Yesterday I had to go to my annual physical. And my dear prairie sisters, we all know how enjoyable that experience is. The minute you hear the word "stirrups" and don't see a pony in the room, it is time to skedaddle.
I felt the need to treat myself a bit afterward, so I stopped at a little consignment shop Eydie and I discovered this past spring, The Village Attic in Cottage Grove--one of those places that has a bit of everything and more than a few jewels if you are willing to dig. During our last visit, Eydie scored a vintage 60's handbag with a wooden bottom, just like one my Aunt Sally use to have. She has since learned that 60's chic and today's phone technology don't exactly jive. When her phone goes off, the entire bag tends to vibrate across the floor creating quite a racket. On this visit I found just what I was looking for, a small low table that needed some TLC and a thick layer of Mod Podge. Purchase secured, I headed home for an afternoon of creative fun.
A month ago I had found an old art book of Mary Cassat paintings at the best used bookstore in Madison, The Frugal Muse. I have always loved her portrayal of women, especially mothers. I had this idea floating around in my head of figures from various paintings layered, and this is the result:
And after a wonderful afternoon, which followed a less than thrilling morning (my health is excellent, thank-you), I felt a twinge of guilt over having "wasted" six hours playing, but that twinge didn't last long. I didn't do what I had to do, but I did what I wanted to do. And when it is all said and done, what I didn't get accomplished yesterday is not going to matter a twit.
This is a hard lesson for me. I am a type A+ personality who has difficulty pausing for a breath as I rush through my daily list of "must do's." In the past two years I have gone through a divorce, seen our family income cut in half, and taken on a second job as a result. The "must do" list seems to be longer and more complex. Learning how to relax, how to procrastinate, how to play isn't a luxury anymore. This is survival, and this summer is proving to be my graduate course in fun.
Speaking of fun, this is another collage I created today. I didn't even buy the table for this one. I found it in my neighbor's trash.
Definitely a bit quirky. Those are Jackson Pollock "clouds" hovering over bits of Wood, Wyeth, Kanovitz, etc. Joli looked at this one and asked with a bit of fear in her voice, "And where are you going to put it?" I think she was afraid that it would end up in her bedroom. You are probably asking the same. The answer is, "Sell it!" Eydie and I have our eyes on the Willy Street Fair in mid September. There is a person in Madison, Wisconsin who really needs this table. I will find him/her.
So I am daring to treat myself this summer by putting off straightening that hall closet. The carpets don't need to be cleaned until right before school starts, and maybe it would be better to wait until Christmas break. I did get the grout cleaned on the kitchen floor, but that was by accident--a very long and painful accident that I will save for another post. It was so terrifying that I had to collage a full two days before my pulse rate returned to normal.
Dear Eydie sent me this quote from another favorite of mine, Louisa May Alcott. I should probably stitch this into a sampler, although I have given up needlework. It isn't fun.
"Have regular hours for work and play; make each day both useful and pleasant, and prove that you understand the worth of time by employing it well. Then youth will be delightful, old age will bring few regrets, and life will become a beautiful success."