Plan B May Be Plan A

I AROSE QUITE EARLY (for me) on Tuesday. I’m not sure what possessed me to do it … other than I wanted to catching the sun rise with a beautiful backdrop of clouds. I was sure the display would—should—be breathtaking. So, from the comfort of the house, looking east out my kitchen window, I waited. (Click on images for more detail.)Predawn image

As I waited, the predawn songs of the earliest risers floated to my ears, warming my heart. A singular songbird, then a scrub jay … then the roosters. Bit by bit the air was fillled with song, making me smile.

My Wunderground Weather app said “first light” was at 6:34. “Sunrise” was at 7:04. I waited. The last time I tried this, I was in place for “sunrise” and the display (if there was any at all) was completely done by the time I arrived at the window. I’ve tried to get myself going on many occasions so I could enjoy the lit-up sky, to no avail. Sandman kept pummelling me, telling me sleep was far more important.

Cloudy sky image“First light” came and went with only the moody monotone clouds. Beautiful, but not what I had hoped for. Patiently, I waited. I was greeted with birds of all sizes at my strategically placed feeders. Nuthatches, sparrows of all types, a solitary scrub jay … seeing them brought joy to my heart. Sunrise imageAs “sunrise” approached, only the faintest blush of colour painted the clouds. Nice. I waited. And waited—with great anticipation. A bit more of a dusting of colour painted the clouds … but nothing more. Sunrise imageMy heart sank. I was truly looking forward to God’s glory in the form of a robust, colourful blaze in the sky. Apparently there were far too many unseen clouds somewhere, obscuring what I figured should have been a spectacular sight. My wait for a broad stroke of beautiful colours was disappointing, but the sights and sounds of the morning waking dampened the disappointment considerably. Cloudy sky imageThen I remembered something a friend said at a church gathering the night before. She was talking about when plans go astray. To put it in a nutshell, what she was trying to say was our plan B (or C) may be God’s plan A. It’s a good lesson for me to hold onto, since my plans seldom go as anticipated. It’s taken a long time to realise, but now I seldom stress over it—always “chilling” and seeing where the new path will lead me. I’ve never thought about why the plans didn’t go as I wanted. I should know better—after all, I’ve tried to direct my story (series) the way I wanted and learned the hard way that I’m not in control … never was!

Christmas lights and trees imageThat Tuesday morning, I enjoyed the glory of hearing and seeing the first sights and sounds of an early morning … and enjoyed the subtle blush of the sunrise. Whether I find myself planning another early rise or not, I know I need to simply enjoy God’s plan A.

May your Friday and this upcoming weekend and week to come be filled to overflowing with wonderful, serendipitous plans—whether they be your Plan A … or God’s.

Book Arts: Medieval-Style Books

I SPENT THE WEEKEND in a workshop at Open Ground Studios, learning how to creating a limp vellum medieval book. It’s not the first time I’ve attended a workshop led by Nicky Yeager. And, it will not be the last. I like his laid-back teaching style. This particular workshop was a challenge, but I had fun … and was pleased with the final results. I was sleep deprived (only a bad night’s sleep) and my brain was a wee bit foggy—even after a few cups of coffee—all of which hindered my comprehension.

Of course since it was my first attempt, it was far from perfect—but that’s okay. I’ve always considered the first one my prototype. I found myself alternately frustrated (till I figured out how to do a step) and content—I keep forgetting how much I love working with my hands. I’ve been spending so much time editing (head-work) lately that I’d forgotten the joy of real hands-on creating. Every time I finish up one of his workshops, I want to dive into creating more of what I’ve just learned.

This weekend’s event was no different. I’m glad my mind has been kick-started with creative ideas, but with my upcoming trip, I’m not sure I’ll be able to follow through. Last night my brain wouldn’t stop thinking about the different forms of medieval books. My absolute favourite is the wood-bound books. I spent a good portion of the wee hours of Monday thinking about how I could go about getting my hands on quarter-sawn oak … (insert very loud sigh and eye roll—teehee); about how I’ll keep track of the actual costs of materials so I could price them fairly (for the customer and still make a wee bit of a profit) … and how many I should make. Oh. And I wondered about how I could re-invigorate interest in my personalised storybooks. Maybe I’ve too many interests … just maybe.

Oh, yes. My creative mind has definitely re-engaged.

But all of that must go on hold—at least temporarily, until I’m able to get all my travel plans solidly arranged. Then I’ll start planning my next art project. Oh, wait … I have five books to publish (well, re-publish three and first-time publish two). Egads. I do love a challenge—and juggling projects—don’t I? I know a few of my friends will be doing eye rolls when they see what I’ve planned for myself upon returning from across The Pond.

Here are a few photos from the weekend—not all, as many of them are not cooperating—I’ve spent most of the week

DIY Signature "Punching" Craddle

A handy device to punch holes in the signatures. I’m green with envy.

Signatures Ready To Punch ... Almost

Since I don’t have the DIY craddle, gotta poke ’em all the old fashioned way, using a template (grey sheet).

Okay ... Now I'm Ready

Punched on left, ready to be punched on right. Template at center fold (visible so you can see one of the notches used to punch uniform holes for threading signatures together).

Yeah ... I’ve two that could be entered IF they were done. Maybe next year. Thanks for the heads up.

Twisted leather strips that anchor the signature to the cover.

trying to “right” those photos that loaded side-ways (ugh). I’m giving up on correcting things and posting—I’ll add to the images later when my computer/iPhone is less twitchy! Remember you can click on each image to enlarge them.

Have a great day, a blessed weekend and here’s to Spring making an appearance (well, mostly). Hope you’ll come back next week to see what mischief I’ll be up to—personally, I have no clue (insert huge grin and a wink!). Toodles.a