Let me introduce myself

Let me introduce myself.  Yeah, I know...usually one finds this in the profile section of a blog (but I haven't completely gotten there yet).  I also started this blog back in 2008 so maybe this should have come up earlier?   Better late than never.  You'll find this is one of my mottos.

My name is Kari.  This is my blog.

I left my full time teaching job at the end of August this past year and have attempted to blog every week day since I left.  I have written a total of 47 (this is #48) posts so far (Yay for me!  A somersault is in order.  I will take that now...)

Today I thought it might be interesting to take inventory of my blog "labels" or "tags" as others might call them.  I noticed that first of all, I am terribly challenged here. I seem to forget this important part of blogging.  Second, I noticed that most of my posts have the label "inspirational", "authenticity", and "simple pleasures".  The next tier of labels includes "the creative process", "creative commitments" and "quotes".  Hmmmm.... but my blog is titled "Create EVERY Day"?   Wha...?  More about this later...

I am just your average joe (or the female version of joe), living with my husband and our dog and cat in our modest bungalow in a humble neighborhood in Minneapolis.  It took me forever to fall in like with Minneapolis (I grew up near the ocean and went to college in the mountains) but now I think I am here to stay.  I love the creative artistic people and opportunities that literally abound here.  I like the idea that Minneapolis will probably never be a trendy place to live (it's too midwest and just too flat in geography).  I love that it has the perks of any city (with the food, the art, the institutions) but can also feel like a big small town.  I LOVE the ethnic diversity.  It's unbelievable and powerful.  I mostly take pride in the politics of the state too.  Can I tell you something I don't like?  I don't like the extreme weather (really hot summers and really cold winters) and the lack of sun (which usually sums up the daily weather pattern here).  This truly effects me.  REALLY.  I love me some sun!

I love our house (in fact it's one of the reasons it's hard to leave Minnesota) but if you saw it, you may not know why.  It isn't fully renovated, the exterior hasn't been touched, the interior decor is eclectic and it still needs a lot of work on the inside (we've done a lot already but have been in a holding pattern for a while now).  It's also usually NEVER clean because of our elderly pets for one AND because housework has intentionally been put at the end of the list (more about THAT later too).

I married young.  I honestly never thought I would but I was in love (we were, that is).  Oh, and we definitely still are...ha!  I wouldn't say I was naive but I can easily say I wouldn't recommend it and it definitely hasn't been easy or has smelled that sweet.  Lucky for us, we were able to grow up individually in our partnership and this is what's made it successful and happy (oh, and by the way, we are both still growing...).  We don't have children and we probably won't.  We didn't think this would be our reality either but here we are and here that is.  Luckily, we still enjoy life and flourish in each other's company (usually everyday unless we are having one of those arguments - yes, we DO argue). We usually share one belly laugh together every day.  No kidding.  This makes it all worth it.  One thing I have always appreciated about my partnership with my husband is that we can just be.  We don't need an event or circumstance to keep us interested in one another.  We actually do best when we just are.  This continues to be extremely refreshing to me after almost 20 years of marriage.

I am an artist (a painter, more specifically) who became a "professional" (that means I started paying self employment taxes) back in 2003.  I came into art later in my life (here's that motto again: better late than never) and believe in the power of creating every day (hence the blog title, folks).  I have created several bodies of work that really vary but, if you look closely, you'll possibly see the bridges between each.  I have come to understand my art making rhythm and know that painting at an easel (where I create these bodies of work) every day doesn't work for me. What does work for me is creating everyday in a variety of different ways (an extremely important process for me that takes precedence over house cleaning).  I usually develop my own creative commitments.  For me, creating everyday indirectly primes the pump and then, all of the sudden, a new body of work is born (which seems to happen out of no where but what it seems like and what it truly is are two different things aren't they?)  I have been a source of inspiration to close friends and colleagues who feel challenged to show up for their art/creativity everyday and this is one of the reasons why I started this blog and recently, started teaching an online class in 5 day segments for those that also want to participate in creating a daily creative rhythm of their own.  I have also recently launched a creative coaching business.

