Thursday, December 17, 2009

2009 retrospective: blog posts that have made me think.

image here

I have a few more posts in me before I sign off for a couple of weeks over the Christmas-New Year period. There hasn't been much crafty show-and-tell on this here blog recently, but that's ok. The things I have been making, I can't really show you until after the birthday, Christmas and wedding celebrations have passed!

Meanwhile, it's been on my mind a while to mention some of the blog posts which I've found the most striking this past year. The majority of blogs I read fall firmly into the craft/art category. I love to see the creative things people are getting up to, gather inspiration, celebrate achievements, admire techniques or drool over fabrics and notions. But I also love to read a blog post with a bit of meat now and then; a discussion, a reflection, an out-there opinion or personal confession. Such posts often inspire or challenge me in some way, and more than once I've been moved to act or change something.

Here are a few of the posts I've found most thought-provoking in 2009:

M*: 21st century dad
Melanie's wise reflections on being the breadwinner and having a stay-at-home husband gave me great insights into something completely beyond my experience... and reminded me that communication is EVERYTHING.

Raglan Guld: About me
Leonie's honesty in this post (delivered in her usual casual, off-the-cuff humourous style) started a few back and forth emails between us about various issues including PND and alcohol addiction. It was a bit of a wake-up call for me and our conversations prompted me to cut my alcohol consumption to almost zero, which has been a good thing for me and my family. 

Thornberry: Market groupie
Lara's post about craft markets, quality, and why people do or don't make to sell, was a timely one. The post and some of the replies helped me to clarify a few of my own thoughts on the matter... bottom line is, I won't be leaping in to sell craft any time soon!

Consumption Rebellion: What is 'joyful consumption'?
OK, so most of Eilleen's post present food for thought or a challenge of some type. And this is actually a post from 2008 but I read it after starting my blog. It prompted some soul-searching and made me think about how I could challenge my own consumption habits by thinking about what I could gain rather than what I was giving up. My decision to take the Wardrobe Refashion pledge is an example of something that came out of this soul searching...

Foxs Lane: My nest
Kate's candid thoughts about her head-vs-heart struggle in deciding not to have more babies, and the challenges it was presenting to her identity beyond 'mothering', were insightful and challenging for me, particularly as one who does not yet feel that my family is 'complete' (but wonders how I'll ever make that decision, if it's mine to make!)

Are there particular posts that have got you thinking this year? Do share!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

My creative space...

I'm still not so much for the words or the creating myself at the moment... instead, I'm enjoying that my space is filled with the creativity and generosity of others.

Kate's gorgeous, even-better-in-real-life crochet christmas potholders. I won them, and they make me so happy. They're never going near a pot though. Nor is the handmade brown and blue potstand which my friend Beck found for me in Wanaka, New Zealand. I think I'm going to dedicate a hanging space in my kitchen for handmade kitchenalia... I could look at these all day!

A copy of Stitch bought for me by my creative friend Jo, a lovely for-no-apparent-reason gift with lots of interesting and funky projects. I'm diving right in after I've finished that sandwich...

And the JOY Christmas card... it's one of Lisa Stubb's prints. The orange, the typography, the bird, the sentiment: it was love at first sight for me. I'm framing this one to go up somewhere in the house. Because even when the joy isn't flowing easily, it's there for the finding...

More creative spaces at Kirsty's (new) house, which is looking mighty fine. And thanks Kirsty for the space-sharing in 2009... you're ace.

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Welcome to Slumpsville...

Population: me.

I've been in a bit of a slump lately. A domestic slump, a parenting slump, a creative slump. (Slump is such a funny word when you write it over and over... slump slump slump!)

Oh yeah. Slumpsville. I'm sure you know it well, my friends.

In Slumpsville, the floors remain unswept for days on end, the kids eat toast for dinner, the television is a constant companion and the 'floordrobe' in the bedroom takes on a life of its own.

In Slumpsville, the view is all mountainous molehills and forests obscured by trees. I always forget to pack my rose-tinted glasses when I go to Slumpsville.

In Slumpsville, even the craft is surly and frayed around the edges...

But that's ok.

Slumpsville is a stop-over, not a destination.

I'm just passing through.