Monthly Archives: March 2011

Mending Fences (Or trying to anyways)

Are you happy with who you are currently? What are some areas you would like to improve? Perfection is impossible, but is there an image of yourself that you would like to achieve? My ideal self is a cool, easygoing chick who is well-liked and doesn’t worry about petty things or people. She’s in control of her life and emotions and things just slide right off her back. Rather than freaking out, she laughs things off.

As much as I’d like to say that I am my ideal self, I’m still not there yet and I’ve made some mistakes with people which I kinda wish that I could fix. Over the past few years, some people have said things that offended me and instead of telling them directly, I said nothing, stewed over it and then cut them off. It was passive aggressive and caused my ideal self to scream “What the hell are you doing?!” across the gap of our differences.*

Or I let things get personal-too personal-when I should have kept it professional. It’s a fact of life that you’re not going to like all your coworkers, but I should have kept a stiff upper lip and just ignored their craziness. Instead, I became stubborn and petulant and spent too much time letting them get to me. They were being jerks, but by reacting angrily to them, it resulted in me justifying their opinions of me and definitely threw a wrench into getting shit done at work. (Of course it is tougher to stay cool at work because A)Unless you’re really lucky, you don’t usually want to be there and B) You don’t choose your coworkers)

So, I’m considering reaching out to a few who I hastily closed the door on too quickly. Now don’t get the wrong idea: I won’t be reconnecting with people who were very toxic or who it is abundantly clear, that I’ve outgrown. Some social connections definitely have a best before date.

I’m just tired of my sometimes obsessive, kind of paranoid, overly judgemental, grudgeholding self and want to try and see if I can clear some misunderstandings that I have had over the past few years. It isn’t fair to completely disregard someone over one little comment or two(Unless the comments are very hurtful or racist/sexist/homophobic, etc), and I certainly have said some boneheaded things in the past too!

My “experiment” might end in disaster or it might end up o.k. It may even result in silence on their end, but hey at least I tried. I won’t be bringing up their previous comments, since that will probably result in them becoming defensive, I’m just going to ask how they’re doing and try to press the “reboot” button on our connection.

How about you? Have you ever tried reconnecting with people who you previously shrugged off?

Photo: http://kwjersey.com/?page_id=35

*I should mention that I’d also like to reconnect with some people who I’ve fallen out of contact with due to other issues, ie. computer problems, lack of time, etc.*

Between Seasons at the Dog Park..

This Spring hasn’t been great so far. Basically, it still feels like winter, but with less snow. I still trudge to work in my full length coat, jeans, sweaters, etc and people are still major league cranky on the bus. (Though that tends to be a pretty regular occurrence)

But undeterred, I’ve been trying to take Selena myself more on walks. Recently we went to the off-leash one in our area. The place went from swamp, to icy swamp to half ice, grass crater. But Lemon was there as were a few other doggies:

Look at her in that little coat, so cute! They got some good runs in with Selena chasing the ball:

And before you ask, not that’s not me in the white coat and furry boots throwing the ball. I was standing around chatting, it was a nice time actually. Well right up until the yellow lab in the photo decided to pee on my leg!  His owner was profusely apologetic, which was nice, because some people literally just stand there staring at you like a brain dead idiot, while their dog pees on you/bites you or your dog/humps your leg/plows into you (This also happened to me! Dog parks aren’t without their hazards!;) ), etc.

But it was nice of this guy to say sorry, I just replied “No worries, I needed to wash these pants anyways”.

I’ve missed taking lots of dog photos at the park too, so hopefully there will be more posts with them in the near future.  Here’s hoping all that snow in these ones will soon be gone and I won’t have to wash my coat and pants next time a dog pees on my leg! 😉

Changes…

After weeks of no posting and having no time for attend arts and cultural events and interview artists and performers, I have deleted artinthecapital.wordpress.com. My drawing classes have also ended and due to feeling crappy, I missed the last ones.

Another reason that I deleted that site is because talking to other weird and quirky artists took too much time away from focusing on my own drawings, paintings and photos. So I have created my very first art blog using.. *gasp*.. my real name!

Let me know if you want me to send you the link! It’s still a bit of a work in progress and there isn’t a ton of content yet, but keep checking back for updates! 🙂

P.S. Creating this new site is also the reason that I haven’t been blabbin’ as much on here lately, but I will be keeping this blog.:D

Supermoon!

Saturday was the night of the “Perigee Moon”-The time when the moon reaches it’s closest distance to Earth! We were also lucky because it was a full moon so that made it extra special. Here is a photo of this super moon:

Doesn’t really look 14% bigger than a regular moon but hey, at least I have photos! It was actually Hubby who took the pictures, because my body decided to get ill that night. Yes, if it wasn’t for my sudden lack of immunity, I would have been out there with all the other amateur astronomoy nuts snapping photos of our satellite earlier that night when it was closest to the horizon, because that’s when it looks REALLY big!

