So Sheila is too busy making art and dealing with every day life, to remind you- her virtual fans and in-real-life friends that she's going to be showcasing her work this Friday as part of the Nevada City First Friday Art Walk in the fabulous shop, The Parlour at Neva Co. Stop by anytime between 5-9pm and give her a huge hug, have a nibble and even better- buy some art! 400 Broad Street, Nevada City.
And if you're an art lover and you can't make it to the Art Walk, there's plenty of opportunity to check out and support other local artists this weekend as part of the Fall Colors Open Studios Tour of Nevada County, starting this Saturday, October 4th.
And Sheila will get back to her regular scheduled blog agenda, one of these days....
As we enter the golden-hued season, Oh Non-denominational, Allergen Free Deity, grant me the strength to keep these vows as School Eve approaches.
1. I will set up a toxin-free lunch box system comprised of easy to find lids with no designs that the girls love in September and deem "For BABIES!" by January. Sure it may cost a bit more but the homemade kale chips and organic wheat-berry salad that they are sure to love will keep best in it.
2. I will write their names in all their new clothes and notice THAT afternoon when they return home without the Landsend sweater they just bought. I will quickly do a follow up check to insure the sweater is home within 24 hours.
3. Homework time will be a joy! There will be a a box of freshly sharpened pencils and cut apples awaiting each well lit, ergonomically optimal, work station. I will sip my lemon water as I gaze lovingly at the 4th grade math worksheets. I'm certain they will remind me of my own love of 4th grade math.
4. Dinner, Bath, Bed routine! Scrubbed, fed, tucked, read, snuggled on time every night so my husband and I can enjoy a calm recap of the day's events as we joyfully embrace in our marital bed. There will be no bargaining with my spouse about who gets what done. After all, the years go so fast. I will enjoy every damn minute of it!
5. The piles of bills, homework, permission slips, junk mail, art projects, popsicle sticks, rubberbands, and stickers in the kitchen are thing of the past. This is the year the metal organizer gets used for something other than a propping device for the piles.
6. I will not volunteer for too much or too little. I will keep track of how many times I have been present in each classroom to avoid sibling jealousy and welcome every combination of child in my clean car on field trips.
7. Of course I will be sure to schedule personal "me time" "work time" "creative time" "fitness time" "haircare time" "skincare renewal time" to be a beacon of feminist strength and wisdom. Yes girls, we can do it all.
8. I will not come to school looking like a homeless person.
9. I will not let it bother me when 4th graders laugh at me if I need to come to school looking like a homeless person.
10. I will be involved but not too involved in everything from fund-raising to bullying, nutrition to homework, reading lists to closed toe-shoe policy. I will have the strength and wisdom to know the difference and trust that every professional, parent, administrator and aid, both cares as much as I do and understands how much I care; which will always be the exact right amount of care.
I just got a dozen 8" x 8" canvases that are reserved for animals. Plenty of people have a special affinity for certain creatures and are looking for cool gift ideas, so this will be my holiday project. I know everyone can't afford a commission but I'm happy to take requests with no obligation.
They will all be $100 until I run out of this order of cavases.
Everybody likes goats and bunnies. Know anyone with a weird animal obsession? Tell me about it.
Sleepy little animals at Twilight. They are both available in my Etsy store now.
Kids are sick, big push for the opening has passed, it is 100 degrees and I am down.
It was expected. Even though I thought maybe this time I would avoid it, I always have post event funk to manage. Fellow DANK artist, Kathy Frey, and I are going to talk it out on her posdcast. If it is cool, I'll share it with you when it's done.
I'm trying to sit with it rather an exhaust myself pushing against it or wrestle it down with new rules for myself.
I am off to Monterey this morning with Layla. We are leaving a day early to meet her 2/3 grade class at the aquarium where we will spend the night, but first a stay in a nice hotel. It is about a 4 hour drive and for a minute I thought "I've never driven that far alone before,".
However I'm not alone. I have Layla with me, my daughter and friend. Before you go saying "You need to be a mom and not a friend." I get that. I really do but I think I've leveled up in this mom gig, past the point of joyful chore. I want to enjoy some of benefits of living with a formed and interesting person.
Yesterday watching her perform the lead in her class play, with absolutely no help from me, it dawned on me that all that early mom stuff is starting to pay off. She is responsible, she doesn't lie, her teacher commented, "she's amazing, she's so mature!" So I'm going to enjoy this child I helped to raise and hit the road.
I say "helped" because her will and focus is so shockingly strong, I'm often only a referee of social norms. She is good company and I'm looking forward to watching the sunset over the sea during a different kind of girls' night.
Good time to take a break on my water series for The DANK Inaugural and visit the ocean. Works in progress.
I had an unexpected trip yesterday. Greg texted, "pick up Sabrina from my office" while I was working out. Apparently she flipped out about her shoes when it was time to go on a field trip to the Folsom Zoo. But as is often the case with kids, the thing it's really about isn't what it's about. Driving over, grubby with sweat, I remembered how insistent she was that I NOT drive on this filed trip. Of course when I asked if she wanted me to take her, she felt better and wanted to go. Stinky, tired, no lunch packed and lacking water or change of clothes, it felt like the exact right thing to do. I said goodbye to the studio day I was planning.
I'm not looking for mom of the year compliments here, just sharing and enjoying a moment of clarity. I worry about boundaries with my kids. I think most people walk that tightrope between spoiling them with confidence boosters and letting them learn to make their way on their own. Sabrina tried really hard to go on this trip alone. I'll pretend it was about the shoes and hope she gives it another shot.
It's another lesson learned for myself about progress. I spend quite a bit of my mental energy on a story about being a newbie artist that constantly works and gets little traction. I struggle to be a good mom, decent person and dedicated art citizen responding to challenges as they pop up but rarely chart my progress. Driving past Folsom Prison and considering time served, it dawned on me; I've been doing this for 10 years. I sold this painting in 2004 to a couple that had pears on their wedding invitation. I remember being thrilled as it was one of my first ebay sales that made it to double digits. I can't remember the price (maybe $20?) but I remember the feeling. Hearing about how thrilled she was to find pears, how surprised her husband was, how it will hang in their new home. I wonder about that painting now, and all the paintings I've let go. How each was attached to a goal or a wish, that has actually come true but maybe not the way I expected. The seeds of success are so tiny I often forget they grow and can move the boulders of disappointment.
So I'm back in the studio today and planning a speaking engagement in June and a group show in July. I'm excited to share the details as they come together but I know it will all be about water, flow, time passing, flexibility and strength.