Where creativity grows

Category: Oodle Doodles

This week in The Oodlearium

What a week this has been! We are deeply entrenched in the coldest and snowiest winter we have had in quite some time. I won’t lie- it has been hard to stay focussed on the good. That means that The Oodlearium has been even more of a sanctuary than in a normal week.

A dear friend and fellow creative recently told me about a website called CreativeBug. I am pretty anti-subscription services primarily because they can quickly get out of control (Prime, Hulu, Netflix, Disney+, are just a few examples). However, when she forwarded me an email that said I could get 5 months of the membership for $5, I hopped on without giving it a second thought. Over the course of the week, I have been playing around with a few different classes. I did a bit of work with brush lettering, which is something I have wanted to learn for a long time. I started the creativity boot camp, but need to get some more supplies before I can continue work on that one. When I stopped I had created a relatively creepy self portrait that quickly got crumbled into a ball and recycled.  I ended with a bit of work on doodling that inspired me to start work on a different project. I’m looking forward to playing around a bit with learning something new each week without the pressure of feeling like I made a huge investment. Check it out!

I am absolutely not a materialistic person. In fact materialism is something that turns me away from people, but this week I received two packages in the mail that have been awesome additions to The Oodlearium. A few weeks ago I ordered an hourglass from Etsy. I am disappointed to learn that Etsy no longer is a site for artisans to sell their handmade work. Anyhow, the hourglass I purchased arrived and looks beautiful on the oodle surface. I use it when I am writing to make sure I stay focussed on what I am doing and not on going back and forth to check my social media. It has been awesome. And my second Pilot Metropolitan arrived and I am so excited to be able to have an everyday pen and a special pen for cards that will have my colored inks in it. 

Last week I think I mentioned that I was going to host my second creativity chat today. There were three of us and it was fabulous. I was in a pretty meh mood when we started, but by the end I was overjoyed. My friend Karen lives in Israel and she taught us about the Jewish holiday called Purim. She was dressed in costume today as part of a long standing tradition she and a good friend have for this holiday. Someday when my husband and I visit her in Israel we want to go during this time of the year to experience this holiday— the focus of which is doing kind things for friends and strangers to make them joyful. What a beautiful gesture! Another friend taught me all about the Cricut vinyl cutter and inspired me so much that we went out and bought one today. I am thrilled at the prospect of what we can do with this amazing tool. 

I have amassed quite a collection of pour painting canvases, so I am trying to avoid making new ones without some goal of moving a few of the ones I have out. I had a few canvases from when I first started painting that were not successful. This was the first time I ever tried painting over a canvas and trying a second pour. The colors I chose were not the best, but the pour definitely worked. I have a few more that I can rescue, so that was great news!

My husband spotted a few fun items at the craft store this morning— a plastic mask— perfect for Karneval. I’m going to pour that later this week. Then also some super cute wood cut out bunnies perfect for Easter ornaments. So many ideas…so little time.

Finally, this week’s 52Frames theme was one of the most challenging ever—golden hour! Remember what I said about the weather. I am proud of myself for coming up with a way to meet the challenge, but it was tough for sure. Check out my image on Tuesday when the album goes live.

One last thought before I go…I need to write a separate piece about creativity in the kitchen. I had a unique experience in the kitchen yesterday and I am excited to share it with you. I just can’t do it right now 🙂

Until next time, oodle on! 

Behind the Scenes with Sampson

There were so many inspirations for this story. It started with the title of one of the Daily Spark journal entries, which was Cop. Dr. Dancer. In addition to being the German teacher at my high school, I am also part of an eclectic group of educators who puts together a yearly event called Career-Con. The purpose of the event is to introduce students to career professionals in the fields they are interested in to find out what it is actually like in those fields. I know so many people who followed career paths based on incomplete information or bad motives (ie I’ll become a lawyer because they make a lot of money or I like massages, so I’ll become a massage therapist). I love when my students ask me for advice on career choices. We talk about all the things that might be important to them. Without steering them in any particular direction, I try hard to provide them with as many pieces of information so that they can make an informed decision. 

A few weeks ago, one of my level one students asked me if I liked being a teacher. What a loaded question when we are in the middle of a pandemic! I could not lie— I love being a teacher and even more so when I get to talk about what I love about it. Don’t get me wrong, I also told him the things that make it the hardest job you could ever imagine. Then he told me he was trying to decide between being a cop and being a teacher. I chuckled and explained to him that he must be a helper like I am. He was overjoyed that someone understood. 

In Sampson’s story, I take it one step further and add a third option- dancer. With that choice, he can help bring joy to people’s lives through the art form that has changed his life. Does he follow the path of money and become a doctor? Does he follow the path of helping fight crime? Or does he follow his heart? 

Read Sampson’s story here

Behind the Scenes with Rosie

Many of my Oodle Doodle stories are based on journal prompts from a book I bought for school when I started teaching called The Daily Spark. I loved the idea of turning the stories on their heads and telling them from the characters point of view. I went through the book and jotted down a list of almost one hundred prompts and each time I want to write a story, I pick a prompt and let it go wherever it goes.

When I saw the prompt, “What’s in a name?” I knew immediately that I had to base the story on my Grandma. 10 years ago this week, my Grandma broke a promise she made to me when I was a little kid…and that she reiterated many times when I was an adult— that she was going to live forever. Even after she had a massive heart attack at the age of 86 and only had 10% of her heart functioning, she maintained that she was not going anywhere. She was not deluded, she just lived her life on her terms.

As I sit here in The Oodlearium, I am surrounded by so many wonderful memories of her, but there is a whole in my heart that will never be filled. This story was just one little tribute to her. There is really nothing I could say or do to truly capture the impact she made on my life or how very much she was loved by every single person who met her. She was strong, brave and beautiful.

I really do wish you could have known her.

You can read Rosie’s story here.

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