Where Did My Summer Go?

In January, I started posting about “My 12 new months of purpose” -as so often full of plans, looking into the future with high expectations. I enjoyed writing my monthly reports until June, when there was just not much to reveal.

In June, July, August, and September, I gave an excessive amount of woodworking and upholstery classes -adult classes for students who want to learn my craft. Two students even came from other states (Missouri and North Carolina) and both stayed in a hotel nearby. They had willingly paid the extra expense just to learn from me. When they both called in spring just a few days apart and booked a marathon 40+ hour/week class session, I sat down at night, and for the first time, I realized how much learning something can mean to someone who is truly willing to study.

A proud student. Mission accomplished!

It changed my whole outlook. What was first just for fun, and meant to bring extra income, became now more a ritual of handing over the torch to a younger generation, who hopefully will love what I do for a living for a very long time. I am so proud of my students, especially the men.

Teaching, listening, and talking for eight hours a day, five days in a row, was tiring and rewarding at the same time. It brought me closer to my students than I had planned to be. I learned a lot in return -I received a few life lessons I will never forget. Life-changing? Yes, if I follow through and I have every intention to.

Other people called. Older siblings who wanted to learn together, moms teachers who had time to try out a new hobby, because school was out. For the whole summer and the months of September, I overbooked myself on purpose and gave a 4-hr class every day Monday to Saturday -on top of my regular work. I boycotted summer.

This summer, there was no road trip, no swimming, no get-togethers or BBQs, but there was work, work, and more work, and I enjoyed it.

One of my students created a TikTok movie in my workroom, which was interesting (and annoying). I don’t get the hype about these small, staged movie clips and I don’t understand their purpose. However, now I know how they are done.

In the evenings, after class and work, I was too tired to do much and my 12-months-of-purpose got neglected. I put the virtual world a bit on hold.

Still, there is a little to gloat about -not a long list I am afraid.

I would love to re-start reading self-published Indi books, preferably written by bloggers.

I didn’t find much time to read, instead, I binge-watched a lot of TV shows to unwind. I enjoyed “Workin moms.” Perhaps naughty but very reliable, and I watched silly and charming shows like “Emily in Paris”. My favorite was “Hacks” which I discovered by accident when I tried to make it through the first episodes of the new (old) “Sex and the City” series, which was just too bad -and not reliable at all. When I surfed around and tried to figure out how else I could use my free HBO/Max trial, I stumbled over Hacks and I am glad I did. The first episode was strange but left me wanting to see more, and then it grew on me -as the characters did on TV with each installment.

What a treat and what a great performance by Jean Smart.

I want to discover songs that arenโ€™t on the current hit list, but perhaps pieces from other countries, or long-forgotten singers.

I traveled in my mind and listened to old summer hits from my childhood.

I hope I will help strangers within my limits -preferably incognito. (Help does not always require money, sometimes it requires something more valuable than moneyโ€ฆtime!)

I helped, perhaps not as much as I should have, but enough to feel satisfied.

I want to try new things I always wanted to do. 

Well, I continued to tidy up our home -while being boycotted by my husband at first, we now are on the same page. Fifteen boxes full of garage sale items are locked away in our garage for our annual spring community garage sale, and we gave bags full of donation items to the resale shop.

I have used the ‘silver leaf paint’ method, expanded to purple and gold, and ended up trying different colors. The goal? There is none, now the sky is the limit. I need to get the craziness out of my head. I am working on it.

New recipes, one each month -all within my health restrictions. Yummy!

One of my students taught me everything I needed to know about living a healthy lifestyle. I watched, I understood. I am trying to do my best. My new favorite snack:

Key Lime Pie Coconut Date Balls ๐Ÿ™‚

I have to let go of things I donโ€™t use anymore, even though it might sting a bit.

Letting go of the things we bought after we had lost so much is hard. It’s actually tougher than I thought it would be. The bargains we found back then have still meaning, even though much of it is no longer used. I can remember the garage and estate sales we went to and my husband does, too. “Remember when we bought this clock for $5?”

Does it spark joy? Sadly, yes, so much still sparks joy, which is counterproductive to the task. ๐Ÿ™‚

I want to try new routines to break bad habits โ€“and there are plenty.

I have given up eating in front of the computer. It seems I broke a bad habit by creating a new routine. I can proudly announce that I now eat breakfast and/or lunch at a table, even when I am alone.

I hope to find time to sew new dog beds, created with the yards of upholstery fabric remnants

Yes, but this time I made them for a friend who rescued a small puppy that turned out to be a Cane Corso mix. Let’s just say he is bigger than planned!

