“Every artist was first an amateur.”
To be an artist one has to find beauty in ordinary things. Find 10 things of great beauty in the landscape that surrounds you. For example, crumple sheets on your bed in the morning, the smell of coffee making its way around a busy office.
It seems like in the last week or so we have been surrounded by constant negativity; the stock market is in limbo and there are frequent doubts as to whether or not we are headed for another recession. Our government leaders are doing the best to reassure us that they have the best interest of the American people, but it does not seem that way at all. Everything in the news these days is often so dark and grim, leading me to ask, along with many other people, "what exactly is this world coming to?"
It's times like these where I literally have to take a step back and re-count my blessings; I realize that this is incredibly cliche, but sometimes I get so wrapped up in all this worry and what-if that I forget about all the wonderful things that I am surrounded by. They're small and at times are difficult to pick out in the hustle and bustle of life, but nonetheless they're there.
1. Having a Cup of Coffee in the morning-This has become part of my routine since eighth grade; it is the reason why I tend to get up early in the morning, just to have an hour or so to myself before everyone else is awake. There is no rushing around trying to complete morning tasks along with attempting to wake up. During this time I normally watch my soap operas (don't laugh) or catch up on whatever shows are on my DVR at the moment. Other times I read, write in my journal or blog.
2. Taking a shower-Sometimes it's before I have coffee and other times it's afterward. But there really is nothing like taking a hot shower, whether it be to start the day or end it.
3. Swinging-I have a swingset in my backyard, one that would normally have stopped being used once my siblings and I grew older. However, that was not the case for me. I still like to swing on my swingset, listening to my ipod and allowing my mind to wander for a little while. I could do it for hours if I wanted to. It's nice just to be outside, especially with the view of the lake.
4. The lake itself-When I was very young, I used to think that God either put diamonds in the water or sprinkled glitter on top of it. In reality, however, it was just the sun reflecting off the water. I didn't go swimming in it this summer as much as I normally would. On the hottest of days I was at work, and then during the rainy ones I would be stuck sitting inside. But I do think it is one of the most beautiful things about the property that we live on. Natural bodies of water don't bother me very much at all. And although the yard and the house is often a lot to take care of, I believe that it's worth it.
5. Mom's flower garden-I absolutely love flowers; Mom has several gardens planted in the backyard and every once in awhile she'll pick some and put them in a vase in the kitchen. When I went through a photography phase (I literally took pictures of everything in the backyard), flowers took up the majority of the pictures. They're a major staple in my current bedroom and will continue to be when I move into my apartment.
6. Books-Once again, I am probably stating the obvious, but I love to read. My closet is full of them, and whenever I go to the library. It's a shame that some don't care to pick up a book unless they absolutely have to; I understand that everybody has their personal preferences, but I feel like I've learned a heck of a lot more about life from reading books as opposed to TV.
7. Family Photo albums/home videos- I haven't been looking at either as of late, mostly because it makes me cry to the point where it's difficult for me not to look obvious that I'm crying. But there are so many memories of my childhood, from crazy holiday get-togethers to vacations filled with happenings that we still talk about to this very day. But there are moments where I struggle with understanding that I'm no longer a kid anymore; that I am now an adult and I have to take on adult responsibilities. But I feel blessed and fortunate enough to have gotten to do so many amazing things, and have grown up with wonderful people around me.
8. My pets-They're no longer small enough to carry around and can be huge pain in the necks, but I adore having them around. It's nice to give hugs and kisses and not get any complaints (well, for the most part anyway).
9. My Disney movie collection-I still watch Disney movies, probably more this past summer then ever. Somehow watching them always makes me smile, especially the princess ones. Those are definitely coming with me to my apartment as well.
10. My bed-In the past I have always taken having a warm bed to sleep in for granted. There are so many people who don't get to come home to warm, clean blankets; sometimes not even their own mattress. So that is definitely something that is beautiful.
There are always things to be grateful for and to appreciate. It is just a matter of taking the time and effort to look for them.