Ok, no flood warning in effect but we are preping our house for a better drainage plan. When we got the place the poor drainage in our backyard had practically buried the house and garage.
No litteraly, three feet in some places. The perevious owner for whatever reason had every good intention, according to our wonderful neighbor Clifford, to love her backyard and spend time in it but never did.
So this, our second spring in the yard, has brought us back to the task we started last spring and fall.
Note: we work outside when it's nice, inside when the heat or cold gets to be too much.
This spring and fall you'll see a lot of outside projects done. In the summer and winter, inside is where we'll be at!
Where was I? Oh yes. We are digging a trench for our French drain and building a retaining wall.
Note that I do consider this a part of organizing the outside space for work (glass), well sorta. If our outside drainage doesn't get fixed, the garage and house will eventually rot, flood or worse. So the garage is a part of it all. It's a long road.
Ok so I know that I'm a day late on this one: official pie day being 3.14. Whatever year this is but you gotta hand it to me- I did make a pie for pie day!
The steps to make can be found in possibly my favorite cookbook ever- with exception to of course my moms collection she is imparting me each year in different chapters: this past years was casseroles, the year previous was soups. Amazing stuff - it should/ will be published! Anyhow- she makes great pies, and now my husband and I make great pies. But this book does rock!
This fruit filling is perhaps the easiest part - and the most visually dynamic- pictures don't do it justices.
Strawberry fields forever…
My favorite part perhaps is riling out the dough- French rolling pin isn't a must but is amazing to have when you learn how to work it.
I love the feel of flour and the cold dough starting to warm and meld into shape.
If you have never made an actual list prepare to be astonished.
Now you may have made a list for an important trip detailing what you will need to pack or perhaps a list to go to the grocery store or even a list of things you wish to do before you die. AKA the bucket list. These are not the type of list of which I speak.
These are important lists.
However they do not help you achieve your goals.
Nor do they make your dreams come true.
And most of all those they do not bring peace of mind in the now.
Those list that do look like something like this……
Those types of list are made in a minute or two MAX! On the lunch break or when you are ending your day. They are to empty the brain. They art ten in items or less.
How: If you make a list of things to do 10 items long chances are it will get done. I am not saying this based in some statistical data I have retrieved. I'm saying this because it works for me.
Why? Anything over ten and things just don't happen.
How: Alternate big or negative items on your list with fun or short items.
Why? It motivates.
How: If you have one big thing to accomplish on a day off - brake it down bit by bit and let it take the space of many things you would do that day and save a few for the necessities of life.
Why? Dinner, shower, return that phone call- etc. sometimes you just have life to catch up on and you may be Super-person, but even Super-person has to stop at some point. It will also help you to tackle the job in a logical way. Steps a, b, c, all lead to d. D is for that magical word, done!
So why make list anyway?
Everything you do in life adds up. This artist is taking notes on life and it seems to sum up to something in the end with or without your influence. I make lists- my life changes in steps I can manage without getting overwhelmed by the end goal.
When I don't make list..... I worry more, I'm scattered, I end up watching full seasons of horrible shows all summer long instead of working on making that art piece happen in some form or fashion.
I know if you knew me you'd know this is a big deal, not just because after I had decided as a little girl that I didn't want to grow up ever- and then decided that that was just not going to happen- I decided that I was going to be an actress! The thrill of it was mostly due to the wild and outlandish imagination I had and the fun of playing pretend.
Yet even in my ignorant youth I knew that it had some practical draw. I'd be able to play at a lot of jobs. The idea intrigued me about playing dress up as many different types of people. I love people and what better way to get to know the masses than to inhabit a role as one and tell their a story. I still toy with the idea of running away to hollywood every now and again. I know I can't sing. But I can act. Fox Films told me so once upon a time- but I chose a different life. I chose this life and I'm absolutely thrilled about it. Turns out that it isn't really a big deal after all.
But I digress. As usual.
All of this to say I have an update on this artist in her bank and her fashion dilemma!
The question posed three weeks ago now was this:
How does one maintain a since of her artistic self
in the corporate business world?
Well one week of shopping, research and two weeks of on the job training and a dash of pneumonia- now fading fast, Praise God!- and I'm here for an update.
Lessons I've learned:
1. Keep it Comfy
2. Be Brave, Not Boring
3. Life is Not a Movie
4. Playing is fun, Worry is Not
Expanded Lessons. #1 Keep it Comfy. This is pretty self-explanatory and yet it is something we as women forget all the time, especially I think when we put imaginary expectation on ourselves. You can want to live a certain way all your life and look a certain way, but at what cost? I won't sacrifice my legs any longer for my day job. I wish to run, frolic and play. At the end of the day being beautifully dressed is as much about comfort as it is about fashion.
Even CoCo Chanel agrees…. see:
“Fashion has two purposes: comfort and love. Beauty comes when fashion succeeds.”
#2 Be Brave, Not Boring. It is so hard to stay away from black in the corporate world. Yes it is timeless and great if you are the stereotypical artist that people picture smoking in an art gallery- oh Dear Lord please make this image fade back into time where it belongs in the 70's! No offense to dearest Audrey Hepburn and Co Co Channel who taught women many great things besides wearing a little black dress goes a long way in classic fashion. Yet in real life, the world has such color- such vibrance, such verity! Be brave and give yourself a bit of color to play with, or a statement piece necklace. And don't forget to rock it.
#3 Life is Not a Movie. And in this case my bank job will not be a financial version of The Devil Wears Prada. Somewhere in that tremendous imagination of mine getting dressed up was going to be a bit of this. But don't worry I have learned this lesson on many of occasions in my life and so without to much shock. It doesn't register as such a surprise that I will not pick out my clothes with a somewhat strange fairy godfather in a closet filled with the best pieces. Then suddenly all my hard work will look fabulous as well as my duds. LOL The dress code is written on my brain and as I tried to live up to it in the past two weeks I found myself one of only a few trying. I've set the bar higher for myself than my company cares to enforce And yet I am not disappointed in this fact. I want to rock at my job for the glory of God who gave all to me. Part of that is to look presentable and professional-also live as he created this creative girl to be. So I dress to impress.
#4 Playing is Fun, Worry is Not. All this to say that playing with my favorite pieces is so much fun, it is just another way to be an artist in the everyday. Its not posh. It won't sell a piece for lots of money. It won't end up in a museum. But it is a kind of art. Enough of one to satisfy me for a bit of my creative day. Worrying about what to wear is not fun. And however much I try to learn this lesson it all comes back to trusting the one and only true Artist : God.
Oh how he takes care of us.
New King James Version (NKJV)
25 “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?26 Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?27 Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?
28 “So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin;29 and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.30 Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clotheyou, O you of little faith?
31 “Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’32 For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.33 But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.34 Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.