Saturday, December 17, 2016

Is There a Limit? // Thoughts on Imagination and Creativity

You have a unique opportunity here, because you get to read almost a whole journal entry of mine, with very few edits (and they are only to make it sound or look better).  Treasure it, because I assure you, this is a rare opportunity.  I wrote this on December 12, 2016.


You know, it's commonly said that, "there is no limit to your imagination."  Well, I disagree.  I think there is a limit, simply because of the fact that we are human!  God has no limits - none at all!  He is an infinite God, and everything about Him is infinite.  But we humans?  I would venture so far as to say that we are limited in every way!  While on this earth, there is nothing we can do that does not have a limit of some sort.

The thing is, when we tell ourselves (or anyone) that there is, in fact, a limit to our imagination, it stifles our creativity!  How funny is that?  Now, I say that there is a limit to our imagination, and I do believe that (or else I wouldn't say it!), but I believe it is perfectly impossible to reach the limit of our imagination!  That's not to say it's not there, though.  We are finite creatures, and therefore everything about us is finite.  But you know what's crazy?  When you stretch your imagination, it's as if that limit moves further away!  The further you reach, the further it moves!  That's part of why we'll never reach the limit!  In the same way, if you believe the limit is close by, most likely your creativity will be stifled, and that limit is going to feel awful close!
Finger painting is seriously SO much fun.
So what about those people who feel like they don't have any creativity?  What if there are some people who actually have reached the limit to their imagination?  Well, I just gotta be blunt here, and say that if you've reached the limit to your imagination, then, uh, ya must be dead.  See, I don't think those people exist.  Sure, if you think you don't have imagination, that you're not creative, then sure as heck it's gonna feel like it!  But did you ever think about the fact that you kind of need imagination to SURVIVE?

I don't really know what I'm talking about here, actually, since I've never known a day without imagination, but I imagine (ha), if your imagination got no use, you'd just kind of slump over and die.  Right?  RIGHT?  What is it that allows you to enjoy a good book (or any book at all)?  It's your imagination.  What is it that makes music enjoyable to listen to?  It's your imagination.  What is it that gets and keeps any job?  It's your imagination!  If you have the ability to think thoughts of any kind, you are using your imagination.  Our imagination is so heavily wrapped up in everything we do!  Yes, we use our imagination in different ways many times, but there ain't ONE person who ain't got an imagination, and everyone who has an imagination uses it.
This is from a recent blog post, but I just really like the picture.  :)
And have you noticed how I've switched between imagination and creativity a lot?  The two are inseparable!  You cannot have one without the other!  Honestly, I didn't completely buy into all this "everyone is creative" thing before writing about this, but now, it makes perfect sense.  For some reason, even though I said it, I didn't quite believe, in the back of my mind, that everyone is creative.

But I would have never believed that there was a single person without an imagination.  That's craziness!  Now I see that the two are almost one and the same!  I guess it took me this long to understand that, because in my mind, creativity was always related to artsy sort of stuff, or anything left brainedish (it is the left side that's artsy, right?) (...right?...).  I know perfectly easily that imagination is not, but for some reason creativity is was.  So imagination is like a conversion factor!  (Is that right?)
This is the "conversion factor" I wrote in my journal!
I wonder, why does it always seem to be artists/artsy types who stress that "everyone is creative"?  Why doesn't everyone?  I guess because it's ingrained in everyone's heads that creativity is always specifically related to art [or anything involving making, or working with your hands].  I subconsciously thought that, but now that I know better, it seems common sense that it's not the case.  I'm pretty sure it's well known that everyone has an imagination.

Sooo, this whole rant, starting with my belief that there is a limit to our imaginations, was inspired by a sentence* in the 7th paragraph of the 8th chapter of Knowing God by J.I. Packer, which my Sunday school class is reading.


*The sentence, and those following, that inspired that rant are as follows:
"Our personal life is a finite thing: it is limited in every direction, in space, in time, in knowledge, in power.  But God is not so limited.  He is eternal, infinite and almighty."
I took this photograph on a fairly recent, beautiful morning.  God's creation is AMAZING!
I had the idea to copy this into a blog post while I was writing it in my journal, so that's why my writing style sort of accidentally switched from journal style to blog post style near the beginning.  (Yes, there is a slight difference between the two, in that rather than talking to myself, or to my journal, I'm talking to other people in a blog post.)

What are your thoughts on imagination and creativity?  Do you think there is a limit?

Saturday, December 10, 2016

How I Wrapped My Sister's Christmas Gift

Have you noticed I've been a little quiet over here lately?  Maybe not, but I have!  It's not that I'm out of ideas, OH no.  Not in the least.  I'm just tight on time and good habits.  That's all.  But guess what!  I just bought my very own computer recently (woot woot!), which means I can spend a lot more time working on blog posts now!  (But does it also mean less time towards school...?  Pssshhh, don't be ridonkulous.)

