Creating Handmade Crafts
I wonder most days if I am really present in the moment because my mind has a tendency to wander, so embarking on yet another adventure, like quilting, is not necessarily a good thing when you are trying to concentrate on your job. Transitioning from work to semi-retirement takes careful planning of time and resources.
I’m in the process of turning my spare bedroom into a craft room, a place where I can be creative and indulge my newly acquired interests. It’s a bit overwhelming at the moment because I keep adding projects. My latest project is learning to quilt, something I’ve always wanted to do.
My daughter-in-law is THE master at quilting along with her very talented mother. But their skills are not limited to JUST quilting. I’m talking purses, umbrellas, dolls and so much more. These two meticulously work at their craft with such precision and expertise, I pale in comparison. So I want to be just like them when I grow up!
I bought my sewing machine for my latest endeavor. I scoured Amazon to compare features and prices and settled on a Brother sewing machine. I anxiously awaited for it to arrive, which it did this week.
The last time I sewed anything was over 30 years ago when I used to sew all my kids’ clothes. I was one of those mothers that wanted to stay home with their children and be an active part of their life. Unfortunately, or fortunately, life happens and I had to set aside my motherly duties and go back to work.
Well, one thing led to another and 30, 40 years later here I am checking out sewing machines, buying one and finding out they are about as complicated as my laptop computer. Thankfully, it came with a DVD that I could watch. I’m a very visual person, a booklet of instruction might as well be in another language for me.
Don’t Be Afraid to Explore
I have always loved to browse craft shows. You appreciate all the hard work it takes to make a piece of woodwork, handbag or quilt. I don’t think people realize how much work until you actually do it! It’s never too late in life to learn something new; right?
In fact, I think it stimulates our brains and keeps us young as well as providing a connection to others. Cultivating new skills and relationships can be fun. It might be hard in the beginning to tear ourselves away from the T.V. or Facebook, but in the end you have a work of art made with your own hands!
Think about the friendships you can build by connecting with others. I took my first quilting lesson this week, very simple, how to measure and cut. It’s very important and so is being able to sew a one-quarter inch seam.
Next to me was a table of older women getting ready to embroider. Each had their colored pencil sets out ready to draw on a piece of fabric. I could hear the sharing of experiences and pictures of sons, daughters and grandchildren. They laughed together as each of them began to draw and compare drawings.
It struck me as I listened there was a genuineness of caring for each other and a respect that we don’t often see. We are inoculated against violence and destruction, I think we forget how to be empathetic toward our fellow human beings. I want to surround myself with these good feelings of sharing and comradery as I grow older. It’s better than being numb and living in a bubble that only you occupy.
Don’t let life slip by when there are so many adventures yet to explore. If you don’t have someone to take that adventure with, form a new relationship or many relationships, ones filled with purpose and joy. Baby boomers tend to be complacent, seeking the comfort of familiar places and friends and that’s all right to a point. But if you are not married and your children are all grown, it’s time for you to take that first step to find something that quiets your mind and makes you happy.