a small goal achieved

When you set a goal for yourself, make sure it’s small enough to meet the very first step . . . the satisfaction is immense!

My goal was to make two more kete/baskets and harvest enough harakeke/flax for 3 more.  Done!

The first step of the plan didn’t go so well with computer-time rationing went out the window, however it wasn’t necessary to achieve the goal and weed the garden, wash the year’s supply of salt from my windows (a small price to pay for living at the beach) as well as catch up with friends.

Kete #1 Wendy @ the Late Start Studio

Kete #1, 25 x 17 cms high
Wendy @ the Late Start Studio

Kete #2 Wendy @ the Late Start Studio

Kete #2, 27 x 25 cms
Wendy @ the Late Start Studio

And now?  I’m off to help some friend to pluck some roosters and maybe a pūkeko . . . the feathers will turn up in our work so watch this space!

Pūkeko or swamp hen.

Pūkeko or swamp hen.

Now, for my next week’s goal . . .

am I a lost cause?

I want to do everything! I want to paint, sew, embroider, draw, pot, sculpt, weave, create assemblages and make mosaics, knit and crotchet, make crazy creatures, spend time in the garden and read until my eyes itch. And I know I can do all these things as I’ve done them in the past. But what do I do? Sweet Fanny Adams! I either run round like a headless chook getting everything I need for the project and then something else has caught my magpie’s eye and I want to do something else . . . or I procrastinate and do nothing!

Yeah, yeah.  I know.  I’m being too hard on myself but quite frankly people, I really do want to do everything and I really do want to do it all and now and what’s more I want to do it perfectly!  How’s that working for me?  Well of course it isn’t.  The evidence being my sporadic forays into all of the above with little development in my skills because I flit from one thing to the other.

Today was a bit of a nothing day and my favourite Deng Min Dao quote has been haunting me: Each day passes whether you participate or not.

Wendy @ Late Start Studio.

Wendy @ Late Start Studio.

So what, you may well ask, am I going to do about this?  I am not going to sit on my expanding bottom and give up. No, no, no!  I have a plan, a plan so cunning you could put a tail on it and call it a weasel! (Yes, I’m a Blackadder fan.) I have a SMART goal (Specific, Measurable, Achievable, Realistic and within a Time-frame) and a plan to reach it . . .

By Sunday night I will have woven two more kete/baskets and weather permitting, harvested and processed sufficient harakeke/flax for 3 more. Why will I weave only two?  Because that’s all the flax I have left that’s prepared.

1. I am going to ration my time on the computer to 40 minutes in the morning and 20 minutes in the evening, blog posts are ‘permitted’ extra time.  Spending time on the computer is a habit I am challenging!

2. For the rest of the week I will focus on my weaving.  This includes the considerable preparation steps: harvesting, sizing, softening, labeling, sorting into sizes, boiling and dyeing and then finally, weaving.  I also need to keep my visual journal up to date for the assessment in late October.

3. Health is paramount!  Eat well and get some exercise each day . . . and you have no idea how I hate to exercise for the sake of exercise.  I like my exercise to be part of how I live on a day-to-day basis and today . . . well it was too damned cold to do much outside and I had a good book to read.

The goal and the plan are probably a result of my reading Becoming a Life Change Artist: 7 Creative Skills to Reinvent Yourself at Any Stage of Life.   It’s not that I need to reinvent myself exactly, I just need to do a little remodelling.  Quinn McDonald recommended the book a while back and if she recommends a book I take notice . . . she’s a wise woman and my town has an excellent library.

The problem with knowing I can do anything is that I think I have to do everything . . . I’m not really a lost cause am I ( please note, this is not a question and you may insert a sardonic wink here).

gainful unemployment

I think that sounds better than ‘retired’ . . . there is nothing retiring about me right now and I trust there never will be.  I have some serious play to work at!   Always a dabbler, I want to know if an artist lurks within.

Day 1 . . . the official Day 1 that is.  At the end of the school term there was the usual two-week holiday but today everyone else went back to work while I stayed home.  As I lay in bed with my coffee, a book and appreciated the warmth on this cold winters day, I realised that I now get to do what I want every single day!

Last week I completed these two kete.

Wendy @ Late Start Studio.  Two small kete.

Wendy @ Late Start Studio. Two small kete.

Yesterday I began a new kete as part of developing the skills I need for being able to weave more sculptural pieces.  Yes, I decided on my major focus for the raranga/weaving course: start with kete and see where it takes me.

Beginning a new kete: Late Start Studio

Wendy @ Late Start Studio.   Beginning a new kete.

Today I finished it.

Wendy @ Late Start Studio - Kete Whakairo

Wendy @ Late Start Studio.   Kete Whakairo

Tomorrow, I shall begin another . . . but only if I feel like it (insert mental image of me winking here).