Why I Craft

After an interview with the local newspaper, The Elizabethton Star, I was forced to answer questions I had previously never articulated. For instance… Why did I start this blog? What are my goals for the blog? What are my goals in life? How do I manage to fit crafting and cooking into my busy schedule? How do crafts tie into my nursing goals?

Since the interview, I have pondered these questions and realized perhaps you, my readers, would enjoy hearing the intent behind my creative endeavors.

My mother would say I was a born “artist.” Ever since I was a toddler, I have had a fascination with nature. Mom tells me we used to go on walks where toddler me would stop at each little plant or flower we passed and gently inspect every last detail of it. I was captivated by this simple beauty.

Moving on to my junior high days, all I wanted was a “real” camera (a Pentax 35). I’m sure I drove my parents insane asking for one over and over but I was so enamored by life. There are so many beautiful facets of life that we never stop to appreciate or perhaps we simply never slow down enough to notice. A camera makes you slow down. A camera makes you stop and take notice and keep a record of the beauty that fills our days.

Painting has been a more purposeful learning experience. I first began drawing with charcoals and pastel chalks and fell in love with the blending process. In high school I finally decided to take an art class in order to learn some of the finer points of perspective and that is where I fell in love with painting.

Sewing started much later in life. Jack’s mom, my sweet mother-in-law, is one of the craftiest people I know. The year we became engaged, she bought both me and my sister-in-law sewing machines. Up until then I had slowly been learning the craft of making baby blankets and had monopolized the use of her sewing machine. When I finally had my very own machine, there was no stopping me. I worked furiously to learn the basics of sewing and have since learned new techniques as I go. There is a lot to know about sewing, I fear I may never know it all, but I suppose that just keeps me plugging away at the task.

I have always loved cooking and anyone who knows me, knows I love to eat. In the past, this food obsession has usually played out with baking, mostly because of my insatiable sweet tooth. My mom was the baker in our family, my dad the cook. I have learned many valuable lessons from watching and helping them throughout the years. While I do love the actual eating part of cooking/baking, the beauty of food is an aspect we often overlook. Half the joy of baking for me is making the food look fantastic once it hits the plate. I love incorporating as many colors as possible into the food I make. Chef Curtis Stone says that color equals health (unless we are talking cookies and food coloring).

So how does all of this fit into my life now? Jack and I have now been married over three years and our lives are just as busy today as they were on that wonderful day three years ago back in Oregon. Actually, our lives are probably more chaotic now than ever. Between work, school, homework, broken down cars, friends, and bills, we are moving 24/7, not to mention trying to fit in time to spend with one another. So why add crafts and cooking to these crazy days? Simple. It is who I am.

It seems from those beginning walks with mom, I didn’t have a chance and I am grateful for it. Aside from Jack, crafting gets me through the day. I get excited every time I get to craft or cook. By no means am I an expert. I don’t claim to be the next Martha Stewart, I am far from her level of expertise. I learn new things every single time I pick up a needle, paintbrush, or mixing spoon. To me, creating new things, whether through food or projects, is relaxing. Creativity is a release from this crazy life we lead.

As an aspiring neonatal nurse, I know this will continue to be a large part of my life. The stresses of a busy life will dwindle but the role of a nurse holds many daily challenges in itself that will, at times, try my sanity. I know, as petty as it may sound, these creative endeavors will help get me through those rough days.

So, this is why I blog. This is why I paint and sew and cook. It is all for me, my sanity, my enjoyment. Is it selfish? No. It is realistic. I believe every person needs to find that one thing that keeps them engaged, gets them excited, pushes them forward, and challenges them daily. While I blog for me, I share my experiences in the hopes of inspiring others. It doesn’t have to inspire you to cook or sew, but I do hope it inspires you to be creative and find your own niche.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading a bit about the passion behind this blog. Thank you for your continued support. I hope you stick around the site and come back to visit often.