Tonight is Meet Your Teacher night at our school. I typically spend the summer living life instead of scrapbooking it, but wanted to get last year's school layouts done before we're knee deep in another school year. Luckily I take photos during the year and save them in my 4x6 album, and I keep notes in a little notebook so I have lots of ideas to reference. I intentionallly spend more time saving the bits than I do scrapbooking the bits. J's so far:
I try every year to get a photo of my child with his/her teacher and a few photos of the classroom (see bookshelf above). I don't save a whole lot -- a spelling test from the beginning of the year & another from the end of the year, favorite artwork (some of which my husband scans to use for cd covers), a few random assignments. More about my process next month during September: a month of ideas!
I've come to believe that there's something of the soul captured in the human voice and that an audio recording is one of the most intimate and powerful records one can leave behind.
(Find out more about StoryCorps here.)
Other non-fiction to share:
An early birthday gift...thank you Chris!
Love the art direction on Chronicle books (really love it more than the actual projects in their books).
Still preoccupied with sewing. Have some knockout ideas up my sleeve.
I have been soliciting advice wherever I go these days. Part of the mission of this blog is to help me determine if I should keep at my art or turn the corner to who knows where. Here is some of what I've heard so far:
1. Stay the course! (from my dear friend and mentor, Katherine) She reminds me of the flexibility of working for myself, the demands of family life, the challenge of learning something brand new, and all of that mixed together.
2. Interview a librarian (from my sil, Carol) I have a list going already of librarians to interview -- one at an art museum, another at a theater, a corporate librarian, and I'm guessing I could easily find someone at SPPL, where I am a regular patron.
3. "You just have to get over that." (from my former neighbor, Ann, whose children I used to babysit) My first job was elementary teacher -- such an obvious contribution to the community; when I turned to art, I struggled with the place for art in the world we live in (and still struggle). I said to Ann yesterday, I wonder if I am just looking for the prestige/validation of an advanced degree, to which she replied, "You just have to get over that." She also suggested looking into art therapy as a potential career.
4. This blog post. I'm drawn to a creative life, but am I reading the map right?
Do you have any advice for me? I'm all ears!
When I started Recycled my notion was mostly project sharing. But at some level I think I wanted to remind myself of my own body of work. Sixteen years is a good long time to be creating, and I've made a lot of stuff I'm still proud of. Will a walk down memory lane help me determine if I should fight for Dreamland or throw in the towel? Starting something new is enticing to be honest. Starting fresh. But then I have a night like last night where my ideas were coming fast and furious and I couldn't imagine giving up.
The project above is made from some old linen (you could say, recycled) and three squares of wool felt. F doesn't always store things inside -- sometimes army guys, sometimes books. It's actually fun when he rediscovers that the pockets are empty and ready to be used again.
I must have turned a corner because I am looking forward to writing my posts now. On the flip side, I realize I haven't shared nearly as many ideas as I have to offer. So...I thought I would start the day after my birthday with a whole month of great ideas. (And since my birthday is the last day of August, that means the whole month of September.) I am working on a list already so that I can really step up to the plate.
For today's inspiration, I'll let you peek into my Flush of Spring box:
The quilt bits I showed last week were from a quilt I made based on a design in Successful Scrap Quilts. I love the pink and green Flush of Spring quilt, but it really needs a good hundred different fabrics to look that fabulous. I've started a Flush of Spring box and whenever I sew with pink or green (cotton, that is) I cut the scraps into 2" x 3-1/2" pieces. I'll need over a thousand to make a queen size quilt. (I seem to have a lot more green scraps than pink, so I do buy pink fat quarters occasionally when I see something I like.) I don't mind a project that's years in the making.
He maintained his state of ironic cheer in the face of painful frustrations, tormented by constant yearnings for transcendent things -- for ideas, for music that took you out of yourself, into ecstatic contemplation of brotherhood, justice, and love, for knowledge of the deep, the right, the good. He never succeeded in freeing himself of his dream of being, like his father, a learned man who helped others and was indifferent to wealth. Leonard Frankl would have looked, not disapprovingly but incomprehendingly, on Peter's decision to become a mainstream lawyer representing multinationals and the super-rich. That one should do such grim things for the sake of a larger income would have seemed to him laughable, unreal -- something you might read about in a novel but certainly never encounter in real life. Peter could just hear his father's voice: "But why would you want to do that, Peter? What do you get out of it? That will be a bit boring." Peter's work had indeed been a bit boring -- and worse -- and his dissatisfactions seeped into his life, like water into a rotting boat, from a dozen different leaks. He stayed afloat thanks only to silent, arduous bailing.
Place the following in a medium to large slow cooker set to High:
1/2 cup honey, 1 cup oil, 2 tsp. vanilla, 1 tsp. almond extract
Warm for about 30 minutes, uncovered, then stir with a whisk to combine.
In a large bowl, combine the following:
6 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
1-2 cups almonds, pecans, sunflower seeds (or a mix)
1 cup unsweetened coconut
1 cup raw wheat germ
1 cup instant dry milk
1/2 cup brown sugar (omit or reduce if using sweetened coconut)
Add 1/2 of this mixture to the honey/oil and stir to coat evenly. Add remaining dry ingredients and continue to stir. Cook on High 1 to 1-1/2 hours, stirring every 30 minutes. (If you are using sweetened coconut, cook 1 hour only or lower heat to LOW for this part. The sugar in the coconut causes it to brown faster. You can find unsweetened coconut at the coop.)
Turn the heat to Low, cover and cook until dry and light golden in color, stirring about every 20-30 minutes so bottom doesn't get too dark. This takes about 4-6 hours (but may take less if you use sweetened coconut).
Turn off the cooker, take off the cover, and let cool completely before storing, stirring occasionally.
I eat this for breakfast every day when Colorado peaches are in season!
I invent nothing; I rediscover. (Auguste Rodin)
In my idea file, I have a page torn from Home Companion with a piece of artwork by Jan Dutcher. It is a series of self-portraits of her neighbors. Midway into our Potluck Tuesdays this summer, I decided it was time to put our guests to work. I set up a station in my studio:
Of course, the Tuesday I decided to do this, we had 41 people drop in for potluck. It was just a little chaotic. I mixed up a few different skintones and hair colors, and the rest are little jars of Benjamin Moore paint leftover from when I was choosing a color for the dining room. (I tried ten different colors before I chose one -- the fifth I'd tried, a beautiful green called Grasshopper. I painted the room a few weeks ago and it was meant to be that color.)
Now that it says 2008, I feel the pressure to finish it next week (our last potluck of the season). I need to get the children on board (literally)!