Do something

Long ago, a friend introduced me to her secret for making progress on any project – do something. She likened anything she tackled to the endless writing assignments she had to plow through in graduate school – when she just couldn’t bring herself to write anything, she’d work on the bibliography page(s). Something about making even that tiny bit of progress kept her moving forward on the larger project and, perhaps more important, kept her from spiraling into total writer’s block (well, that and frosted Cheerios, which she still swears by as her favorite writer’s fuel).

The span of crappy days I endured last week culminated in a weekend with strep throat (which I’m not convinced is just strep, since getting up and taking a shower still makes me tired). But, true maker that I am, even illness doesn’t completely squelch my desire to make something – it just makes it really damn difficult.

My personal adaptation of the bibliography approach is to embellish something that already exists – spruce up my immediate surroundings. It’s a lot like doodling, but more permanent. Sometimes it’s taking cuttings from my plants, for re-rooting and growing into new plants. Sometimes it’s using my scrapbook supplies to make labels for things we keep in plain sight. Last night, I decided to dress up my coupon binder.

From the comfort of my chair, I played with fonts and images and all sorts of layouts, ultimately making what you see here, for each section divider of my coupon binder. What used to be plain white pages (with the section title only on the tab) are now covered in my favorite fonts, with plenty of room for adding doodles or coloring in, if the mood strikes … or if this illness doesn’t end soon.


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