Sunday, May 29, 2011

Breaking the Rules

I have always characterized myself as a “rule-follower,” which has generally kept me conventionally successful and punishment-free. But how ridiculous to impose my own rules on myself for no good reason!

For example, I decided that Fridays would be my art journal update days. But then last week, I wanted to share my journal earlier in the week, and then I didn’t want to post on Friday. And I felt bad about it! I was breaking “the rules,” messing with “the schedule.”

And then I remembered:  this is MY blog, MY rules, MY schedule. I'm the one who created the restriction. Oh my, what crazy games my mind plays on itself.

So, all this to say, I will share my journal pages whenever I feel like it, and I will try very hard not to get myself tangled up in knots of my own making!  (Welcome to my neuroses!) 
One of my recent art journal spreads reflects my current thinking about my family’s new practice of eating dinner together.
Before last week, the girls were ready to eat around 5 pm, and they didn’t eat the same things we were eating, because I wasn’t preparing our meal until after they were in bed.
But I wanted the girls to get used to the idea of us eating as a family, and I thought that if they saw the way we eat meat and vegetables, they just might be more willing to add these things to their diet.
Generally, it has been a positive experience. It feels “right” to have us all sitting around the table together. The noise level is taking me awhile to adjust to, but it’s a small price to pay for a good habit. And ever so briefly my three-year-old decided she would eat vegetables so she could be “strong like Mommy.”
The journal came about because I managed to stress about this change in family dynamic. (See? Knots of my own making!) The girls were not going to suddenly dig into a pork chop or chicken casserole just because they saw us do it. So how did I make sure they got enough to eat while still encouraging them to eat what we are eating? And without abandoning my entire cooking repertoire? 
As so often happens, my mother managed to “talk me down from the ledge” and see the situation more realistically. This journal spread helped me process her advice and move forward with a more manageable mealtime plan.
I did another page yesterday that shows a little bit of what is going on in my mind:
As soon as I was finished, I thought of several other things that I am also thinking about (or should be thinking about!), but I figure I’ll do another page like this another day, and some of those things might take their places then. 

I think this could be a kind of "exercise" that I do again and again to kind of "take stock" of where my head is, and maybe help me re-prioritize or at least make sure I have a reasonable balance of good for all of the worry!  

Finally, have you seen the latest Sweet ‘n Low advertisement? It’s not a product I use, but the ad caught my eye, and led me to a fun doodle/coloring activity that has filled a good bit of time yesterday and today…colorful and zany!
Thanks for checking out my recent journaling fun!  Happy Memorial Day to those of you who celebrate this special holiday weekend.


VivJM said...

Great journal pages and well done on lifting your own self-imposed restrictions lol!! Why are we always so hard on ourselves?!

We always eat together as a family and have done since I got fed up of cooking two meals a day when my eldest was about 3 (he is now 11). It was stressful at first, but can't imagine doing it any other way now, and both my boys tuck into their veg ;-). And it's a lovely family time of day that we cherish and I'm sure your girls will cherish as they grow older too. Best of luck with it!

laurie said...

such a fun post. i, too, am a rule follower to a fault sometimes! i feel guilty when i don't post anything on my blog for several days until i remind myself i don't HAVE to post at all!!! i love all the different kinds of journal pages you have created.

NLT said...

I love your pages! I totally chuckled at the whole 'breaking rules' concept. I *do* that to myself in my head ALL the dang time! As for the last journal page you posted, I am totally in love with the fact not all the flower petals are the same color. I have to find that Sweet and Low ad now!

scrapwordsmom said...

Oh, we do share the whole "rule" thing!! I am sooo much that way especially about my silly really. I am getting better at it.

My kids have always eaten with us. They aren't picky eaters at all. I think you're girls will really enjoy it:)

Have a wonderful Day!!!


Janet said...

Really great journal spread. As for rules, it's your blog so it's your decision. I say the heck with rules....just do what you like and it will all work out.

Anne said...

I love the variety in your journal pages -- you seem to have no trouble going from one medium to another, one style to another, one insight to another. Can almost see you stretch and grow with each new page. (LOVE the caption "hard sell" on the clam shell page)

Andria said...

I think it's funny that so many people totally "get" my self-imposed blog guilt! I appreciate the feedback and well-wishes on eating together as a family, too. It's been tough, simply because the girls are learning what is and isn't okay at the dinner table, but if we didn't teach them now, we'd have to teach them later.

Nae, I love that you noticed the different-colored flower petals...way to tune into the details!

Laurie and Mom (heehee), thank you for the comments on the "variety". Sometimes I wonder if it's bad that I have no specific personal "style"...everything looks different. But I think it's more fun that way!

Regina said...

It's so beautiful that your journal pages reflect your home life. said...

What a creative, inspiring journal pages!
These are great... each page is cleverly designed. :]