Working on the new normal

I’ve been working on three patterns for weeks! You know what I have to show for it? Two are traced and the other I’ve laid out the fabric to cut. Lie. The fabric is in a heap on the cutting table.

I’m still trying to figure out my new normal and I’m okay with that. But I’ll feel unsettled until I do. That feeling will keep me from enjoying my time at home, which includes sewing. I often feel guilty for using my free time to do fun stuff. Not that I have a lot of free time.

Ollie is beginning to nap longer (can I get a Heck Yeah?) but I am still finding it hard to commit to a chore or project during that time. I get sidetracked by reading blogs, doing a load of laundry, emptying the dishwasher (finally) or doing a big fat side of nothing. Because, let it be known, that I get paralyzed by the ever-growing to-do list.

And there’s lots to do. I’ve been wanting to purge my closets for ages. Confession…I have clothes that went across the Atlantic TWICE with the full intension that I was going to sell them on Ebay. Right. Also, my bookshelves are vomiting paperbacks by the dozens. It’s time for many of them to get donated, sold or given away.


Then there’s my sewing room. Holy mackerel. That needs some TLC. I’d love to organize my fabrics according to type and label them by amount, type, etc. A trip to Ikea will help me hack the sewing table of my dreams. Right now I’m using a fold-away picnic table. Not bad but it could be so much better.

Looks like a mess but I'll call it progress.

The room is coming together slowly but surely and I cannot wait until everything has a home.


Right now I feel like I will never sew again but I know it’s just temporary. A happy balance between parenting, keeping a home, and having fun exists and I’ll figure it out one day. I don’t want this blog to become a dead space so I’ll be sure to chime in here and there with what’s going on, sewing related or not. I can’t promise it won’t be random musings 🙂


35 thoughts on “Working on the new normal

  1. I feel your pain Mela, it will all come to pass. You might never get to the same levels of productivity, but you will eventually get your funk back. Look at all those amazing mother’s who sew amazing things for themselves and their little ones ( I exclude myself from this group naturally).


    • All those productive mommy sewers give me hope and assure me a balance does exist. But like you told me before, I am going to enjoy him while he’s small and not sweat over being too productive.


  2. your patterns and buttons look beautifully organized!! My sewing room is in a constant state of organized mess–I can find everything, but it doesn’t look pretty 😉 I hope you develop a comfortable “norm” that includes time for yourself. You deserve it!


    • Thank you! Mason jars are super handy and pretty.

      I’m sure I’ll learn to juggle a lot better with time. I plan to one day just take the time and completely re-do my sewing space. Lately I’ve been thinking of how much of a chore it is. And it really isn’t. It will be a fun project to do.


  3. I can only imagine that once you have a minute to yourself, that you must just want to sit down & catch your breath (or better yet, nap). You’ve had so many adjustments to make all at once that it must be difficult trying to get your head around anything properly.

    I was thinking how perfect the Little Dress Kit was for you since you have have limited time for sewing & then I thought of the Megan Nielsen kits that you can get through her site. Could be a good option if any of her patterns appeal


    • You’re a mind reader. I have Megan Nielsen’s Tania pattern ready to go: fabric, graded pattern, etc. Once I get the green light I imagine I can make them in an afternoon. They look super easy, which is what I need now. Concentrating on simple garments is a great approach.


    • They do grow fast. You often hear that but you really can’t wrap your head around it until you’re steadily packing away the outgrown clothes.

      A big fat nothing is on the schedule for this afternoon 🙂


  4. It is hard when you have a new little one to remember who YOU are, before you were given the title Mommy. Sometimes you lose sight of her completely, sometimes you see her in the light at the end of the tunnel. Eventually you and her will be one again. My kiddos are 5 and 3 and I get to be “me” some each day. It took a while to get there, but I did. Now, when the kiddos take a nap or have quiet time I immediately run to something I WANT to do, not NEED to do. No laundry or other chores allowed.


  5. It will take time to ajdust but you will… and then you start to make a lot of wonderful projects for you and your baby 🙂 It will be difficult to stop you… so many cute fabrics for children… 🙂


  6. It gets better…I promise. Until school holidays! 😉 They seriously mess with your sewing time.
    My sewing room is a pit. I’m just about to pack it up whilst we mess around with all the rooms in the house. Kitchen table for me for quite a while I’m afraid. I think that too will put a serious kink in my productivity.


  7. Don’t beat yourself up Mela and do take time to do nothing/relax when your super-cute babe is napping! I’m sure being a mum can be as much exhausting as it can be rewarding, so just be kind to yourself. Sometimes, all the boring jobs (like sorting and organising) are what lead to sewing productivity, so take your time and get your space exactly how you want it. In the meantime, I enjoy reading your updates and seeing pictures of you and your gorgeous little guy!


    • Thanks Marie! Welcome back from Portugal! One of my bad habits is being my harshest critic. I really need to learn to take a break and enjoy the now and stop worrying about later. I do think once my space is organized I’ll enjoy being in it more. And I will definitely be sharing more on my little dude and other going-ons.


  8. Dude– you’ve had such a major change in your life, and the thing is, it’s the kind of change that keeps on changing! I hope you don’t feel bad about your productivity level. We’re all interested in what’s going on with you, even if it’s not sewing-related. 🙂 I love following your Instagram and seeing what you and Ollie are up to!


