My Ideal Day…

I have been busy this week with an online course on landscape quilts through Joggles, with Judy Alexander. I also am working on a marketing class that I hope will lead to some new work and some additional income as I approach retirement. I’ve done loads of reading on marketing, and when I had my non-profit learning center, I was very good at what I call “shoe leather marketing” – what you do when there’s no money for marketing. But I am getting very serious about my art, and I want to be able to sell it in the next few years. So this is one avenue I am pursuing.

Now most courses always have exercises for you to do, and I tend to read them and then move on to the next bit of information and not do the exercise. Not this time. I am going to do this full-bore and see what happens. So, one of the first exercises is to look at your ideal day. No barriers, just imagination. I can see the value to doing this already, as it will begin to help me focus on who and what I want to be in the coming years. I also can see myself doing this exercise again in three and a half years when I officially retire. But it seems practical to do it for now, as I am committed to teaching for the next three-plus years – unless I REALLY do well with all of this, and who knows!!!

I see a day where I get up refreshed and not exhausted and have a light breakfast. I’m off to a job I really like and enjoy. I usually head out early so I can get some things done before kids start coming in for conferences. I want to try and get out and walk at lunch to continue my plan of increasing exercise during the day. I would like to take the bus in to work at least once a week to save on gas and the environment. I hope to have a bit more time during the school day to get papers corrected and lesson plans done. Next year I will be going back to a regular contract of five classes, instead of my current schedule of six classes. It means losing a considerable amount of additional income, but I need to consider my health, my physical abilities, and my growing art interests.

I leave school with minimal work for the evening, preferably nothing, so I am free to pursue my art and my writing and marketing. I walk to the bus stop, adding to my exercise plan. This is really important for me to continue, as I need to monitor my body for its health. Once I get home, I want my time for my blog and my art. This is where I see myself developing the ideal afternoon/evening….

I see several paths. One is licensing my art designs, so I will plan at least an hour each day for reviewing emails concerning prospective sales, bookwork tracking existing and new contracts, and some Photoshop work as I prepare new samples and designs.

A second path is my fiber art, so I will always have handwork available for downtime in front of the television with hubby. I will take three hours each day of the weekend to do sewing, design, cutting, planning patterns so that on the weekdays I have small projects.

A third path is my art group, Mixed Media Arts – soon to have its own Word Press site. I will spend an hour on this, marketing, writing, getting interviews and connections. This is where I see the BlogMasters coming into play. A last path, but certainly not the least, is my marbling. At least twice a week I want to marble paper and fabric for the small quarterly orders that we have established.

Mostly I want my late afternoon and evenings to be art-related. I want to relax with my husband, talk about art, read about art, go to galleries and add to our own art collections, small though they may be. Money is not an issue, and neither is health care. We are together, we enjoy a small circle of friends, and if we want to go out to dinner, buy some books or art, go to the movies, or be spontaneous and get out of town suddenly, we can do that.

I do see some of this changing in three years – primarily with planning for our travels and seeing how to make the new art business fit a new schedule. It might seem as though I’m “settling” for the immediate future, but I don’t think so. I think it’s more realistic than anything else. I have been more productive over these last few months, and I see this continuing. Last year’s goals were to enter and be accepted to two shows, and that happened. This year I have a show to prepare for in March, and several licensing opportunities to explore. Plus I am doing more writing, which I really love.

I look at this and wonder where the dreaming went. Have the last few years (well, two decades, actually) been so tough that the dreams of the 20s and 30s are totally gone? Is it realistic or is it what I really want? I think I’m going to have to really ponder this one….

5 Responses to “My Ideal Day…”

  • Anne Huskey-Lockard:

    Sometimes our dreams from younger ages are not our dreams at our current place in life.
    I have found it is learning to seperate myself from the ones from years ago and realistically look at myself and what I do now. That gives me a better idea of where I really want to head: how much can I do physically, what is involved both time and money-wise, am I truly pursuing *my* path, and—most importantly—am I enjoying this?
    Becaue the last I don't know how many years? I have done a lot of work that I have NOT enjoyed the process though it was good work and resulted in some income.
    But the tradeoff (selling the soul for cash) was not worth it.
    I'm at a deciding point….giving it time to all settle in and see what happens.
    And for once, I'm in no hurry, and I'm okay with that. 🙂


  • Jan:

    Thanks for becoming a follower on my new blog, Linda. I'm too distracted to give good attention to your long post on your blog today, I will be back.

  • Linda Moran:

    Thank you, Anne.I'm definitely at a deciding point – I just end up having loads to think about! Your wisdom is appreciated!!

  • colortwirl:

    An inspiring post, Linda. I think you're wise to start dreaming with your current reality. Two years ago I negotiated a four day work week (with corresponding drop in salary) so I could spend one day a week on marbling and related pursuits. It helps me keep my sanity with the job and revealed a lot about my focus or lack there-of. It's practice retirement, one day a week!

  • Linda Moran:

    Thanks, colortwirl – I think however I look at developing my business and art work has to be in light of current reality. I'm content with reality right now, but I know that will change. If I can start working toward an art goal now and see progress, then my "dreams" and ideal day should change over the next few years!

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