Showing posts with label the grind. Show all posts
Showing posts with label the grind. Show all posts

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Completing your Writing Project with the Same Enthusiasm You Started it With

You know this scenario: you have a great idea, have made good progress with your action plan, but now things are starting to slow down. Your project doesn't have the same appeal, you are getting tired of the strategy, and you're starting to feel like you may never complete it. Is it doomed? No! You are just confusing strategy with outcome. The latter is the focus. The former can be replaced.

Here's how to go about doing just that:

1. Review what you want to accomplish and why you want to accomplish it.

Your writing project, when you first conceptualized it, pitched it, and started working on it; had promise and you were excited to make it happen. The reality of sitting down to write, fighting your inner editor, and worrying about the outcome may have dampened your enthusiasm. Maybe you're even worried that you'll never get it done at this rate. But you can recapture that first momentum by selling it again to yourself and picturing the completed project and what that will accomplish for you and how it will feel.

2. Post a visual representation of the finished project where you can see it regularly.

Designing your cover, author bio, and back cover (even if someone else will doing the real ones down the road) and posting them on your computer desk top or office bulletin board means the project will become more real to you and you will naturally be drawn to making it happen. You don't have to spend a lot of time to make it happen. Make a mock up in Microsoft publisher or canva or delegate the project to someone on fiverr

3. Brainstorm a variety of strategies for making the process enjoyable.

The beauty of the brainstorm is that ideas can be collected quickly. Don't limit yourself. Giving yourself permission to put down the ideas that feel silly at first can help you stumble onto some brilliant ideas (ie. paying yourself $1 for each 10 minute writing session = vacation funds and a finished project) You may find rewarding yourself with a walk, reading, TV watching, socializing etc also works. Maybe it's making your writing session inviting with a new venue, accessories, or favorite food or drink. Try a few strategies and record the results and you'll find what gets you producing.

4. Varying up the approach to execution.

Within the same project, you can take different approaches within your writing sessions. Let's say you have a book outline, several drafts with different tones and points of view, and an imbalance in the attention you have given the chapters. You will need to fill in the book outline, merge the documents and move the project over to the tone that works best, and focus on the chapters that need beefing up. These are all components of the project, but as long as you stay focused on the overall project and outline, you can do them in any order you want. Some days may be better for identifying gaps, others for editing flow, and others for research and developing further content. Having a flexible approach means one of the approaches will appeal on any given day.

5. Adjust the delivery date if necessary, but find a way to overdeliver.

Keep touch with your due date and the amount of work left to do when adjusting your daily goals. If you are far behind, set aside a stretch period where you will overachieve on your usual productivity. This is not a strategy that can work for days, but it is perfect for sprinting within the overall marathon of the project to make up time. You can also adjust your delivery date. Just remember to make your daily goals doable and then hit them consistently with your new approaches. Keeping focused on your project and steadily executing on it means it will be great when you finish up. Pace yourself and have fun.

Remember to stay away from negatives including approaches that haven't worked for you, days you were less than productive on your project, or defeating self talk you may have engaged in. Don't beat yourself up. Learning is part of the process. Review what has gone well, re-engage with your great idea, and go make it happen!

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Keeping Your New Ideas from Sabatoging Your Current Project

Once you start to work and make progress on your project, it may look like all sunny blue skies ahead. But it is important to make plans for not only in case of writer's block, but also for what to do when that flowing creativity results in too many ideas. The newest idea threatens the one you are slogging through and looks like more fun/easier to execute/more interesting/what have you... If you have been at this for a while, you know following this path means you can land up with a bunch of good ideas and no completed projects.

The siren song of a new idea can spell death for the current project if it is abandoned before it comes to full bloom. That doesn't mean you have to hold off until this project is wrapped and launched before getting into the new idea. You just have to be smart about it. Here is the strategy to both stay the project's course and not lose the new ideas:

1. write it down

Taking the time to sketch it out means you won't lose the inspiration. You can add more ideas as they come up. Just keep the notebook or digital file nearby as more details are sure to come to you as you continue to work on the current project. If you don't get rattled by it, you can just enjoy it as a side benefit of creative juices flowing. And celebrate! You are generating twice the ideas you anticipated.

2. see if you can tie it into a series

Sometimes new ideas arise because you have hit upon a theme that especially resonates with you or the market is timely and references to it keep arising in daily life. Don't worry that you will lose out this opportunity. If it doesn't tie into your current work as a supporting book or series addition, just keep working on your notes. It might be a stand alone series by itself. And given the success model that sees authors of multiple books hit the best seller lists, this is a direction you'll want to develop in.

