Sunday, December 02, 2007

selected quotations (and other musings) from Life.

"When you travel towards your objective,
be sure to pay attention to the path.
The path teaches us the best way to arrive
and enriches us while we are traveling along."
~ Paulo Coelho

Having just finished eating an orange, its citrus fragrance reminds me, for some reason, of old school desks or of the crooked little house I briefly rented in my early twenties. In that house I had a turquoise kitchen table, read books on zen, grew an enormous spider plant, and was fond of burning orange scented incense. I worked in a coffee shop, wrote a lot, and liked listening to Elizabeth Cotton sing about freight trains.

I wish I could write everything in color, but maybe I'm saying that because I spent the evening painting in my studio. It's been roughly a month since I last picked up my paint brushes, but a few recent Etsy sales have inspired me to create some new pieces. I lost my momentum with painting when I immersed myself more deeply in writing. Then today, after eating lunch at a wonderful art-filled cafe with M., I found myself overcome with a craving for color.

So I went home and started painting. This time I chose a little bit bigger canvas because last night I rearranged the house to make room for our Christmas tree and now have a big blank spot in the dining room where I used to have a stack of over-sized paintings stacked up against the wall. They have been temporarily banished to basement, but that's ok because now I'm looking forward to hanging something new. I've decided to paint several random sized pieces, hang them in a grouping, and then put them up for sale on my Etsy. Each time one sells I'll make a new one and, in this way, gain a fresh perspective on my art. This process of creation and release makes me think of the Tibetan Buddhist sand mandalas. I want to create a flow of art in my life.


That is a word that I would like to incorporate more fully into my life. To be flowing, one must be willing to accept the transitory nature of all things.

Since signing up for Jamie's Circe's Circle a few days ago, I've noticed my energy shift once again towards art-making. I started my Etsy with high ambitions, got distracted and busy with other things and, in the end, became discouraged. However, I've become much more aware of how the energy I put out into the world is met by equal energy. My Etsy sales slowed down, because my energy shifted away from it.

On a creative level, there are three things that are most important for me right now. They are:
  1. Writing (finishing my thesis).
  2. Painting (for my Etsy).
  3. Web Design (freelance).
I also find it important to achieve some financial stability. This doesn't necessarily need to be through creative endeavors, but it does need to be fulfilling and satisfying in a way that allows me enough energy and inspiration at the end of the day in order to pursue my other interests.

Eventually, V. and I want to leave the city. We want forests and stars and room to roam. I can't help but notice how all of my current endeavors and desires are part of the process of working towards that goal (and beyond). The details are a still a mystery to me and there are days when I feel stretched much too thin, but I must admit that the path is quite interesting when I take the time to appreciate it. Maybe someday I'll look back at the way my life was when I was in my early thirties with the same rich sort of pleasure that I get in looking back at my twenties. Note to self: Enjoy... because "the path teaches us the best way to arrive and enriches us while we are traveling along."

*quotation from LIFE, by Paulo Coelho.


bee said...

flow....i need that word, too. thank you for reminding me. i miss you.
i don't even have one lick of coffee in me so i don't know if this comment will make maybe i will just list the things that i loved about it...
art cafe with m., yuuummmm.....
sand mandalas and learning how to let go of art....
keeping your eye on your eventual dream...

it's important, really important, i think, to remember where you want to be in a long time from now, if you have those goals. and keep working towards them. you seem to tread that line so beautifully...being gentle with yourself and so gently focused.


Leah said...

lovely, you inspire me darlin!

Anonymous said...

Flow...ah, a magic word indeed. Reminds me of our conversations yesterday. I am still basking in your energy. :-D

I love your lists so much I was inspired to make one in my morning pages today. So thanks for that.

And I have already put your books by the door, so as not to forget them next time. xoxo, M

Kikipotamus said...

Beautiful. So glad you are flowing. Oh, and thank you for the link to Libby Cotten. Sounds like music I could get right into.

Maddie said...


I always come away from your
posts feeling like I have
savored a lovely cup of masala
chai ~ and read a very
soulful book ~


I need a bit of that flow
myself and now I am going to
get me some!

Can't wait to see what you
bring into your etsy shop!


Melba said...


That is what it is.
I want Flow.
I think we all want flow, but we say we want happiness.
Happiness seems like such a beginning and an ending.
But Flow
Flow is eternal.
Oh, you wise woman Jessie!
I feel so honored you are my friend!

and I love the smell of oranges. Maggie loves oranges. I like the taste, but the acid is not always so good to my tummy.

tara dawn said...

how very true...the path IS the journey, it IS the adventure...and we all must remember to pay attention to it for it breathes the essence of life into our very bones.
love the freshness of your words here...they fill my senses with a wonderful comfort!
looking forward to new paintings on etsy...i just might buy myself one as my personal gift to myself for the holidays.
i promise to write an actual letter soon...know you're in my thoughts SO often...i love you j!

laundrygirl said...

I cannot wait to see the paintings you list in your shop!
I love that line - "To be flowing, one must be willing to accept the transitory nature of all things."
I am so scared and suck and yet I know I must find a reliable way to make an income so we can move forward in our lives. So lately the question has been, do we live in the suburbs or the city? While I love the city, it strips away my ability to do much than simply live due to the expensive rents and all. I am in the middle of a major pros/ cons list...
Needless to say, you and I are kindred spirits each searching in similar ways...

Anonymous said...

I'm a big Paulo Coelho's fan and I don't know if you heard about his blog
I've started as a fan and now I'm collaborating with him and thought that you would like to enter his universe.
Check the blog.
if you want, or subscribe to his newsletter
You'll see a community of warriors of light sharing ideas, dreams and most importantly following their personal legend.


The Warrior of Light meditates. (Warrior of the Light)

See u there and have a great day!


Vedrana M. said...

i wish you good luck with everything, lots of creativity and love :)

The Dream said...

You're so good, J!
Write On - Paint On - Design On.
DREAMS do come true ... and yours most surely will. From what I gather, it's about perseverence (as you are so well versed) and patience (not my forte' either).
Flow On ...

kj said...

thank you, my friend jessie.

Amber said...

" To be flowing, one must be willing to accept the transitory nature of all things.--- are talking to me.

I am on my way to see your new stuff. ;)


Jessie said...

sorry, amber. i haven't finished anything yet. work still in progress! :)

megg said...

I love your details - the way you see your world! I love it! You always make me see what you write and as I am NOT visual at all, that is a huge compliment to your writing!!

I have finally found some way that we are different!!! You are looking to get out of the city and Mark and I are desperately trying to get back in!! We feel retired out here in our teeny tiny village and are looking for more energy.

I hope that you are well and I am really looking forward to seeing some of your paintings!! SHOW! SHOW!

Anonymous said...

I absolutely adore the image of your turguoise kitchen table and you nurturing a big spider plant.
Burning all sounds like my apartment.
Ah writing and working in coffee shops....the two go hand in hand don't they?
Where do the years go?
I really loved reading this post Jessie...thanks for sharing such genuine thoughts of you.
Sounds cliche' but you really do inspire me in all ways!