Rain / by Susie Lubell

I've been watching the weather forecast on my phone for the last week waiting patiently, or with very little patience actually, for the week of rain scheduled to start Thursday night. Which it did! We've had a few intermittent showers over the last month but nothing that resembles the true end of summer. But I think it's over. In Israel we have basically two seasons. Hot and Cold. The spring and fall are very short. It mainly means you can wear jeans with your sandals. The fall may as well not exist altogether since the trees don't change color. Spring, on the other hand, is spectacular with unimaginably beautiful wildflowers at every turn, but the fall is kind of meh. Needless to say I'm pretty delirious about the weather changing, with the exception of its affect on my allergies. Rain cleans everything up. It settles the dust from the summer. It brightens up the place. It forces me to take inventory, switch stuff around. I find myself in the attic searching for rain boots and umbrellas and down comforters, all packed away last April. The whole thing makes me giddy.

A few weeks ago I went through the same process with my website. I wanted a fresh start for a new season and I was desperate to brighten up the place. But more than just a visual makeover, I needed to really examine my value proposition and take proper inventory of what I do. For other artist/bloggers out there, maybe you've struggled like I have to extract something cohesive from all that you do. Something that is uniquely you, something compelling in this world where everything under the sun already exists. For many years, before I started making art again, I was writing about motherhood and family life. About balancing work and life with kids. I had a lot to write because everything was new. The lack of sleep, the worry, the potty training, the exhaustion, the everyday toils of a new mom. And then I started my business which had little to do with what I was writing in my blog. Occasionally I'd try to make a connection but it felt forced which is how it continued for years while the pace of my posts decelerated to a near standstill.

So when my kids finally went back to school in September I looked at everything. I went into my proverbial attic and sorted through the clothes and boots and gear until I got a clear picture of what I had to offer, my BRAND. And that's when I could finally make sense of the many hats I wear and pull together a unified online presence to showcase it. Moving here three years ago opened up a source of constant inspiration for me. Sometimes to the point where I'm completely over stimulated and can't get anything out. But when I slow down and spend some part of every day creating then the work flows. What I witness here on the day to day is what feeds my art and my writing. There is no distinction. And taken together, it's my vision and voice, which is the one thing I can offer to the world that doesn't already exist. Because nobody else, thank god, is me.

So here's to rain and settled dust and clean slates. It's a work in progress. More later on how I built the site in one week of late nights using WIX.

Shabbat shalom.