i might as well give up on blogging. not really. i’ll post when i can, but life has been happening, y’all.
first things first, justin and i got married. we shotgunned it down at st. andrews at the beach with a few of our family members. i wondered if i would look back and regret not having some large extravaganza, but i am 100% happy with my decision. that small wedding was enough stress on its own. i can’t even imagine a multi-thousand dollar affair. i’m happy to continue planning those kind of large events for folks, but i’m glad i stuck to my guns and kept it intimate.
we also moved. i lived at marsh landing for three years, and it was such a cool little place. we live in house now with a pool, and it’s finally coming together after a few months!
we’re also having a baby. a little girl, vayda pharris. we just love the name vayda, and pharris is my great grandmother’s maiden name. her birthday was january 8th, so i’m hoping vayda will be here around that time (we’re due january 20th). only a few more months to go. pregnancy has been interesting. i’ve been sick literally every day since about week five. i was sick all day during my first trimester, but i’ve kept up the morning ‘routine’ everyday when i wake up. after over 150 consecutive days of throwing up, i’m feeling like a true champion.
justin has been really busy with some upcoming festivals and concerts he’s planning. i can’t wait until it gets time for the holidays and we can both slow down a little. it’ll actually be busy at my job during christmas with events, but i’ll be taking it easy since i’ll be eight months pregnant. 🙂 that’s just a little update for now!
it’s easy to be really involved with a creative idea in the beginning. ultimately a road block appears where the project is avoided. it just isn’t fun anymore or it’s too complicated/time-consuming to complete at the moment.
the most disappointing part is, i rarely pick it back up. and if i do i wait forever to finish it. life has changed gears for a season, and my aim is producing more with my time. producing more of whatever it is in that moment for me. producing an intentional and finished product. one day, it’s a random craft with repurposed bottles. rearranging our den as a playroom for V. the next day, owning a task at work. organizing a junk drawer. designing a gallery wall. i’ve penned lists in my notebooks: projects at home to conquer, and project tracker with goals for work.
in order to be intentional about working through my grandiose list of possible design projects, i have defined some new personal guidelines…or something like that.
1. choose one project from the list only. enjoy thinking about the project in advance and divide the project into clear-cut steps.
take one of my latest piece for example (pictured). i wanted to do something a little different and fun with V’s birth announcements. don’t ask me why, but i had 12 different cards printed that i wanted to collage on a canvas with some sort of handpainted work included. i started by ordering the cards, obviously, and picked out canvases from my stockpile to use. then i took time to envision the piece and imagine the arrangement, colors and tools i would use. after planning out the timeline, i felt confident and excited about my upcoming craft.
2. house must be clean and all work-related tasks completed before i start to art.
my OCD mind will wander to what’s unfinished or undone, and then I’ll inevitably be juggling 15 chores with my designated project. making sure things are in the order before i step into my realm of peace with the piece.
3. communicate with the art.
quite possibly the lamest way to put it, but the most enjoyable part of any creation for me. it sounds nuts (and maybe it is). for years i have pondered God as an artist and how He must delight in the artform of nature, space and humanity across decades and dimensions. could you imagine…? i don’t [think i] have a god complex, but i appreciate the idea of imagining my blank canvas as a creation i’m breathing life into as i work. so, i enjoy “getting weird” while i paint. fluid patterns and strokes that follow the imperfections of a specific tool. mixing colors to massage their best pigments and making sure they feel good on the canvas. that no stroke or pen mark feels completely awkward unless agreed upon between me and the brush. call me crazy, but those are my favorite pieces. they get the most of me in them.
4. let the stuff sit out.
the house is clean, so i intentionally leave my craft necessities out in a designated, but obvious, space until i finish the project. ‘not wanting to drag the supplies out’ can’t be the excuse not to finish. barring a visit from important company, i allow my supplies to get some fresh air mid-project. why not? my living room, my life. and who ever got much done without getting a little messy? (these questions aren’t rhetorical. i have to motivate myself that a little of art supplies gathered by the bookcase and gallery frames on the table are not the end of my clean house.)
so those are my new four rules for myself, the ultimate procrastinator. this lazy artist with all ideas and not much product to show for it lately has been churning out some stuff recently.
the creative process ebbs and flows, of course –but i’m maturing my processes to get the most out of my creative time, at least until Baby V is stealing the paintbrushes out of my hand.
