by hook or by needle

Growing up I was surrounded by every type of handcraft you can imagine.  My grandmother was a keen knitter, also very adept at crochet, tapestry, embroidery, beading… school holidays always involved a project.

I vividly remember sitting on the front porch with her doing some embroidery, leaning over and getting an embroidery needle firmly lodged in my knee.  Lesson 1. Always ensure the needle is nowhere near fleshy bits when you lean over.

I never quite took to knitting, but crochet I loved – and still do.  Give me a pattern and I can crochet anything.  Finishing it, however, is a whole other story.  Starting projects is filled with optimism and grand plans, but for some inexplicable reason soon enough it is sitting in a basket with all of the other half completed projects.

Perhaps I get bored too easily?  Perhaps I am what Emilie Wapnick describes as a “multipotentialite”.  I loved reading her insights as to how there are others, like myself, who have more than one passion, or calling.  I take on so many different projects involving so many different interests.  Right now I have two crochet projects, a quilting endeavour, some cabochon jewellery and another idea in my head.  Up until earlier this week I was also dabbling in website creation and dropshipping.. but that’s another blog post.  I am also building a website for a close friend who’s existing website was rather embarrassing – it looked like it was built in the eighties!

It was like I was always searching for the perfect business idea, and when I got bored I would discard it, never to be touched again.  Over the past two years I have started and shut down a few sites, not because they were awful, but my ideas never quite came to fruition.  The idea was to supplement my income with a small sideline, I found a few niche items but for various reasons I couldn’t make it work.  You see, in order to make money, you must spend money.  I built some damn fine looking sites, but then I couldn’t fund them, or purchase inventory.  The sad realisation hit me this week that it may just not be my “thing”.  So in order to satisfy my need to create something online I began this blog.  I can bore random strangers with my endless pratter – I had a university lecturer tell my I was “verbose” once, that’s a good thing, right?

Sitting here tonight I’m not ashamed to admit that I have been feeling depressed the past few months, tired of the struggle and tired of not being happy, always searching for ways to make life “better”.  Better than what?  Is my life that bad that it has to be better?  Honestly, no, it certainly isn’t.  I have a roof over my head and a warm bed at night, I have a very small family that love and care for me and three cats that rely on me.  I have a stable job with tolerable people to work with and most days food on the table.  So why am I feeling so out of whack?  I really don’t know.  I seem to feel lost when I am at home away from work with constant distractions, I cannot seem to get motivated to do the simplest of tasks, even getting dressed is an inconceivable effort.  If it continues much longer I will make an appointment with a psychologist and have a chat – see if we can figure out what is going on in this grey matter of mine.  Writing it seems almost cathartic, perhaps that acknowledgement alone will help me come out the other side.

I have a mini-break coming up from work, and I have goals that I want to achieve.  Quite mundane ones, but a test if you will, to get my groove back.

Stay tuned…

M x

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verandah by the sea

I don’t have a picture.

I have a feeling, a feeling of home and tranquillity.  Of fresh air, quiet and ocean spray.  A small home, weatherboard, with verandahs all around.  Verandahs wide enough for a few comfortable chairs, where there is shade on a warm summers day.  The inside is light and airy with open plan living areas and a kitchen with a window (for some reason it has many years since I have enjoyed gazing out a kitchen window) where I can grow herbs.

The smell of freshly cooked food always wafts from the door, is there anything more homely?  I would bake bread and grow my own vegetables in a small vegetable garden.  Gardening is not my strong suit, but I would learn.

Of course there would always be cats, a pleasure I have only realised in the last few years.  I have been allergic to cats all my life, avoiding them was an art and antihistamines my best friend.  That is, until I met a Devon Rex cat – the pure joy of having a cat choose to sit on your lap is something I cannot describe.  I now have three of the little devils and adore them like my children.  They eat before I do, no question.  There have been times when I could not afford to buy lunch because I had to feed the kids… it’s just what you do.

My verandah by the sea is my dream, my goal, where I want to retire and relax.  Where my days are spent with those I love and who love me back.  How that will look, who knows.  How it will happen, is so far from my reality right now, but we all need dreams don’t we?

As I go from day to day, paying bills, doing my job as well as I can and earning the pittance I do, I shall continue to dream – for sometimes it’s all we have.

M x

finding clarity

When did it get so difficult?

When did our sense of acceptance and value depend on how many “friends” we have on Facebook, or how many “likes” our photo gets on Instagram?

Life has become complicated, or is it a mere perception that it is complicated?  Surely I am not the only one that yearns for simpler times, days of old where you could pick up the phone and spend an hour chatting to your friend about your latest adventure.  Now, you are expected to post a gazillion pictures to social media in order for your friends and family to see what you’ve been up to.  These pictures are a visual snapshot of your day, yet somehow lack the emotion and feeling that were felt at the time, something that can only be expressed through speech, as we retell the story of our day.

They talk about Social Media “connecting” us, and true, it allows us to get in touch with our school friends and family overseas, even complete strangers, but what is the effect of this connection?

Scrolling through my Facebook feed of late I have ffacebook-reactions-1elt a mixture of emotions.  Frustration, anger, joy, sadness, longing… it’s funny how images and words can evoke a myraid of feelings.  Of course we are expected to display our feelings by hitting that magic little like button – with more options now, you can also love it and wow it…

and then.. have you ever suffered the wrath of your friends when you accidentally hit the wrong emoticon?  Yup, hitting the haha button on a shared post regarding the plight of those in Syria really can bring out the worst in people, not to mention the self-imposed banging-head-on-table.

Over the years I have thrown a whammy and deleted my Facebook account a few times, then magically reappeared a few weeks later, re-adding friends selectively.  Eventually, I would once again find myself with friends and family I didn’t even speak to, let alone want to show my latest picture of me sitting in my pyjamas with a cat on my lap.  I have been trying to figure out why, why do I feel drawn to it time and time again.  I don’t have a definitive answer, only that it seems to be this feeling or need to be involved, perhaps even voyeurism.  Living vicariously through others.

I can’t remember the last time I travelled, perhaps that is old age setting in.  Pretty sure it was about nineteen years ago when I travelled to the U.S. – that’s a whole other blog post!  I used to enjoy seeing posts of peoples travel adventures, but I have to admit that now I find myself wondering if prolific posters on Instagram etc do it for bragging rights or their own desire for social acceptance.  Me, I found myself experiencing feelings of envy and jealousy… not the person I want to be or usually am.  Urgh… I can’t believe I actually admitted that, but it’s true.

So, I find myself now in a place where I want to delete my Facebook account – for good.  Therein lies a whole plethora of questions – do I announce it to those seventy-five odd friends and family I have?  Or do I simply disappear with nary a peep… I’m leaning towards this option as I really couldn’t be bothered drafting a post, waiting for replies and answering.  Oh, and there’s another annoying social expectation – the horror if no-one responds, or posts a birthday message.  OK, so I’m done.  Back to simpler times, where conversation in person is valued and my self-worth is not gauged by how many friends I have.

There – done.

Clarity – oh, there it is!

M x