<![CDATA[The Green Iris - Blog]]>Tue, 24 Nov 2015 05:48:19 -0800Weebly<![CDATA[Quote for a milk break]]>Mon, 11 Oct 2010 22:24:32 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/quote-for-a-milk-break1I've had a Bjork song stuck in my head for several hours now and haven't listened to any of her songs in a long while. Isn't it funny how that happens? I went web-surfing to try and purge it from my head and stumbled on this quote:

"It's incredible how nature sets females up to take care of people, and yet it is tricky for them to take care of themselves."  -Bjork

There are several different ways of interpreting this statement but it made me think about my own life and my struggle to find joy in the fragilest moments of every day. There is this book called, And Then I'll Be Happy! (see this review on TwoDay magazine) and basically touches on how difficult it can be for some women to put their own needs first and that for many of us, we have been "programmed to be unhappy". Okay, so I think I have been doing alright trying to balance taking care of myself with taking care of my little charges (electric bolts of lightening those two boys are!) but some days I feel like a circus performer walking the high wire. My advice to other high wire acts...unravel that bad programming however you can, and make a safety net out of yourself.

Be your own safety net
<![CDATA[Some Robots and a Little GLOB]]>Tue, 28 Sep 2010 16:36:22 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/some-robots-and-a-little-glob When I first set down with GLOB I was on a robot kick. Orion had just helped me make some robot heads to decorate our bathroom, and when I say Orion helped I mean he helped me arrange all the spare parts I had been saving like tape dispensers, binkies, lotion caps, etc. and I did the gluing at naptime. After we were done I thought I’d make a robot painting to hang in there too and finally try this new eco-friendly paint at the same time.

So GLOB, I’m not sure I’m in love with you…I think I need to work out the kinks. It was like painting with extremely watered down water colors which can be cool but then when I wanted to use a marker to outline I got resistance. The plant starch that is used as a binder made a waxy film on my paper making it hard to get smooth unbroken lines. Other than that I think I just need to experiment more because like any medium, I’m sure there are tricks to bend it to your will.  

WeatherBots (featuring GLOB natural paints)
Family of robot heads
<![CDATA[Quote for a milk break (I'm in the milk and the milk's in me!)]]>Fri, 17 Sep 2010 05:39:58 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/quote-for-a-milk-break-im-in-the-milk-and-the-milks-in-me“Peace goes into the making of a poem as flour goes into the making of bread.” Pablo Neruda

For some reason this quote makes me think of In the Night Kitchen, one of my favorite books by Maurice Sendak. Mickey is frustrated by loud noises and then falls into the night kitchen without his mama and papa. He then creatively solves a problem for the bakers all on his own. Using dreams and creativity to work out aggression seems like a pretty good idea...

<![CDATA[Quote for a milk break]]>Wed, 01 Sep 2010 21:35:49 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/quote-for-a-milk-break"There is one thing one has to have: either a soul that is cheerful by nature, or a soul made cheerful by work, love, art, and knowledge." -Friedrich Nietzschede]]><![CDATA[Quote for a milk break (reflection as nourishment)]]>Tue, 24 Aug 2010 06:16:15 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/quote-for-a-milk-break-reflection-as-nourishment"Every change is a form of liberation. My mother used to say a change is always good even if it's for the worse." -Paula Rego
<![CDATA[My me-ness]]>Fri, 23 Jul 2010 00:29:53 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/my-me-ness So I'm starting to realize I've been figuratively beating my head against the wall trying to take care of the 8 month old and the 2 year old, and the laundry, cooking, little bit of cleaning, art projects, while also trying to carve out a tiny bit of relaxing. Not being able to do these things has been making me mad, mad, mad! I realize that I need to let go of some of my controlling nature.

Riding shotgun with control is instant gratification. I want things now, now, now! I want the O.Z. (toddler) to be more self-sufficient, I want the A.T. (baby) to be less clingy. I want the toddler to stop smacking the baby on the head. I want to be completely unpacked and organized in the new house. I want to have the side yard cleared out and completely ready to plant for fall and winter...blah, blah, blah. I guess I need to live in the now, now, now and not feel guilty for all the things I'm not visibly accomplishing. (Hey, I guess I had time to write this and didn't ignore the baby too much in the process.)

