I have been sleeping and reading a lot the past few days. And I have to say that I think naps are truly one of the greatest things in the world! I am about to go take a bath and read some more – a wonderful book I found about Picasso and Einstein. Art and science, two of my favorite subjects. I admit I have been fighting the urge to do some work, and tonite I did update my site and commissions page, but for the most part I have rested. My children are in N.C. with my parents until Saturday and the quiet and peace in the house is really, really nice after the past month. I think I will work on my own project tomorrow. Or maybe I will just read and nap some more. I like this vacation thing.
Ok, so we (ok, my husband) did laundry all day long getting ready for our trip. That night when I finally got my bath ready, full of bubbles and lovely smells, with my hot tea handy and new book, this bath- the promise of which helped me get through the week – was luke warm. Bah! No hot water left for me. Double bah! What a let down. So I put on some snuggly pj’s and hopped into our new king size bed with cuddly flannel sheets (my birthday present from my parents! side note: if you want a new bed have your parents sleep in your fullsize bed you have had for way too long during a visit!) I ready some of my book, sipped my wonderful zen tea (another present from my best friend who also provided all the delicious smells for my bath – lukewarm, bah!) But then my mind got to wondering. Still thinking about work. How many paintings did I paint this year? How many this month? It seemed like a lot, but how many? I pulled out my files. I keep all my client information and sketches in files and various journals. I figured out why I was so busy since the week of Thanksgiving. From the Monday before Thansgiving up until this past Sunday I painted 37 paintings!No wonder I was tired. I counted 97 for the year so far and quit before I made it back to February’s paintings last year. No wonder I’m tired! Merry Christmas everyone! Talk to you after the big, red, jolly man comes!!
I didn’t meet my self-imposed Saturday night deadline. I finished last night (or this morning?) at 3:30am. I have one last painting to be picked up. The painting above is the last painting I will do for the year 2003. Can you tell which dog is head of that household?? lol! I have yet to tally the paintings for this year and will do that the week I have off after Christmas. As well as post them all to my commissions page. I know this holiday season was twice as busy as last year’s and I painted about 20 paintings in the past 15 days. Phew! It was a tremendously satisfying and fun year and one of the best parts was the new online friends I made this year since starting this blog. I have lots of new exciting projects to get going on first thing in January and I will share them as they come up. Once big one that I have had to put on the back burner is now just screaming at me to finish it up. I can hardly wait to see what is ahead for me. I really enjoy having no idea what my future holds. It keeps my days full of hope and promise. Paychecks every two weeks can come in handy a lot of the time, but when all is said and done I still enjoy the rush getting in that job or commission that means I can stay self-emplyed one more month. My goal for the new year however, is to have an actual savings account! I know, loftly goals, but I think I can do it! Have a very happy holiday everyone! I will be back after Christmas!
Ok, so I am a bit crazed and just realized today that my kid’s last day of school until Jan 6th is tomorrow. I totally thought they had school next week. I found out at my daughter’s class party today. Yeah, ok, that was a bit embarressing. Um, no Mrs. Abeyta her last day is tomorrow. Ok, so I am a tad scatterbrained these days. I am leaving in 15 mintues to go deliver 3 paintings at Starbucks where I will be getting one final coffee of the night although I think I may need to eat as I can’t recall if I actually ate today. 3 paintings left. 3 paintings left. It is a mantra. Ya know what keeps me going? The reactions. The smiles. It is a natural high I am completely addicted to! I have no time to post new paintings, so I am attaching a triptich of a farm scene someone ordered for their mother of her two horses and dog. I love how it turned out. It is 3 6×8’s. Remind me tomorrow to tell you how my two dogs are now masters of escape and I have had to hunt them down twice and met 3 new neighbors who have returned them. Yeah, I need to be hunting down these two numskulls right now! Good thing they are so darn cute!
Still on schedule to finish on Saturday. I am pretty much running on adrenaline at this point. So many marathon painting sessions will do that to you. I am surprised I don’t have carpel tunnel! Yesterday I did get to take a break though. My husband has come down with a nasty bug of some sort, so he has been bed-ridden the past day. Normally he drops the kids off, picks them up and generally plays with them after school so I can conitnue to paint. Yesterday, as he was so sick, I picked up the kids. After school we made cookies and laughed and danced in the kitchen to some Lyle Lovett. (love him!) We had a great time and it was such a nice unexpected break. I am of course, sorry my husband had to feel so sick for this to happen, but it was a sweet time with my kids. I did, however, pay the price. I was up until 2am to stay on schedule. But it was worth it. And again, when you love what you do, it is not really so hard to stay up late painting. Plus, Saturday night I intend on celebrating in a nice warm bubble-filled bath. My best friend sent me a birthday package that included Zen tea, candles, bubble bath, a bunch of great books, and new cute jammies! Ahhhh, Saturday…it is like the carrot in front of my nose getting me through the week. Well, that plus knowing these are Christmas presents and they HAVE to get done!
