Friday, October 31, 2014

Tool hangers (and musings on saving stuff)

In the midst of a semester where every hour counts, I've been thinking about what and how we save things.  
  • If I save money, I see the numbers in my accounts go up, and I can get that money back out whenever I want.   
  • But saving things --- like arts and craft supplies, that requires ongoing effort so that things don't get cluttered, and I'm still not guaranteed that I'll ever be able to use any of it. 
  • And saving time --- well, I don't have to store time in a drawer, and I don't get to store it in a bank. 
Still, there is a way in which learning a skill and practicing it is a way to bank a bit of time for the future.  I've done so much sewing in my life that, by now, it's easier and faster for me to mend something than to go out and buy a new one.  And I've made so many tool hangers for family and friends who got married that nowadays I can whip up one fairly quickly.

So when K-daughter wrote me earlier this week to say she's getting married Friday (today!), it was fun to spring into action.  I just happened to have a set of tools lying around that I'd planned to be a gift to I-don't-know-who (but now I do).  And I rummaged through my fabric supplies, and found a pair of holey jeans, and an orange drawstring that N-son had asked me to remove from a pair of his shorts.   
I like how the orange drawstring winds up and down;
have to take the ugly sticker off the hammer, though!
 I like the contrast of colors; they fortuitously go well with the color of the tools I'd picked out.
I even like that this is something old/something new/something borrowed/something blue.

But aside from the tool hanger itself, the process of putting it together was joyful.  It took me two, three hours, probably.  These were contemplative and creative hours, a break from my regular routine of reading papers and writing reports.

And maybe this is one aspect of what saving time looks like:  that some long-ago version of me spent time learning to sew, puzzled over new projects, and stocked up on extra materials.  So then this week, when I needed to pull all this back out of the Time Bank, I could.

The wedding is tonight.  I'm so excited!  


  1. What a wonderful gift! Congrats on the wedding. Was this totally out of the blue? I love your explanation of the benefits of taking time to learn a skill. Bravo.

    1. We'd had inklings she was going to "elope" -- and then early this week she decided to invite us to her elopement. Not a total surprise, but definitely not one of those over-planned events either! -MM

  2. I am also making a toolkit. And I am also making the pockets not be flat. But I have no experience with this (though I have sewn before), so there is less time in the bank for me!

  3. What a great gift idea for newlyweds. I hope everyone has a fun wedding tonight!

  4. Congratulations K-daughter!

    And very cool gift.

    1. Not to mention, I realize that this means that even though I haven't passed my *genes* along to K-daughter, now I've passed along my *jeans*. We all think this is hilarious.

  5. So exciting! I've been thinking about banking time myself. Yesterday my son asked if we could bring him some soy sauce--yes. Figured that saved him an hour--a good gift. Many, many other examples of similar--as Im sure you know.

    And--combining two celebrations--Halloween and wedding--now that's frugal. I eloped too.