Well, here we are, already just over a quarter of the way through the year. Taking a cue from corporate culture, here’s a quarterly report on yours truly:
Oh, Oakland, you are breaking my heart. As much as we want to stay here, I’m not sure we’re going to be able to buy in Oakland.
Our choices are:
* crappy condos in (sometimes) OK (meh) neighborhoods
* falling-down dumps in OK (meh) neighborhoods
* incredibly adorable renovated perfect charmers in extremely dangerous neighborhoods (painful to see these and then look at crime reports)
* incredibly tiny one-bedroom condo jewels in decent neighborhoods
None of these really fit what we’re looking for. So, we’re looking east. Either we stay where we are (nice retro 1-bedroom apartment in fantastic neighborhood which we adore) and don’t buy anything, or we move farther out to various suburbs. Which isn’t a bad option, just… far.
So, we are temporarily not really looking. We’ll wait until the SSDI hearing to see what we’ve got to work with. And then start touring.
Art and Such
Who knew I was such a wimp? As previously noted, our house is COLD. There are no heaters in the room I use as art studio, and if I plug in a heater, it’s a 50/50 chance that the fuse will blow (yes, fuses. See: retro apartment). So. It’s been cold and rainy for a really long time now (which I like in theory, but not when our house is freezing) and so… i haven’t been painting. However, I have one in progress. I decided to start playing around with abstracts, just to get creative-juices flowing (aside: does anybody else cringe when people over-use the word juicy
? Bleck.) I was doing really good with it… and then I over-did it. So time to backtrack. And maybe turn it upside down. And try some gold leaf. Gold leaf makes everything better, don’t you think?
A few more words on creativity: sometimes it just KILLS me that I’m not messing around with art stuff every single day. Wasting time! Wasting talent! Waste! Waste! It breaks my own heart that I do this to myself.
And yet: Cold! Worried! Working really, really hard! Really, really tired! Those things suck up creative energy very quickly.
Still, as soon as it warms up, am totally going to resume at least one night a week of art, plus at least one afternoon per weekend of art. That should help. I may have to move my target of “art show” (meaning: have something up in a public space) back a few months, but that’s okay.
My other idea, which was a cookbook, has been put on-hold as my energy is being eaten up by all this other stuff. Not ditching that idea yet, however. Just… rationing out energy.
Feeling pretty good about progress in other areas.
* I got both of my websites updated (although I am seriously not happy with the graphic design one and will be redesigning as soon as I figure out my options). Have been wanting to do this for over a year, so Yay Me!
* Despite feeling discouraged, the ball is actually rolling in house-buying arena. Major accomplishment.
* Despite feeling mad at myself, I’m thinking more about art than I have in a long time. I think as soon as I have warmth/energy/can quit worrying, I’ll make some real progress.
* Have had better luck with books so far this year. Am enjoying just reading “whatever I want.”
* Am feeling like after the SSDI hearing, I’m going to hop right back into that “Make Stuff Happen” mode and start… well, making stuff happen.
* Although lately I have been really very tired and kinda crabby, my optimism remains firmly in place (only falling off the tracks every once in awhile). We have approximately one more week until the hearing, and then we’ll know what’s what.
A few more thoughts on creativity.
I have been thinking about what sorts of things foster creativity. I look at my own world and I see that although I have a very full, rich reading life, and I am great with cooking creatively, I’m not doing a whole lot visually. I don’t go to art shows, I don’t go to museums, I don’t look at art books, I don’t read artist biographies.
There seems to be two schools of thought about this sort of thing. One is: don’t look at anybody else’s stuff, because you’ll either start comparing yourself (and get paralyzed) or become overly influenced (and become unoriginal). The other school says to surround yourself with creative stimuli all the time: books, people, shows, classes, etc.
I’ve been in a visual vacuum for awhile, so I’m going to try the other way and see how that goes. I got some books on abstract art (more instructional than theory), and I need to make a point of going around to local galleries and just seeing what’s there. There is an Art Murmur in Oakland on the first Friday of the month, so maybe I ought to start going to that sometimes as well.
I know part of why I don’t do these things is because it breaks my heart to do them without Terri, but maybe I can do them sometimes anyway, just an hour or two here and there.
So, as spring starts to warm things up around here, I’m going to try and step out of my own box.
And I PROMISE to not start “marinating” in my own “juicy” creativity while “honoring” my “authentic self.” People! Use regular words!!!
(have I said lately that this tiredness is making me slightly crabby?)