I’ll admit it. I have alot of hobbies. I’m one of those people who has difficulty sitting still for any length of time. Even if do find myself sitting down, I have a book in my hand so that I am at least doing something.
Now, it’s not like I have countless hours to fill. I work full time and when I”m not in the office, I am kept busy raising my two daughters. I have always been very active, teaching fitness classes for more than twenty years (Yes, I began teaching fitness when I was 5).
In my early twenties, I began to pursue the craft of quilting. What began as a pillow here or there has blossomed into all out quilting. And then there’s the knitting and the crocheting that I was taught by my grandmother when I was a pre-teen. I have knitted more scarves and crocheted more blankets than I care to remember.
Let’s not forget this whole writing thing, present for most of my life but squelched during the years when my girls were babies and consumed practically all of my time. Since those early years, I have written three books and had two of them published. Along with this hobby, if that’s what you’ll call it, I’m an avid reader. There are currently more than fifty books loaded onto my Kindle and more than two hundred books on bookcases in my spare bedroom just waiting to be read.
So why, I must ask, do I feel the need to pursue other hobbies? I have no idea. All I can say is that when I am presented with something I know nothing about and the idea appeals to me, I feel the need to find out more about it. Since I’m a visual person, this usually involves something for me to do with my hands.
Case in point: A few months back, a friend posted pictures on Facebook of some furniture she was trying to get rid of. My closest friend saw the post and encouraged me to take one of the items posted. Upon further discovery, the piece was being given away….for free! Well, anyone who knows me knows where this is headed.
Yup. I scooped up that piece of furniture without even knowing what I was going to do with it.
I stored it in my garage until I gathered the courage to attempt to do something with it. When I finally googled enough sites and asked enough people what in the world I should do with it, I began to sand. I sanded and sanded and sanded. I spend countless hours sanding the hell out of that piece of furniture. Each night, my arms were quivering with exhaustion but I will admit there was a certain thrill in handling my first power tool!
But I digress…Once the sanding was completed, I painted and stained and poly’d that piece of furniture until it shone. The pics at the top of this post show the before and after and honestly? I’m incredibly proud of what I did with that piece!
And now, I have to confess, I am an addict. I peruse Craig’s list daily, looking for the crap that others are trying to get rid of. I have pulled over to the side of the road to haul a desk into my minivan, intent on refinishing it and giving it new life. That piece is now in my garage, awaiting a paint job.
Suffice it to say, I have a new hobby. Not that I needed another thing to do or had time on my hands. But I am just one of those people who finds that they work best when they are under pressure. Give me a day with nothing planned and I will do nothing. Give me a day where every minute is planned and I will complete all my tasks with time to spare.
So, if you have a piece of furniture somewhere in your house and if you are sick and tired of looking at said piece of furniture, let me know. I’ll take it off your hands and experiment with it! Got some fabric you’re looking to get rid of? Let me know. I’ll make something out of it. Old t-shirts? Send them my way and I’ll cut them up and put them into a quilt. What about yarn? Yup. I’ll take it. I feel the urge to crochet another blanket.
After all, I’m able to squish these hobbies into every spare minute I can find.
Donna Small is the author of two nowels: Just Between Friends and A Ripple in the Water. She lives in Clemmons, North Carolina where she is at work on her next novel and several other piecesof furniture, quilts, scarves, and whatever else she can use to feed her ADHD.