Self-care tips during extended lockdowns

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These are unprecedented times that we are all living in and many people right now are struggling with their mental health, myself included. The collective anxiety we are feeling is real and warranted as we are managing this pandemic through social distancing measures. Many readers have been quarantined for weeks at this point, some for the very first time! I have been working from home for years and have plenty of experience being alone in a home for long periods of time. Here’s five self-care tips on how to not just survive your lockdown, but to thrive!

1. A variety of houseplants

Global health crises or not, a good collection of plants will always enhance the time you spend in your home. Cleaner air and living plants are easily my favorite bringers of joy. Watching new leaves uncurl in the early mornings with the company of coffee and a stress tear. That’s my 6:30am. The lighting is perfect at 3 points during the day, and I will make a point to loiter near my plant shelves for a moment.

For low light, you can get snake plants (Dracaena trifasciata), pothos, or most varieties of succulent. Of course, the more available sunlight you have to work with, the wider variety of plants you can grow in your home. There’s always a way to build your perfect indoor jungle.

It helps!

2. Music

I have met people in my life that did not constantly have music playing in the background, or that did not listen to music as an activity and it struck me as quite strange. I guess having a musician father has really impacted me in this way, but the power music has over the influence of our moods is astounding to me. I cherish my silence just as much, but having up beat music on while you cook breakfast and dinner always improves mood. Especially when you bust out some dance moves!

Some of my favorite music to listen to includes Tame Impala, Jimi Hendrix, Budos Band, etc. I love a solid reggae hour and funk hour littered throughout the week. You’ve gotta get moving so put on whatever makes you dance! Your plants will love it, too.

3. Keep Track of Something

Calories. Rainbows. It could be bird sightings, or the weather, or even how many inches your seedlings grow each week. When your life is simple and you are at home to observe everything, you might as well keep a log and be passionate about something. I miss simpler times when I could track egret sightings out the window in front of my office. The peace!

4. Neighborhood Walks

If you are able to do so in a way that avoids other people up, I highly recommend walking at least 30 minutes a day outside. It’s spring time, and as long as contacted can be avoided, the baby flowers and new grasses are like a warm broth for your soul. And if you can’t go outside safely, you can always vacuum your home 5 times a day (which I also do!)

5. Be grateful

Be grateful for your ability to facilitate the world in it’s recovery from the Covid-19 pandemic. You are here with us and you can stay home for a few months while countries contain the outbreak. This is a service to fellow humans and we’re all in it together. Be grateful for your health, and do your part!

The COVID-19 Renaissance

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March 2020 has arrived and evacuated, while collective anxiety flirts with the entire human population of Earth.

April is here, and stress radiates through every human display. Human displays are witnessed via a screen more often than a human being you can physically touch and talk to. Businesses are closed, people are home for weeks at a time.

And every single one of us humans are freaking out. Our hearts collectively beating right out of its chest, astrally projecting itself above your physical containment.

The only way to protect your mind from these trying times we felt so far away from as a modern society is the same as it was during the bubonic plague and many other epidemics throughout history. Through art and connection.

I hope everyone can stay home and maintain connection with other humans in a healthy and beautiful way. The next 6 months will be hard. The next few years will be hard. We are all struggling, we are all in this together.

Florida Visit 2020

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I always write my title’s last. I suppose it has to happen that way when you don’t know what you will write / draw / create until it’s being created. My words don’t linger anywhere but on the screen or paper.

I left Idaho to visit my extended friends and family in Florida for 3 weeks and it was the most wonderful and emotionally exhausting 3 weeks of my life! I truly recognize now that I’ve never missed anyone before and have promised myself not to ever leave without my husband again, it’s simply much too hard. SO here we are, back home, and waiting impatiently for him to return home from a welding job in Washington state.

We’ve been waiting since Tuesday and it is now Friday afternoon. Soon! Soon! I am so excited I am clicking away on my keyboard because I know this whole weekend will be too busy filled with love and happiness and cuddles that I couldn’t possibly get any writing done.

Florida is always a wonderful time and I’m so blown away with gratitude for the quantity and quality of friends that we have there, even if they may not know my husband at all and just met my child, we are always welcomed there with open arms and it feels fantastic.

