I'll be honest- I didn't love my first year of being home without kids...but I've thought a lot about why that might be, done some soul-searching and recognized some strengths and weaknesses. I've come up with the basic outlines of a plan to help my self flourish (or at least not wither) during the next nine months while the boys tackle the 3rd and 1st grades. The key elements of this plan are to balance my love of making art with my lack-of-love of being home alone for long stretches each day. I'm a social being- a true extrovert. Despite how happy art-making makes me, hanging out in my studio all day is just too lonely.
So In order to balance the two side of me, I'm making art-show commitments that will require me to discipline myself in the studio for a few days a week: I need to have ehough stuff ready to fill a booth for an October 1 show, and then again for a December 2-3rd show. This is a piece I just finished in preparation for the October show:
However, to make sure I don't turn into a hermit, I'm also diving into volunteering at the Museum of Wisconsin Art. This is a wonderful museum which is within walking distance and has been able to find enough things for me to help with to fill one afternoon a week, and through which I'm training to be a docent. This is my plan for being social and staying connected to great people in an environment I absolutely love hanging out in.
The final piece of the autumn puzzle is that I've been invited to be the Artist in Residence at the Cedarburg Cultural Center for the month of October! I'll be trucking all of my supplies over and making art on-site from 10 am til 3 pm on Thursdays and Fridays all month- so come visit! What a perfect solution for the extroverted studio artist, no? At the end of the month I'll be giving a mixed media workshop for 6-12 year-olds, and hopefully will have built up a good supply of work for that early December show.
So, it feels like I've mapped out a pretty good autumn...after that, it's the mad slide into holiday busy-ness. In the new year, we'll just see what unfolds.