I have to be honest with you all, lately it has been a little difficult to write here every morning. I have been working on several different ‘secret’ things and I can’t really share them here. Last year, I painted my partner’s mom a box that she could keep her needlework supplies in and I was able to show the progress here, but since then, she has gotten a laptop and I know there are days when she does read my blog. Many of my other friends and family also check in now and then so I don’t want to risk showing what I am up to if it is to be a surprise. So we have to talk about other things.
The days are passing quickly and I am busier than ever. I was able to finish getting all the packages and holiday cards in the mail earlier this week, and with seeing my friends at our luncheon on Tuesday, I was able to deliver some ornaments and holiday greetings in person.
Our gathering was wonderful, but went by much too quickly. Seeing everyone together after almost three years was certainly a treat and the table was filled with several lively conversations at once – just like the painting sessions used to be. It seems to me however that everyone has gone into different directions and life has taken over. For myself, I know it isn’t practical for me to make the hour long trip to go paint every Tuesday – especially in the cold weather. With my car being parked until spring, I can’t expect Keith to drive me there every week and wait the day to take me home again. It just wouldn’t work.
I toy with the idea of getting a second vehicle for winter, but I usually am able to talk myself out of it fairly quickly. The cost of registration, insurance and upkeep for something that I only would use a couple of times a year really isn’t a good way for me to spend money. For the very few times I would use it, the cost would be much too high. When I think of the times when I need a vehicle in the winter, I can’t really justify the cost of getting another one. Besides, there are things I can do here and I never seem to have enough time to finish them anyway.
I am torn between moving ahead and designing for the next seasons and taking the time to enjoy the season that I am in. So often as a designer I am so out of sync with real time. I am making Santa Clauses and Christmas items in the sweltering heat of summer and honeybees on the frosty cold days of winter. By the time the actual season or holiday arrives, it is sometimes anti-climatic and somewhat of an afterthought.
I really don’t want that to happen this year. Although I am not fully in the clear, I am on the best footing in regards to my company than I have been in a long time and feel like I want to kind of relax and enjoy that a bit. But I don’t want to relax too much. Resting on my accomplishments isn’t a role that I enjoy playing. Besides, my head is still exploding with ideas and there is so much that is ahead of me that I still want and need to do. But will a week or so of ‘coasting’ really hurt things in the big picture?
The web site has slowed down a bit, which is expected about now. Because we provide patterns for people to make their gifts, our season tends to peak sometime in the beginning of December. Overall, the year was incredible, despite the economy and our trip to the States. Between the preparation time for a couple of months prior to leaving for the trip and the time gone, as well as getting back into the swing of things when we returned, we figure that the trip took us out of the production mode for at least a couple of months. That’s a lot for someone like me who is pretty much the entire business. I am kind of looking forward to seeing how we will do next year when our efforts can remain focused for the entire year. I am excited about it.
I decided that I am going to work on Ellen’s fence pieces today and spend the day painting. I really want to reach the goal of having them done by the time we see them at Christmas. Although they are Christmas pieces and won’t be used until next year, it is the best I could do for them. I think they are going to take a couple of full days to finish up and I will document my progress here over the next couple of days.
I am satisfied with how things are going. I have heard a lot of good feedback from my customers on both what we already produced for them and also what they would like to see us do in the future. And I know that some of the ideas that I have rattling around in my head are going to be good. Not all – but some. So while I sit here and paint, I will be multi-tasking by thinking about and planning for the year ahead. I am good at doing that.
Sometimes it is a good thing to slow things down a little. While part of me just wants to jump in and begin working on the new ideas that I have, there is another part of me that wants to allow the waves in the pool to settle so that I can clearly see what is ahead and which direction I need to go. Stopping for a minute and gathering my thoughts is something I feel far more beneficial than being overwhelmed by thinking in too many directions at once. The right path will eventually show itself. But only if I permit it to do so.
“We rest here while we can, but we hear the ocean calling in our dreams,
And we know by the morning, the wind will fill our sails to test the seams.
The calm is on the water and part of us would linger by the shore.
For ships are safe in harbor, but that’s not what ships are for.”
~ Song “Ships” by Tom Kimmel and Michael Lille
I wish you all a wonderful day.
-- Designer/Artist/Teacher. Owner of Sheila Landry Designs (http://www.sheilalandrydesigns.com) Scroll saw, wood working and painting patterns and surfaces. "Knowledge is Power"