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Sunday, April 29, 2012


i just love your posts! I myself take the very same journeys, and I am a pathetically long way from retirement. So it will have to be a wealthy husband for me... Oh wait, I already married for love, dang! I dream of living in a cottage by a lake where I get to do nothing but read, take photos, create, craft and spend time with loved ones. Its my heaven.

once again, you have touched that sweet very soft tender spot in me...
i dream
i heard (silly nonsense)
--because they do NOt know of this soul of minE
THIS DREAM of me me me
i live the moment
but i do also do live that moment
the one when i can give my most and only ONE
when there is no day job (yes full-filling)
(the but --human after all)
there is more
the one the ME
full time art time
full time to be
and do
and make
(thank YOU)

I admire how you seem to be able to focus on your job when you are there, and restrict your mental wanderings to sanctioned times. I wish I had your fortitude. I spend a lot of time at my desk and elsewhere contemplating my retirement, which is not for another 20 years. I tell anyone who will listen that I'd retire tomorrow, and people who think they know me but apparently don't say, "Oh, you don't want to retire now! You'd be bored in a week." No, THEY would be bored within a week. I hate it when other people judge you by their sordid standards. I'd be doing art every single day. Nonetheless, I try to do a bit now, usually at lunch, where I sit outside and do a bit of sketching from photos, or some lettering. Or crochet, or today, it was making yo yos from fabric scraps. You know, whatever... Love you, MAM!

ok the magic of POOF the comment disappears as I'm writing! Love your analogy and wonderful blog title...my mental journey (love the term) takes in in my little Casita RV I'd like to buy and journey through all the US National Parks....seeking peace, birds, good coffee over a fire, wonderful hikes (in whatever order I want to do that day!)

I'm flying in a hot air balloon over the Loire Valley, landing at Chateau Artsy-Fartsy, where a luncheon is spread in the vineyard and and a Cirque du Soleil troupe is performing while I paint away in my visual journal the size of a ping pong table, my brushes are tied to long sticks so I can reach the top parts. So exhausting, I wrap it up and settle on the bed set out in the flowering garden and sip Moet Chandon while I am given a pedicure by the hunky gardener who also happens to be very good at painting little daisies on my toenails. As the sun sets, I hear the birds break into trilling song and then......
I smell burning rice and angry voices "MOM HE HIT ME...NO HE HIT ME..... F**K....S**T..YOU ARE A PUSS...NO YOU ARE..."
Back to reality.

Oh yes, I can relate! I find that slowly my life is becoming exactly what I wanted. I have made my dream of living by the ocean come true (I never dreamed it would be on an island though), my house is turning into an art studio (slowly it's taking over every room and I love it). There's just this little thing called the day job that takes so much energy and time, five days a week, sigh. I don't hate the day job, I just hate that it takes up so much of my life. Early retirement would be wonderful, I'm ready to start tomorrow, oh hell, today even! Unfortunately bills need paying, me and my cat need feeding and I would like to keep warm in winter and early retirement is a dream I can't afford. One has to make do, like it or not.
I also can relate to needing uninterupted time and the frustration when there is none. I'm just coming out of a few very busy stressfull weeks full of stuff both workwise and socially and I was exhausted by it. I swear I became very close to zombiehood. I didn't even journal, which to me is a tell tale sign I'm going off track. Fortunately quieter times are appearing on the horizon and this weekend I will have two whole days to myself. Aaaaaah, the luxury of it. I can't wait.
My early retirement days would look like my weekend days alone: sleeping long enough to actually be rested, taking long walks through nature or along the beach, reading many books and of course spending time playing in my studio. I'd be perfectly content that way. Perfectly. Really.

Oh the places I go, into the deep and delicious corners of my mind. I have an entire 2nd life I can escape to anytime I want.I visit frequently. I've written some of my alternate life experiences and sometime, those moments spill over into my journals and find their way into my art...oh yes, the places I'll go, the places I've been...the mind can be pretty sweet sometimes.

pam those delicious flowers are a photo of a BEAUTIFUL photo album a dear woman just sent me. i printed the photo, gessoed over some of it, and went over it with pen/paint. i too REALLY love it!

