View Full Version : Momma's with young kids...

April 1st, 2014, 10:16 PM
When do you find the time to quilt? I walk past my quilt room a million times a day and swear once little guy goes down that I will work on my latest project but I am just to exhausted by the end of the night. When do you quilt?

April 1st, 2014, 10:18 PM
LOL! I would never have been able to quilt when Liam was little. I did no hobbies other than crochet really until he was about six or seven...then ironically I started stained glass...in our kitchen of all places! But even then it was only weekends...working full time and having a little one was not conducive to "ME" time. Once he could make his own food things got easier! LOL! I started teaching him to do that really early! He's very independent now. Good luck!!

Simply Quilting
April 1st, 2014, 10:57 PM
I did some while it was rest time - even if there was no napping, we still did a rest time everyday. If I had a project that had to get done, my husband was great at watching the children so I could work. I never had a sewing room, so I always had to get out everything and put away everything when I sewed. I also lowered my expectations greatly of how much I would get done. Even a little bit added up.

April 1st, 2014, 11:19 PM
I've always showed my kids to have a hobby, even when little. I just started quilting, but before I did counting cross stitching. I would buy then craft stuff, age appropriate, and give it to them. We would all sit down to do our craft. If I chose to read a book, everyone read a book. If I wanted to paint, everyone painted. Yep, I included them in everything I did. Even cleaning up the house, if mommy cleans, everyone cleans. Now that I've picked up quilting, my two younger ones are 9 & 12 they have learned how to sew using my sewing machines. They are now piecing quilt tops, currently working on their second top.

Honestly, at first, I thought no, this is my time. But then I realized, it was a way I could bond with them. It does work on your patiences. The thing about it, they grow up so fast that one day, they don't want to do the activity with you anymore.

April 2nd, 2014, 07:06 AM
Usually on the weekends, either early before everyone gets up or after everyone goes to bed. I often stay up to the wee hours of the morning on Friday or Saturday and do marathon sewing sessions. And if it is a rainy weekend and the kids are feeling cooped up, sometimes a good movie in the DVD player will do the trick for them and I can get in a little sewing. But weeknights are pretty much impossible with dinner, homework, soccer, bath, bed .... by the time all that happens, I just want to sit down and take a deep breath (or go to bed).

Iris Girl
April 2nd, 2014, 08:11 AM
I have always done some type of craft since way before kids, I just fit it in my schedule. I used to sew in the living room so while they were playing nicely or watching something neat on TV I sewed. I also am and always have been an early riser and a lot of sewing was done before anyone was up.They were taught from the beginning that hobbies are good. Plus you need your me time. Hubby and my mom were always good at helping with kids then especially since I was not a quilter then but a clothing maker. Everyone wore homemade clothes. Some items they still all get homemade.

April 2nd, 2014, 08:41 AM
I didn't do much sewing when my girls were little. It was enough just to keep up with them, the housework and putting meals on the table. I'd like to be more encouraging but the truth is the truth! I've never been an overachiever so once I start to become a bit overwhelmed, a bit stressed, I stop and decide what's most important and just focus on that. I would often fall pass out on the sofa at 8 p.m. so exhausted from the day so no sewing would ever be done at night.

I will say that your little ones will only be young for a very short time and you will have years ahead of you to focus on your craft. Enjoy them while you can. Before you know it they are teenagers. If your kids will be like mine they won't want to have anything to do with you during those teen years. That's when you'll begin to find time for yourself. If you must sew, I recommend you find a project and just set little goals for yourself each day. If you can set up your machine where the children spend much of their time you can grab a minute here and a minute there to get a bit done. I'm not one to sit at the machine for hours on end. I do a little bit every day. Before I know it I've got a quilt top finished. You'd be surprised at what you can accomplish within just a 15-minute time slot. Pick projects that are quick and easy There are tons of really pretty beginner quilts online. I'm a experienced sewer but I often pick easy quilts to make. Some of the easiest quilts are the prettiest in my opinion.

