Post 17: Breathe And Just Let Things Roll…! 105 to go!

Kat doodles about life:

At the moment my life seems to be either hectic working and cycling between jobs or being exhausted, not doing much or having way too much fun. (I will leave it up to your imagination.) All that means I am not very good at following my 3 Days Challenge at the moment,  so I am not very impressed with myself. This weekend I topped it up by doing another extra shift on top of the five I already had to do anyway and as a cherry on top of the cake I added the first lesson with my new student! I have now three days off, so today I was snoozing until early afternoon with my phone on silent. It was a bliss, if you ask me!

As I just mentioned, I have now new student! I was recommended to him by my student- chef, so it is great to see that someone is enjoying my lessons and passing on the work. He is more advanced, so we will be practicing more speaking, particularly pronunciation . He loves to travel and lived in Spain for a long time, so I am planning to spend most of the lessons dedicated to Geography and topics related to interests he has. They are both very keen to learn and it makes such a difference, because it helps me creating exciting lessons, which we all enjoy.

Although working a lot this weekend, after my slightly too depressing post last week about where I am in my life at the moment, this first lesson brought little bit more happiness back. Sometimes I know I want things too quickly or I feel the whole world is against me, when I do not get it RIGHT NOW and I have no idea why or what to do.  Over the past few years I realized that when I just let things roll, they happen without even me doing much. It almost feels like it is all given to me on the plate. Obviously now I am exaggerating, it is not that easy! However at the moment it seems to be happening with interpreting for this new company and teaching privately. I know it took years of hard work to get myself to this point catching every colloquialism and blending into society that now I call this place home. So I am learning how to do it with all the other things I do. It seems to be working in my private life, although there is always way too much excitement going on and now I just need to apply it on my design career. Patience and focus are the key words. I get that great thinking time, when I am on my bike,which is a lot at the moment, so perhaps I need to find another activity to calm my thoughts.

The events of the past few weeks also made me think that I do things differently than others. And I always did. So really I should  not be too hard on myself, because that is just simply who I am. Somehow I always choose more complicated journey even I know there is a simple way. May be it is the addiction to adventurous life and all unknown. And I guess that will never change. So yes, I just need to breathe and let things roll…! Something will happen!

With love. Kat xx

Post 4! Making little steps towards a bigger picture & driving lesson n. 4! 118 to go!

Kat doodles about life and gets arty:

I was going to write this post mainly about my fourth driving lesson, but it is all going on at the moment, so here are some updates. After publishing my rather philosophical post I spent the rest of the Thursday dealing with my e-mail account and managed to clear three out of five folders to completely nothing so now there is only incoming mail to deal with.  I had some rather nice responses to my worries and everything is moving in the right direction.

Mentioning the “January” project in the last few weeks, I finally received the result in. Well, it was a fail. I have not had enough interest, so I better go back to the drawing board and rethink the whole concept again. Mainly I think the problem was in tight deadlines when submitting paperwork, which caused delay and having the knock on affect on not being able to advertise for long enough period to get the word spread around. I have now option to turn in into “April” project if I want to, so let’s try again and not to be deceived by a failure. It is all a learning curve.

Now we are getting to my fourth driving lesson. After having two weeks of Christmas break I tried to remind myself of the process, when it comes to making the car move, attempting to find it in my Driving Theory Book, which did not have anything like that in. After I wanted to search You Tube, but instead got distracted by Facebook. I better work on that. Theory studying now as my bed time reading.

Certain moves are already fully saved in my brain such as moving from first to second gear pretty much straight away and 20mph zone feels way too slow now I have tried driving 30 mph! However on the other hand I still have problem remembering the exact procedure, when starting the car, although I am slowly getting there. The session was mainly about getting comfortable with starting and stopping up and down the hill at T-junctions and driving through little roundabouts whilst using first three gear. My driving instructor commented on the lesson as the best one so far, although I did not share his enthusiasm. Too much oncoming traffic, pushing the pedals slowly to make the car go fast and start up to the hill on T-junction  are just taking forever to get a grip with. Apparently my steering really improved and he started taking step back from teaching under full instruction, so I guess little by little I am getting there.