We got in to Tampa at 11:15 pm and my dad came to pick us up, joint in hand and quite cranky to be made to grab us but circumstances are never ever what I anticipate so, my moms car broke down and here he is.

The drive back to Holiday was a long one and so I clutched my son on my lap and held on for dear life and prayed we would evade the police for 60 minutes flirting with midnight and naturally, it seemed to work.

The first people besides my parents that I truly wanted to see would be these beautiful friends of mine! Holly, Joe and Evelyn. Creative, kind, and energetic souls that I will adore for the rest of my life. We had a few beers and talked about how much we love each other and about classism and existence and being supportive and laughing and crying. It was a real treat!

We spent so much time in Holly’s garden and Axle loved to play with the bird bath and toss dirt every which way. His sweet smile melted souls and I am so proud of my happy boy. We went to the beach with my mom and MJ and Evelyn and that was Axle’s first time at a beach. The sun was setting at Anclote and everyone just looked so RADIANT!

Miss Holly will come be in Idaho for a while and I could not be happier!!! A union of souls, and hopefully the start of an even greater migration.

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Beyond the layers of our atmosphere, there is an unknown and ever expanding universe and no one knows what lives there. In the event that earth suffers a catastrophe and is.. say.. sucked into a black hole. A tear in our atmosphere occurs in our sky. You can look up and see the tear opening up, like a window into the universe beyond. Black stars and nebulae.

Then, destruction. Earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, the tectonic plates are stirring heavy. Heat waves, tsunamis, and all manner of natural disaster on every part of the planet.

Unparalleled beauty, the brief moments before the end of it all. Earth turns into dust and debris, sucked into the black hole like the violent waters of waterfall. Every day that this doesn’t happen is a gift. Our cosmic universe is so vast, and our reality is one so taken for granted.

I’ve created comfortable environments out of thin air and tried to connect or at least be nonthreatening to every single other living thing around me. That we even exist is too incredible to not appreciate. Perhaps it is a game or an experiment to other worldly beings. Sky-man.

The spirits of the dead fill the universe with their energy, in whatever form that it exists. Colors, lights. They are taunting the living with their invisible influence, and maybe some angels and devils linger in the atmosphere.

Maybe extra terrestrial beings are curious about us and make visits as often as former humans.

These are things different people have thought of in ancient time. Sumerians, Egyptians. The people of the sky.

Our human bodies and anatomy and biology and our history and this ever expanding universe full of energy and beauty? It’s incredible. My little boy, I believe, had nightmares last night. He was inconsolably screaming until midnight when I pulled him into bed with me, he immediately quieted to sleep. Nightmares! Another interesting part of existence.

The sky is brightening, a sign that 8:00am is approaching. The sun doesn’t come out in the winter. The sky just brightens and the mountains become faintly visible in the far off distance.

moral infiltration

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Thirteen drafts filled with a half a sentence. Writing is so hard to do with a curious and persistent 13- month old toddler wandering around interested in a laptop with all of his being. This time though, I’m elevated and sitting with my legs crossed on the bed. A set of watchful eyes. Two sets, in fact, as the cat is on the bed with me.

Every day is becoming more system, a good thing. Mentally, things are just numb enough. This world, is amazingly disappointing. I am waiting for The President of the United States to be acquitted on his crimes. An unfit man in a demanding position, the weight of which is visibly crumbling him.

And the world is laughing at the United States, this crumbling man leading the nation to crumble with him. To topple over after a disgusting network of racism and hate spread throughout the underbelly of the country. How do you uninstall these ideologies within American society? What would a moral infiltration look like and how long would it take?

Every interaction with a racist person should be designed around displaying that equality is the only way that is truly aligned with God. It’s the only way to live. Racism is so damaging for no reason. We should unite to fight for a better treatment of our PLANET.

This planet that just happens to exist with all of these billions of people. In the hundreds of years that humans have existed here together on this planet and we still haven’t learned to stop the violence and hatred.

It’s so stressful and I feel guilty bringing a child into a world like this even. I am hoping that if I raise a kind, intelligent and good person to the best of my abilities, it may have a positive ripple effect for generations to come. But the guilt lives in my head, too, right next to those thoughts.

2020. We’re flirting with other predicted end of the world dates, and technology is advancing quite rapidly into AI based. The world our government was designed for is not the world we are living in. It’s just not working.

