I am feeling hyper, motivated and inspired to do the unthinkable - CLEAN and GET RID OF STUFF - Including ART SUPPLIES!
This feeling hardly ever comes. And when it does, it usually lasts only for a hour or two. Then I get overwhelmed by the amount of work it takes and I avoid it again for another year or so.
But all the energy in my life is telling me that it is time for a change.
I need to LET OUT THE OLD TO ACCEPT THE NEW!
There are so many examples and descriptions that I could go into for why this is resonating with me that I would end up spending the whole day writing blog posts about it. But there is cleaning, returning and organizing to do and I have to strike while the iron is hot. Iron...encaustic...painting...mmm...oh, distractions.. how I miss you already. No! Focus! Okay, one quick example.
In my Japanese class, we talked about traditional activities surrounding the New Year. (I am just going by memory here, so if I get it wrong, please forgive and correct me!) Each year has a specific animal sign (adapted from Chinese Zodiac), and a new deity that is welcomed into the home by cleaning every inch of it. Getting rid of old things, cleaning, writing New years' cards, and putting up decorations is necessary. The first three days of the new year, everyone has off (with one exception). New years' cards are sent to everyone you know and are delivered on New Years day by mailmen who are the only ones that work. New years eve at the Shinto shrine, the monks ring the gigantic bell 108 times to release the 108 sins or demons inside every person. More about Shinto New Year bell ringing here. Going to the Shinto temple for blessing is common within the first few days of the year. Bathing and cleansing are very important for the house and the body. To the left is a picture of Chris and my friend Joyce cleansing their hands and mouths before going into the Meiji Shrine in Tokyo during our Japan and China Study Tour. They even wear new clothes on New Years' day. It looks like an amazing tradition, and one that I am going to adopt and modify to fit my own life this year.
So back to what has been occupying me for the last few days - cleaning out the old. I am getting rid of all the clothes, items and even art stuff that no longer fits me. This includes lots of watercolor stuff, acrylic paintings and maybe even art books (although those are harder to part with). And as I get a notice from my health insurance company that starting January 2010, my health insurance per month will be raised to $295, I am thinking about the barter system. Maybe I need to trade some of my art supplies for other services? Maybe trade art for something more practical? Maybe trade of acrylic supplies for encaustic wax that I need to continue my projects for the new year? I am already making a trade with my friend Starry to help me regain my sewing skills, but we haven't worked out the details. I am looking for options in the new year, and I believe that this new energy will not do me harm. Anyone looking for a trade of art supplies? Email me and we can work out a deal!
I have spent too long on this post, but I am still energized to make room in my life for more abundance! So if you don't see my posts as often as I usually do, trust me, I am still here and working away on my art and life. I look forward to sharing more of my life and art with you in the new year!
Happy cleaning and Welcoming the New Year! ~ Jaime Lyerly