Hey You!! (again) I am now in the routine of staring at those white flowers for endless minutes...is it a paint by number kit? I WANT IT!!
what have you done there? It is reminding me of stone carvings where you have to tap tap tap the rock out of the way of a stone temple
or god or goddess or a woman with incredible mango bosoms...I tell you I am getting lost in those white flowers and need some answers
or I may just dive right on in...I am sensitive to smells, I get migraines, but I tell you I know if I dove right on in those flowers would have
the sweetest smell, I just know it!!
Losing it in Mpls!!

The other day I told my 7 year old: when I grow up I want to be an artist.
She said: You are a photographer.
Me: Can't I change? Or be both?
She said: Hm. If you want ...
Me: I was a Computer Scientist before. I am also a Mom now.
She said: So you can be a lot of things at the same time?! I want to be a piano teacher, a ballerina, a singer ....
She obviously has no concept of time yet ... but it's so good to be able to dream you can do it all :) Often dreams are the best place in the world (no matter where you are currently ;)
PS. I am currently taking your Remains of the Day ecourse. I'm LOVING it!

I also dream of early retirement from a job that will eventually lead me to a mental breakdown. The stress of it is wearing me down day-by-day. However, all the time in the world will never make me more than I am--an art dabbler. Oh, I always have a project or two going but I work on them when I'm in the mood and they'll get done when they get done. Still, I yearn for the time when all the day is my own and I can dabble as I choose--journaling here, knitting there, reading when ever, even painting a canvas for a friend!! Oh, yeah, and taking all the on-line classes I can afford!! Waiting anxiously for your next big class, Mary Ann!! What ever it will be!!

Living the life now that I always wanted to live. Taking photographs as a profession and doing what I like to do on a daily base. I am so glad that I can stay at home and not having to work for a boss anymore. The newspaper was slowly killing me, so this freelance photography thing is really good. I am a happy camper!

Yes, work really cuts into one's day...
I have a wonderful little world in my mind that I go to in the grey of dawn. you know the place, when you first start to wake up and the edges of your world haven't firmed up yet and the life you live isn't in full colour in front of you? My dream is a day filled with writing and painting and sewing beautiful handwork, kneading bread dough and sketching all manner of little critters as they run and flit and fly around my back yard. And late in the afternoon, there might be a margarita...

jan i understand exactly what you mean because there are times in the summer when im on full-blown vacation that i go for days without sitting at my art table and engaging in the process. seems like when we have all the time in the world it becomes less precious and we are do battle with the artist inside that wants to COME OUT!

i sort of see walking in the same way. i revel in the feeling of strength and health i feel when i make the effort, but i dont make the effort consistently enough. i have no good reason for it.
human nature perhaps to avoid the very things that could make us more whole...?
its a lifelong struggle for many of us. but in my early retirement fantasy i am stoking the creative fire constantly.

Love your post and your journal art. Could levels of creativity depend on circumstances and on the individual rather than the amount of free time available? It would seem that I have all the time in the world, but I don't find my creativity boiling over, quite the reverse in fact. My circumstances are rather complex and difficult, which might also dictate the extent of my creative ability or lack thereof. However, I do wonder if creativity can be ignited at any time, regardless of time available, if we have the right stimulation and an openness to see wonderful possibilities that are within our grasp and within us. I don't have answers, I struggle to create no matter how much or how little time I have. Sometimes I wonder if I really want to be the artistic, creative, person I dream of being...possibly it's simply a situational funk I'm in :))

I am loving your drawings - esp the very first one with the white flowers with just that touch of yellowy orange. I could stare at them all day, in fact I have
stared at them many times today as they really are so lovely. I really liked your silverware as well. This is interesting to me as I visit your blog regularly for
a strong dose of color and humor. So the very simple drawings with just white and grey and yellow have surprised me and delighted me at the same time.
Sometimes I wonder if more time and more choice leaves less room for very organized operations? I am always amazed by the amount of living you accomplish
after spending your days teaching.
Thanks for your delightful visuals.
Pam (mpls)

i love this phrase: "inside the cocoon of your heart".

