Posts tagged ‘creative inspiration’

November 26, 2009

thankful: my mom

Jules and KathyGrowing up, I never quite understood my mom. She was always busy in the kitchen or at a sewing machine, and I was always buried in a book or entertaining the thoughts in my head. I saw her more as an interruption to my days than as someone I wanted to spend time with. We were truly polar opposites. And because I was so close to my dad, I probably saw Mom as a threat to my time with him. Of course, I could never verbalize that or even process that thought in my head, but there was definitely a barrier between me and her. And it didn’t break down until I reached adulthood.
Now that I know my mom better, I see her life in a different light. Whereas she always seemed so busy and irritated by any interruptions, I know now that she was often overwhelmed by her daily tasks as a stay-at-home mom of three daughters born within 5 years. Her time in the kitchen was a creative outlet for her, but it was also necessity to make every dollar stretch as far as it could. And her time with a sewing machine was to keep us in clothing without being forced to take us all shopping (which was a complete nightmare) where she could get only a few clothing items when her own skills could create an entire wardrobe for the same amount of money. As I began to realize these were her talents and that she worked so hard to make us all happy, I dubbed her “Betty Homemaker” and started to appreciate all that she can do.
My mom and I finally became friends when I finally grew up. I learned to assess her life within its context, and I realized how talented she is and how little I had learned from her. Although I still don’t actively seek her knowledge, I’m fully aware that she is a treasure for our family. She was responsible for raising three girls much of the time while my dad was working long hours and being called in during the night. I don’t remember my dad being absent, but I do know that it was often Mom who disciplined me in the daily moments and who helped me with school projects. The fact that Mom was always home when I returned from school was something I certainly took for granted at the time but was something that allowed me to feel secure and stable in my life. And that was invaluable to me as I struggled through an emotionally tumultuous adolescence.
My mom is now my best friend. She’s the one I call first when something good happens or when I need a bit of advice or an opinion. She’s my greatest teacher, and she’s my most honest confidante. I know that Mom will give it to me straight, and I know that she will also steer me in the right direction. It was she who gave me the greatest piece of advice I’ve ever received: when I was miserable in a job and felt no respect for my boss, she told me that the experience was necessary to build character. I’ve never forgotten those words. And when I find myself struggling and uncertain as to how I can change a situation, I always hear Mom’s voice saying, “This will build your character.” It never fails to put things into perspective or to give comfort.
I celebrate my mom on her birthday this Friday, and I thank God for bringing us to a new relationship early in my adulthood. She is a champion with a servant’s heart, and I want her to know how much I love her and cherish her life. You truly are a treasure, Mom! Happy birthday!

October 28, 2009


Slowly… I am emerging from these months of hibernation
Slowly… I am searching for a flicker of that creative spark I shoved into the dark corners back in August
Slowly… I am finding a rhythm at work that allows me to plan my days and not feel overwhelmed
Slowly… I am raising my head and taking stock of all the clutter that has piled up around me
Slowly… I am restoring the energy to do something about it
Slowly… I am being drawn back into reading the blogs that never fail to inspire me
Slowly… and cautiously, I am starting to look ahead
Slowly… I am regaining a sense of myself
Slowly… I am returning to LIFE

August 28, 2009

things that are good for the soul

41.  creating a friendship through words alone, and developing that friendship without once meeting face to face
42.  doing your best, above and beyond what is required, and then receiving unexpected praise
43.  finding newborn pairs of baby dove in the same nest, in the same place, again and again throughout a single year
44.  providing a comforting touch to a stranger
45.  allowing yourself to be swept away
46.  viewing, up close, the work of a master
47.  staring into the night sky
48.  taking a day “off” from everything
49.  hearing complete and total silence
50.  writing it all down

more things that are good for the soul
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July 30, 2009

12 stories to define my life

Recently, life artist extraordinaire Ali Edwards posed this question:
If you could only create 12 scrapbook layouts that defined your life what stories would you tell?
I’ve been pondering this for a couple of weeks now and feel pretty good in the list I’m posting here. Obviously, this is a list based on where I am in my life at this moment, but it’s also pretty exemplary of who I am and what makes me tick. And one day I’ll actually create the art to go along with each of these stories. Just not today.
 1.  Personal Manifesto: This I Believe
 2.  My Faith Journey
 3.  Family: A Lifetime of Evolving Relationships
 4.  My Heart: A Girl and Three Boys
 5.  Friendship: One Great Friend at a Time
 6.  Finding Myself: Learning to Love What I See
 7.  Personal Quirks and Eccentricities
 8.  Creativity versus Work Ethic
 9.  Yeah, Write: My God-Given Talent
10. Wanderlust: Oh, The Places I Want to Go!
11.  Pop Culture Junkie
12.  I Am Okay If I Never…

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