I am holding my breath. Trying to minimize my impact on the world. The majority of the time, I buy things only second hand. I don’t buy paper towels, other unnecessary product that becomes trash.

I’m just waiting. I guess we all are, but really, we should organize. Don’t you think?

🙂

Sunday was always my favorite day to write

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Also, my favorite day for an evening coffee. It feels naughty caffeinating later in the evening when a workday looms so close. The difference now is that the looming workday isn’t relevant for me and I can have an evening coffee whenever I want.

I haven’t done any art and have been battling with a mild depression that has been building for months and months as I’ve been struggling to adapt to wifehood and motherhood and not having a career. Making friends as an adult is hard. I wonder if people realize how stand offish they come across.

Strangers in the world.

Staring at you, staring at them, staring at me. It’s interesting, people watching. Always has been. Everyone is busy. No one is watching. I like to find the ones that are. We smile, we engage, we are busy but, not too busy. Not too busy to be friendly. The world needs more of that. Now, more than ever.

In high school, I wrote a science fiction story about brand-cities

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I predicted these brand-cities to be big names. The Amazon’s, Coca Colas, and Microsofts of the world. Each city represented the headquarters of a very large brand. The city infrastructure built around the corporate presence.

The economy stirred exclusively by the corporation and it’s workers. The story felt like a far fetched fantasy at the time of writing. The words reflected an exasperated beyond what reality would ever support.

If I really think about it, what about Seattle? Home of Starbucks, Amazon and Microsoft. Although it hasn’t been renamed yet, the presence of big business in Seattle is hard to ignore.

What if my high school literary fantasy becomes a reality after all? The progress and health of every city, sponsored by your favorite brand! Can you imagine? Green energy and reforestation, sponsored by Apple, inc.

I hope that never happens, of course.

Not to the extent of my 16 year old’s imagination. But what if it did, how would that impact the world? Is it really that much of a change from the kind of society we currently exist in?

Sometimes I am sure I am just being melodramatic but so much of me things our current world is more dystopian than we give it credit for. In the blink of an eye, we’ll be various technology baked acropolis’. Connected constantly, our lives will look much different. But not too much different.

A brief sum of the season

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Our son is almost one year old. He is happy, grumpy, and gets what he wants. It’s like dealing with a very small, primal version of my husband, of whom has attitude and grump in abundance.

Boise has been good to us this year. My mother came into town for 4 days in October and we drove up to Cascade, Idaho where the snow was kissing the ground and there were colorful trees littered all along 55.

I am anticipating a long, rough winter. I hope it’s our last. I’ve been painting with watercolors, and doing some vector art with Illustrator this week for a friend! I am excited to be able to flex my artistic muscles some more while we adjust to our new normal household situation.

As a side note, while my coffee gets cold: I’ve decided I would love to design and make a toy.

2019 Friendship Gathering in Utah and Idaho

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I used to think that the Floridian landscapes were easy to imagine dinosaurs inside of. Then I moved to Idaho and this landscape perfectly encapsulated landscapes my mind made up that would along with such enormous creatures as those roaming the earth millions of years ago. And so, with my best friends Evelyn and Holly I went exploring in these giant landscapes.

We felt small together, traveling through the mountains, and then through the night.

I love the kind of trips that don’t really have a specific destination in mind. It’s just seeing, finding a spot to stop and sleep. Waking up and seeing some more and then, we head back. The day after Evelyn and Holly arrived in Boise, we got our rental car and off we went!

On the way to Logan, Utah we stopped at viewing areas in Twin Falls, Idaho and

We aren’t too far from the Yellowstone national park. The Utah/ Idaho border at the southeast called Bear Lake is beautiful, mostly green with small hints of yellow in the foliage surrounded by mountains, red rock, and small streams and rivers. We took the stop at the viewing area at Bear Lake to explore and photograph.

This is Earth. Some of it is mountainous and does so well at making you feel like the smallest little part. Other parts are oceans, plains, deserts, high rock walls and each with a complimentary group of creatures roaming about and surviving. It’s incredible and we are just breathing it in.

When we got back to Boise, there was not a lot of time to spend together so we took turns working on a large canvas and were sure to take some silly family portraits!

My sweet friends, sister, son. Until we all meet again, I love you!