Sunday, February 27, 2011

Time Flies When We Are Having Fun....

As the kids are getting older, seemingly faster every second, I have found myself thinking about the shoulda, coulda, woulda, list...you know the things that if the right opportunity had come along you would have actually done.  Each day is taking on new meaning, and I don't want to waste a single one.  Not that I regret any part of my life, as every moment good or bad has made me into the woman I am today, but now that the boys are needing less and less of my time I have been daydreaming more of things that I would like to do.  For most of the past 16 years (one month short of 17 that I don't want to admit has gone by) I have had little humans as my number one on the agenda.  Now almost exactly one month before my oldest is going to be the age I don't want to admit to, I am thinking about what I could accomplish in the next long stretch of unmentionable years...

Over the years these thoughts have come and gone with little gusto but yesterday I visited a fellow homesteader who had purchased some geese from us in the past, and in our chattering about this and that I mentioned my love for re-purposing around the farm.  She quickly ran in the house and brought out her newest bit of crafty genius.  A saddlebag crocheted out of used plastic shopping bags.  In one second my heart was filled with so much emotion.  This lady has lived so much like I have wanted to live my own life.  She has raised her children to be better people having some of her children literally all over the world doing missionary work. One in Africa and one in South America teaching the children in these countries to be more self sufficient which is where this wonderful idea is being used to teach the children there to make these bags to sell so they can support their families.
 She had fed them with things she has grown on her farm. Even before the movement of becoming organic families was the thing to do.  Her animals raised with love and care as because they are what were nourishing her beloved family.  But there was also a sadness as she told me that one she had made, the saddle bag that was right in front of me was for her Oncologist.  Just the week before she had called me to tell me she was recently diagnosed with cancer. It made my heart ache.  It was a reality that has unfortunately hit me before and each time I used it for different reasons.  Although some stand out more than others. When my youngest son was recovering from a his life treating bout with bacterial meningitis and we almost lost him, I made a vow to spend more time with the kids and make the time I spent with them count.  When my brother Vinny died I made it a point to keep the stories about our childhood, our family and the past alive in the lives of my children so they could tell theirs.  When my mother in law passed I started writing my cook book so that my children will remember me the same way my husband remembers her when I make a dish that she would make.  The kind of memory you can almost touch it is so real that when you close your eyes you are sitting there with them and the comfort is one that only they could give.  The reality is that we are only given a certain amount of time, and we have no idea how long or short it will be and wasting any part of it can only be called foolish.  So again I am on a mission to see what my time can be filled with.  Not just to make my time go by more quickly but things that will have purpose in my life and those around me.  Making the time that goes by meaningful and memorable. 

I would love to learn how to use my sewing machine...

Yes I have one and have had it for 3 years but the directions are in Chinese and well, I don't know how to read Chinese...(that will not be one of the things on my list however nice it would be to learn another language someday) I know how to do everyday sewing like a button, or a seam, if necessary, and I have made a costume or two, and a few hems that although did not hold up that long, by the time they fell out the kids were tall enough to fill the length of the pants that I hemmed anyway.  In my head though, I have so many ideas.  Maybe if I had a little girl I would have moved this up on my list of things to learn sooner as it might have taken more of a priority to me, but the fact of the matter is that I still have all these ideas and patterns in my head, dresses and curtains, pillows, and quilts it would be nice to be able learn how to make at least a few them.

I would also like to learn to crochet or knit...or maybe both...

Maybe make some blankets or scarfs, hats, and mittens for the kids.  I may even make one of those silly toilet paper cover dolls, with the crochet dresses that my grandma used to make or a toaster cozy...

I don't know why, but I am also not very good at staying on task to complete things, which is not always my fault as all you moms know.  It seems that as soon as you get into something someone always needs your help with something else (not that I am complaining), which is also one of the things that has happened less around here and I seem to have these strange and unfamiliar stretches of time I have never had before. Long enough to make me think that maybe I can finish something.  I do have to admit that this is only 1/4 of the reason that I haven't embarked on this before, the other 1/4 is that I am not the most organized person in the world.  Although, in my head everything is perfect and orderly labeled and filed in it's appropriate place. The other 1/4 is some kind of adult onset ADHD that seems to make it impossible for me to start something without getting sidetracked to something else that takes precedent on being started...(it's a vicious cycle) Which again, I think that has something to do with being Mom, as I don't really think that it would all have the same importance if it was just for myself. It is also the reason that it took me until I was done typing this,  read and reread it a billion times, posted it and then it took my 13 year old (who has also just corrected me and told me he was 14 *sigh*) to tell me that I left out the last 1/4...Oh well, you get my drift.   It seems that lately I have actually finished thoughts that started 17 years ago...wow!

Over the years I have learned how to do so many things. Some I like more than others but none of those things I learned to do out of mere curiosity and some I never really even wanted to learn, but I learned to do out of necessity.  Those I can cross off my more expanded list, like maybe numbers 110-130...(*note to self*cross off...tiling floors, laying brick, hardwood, painting, framing, sheetrock & plumbing) More of household repairs than a hobby but those are the things that filled this rapidly emptying time slot before.  Nothing that any girl growing up in Jersey thinks she will ever need to know.  I have to say that I do feel accomplished for learning how to do those things and it's nice to be able to say when someone comments on something in my house that I built or repaired them all by myself and maybe in another life I would have loved to do those things as a hobby but really as much as I like the finished product not many of those things have cured my need for craftiness.  Starting a project that took more time to prepare to do or to clean up after than the actual project took to complete seemed daunting but I was also unrealistic about what my expectations were for myself.  Something that I can put down and go back to, now that is a project that seems like a good pair with me...something that can take up that busy time, help me unwind, and think, and plan, and pray, while lulling a part of me that is filled with the unknown which lie ahead.   

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