Thursday, March 28, 2013

Friday's Special Moment of Gratitude

I have started a new series of pastel classes and I am learning so much and because of what I am learning I think I will be shopping very soon for some new supplies.  I have learned that with pastels the materials you use do make a difference and that if I get the right materials I will not have to work so hard to get the picture to look just right.  The problem is that I am not sure what just right means.  I think that is something that is very personal.  For me, just right usually revolves around a picture that evokes a memory.  It reminds me of a time, a place, a person, or an event.  The picture will usually have water in it somewhere and the colors will usually be soothng and peaceful.  I think for each of us "just right" means something different.  It will be interesting to see how my work changes as I get the materials that have been recommended.

As you know it is my practice to share what I am grateful for each week.  This week I am grateful for the power of hope.  As many of you know my husband has a progressive lung disease.  This has been a difficult winter but spring seems to be bringing with it lots of hope.  As with everything in life, this disease has its ups and downs.  Right now, we are on an upward swing and at this time there are lots of reasons for hope. What I have come to understand and celebrate as we go through this journey together is to never give up hope.  There is always a new day, a new direction, a new surprise for us to enjoy.  Tomorrow we go to learn more about becoming part of a research study.  Wouldn't it be wonderful if by participating in this study, we could not only learn something that could help us but many many more people as well?  So today I am grateful for the opportunities that await us and for the power of hope!

I would love to know what you are most grateful for experiencing this week.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Sunday's Quote and Reflection

Nature is painting for us, day after day, pictures of infinite beauty if only we have the eyes to see them.
                                                                                                                      John Ruskin (1819-1900)
I am always inspired by nature.  Its colors, its strength, its softness, its beauty.  Whether it is a sunny day or a cloudy one there is always something to see and appreciate.  I love to be out on the water and watch the sunlight dance on the waves or listen as the waves rush up to the shore.  I love to be in a garden filled with beautiful flowers or go walking in the woods surrounded by strong silent trees.  I don't always have the opportunity to do these things but I am finding that I can recreate my experiences again and again through the things I paint.  The more I paint, the more I am inspired by nature.  The more I am inspired by nature, the more I paint. 

When I look at the painting above, I am reminded of how much fun we used to have when we went kayaking.  Most of the time we kayaked down slow silent rivers surrounded by trees but once in awhile we went through rapids or up and over small waves and it was always so exciting.  We kayaked with the manatees and in the ocean - both experiences I will never forget.  Each time was different but each time was magical.  When I look at the simple picture above, I remember all of those special Sunday afternoons. 

Do you have a picture that you have taken or painted that brings back special memories?  I would love to know what inspires you to paint and what makes a painting special to you.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Friday's Special Moment of Gratitude

Each day is special.  Each day gives a chance to begin over, to create something new, to celebrate who we are. Once we realize that, life becomes filled with endless possibilities.

I had just finished writing the last three sentences when my cell phone decided to give me an opportunity to put into practice what I had just written.  I hate it when things break and all of a sudden for no reason my phone wouldn't work.  So I thought ok, a new possibility to see what I can do.  Can I fix it by myself?  Can I stay calm which is something I can do for any other type of problem but not when the problem is the least bit technical.  Can I see this as an opportunity for growth? 
I tried to make the phone work.  Nothing I did made a difference.  So I stayed calm and drove to the Verizon store expecting a long line and an even longer wait to see someone.  Luckily, it did not take long and of course the girl ( who knew what she was doing) had it working in a second. 

So I got a chance to see myself in a different light.  I did try to fix the phone.  I did not get irritated with the phone or myself when I couldn't fix it.  I learned that even though I hate it when I don't know what I am doing; it is not that hard to ask for  help.  Sound simple?  It was.  But it is not something I always do. So as silly as it sounds, this week I am grateful that my phone broke and in the process of getting it fixed I learned a few new things about myself.

Is there something that made you smile, grow, or that you are grateful for experiencing this week? 

I hope that you will take a minute to visit the artists at Paint Party Friday and Creative Every Day.  It is a wonderful way to begin the weekend.

Friday, March 15, 2013

Friday's Special Moment of Gratitude

I  think that life is about to get back to normal or at least a new normal for us. Which means that I am going to get back to blogging more.  When things were so hectic with doctor's visits, new equipment, and new medicines to be decided upon the words just didn't seem to flow.  So I took a short break from blogging.  Now that life has begun again, I realize how much I have missed blogging regularly. It is an important part of my life and a practice that I am really glad that I started. 

This weekend is supposed to be warm and sunny.  A perfect weekend for watching soccer games and planting flowers.  A perfect weekend to sit on the porch and read.  A perfect weekend to paint or write or sketch.  It would be a perfect weekend to have a picnic in a field of flowers - I'm just not sure where there is one except for in my imagination right now. But no matter we decide to do, I know we will have fun.  It's too important not to.

Each Friday I reflect upon what I am most grateful for experiencing during the  week.  This week it's all the "normal" things I sometimes take for granted.  A perfect cup of coffee, singing happy birthday to my grandson,  getting great advice from my son,  getting back to yoga, buying new pastels, laughing with my husband, talking about art with a friend.  These are the things that make my life special everyday but especially this week. 

Is there something that has made you smile this week?  Is there something that you are especially grateful for?