Happy New Year everyone! Is it still okay to say that, now that it's 17 days into the new year?!… it just felt wrong not to since this my first post of the new year. I do hope you each had a most wonderful holiday!
The beginnings of a shop restock.
I'm now about two weeks back from a very short, but much needed break over the Christmas holiday and things are once again starting to look much like they always do: I'm packing molds and shaping fine details on dozens of beads, and next week I'll be starting my first paint batch. One of my very favorite things! Here's a bit more of what's taking shape on my work table right now…
If you would like to know what I did during my break, the answer is simple: I made things! In other words, I swapped out bead making for other kinds of making. I made pies, cookies, and my mom and I spent many hours in the kitchen preparing all the other homemade goodies my family loves. I do love to bake! And then I made a few gifts—jewelry, a vase (I was still working on it on Christmas morning!) and some little tiny plant pots. And I started another couple gifts that weren't finished in time and had to be given as work-in-progress gifts. Have I convinced you that I really have no clue how to take a real vacation?
This was my work table 3 days before Christmas! You would have never guessed I wasn't making beads.
My heart is so very happy when I'm creating, especially if it's something special for someone I love. And I truly believe that what talents I have are a gift meant to be used and shared. So anyhoo… when Caroline asked us all about our goals for the new year, I came to the full realization that I really didn't have much planned. I had been pondering things for the past few months and even though there are so many things I want to do, there was nothing really solid, and it finally hit me hard.
A little tiny air plant pot! I made three of these little guys.
What I've realized most, is just how much my creativity has consumed me—filling up every last moment of my days. I joke that if I'm not working, I'm working: it's either my day job or my studio job, but I'm always working. I actually feel sad that some of it kept me so busy that I missed out on time with my family and friends. It's no longer a hobby, but a second job. One that I do love, for sure! I mean, who can complain about doing something that has been a life long dream? But when you miss out on the simple things like dinner and movie night with family. every. single. time. It's time to step back and rethink things.
This vase, for my mom, was my Christmas morning project. I finished just in time to open gifs… actually gift opening was delayed on my behalf. :-)
I do have a very good excuse for being so late: the gift I purchased for her arrived late and was not quite what I had expected. Handmade gifts win every time!
I know some of you might ask why I am complaining at my success. But no, it's not that at all! I'm overjoyed and am so very thankful for each and every success that comes my way. It's not at all success that I am struggling with, but how to rein in my creativity. Just a little bit.
It's the struggle on how to feel okay about a particular bead being sold out for a few weeks while I fiddle with new ideas that might come to nothing. Or when to clean up and turn out the lights in my studio early some nights. Or even for a weekend. It's about the struggle on how to handle not doing it all, all the time. For a person who thrives on organization, schedules, and lists it's an alarming thing to discover just how unorganized I've become! Take for example me editing this post at 2:58am because I was too busy making beads earlier. See what I mean?
I always laugh when someone who doesn't understand what I do comments on how nice it must be to work for myself, because it means I can take breaks whenever I want and do what I want… really!? That certainly wasn't in my business manual.
Does this all mean that I'm burnt out or should take a long vacation? Not yet and no. I think there will probably always be beads coming from Tree Wings Studio. I am often exhausted, but know I'm not burnt out when new ideas are constantly flooding into my mind. Yes—what about all the new beads that I hint at every so often? I do want to finally make them!
I really can make new beads, if I make the time for them—nothing quite like a Secret Santa gift swap to push me to create something brand new!
So, for this year, my one and only true goal is to live life just a little bit more, to stop working so hard, to actually stop creating all the time… to breath a little and relax, and be inspired by more quiet time and time with family. I hope that this will in turn fuel my determination to work more efficiently. I think it may prove harder than any other goal I've ever set…
Okay, now it's your turn! Do you ever struggle with too much creativity? Does it ever get in the way of other things you love doing? Or maybe you have found that happy balance? Do share!