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Showing posts from February, 2013

feb.28 {business and pleasure}

It's been about 8 or 9 months since I have done any "work", which means having parlayed any of my creative pursuits into dollars.  At first the shift was simply out of necessity, then it became more of a choice as things slowed down to a crawl for the last quarter of 2012.  Since I have been in this new space and writing and creating again I have been thinking a lot about my place and relationship with business. I can remember as a kid making baskets out of brown construction paper and selling them to very kind neighbors at the end of our driveway, and growing up I have always had ideas for small (and sometimes big) entrepreneurial endeavors.  Sometimes it was because it was just fun, other times it was because the idea had me completely inspired and captivated, and for others it was mostly a happy way to make a bit of an income - the best ideas were a little of each.  Here's a list of all the businesses I've dabbled in over the years: * selling my art and crafty

feb.25 {faith & desire}

 {Faith & Desire ~ 16x20 mixed media on canvas} I've had this phrase in my head as of late (originating from this Matt Nathenson song which I also can't seem to get out of my head), so it was apropos that it became the name of this painting I just finished yesterday.  Those words perfectly anchor me in this moment, right here and now:  Faith in my own hands which are feeling their way and reaching into new places every day, it seems. in my creative voice coming through with a certainty that feels incredibly grounding after having dabbled in art and wandered around creatively my entire life. in the emotional clarity I have been feeling lately. in Love, that is surfacing in small and big ways in every direction. in happiness. in doors opening at just the right moment and revealing the next step no sooner then when I decide to step through. in my own unique truth.   Desire to be sure my boys know how much I love them, see them, and believe in who they are even as I stumble o

feb.24 {truth or dare}

Remember as a teenager playing Truth or Dare?  That game where someone would asked a question, usually a very probing question, and you would either answer honestly or, accept a dare which was probably equally as embarrassing to follow through with.  Depending on the question, which generally revolved around boys and crushes and kissing, the options would be momentarily weighed, can I say this out loud or do I need to keep this one a secret?   Either way you were out on a limb sharing a juicy personal tidbit for public consumption, or not, leaving your friends to make their own assumptions and then feeling a bit regretful that you couldn't bring yourself to fess up - at least that is how I felt.  I think I always wanted to tell the truth whether I did or not, or maybe it was more that I always wanted to feel like I could tell the truth.  Those times when I did, I remember that potent feeling of revealing a daring nugget of information to a huddle of snickering girls that felt both

feb.23 {rhythm & blues or PMDD and other stories}

Today marks the completion of the first full 3 month cycle of a medication I was prescribed to help with my recent diagnosis of PMDD .  Part of putting all the pieces together for me recently has been about addressing my mental health.  It is also why I was MIA from the creative world for most of last fall. It wasn't the first time.  I have been running on this hamster wheel of ups and downs for as long as I can remember, the first real depressive episode happening in my early teens.  I have, through the years, tried to get some clarity and a handle on things by utilizing tools like medication or talk therapy, which sometimes helped and sometimes did not, though never for any real length of time.  There have also been several inaccurate diagnosis along the way in hopes of finding best how to treat the symptoms.  That's all I ever wanted, was to not feel the way I often did. Mental health is such a strange thing.  It is objective in some ways, but everyone's personal experie

feb.20 {i want to remember...}

I want to remember the way you feel in my arms, small yet solid wrapped tightly around with little limbs hugging, and a sweet smelling smile tucked snug into my neck. I want to remember the light we found in this corner of the universe, surrounded by sea and steadiness and the four of us held together by the certainty of love. I want to remember the stories we shared amidst a nest of blankets and how every word stitched our worlds together, as the two of us explored imaginary lands far far away. I want to remember the freshly pressed smell, the weight in my hands, and the fluttering of pages with words and images staring back at me saying, "Yes, you were here, and you offered sparks that somehow caught fire." I want to remember the thrill of a dream, the persistence of desire, and the way passion feels like a fearless elixir of holding tight and letting go. I want to remember the path of kindness, all the open souls and their willingness to share which lit my way into the inf