boy do i hear you loud and clear! i LOVE my day job (teaching refugees English) and i get a lot from it, but to think of creating and getting into the "zone" that only comes after some consecutive hours...well, let's just say i definitely daydream about that. but yes, we DO make do, don't we?
wishing you splendid "moments" til that early retirement..xo

Yo sister - sometimes I go on mental journeys into your journals. I just went swimming through some pink lemonade and sunshine. I feel so refreshed!

Ah.....my mental journey always involves extended periods of travel to far off and exotic places. Sometimes I am on a tall ship sailing the South Pacific for months on end, other times I find myself in Outer Mongolia on a pony, traveling with a small group of nomads from yurt to yurt, smelling the wind from the west, full of the scent of the wild Russian Steppes. Always, my journal keeps me company, as does my camera, on these mental excursions. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE my home, my husband, my life, BUT in my mind.....I'm gone!

Balance.I dream of more balance in my life...where this job I love isn't so all-consuming and I would have time to create more of my own art and to take a trip with my husband. I also dream of having enough money to open up a no-kill shelter for homeless cats.

I am learning that it's VERY easy to get distracted in retirement (um...Pinterest, for one...). I am still a work-in-progress for maximizing my creative time. Worked with my Art Journal group over the weekend; headed out to work in the garden today. My desire is to travel more; one mental journey I regularly go on is to the Galapagos Islands. Stay tuned... :)

The white, grey, and yellow floweres are simply gorgeous! I looked long and hard at them in your last post as well. Lovely.

I hear you on the fantasies. The day job definately cramps my style. If I didn't have it though, I'd be lacking the financial freedom to buy the paints and paper and other goodies I need.

Mary Ann, tomorrow I start living my dream life. Today is my last day of full-time employment. I can't believe this day has come and look forward to those long uninterrupted periods of play in the studio. My only fear is that I will no longer have work to blame for lack of creativity time :-).

I have 7 children and 8 grandchildren and a house big enough to accommodate them coming and going. it's exactly the life I always wanted. My career choice, if you will.
But sometimes, when things get very hectic, I dream of living all alone in a tiny house, maybe even one on wheels. I would work temporary little jobs or garden just enough to feed myself and spend the rest of my time doing whatever came to mind. reading, writing, creating, napping, exploring. Just whatever.

Mary Ann, I am stealing your quotes about the day job, but will always put your name on them as the thinker that thunk them up. My day job is slowly killing me physically. Serious! It is very sad, but be care what you ask for and I asked to be here. I am always thinking of how I can get away from it and actually live a while longer. My art journal takes me there, on the weekends, but faithfully delivers me back to the day job door on Monday mornings. UGH! Thanx for all you do for us, my friend.

Oh, Mary Ann, do I hear this! Dreaming of finding a decent paying part-time job to allow more time for noodling, doodling, drawing, musing, and everything which leads up to painting. Winning the lottery! Moving to a cottage in the country and painting! Dreaming on...

I hope your "special project" is a new class.... hummmmmm ;) VBEG

Ditto what julie MacNeil said...travel with art materials, camera, be a vagabond. A round the world cruise on a luxury liner...check off all the things on my bucket list.

I have not worked outside my home for many years...I have all the time in the world to make art, but do I, no. I read about it, cruise the art blogs, have artist's blogs I follow, like yours, but do I make art ( I paint watercolors) no...I see that blank white page and go into freeze up mode.

I think the same thing all the time. Just finished a week off (I also teach school) and was having the Sunday night "Oh do I have to go back to work tomorrow?" Not that I don't love my job but making art is SOOOO much better.

Lovely! Your paints are so vivid, just beautiful! Me, I have the same dreams - early retirement, quitting my day job, painting all day long! :)

oh, to travel the world!

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