26 April 2013

Renew and Move Forward

This post is written by contributing author Anabel Bouza.

It is April, and the season is picking up its pace around here. The birds have calmed down some, but a few weeks back they were still tweeting – almost hysterically – in every tree, making me feel energized and inadequate at once:

You see, while the world was frantically renewing itself, I just sat there, still in my end-of-winter stupor. 

If you live in an area where spring is even noticeable, you probably know that it can be very brief; before you know it, summer has set in. My feeling of inadequacy came from knowing that this vernal spur goes as fast as it comes, and that I was wasting time by not tapping in to this resource to help me move forward.
Renew and Move Forward
Illustration by Anabel Bouza
Every year I take a page from nature's book, and see spring as the Go sign to reinvent myself. 

Nothing gets me moving like the realization that the sun is still up in the sky at 7pm, that it's time to plant seeds again, that people have sprouted on the streets once more, wearing no jackets... 

You want to spend every weekend and afternoon breathing in the perfect spring air.
You want to run outside and seize the brief season, but before you do that, you should dedicate some time to renewing yourself and your surroundings:

• Tackle new projects and ideas as they take shape in your mind. It is when you first come up with an idea that you have the most momentum and spark to dedicate to it. Seize that momentum! Maybe you'll feel so empowered afterward that you'll even dedicate the leftover inspiration to those older, unfinished projects you've been skirting.

• Try a new hair style! 

• I like to make a little ritual out of rehabilitating my warm weather clothes after the winter. Getting them from the far reaches of the closet and washing them all at once is really gratifying. Take the occasion to rethink outfit combinations (we emerge from the winter a little changed, I think) and to let go of the things you don't use.

• A reminder to change up your soaps and lotions to match your skin needs — they change with the season, you know.

• Embrace a new fragrance, or let a new color "tinge" your outlook!

• Revive a room. Remodeling is not required, it is as simple as just switching your furniture around. Incorporate new plants, hang lighter curtains to let the light spill in, get creative with the layout. I like to blur the outdoors/indoors boundary by picking some of the colors from the vegetation outside for my indoor plants. I think this invites the eye to jump from the windowsill (or flower box) to the trees beyond.

Fresh spaces will be waiting for you at home, and since you've made room in your mind for grand new things... go fill up on life lessons and adventures!

Anabel Bouza insists there's powerful magic in the action of creating something out of a vague vision, a chill of inspiration. She is an illustrator with a passion for nature, paper manipulation, and pointing her camera at things.

Her appreciation for simplicity dates back to a former life in Cuba - her strange homeland - where she refined the ability to see the alternative uses of common objects, and the enchanting side of things. She's often found blogging as
Weird Amiga, hard at work in her sunny studio, or staring at things as if looking at them for the first time. Her tiny family is comprised of husband & a turtle. Connect to Anabel via facebook and twitter.