Change is good. I think.

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Yesterday my youngest and I meandered over to Starbucks and got ourselves a venti light brew, milk, and chocolate cookies (the coffee was mine, just to clarify;). We sat outside, looking at the mountains, relaxing, munching. After a while it felt like it was time to leave, so we did. We went to the library, going a bit faster because my youngest can be a bit loud, but still, it was a fun trip.

And relaxing. Did I mention that? Mostly because my older kids were in school.

I don’t talk about it much (I don’t think), but up until this year we were avowed homeschoolers. It was easier with our schedule back when we were finishing college, and then we lived in areas with less-than-stellar public schools (I know this because when I said we homeschooled -all- the parents said “keep doing that!!! I wish I could homeschool!!!”). But now we live in the best school districts in the state, and I’m trying to grow my business, so we decided to try public school for a year.

I’m trying not to make any sweeping judgments until we’ve had time to adjust. I have my doubts about the efficacy of homework, I have concerns about teaching to the test, I have concerns about the amount of stress my kids are now exposed to. But some kids truly thrive in the public school setting, and I want to give it a fair shake.

My days feel strangely empty though. Until they get home, then it’s crazy.

I’m setting a new schedule. It’s not all play-I still have the youngest with me-but I do have a decent amount of time to get work done, posts written, drawing to occur. I finally have time to figure out how to create planner printables and worksheets, something I’ve been wanting to do for awhile. The youngest’s naptimes are gloriously quiet.  I have a cut-off time: business hours are over as soon as the kids get home. We can’t stay up late, skip our evening routine, because mornings would be awful if we did. Accountability, there’s the word. It’s a new paradigm for all of us.

So. Change. It’s good. Maybe. I haven’t decided. I’ll let you know how it goes.

And in the meantime, art on;)

First Art Fair Update and a Case of the Blahs.

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After Saturday, I was mentally exhausted. Sunday the physical exhaustion set in, and Monday I don’t know what happened. Catch-up, I think, on everything I had let slide the week before. Tuesday we drove my mom to the airport (an all-day affair due to the distance), Wednesday was “oh crap we don’t have everything for school!!!!!”, and Thursday I sent my eldest two off to public school for the very first time. And that brings us to today, and I am wearily getting back into the swing of things.

So! Art Fair! It went well. I had reached half of my “dream goal” (10% of what I had brought, which was the common figure I had seen when researching art fairs) when the skies opened and the rain poured down. We stuck it out for a couple more hours, but I had no sales after that downpour. I have some ideas to try for next time, and now I know that I do -not- like using etsy’s card reader for art fairs (I had a bunch of discounts going- the more you bought, the less you paid- and I did not make listings for those ahead of time). We did many things right, however, so I’m hopeful that the next one will flow even better.

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The whole booth shot with my patched-together sign.
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A close-up.
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This is the only shot I have before we rearranged for the rain, and as you can tell the sun was still making some fierce shadows.

I was surprised that none of my originals sold-people kept stopping to look at the ones on the right. I didn’t sell any journals and fewer bookmarks than I had thought, but I had them arranged in such a way that people might not have been able to tell what they were. I sold mostly prints, greeting cards, postcards, and note card sets, so if I’m in the local fall fairs I’ll probably concentrate on those.

So now that that’s over, we’re concentrating on our upcoming move to a much bigger house and the round of fall fairs and exhibitions that our town puts on. I applied for the big one, but it has less space, so the booths are rather limited. I’ll also be applying for our art center’s “Affordable Art” display, which is where (last year!) I sold my first original. Fond memories.

So art on, my friends, even when you have a case of the blahs like I have. It’s still here, although I did push through and draw this last night:

 

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Very Thanksgiving-y.

Happy Weekend!!!

Wordy Weekend Links and a Mock Setup

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We did a mockup of our setup for Saturday last night. Note the couch that has been pushed out of the way-our apartment is really small. Also note the ribbon my eldest festooned the tables with;)

And on to the links.

Entrepreneurship is a Mindset. I might buy this print-it’s an important reminder.

Do You Need To Learn Digital Painting? I need to learn-I’ve got some black and white scans that would look good in a variety of colors, so this is now on my ever-growing list of things to learn;)

The Myths and Realities of ‘Doing What You Love’ This rather messed me up as a young adult. I wasn’t very passionate about anything, except books, and so I had no clue what I should do. I ended up working at a bookstore (aha! I followed my passion;) and found that I’m very good at organizing and paperwork-so if I ever need a job again I’ll go that route. I’m telling my own kids that they need to get a day job, in order to pursue their night job/passion, and then if that passion pays off you quit your day job. I feel like this is a sensible course.

Art on, my friends. Pictures of the actual booth on Monday! (and a possible meltdown-we’ll have to see how it goes!)

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A look at the pretties I’ve made, because you don’t want to see what my house looks like right now.

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The fair is this Saturday, and while I’ve printed all the essentials I’m now printing extras to make sure my display is well-rounded. We had a moment of panic when my printer started acting up, but it’s fixed now, all is well. I’m rather cranky, because kids frequently pick up on the mood of the parent, and that just perpetuates the cycle of cranky.

I’m takin’ a break after this event. We all need it desperately.

And now, the pretties.

If you’re in the Santa Fe/Los Alamos area come on by, I’ll be in the tent labeled “Wordsremember”. You can find all these items in the shop here.

Art on, my friends!