Art in August (Whadduya mean August is almost over??)

I signed up for Art in August over at Laptop on the Ironing Board. I did, I swear. I’ve done a few artsy type things. I’ve been too lazy swamped driven crazy by my varmints unable to post the results so far. I have a good excuse or three.

My mom had surgery and a follow up trip to the emergency room for an infection. It’s been fun ( My and IJ’s wedding anniversary was last week. We went to a yarn store and a used book store, which meant, because we are giant nerds, that we had a fabulous time. Uh, we also went out to a nice restaurant for dinner. Arranging babysitting was a last minute oh-crud-we-forgot-my-parents-can’t-babysit-because-mom-just-had-surgery kind of ordeal.

Aaaand, the biggest hurdle: IJ’s schedule change has been killing me. Me and the Helpful Toddler. Together for 12 hours a day, 5 days a week. Without Daddy. Without Grandma’s occasional but crucial help. 60 hours of Toddler time, every week.

To give you a sample–a couple of days ago, she broke a light bulb in her room. She decided not to tell me about it because she didn’t want to get in trouble (since she broke it doing what she had been told not to do). But she thoughtfully didn’t want the baby to get it (or for me to see it, I’d guess), so she helpfully hid the broken glass…

in the baby’s crib. We figured it out just after putting the baby to bed in her dark room. We are AWESOME parents. Thankfully no one was hurt, though I did wake up in a cold sweat several times that night and make IJ go make sure she was still okay. I don’t know that he completely woke up for these episodes–his body has fully adjusted to fathering, you see.

Moving on to the actual topic. Art in August. Kate at Laptop on the Ironing Board has a nice list of the others who are participating. Be sure to check them out!

I used to paint a lot. Usually watercolor. But since I’ve gotten out of college and gotten married and had children and bought a house with a yard that just won’t stop growing *deep breath*, I find my enthusiasm for non-practical artistic pursuits has dropped off. It’s not that I feel painting is not valuable (just the opposite); it’s that I feel like I don’t have time or energy for it in between the necessary parts of my job as a SAHM mom.

You see, it’s like conducting a battle. Lots of strategic set up, disheartening clean up, and hand-to-hand combat (i.e. fighting off little hands). Not to mention the psychological warfare (i.e. whining).

So I’ve been trying to satisfy my inner artist in the everyday tasks. Cooking is one. Perfecting sourdough is definitely an art. Or preparing meals like this:


Beef and vegetable stew on mashed potatoes, with dark leafy greens and chardonnay


Rolled cheese omelet with roasted root veggies, brown rice, garden salad, and sauerkraut

Even with a weeknight dinner, inventing a recipe on the fly, plus a little effort in presentation, makes me feel worlds better.

Knitting is an artistic outlet that is easy to pick up and put down, AND results in a totally practical useful object. So this month I designed and knitted a sweater for myself.


The design is simple but satisfying, and comfortable and warm. And it was quick to knit!


It feels like I’ve been working on IJ’s aran sweater forever; a quick design/knit fix was necessary.

And, lastly (for now), I did some actual non-practical artwork. A creative block had me putting it off. I didn’t actually overcome the block; therefore I went with my usual symbol: butterfly (did I mention the Curious Pup is a papillon?). I’m a sucker for design elements that include butterflies. At least I feel like this picture represents my current life status.


I actually fingerpainted this mixed media piece (yarn and thumb tacks contributed as well). It seemed like the thing to do. The Helpful Toddler painted, too.


Turns out I have the only child in the world who hates fingerpainting. She wanted to ruin all my brushes instead.

I still intend to do a much larger project, but I am still missing a piece for it. Not sure it’ll get done in August, exactly…

Well, that’s my Art in August update. FINALLY.

Please, may I have a gold sticker?

(Shiny objects help distract the Helpful Toddler…)

August isn’t over yet! Anyone else get a creative itch they just have to scratch sometimes???

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6 Responses to Art in August (Whadduya mean August is almost over??)

  1. This is awesome! Plus I love the lightbulb story (it’s funny because it didn’t happen to me – this time…) I know what you mean about ‘practical creativity’, I tend to lean that way myself. But I’ve found doing impractical creative things is very nurturing because it allows me to play, with less focus on the end product.
    I’ve had life get in the way this August as well. I think this project is going to spill well into September for me!

    • Sorry to hear about your grandmother. 😦

      Well, it was write about the light bulb storyand see if I could get a laugh out if it or remove all light bulbs from my house.

      I’m glad I’m not the only one spilling into September!

  2. Hi Katy, I’m thinking of doing a wrap-up post for Art in August (I know, it’s October – so embarrassing!). I was thinking, it would look nice if I chose an art work from each participant and made a nine-panel mosaic of the pictures (not sure yet how to do this, but I’m willing to give it a try!)

    I want to check first that I have your permission to reproduce one of your images on my blog. I will rig it so that clicking on the image will take the reader to your post. (if I can figure out how!)

    Let me know what you think,. If you don’t manage to get back to me, I will assume all is well and post away, though I will take it down as soon as you ask me, of course!

  3. Pingback: Art in August – A Wrap Up | Laptop on the Ironing Board

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