Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Creative Outlet aka Keeping Sane

On this blog I write about the importance lifestyle plays in health, mainly focusing on diet and sharing recipes. This week, through blogging, I reconnected with a cousin that I have not seen since childhood. I am so excited to have found you Dolly! Reading her blog  reminded me of something that I believe is essential to good health. Since it's second nature to me, I've completely overlooked mentioning it. But I know that in my own life it is crucial, and I could not function without it.

It is a creative outlet. Creativity fosters a sense of accomplishment and well-being. It helps relieve stress, lifts your mood and can help ease depression. Creative self expression takes many forms; art, crafts, dance, music, writing, cooking, blogging, gardening, decorating one's home, etc. The list goes on and on. Everyone needs some form of creative outlet.

 I know that in my own life if I go too long without a project of some kind, I just don't feel right. I get cranky, impatient, stressed and sometimes depressed. I have a deep need to create with my hands. Once I am working on something, I immediately feel better. Dolly, it's nice to know we share the same crafty/creative gene that our grandma had! I really enjoy looking at all of your fabulous work on your blog!

I have tried just about every craft out there. I have done woodworking, ceramics, counted cross-stitch, crochet, sewing, quilting, knitting, black and white photography, and drawing with charcoal. Quilting and knitting are my favorites, and the two I always come back to. I love knitting since it is so portable and is great for when I am hauling kids around and waiting for them at music lessons, etc. I have a pinwheel quilt top that I finished a few years ago and them set aside. Dolly, you have inspired me to get that quilt finished, thanks! I pulled it out and here is a photo of it:

Here are some photos of other quilts I have done (or things that keep me sane!):

This rose quilt hangs in my living room.

I quilted this blue one by hand.

I quilted the bird quilt by machine. It's one of my favorites. And here is some of my knitting:

This is the traveling cables cardigan, the branching out scarf and 2 pairs of socks. You can't see them well, but there are cables on the blue socks. I love knitting cables and lace, they are so much fun!

I know that many of you use your creativity in your fabulous food, what other creative outlets do you have?  I would love it if you share them, we can all use some creative inspiration!


Dolly December 30, 2009 at 11:51 AM  

Outrageous !
I absolutely love that pinwheel quilt. Too bad we can't put it up in a frame and quilt it together ! That blue surrounding fabric just sets such a mood !
I'm piecing the finishing touches on a simple top today.....haven't decided whether it'll be hand or machine-quilted. Now, I'll be thinking of you while I work on it !

I'm a little envious of that sweater.......I haven't accomplished that goal yet,......a beautiful sweater for myself !
But, boy, did the good LORD hand it to you and me with both hands full ? Praise the Lord for giving us an outlet and a sanity-saver !

(P.S.....I've never been 'featured' on a blog before.......I feel a little FAMOUS !)
Thanks, cousin ! (ooh, that feels good to say !)

Vegan Epicurean December 30, 2009 at 12:10 PM  


Great post. I don't frequently think about sharing this type of information, since mine is mostly a food and nutrition blog.

I also knit, crochet, sew, and paint (both canvas and faux paint on walls). Landscape photography is something I had done as long as I can remember. Additionally I have a big culinary big herb garden. I also taught myself how to reupholster furniture a few years ago when I wanted a new project. My favorite form of creativity is developing new recipes.

The bird quilt is really pretty. You are a very talented knitter. You must have spent many hours refining that skill.

Really fun post, thanks for sharing.


Fayinagirl (means Free One) December 30, 2009 at 1:36 PM  


You are so talented! Fabulous! I've always wanted to learn to quilt. It's on my back burner for now. But, I'm thinking I'll pick up the knitting needles and crochet hook again in 2010. It's been too long.

We have a house full of artists. Dh is a film maker/photographer. DD24 a chef (in college now). DS 20 and fine artist (in college now). DD 19 a photographer and fine artist (in college now). Wubba, Livy, and Izzy are budding food artists ;-) and all the kids play instruments as a hobby. All that to say...I TOTALLY agree with you...we all need creative outlets!

~julie lynn

Fayinagirl (means Free One) December 30, 2009 at 3:21 PM  

Janet, just one more thing. Stop by my blog when you get a minute. I've left a blog award for you. Happy New Year! =)

Brigid December 30, 2009 at 3:58 PM  

Wow, you're very talented! I've recently gotten back into knitting. I'm doing my first cable-knit scarf right now. I also make jewelry, crochet, and dabble in this and that. I really want to learn to sew this year.

janet December 30, 2009 at 4:13 PM  

Thanks Dolly! And you're right, it sure is a sanity saver. Blogging with a cousin, how much fun is that!!

Alicia, I never thought to mention this side of me either, since I write mainly about food and healthy living. But creative pursuits do play an important role in health and well-being. I am not at all surprised to find that you have so many talents, because your food is always so creative and fabulous! Upholstering sounds interesting, that is one I have not tried.

Julie Lynn, your home sound like a fun place to be with all those creative people! I've seen some of Wubba's creativity on your blog- fabulous! My girls also play instruments as a hobby. It is great how many forms of creativity there are, and it really is a necessity to have an outlet! And Thank You for sharing the award with me, you are so sweet!

janet December 30, 2009 at 4:21 PM  

Brigid, I've seen some of your jewelry on your blog, you are very talented too! Knitting really hooked me when I started to learn cables, I hope you are having fun with it:)

Claudia December 30, 2009 at 10:58 PM  

Oh so beautiful - you amaze and delight me. I left something for you on my blog.... when you have time. Happy New Year!

janet December 31, 2009 at 8:14 AM  

Claudia, thank you for the award and for thinking of me, I am honored. You are very sweet!

The Queen Mommy January 1, 2010 at 9:15 PM  

Look at those GORGEOUS quilts. Breathtaking - i am in awe!!! Honestly. Creativity is a MUST in my life or I'm completely OFF balance. Mine tends to be writing, although I'll tell ya, sometimes it's just coloring with my girls. =) lol

Wishing you a VERY Happy New Year and hope we can connect more often. =)

janet January 1, 2010 at 9:37 PM  

Thanks Debbie, you are very sweet! I get the coloring, I used to do it with my kids too!

Oraphan January 2, 2010 at 1:06 AM  

You're so amazing and talented, Janet! I'm very impressed. What a wonderful post!

Kateri January 2, 2010 at 7:32 AM  

I love that bird quilt! Since becoming a nurse I haven't done a lot in the way of crafty/creative things (hardly any time left over for me). Gardening has mostly been my outlet. Last year with moving in the middle of the garden season, I didn't do much of that either. Looking forward to a major gardening year next year! Also used to be prolific basket maker...would really like to take that up again.

janet January 2, 2010 at 8:27 AM  

Oraphan, thanks for your kind words!

Kateri, I know how hard it is sometimes to find time for creative things. With your move, you have had an extremely busy year. I enjoy your lovely photographs, and that is certainly a creative outlet! I look forward to getting out in the garden too, but mine is really tiny, not at all like yours! Basket making sounds like fun.

Lori January 2, 2010 at 3:11 PM  

The quilts are beautiful! Lately cooking has been my creative outlet, but I find I'm being drawn to more crafty things.

Thoughts are with you and your family. Pets are always such a big part of our family. It is never easy to lose one.

janet January 3, 2010 at 8:29 PM  

Thanks Lori, I appreciate it, it's amazing how much a part of the family pets really are.

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