Why is it so hard to ignore societal pressures? I frequently get asked, "What do you do all day?" and this leads me to sometimes have this nagging voice in the back of my head saying, "Well, should I be doing something else? Should I feel bad for not getting anything else done besides playing with, feeding, and clothing the kids, changing diapers, washing diapers, trying not to yell and scream, going to the park-- you know, basic child-care stuff? (And I don't say that sarcastically.) There are so many things that are great about this time with the O.Z. and A.T.  If I could just step back and listen to the voice that says, "this is such a tiny blip and you need to find the joy in every moment”

While I think there is probably never going to be joy in every moment for me, I do think there is learning in every moment. I am growing into the mom I want to be and more importantly the person I want to be. But…as a stay at home mom I do feel urges to establish some outward me-ness. Kind of like wanting to write your name on the bathroom wall.
I just watched this quirky family flick—an Aussie film, Hey, hey it’s Esther Blueburger. The protagonist is a 13 year old outsider looking for some acceptance who eventual realizes that she just wants to be recognized as a person. At one point she recites this nonsense babble poem repeating her last name over and over in different ways. She is proclaiming her me-ness and that me-ness is not static. I think each stage of our life is an opportunity to re-examine our identities—a time to figure out who we want to be. That’s why being human is so great. Well, that and opposable thumbs I guess.

So, maybe I have time for a doodle now and then. It could be like my statement of me that only takes a few minutes with no end result-- no money, no feel good feelings of gifting to someone else. My first creative hurdle so to speak.

I don't care if it's messy or weird or just banal. This is me, proclaiming my me-ness.


Orion wanted to assert his me-ness too!
<![CDATA[The benefits of art moving excruciatingly slowly when there's a toddler afoot]]>Sun, 13 Jun 2010 21:17:36 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/the-benefits-of-art-moving-excruciatingly-slowly-when-theres-a-toddl Between Orion dumping out my pencils, and trying to roll his cars through my paint, and continuously saying "help mommy, hey-elp!", I started thinking that I needed some paint that was safe for him to be around. It also led me to ruminate on a previous desire for more eco-friendly art materials. This art mama wants to be friends with mama earth.

I am beginning to think artists should really strive to reflect the times they are living in. There are so many ecological crises happening worldwide that to create art and not to attempt a greener approach might be considered irresponsible. I use acrylics for painting and although the cleanup is better for the environment than oils (if you're not flushing your rinse water down the drain) the plastic containers and tubes that hold them, and the plastic polymers binding the pigments aren’t exactly best buddies with our earth, and some of the pigments themselves contain heavy metals like lead that I don’t want my liver or the even smaller livers of my children to have to deal with.

What to do then? I’m sure there are sustainability issues with many different art supplies that I currently use but my first step is going to be trying out this product that I just heard about called GLOB. I ordered a kit last night and am really excited to start using it. It is a dry powder that you mix with water, made of all natural ingredients, and its manufacture and packaging are very earth friendly. Its labeling categorizes it as more of a craft and/or kid's art product which is excellent. It probably isn’t considered artist grade because it doesn’t have the same archival quality of current art materials on the market but I really don’t care. Digital photography can help artists achieve longevity if required; if we don’t take a hard look at all of our activities in an effort to save our planet, then longevity of a piece of art will be a meaningless concept.

Check back for more info as I continue to create a more mama-earth friendly studio.
<![CDATA[The need to create]]>Wed, 02 Jun 2010 04:55:26 GMThttp://thegreeniris.weebly.com/blog/first-post"Writing can be a pretty desperate endeavor, because it is about some of our deepest needs: our need to be visible, to be heard, our need to make sense of our lives, to wake up and grow and belong." Even though Anne Lamott was speaking only about writing, I think her statement applies to any creative endeavor. These endeavors can be a little scary at times Why do we send our creations out into the world? Is it mostly about ego-- about having a voice? Is it about gain? I'd like to think that if there really is a deep driving force in me, it is one of growing, of communing with others. I'd like to think that this force is driving me to understand the nature of happiness.

As an introvert, it's often difficult for me to connect with others and yet I want to feel like I am contributing to a positive social consciousness on a real level. By that I mean making the world a better place. Too lofty a goal? Not if I recognize that not all change is loud and not all help is acknowledged; sometimes they are quite off the radar. I think the first step is finding happiness and repeating the discovery again and again.

You can read aphorisms all your life that tell you a variation of "you need to do in order to be [happy]" but you need to be in the right listening space in order to feel the truth and then in the right space again to actually want to implement. In order to do to be happy, I want to send something out into the world no matter how small the scale at least once a week.

Now back to satisfying the basic needs of the sweetly babbling, little guy next to me who wants desperately to be visible.