Here I am,  yet again returning to this blog after a long hiatus. After a stressful end of semester and holiday season, I find myself feeling restful and reflective and with an annoying head cold. I've faced a lot of personal challenges over the past two years, and I'm finally feeling like I'm in a place where I can focus on becoming the kind of person I want to be, instead of focusing my energy on not bursting into tears or flying into a rage. I've been treading water for too long, and am finally ready to move forward.

I'm setting my sights relatively low: setting goals that will hopefully make me more disciplined, while not feeling overly burdensome. My main focus will be on getting organized, practicing gratitude, practicing kindness, learning calligraphy, maintaining and expanding my reading practice, and, of course, pouring my efforts into my studio practice. This will take the form of starting a gratitude journal, trying to complete one small act of kindness everyday, spending one hour a day minimum in studio, filling out one calligraphy practice sheet a day, and keeping a bullet journal (without getting wrapped up in the fact it's not Pinterest pretty. . . .yet). I plan to read more art books, do more research, and read a broader range of works.

I want to make more and strive less. The work is in this interesting, yet delicate flux right now. The book making and the metalsmithing are starting to converge. The aesthetic is shifting, and I'm still trying to figure out what it's all about. Now that I'm back in the south, I'm surrounded by it, but I still can't quite articulate it. I intend to focus on the work, and not so much the results of the work: getting into publications, getting into shows, getting invitations to things. In other words, what feels like the "popularity contest" side of things. I have to keep reminding myself that I don't make work because I want people to like it, and therefore me, but to connect with the most authentic version of myself.

So that's the plan. Happy New Year.