You're all very nice, really, thanks. I wasn't looking for cheers about my photoraphy skills, but boy, you make a girl feel good. I will be starting my month long project on Monday, until then I may have a bit of blathering to get out of my system beforehand. I've decided I won't be writing any words of my own during this project. That's the plan, even though I have no idea how I will be able to keep quiet for that long, but I need to. For me this has to be all about the images... if there are any words they will be borrowed from some other soul. I'm pretty excited to see how I feel and what I will have learned at the end of this month of balance. And just so I'm clear, this will not only be about capturing the good vs. bad in my days. I'm not sure if that came through in my last post. It's about energy, in all it's opposing forms, making sense of the balance that exists somewhere in the middle. Mellow/excited, desperate/glutinous, chaotic/serene, challenge/ease... it's all there, everyday.
This picture... in an effort to keep summer local as we are more mindful than ever of energy conservation, myself a two friends started a Family Fun Night at my daughter's school. I realize that is the lamest, most unimaginative of titles, but the kids wanted it to be called something. Kids love stuff like that. Anyway, so far it's four families. We gather at the school, three miles from my house every Wednesday evening for a couple of hours. The school is closed of course, though many of us have keys (it's a laid back kind of place) should the kiddos need the bathroom. Each family brings a picnic dinner, the kids get to run loose on their beloved blacktop and playscape, shoot hoops, check out the vernal pond, make mud with the hose in the sand box (which would be a no-no during the school year), you know, general kid summer stuff. The adults get to visit, catch up, enjoy the slow passing of yet another summer, and watch our little crew slowly turn into a bigger crew. A simple idea for this community that is working out beautifully.
What's going on in your community, with your peeps, in an effort to keep it local, whether you have children or not, please share. There are six more days in the week to think of...
For three hours today I scrubbed the floors. On hands and knees, changing the water in my bucket too many times to count. My poor dog Sukha drools uncontrollably and goes into full body shaking/trembling fits at the slightest hint of thunder in the distance. It's summer in New England, there is always a hint of thunder in the distance. My floors were bad. Really bad. On top of that I was just cranky. I had plans to hang with Emily this afternoon. We were going to head down to the library, then make some jam. Our plans were cast aside as one neighborhood friend showed up, then another. They're great kids, I just wanted a day with my kid, and only my kid. I was feeling crabby and bitchy and wanting to get the hell out of this urban locale and head for the hills. I wanted there to be a small forest between myself and my closest neighbor. I wanted total privacy, just for one day. Instead, the kids played while I scrubbed the floors. Maybe we'll walk down to the library tomorrow.
As I washed the floors I thought a lot about balance, how I find it, and how easily it can slip away if I'm not careful. I try every day to maintain a healthy balance in my life, my heart. But sometimes, when I turn my head for a moment, things get all lumpy and scattered, thrown here and there. I thought about how inspired I've been this month with Erin's 30 Days of Happiness. How I'm over the top in love with her 365 Set. I don't think I've ever seen a more expressive collection of self portraits. I've always loved Erin's fabulous blog, but lately I feel like I'm hearing her truest, wisest voice come through her words and images.
At a certain point in the late afternoon I decided to turn my attitude around, get over myself, send the kids to their respective homes and have a little one on one with my girl. I brewed up a batch of iced coffee, made mine a double, and set her up too. Why not. We chilled on the deck, talked about how six days out of the week it's great to have a constant flow of kids in and out of here, handing out frozen chocolate bananas and all, but sometimes you (I) just want to be alone and not have the doorbell ring in the middle of lunch, just sometimes. You know, to keep the balance. Here's what I'm thinking... a la Erin's 30 Days of Happiness as well as other "30 Day" projects that I am too tired to link to right now... I'd like to record two photos a day for a month (or so), intending to capture the balance in my days. Sitting with chaos, sitting with joy, finding a steady, reliable, safe connection between the two. I'm hoping my images will remind me daily that no matter what, no matter if I am handed sweet or sour grapes as the sun rises, there can always be (at least) a moment of balance before the end of the day. Even if it's a little balancing pranyama while cozied up in bed.
My camera isn't anything special, I won't be amazing you with my picture taking prowess during this project. My hope is to look back on these days and see with my eyes that yes, indeed, I was able to capture the balance, the yin and yang of my life. That I will be able to reflect, feel joy and count my blessings on those days when I just want to run to the hills.
I think I'll start this on Monday, maybe sooner, likely on Monday.
This could very likely be the most incredible vintage fabric ever. Has there ever been some sort of contest or anything? You know, like at the county fair where you can win a blue ribbon for your grandmother's jam recipe? I'm feeling a little deserving of a blue ribbon in the 'thrifted' category. Sadly there is never such a thing, but shouldn't there be? Oh my, can you imagine? Raspberry lime rickey's, apple pie a la mode, and a thrifting contest? Who needs tractor pulls anyway?
Find a closer look if you'd like here.