Barbara Barrett

Romance at Work

Thoughts from the Treadmill: Sense of Accomplishment

Photo by Leslie Sloan

Photo by Leslie Sloan

Since I’m in the middle of the first draft of my current manuscript, I don’t always feel like I’m making much progress. Finishing a chapter is nice, but it doesn’t make my heart zing as much as finishing that final chapter. I’ve found it helpful to accomplish other things while still writing. Then I can still pat myself on the back for a job well done. My big accomplishment right now is the completion of a needlepoint stocking for my eighteen-month-old grandson, Jack.

I have been making Christmas stockings to hang from the mantel since my oldest child, Leslie, was a tot. I designed hers and the one for her younger brother, Christopher. I taught myself how to needlepoint just for those projects. The results testify to my lack of familiarity with the craft. Nonetheless, those stockings have come out every year since, even though both now have several stitches missing.

Since then, I’ve added to the collection as new members were added to our family. These stocking have come from kits, which makes for a much more attractive, finished product. The first grandchild, Samantha, got hers, then I did one for  her younger brother, Zachary, a few years later. As our kids married, a stocking was done for the spouse as well. I love the angel I did for our daughter-in-law, Shannon, because it has a dark blue background rather than the green and red that predominates the others. I broke down and bought three new stockings at once a few years back when our daughter remarried and brought twin boys, Jaden and Turner, into the family along with her new husband, Chris. Finally, I decided it was time my own spouse had his stocking; I swear the Santa looks just like my husband, Veryl, with his white hair and specs. (He thought I needed my own stocking well and purchased one about that time. It is light blue.) christmas stockings

Two years ago today, my son and daughter-in-law gave my husband and me an early birthday present (we’re a day apart, less than a week before Christmas): a stocking kit. It took me a few seconds to process and then I realized they were telling us something, something very special. It was time to do yet another stocking. We couldn’t have received any better birthday gift.

I didn’t get the stocking finished last Christmas, although at six months, he wouldn’t have known or appreciated it anyhow. But this year I was determined to get it done, even though I didn’t do a thing on it this past summer. Thanks to my weekly knitting group (they don’t require you to knit, just work on a project), I made significant progress, but I’ve had to really buckle down and apply myself of late to get the final touches done. I hadn’t realized how much top embroidery was to be added after all the blocks were filled in.

Still drying. Check back later in the week to see it with backing.

Still drying. Check back later in the week to see it with backing.

As of today, I can finally say it’s done and headed back to Iowa for its new home on the mantel along with the other ten just in time for me start then next one, as we await the birth of Jack’s new sibling in February 2014.

Whew! Now I can get back to my writing.

DriventoMatrimony_7901_750AndHeCooksToo_7346_7500d00c-thesleepoverclause9986f77ee1cf9b6131db772b723c83c7.image.200x300

Driven to Matrimony                 http://amzn.to/1aowiJ2

The Sleepover Clause               Amazon ebook, Amazon POD

Barnes and Noble

iTunes

iBookstore

Kobo

And He Cooks Too                The Wild Rose Press, TWRP POD

Amazon Kindle, Amazon POD

Barnes and Noble Nook

iTunes

iBookstore POD

Kobo

Holiday Garden Gourmet   http://bit.ly/IDJ5iH

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