france, battling natsubate and pushing the songbird pattern across the finish line

Natsubate, I definitely have it. It is a Japanese word that can be translated as “summer fatigue”. July is almost always lazy and slow for me. There is no talking myself out of it. I should probably start planning for that. Besides the seasonal aspect, the natsubate, giant projects almost always have doldrums, usually near the end, when the hard part is done. A massive wall of resistance rises between me and the little last details.

That stuckness is cemented by ambiguity. Specifics, specific tasks, specific goals and time frames move things forward and support momentum.

hand stitched songbird progress

That’s where the songbird pattern has been,  trapped in a perfect storm of inertia: July, just the fussy boring details left to do and a lack of structure, a lack of plan to complete those. There is also, I’m sure, an element of brain fatigue, the backlash for having not taken a break for a while, not letting my mind and focus muscle rest. A few days out of my routine being tossed about in salt water helped with that.

And I can fix the lack of plan part while still accounting for my seasonal dip in energy and focus by applying James Clear’s method, reduce the scope, stick to the schedule. I’ll devote a couple golden early morning hours each day to a specific lists of tasks. When I broke down exactly what I needed to do on paper it was suddenly clear that would be more than enough to push this pattern over the finish line and into the shop. That clarity was motivating on its own and to add some accountability to further inspire me I’ll tell you that the finish line is Tuesday, 7/17.

corde sur ciel : france

Now let’s talk about France a little bit. France gets a big thumbs up from me. I suspected it would be good but it was beyond my imagination. Good job France, you really brought it. I was so completely engaged in the experience I hardly took any photos but I’ll share what I’ve got below and you can find more on french general’s instagram feed  (scroll down a little for Corde Sur Ciel).

textile toadstool in the south of france

I’m planning now for a longer stay next summer. You should come. If you think you might like to let me know – and I’ll keep you informed as plans solidify.

Have a beautiful weekend and I’ll be back on Tuesday to share the songbird pattern. At last.


  1. Good luck on the songbird. Finishing things is it’s own reward. I look forward to this new pattern. Thanks for sharing France! It is beautiful!!

  2. Cindy Armstrong

    Natsubate. I finally have a word for the way I feel right now. Thank you!

  3. Sonia Simpson

    I think my.little dog Peggy has Natsubate ( is it just me or does it sound rude)
    When I.feeling like that I remember a ted talks motivational speaker whos words hit a nerve
    And for some things it’s true.

    • Georgayne

      The Japanese pronounciation sounds like “ not-su-bot-yeah”. Sounds better this way :D.

  4. I love Corde sur Ciel. Thank you for posting the refresh-the-mind photos. Could almost feel that breeze.

    Bird — wonderful. And he looks patient, knowing it’s July.

  5. “…trapped in a perfect storm of inertia…” what an expressive way to describe July! I feel this way after finishing a doll project. I curl up and read while my batteries recharge…but the charging takes a lot longer in the dog days of summer.



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