Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Welcome 2010!

very cool photo found here


I was reading something recently that was pondering how collectively we'd pronounce the numerals for this next year. I personally envision people will call it twenty-ten...seems to be the going term already. I personally like oh-ten myself just because it's kinda silly, yet also makes sense given we've already been using the oh-number for 8 years now. Although I like how the old timers would always refer to the turn of the last century with "the year one/five/ten" although I don't see us going in that direction either.

Speaking of directions, I've been thinking about them lately...well mine in particular. I've been spending a bit of time reflecting on this past year, all that it was & all that it wasn't, and trying to project ahead to next year, to all I hope it is & all I hope it isn't. I know alot of people put alot of emphasis on the beginning of a new year, and it's hard not to do...it holds such undenialble freshness, newness, & promise. I am no exception, although I don't like doing traditional "resolutions," but I have always been a fan of "goals." More & more I believe in the power of intention: of envisioning something, naming it, holding it in your heart, and then releasing it out for it to return back to you pure & strong & beyond anything you could have envisioned in your own little mind.

So this year is no expection...I have goals, I have wants, I have half-dreamed dreams that I'm ready to set free and await their return to me in the form that will best suit me. Some of my list of goals are big & far reaching, some are small yet enriching. I like the mix to keep me from feeling overwhelmed.

So here it is, my list of 2010's To-Dos
  1. replace job with more satisfying one (I've started down a new career path, but a new job will not happen this year).

  2. California friend visit (LA or SanFran) (not gonna happen :( this year)

  3. open an Etsy shop (not gonna happen this year)

  4. day photo road trip (took a day trip to Round Top 5/2010, plus I also did some photoing while in Bastrop with Mom for Mother's Day weekend)

  5. submit a short story for publication (did not happen this year, but definitely next year)

  6. start novel, in earnest (I'll be darned, thanks to NaNoWriMo, this actually happened--I got about 21,000 words towards my first novel attempt!!! Yay me!)

  7. join an online project/group (photo, art, writing) (this year I joined a few, whether they were e-courses or just for fun--so far Unravelling Winter, Experimental Art Ecourse, Sexy on the Page, Claudine Hellmuth's art ecourse, August Break, and WishStudio's Necklace project [I've yet, as of Oct 19th, to get the necklace to add my charm tho])

  8. attend a retreat/class (art, photo, writing, jewelry, craft) (taking Claudine Hellmuth's 12-week online mixed-media art e-course--this will have to suffice, as budget is not going to allow for in-person retreat this year!)

  9. attend UK boot sale, charity shop spree (not gonna happen this year)

  10. complete Bikram 60-day challenge (attempted a 30-day one in April, but it was too much too soon--wiped me out. hope to try it again later in year)

  11. submit piece to Art Wall online art store (did not happen, not sure I still want to happen)

  12. add to Fiestaware (hmm, do I want this to happen?)

  13. start compost bin (set one up May 2010!!!)

  14. see atleast 3 live shows (one down: Muse 3/18...but that's it...dern, thought 3 was totally doable)

  15. go to the beach w/ my girlz (spent a week in SPI for D's 40th Birthday--woot woot)

  16. take 1 photo every day (this is dead in the water--is it too late to restart on 3/19?)

  17. go dancing (I was about to say not gonna happen, but it actually happened in conjunction with #15 above...it was lame & I didn't really get my dance on, but it happened)

  18. make xmas ornaments (still could happen as of Dec 1, likely won't)

  19. have sex somewhere new (well this ain't gonna happen...sigh!)

  20. move (this hasn't happened--I left it vague to mean either move house or move my body [i.e. exercise], but neither's really come to pass)

So there we go...20 things for oh-10! Can't wait to get started...hoping for a busy & bustling & energetic year!!!

xoxo!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

11th Hour Christmas Request

Dear Santa,

I had a post all written about Christmas blues...not blue about Christmas, but getting down on myself w/ some guilt about not being in the "gift giving" spirit, etc, etc.

However today I am in a fantastic mood & have called bullshit on all that guilt-crap & just ready to enjoy the little bit of holiday festivities I am inviting in.

I not big on the whole spending/buying spirit that seems to be what the holidays are mostly about...I don't make a list of wants to give to my family & friends, and in fact, I ask that nobody feel obligated to get me anything. But this year, I want to make a list to Santa himself...for a couple of things that cannot be bought in the stores or even online (gasp, is there anything that can't be bought online?!)

So this year, I make a last-minute, Christmas Eve request to the jolly man in red:

1) the courage to follow my dreams & believe in myself: in work, in love, in life;

2) the opportunities to make new friends & nuture the friends I'm blessed to already have;

3) and something akin to one of these wouldn't hurt either:


xoxo!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

tuesday inspiration (on Thurs)

yummy coffee pic, by Susannah Conway

You know you read too many blogs each day when you dream about blog people you don't even know....geesh!

Some fun links I've been checking out this week:

Notpaper (a blog about collage)

Hula Seventy (photography & general sillyness)

Postcards from... (photography, poetry)

In other news, there might be something to this no-coffee thing (today is day 4 of the de-coffee-ing process)...it's the final frontier in trying to get my groove back. So far gone are: gluten, dairy, sugar, booze...only thing left is my lovely, delicious AM coffee. Oh how I will miss you dark mistress of morning! Nothing can replace its thick, rich, smooth groove, but I have just found a lovely stand-in...and if all goes well, I will treat myself to an electric kettle to add to the enjoyment.



Kettle or not, it'll be worth it if the preliminary trend continues: Tues night I had a smidge of an inkling of a passing thought about the Park (i.e. exercise) and this is huge people. Then last night I actually broke out some paper and glue and paint & started on some backgrounds...for collage maybe or perhaps they'll end up in an assemblage. Who knows?! Point is, I had the motivation to get it out AND I put on some music & got my boogie going while I did. It's feeling good to feel the rumblings return. To be continued...

xoxo!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

i'm not mistaken

me at Caernarfon Castle, 2009


I read this line today from writer Ann Lamott:
You have to make mistakes to find out who you aren't. You take the action, the insight follows: you don't think your way into becoming yourself.

I've made some mistakes in my life...oh boy, have I. But who hasn't, right? And for some reason I have chosen to berate myself about yet another bad choice made rather than seeing it as "okay, I can check that off the list."

Often I have cursed my decision to move to Houston from Austin 8 years ago...I have blamed alot on that "mistake." But the truth is, yes some not great things have transpired here & I suffered one of the greatest betrayls/heartbreaks of my life followed by a few others & one disappointing abandonment and some other shitty little happenings. BUT also alot of really great things have happened that wouldn't have otherwise.

I wouldn't have had the need to learn to travel alone (thus never going to St. Thomas and DC and Costa Rica and UK to finally meet my penpal of 20 yrs) or been forced to find an outlet for my abundance of alone time, which means I probably wouldn't have had the opportunity to be mentored, hands-on, in metal work & most likely wouldn't have subsequently found my art, had an art show and connected with some great artists online. I wouldn't have met some of the wonderful souls who've made living in Houston doble......and I could go on & on. But the point is, had I not made the "mistake" of moving to Houston, I don't know what experiences I would have missed out on.

So the truth is, I learn more about myself when I try something, anything than when I sit back wondering (i.e. overanalyzing) what I should/shouldn't try next.

Must keep remembering this when the "what-if" gremlins start doing their dance...and put in Sliding Doors for an afternoon watch!

xoxo!

