HAPPY BIRTHDAY MR. CAREY

I have had a rough week. One of those, lose your phone, cannot get a good night of sleep, stressed about your last trip happenings and those to come in your upcoming one this weekend, sick dog, kind of weeks. And I am turning 25 in just a bit as well. Not that 25 is old, but I have viewed it as a sort of milestone for a long time. When I was younger I would think, “how awesome is my life going to be when I’m 25?!” “25?! Just imagine how many incredible things I will have accomplished!” “How many creative and awe-inspiring companies do you suppose I will be running by 25?”

Naturally, things are a bit different than that starry-eyed little lady had imagined. And not to be all, ‘woe is me’ or anything, but hitting this milestone has really had me questioning, how did I get here, what am I doing with my life, why haven’t I done more or at least made more progress towards my dreams? Remember how much of an awesome and motivated and driven and do-all-it-takes kinda person you used to be? Clearly something went awry along the way.

Then an odd thing happened. This morning, I was listening to some crappy radio station where they were announcing celebrity birthdays and for whatever reason when they announced that Drew Carey was turning 55 today, I thought, wow, 55? That is 30 years older than me. 30 years is a long time. 30 is even larger of a number than 25. And in the next 30 years, sure I probably will buy a house, change jobs a few times, but life won’t be totally changing as quickly as it was throughout these first 25 years. Surely in these next 30 I can truly be refining who it is that I am, determine what defines me, and figure out what sort of things I want to really accomplish in this lifetime. If you think about it, the amount of life changes that occur from 0-25 it is pretty nut-balls. For some reason, this made me feel better.

Sure I still wish that some of the decisions I made along the way were different, but there isn’t anything that I can’t work to correct or still make an effort to redirect my life towards (and I am.) At (nearly) 25 my biggest problems are: 1. I set totally unrealistic and impossible expectations of myself, pretty much guaranteeing failure and subsequent depression – time to start setting baby step, or reasonable goals for myslef, my life, my happiness; 2. I am a realist often leaning on the side of pessimism who uses sarcasm and self-deprecating humor as a crutch, yet at the same time, am a person who desperately wants to be a bright, colorful, optimist, rock star, creative junkie – but sometimes you have to just accept who you are and not get bent out of shape trying to fit into a mold that isn’t yours, even if your natural mold is in the shape of a black cloud, rather than a gold star; and 3.  I have chronic the-grass-is-always-greener syndrome and excel at looking at all that I have and compare it only to those who have it better, but the truth is, life is pretty sweet – putting things in perspective is on the top of the list of skills to develop in the next 30 years, preferably 3, not 30.

In summary, what I realized is that I am so tired of feeling sorry for myself. I am so tired of then feeling guilty for feeling sorry for myself. I am tired of my laziness and my immaturity. I am sure my loved ones are tired of all that as well. 24 has been a challenging year, but a good one in that a lot of thinking has been done, maybe not a ton of real action or progress, but mental planning for the very awesome things that HAVE to be in my future. Because I won’t settle for less.

And to end this post, I would like to thank Drew Carey. Thank you for being a lot older than me. And Joyeux Anniversaire to you!

drew-carey

/via/

P.S. That photo on the left is Mr. Carey about 33 years ago, age 22. Lookin’ sharp kid-Carey.

ryannplus30

PAINTINGS

I don’t get nostalgic often. Sure, I appreciate and will mildly indulge in a sweet passing memory, but I don’t spend much time focusing around those thoughts as I find it occasionally leads to, for me, anyway, a shift in thinking – away from forward movement, to wishing some things were how they used to be. Or worse even, sometimes regret will enter the picture. And we all know regret loves to keep depression as close company. Then the next thing you know I am in the fetal position on the bathroom floor feeling sorry for myself for reasons I have already forgotten because all I can possibly do now is just be extremely sad. I probably (read: definitely) am exaggerating here, but my point is, I find myself looking forward, and only forward so much that I actually having created this false fear of looking back on things. It is so bad that I will often forget that it is also important to take an occasional step back to realize your accomplishments, remind yourself of where you came from and use that for wind in your sails. Gas in your tank. Pep in your step. Scoot in your boot.

This week I did some file organizing and found some pieces I hadn’t thought about in a while. Today, my primary focus when it comes to creating art has been graphic design, however, there was a time that I would spend my days/evenings/what is now considered my sleeping hours, in the painting studio. Over the last several years, I have done a painting or two, here and there, for friends or gifts mostly, but I can’t recall the time that I just painted because I felt like it or had a grand idea I wanted to see realized. Not to say my “commissioned” projects haven’t been fun, quite the contrary, actually, as I have greatly appreciated the excuse to get out my painting supplies. Yet today – as I look through some of my these aged files I am reminded of those wine nights with my fellow art students, listening to David Bowie or Iron and Wine or the latest band we were certain no one else in the universe but us knew about, and discussing the stress of the deadlines or our Art Professor’s passion for Tarot cards – I realize I should really revisit this practice. Maybe sans the deadlines.

To share a bit of this nostalgia with all of you, here are a few of the paintings I have done, once upon a time. (Are they great? No. Am I still proud/happy with them? You bet. Are they available for purchase or a gallery showing? Absolutely! Anytime! If fact, my studio is on wheels these days and ran out of my car due to the size of my current apartment – I can come to you! Home delivery, the latest in art collection convenience!)

wrath

taylor

thekaratestudio

angryalex

gluttony

Also, don’t ask me about my hair yet. It is still in the process…. patience my dears.

Working for the Weekend

Although the week has started and I am already well into my crazy schedule, my mind is stuck on my weekend. In my mind I am still bike riding along the strand or sipping mimosas with a good friend after finishing our 10K.

Only a few more days before we get to enjoy another little life break.

weekend

For some extra fun-timez, here are a few great things the internet has introduced to me today:

  1. I just can’t quit watching the NPR tiny desk concerts, here is a great one of Swell Season.
  2. While I was considering just making some myself, these coasters may have changed my mind.
  3. Last chance to vote for Homies on Apartment Therapy – everyone should vote! (If you are dying to know who I voted for, here is a hint: rhymes with Ranhattan Fest)
  4. I think I could literally listen to Amy Winehouse singing Valerie for the rest of the week, straight.
  5. Booked our flights and our rental care for our spring break, Europe trip. Countries will include Belgium, Germany, and France. Send any must-see’s my way. (So far I have taken about 20 pages of notes from Oh Happy Day’s Paris posts)
  6. My type-friends will appreciate this: Kern Ring Set. I also appreciate and want to own them.
  7. Two favorite recent (crazy stylish and beautiful) blogs I have found: Sweet Thing and JASPR.
  8. My web design class meets for the second time tonight and I can already tell this is going to be one of my favorite classes of all time. Big plans, huge goals, and exciting future – here I come.
  9. This Design Sponge, Bri Emery of Design Love Fest and Blogshop feature is so inspiring and motivating. Repeat – big plans, huge goals, and exciting future – here I come.
  10. This vegan paleo recipe posted by Jeremy and Kathleen has me wanting to go vegan paleo.

What are your weekend plans? What are your huge goals?

**Don’t forget to immortalize your favorite pet or loved one in a DIY cell-phone cover, either for the Hallmark holiday around the corner, or just because.**

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