Showing posts with label greener pastures. Show all posts
Showing posts with label greener pastures. Show all posts

September 3, 2015

the grass is always greener

It is September again... already. I'm reminded of a September blog about Rituals 
I wrote that I thought was last year but turns out it was two years ago. This makes perfect sense as the next thing I was going to say was that my life seems to be replaying itself over and over. So it seems right on cue to want to talk about it all over again... 

My life is good, as in, I have a good life, but the critical part of me is extremely critical and always thinks the grass is greener no matter what. That annoying naysayer stuck in my head revels in an endless litany of malcontent. It matters not that this year I am settled in a new place, new location, new environment. Apparently the inward man is not affected by changes in scenery. My gut is still looking at the neighbor's lawn regardless.

I am supposed to be coming up with new morning rituals, and this seems very difficult. Afternoon rituals and night time rituals also just as difficult. I am usually so excited for September, writing new schedules and starting new classes, etc. but right now it all seems like so much work. I am slightly dreading my calendar that already has so many marks circled and crossed off and circled again I can't see the numbers of the days anymore.

I'm sure the fact that I have not been in my art studio since July has a lot to do with it. Things happen in the summer that can't be explained except to say, well... it's the summer. Even though I am so proud of all the work I accomplished last year, I want to be even better this year and even more focused.

Sometimes I think if I could only be more traditional and go about the day rigidly following lists and schedules, I would be more stable, temperate, less distracted, stop thinking so much. I would be the most focused devoted person in the world. I imagine what it would be like to be that devoted to my artwork. I'd figure out how to haul the white couch into my second floor studio so I could spend mornings and nights there and just work work work. I'd be so devoted to my family I'd hang on their every word and make every meal from scratch. I'd be devoted to goodness and God and happiness. I would never be restless, bored or irritated. And I would definitely not spend the entire month of August away from my artwork. 

Thankfully I'm able to temporarily wake myself from this unrealistic dream. A cool relief sweeps right over my thought that all those temperate, ritualistic traditionalists have it any better than me. That would be almost as ridiculous as hauling a perfectly clean white couch into an oil stained painting studio.

On the other hand, there's something to this idea of keeping rituals I can't get away from. If only there were a way to use my naturally restless character to help me accomplish all my goals. If only the very idea of rituals did not include blind devotion with no guarantee of reward. Unrewarded is a term I am not friendly with. This is something to ponder... 

Devotion comes little by little, step by step. The very notion that change can come from doing something repeatedly is difficult to grasp. But maybe it is not the doing so much as the perception of it that leads to change. If I keep doing the same thing but think about it differently?

Samantha Palmeri painting
detail, "abstract painting #5" 2014
Perhaps I can focus on what I've already been rewarded with and start from there, or perhaps stop thinking about the reward altogether. 

I love my art studio. For the first time in my life I can honestly say that in this particular case the grass is not greener. I do not want a bigger, better space. I don't visit other artists and think, oh if I only had that space what amazing work I could get done. Nope. I just want more time to enjoy it. Come to think of it, I do not want a better anything. Really all I want is to be happy with what I already have. So what if it's stupid to put a white couch in a painting studio, so what if pizza night is twice or three times a week, and so what what the neighbors or anyone else is doing with their metaphorical lawns.

This is precisely what's going on my September schedule this year: 
Be happy with what I have and who I am.

February 22, 2013


This morning at 6:30am the sky was completely filled with a warm salmon and purple color.
Amazing how color in thin air can be so warm and cozy while feet on a ceramic tiled floor so freezing.

Speaking of color, last weekend we took a trip. We are officially on the lookout for greener pastures, an expression I should look up the meaning to, along with the grass is always greener...
(I imagine the world was filled with a lot more grass filled pasture-land than it is now).
So, yes, we made it through another road trip adventure!
This time from Manahawkin, New Jersey to Beacon, New York. 151 miles of changing scenery, traffic jams, and mixed CD's. Here's some advice: Never stay at a $99 hotel. For fifty bucks more you'll get a mint on the pillow, a mag under the mattress, and a floor that's actually been vacuumed within the last century.
 It all worked out though. We just spent more time out and about exploring the town.

DIA Beacon is amazing if you've never been. Their collection of works from the 1970's-80's gives a well rounded education on the art world of that decade. The vast space of the ex-Nabisco printing factory is a sight to see, and apparently only a train ride away from NYC. The shops and galleries on Main Street are very cool. Homespun Foods for breakfast and The Hop for afternoon handcrafted brews are both incredible, and Hudson Beach Glass never fails to hook us up with a present to take home.

The trip ended with an intangible evening at Alex and Allyson Gray's art sanctuary in Wappinger Falls. Led up a dark winding driveway by a guy holding a flashlight to a smaller footpath filled with ice and mud, we had no idea what we were in for! When the sign at the door to the house said please remove your shoes, we looked at each other quizzically. The evening turned out to be an exceptional experience. We left feeling rejuvenated and refreshed.  I can't decide what was more inspiring, Dusthead's otherworldly performance, the dancers, the music, the artwork or all of the above. Talk about good vibes! If it wasn't for the smelly hotel, we would've never wanted to leave!

Yesterday while driving to the Art House, I saw a street sign for Beacon Avenue. One I've never noticed before. Not surprising since all the streets in our neighborhood are named with nautical references. A beacon is a light, a signal post, a guide. And Light is a symbol for Truth.
I realize that what my husband and I are looking for has a lot to do with this, that we're not really in search of greener grass at all, but maybe just a warmer light, which is fine with me...