In Atlanta, spring arrives slowly at first, with a fresh smell in the air, daffodils popping through the ground, and birds singing with delight finding buds in the trees. And then, the day always comes when Mother Nature abandons all subtlety – the skies are filled-in with the green of new leaves. Azalea pink, red and white greet you at every turn, and the world has a yellow tint of pollen blanketing any surface that isn’t moving.
How beautiful nature is – sharing its newness, reminding me of life’s eternal renewal. There is nothing to do….it just happens.
This spring, nature had company inside. It all started simply enough. In January, I was thinking it was time to replace the well-worn carpet and stone. And then, one day, a backed-up pipe gushing water into my den catapulted the thought into action.
And so, the creative process of the new, inside spring collection – began. The long and short of the story is that I changed the color palette of my home – with new awesome floors that are puppy-proof, redone cabinets, and new paint colors. What had been my office was transformed into a studio and library.
I must confess that there were some days – like when the crew with jack-hammers put a 9’ hole in my den to replace a clogged pipe and when the hall flooring team took saws to my floor and set off the smoke alarm – that I wasn’t so sure. No one can really explain what any change will be like or how it will feel – particularly on the days we can’t see our way through to the end.
Just as there were surprises in what needed to be done, there were even more in the gifts that came. For example – the craftsmen. They spoke an array of languages, shared pictures of their families, filled my home with songs and laughter along with their love of their craft and their devotion to creating beautiful spaces.
What was poignant then, and still is today, is the memory that when life is in seeming chaos, there are always guides to help. For me, the flooring team made sure the puppy, cat, and myself had a path to get between rooms. My good friend and master of the plan had a wonderful way of showing up at the right time to get me out of the house – for breakfast, or looking for new cabinet knobs, or office table. And every day, my daughter Sarah reminded me that “this too shall pass” and it was all going to be beautiful.
Finally, spring’s faithful harbinger is the line-up of entrepreneurship and social entrepreneurship events. The season begins with the Georgia Bowl at Kennsaw State. There were teams representing both U.S. and international universities. And, having taught entrepreneurship at Georgia Tech, its Business Plan Competition for GT students is always a favorite. Then, of course, I’m geeky that way – love to see science transformed into impactful businesses.
A relative newcomer to the line-up, which is now in its 5th year is the Idea 2 Serve Competition. Here, Georgia Tech students present venture ideas to impact the world. This year, teams focused on ideas to serve domestic and international communities in areas of water, energy, food, air, transportation and education. No small feats.
I was honored to participate as a judge in the Business Plan Competitions. And I was the host for the Idea 2 Serve Showcase, where the 29 teams presented their ideas to a panel of 35 judges and the community. They reminded me that we are all students and teachers, irrespective of our physical age. The university students presented new ways to look at the world, seeing possibilities. And the seasoned judges shared their wisdoms of how to bring the ideas into reality. This is a great recipe for inspiration.
Now, I’m back at my computer, in my new studio, pausing for a moment. I must say, the 2013 Spring Collection has been amazing. It is exciting to create new adventures, to feel the power of commitment in the middle, and to revel in the joy of seeing the results. Beautiful outside. Beautiful inside. And, new possibilities on the horizon.
“When spring came, even the false spring, there were no problems except where to be happiest.” Ernest Hemingway…A Moveable Feast.
Thanks for reading!