Back-at-home diary, part 1 (hello again!)

December 21: Views from the trail by my parents’ house in San Jose, on Erik’s and my first solo walk since we got back to California.





December 26: A walk with family on a drizzly day, on a different trail in our neighborhood.








Dec 26 - DSCN5077

From my private journal, yesterday morning:

“Since I’ve been home I’ve felt as if the whole landscape of my life has changed, though of course it’s just my perspective. It’s strange because I used to think, before we started our trip, that it would change me completely, and then once we started, I was so surprised that it did not. And here I am now saying that it did, after all — but not in the ways I expected, I guess. I’d thought I would come back thinner, better dressed, more confident, more relaxed, and less attached to material things — all of which has happened, but I think I thought all that would be the point, and it isn’t. The real change is in my way of being. I still feel like myself, only such a lighter, freer, happier version, less concerned with outcomes or expectations (my own and others’)…

“It’s as I said on the blog awhile back: I’m living more in the present moment — which is fun, but isn’t (I think) all good. I’m less cautious about spending money, I don’t eat whole-grain bread anymore, and I don’t give a sh*t — okay, I only vaguely and distantly give a sh*t — about whether there is a viable creative career anywhere in my future. I said I think this isn’t all good, because I could also make a case that it is: by not worrying about minutiae (of which I am, as you know, endlessly and obsessively capable), I decrease my stress levels; by not fixating on trying to earn artistic validity now, I’m free to create whatever I want, even if it’s very weird or bad or takes me 10 years.”

December 31: My sisters, a gleeful me, and a panicky Lyapa (she hates being picked up).


From the same journal entry as earlier:

“The other day Erik and I went to the storage unit to tidy up and assess the damage from the break-in back in July. Thankfully it wasn’t nearly as bad as we’d expected, and to our great delight, our big coffee table — the single completely material (i.e., non-sentimental) possession we’d miss — was still there, deep in the back where we’d shoved it! Oddly, though, it appears that quite a lot of my craft supplies were missing, including possibly all my beads and quite a number of my fabrics. I wish the thieves joy of them. While I do have some sadness about the losses, I confess that after 8 months of living out of a duffel, I’ve been entertaining thoughts of throwing out the vast majority of our stored stuff at home. So overall I think the burglary almost beneficial, a forced start to the decluttering. Speaking of which, the burglars left one book outside of its box: Peter Walsh’s It’s All Too Much. An accident, or a bit of humor/critique on their part?!

“Anyway, as I was going through the disarranged boxes and bins and swatches of fabric, rather than feeling devastated about the loss, more than anything I felt almost gleeful that at some point in future, I would get to go through my supplies again and re-sort and re-cull and re-organize. Which leads me to think that my whole affair with crafting was never so much about the love of craft (though I am looking forward to making myself some new skirts, someday) but a result of my near-OCD adoration of sorting and creating systems and reveling in colors and textures! Which makes me think I should look for other outlets for this!”

December 27: View from the car while driving through Sausalito.


Again from the journal (with revisions):

“Back to my original point, though, there really is some truth to this ‘landscape is changed’ feeling — over and above the necessary adjustments that come from changing location. For one thing, I’ve barely blogged since we got back, and I haven’t really read anyone else’s blog either. I haven’t written at all until today, nor have I made a single sketch. For 3 weeks I’ve felt as if my brain were on vacation, which it probably was, after so many months of being on high alert. I remember when my sister’s cat Manapua sneaked out of their apartment and spent a night outdoors; when she returned the next day, she was edgy for a while, jumping at small sounds and sniffing everything. When she got upstairs to her old blanket, she apparently decided she was safe now and could relax, because she curled up and then conked out for hours. I think that’s what my brain has been doing. It is good. I feel rested now, and there is a sense in me today of the vacation being over; of being ready to get back to work.”



16 responses to “Back-at-home diary, part 1 (hello again!)

  1. I’ve been thinking about you the past few days, wondering if you were writing at all. So it is very good to see you here again. And I am reveling in your revelations and expansion of spirit and very glad you have had this time to “curl up on your blanket” and take a well deserved rest in the safety of home and family. Sending you love…..and by the way, I love the neighborhood your family live in!

    • Sherry! Thank you so much for the warm welcome-back. 🙂 It’s really nice to be on the blog again! I really thought no one would notice when I posted, since I was off for so long!

      My parents live in a really peaceful neighborhood; a friend calls it the “Deep Suburbs” (like the Deep South) because it really is kind of the southern edge of San Jose — about a mile and a half south of my parents’ house, there are orchards and mountains and a reservoir. It’s lovely for walking around, and it’s safe, but it’s also boring (compared to cities) and there’s nothing to walk to except the trails. I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with it, or more accurately, an “ahhh” (sigh of relaxation)/”ahhh!!” (yell of frustration) relationship. 😉

  2. This has been quite the journey in so many ways, and I’m grateful you allowed us to travel along, and to give us such an ‘inside’ view, as you do here. You’re a wise woman.

  3. HiLisa! I wondered if I had unfollowed you tee hhe. Glad I’m still following yoiu. Yes you get going and number of followers etc is important and then they aren;’t anymore but you have changed. We all need periods of rest and well just digesting it all. HUGE . That long a time must have changed you in good ways – how you see others, what’s around you. How you try out new things. You were so brave to go to drawing sessions in strange countries, Your drawing came a long way. So what if you do it solely for fun. I just like the doing of it. Thank you for sharing your personal self and not being all hung up about that. It’s nice to see the happiness of the sisters 🙂 Two of the new photos look like Constable and Turner’s paintings.Big Hugs and welcome back Carla

    • Carla! 🙂 Big hugs to you too, and thank you for all the good thoughts! The three sisters are very happy indeed — these days it’s not so often that all three of us get to hang out together, so every time we do, it’s good times. I’m glad we took this break while traveling; it’s been a chance to step back and look at the life I’ve been making — just like we step back to see what the canvas/paper looks like. 😉 Now it’s full steam ahead to Hawaii and Japan!

  4. I had so many thoughts come up as I was reading this, but trying to condense all of them into a coherent comment seems impossible. Suffice it to say, I loved this post, I miss you, and I am so grateful that you share so much of yourself. This was exactly what I needed to read this morning. Huge hugs…

  5. Great read!
    There is a saying I adore:
    ‘A horse will cross the ocean, and come back a horse.’
    To which I always add – ‘but a different horse’

  6. Experiences change and shape us like water does to a rock. You can quote me on that by the way, just made it up. I’m feeling like a fortune cookie tonight.

    We all have to rest our creative processes sometimes. Rest our brain and rest our worries. Living in the moment is great and needed as well as preparing for the future.

    I started writing again as well. 🙂 Been thinking of you and Erik, and our exploration of Paris. The trip to France was a much needed one for me. It has jump-started my creativity and determination.

    Hopefully I can see you before you leave for Hawaii :). Let’s try and do coffee or something before you leave.

    • Bonjour Madame Fortune Cookie. 🙂 Glad to hear France was so rejuvenating for you! I’m so happy we got to meet up there. (I saved the chocolate box from À La Mére de Famille and pinned it up on my wall in my parents’ house!) Yay writing, creativity, and focus. 🙂

  7. My dear! It’s good to read from you again. I’m excited to read more of your reflections as you continue to unpack your various journeys. I’m bummed I won’t get to see you but perhaps this time around you can make it to GH if I am still here past the second quarter. Miss u loads!

  8. ‘I’m free to create whatever I want’ it is a truly beautiful statement Lisa. Thank you for you so much.p.s. Lyapa is gorgeous.

What do you think?

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s