I have been feeling a lot of what I can only call the doldrums or weariness lately from the constant barrage of nothing but virus news on the newscasts, and a lack of focus when I am in my sewing and crafting space. This past weekend, I abandoned my basement for some outdoor activity, and that did help clear my mind a bit. I’ve also stopped watching much of the news. I know I am going to be at home for the next six weeks and likely longer as North Carolina enters lockdown orders today, but thinking in those terms is overwhelming. Are you feeling the same? While I was doing some clean up and a bit of gardening, my mind was free to ponder the problem, and I think I have come up with a solution for me, and maybe it will help you too.
I think my main issue is I have nothing to look forward to or plan for right now. All my fun activities from quilt shows and meetings, car club drives, participating in the Easter parade, working the library book sale, the annual MINI event at Fontana, and speaking engagements, to lunches and dinners with friends are all canceled. Normally about now would be the time to bring out all the rabbits and create some pretty tables, and maybe you’d be doing the same to get ready for a family gathering that cannot happen now. It is easy to say ‘why bother?’ So, it occurs to me that the solution is to create some new goals, have a plan for the next couple of weeks, something to work toward. So even though I have to put away my Easter parade hat for another year, I will make a plan to be productive for the time being, one week at a time.
In an effort to create as much normalcy as possible, I am going to get out my spring decorations and freshen up the decor. Even though we won’t be having a big gathering, or even a small one, I’m going to leave the spring table up and add some rabbits to it. Then I think I’ll do another fresh and bright color table for the pub table where we eat most of our meals. Shopping the house, I’ll use what I have in a new way.
With at least six weeks at home on the horizon, I’ll choose six projects to be done, one a week. These will be the harder or time consuming things that I tend to put off, and will work around my sewing, crafting and cooking time. Here is my list –
- Deep clean the kitchen, run the oven cleaning cycle, wash cabinets. Sharpen all the knives. Weed out utensils I never use for donation. Go through the spices and toss everything out of date.
- Flip my closet to spring, trying on everything, and compiling at least one bag of things to go to the thrift store when they open again. You can do this too, see my system on my post What’s In Your Closet?
- Tackle the last of my mother’s papers and mementos for sorting, storage, or throwing away.
- Clean the windows, including lubricating the tracks for the casement windows and vacuuming out the outside sills where dirt collects.
- Clean out all my old magazines, catalogs and other detritus from my sewing shelves, organize what I want to keep, and recycle the rest. I’ll use the same plan as I did in my Organizing Recipes post.
- Finally, go through the photographs and organize them at least into years, topics or places, scanning the precious ones that I want to be sure to keep just in case they deteriorate.
So, that is my big to do list. One task a week for six weeks. Each day I’ll spend some time in my sewing and crafting space, and a bit in the kitchen, with some goals there as well.
- Finish the quilt repair I have to do by working on it at least 30 minutes a day. It is a hand repair with a lot of patches to do, so it will take weeks.
- Find an embroidery or hand stitching project to begin.
- Sew the next four blocks in the Vintage Christmas Quilt Along. Write those posts and schedule for the fourth Monday in April and May.
- Quilt the next Quilt of Valor in the queue.
- Add borders to Scrap Dance Twist and write the next steps. Quilt and bind it when the QOVs are done.
- Make my Corona-cation Placemat and write that post.
- Begin a quilt for Hands2Help.
- Make some cards for friends, spread cheer wherever I can.
- Leave lots of comments on the blogs I follow, to keep up the connections and feeling of community.
- Plan a virtual lunch each week, and learn how to use a video chat app on the tablet.
- Develop a new recipe.
- Watch some new videos to learn more about knitting, and watch some more gardening and cooking videos too.
Here are some more ideas from my previous posts that may give you some additional ideas. Just click on the photos to see the posts. Make a Spring Wreath for your front door.
Set a pretty Easter table, even if it is just for two, or for you alone. Making our environment pretty and inviting is uplifting to the spirit. Add fresh flowers if you have a garden.
Make a Coronacation Placemat, for yourself, or for our drive for Meals on Wheels.
Whether you are a stamper or not, make some fun cards to send to family and friends this year. Sentiments printed off the computer and pictures cut from magazines work too. Happy mail is a treasure right now.
Tackle that overstuffed closet with my post on Clearing Out.
Plan a Virtual Lunch with a friend or relative to stay in touch.
Try a new recipe at home like my Asparagus with Sun Dried Tomatoes on my Spring Celebrations post, which also references how to cook a ham. See more recipes to try anytime by clicking on the Cooking category on the sidebar. With 159 posts in the cooking category, there are a lot of ideas on this blog for delicious new things to cook and serve to your family.
Upcycle a metal item with spray paint, like this project using an old birdcage.
That should help keep us busy. Today, take a few minutes and plan some goals for the next few weeks. If you need a few more ideas, how about these –
- Pull one of your quilting books at random and make one of the projects in it.
- Take some time each day to read, perhaps that really long novel you’ve been meaning to start.
- Clean off the old files you no longer need from your computer and back up your hard drive.
- Call someone you haven’t seen in a while, particularly the older population, just to chat and stay in touch.
- Pull out your UFO projects and make a plan for finishing them. Work on them for a short time each day. For more great organizing ideas for your hobby room, see my friend Mary’s blog post Planning Ahead.
- Learn the bird songs for your local population so you can identify them.
- Update your cell phone contact list, delete old numbers no longer needed, be sure all your friends are added.
- Enjoy a meal outside on your porch or balcony, or spread a blanket in your back yard for a picnic.
- Watch some videos and learn a new craft.
- Have your own spa day. Do a facial mask, and a hair treatment. Paint your toenails bright pink.
What are your plans and goals for this stay-at-home time?