Category Archives: Family

Finding passion without becoming addicted or why six years on it’s not any easier

2012 calendar desktop monsters handmade aliens pretty whimsical etsy

I wrote this blog post earlier this year in May but hadn’t published it. This seems to be a common occurrence as I write a lot but don’t publish them. And with 95 blog post drafts sitting anxiously I thought well, now is the time to edit and publish. Anyhow, I recently celebrated six years sobriety of off hard drugs on August 26th so while perusing the drafts I re-read this one and thought it appropriate to share with you.

For the last six years I’ve been searching for something that doesn’t exist. A something that perhaps exists in everyday life but doesn’t exist in the nether regions of one’s psyche. One can never return to the past nor can they return to the future.

While I may think of chemical drugs almost everyday I know that if I consume them it would spell the death of me as I’d fall so far down the rabbit hole that I would not return as the drug means more to me than life itself and more than everyone and everything else in this world. I knew this, and understood this, when cleaning up from addiction in 2005.

And I miss the freedom of living in a larger urban center and of being free to not wear a bra and being free to not look like the rest of the population surrounding me. While it seems tuff at times to live in a small town… yes, Saint John is a small town even though it is officially declared a city… it is still a small town by modern standards; and a very conservative small town at that. And to see fashions that were in style in Vancouver in 2007 rearing there head here right now is mind boggling as it’s nuts to think that it takes four to five years for fashions to make their way from West to East.

I was talking with my cousin a few days ago who is four years older than I. We are both relatively single and do not have children. We are also both self employed and creative although her creativity is a hobby while mine is my main source of income.

I can remember at age 12 or 13 visiting with her and her showing me the many drawings that she drew and being inspired by them. I don’t know if you know that Rochelle. But I’ll never forget the amazing ink drawings you rendered as a teenager and how you told me to keep drawing even when I didn’t feel like it while we stood in your bedroom. I’m fortunate to have had people in my life who inspired me creatively at a very early and tender age.

As I near middle age now, I wonder if this is how it’s supposed to be. While I don’t enjoy being single, I do long for savageness and wild abandon. I miss it to be honest. I feel repressed here in Saint John and while I have sex on very rare occasions, I do miss the damn connection that comes when you finally meet the right person. I’m sick and tired of dating. And this isn’t to say that I’m looking to lay just anybody. I’m not addicted to sex but I am human and I hunger for physical contact but MUCH more than that I want a life long commitment with someone.

I may never have children and that is not okay. So six years on it’s not any easier. And that is the truth people about addiction. It never goes away, but you can use it to your advantage and work with it, molding it into inspiration to continue living and striving for the life you want.

Handmade by me 2012 Desk and Wall Calendars are listed and ready to ship in the art shop now. Pictured above are the 12 months from the desk calendar.

The DIY Deck in Pictures

My feet on the new deck!

When I purchased this home a couple of years ago the side stairs and small 3 by 3 foot landing were in pretty rough shape, but still usable. By the beginning of this Summer they were detaching from the house and were unsafe to continue using. My Dad and brother dropped by about a week ago and built this new 6 by 8 foot deck and staircase for me in one day.

This is the story in pictures… (click them for a larger image)

My Dad (John) the mason and younger brother (Stephen) the journeyman carpenter are awesome! I love you both and the new side deck rocks!

The good in becoming vulnerable

How do you deal with unwanted attention or attention that perhaps you didn’t expect to get from something you wrote, said, posted, tweeted, shared or facebooked for the sheer fun of it; basically because you could, because it’s your personal space to share and create on.

Getting sick and feeling awful certainly puts one’s life into perspective. It has a way of making you take stock of where you are, where you were and most importantly where you want to be once you do begin to feel better.

Do you count your blessings? Do you make yourself vulnerable to new friendships, new business initiatives or even romantic relationships or do you avoid them out of fear? Do you take risks or do you always walk on the damn line like everyone else and fit into the mold that society markets to you?

Something snapped inside in March after travelling to Fredericton. I haven’t been quite the same since. And that could be due to the Synthroid beginning to work and stabilize the hypothyroidism. Or, it could be that in being honest with and surrounding myself with people who inspire, share, challenge and grow with me rather than work against or hold me back, I’m growing as a person again. And this doesn’t mean that we agree all of the time… in fact it’s quite the opposite… it just means that we like each other and like the dreams we talk of. That Waitress Story is more important than ever.

I applied for a creation grant in early April. It was rejected three weeks ago.

I signed with an artist representative a few months back. I ended that relationship quite abruptly a few weeks ago after learning that all was not what it seemed to be.

I also turned down a part-time College level teaching job earlier this year after realizing during the uber-complicated negotiation process that we were not a good fit after all.

I am dating and realizing more and more what it is that I’m looking for and it’s not so simple or black and white as what is written on this list as many men seem to think from the sheer amount of emails I’ve received from them about it. Look, I don’t date men that I meet online anymore, well maybe…

All it really takes in life is a genuine smile and an outreached arm to dance. Actions speak much louder than words and it’s those actions that make a person back away or grab on and enjoy the ride.

Really, life is that simple and if you are not experiencing that then you must do everything you can and get off of that straight line and enjoy the bumps along the way.