3. use it as a reward

Working on a new idea when it's hot has the side benefit of feeling like a reward. Working on your current project for a timed set (even 10 minutes) and then switching to develop your new idea for another five or ten is a model that when repeated can have you producing what you need to on your current project while not losing the momentum of the newly hatched ideas.

4. test it out

As you develop it, give your new idea some test runs by writing a short scene, posting an article or blog post on the topic, or discussing it with your fellow writers and beta readers. Taking it for a trial run lets you see if it is an idea worth pursuing and how much interest there is for it.

5. prioritize it

Not every new idea will make the cut and go long term project. That's ok. Keeping a running list with time frames and markets for them (agent submissions, short story contests, guest blog posts, linked in articles... etc) means you will spend the appropriate amount of time on each project according to its purpose. If you use vision boards, mapping out each project on one bulletin board (virtual or not) is a good way to keep an eye on each of them.

Let me know if this touches on your experience with new ideas. Do they help you or harm you when it comes to your production?

Tuesday, July 05, 2016

Don't Have Time for Down Time? 10 Easy Ways to Recharge Quick

When you are looking at your regular work day and your writing project you're tackling on the side, it may seem like there's no time for down time. But not building it in will risk your losing creative energy. Take time for the things that recharge you. They will make a million other things possible.
Here are 10 easy ways to recharge quick:

1. Take a 20 minute nap.

Napping is not just for kids. The 20 minute nap makes solid health contributions. Web MD calls it a stage 2 nap which makes you alert and ready to tackle both thinking and motor control tasks upon waking. Set your timer and keep your notebook nearby. Frequent nappers often have vivid dreams & 20 minutes is long enough to go through a REM cycle.

2. Do a short workout video on youtube.

Exercise gets your heart pumping and brings extra oxygen into your body. Your brain will be at heightened capacity especially if you drink water to go along with your workout. Taking in enough water improves brain function & exercise superpowers your brain as well. A search for 15 minute cardio will get plenty of results.

3. Handmake a card or two.

Creative pursuits like arts and crafts use a different part of the brain than logical thinking processes. Going into another sphere works to relax you and recharge you for complicated plot twists ahead. The side benefit of having a few cards on hand for upcoming birthdays doesn't hurt either.

4. Putter in your garden.

Getting into your green space lets you clear your head, brings your blood pressure down, and gives you fresh inspiration. Employ your senses and lay on the grass, rub some mint between your finger and thumb, breathe in fresh scents and let your mind wander. Bonus points for cloud watching.

5. Have fun with your writing prompts. 

Taking a creative approach with your writing prompts could mean cartooning your story line, mind mapping your character developing, or painting the feeling you want the scene to take. Keep a notebook nearby for the snippets of phrases that are sure to pop into your head when you are relaxed and musing on your story.

6. Clutter bust.

This is a different enterprise from cleaning house. In a specific room in which you want to write for the next writing session, empty all of your clutter into a filefolder, garbage bag, and donation box. The space should now be spare. Set out something that makes you smile. Clutter gets in the way of clear thinking and busting it improves optimal thinking.

7. Trade massages.

Ask your partner to rub out those shoulder knots or book a professional massage if budget allows. Holding tension in your body puts you at risk for distraction, headaches, and reduction in energy. Having your pliable spine back will allow for more comfortable writing time.

8. Make an occasion out of your coffee run.

Instead of making a coffee run yourself or meeting a friend at a coffee shop and taking up a chunk of time you cannot afford out of a busy day; ask your friend to meet you and go for the drive or walk to the coffee shop. You will have socialization time, which is recharging ( provided you're meeting up with a positive person ), and it will be within a pre determined amount of time, allowing you both to get back to your schedule refreshed.

9. Make a vision board.

A vision board lets you see your goals in front of you every day. It both inspires you and keeps you accountable to what you say you want. Actions are sure to come out of what you are focusing on every day. Cutting out pictures out of magazines and gluing them is a fun change of pace. It works just as well copying and pasting images into a collage on publisher and then printing them out. (slightly easier to do on lunchtime at work as well)

10. Get in the water.

Whether it's a bath, shower, pool, or hot tub; water is relaxing and a true time out. It is hard to be stressed out in such a setting and letting your mind wander is the best benefit of all. You'll find ideas come to you when you are not even looking for them.

