Crafting reduces stress, makes us feel accomplished, and leads to an overall happier life for those who do it often. Unfortunately, as every knitter or crocheter knows, there simply isn’t enough time to get as much crafting done as we would like. Our little ones need our attention, household duties and full time jobs suck away the majority of our hours, and at the end of the evening, the bed can be far more enticing than we would like.
Though I’m definitely no expert on juggling all of the duties that have been assigned to me (who did assign all of those anyways!?) I have been working on making a little more time for myself and my crafting….after all….everyone in this house knows that Mom is more pleasant when she’s had even a few minutes of Hooking or Needling time 🙂 Here are a few tips to help you squeeze a bit of extra crafty goodness into your daily routine.
1) Mobile Motivation
I’m sure every one of you has heard jokes about the fact that you take your current project with you everywhere you go….but seriously, this is a must! Those 5 minutes at the doctor’s office, 10 minutes waiting for your kids after school, 30 minutes while watching soccer practice, and 15 minutes waiting for your dinner in the restaurant (that’s right – have no shame!) can add up to an hour of extra knit or crochet time EVERY day. For some people (certainly not me because I knit like molasses drips) that could equal an entire project finished, which leads to more self-love and admiration (Don’t even try to claim you don’t feel super awesome, proud, and happy when you finish a project).
My Grandmother-In-Law….hmmm. Is that even a real thing? My husband’s grandmother is an avid crocheter and has been for years. She makes the most stunning rugs that you’ve ever seen (in fact I’m writing myself a note right now to take some photos to share with you all next time I’m over there), for absolutely everyone in the family. She makes them out of scrap yarn, and they are sooo cool. However, they take SO MUCH TIME!!! I used to be totally stumped as to how she could produce so many rugs (my husband has a gigantic family and they’re all very close to each other) so quickly. Then she told me her trick. She keeps her rug projects in the car and she works on them every time they go anywhere. Even if they’re taking a short, 5 minute trip to the drug store, you’ll find her hooking away on her way there. At first I was surprised – could the car really be the only place she’s working on these rugs!? But then I started to think about it…..we all spend an obscene amount of time in the car. She’s just putting that time to great use by turning every second spent driving into a stitch of love.
2) Keep it Close
How many times have you set your knitting down and somehow misplaced it? Be honest here….I surely can’t be the only person who has lost my current project amongst my giant mess of yarn only to find it a few days….or weeks….ok, sometimes months later. This problem was really heightened for a while when my husband decided that all of my knitting stuff (and I mean ALL of it) needed to be stacked on my dresser. So if I left anything out for even just a few moments, it would disappear. Just disappear! Into thin air!! The same thing happened to any yarn that I may have purchased, or been admiring and left on the counter (I really was going to come back for it soon). Thus, I could NEVER find my knitting!!!
Thankfully, my sister swooped in for the rescue, and made me the most gorgeous, batik bag ever. I now keep all of my knitting in that bag, and never lose track of my projects. I feel like Mary Poppins, because I’ve got everything right on hand! Need a yarn needle? Got it. In search of an extra crochet hook? Check! Looking for that perfect shade of purple yarn? Well don’t you know it – I keep one of every shade of the rainbow in my awesome bag.
(My current craft space with my super awesome bag!)
Having a pretty, large (if you like to be extra prepared like me), and functional bag close by helps keep you from wasting time searching for projects or supplies. It’s nice looking, so you can even keep it right next to a comfy chair where you can steal a few moments of solace from your crazy day.
3) The Reward System
This one is pretty awesome because it not only helps free up extra time for crafting, it also helps motivate you throughout your day. Put yourself onto a reward system with your current project. Allow yourself to take 5-10 minutes of time for yourself every time you finish something on your to-do list. Having trouble working through that huge stack of dishes? Just do it – there will be yarn at the end of the tunnel! Feeling like sweeping the floor just may push you over your daily limit? Give one last push and know that your yarn is safe if it accidentally falls on the floor during your reward time.
It’s really important to acknowledge and reward yourself for all that you do. It’s not easy keeping up and you are doing a wonderful job. Give yourself a treat to help push yourself through the day. Do set a timer though….we all know knitting and crocheting can be like Pinterest. You sit down for a moment, and suddenly you’ve lost 3 hours.
4) The Evening Decompression
My sister has been telling me for months now that the reason I’m having a hard time falling asleep at night is because I spend the minutes before I crawl into bed answering e-mails, watching tv, or surfing Facebook on my phone. I’m trying a new approach to bedtime where each evening I shut off anything that has a screen about 30 minutes before I turn in. Spending this time crafting is the perfect time to decompress….it’s like getting a massage for your brain. Keep it simple and work on an easy project so you can slowly let your mind shut down while you’re working. This extra 30 minutes of dedicated crafting will lead to better sleep for the night, and more finished projects for those you love.
Do you do something special to steal a few more moments with your yarn? Leave a comment and let me know.