…blogtober day 17 :: Monday making…
In our homeschool, we don’t follow school terms. We’ve found a different rhythm that works for us, but still gets the requisite time in each year. Most recently, it meant that we worked through the first week of the school holidays, had a week of drama classes which I’m counting as school, and then holidays last week. Today, then, is back to school.
I’m experimenting with a new format for this block – our last for the year. We’ll go through now to the end of November, and then shift in Advent activities. Back to school day + new lessons + new format, meant I needed to be on top of my game. It also meant there wasn’t a lot of free time for crafting. Part of our new routine, though, is a morning walk, and sketching time in our nature journal.
After a gloomy start to the day, the clouds burnt off, and the sun was warm on our backs as we went for a wander down towards the back forest. The road, once dry and dusty, now ankle deep ruts a tractor width apart, and in many places, still holding water. Further down, but before the forest proper, we found a spot with lots of interesting things to look at, and different views to catch different attentions. It was less an exercise in art, as an exercise in observing, and in being still in nature.
Watercolours, a pen, a single paint brush. That was the list given to them. I also brought my art journal, and paints. I also did sneak in my favourite black Inktense pencil, as I had a vision in mind for my page. We sat, books and paints strewn around us. I encouraged them to look around, notice shapes, notice shadows. How did things fit together? Where were some interesting layers that would be fun to paint?
I showed them in my own book, how to quickly rough in an outline in pen. Letting go of perfection. Capturing the general idea of the scene. We weren’t here for a long time, or to create a photorealistic memory. We were here to stretch our creative muscles, to touch the earth, to breathe the air, to enjoy a moment of calm to start our day.
My morning sketch habit has fallen off, so it was a nice slice of creating before the real work of the day began. It was the kind of Monday where my to-do list was screaming for mercy before I even put pen to paper. There were committee jobs to tidy up and house planning to sort and school to teach and somewhere between that, sneak in a little crafty time and don’t forget the blog post…
In the way of these things, though, the busier I am the more I fit in. I ticked off the committee jobs. I cruised the photo archives for one particular photo. I approved a repair quote for my good camera and sent and email to to the builder. I percolated on an idea I had last night. In between school sessions, I made the most of the downtime, and got my craft on.
I finally got to cut the fabric that I had intended to be Saturday’s project. I pulled out my art fodder book ready to do blackout poetry with the children…until we ran out of printer paper and I couldn’t print THEIR black out poetry. I found that photo in the archives I wanted, and threw it into procreate. Today’s #lacelitober prompt hit me over the head with an idea last night, and somewhere between sleeping on it and starting it, it’s morphed into something much more complex. I won’t get it done in time to post for the prompt, but I think it will be worth the extra time to work through what I have in mind.
Then this afternoon, after the blackout poetry turned into a fail, I went to plan b. We baked a mulberry crumble cake, using mulberries from my aunt and uncles orchard last season. They kindly offered us all we could pick, and what the children didn’t demolish on the way home, we froze in 2 cup lots for such a time as this. While it baked, the children were assigned a creative writing task, and I got to work on a secret squirrel project that is due at the end of the week. I’ve had my notes and ideas for this project sitting on my phone for maybe three months? But of course, it’s taken until the week it’s due to actually start it.
And to top it all off, this morning, while the children had a sleep in, I managed to finish my second book for the weekend, and number 64 for the year.
I’m hoping the rest of the week continues to be as productive as today. I want (need) to get this secret squirrel finished and submitted. I want to get the snowflakes on my shawl finished. I want to get the underwear I cut today, sewn up. The procreate project is also high on my list. I was hoping also to get some gnome progress, but I think that might have to give way to some cricut time. Only I could go to an athletics working bee and come home with a project list! If I can, I would love to make some serious inroads on my audio book, and make a start on the bloated TBR folder on my kindle.
The rest of the week isn’t looking much more forgiving than today. We have school. We have one scout meeting, two drama classes, three sport sessions, four days of predicted rain. We should, at least get a solid amount of school work done. Somewhere in there, too, maybe some crafty time to take that overly ambitious list. It could get interesting. Thanks for playing nice, Monday, how about you convince the rest of the week to do the same?