For maximum benefit for your writing project, before you start your recharging session determine how long it will be and when you will start writing. Following up a break with a treat writing session means you have a win-win before you.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

3 Ways your Writing can Benefit from a Bad Day

Of course we'd all like perfect days in which to do life and in which to fit writing. Because shouldn't one make sure everything is going smoothly before trying to fit in something else? I don't believe so.

We can't control whether all of the conditions are ideal, but we can control how we respond to any conditions we find ourselves in. Responding with creativity is the best way to turn things around. And a bad day often makes the best creative fodder.
Here are the 3 ways your writing can benefit from a bad day:

1. It gives you believable characters.

A bad day makes you able to empathize with your characters. No one's life is perfect and writing about perfect lives is boring. We know what we know, but we also write about people different from ourselves. We need a broad range of experiences to give to these characters to bring them to life in order to resonate with readers. If one of your developing characters now gets put into your bad day situation, you can think through their response to it and work it into the storyline. A believable character is one who faces situations we can see ourselves facing and has human responses to them.

2. It can serve as a good read for someone else.

For your own benefit, writing your bad day onto paper serves to give you some distance. For others, it can be entertainment. Whether you write it humorously or poignantly, it can serve as a good read for someone else (who may well be escaping his or her own bad day) Good for you -- helping your readers out! A great story is one you can sink into. Readers who have this experience will be back for more.

3. Your writing will benefit from a production boost if you use it as a distraction technique.

Sometimes you'll need a break from whatever was going on that made it a bad day. Writing is the perfect fix. Getting into someone else's story is the exact opposite of minding your own business and it's a great break from reality. Your word count will thank you.

Sometimes a little rain is good for your art in a way that nothing else is. Benefit from it and then move on and have a great day tomorrow.

Monday, February 23, 2015

Of thrifted treasures, dinner I didn't make, and time with my boys

One of my favorite things to do to decompress at the end of a demanding week is thrift. This weekend's under $10 haul: 2 farm animal collectibles, a chair for the corner of the kitchen, and a laptop bag.
It was D and my 18th anniversary yesterday. We did our favorite day: hanging out with the boys, getting our individual projects done, going for a drive, and watching TV to a dinner he made. And, chocolate, of course. It was lovely and mellow.
Working on a few to-do's before the kids wake up and the before school and work rush starts. This is my usual writing time. I get it back in a month. I've learned if I try to get everything done at once, I will likely get nothing done. Better to be realistic and compartmentalize the calendar.

Saturday, February 21, 2015

When Your Calendar is Filled with Fill-You-Up Stuff.

This quote resonated with me this week. It's been a week of sharing ideas: learning from the online learning communities in the online workshops I am participating in, putting together the soon to be released Everyday Writing Coach monthly newsletter (details coming soon), meeting with my conference planning team-mates in preparation for this great annual event, and doing an author reading at the Writing and Publishing event for FVRL in Hope. Nothing is more exciting than exchanging ideas, no matter the topic. And best of all, these exchanges and relationships are available to everyone. Take a look around and see who can use your information and whose you can use. It's worth your time.

Wednesday, February 26, 2014

the next book's homestretch

tackled laundry mountain on my snow day.
released another finished short story to my reading team.
googled story research -- this morning -- what would be the typical heart rate of someone on life support?
this week is about getting my cover finalized in preparation for the new book's release in the next few months.
keep an eye on the blog for the countdown.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Making time for the sentences that change your life.

There's a reason for one pot suppers. they save time.

I've just finished Nora Ephron's "I feel Bad about my Neck" and I loved it. had I not been given it by a friend, I might not have read it, having heard previously that it was about the physical side of aging and going on and on about it. but it wasn't. it was clever and funny and honest and had more depth than I was expecting.

as I finished it, I realized (part of this was tripping over the books beside my bed) that I read a lot of books. Just this week I posted on Facebook that I had finished my book club read (Monday meeting so I read it over Saturday and Sunday) and then went on to list the two I was reading after that.

My friend sue suggested goodreads which I clicked on and which looked fascinating, but I worried it would cut into my reading time. plus, I have such a substantial wishlist going on at alibris that I probably don't need to run across more to wish I'd read.

