making time to get creative

by Sharon Santoni

Life can get pretty hectic, we all know that. Our daily routine can easily suck us into a spiral where we try to get too much done. I know from experience that when the routine gets too intense, and I have no time to get creative, that I feel like I’m drying up inside.

Nothing feels right, it is quickly a vicious circle – the less I create, the less I want to create and the more I slow down.

The self-knowledge that comes with age is a wonderful thing! Once I identified my need to get creative, I was able to remedy the situation, which is why this weekend, after a particularly intensive couple of months, I deliberately did Nothing. I knew that I wanted a slow couple of days, and then time to make something pretty on Sunday.

All day Saturday, I pottered in the garden, read a book, picked a few flowers, and started planning in my head what I wanted to do on Sunday.

Here is the result. An old display shelf was hauled in from the barn, and set up on a black dresser. I positioned small vases and glass bottles and started layering in flowers from the garden. Sticking to a limited color palette of greens and whites, with a couple of pink tones, I carried on adding flowers until there was no more room.

I’m not saying its perfect, but it looks pretty and that worked for me. I felt the soothing power of getting lost in the flowers and building up the layers as I went. Of course, anything using fresh flowers will only last a few days, but that’s fine. The pleasure was in the creation, and if we get to enjoy the display for a short while, that’s the bonus.

If you are in a creative rut, then you may like to know that we are offering a creative retreat in Provence next June. We are privatizing a beautiful Bastide, and settling in for 6 days, to visit the region and to find time for some creativity. Take a look at the details here, or email us at for the full brochure.


Vicki July 25, 2023 - 6:49 pm

I have the same issue with creativity in my life, Sharon. It is so important to clear space for some creative time. It puts back needed energy and passion and enhances the mundane, as we all have enough mundane. I’m now planning a much side lined post of my home office space (creative outlets being photography, flower arranging, home decorating and blogging). Thank you for the inspiration!

Maryanne July 25, 2023 - 8:56 pm

Your flower display is fabulous! I’m saying it’s perfect.

Philippa July 25, 2023 - 11:21 pm

I love this SO much! My life is a whirlwind of growing perennials to ship all over New Zealand, 4 ballet classes a week (mainly dancing with girls 12-17 which I adore – I’m 61), growing vegetable seedlings for our very popular plant stand, growing vegetable in my big kitchen garden in the paddock and trying to keep other garden areas in check. My art studio is now mostly my office and no matter how hard I try I can NEVER see the surface of my desk or floor. It’s a tiny space. The untidiness frustrates me – I shift my keyboard onto the floor so I have some space to do some art here and there! I am a beautiful-things-a-holic and my sparkle collection is HUGE. I need to make time to REALLY tidy up my studio/office to declutter my brain but where to put things???? Hmmmmm… HELP.. GIGGLE

lori everett July 26, 2023 - 2:51 am

Every morning I begin with sipping my coffee. Then I begin to walk around inside our home and look and re-arrange our decor. Everyday! Crazy, but I love to accentuate our home and always see a new way to combine our decor and enhance our home. My husband does not notice any changes usually, but each time I put something in a new place, I think, wow…..why didn’t I see this combination years ago. It is actually funny to think. But I am 68, and I rarely buy new decorating accents. I love each item I have as there is a story to tell that really no one wants to hear, but I want to remember how I came up what I have and I am about to record where all of my beautiful articles came from because many are gifts I received from friends over the years. I treasure them.

Ewa July 26, 2023 - 2:38 pm

jest do opowiedzenia historia, której tak naprawdę nikt nie chce słuchać, ale chcę pamiętać, jak wymyśliłem to, co mam, ….
Jakie piękne i mądre słowa!

Linda Johnston July 26, 2023 - 4:22 pm

Loved this post. It is so easy to get in that rut and difficult to get out of it! Working on it though!

Lorrie Orr July 26, 2023 - 10:04 pm

Taking time to be creative is important for a healthy self. Love your flower play and the results.

Cassie Keturakis July 27, 2023 - 6:41 am

You have a lovely gift Sharon …
You inspire others by your example. Merci.

Darlene Stallard July 27, 2023 - 7:10 pm

I love seeing the stages of this floral, beginning to end. Simply stunning! The dark background makes everything pop!
Thank you Sharon,

Marianne C. Whitman July 28, 2023 - 6:39 am

Your flowers are lovely and am glad you spent the time creating this lovely picture. I have not been able to garden much as the downpours of rain and then blisteringheat kerps me indoors. I have not let myself read which I loved to do or needlepoint while inside as guilty not getting cleaning done. Bad situation when you getdepressed.

mini crossword October 5, 2023 - 5:39 pm

Wow, I’m impressed; this is really motivating. It’s easy to fall into that routine, but challenging to break free of it. But I’m working on it!

dinosaur game January 30, 2024 - 9:11 am

Whoa, this is incredibly inspiring; I’m truly amazed. It’s simple to get into that pattern, but difficult to get out of it. But I’m making progress!

kane charles April 22, 2024 - 12:30 pm

Sometimes, life is so busy and stressful that it can make us feel exhausted. I’ve also experienced that feeling. However, recognizing my own need to be creative and making time for it has helped me feel more comfortable. This past weekend, I took the time calculator to enjoy being creative and the result was a wonderful painting from the flowers in my garden. That really makes me feel relaxed and happy.


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