Friday, January 24, 2014

New Year, New Goals

Big Blooms pattern available from The Whimsical Workshop
We are three weeks into the new year and I am finally getting to blog about it. The past few years have been a quite crazy and I have let my life get a bit out of control. As I am sure all of you can relate to. Our business has seen great growth over the past three years and with that comes a lot more work, longer hours and lots of juggling.

After giving all my time to The Whimsical Workshop, I have decided to pause for a moment and think about how I am spending my time, how can I make life a little less crazy, how do I take time for ME and continue to move forward with our business doing the things I love!

So as I look forward to 2014, I have taken time to reflect over the past few years and thought about what I want to change moving forward and here are my pearls of wisdom I have come up with and have put into practice:

1. I have learned I will never be caught up. If I am doing things right, there will always be a new project just around the corner waiting for me. I have treated work like a sprint and it really is a marathon! I need pace myself, stop and take a break every week. Exercise, day trips and hobbies outside of quilting are needed to keep me fresh.

2. It is okay to say NO. I have realized that not every job is a good job and it is okay to turn work down. This is a very scary concept to me. Once I realized that a job that takes 10x longer than I estimated due to the stress the job causes me dread working on it, it is not really worth doing! (It is also so empowering to say no to something you really do not want to do.)

3. Spread out large tasks over a few days. Back to the sprint vs. marathon concept. I used to kill myself to complete a quilt top in a day, now I am trying to spread it out over a couple of days. My work looks better and I am not quite as sore at the end of the day. Larger projects are easier to accomplish if I break them down in smaller tasks and spread them out. I am amazed how much more productive I have been in the short time I have started doing this.

4. Write it all out- I used write down all the tasks that I needed to accomplish each week and I would hope to get to long term tasks with longer deadlines on the weekends. Well I would push off the longer tasks until they became the rush projects during the week at a later date. I also spent the whole week feeling stressed out about the number of jobs I needed to complete. So I never stopped working and never felt a sense of accomplishment.

Now I take the week's list of projects and break them down by day of the week. I make sure to include smaller tasks for the long term projects on the lists and also to leave time each day for things that pop up (They always do). This has helped me plan my workload better and I  have set a goal I can accomplish everyday. I also get to experience an empty in-box several times a week.

After three weeks of following the above, I have to say I feel calmer and have an easier time dealing with things that out of my control. I think I might have tamed some of CRAZIES in my life. I hope some of these ideas can help any of you who also have a case of the CRAZIES with no help in site.

I would also love to hear some of your ideas on added a touch of calm in your life. Leave a comment below by 1/27/14 to win a copy of our Big Blooms Pattern.

Until Next time.....

Monday, January 20, 2014

Aurifil Designers for 2014

As many of you know, I LOVE Aurifil thread and use it all the time in our studio and this year I am excited to announce I am one of the Aurifil Designers for 2014. I am Miss June! Each month I will share with you the designer of the month. I am so excited to see what everyone comes up with this year. 

For 2014 Aurifil selected this group of fabric for the Design team challenge. The prints are all from “Wishes” by Sweetwater for Moda. Plus the Moda Bella Snow.

Each designer is going to create a 12″ finished block with a modern/clean feel using some of these fabrics and adding in ONE fabric from their stash.
The first block is from Brigitte Heitland of Zen Chic, which will set the tone for the entire year. 
Here is the link to Pat Brovo's interview with the amazingly creative lady.
2014 Design Team
Until Next Time....