Saturday, December 12, 2009

CFS + PMS = MIA

A.M. inspiration, inspired by record the day

So last weekend I got pretty down on myself about the chronic fatigue of my Chronic Fatigue...and how I feel that it's keeping me from doing the things I dream about doing or even the mundane daily things I need to be doing. With alittle help from my ol' pal PMS, I had a wee pity party about the fact that I'm 38, single & kid-free & this should be a time when I'm living life with gusto. Then I got on: what if this is IT...what if there's not a fix, what if I'm like this forever, what if I never again to return to an energetic, joyful, active woman???

But I quickly decided that all that wasn't going to get me anywhere either. Sooo I'm keeping my chin up and moving forward, cause really that's what I can control right now.

xoxo!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

doing your dream

write out loud, assemblage by me

I've been talking alot about dreams lately...and not the in-your-sleep, what-the-hell-was-that-about kind, but rather the wide-awake-in-your-authentic-self kind. I guess it's because not only am I actively attempting to tap into the power of intention--putting in out there so that it manifests for you--but also trying to wrap myself around what exactly it is that I want to be/do with my life.

I've been feeling a growing sense of it all passing me by lately. I don't know if it's from my CFS making me feel so damn useless or the fact that I'm creeping ever so close to 40 or the fact that I've chosen not to have children. But I'm restless...and searching for whatever it is that will settle this feeling of not living up to my potential.

There are certain things that I secretly wish I could be/do, but that I not-so-secretly know I won't likely invest in making them happen. Like becoming a professional dancer (ballroom would be awesome, but just being able to move beautifully in any capacity would be great). Or speaking mulitple languages fluently (French, German, Spanish would be enough). Or chucking it all to be a do-gooder in foreign lands.

But beyond the list of truly (for me) pie in the sky pretend wants, there are a whole slew of could-be-possible-if-I-could-just-figure-IT-outs. And by IT I mean the one (1) (singular) thing that is doable, and that I'm in love with enough to bust my ass at it, and that can earn me a living all at the same time. And I'm okay if it's not 1, singular thing...maybe it's a tightly knit combination of 2-3 things...but I want it to an obvious grouping, not baker/furniture maker/artist/dog trainer/writer.

And dammit, I'm going to keep rambling about it til I figure it out.

xoxo!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

to dream the impossible dream

pearls of wisdom, assemblage by me

One thing I've been noticing is that when I read other people's dreams or goals or wishlists online, I always think "how cool" and "right on--go for it" and "what an amesome idea." I never think "how stupid...good luck with that...whatever sister...dream on."

Now keep in mind, I don't know these people personally, but when I read their goals or dreams, whether it's to own a house in 5 years, design for [fill in the blank of some giant store or magazine], move cross-country/internationally, leave their high-paying coporate job, launch a new line of products, open a store or whatever the myriad of wonderful, creative ideas that people have, I always think it sounds so doable...for them.

Yet I can see, from my own experience & from how I hear other people blushingly reveal their own, that we often times don't come to our own dreams the same way. Many of these folks hesitantly reveal their dreams, nervous to put it out there for fear of scrutiny or looking foolish maybe or seeming too full of themself. Because I guess, so often times, what we hear in our own heads around our dreams are the "yeah whatevers" instead of the "go for it's." But to the unbiased outside observer, the dreams sound tangible & real & possible & attainable.

So maybe we, and I really mean I here, need to look at our dreams like an unbiased observer...believing it's doable from the get-go. Because why shouldn't it be?!

xoxo!

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

tuesday inspirations

today's AM creativity...inspired by record the day...something I'm going to start doing to give me a jolt of creativity each day...we'll see how it evolves


OK OK...trying to get outta the funk. And to do so, I've come up w/ some recurring goals for myself. The first of which is going to be "tuesday inspirations."

I spend so much time surfing blogs...I mean, it's ridiculous really. No, I don't get paid to read blogs...but c'mon, the reality is I'm getting paid while reading blogs. I mean, shouldn't that be a job in itself? I'm sure it is for someone out there who was clever enough to create that job for him/herself....I'm sure someone at Artful Blogging has that title, for instance.

I have a list of daily blogs I read, well daily. I don't do RSS feeds because honestly I've been too lazy to figure out what those actually are. So instead, I peruse each & every of my designated blogs every.single.day in hopes that something new has been posted (I like the anticipation of waiting for the page to load). My list of "daily blogs" grows & even as much as its grown (I really do need to count the # of them I check regularly), I still go through them way faster than I'd like. Luckily blogs tend to veer off into that rabbit hole of blogland, allowing me to find new & different (& sometimes alike) blogs to fill the other 7 hours of my work day.

So for tuesday inspirations I will chronicle the newer ones I find. Maybe they don't make it to the "daily blog" bookmarked list (or maybe they do), but either way, I find them entertaining or capitvating or inspiring enough to dig passed the first page...if only for a day. I'm also trying to get better at posting comments on the blogs I peep.

Today I'll highlight some photo girls I enjoyed spending time with today:

Hippy Urban Girl

Sticking To The Point

Chookooloonks

My Polaroid Blog

Stay tuned for a couple of other flashes of goal inspiration...maybe like "friday fortunes" and/or "sunday self portraits." Stay tuned...who do I think I'm talking to?! It's just me in here!

xoxo!

PS: I did take my Holga out w/ me while walking the dog & snapped a couple of shots. I've been procrastinating on this & I'm happy to report some baby steps here.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

joy, how you allude me

Well what started out as a promising day on Saturday, turned on me as usual. The spark of morning energy was good...I pulled down the Christmas boxes from the attic, turned on some fun, traditional Christmas tunes, and set about decorating my little 4' tree (the same one I've had since my first year in college...20 years ago...eek.). I was in a good place...

And then it. just. all. stopped! Not sure if my CFS kicked in, or if an IM conversation with a certain someone overseas put me off, or if I ate something that brought my system down (too many gluten-free, sugar-free, dairy-free cupcakes). But I was a lousy mess of laziness the entire remainder of the day. I watched countless hours of random telly...including close to 10 hrs of The Good Wife (which is really good by the way). And by 2:00 I was already starting to feel the depressin of stewing in my own lethargy on such a lovely day (something I'm unfortuantely not all that unfamiliar with). I even texted a friend about maybe getting out that night, going bowling actually, in an attempt to circumvent myself to do some thing. But later I recanted, as there was no way I was up for doing anything, let alone getting out & about.

Sigh...it's so frustrating & rather baffling. And today I still have a bit of a hangover of it all & am not starting the day off with much enthusiasm, esp with the grey skies outside to greet me. After struggling w/ this up & down nonsense for the better part of the last 2 years, I'm beginning to think that joy insists on alluding me.

xoxo!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

it's gonna be a good day


It's a Saturday morning & I'm feeling unusually motivated, (slightly) energized, a good kind of restless. Maybe it's the snow we got here in Houston yesterday and the super chilly morning, all sparkly with frozen car hoods and roofs as the morning landscape. Maybe it's another week of no sugar & not spoiling it by having just one drink on Friday night.


Whatever it is, I hope to ride it for as long as it will pull me along...and take advantage for a change by doing things that make me feel good, give me joy, and let alittle happiness fill the air around me.


My goals today are to make some art (would like to start on my pendant for this project), put up the Christmas tree, and get out in the chilly air to snap some pics. Ohhhh it's going to be a good day!


xoxo!

