Knitting projects promised Nightmare!

I have been in and out of the hospital for the last 6 months, I have had 3 surgeries so far and have the last one on June 28. (I have REALLY BAD Arthritis, and needed to replace both hips and both knees, I should have my left elbow and right ankle replaced also, but not willing to do that MUCH surgery in one year.) I seem to be unable to knit with any kind of consistency when I am in the hospital or for the first 3 weeks when I get out–Might have something to do with the pain, pain medications, or simple loss of energy because of the surgeries.
So I just realized that I am REALLY Backed up with Promised knitting projects, I need some help with ideas of how to politely tell some people that they are not going to get what they have been promised within the time frame it was promised.
Here is the list of all current projects and their promised delivery date. HELP!
[li]2 pairs socks–brother’s birthday 8/1–only one pair started (Toe up 2 at a time–toe finished started on foot)[/li][li]2 dishcloths–mom’s birthday 10/28–1 started about 1/3 finished, yarn for other purchased)[/li][li]2 pairs socks–Mom Christmas–NOT started, Yarn purchased[/li][li]Pink Blanket–Nurse from hospital 6/27–Started about 1/16 done (She is paying me for it)[/li][li]5 Blue hats–NICU at Private hospital 6/27–3 finished other 2 not started (Hospital provides yarn and requests completion within 1 month)[/li][li]2 Comfort shawls–ICU at Private hospital 6/27–1 started (only 7 rows done, Hospital provides yarn and requests completion within 6 weeks)[/li][li]Pony–Friend Angelique’s birthday 1/1–not started (she paid for all the yarn since she wanted very expensive yarn)[/li][li]5 pink hats–NICU at Private hospital 6/27–not started (Hospital provides yarn and requests completion within 1 month)[/li][li]Brown Shawl–myself 8/31–NOT started, yarn was purchased for me as a birthday present this year, and I was told to make myself a shawl to wear at the church picnic on 8/31[/li][li]4 Baby Blankets–Palmer Park Blanket Brigade–1 (peach) started. They provide the yarn. They never request the blankets back by a certain time, but they hand out 30 or more blankets to the battered women’s shelter and city owned hospital NICU every week , and need these blankets ASAP.[/ol] [/li]How in the heck am I going to let people know that I am sorry they are not going to get what they wanted in their time frame, but that I promise they will get The project eventually?

Any suggestions?

Simply tell them that - due to your medical/health problems so far this year, you’ve been unable to work on their items, but will get them as soon as you can finish them. Let them know that may not be until the end of the year, even the charity items. And start saying no to any new items as you prioritize your list.

I agree. Tell them that due to your medical problems which includes the pain medication after surgery that you will be unable to complete their projects till at least the end of the year and possibly into next year. Your family and friends should understand. If they don’t then consider whether you should be knitting for them at all.

Charity projects do sometimes have due dates for various reasons, but it’s likely you’re not the only one knitting for them. Tell them the same thing and if they need them by a certain time you’ll just have to tell them you won’t be able to do this project. Maybe next time.

I have arthritis in my spine at the cervical level. Unfortunately they cant replace that. :doh: I hope you feel better soon! :hug:

You have a very good reason for not being able to complete the projects you promised on time. Let everyone on your list know about it and then relax and concentrate on getting back to your old, but better, self. Sometimes circumstances intervene and upset the best of well-laid plans. Hope all goes very well for you as you recover.

HONESTY, as they say, is the best policy.

Personally, I would tell the hospital/ICUs first. While they have supplied the yarn, they are a charity, NOT your friends and family, who should come first. And, since they are a hospital, they can understand medical problems affecting life. Just assure them that the projects will be done, just delayed.

One thing you can do is send a nice card to the folks on the birthday/Christmas list. And in the card, tell them that you’ve been “a little busy lately,” but unfortunately it hasn’t been the kind of busy that you prefer (that is, knitting for them).

If you have the yarn for the project, snip off a piece of it and enclose it in the card with a note that says, “Here’s your project in its infancy stage!! You’ll be getting the fully formed [insert name of project] as soon as I’m back to some form of normalcy!”

You could also remind them that if you don’t take care of yourself [U]first,[/U] then soon NO ONE will be enjoying your knitting!

And for those who purchased yarn for you to make something, offer to give it back to them so they can find someone else to do it. You’re not the only knitter out there, so don’t feel as though “it’s all up to you!”

By the way, I wouldn’t recommend putting a deadline on yourself since you never know what’s around the corner!

