Work

Jul 30, 2017

I’m my best self when I’m actively making and perusing my creative interests and endeavors and I haven’t been lately. 

Obviously life is different with a newborn and kids home all day during the summer and all that. It’s never really convenient to be creative. There are chores to be done and kids to feed and toddlers to potty train. 

And the times when it turns out I did have an hour or two to myself I usually don’t realize it until afterward. Instead I spend the time sitting in the rocking chair scrolling through things on my phone or maybe hurriedly eating something or picking up the mess on the floor. 

If I knew ahead that I’d have a worthwhile chunk of personal time… goodness what a gift. 

To be honest I’ve been feeling pretty discouraged lately about how little I’ve sold of my quiet page patterns and kits. I worked so hard and invested so much of myself into that endeavor and now it feels like a complete flop. The word failure keeps rolling over and over in my brain. Not even in a self-pity way, I’m just bummed that I didn’t do certain things differently or better. 

The products themselves are great; I stand behind those no problem. The kits have crazy good quality materials and the instructions are good and the finished pages are so charming and fun to play with. I just wish I’d matketed them better from the get-go or taken into account what a small niche my target market was or… I don’t know. Hopefully I’ll at least be able to sell them slowly over time and they won’t just sit dead on my shelf forever. 

Anyway I bring it all up in the middle of this post because sometimes the feeling of failure can push us to try harder and do better and sometimes it just kills your momentum. Like a very literal metaphor, for weeks I had all the kit boxes stacked up on my sewing desk, blocking all future potential projects. I’ve since moved them to the closet and I’m working on it mentally too. 

Goodness, being really honest and vulnerable is humiliating. 

But much as I want to sell all those kits and turn a profit, what I need is to have good work to do, work I enjoy. Projects to work on, even (and perhaps especially?) if just for myself. 

Ideally I’d love to set aside a few hours each day as Work time. Time I can count on to work on sewing a quilt or knitting a hat or designing something on Illustrator. Time where I can focus on my strengths and improve my talents and feel mySELF and self worth as an individual renewed. 

I don’t know if that ideal situation will ever be my reality, but I think knowing what I want is a step in the right direction. Not in a selfish way I hope, but just to have ideas about how to bring my best self to the table for life in general. 

Baby’s crying. Gotta go, but I’m gonna keep thinking on this. 

Mind-blowing thoughts of late

Jul 29, 2017

  • The people in Little House on the Prairie didn’t think of themselves as old timey. They had the best technology of their day. They thought of themselves like we think of ourselves–living in this modern day of age. 
  • My daughter is currently seven, turning eight. I remember being that age. She will remember being this age. What that says for me as a mother. What that says for her as a kid. These are the formative, memorable, nostalgic-making years. 
  • Is everything–even in fantasy and science fiction–just based off of something we already know from real life? Can we think truly original things? Or is the closest we come akin to being asked to think of a new vegetable that doesn’t exist and coming up with a pink carrot? 

Yo diaper jokes

Jul 28, 2017

Changing the baby’s diaper & before I get started I notice his diaper’s so full the snaps on his onesie are buckling under pressure. So I say to him, “Your diaper’s so full your onesie doesn’t even fit!” 

And that’s when it hit me: a whole new line of jokes. Like yo mama jokes, but lamer and only really funny to young parents. Like…

Yo diaper’s so full it looks like you pooped outta yo back! 

Or…

Yo diaper’s so full you gonna need to move up a size!

(Or to your toddler: Yo diaper’s so full you gonna need to potty train!)

Or these ones….

Yo diaper’s so full the neighbor’s dog called to complain!

Yo diaper’s so full you just turned your car seat into a swimming pool!

Please spend an unnecessary amount of time thinking about this and add your own in the comments. 

Hair appointment 

Jul 25, 2017

I don’t want to be the person that writes that post. I don’t want to be whiny and grumpy about the things I want when I already have more than enough. 

And yet, there are things I want. 

And I’m all for delayed gratification and not being crazy material, but at some point after two years of hemming and hawing over it you just bite the bullet and dye your hair again, right? Or do you keep waiting until (fill in the blank)? I never know. If either of the salons I tried had appointments available tonight then both my wallet and my hair would be lighter, but instead I took and shower and put on frumpy jammies. 

There are days (a lot of them) when I honestly don’t care about what I look like or how I’m dressed so long as it’s modest and reasonably not-gross looking. And then there are days when it’s all-consuming and I’m hungry for dressing nice and looking nice from head to toe. 

But who am I even dressing up for? (And by “dressing up” I mean dressing like a normal human being, not, like, ball gown.) I don’t think you have to have a reason to want to have clean hair and a presentable outfit, but it can be a bit discouraging putting forth the effort only to spend the entire day at home with the kids. 

Anyway, after 2+ years since my last hair color and months of maternity clothes and now dealing with the joys of a postpartum body, I’ll let you guess what kind of day today was. So I spent some money and bought new clothes and I’ll see which ones I like enough to keep. 

All I want is to look nice–to feel nice–and have something energizing to do. 

Languages 

Jul 24, 2017

I often think about the languages we speak. Some we’re born into, like the words we use. Others we choose, like our hobbies and professions. 

I’d say I’m proficient, maybe even above average at both speaking and writing in English. Definitely well below average (more like barely passable/definitely couldn’t get by on my own) at speaking and writing Spanish. But I’m also fairly literate at doing and reading and writing and talking about Sewing. I’m working on learning Knitting. I’m about half fluent in Crochet. 

I’m nowhere near perfect at it, but I’m arguably the world’s living expert on Olivia, Felix, and Henry. I’m fluent in the The Gospel. And in Faith. 

I’m so well acquainted with Moving that I’ve even developed my own accent. Same with Getting Rid Of Stuff. 

And I think it’s true that, the more languages we speak, the more opportunities we have available to us. The more people come into our lives. There are friends I made when speaking Small Business that I still cherish and talk with often. Sewing and Writing have opened a number of doors for me throughout my life.  My husband is fluent in Optometry and Genuinely Caring About People and it has not only led to a lot of people getting the right glasses prescription, but also getting the extra medical care and attention they need. 

I’d like to be more articulate at Listening. I’ve been working at it for years. 

I’m very slowly learning Patience, but it seems to take long time. 

I’d also like to become prolific in other important lagunages like How To Tell When Produce Is Ripe or Gardening or Cooking. Hair and Make Up. Reading Actual Books. Chilling Out About Messes. 

And maybe even in Clean Finishes When Ending A Train Of Thought. 

Things I want to be blazing ahead on, but mostly I’m just a boring normal person

Jul 23, 2017

  • Writing super funny witty stuff every day that just leaves you feeling delighted and laughing again as you think about it later or tell your friends (instead of, ya know, this) 
  • Doing my hair and make up every day so I look really great and feel really awesome about myself (instead of thinking of that line from Princess Diaries (pre-make over) when she looks in the mirror and says, “Well, as usual, this is as good as it’s gonna get.”) 
  • Knitting a really cute baby hat (instead of a hat that could probably fit my husband, but would just make him look like a big baby)
  • Exercising a lot and getting really fit and having impressive defined arms (instead of exercising zero)
  • Decorating my house in a really beautiful and fresh and cozy and timeless way (instead of haphazardly hanging the clock and the metal star on the wall as we were unloading the moving truck and then just leaving them there)
  • Sewing an entire wardrobe of fun, flattering, timeless clothes for myself (instead of every item of clothing I’ve sewn for myself ending up looking like a hospital gown)
  • Pottytraining my three-and-a-half year old (instead of just kind of hoping for a miracle)
  • Getting on a really great schedule (instead of, well, real life)