New Years is a great time to start something new, and unlike the year I decided to not shop on Sundays, or last years “bagless garbage system”, this years NEW thing will not effect my sweet husband in any way. Haha. Maybe.
Everyone knows I have my hands in a lot of different projects, but this year I’d like to try and be more focused. In fact, FOCUS is the goal. So each week I’ll stick to one topic, give or take a few random outbursts, and you know what? I think this is going to work out great!
For the past 2 months I’ve been working on a dollhouse. A beautiful, 3 story Victorian farmhouse that my husband bought me, called the Alison Jr. Lately I’ve had a lot of progress with it, so for the first week of January, the focus was on dollhouses. I would say it was a good week; I’ve met a lot of like minded people online and heard some sweet stories about other peoples experiences with miniatures. It’s really motivated me to keep going, even when the going was tough, and while building a dollhouse is not a quick process, I felt like this past week was exceptionally productive.
In person, I’ve met an equal amount of people who have been bewildered by my desire for a dollhouse. I’m a grown woman, 39, with a 12 year old daughter and oh-so-serious(ly cute!) husband. I have a nice house, a big yard, and a craft/catering business. Why on earth do I want to build and have a dollhouse?
I’ve thought about this more and more every time it’s been asked. Dug deep, and here is what I came up with. Ready?
Back when I was a teen, I auditioned and was accepted to an Art School. The school was 2 towns over and a 45 minute bus ride, both ways, but going to art school gave me a lot of confidence and freedom that I needed. There, I could call my teachers by their first names, colour my hair weird colours and best of all, I had the freedom to be ME.
Just Me. I didn’t know a lot about who that girl was, but it sure was fun being allowed to explore all the thoughts in my head. The monologues I adored throwing myself into for drama class; The darkness hiding the faces of my peers, my universe consisting of only the pool of light surrounding me. The cold sweats I got just before singing in vocals class, and completely opposite, the calm assurance I felt when I got behind my clarinet instead. The hallways that changed to a completely different colour every time you turned a corner, the woodshop teacher who drove his motorcycle down the hall, and the large pine tree on the front lawn that I could crawl under during lunch to read my books. The branches drooped so low it was like a private world under there.
One of the most inspiring mentors I had during my years in art school, was actually my bus driver. He had a name as long as his incredibly long, beard; So we just called him Mr. M. We spent so much time with this guy, and while he usually just drove the bus, we could always go to the front for a chat.
He was a school bus driver, who also happened to be a university professor at Brock. His beard went to his belly (before Duck Dynasty was ever a thing, that was super weird) and he had a different hat on his head every day. I don’t remember too many things about him anymore, but I do remember that he had this impressive list of things he had done and more he still wanted to do. He was supremely smart and would help explain academic concepts to us while we did homework on the bus ride, and it was like having a private tutor and motivational counselor all in one. I loved those days, because while I may not have left art school knowing who I was, exactly – I certainly knew that a cookie-cutter life wasn’t ever going to be good enough for me. And Mr. M. taught me that was okay.
His philosophies stuck in my mind and started something I could never turn off, but honestly I’ve never wanted to. I go after everything that I think is interesting, and so here’s (finally!) the reason why I have a dollhouse:
Because I wanted it.