Monthly Archives: February 2012

Beginnings

Today is leap year, such a fun concept.it seems that the earth actually takes 365.242 days to make its journey around the sun and like everything in life, that little bit of time adds up to another complete day about every four years. This is that special day a girl can propose to a man, hmmm. Anyway, we get one more day this year so, I say, make it count.

 I will begin my day by counting blessings and that always helps to get me positive, for as I have recently and frequently declared being positive is my destination. It’s early as I post and the day is freshly scrubbed and new. Life is still for a moment and this moment is where I need to adjust myself, prepare myself for another God given day. These early morning moments are divine – they are where life holds still for just a bit, all I hear are the birds outside and they too seem to sing more in the very early morning. Do they know something; is this the time we should reflect, this time before we are distracted by the day and before negative forces try very hard to corrupt our thoughts with the day’s dirt?
Perhaps we are like the sunrise – our days begin with its divine burst that is only positive energy and as it makes its way across the sky it becomes shadowed and obstructed until it finally rests from the weight of the day only to begin renewed again tomorrow. Nature gives us so many examples, so many lessons but for some reason, there are many that just ignore her and even worse, destroy her.

“Upon awakening, let the words Thank You flow from your lips, for this will remind you to begin your day with gratitude and compassion.” Dr. Wayne Dyer

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Rising sun

There was a night this past week that caused me to feel a sense of pure joy – something happened, something was said, that seemingly came from “nowhere” to tell me a wish was coming true. I was talking to my son, Matthew, on the phone from Boulder. I was busy asking “20 questions”, how’s school, are you eating right, is it cold, etc. when he unexpectedly began describing the morning view from his apartment window. He told me about the sun rising over the Rockies and how it “motivated” him to begin his day and how wonderful it was to wake up that way each morning. In  that moment I had such a rare feeling of arrival, that something had “taken”, something worked, someone was listening. For me, and I emphasize, “for me”, this type of reveal means more than anything – people measure worth in many ways, this type of perception and appreciation is how I measure and for Matthew to express this intrinsic feeling to me means I have been granted my wish. I carried that joy around all of the next day and will reflect back on it when I need to – it is there. It is proof that they are listening, they are watching and their fabric is from the bolt that is you. It is beautiful but it is also a responsibility, the greatest of all.

I suppose that is how the universe works; just keep doing what you feel is right and in God’s time, you will hear, “Mom, you should see the sun rising over the Rocky Mountains”.

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I thank all of you with an entry from long ago…

I really amazed myself yesterday, I stepped outside of my rational mind and invited a lot of you to visit my blog, sketchesofmyday, wow!! I am always very private and never self-advocating but I did this really bold thing by inviting you – soliciting you??  Hmmm. I suppose I am happy about that but then, perhaps not. I am constantly aware of ego driven situations and try to avoid them totally, especially for myself but then I think, this self-advocacy was not ego driven, it was just something I needed to do…I write, so I need someone to read – simple.

 I know that now and then I will write something that will be just what you needed to read – the universe puts it out there for you like that. Anyway, thank all of you for giving me consideration and no matter what, I will continue to write and paint and if along the way, my writing and my painting stirs an emotion in you, then it has purpose.
 I found what follows from a long ago post in the deep corners of my blog and it is so “right now” for me so I have to share with you, my “new” friends.

September 18, 2010

roads

It is Saturday morning in late September (and I really should be back in school – Rod Stewart) and I sit here wanting to write something positive and uncomplicated – the way I would like for my week end to be. I think of the quote my daughter sent to me yesterday, the one by Thoreau that says,

“Go confidently in the direction of your dreams; live the life you’ve imagined,”

and I am inspired. While hanging out sheets or mindfully making supper this week end and being still for a moment, I will think again of what my dreams are and try to clear the path that leads to them. Time is not waiting for me. I have realized that you need courage to follow your dreams because you must break away from the status quo and you must do as Frost says, take the other road,

“the one less traveled by”

daunting for most. I have not, as of yet, left the beaten path and I fear I may not ever. Life has led me to responsibilities and routines that are necessary to maintain. There are times, however, when I see a clearing and an opportunity to wander into the place in my head where I have my dreams. I feel encouraged that one day I will step off of this predictable path that I am on and just be. The place that I am now is a pleasant place, it is safe and enriched and all is well here, and for that I am grateful and thankful. This other place is just a place that only involves me – it is where

I

am and in time, I will find it. Meanwhile, I will relish these days and the people I am privileged to share them with…

You have to leave the city of your comfort and go into the wilderness of your intuition. What you’ll discover will be wonderful. What you’ll discover is yourself.

