Day 2 – Winter Wonderland

I am NOT a fan of winter. I dislike wearing layers. I loathe driving in storms. I don’t appreciate how long it takes to get two kids dressed for the elements. And I definitely don’t like shoveling. The other day I went outside with my father to clear the drive and A-J joined us. Bundled up in full-on snow gear, she simply stood on the front step, staring out at the white landscape around her. She didn’t need to play or do anything specific. She was entertained for almost a half hour just looking at the snow.

So this morning, armed with my second coffee of the day, I went to our dinning room window.  And I stared.  It was only for a few minutes, but I was totally mesmerised.  I started thinking about how amazing snow actually is.  All of these  fat, fluffy cluster of flakes were falling down (how’s that for alliteration) to their own rhythm, independent of wind and  of each other.  Each flake  is (virtually) unique, yet blends itself perfectly with others.    Special.  Different.  Pretty.

Though I still don’t like shoveling it, snow is beautiful.

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Day 1 – A very good place to start

(By the way, you might want to read the previous post before carrying on.)

Memories.

They are such amazing things.  You can have such a visceral full-body response at simply the thought of someone, or something or somewhere.  While this may not be the desired effect when thinking of a past uncomfortable, sad or difficult moment, this is exactly what you want to feel when thinking about something good.  It’s like a mini-non-harming drug.

My mentor, Rae MacCulloch passed away on Christmas day.  I’m still greatly saddened by her passing, but I can’t tell you how often I’ve smiled in the last few days because of  thinking about her.   Pretty much  99.9% of my memories surrounding that woman are amazing.

Memories are beautiful.

(By the way, if anyone wants to challenge my definition of beauty, feel free!)

What is this?

This blog started as one thing, and then a major life altering moment turned it into something slightly different.

In early 2010, I was married with two kids, a new home, an amazing career and a full, exciting life… by all appearances anyway.   My husband suggested that I start writing a blog.  This piece of advice came less than 24 hours after we watched “Julie and Julia“.  Concidence? hmmm.  Here is my original rationale for the blog, written in January 2010:

“I used to have a blog.  But I haven’t written on it for ages.  It was during my pre-family, festival touring days and I found it exciting to be able to document my life .    However, having two kids takes up a lot of your time and leaves you little time for personal projects.   That’s been my experience anyway.   

2009 was a rought year.  Lil B was born in February.  My first Ottawa Fringe festival as the GM happened in June.  At the same time, I directed a play for the Rideau Project and, not long after, directed Arabian Night.  Stewart and I bought a house in August.  Add to that teaching drama to oodless of awesome little kids with OYP and taking on the role of Producer for the Ottawa Fringe.  Bu-sy.  But all good.   Through the chaos of exciting events, my superwoman powers were slowly slipping away without my noticing it.  By September, my suspicions of having PPD were confirmed.  The master multi-tasker had taken a rest.  But she’s waking up now.

This blog is about beauty.  A completely unreliable, but pleasing to me, definition of Beauty is:

a characteristic of a person, animal, place, object, or idea that provides a perceptual experience of pleasure, meaning, or satisfaction.

Joy.

I work in the theatre, so I should be able to see beauty just fine.  But I can’t.  To use a term one of my favorite professors grilled into me, I need “defamiliarisation”.  To him, what is theatrical is what is not-familiar.  Not totally odd, but just to that other side what we always see/feel/hear.”

The original goal was to write one post every day for 365 days, trying to find one thing that is beautiful and that brought me joy.  I stuck to it… for a while.    Eventually the ability for me to find bits of beauty in my daily life became very difficult and I had to write this post.   I never directly confirmed in my daily posts what happened, but essentially I found it impossible to write regularly because I had separated from my husband and became a “single mom”, in the true sense of the term.  Though I knew that ending my marriage was ultimately going to be full of positives, I struggled on a daily basis to find beauty in anything.  Slowly, my focus came back, my path seemed clearer, and life was filled with joy again.

So I still post.  Just not every day.  Though I am committed to at least 365 days worth of beauty and joy.  I’m not sure where this blog will take me after that, but I look forward to the journey.

Enjoy.