in circles

It is normal to be fickle right?  As fickle as I am?  Geeze Louise.  I started listing some of my vintage kids items (just a FEW items, like, what was on the very top of the pile) on etsy last week and immediately became too overwhelmed with the process and now I feel like pulling them down and not dealing with it at all.  Why is that?  WHY?  There were, like, strings inside of me pulling me back, fighting forward motion, every step of the way.  And, so, something that should be kind of fun (in theory it would be SO FUN) felt arduous.

I just don't know. 

I always see people talking about their projects.  I need a project.  And it needs to come out of my own brain.  I am circling and circling with creative ideas and energy but don't know how to make them add up to anything.  I don't know where to rest.   I am praying for a landing field.

So I fuss around the house, moving furniture and switching where pictures hang and making things a little bit new and different.  It gets me by and makes me feel better, but it isn't IT.  It's just the overflow.

Do you have one?  A project?  A landing field? Something to work on that makes you feel like the youiest you?  Where did it come from?  And how did you know?


  1. I can really relate to this post. I always feel like there are things I SHOULD be doing in regards to creativity. I used to draw all the time and enjoy making things just for the sake of it and somehow after studying art I have sort of lost that spark. It's sort of sad. I hope that it will come back but I know what you mean, I always sort of half start things and then lose the drive. Then I read about people doing all these great things and I think why can't I have that sort of motivation! It's tricky. But I mean at least you have a blog where you write great stuff and inspire people! That's more than a lot of people do. :)

  2. I've given this much thought over the past year. I asked myself (and maybe this is different from what you're talking about?) "what are the things that have been constant interests in my life, since I was a little girl and up through?" After some sifting, here were three clear answers: writing, food/cooking, and talking. Understanding this helps me to know where to put my energies.

  3. So, I do think this is the reason, when I started cooking, that I poured myself into it. It became an outlet for discovery and tinkering and creating that killed two birds with one stone: I had to feed my people, right?

    At the same time, it's not enough.

    When I used to design full-time, my process was often heart-wrenching. With every new project, I would go through this emotional, isolated period of wrestling, self-doubt, furious erasing, near-depression, until the idea came and landed. And then -- that aha moment was so glorious, so life-leveling, it was the thing that kept me designing. Like a drug, really.

    These days, I don't design, and don't really want to. But that feeling of process, of never quiet being settled, of looking around and knowing the problem isn't solved -- it feels like I'm in that all the time. I can blame it on specific things -- I want to make new curtains, I need to hang those pictures, I need to find the right paint color -- but those are just distracting symptoms.

    As far as I can tell, for me, it's just being a mom of growing kids. And you can never land, because they never do. They constantly change, they are our ultimate work that we will likely never see completely finished.

  4. also, I sort of chased a rabbit there. But it could be your lack of interest in selling on Etsy has to do with two things:

    1) It's work that has no end, other than cash in your pocket.

    2) It's stuff that has been a part of the life you've created (with your kids), and that stuff is always hard to part with. I famously (ahem... OCD) check our Goodwill bags about 3x each to MAKE TRIPLE SURE nothing "accidentally" ended up in them.

  5. I think your home is your thing. I also love seeing photos of your home or little areas you've decorated. Also, not sure you need or want the temptation but did you see this challenge?


  6. I don't know if I consider myself a creative, but I'm a mom and I was facing this just a few months ago. I was well, bored and restless. I started praying that something, anything would come my way.

    Then a friend asked me to do a weekly column for his news site. It turned out to the best thing I've ever done. I love that it's a job with a small paycheck, but also something I've wanted to do forever.

    It doesn't solve all my creativity problems, but it helps. I am still praying for something that is more craft-driven, and I always have a thousand ideas, but nothing has been the one yet. I think I'll have to keep trying them, though. Ideas have to be tried, not just thought of.

    All that to say, hang in there. It's a familiar place.

  7. I can relate to this post! My creative outlet is cooking and baking {most likely because it's essential that I feed my family}
    I find my fuel mostly by just being with my family, snapping pics along the way, and documenting our stories in words and pictures via my blog. Oh, and like you, I'm a furniture changer. Works wonders for the soul to move the couch or a chair.

    ps..new to your blog and really enjoying it. :)

  8. i used to have a landing field, but then i started to really not like my landing field. now i kinda hate my landing field. and i'm trying to figure out how to make something else be my landing field.

