Grace

I. I have been working very, very hard but in that way that makes me feel very, very good. Do y’all experience this? I verge with anti-capitalism so it isn’t about money, though my efforts do pay off in that realm. It’s about the sense of accomplishment I derive from the value of my work. It is almost as good as dark chocolate. Fires off in my brain in the same way.

I don’t chase it, though. I don’t push myself to go after it all the time. I let it happen according to the list, and then when the list is done, I rest or frolic. I don’t over-pack my list, either. I’ve learned what my limitations are and I work within them.

I’m feeling really good about this.

II. Speaking of frolicking, I need some.

III. Ontario has opened up to vaccinating those over 40 with the Astrazeneca vaccine and I’m excited about it. I need to get through month-end before I opt-in, though, because I do not want to panic about that month-end list when I’m supposed to be in a blanket fort with Tom Yum Soup and furbabes recovering from the work my immune system will do once I get the vaccine.

IV. My Witch Adjacent is home and healing. Thank you for holding space for me to worry about her yesterday.

V. Frozen spanikopita in my freezer is self-care.

VI. This happened:

She’s for Book Of Days 2021 for the month of May. You can join me here if you want to make her + all the other gorgeousness that’s up in that class.

VII. My cataracts are getting really, really bad. They’re interfering with my *desire* as well as my ability to paint and I need to get on that but executive dysfunction when it comes to dealing with things like these is a real thing that I struggle with. Still. My dad let himself go completely blind unnecessarily before he died, and that is not a road I am willing to go down, so I’m aiming to fix it.

VIII. I may have unfairly judged someone. It happened last year, and I did a very typical INFJ door slam on them because I didn’t have the bandwidth for anything else. I’ve been thinking about it for days – like, a lot. It’s been weighing on me that I need to clear the air and make amends.

I girded my loins and reached out to ask if we could talk things over and the answer was yes.

IX. Grace. It’s a lovely thing.

Nine feels like a good place to stop today.

Witch Adjacent

My Witch Adjacent is having surgery today, (Sigourney is finally being cast into the outer darkness!!!) so I am pretty much just holding her body and soul together with my thoughts because that’s how I roll. Carly is keeping me posted.

Meanwhile, I’m painting.

That’s all I’ve got today, though, because holding someone’s body and soul together with your thoughts takes focus.

Storytime

I. I watched the documentary series entitled “Q: Into The Storm” over the course of last week and WHOA. Fascinating. Everyone should watch it if they want to understand how the fuck QAnon happened, who is behind it, and how *creepy* it really is.

II. Mentioning it on Facebook led to the discovery of Qanon Anonymous – a fantastic podcast that is both hilarious and informative. I found it on Spotify and almost immediately signed up with them on Patreon. This is good stuff.

III. I spent yesterday in a relaxed state, slept well, and woke up this morning feeling refreshed. Got my newsletter sent out + the Darling Human note + read a bunch of blogs with my morning coffee. Now I’ve tossed a corned beef brisket into a pot to simmer all day so I can have it for dinner tonight. My studio is clean. My kitchen is clean. This feels really good.

IV. I’m going to paint today.

V. Storytime.

This train of thought was prompted by seeing this meme floating around Facebook:

I could make quite the list.

VI. I have some tender things on my mind about friendship and lineage and giving credit and the way I’ve seen some people mine other people’s content to pad their own. Renee and I talk about this fairly often because we’re both in a position where people get close to our work because they love what we do and then we find what we do cropping up in their stuff without any kind of acknowledgment of where it came from. It is disheartening, mostly because I don’t think people realize that they’re even doing it. There’s no way to address it without seeming like a fucking asshole, either.

