“Finer Fruits” comes straight from a quote from Thoreau. (I’m fond of Thoreau. If you’re here for any length of time, you’ll probably get that. Emerson, too, but Thoreau’s prone-to-rantiness makes me love him.) The gist of the quote is that most people spend way too much time working as part of the machine and never leaving themselves the time and space to be humans, and to actually enjoy the life they’ve been given. It’s like voluntary servitude.
There’s a whole post about how this whole project came to be, so I’ll spare the long, drawn-out explanations here. In a nutshell, then, FINER FRUITS is my year-long project to look for balance in life, satisfaction in work, and a great big giant helping of Re-finding That Passionate Soul that used to live somewhere in this smooshy, aging body of mine.
Before you think this is all about me (which, really, it kind of is a tool for me), I’m planning to share the journey with any and all comers. I’ve been hammering out systems, doing a lot of research on what are the best actions to take to peel back the layers between the Machine-Dweller and the Soul, and I’m hoping to share not only my journey with it, but as much practical stuff as I can cram into a blog post every day or so.
There’s a whole structure to the way things are posted, but it all follows a few very basic themes or topics:
- getting healthy,
- getting balanced,
- reconnecting with self and community, and,
- digging out that spark of life that makes this whole life thing so much more juicy.
Nothing like dreaming big, after all.
Oh! And don’t forget to sign up for the mailing list to get access to stuff nobody else gets to see, and to find out when I’ve got new resources available, too. It’s the best way to keep in touch, after all, and sometimes, change is all about being surrounded by things that encourage those changes.
Elizabeth (aka Elli to her friends, Eliza to her not-friends, and Liz to her husband despite all assertations that she is so not a “Liz”) is a work in progress. This section is technically where I’m supposed to tell you all about why I’m qualified to teach you all about how to change your life, but here’s the deal:
I’m so totally not. I’m a walker of this here path, just like you. I’m probably going to fall down a lot. Bump my head a few times. Do something really stupid like taking up a diet of Chee-toes and Beer, just to see if it works. (Because if you read it on the internet, it HAS to be true, right?)
So I’m not qualified to dispense advice. I am qualified to share my process, however. And I’ve done a bit of life changing in the past, so I have a pretty good idea of how it’s going to be. Ten years ago, I owned an indie publishing company that made art ‘zines and online creativity classes and loved every second of it. Then, through one of those weird evolution-type things that nobody can explain, I ended up being part of a podcast that took off like a house on fire, spawned some extra side projects, and ended with some really crazy people deciding to stalk me to this day. (It’s been two years. I think I’m not the only one due for some life-changin’. Seriously.) From there, I worked for several marketing companies in directorship positions, making other people famous, quietly from the background. (Which I was much happier with anyway, to tell the truth.)
Now, I’m a media director and an artist/writer/teacher again. And, apparently, someone who is just raring to suck all the marrow out of life.
I’m available for questions and such on the forums, or drop me a note at artgirl AT gmail DOT com anytime.
I know this “About” page is already epic in length. Kudos for making it down this far. (Whenever you’re dealing with health stuff, the government suits kind of like you to be clear, though. See how they are?)
There are two sets of rules that are pertinent to Finer Fruits: My own, and yours.
My rules are easy:
- Post things. I’m aiming to share as much as I can, as often as I can, with the absolute minimum of a challenge on Sunday, a check-in on Friday (groooooan) and a little cooking fun on Saturday. Even if life explodifies, I want to try and keep those going, even if the other posts have to pause for a bit. Keeps me honest.
- Try a bunch of stuff. I’ve been in a rut, and not a healthy or enjoyable one, really. The only way to break out of a rut is to…(revolutionary, I know)…do something different. So that’s what I’m aiming to do.
- Get to know you. It’s no fun digging deep into life if you can’t share it with other people. (Well, okay, it is its own reward. But it’s more fun to share with other people.) I promise to treat you with respect and support while we’re all finding the way down this road, provided that respect is shared, too.
