It’s creative flood time. I never know when it’s coming which is half the fun. It just arrives, like a tsunami, sent by the universe to swallow me whole, and I ride the waves. I want to inhale books and arrange flowers and write poems and paint murals and make up dances and listen to new music and log ideas in a pretty little notebook and try new lipstick colors and rearrange furniture and talk spirituality and cook something amazing and send happy mail to friends and paint a rainbow step stone path all the way up my driveway. If I could map these swells out with some regularity and study arrival patterns, I would, but creativity doesn’t work that way–at least not the tsunami kind. All you can do is feed that hungry beast.
This week we’re enjoying…
New Sidewalk Art Supplies.
Which, when you’re a kid and especially when you are a grown-up kid, is very exciting. Also ranking in exciting newness:
A new box of crayons
New tennis shoes
A new jar of peanut butter
New dish towels
New printed photos
New pens–the slick gel ones that glide nicely on paper
A new coffee mug
New stamps–and not the plain old forever flag ones. That’s mail blasphemy. We’re talking a trip to the post office where you stand in line just to say, “Could I see all the stamp designs, please?” And you wait while the post office worker puts them all out on the counter. And you hold up the line while you decide, asking for input when necessary, comparing designs, holding them up in the light and squinting, imagining how they’d look on a nice envelope. And it’s the hardest decision ever because the Janis Joplin stamps are so colorful and retro but the songbirds are soft and timeless. And then you find out they have Harry Potter stamps and, oh my God, the Hudson River School Stamps are absolutely gorgeous. But you make a decision because that’s part of creativity too, and you walk out of the post office with a new book of beautiful stamps begging for some good snail mail to send out, and you feel all excited and grateful that someone in the stamp department understands that little things like offering different stamp designs can bring a tiny bit of sunshine to an ordinary day. Kind of like getting new sidewalk art supplies.
A School Day Off
Thank you, George Washington. We all knocked out our teeth and replaced them with wood ones to celebrate you. Okay, we didn’t but we made the best of a blessed Monday off by setting out on a mom adventure. Lots of kids, strollers, picnic blankets, packed lunches and a big ‘ol state park.
We hid in the Bamboo Forest which is really just a cluster of bamboo, but when you name places like they’re stops on the Candyland board, life is more fun.
Exploring the historic homes of Koreshan State Park:
We don’t stay long at the beach on windy days because there’s sand and salt blowing everywhere, hair in your face and rough water, but Lainey loves it when we have waves. So do the people who own surf boards who mistakenly landed on the gulf.
The first bouquet inevitably setting off my spring cravings which include pink, pink, mint and pink.
Right when he turns two and I’m missing smooshy baby and nuzzly newborn nurser and looking at all these pictures of other people’s babies thinking, “Oh my God, I’ll never have that again” when everyone’s telling me “How is he two? He’s HUGE!”…I look a little closer. I take him all in, study his curves and edges. And I stop at hand dimples. Chubby thumbs and thick skin and four little dots beneath those sticky fingers. He’s still so little. I mean, hand dimples. Come on. We’re good.
Early Morning Endless Alphabet.
And the soft spotlighting effect of natural light–I mean artificial iPad glow.
Five Going on Sixteen.
Turn down your music and give me back my car keys.
Afternoons with These Two.
A sweet window, this time with both of them home in the afternoon. We don’t get a lot done unless you consider ransacking the house getting things done. But I love to watch them, the way they play, the way they fight, they way they make up.
It’s supposed to drop down to the thirties tonight which, for us, means digging for mittens and throwing an extra blanket on the bed. I’m going to lasso up that creative swell and serve it up to my family in a pot of hot soup, a blanket fort and a Cold & Cuddly playlist which includes all the three-name dudes: Gregory Alan Isakov, Benjamin Francis Leftwich and James Vincent McMorrow. They should have been presidents.
Bundle up and enjoy.
Creative swells call for creative lists so feel free to leave these four things in the comments if you’re feeling it.
Last best reads: Still Alice, heartbreaking and beautiful. Currently reading War of Art again (it’s a 5x a year read) and Soul Food, an out-of-print poetry book a new friend recommended–I can’t put it down.
Music for a night in from the cold: Maxence Cyrin–haunting piano melodies, good with a glass of red wine, a new journal and a nice pen. Start with Where is My Mind, a question I ask myself more often than not.
What are you dreaming of for spring: Easter dresses for the girls; seersucker for Dash; a good deep house cleaning that doesn’t involve shoving anything into a drawer, closet or under a bed to get rid of it; decorating projects; flowers, flowers, flowers; Peeps. And yellow…everywhere.
Last thing that made you laugh: Nella who hollered from her bedroom this morning, trying to get my attention: “Mommy! Mommy! Kelle Hampton!”