Sometimes creativity comes imperfectly in the form of arranging a quick spring still life to savor a moment of pause.
A Spring Still Life, A Moment of Pause & Maple Le
By the weekend, I sounded like a caricature of a chain-smoking granny. My voice was shot. Probably a white flag of surrender from my body amidst a whirlwind two months.
There was a trip to Florida. A trip to Nola. A beach photoshoot. A decision on a puppy. A flight home. A special dinner. A business deep dive. Another shoot. A last-minute farewell festivity for a close friend. A return to Florida.
There was a road trip with the said puppy and the next chapter in my relationship – Dylan’s return home from PA school rotations in Florida. There was a pit stop in Asheville (ahhh, Asheville – so much more to say on that!).
There was a sister’s wedding and a few deep, emotional family conversations. There was the death of a neighbor and the ache of a close friend.
Then my commercial work poured in because if you work freelance, you know how true the adage is – “when it rains, it POURS!”
There was such a mix of joy and such momentum. There were so many reasons to be grateful, so I turned a blind eye to my exhaustion until my blind eye threatened to cry at the slightest drop of a hat. Oh hello, burnout, my old frenemy. I almost didn’t recognize you.
Like a broken record, I had told myself “things are busy but good, busy but good,” until my vocal cords gave out, and I had to pay attention. Even if the whirlwind is full of positive moments, there’s still a need for rest, for quiet, for alone time, and especially for me, for creativity for my own sake.
Thankfully, I received a reminder via a Goal Digger podcast episode specifically on burnout (An Achiever’s Guide to Burnout and Balancing Happiness).
The reminder was this: we may never fully “beat” burnout, and just because it reappears does not mean we have failed. Burnout is an alert system.
The quarantine gifted me with periods of rest, quiet, and calm. It forced boundaries that I now need to navigate, define and guard for myself. In the hectic interim, this has meant permission to rest when possible. This has meant creative play in the form of arranging a still life of languishing azaleas, collected spirits, and my new crowned goddess.
Spring Still Life Details
Appalachian amaro from Eda Rhyne Distilling Company
Single Barrel Whiskey
Still Hollow Spirits
Gold Herb & Cheese Spreader Knife
Homemade by Facture Goods
Block-Printed Linen Tea Towel
There’s a New Pup in Julep’s Corner:
One of those very positive (or should I say “pawsitive?”) yet very crazy bits of the recent whirlwind … Maple Le, our rescue from Florida, and our road-tripping pup extraordinaire.
We don’t know what kind she is yet, but we do know she is extra cuddly, joyful, and playful. She is quite vocal, snores like an old man, and wears the eyeliner of a punk rocker.
I’m very proud of Julep, who is sharing the spotlight pretty generously. I dare say she might even like Maple. I still remember introducing baby Julep on this, my beloved corner of the web.