make life easier. Rather than "clean house" all on one day, I will vacuum and dust on one day, and clean a bathroom on another. Neither task takes much time, but if I cleaned the house all on one day, that's *all* I'd do on one day.
My point is, any small amount of time spent working on whatever project that you're interested in at the moment will add up over time. Don't discount time spent cleaning the sewing area, researching, reading or just gaining inspiration. Sitting down to take 10 minutes to read a magazine article, even if it isn't related to your current project can be beneficial and provide a welcome break from all the other things that make up "life".
So, tell me, what can you do in 30 minutes, sewing related or not?
Tomorrow I'll show you Christmas dress #10 completed. I just need to finish up a little trim. (Hint: inspiration from Laura!)
Parting Shot: Christmas Cookies! Today we made Christmas cookies as we'll need some to take to the concert tomorrow night for the get-together afterward and because we like to have some to eat at home, too. I let each child pick out a couple of recipes that they want to make and then we work together to get them done.