Wednesday, September 27, 2017

In Between Times

The in-between time...when you are neither here or there has arrived at the lake cabin.  

The leaves are turning but it appears it is not going to be a splendid colorful autumn this year.  Two years ago we were mesmerized by the color.  But last year and this...the colors have been muted and many leaves have fallen without much color at all.  Everyone has a theory: it is too cold, too wet, or too dark or some combination.  Indeed it has not not been memorable for weather this summer. 

On the roads slippery leaves pave a way through the tunnels of dark dry ferns.  Day are definitely shorter and we rise in the dark many mornings...lingering over the hot coffee in hopes of seeing the thin sunshine arrive to bring some color to the forest.   

We drift now, hubby and I, just between the time of summer's dimming pleasures and the crisp cusp of autumn.  Hints of the coming winter are around us now.  The loons, hummingbirds and ducks have flown and the song birds seem to have disappeared. 
So the mornings are very quiet now.  When you walk you mostly just hear the leaves crunching underfoot.  Vs of geese fly honking overhead.  

We now face the inevitable and unloved task of packing and closing up.  It involves winterizing appliances, cleaning out cupboards and fridge and draining the pipes.  Boats come out of the water, piers get stacked on the shore and lawn mowers stowed away.  The list gets checked off as we go along.  

So many things we thought would get completed didn't...I never seemed to have enough time to write or draw or paint.  But there were plenty of times for laughter, friends, family.  We got the porch finally enclosed and with the help of the kids, painted.   

And although the  long, warm afternoons on the pier we love were severely limited this year, there were enough to make good memories.  We know enough at our age to prize the moments and the days.  

I hope to accomplish a few more things in the studio yet this autumn.  We have a week before we get into the serious countdown.  We will say good byes to lake friends in the next weeks. We will enjoy Greg's Model Train Club show in Hazelhurst this weekend and hopefully take a fall drive up to Land o Lakes for gallery visits.  

Susan and I are seriously contemplating doing the Inktober Drawing challenge again.  It will start on Sunday.  

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Greeting Card Fun

The time of year when it seems like ALL the family birthdays converge at once.  When you have 6 kids and 12 grandchildren there is a birthday going on almost ALL the time.  Then throw in graduations and confirmations and etc.   

For someone who has vowed not to keep the card companies in business I am ALWAYS busy!  

Grandson, Alex, turns 24 next week.  His card went out this morning.  I can hardly wait to take Joanne Sharpe's class in November on funky and fun hand lettering!  My cards should take an upturn in creativity. 

4 x 6 on card stock with acrylic ink

My daughter in law, Marie, and my stepson, Mark, both have birthdays this time of year too.  Marie's card is a collage of hand printed papers and Mark's includes some acrylics AND embossed white and gold stars celebrating 50 years!  

Both Marie's and Mark's include "nap coupons" which I love!  And a bookmark handmade with some Zentangles on them.  All held together with hand printed Washi tape.  

I also did one for 11 year old Mike! But I forgot to photo that one.  

We are having Indian summer in northern Wisconsin.  I cannot whine about the weather is PERFECT.  No wind...lots of sunshine, temp about 76.  The smell of pine needles fills the air, leaves floating on the lake water, a kind of glow through the woods.
We ate lunch out on the Adirondack chairs and several caterpillars joined us.  There are mushrooms scattered all over the forest floor.  Leaves float lazily down.  The pier is stacked now on the shore line and the boats are all put away.  The cabin windows are open and it is very still.  We are talking about a campfire tonight.  A day to remember.  

Monday, September 18, 2017

Demo Day at the Great Northern Coffee House

A day at the Coffee House for the demo
9 x 11" Sketchbook - wc and ink

A nice day sketching and doing Zentangle® at the Great Northern Coffee House in Minocqua, WI.  The owner of the store bought the little sketch...which was nice.  I didn't sell any other art that day but the art will remain hanging until Oct 11 so I am hopeful!  And the big "Beef-o-Rama" event comes during this time (Sept 30).  So lots of people in town that weekend.   

Here at the cabin I am now falling into what call "the Limbo days". Being "in limbo" for the last 20 days between being home here and packing for home in Florida.  It's an annual event.

We got happy news Sunday that our power was finally restored.  BUT we also got word that Hurricane Maria is making disturbing progress in our direction.  This seems like kicking someone who has already fallen down, don't you think?  Please pray that this hurricane veers out into the Atlantic.  

Incidentally I looked up the phrase "in limbo":
An intermediate or transitional state, as in After his editor left the firm, his book was in limbo. [ Early 1600s ] Both usages allude to the theological meaning of limbo, that is, a place outside hell and heaven to which unbaptized infants and the righteous who died before Christ's coming were traditionally consigned.

I had no idea about this being a "place for unbaptized folks and folks who were born before Christ".  Think I will change the term to something else a bit more mild like "in transition" or  "feeling homeless" or "A bit detached" or ...any other ideas?  

