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 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 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!!!


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:


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)'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...


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!


Saturday, December 12, 2009


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.


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.


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?!


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 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


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!


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.'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.


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!


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'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?