Friday, January 15, 2021

Comfort and Joy


Last month, like clockwork, Pantone released its choice for Color of the Year to represent, lend focus, and inspire us as we move through 2021 ... and as surely as night turns into day, I hate it.  
Ok, ok, hate is a strong word, but I am really not feeling it, and what makes it even worse is that they pulled another 2016 on us, and picked TWO colors.  Two colors that I'm equally "meh" about separately, but also equally "bleh" about when combined (and, if you've been following along you know we'll be seeing a lot of them especially together thanks to a plethora of contract deals, and marketing, marketing, marketing) are here to usher us through this moment of uncertainty by soothing our frazzled nerves with "a marriage of color conveying a message of strength and hopefulness that is both enduring and uplifting."  Without further ado, I give you:
Alright, so the combo is kinda cute in this photo, I must admit, but anywhere outside of the world of slickers + sightseeing destinations, it's a pass from me.  In fact, I've been doubting this duo since a designer from one of those switcheroo-destroy-your-neighbors'-living-spaces-behind-their-backs-and-hope-they-don't-kill-you-on-television, early 00s shows tried to make it a "thing."  
Plucked straight off of their Spring 2021 report, it doesn't show much imagination to me, but I get what they're going for with their message of positivity + stability ... I just happen to disagree.  You see, sometimes the light at the end of the tunnel is attached to a whole train barrelling straight at you, so maybe after the year like we've all just had we don't actually need to hit the ground running after rogue lights in the darkness.  I think now very much calls for a time of nurturing, and nourishment, and that's why I went in a different direction for my own color of the year.
For the past several years I've selected annual color themes for my blog, mostly because I feel it makes for a nice scrolling experience - hey, I hang out here too!  I made this place to be somewhere I like to come ... I listen to the music, I catch up on what's going on with some of my favorite artists, writers, home chefs, and bloggers, and use this page much the same way anyone else would.  For me, it's a lot more fun than just going to a boring column of bookmarks hidden away in a drop down on my browser (which I still do for other things, but what you see here are my faves).  Anyway, my point!  I like to coordinate the overall look of my page for the year, and I find that this little task occasionally makes its way into other areas of my life beyond the computer screen.  Whether it's a paint color, art projects, a curtain panel, or a garden bed full of flowers, I'll find the color repeating itself, and bringing its intended message to me like a little trail of love-notes I've left for myself sprinkled throughout the year.  
It's easy to forget resolutions, but it's much harder to ignore a theme you intentionally seed your days, weeks, and months with.  While going through the process of selecting this year's color, thoughts of boysenberry jam kept coming to me; all berries really!  Delicious treats, richly colored warm desserts reminding us to slow down, and really enjoy the simple pleasures in life evoking feelings of comfort this Winter, but also reminding us of the promise of Summer's abundance.  I was already sold on the idea based solely on the childhood memories of watching my mom scoop up helpings of hot blackberry cobbler that we'd pour cold milk over to cool just in time to share a dish with my dad (while everyone else slept) after his late night shifts on a very chilly waterfront.  In the early years, for just those brief moments, it was as if the whole rest of the world, and all of its problems just melted away, and slipped off into the dark night ... which probably explains why I have a certain affinity for night time, and have had a lifelong relationship with midnight snacking (I digress), but what sealed it for me was taking the moment to look again into the meanings of the colors.  The gorgeous reds and burgundy, shades of magenta, and deep purple ... words like, luxury, warming, invigorating, determined, unconventional, wealth, prosperity, wisdom, maturity, compassion, empathy, harmony, balance, universal love, spirituality, and connection swirled.  
Yes, yes, yes, and yes!   
This is how I want to spend my year.  I'm not sure I'm ready to be cheerful, and excited like Yellow would probably like us to be, or reliable, and dignified, and even somewhat detached like Gray would perhaps suggest.  I want to be loved, and comforted;  I want that for all of us.  I want us rejuvenated on a cellular level before snapping back to business as usual.  I want self-care cranked to the max even if we have to, or choose to live modestly right now.  I want us to be nurtured, and nourished in all ways.  I want us to enjoy the hell out of what, and who we do have in our lives, and most of all I want every last bit of the unnecessary strife we're experiencing collectively, and individually to just fall away like the petals of the flower before the berry arrives.