Welcome to this week’s edition of Friday Five SUNDAY SIX! Six things that are rocking my poptarts! Good things. Moving things. Things that restore my faith in humanity, or my faith in myself. Artsy things! Nerdy things! ALL THE LOVELY THINGS!* If you’d like to get my blog in your inbox, click here. If you’d rather just get my occasional newsletter (with a round up of my blog posts included in link form + subscriber perks, including discounts), click here.

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Thing One

This is more of a recap than a thing, but here goes:

During the last week of July, my youngest son came to visit from Calgary with his fiancee in tow, and we had an intense, whirlwind week of ALL THE SOCIAL. It was completely lovely. I adore my soon-to-be daughter-in-law, and it’s obvious that they adore one another. A mom can’t ask for more. She’s free-spirited, infinitely curious, full of life.

Isn’t she lovely?

There were outings (The Boathouse, the ex’s place for a fire and BBQ, the MIL’s place for Indian food, buffet style) and innings (movie night – we ate Borscht and watched Memento) and two trips to and from Hamilton from Kitchener (about an hour’s drive one way). He tuned my guitar, and taught me a song (Chelsea Hotel). There were lots of hugs and ‘love you mamas’.

The thing that struck me the most about this visit was how devoid of drama it was. This family of mine is a collection of intense personalities, and when we all get together, it can get – well – intense. Kids on their way out of childhood and into adulthood can be especially intense, since they often come with lists of grievances the length of their arms to air out now that they’re old enough to know how badly their parents fucked them up. There was none of that this visit, though. None of it. It was full of humour and tenderness, adult to adult. I caught myself thinking more than once “This kid has really grown up…”

Here he is at The Boathouse on Sunday, showing off his chops and making mama proud.

Thing Two

In the midst of all this, my middle son moved into his own place, and I got to put my studio back into some semblance of Effyness. He’d been crashing in there, so I’d rearranged everything in order to accommodate the addition of a double futon and a bunch of his stuff. It was workable – I mean, I worked in there for the months that he was here – but it was really lovely to reclaim it, put things into place, and create a sense of spaciousness that hadn’t existed in there before.

I love this room. I’m so glad to have it all to myself again.

Thing Three

On Thursday, the ex and I drove the kids to the airport, and then we drove back, mostly in blessed silence. We had no plans to hang out but we decided to convene on my couch to high five one another for successfully navigating the invasion of the kidlets, listen to music, and play a bazillion rounds of Yahtzee. It was a lovely way to ease back into solitude.

On Friday, I rolled out of bed only to collapsed in a heap of socialed-out underwear-clad jelly, which is why y’all didn’t get a Friday Five *or* the promised winner’s announcement from my giveaway. I had exactly *nothing left* which is often the case after an intense period of engagement with other human beings. I took three naps that day. THREE, y’all! Much needed though, as proved by yesterday’s ‘rolling out of bed and into the studio’. I painted & puttered, got some housemouse stuff done (dishes, bathroom), watched endless true crime documentaries, made soup, burned nag champa all day, and even put on pants so I could go be social for a little while.

SOUP

This was easy to throw together. One onion (chopped), three cloves of garlic (minced), two carrots (sliced into coins), a half of a jicama root (peeled and chopped), about 2 cups of mushrooms (sliced), curry powder, a splash of soy, a splash of apple juice, salt, pepper, lime zest, lime juice, and about six cups of chicken stock (I use “Better Than Boullion” when I don’t have homemade stock handy). Simmered for a few hours. Devoured in a matter of minutes.

Today will be mostly worky with a bit of housemousing (I can’t see the floor in my bedroom at the moment), and a bit of social later this evening.

Thing Four

Despite the intensity of the week, I still managed to get some art done. I made a decision just before the kids arrived to get over myself and start working on canvas. I don’t know why it’s so intimidating for me, but it always has been. You guys have watched me struggle with this for a few years now. I have all sorts of built in ready made excuses about why I can’t/shouldn’t work on canvas/sell my work that are getting seriously old. People ask me all the time “Where can I buy that?” and I always answer “I don’t really sell my work…”

I started up a Society6 & Redbubble shop last month, and was surprised to find that people aren’t kidding when they ask ‘where can I buy that’. There are floors out there adorned with rugs featuring my art. There are people wearing my art on a-line dresses, or carrying tote bags featuring my art. So, alright already. I’m listening.

This canvas is almost finished. She’s 11 x 14 inches (I think – I’ll have to give her a proper measure when she’s finished). I’m calling her “Queen of Earth”.

She just needs a bit more work in the face, and a bit of tending, and she’ll be done. I’m pretty sure I have to courage to offer the original up for sale, and offer prints & other things in my shops. And then? I want to work on a “Queen of Fire” and a “Queen of Water”, etc. because series are fun.

Thing Five

I discovered this, and I jumped in with both feet because ALL THE DANCING.

Thing Six

I held a giveaway for a seat in Mixed Tape II last week, AND THE WINNER IS!

YAY! KERMIT FLAILS! I’ll be emailing you today, Christina! Congratulations!

Here’s More About Mixed Tape II for those of you who want to join in the fun!

CLICK HERE FOR MORE…

And that’s it for this week’s edition of Friday Five SUNDAY SIX! I hope you enjoyed this peek into what’s delighting & inspiring me this week. Have a beautiful weekend and I’ll see you back here soon. <3

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