In my lexicon, swap has come to mean "stick with a project," as in, meet the deadline. I always finish and mail the piece but my tardiness has become unacceptable. I tend to assign blame to my illness, after all, having to go to bed at 9:00 and sleeping until 9:00 with a nap or two does erase a few valuable hours from the day. But it's not all due to time, or lack thereof, or the needs of my children and ever-messy house. Disorganization has haunted me all my life and now is an enormous, unsavory beast that trails around behind me, taunting, from room to room, pointing, sneering at the piles, the clutter, the projects I should have done last week, last month, last year?
I suppose the key to organization is getting that way and sticking to the habits of tossing, having a place for everything and replacing them when finished. OK, so now I'm laughing so hard my side hurts. This confessional brings to mind the fabulous conversation I had with the intrepid, gifted artist Karin Bartimole, who has way more valid reasons than I to procrastinate. We hee-hawed about being chased by piles of papers (think Michelin Man) and tripping over the remains of the last art project. It makes me wonder, are artists as a rule, so caught up in creating and doing enough laundry so everyone will shut up so we can go back to the studio??
I've never been brave enough to read Somerset Magazine's Where Women Create, though I've seen enough to cringe at the airy, sunny spaces organized with drawers and bins and shelves... a bin for papers, one for lettering... enough to make me pull the quilt up over my head.
I asked my daughter once to help me, thinking she'd love the vast assortment of buttons, lace, paint, papers, packaging (to recycle as art of course), and her solution was to grab her dry-erase board and scribble, "Danger, do not enter unless you are Patti." Thanks.
I have decided to divide this holy terror of a task into small pieces and remedy the chaos, clear the clutter and turn this house into a comfortable albeit fung shui'd home. And, since maintaining my sense of integrity is highly important to me, I've decided to stop swapping - after I send a huge jug of cool, fun, amazing items to the next person on the list, and mail two packages overseas.
Along with my meeting deadline issues is a tendency to put off saying thank you and showing off the fabulous treasures that have come to be in my possession through a variety of means. For example, this fabulous piece has been waiting to be acknowledged so I can find just the right space to show it off. I entered a drawing on What Whitney Made Next and won this fabulous bowl. Take a look at her site and you'll be amazed, as was I, by her gorgeous art. In a recent post she claims to be the messiest person in the universe but I think I'd be a worthy challenge.
Oh, remember One World One Heart - the incredible global blogathon organized by Lisa, the Whimsical Bohemian? How she pulled it off I'll never know. I signed on and got totally blown away by the tremendous number of responses I got. I tried, really, to enter as many as I could but I think I only managed twenty or thirty. Once it was over I visited blogs and saw the unbelievable array of art won by those who spent a bit more time leaving comments than I did. But then, by a stroke of luck, magic really, I got a note from Dawn Simpson, an artist from Northern Scotland. One look at her site, Crafty Ramblings, and it's hard to believe all she manages to accomplish. She's busy moving now, and will live closer to where she works, and in the photo link she sent, it looks just the way I've always pictured it, lush and green and magical. My ancestry is Welsh so one day I hope to visit.
Getting back to Dawn, she told me I had the winning comment in her OWOH drawing and could I send her my address. I did and when I opened the package, I felt as though I'd hit the jackpot, won the lottery.... A canvas, tags, cards... an overwhelming number of amazing pieces that she'd made and that, again, I'm just now getting around to acknowledging. I didn't photograph all the cards and I've used a couple but she sent nearly a dozen and the complexity, detail and stunning originality absolutely blew me away. So far that I waited a couple of months to post them? Well, that's the issue then isn't it. Take a look at her work and you'll see why I only needed to win one drawing.
Thanks for 'listening' and I'm sure there is more than one head nodding in agreement about the difficulty of mess. I'd like to hear your stories, maybe I wouldn't feel so bad:)