Monthly Archives: April 2008
I am feeling blue. And not in a good way. I am at that point where I am worried about abundance and how to move forward on a path. The school year is coming to a close and instead of rejoicing at an opportunity to have more time for art, I am looking at my meager funds, my lack of savings and having panic over what comes next. Will I once again panic myself into a position that ties my hands and keeps me from my art? Why didn’t I take more steps over the winter to prepare for this day?
I am feeling needy, and sad to admit greedy, at my list of wants. New Camera. Printer. Scanner. Vacation. Gas money!
I did finish a freelance article today that will appear in the next issue of Health and Happiness Magazine. Yet, I am beating myself up at not having searched out new markets.
Turn it around! Take my dread and negativity and turn it around!
Let’s do some research!
- What camera’s do you readers/bloggers use–and why?
- What printers are you using–and why?
- What software are you exploring and enjoying?
- Have any of you written and published an ebook?
- Are you producing gift cards with photo imagery on natural looking stock?
- Printer used? Or web-service?
- Cardstock supplier?
This is a list of things I am researching and if I am going to move forward I need to get it together. Last night at my respite job, I doodled and I wanted to scan and upload for you all to see. Simply using my sig-other’s scanner was so frustrating today, I surrendered. I once had my own scanner, an HP but the upgrade to XP ended that.
I have yet to come up with a new choice of scanner for my set-up. I really want my studio more functional again. Currently, I have no printer. Again I am using my Magic Man’s resources, downstairs, via our household network. He has an HP Lasertjet and an HP deskjet 930c. Oh and we have a tiny di-sublimation printer that does 4x6s (purchased on ebay).
Printers–sigh–what handles cardstock and various thicknesses? What about fading ink on photos. Photo paper? I feel overwhlened at the possibilities everytime I search online.
The camera I am considering is a Canon PowerShot S5 IS 8.0 Megapixel Digital Camera. It will be an upgrade to my very hikable DXG 5.1 purchased last summer for 99.00. Comments?
Do I feel better about all this? not yet.
Now, even though I am feeling depressed and like crawling under the blankets (but I already made the bed and got dressed–small victories today) I need to go to Dead River and ask Theo when my show needs to come down. I have avioded the place all month. I wonder if anything sold?
If nothing sold–how will I pay my credit card bill? framing was not cheap. Ibought frames at Target that already had mats. We had wired them for hanging.
My head is swimming today, can you tell?
Gray, cloudy and cold today but after a morning free-write I pulled on a hoody, hat and gloves, and headed out for digi-shots of daffodils and a quick, brisk walk before finishing the freelance article I have to complete before my night job.
I have learned over the course of the month that I have a weight range that fluctuates with my hormonal cycle and much to my dismay I was up to 193 lbs. last week–now I am almost back down to my new low which is 189.4.
Last night I cleaned out my dresser and closet filling 3 brown paper grocery bags which I will take to St Vincent DePauls. I also tentatively slipped into my size 16 jeans. I have not fit into those jeans since spring of 2006! They fit my legs and bottom well, but I have a bit weight to go before they look fine.
Remembering my stress from last week I am trying to work more free-time and downtime into my schedule. But I am mindful that my exhibit has to come down. I have an art show to jury at the end of the week. And I work both Saturday and Sunday morning meaning, no weekend, again.
As some of you know I am currently sub-teaching and doing respite work for families with children that have physical or cognitive challenges. On some days this has me going to teach at 7:30 a.m. in the morning and coming home to end the day at 9 p.m. It has not left me much time for writing, gardening, grand-mothering, or photos.
The goal for this summer will be to strike a better balance, to find ways of sustaining both my bank account and art, and breathe.
Note: I found a tool at http://www.startmakingchoices.com that allows you to put in your zipcode, zoom in on the map, and plot out your walk giving you mileage on your walk. My walk this morning was 0.721miles.
I’m sitting here looking at a book with a pink cover. White letters across the cover announce, “cloning.” It is a thin book of 90 pages and I think how needy I feel and how certainly a small thin book might offer solutions to the crunch I am experiencing.
A book of essays, and I flip to one entitled, “Human Cloning May Fit Our Changing World” by Glen McGee. His words recall my childhood and his, a discussion on “Birds and Bees” how a man falls in love with a woman and have a baby. I’m transported by memory to a sandy road in the Leelanau Peninsula where my father points to a bee on a purple thistle and begins “The Talk.”
How on earth has my stress and crunch for time transported me to the summer of 1975? Why did I dream of mother and daughter frogs frantically hoping away from a cartoon villain? All around me, I am launched by magical realism into other realities.
I read the line, “…new technologies will necessitate new stories.” One answer, I suppose. The wind blows hard outside and the wind chimes jangle, crowns spring daffodils bob wildly, rain hits the window and I give up on the idea of clones and write with breath and breeze.
con·tour Pronunciation [kon-toor]
-noun 1. the outline of a figure or body; the edge or line that defines or bounds a shape or object.
