I’m not especially fond of swimming. My lack of enthusiasm for the sport probably started in the eighties with my homemade terry cloth swimsuit in sixth grade.
Bless my mama’s heart (maybe terry cloth was on sale and she got a really great deal on it), but my sisters and I still laugh about the summer we spent with terry cloth swimsuits.
For the record, that’s the stuff that towels and teenage nightmares are made of.
When at the pool, I think the water is nice to look at, but I prefer to read a magazine in the shade and listen to the delightful sounds of people enjoying the water without me.
BUT...when you have two boys to raise, you get over yourself and go swimming and play Marco Polo and tag and chase them like you’re a shark. It’s just part of the parenting deal.
My boys and I spent the first 12 years together entering the pool quite differently. We would arrive at the pool, set our things down, and they would just jump straight into the pool with cackles of delight.
I, on the other hand, have been a classic toe dipper most of my life. I would sit on the edge of the pool and slowly ease my way into the seemingly always cold water.
It wasn’t hard to see who of us was having more fun. All those years, I knew they were having more fun (and I am highly motivated by fun), but my fear of being cold kept me as a toe dipper for a good long time.
Then one night, I decided I didn’t want to be a toe dipper. I wasn’t a toe dipper in any other area of life, and I thought I would surprise my boys and mix things up a bit.
We dropped the towels on the chairs, and instead of making my way to the kiddie end of the pool, I did my best Egyptian strut straight to the deep end where I cannonballed my way into the water.
They were delighted! And, after the initial shock to my system, I was, too!
They were right! It WAS indeed MORE fun! And, I now know that the only FUN way to enter the pool is to just dive on in!
Last month when I was laying out my new website, I had these categories:
FAMILY NAME CANVASES
I’ve sold digital files for years, and vinyl lettering is something I love. Art prints and canvases would be great printed on my printer. That all made perfect sense.
BUT...I didn’t have a single thing to put in my GREETING CARDS category. Instead, I made a nice little picture for the category saying,
“I’ve wanted to have a greeting card collection for over 20 years, so THIS is my online vision board. COMING SOON.”
When my kids were one and two, we were out one day running errands when I came across a store that was getting rid of a greeting card rack.
I was instantly enamoured with the idea of taking that card rack home, and somehow I found a way to take two kids and a five foot greeting card rack home that day to my already cramped apartment.
There in the middle of high-chairs and swings and play pens and walkers, sat this beautiful card rack.
I didn’t know the first thing about making my own greeting card collection, or what I would write on the cards. I only knew that making cards for friends brought me joy.
A divorce and several moves later, I gave away that greeting card rack, but the ideas have still bopped around in my head all these years.
“Someday,” I would think.
Then a few years ago, when our local Radio Shack was going out of business, I stopped in to see what store fixtures they were clearancing. I have a thing for store fixtures and just feel more at peace in life if I have some in my home, so I can see them.
They had two displays I fell for immediately. I brought home those racks and set them up in my bedroom, just for the pure pleasure of looking at them. Just because the idea of what I could put on them brought me joy.
And then my life fell apart, and even the possibilities of card racks and greeting cards couldn’t shake the pain of a broken heart.
With the sun now shining in my heart again, I was determined with a new website to add cards to the list of things I loved and wanted to sell, and I knew as soon as I found my art, I would find words to write on them.
Until then, I would just commit publicly.
But then two weeks ago, in the middle of riots and sadness, I found myself playing around in Photoshop and stumbling upon a style that I really liked.
I found myself mixing colors and thinking up ideas late into the night. Night after night. I found myself creating art that would be perfect for the greeting cards I’ve had tumbling around in my head all these years.
At first, I planned to release the art just as prints, and see how it went and then, put the investment into making them into cards.
BUT, that’s toe dipping, and I already know which way is more fun to enter the pool.
So, I took a deep breath, did a funky little strut on over to the edge and decided to dive right in. Instead of easing my way into this new season, last week I placed an order for my first collection of greeting cards.
They are in production now. I am biding my time telling you stories and finishing details on my site while I wait for my first boxes of a lifelong dream to arrive.
I cannot tell you how utterly DELIGHTED just taking the leap and diving in has made me. I will have details to figure out and need to trust that I have more collections waiting to be born, but for now:
Someday will be happening THIS week.