My job for the past year—since being laid off as a graphic designer in educational book publishing—has been looking for a job. It has been stressful to be sure. But through the job hunt and worrying about money and bills I have been fortunate enough to enjoy the one thing that money can never buy—time. Isn't that what we all want ... a year of Sundays?
Overall, putting aside the unemployment angst and daily uncertainty, this past year really has been lovely and amazing. I've had time for my inner child to come out and play and just to be the creative dreamer that I naturally am. I've had time to watch cherry tree blossoms floating in spring breezes, time to run barefoot in the grass during thunderous summer rainstorms, time to paint en plein air on freezing cold mornings after a snowstorm, time to feel warm sun shining on my face as I cultivated my garden, and time to cultivate me. I've explored the world—traveled just a bit, been museum hopping, read books and watched great films. I've played in the kitchen and experimented with new recipes. I've had play dates with friends, my husband, and relatives. Who can ever put a price tag on a special lunch with my mom, favorite aunt, cousin, brother and sister-in law?
These are the memories I've forged over the past year, and they will always be a part of who I am. I will never forget them.
Today, I start a new job. I'm thrilled to be jumping back into the game designing children's books. Is it any wonder to you readers that this is the kind of real work I do? I'll always find wonder and amazement in the world, and see color inspiration in the most mundane things. But just know that I may not be posting on this blog as often as I've done in the past. I am happy knowing that my new job is a perfect match for my spirit and imagination. But I will always dream enough to share my Bella Vita here. And my year of magical thinking? It was worth a million… maybe even 365 million.