Yesterday was the day I finally caught up with my workload, so it is possible that you might be seeing me with a little more regularity. I ended up getting behind in my longarming due to t-ball and my husband’s work obligations combined with my own. Normally, I quilt about two quilts a week (and if I need to squeeze in a third, I usually can), but lately, I’ve only been able to do one each week.
I started reflecting on my quilting. I bought the longarm to elevate the level of my quilts… but am I doing it? Sadly, I am not. I only have time to stipple my quilts (and honestly, I do love stippling, but I sure am not going to be able to ever enter a quilt show with a stippled quilt!), while I spend a lot of time doing fancier quilting for other people. So I found myself at a crossroads. I no longer have the time to run my household, work full-time teaching (and running the gifted/talented program at my school), be the parent that I need to be, and have a hobby that isn’t really just a hobby.
Our schools across the nation are in trouble. In Texas, though, the schools are really in deep shit, financially speaking. There was a time when I was concerned if I would even have a job with our district, so I started thinking about Plan B. And it started sounding pretty good. And then I found out that I was going to keep my job, but lose a couple thousand dollars in pay plus lose my work partner (and thus have to run our program solo). At that point, Plan B was much more appealing than Plan A.
So here I am. I will soon be clipping coupons (and actually having to use them) and living life on a strict budget… but I will get to do so much more. I might pick up a class or two to teach at the local community college. I’ve been asked to do contract work for the district conducting GT staff developments. I’m going to join the Gifted/Talented Advisory Council for my district, the fourth largest district in Texas. I’m going to quilt your tops and mine the way I want them quilted, not what time dictates. I’m going to keep a cleaner house and cook real meals (at least one a day!). I’m also going to be here for my family. My biggest fear is that I will wake up one day, and my child will be going to college, and then, for the first time in years, I’ll have the time to sit down for a real dinner, or to hang out at my son’s t-ball practice, or to go on a date with my husband, and there will be no one to share it with. It’s scary to think of losing my income, but it is definitely an investment in the people I love.