July 15-?

July 17, 2013 § Leave a comment

My, my. The year is almost up and I have blog senioritis. I haven’t been doing much, other than watching my kids make temporary installations and play my dad’s keyboard (which was great and I have no photo record of the event). I have been feeling words gather in my head, as they do when I am about to start writing again, but nothing yet. Probably because the kids, or at least one at a time, are awake between 6am and 11pm. I have decided to keep posting once in a while even after next week. In the meantime, here are some small creative excursions from the last few days:

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Here, he was being patient at the beach, while I was drinking coffee with my friends. He built a fort with the help of rocks and toothpicks. At first we were concerned about the fact that he was snatching a toothpick every two minutes, so it was a pleasant surprise that he used them to make things. Like a monster creature. And a fort.

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Then here, at a coffee shop again (I know, I know), making me a gift from post-its with a hole puncher and a gold marker. He also created some amateur body art with a yellow highlighter. Moments of peace are rare in our family, and therefore always cherished.

And finally, my mom pulled out my “pioneer” uniform from my elementary school days (most readers of this blog will have no idea what I am talking about, so here is the Wikipedia article about Tito’s pioneers) and J. had the privilege of trying it on. More on the nostalgia theme.

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July 8 &9: Random acts of beauty, jams, and laughs

July 9, 2013 § Leave a comment

I am still just taking pictures. Today I spent time with the kids and an old friend, a photographer, at a cafe overlooking the city of Belgrade, getting advice on photography. While I was randomly clicking, J. found an empty mini wine bottle and filled it with leaves, flowers, and a bit of water. Instant beauty. I love it when that happens. I love the ease with which kids can create art (and chaos, but that’s a different story).

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(notice the sour cherry juice next to J’s bottle; it is nice to have many juice options at cafes, and not just apple and orange as we do at home)

Prior to that, my mom was making apricot jam, and I was loving the stunning orange of apricots being cooked, so I took a few pictures of them:

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For those who follow the blog regularly and remember a certain striped dress I featured a few days ago, here is a photo that goes with it (my sister’s first day of  first grade):

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Yesterday, little creativity happened, as I left the camera at home for a truly fun outing (as these things usually happen), and in the evening the kids insisted on being awake late and not letting me do anything, so I gave up and went to sleep myself. But, here is a magical moment of laughter that I caught earlier in the day:

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The universe is good to me. I wish I didn’t fear losing it all and savored it instead.

July 3: Ill-prepared

July 4, 2013 § Leave a comment

So we arrived to our destination after a long but enjoyable trip. I thought we were well-prepared for crafting, but I was wrong. I brought a paper-cutting book but no paper, and it looks like our main crafting options are sewing and knitting. Until J. decides he wants to craft with me instead of watching endless television which is allowed here, I may practice some photography though. It may be interesting to photograph objects and places that were relevant to me as I was growing up. I also intend to write for at least five minutes a day (more would be unrealistic considering I am here alone with two kids and there is work I need to do). And did I mention my dad has an art studio in his yard? So maybe I am being dramatic about not being able to make art. While we are getting over the jet lag, I stood on the balcony last night and took a few photos of the view (not including the guy in his underpants strutting in front of the window in the building across from my mom’s — ah the joys of city living!)

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Wait till I am really over the jet lag. Maybe I will be able to take better pictures.

June 16: fishing, June 17: weaving, and June 18: whimsical

June 19, 2013 § Leave a comment

These days I am finding that 1-year-olds are *very* time-consuming and that teaching summer school is a silly idea. In terms of this blog it means that I have very little time to actually post anything. Right now, I am drinking cold coffee, keeping an eye on the baby, trying to eat breakfast and leave for work in 20 minutes.

So here is a brief update on our small artistic endeavors. Because some of them have indeed been very small.

On Sunday, J. went fishing for the first time. I had a lot of time on my hands, sitting on the grass with O. which meant I spent a lot of time taking pictures of daisies and her. I don’t think my photography is getting any better, but I do enjoy the moment of looking at something through a lens and thinking about how it will turn out.