I have used Saturday to move my studio space around and decided to get ready for some painting.  For a good while I have been thinking what to paint going through piles of images, scrapbooks, and doing the search until Friday night at work brought the inspiration. A gentleman came in dressed in well enough presentable clothes but I spotted straightaway few paint splodges and commented it on as exciting. After having small talk he asked me if I can paint naked men, so I replied of course I can, but I prefer architecture. I had to go and serve other customers, so we did not get to what he actually meant, I hope I find out, but it got me thinking on another level.

This week I have been going through my some of my work getting ready for the presentation, picking up one of my favourite drawing exercise from second year of uni using mainly just energetic charcoal strokes. Most of the time, if I can, I love using pens and byros when sketching to achieve that exciting feel. During the presentation someone actually also commented on this drawing as the outstanding one out of all other similar work. Suddenly this and the converstaion in the club got me thinking about inspiration for my past project, and I have figured out men in my life are certainly one of the subjects I focus on a lot. 195022_208080709204457_3324463_o

So I thought why not?! If they get me back into painting, I do not see the problem. I decided to start with bearded men since they have lot of manly character, facial hair, rinkles and other lines, they will be perfect object to study using different variety of the brush or pencil strokes. I will probably show you more in my next post, but I started with men such as Dostojewski, Darwin and few others found in the online world. I am also planning to ask few bearded men I know myself. For now here two very quick sketches in little A6 size sketchbook I did last night at work. Back soon. Love Kat xx

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I used printed image, so lot of the fine detail disappeared in one black flat surface area..

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Day 81: Third driving lesson and getting others motivated! 11 days to go!

Kat doodles about life:

I am not very good at getting up, in case you have not noticed. I like to have time to wake up slowly, have a good breakfast, check the e-mail, and then start. When working in catering, there are not many days like this. I used to even wake up 4 am to start at 5 :30 am. Thank God those days are over. I am rather used to work until late at night or early hours of the morning, or even to carry on the next day without any sleep. I had many of these ‘the adrenalin is high, let’s just carry on’ situations during my theatre design degree. Being ill for the last four weeks did not help either, because my body clock is used to sleeping whenever, so last night I set up my alarm on about ten different times as my third driving lesson was booked for 8 am. It was either that or driving on 24th December, which is my Christmas Day. What do you think happened? Of course I overslept! Good job I had everything ready, so in five minutes I was sitting in the car trying to quickly wake up before we swap the sides. I guess it is a good exercise to experience, because it will happen in real life simply knowing how much I like ‘the mornings’.

My last lesson was five weeks ago, plus with this late start, I thought I am going to be terrible, but it was not as bad as I expected. Obviously there were few panic moments, but it was just due to getting into more complicated traffic situations. However there was an improvement from first to second gear straight away, putting gear into first one, when starting, I even went up to 30 mph, drove up some fairly steep hills, went through junctions with more traffic and lot more stopping and starting up and down the hill.  The car suddenly does not feel as terrifying and certain moves are becoming a habit. I am quite happy I waited this long, because I have the knowledge of the highway code from cycling, less things to learn, nevermind doing it in second language and on the opposite side, and I am confident enough to say something in case I would not be happy with my driving instructor. Mine is so friendly, patient and easygoing, it makes such a difference, when I make a mistakes. If I would be 17 and had a stressed driving instructor as you hear some of the horror stories, I am not sure if I would be strong enough to say I am not happy with the way you teach me and I would go blank and panic even lot more . Thankfully that is not the case and so far I am making progress, so that is great to know.

I spent the afternoon getting few things done including correction of my new student’s cv. We spoke on the phone later and he was very excited telling me about that Italian cookbook I left there, as I mentioned two posts ago. He was very happy flicking through, translated four recipes, wrote down the vocabulary he needed to look for in a dictionary and even made one of the recipes! How impressive! I was so pleased my personalised first lesson got him so motivated, so when he goes out tomorrow searching for the job again, I hope he is more successful. I am sure he will be speaking in no time with this attitude.