2. contour line.
3. Phonetics. a distinctive pattern of changes in pitch, stress, or tone extending across all or part of an utterance, esp. across a sentence, and contributing to meaning.
As I taught this week in various schools, the concept and lessons of geography and contour maps was a theme. In my daydreams, the idea for travel and adventure began to take place in strong undeniable ways. Day planner spread on the desks of various teachers whom I was substitute teaching for, I began highlighting weekends where I would certainly take in adventure.
As each summer approaches, I feel the need to stretch across the land to meld with the rivers and shores of Great Lakes, to walk across spongy ground under hemlocks, to connect with my “ground of being.”
I ordered my travel shrine, a focal point and creation tool to help guide my dreams. It came, by the way, in the most awesome recycled padded mailer. The shrine was made by Cynthia Morris who is traveling and living her dream. I just adored her post on how 14 years ago she wrote in her journal, “Cynthia travels to exotic, distant lands, tracing the contours of experience. Leading her everywhere and beyond, Cynthia, our illustrious illustrator of journeys…” (source: Journey Juju), and that now it is all coming to fruition for her.
For two years I have written my “evolutions” at the onset of each new year. Each time aquire a passport and allow for open doors was included. At this time I might not have the funds for international travel but I can certainly discover the “here” and “nearby.”
I have dreamt of being a nature writer, a travel writer, someone to whom the landscape calls. I certainly am a writer affected by place. And I want to feel the land. Contours on a map helping me reach past what my own profile looks like, changing the shape of my personal landscapes, crossing borders and divisions. Flowing along the topography. Cascading over stone and pebbles, feeling the fine sandy bottoms of creeks.
Thanks to Cynthia’s quote above the word “contours” feels like a dance of possibilities. Watch for what comes next.
- Continued funding my M.M.A. through the Suze Orman, “Save Yourself Plan.”
- Started using Debit Card instead of Credit Card.
- Readied my photos for exhibit at Dead River in April.
- Lost weight.
Some months we lose steam, as I did this month. I battled illness, had elevated expenses due to illness and cancelled many activities while I recovered.
I am planning to be more productive in April and May: paying down debt; developing a stricter budget for summer; plan my off-time; get back to list making (and following); and optimize the time I am allowing for “job” while working on “career” goals.
My exhibit went up in April and I am planning on where it will travel next.
I need to research freelance markets and set-up my Etsy shop before the end of June.
Travel photo opportunities will include a trip in May and one in June.
On March 17th I posted that I was at 192 point something and dropping and I have lost another 2+ pounds in the last month. Not bad considering I spent the latter part of March fighting off the flu, an ear and sinus infection, and the side-effects from my antibiotics. I was not exercising, unless you count being so sick a walk across the room caused a sweat and raise in heart rate ;-)
I have postponed my 80′s Party, an event where salad is the main course and the only course. Dressing up like you were from the 80′s was optional. I originally had the event planned for April 20th and it is now set for the day before Mother’s Day. I am hoping the gardens will be lovely and we can have our meal outdoors.
Today I stocked up on romaine lettuce, raw spinach, carrots, cukes, chickpeas, hummus, tomatoes, red grapes, pink lady apples. And I made a brown rice curried salad withcurrants, green onions, toasted almonds, pepper, and red grapes. The light dressing is made with honey, lemon juice and olive oil. I pre-measured out portions and I ‘m packing my dinner for work with additional fruit and low-fat cheese…yummy. All this produce and my rice salad make me long for all this snow to melt–fast!
I am checking in with my doctor on Wednesday and hope to be back on an exercise routine by the end of the week. Instead of losing 2 pounds in one month I am going to shoot for 4-6 lbs.
I am highly uncomfortable with photos taken of me at the hanging of my photo exhibit–I look pregnant. I carry most of my weight in front of me. But I could tell that the last 10+ pounds of weight loss show mostly in my face.
I must be crazy posting these photos, but I guess I want success. I want to look at these photos a year from now and feel like those contestants on the “Biggest Loser” and know I did it. That I had the power to change myself, my habits, and my lifestyle. Even if I only lose two pounds a month that will be another 16 lbs by the end of the year. The goal of losing 30 lbs and keeping it off is on my 10 year plan.
The photos were taken by Beth Millner. This last photo I am standing on a chair taking a down-shot at everyone. Beth kindly reminded me that my posture on the chair has me leaning back and is accentuating my middle.
Anyone for a walk around the neighborhood–we can bring our cameras.
Beth Millner was “pimping” my show at her blog and rec’d some feedback from a viewer who’d like to see the images in the show–not just shots of the work being put up on the wall at Dead River Coffee. Many of the shots do already appear on my blog, so here is a list of links. In the near future I will be developing an Etsy store for ordering.
Note: Some of these photos had different titles when first posted on my blog. At times images posted to blog were not “show” ready and the colors and quality are more vivid in print.