Hey Everyone! I know it’s been over a year since I shared anything on this blog. My hope in 2020 when launching my website was to write regularly and share a lot of really good information here. I wrote a few posts and then 2020 became 2021, became 2022, and now here we are!

Each year more and more has been added to my plate in some really great ways, and some really hard ways too. Every rose has its thorn, right? My time for writing has been minimal and I have had to focus on so many other things.

So to update all of you wonderful humans that support me I thought I would share my roses and thorns from the past year in reflection.

A red rose with a rainbow behind it.
Photo by amirali mirhashemian on Unsplash

Rose #3

One of the roses that grew this past year was being re-diagnosed with ADHD (combined-type) at the end of 2022. I know that might sound a little strange, but I now have access to medication that is actually working fairly well for me and I am really happy I took the risk of trying medication again.

and a thorn.

The process of going back on medication was really hard and exhausting. I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do originally when bringing up my ADHD to my doctor. All I knew was that I was riding the struggle bus more than I had in a really long time.

Because of my negative experience with medication in the past, I was reluctant to try medication again, and since my over 20-year-old diagnosis wasn’t in my records (how does that happen?!) I had to rehash everything over multiple months, with multiple doctors and counselors, and way too many appointments, all just to be able to see if the medication was something that even wanted to try.

Luckily as an adult, I have much more awareness and ability to advocate for myself, so ultimately dipping my toes back into trying medication is working out pretty well.

This whole experience is a story of its own that I may have time to sit down and write someday, but that day is not today… so, more on this one later.

Rose # 2

Another rose was the launching of my handmade shop, Atypically Artistic. Today, June 1st is Atypically Artistic’s 1 year anniversary – happy birthday Atypically Artistic! To celebrate I have moved my shop to my own website and will be adding a handful of new creations this month! Check out the new shop here.

A stretchy beaded pride ring worn on a hand.

Bonus rose! In opening my shop a year ago, I had the dream of supporting causes with my creations and today I am making that a reality – All profits from our LGBTQ+ themed products will be donated to the It Gets Better Project, a non-profit whose mission is to uplift, empower, and connect lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ+) youth around the globe. Happy PRIDE y’all!!

and a thorn.

As much as I love creating for my shop I wasn’t able to focus on making new creations as much as I would have liked this past year. Between my other multiple jobs (teaching, consulting, parenting, chauffering, costuming, etc.) and the abundance of hard personal situations our family and friends went through this past year, things were just hard… and creating for me (and you!) got put on the back burner in order to make it through.

Thanks to my family (and the awesome Mother’s Day gift they got me) I now have some dedicated portable crafting tables that make it way more likely for me to pull out my projects in my free time (what exactly is free time anyways?!?). My typical creations are portable while making them so I have done my best to make mini craft bags to carry with me wherever I go. That way if I find a moment to create I can do it right then and there. So, this thorn has already started to turn around a bit and I am prioritizing creating for my mental health a lot more!

Rose # 1

At the same time I launched my shop last year the #etsystrike was happening. That was what made me shift to listing my shop on Ko-fi instead of Etsy and I have stuck with my choice to stay off of Etsy ever since. Etsy is not what it used to be nearly a decade ago when I opened my first shop. It’s overrun with mass-produced products and centralizes profits over creativity which is just not my jam.

Out of this issue, however, came something truly beautiful. I am really excited to share with you all, Artisans Cooperative.

Five Artisan Cooperative pinback buttons displayed on a white background.
These buttons will be listed in my shop later this month!

Back in July of last year a small group of artisans from across the globe came together to meet and discuss how we could solve the problems we are all facing in the handmade community. We shared our stories and ideas and began working to organize what would later become Artisans Cooperative.

Over the past year, this amazing team has worked tirelessly to take our plans and ideas and form them into something tangible. As of May, we have incorporated in Oregon state, elected our interim Board of Directors (Oh hey… I’m on the Board!), formed policy to support our mission, and brought together a community of hundreds of Artisans and Supporters that are now joining the Cooperative as members!

As of today (WOW, June 1st way to be such a momentous day!) Artisans Cooperative membership is now open to the public! There are multiple ways to become a member – through cash buy-in, monthly payment plans, and our points and tiers system – our goal in this work was to make membership equitable and an option for everyone in some form.

You can learn more and join us at https://artisans.coop/membership.

…and if you aren’t ready to join just yet, you can still support Artisans Cooperative by shopping from our cooperative fundraiser items that Artisans have made (find all of Atypically Artistic’s fundraiser items for the Coop here). You can also support our Artisans by shopping from our Artisans Shop Directory which will soon be replaced by our marketplace when it launches later this year.

Well, that’s it for today! I definitely have many more roses and thorns, but I think we will end it on a positive note.

As always I hope to find some more time for writing and sharing my creative journey with you all soon – but if I take another year to write another post you can stay connected with me and follow what’s going on in my creative world through Instagram & Facebook.

Thanks for reading and I hope you have a fantastically creative day!

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