It is really wonderful, when people believe in you and you believe in others. Getting excited, more understanding and patient were the qualities I missed a lot in my school days from some of my teachers. It does not mean you are stupid, just the way you learn more effectively is different and you should not be punished for it. I have discovered that once I left abroad, had the experience of life and started to study the Foundation Diploma in Art&Design, here in the UK. When coming home for holidays I started doing these talks in Art and English lessons back at the same school, where I started. And I can tell you my English teacher was not happy, when I told the students that I was really bad and definitely not her favourite. And as the years went on and I got accepted to university here or passed CPE last year, she would still have that judgemental look on her face every time I saw her and would not really believe me. And you know what and I may never be absolutely perfect, but it is more than enough to make me live the way I want to. Bohumil Hrabal, writer, who went to our school, who failed in Czech language, or Albert Einstein, when failing Maths, were always my great heroes. And look how far they got! Failure does not mean stupidity!

It is not about how much you know and being academic type, it is about how you find it, use it and make it work. It is about being motivated, believing in your dreams and working hard for them. Attitude Czech education is definitely missing and when recently reading this article, it seems it still does, although it may be getting better since the new generation of teachers is going in and the speedy development of the technology. So anyway to end this critical point I have about Czech primary and secondary education, I am very happy about this rather productive Friday and how great it is to bring happiness to other people when using the right teaching methods. Back tomorrow. Kat xx

day 12

Day 77: High on paint this time! 15 days to go!

Kat doodles about life and recommends:

After posting last night, I got again into writing more e-mails and cleaning up my e-mail account. And there I have discovered long time sitting e-mail notification from a Maison Bentley Style Blog Party. I went through all the blogs listed in the main post long time ago and made some great friends, but there were so many other comments below and people adding their blogs at later date I decided to go through those last night. Plus I could not sleep, as I did that during the day, so why not to use that time in more productive way. Plus before falling asleep  I have finally figured out next year’s challenge. So I think. At least for now.

I have recently signed up to few blogs recommended by Learner Mother, so I have been having a look around those too.  Lia in Brussels is interesting blog about cultural events in Brussels, from gigs, theatre shows to exhibitions and. I highly recommend it even  if you do not live in Belgium, as lot of the stuff is fairly exciting to read about. Next blog is by Free Falling into 40 with her very funny take on Potty Training her children and her still being honest about major failure of this task. I will end this bit by talking about 44andfourth and her funny take on being a mum living in Laos and then by reading the best post ever of this week, which made me smile from beginning to the end and that is When The Going Gets Tough(ie) by Put Up with Rain. I found it personally so hilarious, it still makes me smile now I write about it.

Well after, what I did, was I signed to new weekly link swapping for all the different social media, so I spent this lunchtime about two and half hours by going through all the different links, clicking on Likes and Follow of selected  members of UK Bloggers. It did bring enough Likes so my Facebook Page was suddenly on number 99, so with a bit of hinting to my friends, which I am very grateful for, we got to number 106! How fantastic! I have few notes of browsing through some blogs, when I get a bit of time and connecting with the ones within my arty field, but to get you more traffic and people reading it is worth doing once in a while.

Craving proper food for the last few weeks of illness I went onto cooking good quality sausages and rustic mash with three different types of cabbage and broccoli, which I decided to have again for dinner. It was a feast I am telling you. Just a little trick what I do with the mash, I do not bother with peeling the skin, as it tastes better (well to me it does), salt, pepper, few cloves of garlic whilst it is boiling with caraway seeds, and once done after adding butter and milk, more of fresh garlic, caraway seeds if needed (in Czech there is never enough caraway or poppy seeds in anything, we simply love them) and lots of chopped curly parsley or coriander. All these ingredients make it taste and smell divine.  If there is no milk, you can substitute with yoghurt or houmous, which is another great tasting ingredient.

And getting back to work meant writing more work e-mails about January project, which I have some more work to do on this week, uploading  pictures to Instagram and replying to my new student, who is starting lesson tomorrow. He is a young ambitious man, so I am sure he will make the most of my knowledge of British life and my language skills, since my other skills are questioned by my housemates when voluntarily offering my help to paint this afternoon. I shall not bother with these type of teasing comments next time and watch them instead making comments about missing a spot 🙂 Now I will rather move on with getting ready to sleep after this very productive, in my eyes, day. I will see you all tomorrow. Good night Kat xx

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