It's been an interesting year, having taken some time away from working for myself to be a special education aide in my school district. I've done that off and on for the past several years, as a substitute, but this past year took a permanent position. It was an amazing school year with the kids, and it definitely brought out the best in me, being forced to go deeper inside myself to be patient, kind, even-tempered, optimistic - every day. I know that my being with the students was good for them because they could tell that I had genuine affection for them. So it's been a very good thing, and really feels like what people refer to as service, the giving of oneself to fill a need in society.
I pretty much hated school once I hit middle school, anything that had to do with conformity, all the rules and regulations! I can relate to kids who are struggling with school for whatever reason, and am a very good advocate.
It has been different to get up every morning at a certain time, then go to work for someone else, be with people all day, then come home, and amazing how much time it took out of the day. However it was somewhat of a relief, a respite from having to make so many decisions all the time.
Now that summer is here, I am semi-busy doing theatrical storytelling events here and there, and ideas/plans are in place to create an ongoing line of illustrated sewing patterns. I'm best at being a designer, figuring out how to take a vision and create something tangible. I get so excited and consumed with whatever pops into my head, but after making 10 of anything I lose interest because something else hits me. Once it's in my head I just have to bring it to fruition.
So showing others how to make things is a natural progession of all that I've been doing most of my life. There are several good books inside that ought to come out. Making Costumes for Kids with Everyday Materials, Creative Group Activities, Cloth Dolls and Stuffed Animals, just to name a few.
I really want to make my own fabric!, since I spend a good deal of time looking for the right fabric for the job, so am seriously considering going to school for it. Fortunately there is a university not too far from me that teaches textile design. Where I'd find the time to do this is beyond me.
Also ahead is taking the stories in my storytelling events and turning them into a series of children's books,with the collaboration of one of my daughters who is heading into her senior year, studying illustration at The University of the Arts in Philadelphia.
I have so many good ideas, all the time. It's just overwhelming trying to get to all of them.
At the moment I'm cutting an old denim quilt into squares and making one of a kind, heavy duty, chunky owl and cat potholders, which will be in the ArtyPantz booth at The Phoenixville Farmer's Market next week....also just posted them on Etsy for sale.