October is still my favorite…but April comes in a close second.
We rang in the new month by spending Easter with my family. None of us are particularly religious, but holidays have always been our time to get together and catch up on the going’s on.
These days, Easter is spent at my aunt’s house. Every year, she makes a ham, asparagus with hollandaise sauce, and a giant casserole of cheesy potatoes that are so bad - but so, so good. Truly, those potatoes taste like my childhood. A few years ago, I found out that the magical topping, the beautiful-golden-crispy-delicious finishing touch, is Cornflakes - which only makes Eric love them more (Cornflakes are his favorite). As for me I’m a sucker for traditions, so even though I parted ways with white potatoes a year ago, I happily succumbed and ate a massive scoop. And it was definitely worth it.
It occurred to me, as we were all sitting around the table after our meal, how families rely on a collective memory. Everyone knows bits and pieces of the stories, so when memories fail someone else is able to fill the blank with their own perspective. Around and around the conversations go - little details coming together to create a tapestry of shared experience.
My mom brought up the year that she and my dad hid my Easter basket in the closet - and when I found it I discovered that something had torn through the candy and eaten the center of every peanut butter filled chocolate. In my memory, I am just confused as I look the shredded tin foil wrappers - but my mom remembered me being angry, asking why they (my parents) would scrape out the centers of my beloved treats. She also remembered having the realization, and having to share the realization with me, that mice were the ones who had raided my basket. My dad then jumped in, saying he remembered that, luckily, they had plenty of spare candy - so the day was saved and my sugar-loving self did not end up deprived despite the turn of events. And, having pieced the story together, we couldn't help but laugh.
As if the day, spent with family, wasn’t beautiful enough, on our way home Eric and I even saw a few late blooming crocuses, opening their petals in the afternoon sun. Perfect.
On the jewelry front, a few changes are brewing this month. But I’m hoping they’ll be for the better! For awhile now, I’ve been trying hard to take note of the things that cause my creative flow to swirl back on itself, getting caught in endless eddies. It’s tricky because when I find myself in one of these low motivation scenarios, realizing that I’m stuck is usually the last thing that occurs to me.
One of the biggest blocks I’m finding is my current format for shop updates. In the past, I’ve planned out a handful of pieces, created them, and then put them up in the shop at a set time. But honestly, this way of doing things just isn’t working. Designing and then creating larger collections saps my motivation because I end up feeling like I HAVE TO create all of the pieces I planned, even when I feel my muse pulling me in a different direction. And then, when it’s finally update time, I am stressed beyond belief. Sleeplessness hits me a couple of days before the update and I positively shake with nervous energy at the moment I post new pieces. And then the cycle begins again. I’m not sure why it has taken this long, but if finally occurred to me that it can’t hurt to try something different.
SO for the month of April, my plan is not to plan - but rather to make spontaneously and from the deepest, truest place in my heart. And when pieces are finished, I’ll just pop them into the shop. No stress, no buildup. Just a creative outpouring and a chance to see how I work, free from my own rules. Here on the blog I’ll post previews of new pieces, and Instagram posts will be for new jewelry that is available in the shop.
It’s a little different. It’s a little scary. But a person can do most anything for a month, right?
(And just for fun, a picture of the Prairie Born earrings - they’re headed to their new home on Thursday. These earrings feel like a turning point for me, and I want to make more pieces like this - on the edge of what I think I can accomplish. Because I think that’s the headspace in which my best work might be living.)