smother me

i keep catching myself
trying to
smother me
in worries
in
things that have
to be done
now!
or else!
or else what?
i sometimes
think to ask
&
the voices
sputter out
take a step back
to plan
a new attack.

slow & steady wins the race, right? i am making myself purposely move slowly. trying to think more slowly. i was freaking out about the lawn at my new house. i use a reel mower (or as i call it, an amish mower) & the lawn was getting longer & longer.
so i asked my friend to borrow her mower. and for some reason i had to do it that day. even though if i had stopped to think, i did not have time to mow. plus i was running late for an appointment. but i ignored the voices telling me not to worry about the mower & went to get the mower anyway.
and i threw out my back lifting the mower.
and then decided i shouldn’t use it anyway.
so i took my reel mower out to amish land to have the blades sharpened. as well as getting my scythe & other lawn tools sharpened.
then, a week later, i told my boys i would pay them to mow the lawn.
sure the lawn looks like it was a victim of a slasher movie…but i am honoring my desire to live a low-impact life, giving my boys work experience as well as life experience, and taking my time instead of getting it all done now!now!now!
and my back feels much better.

(i borrowed from gustave dore again for inspiration for the inking)

outside the box

i live
outside the box
yet still find myself
listening to the voices
shouting out
at me
from that fucking box
still find myself
projecting that box shape
onto my own life
only to berate myself
for coloring outside the lines
scribbling outside the lines
creating whole worlds
outside the lines
i could cut off my arms
cut off my legs
remove my head
& i still wouldn’t fit
inside the box
& why
why why why
would i want to stuff myself
inside
knowing i would die
kept in a box
i live
outside the box
& that
is the perfect fit
for me.

every day of my life tends to be a reminder to me that i don’t fit in. most days i am totally fine with that–some days anyway. even as a kid i wasn’t all that interested in fitting in. and the older i get, the more i realize just how non-non-conforming i am. how unconventional i am. never doing what everyone else is doing. with my flip phone, no internet, unschooling, buy-nothing-new, free store mentality….
people assume i am going to do what everyone does when they are fixing up a house. but i’m not. i’m going to be me…& that house will be an extension of me. of me & my minions.
it will be complete madness
in the best way possible.

(speaking of which, i am looking for foraged/salvaged materials & ideas for sustainable renovations. so if you have experience with this or know any good sources–let me know! also! who wants to come over & help me build walls & floors & maybe a rocket mass heater from whatever we can find to do that with?)


cautionary tale

i aspire
to not become
a cautionary tale

(i probably already am a cautionary tale…)
on a related note…i was trying to think of a name for my house. i am thinking of naming it “madness” after the band who wrote “our house” as well as a wink to the state of mind in buying a house that needs as much love as mine does on top of my four children & myself all being a bit mad….

my house & my dog
what will one day be my studio, office, & tarot/tattoo parlor

my dickie

i call my hairstyle
“the dickie”
it looks like i am wearing a full head of hair
but
i am not.

just a goofy thought put into my art journal. i like the inking of me.
mostly i am freaking out about my new house these days. does anyone have thoughts on alternative energy in regards to heating…& water heaters? (just in time for earth day!)
i am making this house from scratch it seems, & i don’t want to follow the recipe.

meanwhile at the free store

i have two rooms now, well, two & a half…. one for household items & shoes (so many shoes!)
& one for clothes & toys. i figure put the toys in with the clothes so moms can look for clothes while kids make a mess with the toys.

speaking of messes…i almost closed up the shop…turned the bus around…i was so frustrated with how people don’t pick up after themselves. i mean, nothing major, but with enough people not putting things away…. i already have four kids to pick up after….

but i am trying to keep the faith. the free store doors remain
open
(two doors now!)

ps. if i have to deal with another bag of single socks, i might just freak the fuck out…so pair up your socks, people. no singletons or i will hunt you down.

