Tag Archives: On Being

The week according to Instagram

It’s been a while since I shared an Instagram-ish update, mostly because that used to be a weekend thing… and there’s not much difference now between my weekdays and weekends.

2 Exceptions:

  1. The number of adults present (a.k.a. persons capable of rational thought + behavior, most of the time) in the home during the day — There are twice as many of these on the weekends.
  2. The number of leotards worn to gymnastics class– That number is 1 during the week.  And 0 on the weekends. (… please note that I did not simply say the number of leotards worn).

week according to instagram

I love a good ill-informed, politically charged Facebook post from a middle school friend happy life update from an old pal as much as the next person.  And as you’ll see from my Twitter “likes,” I can’t get enough tweets about the Pope.  Or preserving tomatoes.  Or Jeopardy! contestants’ opinions of Alex Trebec.  And don’t get me started on Pinterest.  It’s the best way to waste time, while pretending that it’s going to help you me more productive in the future.  If only I’d remember I pinned that workout for slim and trim hips.  Or a month’s worth of dinners in 2 hours flat!  

But Instagram is my favorite.  While I aim to keep things light-ish and bright-ish, these are still very real moments.  Ones that I want to share, but mostly ones I want to remember.  Here’s a bit of a scoop on the last week’s posts.

THE WEEK ACCORDING TO INSTAGRAM | @ELIZABETHEV

It’s rare for Nick to fall asleep in my arms any more, but he seems to get extra cozy in his new ring sling.  We upgraded from the linen sling to silk, which feels much more snug for my toddler-sized infant.  I took this selfie (us-ie?) after we finished watering my parents’ plants when then you were away.  Pretend gardening is tiring work apparently.

Quinoa and pesto had been a late summer standby.  And you already know how I feel about heirloom tomatoes and mozzarella.  The spicy micro greens are from Whole Foods and make a nice addition to this warm salad.  (You could eat it cold, obviously… but that would require patience.  And they were sold out of that.)

These are my new shoes.  The ones my husband bought for himself, and then I copied him and ordered a pair.  So, that’s special.  I’ve mentioned the On Being podcast before, but I sort of feel like I’m going to keep talking about it until everyone is listening.  What do shoes have to do with a podcast?  A recent episode that aired during the Olympics featured a group of runners sharing how running is a spiritual practice for them.  I was listening in the car on the way to Mama Beasts and, as soon as I grabbed a parking spot, grabbed my phone to jot some quick notes from the episode.  

“The blessing is outside your comfort zone” is something someone said to Ashley Hicks, co-founder of Black Girls Run, as she was prepping for the Chicago Marathon.  I thought that was pretty powerful.

I also found myself wanting to learn anything and everything about Billy Mills, the first (and only, so far) American to win Olympic gold in the 10,000 meter race.  His interview was really compelling, too.

Such a good episode.

These two are the cutest.  I love how gentle and playful Clark is with both kids.  The old guy has seen better days, health-wise, so I’m feeling extra mushy about him lately.  We are so lucky to have him at our sides.

Goodbye, weekdays. Hello, weekend. ✌🏻️ What's on tap for your weekend? #southie #castleisland #weekendviews

A post shared by Elizabeth | On Tap for Today (@elizabethev) on

We’ve been spending a lot of time out at the island lately– running, walking, counting boats, learning about fishing (Grace has taken a particular interest, which grosses me out, but hey), playing on the “big kid” swings, and looking for seagulls.  Oh and marveling that people are still playing Pokemon Go.  Apparently Castle Island is a hot bed of pokemon activity (I don’t really know what that means, but I heard it somewhere… so it must be true).

But seriously. I would eat snacks for every meal.

I love everything about seeded eucalyptus — the color, the varied textures, the incredible fragrance.  I always pick up a bunch when it’s in stores.  Same goes for new issues of domino.

No Lifeguard on Duty (#storyofmylife) 🏊🏻 Are you a risk taker or a play-it-safer? #instacapecod #wickedcapecod #itsstillsummer

A post shared by Elizabeth | On Tap for Today (@elizabethev) on

…and the full view of the tiny Instax shot included in the photo above.  Nick and I were down the Cape for a quick half-day trip (we’ve got something really fun in the works) and I couldn’t resist a quick stop at the beach.  It was quiet, overcast and a bit chilly– perfect off-season weather. 

And last, but not least, confetti from the best date night ever with Nick, seeing Adele live at the Garden (I forget what the real/new/current name of that place is).  The show was incredible, and I couldn’t help but grab a few pieces of confetti (each piece had a lyric or note in her handwriting… but despite what people were claiming, I don’t think she hand wrote all 9 million pieces… or whatever).

She performed for just over 2 hours, I think, with no breaks and no opening act.  I loved the format– especially the short acoustic set in the middle.  I have been listening to “Don’t You Remember” and “When We Were Young” and “Hometown Glory” on repeat.

Semi related: Lemon water with a bit of honey is great for your throat… you know, if you’ve been walking around your condo pretending you can sing and sort of lost your voice.

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s your favorite social media platform?  If you could be any diva (current or past) who would you be?