Ever since I can remember, I have been absolutely inspired by simple pleasures or small delights (when we were first dating, my husband used to say he loved how easy I was to please or he'd refer to me as one "cheap date").  But, if I dare to tell the whole truth, I am NOT easy to please at all, I just love to cloud watch (yeah, sometimes my husband and I lay on a blanket in our backyard - our UNlandscaped backyard, just to clarify - and watch the clouds).  I love nature and all things small and miraculous.  I am crazy about the NATURE tv series on public television.  I LOVE independent films.  I strive to have authentic relationships based on emotional truth (whoa, heavy, huh?) I really don't like small talk.  I am an introvert (which has really negative connotations and it would take an entirety of 5 blog posts just to set the record straight - I won't go there now).  I LOVE to camp on the sandy beach of Lake Superior and have a dream to spend one entire summer there.  I have a bucket list.  You can read that here.  I LOVE coffee, wine, chocolate (and am VERY particular about what sorts of coffee, wine and chocolate I consume).  I love road trips and would prefer to drive anywhere rather than fly because I get just as much pleasure (or more) out of the journey than the destination (no matter how cliche that may sound).  I believe there is room for everyone to do what they are called to do and that most of our lives are spent trying to actually find or cultivate this calling. I love to take photographs (you can find these here and here) and anything camera-wise beyond a point and shoot is just too challenging for me to manage.

So what inspires me?  Nature, simplicity, authentic relationships, emotional truth, good music, inspirational people, people that listen to that inner calling inside and follow it (despite what it looks like on the outside), laughter (laughing is seriously one of my favorite activities and it usually happens OUT LOUD, everyday.  I feel lucky), good friends (I have SUCH good friends - yep, more feeling lucky).  I love animals and am so intrigued by what I believe they can teach us.  Good food inspires me (although I don't cook and it's really important to me that I eat well)  I love good books and have mentioned many of them here in this blog.  Seriously, if you dropped by one day you might find me giddy with delight under afghans (I LOVE these too) supported by a ton of pillows while indulging in "the luxury of reading"(but don't drop by, really, 'cause I am probably having me some quiet time - ha!).  I love to journal and write.  I have heroines that aren't that mainstream.  For many years now they have been Georgia O'Keeffe, May Sarton and Barbara Ueland.  I love that in their era and time they were not afraid to express their own truths as persons and women.  I love the visual image itself and LOVE social networks for this reason (as well as pinterest).

I experience challenges all the time.  Small bumps and LARGE ones REGULARLY.  My life isn't all sunny and warm and skipping through the fields of life (although, when it is, it REALLY TRULY is). I also take life and how I choose to live it seriously - VERY seriously.  In fact, sometimes too seriously.   I stick around here, living this life because those truly amazing times (when I find myself skipping) make all the challenges worthwhile (don't mean to sound cliche again and, by the way, you happen to be catching me on a "good" day).   This blog is also a way that I remind myself of what really matters in my life (it's a way to realize that life's challenges don't need to define me).  What's here is what defines me.

There is absolutely no way I could encapsulate me in this post but, I hope for now, I've created a start.  If you like what you've read and want to hear more, I hope you'll follow my blog.  If you can think of others who might appreciate it, I hope you'll pass it along.  Also, just as importantly, if you know of others who you think I would appreciate being connected with, please introduce me!  I just met a new cyber/blog friend through another dear friend yesterday and I felt an instantaneous connection (yay!)  Bring it on...

Lastly, thank you for reading.  I will keep on keeping on.  You keep on keeping on too.


  1. I really liked reading this. I resonated with quite a lot of it. Especially, "I have created several bodies of work that really vary but, if you look closely, you'll possibly see the bridges between each."

    I've had several people tell me that they can see a common thread through all the work I produce, but it took a while for me to notice it myself! For a long time I felt that I was just "all over the place" as an artist. Experimentation meant more to me than a cohesive and recognizable style. Although, I have to admit, part of me wanted a stronger and unique visual "voice". Ok, maybe I still am all over the place, but I guess the point is that I finally decided that it wasn't a bad thing! :)

    Thanks for sharing your introduction. It's very nice to meet you!

    1. Yay, Anika! And, in turn, it's so nice to meet you! Thank you for reading and thank you for your comments. It's so encouraging to hear about others' creative endeavors. I love that we have "found" each other.

      For anyone else reading these comments, Anika is a recent blog friend I met through HER creative commitments. Check her out here!

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  4. Beautiful, one of your gifts is that you always remain true to your self. xoxo Lizzie

  5. Hello! I just discovered you through tumblr, searching Northern Spark, and followed your photograph to the beautiful words and art you have shared. Thank you for your honesty as an artist. It is perfect reading for this late night. Many thanks for the inspirations!

    1. Stephanie, and lo and behold, here YOU are! I've been perusing your links this morn. How fantastic and fortunate I feel to be introduced to you! Thank you for your kind words and encouragement. I look forward to observing/following your process


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