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Message Board > Miscellaneous > Working moms ( Moderated by Deepika, EleanorSews, CynthiaSue)

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Working moms
How do you find the time?
3cutegrlz

3cutegrlz
Beginner
ID USA
Member since 12/29/06
Posts: 83
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Date: 4/2/07 1:47 PM

This is more of a rant to vent my frustrations. How do you other working moms find the time to sew?
I work about 30 hrs a week, all in the evengs except on saturdays when it is during the day. I have 4 kids, 6 1/2, 5, 2, and 1. The first 3 are girls and I love sewing for them. I just don't know when I can find the time to sew! I don't get off work until 11:30 at night, so I don't have time at night because my sewing stuff is in my bedroom and my Hubby usually is in bed when I get home. And during the day, my oldest is in school, and my second preschool so I am shuttling back and forth all the time, then I have the 2 little ones to care for. I just don't see how other working moms do it. I'm upset because I have a huge stack of summer fabric and my oldest DD really needs some shorts. and I have 2 outfits cut that need to be finished and a stack of RTW stuff to be altered or mended too. I am so frustrated and sad, I love to sew I just don't know when I have the time.

pharmlyn
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pharmlyn
Intermediate
Member since 1/16/04
Posts: 66
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Date: 4/2/07 1:55 PM

I have 2 little ones (ds age 2 and DD age 4) and I have limited sewing time...I get most of my sewing time in on Friday nights after the kiddos are gone to bed...All day on Friday at work I drink lots of caffeinated beverages so I can stay awake til late at night...Sometimes, even that does not work and I am still sleepy pretty early...Sometimes (if I am not dead on my feet), I will sew after the kiddies go to bed at 8 pm so that i at least get an hour or so of sewing time.

dvazz
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dvazz
Advanced Beginner
MO USA
Member since 8/15/03
Posts: 411
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In reply to 3cutegrlz


Date: 4/2/07 1:56 PM

No brilliant suggestions here; just offering sympathy. Sounds like you are actually working two jobs, because you care for your little ones during the day and work at night. I have enough trouble finding sewing time, and I "only" have one job.

It does get a little easier when the kids are old enough that you can sew and keep an eye on them at the same time, but with a 1 year old, a 2 year old, a job, and no day care, I'm not sure how you find the time to sleep...let alone sew. You might consider hiring someone to help with the kids a couple of days a week if this is an option, just to give you some sewing time and a sanity-restoring break. In any case, best of luck!

------
Dana

Debbie Cook
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Debbie Cook
USA
Member since 4/11/02
Posts: 9703
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Date: 4/2/07 2:12 PM

If you still have the energy to sew and it sounds like you do, my suggestion is to move your sewing stuff out of your bedroom so you can sew for 10 minutes at a time here and there. It does add up!

Right now, with it being in your bedroom, the "inconvenience" is stopping you from sewing in the same location of your littlest children during the day and while your husband is sleeping during the evening hours.

I'll also echo the other thoughts here ... it does get easier to have time for yourself as the children get older. Hang in there!

------
--
"I base my fashion sense on what doesn't itch." Gilda Radner
http://stitchesandseams.blogspot.com

Kathi R
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Kathi R  Friend of PR
Intermediate
CA USA
Member since 2/28/05
Posts: 2096
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Date: 4/2/07 2:16 PM

Hit the used book stores or Amazon and see if you can find a copy of Nancy Zieman's 10-20-30 minutes to sew.....she shows you how to break things down into workable little segments. I bought the book years ago when my kids were younger and it really helped me think through the process in advance so that I could use what little time I had efficiently.

The only thing I could never master in short spurts was cutting -- so I would have a cutting extravaganza day and cut a pile of garments for the kids at once. When it was time to fuse interfacing, I'd fuse pieces for multiple garments....same thing with clean finishing facings......by the time a garment got up on the workbench for construction all the details that slow the project down were done and I could fly through the final construction.

One more thought - move the sewing machine. Getting home at 11:30 is late but you still need some time to decompress before hitting the sack.....think about how much you could accomplish if you were able to sew for 45 minutes every night while unwinding from your day.

Good luck - it will get easier when the kids are bigger....and pat yourself on the back for your accomplishments.

------
2012 : starting stash 386, net additions 206, used 164, ending stash 428...I'm never going to get in front of this pile of fabric!

KarenP
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KarenP  Friend of PR
Intermediate
NV USA
Member since 8/19/02
Posts: 549
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Date: 4/2/07 2:18 PM

I know how you feel. I have a very hard time finding time to sew and it is very frustrating. I used to sew once or twice a week after my DD went to bed, but lately she's been having trouble sleeping and my sewing room is right next to her bedroom, so I have not been able to sew at night.

