A picture of my family walking along the beach on Lake Erie at Cedar Point.

A picture of my family walking along the beach on Lake Erie at Cedar Point.

 

I am heading into this season with a mixed bag of feelings.

For the most part, I am quite happy.  Summer is my most favorite time of year.  I love sun, warmth, outdoor activities, and everything that goes along with it.  There is a freedom in slipping into flip-flops, grabbing the car keys (or bike) and going somewhere..anywhere.  No coat required!

I also love just sitting outside on my patio and I’ll find any excuse to get out there.  I’ll drink my morning coffee and check my email, I’ll make phone calls, and on the weekends I’ll often join my husband outside while he’s grilling with a few beers.

Summer also means the kids are home- which is a blessing.  Soon enough they’ll be going their separate ways and I know I must cherish this time with them while it is here.

 

Summer is a time for exploration. The kids pose in front of a statue at one of the numerous galleries in Santa Fe, NM

Summer is a time for exploration. The kids pose in front of a statue at one of the numerous galleries in Santa Fe, NM

 

So that’s what I do- I cherish the heck out of them!  We go to parks, swimming holes, festivals, and eat a ton of watermelon and ice cream!  Our objective every year is to wring out every ounce of summer that we can.

But where do my own creative goals and aspirations fit into this picture?  They get squeezed in between the nooks and crannies.

This summer I need to find a balance.  Yes it’s important to “do summer” with my family, but I shouldn’t have to sacrifice my own aspirations to get there.

I’ve been thinking a lot about this and have come up with some ways to keep creativity in the foreground.  Want to hear them?

  1. Implement working mornings.  If there aren’t camps or activities to get to, then my family likes to lounge around in the mornings- which will give me ample time to squeeze in a few hours of work.
  2. Work Smarter.  Spend less time goofing around on the computer and make the most out of the time I do have.
  3. Make Goals.  In past summers often weeks would go by without picking up a paintbrush.  I need to keep my momentum going and find that time to create.
  4. Get Family Involved.  Perhaps we can find some projects to collaborate together?  Pinterest, here I come!
  5. Seek Inspiration.  All those walks, festivals, and events can be fodder for creative inspiration.
  6. Allow For Modifications.  Sure there are things to get done, but the default setting needs to be on play.  If a particularly sunny day comes along or a beautiful sunset, it’s best to stop and enjoy it!
  7. Bring A Sketchbook.  Last summer I began this practice and rekindled a love of sketching.  It’s a way of getting out there yet bringing my creativity with me.  Perhaps, if I have a bit more time, I could bring some paints and expand on some of my drawings.
  8. Work Outside.  Whenever possible I need to open the windows or better yet, work outdoors.
  9. Read!  In a roundabout way this is a creative goal because it often feeds my creativity.  I don’t do nearly enough of this and neither do the kids.  We all need to put down our electronics and pick up a book.  The library will be our best friend this summer!

 

Sketch of Tree

During a recent walk with my dog in a nearby park I came upon this tree that just begged to be drawn, so that’s what I did!

 

It’s going to be an exciting summer and I can’t wait to get started.

Bring It On!

 

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