the post that started out about crafting and took a turn somewhere in the middle.

I used to be crafty. I used to love finding old things and incorporating them into our home. I used to love decorating and creating and crafting and using my hands in a way that made real tangible things I loved.

But then we moved out of our home and I lost all desire. The spaces we live in and lived in aren’t and weren’t ours. They were the Allens and now they are my parents. And all of my favorite things are in boxes scattered around the city being stored in basements and attics and rooms for us while we’re in this waiting stage. This saving stage. This refining stage.

In a rash of yard sales we’ve had to declutter and simplify and purge I’ve gotten rid of nearly all my beloved craft supplies. Once was the day that an entire room in our house was an art space and now I couldn’t tell you where a Crayola marker is. Or acrylic paint. Or buttons or glitter or tags or fabric or paper. Things i used to use on a daily basis alone and with my kids.

Sometimes as I wander around the blogosphere looking at all the amazing crafts moms are doing with their kids I wonder if you can put crafting on hold for an entire year and not kill the instinct to craft in yourself or your young children. I “star” great ideas I see in blogs in my reader so SOMEDAY when I have a craft space and supplies again I can go back and recreate that awesome idea. I bookmark websites with cool ideas for later. Later. When we have a home. When we have money I can spend on craft supplies. When I am not working two jobs and have time to craft again.

And while looking at those great ideas and those inspiring blogs I feel so empty. Because I want that. I want a kitchen I can fill with the latest project and go to bed with a huge mess everywhere so me and the kids can pick up tomorrow where we left off today and not worry that we’re in someone’s home that’s not ours to mess up. I want my own space for craft supplies again. I want to be able to buy craft supplies again instead of spending every dime we have on getting the kids healthy and buying a house.  I want to work less, create more and get messy with my kids again.

It’s sad to look back on my old blog, the early days when I was home with two and then three really young kids because even in the midst of pure exhaustion I created with my kids every day. We did something. We painted or colored or glued or glittered. And now we do so little. Between Kindergarten and preschool and Parent’s Day Out and Kuhn Const. and Fresh Art and doctor visits and meal planning and living communally there is just no energy or time or space. And I miss those days. Those days I KNEW I would miss one day but NEVER dreamed it would be so soon. When we had barely a dollar to our name and never slept and laughed every day.

I sometimes think I should stop reading blogs completely so I’m not wishing for something I can’t have right now. Because when I’m not peeking in on someone’s life mine seems amazing. And truly I’m happy. And my kids are incredible. And Chris is by my side. And our parents are, well, so giving there simply are no words.

So although this refining period is hard, oh so so so hard, it’s also so good. I see God in every little piece of our puzzle right now. I know this was His plan for us all along. He’s refining me and Chris and our finances and our health and our relationships with family. He’s weeding out all the bad crap we let creep in the last six years and I know one day, sooner than later I hope, we will be left with an even more amazing life than we could have dreamed up filled with blessing we can’t imagine.

I think it’s just hard in the meantime. Being refined isn’t fun. Neither is eating healthy or budgets or downsizing. Or not crafting everyday.

But I know it’s so good. And I see the good.

And tomorrow come hell or high water I’m going to craft.

I’m going to start crafting again damnit.

5 thoughts on “the post that started out about crafting and took a turn somewhere in the middle.

  1. bring on the crafting. mom will get over the mess!

    heck, maybe she will catch the crafting bug again too. I can remember big messes of her’s in the basement. all kinds of great wood painted holiday decorations came out of that basement!! remember mom?

  2. While it might be hard to imagine right now…you will look back on these days fondly and wish that you had soaked in the simplicity of these moments. When “more” presents itself…sometimes we find ourselves looking back on times when we had less. My husband and I have been out of “our” home twice while waiting for new homes to be built. The first time was early in our marriage. Just he and I. We were scrounging for every penny we could save. We lived week by week in friends and families homes…finally settling in our old office building. Our bed was in the lobby. A rabbit eared TV with 2 channels sat on the old reception desk. No kitchen. No furniture. Nothing. We put bottles of water over the AC vents to have cold water (the coolers had the beer!). Living out of suitcases, eating out every single meal (while we were trying to save!) and not having 1 personal item that wasn’t packed away. I thought those were the worst days but now looking back they are some of our fondest and funniest moments. Simplicity. Together. Stripped down has a way of bearing souls. Enjoy it while it’s here…and don’t wish it away. This too shall pass and it will be so worth it. And you’ll laugh when you miss this. And you’ll wish that you had taken pictures of the water on the vents with your husband eating carry out straight from the aluminum foil like a caveman and using a dirty t-shirt to wipe his mouth (no utensils or napkins in the carry out bag!). Lovely. :) I thought I might die. But boy do I wish I had pictures…Document it! Hang in there! This too will be cherished.

  3. Keep on crafting girl!

    There are also times when I envy others while reading their blogs. But, one time I stumbled upon Darby’s blog, http://www.flythroughourwindow.com, and she had this listed in her “About” section…
    Just a little reminder: this a blog, not a real life account, but merely a tiny glimpse into our lives. We don’t sit around craft, bake and smile for pictures all day long. We do strive to glorify God but fail miserably and recognize our deep need of a Savior. What comfort we find in knowing that our debts have been paid and we have been set free.

    I found that as a nice reminder!

  4. Hey Jodie-it’s Nancy’s sister Natalie. Just thought I’d let you know I just saw this: http://pinterest.com/pin/4665009/ on Pinterest (Pinterest is a site where you can “pin” images from the internet to inspiration boards). Your crafting is appreciated across the internet :)

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