Thursday 6 May 2010

Back to the real world!

Hi everyone! 

I may have thought that my blogging break would only be until I moved into my new house and had the internet reconnected but I completely under-estimated just what was involved in the move.  So a quick update - Zach and I "camped" in the house for the first month until Joseph and the furniture arrived.  I started work straight away as my employer was incredibly helpful and gave me an immediate transfer. (I have since started another job but again with the same department - I have been incredibly lucky and I am so happy!)

I think the reason I didn't blog once we got the internet organised was that I wasn't doing any arting or crafting and that really is the focus of this blog.  Anyway once the 120 cartons of "stuff" and the furniture arrived, unpacking was the priority!  I had forgotten just how exhausting that process can be and of course I want everything to look lovely straight away (which is an impossibility when you have way too much "stuff"). 

When I still had the 40+ cartons of art and craft stuff to unpack it was time to go to the Creative Soul Retreat over in Melbourne - something that was planned a year ago when a move to Perth wasn't even on the radar.  While the actual retreat was four days I had booked for a fortnight away so that I could have some time with one of my sisters who lives there and then with Joseph who arrived midway.

The Retreat was wonderful and just the rejuvenation I needed - I am really looking forward to get back into some creative stuff now.  I did a couple of workshops with Jan Harris (who stood in for Judy Wise as she has health issues that forced her to withdraw) and a couple with Laurie Mika.  They were all terrific but I absolutely adored working with the polymer clay and can't wait to do more mosaic style pieces a la Laurie.  Melbourne was fantastic fun- Joseph and I had our first holiday alone for about a decade and we are already planning the next one!  Shopping, eating, looking and walking - did we cover some territory!

After getting back from Melbourne I had a final week of my holidays to finish the unpacking and to get the house looking reasonable and it was fun (although at times I wondered whether I was just walking around in circles moving stuff!).  I have set up a craft room this time from scratch - in the past I have used all the bits and pieces of furniture that were excess to other rooms/needs.  I am now a walking talking IKEA advertisement in fact - I love their white bookcases, tables and drawers and I have used them exclusively (it is a very small room so it didn't need a lot).  Big thanks to my son Zach for having the patience to put all the units together (my role was limited pretty much to the "needs two persons" pieces).  I recovered the window pelmet one night and had to compromise when I found that I had misplaced (lost) my sewing machine power cord somehow in the move - thank goodness for fusible webbing! So glad that there is a Janome shop  close-by now - nice not to have to think about long distance purchases, postage etc. I'll take some pictures soon to share but in the meantime I just keep having a peek in there to make sure it is real!  Can't wait to actually get creative in there...this is a photo of my new desk area a few weeks ago (I have already made some changes of course!).

My sewing room, on the other hand, is a bit of a disaster and I am planning to really change my layout and storage there as soon as higher priority items are attended to (like a range hood and new oven, a new dining table, new blinds ... etc etc). 

So this post is not without some arty content here is the mosaic personal shrine (still without the middle "shrine" bit) that I made in one of Laurie Mika's Creative Soul Retreat workshops and a very blurry picture of one of the personal reliquaries that I made in the other workshop I took with Laurie.  This one was for my sister Marrijane in Melbourne.  So much fun!  I've bought a toaster oven (I didn't even look for a secondhand one when I found out how reasonable new ones are these days!) so expect to see more clay/mosaic work soon.

I'll be back soon (promise)!

Friday 1 January 2010

About my Unscheduled Blogging Break...

Just popping in to say that my life has taken an unexpected but very exciting turn which means that I don't have any time for blogging. We are moving back to Perth early in 2010 so we are using every spare moment to de-clutter and prepare our house of the last ten years for sale. Joseph has a job transfer and Zach is starting uni in February so it is suddenly up to me to find a job in Perth too! I am really hopeful that I will be able to arrange something (quickly!) with my current employer but I am of course looking at all the options. What we are discovering is that you suddenly "see" your home differently when you know it is going to be seen by a potential buyer's eyes - we have a lovely home but suddenly the backlog of maintenance seems so obvious!

So you can guess how I have spent the last couple of weeks - firstly packing up my art/craft rooms so that I can get in there to re-paint and then of course the actual painting. I had forgotten how much it hurts my neck to paint above my head height and guess what else - I had forgotten just how much "stuff" I have accumulated and how it very quickly translates to an enormous number of cartons!! If I had more time I would try and thin it out but unfortunately I am going to have to try and do most of that at the other end. The whole exercise of packing it all up has made me really want to streamline and to establish some focus in my art - it is crazy to want to try everything and to buy supplies for every style and technique that appeals to me! I need to face facts - I would need another five lifetimes, at least, to do justice to my acquisitions to date and I certainly would need to give up my day job and that is not going to happen in the short term!

So exciting times ahead - I am so looking forward to living in Perth after our 16 years plus in Kalgoorlie - to be close to friends and family (and the coast!!) again but of course there are also moments when I think of what we will miss here - this place has been good to us and for us!

I'll pop in occasionally to provide updates but there won't be any art to share for a little while (but can you imagine just how hungry I will be to get my new space set-up and functioning!!) The only blog I am reading at the moment is this one!!

Happy 2010 to you all!!