Well, on Saturday I turned 31. So it’s official. I am now ‘in my thirties’. It was a nice birthday weekend. I worked at a small local holiday festival here in Decatur on Saturday and Sunday. I love this little town. The people that live here really support the local artists. Even with the dreary weather, I made a nice little profit. A bunch of people bought gift certificates and holiday cards. The best part however, was getting to know the fabulous other artists at the show. They were a really creative and friendly group and I felt really lucky to get to know them over the past two days! At the end we all traded art with each other, so for the first year in many, many years my family won’t have to get my art for Christmas! They can finally have some wonderful art from other people!
In other work news, I am happy to report that if I stick to my schedule and I get everyone to pick up their paintings from me instead of having to deliver, I should finish my last painting this Saturday. It means pretty much non stop painting until then, but it will be really really nice to be able to relax the few days before Christmas. So with that being said, I have THE cutest bearded collie ever to finish up and get in the mail to Boston!
Acckk!! (The sound effect here would be the ‘Acckk!’ noise Snoopy makes-you know the one!!) Only 16 days left until Christmas!! How did that happen??? I just uploaded 14 new paintings I have done to my commissions page. Click on the link below to go see! Ok, got to go paint like the wind!!
What is your dream? What have you secretly always wanted to do, but never done? It does not have to be a career choice, it could be taking a safari in Africa or scuba diving along the New Zealand coast. It may be volunteering to help teach adults to read or providing a child with a foster home. What experiences in life will you regret not having when you are older? Life is so much more than how we tend to live it. We wake up and go to sleep having done, for the most part the same thing as yesterday. Don’t get me wrong, routine is good, wonderful and cozy. But every once in a while we need to get out of our comfort zone and risk being uncomfortable and out of out element. Only then do we realize how magnificent life is and how much our individual lives make a difference. Every single person in this world matters. We each affect each other so very much. Imagine the changes that will occur in not just you, but in everyone around if you were to take a risk and do that thing you have secretly been wanting to do. Try it. Or at least begin to think about trying it. Change is good. (And yes, there is something I want to try and am working my nerve up to do it!)
Today is so nice and cozy. It is rainy and grey and the coffee is hot and tasty. I have mulling spices simmering so that the whole house smells like Christmas! Tonite is my kid’s holiday pageant – always fun. And as corny as it is, I cry every time I see my kids onstage. It will be a fun night. Also in the Christmas spirit, I have posted an illusration I did that will be out holiday cards. There is Lucy and Rufus in their usual positions!
Right now I am finishing up a poster design then have to finish up a painting to deliver later today. Oh! That reminds me of my cool story to tell you! Tuesday night I was dropping off a painting to a woman and when I got there she said, “I went over to my neighbors the other day and walked in their foyer and there was one of your paintings!” I asked what the dog’s name was and upon hearing it was Lacey, I knew it was the Irish Setter I had painted about a month ago. These neighbors both did not realize they had me commission a painting, and I did not know where Lacey’s mom lived. She had picked up her painting at my home. So how cool is it that two different people ordered from me that live across from each other?? I realize that in the past year I have done almost 200 paintings so my work is really getting out there, but that was really a cool thing to happen!!
I have been painting an average of 8 – 10 hours a day for the past week. I have a bunch of new commissions to put up on the page but no time to do it. I have a painting behind me on my easel that is waiting on me to finish it. I have, at last count, 13 on que. Soon I will have to stop taking orders, as I don’t know if I can finish them in time. I am taking orders until Dec. 6th. Then only offering gift certificates. I have a fundraiser this Saturday and a holiday show Dec 13 and 14. (My birthday weekend!!) It has been an amazing holiday season and I am looking forward to the week after Christmas when my parents take the kids and I can just do nothing. Preferably in front of a roaring fire with a nice Irish coffee or some such treat. Until then, I am loving each day as I paint another gift into being. And once again I can’t help but reflect on how very lucky I am.