And, yes, I second the advice to stop promising people things–at least until you’ve recovered. Saying NO is a very healthy thing to do. At the very least, you can tell them, “I’m sorry, but I’m just not able to take on any new projects right now.”

It sounds like it may be a while before you are fully functioning again. I believe that all reasonable pressures need to be removed in order for you to recover. I would return all the yarn that was given with a short letter explaining that you are not recovering as quickly as you had hoped and therefore you are regretfully unable to fulfill the requested projects at this time. I believe it would then be a good idea to talk to those in the family that are expecting items and let them know the same. It would be best not to promise the items by a certain date because if you are not able to follow through you will be adding further stress onto yourself which could in turn delay your recovery time even more. When you feel back to normal then you could contact the individuals regarding any new or unfinished items that you may be able to help with

What they all said. I’ve had both knees replaced. When I had to have the second one done in November 2010, I was partway through 24/7 nursing/rehab of a post-spinal surgery, 100-lb Bernese Mtn. Dog.

Unfortunately, that knee replacement surgery almost cost me my life: I threw a clot (right outside lower leg) on the table, lost a unit (maybe two?) of blood–and had been unable to donate my own, and developed a Baker’s cyst in the popliteal region of the right knee so that even the Continuous Passive Motion machine hurt my knee!

Fortunately (?), we had moved our bed downstairs so that DDog and I were just a few feet from one another. DH helped both of us for the time he had off work, and then I was right back to 24/7 care for DDog.

My quilts fell by the wayside, my crocheting too; I didn’t know how to knit yet (learned in May 2011). No one said a thing, not at Christmas 2010 and not even at Christmas 2011, when I was still thrown for a big loss by the unexpected death of DDog due to an opportunistic infection.

People will be understanding of your situation; they were of mine. The quilts that have been delayed are important ones: nephew’s graduation quilt; niece’s marriage quilt that I had hoped to finish before her 1st anniversary (September 2011); sister’s quilt in a Celtic-inspired design; MIL’s quilt from late FIL’s shirts (MIL herself is in fragile health). But I couldn’t stand up to do the cutting.

Now I can, but now I have a rescue dog who needs intensive care. The quilts have come back to the top of the list, together with the knitting/crochet projects, to the point where I’ve had to develop a spreadsheet to make sure none of them get short-changed or forgotten!

And, like others have said, if anyone gives you static, consider the possibility that he/she isn’t “knit-worthy.” That’ll make your list shorter, too.


Good, sound, basic advice.

Lovely suggestion/sentiment.

Thanks everyone! I Love the suggestion of sending a cliping of the yarn with the note explaining that things just won’t be done on time. I Definitly will be saying NO to any and all new projects, and reprioratizing things and doing those that I feel I can really accomplish.
I think you are right that anyone that gives me a hard time, needs to be droppd from the knitting project list.
DogCatMom, I am sorry to hear of your loss but Happy that you have a new Fur Baby to care for, I am glad you have teh ability to care for ruesuce animals.
I addition to all this surgery, I also had to have my dog (he was 14 3/4 years old, but I had only had him for 4 months. I resuced him from my brother’s new wife; she did not have time to care for him as she was working 16 hour days with 1 hour total commute time.) put down last Saturday. He had Aggressive rectal cancer (no visable rectal tumor 4 weeks ago, grew to totally occlude his rectum in 4 weeks) and was unable to poop. Durring the autopsy they found additional Cancer tumors on his kidneys, liver, and chest wall. Vet thought that if we had gone the painkiller and laxative route he would have died within the month anyway.
So now I have to get over his loss before I can consistently knit again, also.

Glad I have you all here to help me keep Knitting in perspective.

Good for you! :yay:

When you get out from under some of the obligation burden, I bet you’ll feel a whole lot better emotionally. Now you just need some time to heal from your surgeries and to grieve for your dog.

Sometimes knitting can be good therapy, but not when it has deadlines and expectations attached to it! Ick!

It’s clear that you are a generous, giving, kind person. I expect that everyone on the list knows this and that you wouldn’t just decide not to do as you’ve promised. The most important thing right now is your recovery. Things happen that we don’t have control over.

I recall one Christmas that my MIL had intended to give items she’d sewn as gifts. For some reason she couldn’t get them done before Christmas. There were packages of fabric and an IOU for the finished item. All were done, just not by Christmas. Life’s too short to stress over things more than we must.

I wish you a speedy recovery.

ETA My guess: Others will cut you more slack than you do for yourself.