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

keeping my eye on the prize

"she kept her eye on the prize" assemblage by me

I'm trying to keep my eye on the prize these days, but to be perfectly honest, I'm not entirely sure what that prize is anymore. My head is still swirling with ideas & doubts & uncertainties & blocks.

I had my 4 days of freedom from the cube for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend...a time I had been anticipating to start back in on my art work full force, uninterrupted in my newly organized workspace. Oh how fabulous it was going to be. Know what--I didn't do dick! I mean I painted a bird on a mixed-media canvas that I started a kazillion months ago. It (the bird) came out unexpectedly good, but still...I didn't finish the damn canvas. I laid a few found objects next to 2 barely started boxes, but I didn't affix or construct anything to take it to the next level of doneness. I pulled a few pages out of the white page directory to use in a piece that's been burrowing in my brain for about a year now, but I have yet to put anything into a concrete form for it.

What is my f*&#ing problem?! Is art not really where it's at for me? Is it like my writing where I have a bundle of half-started stories & fancy ideas that span the better part of 15 yrs, not to mention a writing degree I received in 1993? I've blogged about it before--the grasping, the reaching, the trying to find something, my thing that will quiet the nagging creativity in me...the voices that tell me to do more, be more, find your niche, your passion, your calling, your destiny...it's out there, keep going, keep trying, you'll get there. The more I grasp, the more it seems to allude me.

Or am I fooling myself? Am I reaching for something that's not there? Or atleast not out there? I got an education in writing. I taught myself art. I have my eye on this class & that e-course, hoping I can find that nugget of knowing somewhere along the line. Is it okay that I flit here and fly there? Maybe it is. Maybe it's a waste of time. How can I keep my eye on the prize when I'm not sure if it's behind door #1, 2, or 3?

xoxo!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

giving thanks

Eadie...my favoritest buddy

Thanksgiving is mostly associated with eating turkey, gathering with family, and football. Today I am at home, by myself, which is fine--it's my choosing. And while I'm perfectly content with that because family-hoopla isn't really my thing. But I must confess, I do wish I had a partner to spend the day with...but what's new?!?

In spite of that, I am still thankful for plenty today:

Eadith Louise....my trusty 4-legged companion of 13 yrs
Healthy family & animals
Girlfriends who make me laugh & let me cry
Gluten-free baking
Blue skies & sunshine
My Jeep
Vibrators :)
Finding my art voice
The internet & all who share themselves there
A steady paycheck
Polaroids
Morning coffee
Getting to meet my UK penpal after 20 yrs
Possibilities
Scottish men in kilts
Netflix
Mani/pedi's

I could keep going & I'm sure get even sillier with it....point is, it's not difficult to get into a grateful frame of mind if you give yourself permission. And not just one day a year, but each & every day...especially the ones that feel grey & gloomy.

However, today is beautiful and bright & clear & crisp & cool. I have hours & hours to make art (although struggling a bit w/ getting going after an almost month-long hiatus) & 4 days of freedom from the cube. I mean, that alone is enough to be grateful for.

xoxo!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

sugar & spice & creating is nice

mmm, can't wait to get this & start baking

My brain is buzzing with creative cravings...so many ideas are slamming to the surface. I feel like it's a sea of little kids each with their hand up screaming "me!" "me!" "me!".

After my art show I decided to take a wee break from creating, especially as I used part of the time to get reorganized in my teeny workspace & get the rest of my house decluttered so I could actually think & breathe while at home. That's been accomplished, yet I've been sorta unmotivated in the world of creativity lately...with a faint eye on the 4-day weekend up ahead for Thanksgiving with no family obligations/plans & intending to use it for creative endeavors. But it's been a bit of a blurry goal. Nothing specific, just "make art."

My lack of creative motivation has undoubtably been due to my overall motivation--been in a bit of the dumps lately, just feeling blah as usual (and irritated that I still am). As as result (and after a cookie-dough-induced-depression all last weekend making for a useless weekend), I've decided I have GOT to get off sugar. I'm gluten-free & dairy-free, but I've found plenty of tasty "legal" goodies chock full of sugar to enjoy. Trouble is, just as I get with glutenated sugary foods, gluten-free sugary foods still mess me up. After the depression-induced gluten-free cookie dough experience, I decided that's it...no more...and I've been sugar-free for about 4 days now. And guess what--the pep is coming back to my step & the creative juices are starting to churn & flow again. So much that I feel a bit flooded just now...assemblage, mosaic, writing, photographs, jewelry, xmas ornaments, furniture restoration...I mean, it's just 4 days off...where do I start?!

So I'm going to give sugar-free a new chance...especially if I can still enjoy yummmies made in a slightly different way. I've been sugar-free before...in fact, I abstained from sugar for 3 whole years & was better for it, but the contast deprivation was depressing in & of itself sometimes. I'm really looking forward to getting this book (hopefully before Thanksgiving weekend, so I can treat myself to something nice) & see if an alternative sugar* diet might be a happier medium than all or nothing and I sure hope so. I'll report back what I come up with...both in the oven & the workshop!

xoxo!

*when I say alternative, I'm not talking chemically sugar substitutes either--I'm talking natural sweetners that have a lower glycemic index & don't jack w/ my brain in crazy ways.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

missing kissing


You know that soul feasting, mouth watering, lip devouring kissing that only happens when the passion & the partner come together in a hungry dance of unquenchable union?!

I've only had 2 partners who have been my ulimate kissing twin...whose kisses were so all-consuming that we could carry on in a lip embrace for hours, mouths melting into each other like mercury, breathes taken in syncronicity, with a hunger to consume the other driving each oral movement. The kind of kissing where intercourse can only serve as mere punctuation to the flowery prose written in kisses.

Yeah, I miss that...

xoxo!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

be still

be still, assemblage by me

It's not unreturned love, from a certain someone, that hurts, Katherine. It's just that sometimes the "thing" you're focusing on, keeps you from feeling all the love that others are sending you.

Especially me, me, me - The Universe
PS: In other words, Katherine, the more it seems that "love" hurts, the more you can be sure it's something else.


I thought today's Notes from the Universe was ironic given yesterday's blog post. Thanks Universe!


Also, now that I'm organized in my little art-making area & enjoying the unclutteredness of my house overall, I'm starting to look forward to using my Thanksgiving 4-day weekend time off to start diving back into making some art. Could mean the clutter & chaos come back out yet again, but I'd like to try to manage it better this time around, see if I can't keep it from taking over the entire house for a change. We shall see...

Funnily enough, I've been daydreaming about these little mini-collage/vision/inspiration cards that I ran across at record the day and I'm itching to figure out how I can incorporate something similar either into my artwork or just my daily creativity. Again, we shall see...
xoxo!

Saturday, November 14, 2009

the lonelies

very cool fountain (name unknown), Birmingham, UK

Been gripped with loneliness lately. And not necessarily the kind from not being around people--while I can be a bit of a loner (by choice), I'm around people at work & I have friends whom I see on occassion; however, even in the midst of these options of people, I still feel quite lonely & choose more often than not, to spend my time alone.

I'm definitley lonely for someone in particular. Sometimes I'm lonely for anyone in general. I have a love I haven't seen in 2 yrs. It's complicated & I won't go into the details or analysis of why it's been 2 whole fucking years. Suffice it to say, there is someone whom I miss deeply & daily...for hundreds & hundreds of days now. It's been hard to hold on, yet equally hard to let go because there's still a love that flows both ways, but circumstances (and perhaps some stubborness and/or reasons unknown to me) have kept us apart.

