After a rough autumn-into-winter, things are looking up. Had a basically wonderful holiday vacation with the whole family, with time in the sun, so that was nice. January still WAY too calm: I feel like I've been marking time for over a year now, waiting for SOMETHING to excite me again, and allow me to use my mind again. Hubby's surgery and recuperation, in addition to my own physical troubles, left me reeling, and feeling WAY too sorry for myself. Not a productive way to be, and not the way I like to handle things, but I felt like I was turning in circles.
Well, my life has just gotten interesting again! I applied, and was accepted to, an art school that holds its classes online. The concept is to give a classical art education to students around the world, and I have to say, if I was skeptical before beginning, I'm quickly becoming a believer...
I've always loved art: drawing and painting and anything to do with color. I even contemplated going to art school instead of a liberal arts college when I left high school, but I felt that I didn't have the talent, or the fire in my belly, that was necessary to fully bloom at that time. I still think I made the right decision (especially since it brought me to the life I have now, which is pretty darn good!).
But after having had careers in accounting/finance, teaching English, and stay-at-home motherhood, it was time for a change. I lose interest in a career when I feel like I've learned all I want to learn, and boredom isn't something I look for in a job, or in any activity. And I have to add that I know how incredibly blessed I am to have the options I have: to work or not, to do an activity or not, and not have to worry about bringing in a paycheck. I appreciate the freedom I have to explore new interests, but then the "dilemma" becomes: with all the choice I have, what do I do? It's harder than you might think...
Anyway, I figured it was time to look at my options to do art, but I wasn't ready to become an amateur painter in a local expatriate art group. And not knowing enough Dutch to participate in schools here was also a hindrance. I want to learn the principles of good art, the classical principles that started with the Greeks and Romans, were rediscovered by the Renaissance artists, and still continue today. Not that I don't like "modern" art, but to break the rules, you have to KNOW the rules, you know?
So back to this online art school*: it gives a classical art education, starting from the basics, in 30 months of full-time study. As a beginner, I have about 27 hours per week of online classes (lectures, streaming video, slides, demonstrations), and then 10-15 hours per week of homework to hand in. The workload is heavy, but I'm enjoying every minute of it. And although the classes are held in Texas, they can be watched on demand, which works for me since some of the lessons are in the early morning hours Dutch time!
I've found a new passion, and it's amazing how it has energized me in my exercise and my eating as well: the couple of pounds I've gained since the holidays are now coming off, since I'm not mindlessly nibbling. Much too busy!
And one last tidbit: I finally found a way to try out yoga, since classes never worked due to physical impediments. I've signed up for private lessons, and after the first class with the teacher (a lovely woman!), I slept like a baby and felt like my whole body had been stretched and pulled in all directions, in a good way, of course! She was able to help me modify poses so they were attainable, and it was amazing.
I'm coming out of hibernation, and it feels good!
*If anyone's interested in my art school, the website is:
The focus is on concept art, but they give the same classical foundation to everyone, and you specialize after the first year; I'll be majoring in Drawing/Painting myself.