Here we are. End of the year. So many things this year....
Life and death. Happy and sad. Good and bad.
I went into the archives over there on the right, and read my End-of-the-year post from 2016. I wanted to see if I achieved many (any) of my goals. so now let's review. Here they are. (current comment in this color)
1. make more art.
( I most def. did!)
2. write more. and read more books. (learn more stuff)
(YES! I'M 2 FOR 2 )
3. take more classes at my Y. perhaps even swim...(however, this will involve buying a bathing suit...)
4. eat healthier for real.
(Hmmmm. I really don't think I did. But I still can do this....)
5. organize my work space better. (who wants a piano? I will get rid of the piano this year)
6. be more open to other ideas. (I tend to like mine)
7. visit friends that live in other states.
(ok. I reserve the right to transfer this one to 2018. )
8. go to museums ( including art institute!)
(yes, but DEF can improve on this)
9. give stuff away.
10. fix the yard.
(reserving the right to transfer this one too. although I DID pick out plants and think about planting them... Unfortunately, it was in October.)
11. be more patient with my mum.
( I think I surpassed all expectations of myself on this one :)
12. save some money for a trip. (I'm such a bad saver)
13. sell my signs. (alllll of them, then I can do #12)
(still a goal)
14. go on another epic adventure. (This was a highlight of 2016 for me...short trip to NY with an old friend)
(NEED TO DO)
15. work on the upstairs bedrooms.... BIG job.
16. be nicer. yeah I'm pretty nice already. But I could be so much nicer.
(yeah. I might have been nicer.:)
17. get a passport.
SO THERE. :)
Happy NEW year, friends. I am eternally grateful to people who buy my art.
More writing this coming year. x
Hi friends. I have been working on some different things. This is a collaged barnwords. I love random collaging. Not exactly sure how I feel about this though. It's not for everybody...but if you're looking for an artsy, just a little bit weird welcome sign...
I'm your gal. :) and it's a work in progress... I actually began it months ago, and then put it aside.
We will be having a quiet Thanksgiving, as everybody is somewhere else, and oddly I am fine with it. I guess I like different.
Friday, the day after, I'll be up at Northwind perennial farm in Burlington, WI working the day with my dear old pals. Should be a blast, I had a lot of fun last year. ALSO I will have barnwordsx ornaments for sale! So locals, cmon up Friday and see Northwind Christmas, always a treat.
The Bob Marley musical chair is still for sale. Do you know a Bob super fan? Send 'em over. so to speak. (pix on the photo page) Great gift, right? Speaking of Christmas gifts, last year was the first year we decided (and stuck to it) NOT to do gifts. It was so wonderful and relieving, not to have that pressure and decision-making... uggh. We all just enjoyed being together!
(I should mention I give my kids gifts all the time) LOL. just not on Dec 25. unless it's homemade! That's the exception. Hand made gifts are welcome.
See ya soon everybody! Have a great Turkey day!
I am observing something here. I used to have 2 tables for working.... well actually 3 if you count the desk which I keep for REAL stuff like paying bills and growing succulents... Then I acquired a third awesome table and THIS is the Sunday current state of all 3. NOT including the real-life-desk. So does this mean that if I had a 4th table.... OH NEVERMIND.
I do like working with stuff around me, I am not one of those who needs everything clean and cleared to think straight...prob the opposite. Today is rainy. I made some beef stew and a bunch of barnwordsx ornaments! There are still not enough hours in a Sunday though. Whats everybody else doing?
Day 14. The twenty dollar french fries.
So I debate whether to write about this ,as you will surely all think I am stupid (I'm not!) but here it is. I love french fries. I do not eat them all the time but I probably would if I could. A few days ago I was out doing a few things and I really wanted fries. Sometimes it comes upon me like that, especially when I'm hungry. I decide to treat myself at Culvers ,since I am already driving by it anyway...why not drive thru it? The total is $2.10...not bad for a satisfying 5 minutes and hell, I deserve it with all the bs Ive been dealing with lately. I give the girl a twenty and a dime. The dime falls to the ground and we both laugh and I rummage through the change pile (do we all have ridiculous sized change piles in our cars or just me?) and give her another ten cents. Being a frugal gal, I even attempt to see if i can SEE the dime and pick it up... no luck. No big deal. We exchange pleasantries and she gives me the fries and my water and.... I drive away. Um. I did. Ate the delicious fries on my way home. So many things on my mind. It is two days before I realize I dont have 18.00 anywhere. Check all possible places...car, purse, pockets, even ridiculous change pile. Nope. So then I try hard to remember IF she gave me the 18.00 or not and I come to the conclusion that she did not. In retrospect, I can understand the mistake. 2.10. 20.10. the dime drop/distraction. I am sure it was not a deliberate over site but even more unsettling- I drove away without even realizing it. (Still Alice??) I'm so mad at myself and quite disgusted as $18.00 is still a lot of cash to me.
