06 October 2017

Making time to make and do

Meeting up with people and going to exhibitions and talks is all very well, in fact I love it, but sometimes you discover that lots of "domestic maintenance" and other things below the Radar Of Fun need to be sorted. And in the worst case, you don't even remember what those "things" are ... there's just a terrible half-awareness that there are a lot of them...

So I've carved out a block of time by cancelling everything for a few days, and putting the Radar Of Fun onto go-slow in terms of taking on new events, just for a wee while.

To start with, in terms of sorting out What is What (or where, or when), I reinstated the morning pages (remember those, from The Artists Way?) and found a book from 2005 (!) that had some blank pages, probably enough for this particular rescue mission. I used to enjoy starting the day with a coffee and the fountain pen, filling three pages in the book - dumping the troubling stuff out, and/or thinking about the ins and outs of the current or future art project. 

The dense writing of 2017 contrasts with the spaciousness of 2005
This morning I also had my List Pad to hand, open to the page with the list started 18 September, of which I've crossed off practically nothing. And some of the items on it are so inconsequential, would take such a short time, that they hardly merit being written down...

But the idea of the Long List is that everything is there - and then you choose only 3 items to focus on each day. Sometimes not all 3 get done; never mind; you might well find that some of the other items did get done. "Do a little of everything, and eventually it will all get done" is another approach, and it's not incompatible with my "3 things" method - having written down what the tasks are, you don't have to keep them in mind, and can do them without feeling pressure. Unless there's a deadline, of course .... that's a whole nother strategy ....

Freed from pressure, and with sunshine luring me outside for a walk, my perverse subconscious would not let me go - "just tidy up that kitchen counter" it said; "remember how nice it was, back at Wrentham Avenue when the estate agent might drop by while you were out so you had to keep it very tidy at all times, how nice it was to come back to those perfectly tidy rooms? At least do the dishes and shine the sink." Which I did, and somehow that turned into an hour of degreasing the cooker hood, wiping down the tiles, deranging the undersink cupboard somewhat, etc etc - but how good to see it sparkle -
Knife block made my my brother, cutlery drainer a gift from Daphne (last century!), and the cups each have their own stories. Cooker could do with replacing, but not this week. The kitchen was built in 1994 - to cut costs I did a lot of painting and varnishing, and also the tiling.

And then, the Parkland Walk -
 Eventually a spot of lunch in one of Crouch End's myriad cafes -
Back at home, a little gentle mending - the ravelled sleeves of care are getting "knitted" - looks a bit clumsy but the colour matches at least -
The "rest cure" is starting to work; everything no longer seems completely impossible. I'm trying to open up some time for art and/or sewing.

Sometimes you need to stop ... only it's not really stopping, is it? 

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