I have been gentle with myself (maybe too gentle at this rate), allowing myself to let go alittle at a time, yet somehow I still cling to those future hopes & dreams I created in the past....before 2 years became my reality. I've even allowed myself a very brief tryst with someone & tried to nurture thoughts of perhaps finding another to love. It's been hard. I've been slow to release my heart & I think because of this, I subconciously keep myself in a state of loneliness...lonely for him as well as lonely for someone who's not him.

Most days I just want to be wanted. Some days I'm convinced I only want to be wanted by him. And on a few rare days, unlike today, I'm confident that it'll all even out & I will find someone I don't have to long for.

ps: it probably doesn't help that today is his birthday.

xoxo!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

comparison vs inspiration

she often came unhinged, [SOLD] assemblage by me

It's easy to get caught in the swirls of comparison...to others' work, situations, successes (perceived or real)...for those who have gone before you or maybe even alongside you but who've gotten maybe more attention than you.

I spend alot...and I mean ALOT...of time online reading blogs. {yes, I know "a lot" is actually 2 words, but I think it looks better as 1} I read through blogs of those who do similar artwork that I do. I read blogs of those who do things I wish I could do. And I also read blogs of those who do all sorts of stuff in between...food, lifestyle, gardening, decorating, writing, photography, fashion, inspiration, animals, ecology, etc, etc. There are a kazillion out there, as any blogger knows.

I spent alot of time in a haze of comparison as I was figuring out how to be an artist & trying my hand at blogging while trying to determine the point of each. I've since realized there's no room for envious comparison. And really what these glorious people are doing is inspiring me to be better, to try harder, to reach deeper & dream bigger. The voyueristic quality of blogs lets me know I'm not alone, even if I feel like it 99.9% of the time. But really that I'm not alone in my struggles, my desires, my roadblocks, my internal chatter, or even my ability to achieve. I used to get mired down in comparison--even to people doing things outside of anything I ever intended to do (because dammit most of the times I want to do it all). I would be envious of what they were doing & how well it seemed to be going for them & how easily it seemed their successes were coming whenever they'd simply seem to ask for it, and on & on.

But really I've learned to turn that comparison into inspiration...to be inspired by their gone-bef0re-me status and the fact that they achieved what they set about & asked for. It gives me the extra boost to know that if I keep putting one foot in front of the other, I too can achieve what I'm setting out for (even if most days I'm not entirely sure what exactly I'm aiming to achieve) and also start getting things that I ask for.

Take my artwork: I asked for an outlet for my creativity & I stumbled into the wonderful world of assemblage. I asked for something to "do" with my artwork (instead of it just sitting around my house), and I was given an artshow (where I was able to sell 7 of the 9 pieces I displayed). This is how it happens--this also seems to be mostly how it's happend for those who've gone before that I read about day in & day out (because trust me, I've gone back & started at their beginnings to see where they've come from).

So I choose to be only inspired instead of envious...and to be ever so grateful for those who've gone before (in whatever way they have) and been brave enough to share their experiences (both good & not so great) along the way via their blogs.

xoxo!

Monday, November 9, 2009

clearing the clutter

I wish I had befores, but here are the afters of my little art studio re-org space. It's the first room you enter when you come thru the front door & having it so cluttered & junky was not a comforting or welcoming way to enter my home.

I'm hoping I can keep it kept nice & neat even when I'm knee deep in creating and making stuff. It's just so nice to be free of the visual chaos all over the house (well my dining room still has some things scattered on the table that need sifting through). As so often happens when I embark on any of my annual cleaning sprees (no I'm not a very devote housekeeper--I mean I try to clean more regularly, but I'm very lazy about it), I get that sense of accomplishment and wish it was enough to remind me not to let things get junky as the days go on & the projects get started, etc, etc. Sorta like exercising: when you do it, you're glad you did & can't believe you left so much time pass where you didn't...it's a theme in my life: cleaning, exercising, eating right. Don't get me started...


I must remind myself that the creativity flows more freely when I'm not having to function over & around & underneath piles. But I also have to give myself a break & know that when the creativity is flowing, shit starts flying around & piling up & getting crazy because I can't break the cycle to pick up after myself every other minute while I'm making art. And that's just part of the process...for me anyway.

xoxo!

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Re-Org '09 and avant garden

"avant garden" mixed media assemblage (sold), by me

Thought I'd start posting some of the close-ups from the pieces from the show. I've been pretty knackered ever since...guess the CFS is acting up after that week of high adrenaline of getting it all together.

Since then & thanks to the generosity of my mother, I have been focusing my efforts on Re-Org '09. I got some new shelves from Ikea for the studio space to a) provide more work room and b) more storage capacity. I spent an evening assembling the darn things. Then another night clearing out the studio space so the shelves could go in. Another night starting the migration of the now-wayward other furniture items into other areas & uses around the house, plus re-migrating art things back into it's new space. And now with the weekend, I'm really diving into the studio itself to get it all organized & all the bits collected from around the house. It's going well, but I've hit a bit of a wall since I've been up since 4:00 doing it.




I wish I would have taken a "before" shot of the studio space, but alas, I was so eager to make it all better that I forgot to snap one (i will post "afters" since I promised mom I'd show her how it turned out). Needless to say, I know what the difference is & that's really all that matters. Plus who would have thought that organizing my studio space would mean that my utility room got a much-needed revamp, I will be able to eat on my dining table again, and that I repurposed other furniture items into much more functional roles in other rooms?!

It's a really good feeling, even though I'm not 100% complete yet, to get this massive undertaking underway & reclaim a clutter-free (or mostly anyway) house! Yay me & thanks mom!!!

xoxo!

above assemblage constructed using: thrift store frame, spoon, wire, tin & found bits of random hardware assembled to look like flowers, wax, bits of vintage paper & modern cardstock.


Tuesday, November 3, 2009

post-show

me in front of my pieces, 3117 White Oak, Nov 1, 2009

I think the art show was a success! I had alot of support from friends & family coming out, and had a nice time visiting with the other exhibited artists. Plus, I ended up selling 7 of my 9 pieces before it was all said & done (granted it was mostly by said friends & family, but still), a success none the less. I got some great feeback from strangers too...including other artists, so I feel like my pieces were well received even by those not required to ohh & ahh!

I didn't feel as sad to see them "go away" as I thought I might. Of course, I haven't actually packed them up to send to their waiting homes yet, so perhaps I'll get a smidge of sadness upon saying the final goodbyes. I'm happy though that they will go where they can be appreciated. I am also glad my mother bought one of my favorites, so it's staying "in the family" and I will see it again! :)

So now what? I have new ideas in my journal & some partiallly started, but I have zero creative energy at the moment. And I need energy...for cleaning up. My house is a complete & chaotic disaster area. I have art supplies & misc art crap strewn about in virtually every room of my tiny house, making it feel all the tinier. I was fortunate to be able to go out & buy some new storage shelving, etc. to reorganize my studio space now that the madness of finalizing those 9 pieces is complete; however, the studio needs to be cleared of all its contents first, the shelving assembled & installed in the studio area, and every little cluttery thing divided and organized and stored within the new set up.