I like to own and collect books -- which is why at least one shelf in each room is full of them. and I'm married to a reader so he doesn't mention to the book sprawl and in fact contributes to it himself. which is huge to me. when I was a teenager, I dated a few boys who were not readers and knew we would never last.

there are many things I do to maximize reading time. I don't spend time nagging my boys to clean their rooms other than to throw their laundry and the missing towels down the stairs. (our room salso consist of an unmade bed and discarded reads so d and I can't talk) I speed clean ( I figure that doubles as working out which saves more time for reading ;) -- but not the boys' domains -- they do that when they need to

I also don't spend time recreational shopping either online or in real life. I have a few main stops I rotate through for the practical stuff, but most of my expenditures seem to be on non-fun like commuting gas and more groceries. sourcing those take up enough time -- my reading time would be severely cut into if I added more errands.

you won't understand this devotion unless you are similarly held hostage by reading addiction and compulsed by also a writing addiction so that nearly every thing you read and thing you experience finds it way into a scribbled note somewhere. perhaps that's why people sign up for goodreads when they already have a plethora of other social networking sites and not enough time already -- it's community.

timer beeped. blueberry scones coming out of the oven. (not usual for me -- baking also cuts into reading time -- usually my middlest takes care of it) they will perfect accompaniment to another read as soon as I tackle enough to do list to warrant it.

Monday, November 05, 2012

survival guide (disclaimer -- only possible if you have an eight year old personal assistant)

 we may not have tons of exciting eats but at least you will be stocked up on underwear and masking tape when you put little c in charge -- he is the best personal assistant -- writing down things as i talk out loud to myself ;)
 the realities of moving -- below -- absence of any sort of room to walk.
 the middle schooler's binder is so cartoon cute
you know those months when you are in a bit of a groundhog's day movie sequence? yup, my schedule's been like that for the last couple of months. a few looming deadlines (work, side work project, side volunteer project, moving to a wonderful neighborhood -- no i didn't plan all those things to happen at the same time ;), and the standard life priorities (family, friends, trying not to drop juggling balls) made each day a bit of everything, but not one a bit of nothing. to cope, i listened to inspirational podcasts, read my favorite refocusing book + some fluff reads when my brain was too tired for anything intelligent, and not to be underestimated -- let little c make my to do lists -- because he keeps it simple. and when an eight year old runs your at home portion of your daytimer for you, chances are he's going to be on it ;) I spy a light at the end of the tunnel (hello, December!) where date nights and doing days without power naps may be possible. (tell my friends to hold on for me -- I really will have a life again soon ;)

Sunday, September 23, 2012

shots of september

lately when i've been talking to other moms, i've felt like most of us took nearly all of september to hit our stride again combining life with the kids' school routine with work. it could be i'm only running into the affirming ones and that's ok too ;)

 went on a local aboriginal tour with some work peeps -- beautiful fascinating day
 we've been board-gaming up a storm -- the favorites: scrabble, guess who, and hangman
 summer is refusing to pack it in. i'm ok with it. family swims on the weekend didn't hurt anyone
 kitchsy kitchen cross-stitch -- you know it -- thrifting
 on another thrifting excursion -- found the mini oil that i'm sure someone else picked up on their travels for me -- love it
 heart warming fridge art
 found this picnic basket while thrifting -- plan to incorporate it into our Christmas pics if it works
loved this book. found it at the exchanging bookshelf at this holiday -- canadian experience, canadian content. -- yeah, i'm a fan
now if only i could only get my house managing down to a science... i've done the 30 day no spending before and now am knee deep in a 30 day organization bid. you have faith. i know you do ;)

maybe if i reward myself with writing time...

Sunday, July 22, 2012

bribing oneself in the midst of a flying summer

who knew my new pinterest addiction would come in handy?  i was bribing myself when doing grunt work writing with 10 pinterest items for every 100+ words. it worked so i tried it for household chores, and then even stumbled on the pinterest idea of putting folded sheets into pillowcases for storage. (quite possibly the only pinterest idea i have actually executed ;) when i wasn't pretending to be organized, i was feeling summer fly right by. how are we this close to the end of july already?!
in july's dust lies little c's birthday, the oldest's "build a house in mexico" trip (pics at instagram links below)
and some summering in swimming pools and back yard forts.

the other day i was driving behind a dad and his little girl on his motorcycle and i flashed back to childhood rides on the back of my dad's. it was super cute. i remember wearing jogging pants (the kind that clinched onto the ankle) under my ruffled dress. let's pretend that was trendy ;) (not sure that all the crafts i pull out will be the equivalent of riding on the back of a motorcycle, but  humor me ;)

art cupboard contents rarely in actual cupboard -- should start calling kitchen art floor

 my kind of salad -- with a big hunk of dinner in the middle ;)
 the kids' VBS craft -- adorable
 little c wanted to take his entire class to the pottery store in the mall. i wasn't about to subject the store staff (or my wallet) to that. so we re-created the experience at home. worked out like i had pictured it in my mind -- love it when that happens.
 even the paper route looks beautiful when looked at from the right angle
 painting party in full swing.
 fort building with little c. he took some pictures of me posing in there too, but i will spare you them.
 i could make a coffee table book of d's dinners -- he is much more cheffish than i am about dinner -- this was his own herb crust for the chicken and garden pesto and garlic in olive oil on the pasta
the middlest is all about the winter headwear in the summer. it drives me crazy, but i pretend not to care. apparently he is making a scarf as well.

