Hello after months on the move

I had a nagging feeling through mid-August, September, and somehow I’m already nearly done with October: I said I’d write. I take my commitments seriously; sometimes too seriously. As the days wore into weeks and months and I still wasn’t updating this blog as consistently as I’d intended, I decided to let it go.

Wes and I made an enormous life change back in May of this year, deciding to live full time in the 19′ Airstream Mobile Art Studio, point ourselves south from Alaska, and live smaller/get pickier about our work. Me, I doubled down on art and painting as a primary source of income, alongside continuing to consult on a project-by-project basis. Wes took a job as a hike/camp/backpack guide with a company based out of St. George, UT, which is where we’re currently based.

It’s so easy to write that all out in retrospect. But the mechanisms that support this new life – the new budgeting spreadsheet that enables us to better allot our seasonal incomes, the vehicle(s), the scheduling of our work – are all new. Adaptation looks like waking up in the morning and feeling torn between going for a walk on a sandy trail or sitting down to the easel to paint. It looks like a new transmission for the truck costing what we thought was a pretty healthy margin of financial error – strike those numbers from the spreadsheet marked “savings”. It looks like Wes’s trips blocked off on a Google Calendar; dovetailing with my consulting projects in Alaska and us realizing we’d better actually take time together this coming Friday night because it’s the last time we’ll see each other for a month.

In short, it’s learning. As I articulated recently in my (new! But also very much not new!) Alli Harvey Art Values, it’s progress over perfection. It’s doing, vs analysis paralysis.

For me, it means even when I’ve stated that I want to update this blog more frequently, when I don’t do it, noticing it and freeing it. This is, overall, still (and maybe always) a time of shift as we spend our first weeks, months, and eventually year(s) in this phase of life. I will need to get more comfortable with knowing where I will push myself to discipline, and being okay if there are places where I slide.

And you know what this enables me to do? Be better present. I can’t tell you the number of moments these past months that I have been filled up to the point of tears with amazement at a connection, a view, an opportunity, or just a fleeting feeling. That feeling – that builds to overall contentment – makes me a better me. So when I do paint, write, facilitate, I’m all the more there. This, wildly, still feels like a novelty.

But what have I been doing all these months?! Well, a mix of painting, travel, consulting, and spending time with friends/family. I’ve accrued quite the selection of potential paintings from trips to Alaska, Reno, and across Utah. Some potential photo references below!

More soon. Or – at least a little sooner than this last time, I think and hope!

4 Comments on “Hello after months on the move

  1. Alli, you and Wes inspire me with your courage and your example of living with intention…I love your stories and your photos, and your art work, which is increasingly diverse and interesting. I’d love to see a painting of that photo titled “Running in Reno, NV.” Continue to delight us with your posts; best wishes for health and safety as you continue your adventures.

    • Aw, Mary: thank you. Wes read your comment too. It’s really nice to hear and especially from you! Thank you for weighing in on that Reno pic too. Agreed. Sending all our love to you and the fam!

  2. It sounds like you are doing more “being” and less “doing”. Isn’t this what all yogis strive for?
    Being for me, is that opportunity to be in wonder and in awe in the moment as opposed to reporting on it or responding to it.
    I could go on and on, but that would be more doing when i’d rather just “be”.

    These lessons in life are amazing how they stealthily wander in and elicit, first a judgment, then asking for forgiveness and finally leave us laughing at ourselves in the present moment…..

    Sending more love and a standing ovation at your courage, determination and execution of a new life carved from a dream.
    Good show Alli!

    • Damn, Joanie. Well said. Thank you for articulating that in your way. Sometimes I worry that I’ll become someone so good at “being” that I’ll become uninteresting, even to myself. But I think there’s plenty in life to keep it spicy. …even when I am fighting said spice, ha! It’s also an interesting balance taking care of myself/being present in that way you describe and also staying tethered to a world that needs so much freaking help right now and always. I’m learning how to have both, I think. I miss you! I look forward to our next in person, where and whenever that may be.

Leave a Reply

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.