Sunday, July 31, 2011

A Week of Joy

As I've stated in an earlier post, it's been a rough summer.  Things aren't really better, nor are they worse.  Okay, maybe they're a little bit better.  But I'm tired.  Of all of it.  So for this week I'm going to attempt to do something and focus on JOY.  And I just thought of this right now, this very moment.

I recently bought another necklace from my friend Liz when she was running a special in her etsy shop.  She included one of her soul mantra necklaces with my order.  When we returned home from vacation last week I was thrilled to see the package had arrived.  As I tore it open, I thought to myself, "the soul mantra necklace is gonna say JOY on it."  Yep!  Liz knew what I need to focus on, even if I didn't know it myself.  She's such a wise soul.

Looking back on the day I can think of two things I did that brought me JOY.

1) Miles and I filled up the blow-up pool with water.  Despite the warm air, the water was cold.  But he and I sat and talked.  And then we did yoga poses in the water.  And danced together.  And were silly.  Even though we don't have a fenced in backyard and all the neighbors could see if they wanted to.

2)  I painted a background painting for the How to Paint an Owl ecourse I'm taking.  Yes, it's led by a woman named Juliette Crane and no, I don't think we're related.  I didn't paint like I usually do.  Instead I painted with my fingers.  Just like a child.  Mixing hue of pink.  And then the fun, fun of spray paint.  When I think of JOY, I think of the color pink.

JOY in the simple moments. 
JOY in art and creativity.
JOY in play.

Will you join me this week?

Saturday, July 30, 2011

Give me a B

Uploading photos to my flickr account and noticed the titles I've given to many of my instagram pics have started with the letter B.

at a rest stop in Alabama

Beachside lunch
at Bahama Bob's in Gulf Shores AL

Best way to start the week
from our condo in Gulf Shores AL

on our backard butterfly bush


on the hose in our front yard

Have a BEAUTIFUL day!

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Playing in the Sand

How fun it is to play in the sand!
(Might help explain why sand play therapy is so popular.)

At any age..
sand sculptures clockwise from top left:
by Miles, Meredith, Jodi, Jeff
The first day we were there Meredith wanted to be buried.
Wonder why kids like to do this so much?

For me, I just love how it feels on my feet while I read a good book.

Doesn't the photo above make the sand look like cookie dough?
Oh yum!

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Make a Wish

"Between the wish and the thing life lies waiting."
wishing well at Birmingham Botanical Gardens

First day back from vacation and I'm easing back into "normal" life. But then, it's all life.

Looking up quotes about wishes and wishing, many of them were like these two:

A goal without a plan is just a wish. ~~Larry Elder
It takes as much energy to wish as it does to plan. ~~Eleanor Roosevelt

I get their point but sometimes you've got to start with a wish.

wish-->dream-->goal-->plan--> and then do

wish wall at The Hangout
Meredith adds her wish
And sometimes a wish is like a little prayer.

Make a wish
Throw it gently into the universe
It catches on the first star
And the energy from a child's birthday candles.
A wish for you, your family, a friend
A wish for a stranger
A wish for the world
A wishing well
May we all be well indeed!

What do you wish for?  Shhh, don't tell me or it won't come true.  

Friday, July 15, 2011

BE TRUE - Full moon dreamboard

It’s been a rough summer for me personally for reasons I can’t go into right here.  (Not a great way to start a blog post, I know.)   As the cliché goes, experiencing a difficult time forces you to discover what’s really important to you.   I’ve been thinking A LOT about this.  A simple mantra keeps flowing through my mind lately: CREATE WHAT YOU NEED.  (I first heard this either from Jen Lemen or Andrea  Scher as part of a Mondo Beyondo class.)
Meanwhile I’ve been wanting to participate in Jamie Ridler’s Full Moon Dreamboard.  I’ve done dreamboards and vision boards before, but not at such a trying time.  Dreamboards are an easy way to concretely display what I want to create, what I need.

This month’s full moon is called the Buck Moon.  Sounded strange until I looked up its meaning.  “July is normally the month when the new antlers of buck deer push out of their foreheads in coatings of velvety fur. It was also often called the Full Thunder Moon, for the reason that thunderstorms are most frequent during this time” (Farmers’ Almanac).
Yeah, you could say I’ve experienced some storms.  And yes, I’m ready for something new in my life.

Jamie asked, “what do you want to step into and create this month?”  I sat down to work or would it be play?  This time it did feel a bit like work.  I struggled at times.  In the past when I’ve done this activity I’ve been drawn to images.  Not this time.  Words and more words.  But then I was wanting images.  And I just couldn’t quite find the right ones.
To me it all boils down to BE TRUE.  Being true to myself.  Before I made the dreamboard I was surfing the net and saw the famous Shakespearean line, To Thine Own Self Be TrueSomehow this all fits together for me.
To thine own self be true.
Create what you need.
Beyond the storms are rainbows.
Promises of new beginnings.
Be true.

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Oh, Instagram, I love to play with you

Oh, Instagram, I love to play with you.


Outdoor concert with the Nashville symphony.  One of the nicest things about living in my small town.
Americana dinner
fireworks with my pyro boys


My family of bikers.  I need a bike so I can join them. 
This summer they have enjoyed going to the icehouse (convenience store/gas station) to get a snack.
I've been reading under our sugar maple tree lately.  Right next to our broken windchimes.

Just happened to come upon this balloon while out and about. 
Had my husband drive us closer so I could get these shots.


While Meredith's been away at camp, Miles and I have had some quality time together. 
Here he is towards the end of a 2.5 mile walk down at the state park.
My sister posted on facebook that he looks he should have a set of drums with him.

Scenes of our time with the geese that I posted about earlier.

 P.S.  This blogpost might also be known as an "iPhone dump."  In honor of my virtual friend, Elisa Lou.

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Sometimes the Best Play is the Simplest

Sometimes the best play is the simplest.
A loaf of old bread.  A warm summer day.
A park.  Lots of geese.
And my boy.

Wonder what this one is thinking?

Monday, July 4, 2011


Over at Creative Every Day, the theme for July is blue.
I decoupaged the paper mache heart you see above and below with scrapbook papers.  I can't remember if I've ever done this before.  Perhaps as I child.  An easy and not very time consuming project.

I sat outside on the fourth of July and wrote these words.


I am blue. 
A roller-coaster of emotion.

I look up into the expanse of the sky. 
A gentle breeze against soft skin as the clouds.

Down below the water of the land, deep and churning.
Unsure of what I can’t see.
Easy and hard tears flow, cleansing my heart, soul, and mind.

Turquoise and teal.  Blue is joyful.
They swim and splash and run and play.
I smile.

Blue as the rain ruins carefully, constructed plans.
I wait.  And wait.

A couch, a soft blanket.
Journal and pen, a book.
A cup of comfort.
Nap. Rest from what my blue eyes have seen.

A cracked robin’s egg in my hand, remnants of a Spring beginning.
One can fly if the choice is made.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Kids, Crafts & VBS

This past week the kids and I participated in Vacation Bible School at our church. I have fond memories of attending VBS as a child in Iowa. Songs. Games. Snacks. Stories. Crafts. Adults of all ages assisting making this an intergenerational event. Summer just doesn’t seem the same without VBS.

This year I chose to help in the craft room.  Okay, not only did I help, but I also made crafts myself.   And I learned how satisfying it can be to wield a hammer.

We made birdhouses



and offering boxes.

Two things I love—children and art.  That makes me happy.