Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Strength, Grace, and Wisdom

According to Sarah Ban Breathnach, who I frequently turn to for inspiration {lifestyle & creative}, what it takes to lead a CHARMED LIFE {and we're not talking "embellishments" here} is as simple as ...




"There is entirely too much charm around, and something has to be done to stop it."

-- Dorothy Parker

You may be thinking BAH, HUMBUG to Dorothy Parker for that one. But take a closer look, and you'll begin to see what DP and SBB mean when they bring to our attention all the glossy magazine images that make us think everyone ELSE has a perfect life, the most beautiful house {ah, but is it a HOME?}, is living a perfectly charmed existence.

Ain't no such thing, is what I say.

Being an {albeit retired} interior designer, and having worked many photo shoots for magazines and marketing materials, I am here to tell you IT IS ALL STAGED. Yes, the houses and/or rooms were delightful in some special way in the first place, or else they would not be the subject of said photo shoot. But I gaurantee you that what you see in the photo, and what you would have seen two hours prior -- or two hours post shoot -- are not the same thing. WE DRESS THINGS UP. WE CLEAN THINGS UP. WE STRAIGHTEN THINGS UP. WE TAKE PEOPLE'S "Stuff" AND WE HIDE IT. You have no idea !!!

That covers one aspect -- places we see in magazines.

The same goes for the beautiful models gracing the pages and our televisions -- of course they all have a particular beauty, a certain "look" about them -- that's why they are modeling or acting. But the stylist is responsible for getting them to that JUST RIGHT look you end up seeing. They sure don't roll out of bed looking all good to go. No sirreeeeeee. Being the daughter of a 40's - 50's-60's-70's fashionista, I am here to tell you -- what you see is NOT what they see when first they look in the morning mirror !!!

Mom used to tell me ... "if I don't look perfectly made up and put together, head to toe, front to back, each time I step out the front door -- who will hire me for their next convention / fashion show / appearance?" And sadly, she was probably right - but it was her BUSINESS -- MOM was the product.

So what does all this have to do with CREATIVITY?

Princess Magpie {that would be me!} is known for putting a lot of expectation & pressure on herself {yes, it's true!} for how things should turn out.

Take my Christmas Cards for example. I want them EACH to be so charming, that the recipient will keep it forever. PUH-LEEZ. For the most part, they won't know what sort of time, thought, love, and energy went into making the card -- and if I don't send them the "perfect" card FOR THEM, that will really appeal to them, making it impossible for them to toss it out after the holidays ... then SO BE IT. I have to put the love and energy into the cards, write our greetings inside, put the postage on, and SEND THEM ON THEIR MERRY WAY. And just let whatever happens to them next ... happen.

SO - my creative friends - NO PRESSURE. Make art because it makes YOU happy inside. Then release it into the world and JUST LET IT GO ... LET IT BE ... let whatever happens next, happen.

Get up each day, thank God for all your blessings, and put on your own version of


to keep you going all the day through.

That's where I was going with all that!

-- Princess Magpie, aka DAH
wishing a Most Happy December to you all

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