Today I’m grateful for family and friends who while being kind and gentle are challenging me to break out of the shell that I slid into sometime last year.

Photo Credits: Andrew of Park Imagery

  1. Me and my beautiful friend of 20 years, Vikki (Fredericton, NB, Canada)
  2. Me and Vikki again (Fredericton, NB, Canada)
  3. Me hoola hopping with 50lbs of homemade hoops (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  4. Doing my best to keep those hoops spinning (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  5. My good friend Anne hooping (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  6. My good friend and roommate Andrew, hooping! (Quispamsis, NB, Canada)
  7. Harrison’s Dad, me and Harrison (Cambridge Narrows, NB, Canada)

Happy Mother’s Day – wreath of joy drawing

mothers day wreath illustration berries leaves joy happiness artist jessica doyle

Just a quick note to say happy mother’s mother’s day to my mom.

I love you! xoxo

I drew this wreath late last year with a Pilot G-tec C4 pen inside a Fabriano Quadrato journal. Last week, I added in some vibrant colour using Prismacolor Verithin coloured pencils and a few highlights with a white Pilot Choose pen. The illustration section pictured above, squared from the journal, measures roughly 5×5 inches (12,5cm by 12,5cm).

An instant collection of vintage Canadian cigar boxes and a little Doyle family history

collection of vintage cigar boxes tucketts, benson hedges, rob burns, invincibles, pandora cigars

All these cigar boxes had belonged to my great uncle George Doyle and date from the 1920’s to the 1940’s. I come from a long line of collector’s, skilled tradespeople, homesteaders, artists, thinkers and tinkerers. While each of us currently collects things that mean something to us, many of the items we have are simply not something we need or want to keep but may be something you would enjoy owning.

With that said, My Dad and I recently began stocking the Doyle family vintage shop again, last week. We will continue to stock it with knicks knacks, collectables, paper ephemera, period advertisements, tins, houewares, supplies, Saint John NB historical items, WWII themed things and many more wonderful pieces of history!

I do all the online work, photographing, listing and packaging. While my Dad, cleans the items and together we date them. His living memory goes back 65 years, so this certainly is more advantageous than my 37 years. Together, we expect to have hundreds of listings added to the shop during the next few months. I’ll be blogging about select items here on the blog as I did in the past too. There is a vintage category.

This is my hobby folks, while art creation is my job. And if you have a hobby and haven’t been practicing that hobby for a while, then you are all to aware with what happens when you neglect your hobby for months or years…

So, today I’m happy to share with you a collection of five vintage cigar boxes.

Pictured Cigar Boxes

  1. Tucketts Marguerite Cigar Box
  2. Rare – Rob Burns – Invincibles – For Auld Lang Syne Cigar Box
  3. Pandora Cigars – Aged in Cedar, Patented – Panetela – Cigar Box
  4. Rob T. Burns – General Cigar Co. Limited – Invincibles Cigar Box
  5. Benson & Hedges – Number 7 Cigar Box

collection of vintage cigar boxes tucketts margueritte, benson hedges, rob burns, invincibles, pandora cigars

This collection of vintage cigar boxes can be purchased in the Doyle Family Vintage Shop, OLDisNEW.

What are your hobbies? Do you get cranky and become unfocused when you can’t or choose to not to practice your hobby and procrastinate instead? I hadn’t practiced my hobby since late 2009! It’s been far too long.

Joy to the World – a series of vintage Doyle family photos

A long long time ago, well 26 years ago in grade five I was chosen to play the part of Mary for the grade five production of the Nativity during the annual Bayview Elementary School Christmas public assembly. My mom snapped this photo just as I was sitting down in the Nativity chair. It certainly makes my bum look huge.

Every Christmas as a child my brother and I saved each cardboard roll from the inside of Christmas wrapping paper to play games with. In this photo we are playing tetherball using an ornament attached to string with Lady the collie watching us. It was cold outside remember and we needed something to do. And yes, those are Mickey Mouse and Dr. Suess books in the background.

Though it was extremely cold outside Stephen and I did play outside in the snow until our fingers were frost bitten every day. This is us in the backyard. We piled snow to build forts when there were no drifts to use. We slid down mountains over jumps knocking the wind out of us. And when Spring began to hit we built ice and snow damns along the side of the road in a tremendous effort to stop the flow of water from melting snow going down the street while cars and buses rushed by us. We were busy and had no fear.

Oh and I figure skated too.

😉

Spring Pussy Willows no.2 in Remembrance of My Great Aunt Theresa Moore

I feel as grey and calm today as the weather dripping from the sky outside.

My Great Aunt Theresa passed away yesterday. Theresa was like a grandmother to me. And She was like a Mom to my Dad and his four siblings after my Dad’s Mom passed away when he was five. His father never remarried and Theresa became the surogate Mom to his five children along with raising her own four children. She was a generous and beautiful woman.

When someone dies you can never tell how you will react or when the tears will flow or even if they’ll come at all. They came in waves for me after the phone call from my dad early yesterday afternoon. I sat on deck and simply cried.

Tonight will be difficult and filled with emotion but it will be happy at the same time to see my family, some of whom are traveling from very far away to attend the funeral. The last time we gathered on my Dad’s side of the family was for my cousin Marc’s wedding which was only one month ago.
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