So Much For Good Intentions…

I had resolved to do something creative every day in 2010. And things were going well. I was converting these:

Into these:

I was practicing my calligraphy skills:

(Can you guess which movie I watched while I practiced?)

I was sewing new curtains and designing a card for a friend’s top-secret surprise birthday party.

Indeed, things were going well. Until day 5 of 2010, when I decided to go to the walk-in clinic to get my sprained ankle checked out because it wasn’t getting better. Four hours later, I came home with this:

Turns out I’d been walking on a broken ankle for the past week. When the doctors told me it was broken, I thought they were kidding (because doctors like to play practical jokes on their patients…right?). Even when they showed me the x-rays, I didn’t believe it. And even as they were putting the cast on, I was still skeptical.

So for the past few days I’ve been trying to wrap my head around this whole situation. The doctors have said I’ll need the cast on for 6 to 8 weeks. They’ve scared me into staying off the broken ankle with threats of surgery if I don’t comply.

Getting to and from the office is a huge struggle in the ice and snow. And to make things worse, I need to travel extensively to implement 13 events in the next 7 weeks. Yikes. I’m still trying to figure out how I’ll get it all done.

Although I’m quite happy to be single and living independently most days, I could sure use my very own Mr. Darcy right now!

So that “creative every day” resolution I was talking about earlier? Out the window. The good news is that I’ve been catching up on my reading. Right now I’m enjoying “Through Black Spruce” by Joseph Boyden (isn’t he a cutie?) and “When You Are Engulfed In Flames” by David Sedaris – exactly what I need to cheer me up.

Another Year with New Opportunities

It’s hard to believe that today is already Day 4 of 2009… Time continues to tick away, when there is still so much to do. I’ve spent the past several days just vegging out and thinking about what I want to accomplish this coming year. Although I haven’t posted on this blog in several months, I’ve been very busy creating in other areas of my life. In December alone, I:

·         Took part in a craft fair (while recovering from a nasty bout of food poisoning)

·         Made no less than 6 custom books and 3 boxes for special commissions

·         Taught 3 bookbinding workshops

·         Wrapped up a weekly web design course I was taking

·         Made a bracelet as a Christmas gift for my mom and started a second one for myself (Found a new hobby – oh, joy!)

·         Made a painting (18”X24”) of Jim Morrison as a Christmas gift for my brother

·         Organized and delivered three events in three different cities for my pesky day job

I think I really overextended myself this time…no wonder I’m feeling so burnt out. For months I’ve been working long and stressful hours at my pesky day job, and on my crafty endeavours every evening and weekend.

Despite the current economic downturn, it is my greatest hope to start working for myself. Being a realistic person, I know it won’t be possible just yet. But in the meantime I have decided to set the wheels in motion so that when the timing is right, I’ll be ready. One example of this is the web design course I recently took – I started with the intention of learning to design my own website, but I can now see myself selling my services to others one day. With this in mind, I’ve signed up for a course to learn Adobe Photoshop, which will in turn help me to design better websites. I also signed up for a full-day workshop on Starting Your Own Business, so that when the timing is right, I’ll have the tools and skills in place to get things done quickly and correctly.

When I came back from my Christmas trip in Switzerland a year ago, I had decided I wanted to learn a new language (meeting so many Europeans who could speak several languages really inspired me) but I never did anything about it… Now one of my closest friends, Neil, is getting married in Greece this coming May, so I registered for a Greek-language course to keep me focussed on my goal of saving enough money to attend the wedding (and impress my friends by speaking Greek!). Living in the Greektown area of Toronto will no doubt help me learn the language more easily. I can’t wait until next week, when the course starts…should be fun!

Part of me feels that I’m again overextending myself by registering for all these course during my busiest time of year at my pesky day job (I will be organizing and delivering 5 events in January and 6 in February), but the other part of me feels that I really need to do this for myself if I want to improve my life in the long run. If I can get through the next two months, I can get through anything! I just need to stay focussed on my goals, get lots of sleep, and enjoy every free moment I have.

Here are a few photos of some recent projects:

artist-ribbon-notebook A notebook I made for a swap that never took place…

wedding-album-box A wedding album & box commission (I made 5 albums and 3 boxes for this couple)

bluenose-journal Another commission – a large journal for a Bluenose aficionado (like me!)

jim-morrison-painting The Jim Morrison painting I made for my brother

teal-bracelet The half-finished silver & teal bracelet I am making for myself (I made a similar one in gold & cream for my mom)

So tell me, what do you have planned for 2009?

Harvey and Audrey and Grover, Oh My!

I was saddened to hear about the passing of comedian Harvey Korman last week. I used to love watching the Carol Burnett Show and its incredibly talented cast of characters. Whenever Harvey was teamed up with Tim Conway, you knew you were in for a good laugh. I searched YouTube and found this gem:

I could spend hours watching all the videos from the Carol Burnett Show – even 30 or 40 years later, they are as timless and funny as ever!

In more creative news…
Now that I’m fully recovered from the crazy super-bug I caught a few weeks ago, I’ve been spending lots of time at my craft table. I’ll be moving into a new loft later this month and will need to decorate the new place. Since my budget is limited at the moment, I decided to create a decor element of my own. I introduce you to my new friend Audrey:

The photo on the right shows the image that I used to create the canvas painting. I’m thrilled with how she turned out, and I can definitely see myself making more of these in the future!

I’ve also been making books, books, books for sale at nathalie-roze & co. Of course, I forgot to take photos of the dozen or so LP journals I made before delivering them, but they included Steve Miller Band, Eric Clapton, Rolling Stones, BTO, and more. I found out that one of my David Bowie LP journals will be used as a guest book at a gallery in Scarborough. They’re showing an exhibit on LP cover art (including the Bowie cover I used to make the journal) so it’s a perfect match!

I did remember to take a photo of this journal I made for a swap – the theme was the Muppets and I absolutely love this book. I wish I could keep it!

As a change from making books all day, I started making these a few months ago. I have to admit, they’ve become a bit of an obsession. I loooooove how they add a touch of class to just about anything:

(I’m also loving the macro feature on my camera!)

Today I plan to plug away and make more books for sale, but I’m not sure how far I’ll get with the heat. It’ll be close to 40 Celcius this afternoon with the humidity factor, and it’s already hot and sticky. Ouch. I may need to take a few ice cream and cooler breaks in between the book making…

Happy crafting!