Thursday, July 31, 2008

Donna Parker

I sat on the back porch today and turned an existing abstract painting that was kinda bugging me into a collage. I'm quite happy with how it turned out, but most of all pleased with how it felt to make it. I used 2 different books -- an old teenage novel called "Donna Parker Takes a Big Leap", and a second children's picture book by Munsch about a girl befriending the wind. Funny, I chose them because they were the only books on the shelf I was comfortable cutting up, but when I got them open and started to create, I realized that there was a nice thread between the two.

The result is this:(detail)

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

sunny tuesday

Tuesday night... 7pm. Sitting on the front porch with Phil and Liv. Liv's painting on an old piece of wood she found in the garage. I can't see what she's creating from here, but I can see that she's using a big brush that would normally be used for wall paint, and that the water she's dipping it in has turned a beautiful Caribbean blue.

Phil's playing his old guitar, working out something new, maybe it's old? Cold bottle of Harp, no mosquitoes yet. It's a grand evening on Henry Street!

I spent the day picking blueberries and raspberries with my friend Nance. She's so wise and insightful, and I love her honesty and fearlessness. Her daughter Jules is 25 and has cancer. Nance told me that she decided to continue to live her life beautifully, recognizing that even though her daughter is ill, it doesn't mean that Nance is too. We talked about our paths, our careers, struggles, our unknowns. I talked about the choice that I made to try out painting, and my frustrations with wondering whether to paint what I like or to paint to what I think people might by. She had some great advice, but what really stuck out was a simple, "just follow the thread." I liked that. Thread, so easy to break, but strong enough to hold an old pair of Levi's together for decades. Don't pull on it, or it will snap. Just let the thread hold it's own, let it be the strength you need to hold it all together, and just follow the damn thing!

Perfect timing for me, as in the past few days I've made my own decision to work a little harder at my faith and perceptions. To open my eyes a little more, and to listen for messages. I've gotten into a bit of a rut, not truly appreciating what is here right now. Looking for the 'next', when I need to remember to let the present be here, now, and to allow it to show me the way. This sounds like a bunch of bung, but in my little head, it's what I need to not annoy the crap out of my fellow housemates!

So tonight, here with my family on the front porch, I'll look at them, really see Liv's bright blue sky, smile at Caleb as he rides down the sidewalk on his new go-cart, laugh at Phil when he tries to sing Delta style blues, and be right here, right here, right now.

(ahhhhhh men!)

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


Sitting in the kitchen, drinking coffee that's turned cold, hearing the sounds of cicadas and Phil digging in the dirt. Summer is here, and we're grabbing onto every bit of opportunity that we can, without exhausting ourselves!

We're in the middle of a little restful stretch after a few weeks of fun. Michael Franti at Shelburne Farms -- Liv up front with her friends, a smile on her face I only see a few times a year -- so big, bright and true! The most special moment for me was dancing with Phil to one of my favorite songs "Dancing in the Moonlight" by King Harvest (thanks!)-- so beautifully cheesy and sentimental for me. There's something about those happy early 70's pop songs. Add that to a warm summer night, Michael Franti (!), and my guy, smiling and dancing with me... twirling me around... laughing, falling into each other. It was a perfect evening.


Road trip with Phil around VT and NH a few weeks back, camping out in the truck, sitting by the fire, swimming in a delightfully painfully cold mountain stream. Going to an art contest with Caleb and watching his concentration with pride. A boat trip on the lake, kids driving, warm sun, cool breeze. Fireworks with old friends, laughing with Barb until I cried. Digging in the dirt, making a lively garden where nothing bloomed for years. It's a great summer, so far. A lovely gift filling my soul!