Alan Alda

my walk in the September woods

the promise of citrus in late October

a spider lily from Miss Sue’s garden

wildflowers in the woods

a Christmas tree

eating fallen pears

meeting for brunch

morning glory and cypress vine

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The Hours

 “I remember one morning getting up at dawn… there was such a sense of possibility… and I remember thinking to myself, ‘This is the beginning of happiness, this is where it starts and of course there will always be more.’ It never occurred to me it wasn’t the beginning, it WAS happiness.” – Clarissa Vaughn
I just had to post this – it is so thought provoking…
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Mardi Gras

There is a Mardi Gras “incident” I remember from years back that I “get” now. It involved my mom and a pot of gumbo. There is a tradition here in south Louisiana that every house should have a pot of Mardi Gras gumbo simmering on the stove on Fat Tuesday. It goes back to the tradition of the Le courir de Mardi Gras that came from the back country – something totally unlike the pageantry and parades seen in the cities. This maintains its French pronunciation because of its place of origin, the French countryside. This is the Mardi Gras my mom grew up knowing – chasing chickens on horseback and in costume that would end up in a communal pot of gumbo. Well, that tradition, as are many, was buried deep within her but it was not passed on, so, how was I to know it was important? Anyway, one Mardi Gras she made a pot of gumbo and we, her adult children, did not show up – we had made other plans – parades. She was very disappointed, perhaps even offended?? I didn’t really understand the dramatic response then, but I do now. I understand the wanting to share your past with your future, wanting your children to know where you came from. Life is funny though because all of those opportunities to share and connect tend to happen when your children need to be so in the moment – their lives are busy with their children, careers, houses, etc. It is all so upside down and regretful. Today, this time in my life, would be a great Mardi Gras day to hear of Le Courir de Mardi Gras that ran through the countryside around Ville Platte and Mamou and to hear her describe the details of the riders and the ingredients of that gumbo and the foundations of her life – How I would love to hear all of that…now.
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Liberation

I spent a bit of time revamping my blog this morning – a reflection of what I am trying to do in all aspects of my artistic life. Some days I want to just toss out the whole deal and not do art – no writing no painting – it is so possessive of my thoughts. I always knew it was a burden, this desire to create. It keeps you captive; it keeps you from being “normal”. I don’t do other things because I “need” to write or I “need” to paint or I should be promoting my art – it never really leaves me. That is exactly why when I was raising my family I put it all aside – I knew it was all or nothing for me and I wanted to do the best possible job I could with my kids. Well, they are, for the most part, grown and I have begun again and it has gripped me. When I think of letting it go, I instantly know I cannot. This is why I am turning this blog into my liberation – I will sit here when I need to and I will write what I need to write without concern of anything more than just releasing what I have formulated in my head. I have nothing preconceived or contrived – it’s raw. And if, along the way, you can connect to something I am thinking, then it is worthwhile in a broader sense; it becomes more than just the freeing of random inspired thoughts, it becomes a contribution.

The day was wonderful – spent inside doing left brained things like organizing a closet and pictures and domestic things like scrubbing my kitchen floor and folding all of the clothes in the laundry room. Sandwiched between these tasks were the moments I spent here, writing. I had a pot of coffee on nearly all day and I wrote and had coffee – staying inside of my head for the biggest part of the day. It is Mardi Gras in the outside world – parades and revelry that I no longer have to attend – I am so happy that that part of my life as a parent is over! Let me say this now, “I hate parades”. There, done…That felt good. I did step outside this morning for a bit to gather eggs from my hens. I have 9 new baby chicks in the laundry room waiting for the warmer weather to move into their new home.
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"Be Mine"

Valentine’s Day came and went without much thought from me. I disappoint myself. I usually look at this day of love stuck in the middle of February as a gateway of sorts into spring; hmmm this year I just ate the chocolate – no red velvet cupcakes, no cards, no sentimental journey…now I feel disappointed. I usually love Valentine’s Day – I love the way it sits there on the cusp of spring, the way the cold air blows over the precocious clover promising the arrival of spring, I love remembering the huge red heart my dad would buy for my mom and smaller matching hearts for the three kids and finding the caramel inside of a chocolate nugget, I love the little valentine cards of my youth – the ones that weren’t something Hollywood was promoting – the ones that simply said “Be Mine”.I suppose this little bit of apathy could have something to do with the way everything is hyper commercialized and mass produced and all about the bottom line. Or maybe it’s because when I was in a department store on February 13 looking for valentine candy for my class, there was essentially none and the easter bunnies were lurking in the aisle about to be shelved – sorta takes away the magic for kids I think – tell me why , tell me how we have arrived at this pitiful point of consumerism? Okay, enough – this blog is suppose to be a positive flow of energy – not a rant. Happy Belated Valentine’s day…

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art day

I have nagging things in my head this Saturday morning,- little bits of “housekeeping” I need to do but so do not want to – these things extinguish the muse – they put me in a place that is so concrete and practical, so 21st century. I will do these things though because, just as I have to clean the kitchen before I cook, I have to take care of business before I create – it’s just that tiny fragment of left brain functioning that I have that directs me.
I have an art show tonight and I am so grateful about that – I hope I sell so I can paint more! The show is sandwiched between two Mardi Gras parades so I have hung a lot of small pieces – perfect sizes to fit in tourists’suitcases! And during this time, Elizabeth will be part of a flash mob in the lobby of the art center – showcasing a dance from a musical she is in! It will be cold but it will be a night filled with art. And…the twins are in Colorado during all of this, creating works of art in a kitchen – I’m happy! More than that, more than “happy”, I am grateful. This entry is my primer for what I hope my day will eventually become – a day filled with creative words, small paintings, food and dance…
What art offers is space – a certain breathing room for the spirit. 
 John Updike
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