GentleSoul Arts

Living a Creative Life


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Social Distancing

You’ve probably heard about the Covid-19 pandemic and everyone is encouraged, if not forced, to practice social distancing and self quarantine. I got a new phone a few months ago, and figured this would be a good time to set up my WordPress app.

I created a quick sketchbook flip through on YouTube, I’m about to complete my current sketchbook, I’ve tackled some organizing projects I’ve wanted to do around the house, and I’m about to go clean out my closet.

I’ve participated in a The Artist’s Way book discussion with my art friends on video. I’ve rewatched some Sketchbook Skool classes I’ve enrolled in. There are so many art prompt and draw with me live streams, music concerts live streams. I think even though we’re isolating there is more connection.

The dryer beeped that the sheets are finished so I can finish making the bed back up. I’m hoping eveyone is making the best out of the situation we all find ourselves in.

Remember to wash your hands.


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Obligatory Year-End Post 2019

Maybe 2020 will be the year that I actually write on this blog regularly.  I think that every year.  But I am tired of social media.  I think I’d rather put energy toward the blog and my visual journaling.  I think that every year too.

Another decade is about to end.  A lot has happened since 2010. Major life changes.

  • I’ve worked for 5 different companies, due to buyouts and spin-offs.
  • We lost 1 dog (Murphy) and 2 cats (Jet and Onyx) but welcomed 2 new dogs to our family (Jarvis and Vision).
  • My father-in-law and my mom passed away.
  • My oldest got married.
  • I stopped dancing and gained a lot of weight.
  • My husband got a CPAP machine so I no longer sleep on the floor.
  • I traveled by plane for the first time in 20+ years.
  • I started geocaching (2012)
  • I started Postcrossing (2013)
  • I bought an iPad to start drawing digitally.
  • I’ve filled up 12 sketchbooks.
  • I’ve made some wonderful friends online and in real life.

I don’t plan on making specific resolutions.  I mainly want to focus on more art.  More creating.

Happy New Year y’all.

 


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To Blog or Not to Blog…

(Obligatory End of the Year Post for 2018)

I’ve removed the payment information for my blog upgrades 3 times over the last 2 months, and I’ve put them back.    I’m looking for ways to cut excess costs so I can put more towards paying off credit card debt.  My dogs will no longer receive Barkbox (although I will recommend it to anyone. It is a great value for what you get but after 2 years we have a nice stash of toys and treats built up), and I thought cutting out the blog would help as well.

But then I think, I don’t really use the blog to my advantage for my artwork as little as I’ve done of that lately.  I’ve had on my Google Tasks list to revamp a few pages and post my finished art pieces, and it keeps getting pushed out another week or two. I may have deleted it all together, with the idea of ditching the blog.

And I’m thinking of What Am I Going to Do Differently In 2019  year-end reflection.  Art and Blogging.  Two things at the top of my priority list.  I slacked off on my ukulele after cutting the side of my thumb and I couldn’t strum without intense pain for about 3 weeks, I’d like to start that again.   Less social media, more blogging.   More creative Action, less mindlessly scrolling through Instagram pics of other people’s artwork.

I’ll write some tangible goals and deadlines for those goals (like revamping those pages) and work at staying on task.

Thank you to those who follow and read my blog.

Namaste and Happy Holidays.


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The Inevitable

Two weeks ago my mom passed away.  I thought I was ready.

I had visited her in the hospital for 3 days prior, seeing her mostly unconscious, bruised from IVs and the respirator on her face (she had very thin skin from sun damage as a child and would bruise easily just brushing up against something).

She had degenerative disk disorder and arthritis in her hip which made sitting for any length of time uncomfortable, even when she was younger.   In the hospital, she would try to toss and turn, but was so weak she could barely move.  We would shift her around as her breathing shallowed indicating she was in pain.  She’d settle down and breath deeply for a while, until that position became uncomfortable.

She had congestive heart failure, had a heart attack 17 years ago or so, continued to smoke afterwards.  She had COPD and breathing problems over the last few years, and kept smoking.  I think cleaning out her dresser & purses, we found 5 packs of ‘stashed’ cigarettes.  She told the doctors she only smoked 2 cigarettes a day.  It was closer to a pack a day.

She also lost her eyesight to macular degeneration. She had told me it’s hereditary but I can’t recall anyone else in the family with it.   I honestly think it had more to do with sitting in a 900 square foot house, windows and doors shut, with a haze of cigarette smoke lingering in the air.

In the hospital she was in pain, annoyed with the respirator and during one days when she seemed more conscious (although I still doubt she knew who was who) wanted to go home.  I wanted her to recover and go home, but I think part of me knew it was the end. I thought I was ready.

Part of my anger in the grief cycle is why didn’t she take better care of herself.  Why continue to smoke after such drastic health events. I never saw her exercise for the sake of exercise.   I really don’t understand it.

I know everyone dies, and no one lives forever but Mom could have lived another 15 years easily.  Well, maybe not easily if she had no desire to change her lifestyle, quit smoking, move more, eat healthier.  I’m not sure how many fresh fruits & veggies she ate.

As I am approaching 50 years old, I’m making a serious commitment to moving more, eating less sugar, and more fruits & veggies.   I’m not going to live forever but when I’m 72 yrs old, I’ll be able to get out and continue to geocache, hike and be social.

As much as I love my mom, I’m not ready to become like her as I get older.