New Year, New Volunteer Project

I've been burnt out for about a year now.  I've been doing volunteer projects and I just can't keep up the pace anymore. So much so that I don't enjoy any of it. I used to.

I make charity quilts for church and for Quilts for Kids. I was on the board of directors for the local American Legion Auxiliary, I am a PTO member at my granddaughters' school, and the Webmaster for my church. And I'm tired. So what do I do about it? I get a part-time job. Talk about making things worse. Ha!

Last summer I was asked to do more charity crafts and quilts. I said no, I just can't take on anything new. I was treated like I had just killed a dog. And that did it for me. It was time for a change. I taught the church staff how to upload information to the Internet so since November, they've been managing the church website. I declined the nomination to continue on the board at the Legion in May so in fall they had to find someone else to fill my post. I finished up the church quilts with the fabrics I took home from there and since then I only do what I can at our once-a-month sew days - the rest will have to be divvied up among those who want to take stuff home. No more donated fabric for me.

As for Quilts for Kids, my granddaughter reminded me why I was doing those - to honor (and remember) my grandchildren. My granddaughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes last year and she recently asked me if she could deliver quilts to the hospital where she gets her care. I said absolutely yes and I will continue to make those - but again, no more donated fabric is coming home with me. And as for the PTO, I won't give that up. I get to be with my granddaughters and that matters most.

I am slowing down and enjoying my new just say no philosophy. I still get to help others, but at a more manageable pace.

So what crazy thing did I do? ... and over the Christmas holiday?  I volunteered to help with a project where quilts will be sent to the children in detention centers at the US border. The organizer asked all her quilting friends if they would like to help. She sent us the fabrics and the batting and we would just sew utility quilts. I started on these about 10 days before Christmas and finished them today. 5 quilts are ready to go. That's what I promised her. She sent enough supplies to make more than 10. But I just have to stop. I'm exhausted and worn out. But they're done. A reminder that I said I will slow down. 

Frankly, I think I could have enjoyed the holidays a little more if I weren't so stressed about making these quilts.

As for this new job. I am cutting fabrics for quilt kits at a local quilt shop. What fun! And next week I will be doing demos at a Rob Appell Trunk Show. The demos will be of small projects using Michael Miller fabrics, which is the fabric company Rob represents. I am happy with my new job, it gives me a bigger sense of purpose. 

I can't wait to see where the new year takes me.

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