I have come up with a solution that is at least helping me work on my projects, albeit slowly. In the evenings I bring part of my project out to the couch and I get the next sewing step ready to go: I pin the seams, trim seam allowances, etc. Then I have something all ready to go, so if I have a few spare minutes during the day I can sit down and sew the seam or whatever. It's not as satisfying as spending several hours on a project, but at least I'm making progress and I get my "sewing fix".

Hope this helps a little...

ETA: I look forward to seeing the other suggestions you get! It is helpful to hear from parents of older kids to know it does get easier.
-- Edited on 4/2/07 2:21 PM --

------
~Karen
http://thingsfromscratch.wordpress.com

beangirl
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beangirl
Intermediate
TX
Member since 9/15/05
Posts: 3084
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Date: 4/2/07 2:35 PM

I don't have any suggestions better than have already been made, but I totally sympathize with you. I don't have nearly enough time to sew everything I want to and it's very frustrating. Last week I took off Friday as a vacation day with the sole intention of sewing at least one summer shirt for myself, and maybe getting the start on some pants. I got not one thing completed, of course.

I don't see how you have any time to do ANYthing, frankly, so I think you're very ambitious and courageous to even consider sewing. You should be proud of every minute you find to sew. Try to look at it as time found, not time missing.

------
kristine

quote of the day:

"People all over the world, join in -- on the Love Train, Love Train..." ~the O'Jays

Christen
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Christen
Advanced Beginner
CA USA
Member since 8/15/06
Posts: 388
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Date: 4/2/07 4:10 PM

I have two boys (7 & 2), and although I do stay home I find I have less time now for myself than I did when I was working and only had one child. I did "attempt" to sew when my youngest was down for his nap and my oldest was at school but that was really difficult because I was constantly having to clean up my stuff and drag it out if I wanted to sew and by the time I got my wits about me and finally start sewing I was finding that my sewing time was even more limited, which is not good while trying to sew as a business. I did find a great solution and that was to take over our garage! My husband has a workbench out there for all of his "stuff", so I thought I deserved a spot as well and my inspiration came to me when I acquired a vintage machine in a cabinet that I was not able to put in my home for fear of ruin by my youngest monster. I keep my sewing machine ready to sew on top of the vintage cabinet, I have a folding table set up next to it that I use as my work space, and my ironing board and iron are set up in that same area. I find that keeping my sewing machine out and everything ready to go keeps my frustration over lack of sewing time at bay. I also find that I can escape for a few minutes if I really need a break. I like the solitude of not being disturbed, and my husband likes that I have a quiet and peaceful place to go when I get frustrated with "mom stuff" as he calls it. The other thing that I do occassionally is take my youngest to the sitter for a couple of hours here and there (it's maybe 5 hours a month). He isn't in preschool yet, so he goes over to the sitters to play with her 3 year old and the other child she watches. I used to say it was totally extravagant because I have a couple of friends I can call to watch my children, but I like that I have one person who I can just call and pay her to watch my son without the guilt of reciprocating the favor. She's really very inexpensive, she loves having my son over because it's a change in dynamics for the children she watches and I love getting a much needed, no strings attached break. I hope you can come up with a workable solution! It's so hard when they're little there's so little time for yourself. I'm TERRIBLE at taking what I need, which includes breaks (I rarely take one from my family) so I've been working on finding ways to get what I need without guilt. I pay $5 an hour for a sitter, I take my youngest while my older is in school and I get 2 or 3 hours of guilt free mom time to do whatever I want.

------
Christen

http://www.woobadoos.com



Member since 12/31/69
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Date: 4/2/07 4:30 PM

First, keep hanging in there ! Get your machine out of your bedroom. Claim another space in the house where you can sew without disturbing anyone and where you can leave your machine up. You'll be surprised at how much time you save by not having to set up your machine every time you want to sew.

You may have to schedule time to sew. It is very important that you have some "me" time even if its only 15 or 20 minutes.

Elemenopeo
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Elemenopeo
Intermediate
MN USA
Member since 5/11/04
Posts: 402
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Date: 4/2/07 5:37 PM

I kept my machine in the rarely used dining room when my kids were little like yours and I worked part time evenings too then. I didn't get a lot of time - mostly stolen moments when they were all busy - or sometimes they would "help" me. I'd sew when I came home to decompress some.

It does get easier as they get older. But it's so much fun to sew for them when they are little! I'd caution not cutting out too much for them at once because sometimes they would outgrow it before I was able to sew it up.

Now I work part time days while they are in school and run around to activities and such evenings when I'm not cleaning and making dinner. I still sew in small bits of time but occasionally clear the schedule for a whole evening of sewing. I get more done when I am working in consistent spurts than when I try to save up for a long time I find.

------
Stefanie

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