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I've created a line of wooden peg looms to make potholders and projects of other sizes. Read the story behind the looms and check out my etsy shop.

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A Beautiful Night in Grand Rapids Got Me Thinking…

Thousands of paper lanterns were released into the night sky Friday in downtown Grand Rapids as part of ArtPrize 2012. The entry, by Mark Carpenter and Dan Johnson, resulted in a stunning visual display of flickering lights climbing high above the city and thousands of smiles on the ground. It was lovely.

After a very stressful couple of weeks, it was nice to witness something beautiful. It served as a reminder that I really have to stop grabbing ahold of the safety lines in my life and just let go and see what happens when I dedicate my time and energy fully to a project of my own design. During the last three years, I’ve continued to bog myself down with low-paying and unpaid work for other people, and that continues to steal valuable time and energy away from the things I feel most compelled to do. This has to stop.

Seeing those lanterns floating in the sky inspired me to consider what could be if I rearrange my priorities and put my own projects at the top of my professional list as opposed to fitting them in when I’m exhausted and all my work for other people is done. My latest attempt to “give back to the world” is kicking my rear. I’m working hard and failing to motivate everyone in the room. I don’t accept or understand apathy and laziness and now the stress and disappointment of it all has showed up on my face in the form of acne – a problem I don’t normally contend with. At the height of it, I had a headache for a solid week and I was walking around with an uncomfortable tightness in my chest. I thought the headache was from getting hit in the back of the head with a soccer ball (when it rains it pours, eh?), but now I’m thinking that may of been a coincidence. Stress is physical and my body is telling me something. I just hope I’m smart enough to listen.

Perhaps, when I get to the next crossroad and have the opportunity to change direction, I’ll make like a paper lantern and take off on a new and beautiful adventure.

 

Comments

Comment from Sarah
Time: September 30, 2012, 5:47 am

Much love to you, dear girl.

Comment from DianeP
Time: September 30, 2012, 7:32 am

Please slow down and listen to your body. It’s time to stop and really think about what you want from your life – both for you and your family. Pleasing everyone around us doesn’t make us better – they will take more than we can give. Save some life for yourself please.

Comment from Lydia
Time: September 30, 2012, 7:52 am

Jennifer, Things have been very hard and I know none of us ever thought we would be in this position. Over the last 6 month, I have gained weight, have insomnia, and now have high blood pressure. I keep looking at my quilt tops and wondering if I’m ever going to finish them. You are right. We need to put ourselves first. Some things we just can’t change. So, I’m taking my quilt tops off the wall, and getting my sewing kit out. We must do what we love, for ourselves.

We’re hoping the best for you and your family.

Lydia

Comment from yvonne
Time: September 30, 2012, 10:25 am

Give yourself time to find what is right and what feels right for you and your family. I’m glad you are able to reflect and know you need something else. My best to you :)

Comment from melissa
Time: October 1, 2012, 6:49 am

i have faith that soon you will be like one of those glowing lanterns. i am sure what you are experiencing is all part of a grand process you will look back on one day and write about. it’s so hard to live through a major transition but you will be stronger in the end. take care!

Comment from Nancy Liedel
Time: October 1, 2012, 3:27 pm

Long time subscriber, first comment. I grew up in Grand Haven and my dad now lives in Grand Rapids. I wish I’d known about this, because it would have been worth the trip. However, your stunning picture just brought it to life. Thank you!!!! I’m only in Ann Arbor, but it feels worlds away. This made me feel like home.

Comment from Jess
Time: October 2, 2012, 7:54 am

I feel you on so many levels with this post! I’ve had hives on and off for months and my acne is OUT of control. Too much stress! I feel like I have my hand in so many different projects that I’m not doing really WELL at any of them! Anyway, all that just to say I’m sorry and I know how you feel, at least a little.
Also, if the project you’re thinking of putting yourself into is the magazine, then wahoo! I love the idea, ha! I seriously love this little magazine; it’s a bright spot in my day when it gets published and I refer back to the previous issues often. If you ever feel the urge, I would definitely be interested in buying a kid-friendly version! Not that the main magazine isn’t kid-friendly, but you know, one that’s specifically geared for a kid audience. I think there’s a bit of an empty spot in the kid magazine market and a CS Kids would be awesome!!

Comment from Fred Jackson
Time: October 20, 2012, 11:58 pm

Oh~ So Many paper lanterns ,looking like meteor shower.Very lovely!

Comment from Maryanne Carter
Time: November 2, 2012, 8:46 am

those holy traces of Promethean fire!!I like that !!

Comment from miki
Time: November 7, 2012, 11:59 pm

hi,the lanterns in China is call Sky Lantern.Some people write their wish on the lanterns and hope the wish will be ture.It’s a good idea to do that.I hope you will have a new and beautiful adventure.

Comment from Paige
Time: November 29, 2012, 6:52 pm

Lovely post. Thanks for sharing.

Comment from http://easyhomeremodeling.webstarts.com/
Time: February 13, 2013, 1:10 am

You really constructed several remarkable ideas inside ur blog,
“CraftSanity – A blog and podcast for those who love everything handmade

Comment from zerobugs.org
Time: April 19, 2013, 1:47 pm

I want to know how come you named this specific post,
“CraftSanity – A blog and podcast for those who love everything handmade

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