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A Little Bit Of Summer On Your Nails

As I write this, summer is in full bloom: the sun is shining bright, the grass is green, the pools are open and the jackets lie forgotten in a dark part of your closet. At the same time, most of us can't enjoy the spirit. Instead, we end up sitting at work and longingly look outside the window dreaming of summer adventures and long days lying on the beach.

I decided that I could bring the spirit of summer with me in small bottles: nail varnish.

There is always a colour that goes with the occasion. Darker red tones if you go for traditional, orange to signify your anticipation of The Grand Tour or simple nude nails. The options are endless.

Digging through my seemingly bottomless supply of nail varnish, I found five that shout "summer" at me, and can bring a little bit of summer spirit in even the darkest place:

Stealing Inspiration From Your Friends

1000 Hours of Writing: Hours 380 - 400

When the lovely Susanne wrote a guest post on my little art blog, she wrote about using your friends as motivation - as a cheerleader or someone to talk things through with, or someone you want to overtake in a private competition. But you see, dear reader, I think she left out an important option: You can steal inspiration from your friends.

Now, friendly stealing in art is not all that uncommon, there are countless examples. Mussorgsky visited an exhibition and turned the paintings into classical music. 'Moby Dick' is said to have been influenced by Shakespeare. 'The Lion King' stole from Shakespeare. 'West Side Story' stole from Shakespeare. But that is stealing (friendly re-purposing) of ideas. I'm talking about stealing inspiration.

You see, dear reader, I don’t lack ideas - I lack the motivation to get started. Once I doodled for five or ten or even thirty minutes, I can then keep going with bigger projects. This works much like responding to a prompt question, and then continuing to write. But I never know what to do in those first five minutes.

An oft-repeated advice is to do what you love. But looking at other people's art is not always helpful when trying to make art yourself. Then I reread the lovely guest post on my blog, and, being a procrastinator, I followed a link to this blog. And I realised: I love this blog! (This is a totally unbiased reader opinion I would have written (well, thought) even without being a guest author.)

The little stories from everyday life make me smile, and they put images in my head. And I want to be an illustrator, so I can indeed use something I love as inspiration - I can illustrate the images that the posts create in my head! These illustrations don't need to be massively detailed - I only do them for my own enjoyment, to get started, or, just this once, to accompany this post. But I can draw something that makes me smile and feel productive, which puts me in a better mood when I actually start on something big and detailed.

Sadly I Will Single-Handedly Ruin Amazon

''Me Time'' Versus Stressful Times

Finally, the weekend dawned upon me. I could ignore the world and curl up in bed with a good book and a nice cup of tea. Then when I fancied it I could plant myself in front of the television and watch trash. Bliss!

If I am honest, I could really use the time. Mostly because I can't properly recall how we ended up in July. Everything was kind of clear until mid-June and before I knew it we were in July. Then I had a serious "what the fuck moment" as I wondered if it hadn't been mid-June a moment ago.

In fact I had been so busy in those weeks: a big task here, an important event there, socializing there and some work thrown in between. I hadn't had an opportunity to reflect on these events and so they had become blurred.

This Saturday I sat down and delightfully opened my book. Now I could submerge myself into the story, get lost between the pages and ignore the world around me! Nothing could bother me any more, I deserve this time for myself!

But then the twat of my brain cleared its throat, "I don't want to interrupt but ..." and before I knew it I remembered that there were quite a few tasks left. "How dare you think about relaxing now??!," my brain scolded me.

I began to wonder if I do the shopping now and as soon as I get home I try to squeeze in writing a tribe post while hydrating for my bike ride. Oh, and don't forget to wish someone a happy birthday and buy a gift for someone else. There are still some dishes left to wash as well. Tomorrow you need to consider what to write for the blog, I am just saying ... Maybe then you can enjoy your book if you still have the energy ...

This - I am afraid - is real life. I love preaching "take your time, self-care is soooo important" but at the end of the day, I am a bit of a hypocrite.

What Hides In The Future For My Writing?

1000 Hours of Writing: 360 - 380

When I started this blog, I thought that it'd be a fun way to write down whatever was floating around in my head and maybe make a few people laugh along the way. It was just a way to pass the time - after all life was already set in stone, I was studying and why should writing get me anywhere. It's unrealistic anyway. I have not considered that one day it might think about where to take it. However, after life changed, I am in a position where I wonder what to do here.

I am not sure when the turning point was. Maybe when I was accepted as a pre-launch tribe leader. Just a minor hint that showed me, that my writing wasn't all too rubbish. This in turn "forced" me to make a second twitter for my writing persona. So I discovered an unbelievably kind blogger community. I noticed that my blog flourished under its watchful eye and it became more structured.

Then I ran blog and tribe side to side, saying that both have the same priority. If I do one blog post per week, I am going to do one tribe post and vice versa. And while usually, I wouldn't feel inclined to share my thoughts and ideas about the future, or where I want to take things I feel like this time I should clear things up. After all I walk a thin line between motoring bollox and lifestyle bollocks.

After half a year, it has been established that this blog has priority over the tribe. I can't exactly explain why, it's more a gut feeling that this is going to take me somewhere - wherever that is. While I don't want to make it a habit of missing tribe posts, I won't stress myself over them either. Don't despair I have new ideas for DriveTribe as well. But let's start with the changes for this blog:

June's Favourites
Owl Bags & Hopeless Fountain Kingdom

Small Tips To Help You When Jogging

As some of you know, I am an avid jogger. I adore it! The way it can clear the mind and you can keep pushing yourself. I'd be lying that it is easy, especially when you start it becomes more than complicated: how far should I run? How far can I run? And all the minor things you didn't even think about. And it does take a while until you're going to see a result.This can become quite frustrating ...

Hence I am going to share a few tips and tricks that have helped me to stay motivated.