Quilts and Other Stuff from Frances

Five at a time…..

I have just finished a SUPER busy time of life known as “Income Tax Season”!! Every year from February 1st thru mid-April I struggle to find creative time amidst the flurry of W-2’s, 1099’s, 1040’s, and the other detritus of preparing income tax returns.

But this year was different. No, there wasn’t tons of time available, but I did manage to get into my studio for a few minutes…..almost EVERY day!!

How did this miracle happen????

It was simple…..I added a new habit to the stack of my current habits!!

Let me explain…..

While reading “Atomic Habits” by James Clear, I learned about habit stacks. A habit stack occurs when you have a series of things that you do in a row. In my case, my morning habits go like this…..wake up, enjoy a cup of tea, go to the gym, take a shower, have breakfast, read my devotional and then into my office.

BUT….what if I add studio time in the middle of this stack…..even if it was only 5 minutes at a time!!

THAT is what I did…..

I bought a cheap timer, set it for 5-minutes and started working.

Some days I just cleaned up and organized, sometimes I ironed fabric, sometimes I planned a future project, and some days I just sat there and looked around.

And, over a series of days, I made a block!!! It looked like this……

Day 1 – pick fabric

Day 2 – cut fabric for block…..

Day 3 – mark squares with diagonal lines

Day 4 – sew half-square triangles…..

Day 5 – trim down half-square triangles……

Day 6 – start sewing strip sets for the block…..

Day 7 – RIP OUT what I had done wrong!!

Day 8 and 9 – continue with strip sets


Yes…..it took me TEN days to make one 6-inch block!!

But, it meant that for 10 days in a row, I got to handle fabric and be creative…..even if it was just a little bit!!

Now that my time will be a bit more in my control, I am looking forward to keeping my 5-minute sessions going but maybe just to get set up for a longer sewing session later in the day!!

Wish me luck with my new regime!!!!

How do you find time for sewing??

4 thoughts on “Five at a time…..

  1. One of my “sewing times” is while I talk with my mom each morning. She is 91 so daily checking are important since I live 550 miles away. Sometimes I am gluing my EPP blocks to handstitch later. Sometimes I am burying my threads in a piece I have FMQed. Sometimes I am chain stitching “mindless” piecing. One hour later, I have had a great chat and done some sewing.

    1. Christie, that is an amazing way to use your few minutes of creative time!!! I used to call my Mom and M-I-L when I was driving somewhere and now I really miss those times. Enjoy your sweet sewing/talking times!!

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