This isn't exactly a "How-to" post, it's just a "How-I-Did-It" post.  There many ways to wrap a gift, and this is not how I always wrap a gift, of course.  This is simply how I wrapped one gift.

These are the items to be wrapped.  "What?" you say, "But they're already wrapped!"  OH come now.  I am not done!  The remainder of the wrapping will be explained in this here blog post!  (And anyway, there's a good chance the recipient of this gift is reading this, so I'm not going to spoil it for her by showing a picture of the gifts!  You'll just have to be patient, KB.)
I bought a 64-pack of crayons the other day, solely for the purpose of using on gifts!  I found this cool gift wrapping idea recently-ish, and it looks so fun, don't you think?  So I went and got a bunch of crayons, and I'm very excited about them!  Heehee, when I opened up the box, I found this:
So I'm going to tape three crayons on the off-white wrapping.  These are the three I originally picked.
But THEN, I found some more that also coordinated really well with the wrapping.
Look at that!  It's so beautifuuull...
You probably can't read the names very well, but there's "Green," "Forest green," "Lime Green," "Tumbleweed," and "Mauvelous."  Indeed, they are all "mauvelous," aren't they?
I knew I wanted three, and I knew I wanted to keep both the brown color, and the pink color.  So it was just a matter of getting rid of two greens.  But look!  Every one of them coordinates superbly!
In the end though, I stuck with my original three, heh.  I thought the dark green was best because it balances out the light shades of the brown and pink.  After I chose my colors for real, I taped them to the gift, and tied a ribbon around.  This is only the second time I've used this idea of taping crayons to the gift.  For this particular gift, I thought it would look better not to write, "color me" on the gift.  So I didn't.
Now all the inside stuff is done, and the gifts are ready to put into the bag!
After I put them in the bag, I remembered it needed a tag or something.  I know, card making is like my specialty, and I haven't made one in a while, honestly, but I thought what this gift needed was a tag on the outside, not a card on the inside.  (Plus ... I was doing this late at night, and I wanted to finish it up that night.  Making a card would take too long.)

I had this tag on my desk, already made, and it goes perfectly with the colors of the wrapping!  So I took advantage of it.  These were the colors I was thinking about for writing on it.  I really wanted to go with pink, but I knew that was too light, as well as the green.
I decided on the light brown, which turned out to be too light also!
So I went over it with dark pink, which I was not planning on, but it went with the wrapping paper!  I really didn't want to, because it didn't exactly match the ribbon I had already picked out, but neither did the purple sharpie, which is why I didn't pick that to go over the light brown sharpie.
I had gotten the gifts back out of the bag to do the tag, but now they went back in, and it was time to put a bow on the bag!  These are all the ribbons I had been thinking about using.  I wanted to use three, and tie them all together.
These are the three I picked out.  The middle ribbon is the same I used to tie around the off-white gift with the crayons.
The light green was the shortest of the three, but I thought if I cut all three to the same length, I wouldn't be able to tie them in a bow.  Sooo...I thought maybe it would be cool if they were each different lengths!  Well, I was wrong.  It looked pretty bad, in my opinion.  Plus I didn't have a way to attach the tag with this option.
So instead, I ditched the light green ribbon, cut the other two to the same length, and tied a perfect bow, this time attaching the tag!

Note: I find bows look most "perfect" if you tie them upside down.  Like, for this bow, I bent over the gift so my hands were working upside down.
I had wanted to tie both handles of the bag together with the bow, but that didn't really work out with what I did up yonder.  Still, I thought the handles needed to be pulled together in some way.  I still had that light green ribbon, so I thought, "Hey!  I'll use it on the handles!"

But no.  It wasn't working for me.  The fact that it was a different color than the bow with the tag really bothered me.
So I used a small amount of the same green-turquoise ribbon I had used for the bow, and just tied a small knot, not even a bow.  It's inconspicuous, but it does the job. 
All I had left to do was tuck it under the tree!
Even though this is not traditionally Christmas-y, I love how it looks.  In fact, I think I like it more because of that!  I don't really like traditional Christmas colors.  I love Christmas, but not all that red and green and gold jazz.  I hope my seester likes how I did this too!  Haha, sorry for spoiling the wrappage of them, Kay Buff!  At least you don't know what the actual items are though.  :)
 Hey, before I leave you, go check out a guest post I did over at Lisbeth's blog, Running In His Reign!
Poppy Thank You Cards
Do you wrap your presents fancily?  What's the prettiestly wrapped gift you've ever given or received (meaning, how was it wrapped, but you could also tell me what was inside, if you want)?