Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Living, really living . . .

In the last few years, something I discovered about myself long ago has become much more certain to me. That thing is the knowledge that to me, if I am not creating, I am not living. And I mean really living the life that I need and want. Creating is just a part of me, and any of you out there who are creative know what I am talking about.

Let me tell you about the year 2008. It was probably the most creatively happy and fulfilling year of my life. It was also one of the most stressful and hard years of my life, too, but when I wasn't helping my parents, I was making cards. Lots and lots of cards! If you want to see pictures, you can check out my other BLOG or my gallery on

But somehow when 2009 arrived, I just couldn't find that joy in making cards any more. A lot of it was that I wouldn't "LET" myself create until I got some things done around the house that I'd let slip for a long time. But then I couldn't get those things done either, so I just played on the computer and did a lot of nothing. Over time I did a bit of embroidery, made a few tiny pincushions and lavender sachets (see my Etsy shop to the right), but not much creating went on around here.

Depression does that to you, it holds on to you so hard you can't move, and when you do, it's only for the things that have to be done. Finally one day I made myself make something, and it felt so good. But then my dad's health got worse and worse, so I didn't have the time or energy to craft much. My dad's been gone 6 weeks now, and I'm beginning to relax, and breathe again, and CREATE!!! To play with one of my favorite things - paper.

The itch has been there for a couple of weeks, but this past Friday night I got the itch, and had the time, so I let go! And I made a couple of ATC's. Something small, quick, and something that 'said' something. Here they are as a set . . .

The birdies are made from the paisley Spellbinders Nestabilities set. Stickles, scrapbooking paper, cardstock, seed beads and bakers twine for legs make up the rest.

The first one I made says 'wherever you stand, stand tall', and it's not about height! At 4' 11" I've learned that it's not my height that dictates who and what I am. It was a long hard lesson, but one I learned well. I think most people who know me will not remember me for how 'short' I am, but rather for the person I am.

The next one says "do whatever makes your heart soar". Can you tell these are reminders for me as much as anyone else who sees them? I shouldn't have to remind myself how important creating is for me, but from time to time I do.

And the last one says "creating is NOT being afraid to let go and make a mess", and of course I did make a mess on this one! I got a little carried away with the Stickles and it looks kind of gunky, but to be honest, it is real and true, and so what if I made a mess - it was fun!

So, after I made the ATC's (artist trading cards) I decided it was time to make a card. Here are a few peeks . . .

The papers are from Daisy Bucket Designs 'In The Meadow' collection. The background brown and white stripe is from 'celeste', the flower cut-out above is from 'addison'. I trimmed around the flower, topped it with a couple of silk flowers and a cute button.

The bingo card is from Jenni Bowlin, and the cardstock is embossed using my Cuttlebug and the swirls embossing folder. The button in the center of the bingo card is an old bronze looking one, and I used platinum Stickles in the center.

The bow is brown silk ribbon, and I put a few tiny seed beads on a brass safety pin and pinned it onto the bow for a bit of color. If you want to find out how to make tiny bows easily, check out my place on ford my tutorial.

And here is the finished product. I just love how it turned out, and to be the first card I've made in about 9 months, I think it looks great! And with the reminder on the bingo card to LIVE! I think I'll post it somewhere over my work table for a while. I'm learning to live again, and it feels so good! Honestly, Saturday evening after I'd played most of the day, I was just giddy and gleeful, and those are feelings that have been missing for a long time.
Things are looking up, and I'm so excited to see what the next weeks and months and years bring. Live, folks! Find what makes your heart soar, and do it to the best of your ability. It doesn't matter if it's perfect or like everybody elses, just have fun, and it won't matter one little bit!
Blessings folks! Becky


K-Sue said...

Permission to create - that is something I struggle with, too, often holding myself back because I have not done the chores. It's hard to find the balance. So glad to see you are back to being creative. I've looked forward to it. I love the birdies! I always like bird motifs, and the sentiments are such fun - love the "stand tall" one. I'm surprised to hear you are shorter than I am - I'm 5'3" - almost.

aimee said...

i love your new creations! im glad you have found your way back into creating and making yourself happy. brings me joy knowing you are taking time for yourself.

Farm Chick Paula said...

Wow- you are awesome! You do such wonderful work- I'm so glad the joy in creating is coming back for you! I too feel better when I'm making something with my hands and heart.

The White Bench said...

OMG! I need to leave another comment- these birdie ATCs are sooooo sweet!