  9. I feel the exact same way. I lay in bed and contemplate crocheting adn painting and yoga and starting a group blog and baking and..... none of it seems to fit.

    Let me know if your brain lands on something. I'd like to know at least someone knows what they want to do, even if it isn't me.

  10. i've been trying to think about how to answer this. my creative outlet is so weird to me. i make these collages and little doodles and I don't really know why but it feeds me. i know this is a lame answer, but i really don't know where it came from. i've had it for so long now it's hard to separate it out from myself, you know? it's like a little magnet inside of me just gets drawn to scissors and glue. I just wish I could stop wondering about ways to monetize it. I think it's the same as your etsy shop thing: when I think about turning art into a career or an income, all the fun just flies out the window. so I'm working on being okay with that.

  11. I think it's important to let go of the idea that your thing has be completely original, you know? I mean, it's all been done before and that's okay. I understand wanting your own THING, though. I try to go with what I really, really itch to do creatively. This summer it's been all about friendship bracelets and I'm still making them. I will probably get back out my looms and make some hats or scarves when it starts getting colder. Or maybe, just maybe, I'll branch out and learn to crochet from YouTube tutorials. And of course I'm always reading like crazy and I set a goal this year - 75 books. That has helped me stay on track and a goal that I really want to meet, just to say I DID IT. My real project needs to be decorating my house (and unpacking the bedroom full of boxes of stuff we apparently DON'T NEED since we're not missing most of it). But just do what makes you happy, and relaxes you. I've figured what I like most about making bracelets or knitting or painting or making mixed media is the colors - I love picking out color combinations.

  12. I find yoga a great way to recenter myself...time to just be. Afterward, I do my best thinking of what I should be doing with my life. It's hard to be everything to everyone, and young children are very lovable, but at the same time, very draining. I've been in your shoes, but with my children now being 7, 6 and 3.5, I can assure you, things will get easier.

  13. i would have to say photography is the one solid thing i've done for years. YEARS. sure, i sew here and there. and we paint rooms sometimes. and i craft sometimes. but it's not a constant. photography is my constant. it's the ONE THING i can do when i'm feeling sad, happy, upset, mad, delirious, anything. and i don't mean taking my kids out in a field and dressing them up as mary poppins ... i just mean, holding my camera in my hands and capturing the life around me. that's what centers me. usually.

  14. After ten years, I'm finally starting to write again and, damn, does it feel good. It's not perfect - in fact it's very rough and stiff, like muscles that haven't moved in forever. But exercise and the fluidity will return I hope.

    Meanwhile, I have my crochet when the writing muscles cramp and I have to rest.

  15. I had this entire comment written out, but I deleted it because it sounded crazypants and like I need a heavy dose of paxil. Hee.

    On a related note, I watched Bob Ross a few days ago and it made me want to paint and grow an afro. New projects on my horizon??

    I am bad at leaving comments.

  16. Sometimes I get these grand ideas for a new craft project. I get all the materials and start in and then something happens and it all fizzles out. Happens more than I'd like.

    I just started a Autumn quilt for our bed. I don't do a lot of sewing, but when I do, man am I into it.

  17. Being a mom. That counts, right? I've thought these same thoughts before, and tried to do "projects". Like you, I even started an Etsy shop once. I closed it a couple of days later. Way too much stress just thinking about it.

  18. I can relate. It took me playing around with many different things before I found 'the one'. And I have a feeling I'll still look for more outlets for my creativity.

    I'm with Steph, though, I adore your home. I love looking at pictures of your style - little snap shots of your personal style.


    I was totally overwhelmed with Etsy the first week or so I put a store together and started making sales. It freaked me out until I got used to it.

  19. Oh man, I so need to figure this out. I am in serious need of a "passion" or even a really good project, because the end result of all my fickleness and uncertainty is laziness, where I get nothing accomplished. And I really, really hate it.

  20. i felt this way 8 months ago. then i started an etsy shop and now my life feels out of control. sometimes i wish i could go back to the days of rearranging furniture and spray painting picture frames. now i'm neck deep in a small business! BUT, it is a lot of fun. just an exercise in self control and keeping my life in balance.