(which she can totally get away with being this cute.)
i was scared vayda would be a boy even after several confirmations she would be all girl. that may be why i started creating a gender neutral nursery. but just like everything else i planned for the baby during my pregnancy, things changed.
when i first found out i was pregnant, i went to target. isn’t that thing to do? i’m pretty sure they puff some scent into the store’s air that make maternal hormones rage, because my cart mysteriously fills to the brim (with things i probably don’t need) during every visit. elephants were popular for baby room decor at target during my pregnancy, and we happen to love elephants at the andrews house since we cheer for the crimson tide. cue everything elephant. i incorporated a little “where the wild things are” inspiration, too, with greys, light blues, yellows and burnt oranges.
you’ll see that pink has inevitably made it’s way all over the nursery to compliment my initial color choices, but i fall more in love with the wild array of hues as time moves on. it’s a mix and match of all the people and experiences of vayda’s life thus far. her crib and dresser are from the baby’s dream enchanted collection. it will convert to toddler then double bed for lifetime usability. we got our set from brooks furniture (great local baby section) and are ever so thankful to robert, who included some great extras as a gift to my parents, who got V the set.
**rabbit trail for full disclosure here: unfortunately, vayda does not use her crib often as she still sleeps in a co-sleeper beside our bed. with a little reflux early on, she is most comfortable in her fisher price rock-n-play sleeper (and mommy likes her close by, too). during the day, she is constantly held, napping in my arms or being worn. [this article shares many –but not all– sentiments i do about baby wearing and my philosophy on holding vayda as much as possible: natural child] she will be using her crib and room more for naps soon, but we have found vayda to be more even-tempered and secure in her surroundings with our current methods.**
i opted for style on a budget for the rest of the nursery. all the nursery art was hand painted by me, which was a fun way to help make the anticipation speed along as pregnancy days grew longer. the area rug came from IKEA at a bargain, changing cover from etsy (with back-ups from target), floor length window panels from target – then i filled in with decor from hobby lobby, etsy, our new baby! (my favorite baby store – currently) and sweet gifts we got from family and friends. this includes a sweet toddler-sized bear rocker that was justin’s when he was little:
several sweet, very pink bears are keeping the seat warm for vayda when she gets old enough to sit in it.
along with those pink bears are manyBOWS! my mama used to have me in outfits with matching bows. a proud moment for my mom was when my art teacher told her i was the best dressed child at deerfield in grade school. i guess that bow obsession seeped right into my own veins. i had to get creative with ways to display the many bows and headbands that mommy has gotten addicted to buying. seriously, people – it’s a problem. i never thought i would be one of those mamas who creates a bow child. but here’s the real situation:
might as well face it, we’re addicted to bows. and i have totally embraced being that kind of mama. i got the cylindrical headband holder from etsy. many shops make these and there are many tutorials on how to make your own. it is so convenient when hurrying to dress an infant. plus, there is extra storage inside the cylinder – much needed at this house. the blue bow holder is handmade by me (along with the canvases). i also got two hanging ribbons at livi & company for our ever-growing alligator clip bows.
here is a mural i fingerpainted on my bedroom wall growing up. i’m so grateful that my parents supported my creativity and allowed me to paint all over their home. this piece really means a lot to me because i painted it over the course of several years. it doesn’t have a lot of intrinsic meaning, really, but each fragment of the piece came from some song lyric i enjoyed or a memory i enjoyed musing over. then my friends started adding to it with notes and drawings, and i never even had the opportunity to feel alone or unloved when i had my friends’ colorful stuff on my wall and my parents down the hall. it really means a lot to have a family who supports the arts. thanks, mom and dad.