April 2nd, 2014, 10:42 AM
I have a 1 and 3 year old and its really hard to find time to sew BUT I do manage to find a little time everyday to get in even 1/2 hour or so. Often times it is after the kids go to bed since it is near impossible to sew when they are awake since they want to "help" me :)
I think it is important that just because we are moms and have a lot on our plates that we also do not to "lose" the things that we love to do in the process.
Find an easy project like others have said I do agree that those tend to be some of the most beautiful. Set reasonable goals to get things done and I have found that with Jennys patterns and the fact that so many of them use precuts is a huge time saver too.

April 2nd, 2014, 10:54 AM
I'm a dad so maybe it is different if you are exclusively breast feeding and have to get up for every single feeding (we feed both milk and formula so Mrs. and I share nighttime baby duty).

I have a 7 week old and he is still small enough that I just bring him with me down to the quilting room and let him sleep or just watch me from his bouncy chair while I work on projects. A lot less gets done because of the need to constantly stop what I'm doing and put a spit-out pacifier back in his mouth or feed him. Not to mention the "I haven't slept more than 4 consecutive hours since mid-February" fog that my mind is constantly in. I do some of my quilting in the early morning, after his feeding which usually occurs between 2:30-3:30AM. I am a morning person and once I wake up, I am just awake. None of this "feed him and crawl back in bed" stuff for me. If you are not a morning person this is probably not a workable solution though.

He is going to daycare in a few weeks and because I get off work several hours before he has to be picked up from daycare my plan is to come home and work on any outstanding projects for an hour or so before picking my son up. My wife seems horrified by the idea of "neglecting" our son to work on things around the house but the daycare has other kids to play with, art projects, singing, and is probably a much more fun place for baby than trapped in a playpen while daddy does dishes at the house would be.

When my brothers and I were young, my mom was a stay at home mom but she sent us to a "mothers day out" program which is like part time daycare (i believe through a church) but only for a few hours a couple days a week so she could have some "me time".

April 2nd, 2014, 11:11 AM
I have an 8yo, 6yo, and 3yo. We homeschool so they are always home. They are required to have quiet time after lunch for 1 1/2 hours so I can get some sewing done then. They also go to bed at 7:30 so I can do some sewing after they are in bed. Sometimes, I do get sewing done while they are playing nicely or watching a movie. Often times though, my 3yo is playing under the table ;)

April 2nd, 2014, 12:52 PM
Thanks everyone! My little guy is 16 months and in to everything so bringing him into my sewing room wont work. Rebecca I am exactly like you. Sewing was easy to set aside when other important things need to be done. I am just stressing a little because I agreed to make a quilt for my SIL before June...it will eventually get done lol

April 2nd, 2014, 01:15 PM
Coming from the mother of a 5 year old, it is never enough time in the day for "me" time. I work 5 and 1/2 days a week so my only real off day is Sunday which is spent visiting with my parents. I usually try to make it to my sewing room after my son goes to bed during the week. Then maybe some more on Saturday nights. So far this week I have been in my sewing room for about 10 minutes and that was to add some precuts to my stash! :D I have one quilt in my frames waiting patiently to be quilted and another top ready to go (and a very long list of I want to do quilts that keeps getting longer by the minute) Lol!

Sometimes I might get 20 or 30 minutes to sew while the hubby and son have their playtime together (usually wrestling mma style in the living room). :icon_heh: I just take advantage of any free time that is put before me. Even if it is only 15 minutes you can get a few blocks sewn together or some fabric cut. Eventually we will have nothing but free time and be missing these moments when they always need us!

April 2nd, 2014, 01:58 PM
It kind of depends on the kid. My first son was a high-energy, high-needs, high-maintenance kind of kid. He required a LOT of attention. I didn't get anything done when he was little, and he was so exhausting that when I got any free time, I chose to take naps. But my youngest son was the opposite - he was very good at entertaining himself and preferred his own company, so I was able to work while he sat next to me, reading a book or drawing.

