From guest author, Denise Nelson

UFO’s. Unfinished objects. You know, all the craft projects started but either you hit a snag and set aside for a minute or a year or keep meaning to finish but life and work get in the way. Sometimes it is because we just cannot figure out how to do some part of it. Some times it is because we buy way too many projects to finish in one lifetime. Whatever the reason, UFO’s are part of every crafter’s stash. In comments own up! How many do you have?

Unfinished objects, the bane of my existence. Entire retreats are held for quilters, knitters, and other crafters/artists just to motivate them to finish the project. Perhaps paying even more money than the supplies have already set you back compels one to finish. I wouldn’t know. I would have to rent a u-haul to get my UFOs to the retreat. It isn’t as if my projects are cluttering up the whole house. They do take up a whole closet (maybe two). The rest of the house is filled with a different kind of UFOs, my life.

For years I have heard what people would do when they retired or took an adult gap year from work. I’ll quilt, plant a vegetable garden, build furniture, read the classics, needlepoint seat covers for the dining room chairs, hike the Appalachian trail (bit hard with a walker), start knitting, finish knitting, take up stain glass, learn to sail, finally finish the home remodel, travel the world, write a cookbook, and on and on. As the years went by many of these very same people actually had the opportunity to do just what they had planned. However, it appears they just went on doing or not doing what they were already doing minus working. No quilting, planting, classes, traveling, etc., they’re still getting to it.

After 18 years at my last job, I am on a sort of break. Quite long actually. At first it was all fun. Lunches with the ladies, hosting happy hours for friends, museums, concerts, and a party or two. Then life settles in. As I don’t work for right now all household chores are mine. The total housewifey thing….Every bit of dust, every piece of laundry, cooking, shopping, gardening, cleaning up, errands, lunch making, it’s all mine, mine, mine! After only six months I have a handle on it. Time set aside for catching up on world events (Thursday afternoon when People Magazine arrives via mail), catching up on gossip (Monday nights when Newsweek arrives via Kindle), completing chores, and everything else home related. Suddenly I was faced with SPARE TIME!

Spare time is a bit frightening. I could kill it walking for my health, being more social, or watching the Real Housewives. I tried all three. I could even start blogging about finishing projects to avoid the projects. Then I realized that there was only one thing left to do, face my UFOs. Ever so many choices… Where to start?

The so called craft supply closet could not be emptied without filling the entire room it is attached to with bags and boxes of projects. Trying to have choices would just mean avalanche city. So the “work from the front” technique was born. I was able to pry loose a basket of innocent looking bags. Small projects, like a scarf for a friend, needlepoint for a pillow, and EIGHT knitted socks. Not eight finished socks, eight sock beginings! Bad news as these will take forever. Are these just examples of my life? The diet not finished? The relationship not resolved? Who knows, who cares! That is for another day. Today is for getting something done before People arrives and I have to read, sip coffee, and call friends. Ooops, here’s the mailman.”

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