Did I mention I have zero creative energy right now. While the re-org is all so very needed & way overdue, it's all feeling very overwhelming because the truth is, I feel all kinds of chaotic inside & out lately. I haven't been taking very good care of myself lately. I've been allowing myself to walk that familiar Russian roulette with things I've already proven to be harmful to me & my well being. And because of this, I've been feeling my chronic fatigue coming back to the surface in a way I haven't felt in awhile now. I've been laying off my supplements, thinking I was beyond them, but have started now to feel puny again. I haven't been exercising & I've been getting lax w/ my g-free food options & sugar & caffeine. I feel heavy & achey & slow, both physically and mentally. I am exhausted & tired & run down all at the same time. I'm not eating well or sleeping all that great either. It's the usual vicious cycle of personal unwellness & I'm stuck on the hamster wheel of non-self-care.

So for right now (and maybe til year's end after which I hope to embark on that writing e-course & the self-seeking photography course) I need to focus on taking better care of myself...loving myself, treating myself with kindness & gentleness & refueling my creative fires as I forge on into this creative life.

xoxo!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

momentum

my new Holga & first glasses, by me



The above pic has nothing to do with today's post (not like all the pictures ever do anyway), but it just so happened I got my new Holga (even though I said earlier I had a crush on her) & my first-ever specs on the same day this week.

What's really on my mind is momentum--or lack thereof at the moment. I've been preparing for my first art show coming up this Sunday (today is Tuesday eve) & I still have some last-minute finishing touches to put on 2 pieces. I'm having a REALLY hard time using my time towards finishing them. Over the last month, since I found out about this show, I've been busting my butt to finalize many pieces that have sat stagnant for the better part of this past year, so they'll be ready for the show. I have made some brand new ones in that time as well. But I'm feeling tapped out, I guess...just before the finish line.

This happened to me during college too. My very last semester of my senior year, I was so sick & tired of writing, but during those final months before graduation, I had one more written piece due every day it seemed. I mean there's alot of writing in college, but getting my degree IN writing, meant that was just about all I did that last year. I was so burnt out on writing, that I acutally started turning in pieces about how sick I was of writing. By the time graduation came & I got a 9-5 paying job behind a desk in an office building, I told everyone who would listen that if I never had to write creatively again, I'd be fine. (I didn't dare consider market studies and sales proposals creative). Yet today, I wish I hadn't let so much time go by without making an effort to write. The muscles feel like they've atrophied on me because I've lost touch with so much of what I cultivated during those grueling final years in my writing program.

I'm feeling bits of all that stirring now with my art work. And I don't want to feel that way, but it's the truth (at this very moment anyway). With this being my first art show & me still being relatively new to creating this type of art (barely 2 yrs now), I don't know if this is "normal" to want to pack away the paints and found objects because I'm actually rather sick of looking at all the clutter. Just like I don't know if, for writers, it's similar when they've finished that novel or published that collection of short stories and cannot get far enough away from the laptop or writing notebook or sentence structure.

Do all creatives go through this "if I never have to do this again..." feeling or is it just me trying to convince myself to give up on something else just when I get my momentum going?! I still get new ideas that gnaw at me--for both art concepts & writing pieces. I still got really energiezed when a new piece started to magically unfold in the midst of finalizing all the other half-finished ones. I still get excited to think about taking an erotic writing course at the first of the year. Maybe I just need balance--time for art with writing with photography and with rambling walks and new recipes and friends and whatever else gives me some distance from those callings that I do enjoy but that can be a bit all-consuming if not peppered with breaks and time to get reinspired.

Baby steps...I'm getting it.

xoxo!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

who, what, when, where am I???

self-explanatory, London 2009 (by me)


I've got so much I want to do, so many ideas, desires, interests. Now that I've gotten my 8-9 pieces squared away for the art show next weekend (is that even enough pieces I keep asking?), I can feel other urges vying for my attention. I saw a notice of an online writing course I've been wanting to take, which starts in January. Trouble is, I was already eyeing a sort of self-improvement course during that same time that I was hoping to take as well. Nothing says I can't do them simultaneously, but something is saying I'm better when I can focus on one thing at a time.

The assemblage work has been consuming my extra attention latley. But then of course, there are the 2 cameras I ordered that I'm still waiting to get delivered that have been gnawing at my interest from an anticipated distance as well. Each time I get an idea or a wiff of an interest, I feel that's the right one at the time. So when I read about the writing course, my nerves perked up. In fact, I stirred in bed all night half dreaming about writing, interested, excited, as if it was a reminder that that's still brewing below the surface too.

I feel a bit pulled, torn almost--what to focus on when. In addition to the things on my so-called plate like the assemblage & writing (as imaginary as it might be at times), there's also the pending to-do's: the jewelry, the photography, the knitting/sewing/felting, languages, yoga, metal, glass, collage, furniture, 1001 diy's & 515 books & magazines & websites on any/none of the above....I mean, ask me what I'm most interested in & it could vary with the day of the week.

Makes me feel a bit schizophrenic, especially on top of: the day job, the housework, the disorganization, the exercising and health seeking, the friendshipping, the dog walking, errand running, bill paying, and pay day praying. Oh and wait, and what about that thing I hear stories about called dating...right, how could I forget about the loneliness & isolation & desocialization now firmly planted in the leftover crevices of my life?

Breathe...Trust...Let go.

xoxo!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

gentleness

awesome sculpture (sadly I've no idea what it's called)
Birmingham, England by me 2009



OK, I feel like I've been a bit negative on here lately & that's something I want to do my best to stay away from. I don't want this to be a forum for bitching or moaning or grumbling--that forum is already 24/7/365 in my brain. Truth is I tend toward the glass-is-half-empty perspective of life & it's something I'm definitely working to get.away.from in my everyday & definitely on this blog & as part of my year of living creatively. I'm not just hard on myself--I can be downright brutual with myself--when people get a glimpse at this they are actually shocked at how ugly & pervasive it really is.


This creative journey is about silencing the negative reel-to-reel that is on perpetual loop in my brain (if that's even possible with an old school reel-to-reel player, but you get the idea) and instead giving space & permission for the positive messages that I want to re-record in there.


I am nervous about measuring up to the other artists at the show next Sunday, but I too have a right to be there & have my worked honored. I do wish my life was more in line with my daydreams, but my life is still good as it is and I'm grateful to be where I am in my journey. I do feel a bit lost & random & restless most of the time, but thru it, I am searching & seeking & learning & growing and how wonderful is that in & of itself?


So I want to be more gentle....with myself, with my process, and with my dreams.


xoxo!

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

my first art show

Finally, the invite for the art show went out today--I was starting to sweat it alittle bit. Now I can just sweat the actual event--all the questions of how will my stuff hold up, how will it be received, do I have enough pieces, are they good enough, will they fade into the greatness of everyone else's work, etc, etc. Gosh, why are we/I so freakin' hard on ourselves--why can't it be great enough just to be included?


"The Thin Veil"

A Celebration
of Life's Harvests, Spirits, and Saints

1 November 2009
3:00 to 7:00
3117 White Oak
Houston, Texas

A Gathering Of Photography, Painting,
Sculpture, and Assemblage By

Bert Long, Daniel Schnorr, Christy Karll Mcwhorter,
George Craig, Katherine Tucker, and Tom Kilty

xoxo!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

romanticizing

(me in 40 yrs?) Bridge North, England, by me 2009

I was relaying a daydream to a girlfriend today & she said "the change in weather always makes me romanticize things." I must romanticize all the time...the daydream I was having was specific, but not unusual for me. I dream of a different life on many levels & while I'm sure we all do, I think I internalize it beyond the romance stage & expect that it should be as I dream it in my head. The trouble is that I think I berate myself a bit for not making it so.

