I think this saying comes from branding season – when cowboys brand the calves and they have more branding irons in the fire than they need. Thinks get messy and people can trip over things.
Back a few years ago, I decided that my parachute had 5 colours. Sometimes I think that in itself may be “too many irons” but it continues to serve me well as I keep life organzied. The danger, however, is that within each colour I have too many things going on.
In my “Blue bag”, well actually there are a lot of blue bags in my life right now – yarn projects in various stages of completion. Some are just balls of yarn, others are half finished projects that need to be done. Here’s a partial list – and a few pictures:
1. The Babette blanket I was working on several years ago when I travelled to Michigan. It’s been blue-bagged ever since. Someone commented on the colours and that did me in. (I have finished three other Babette blankets, just not this one.)
2. My dad’s 80th birthday present. He’s now 81, its two days before Christmas and I’m still putting it together. And making the edging parts.
3. The Toe-up socks I wanted to give my mom for her 75th birthday. I ran into problems with the heel and left them to languish.
4. The Kaleidescope blanket that I want to finish for Neighbour Link. I keep trying to make them boyish and it’s not working, even if I leave the pink out. It too is almost done, sidelined by a lack of white to finish them off, and indecision about the colours.
I think you get the drift. I won’t go into the balls of yarn that don’t even have a project to go with them, although some of them do. And just in case you think I don’t finish anything, here’s evidence that I do!
Two lovely designers from Greece Mania and Maria shared a pattern a day until it was done. I jumped the gun yesterday with the edging and was able to block it in two pieces. I’m done and so excited. But this yarn, bought eight or nine years ago in Belleville, Ontario at the Knitting Nimrod, had been waiting patiently for a project.
So where’s the wisdom in all of this? For me it’s this – get rid of those works in progress. Finish them. Move forward. Don’t start another new project until these old chestnuts are done.
Even though they are not in my face, they take up space in my home, in my mind and in my daily life. Once they are complete, I will have room for other things.
Here’s to taking a few irons out of the fire and being more careful about the ones I put in.
Becoming wiser, one iron at a time,