I have been working so hard and getting unwanted overtime at my "real" job lately making me so run down and disgruntled that it has been difficult to come home and fully enjoy my family life and "extra curricular crafting". Two custom orders recently came in during my busiest (and most disgruntled) time and it actually had me pondering why I am taking custom orders in the first place. I've actually been analyzing what it is that makes me want to make Art! Compared to similar artists, I certainly don't charge enough to make money my motivation. I love art and I love to create. It's what makes me happy. And the joy I get from hearing customer's reactions to the finished portrait is just priceless. As I am drawing those sweet little faces and fixing them up to glittery "perfection" I do it with the utmost desire to bring a smile to someones face and it makes my heart warm knowing I am helping to create a lasting memory. And my last customer made me realise that it is also the interaction with a complete stranger, from anywhere in the world, that makes it all the more intriguing. I received a special gift in Susan Knickerbocker of Whidbey Island, WA when she recently ordered a custom portrait of little TY (pictured) and has been the most cherished of customers I have had so far. Aside from just being a gem of a person to talk to, I found she writes a monthly column for the South Whidbey Record called Hometwown Heroes which is a column I describe as almost "outing" God's special quiet little helpers he has placed all around us. She tells the story of the everyday heroes on South Whidbey Island in an effort to inspire the community to follow the path of the good-hearted. Many of her profiles have been compiled into a book, the first in a series called "Hometown Heroes. A Celebration of Community Spirit on South Whidbey Island". What amazes me is I too have had this dream to create a newschannel, newspaper or even just a column focusing only on the good things in life all around us that all too often go unnoticed or get burried under the seamingly more inportant reports of all the crime and hate. Ms. Susan, from a little Island in Washington has managed to find her way across many states and inspire me to give more serious thought to seeking out and reporting the angels among us in Tennessee-which so happens to fittingly be-The Volunteer State. Thank you Ms. Susan. It has been a pleasure. And you have touched my heart and given a jolt of life to the dreamer and adventurist in me. YOU are an angel.
Click to read a few columns by Susan Knickerbocker:
I have been spending a lot of time learning about and reading various blogs the past few days. Although very enjoyable reading, it makes me feel a bit like a snail in the world of technology moving slowly along at my own pace carefully absorbing information and ideas while everyone around me seems to be moving at the speed of light like their "shells" are rigged with endless nitro. I have always been the quiet observer joining in only when I am good and ready. Maybe this is why I have always liked the verses- "to everything turn...there is a season... and a time to every purpose under Heaven". I rarely get impatient because I know my time, for every purpose, will eventually come, under Heaven and in it too. And I must also share, that the entire time I have been writing this blog about "shells", my hermit crab crawled to the front of his aquarium and gave me audience and I could almost hear him saying "PREACH IT!"-- too funny. (its those little things)
Back to the "daily" grind at work today (eeeuuuhhhhg). But just as I began chanting my daily prayer "deeah Gawd, make me a bird, so I can fly fah, fah fah away from heeah" our glorious grandfather clock chimed his music in my ears and his lyrics were simple but sweet-LUNCH TIME!! Turning into that bird, I flew to my bird house in my sexy minivan and opened the fridge like I expected food to have magically appeared while I was at work. hmmmmm.....a leathery hot dog, no, scooby doo gogurt, nuh-uh, triple sec and rum (I pondered on this a bit) (and a bit more) eh better not, OH left over mac n cheese!, four days old, should be ok..........LUNCH! Did I mention I am on a low carb diet?....eh-heh. Anyhoo, just as I was daydreaming about yesterday and my jungle adventures I heard a little tap on the door. My Pekengese gave me the "I know these people at the door so I wont pretend I can tear them limb from limb"-bark. I gave her a pat of appreciation. At the door was my lil one. Today he had taken Gramma on one of his imaginary adventures.On a trycicle. But before I could start wallowing in jealousy he gave me that sweet smile and said "um yes mayum" (country boy) "would you like some ice cweam?" I could not resist so I stole a few extra minutes from work to sit on the front porch and eat imaginary ice cweam from the trunk of a tricycle that only cost me twenty fowty eight ten $$. Best deal around. Walmart could never match it.
Well it's the end of my first blogging day and boy has it been a busy one. I was pondering the thought this morning that probably I should not stress about how overloaded each day for me is. Because all the things that keep me running in so many directions that I often wish I had several clones, are things in life that define "my cup runneth over". Well my cup definitely runneth over......so much that I wish I could ask to super size it. (and can I have fries with that?) Today after and during several cups of coffee I have managed to clean a bit on the house, do laundry, read a magazine, clean the crabbie tank, start a blog, read several blogs, post on several blogs, create a custom portrait almost in its entirety, clean the pool, play kickball, croquet, teatherball, go on a jungle safari adventure feeding baby gorillas and saving turtles, catch bugs, play in the sprinkler, squish play-doh, visit Nana, make an ice cream run, laugh hysterically over silly yet slightly vulgar poems (boys) read stories and rock my lilest one (and almost myself) to sleep....................aaaaaah. Everyone in the house is now sound asleep except for me, as usual, clinging to my few moments of "me time". There are still several things I would have wanted to squeeze in today. Where is that clone? Tomorrow will be overflowing again, and yet even more since I have to drag myself kicking and screaming (on the inside) to work. And I am sure tomorrow, as I "sit" at work, I will be wishing I was back on my Jungle Safari.
I was at Michael's Art Supply last night (again. I could stay in there all day!) and as always, before heading to the register, I scoped out the magazine racks for possible new issues on craft ideas and saw a copy of "Artful Blogger". I have always been curious about blogs and what they are all about. I opened the magazine and fluttered through a few pages and saw a plethera of blogs with the most captivating pictures and I decided I HAD to bring this magazine home. I was a bit nervous about the price though (14.99US) but I so desperately wanted this magazine I finally decided to treat myself. And as if there were crafty spirits around me wanting to congratulate me for deciding to actually treat myself, since I rarely ever do this, a lady came to me as if from nowhere and handed me a 40% off coupon exclaiming she wasn't going to use it and then, as quick as she appeared, she was gone. I have poured through this magazine and its articles and pictures and did a little research on blogging through the Etsy forums and decided to dive in. So here I am. First post. And I have a feeling this blogging thing could get horribly, or perhaps magnificently, addictive.