Sabbatical Adventures begin . . .

Sabbatical Adventures begin . . .

Monday, April 28, 2014


I was just thinking . . .
 in our reaching out, we reach for different things.  
Some of us reach for support: 

and some of us reach for the sky:

What are you reaching for?

Friday, April 25, 2014

Not responding right away . . .

I was thinking . . .  the other day, a relative offended me with an offhand remark.  Actually it was made in an offhand way, but obviously had been well thought out in their life. The words hurt my feelings since it was something that was one of my life choices.  It was nothing bad, just a way of living that I have learned to live by and this relative has rejected it.  I know, we each have our own ways of doing things, but I was a bit shocked when the remark was voiced, but I didn't say anything.

It bothered me that evening and the next day.  I started to blow it out of proportion in my mind, as I was thinking that it was a judgement of my existence.  I wondered if I was not "approved" by that person. I wondered if I should talk to them about it. I wondered if I should talk to the other relatives about it.  I struggled with the thought.  Ever been there???

Well, what I came up with is . . . sleep on it!  After a day or so, I realized that the shock of the heartfelt statement was that person's opinion and it did not devalue me. I could and should let it go. Besides, isn't it written by Luke in Acts:

This being so, I myself always strive to have a conscience without offense toward God and men. 
Acts 24:16  NKJV

and I believe Solomon had something to say about this subject:

9 He who covers a transgression seeks love,
But he who repeats a matter separates friends. 

Prov. 17:9  NKJV

And finally, my dear readers, as  Paul says:

If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men. Rom 12:18 NKJV

Monday, April 21, 2014

a new adventure begins . . .

As you know, if you have been following this blog, I have taken some time to think . . . contemplate changes and muse over possibilities.  In one area, I have made a decision. Now don't think that I have answers to everything and concrete plans for my whole life, because I don't. Thus I am considering extending this Sabbatical time to contemplate a few other directions, but rather than a time away, it will be more of a disciplined time to think.  I tend toward busyness, and spontaneity.  Disciplining myself for a time of solitude will be difficult, in the mist of all my doing, but I have come to understand, during this Sabbatical, that I need to cultivate a time of solitude. (And, of course, I will write about those times here in this blog!)

As to that one area of decision, I am now announcing the re-opening of my Abigail's Attic blog!   I am so happy to have made my decision and to be headed in a new direction.  It's like one of the boats (in the header picture) being moored for a long time in the bay and now heading out to sea!  Exciting!

Come on over and join the fun! Here's the opening post!

P.S.  On another note, or another of my boats floating in the bay, my wholesale blog is coming along with several posts scheduled, I will let you know when it opens!

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Tulip Day

Recently my daughter, my two grandsons, Padraic and Owen and I went to a nearby Tulip Farm for the afternoon.  I thought you might enjoy a photo diary of the day. (and more photo practice!)

Owen romping in the field!

Padraic enjoyed the 1913 Steam tractor!

My favorite one!  Blushing Beauty

Monday, April 14, 2014


In my last post I talked about rest producing realignment.  I have been doing a heap of realignment, and not just in my spiritual life.  My business is getting a major overhaul!  I know some of my followers have been anxiously awaiting the reveal of these plans, so here we go.  One of the things that I did for this Sabbatical process was close my PruittCreations Etsy shop, and I  thought long and hard about it's future.

Some history:
I opened my first online shop in late November 2008. I have struggled with the brand, ever since, knowing that I needed to narrow my line of products.  I tried opening two more offshoot shops, to separate my products. This worked for my PruittSupply shop, as it holds its own in the marketplace.  But the initial offshoot, PruittDesign, a shop for my jewelry sales, failed.  Granting that I did have sales, they were not enough to sustain the shop's place in an already overcrowded jewelry market. So, in 2012, I changed the emphasis of that shop from jewelry to textile art, another of my interests. Although that has opened new doors for me, I still struggled with my online brand  in the first shop, it was still too diversified. While all this was happening, I started selling aprons in the wholesale market, and after a slow start, it has taken off!  I think that my brand is becoming significantly narrowed to "The Apron Lady!"  **smiley face**

Thus, for this reason I am expanding my wholesale business and paring down my online Etsy presence.  So, how am I going to accomplish these transitions?

Some of the business plans are now shaping up as follows:

1)  I reopened my Creations shop for a temporary time, as a bargain basement type of shop, to clear out all my inventory that will not be moved elsewhere.  Because much of the inventory in Pruitt Creations is also my craft show inventory, I will not be doing as many craft shows this year.  I will do only a few shows with specific products, instead of a table full of various fabric items, as I have in the past.  This period of creating small fabric items is closed--a decision that was very hard for me.  I will stick to my art and aprons.