But Hubby also got this really cool shot:

The moon behind some trees….eerie!  He’s a good photographer though and a great help. Being sick is no fun, but it helps to have a husband who indulges me and my many zany interests.

Did you guys see the moon? Did you take photos?

Watercolour Fun!

After playing around with pencil crayons and feeling a bit disappointed with the results, I decided to try watercolour painting. While in Wallacks, I picked up a watercolour pad and a set of paints and have produced two paintings since.  Watercolour is a tough medium, probably the hardest and least forgiving out of all the paints.  But I am a crazy gal who likes a challenge, so I figured what the hell?

The great thing about watercolour is that it requires little set up and materials: I simply put down some newspapers on our dining room table, along with the watercolour pad, paints, brushes and a small empty jam jar of water and I’m set to go! Awhile ago I took some photos of Maggie looking up, so I’ve been translating these into watercolour paintings.  Here is my model “supervising” my work:

and here is the second finished portrait:

My uncle in Alberta is a professional watercolour painter and has been doing it for the past thirty years (He’s also a dynamo at framing, which comes in handy), so he’s been sending me some advice, which is appreciated! 🙂

So if you or your kids are bored this March Break, I recommend trying watercolour! It’s tricky but still fun! 🙂

For Jen and for fun!

 

Winter’s been kind of wearing me down lately, so I’ve been in the mood to draw more lighthearted things, like the rat above.  I would also like to dedicate this drawing to Jen and combine two of her favorite things: Rats and balloons. In fact,  Jen’s been working hard on creating a series of self portraits with various coloured balloons. They are quite charming and I recommend taking a look at them on her site when you get a chance!

As for me, I like the ratties and think I might make more drawings of ’em! 🙂

Latest Stuff..

In my upstairs renovation adventure, I sold our single guest bed online last weekend. We only bought our twin/single last year, but having a single mattress limits the amount of people who can stay over. (ie. not couples) Right after the buyers came and picked it up, I prodded Hubby into going to Sleep Country where we found a nice double plus frame that was on sale. Yay! My brother from Toronto will be staying with us next week, so it’s nice that it will be used right away. We stayed with them, now they get to stay with us! 🙂

It will be nice too when the master bedroom and guest bedroom are exactly how I want them. We haven’t been making major adjustments or anything, it’s more surface changes, but it’s still enough to be quite expensive.  Hopefully it will be worth it in the end!

I’ve also been reading a lot lately. In terms of the aforementioned Canadian content, I finished Laura Best‘s Bitter Sweet and Troy Little’s Chiaroscuro awhile ago. Both were excellent, but very different. Bitter Sweet is a heartwarming tale about enduring hardship and familial love that is safe reading for people of all ages.

A family moves into a small home, but is quickly thrown into turmoil when the father runs away and the mother dies. It is up to Pru, the main character, to keep the family together. Pru’s inner strength and love for her ailing mother and family really tugged at the ‘ol heart strings.  There is a deep bond between mothers and daughters and I think this book really represented that bond well, it was very touching.

Chiaroscuro, on the other hand, is targeted more towards young adults, and has a slight Kevin Smith underdog feel to it. Art graduate Steve just can’t seem to get motivated enough to paint on the blank canvas that sits in his apartment. Not even his dingy surroundings or teasing from his best friend, will get him to stop bitching and start creating. It’s not until some strange men, mistaking him for the former tenant of his apartment, start harassing Steve that his life finally begins to change. It was great reading this book and seeing the references to Canadian artists and the National Gallery. I am quite fond of Troy’s drawing style and dry sense of humor.

Of course, I haven’t just been restricting myself just to Canadian authors. (I never could restrict my author list to just one country) My brother’s girlfriend, after discovering my intention to go to the Silver Snail to pick up more Sandman books, lent me Neil Gaiman‘s “Stardust” and “American Gods”.  Between Sandman, my birthday gift of “Neverwhere” from Jen and these two novels, I am up to my eyeballs in Gaiman! But the more I read his stuff, the more my obsession grows with acquiring more, so I am very happy to be able to read all these books.

Here is one Neil Gaiman quote for all of you and my brother’s girlfriend, who works in a library:

“[D]on’t ever apologize to an author for buying something in paperback, or taking it out from a library (that’s what they’re there for. Use your library). Don’t apologize to this author for buying books second hand, or getting them from bookcrossing or borrowing a friend’s copy. What’s important to me is that people read the books and enjoy them, and that, at some point in there, the book was bought by someone. And that people who like things, tell other people. The most important thing is that people read… ”