- Break my habits, fix what’s broken, and be relentlessly positive about it when I can.
All of the rules for you are in this little post right here. To recap, since I didn’t call them “rules”:
- Don’t be a jerk. This place is about positivity and inspiration, not whining and sniping and snarking. Period.
- If you break #1, I reserve the right to delete your posts and comments without warning.
- See a doctor if you want to try new health things. (See below.)
- All content created by me is mine. Please don’t steal it. Your posts, though, are yours. Do with them whatever you’d like.
- Joining the mailing list and the forums are not mandatory, but are encouraged. Everything’s easier with friends.
- You acknowledge that I’m a person. I might disappear for a while, I might not email you back in anything resembling a timely manner, and I will screw up. Because that’s what persons do sometimes.
- You also acknowledge that at some point, I might actually make things for sale. (Workbooks or classes or something. I have no idea right now, but it might happen, because I do that sometimes.) It doesn’t make me any less of a people, and you will never have to buy anything to participate and play along.
Here’s the biggest thing to remember:
What I think an awesome life is/could be will never ever ever be the exact same thing as what YOU think an awesome life is for you. That’s just some true facts right there. What would make me roll over and squee with joy might make you drop into a boredom-induced coma. What I find interesting, or what I need to work on, or what I do well…all of those things might be very very different for you.
So no matter what I say, beyond the most basic of universal truths, make your own path. Your own rules, your own vision of what life should be, your own rewards.
I’m just some chick with a keyboard. You get to live this wild, precious life all of your own making. How cool is that?
To sum this up in a nutshell:
- Spammers are the scum of the earth. There is a very special level of hell for them, where fire ants will chew their privates.
- Because we feel very strongly about spammers, we will never sell, rent, or otherwise compromise your personal information if possible.
- All reasonable safety measures have been taken to ensure that your forum data is safe, too.
- All payment processing, if we ever sell anything, is done by a third party (probably paypal, or google payments), and their privacy policies apply. We don’t see your financial data, and thus, it’s safe with them.
- If you have sensitive health stuff you want to talk about in the forums, by the way, please take reasonable caution. We’ve done our best to lock it down, but as with anything internetty, if you don’t want it known, don’t put it on the internets. That’s just basic Internet 101, and not Finer Fruits specific.
And I’d totally suggest signing up for the mailing list, which has the same kind of spammers-not-allowed policy as the rest of the site.
First and foremost, let me reiterate this: I am SO NOT A DOCTOR. Please see one before you make any life changes that might affect your health. Doctors is smart peoples, and yours probably knows more about you than I ever would.
If you don’t consult with your doctor, (or even if you do), we’re not responsible for any outcomes, ever, for any reason. I make absolutely no claims of outcomes. My results may be completely different from yours. We will, however, do a little cheerleader dance in your honor if something good happens, because we’re like that.
All opinions expressed here are my own. Wherever possible, links to stuff may be affiliate links, so that I might pay for my burgeoning crack habit. (And by “crack”, I mean “art supplies”.)
If you are a manufacturer of products you think LBV readers would like, by all means — send ‘em to me to review. Sending them does not guarantee a review, nor does it guarantee a favorable review (though I generally have the belief that the world has enough negativity, and I’d rather not review something than smear it). If there’s something reviewed here and I say I like it, it’s because I like it, not because someone’s paying me to like it. So there.
Comments and guest postings are here at my discretion. If you are a dick in the comments, your comment will be removed. Same goes for any other format that discussion might take place. There are lots of way more fun things to do than to sit around being a d-bag on the internet…go find one.
I am about as far from an expert in all of this as you can get and still be a functional human being. And even that’s questionable before six a.m.. Please use your own judgement and decide what’s best for you. We’re all trying to be better peoples, not fangirls here. So have at it.
Craft your own life.
Now go play.