15 November 2008

difficult times.

It's a bit crazy on the home-front...
If you're not aware, there's been a firestorm that has been spreading like... well, wildfire in the Los Angeles and Orange County area. One of the areas that has been affected is the city of Brea, which is a very close neighboring city to my city, Diamond Bar. The building smoke has been peeking behind the top of the mountain that is across from our home, so my family and I have been packing our most valuable things into suitcases just in case there's a call for an evacuation.

Luckily, nothing's happened yet in Diamond Bar, and here's to praying that it stays that way.

I actually heard about the fire this morning by a wake up call from my mom, who told me of the news and told me to pack some of my most important things into a suitcase just in case the fire hit our home (not how I want to wake up every morning, for sure).

View from the front of our home right before the smoke got really intense.

So, I ask you: If you were told to pack up a small bag with your most valuable items with the knowledge that everything you leave may not be there when you return... what would you pack?

I think we're asked this question occasionally... you know, random chatty conversations with friends or even during one of those silly "20 questions" games we play on long road trips. It's a thought that crosses our minds sometimes, because it inevitably asks you: "What's most important to you?" But when you're faced with the reality of it, it's sometimes a totally different story.

Since I had originally thought that it would be difficult for me to leave things behind, it was a surprise when I realized that when it came down to it, most things are very replaceable to me. My first instincts were the items I had personal reliance on (sad to say, I'm pretty reliant on my MacBook Pro and cell phone), but aside from a few jeans and t-shirts to keep me warm and from being naked, I was stumped...

Except, when it came to my art.

I can always buy new clothes and find ways to replace all the material things... I could live without them. But when it came to my artwork... and even my hand painted tote bags, handmade journals and cards, art prints, buttons... I was scared I was going to lose it all. All the time and heart that had been put into every single item and to think I'd lose it all to some selfish fire?

Let's just say I quickly packed all of it into my car.

I guess my point is that as Californians are losing their homes to this fire, and even more of us are thrown into a frenzy from the fear of it... it's also really made me realize how important my silly little paintings really are to me. It's so much more than just "inventory" I sell in my Etsy shop or at local craft shows... it's who I am. And I think all us independent and handmade artists and crafters can identify with that.

Because I know I certainly can.

Please comment, I'd love to hear what you all have to say.


3 xoxo's:

Jaye said...


I just saw this on the news this evening. I'm sorry to hear that you may have to be evacuated :( and for those that already have been.

It's a question I've posed to myself many times, and I guess, like you, I've come to realise that there are a lot of things I could live without. With the exception of a few momentoes from when I was a kid, my artwork is probably the only thing I'd ever feel really upset about losing. I'm writing a novel at the minute, and rather stupidly, I have no hard copies of it. I guess it's something I should do o_O but then again, when I think about it, I don't know if I'd be devastated about losing it. I suppose that's something you can only know if it happens to you.

I pray that it doesn't come to that for you.


P.S. I'm sorry, my blog name must seem really inappropriate right about now...sorry about that! I never considered the consequences of choosing it to be honest.

Kelle's Kitchen said...

1) Pets - meaning 1 dog, 2 cats, and a bunny.
2) After that I'm stumped. I kept thinking about certain things that were expensive like the cat feeder, cat tree, air purifier, and I suppose I would grab those things because they are more expensive to replace. I would grab photos. Probably some of my books.

In thinking about it though, I realized how much of the stuff I use every day really is replaceable. Even my Macbook (which I would probably take :)). The most important things would be my boyfriend and our pets. I think if I had any handmade art, that would go as well, but my soaps can be re-made.

I'm really thinking about you, I hope everything turns out ok.


jess gonacha said...

WOW, how scary. I've been hearing about the fires-- I hope everything is OK. Artwork would be at the top of my list, too, of things to pack, and my computer for sure, because that's where everything is-- all my images, everything. What else? Probably photographs, books I love, sketchbooks, things that have lots of personal value. I don't even like to think about having to pack anything up, though-- good luck... my thoughts are with all of you out there.