along with a tons of photos clogging up my phone, i have a file ongoing that contains current blog fodder so it doesn't run off the edge of my brain map into the unknown abyss. incidentally, the same reason i have a heap of lists going at any one time.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

where the new week rears its not too ugly head

it was a freaky friday sort of week. the week was full of back to back social calendar and so by the time the weekend came it was a paint my nails while watching tv with d sort of thing and digging into some good nonfiction (specifically,this and this)

the running adventure continues (my first 10K behind me and the next one scheduled shortly ahead). i have to confess it's not the everyday running i love (i tolerate it for the social time with a good friend and the improvement it's given my soccer game) but the events i can see being addicting -- totally different than i had expected -- like riding a crest of a crowd's love of sport. 

on the kidlet front -- the middleschooler has been fundraising for his upcoming first missions trip to build a house in mexico in the summer; the middlest has been counting down the days til he can join the ranks of phone holders (our family's rule makes it happen the summer before middle school), and little c has been painting mushy handicrafts for his room to make up for the destruction he leaves in his wake
the rest of the time, he has been calling and setting up his own playdates -- sometimes he even warns me in advance ;) (his fairly impressive 7 year old M.O: flipping open the school directory, asking for the household mother, referring to his calendar, and inviting over his classmate complete with date and time and transportation specifics) i'm brainstorming for what other organizational duties he can take over because he sure has this one down pat ;)

i gained a new little niece this last week -- another sweet excuse to pack more impulse pink purchases into the present closet (i am that auntie who gives sequined gifts of little practical value ;)
the warm weather has snuck up. i threw some pansies in the front door planters and my friend cindy came over and did an intervention on my lawn (first cut of the year is a tough job for my little reel mower). the dandelion crop in flower beds are probably due next.
thankfully, it's rest day so i have a fluffy little british read and some pjs to report to. i've read a bit of new writing procedure (set word count on set days) and am about to find out if it meshes with the story coming out well. will let you know.

Thursday, April 05, 2012

planning dates, book formats, and other curiosities

sometimes i am mid day and realize there is quirk in there. like the other day when d and i met up for a romantic mid work day date (ok it was 20 minutes at mickey Ds eating extra value burgers and talking day logistics, but i counted it) when i realized he was wearing his computer techie shirt with his name stitched on it and i was sporting my work name tag. we are nothing if not easily identifiable ;) and today i realized the day's tasks might have chugged right along on the power of my secret curious george toe bandaid. (it's easiest to let little c do the first aid gear choosing as he does still believe in the power of the character bandaid.)

on the holiday front, the easter loot has been labelled and packaged. thrilled with my last minute finds (among them - a bunny car, a very manly viking ship cross-stitch kit, and a few good books) i do the kind of hosting that is easy -- hide a few plastic eggs, dole out the loot, pull the pre-glazed ham out of the oven, and serve peep chicks and bunnies on top of cake mix cake and icing (hey, it's cute and it beats bakery lard slab cake ;)

i am thrilled to be blogging at work as part of my job -- i will have to do some research on workplace blogs over the long weekend because the typing the occurs rapidly at home is more stilted there -- let me know if you blog for work and have pointers to get over the unexpected writer's block.

i am also seriously considering the next book's debut as an e-book given the popularity of all those hand held devices (no, i am not an owner -- still have managed to hold off on being a cell phone operator too -- amazing i know ;)  i like dropping off the map from time to time.  in unrelated news i found a copy of my book at the thrift store today (weirdly thrilling even though it means someone was thinking i'm done with this) so you know i grabbed it having given the last copy away.

i'm off to catch up on blogs before i take the boys on their paper route (the middlest keeps making like a carbon tax payer and off-loading the work on the other two to do in exchange for more $ -- it turns out he's too social to schlep. i'm on to him... ;)

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

here a list, there a magazine

it is january end and my life this month has been one big cold call ;) making work experience university student placements by day and homestay family arrangements for international students by night means that there are lists of notes everywhere and a big stack of magazines to reward myself with. the light is visible at the end of the tunnel. which is good because that's where the writing is.

