Sunday, November 19, 2017

Autumn Garden and Embracing Imperfection

autumn garden, dahlia, autumn dahlia, red yellow dahlia, autumn sunshine

Hi Friends! It's been too long since I've shared anything here on the blog. The end of this past summer suddenly brought with it so many duties and responsibilities that it all felt like too much weight. Nothing was fun! I really needed to take a step back, evaluate and allow myself to embrace imperfection - the idea that as much as I would like to, I can't do it all.

I actually went for several weeks without picking up my camera or spending time on my favorite social media platform Instagram. I decided to let all that be and see where it leads.

At first it led to many early evening naps on the couch. You know that feeling you get when your body tells you to shut down and get the sleep that you know you've been neglecting for probably weeks, or even months? That was me.

autumn garden, Pacific Northwest gray squirrel, Pacific Northwest grey squirrel, Oregon squirrel

It's been several weeks now since I allowed myself free time to just let things flow. And I must say it has been a great relief to stare out the window, watch Mother Nature unfold, and marvel at all the color in my garden that I'm sharing with you here. 

autumn garden, dahlia, autumn dahlia, Dutch Explosion dahlia

As far as this blog is concerned, it is clear from the stats what I should be writing about: Art History and vintage collectables. I've known that for awhile. I think I just needed to concentrate on photography. Meaning I have been rather obsessed with photographing flowers and my vintage finds for my Instagram feed and hosting the #collectandstyle hashtag. And while I have loved doing that and meeting so many incredibly talented women there, the truth is that I was burning myself out attempting to reach my own version of perfection.

autumn garden, autumn maple, red leaved maple, quan yin

I have learned so much about still life photography from both trial and error and from all my talented Instagram friends. There is nothing more pleasurable in life than creating something out of the love that you feel in your heart and sharing that expression with the world.

autumn garden, dahlia, autumn dahlia

Giving myself permission to take a step back and disengage has allowed me to feel okay with the fact that in this crazy on-line world, I can't do 'all the things'. Especially since I don't always know what I should be doing next! So, instead of beating myself up for not doing all those things that I think I should be doing, I'm opting for just two priorities for right now - this blog and my Etsy shop Vintage Tea Treasures.

autumn garden, blueberries in autumn, autumn blueberry bushes

I consider Vintage Tea Treasures my greatest gift from the world wide web. It all started last year when I worked with Numi Organic Tea. They sponsored my Instagram hashtag and my tea ware shop was born out of that effort. (Thank you James for suggesting it!)

From the very moment I started this blog I knew that I wanted a shop of some kind. And then I discovered that I got a lot of pleasure from sharing my knowledge and growing expertise in vintage tea ware. In fact, I would better describe it as a passion that has grown into a calling. A calling that I have been wanting to spend more time on but have felt too stretched thin to be able to accomplish it.

It was for that very reason then, that I realized I just needed to get to work on my shop and make it a priority.

And so for the last several weeks I have been spending my spare time putting effort into growing the inventory in Vintage Tea Treasures. I've been on the hunt for teacups, teapots and dessert plates, getting them photographed and listing them. If there is any lesson I can say I've learned over the last couple of months, it would be that it feels so much easier to concentrate on one large task at a time, and be in it wholeheartedly.

Since taking a break from social media, a few of my fellow Instagrammers have sent me direct messages inquiring about my well being. Thank you! I do plan to be back, but in a more limited capacity. 

autumn garden, autumn dahlia, orange dahlia

So as the clock ticks away on the close of this unusually sunny, warm and long-lasting colorful autumn season here in the Willamette Valley of Oregon, with its shorter days, long nights and what seems like endless leaves to rake, my family and I begin to turn inward. To more time spent indoors out of the rain, and leaning into the preparations for our Thanksgiving and holiday season.

pumpkin and mums, autumnal light, autumn mums, fall colored mums

Pumpkin pie, anyone?

Alfred Meakin Sunflower plates, Meakin Ironstone plates, Meakin plates, Ironstone plates, pumpkin pie, mums


1 comment

  1. Ah so good to see all these wonderful Autumn colours, how wonderful. Are the plants all in your garden? I am also rather liking your pumpkin pie plates.
    I'm so glad you found the time to share here on your blog. I am itching to get something on mine too but as you have said we can't do everything!
    Sending you lots of love from across the pond
    Madeline xx


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