We are buried in snow here in Boston a week before Christmas and I am trying to enjoy it while deep down I am pining for Autumn and feeling my annual winter Autumn regrets. Regretting that I let myself get so busy that I didn't enjoy glorious fall it it's full potential. The snow is really pretty right now and sledding is fun but winter in the city is a challenge. It gets ugly fast and the ice makes getting around just plain dangerous. At the very least getting around in the winter can be very tricky and require some extra planning and time. And of course it is very cold! But autumn is just lovely! The colors, the crisp air and the food. Just wonderful. Unfortunately that is also when school and activities start and the weekends fill up quickly. Right now I regret that we only went apple picking once, that we never made it to the Arboretum when the leaves were turning, that I didn't go on more bike rides and that we didn't carve a pumpkin for Halloween. The snow is on the ground and there is no going back now. Not until next fall when I will again be busy and partially crippled from anxiety about the impending winter.
Like just about everyone my days are very busy and it is often very hard to carve out art time during the day. Unfortunately I typically don't have much creative energy left in the evening after the kids go to bed. Which is a pity since that is sometimes the only time I have to make art. Thankfully carving is totally different and doesn't take much creativity or energy once I have a drawing already mapped out on the woodblock. Carving is a mentally minimalist and meditative process that gives me a chance to unwind at the end of a long day. Not too many things out there get me to slow down but carving a block of wood is one of those things that does force me to slow down and narrow my focus to the quiet and labor intensive careful task of carving a block of wood to print in the spring. As the days get shorter and colder there is something just right about spending the evenings in my little studio carving while drinking a cup of hot tea. As summer ended I found myself craving to have a large block of wood to slowly carve away so I got started on the planning and sketching. That is what I did during most of October. Now I am ready to carve.