Unexpected Accountability

One of the problems the as-yet-undiscovered artist faces is accountability. If you don’t have a client – gallery owner, publisher, commission-holder – does it matter if you fudge your deadline? And by “you” I mean “me.” Yes, I structure my day to maximize creativity, I maintain a list of goals, I establish a system of rewards and consequences for those goals. Nevertheless, as long as dinner is ready I’m accountable only to myself.

Until last week, when the kids arrived for an undetermined stay while they look for work. While I’m not precisely accountable to them, and even though they haven’t been here that long, I have discovered that:

  • coordinating schedules makes me more aware of what I want to accomplish in any given hour
  • having more people in the house really does mean more clutter, so I have stronger incentives to put things away in their proper places
  • having more people around makes me less inclined to waste time, even if they aren’t paying attention to me

Now, I will admit to my share of setbacks. I’ve added to the clutter – although not in the sewing room – by buying a special rug for my daughter’s dog:

I also had to move more stuff into the sewing room so that back wall didn’t get organized:

Still, I think there is going to be a hidden benefit to having the whole family under one roof again. At the very least, it is nice to show the kids that I was handling the empty nest syndrome just fine (and I have an excuse to dump the dishes on them – I need to quilt!).

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