I want to re-watch new (old) movies. Black and white, American movies or movies with under titles. 

Thanks to Turner-Classic-Movies, this was an easy task. A Bette Davis marathon, followed by old Humphrey Bogart movies. They don’t make movies like “The Maltese Falcon” anymore.

I will open up more and share more about my life, perhaps even more of me.

I changed my profile picture and became a human. ๐Ÿ™‚

There are some things I wish for, but I never order them, because I tell myself I donโ€™t really need them.

Does a new puppy count?

Twelve new months filled with projects, antiques, and old forgotten pieces.

I had some interesting projects this summer. Lots of woodwork and wood repairs, as well as upholstery. I got lucky, at a time when most play it safe and follow the trend of having everything either in gray, off-white, or beige, I had a few customers who stated they needed some color in their lives -which was music to my ears. I always joke “One more gray chair and I will puke all over the place,” but of course, I don’t. The customer is king, the customer is the designer, and I am just the laboror, creating their vision -not mine. So I considered myself very lucky that I could play with colors and designs.

A modern waiting room in an old building!
Grandma’s chair. A lavender dream?
And the masterpiece. A hidden treasure set free!

What else?

Vader, our new puppy, has brought lots of joy into our lives. He is younger than we thought he might be.

Finally, he has gained weight. He is now at 38 pounds, estimated 18 weeks old, and 24″ inches long from nose to the beginning of his long tail. Our new veterinarian thinks he is a Doberman-Hound-Bernese Mountain dog mix and we agree.

Whatever he might be, he is ours and we are grateful.

I enjoy the cooler weather. The A/C’s are off. I am wearing goofy socks and long for a cup of hot tea.

October, here I come -oh, you are already here!

25 thoughts on “Where Did My Summer Go?

  1. I envy your talent and ambition as well as what you have achieved, Even if you didn’t hit all YOUR goals, your time and energy was put to good use. I think you would agree with that assessment?

    IDK if you’ve seem my new post that lays out where my head, heart and most of the rest of me are at the moment. I’m giving you the link so you can tell me what you think! https://hbsuefred.com/2022/10/10/my-newest-start-may-be-in-october/

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Wow! I am tired just reading all you accomplished this summer. You have been busy but it all sounds like for the best. I love the color pop furniture, especially the floral grandma’s chair. I hope the fall treats you as well as summer did!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Your work is absolutely beautiful, Bridget. I think that passing your expertise along to others is a profoundly worthwhile experience that makes me think of artisan craft guilds dating back across the centuries. Without artists like yourself these skills will be minimized over time. And you are still making progress with the goals set at the beginning of the year. Your original aims were ambitious, and I think you’re refining the process every week. I, too, really enjoyed Hacks. I might never have given it a nod except I really love Jean Smart. I think she’s fabulous in this role. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Isn’t Jean Smart fabulous in that role? I would have never looked into it either, but I watched her in the mini series “Mare Mare of Easttown” on Netflix. The ice-cream eating crazy mummy ๐Ÿ™‚ Also a great series, worth watching.
      As for my work. I love what I am doing. My mentor told me to get a hobby that would force me to be creative, as a counter balance to use my brain as a translator. I met an older gentleman who upholstered furniture and did some wood magic. He taught me everything I know and now I give the gift to others. ๐Ÿ™‚


  4. I love this post! Your mind echoes mine but I seem to be less successful in finishing all my started projects… ๐Ÿ™„

    Those chairs are wonderful and I love how you described the out-of-state students’ motivation. So inspiring.

    Can you share the TikTok link? If not publicly, my email is on my website writerofwordsetc.ca in contacts. I deleted that damn app but will be returning to it in the not too distant future… ๐Ÿคฏ

    Liked by 1 person

    • I don’t have the tiktok link only the video, which I cannot post because I have a free account. It’s nothing dramatic, just a student sewing a cushion (can being mighty proud of it) I don’t get why they make this videos and who might want to watch them -but what do I know.


  5. Goals are merely a guide and you have certainly done a LOT with your time! Thank you for showing us some of your restoration/upholstery results – absolutely gorgeous. Look back on the summer with the knowledge that you have made a positive difference in the lives of many – including Vader!

    Liked by 2 people

  6. Fantastic, Bridget! I love your work of giving new life to old and worn upholstery. Congrats on a successful summer of woodworking and upholstery classes for those who want to learn your craft! A powerful way to impact the lives of others. Forget about your initial goals. Sometimes, in opening up to the unexpected is far more rewarding and life-changing.

    Liked by 1 person

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