Getting ready for spring shows makes my life so busy - filled with all the little things that need to be done after creating a piece - entering items in the stock book, photographing, tagging and so on which takes up a lot of hours - plus thinking ahead for 'what ifs' - what if this happens, what if I run out of this, what if, what if, what if. Of course the couple of days immediately before the show is pretty hectic too with packing and checking and making up boxes.....
But sometimes we have to remember that work is only one part of our lives. An important one - be it for monetary reasons or fulfilment of a creative need - but there is a huge part of our lives that involve family and loved ones and we really can't lose sight of that, although we all too often do. Reading this post http://she-essence.com/blog/?p=41 on the She Essence blog rung a rather loud bell with me! Only a few days ago my son, age 9, stated that I was no 'fun' anymore - I didn't have 'time' to have 'fun'. Hello. Wake up call.
One thing I can do with my children, apart from the normal 'mum' things - looking after their needs and wants and keeping the home comfortable and welcoming for them, as well as instilling a sense of what is right and wrong, is to nuture their creative sides. Not everyone is creative in the same way but all my children love to draw and make things. They often see me sketching designs and so copy me, drawing their own designs. They always want to make a necklace or a bracelet and with skills they have learned from watching me at my bench, have made a ton of jewellery for themselves and their friends ... its almost a little scary when I look at their jewellery 'tree' (a commercial jewellery hanger/display that is almost as tall as them! - well as tall as my 6 year old girls, at any rate!).
Recently, my son really wanted to make a necklace out of some quite pricey stones. I was resistant at first, but he went off and drew a design which looked quite nice. He got some of my 'stone soup' stones (offcasts) and showed me what he wanted. So I agreed - I would do the actual 'making', but he got artistic input ;)
The piece pictured above is the result - it is made with smoky quartz and amethyst faceted nuggets. (I picked out the actual stones, but he 'approved' their placement/order). The stones are linked together with sterling silver forming a section of gemstone 'chain'. This section is in turn connected to sterling silver long and short chain (selected by the designer) with a plain sterling clasp at the back. He even chose the length. We even agreed on the name together. He really got a kick out of seeing his design come to reality and being part of my work.
I must admit I was pretty impressed with his work - we made a pact that he would get a percentage of the sale when it sells - so of course he is keen to make a sale!!! I think he may even have a future as a designer - what do you think?
Now, if I can work on organising myself a bit more so that I have more available time when the children are home, I may be on the way to achieving a good balance of home and work - meeting my needs (which as mum's we often overlook) and raising well adjusted children who still have fun with their parents!