“To be creative means to be in love with life. You can be creative only if you love life enough that you want to enhance its beauty, you want to bring a little more music to it, a little more poetry to it, a little more dance to it.” ~ Osho
But then, what of the following quote? Can a person who is low in spirit also be in love with life and create anything worthwhile?
“Our sweetest songs are those that tell of saddest thought.” ~ Percy Bysshe Shelley
Many have theorized that there may be a correlation between sadness and creativity. Great talents such as Van Gogh and Virginia Woolf come to mind. The romantic poets described suffering as a precondition to writing anything of literary merit.
Angst has a creative upside! That said, I believe joy, heartache, or any strong emotion can stimulate creativity, just as one’s mindset can influence the mood of an artistic piece.
To look through the lens of a somber, troubled mind, one may imbue his or her own state of melancholy onto the subject. . .
. . . whereas, if the emotional perspective and attitude is lighthearted or happy, one might frame it in an entirely different light.
Sadness and happiness are simply two sides of the creative coin.
About this time every winter, I begin to yearn for an injection of more colour in my world. So when I saw that Yellow was this morning’s one-word prompt from The Daily Post, I felt compelled to take part.
The following photos were previously shared on my blog over the years, but I thought it fitting – as well as worthy – to give them a second look.
These last two photos are from my Instagram account:
Last but not least, something to wake up the taste buds:
“How wonderful yellow is. It stands for the sun.” ~ Vincent Van Gogh
Have you ever looked at your children when they are teenagers – or beyond – and wished you could go back in time to enjoy a day when they were little? I certainly have.
Children grow up so incredibly fast! It’s almost like you blink and they are grown. All the way through childhood they are making firsts: Their first word, their first steps, their first day of school. There is so much to relish and celebrate about these milestones that you almost forget about the time whizzing past.
Kids need a solid grounding and good examples to learn from, therefore conscientious parents want their kids to remember their childhood fondly, and with love. Their formative years are important because they’re going to remember certain things forever, so if you do fun things together as a family, they will remember these events fondly for the rest of their days. Here are some ideas on how to make memories that will last a lifetime.
Play with paint
It’s a great idea to teach a child creativity from a very young age. If they learn not to be afraid of a blank page, they will probably go on to create great things. (As a writer, I have faced that blank page many times.) One of the most imaginative and artistic things you can do with your children is to create and paint together. Let them go wild with crayons, colouring pencils, acrylic and water paint, and glue. They will feel proud of their results in the moment, and it will be fun to look back on their creations together in the future.
Pose for a picture
The wonderful thing about smartphones is that you have a camera almost always at hand. This give you the chance to capture as many candid photos of your children as possible. And don’t forget taking videos of them. If you would like something a bit more professional, a photographer can give you great results. A professional family photo is something that everyone loves to look back on because it perfectly captures a moment in time you can cherish forever. Not only will you have the physical photos, but you’ll have great memories of the actual day as well.
Read stories together
My girl’s favourite: The Owl & The Pussycat
This was a big one for me when I raised my kids. When your children are little, it’s a great idea to get into the habit of reading them a book every evening. This not only calms them before they sleep, but it also helps them learn. The stories that you first read them will probably stay with them forever. Almost everyone can remember the first book that they loved to have read to them. It’s a child’s way of really using their imagination to form the pictures in their mind. Keep a couple of their favorite books for you to show them when they are grown up.
If you can teach your children a family recipe that has been passed down through the ages, they’ll remember it forever. A cherished recipe can be pulled out and enjoyed again and again, and it will strengthen the memory for your child of when you first made it together.
Our boy making muffins!
Notice the recurring theme here? Creative endeavors seem to be the best way to make memories for you and your family!
What do you and your children do to make memories that will last a lifetime?
What comes to your mind when you hear the word connected? For some, the word may conjure a mental image of all the gadgets we have, like our smart phones, computers, etc. that allow us to stay accessible and up-to-date in the digital world. Or it may make you think of being well-connected, in that you have successfully networked with the right people who can further your career or your mission in life.
The most meaningful connections for me, as they are for most, are the ones I make with people in person, especially one-on-one. These attachments are unique and irreplaceable. You know who you are<3. But as much as I treasure the relationships in my personal life, there is a lot to be said for the virtual connections I have made with other bloggers over the past three to four years.
Living in a remote or rural area can make it difficult to find like-minded souls, especially in the writing arena. The blogosphere has been instrumental in solving that dilemma for me. The advice and the inspiration I have received from other bloggers has been nothing short of extraordinary since I started Jennifer’s Journal. A huge thanks to every one of you that I follow. Whether your blog shares writing, art, or photography, I am grateful to have met you through the internet.
Kath Unsworth of Minuscule Moments of Inspirationis one such blogger. Not only does Kath pursue the craft of writing, she is also a gifted artist. Her creativity and dedication to her artistic endeavors have influenced my own aspirations much more than she probably realizes. And because of the internet, it is no matter that she lives on a farm in Australia. Well, actually it does matter; her location adds even more intrigue for me. 🙂
I was lucky enough to win a contest Kath held last year, where my name was drawn to receive a free pet portrait. Here is the result:
This summer, I was moved to acquire one of Kath’s original, highly affordable works of art from her newly opened Etsy shop, ScratchyBirdDesigns. Her love of birds speaks to me, so much so I had to have one of them adorning my wall. (Vivian is in my living-room, Willy Wagtail is in my kitchen-dining room.) Isn’t he beautiful?
I also purchased her delightful fridge magnet (its slogan fits me to a tee):
Like me, Kath understands the value of virtual connection. You can read about it in her blog post here:
Just a quick note tonight, friends, to let you know I will be away for two weeks starting this weekend.
I’m not sure if I’ll have the time to blog before I come home again, but I do know I will enjoy this break to renew and refresh, soak up some summer fun around the province, and look for new inspiration.
I finally received my editor’s developmental review of my manuscript this past week, and am pleased to say most of the changes are not actual changes, but additions to what I have, so my laptop will go with me.
But you know what? That isn’t work because, to me, it is a labour of love.
This is a drawing of my cat, Vivian. My blogger friend, Kath Unsworth, of Minuscule Moments, put my name in for a chance to win a pet portrait last month, and I won! She drew Vivian with soft colour pencils and mailed it to me all the way from the Land Down Under.
Kath writes and illustrates children’s picture books. She lives on a dairy farm in Australia with her husband and family. I find her artwork dreamy and magical, perfect qualities for a child’s eyes, or anyone’s, for that matter.
Check out these other selections from her blog.
This marks the beginning of a new category on my blog I call Friday Bouquet. I am excited and look forward to this new adventure. Most Fridays, I will toss a bouquet to deserving bloggers who have caught my attention doing something worthwhile and positive in the blogosphere, and in their lives.
This is not a new idea, as I follow a blogger or two who pay it forward like this (you know who you are 😉 ), and just as they do, I am disabling comments here, in hopes you will visit the blog I spotlight and comment there. Simply click on the link below for a visit and tell her I sent you. Thank you again, Kath! xo