feb.19 {at the intersection of sexuality and motherhood}

Confession:  For the last several years I have been hanging out in the creative community as well as exploring the sex-positive community.  In both, I have taken some interesting classes, gone to a couple of retreats and conferences, and have met some really amazing people.  It's been a parallel journey in two very different realms, one on the surface and the other mostly underground but now those two paths are starting to converge.  It's both exciting and scary, and is bringing up a lot of questions for me as a woman and as a mom especially. It is tricky to balance simply being an artist, a mom, a wife, etc. but there are a zillion conversations out there to help us navigate - but to toss in this element of interest I have in sexuality and relationships is really a curve ball because there are zero conversations (at least that I have come across yet) about how to integrate that.  If I had a side hobby of being a zumba instructor or reading tarot cards it wouldn't be an iss

feb.18 {the perks of being a wallflower}

  {Here - 20x20 mixed media on canvas} There was a tweet floating around yesterday about the yuckiness of jealousy, and when I read it I realized that there are so many of us who feel like a wallflower.  It made me think of all the cliques in high school, and then about the cliques in any community...because, let's face it, there are definitely the 'cool kids' wherever we hang out, even as adults. In the back of my mind was Liz's post , and how it mirrors so much of how I feel (how I always have felt, actually) and it made me want to dig deeper.  The odd thing is that I am often seen as part of the popular crowd, just like it was in high school.  While I do make connections with people who tend to be seen as the leaders of a community because I find them interesting and inspiring, I still always feel on the periphery of that clique and I wondered, not for the first time, what that meant.  It doesn't mean that my friendships and relationships are not genuine, they a

feb.17 {love your sacral chakra}

Someone recently told me that both creativity and sexuality are both influenced by the sacral chakra (the orange, and 2nd chakra).  This immediately struck a nerve for me because it is exactly where I have been feeling my life and energy has been focused lately, so I did a little research.  It doesn't surprise me that these both emanate from the same origin because I've felt that connection so strong on an intuitive level for a while now.  While poking around, I stumbled upon this Chakra Test (take it and let me know where you land - I'd be curious to know!), and lo and behold my sacral chakra is the most active of the seven (at 88%)!  My root chakra happens to be the lowest (-25%) and all the others for me are balanced and open - yay! - and these results totally make sense to me. So what does this all mean?  Well, for me it means I need to watch my creative and sexual energy from getting too busy and loud to the point where I am distracted and less productive - but that&#

feb.15 {forty one truths}

1.  When I only have one wish, I always wish for the health and happiness of all my loved ones (because I worry about those things). 2.  I play Tetris to relax my brain and totally check out for a few.  And I'm really really good at it. 3.  On rare occasions I still smoke, and it makes me happy that I can whenever I want to and not worry about it becoming a habit.  4.  I worry every day that I'm not a good enough mother. 5.  Even though I'm pretty outgoing and chatty, I have a really difficult time talking about myself in any way. 6.  I've written several anonymous blogs as experiments, and it was fun - but it's more fun being real. 7.  I was recently diagnosed with PMDD and I think it is finally an accurate assessment of my mood disorder (someday I will write more about this). 8.  Jealousy is a vice I struggle with often. 9.  I've kissed a girl more than once and consider my orientation to be heteroflexible, and my husband is bi which I knew when I married him.

feb.13 {just be true}

{tote by jen lee } What's really going on around here is that there's another round of colds starting to come through.  There are far too many cupcakes in this house (of the pink fairy, chocolate marshmallow, and cinnamon variety) and there is still more cake and candy to come.  School Valentine's are in the process of being tagged and signed, and I still have a few little special things to pick up for my Valentines (all three of them) and popcorn to buy for the 4th grade party.  I know my husband is going to love his - don't click, Alex - even though we're not supposed to exchange gifts as for some reason my birthday always seems to trump the holiday, but this was just too perfect, I couldn't resist.  There is still a ton of snow on the ground and I always worry about the kids at the bus stop, but the mild temps are melting it away which is really also a shame after all that blizzard hoopla, not to mention the cool fort the kids proudly built.  Mother Nature