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Monday included going to the local art store to buy J. some art supplies with a gift card he got for his birthday. So far the appeal has been more in buying them than in using them, but he did spend some time on the weaving loom, which they also use at school, and it seems he is missing school a bit. I also organized his art supplies and desk, throwing out the old, making room for new. Time consuming but liberating. Though I suppose I could have just sat out in the sun instead.

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And then there were kids with balloons

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The first few days of summer break went well. Lots of playing and lounging. And some balloons.

Last night was my favorite though. A long time ago, J. made me a collage kit that consisted of some construction paper, some scrapbook paper and some stickers. When clearing out his room, I pulled out the kit for us to use, at last.  I started with no idea about what I wanted to do, but then thought: “flower.” I got a pipe cleaner and made a flower. J., who had not been interested in joining me, all of a sudden got really excited, and we made this lovely whimsical landscape in a matter of minutes. Often I feel rushed when making art, or I feel like I have to accomplish something. Last night, I just had fun, and those ten minutes made me feel rested and calm, as crafting should. I look forward to more such experiences.

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May 12, 13, and 14: What are we up to these days?

May 15, 2013 § Leave a comment

I have not stopped blogging. I am just waiting to get my life back. Or to give myself permission to log off from work a little before midnight so I can blog.

In any case, I attempted to make queso blanco on Sunday, and that failed miserably, so my five (fifty-five?) minutes of creativity were wasted. The milk never curdled, but it could be because I was in a foul mood.

On Monday, yes, on Monday, I actually forgot to be creative! Even for a second! Until I was in bed, and then I felt very bad. I hope not to have to go through that again.

Today I took some lovely photographs of our and other people’s gardens, because photography really can take no more than five minutes, and because it was a lovely day, but I haven’t had time to download or edit the photos. They will come. Tomorrow, most likely.

But I just need to report to myself here, so I don’t slip into the space where I can’t even find five minutes for myself. Because I have been there many times before.

Finals next week, and then I have promised myself a week off.

I also checked out a few kids’ sewing books. So you know what’s coming!

 

April 26: Mask in action

April 27, 2013 § Leave a comment

The completed mask made it to the first procession of the weekend.

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As is usually the case whenever we show off some of the stuff we have made ourselves, people were impressed. I have no picture of the procession because it was small and not very exciting.

Instead, I took some time to write some crafting intentions on our new whiteboard poster. I am planning on asking the family to add ideas. My newest interest is felting: I got a book from the library, and leads for buying wool. Now all I have to do it find time and energy to do it! (J’s been felting at school, so he can teach me).

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What else should we add to the list?

April 11: Pinata layer 3

April 12, 2013 § Leave a comment

What can I say, pinatas take a while to make. We should be done in two days, and then I will share some pictures with the world. In the meantime, I am keeping my end of the bargain (being creative every day, and getting my hands dirty), even if my blog posts are yawn-inducing.

April 10: Pinata, layer 2

April 11, 2013 § Leave a comment

No excitement today. I just added another layer to the pinata, and now it’s drying again. I expect that we will be painting it by the weekend.

March 28: Beads

March 29, 2013 § Leave a comment

Because we didn’t want to travel this spring break, we decided to take some day trips to neighboring towns instead. Today’s trip consisted of a brew pub, library, park, bead store, and thrift store. All good things. We bought some games that we played in the park and when we got home (battleship, checkers…) and ended up with some fine beads, both from the bead store and thrift store. Though we haven’t made anything from them yet, the process of sorting and organizing them was exciting and inspiring. I announced to my family that I am now going to seed bead the entire house, but maybe I should start small. I already have a few projects in mind. Stay tuned.

I especially enjoy the colors of the wooden beads I got at the thrift store for J.

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March 26: Math

March 27, 2013 § Leave a comment

In our household, math is always considered a creative enedeavor. J. goes to a Montessori school and has been learning “dynamic addition,” which he showed us today. There are terms like “crisis of nine,” and reaching 10 is an emergency sounded with the ringing of a bell, when ten units go to the bank to be traded for a ten. Never mind that he has some major misconceptions. The fact that we had a great time adding (and building) with base ten blocks, and that the bedtime story was Sir Cumference and the Knights of the Round Table, is good enough for me. But then, it’s not like he had a choice regarding liking math.

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