    • I’ve never dealt well with change. Takes me a while to adjust. But adjust I do! So everything will work out and I will sew eventually.

      Yay! Glad you like following on Instagram. I enjoy taking his photo way too much.


  9. Man, I know exactly what you’re talking about. In my case, I feel buried under all the work I want to get done before Babybird gets here, and I can’t seem to focus on one thing — I’ve had a sewing table full of junk for a month; my refinished closet is ready for all the clothes to move back into it, but I can’t bring myself to lug those clothes up the stairs; sewing projects to start; a pantry to organize.

    My biggest hope is in choosing just one of those things and putting my laser beams on it until it’s done. Now all that’s left is to choose *which* thing …


  10. I know you’ll find your “new normal,” but it can take a LONG time! I remember feeling like I was walking around in a haze for months after N was born. I’m not looking forward to facing that particular feeling again :/

    My sewing room has been in a constant state of re-doing/organization for nearly a year now. It gets done bit by bit, piece by piece. It’s generally in a state of organized chaos, but as long as I can find what I need, I don’t sweat it!

    One of the biggest things I learned after baby #2 was born was never to turn down help if it was offered (and to seek it out if necessary). Mother-in-law offers to do a few loads of laundry? — No problem! Neighbor brings over a pizza for dinner? — Heck yeah! Hubby cleans up the kitchen after dinner and wipes down the counters? — Honey, I love you! And I know it’s not in every budget, but having a cleaning service come in every now and then and clean the place for you could be a life saver! (Even if it’s not in your budget, there are holidays coming up and what an amazing present that would be!).

    Good luck!


    • Thanks Katie. My lovely husband has actually offered to get someone to help us get organized and such. Bless. If I get desperate I might ask him. I am holding out that I can get a bunch done when my father comes to visit us in the fall.


      • Having family visit will be a big help! My dirty little not-so-secret: I have someone come clean my house every other week and have for over 8 years now. She’s also our primary babysitter — we love her. I hate cleaning, I suck at it, and it would never get done if I didn’t pay someone to come do it. I always find the money for it and it is SOOO worth it IMO!


  11. I’m in the same boat with you! My creativity is just bursting, but I can’t seem to find the time. Little Miss is finally sleeping through the night (for now at least), so perhaps I’ll be able to get into a rhythm that will allow me to sew. It seems like a piece of me is missing, but on the other hand, how lucky am I to be a mom? This won’t last forever, and I want to soak it up.


    • So so lucky. Being a mom is such a treat. We really have to soak it up when their sweet, squishy and so darn happy.

      And sleeping through the night? Jealous! 🙂


      • Don’t be too jealous. She’s nine months, and she’s only slept through the night for a few nights. We have guests coming this weekend, so I’m sure that’s going to throw off her schedule!


  12. I know exactly how you feel. Even though my babies are at a self sufficient age, and the house is never in a state where I would be embarrassed if company popped by, I still feel a twinge of guilt that I should be doing something else when I sew.
    Ollie is still so little, so I wouldn’t expect too much productivity until he gets to the point of being able to do solo play in addition to naps. I will say that is some of the best advice I have ever received was to encourage them to play without me. It gets pretty tiring being a human jungle gym or constantly in entertainment mode.
    Timers and scheduling blocks help me out tremendously with my time. For example I will do house work for 45 minutes straight then have a break for 15 where I read blogs and stuff like that. After a couple of those the house is usually in pretty good shape and I still got to do some fun stuff. If I’m feeling lazying 45 minutes of BSing, 15 minutes of work. For sewing I do little steps every day even if its no more than a couple of seams, then I schedule a chunk of time where I let everyone know I will be sewing. It’s never more than 3 hours max but with all the little steps already done I can get a bit accomplished providing I don’t make a bunch a mistakes and have to redo things over and over :/
    Don’t worry, you’ll find you groove and your “good” readers will still be here waiting and excited for your successes.


    • So far Ollie doesn’t mind being left to play on his own. I think once he can sit he’ll be able to entertain himself for longer. I hope, anyway.

      I love the idea of working in blocks. Makes chores feel a lot less stressful. Yes. I should give this a go for a week and see how it goes. Thanks Shawnta! Hope you’re keeping cool in Texas.


  13. I know what your problem is… because it’s summed up nicely in one of the photos you’ve posted here. omg look WHAT A CUTE BABY!!!! hehe, as If you’d be wanting to do any of those things when you’ve got a gorgeous bub like ollie to cuddle and play with? Don’t worry too much… times are too precious when you’ve got cuteness like that 🙂


  14. I am so right there with you. The to do list is overwhelming, mainly because it feels impossible to even make a dent. And I missing my sewing and knitting so much, but I feel guilty when I do steal some time to myself for it. You’re right, though–it’s just a matter of giving it time and waiting for the new normal to emerge.

    By the way, my little boy is Ollie, too! =)


  15. Ah so nice to read words of encouragement in the comments because I am right there with you. One day I’ll sew again…. I hope. I actually have sewn a bit here lately but I go back to work TOMORROW and I know life is about to change once again. New new normal I guess.


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