Open your eyes. And go ahead, ask me a question!
A particular theme keeps popping up for me everywhere. Like, in scripture, songs, random people's IG thoughts, other blogs…everywhere. A plea to open my eyes, grab onto what brings me life, and let the rest go. The scripture and thought above (if it doesn't bring you life, don't look!) sealed the deal for me today. Ok God, I get it.
Over the past year I have to admit I've played certain conversations over and over in my mind a sad amount of times. I had some really big creative opportunities and relationships not work out. Like I thought for sure were great opportunities for me as an artist and friend. Things I was excited about and spent a lot of time on. And then they didn't pan out…and I was left with silence, embarrassed, and not confident. My confidence has been extremely shaky the last year. I find myself anxious about my gifts and talents…..but my biggest cheerleaders, God, Brett, and my twin sis, have reminded me to keep on. So I have.
And as we enter this spring I feel God gently asking me to take His hand and to trust in His confidence again. To boldly be confident in myself and my gifts. To trust that good (even great) people will come along and applaud me..not tear me down, whether I'm at my worst or best. And you know what, through some of the loveliest people on the web, encouragement is reaching me. I thank you, dear readers, for allowing me to be myself fully on the blog. For not walking away in the moments my confidence falters, or my spirits are less rosy. For showing up anyway. You are golden.
I've also done some major reflecting on my own daily practices, seeing what lets the light in and what doesn't. I don't mean things like doing laundry (which isn't my fave). I mean like browsing Facebook does nothing good for me. It leaves me feeling yucky or left out or just plain bored. So it goes. Instead I've been switching light-stealers for light-givers. Like sitting by the fire with my art journal at night is just plain lovely. ALL the light comes right on in.
Happy stacks of books, ready for browsing in the daytime or hunkering down with at night are keepers too. I admit, I'd almost always rather be watching an art video or making art than reading, but once I get into a book I do love reading too! The Spice Necklace is a delicious read.
Bringing a bit of the outdoors in, however bleak it may look at times in this in-between stage, does my spirit good too. It's almost the time of year when I start dragging in all kinds of things from the outdoors. I can't wait. I plan to try my hand at some wreaths and different types of arrangements this year. We're already anxiously awaiting the daffodil field that comes up in the spring.
A few changes to my daily chores has made life a bit more simple too. The transition from nap/rest time to teaching and playing with the girls and then evening chores can sometimes be a challenge. So I've started tidying up in the afternoon some. That way we wake up to a fresh start.
Anna Ruth doesn't nap anymore and I've also started planning activities for her to do during quiet time. We also usually do some sort of art or learning activity together after naps too! Another blog post though!
I had to capture a lovely picture of the markers before I hid them from the girls. Some sweet little artist left me a picture……..on the couch. And the stairs.
Things are messier than ever in the studio and I like that. I've been getting up before the girls and having my coffee and quiet time in the studio. I need to buy an alarm clock so I don't have to rely on my phone alarm. I don't like having it that handy on the nightstand…too tempting to browse the phone every time I'm awakened. Which is a lot. Anyhow, I've been prepping for Vintage Market Days show in April! About six weeks to go and I'm right on track with where I want to be!! I made these award ribbons this week for my booth. I'll also have banners, lots of art prints, 10 original paintings, hand-painted notebooks, stitched flowers, gift tags, and photo postcards. I can't wait! I hope I'll see you there!
Other ways I plan to let the light in are by doing a happy mail exchange soon and tackling my creative to do list I made for myself yesterday. Other people make lists for things like vacuuming and grocery shopping. I do that too…but I also listed all the creative ideas I'm wanting to try this spring and summer. The list is mighty long. I can't wait to get started!
Make way for the light!
Now, it's your turn. Something I've enjoyed the last few months is answering emails from readers. I actually get quite a lot, usually about my art process.
So tell me, do you have a question for me? It can be about anything, but please be kind. I'll answer (most likely, lol). You can ask in the comments or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org! I'll answer in another post….anonymously, so no one will know you asked.
Friends, let that good light in today.