Let's start at the beginning

Here it is, my first blog post.

The idea of starting a blog has been bouncing around my head for over a year or so now. The problem that kept me from taking the first step was content. What would I put on it? Stuff happens in my life but a blog about myself sounded pretty boring on its own. I'm an art teacher but I didn't want to make a teaching blog. I like to cook but I didn't want to create a food blog. I'm an artist but I hadn't made any personal art in a long while. 

Well, something finally changed.

A few months ago I decided I needed to get back into my art. I had spent nearly a decade so focused on teaching kids how to make art, I was too tired to do it myself. After handling 150 or so kids a day, I'd drag myself home physically and emotionally exhausted. If I had any energy left, I'd make dinner. All I wanted to do after that was plant myself on the couch and not move until bedtime. 

This daily regiment had been especially taking it's toll on me the last couple of years.  I tried as best as I could to stop what I felt was coming but there was no stopping that train. I crashed HARD. I was and am very blessed to have had the support of my doctors, my family, my friends, and most of all my husband.

Long story short, I needed to find some time in the week to get away from the anxiety inducing stress.

I had been going to my favorite coffee shop on my own every Wednesday to do my bible study. At the end of my study I began feeling guided to start using the rest of my time in the coffee shop to do some sketching. Nothing too demanding. Just some doodles. 

It was slow going at first. I tried going back to my old standby of figure drawing but it did't satisfy me. I'd look up inspiration online through Pinterest and random word generators. Nothing I drew felt right and I was starting to get frustrated.. Then an idea came to me. I decided to focus on drawing portraits, something I never really cared to do before. 

My first attempts weren't great by my own standards but I was driven to keep at it. 

After a dozen or so attempts I began to find my style, and in doing so, created a portrait I was actually impressed with. For the first time in a long time I was having fun while drawing, I was happy with what I was creating, and I felt at peace. I wasn't worrying, I wasn't stressing, I wasn't just trying to distract myself from life. While I was sitting in that coffee shop, earphones on with music playing, and with coffee by my side, my focus was on what I was doing. Getting the nose right, the lips, the hair. For a few hours my stress and anxiety was completely gone. 

I think I've become addicted to it in a way. If I can't get away to draw at least once a week (two or three times if I can manage it) I can feel it. I start craving it. And that's a good thing.

So now I think I'm ready for a blog. Somewhere to post and share my work as it's created. 

Maybe I'll put some stuff on here about myself, my teaching and my cooking. But I want to focus first and foremost on my art. I have felt the hand of God leading me through all of this. I've sensed the Holy Spirit gently pushing me forward and encouraging me. For that I feel assured, I feel blessed, and feel very, very thankful.