Today: Get Messy Thursdays | Serenity, Weeks 4 + 5

I did a little bit of painting last week, but very little art journaling, so I decided to throw together a combination post for Weeks 4 + 5 of the Get Messy Art Journal challenge, Season of Serenity.  

Several of these pages feature poems from Hãfez.  I’m basically obsessed.  I also drew inspiration from the gorgeous views at the Cape, my favorite podcast, beachside yoga, and a nearly-empty tube of gold gouache.

Get Messy Thursdays | Serenity, Weeks 4 + 5

Materials used: Sakura KOI watercolor (Prussian Blue), detail brush, clear alphabet stamps, fuschia StazOn ink (plus the black ink I never washed off the stamps… oops… plus a bit more blue watercolor to round things out).

I’ve mentioned before how much I love Krista Tippett’s On Being podcast.  I recently listened to an episode with Rami Nashashibi, a Palestinian-American who uses graffiti, calligraphy, and hip-hop in his work as a healing force on the South Side of Chicago.  Something that really struck me from this episode is how much of the good and powerful and beautiful we never hear about when it comes to other religions and cultures and ways of life.  Media loves the bad, the upsetting and the ugly.  I found myself thinking about this teaching from the Koran, which Mr. Nashashibi shared in the interview, for days.

Those quick flower sketches sort of reminded me of blue and white china.  I think I will likely keep working on this page and fill it up a bit more.  

Materials used: The aforementioned gold gouache, neon acrylic paint (pink and yellow), gesso, black Faber Castell Artist PITT pen (1.5)

I made the gold and neon background a few weeks ago, but wasn’t sure what I wanted to do with it.  I covered up a bit of the paint with gesso and started scribbling on a favorite Hãfez quote, just as inspiration struck… I started writing in lines from the poem atop the neon, regretting having slapped down that gesso sort of haphazardly.

 I love the neon/writing bits, but sort of loathe the gesso/writing monstrosity.  The upside: I’m excited to try this made up method on a new page soon.  Please remind me of it when I’m fresh out of ideas.  

Materials used: Rolled strips of magazine cut-outs (rolled on a toothpick and sealed with matte Mod Podge), Faber Castell gelattos (sealed with matte medium), magazine cut-out (adhered with a plain old glue stick), Sakura KOI watercolor (Prussian blue)

One of this week’s prompts called for incorporating “paper rolling.”  I had no idea what that was.  So at 4 o’clock one morning (I have reached the point in this pregnancy where I just don’t sleep) I took to Google for a tutorial.  Word to the wise: “rolling papers” is different than “paper rolling.”  I now know a lot about weed, and a tiny bit about rolling up strips of magazine paper for art projects.

I like the simplicity of this spread and was definitely craving white space.  Probably literally and figuratively.  It’s been a go-go-go few days.  Sometimes less is more.  And that’s more than enough.

Materials used:  Magazine cut-outs and tissue paper (applied with matte Mod Podge), black Micron.

More Hãfez.  I love this poem.  The collage is sort of mosaic-ish and came together quickly.  The writing is kind of messy and I kind of want to re-do it.  But hey… 

Materials used:  Watercolor, gouache, silver and white washi tape, white gel pen and a super cheap letter stencil, ink spray, purple paper, magazine cut-out

And lastly, my favorite of the week.  Purple and grey are one of my favorite pairings.  After applying a wash of purple watercolor, a strip of paper and washi tape, I filled in the page with grey gouache.  I love the chalky finish of gouache.  

I had such a wonderful time at beach yoga last week and loved the teacher’s cues for staying mindful and present (focus on now… nothing from before…).  I added the “nothing for after,” because my worrying tends to be about what could come next.  This brain of mine can come up with all kinds of worrisome scenarios for tomorrow.  And the day after that.  And the day after that.

Meanwhile, the well dressed lady is from an ad for bathroom fixtures, so there’s that.  

Also On Tap for Today:

What’s got you feeling inspired this week?

Today: Get Messy Art Journal | Brave, Weeks 4-6

Two posts in one day!  It’s a miracle. I’m making up for the fact I’ve been MIA.  Time for another peek at my art journal!

Get Messy Art Journal | Brave, Weeks 4-6

Materials used: Embroidery floss and a giant, unsafe needle; Golden liquid acrylic and high flow acrylic paint; Blick liquid watercolors; Crayola crayons; Sakura watercolors sketchbox; black paper; Sakura white gel pen; salt water in a little spritzer bottle thing; washi tape

So this set of pages is basically a mess.  Which is fitting, this being Get Messy and all.  It took a while to let each layer dry, so it was sort of an exercise in patience (specifically, in Nick being patient with me leaving all this art crap all over our condo, all in the name of “building layers”).

