December 10, 2013

By the time a woman reaches her fifties (my children might point out "is close to her sixties" is more apt but since Christmas is coming hopefully they will remain silent) one would like to think that she has learned a thing or two about procrastination.  As in, don't procrastinate.  My husband is a big proponent of the DO IT NOW school of thought, and my mother is prone to quoting "let us now be up and doing, with a heart for any fate..."  and I...well, I would rather find a book, a couch and a nice warm blanket.

I always justified my procrastinating ways by asserting that I work best under pressure...that the looming deadline gets the creative juices flowing, but I think I'm finally realizing that the last minute hustle and bustle just creates stress, not creativity.  I manage to get things done, and usually done at the level my silly perfectionism requires, but it takes a toll.  And, more to the point, it leaves me disappointed, because I never seem to have the time to sit and relax and enjoy the ....(insert word here, holiday, weekend, day off, special day...) because I'm scurrying around trying to finish my impossibly long to-do list that I've left until the last moment.

2012 Holiday Tag-a-Long

Case in point.  Have you noticed the lovely Christmas tags I've posted in today's blog?  I really wanted to make some of these lovely tags for special presents.  I admired them last year in two of my favorite blogs, PrettyByHand and NanaCompany, and even downloaded the tutorials and bought the patterns.  In December last year it seemed completely do-able that I could make at least one tag for each family member. And yesterday I read that Kristyne and Amy, the creators of these two awesome blogs, are DOING IT AGAIN this year with even more amazing designs.  And my tags?  Well, I know the pattern is somewhere on my desk (I think) but that's about as far as I have gone with this idea.


I'm not beating myself up--I work a full time job and it's been a crazy, stressful year.  But moving forward I need to figure out a better way of incorporating the things I want to accomplish along with the things I must accomplish.  But even if I'm feeling a pang of regret that these beauties aren't going to happen at my house this year, I will enjoy how gorgeous these are and hopefully plan better for next year.  Because hope is a good thing at this time of year, right?  

This poem by A.A. Milne (of Winnie the you know who Pooh fame) made me laugh at the end of a long day, probably because I could really relate to the old sailor.  Perhaps if I am shipwrecked I might have time to stitch my Christmas tags!  

The Old Sailor (AA Milne)
There was once an old sailor my grandfather knew 
Who had so many things which he wanted to do 
That, whenever he thought it was time to begin, 
He couldn’t because of the state he was in. 

He was shipwrecked, and lived on a island for weeks, 
And he wanted a hat, and he wanted some breeks; 
And he wanted some nets, or a line and some hooks 
For the turtles and things which you read of in books. 

And, thinking of this, he remembered a thing
Which he wanted (for water) and that was a spring;
And he thought that to talk to he’d look for, and keep
(If he found it) a goat, or some chickens and sheep.

Then, because of the weather, he wanted a hut
With a door (to come in by) which opened and shut
(With a jerk, which was useful if snakes were about),
And a very strong lock to keep savages out.

He began on the fish-hooks, and when he’d begun 
He decided he couldn’t because of the sun. 
So he knew what he ought to begin with, and that 
Was to find, or to make, a large sun-stopping hat. 

He was making the hat with some leaves from a tree, 
When he thought, “I’m as hot as a body can be, 
And I’ve nothing to take for my terrible thirst; 
So I’ll look for a spring, and I’ll look for it first.” 

Then he thought as he started, “Oh, dear and oh, dear!
I’ll be lonely tomorrow with nobody here!”
So he made in his note-book a couple of notes:
I must first find some chickens” and “No, I mean goats.”

He had just seen a goat (which he knew by the shape)
When he thought, “But I must have boat for escape.
But a boat means a sail, which means needles and thread;
So I’d better sit down and make needles instead.”

He began on a needle, but thought as he worked,
That, if this was an island where savages lurked,
Sitting safe in his hut he’d have nothing to fear,
Whereas now they might suddenly breathe in his ear!

So he thought of his hut … and he thought of his boat, 
And his hat and his breeks, and his chickens and goat, 
And the hooks (for his food) and the spring (for his thirst) … 
But he never could think which he ought to do first. 

And so in the end he did nothing at all, 
But basked on the shingle wrapped up in a shawl. 
And I think it was dreadful the way he behaved - 
He did nothing but bask until he was saved! 

Have a Happy Day!

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