Thursday, January 5, 2012

Rebuilding Joy - Jan 4

I couldn't pic which photo was prettier, so you get both.
The lemon tree in the backyard is going crazy with lemons. Its not a big tree, but it is mighty fruitful.
I'm busy digging up recipes for lemon chicken, lemon cake, lemon everything.... I've been drinking fresh lemonade every day.
These smell just as good as they look. I swear, the sunshine makes them smell better too.

Rebuilding Joy - Jan 3

I took the kids for a hike in Bronson Canyon. Southern California can be weird with weather... The summers are often cold and gloomy, but we always have some strange weeks in January and February that have winter light, but hot summer weather. It was 80degrees this day and we breathed in deep and heard the silence of the canyons underneath the famous "HOLLYWOOD" sign.
This tree in particular caught my attention. The patterning on its trunk blew my mind.

Re-Building Joy

Someone recently posted this laughing photo of me at a wedding on Facebook. It's a fun pic, but the day I saw it, I got really sad. I cried. The photo had been taken 365 days earlier and I felt so far from that huge laugh after the past year. The two pics on the right are pics from this week... I'm still able to smile and appreciate moments and laugh and dance and sing, but I'm clawing my way out of a lot of pain and definitely don't have that depth of joy and hope that is so evident in the first pic.
I've started to go to a counselor. This week I told her that I was setting aside Jan 1- Feb 29 (my leap year birthday) to try and focus on doing things that will heal me and feed my heart. I am planning on finding at least one thing a day that will be a healing activity. She loved that idea and spoke to me about "Building Joy" back into my life. She pointed out that unless I am filled, my family will remain wounded.
I was unable to write many details about what was happening this past year, but you know it was hard. The real reason I quit making those hand-stamped charms was that my hands shook so hard that I could no longer make them. I cried over so many charms as they sat ruined on my desk and decided it was time to give it up.... That's only a sliver of where I've been. But that is then. And this is now. And...
I've decided to lightly chronicle this journey here on my blog, since you readers have been so encouraging to me all along... You are invited to read along, view my pics and breathe in a little deeper with me as I do my best to come back to laughter and spend these days "Re-building Joy". I have no idea what to expect, but I do know that I'm being very intentional about this.
I hope you don't mind.

Mini quilts

Mini quilts by libby dibby
Mini quilts, a photo by libby dibby on Flickr.

Some people call them "mug rugs" or "mini quilts", maybe they are potholders. Or trivets. Or doll quilts. Whatever they are, they were called "UFO"s (as in "UnFinished Objects") around here until last night.
I have about 15 different projects on my mental to-do list and have been feverishly working to finish that hand-quilting on the paper pieced quilt... But I've been doing it so long that I've missed my sewing machine. I literally haven't touched it in weeks. As I was giving a neighbor a sewing lesson on her new sewing machine yesterday, I began missing my own machine.
So last night, I put away the hand quilting for the night and tried to clear the ironing board of its stack of UFOs. First on the list were the rest of the Christmas ornaments (about 20 were half-started) - and then there were these.
By the end of the night, there was a little sense of accomplishment, some pretty (useful) things to look at and two less things in my way as I look into my creative plans for 2012.



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