Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ornery children

I have a writer self and an artist self. Both are curious, adventurous, tenacious and passionate. But it is like having two ornery children in my head and soul. They are constantly fighting over who rides shotgun - if I am writing, the artist is jumping up and down and whining “You need to paint and draw. The studio needs you and you need it!”

If I am painting and drawing, the writer is stomping her foot and pouting “ You never spend enough time writing. You are never going to get anything done (i.e. published)!”

And they both constantly yell “you like me better” “No, it’s me that is the passion, the calling!”

Until finally I react “Quiet, both of you!” and treat myself to a milkshake.

I love to write and I love to paint/draw/design. I can’t exist in a realm of sanity without both of them and I have yet to find a balance that keeps all of us contented.

Maybe that is the core of the adventure and the catalyst that keeps me from becoming too complacent, too lazy, as either a writer or an artist. What fun!

Sunday, September 12, 2010


Not far from my house another new mini storage facility is being built.  I have noticed that mini storage businesses are booming and are averaging 1 or 2 per neighborhood in this area.  I used a mini storage unit once during a period when I was moving from one house to another by way of a temporary apartment until the new house became available. Since the apartment was much smaller than the house, I stored seasonal and other stuff that my family could live without for a few months.  It was temporary. 

But I have to wonder as I see all these mini storage places springing up, if these are more than just temporary storage for most users.  If we have too much stuff to house in our home storage (closets, garages, basements and attics), what exactly are we holding on to and WHY?  If our STUFF is locked away in a concrete storage bunker gathering dust for years, why is it in our life to begin with?  

I admit, I have a couple of boxes in  my garage that I haven't opened or used since my last move (seven years ago)!  I have to ask myself, if I haven't needed the stuff in those boxes in seven years, why do I still have them? Do I really need all the STUFF in those boxes that are occupying space in my life?  Do I even know what is in them? 

And the REAL question is:  Does all of our stored and unused stuff represent personal baggage that we need to let go of?

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

cloudy with rain

It is a gray rainy day - remnants of tropical storm Hermine. I am glad to have a warm cozy place to eat lunch.

Recently, I watched a program on PBS about 3 musicians who were obviously very gifted. They played so beautifully that the music seemed to come from their souls, as though the instruments were extensions of their bodies - one on piano, one on violin, one on cello.  I watched them and wondered if they had had some extraordinary educational and nurturing experiences growing up, if they had some unique and rare genes that rendered them more musically gifted than the rest of us, or if they were just like the rest of us but had somehow tapped into their own passions in a way not yet discovered by the general population. Do we all have that gift inside us, we just don't let it out and nurture it?  Are we all geniuses but afraid of the power that our gifts would release?

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

a new adventure

Traditionally, Memorial Day marks the beginning of summer and Labor Day marks its end. This year it seems that the weather has shifted as well. After weeks of typical dry scorching heat, the temperatures have eased and there is just a hint of the winds of autumn in the air. OK, so it’s a little more than just a hint. Yesterday, the winds would have blown the hair off your head. As usual when the weather changes, I have the urge to rearrange the house - get the nest “ready.” I am trying to satisfy the urge with small changes and good cleaning, because I don’t want to give over my free time to cleaning up the mess that major rearranging results in, but I feel the need in my “bones” to get ready. A writer friend and I are playing with the idea of collaborating on a book - something fiction and fun, but that reflects the deep spirituality and faith beliefs we both share. A new season and a new adventure. Where will it lead us, I wonder…

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Bodacious Weekend

It is a gorgeous Saturday morning kicking off a long luxurious weekend.  I have had so much coffee this morning that I am sloshing, but wire up and ready to get to work on all the ideas racing around in my head.  And at this point in my life it is probably time to admit that I am obsessive compulsive:  when a bee gets in my bonnet, it sets up house and moves in for the long haul and pretty much takes over my life  The last several months have been the Summer of the Artist. I have totally immersed myself in my art - exploring new areas and mediums, attending a fabulous art camp, beefing up my studio and making new art friends.  It as been wonderful and theraputic. And my writing tools and notebooks have been gathering layers of summer dust and pollenwhile my mornings, evenings and weekends have been devoted to painting, cutting, glueing and drawing. However, the weather is beginning to change, the winds have shifted and fall approaches. This year instead of rearranging the house, I am hoping to channel that energy into my writing - dust the pollen and Cheerio crumbs that have collected off my tools and PRODUCE!While sports fans cheer on their football favorites, I will cheer on my project.  Go team!

Friday, September 3, 2010

Running late

I woke this morning with the headache monster. The neighbor's car alarm went off a little before 5am and the sudden jolt into reality alerted me that I needed to address the pain before it took over my whole day.  I don't know if it was the storm front that moved in last night or the pillow arrangement I was sleeping on, but the nerve in my clavacal (?) that gives me so much trouble was pitching a big fit.  I stumbled into the kitchen, switched on the coffeemaker, nuked a hot pack and applied it to my shoulder.  When the coffee was ready I collected a cupful, and settled into the Big Easy (chair) with pillows and a comforter.  Comforter?? I not only had a headache, I was cold.  The storm front.  Wow.  Stifling heat to damp chill.  No wonder I have a headache! 

Snuggled down in the Big Easy, all the lights still off, I tried to doze and sleep away the headache.  An hour later, after much shifting around, I surrendered to the fact that it was morning, switched on the lights and escalated my treatment to include some ibuprofen and an ice pack. Another cup of coffee later and I was ready to tackle the day - or the morning at least - and granted myself permission to take it slower than usual. 

The headache had subsided somewhat and I was feeling mostly functional.  Sipping cup of coffee #3, I thought about how lucky I am to live in a day and age where I have the luxuries of ibuprofen, ice packs and the Big Easy to cope with a headache.  I think about my ancestors (from whom I inhereted both the pinched nerve and the headaches) who woke up in caves, sod houses and log cabins without anti-inflamatories, ice or easy chairs.  I truly appreciate their perseverance, fortitude and sacrifices that created the cushy world I am blessed to live in!