From Procrastination to Completion

Archive for January, 2012

Day 139 and more Friday December 16, 2011 to Wednesday January 11, 2012 (27 days)

Posted by Beatrice on January 12, 2012

Reading the tabs titled “An Introduction”, “Background” and “About” will help you know what this blog is about. You can track my 11-point star quilting project progress from day one to today.

Date: Day 140, Friday December 16, 2011 to Wednesday January 11 2012
Project Accomplishments: none on 11-point star quilt project – but I did move it. It has been 71 days since I worked on that project. Now Christmas is past. It is impressive to keep track of this and it is a revelation. Just think what I could have accomplished if I had done something for the last 71 days!
Books:  Title: #14 — Explosive Eighteen
Author: Janet Evanovich
Book Comments: I read this book over the Christmas holiday. It is an easy read and I did not like the rats near the end that was over the top yucky
Tools: mostly computer and art supplies
Observations: My plan to work on the 11-point star project the week after Christmas and nothing else did not come to fruition. This is what I did do:
I kept very busy during the 27 days I have been away from blogging. My last blog introduced my newest diversion, scrapbooking, which I talk about below.

Christmas preparation and activities, of course, took some of the time. I spent a quiet Christmas Day and New Year day. I wish a Happy New Year to anyone who reads this. I decided that I would “finish” a project I began in 2008. After all, this site is all about finishing something started and then set aside.

To review, some time ago, for a gift to my children, I decided to make a picture scrapbook from picture slides taken between 1966 and 1984. I moved to hard copy photos after that. In 2008, I had the slides scanned to digital format, purchased the scrapbooks, purchased special papers and decorative elements and then the event at which I was going to present the books did not materialize and I set the project aside. The pictures are ones they may have seen but I am sure they would not remember. They may never have seen the pictures. The ones I had scanned were all about them and family events.

It is always difficult for me to decide what gifts to give my children at Christmas. They do not live near me so I do not hear their comments about what they need or would like. This year, the scrapbooks seemed to be a good choice. I could not have estimated the time it would take me to do this project but I assure you it consumed many hours.

I reviewed each digitized slide and sorted them by child name, family and more. I decided during the project that the company that digitized the slides had not done a good job because many slides were not in focus with the color faded. I found out when I sorted the slides after finishing the project that it was not the company, it was the inability to take good slides.

After sorting the slides by categories, I began adjusting each with PhotoShop. I learned that I could get quite good results using various adjustments available in the software. I chose photos that were upbeat, had interest, had nice smiles and memories. I cropped out people to make a child the focus. I cut stuff out of the scene to “clean up” the look. I took out glare on eyeglasses and other objects, darkened backgrounds and came out with some good pictures. I had an allergic reaction to something when my oldest child graduated from University and my lip had swollen up. I fixed that too!

There were six discs of slides. Some had as many as 135 pictures on them and some only 75 or so. You can “picture” the time to do this adding up quickly. When I finished that, I printed the photos on my photo printer and had to purchase ink and paper to finish the project. Just a few pages of paper remain.

Cutting out each photo, I sorted them by child and topic and then I began to assemble scrapbook pages. I found this to be enjoyable and while it took much time, it seemed to fly by. I had most of the supplies I needed but supplemented them with “special” purchase paper and decorations. I made three 12-inch square books and one 8-inch square book, which I gave to H at Christmas. I think all turned out quite well.

In conjunction with this project, H and I sorted through all our loose hard copy photos accumulated over the years and again sorted them by child. The ones we wanted to keep, we scanned into the computer. Then we put rubber bands around the sets of photos to send off to them.

These projects were not enough of a project. We updated our family tree of birth dates, anniversaries and deaths. That had not been done for ten years and I found that some of the dates were missing so I sent copies off to my and H’s family to be updated by people “in the know”. A number of years ago, we wrote short histories about our families and our growing up years and we both updated those. H also wrote about the career he chose and why he chose it. We are sure our children will enjoy the history.

The hardest part of this project was looking at pictures of one of our deceased children. But seeing the smiles made it easier.

This week I sent the scrapbooks, photos, slides, family updates, baby books and more. They should arrive next week. It was a great project to do and to complete. It was a great project to end a year and begin a year!

I cleared off my worktable to make room for the scrapbooking project so I moved the 11-point star project to a temporary location. I had such a mess all over my studio during the scrapbooking. I cleaned part of it up and plan to finish that tomorrow. So these projects are how I spent my holidays.

Prayer: There is so much to be thankful for including the pleasant holidays. In particular, I thank you Lord for allowing me the time to complete the scrapbooking projects, for giving me the stick-to-it-tive-ness and for the rewarding results. I pray that all my endeavors will be equally time-conscious and rewarding.

Diversions: You got a good share of them above but I also did the normal chores like cooking, decorating, cleaning, paying bills, ironing…..the list goes on


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