Flowers in Winter

I’m trying to grow some basil plants in front of my bedroom window, and the struggling sprouts look a lot like I feel. It’s not actually very cold yet, and we’ve still got some leaves and some green grass. But the slanted light is very wintery.

And so is my driving need to create something.

I’m working on a story that I think I’m going to love, but I can’t do that all day (darn it). For me, busy hands means a busy mind. I build plotlines or work through feelings that I can’t untangle head-on. Since I’m not in the mood yet for puzzles or coloring, I’ve turned to origami.

In general, I’m no good at origami. Precision isn’t a spiritual gift of mine. Cut first, measure afterward, try to make do anyway, make a mess — that’s my motto. But I found two paper-folding projects that were forgiving enough for me. I can make flowers!

I like to sit down on the floor and put on music, and lose myself in creating these roses and lotus blossoms. Bookgirl and Sparkler join me occasionally, and the rest of the family comes and goes around me. The bunny usually settles down within reach of me. For an hour or so, the world is bright and warm and satisfying.

Here are a few of the roses that Bookgirl and I created the other night:


My laptop sits with me because I listen to music on Musicbed, browse Facebook, and look up tutorials.

The “quilt blocks” below are what really got me started on this paper frenzy. I was researching quilt patterns for my story, and found very interesting ideas. I always want to try quilting until I read the instructions and see things like “measure 4.21 cm on the diagonal and cut with a scant .674 seam allowance, cut 547 more” that I realize that God didn’t intend me to be a quilter. I tried to reproduce Storm at Sea on paper and couldn’t, so settled for simple triangles and squares.

Then I stumbled on these simple roses.


Bookgirl liked making — in her 15-year-old terminology — “smol” roses. (Small. That’s what that means) She then decorated DJ’s shoes and announced that “Moses supposes his toeses are roses.” She knew she’d get points for quoting Singin’ in the Rain to me.


This lotus blossom looks really impressive but isn’t at all difficult. That’s kind of my forte. (Hand model: Sparkler)


So what will I do with my newfound talent? Maybe make gifts! Sell on Etsy! Or most likely create a dozen or so more, get tired of it, and not come back to it for three years. That’s how it goes. Writing is the grand exception. Oh, and also my family, fortunately.


Watercolors, flowers, and butterflies. Take that, Winter.




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