1. Revisiting old art journals. This can be both discouraging and enlightening. At times I find I run across pages that I want to tear out, pages that seem so far from who I am now. Of course, I don't. That would defeat the purpose of saving the journals in the first place. How could I document growth without a few ugly pages? And then there are times that I flip through these journals and find pages I love. So I am glad I save these books. And I am glad that I haven't gone through in a mad flurry and ripped out all the yucky stuff. They just make the pages I do admire seem that much prettier.
2. Loving that I let go of the worry of "creating in public" and just do it. I have, for a long time, carried by travel art bag with me to lots of places - beaches, parks, airports- you get the idea, but I always had reservations about pulling out my journal when people were close by. I always hesitated to actually create if I felt eyes upon me. I have let that go. I still feel less that comfortable and I still worry I look like a weirdo, I just no longer let it get the best of me. I drag out my art stuff anyway. No one has ever tapped me on the shoulder and said "what the hek is the matter with you?" so maybe no one cares, or maybe no one is really looking, or maybe on one wants to get that close to a real live weirdo! Either way, I am doing it.
3. Working on some new stencils. They are turning out just how I like them- less than perfect, but perfectly funky. Can't wait to make some more! Check back later this week to see how this one turned out!
4. Feeling so grateful for this guy. He works so very hard so we can ALL have a lovely life. Not a pack your bags and jet set life, but a safe, dependable, lovely life. And I mean he works hard. Long hot days doing a job that is not glamorous, and never complains. He walks out the door before we open our eyes and returns long after we have all been home- all smiles and happy to be with us. He is generous to a fault and stronger in spirit than anyone I have ever met. He is honest and fair and so truthful it can hurt, but he is full of God and faith and laughter and we are more than lucky to call him ours, we are BLESSED is what we are.
5. Getting ready to get my paint on again. Going away was a lot of fun and much needed, don't get me wrong, oh so needed- but coming back is always sweet in its own way. Getting caught up on work, not so fun. Getting back into a routine, not my favorite thing to do, but getting to make art for the hek of it is worth every other hum drum thing we do around here.
6. Really sad that these guys won't be around as much with school starting. This is not a new feeling for me. I complain each and every year about the kids going back to school. I actually enjoy my kids. We have a lot of fun together, so when they are suddenly gone for 8 or more hours a day it is like a door closing between us. And while this year won't be as quiet with them gone, (with two grand babies coming and going) it is not the same without them here. They help me out, they cheer me up, they make me laugh, they keep me company. They are just fun to have around. And then the hubs keeps longer hours once summer is over, so he is missed as well. I always find myself a bit weepy that first week of school. I know- I'm a wierdo, but I have known this for a very long time and at least I have the good sense to admit it!
7. Keeping up with The Documented Life Project. When we started this project we all agreed that we are people with real lives, so even as team members we would be allowed to skip a challenge as needed or wanted. We didn't really need a reason, maybe it didn't speak to us, maybe it didn't apply to us, maybe we were just plain busy or tired and not feeling it. But I gave myself an additional, personal challenge to try to create all 52 weeks, no matter what. So far so good! Don't get me wrong- there have been a few weeks where I just wanted to say, um, no. I can't this week- I am swamped, tired, too busy, over it, and a million other excuses, but then I just couldn't do it. I couldn't skip it. I just felt like I HAD to do it, and so I have. I hope I remain this faithful and strong the second half of the year. Things are about the get crazy again, so wish me luck!
8. Wondering how my dining room table could be covered in notebooks when school doesn't start for two more days? These guys are obviously ready even if I am not!
9. Smiling at what a great Fruncle this guy has turned out to be. You read right. Fruncle. When his first niece was born, last year, he knew he was an Uncle, but it wasn't until his birthday, later on, that he learned he was a Fruncle. She might have been only 5 months old at the time, but her card clearly stated that he would be more than her Uncle, he would be her friend. And so he became a Fruncle. He has proved himself too - with long walks, and big hugs and lots of stories and rocking. He is amazingly patient and kind and full of crazy ideas to make the babies laugh. So we took a vote around here and guess what? yep! He is the best Fruncle ever!
10. Taking time to experiment with color. I don't have a great love for or gravitate to all colors. Because of this, I have to force myself to branch out a little bit. The truth be told, I don't always like it and I don't branch out that often, but I try to push myself, remind myself, to do this off and on. It helps. It really does. I have learned to work with, if not love, many colors I never used to create with and so that shows progress if nothing else.