I debated calling Culvers. What will I say? "hi yeah, two days ago, I wonder if your drive-up cash drawer was $18.00 over at the end of the day? Yes, That is mine. mmmhmmm." The stupidity of ME leaving without my change prevents me from making this call.
So there you have it. The twenty dollar french fry episode.
I once read somewhere that the human brain can only think of one thing at a time. Since we do about 350 things concurrently at any given moment...this is amazing. Eventually, somethings gotta suffer. A shame it was at the expense of my 18.00, but I've learned something and I will never leave without my change again, I'm sure of that! Humans. We are so amazing and complicated and yet, Twenty dollar fries. Actually twenty dollars and twenty cents to be exact. Jeeeeez.
Today I'm making vegetarian split pea soup. Just so you don't picture me as a stupid fry guzzling Alice. x #500wordsaday
Hello friends! I'm pretty excited about the latest product. BARNWORDSX are the cutest little Christmas ornaments.
I would love a handmade original, one of a kind ornament, how about you? Great gift, eh? The coolest thing is I'm incorporating these amazing vintage stickers from the 30's and 40's!!! My 91 year old mum collected them. I love them to pieces,but it seemed a waste to just have them in a box. I'm pretty excited to take these to my Holiday shows coming up...
They are 3" x 1.5". I am going to make a ton more but couldn't wait to post the first few.... that's how I am. :)
Give me feedback,friends! I NEVER thought I'd be making Christmas ornaments!
Well friends, this labor day weekend is just about over and I definitely enjoyed mine. The official end of Summer is always sad for me but the 3 day helps.... :) I got quite a lot done in the barnwords world. I now have 50 of the img_1349.jpg fridgefriends done for a special project...I may need 20-30 more...but I feel pretty accomplished. They're the LOVE series,aka WHATTHEWORLDNEEDSNOW series. I am going to make loads more for selling, though, as I think it's a great gift item (inexpensive and one of a kind!) I also added some pix to the www. so that's good. CHECK IT OUT :)
Ive acquired 7 old wooden chairs suitable for barnwords musicalchairs and look forward to doing more of them. I was so happy with the first one and so pleased that people were interested in buying it and so happy someone did! (THANK U)
I will make another Dead chair for sure, I'm working on a BOB MARLEY chair now, and have thought about doing Pink Floyd and Talking Heads and Dylan and Morrisey/the Smiths (mine) and DMB (sharilyn).
I finished up a couple half done signs...and fixed one I "hated". (that's a problem with me....)
I've lately been obsessed with a couple of cooking blogs...I know,Iknow...who am I?.....smittenkitchen.com is one, it makes me want to cook/make food. This one, mynameisyeh.com is actually a friend of Garth's which is cool as heck, and those vanilla cupcakes....OMG.
The kids are all doing well. (i think). Miles and Jessi are in Shanghai RIGHT NOW seeing Garth and it makes my heart burst with happiness that they are together so far away. Ian just had a birthday...23. 23. wow. so weird. i miss them.
I will be at Affair of the Arts again on November 19, which sounds far off but we all know it isn't. Come see me!
Until next time.... enjoy!
So many times in life we second guess our decisions. The what-if and should-I have syndromes.
I am sharing booth space in a show this weekend with some maker friends of mine. I am mostly bringing my barnwords stuff but also some artwork and old stuff as alot of vendors sell antiques and a lot of people buy antiques here. If you have not checked it, feel free. www.barnwords.com *shameless plug* and it is shameless, because hey. DAY 30.