The daydream today was this: I'm outfitted in my favorite pea coat with a bright knitted scarf & fun fingerless gloves. Walking around Bridge North or Bath England on a crisp morning, cameras in tote, I spend the morning snapping pics of interesting architecture, gardens, and quirky people along the way. I stop at an outdoor cafe to have some hot tea and a cigarette and take my laptop out to jot down a tale that I will later send out for publication. From there I return to my cute, light & airy flat to prepare some packages for shipping from my online art shop & then rustle up a spicey stew & mashed tatties while I wait for my cute & charming British boyfriend Nigel/Ian/Malcolm to come over for dinner. We sit on the couch, under a shared blanket, to watch trashy East Enders telly and talk about our days.

door in Bridge North, England, by me 2009
love the circular glass cutouts they had everywhere


It doesn't sound sooooo unrealistic, does it? Not so unachievable in the grand scheme of life. It's not like I've got myself living in some massive French chateu or spending the day doing something extravagant and deluxe or jetting here, there & yon. My daydreams are always so doable that I tend to get subconsiously mad at myself for not doing it. And then I wonder: am I dreaming my dream or romanticizing myself out of my life?!

xoxo!

Monday, October 19, 2009

notes from the universe

costa rica, by me
"The agent, the producer, the investors; consultants, lenders, stockholders; customers, clients, fans; friends, lovers, support systems...Katherine, they have nothing to do with dreams coming true.They're simply summoned after someone's "made up their mind" to the degree that it's followed by unending action. Same with accidents and coincidences. You see, Katherine, dreams actually come true (or not), long before they can be seen in time and space.

Yeah, 'mon,
The Universe"


I love my Notes from The Universe.
xoxo!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

restlessness

ft collins, co, by me

I'm very restless inside my skin, in my bones, my brain. Thoughts fly in and inhabit my body, masking as inspiration and clever ideas while they needle and agitate me. I don't entirely know where I am, who I'm supposed to be, what I should be doing. I often hear someone else's wishes and wish they would be mine too. "Is that what I really want too," I wonder. "Is that someone I can be?" The dreams others are making real become what I see at night, masquereding as my own dreams while I sleep.

For as long as I can remember, I have felt lost, unsure, unknowing. Forever I have felt like a seeker, trying to determine where it is I belong & what it is I'm meant to be doing. Right now I feel like an animation I once saw although I can't remember where or when. It was of a figure pushing and straining beneath a rubber encasement, fighting to penetrate its way out. That is me right now--fidgety, uncomfortable and restless. I want out, I want to be free, but the rubber barrier is not giving way yet. It is as if with every push against my confinement, I am grasping for "the thing" that will set me free. "There she goes again," I imagine them saying, "trying her hand at yet one more thing (that she'll surely give up on)." But I am desperately trying to find my thing--that thing where I will I feel that I am where I'm truly meant to be, doing my soul's work, being the best me.

But I am tired of straining, pushing, grasping. I'm frustrated at myself & my life & my failed attempts of hide & seek. When is giving up, giving up & when is it surrendering to what is? They say surrender is the surest way to contentment. Perhaps I need to stop trying so damn hard to find myself, my calling, my thing. And just do life--so that the reaching & the trying no longer feel like struggling, but simply experiencing.

xoxo!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

writing your story

still life, by me

I feel like I have a story to tell. But maybe it's not the erotic anthology I think it should be. Or even the Great American Novel that everyone assumes it would be. Maybe it's not even to be told in words. I don't know entirely...not yet anyway.

The chatter in my head seems to want me to hear something. The louder it gets, the harder it is to keep inside, to keep quiet. It is with me always, no matter what I try to do to escape it. Even when I am making art, I cannot detach enough to avoid the incessant noise. Not even when I try to drown it out with laborious sweat or nature's soft sounds. The only time it feels quiet, the only time I feel present, is when I'm writing. It's something I don't do nearly enough and therefore rarely find that quiet peace of being fully here & now.

Maybe, just maybe, through writing it down--the chatter, the noise, the conflict, the rage--I can begin to hear myself again. The words. The story. What needs to be told.

xoxo!

Friday, October 2, 2009

moving & grooving

metal gate, by me


I'm in the process of contemplating some major life changes. Namely moving back to my "hometown" although it hasn't felt completely like "home" anymore for many visits back now. I've been in Houston almost 8 years (alot longer than I ever thought I would) & as much as I've bitched about this city for the majority of those years, the thought of leaving makes me alittle sad for several reasons.

The reason for the move back to Austin really is solely based on an opportunity to buy a family house for a VERY good price, which just so happens to include a large workshop/studio space (and sentimentally one that my grandfather built many years before he died). In fact, he built it for my grandmother to house her doll-making supplies, and then later for her to hold her doll classes. In a sense, I feel that I will be honoring the original intent of the space by bringing my art and eventually my own classes into it.

When I think about that aspect...and only that aspect...my heart leaps & I feel happy & inspired & insync. I have been putting out the energy to have a larger workspace & then once I nailed down my desire to combine my art with my wants to teach and help people empower themselves, the long-available house called to me out of the blue one morning as being the perfect space to make it happen.

Where I'm finding the resistance is in the logistics: the what-if's and but-how's about relocating in this economy & to a town that is notorious for low pay (both of which are the reasons I originally had to leave). How can I commit to one of the biggest financial commitments, home ownership, even for a super great price on this house a) without knowing I'll have a solid income to support it, b) with few any-kind-of-jobs even available right now, and c) without anything already saved as a cushion? Then I ask "what am I going to do with that big house...all by myself...when I can barely keep up with the little house I rent now where I can call the landlord for emergency repairs?"

But probably biggest & most frustrating (and hardest to actually admit) is knowing that leaving this city will mean saying goodbye & letting forever go of the (however faint) potential for a future with J. Mind you, it's been a future-in-waiting for about 2 yrs now & it's been a rocky & confusing wait, but I guess inspite of all of that, something somewhere (my heart) and for some reason (love) inside me has still been holding a wee shred of hope for a reunion and our happily-ever-after...which moving seems like it would require letting go of completely. Perhaps that's what scares & pains me the most--it's what stirs the most panic & what makes me want to just stay & find a way to make it all work here instead.

Now why would I trade building a future rooted in my passion & of my own creation for something that has been dangling flimsily from a thread of uncertainty for 2 years now? I wish I knew. The truth is, I could build the artistic future here or there...there really are parallel pros & cons to getting it going in either city................

Ugh, this post is pissing me off. And I could wait & not post it like this, but I want a chronicle of the frustration, so I think I will leave it at that for now & post as is & come back w/ a fresher perspective...I'm too close at the moment.

xoxo!

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

catching dreams

Dream Catcher
mixed media assemblage by me
(for D's birthday)


I've been working on a list of "dreams"...intentions really...things I'd like to do/put out into the Universe as an offering and a request for help in achieving my heart's desires.

I have been feeling very nutured by the Universe lately, so I'm trusting it more. Maybe it's because I'm not fighting with myself as much. Maybe it's because I'm trying to trust the process more. And maybe it's just because I'm allowing myself to believe in myself for a change...especially when I stop long enough to see the signs & feel guiding hands giving me nudges & thumbs-ups.

So I thought I should put my list of dreams OUT THERE...as scary as that feels even though nobody is reading my blog but me. If for no other reason that to finally be able to say: I believe in my own dreams dammit! It is by no means a static list...it's a start. Perhaps I will update it every few months--cross off & add to.

