This Is Us.

This Is Us.
This Is Us. (Couldn't Resist.)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Spring (Re)Discoveries

I've managed to find the will to blog even though DA is finished for the year.  Here are a few things that are making me happy lately:

1. Scrap booking: I don't do many of the traditional womanly arts well, but I can slap a few pictures on pretty paper and write down everything I remember about the captured moments.  I have my feet in both the digital and tactile world of memory preservation, and I think both are important.  I just discovered chatbooks, a subscription based company that takes your Instagram pictures into a 4 x 4 bound book for only $6 a book.   Each time you reach 60 pictures, you receive a book.  Shipping is included and there's practically no work involved.  You pick the cover picture, delete any pictures you'd don't want printed, and that's it.  I'm uploading any impromptu pictures I take from my phone to Instragram now so I can keep a running record of our day to today.   Making anything with your hands is therapeutic for the mind and body and there is a sense of completion in the product.  I started scrapbooking after college as a hobby (when I wasn't at church, teaching or the library) because I was a social butterfly and well, a bit of a premature Memaw.  So be it.  I opened up that scrapbook and giggled at the subject matter: a page on my sister, my Mom, and weekend trips I made down the GA-SC coast.  Clearly, I was sweater-set wearing, bible-study-going, non-dating wild child at the time.  (Not that there's anything wrong with that. At all.)  Anyhoo.  That's my early twenties and it makes me thankful that I kept to the straight and narrow, even though it makes for sedate reminiscences.   I made a scrapbook for each child and every so often add a page.  Since I don't do it on a regular basis, I'm just trying to get each year of their life documented with some major life event represented.  I've got most our Christmases and birthdays present and accounted for so that one day when I'm gone, maybe they'll be glad their old Mama took the time to preserve their childhood.  I can hope.

2. Dave Barnes: I recently found this singer-songwriter through some (wait for it) blogs I follow--shocker!  He has a new EP out called Hymns for Her and it sounds like a perfect soundtrack for springtime in the South.  It's upbeat and has a toe-tappin' love song ("Good Day for Marryin' You) and a beautiful instrumental ("Mississippi").  You can find him on Spotify or Pandora or just plunk down $6.99 for the EP.  Worth the listen.

3. Bird by Bird by Anne Lamont: I've heard this author's name several times and I checked out her book on writing.  She's a novelist and memoirist and this book is very approachable.  I'm about a third of the way through the book and the best nugget I'm picked out is that with any discipline, in this case writing, you commit to practicing the discipline daily and the greatest reward will and has to be the discipline itself.  Writers write to write.  Painters paint to paint.  Publication or recognition may come in time, but this is not the ultimate goal or satisfaction of the process.  It is self-expression.  It's doing the work consistently over time that reaps benefits.  This is kinda a "no duh" sentiment but as my husband always is quick to remind me, most things in life aren't HARD to understand, but hard to carry out.

 I'm so happy it's warm this week that I pulled out a short-sleeved shirt and skirt and it's heavenly not to be bundled in jeans and a hoodie.  I'm feelin' all kinds of sassy that I dressed like a human that functions in the world even if it was to run to the grocery store.  That's all I got.  Hope you're enjoying the early signs of Spring!


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