daily forward tumble


the practice of being creative everyday

november 1st – my challenges for this month

November 1st, 2010 at 11:36

It is November. I’m sure everyone has different ideas and associations about November and these ideas are most likely affected by your cultural setting, by your location, seasonal changes, the big events that happened in the past in November, birthday and other anniversaries. Your associations for this month will most likely be affected by what you do for a living or how you spend your time and in turn how that is affected by the changes this time of year brings to you.

If you live in the Northern hemisphere like me, you will most likely feel a change in the weather and if you live in the North of said hemisphere that means colder days, crisper, thicker air, shortening days and less daylight hours. It means putting on the heating, bundling up in warm clothes, wearing woolen scarves and possibly hats and gloves, too. It might mean you spend less time outdoors.

When I was younger November had a terrible reputation, the country I lived in as a child seemed to think it’s the month of collective depression. Short, wet days, suicides, misery, cold, horrible – these are words people used in association with November. But I don’t feel like that about November and yesterday I realized my entire perception of winter is starting to shift to an all together very positive outlook. Maybe it’s because of all the gardening I’ve been doing for two years now. Maybe it’s because I’m learning to deal with life cycles in a more real and tangible way.

November is officially the beginning of winter here in Ireland. And I really like the concept of seeing it as the beginning of the year. Most of my life I’ve been a seat of the pants kind of person and it’s only now i see the benefits of sitting down and planning and I can even envision enjoying that process, relishing in the anticipation of what there is to do and be in the future. And I am very much surprise that I can start thinking of doing that, planning. For I have learned in a most painful way that the most careful plans can sometimes not work out at all. And if you plan you might be utterly disappointed and hurt. So the fact that I can, do and enjoy is -well, for me a sign of healing.

November is the beginning of the new year and I intend to spend it planning the garden for the next year, start preparing the garden for this coming year.

Today, the first of November is also the the beginning of the Art Everyday Month challenge of the CED. So I will most likely be combining the art projects with life in the garden in many ways. But because days are wetter and much shorter now, I am also taking on the NaNoWriMo challenge which means something like 1600 words a day of novel writing. I know November will be a very busy month with these three things going on. But I’m good with all of that. I love challenges. I could add a disclaimer kind of sentence starting with a big fat BUT to make sure nobody expects to much from me this month, and anticipating some kind of give somewhere down the line as the month progresses. But I wont. It’s not that I’m hard on myself or put pressure on myself. It’s more that I am expressing self belief, that I can do this if I want to. And I want to. I want to write everyday, art everyday and in doing so spend the beginning of this year reflecting on the past 12 months and let that knowledge nurture and grow the future.

Happy November to you all.


While I was writing the above, a butterfly came into my room and settled on my desk and then the window. It is too late in the year to let him out, there is no point with all the very heavy rain at the moment he would find no shelter anywhere. He came from somewhere in our house. He will sit in my room until it is time for him to go.

Fionn’s monarch – woodblock print on handmade paper ATC (the very first print I saved for myself, I post it here to mark Dia de los Muertos)


3 Responses to “november 1st – my challenges for this month”

  1. Bev Says:

    What wonderful challenges to take on! All the best!

  2. leah Says:

    I really love your perspective on the coming winter! beautiful butterfly print!

  3. geni Says:

    Beautiful done!

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