  1. earn a comfortable living exclusively thru creative/artistic means
  2. share my passion for creativity & self-empowerment/healing (conduct art therapy/workshops)
  3. find a partner to share my life withl, a man who encourages me to be my best, truest & silliest & is willing to be the same (hoping this is w/ a certain Scotsman, but open to what is meant to be)
  4. explore photography
  5. live in a unique, personalized house with a large studio/workshop
  6. live part-time in Europe (UK most likely)
  7. trust my journey and live with joy
  8. write & get published
  9. create/become part of a community of like-minded & inspiring friends
  10. nurture myself physically, allowing myself to be healthy, strong & fit
  11. learn a 2nd language (either improve my German or tackle Spanish)
  12. dance regularly
  13. cultivate a beautiful, ever-growing garden
  14. risk more artistically & dream bigger creatively
  15. show my work to the public
  16. learn to sew
  17. learn to knit and/or crochet
  18. take life less seriously
  19. take weekend/day trips


It's a small step...but every journey begins with one, right?
xoxo!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

girl crush

Dianna F+ by Lomography


I've had my eye on this cutie for about a year now. I know nothing about photography...well, not nothing, but not alot. All I really know is that I want her & I want her to show me things & I want us to be BFFs. Is that so wrong?!


xoxo!

alice in blogland

I love finding new blogs whose author's words/ ideas/images/experiences I immediately connect with. And then reading obsessively straight through to the very first post, often times back years. It might take me a couple of days, maybe a full week, but I really enjoy absorbing myself in the interesting ones & then find myself sad when I've reached the beginning & have to wait for new, current posts to come around! There have been times I've started at the beginning, but I prefer to read backwards, seeing how ideas from older posts came to be & fitting the chronology or life event puzzle together, all the while feeling like I know their successes before they do.

I rarely, if ever, reach out or comment (something I am trying to change now that I've started my own). Yet even still, these strangers keep me company in my work cube during the many days I have nothing work-related to do & long to be spending those days absorbed in my passion, earning a living in a way that fulfills me and nourishes my soul...rather than sucking my energy from sheer, mindnumbing boredom.

Soon, hopefully very soon.

Until then, I will continue voyueristically enjoying my blogger finds...inevitably falling down the rabbit hole to another & yet another remarkably talented & interesting soul...stocking up on inspiration, support, imagination and soul nutrients along the way!

Here are some ladies who've capitavated me & kept me company in the cube...and inspired me by their own journeys near & far.


  1. Susannah Conway @ inkonmyfingers
    (whom I discovered when I won a photo give-away at the next lady's site)
  2. Kelly Rae Roberts
  3. Shanna Germaine @ chapter37 (also of year of the books)
  4. Holly @ Haus Maus (also of decor8 fame)
  5. Alessandra de Souza @ gypsygirlsguide
Thanks girls...
xoxo!

Monday, September 28, 2009

fatigue is tiring

Tired, by me in Ft. Collins, CO



My intention is to use this blog to stay accountable to my creativity & not muse on about my aches & pains & general grumbles, but it's hard to separate all of that from my creative life. My creative life is my life...my creativity is affected by everything else around me, whether it's the fun swirling stuff or the icky stagnant stuff.

I've been navigating my way through some health (physical & mental) issues for the last 2+ years & this undoubtedly has colored my creativity...for better & worse. Because of it, I am tired all.the.time. And because of that, I often don't feel up to working on art...and it's not even that I don't feel physically up to it, but more mentally energized for it. The physical drain causes a mental strain...the combination of which keeps me down alot of the times, but I'm learning to find ways to work inspite of it. To find my creative force from beneath the muck of chronic fatigue & ever-looming lethargy.

The first year of struggling with these health things, I focused more on remedying the physical. I've had a kazillion tests; seen dozens of different doctors; tried various alternative techniques. I have had progress and setbacks, feelings of hope and defeat, self-pity and dusting-myself-off. Thankfully I have had art, even if it sits untouched for months on end, to fill some of those voids of uselessness that come up from not feeling capable of achieving even the basic everyday things.

It is also art that has pioneered the way to me getting out of my "professional" rut. And because of this, I have begun, just in the last few months really, to also start focusing on healing the mental as well...and partly why I decided to create this blog to help me along the way. I've had various advisors plant the seeds of the mind-body connection for years--that our very thoughts & beliefs manifest physically within our body. It only took one look in Louise Hay's You Can Heal Your Life to get a confirmation of exactly the mind/body connection going on in me currently. Two relavant ones that jump out at me:

Fatigue = resistance, boredom, lack of love for what one does.
Adrenal problems = defeatism, no longer caring for the self, anxiety.

So I am working to right the mental in hopes that the physical will follow. And I'm hoping that naming, nurturing, and then following my truth will allow the rest to right itself. I'm ready for the journey & to feeling like myself, not again, but really anew!

xoxo!

Friday, September 18, 2009

hatching a plan

So things are heating up during take 38 of my life of creativity...I feel like I've put it out there & already the Universe is rising up to meet me.

First off, a friend approached me about participating in an art show. I was dumbfounded when she approached me about it. I stopped by her place unplanned one day (with a last minute invite of course), and while we were talking she asked me if I thought it was a good idea & if she did it, would I want to be in it. Heck yeah times two, I said. I felt like it was an answer to my silent question of "what am I going to do w/ all these things I make...besides give them away to friends?" Boom...question answered...for the time being anyway. And who knows, maybe it will open the door for additional shows to follow. More to come on that.

Secondly, I had not one, but two major AH HA/EUREKA/BY GEORGE moments. The first one was after a brainstorming session I had with a trusted advisor. I was rambling through all my seemingly disconnected interests/career paths. It wasn't actually during this brainstorming session that I had the light bulb moment, but maybe 10 minutes later when I was by myself driving home from this conversation. It hit me how I could combine a couple of my top interests into one career path that I could potentially support myself financially with as well. It just gelled...together...like magic...in my mind.

So for the next week+ I mulled it over & it kept seeming consistently doable...not like some ideas where the "yeah buts" come around as fast as the initial thought. I finally said it outload to someone, and I don't know if that made it more real or what, but the very next morning while I was having coffee, a lightening flash broke through the morning mind haze & I thought "why in the hell didn't I think of that before?" The second thought was where/how to pull it together. While it hadn't been a "yeah but," I did have concerns about the "where/how"...where to house this new path idea and really, how to fund it.

Not sure if it was good coffee or divine intervention, but that morning I suddenly realized I potentially had access to a physical resource sitting unused within my own family. I made a call to see if it was an option & wasn't met with resistance or even hesitation, but rather with a positive response along the lines of "let me run it up the flag pole and see what we can put together." Sounds like the cost would be but a minute fraction of what they're offering it to others...the where/how was feeling better & better. Because it would also relocate me back to my hometown of Austin (which would just be a little cherry on top)!

I'm still waiting to see what the flag pole has to say, and it could come back differently than it started, but right now it feels promising & is giving me the motivation to keep moving forward regardless of whether I have to rethink the where & how. Feels pretty good right about now.
xoxo

Friday, September 4, 2009

gimme structure

Structure is what I need. I've been sort of aimlessly dabbling in my creativity since starting this blog, with nothing all that concrete to show for it....story of my creative life thus far. Don't get me wrong, I have some things I've created that I'm proud of, and a couple things I'm working on that I'm excited about finishing, but nothing is done & I'm not producing like I'd like to...not in a way that's eventually going to get me published or exhibited or even a solid inventory for Etsy.