feb.12 {just so you know...}

I am clearly straddling two worlds these days and the two do not overtly overlap - but they do in me, so I am trying to bring them together with some heart and humor, and a little bit of bad-assery.  I want to be creative and inspiring, but I also want to be the voice of real desire and female sensibility because that's not only who I am, it is what I believe in. It doesn't seem like a popular mix, at least not out in the open, but the interesting thing is that all the posts I've written lately that address sexuality in any way are the most read posts on this blog (surprise!).  I'm certainly okay with that, in fact I am so happy that the topic resonates with so many of you, but I am also wondering why it is such a difficult conversation to have out loud.  I think I've always been the kind of person who doesn't like to skirt around things, and maybe that's why I feel okay going out on a limb a bit.  I've always been a risk taker and am fairly comfortable

feb.8 {studio makeover, finally part 2}

I realized this week that I never shared Part 2 of my studio makeover .  Sometime between last August and December things finally came together.  Let me revise that actually, last fall the studio became storage for unused clutter during my creative fallow season, midway through the makeover process.  When the muse decided to finally show up again after the holidays, I cleaned up, organized, and made this sweet little space usable and fun. The two work tables are where most of the magic happens, one boy or another usually painting or gluing beside me.  The big white, desk on the opposite wall (see above link) is a bit of crafty storage, my vintage typesetter's drawer (which I haggled down to $20 for!), my printer and where the laptop migrates to and from the dining room table, functional but not all that exciting.  On the studio table I added extra storage by filling a tiered wire rack with different sized vintage jars - a fun way to catch little ephemera so you can actually see wh

feb.6 {words written on my heart}

 {Written on My Heart ~ mixed media on canvas, 2009} From the age of about 10 I can remember writing in a diary.  I probably wrote things down even earlier as I always had little notebooks and stationary (probably of the Hello Kitty variety) as I had the same insatiable appetite for blank pages and pretty notebooks as I do now, but the first memory of really being engaged in keeping a journal was early in middle school - oh, the turmoil of teenagehood.  Once I even brought my journal to school because I was pouring words onto the pages as often as I could, and it was plucked from me and read aloud.  I learned that lesson the hard way.  From then on I kept my deepest feelings and thoughts hidden safely between pages and tucked away securely. Maybe it's a manifestation of sinking into my forties or maybe it's just a symptom of feeling this deep need to shed the unnecessary , but it feels like it's time to stop holding onto these words so tightly.  Who's really going to re

feb.4 {making love and art}

February always has me feeling really good.  Vacation is coming up.  There is Valentine's Day, which I know many think it's a silly Hallmark driven holiday but I love seeing Love around everywhere all decked out in pink and red.  I always volunteer to contribute to my son's classroom party every Valentines Day and it just adds to the festivity of it all.  Who can resist Conversation Hearts and love notes?  My birthday comes just after as well, which is pretty much a day for the kids to blow out the candles and eat cake but fun none the less.  Yes, I love you February. I plan to spend a lot of this month just soaking up all the love and sharing all the juicy moments with family and friends.  I'm thinking of making valentines this year even.  Hmm... ideas are brewing.  My muse has been hanging out with all of us these days and there is crafting and making happening in this house everyday.  This makes my heart so happy, especially because it means one less hour of the kids

feb.3 {the Daring Girl's Manifesto}

feb.1 {my brush with burlesque}

{art by carissa paige ~ The Surrealist in Me} Sometimes there’s an absolute certainty that you’ve crossed someone’s path purely because you were meant to, and that the universe and whatever else conspired to help you bump into this one specific moment in time.   It kind of started like that. I was at a bar in the city on a Monday night, an unlikely place for me to be even on a weekend, as a friend had asked me to come to his show and help out with collecting tickets and keeping his bourbon glass full.   It was a fun night even though my husband couldn’t come along, completely out of the ordinary and full of new and interesting people to chat with.   Even the MC himself, who totally had this sexy Eddie Izzard thing going on, was a fairly new acquaintance and I was happy to hang out with him and get to see him in his unabashed on-stage glory, compelling for sure.   About one and a half dirty martinis in, when the night was in full swing, someone I was laughing and chatting with popped