Awakened by a rumbling cat and a delicate dog lick on my left cheek, it has been a good day so far. Coffee first, -- okay, like most mammals, I find the bathroom first, but that’s hardly glamorous, now is it? -- then a good twenty minutes outside in the cool morning sunlight as the dogs tromp around the yard and be dogs. (See what I mean? All mammals look for the bathroom first thing in the morning!) Inside, more coffee, time writing on the computer, a few phone calls to arrange transport for the next couple of days, and the open acknowledgement that I’m going to have to load the dishwasher before the day gets too much older.
I’ve started working my way through Julia Cameron’s The Artist’s Way again. This program is an interesting way to go about staying in the present and nurturing your own life – whether you engage in creative hobbies or not – as long as you don’t become militant with it. I got the hang of the “morning pages” pretty quick, but granting myself and actually KEEPING my “artist play dates” has been a bit of a challenge. I’ve plenty of things to play with, but finding ways to interact with creative outlets with the enthusiasm I had as a child proved to be a bit more difficult.
Well, Saturday, I think I found the key to my creative freedom. I bought myself a brand new box of 64 Crayola crayons! Do you remember the way a fresh box of crayons smells? The easy glide of the newly molded wax?
The amazing names for all those rich colors? Well, some of the names have changed – I can’t find “Burnt Umber” or “Raw Umber” – and I love the chestnut, mahogany, and other new names in the 64-pack. But now I may need to save my pennies for one of the even BIGGER boxes! Anyone else remember when the 64-pack with its own sharpener was the be all and end all? Do YOU have your own box of crayons? This can be a very relaxing exercise.
A bunch of sites offer free coloring pages now. You can find a list and some evaluations of the sites here at Home School Kid Lit. My favorite so far is the list to the government site. They have a collection of coloring pages of wild flowers, complete with Latin names and color instructions for accurate descriptions. I'm fascinated!
I have a friend who used to credit her crayons with having gotten her through her PhD exams and classes! Repetitive, soothing, with low stress and multiple sensory stimuli – isn’t this a great rationalization for doing something childish? The colors remind me of why I love walking into yarn shops. All the colors, all the textures, even the slightly industrial smells of the dyes and the sharp tang of wool and other animal fiber.
In addition to coloring this week, I finally made a decision and started back to work on some big projects.
I chose to work on the orchid cable top from the cover of the last Spring IK. But a trip to Eunny’s webpage had me digging through my stash for the yarn to make this lovely bit of early spring apparel. Late March and early April usually go back to being wet and damp and miserable here, so if I get it done quickly, I may get to wear it this year. If not, it will be wonderful for fall and winter.
I’ve also gotten started on the baby hats I’m doing for the local hospital. The yarn they chose is rough and not the greatest color, but I’m following the rules!
My second set of socks from Sensational Knitted Socks is whirling along. I like the “denim” colored Paton’s Merino Classic Wool and doing the second set of socks makes it much easier to enjoy the pattern. I dug out some lighter sock yarns to get started on knitting socks for summer. And I’ll have to decide what to do with the three skeins of dark blue KP Gloss that I have. I’d planned socks, but there’s enough there for thigh-highs if I want to get adventurous [grin].