Friday, September 15, 2017

A Tangle for Relaxation

The Diva's Zentangle® challenge this week are "squares overlapping" if I read it right.  I've been off-challenge for awhile this summer.  For one thing my internet up here is VERY slow especially during high tourist season.  After Labor Day it does speed up slightly. 

I did a quick flip through of my Mac n'cheese tangles and stopped on "Mosaik" which is portrayed in variation on the center of this tile.  

The whole drawing got sort of out of control at one can tell I am slightly stressed out...and so I couldn't seem to stop.  I kept adding and adding beyond the time I should have called it quits.  

But the nice thing about tangles is that it doesn't really matter.  If you need to tangle than tangle on! That why Sandy Bartholomew called her book Yoga for the Brain.

And by the way, Sandy has a pretty amazing blog post this week.
Have a look at how to transform a closet into a creative art spot!

James Richards interprets Hurricane Irma

These sketches by James Richards  are a wonderful interpretation of Hurricane Irma.  James and his wife had to evacuate Siesta Key on the west coast but the storm hit him inland in Lakeland, FL as well.  Although he avoided the storm surge by coming inland.  I found his ability to do this amazing.  Click on his name to read his comments about doing this and how sketching during the storm relieved some of the anxiety.  

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

The Gallery Show begins

The show at the Northern Coffee Shop in Minocqua is now displayed as of this morning.  My friend Karla, helped me set up the display.  The top photo is the wall is in the back of the shop where the Lakeland Art League has a gallery and the second photo is one of the walls in the front of the coffee shop itself.

The shop is open 7-2:30 Wed-Sunday.  
215 Front Street Minocqua
The display will be there today through Wed October 11.
Lots of parking across the street in the municipal parking lot near the post office. And a delightful menu of quiches and fresh breads.

On another note here is the update from our lovely park in Leesburg, FL northwest of Orlando.
There was extensive damage from Irma but everyone is rallying.

This photo below is from the front of the main clubhouse where a wonderful old oak was torn up roots and all and one of our street lights came right up with it without even breaking the bulb! Think of all the years that old tree has made it...until this week.  

Reports tell us that our own home made it through unscathed.  Thank you God.  But some others were not so lucky.  No power there yet but hope by this weekend. 

Prayers for everyone who is living through the aftermath power in many places, no AC, no showers, no coffee, no street lights, loss of belongings, angst from the noises of generators and chain saws, loss of sleep, loss of food and belongings, not much gas and frayed nerves.  We've heard reports of short tempers, and looting. These make us even more sad.   

Friday, September 8, 2017

Thinking of those in the path of Irma

"Irma" 4 x 6" Acrylic on paper

My hubby and I have the most delightful little home in central Florida just northwest of Orlando, FL.  It is a gated retirement park of about 1,200 homes.  It is the joy of our lives and we spend 7 months of our lives there...Oct-May. it is in the DIRECT path of a category 5 hurricane.

Blessing: We are not there.  We are still in the north woods of Wisconsin.   THAT is a very good thing as we would be preparing to evacuate if we were.  This darling Florida place is a "manufactured" home (not site built) and they are not good shelter in severe weather.  

Worry: We have many friends that do stay all year round there and  now we pray that they get to safety and remain unharmed.  AND that our little homes can somehow withstand the storm.  

Huge storms like this seem to be happening more frequently  lately...and along with the fires out west the loss of homes from natural disaster is frightening.  Your home is your  "shelter" and it grounds you...and the loss of their personal space leaves people full of anxiety and sadness.  

So do keep everyone in the path of Irma in your prayers this weekend.  

Monday, September 4, 2017

Claims from Time A Rhythm Not Yet Heard

Upsa Daisy by Ginny Stiles
Acrylic 16 x 20

A Blessing for an Artist at the Start of the Day
by John O'Donohue 
from his book To Bless the Space Between Us

May morning be astir with the harvest of  night;
Your mind quickening to the eros of a new question,
Your eyes seduced by some unintended glimpse
That cut right through the surface to a source.

May this be a morning of innocent beginning,
When the gift within you slips clear
Of the sticky web of the personal
With its hurt and its hauntings,
And fixed fortress corners,

A morning when you become a pure vessel
For what wants to ascend from silence,

May your imagination know
The grace of perfect danger,

To reach beyond imitation,
And the wheel of repetition,

Deep into the call of all
The unfinished ad unsolved

Until the veil of the unknown yields
And something original begins
To stir toward your senses
And grow stronger in your heart 

In order to come to birth
In a clean line of form,
That claims from time
A rhythm not yet heard,
That calls space to
A different shape.

May it be its own force field
And dwell uniquely
Between the heart and the light

To surprise the hungry eye
By how deftly it fits
About its secret loss.


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