free store sheep fingers

i’m a little behind on my free store updates.
it is still going strong. the ebb & flow is a bit off however, more coming in than going out.
so!
i’m working on expanding it into the next room over. the building i am in is an old church that was reclaimed as an art & community space. the next room over was an abandoned workshop. i have been clearing it out & trying to clean it up & hopefully not inhaling too much lead paint dust….
one wall was crumbling paint, so i painted over it, but that didn’t seem to be enough, so i took the opportunity to make some life sized sheep fingers. i don’t know about you, but something about sheep fingers just makes me so happy.
soon this room will be finished & set up & the free store at the commons will be much easier to navigate…& my ocd can calm down a bit.

circles

the free store i started is a month old now. it is packed full of goodies. so many awesome people donating.

i have only noticed one problem.
all the accolades i have been receiving have triggered my impostor syndrome & sent me into some serious dark & downward spirals.
weird, right?
like when people tell me i’m doing a good thing, i feel like i am somehow fooling them.
when one woman said, “way to pay it forward,” i flinched. of course, for me it is not about karma. it is about giving the people what they need; keeping crap out of landfills; putting one over on the man….
but am i a good person for doing it?
i don’t feel like a good person…
then i start to wonder…if my art took off, would i suffer in a similar way? spin out to a dark & devastated place where i fear everyone will realize i am actually a fuck up in sheep’s clothing?

however, i can’t help hoping all the spinning i have been doing will leave me standing still

free storing it

so far so good with the free store…though more is coming in than going out. which is awesome that people are so generous–& hopefully it will find it’s own ebb & flow eventually.

i have discovered that i really enjoy sneak peeks into the lives of strangers via donations…must be the fiction writer in me. i also enjoy making sense of chaos. so it’s all good.
though my folding skills leave something to be desired.

maybe i’ll get a trend going here on free stores for sustainability & community.
start your free store today!

free store project

what am i doing with myself since i quit my job, i’m sure you are wondering.
well…other than trying to recover from clogged sinuses that are surely indicative of a clogged soul…
i have opened a free store!
cool, right? very abbie hoffman of me….

this is my journaling about the process in case anyone is curious or wants to try this at home.

here in viroqua, wisconsin, there is a building that is a common space, an art space. it is aptly called “the commons,” and is steered by some good hometown anarchists. i fell in love with this space when i first visited viroqua and was eager to get involved with it’s current evolution.
so!
i asked the board if i could start a “free store” in one of the rooms. i was met with some pretty awesome enthusiasm.
the enthusiasm did not stop with attaining the room. as soon as i started advertising for donations, i was met with overwhelming generousity.

today is the first day the free store is open to the public.
i am hopeful, but i am also keeping an eye out for snags.

i will try to keep y’all updated on my latest quixotic adventure…xxoo.

i just realized this is totally a 180 from of my “nothing for free” post…but, you know, i did fire that therapist for being frivolous with my mental health…plus, like many men i know, he really didn’t listen to what i was saying.

church of the lawnscape

i know now
why we’re so fucked up
as a society…
it’s that we don’t get the therapeutic
meditative
cardio
workout
of mowing our lawns with a reel mower
& scythe
dude…
i’m serious here
as a hand dish washing
line hanging out laundry
reel mowing
she-ra
i am here to tell you
listen as i preach it
an easy life
is no life at all
work it, people
work it….

as the main representative of the church of the reel mower & sole member/candidate of the thunderdome political party….
i do need to start recruiting.

seriously, y’all. i just want someone to praise me…worship me…speak my name with such devotion….

i don’t know if y’all can see it, but i am mowing a little every day around the house to create some yard so the minions don’t have to go in the weeds if they don’t want to.
i am completely ocd about it. i get out there with that fucking mower & i cannot stop. then, when i finally do, every muscle in my body says, “goodnight.”
it’s clearing my head as i clear some lawn.
i really do think we as a society have lost our priorities. someday i will get that church going–get that political party started….
in the meantime, i am feeling fine.

also! i finished the seascapes i was commissioned to do.

in other news, i have been thinking a lot about direction. i feel that my self-portrait series is wrapping itself up. even though i was told to pay no attention to the critique that questioned my writing abilities
(thank you for your support, xxoo), i have been thinking about it. i want a strong narrative to go with my self-portrait series. so i think i am going to go back through all those journals and try to create that narrative. i don’t know if it will end up being more verse than prose or more prose than verse…or a mix of the two.
but it is time to embrace an ending to it…& also a beginning.

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