This has been my mantra of late, attempting to pause and hold the weight of each piece, each moment of my life in my hands--one at a time--and to count all of it as blessing:
Managing the chaos of a household with two toddlers one thing at a time...because this mess will not bury me--I never would let it get to that point! The messes that I let overwhelm me are made one dish at a time, one sock at a time, one toy at a time. And really, I do clean up--all the time! It's just that I'm only managing to stay one step ahead of the tiny twin tornadoes. And for now, that has to be ok. I've said the words "overwhelmed" and "stressed" far too often during this past year and I've decided that it stops here and now. Because the truth is that I enjoy making the messes almost as much as my kids do! Maybe the answer is to try and enjoy the cleaning up too.
I've been giving myself little pep-talks: "Yay! You put the pepper shaker away! That's one less thing out on the kitchen counter, good for you." I'm serious. I celebrate like this: "Yay! Hubby stepped on and broke the big black 3-D sunglasses the girls look so cute wearing but never put away. Now we can toss them, and one less toy will be littering the floor at the end of the day."
Enjoying one child at a time...since the little one persists in being an early riser while the bigger one is a night owl AND suddenly a non-napper. This means my new schedule is usually about 15 hours straight of (mostly) quality time with at least one of the girls, whereas before I had 2-3 hours to re-charge during the beautiful blessing of a double nap-time.
Yes, at first I parted reluctantly with my precious alone time. And oh how I miss painting and blogging! (I'm approaching this too with my new, careful and leisurely no-pressure-attitude--I'm still managing to post at least once a week, and I even have a drawing on my worktable that I'll have time to start painting any day now.) But when I accepted no double-nap-time as the new "normal" and stopped fighting to get my own way, I realized that hanging out one-on-one with Eowyn in the middle of the day is actually way more fun than my "alone" time ever was!
Connecting with people and selling my artwork one postcard at a time...because you never know where that postcard might go and who it might meet.
A couple of weeks ago, I spent an eight-hour day at a craft fair and sold only a single postcard, which, of course, did not pay for the gas it took to drive there, much less cover the cost of renting the booth or make the days of prep-work worthwhile. Or did it? I'm choosing to believe that it was worth it, especially since in the two weeks since that fair I have sold two more postcards in my Etsy shop, PLUS 11 prints!!! Yay!!!
After all, I have rejoiced to build the readership for this little blog one precious person at a time (I am truly grateful for each person who checks in on my blog now and then!)--and although I really try not to get wrapped up in the numbers, I celebrated in my heart when I recently reached the milestone of 100 followers! It's still sort of unbelievable that anyone would be interested in what I have to say :). Thank you, by the way! I hope you'll continue to come visit me even though lately I can't be online all that often.
Since my own creative life is somewhat hit-and-miss these days, I've been sharing the stories of other interesting artists, one at a time. If you haven't already, please check out my recent interviews with Suzanne Millius and Juliette Crane--there's even still time this week to link up (at the end of Juliette's interview) and share a story of your own!
Linking up today (it's been a while!) with my friends at Imperfect Prose and Studio Sneak Peek. Happy weekend...let's hope I can get some Christmas shopping done!