Friday, December 3, 2010

Ode to crafting

Some of my door stoppers which I have found make handy pin cushions too...and not technically a craft ,but my beloved tea cosy, rescued and salvaged from smoke and flames (not kidding!)

First of all, as an aside, thank you to all the lovely support and encouragement for my blog beginnings! It has only taken me a couple of months to get back here! Not that I am under any illusions anyone is holding their breath waiting for my next post! Beginning is one thing, sustaining is the next! Not only the doing now, but the diary of the doing..mmm.

Speaking of doing, crafting, isn't it wonderful? It is my escape of choice these days, a meditative place to retreat, a release for the too long latent creative soul, a "room to call one's own", a connection to my past- somehow it stirs such wonderful memories of bending over the old Singer in my Dad and Carol's home creating dubious fashions (home made spaghetti jeans anyone?!) or things to give; I remember making Christmas clothes for my younger brothers, embroidering cushions for Carol, recipe book covers... Actually my whole early life was an ode to it, everything I wore down to the leather sandals and canvas school back-pack, pink cord trousers (pattern and fabric a 12th birthday gift from Mum), leather waist coat with embroidered butterfly, some of it, much to my embarrassment! But how wonderful to realise now, a little late perhaps,  that I actually had a corner on cool!
And now, oh how it serves as such a solace, a place to go that stills the monkey mind (to borrow a Buddhist term) , a place to commune with friends, and how proud and satisfied I feel of my small humble accomplishments.. when I come up for lovely it is to give of something created from the heart, or to make for our home injections of whimsy.
And hunting and seeking, another interlinked love. Crafting provides an excuse to op-shop (more) for found bits and bobs to incorporate or stand alone.... One friend in particular (check her sumptuous blog beginnings here and I are just totally besotted (admittedly, bordering on obsessed)  with it!)  I think I need to start bringing a pillow to our weekly craft circle, it is not only the crafting that keeps me up, but the talking of the crafting, the inspiration and ideas... I barely sleep the night of, with all the excitement and take a week to recover and build up stamina for our next burst!Boy!
Anyway, enough said! Here are some photos of my recent creations, humble and achievable in the limited windows of quiet time I recover from the bustle of family life. I always burst with more ideas than time to create them. Ahh..I remind myself, though I may not realise it all the time, these truly are my best years! And I will miss being pulled in so many directions at once. But still, isn't it heaven when you find some quiet time to retreat and create something for oneself?

these I have made for my little ones for Christmas

and this is my crafting apprentice, Alexander, helping me fill stoppers

one of my name buntings, love buntings!

and Alexander's

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Being vs Doing

Sitting here, a Sunday afternoon, Ethan asleep,  older two taken swimming by loving husband.
To "be" or to "do"? Always SO much to do, isn't there? Sometimes I feel I will sink under all the "doing" to be done. So often I forget the being part is as worthy of attention.
This I know; when I fill my days with only doing, and neglect moments for just being, being alone, being quiet, being still, being together in full attention, I can begin to feel like a scarecrow of the most ragged kind, stuffing spilling out, posture slumped, my household suffers, it does not sing, but scrapes. For as mothers, we are keepers of the spirit of the house too, are we not? As within, so without. It is a matter of making, stealing (!) the time, because let's be honest, it defies finding!
One magic discovery is that certain tasks, of the soul enriching kind, incorporate both, that by doing them I am lifted to a better place of being.
Amoung my list: creating of all kinds; crafting, painting, cooking (soup and baking of particlar note), writing, reading, gardening, talking/spending time with a loved one,  exercise (preferably of the early morning variety when world is under its secret spell) to name a few.  
Another, that when returning to the realm of the all the "doing" I feel expanded, settled to stillness by the "being" that the frenzy and steam falls out of it and a task as simple as washing the dishes is elevated to  an higher realm. By "be"stilling, I have so much more to give. All those little incessant questions/requests from my lovely 3, can be lovingly met, rather than heard/felt as a chorus of pecking birds to the head.
To conclude, for there to be a sense of "being" in the "doing" one must take time out to just BE. Maybe, just maybe, with more cultivation  the boundaries between "being" and "doing" cease?