2) My Pruitthandcrafts blog, that has been on a hiatus, is getting a makeover with a new URL, a new purpose and a new look!  I will be using it for my wholesale business, exclusively.  When it is ready, I will blog about it here.

3)  The rest of my art and crafty endeavors (Abigail Jayne Art), my writing, and my Etsy team posts will appear in my other blog:
        Abigail's Attic:  Reflections in thoughts and art, from Abby's attic.

Of course, I have a few more specific plans for my business, but this is the gist of it, for now.

Anyone else ever had trouble narrowing their brand presence? 

Friday, April 11, 2014

Thoughts on Rest

As you can see by all my posts, I've been resting quite a bit lately.  I am somewhat like the heading photograph, a dory just moored and floating in the bay. Though not in the water, I am spending time on my patio, checked out of my ordinary daily routines.  But what about rest?  Is it just an absence of activity? A time to "slack-off"?

REST according to Websters is:
1) peace, refreshment as produced by sleep
2) a period of inactivity after work or exertion
3) relief from things annoying, or distressing . . .
 . . . . . . and several other definitions with the last one being:
8) a device for supporting something, as a foot rest

I am making progress in my period of rest, (although some might feel that is an oxymoron.)  I feel like this time is "supporting" me in my future endeavors.  It is helping me separate the wheat kernel from its chaff. As I said previously in this post, I have made a couple of decisions, one of them regarding my spiritual life. Although this decision is a private one, I can tell you how this Sabbatical rest is supporting me spiritually. I am learning:

1)  Rest is a discipline. A basic need of all, both the rest and discipline.  

I am enjoying the teaching of Graham Cooke, and recently found he did some teaching on "The Practice of Rest." Now, I haven't heard it, but his quote was:

"Rest empowers you to become God-conscious, where He is the focus, He has the pre-eminence in all . . . We need that spiritual discipline." 

2) I am learning to live in rest. 

One of Graham Cooke's associates said:

Rest was "to step back, refresh and take a breath. Stepping back into stillness, into our secret place for a few hours or even a few days will allow us to realign and hear His voice."

I am realigning and I have heard some new direction.  I have heard and I will again, in my rest. 

3) I am kept away from a satisfied life without rest.

Another of my mentors, Richard J. Foster, has written a book called Celebration of Discipline.  In it he talks about solitude.  (BTW, you can be mentored by people you never met thru their literature.)

Loneliness is inner emptiness.  Solitude is inner fulfillment.

Our adversary majors in three things: noise, hurry and crowds.  If he can keep us engaged in "muchness" and manyness," he will be satisfied. 
My life, these days is much happier and contented.  
Anyone else feel like giving REST some space in your life?

Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Night Photography

Back on my little patio, this time at night, taking a break enjoying the late night air. Hubby put up some string lights on the ceiling for me, took some pictures from his phone.

Lights from my wind-chime's view
We were enjoying a quiet moment with some popcorn, when it occurred to me to get my camera, that more pictures of my flowers might be different when taken at night!  Obviously these were taken with a flash. The flash washed out any visible background as it was just getting to be dusk and I could see background with my naked eye.

My cheery pansies!

Hubby says that the blue pansies look like old men with mustaches! I guess I could see that if the yellow were their noses!

Pink Primroses

Lavender, baby sweet peas, and "an old man pansy".

I even tried a few shots of the moon!  Tried getting one with a nearby star, then I zoomed in for a couple more shots.

Well, what d'ya think?

Monday, April 7, 2014

An Allegory of Weeds

I know, according to the calender, we're not even really into Spring yet, so why talk about weeds?!  Not yet! Those pesky things that ruin a pretty lawn and inundate the veggie garden?  They will appear in the garden soon enough!

Original sketch appeared in my other blog here

But there are other kinds of weeds that I want to explore today.  They are the strong veins of time wasters that sinisterly take up the space of our lives until we become less fertile and productive for a less pleasing life, just like our lawn.  For those of us who have an online presence, you know the weeds.  They can be too much time spent on Pinterest, Facebook, Twitter etc, although you know too, that these can be good tools for your use.  The trick is to use them in moderation and not let them dictate the flow of your whole life!  They can become like the dandelions in your yard--emphasis on the "lion" part of the word--intimidating and roaring! Although Dandelion weeds can be pretty, even nutritional with edible leaves, once they get a foothold in your lawn (or life), the root is extremely hard to eradicate! And the seeds!  Wow, they spread everywhere!  You know what I am talking about, the time wasters of following links and exploring new images to the far corners of the internet, then looking up and finding that your morning is GONE!

During this sabbatical I have endeavored to keep my time tight! I have a list of topics that I want to explore, research and study, but just like weeds in the garden, it takes constant vigilance to stay focused and on task.

Let me encourage you to examine your time that you might be wasting, in whatever way, and 
stay true to your vision.