I am also starting back to my real job on Monday most likely. That means no more lazy morning coffees and making my own schedule. No more extra yoga classes. No more Caramel Inferno lattes mid day or mid week. (this one involves a drive) No more hours reading WADS at many different times of the day and night. (hey perfect timing) No more winter weirdness. This has been a pretty weird winter for me. Between the 90 year old's (my mum) issues and my own issues and my husband's issues and my kids issues I have been preoccupied to say the least. I haven't made nearly as much art as I normally do in my off season. I won't let myself feel too bad about that though. No point in second guessing what I did and didn't accomplish, including commiting to a show the last two free days I have before work. I will just enjoy it and make a million dollars. yeah!
For the last few winters, I have sort of referred to them, in my mind, in some particular way, like one was the Winter of drawing my words (literally) and taking naps. One was the Winter of starting a small (real small) business called barnwords. One was the Winter of driving to the city a lot. One was the Winter of walking and Sunday fun. This winter was the Winter of expensive coffees and hospital trips and WAD squad love.
I can't wait until I have the Winter of cleaning out everything and making loads of money selling signs. Or the Winter of traveling the world.
I am changing. I am becoming less fearful and less concerned about menial things. I am making the conscious effort to stop comparing. I have no idea if keeping this 30 day commitment had anything to do with this or not, but I know it has helped me. I'm already contemplating what I can do for the whole month of April to better myself. Improve my lot in life.
I feel as if I am always struggling just a bit. Yearning for something undefinable or mysterious that is out of my reach.
If I had all the money I needed, that is- to be debt-free AND to pay all my kids' student loans off... wonder what I would do. I think I would travel. Travel might be the thing I really need.
I will no doubt think of you and your lives throughout the coming months. Hope you receive my good energy at those moments.
see ya later, writing friends. x #500wordsaday
Day 24 that's 324 but not 23 in the 312 or the 815.
Not long ago my son said "I've been seeing my favorite number everywhere!" His favorite number is 23. It made him feel like he was in the right place. He's lived in a lot of different cities in his short little 25 years. Not me. I have lived in the same state, a few different towns, but all close enough to be considered... close. I sometimes wished I had moved around more as a young unencumbered person. I am pretty comfortable here these days, but I know I could move if push came to shove. If I was young NOW though, I might do it differently.
When I graduated from high school in 1976 no one expected me to go to college. In comparison, it was ASSUMED my kids would go to college when they graduated twenty nine years (and more) later.
I attended a college fair my senior year of high school, and decided I wanted to go to a small college called Franconia in Franconia, New Hampshire. I had never been to New Hampshire. I just remember being positive this is where I wanted to go. Oh, it looked so cool. Beautiful mountains and fascinating sounding art classes. I longed to take classes called 'Studio in modernistic Art' and 'Ceramics'. 'Loom Building' Things like, 'The American reality and American thought' and 'Child Welfare, Rights and Advocacy'. A class called "Because it's there'. A class named ' Jack Kerouac, William Burroughs and Allen Ginsberg' ((come ON! what?)) It all just sounded amazing. My dream was abruptly ended when I learned that my father (holder of all the money) would not pay for this. He would agree to an in-state more traditional school, can we discuss this? Absolutely not.
For whatever reason, I had decided it was THIS school or none. I wasn't close to my father, in fact he didn't live with us.
So my attitude at 17 years old was.... whatever. Then I won't go. Unfortunately no one cared. But occasionally, I wonder what would have become of me, had I gone? I still have that Franconia College book somewhere. It will forever be a bittersweet reminder.
I love reading. One time, years ago some guy asked me 'so what do you DO? I mean, like, what do you like to do?' Godhelpme all I could think of to say was... I like to read. It's funny NOW but I remember agonizing over the fact that I could only think of READING as an answer. Now, of course, that would be an amazing answer.... But then. Not so much. I felt small.
I always associated reading with writing. How funny that I find myself so many years later in a WRITING GROUP with a bunch of amazingly talented writers. Life is strange, huh? also...Numbers always remind me of my fave scene from 8 Mile. x #500wordsaday
Day 19 Oh, the humor.
My life is filled with humor. Not everyday certainly, but some days a lot of what happens to me can be seen as somewhat humorous. This is a good thing. Come to think of it, a lot of your (serious subjects) posts in WAD have really funny things in them. Even stories about unfortunate things like spending twenty dollars on french fries can have a humorous side. Which makes me believe that it's healthy to see the funny stuff and also makes me realize what is funny to one is not always funny to another.
