bloggy stuff, depression/anxiety, Obsession, Reading

December blogging

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I’ve decided to blog every day for the month of December. We’ll see how it goes. Usually this means that I’ll write it the night before I publish it, because of logistics I won’t go into. If nothing else, I’ll post a photo.

I’ve been posting on Instagram lately, and I’m going to pay more attention to my Slow Turn Studio Facebook page, where these posts appear through Networked Blogs. But I just can’t get into Twitter. I’ve tried. I’ll just have to be an occasional Twitter reader. I like the comedians.

Just went to my bi-annual doctor appointment yesterday. I gained a pound, but considering the timing just after Thanksgiving, I’m not very upset. I hope that my cholesterol and glucose readings are better. She gave me a couple of EKGs too to make sure that my occasional heart palpitations are “just” anxiety. I told her about the hellish six months I just went through, particularly with the neck spasms and the teeth grinding, and she asked, “Why didn’t you come in?” Well, what can I say? I wasn’t in a very rational frame of mind. I had it firmly set in my brain that it would be better to suffer through it until my next appointment and be tough than go to her and have to explain it. Thank God I feel more sane and much better physically now.

One thing I know is that I need to embrace is to live in my present instead of constantly daydreaming about moving away. North Carolina is a crappy political place but it is a wonderful place in so many other aspects. I live in a great city which is just the right size and I love my house and my neighborhood and my job. The fantasy that I will be cured of my depression if I move elsewhere is a lie. That doesn’t mean that I won’t move some day, but I need to stop obsessing over it and enjoy my life here and now.

Anyway, the plan for December is to write more, post more photos, and get some art on. Despite the holidays, December is a good month for me. A brief respite before the super busy spring semester begins. I might even listen to some Christmas music.

I’m in the middle of three books right now: Guests on Earth by Lee Smith, one of my very favorite authors, A Visit from the Goon Squad, which I don’t even know if I will finish, UGH, and The Thousand Autumns of Jacob de Zoet by David Mitchell. I’ve read several good novels this year since I discovered the Overdrive app, which allows you to check out ebooks and audiobooks from your local library. I liked The Goldfinch, The Dog Stars, and Station Eleven. My shelves are full of books that I bought at a big charity book sale here in Greensboro on the last day when you could fill up a bag for $10. If I never bought another book, I’d have plenty to read for the rest of my life.

art, Obsession

Retreat planning for 2010

My mind in on art retreats again. Actually, my mind is seldom NOT on art retreats, but I won’t go into the subject of obsession today.

So, I am planning to go spend a week in mid-June on Prince Edward Island, rent a little oceanfront cottage on the Northumberland Strait, hopefully sharing the rent with some nice papermakers, and spend at least half of those days making paper and attending workshops. The agenda has not been totally settled yet, but so far it sounds like a gathering to make paper with local materials and perhaps workshops including making kites, pulp painting, and printmaking on our handmade papers. I’m mainly interested in the retreat aspect – just getting away and focusing on art – but I’d do a couple of workshops. I also plan to rent a car and explore the island, including the Lucy Maud Montgomery sites. I’ll have to reread the rest of the Anne of Green Gables series or listen to them on audiobook. And beachcombing. Lots of beachcombing.

What is distressing is that the price of a round trip plane ticket to Charlottetown almost doubled since I checked it a week or so ago, and I have no clue why. That adds about $400 to the trip, and I already felt pushed about it. So I checked the prices for my trip to Port Townsend in October, and tickets to Seattle are still the same. I am not a seasoned air traveler, and I wonder if I should go ahead and buy my tickets now or wait. I have enough points on my miles card to pay for the Seattle trip, but I won’t if it jumps up in price.

I have already paid to go to Art & Soul in Hampton, Virginia in late May, and will just need to pay my roommate for my part of the hotel room. I definitely want to go back to Journalfest in Port Townsend, and that should definitely be doable by late October. The question is Prince Edward Island. I could save $500 by flying into Bangor, Maine and driving 6.5 hours, probably alone, through New Brunswick to Prince Edward Island. I’m not sure what to do, but I’m leaning toward going there one way or another.