I think I’ve shared this before, but I am weirdly in love with my own handwriting.  Not normal.  And not at all humble.  But true.  The quote is from composer Mohammed Fairouz’s recent interview with Krista Tippett on (my favorite podcast of all time) On Being.  You can read or listen to the full episode here, but the text I include comes from this exchange:

MS. TIPPETT: I read somewhere that you were — you began composing music at a very early age. And I read somewhere that you were setting the poetry of Oscar Wilde to music at the age of 7. Is that right? I…

MR. FAIROUZ: Yeah. It’s a song on a poem by Oscar Wilde that is called “The True Knowledge.” And it’s a beautiful poem. I took a stab at it when I was 7. And I have to admit, I didn’t understand the poem at all. But I gave another go at sort of trying to revive it. I revisited it in, I think, 2002 or something as an early piece and tried to fix it. And I’ve since stopped doing that because I realized that as a composer, we leave very important traces of who we are spiritually in the pieces that we compose. And so it’s actually best not to tamper with who you were ten years ago to be who you are today. Accept and perhaps even try to love who you were ten years ago. And be kind to yourself. But also look forward to who you want to be in a year.

Beautiful, right?  Every episode is this good.  I often listen on my commute to work, and have been forgoing safety and wearing headphones (always be aware of your surroundings, people!) between the parking lot and my office, so as to not have to stop listening.   

Materials used: Tissue paper; black gesso; Instax photo; Faber Castel Pitt pens; magazine clipping; scrap from one of Grace’s daily day care reports; label maker

For this spread, I incorporated the shapes and household objects (tissue paper, aluminum foil) prompts from Get Messy.  I used aluminum foil to apply black gesso… but it didn’t pan out very well, so I ended up going back over it with a palette knife.  With so much changing (and so soon), I wanted to capture a bit of daily life in these pages.  We’ve been having so many fun adventures now that the weather has improved, including a recent walk around Houghton’s Pond.  The scrap is a note from one of Grace’s teachers and includes details from her day.

It feels scattered, but that’s the kind of week I was having.

Materials used: Black gesso; white gelly pen; Sharpie white acrylic paint marker; card stock letters; liquid acrylic paint; detail brush; palette knife

Per usual, I saved my favorite pages for last.  This spread was the result of several happy accidents.  I’ve been reading a lot of Hafez lately and this poem was floating around in my brain, so when a blob of black gesso smudged from one page to the next, I immediately saw a bird.  And I got to work adding feet and feathers.  

The letters were originally all on the same page, but kept falling off… that’s how I realized the reverse side would look sort of cool on the opposite page.  Plus, YO + BIRD = Kind of fun as a stand alone page.  Here’s to happy accidents.  And birds. Or whatever.

To see more of my art journal: Love Weeks 1 + 2, Love Weeks 3 + 4, Love Weeks 5 + 6, Get Messy blog hop, Brave Weeks 1-3

Also On Tap for Today:

Are you a podcast fan?  What are you listening to lately?

Today: Currently | April 2015

We had such a lovely Easter with our families this weekend.  Grace was in her glory, snuggling up with her grandparents, aunts and uncles and following her cousin where ever she went.  I didn’t take many photos (I had my hands full of candy), so I thought I’d share a bit of what’s On Tap currently, instead.

pansy

Currently

Reading

Watching

  • This weekend we watched Mile… Mile and a Half from the Muir Project, which follows a group of artists hiking the John Muir Trail in California.  It’s available on Netflix and is worth a watch for the breathtaking scenery alone.  

Listening

  • Every, single episode of On Being with Krista Tippett (this week’s interview with Greg Boyle, S.J. had me crying at the hair salon while my color processed… but in a good way) and my girl Kristi’s new podcast, Soul Chat
  • We are taking a music and movement class on Saturday mornings in the South End and received a CD of all the songs at the first class.  When Grace and I are in the car together (and I am terrified to listen to the radio now that she’s in a repeat everything phase), we usually listen to Raffi… but every once in a while you need to give the ol’ guy a rest.  Our current jam is a song about a dog finding a cell phone on the way home from the dog park. (The second I drop her off at daycare, however, it’s back to sports radio or Morning Edition.)
  • Also…  My current position is that Taylor Swift can do no wrong.  I reserve the right to change my mind, but for the time being: can’t stop, won’t stop.

Making

  • 100 days of something.  I signed up for #The100DayProject (which starts today) and plan to roll that into the new season of the Get Messy Art Journal challenge (the new theme is brave).  You can follow along on Instagram to see what I make each day.  Many of my projects will likely be drawings or paintings or letters, but I am planning to count carefully crafted, non-Cheez-It meals as an accomplishment as well.
  • I picked up a new frame and some acrylic paint to make a memo board (similar to the one I made for Grace’s room) for our kitchen.  I am hoping it will help me remember important things like renewing Clark’s dog license, or upcoming appointments, or like… wearing pants.

Feeling

  • Hopeful that spring is actually here
  • Excited for the Tone it Up Bikini Series (sign up and get more info here)
  • A little anxious and a little overwhelmed (it’s that time of year in the office) but also very grateful for what’s to come

Wearing

Craving

  • A salad as big as my car 
  • Organized closets and cabinets and drawers 
  • “Cool Mom Jeans” (I’ll know ’em when I see ’em)
  • A beach day
  • Caffeine and/or a nap (what else is new?)

Also On Tap for Today:

What are you currently reading? I’d love your recommendations!