It doesn't last, however. My boys are 19 and 13 now, and I have plenty of time to sew. I hope you find a balance.

This was something I taped on my fridge years ago to remind myself that I wouldn't be wiping grubby little fingerprints off everything for long. I have no idea who wrote it.

My hands were busy through the day
I didn't have much time to play
the little games you asked me to
I didn't have much time for you.

I'd wash your clothes, I'd sew and cook,
but when you'd bring your picture book
and ask me, please, to share your fun,
I'd say, "A little later, Son."

I'd tuck you in all safe at night,
And hear your prayers, turn out the light
then tiptoe softly to the door.
I wish I'd stayed a minute more.

For life is short, and years rush past.
A little boy grows up so fast.
No longer is he at your side
His precious secrets to confide.

The picture books are put away
there are no children's games to play
no good-night kiss, no prayers to hear.
That all belongs to yesteryear.

My hands, once busy, now lie still
The days are long and hard to fill
I wish I might go back and do
The little things you asked me to.

April 2nd, 2014, 02:41 PM
My little dude turned 2 in November, and we're due with a second boy in two months, so this is very close to home for me! My little guy is used to me sewing, he will color at my desk while I press or sew, and sometimes he wants to sit in my lap and "help" me quilt! I let him watch for a couple pieces, then he gets bored and goes back to playing at the other table, but we're set up so we're face to face all the time and he'll tell me stories while he colors! I also do some scrapbooking, and my little dude loves to look at the pictures while I work on my Project Life album. Of course, he was 10 days old when he attended his first quilting workshop, and he hung out in my baby wrap for the whole 6 hour class! He used to fall asleep to the sound of the machine when he was little and in his swing, but I think it'll be different when I have two of them running around! :)

April 2nd, 2014, 03:10 PM
When my kids were little, I made time right after they all went to bed at 8 pm.....for at least an hour.....OR when they took their naps when they when they were tiny. Some times I would even ask their grandmas to watch them for a little bit...and sew then....I used to make all my DD's clothing during that hour or two each night was something I did all the time. The thing is that you need to just find time to make it work......I didn't start quilting under last year ( November 2013 ) .......I found this website in 2011.

April 2nd, 2014, 05:55 PM
Thanks everyone! My little guy is 16 months and in to everything so bringing him into my sewing room wont work.

Do you have a pack-n-play or other enclosed play area that might fit in the sewing room? I have some friends with a 14m/o and she puts her son in a playpen in the living room while she sews at the dining table (all one big room). She doesn't get 3-4 hour marathon sewing in but she makes and alters dresses and I think she can get about an hour to an hour and a half at a time.

April 2nd, 2014, 07:40 PM
When they were babies, not anything in the way of crafts or sewing. Three kids in four years did not leave much time. I remember saying to myself "I can't wait until they can get their own pj's on". LOL I sewed some when my youngest was about three or four. You could get fabric really cheap at some places. Once I bought flannel at 10c a yard! I made them all pjj's. from it. You would think as they got older I had more time, but I went to work full time and then they had all these activities....... So.... It wasn't until I retired that I started quilting (badly). Then moved south and took a class with the quilting teacher from h... - that slowed me up some,although I did learn a thing or two which enabled me to follow Jennies tut's on MSQC. When I found this site, I found the treasure!!

April 2nd, 2014, 08:24 PM
My baby turned 18 today. Yes, I had days, months, years of whining for more "me" time and uninterrupted sewing time! We home schooled, so I was always with my kids. I sewed in small spurts and I was able to keep them all dressed well! BUT I will never regret spending hours reading and playing games with them. I will never regret being there for every little accomplishment and exciting event in their days. The days might seem long when you are doing tying the same little shoes once again, over and over.......but when the house becomes quiet and they have all gone on to their own lives.....time is endless! It might seem crazy, but I can't wait for the grands to start the noisy, fun, busy times again!