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30-something mother, wife, lawyer, writer, design junkie, craftaholic, cook

likes: clever tools, snazzy colors, working for justice, kid wrangling, Meyer lemons

dislikes: inefficiency, civil discovery, most shades of purple, Tori Amos

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Entries in thank you (2)

Tuesday
Jun302009

A pause for thanks

Y'all, I'm gonna just put it to you straight: Lately I've been feeling pretty sorry for myself, creatively speaking. I've felt bottled up and frustrated. I've started far more projects than I've finished, and I've thought about thinking about starting a whole lot of others I couldn't be bothered even to try at. I've gotten myself in a rut of thinking that every effort needed to be a slam dunk, a perfectly photographed, brilliantly executed specimen for this here little internet museum of moi. Well, today I say, "Dumb, Blazer!"

Some days (most days) I wish I could devote my working life to creative pursuits. I blame my job and its demands for my artistic limitations. I fret that I am missing out on a different life--an alternate version of me who cuts and pastes and grows and cooks all the time. And then I realize that that alternate version is just as frustrated as the real me. She gets stir crazy and wishes she had stability and office mates and fears she's not doing enough with her education. The trick I'm trying to learn is how to be a little of both of these people without overloading my circuits. There are plenty of books and loads of advice for how to be a lawyer, how to succeed as a criminal defense attorney, how to survive the slings and arrows of life as a public defender. And there is no shortage of good support for people (women especially) who are pursuing creative careers and becoming artistic entrepreneurs. What I'm looking for is the manual that tells you how to combine the two. That's not so weird, right?

Until someone writes that perfect guide to living my specific life, I have no choice but to keep trying to plow through when I'm all tangled up like I have been lately. In the last 6 months or so I have gotten blocked like this a couple of times. And at first, the mere existence of this blog feels like a trap--public evidence of my creative drought. But then slowly, slowly, knowing I have this place to vent, to share, to reach out is the thing that frees me. And that makes me thankful--thankful to the great wide interweb, to the people near and far who tune in to read my ramblings, and to myself for having the guts and the will to keep it up. While I was in a thankful mood tonight, I drew up these cards and matching envelopes. I hope you enjoy them, and I really do thank you for being here (wherever "here" is on the internet).

As always, feel free to use and print as much as you'd like for any non-commercial purpose. If you'd like to link to the cards, I'd love it if you'd link to this post rather than directly to the PDF. You can download the PDF here, and there is a page in the file of instructions on how to print and cut the cards.

Monday
May042009

Teacher Appreciation

Teacher Thank You © 2009 Cameron BlazerThis week is teacher appreciation week all across the United States. Did you forget? I know, me, too. Which is kind of ridiculous since a) my mom has been a public school teacher for 39 (!) years and b) I designed these teacher appreciation cards about 3 months ago. Oy.

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It takes a lot of guts to stand up in front of a room of kids (whether they're 5 or 15) and take on the responsibility of teaching them to read, to write, to add or subtract, to question--to THINK. I know that I am a better person for every teacher who patiently answered my third or fourth question on a subject--and better yet, for the teachers who returned my barrage of questions with a few of their own. I've spent more than half of my life in school, and I have quite a few teachers for whom to be thankful. So, to Sallie Ballard, Susan Skelton, Courtney Sommers, Kara Gwynne-Vaughn, Cathy Woods, Geri Sklarz, Carolyn Matalene, Roy Schwartzman, Keen Butterworth, Peter Sederberg, Lorri Unumb, Mike Seekings, and John Simpkins, thank you, thank you, thank you.

•••

I designed these cards to be their own envelopes, and there are two on each page--I printed mine on cardstock, but they'd be just fine on plain paper, too. When you print the file, be sure to print the page with no scaling, or the cut and fold lines will be all wopsy. Make a vertical cut down the center at 4.25". Then make a fold 2" from the bottom and another 6.25" from the bottom--that should leave you with two flaps and a 4.25" square in the middle. Fold the two white flaps over one another and seal with tape or a dot of glue or a sticker. As always, print as many as you like and give them away freely, just don't sell or redistribute them electronically, s'il vous plaƮt.