Thursday, July 20, 2006

Be Here Now

I'm heading to the beach on Saturday for a week with the family. Free time, unscheduled time, time to read, relax and just be.

How did my life become such a whirlwind? I choose to live this way, excited by all the opportunities and challenges that comes my way, and I wouldn't really have it any other way. But then I never have any down time. But HA, even when I do, I use it to catch up on all of the things that fell by the wayside when I was too busy to give them their proper attention, so things like reading, long bubble baths, staring into space or lying in the sun still elude me. This is summertime, downtime, beach time. I have almost two months ahead of me to relax and get organized before I travel again, yet in the past two weeks that I have been home from Idyllwild I haven't had a moment to rest. I have:

~edited the first set of proofs on my book
~interviewed an artist for Cloth Paper Scissors,
~completed a fabric altered book for Sulyn Industries to take to CHA,
~completed the artwork and been interviewed for Mary Engelbreit's Home Companion,
~ administered IV antibiotics to my Mom twice a day (I used to be a medical assistant, she's OK, recovering from surgery),
~ completed all my 2005 accounting in preparation for filing our income taxes (we applied for an extension until August 15).

And all of that doesn't even include the house, the real estate appraisal job and the family. I never wonder where the time goes, I just keep looking forward to the ever elusive free time. But even then, it's never free, because I use it to catch up on all the other things that fell by the wayside the rest of the year.
OK, enough about that. You're bored, I can tell. Let's transpose ourselves to Idyllwild and take in the serenity of the view.

My Fabric Collage class was wonderful. Like all my classes, it couldn't be anything but wonderful because of the amazing women in the class. I love how our stories unfold while we create together. I think classes are a way for all busy women to stop and just be in the zone. It's a chance to step out of our day-to-day lives and take time for ourselves and our passion, creating art. The work they produced was gorgeous. I wish I took photos, but you know me by now, I would never get them posted...

Jane LaFazio was one of those amazing women. We have shared space in several books (Material Visions, A Beginners Guide to Art Quilts, etc) but never met. It was an honor to have her in my class. I can't say enough about the whole Idyllwild experience and look forward to returning next year. The campus is such a wonderful setting for creating - creativity and inspiration just permeate the air, which is so clear and fresh due to the mile-high elevation. There are tented classrooms and amphitheatres throughout the campus. Looking up at the sky though the tents, I felt dwarfed by large cells floating in the air. We are already looking forward to a return visit next summer.

I would love to show you the work that I have been doing, but alas, since it is all for publication, I cannot. Lately that always seems to be the story, but trust me, I've been busy in the studio. Here's a sweet peek at the Sulyn project. So now I'm off to spend time with this dimpled daughter and the rest of the family in Bethany Beach. I'll be back in August, refreshed, inspired and ready to roll again. I'll let you know if I ever get any reading done. I just may use this free time to make more art!
I'm always in that mode - whenever I have a little free time, I'm always recording songs, writing, whatever I gotta do. It's like my job is my vacation. ~ Ludacris


Barb Stone said...

So, Lesley, are you saying that you do all of that art, all of that publishing, and all of that teaching *AND* you have a real job, too? Holy cow, there goes every excuse I've ever had for not getting more artwork done. You're a godess, woman! What an inspiration and a call to do more myself. Amazing.

Lynn Simpson said...

You have ALWAYS been a super multi-tasker-I can't wait to read your new book!I was really upset to hear your mother has had surgery and needed antibiotics-I feel VERY guilty now for bugging you to write to me!!You should have mentioned it!!!Enjoy the beach-I think making art IS your FREE TIME!!!Make something with shells for me!! Love,Lynn from the UK!!

claudine hellmuth said...

have a great time and don't forget to relax sweetie!!

Plain Jane said...

It is an HONOR to be mentioned in your blog!! Enjoy your vacaish, renew that incredible creative energy of yours and enjoy your family!
Jane LaFazio

Laura Lea said...

Ok so now with the egg imagery you've been working with you can add water's colors,quiet beach walking reflection time for inspriation, beach combing for new finds to add to your art, family laughter and love to sooth the tired parts of your soul! Take care and just be there in the moment! For all you do for others may you fill your cup to overflowing! Enjoy your vacation! Replenish all that you have given out and come back energized!

Snowbear said...

hi, my friend took your class in Idyllwild--2nd from the right--meg--and bought your DVD. I stayed up till 1:30am last night watching it and went out and got myself a board book and sobo glue today. Looking forward to making some very special books for myself!
Very inspiring!
Can't wait to see you in ME

Elle said...

I love the Ludacris quote! He's right, when you truly love what you do, every day is a vacation!

Jan said...

Leslie, I thoroughly enjoyed your class in Idylwild and look forward to seeing you again next year. I'm at the end of my two month vacation and already anxious about all the things I didn't get done and yet unwilling to spend my final weeks "doing" rather than "being."