Friday, December 30, 2011

wrapping the year end up before the glitter starts raining

a few games with little c, endless vacuuming pre and post the playdate circuit that is making its way through our house, and a few first aid issues -- the results of some trampolining, and when my linen closet contents are brought outside to help the brothers "fly" you can imagine. even my much beloved mini hoover got into the action. it can't die i need it too much.

good thing tommorow holds the promise of date night.

Monday, September 12, 2011

a million little pieces of workday

a story that breeds other stories.

that's what the day's brought

and some heat

and some mess

and some to-dos

they all work together to burn daylight

and i don't mind at all.

current craft on the go is these vintage bambi storybook pictures i have framed in all white for the library. to hang opposite to the dog portrait little c gave back to me. like cabela's for the anthropologie market

Friday, August 12, 2011

bad day start good day end

it's ok that my battery recharger is no where to be found when i am contemplating a beach day because it's almost my birthday and starbucks has informed me they are sending me the annual free drink, i have a stack of mags and books to read, the sun is out, and there is salad waiting to be picked in my garden. i'm thinking on the things that are good and lovely ;)

that said, if said recharged wants to show itself, i'd be most grateful ;)

happy weekend to you.

i'm at the "not going to get any real writing done this summer" realization. goal setting set for september. reason #101 i don't home school ;)

post script: thank goodness despina brought her snap happy camera and self. beautiful shots of our first trek to centennial beach -- only a bit of a drive, but like a world away...

Saturday, May 28, 2011

weekends are made for this

these canadian geese broke up traffic in front of my house the other day

i'm a fan of cute gardening gloves, but can't handle wearing them myself so thankfully little c wanted these so i had an excuse to purchase ;)

the garden, teeny mite that it is, is planted.

the garage sale has been held,

library in progress/thrifty chicks stockroom cleared out. and i am tired.

but the good kind of tired.

and i have no where to be but at home with my boys.

who thankfully have a bunch of library books to keep them busy. little c has been rabidly checking them out (he is obsessed with his self-checkout pin, forgot it the other day and reset it before officially checking out on his own ;)

while movie-nighting with d, i have my writing notebook and another for all the brainstorming i intend to do -- middleschooler's room overhaul, yard sketches, and pantry supplies breeding schemes (am considering properly learning to preserve this year) wish me luck.

any smartie pants suggestions on the above most welcome.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

my family will understand when we sit down to easter dinner on a bare wood table

spring break afternoon -- mid week of running the boys to hang out with their friends here and there and hosting kids myself i took a stretch of day for myself. it wasn't the 20 min nap (i read somewhere that sleep cycles are 20 minutes long so will only take them in timed 20 min intervals) they might still upset circadian rhythms as evidenced by my posting this tutorial in the middle of the night ;) but they make a girl feel rested (plus block out spring break brother on brother madness) but it came right after it.

i've been wanting to continue the sewing a dress for the next occasion, whatever it might be saga -- this time in 2011 spring trend cream lace so you know when my grandma was throwing away her lace tablecloths i saw them as more than table finery (plus i'm a plain jane linen for the table girl) so i started in on the dress. (which is waiting for more fabric store supplies so will likely get finished next week as i can't picture the boys volunteering to hit fabricland this week or myself volunteering to take them -- they might craft it up from time to time, but also are apt to choke hold one another next to sewing notion stands ;)

it was all pinned up and then i realized i still had some great cream lace remnants laying around so you know i thought how about a shirt? pulled out a stretchy nude cami and handstitched away.

easy peasy how to:

1. pin a layer to the top seam, folding to cover raw edges and letting the machine finished seam hang down, sew

2. do the same thing on the bottom edge of the cami

3. try on

4. strategically layer the remaining lace somewhere in your midsection for whatever layered look you are going for (i settled on tying rosettes to the one strap, letting it drape on a diagonal and then securing with stitching to the bottom hem)

5. know there is no wrong way to do it -- it's your one of a kind shirt

still working through the stack of books i scored at the friends of the library sale last week --clever of them to call it that --it did make me want to be their friend -- 12 books (not all for me -- i shared with d and the boys) for $3

& adding notes and found scrap paper scenes to my lovely notebook. the sewing was a fun distraction, but the words will be where i will be focusing my attention for the rest of the week(when i am not sorting out my taxes -- the only time of year it is annoying to be self employed in multiple ventures ;)