I might have a warped sense of humor. I don't really know. Farts and poop and swearing and people slipping and falling down are NOT necessarily funny to me, but sometimes the story surrounding them is quite funny. Sometimes when people try to be funny, they're not at all funny to me.
I haven't been to a comedy club in years and years (sorry, Carolyn) but I remember laughing so hard at Zanies when I was in my twenties. I often do not laugh at what everyone else finds hilarious though. Humor is really personal and individual which must make being a comedian really hard. We laugh a lot in my immediate family, because having kids automatically makes things fairly funny.
Karl Pilkington makes me laugh. 'The Moaning of Life' is just hilarious to me. There is a sort of rude songwriter who is quite clever named Bo Burnham that I found funny a few years ago. Some of the political SNL stuff is damn funny. But none of you may think those guys are funny at all. Some subjects are NEVER funny to me. But the daily life things can definitely be seen through an amusing viewpoint.
My son is taking Chinese lessons since he is in China. He has a lovely new friend named Tang Tang whom he shared his phone with to record a voice message on WeChat to me, when the two of them were having a fun moment, and we all laughed hysterically at it. Why? I don't even know... but it was funny!
Work places have often been a source of uncontrolled laughter for me. People you work with and work situations can be super entertaining. My friend Shelley and I built a friendship completely from laughing at our workplace (it was years ago) and I don't believe anyone would think our time there was as funny as we did. I have no idea why this happens.
(I was going to stop there, and use my rollover but I saw the word count was 420. which reminded me of something funny. and I don't even smoke pot.) I never knew about 420. My kids enlightened me. It was a funny thing when Ian and I finally arrived at our hotel at about 2 AM after some really funny and NOT funny things happened to us, about 6 years ago and our room number was... 420. I hope to never stop laughing at my life. x #500wordsaday
Day 16 the big screen
Got a million things to do and what am I doing? WAD stuff.
Sleep is the most coveted thing (well, besides getting shit done, drinking good coffees and feeling better) in my world these days. I've never been an excellent sleeper. Throughout my adult years, I've struggled with the peaks and valleys of GOOD sleep. Many years ago the hubby and I decided to sleep in separate rooms which helped a lot, because I challenge anyone to find a louder sleeper/snorer than he. Then throughout my youngest's high school years I feel like I never slept. He was.... challenging (love you, Ian!) Then menopausal insomnia. Then regular life insomnia. Then worry about the world insomnia.(current) And of course, I have to pee after I do fall asleep. Cuz I'm old.
I'm so envious of people who say 'as soon as my head hits the pillow...I'm out!'. As soon as my head hits the pillow....the big screen in my head turns on. Every single conversation and story and scene from my day (week? month?) starts to replay. I'll admit I've come up with some pretty good observations and resolutions during these times...however I'd still rather be sleeping. I love my bed. I love my down comforter. I love the quiet. and I'd love to sleep a solid 8 some day. Something to strive for I suppose.
Getting shit done is my nemesis these days. (love that word) and I am determined to finish some important demanding things before April first, when I am back to work. I am a procrastinator by nature. I've actually tried to change that, but for reasons unknown I am not successful. I almost typed 'I cant' instead of 'Im not succesful' but that's just not real. I can. It's not as if Im trying to build a house or become a pro basketball player or something I really CAN'T do. I feel overwhelmed with stuff I've got to do and so I do nothing. Nothing, being WAD stuff or whatnot, but TODAY I am changing this. You heard it here, friends. I am making my list as soon as I post this. Feel free to ask me how I'm progressing in the days to come (i.e. Hey Lois, are your taxes filed? Did you take Garth's tax stuff to H and R? Have you consolidated the loans? Have you looked at the cheap flights for June?* <that one I will prob do, since I enjoy booking trips.) and by the way, why do I not know any accountants? I need an accountant friend. I've done our taxes for years and I always wonder if we could get more (or any, some years like last year) money back if I took it somewhere.
*My youngest is graduating in June and for the first time since 2009, I will have no one in college. I love college graduations, seriously love them, so it will be bittersweet as well as a huge relief. Plus it looks like all my kids will be there for it, so how good is that? x #500wordsaday Looks like I'm continuing on.