New Year, New Hobbies?

I am part of an AMAZING women's networking group called She Built This. Our fearless leader, Emily, posted a question to the group inspired by one of our other members and a TED Talk she recently gave:

Is there an area in your life that your brilliance is being allowed to go dormant? What do you think it is that you need to LET shine!?

This question really had me thinking. I immediately went to my day-to-day life. The piece that's missing, well, is ME. I've been far too busy focusing on my family and my business that who I am at my core has gotten completely lost in the shuffle. If you were to ask me what my hobbies are or what I like to do for fun, the only answer I could give you is watch 90 Day Fiancé or Real Housewives.

Yes, it's true, Shannon Storms Beador! (In case you're not in the know, she's on the Real Housewives of Orange County and is possibly my husband's favorite of all the housewives of any city.)

So, I've decided to add a little spice to my life for 2021. My goal is to either try for the first time or revisit one hobby per month. And you'll all be along for the ride! Here is the list of hobbies I'd like to take a crack at:

1) Knitting

I can't tell you how many times I've attempted to learn how to knit. I even took a class with my mom at Michael's when Mini Me was REALLY mini and it did not advance my knitting skills one bit. My mom didn't get that far either, so maybe it's genetics?

I've decided to give it one last try. If I don't make any headway, I'll accept defeat and buy creations from talented local knitters. I feel like knitting seems like the perfect winter activity, so I'll likely attempt this early on in the year. 2) Painting

If you know me, then you know one of my personal heroes is Bob Ross. I've got a baby bobblehead of him on my desk, a couple of magnets of him on my refrigerator, and my Toyota Prius is named, you guessed it, Bob Ross.

(Here's Bob when I took my work away from home and landed at CoWorking House for the day.)

I haven't figured out the method of painting I'll try quite yet, or even the medium! I just learned about paint pouring and gouache this week and both look really cool, so they might jump to the top of my list for my month with painting.

3) Sewing

I haven't really done much sewing since I first learned how to sew in my Home Economics class back in middle school. I'll be turning 40 next year, so it's safe to say it's been a while!

I did do SOME sewing for one of my $100 Room Challenges, but that's been about it.

(I created my shower curtain and a valance from a tablecloth.)

I'd LOVE to design my own throw pillow cases and actually piece them together myself. I can easily buy pillows, but they either don't survive the wear and tear from Mini Me and my Chief Doggie Officer, or I get bored with them easily and want something else. It makes so much sense to create my own pillow cases so I can easily swap them out when I want to!

4) Learning a New Language

I took French for 4 years from 7th grade through 10th grade. It served me well when I spent 2 days in Paris during my Senior Year of high school when everyone else on my trip seemingly chose to learn Spanish.

I also took Spanish when I worked at a community college almost 10 years ago since the cost of the course was covered by my tuition benefits.

I'm at a place where I can check Mini Me's homework for his French and Spanish classes. I'm definitely not in a place where I could land in a French or Spanish speaking country and easily navigate my way around. Perhaps I'll pick up where I left off with either French or Spanish, or maybe try my hand at a completely different language altogether.

5) Hiking

I picked this because I'm fortunate enough to live in a state with plenty of beautiful places to go hiking. Sure, it can be incredibly challenging, depending on the trail. But, when you reach the top, it's an incredible payment for all your hard work. Plus, it's an inexpensive activity that I can do with my husband and Mini Me.

(Please tell me there are other Troop Beverly Hills fans out there...)

6) Pottery

I've enjoyed painting pottery for most of my adult life. My husband and I painstaking painted our own dinner and salad plates at the pottery store my sister-in-law worked at before Mini Me came into the picture to save money and replicate dinnerware I fell in love with at Pier 1 Imports (RIP to their stores :(. I haven't checked out their online selection yet.) I've never actually created my own pottery before. There's something about getting your hands dirty with the clay and sculpting the piece yourself.

7) Gardening

I like to call myself a recovering black thumb. I've been known in the past to kill even low-maintenance plants. I was gifted a bromelaid and killed it within a couple of months. A couple years ago, I decided to give succulents a try. My dad and Mini Me gave me six teeny tiny succulents for Mother's Day (I'm talking they fit into pots the size of Dixie cups). I'm happy to report that I still have 4 of them. And they're THRIVING!

My husband and I decided to try growing a vegetable garden last year and unfortunately, it was a huge failure. Everything was in direct sunlight and we weren't all that great at watering the garden daily...

But, I'm not giving up. I'll take the time to fully research and start the planting process indoors. I might even do a tower garden.

8) Photography My husband and dad went in on a digital camera for me for Christmas 3 years ago. I've barely picked it up since. My husband and I went to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston where I took a TON pictures. I also took pictures of Mini Me's then Cub Scout troop. Other than that, I really haven't done anything.

I absolutely LOVE the look of black & white photography and want to experiment with that. My grandfather was a photographer and I have one of his photos hanging in my bedroom.

Here's hoping the apple didn't fall far from the tree!

9) Baking I really do enjoy baking and strongly prefer it to cooking. It's precise and I don't have to juggle different pots and pans of things at the same time.

For whatever reason, I haven't really baked much over the past year. Go figure, since so many people turned to that as a hobby during the pandemic.

I also LOVE watching Great British Baking Show and feel inspired by all the delicious creations that are baked.

I might tackle baking in the month of May. Both Mini Me and yours truly have birthdays then, so it would be a great time to test some treats and boost my cake decorating skills!

10) Furniture Refinishing

Again, this falls under the category of hobbies I've enjoyed and let fall to the wayside. I actually used to have a booth at a local antique/home decor store with my creations.

(I was SHOCKED the cabinet sold within a couple of days of me placing it in my booth!)

Life got in the way and I still have A TON of furniture to refinish that's hanging out in my attic and my shed. I'll probably be tackling the furniture refinishing in April so I can be outside while I work and have items ready to sell when it's time for yard sale/flea market season.

11) Jewelry Making One of my secret (well, now not so secret) spirit animals is Moira Rose from Schitt's Creek. I absolutely LOVE her. I'd love to create jewelry for every day, but also pieces that channel my inner Moira.

Perhaps I'll tackle this hobby in the month of October, just in time for Halloween and dressing up as my spirit animal!

12) Welding

I've wanted to try my hand at welding for a while now. When I worked at the community college where I took Spanish, one of my colleagues took welding classes for fun at night. I thought that was the coolest thing!

Also, my husband has gotten really handy with woodworking, so it would be really amazing to partner metal with his creations.

I've never seen Flashdance, but I'll definitely be playing "Maniac" by Michael Sembello while I weld.

There you have it. My hobby list for 2021! Let's see how far I get and which hobbies stick! Until next time...

Happy Designing and Hobbying! - Angela :)

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