Thankfully, there are those who integrate what we’ve offered and then make their own thing – things that are obviously their own – and even though those things are obviously their own, we find ourselves mentioned in the ‘credits’ in some way. That is beautiful, and that is where I prefer to spend my energy and attention. I have art teacher babies who started out in my classes and have now way surpassed me in terms of numbers, and I am *incredibly proud of them*. Without fail, you will hear them say things like “I got started on this journey with Effy Wild” or “Effy was a huge inspiration to me when I first started out.” or  “Effy was one of my first teachers” or “Effy is the OG Art WItch”.

This kind of acknowledgment makes me feel appreciated.

VII. I had a relationship very early on in my tenure as a teacher that totally fell apart once I realized that she wanted the benefit of my network more than she wanted my friendship. There was this weird period of time where I was paying her half of everything I earned through my network as part of our agreement, but she wasn’t signing in. She was totally absent. She had a million excuses about why, but it boiled down to this:

I was giving her half my income for nothing.

I girded my loins over time and pointed this out – that I couldn’t keep paying her if she wasn’t going to show up, that I got that she was going through a hard time, but I couldn’t subsidize that, butandalso that the friendship was way more important to me than the business partnership, and I wanted to find a way to work it out. She muttered that it was the opposite for her. She needed the money. The business mattered more.

Ooooof.

I was deeply hurt by this. Deeply. But I was not in a place at the time where I could respond in a healthy way – and yo, healthy would have been to say “Well, fuck off then because I am not a charity and I’m not here to pay you to do nothing just because we’re “friends”.”

I was sure I’d somehow brought this on myself. I didn’t like myself enough to stick up for myself. I guzzled a bottle of wine, cried a lot, and then, within a matter of a few months, while continuing to pay her for doing nothing, I started my own thing without her. When I started the new thing without her, and it became obvious that this thing was going to outpace the other thing financially, she blocked me on the socials and talked shit about me to anyone who would listen, even going so far as to “report me” to people I collaborate with.

Ooooooooooof.

It was hard not to take this personally, but in time, I started getting emails from people saying “Oh, hey! She did this same thing to <insert name here>.” Something about knowing that helped me move on from it, but it left a wariness in me that I haven’t shaken to this day.

VIII. When people get close to me through my work, I admit I wonder if they’re there for me, or if they’re there for my network or because they want to be associated with me because it gives them some kind of Effy Bump…

Do they want *me* in their lives or do they want what they can get out of being associated with me? Or some combination of both?

Tender, tender subject. No resolution at the moment. Just some honest grappling served up for your entertainment.

IX. Video chat with my Bean scheduled for this afternoon. I miss his little face so much and I can’t wait to see him and hear him bellow AWESOME MIMI! AWESOME!

X. My family is healing. Oh. My. Heart.

I’m planning to blog every day this month along with a crew of almost 300 other bloggers in my “Artfully Wild Blog Along“. If you’d like to join us, you are most welcome! Both bloggers and readers are invited to join in the fun! The only requirement is that you agree to comment on three blog posts for every blog post you share in our Facebook

 

Go Frolic Yourself!

Today will be just a few things since I spent the weekend getting loose ends tied up for A Year Of Mary + did some art for me, and I have literally nothing to say except YAY ART OMG SQUEE!

This is my offering for A Year of Mary for the month of April. I am IN LOVE WITh HER soft gaze. She was the exact medicine I needed in this moment. You can make her with me on Patreon. 

Today, I played with some Prima watercolours (Vintage Pastels) on watercolour ground in a Dylusions journal. Then, I brayered gesso. Then I did this:

This little bun bun came to visit and he wants me to go frolic. There was a point *after* I’d inserted that exclamation point that I realized that it would have been really fun to write “Go Frolic Yourself” in honour of May Day, which is coming fast. I might just have to do this again! This got layers of Pebeo iridescent paint, a bit of Tombow marker, white Posca pen, black Sakura Glaze pen, and the bunny was done in Stabilo All (black) and Liquitex Acrylic Ink in Muted Grey.

I took the leftover paints and gesso on my palette and made this super dreamy, soft background in the same journal.

