Monday, April 4, 2011

So, How About Those Hobbies?

Oh, look. It's been more than a year since I last updated...

The good news is, the project did not fade into the same oblivion as this little blog. While there are still some monthly resolutions from 2010 that still need to be met (ahem, willing some grace into my two left feet), many were met with reckless abandon.

My proudest hobby A.D.D. accomplishment from 2010 = signing up for a community garden plot. Last April, my dear sweet husband and I agreed to tend to 121' of fresh new garden turf. We had an individual plot and raised herb bed among 20 other gardeners in East Lansing, MI. Obviously, this commitment spanned more than the 30 days I had originally assigned. The Hubby and I planted tomatoes (lots and lots of tomatoes!), peppers, chilis (scaling the Scoville heat measurements), cukes, melons, arugula, lettuce, and 15 different kinds of herbs. We were pleasantly surprised at how much we liked spending hours in the dirt. We weeded by hand. We ate our produce right from the ground. Our little group of gardeners shared insights, tools, recipes, and homemade iced tea. We celebrated our harvests with potlucks and a participated in a Community Garden tour. The experience literally helped us lay down roots in Michigan-- something I wasn't sure I would do when we first moved out here.

More soon on last year's resolutions and this year's intentions. In the mean time, here are some reminders of sweet, sweet summertime and the innate instinct to grow (in many different ways).

Monday, March 1, 2010

Writing: Check!

Since the beginning of time, I have had trouble with time management. (I’m also a fan of hyperbole. I find it amusing in almost any situation whether the amusement is intentional or not.) But enough about my bizarre literary affinities... what I am trying to say is that this post is long overdue. However, the time I have spent not writing has been spent thinking about writing, which I suppose is progress from where I was this time last year.

Moving on...

Here in Michigan, March 1st has introduced us to the first signs of Spring! The permafrost has started to thaw and I am only wearing three layers (opposed to the five layers that I have become so accustom to). The start of a new month has also motivated me to reflect on the resolutions met so far this year, while looking forward to new projects.

In January, I vowed to start a writing project that wouldn’t crash and burn the next day. In fact, I designed an outline that should keep me writing consistently throughout the year. For a girl with 29846928346 half filled journals lining the mini-apartment’s windowsills, this is quite a feat. My writing resolution has already faced its share of challenges. (The first week, I almost convinced myself to abandon the whole idea and start an online journal about the pleasures and perils of being a free-spirited control freak—an idea that I am still pretty in love with and have carefully filed away among all the other ideas hibernating on said windowsills).

Fortunately, my better half talked me out of starting yet another project before the current one even had a chance to really begin. (He’s good like that.) So, here we are a couple of months later and I am staying true to my original idea. Each month of 2010, I’ll focus on a different interest from my growing life’s to do list until I learn to develop these hobbies/talents. And I will write about/photograph each of these adventures along the way to help salvage any writing/photography skills I may have once had.

Since it is now March, and I specifically carved time out of my day to sit at Biggby’s with my trusty Macbook stuffing my ears with some good ole’ Broken Social Scene to get the word juices flowing, I am considering January’s resolution (to start a writing project and stick with it) as a success… in progress.

Stay tuned for an update on February’s resolution: learning how to make wheel thrown pottery. (Think Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze in Ghost… minus the Swayze/love making and plus some kick ass women who just happened to sign up for a Wednesday night class together!)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Attempts Are Exciting

This is my third attempt at claiming a little piece of the online world to share my thoughts/rambles/writing. However, this time (in the words of the immortal fab four and the oh-so-sexy Joe Cocker) I plan to “get by with a little help from my friends.” (Enter stage right: my first shameless plug for Indie By Design:)

This whole process was initially inspired by my struggle with balancing a love for piecing words together, turning light into memories, obsessing over music, and deepening my love of the arts, while also trying to develop a career path/life plan that won't crush my soul.

This struggle has led to a couple of conclusions.

1) I have hobby attention deficit disorder (hobby a.d.d.).

This became strikingly clear over the holidays. While running into Hobby Lobby for a skein of yarn to finish a scarf, I stopped by a local coffee shop for an afternoon pick-me-up. While in said coffee shop, I saw an adorable wreath made out of Christmas ornaments and balls of yarn. The trusty iPhone captured a photo and I spent the next hour scouring the Hobby Lobby for the perfect glittery red Christmas balls, funky green yarn, and wintry-wonderland adornments to weave into the beautiful grapevine wreaths I found. Needless to say, a month later the yarn and glittery goodness and wreaths are still in a holiday basket– untouched. That scarf, which the original skein of yarn was for, remains unfinished (maybe it will be a gift for next year?) and I’ve moved on to a new love: pottery. Oy vey.

2) My life is chaotic. Always.

I’m not quite sure why I can’t find this magic groove that some (well-adjusted) people seem to find. I know women who have it all. You know, the women who have spotless homes and active social lives and beautiful relationships and time for a weekly mani/pedi. These are the same women who transition from work to yoga class to dinner flawlessly. These are the women whom you never see sweat. I WANT TO BE ONE OF THESE WOMEN. Yet, the harder I try to “have it all” the crazier I become. I’m the woman who is consistently running 5-15 minutes late (on a good day), eating meals in the car, wearing wrinkly clothes to work, and having one night stands with creativity. I think the hobby a.d.d. perpetuates this chaos since I am constantly trying to squish my interests into an already busy life, which leaves me feeling exasperated… The art therapy aspect of pursuing all these endeavors is wasted because I can’t ever find enough time to actually finish a project or really develop an interest.

3) There has to be a way to harness my creative energy in a positive way.

After thinking about my relationship with all of these different creative whims, I came to the conclusion that there must be a way to connect my love of writing and photography with the growing list of things on my life’s “learn to do” list. And that is when this latest little brain child was born: I am starting a year-long writing experiment that can help me develop twelve different interests. Each month of 2010 will be dedicated to a hobby that I’ve wanted to explore. To jump-start this little project, I started my Creative Gratification journal and signed up for a wheel-throwing pottery class to pursue the life long urge to create functional art. So far, the class has helped me focus my energy and really learn the art of working with clay. (Plus, the wheel and clay stay at the studio which has saved precious real estate in the mini apartment:)

In addition to harnessing my own creative energies, I have recently cashed in on a whole lot of good karma by connecting with the brilliant minds behind Pursuit of Etcetera and Sweet Tranquility. These fabulous ladies and I have joined forces to support, nurture, and encourage each other’s personal pursuits of etcetera so that our once crazy lives can be sweet, tranquil, and (creatively) gratifying.

With a collaborative spirit, and a collective can-do attitude, we will be evolving as strong women who are fiercely, unforgivingly, and unabashedly independent. There are no words to express the good vibes and positive motivation that this project has created and I can’t wait to see what is to come! Here's to twelve months (and more) of inspiration!