Seeking Joy: In the smaller things!

Seeking joy, is one of those things that we don’t often think about. Buy why? What could possibly bring us joy, in this changing world of ours? Joy could be a hard sell right now, but it’s definitely still there!

I don’t normally try seeking joy, when I go out grocery shopping, but just think how you felt, when you found either toilet paper, gloves, or Lysol wipes? I found that particularly joyful, as the toilet paper is not normally a scarce commodity, I only use gloves for art purposes, and Lysol Wipes were not really on my radar. But searching them out was only part of the bonus, because it was also the gleeful, but satisfied looks on the faces of my fellow shoppers. It made us happy, in the midst of our turmoil, and we shared the joy!

seeking joy
No toilet paper, means you don’t need to yell at anyone for not changing the roll!

But which other ways are we seeking joy? Well, how about the increased communication (phone, text, Messenger) you’re having with your friends, and loved ones? No, you can’t hug them, but our current communication lines, are virtual hugs!! You’re getting closer to someone, without the need to touch. But another bonus, you will no longer need to shake hands with complete strangers (especially those with sweaty palms)! Ewww!! I vote replacing handshakes with Dr. Spock’s, “live long and prosper”! If you don’t get my reference, then you’ve never watched Star Trek!

I’ve talked to several people lately, who’ve decided to dust of their skills, dig out a recipe, then bake some bread. It brings back memories of all of that yeasty goodness, rising on the kitchen table. But what about that delicious smell, while it was baking, or fresh out of the oven? Isn’t that like Smellovision?

seeking joy

I won’t be self-isolating just yet, but I’m definitely looking forward to cooking, spending more time on my art, and even tidying up my studio! When I say art, I mean anything made with beads, mixed media supplies, fibre, and even paper? My beads, seed beads, and some of my mixed media supplies, are purchased from BeadFX, but the rest has been collected over the years. I always said that I was saving for my retirement, but I was really saving time! Time to do something with it all, but that’s the challenge.

How about exploring your neighbourhood, while practicing self distancing? Homeschooling your children (and perhaps spouses), but trying hard not to penalize them, for not paying attention. Then, there’s always playing cards, games, reading out loud, or teaching your children to bead. Yet, you could go as simple as having them string beads on elastic, make some Kumihimo braid, or even decorating a surface with seed beads, pressed into Huichol wax. But, to keep the older ones interested, how about loom work (scroll down, for some of the less expensive looms)?

Then, what about a challenge? Challenges are good, and help to pass the time!!! As many of you know, I’m a Moderator on the Stitch Meditation Group, but also an Administrator, for the Bead Journal Project (both are Facebook groups). So I thought, why not combine the two? We could call them Bead Meditations!!

When self-isolation starts getting to you, just dig out a small piece of bead backing (Lacy’s Stiff Stuff, GoodFelt, etc.), cover it with some nice fabric (but only if you want to), then bead &/or stitch, whatever suits your fancy. No patterns, no rules, but feel the pleasure of the stitch! Clear your mind, but don’t think about the current state of affairs. You can bead as much, or as little as you want. No one will judge, and I won’t even make you show me! Okay, I’d like to see them, but I’ll talk to you about that next week, when I have one of my own to show you.

Twinchies (2” x 2”), or Four by Fours (4” x 4”), are good sizes to start with, but if you’re daring, you could even go as low as “Inchies” (1” x 1”). Or, how about cutting out some freeform leaf shapes. You certainly don’t need to bead encrust anything (like I have), but I’m just showing you a few of my Bead Journal pieces, for inspiration.

seeking joy
seeking joy

If you need ideas about colour, our curated Auntie Gwen seedbead mixes are a great place to start. But then again, the Toho mixes are just yummy! I also like to curate my own mixes.

Auntie Gwen Seedbead Mixes!

Bead one, bead a handful, or even bead one a day! But don’t be shy, as seeking joy with beadwork, is a pretty fine way to spend your self-isolation time.

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