September 16, 2016

Friday Randomness

This post, like my brain, is all over the place today. This has not been a very productive week for me. My Sweet Guy was out of town all week and I had such plans to take advantage of the extra time but I just didn't feel well for much of the week so a lot of things didn't get accomplished. I don't talk about it much but I have some sort of, as yet undiagnosable, inflammatory issue. It's not the end of the world but it certainly gets in my way sometimes. It's the reason I was put on a gluten free diet three weeks ago. First let me say, it's not helping. Which is maybe a bit of a relief? Secondly let me say, when you go gluten free it suddenly seems that the entire world, like life itself, centers around the very thing you are now no longer allowed to have. I committed to giving it 4 weeks so, 4 weeks I shall give it, but you can bet I'll be eating gluten for dinner next Friday! Enough about that!

I did spend some quality time, on my sacred day, finishing a project that I started months ago! It's always a treat when I actually finish something. These quirky little birds, from a kit put out by Alicia Paulson soooo many years ago, so many, in fact, that I didn't even live in the Village when I bought them, are now happily keeping me company in the studio while I create.

I've spent a fair amount of time organizing this week. I guess it's all part of the change of seasons, although really I'm always a bit obsessed with being organized. This week I ordered my 2017 planner from here as well a Filofax in an effort to streamline my paper and thoughts. I also spent some time gathering the tools that will make my system pretty, because if you are going to use something every day, it might as well be pretty! This will be my third Day Designer and I can honestly say that it's been a game changer for me. I would have a panic attack at the very idea of trying to live without it.

Today has been spent cleaning and fluffing the nest for Autumn. It is such a struggle for me to add in the seasonal changes without feeling like it's too much. I just breathe easier when I see less stuff. Awfully hard to do in the kitchen and dining room where I have no usable cabinets or in the studio where I hoard all the stuff, but in the rest of the house I'm paring down as I go and trying to keep things simple while also, trying to resist the urge to box up all the leftovers and drop them at Goodwill.

It's a start and I will try to take my time figuring out what's right for this house and my apparent bent toward cozy, colorful minimalism. I will probably be shuffling things around for the next week or two. Or realistically until Thanksgiving. I do know that it's worth the effort and the internal war because when I look at this spot, I take a deep breath and sigh. I am filled with peace.

Then I walk in here and see the reality of the chaos I've created and I want to box it all up and hide in a corner with a book. It's important to remind myself that I love this homemaking thing, this creating a cozy, happy nest for my people. I only have 7 hours until my guy gets home from his trip so I should probably get back to it. I don't think that is the welcome home he has in mind. Hope you all have a great weekend. Eat some gluten for me...just don't tell me about it!


September 08, 2016

Sacred Days

Recently I told you about my plan to claim one day a week as my Sacred Day, to guard this day fiercely as something just for me. Well, it seems this may have been one of the most brilliant things I've ever done for myself. I have claimed Wednesdays as my day, going so far as to block it off in my calendar. You can probably guess how much I look forward to this day.

I thought I'd share a bit about what this day looked like for me yesterday. They aren't all the same but this one is pretty representative of them. I am home from the carpool run by 8am, fix myself a nice breakfast (sautéed veg topped with an egg) to fuel my creativity, put on a little makeup, fix myself a chai latte and head to the studio.

I light a candle and use my sound machine app to play a thunderstorm through my bluetooth player. If the weather outside won't cooperate, I will create my own, after all, this is the room most conducive to using your imagination. I put on a favorite playlist and spend some time book flipping while I plan a couple of sewing projects, before moving on to some doodling.

Next there is a little "rustic" papier mache bird painting. And repainting. There is no good or bad here. Just permission to play and see what happens. No fear of failure. It's all important. I give myself permission to not always love the final product but to always love the the process.

A quick lunch of reheated leftovers (a stuffed pepper), eaten in the studio while I watch some videos and practice my hand at more drawing. The time is racing by and I can't believe it's already after 2. I take a break to do some yoga on my mat right in front of this table, before hopping in the car to sit in the carpool line.

Really, the entire day centers around being in this room. On this day anyway. Maybe next Wednesday will feel different and I will need something else. But probably not. I'm back home by 3:30 and apparently not quite ready to give up this time even though my Sweet Man is already home from work. I figure since he is on a conference call it is a good excuse to push on although that's all me and my girl guilt needing to justify this time for me since I know he would encourage me to stay in here as long as I wanted. I'm slowly chipping away at that guilt thing but I have in no way mastered it.

I decide to work on my Visual Journal which is really just a grown up way of doing a favorite kindergarten past time. I mean, I'm not the only one that never outgrew scissor and glue playtime, right? I get so caught up in the colors and patterns that I don't even realize it's almost 6pm and I haven't even started dinner! Time passes so differently when I am in the studio. I was honestly baffled and a bit startled to realize how late it was but my lovely family doesn't even say a word. To be honest, it has become our practice on Wednesday for my guy to bring home takeout for dinner. Bless that man for always being so supportive. He's a smart guy because he instinctively knows what I am just figuring out, that if I give myself this gift of time and space, it pays off in a a big way for the rest of my family in a happy, fulfilled Momma. Of course the thankful, loving texts he invariably receives from me on Sacred Day, probably don't hurt!

Here's the thing about Sacred doesn't have to be every week. It doesn't even have to be an entire day. Your day doesn't have to look anything like mine, in fact it shouldn't! What rejuvenates your spirit is likely different than what rejuvenates mine. I would encourage you to look at your schedule and find a day or an afternoon that you can claim for your own. Find a babysitter, send your husband and kids to lunch and a movie, schedule a vacation day from work or even better yet CALL IN SICK because taking care of ourselves is a kind of wellness practice and one that we should all make a priority.