Thursday, May 24, 2012

As the dust begins to settle...

...when I left, I still had eight weeks of unused sick time...!
 Four weeks ago tomorrow, I decided it was time to make a change. After 14 years, I left the little preschool where I worked and became retired.

In my mind, I thought I would simply switch gears and get to work on catching up on all of  the home tasks that never seemed to get accomplished or, at least, completed! That first Monday, I was up with the birds (and, Roxie, of course)...ready to tackle those looming projects. With a new routine in place, I showered, dressed, put on the coffee and went out with Roxie for a jaunt around the neighborhood. Back at the house, I began working on laundry, cleaning, organizing. I was on a roll!

This went on for several days. And then, I hit a wall. I was so intent on getting things done...I was making headway and accomplishing so much!! I lost all track of task and time. I was pushing myself, somehow feeling that now that I was not 'working', I needed to prove that it was worth it to have me home; to validate my retirement. I now know this is part of the process of transition from job to freedom.

And, it became very apparent that I cannot walk away from 14 years of relentless multi-tasking and smoothly shift to a less demanding schedule overnight! I had to stop...regroup...and give myself permission to slooooow down and take each day, one by one.

For the first time in a very long time, I have slept through the night three nights in a row! Upon my departure from my job, a friend and former co-worker told me that 'in a few weeks, I would begin to sleep through the night again, short term memory would return and my short temper would disapait'. He was right. Finally....there's that light at the end of the tunnel.

Hindsight being 20-20, I find I want to collect photos of the many friends I left behind. Teachers and parents...they were an integral part of my life at the preschool and I need to put them all in little memory book where I can visit them from time to time.

I have a few photos and know it will take some time to gather the others. But I hope to find one for each of the friends that meant so much to me. Especially Yolanda ~ the director that hired me and gave me that opportunity back in 1998. 

So...another project waits for me...but, this project will be a treasured one!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

the Studio

Late in 1986 it became apparent that we needed more room. Our comfortable apartment was perfect for two but a bit cramped for a family of three. So began the hunt for a house.

We looked at all sorts of homes. The offerings went from fixer-upper to are-you-kidding! All price ranges, various neighborhoods...what an education. We had been looking for nearly a year when one day, our realtor phoned to tell us that he thought he had found a house that would be perfect for us. Located in northeast Pasadena, we found the house just below the foothills.

It was not too big, two  bedrooms, two baths....a perfect first home. Being new to the house purchasing market, we looked through the house, talked about it and looked at the backyard. It wasn't until they showed us the basement room that it became obvious that this was the house for us!

Fast-forward to studio .... my sanctuary.

Just inside the door of the studio...

So many supplies and tools! The bins on the left are sewing supplies and unfinished quilting The stacks of drawers at the back are loaded with rubber stamps. Under my work table, drawers full of scrapbooking and paper crafting supplies. The file cabinet to the left, my mother gave me years ago...lots of project ideas are waiting in there!    

My work table...between projects, of course. Against the south wall is the new, industrial shelving that Charlie bought for me. Thanks to Tim Holtz, we learned we could find them at Cost Co. What a difference the shelving makes! Scrapbook paper is sorted by color and theme. The stack of bins next to the door? I am sorry to report....all negatives! Yes...from the Kodak Brownie Box camera days to that 35mm era. It would be great to have them all digitalized!

This is the desk my cousin, Charlie, gave me when he moved. It is perfect when I need to do a small project or write a letter.

In this corner, on the left, is my die cutting Vagabond (by Sizzix), lots of banners, and artwork by Whitney. To the right are all sorts of books, misc. treasures, the telephone (yes, it has a dial and still works!). Oh, and some fun string lights for that extra inspiration.

This bulletin board is an eclectic collection of ephemera, trinkets, doo-dads name it! Inspiration is everywhere...especially in my studio!

I love this little affords me an escape to explore mixed media, try a new project, write ....and sometimes, to just

These are my Mouseketeer ears from the late '60s.