This photo does not do it justice.

I don’t know what I’m going to do with it, but I am really looking forward to exploring what might be possible!

Here’s the entire spread in the journal on my painty table:

Squeee!

I got to spend some time in Zoom with Sera and GG today and it was such a lovely visit. The flow of laughter between us is a balm on my soul. GG is still training for Journal Jam. He’s going to watch some replays and track them to see he does. I also sent him a list of my favourite supplies so he’ll recognize them when I mention them. He’s nervous but excited! We’ll be Jamming Monday after next. Look for the announcement to go out in The Wilderhood.

That’s it for me, loves. I’m going to eat some broccoli and cheese stuffed chicken and then head off to Azeroth with GG for a while.

I’m planning to blog every day this month along with a crew of almost 300 other bloggers in my “Artfully Wild Blog Along“. If you’d like to join us, you are most welcome! Both bloggers and readers are invited to join in the fun! The only requirement is that you agree to comment on three blog posts for every blog post you share in our Facebook

 

Pass It On

I. The news is all “dire dire emergency catastrophic apocalyptic do not leave your fucking house on pain of death” + the funeral of Prince Philip.

II. I watched the funeral and pretty much felt nothing but annoyance with the focus on the relationship between Harry and William + a deep kind of heartache for the Queen as she sat entirely alone. I’m not into the monarchy *at all* and think it is a deeply racist institution, but my heart went out to the *person* who lost her husband. I found myself thinking about my ex MIL, who died in July (I just found out a few weeks ago). She loved the Royals. I hope she gets to have tea and talk horses with him. I think she’d like that.

III. Afterward, I shook it all off and breathed myself back into the center – here in my world, in my life. I did the dishes and made myself the most comforting plate of food – a baked potato slathered in butter with leftover crabcake crumbled over it. I smothered that in melted cheese & served it with some full-fat sour cream and minced green onions and SHOVED IT IN MY FACE.

IV. Then I put my brushes in to soak, broke down all the cardboard, cleared off my kitchen table (which has become the kitchen’s equivalent of the chaircloset we all have in our bedrooms), swept the floors, tidied up the studio, regessoed the canvas board I use as a backdrop on my painty table, put down a little blanket for Sybil so she can stop depositing clumps of herself all over the duckcloth cover I have on said painty table (snerk), finished filming A Year Of Mary, edited all the videos, started putting together the PDF, and popped in here to blog.

V. I am a fucking rockstar.

VI. I posted this on Facebook, but I wanted to share it here:

I deeply appreciate this beautiful, vulnerable conversation about grief.

This kind of conversation, to me, feels like an antidote to toxic masculinity. Thanks, April, for sharing it.

Something about this day is making me very tender. Collective grief. Grappling with the goodness of individual humans vs. the racism of an institution. Empathy for the humans. Even some humans who have done me harm.

Not quite forgiveness, but some kind of shared understanding.

The moon in Cancer, though, so no surprise there.

VII. We’re in a lockier lockdown in Ontario until May 20th. I am feeling a weird kind of exhaustion mixed with no fucks given. I’m furious with Ford for giving police the go-ahead to stop people in the streets/on the roads to ask if they have the right to be there. I’m grateful to hear that most of the police forces in Ontario (including here in London) put out announcements to say they would not be doing that.

Mr. Ford, we do not need more police intervention, nor do we need parks closed. We need paid sick leave. We need you to listen to the medical advisors and do what *they* say. We need you to stop pandering to your base and do your fucking job.

VIII. Oops. I think I just stirred up a little pocket of fury there. Oh well.

IX. I have been so sedentary lately that the list of things I did above made my back ache something fierce. I am planning on throwing myself in a very hot tub of water with Epsom salts before popping two Robax and taking it easy for the rest of my Saturday.

X. I am okay. We’re going to be okay.

Pass it on.

P.S. Also this:

Be gentle with yourself, bebe. xo