I am a great starter.

I love the excitement, the energy, the optimism of starting something new. I dive in with gusto, make super-human progress for the first few days, and then somewhere in the guts of the project, get bogged down, and lay it aside. That’s when I lose steam. What was supposed to be a short little break becomes months… or even years.

I am not a good finisher.

Take the guest-room quilt project, for example.

Once upon a time, several years ago, we only had two children and lived in a three-bedroom house. The two children shared a room so we could provide a guest room, a real bed, and some privacy for our parents when they visited (which happened often as our oldest was frequently in the hospital).

Somehow I decided (I have no idea how) that I had the time and energy to make a quilt for the guest room. It was color-coordinated with the paint and everything. With all the fervent starting-a-project energy, I cut all the pieces, pieced all the blocks, and began sewing blocks into strips.

Then something happened. I don’t even remember what — it’s been that long. But I put the quilt away… and never got it back out. We had a baby, sold the guest bed, sold the house, moved, had another baby, and through it all, the quilt sat in a bag at the bottom of a craft bin.

Where it sits today. And unfortunately, it will languish there awhile longer.

Why? Because I just dove into a New! Exciting! Quilt! Project! This one has a deadline (this is a key element to my finishing anything. See… I am learning a little as I get older.) — my daughter’s birthday next spring. You have permission to keep me accountable. I cut all the pieces out last Friday, and hope to begin sewing it together tomorrow.

Now that you know this history, it gives me great pleasure to present to you…

Christmas tree with skirt beneat

This Actual! Finished! Christmas Tree Skirt!

It has been in the works for *cough* three years *cough*.

I found all the pieces last week, and with all the enthusiasm of someone with a brand-new project to start, plowed through the last remaining steps. And now it’s done! Tra-la-la-laaaaah!

Christmas tree skirt

What about you? Do you follow through on projects, or are you a great starter like me? What’s the longest it’s taken you to finish something? (Please tell me I’m not alone.)