I think what's lacking is discipline, deadlines, structure...it's all too "out there, somewhere, in the future" still. I had a friend inquire when he could read a short piece I've been "working on" for ages now & I realized it wasn't anymore closer to being finished (or finessed) than many months ago when he'd last brought it up. Recently, I also had another friend over lunch offer to be a "technical consultant" of sorts & offer tidbits as needed on my writing. Both of these got me feeling both inspired and anxious, but more importantly, it got me thinking that having someone waiting to read (or see) my work helps put the pressure on...makes me accountable. For instance, 2 friends' birthdays are coming up which means 2 art pieces I started as gifts need to get completed...one by next weekend, one by month's end. While it's both frustrating and motivating to have hard stops lurking, it just seems to be the way I work best. I'd like to say that I could instigate a sense of self-motivation...that I should want it enough to rise to the occassion of completing something or even just working on something for the sheer personal satisfaction of getting it done. Alas, that just does not seem to be how I'm wired to function. But there's nothing like a deadline looming or having someone egging you on to light the fire under the ass of procrastination.

So even though neither of these friends are "writers" and even though neither of them will likely be editors or critics, just having them waiting seems to be enough for now to force me to get busy. And because there might not always someone volunteering to read my work or birthdays to make gifts for (plus I'd actually like to start having real editors read my writing & have art pieces to show & sell instead of everything being given away or as reading material for horny friends), I do need to start doing it for myself...and I'm hoping setting some imaginary deadlines will give me the faux internal motivation to produce something regularly.

So to start, I've set a deadline with one of the above mentioned reader friends to have a more final draft of this elusive many-months-come-and-gone story ready to read this Sunday. It's already helped me putter around with it a bit yesterday & this morning & will give me a reason to sit & buckle down to work on it this weekend! Let's see how it works out....fingers crossed.

xoxo.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

fear

Falling to Pieces
mixed media assemblage by me


Fear is a funny thing. We think it keeps us safe, and I guess it does when true safety is really an issue. But when we use it to save us from ourselves, it can be downright debilitating and hurtful thing.

I don't know exactly when/why/how it started, but I'm now realizing that I've been chronically living in a state of fear...of what exactly I'm not entirely clear at this moment in time, but I do know it's much more pervasive in my life than anything else at this point. And I have a hard time naming it "fear," but the longer I look at it, the longer I feel it in my bones & my muscles & my gut & my heart, and the longer I try to name it with things like procrastination or insecurity or not-good-enough or illness or frustration I realize that all of it wraps comfortably within the definition of fear.

I have always been a person of great ideas, yet very few have come to be anything more than that. I have thoughts & dreams & wants & desires that stay firmly put in the cracks of my brain. I see things other people are doing & think "I can do that," but then I don't. I hear a tiny whisper in my heart & think "I want that" but don't take the steps to claim it. I can come up with a hundred reasons why I don't, but they are all actually veiled in fear.

The fear has manifested in many ways over the years...bad relationships, bad careers, bad situations, bad moves & decisions & even inaction. I think that last one is the one that eats away at me the most...inaction. Atleast with making bad decisions, I'm taking action & can stumble & fall & learn & get up. So you'd think with all the bad decisions I've made & bounced back from, I'd be a pro at just doing it & figuring it out later. But there are so many areas where inaction is the choice I make instead...I just sit, stagnant, frustrated, afraid to move in any direction. And the most infruiating part, is that it's that the things I choose to be inactive about are the things my soul is pushing me towards. Things that would probably ultimately dispell the fear & propel me toward the truest me.

So today I say fuck fear...tomorrow might be a different story, but atleast for today, fear can go fuck itself.

xoxo.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

finding friendship

me hidden in the crowd @ The National Gallery, London


I had lunch the other day with a new(ish) friend. This isn't so much news in & of itself, but what is news is the way I came away from it...and the lingering effects that spending 1 hour in someone's company has had on me.

The lunch itself was good--I had a rockin' queen of hearts salad from Beck's Prime. The company was great & while the conversation wasn't uber heavy, it was really real...honest, true, secure. We hadn't hung out in awhile & I wasn't sure if the friendship had maybe fizzled already. But the easy way we picked back up set me at ease straight away. I found myself smiling the entire time, laughing even (gasp!). I felt light and interesting, funny and understanding. I came away from it feeling like a better person and inspired to be more me.

Now I don't know about anyone else, but it's been a really long time since someone's company has inspired me to reach higher. I have a couple of friends who I walk away from feeling enriched, but with most people I know, while I might enjoy their company, I don't feel a sense of betterment for having spent time in their company. The other day...at lunch...with this person...I did. And it was a wonderful (and much needed) feeling!

Later that night, I found myself feeling swayed by that sense of enrichment...a subconcious inspiration to do better, want better, & be better kept bubbling up in my thoughts all night. A sense of my long-waning motivation started to simmer again: write more, branch out with my art more, take better physical care of myself, have more fun, be lighter in spirit. These are all things innately I want, but have been struggling to produce for myself. And who would have guessed an impromptu lunch would bring about such internal shifts?!

I'm still a bit baffled by it actually. Mostly in awe of the power of the Universe to give us exactly what we need exactly when we need it without our knowledge that we're getting it or even needing it! I'm just grateful that I clued into it (how could I not, I was a little bit high after lunch) & hope I can get some more moments like that with this very special person.

xoxo.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

time traveler

Time Traveler
made by me for my British penpal of 20 yrs

I recently met a friend whom I'd known for 20 years, but never met. We became penpals in 1989 via an ad for "get your own penpal" in the back of Rolling Stone magazine. I think for $5 one could send off for a list of international friends--you could specify nationality, language, sex, age, etc. Looking back, it could have been a rather seedy endeavor, but from my naive high school senior perspective, it seemed harmless enough. What I really wanted was a German friend to practice language, but little did I know, it would produce a long-lasting friendship...and 20 yrs later, a great vacation to western England...and beyond!

me confused in Piccadilly...Aug '09


xoxo!

Monday, August 24, 2009

hello, yellow brick road

follow the yellow brick road: The Wizard of Oz, Warner Bros.


Well week 1 of the new blog & I haven't contributed too much to it. I'm not going to fret or beat myself or of give myself the see-I-told-you-so's either. It just is what it is...and it will continue to be what I make it.

I saw Julie & Julia this weekend. Cute movie & Meryll Streep is so fantastic...and the whole story is very inspiring. Now, I'm not expecting my blog itself to do all that, but it was a fierce reminder of how putting an intention out there (even a seemingly unintentional intention) & letting the Universe work its magic is really what we are charged with doing. So that's exactly my intention with this blog...a forum to organize my ideas, knowing that by simply taking the steps in a direction, any direction, the Universe will lay the path for me to follow.

I haven't done alot this week...but I have had a wellspring of ideas that I've been capturing and nuturing and marinating and planning for. Mostly art, but some snippets of story/writing ideas too. It feels good to have the creative juices flowing & by documenting them, I am giving myself permission to explore them in due time. I cannot do it all at once & change will not happen overnight. I am slowly accepting this. But step by step, I will find my Oz at whichever rest-stop the Universe decides to construct it...I know building permits & zoning restrictions are probably a pain in the Emerald City!

xoxo!