Too many starts…

… not enough finishes.

I wrote last week about the unsettling realization that spending money has become my recreation.   I’ve been thinking a lot about that particular phrase and, while it is still unsettling, it has brought me to some other GOOD (i.e. not unsettling) realizations.

I realize that I tend to delight in planning projects but that I love the buying-of-supplies part more than the actual doing-the-project part.  While this is only a part of the spending as recreation problem, it is greatly proven by my Etsy buying history.  I decided to go back and look to see how many of my past Etsy purchases had been meant for a project of some sort of another.

I’m not going into all of this in order to put myself down or make any sort of confession.  I’m going into it as a way of revisiting what I had once planned and decide whether or not to follow through with it at this point.  If I decide to NOT do the project, no shame.  I’ve simply changed my mind about it and that is okay too.

The overall realization here is that I want creation to be my recreation instead of spending.  I want to endeavor to MAKE what I see that I want instead of buying it, if at all possible.  And what better place to start than finishing up some old projects or moving them off my plate entirely?

So, here we go… Things I’ve bought on Etsy that were meant for some sort of project…

Things that I need to have framed (these are two of a great many):

Journals I’ve never written in:

(The one above is actually an old sketchbook.)

Printables I’ve never used:

I meant to try my hand at ACEO oil painting with these:

I meant to make a rug or a throw pillow with these:

Wheatgrass for my baby girl?  I’ve got the seeds but…

Dresses I meant to alter and wear:

I’ve long since had a plan for a backsplash but have yet to actually do it.  This is one of the tiles I meant to use:

Beads I meant to do something with… not sure what:

Stamps I never used:

Patterns I’ve not used… (folks, I don’t even sew!!):

Bread I’ve not baked:

Fabric I’ve not made anything with:

Very old Christmas fabric… Isn’t it lovely?

Why yes, those ARE both Marimekko fabrics.

Spells I’ve not cast:

And these little cards… I bought these meaning to send one out each month to invite someone I’d like to be better friends with or someone I didn’t really know at all to coffee to make more friends and acquaintances.  They are adorable… vintage, brown, quaint, lovely.  And, not one has been sent.

And finally, this chipboard book.  I got it meaning to make a 2011 planner out of it but then didn’t do that.  Then I thought about using it for a sort of “vision board book” and still toy with that idea.  Whatever I use it for, it is so great.  Good for so many things!  Planner, journal, vision board book, scrapbook, sketchbook, whatever… I definitely want to put it to some sort of creative use.

If I need anything to decorate such a book with, Lord knows I have that too.  This is just a small collage of journal tags I’ve bought over the years.  I love them and do use them a good bit but – wow – I think I’m set for a good long while on journal tags.

Okay, so, I feel a bit exposed now.  Whew.  To be clear, these purchases were over the course of the whole time I’ve been on Etsy and I joined in 2006.  But still… it proves that I need to follow through with the projects I start, right?


I know I want to do something with the chipboard book, the tile, have the framing done, send the cards and use the fabric.  But some of the others?  The sewing patterns, some of the journals (I really prefer Moleskines now anyway), the printables, the ACEOs, the dresses to refashion (the first one anyway), some of the beads,  the bread starter?  I’m not sure that I don’t want to just move those off my plate.

I do love the clarity that going back through has given me.  It makes me feel like I have a place to start with getting some things finished.  I don’t have that overwhelming feeling that I need to finish it all.  I feel like weeding some of it through has given me permission to pick which projects fit me at this point in time.  And that feels good.

Now… which should I start to finish first?


4 thoughts on “Too many starts…

  1. I agree….. definitely do the back splash (I have had a plan to do mine since November!), but first start with something VERY manageable so as to feel that you have gotten something done, like the beads or the journal tags, then keep the ball rolling with a larger project.

  2. I second finishing the backsplash! : )

    Hmm, how about throw a party (or just have over a friend or two) where guests could either bring their own project along (first one gets done gets a prize, and then they can help someone else, and keep the momentum going?) or they can just help you with finishing a project of yours, like the backsplash? I think that’d be fun! : )

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