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Posts Tagged ‘purging’

One of my goals this year is to write more often. It’s not a “resolution” so much as it is a “goal”. Another goal is to finally finish those pesky projects I have tinkered at or played with over the past 20 years we have lived in this house. I also want to purge myself of unnecessary “luggage” as evidenced by the prior post to this one. I’m plowing through that last one and the second one, but I haven’t worked much on the writing bit.

I tossed out a lot of natural detritus I have collected over the years: moldy artist’s conks, interesting pieces of wood, seed pods for some fanciful future craft project, and so on. I started purging the rocks several years ago: the little pocket sized pieces of agate, obsidian, igneous rocks, metamorphic rocks, and sedimentary rocks. I moved them from inside the house and inside jars to outside and in my garden beds. I’m still clinging to the found feathers. Feathers are gifts of passage from Beyond: some ancestor or passed friend sends them to let me know I’ll be all tight in the end. I need all the reassurance I can get some days.

I kept nine artist’s conks (ganoderma applanatum). I collected all of them with the intent to use a wood burner and create fanciful scenes of elk and wild creatures. Ha! And double Ha!Ha! I put them in a drawer with all my other finds and let them harden and dry, and in some cases, mold. So my number one project after going through my art supplies was to put those conks to use. I ruined the first two. Recycle.

I finished five. One is still sitting there as I lack an idea of what to paint or carve on it. Please, not another sappy painting of a seven-point bull elk whistling in the rut. I’m done with that sort of painting.

I learned that I am not particularly gifted at painting or carving conks. Ones I find in the wild from now on will be safe from my prying hands.

The ones I “finished” still need to be sanded with the Dremel tool and sealed with a good sealer before attaching a way to hang them on the wall. At least one of them is so “YUCK” to me that I almost discarded it but I remembered that I am not the judge of what people will buy. Someone may actually pay $5 for it and hang it on their wall for a few years before discarding it. So I kept it. Ever the entrepreneur.

The sloth is my least favorite. It’s only six inches tall.

The owl is four and a half inches tall. It is also not my favorite but it will pass muster.

I went with a stain that was on the conk that reminded me of two sleeping bears with this one. It’s 3×2″. I actually was beginning to like painting on the conks with this one.

The sitting bear took me a lot longer to visualize. There was a “face” in the conk, and a bulge below the face that indicated a fat animal. I finally settled on a fat Brown Bear.settling in for a long hibernation. 4×3″ and I’m starting to feel it a little.

I’m going to confess that I like the sea turtle. 4.5×3″. Very “folk art” in design and paint (I blame my “essential tremor” for the messed up spots – some things we have no control over).

I shut down my art webpage last year and I lost access to my Facebook business page so until I figure that out (another headache), these are only available locally and only after I finish them. Or you can comment with your email address and we can have a conversation if you are interested in any of them.

The last one may become a Celtic design. I don’t know. It’s not inspiring me.

So that’s my on-resolution in progress: a new post, a little art, and a lot of purging.

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Purging 2023

I just spent the past few days going through my studio piece by piece, drawer by drawer. I have tossed pieces of Nature that I saved to “do something with” but never seemed to find the time. I tossed old polymer clay because I once fell under the spell of “more color is better and you can easily create things from…” It happened, but not with the molds I bought and not with all the pretty colors. All I need id white and flesh colored clay. I purged supplies for making faerie houses that I will possibly never make. I can’t even remember everything I purged.

I placed all the items in boxes or hauled them out to the trash or recycle bin. I gritted my teeth and asked myself: “When will I finish this project or actually start this project?” When the answer was “pretty much never” I gave it a toss.

There were other things I gave up as well. Mementos from a former version of me. I am incredibly sentimental. I did not choose to destroy my childhood stuffed animals, for instance. Like the Velveteen Rabbit, those two relics of my childhood still lead mysterious lives after dark. I suspect they will die when I die and the memories are gone. Maybe there will be a day when I can turn loose of them and not worry that they will lay in a garbage heap like the Rabbit and wonder why they were discarded. I would like to spare them that.

I cleaned the wall in front of my desk. It was cluttered. Busy. Unproductive. Sentimental.

My grandmother gifted two of the above items to me. The little “Jackie USED OF GOD” plaque and the November d├ęcoupage. No one- besides me – will remember that Gramma M gave those to me, Or understand the significance of my relationship with her. She maintained a strong relationship with most of her grandchildren. I really don’t need to keep those forever and burden my child with disposing of them after my death. Gramma is long gone.

I earned the little plastic plaque on the left when I memorized the 23rd Psalm in Methodist Sunday School. I lent it to my sister for a good many years but after her death in 2000, it returned to me. My faith has led me down a different path in the past two years. I still believe in the power of prayer, but I have been unable to pray for months. And I survived those many years when it was in my sister’s possession, so why do I need it now?

I took photos so I could remember those things. Remember they were mine and how I came by them. But their time of service to me is past. It’s time to bury some things.

I have cried. I have mourned that which will never be. I have mourned that which once was but will never be again.

But I still have my stuffed animals to comfort me. For now.

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