We're having muggy weather that is making me wilt.
cherries to the rescue
A quick mocktail recipe:
1 part pineapple juice
1 part seltzer
1 part orange juice
lime slice for the rim
Add some rum instead of the orange juice for the cocktail version. Or maybe keep the orange juice. And, don't you think a bit of coconut milk would make it even more yummy?
I've been thinking about stories
I left the Squam Workshops inspired to challenge my artistic self and to be less inhibited, which has led to much thinking and writing and a few diagrams. All of these thoughts and notes keep taking me back to the same thing that led me to make my first Story Stone.
I am hopelessly inspired by the mundane.
The other evening, as I was painting, I remembered my most favorite, treasured art project from grade school. I hadn't thought about if for years. We were asked to use pen and colored pencils to represent something outside of our home. I drew a picture of a garbage can under our big maple tree, and I remember being so happy with how the pen allowed me to capture all of the can's quirky details. The dents, the lines, and the wobbly top were my favorite things to notice and my favorite parts to draw.
I also love imperfection.
So, I'm embarking on a new project. I'm challenging myself to draw and paint a regular old thing every week. I'm not going to clog up this space with my weekly creations, but I'll definitely share some as they begin to stack up.
A big hello to all of my new best friends that are lurking in my pantry or crammed in my drawer or dotting my windowsill.
Painting regular old stuff feels like a really loud whisper. Does that make any sense to anyone else but me?
This spool and button original is for sale in my etsy shop.
Happy summer vacation to us! And to you guys, too, of course. Grandma Jane (Tom's mom) gave the girls these sun shielding floppy hats that have, so far, become their most favorite summer accessories. Seriously. We don't leave home without them. Notice that little Mouse, the burgeoning fashionista, chooses to wear her flower on the back. I love those hats just as much as they do - just look at how they shade their heads, faces, and necks from the sun.
It was farm share day today, and the u-pick sign said we could gather 3 quarts of strawberries. Hello frozen strawberries in our freezer! The fields were hot, and we were sweaty and tired by the end. Chick is a picking superstar this year. She was super selective and efficient with her own little method. I loved watching her take pride in collecting berries. Miss Mouse had a case of Blueberries For Sal where I'd hear lots of kerplunks, but when I looked into her carton there were no strawberries to be found, and her face was dripping with red juice.
So far, our summer vacation has consisted of sleeping late, playing in our backyard, homemade pizza with friends, picking strawberries at our beloved CSA farm, and some after hours coconut rum and pineapple juice drinks around a bonfire with friends.
Hold up! Its not all strawberries and sunshine around these parts. We also made what we like to call our "master list" of things-to-do, and we've been tackling it day by day. You'd think it would mostly have big, house improvement projects on it, but no, instead it has small things like, "bring those three jars downstairs" and "mail that letter." We do also have some bigger things like "bring the old sink to the dump" and "fix the lawnmower"on there too. The master list is making us feel so productive with all of the crossing out we've been doing.
Oh, and I've been doing a gazillion loads of laundry as Mouse learns to use the toilet. We're finally at a stage where she is excited to put on those thick, padded undies, but we're not quite at the point where she is able to get to the bathroom before it's too late. We'll get there, though, and it is so nice that her readiness has coincided with summer.
For now, it is just the right blend of rest and work and play.
And, root beer with ice.
This place with its never ending lake of still, dark water, with its warm breakfasts and musky, old pine smell
with its sweet little cottages and porches meant for contemplation
with morning ice delivery , soft wooded paths, thick moss patches, and draping ferns.
This place is beautiful and magical, and was filled with moments of pure peace.
I began the week with Maya's workshop and was instantly inspired by her kind and gentle ways. She carefully and thoughtfully transformed our beautiful classroom into a softly lit, flower filled space. It was just so easy to be there. There was a moment right before lunch when I realized that I was going to walk through the woods, eat a hearty salad, and then get to continue my artwork afterward, and it became abundantly clear that I was exactly where I needed to be.
And, don't even get me started on lovely, lovely Maya. Simply put, my heart understands hers.
Oh, and I am now kind of obsessed with making wonky, uneven borders.
A table filled with freezer paper stenciling with bright colors on simple cloth.
My second class was with the uber talented Lizzy House who so passionately and clearly taught the linoleum block printing class. Since I am self taught, and I hadn't used linoleum to carve, I thought it would be nice to witness the teaching process. It was the perfect blend of instruction and free time to carve to my heart's delight. I carved two little mice and the hunk of cheese. Later this week, I'm planning on carving them again only playing with the negative and positive spaces a bit more.
And, I learned to knit (again)! Megan whispered the sweetest words of encouragement as I plugged away on my pebbly gray scarf. I'll post a picture when I'm finished.
A huge hello to my Nirvana cabin friends who shared stories, laughs, wine, and lots of porch lounging with me. I was so inspired by the creative energy found in our nook in the woods. Check out Susan's CSA fiber farm. Just look at those little lambs! Eeeep! And, oh! her wool is just beautiful. And, a shout-out to the hysterical, engaging Maggie whose husband is an artist who makes bowls and jewelry out of vinyl. The necklaces are out of this world nifty!
So, here I am, reunited with my dear hearts at home, and feeling lucky. Rejuvenated. Excited. And eager to be knee deep in my art.
Thank you, dear mom, for gifting this experience to me. It was exactly where I wanted to be and you were the exact person I wanted to share it with.
Oh boy! I feel like the luckiest person this evening as I prepare to attend the Squam Workshops with my dear mom. Thank you, Mama! We are all set for printing and painting and knitting and camp firing. I even get to take a class taught by this lovely crafter! Hoorah! And, we are so excited to be accepted as vendors at the art fair on Saturday night. If anyone happens to be close to Holderness, NH, stop by and chat! My favorite knitter and knitting designer, Ms. Kelly Bridges, will be hanging at the booth with us. Double hoorah!
This past month has been wonderful and challenging and super busy and, at many times, quiet. Quiet like tonight when Chick and I read a library book about how bees make honey . Holy moly! The honeybee is the most unbelievable creature ever. We were in awe together, quietly chatting about the drones, the proboscis exchange of nectar, and all the rest. I urge everyone to learn a little bit more about our bee friends. Even Chick, who is quite frightened of the sting, seemed to fall in love with the furry, clever, little honeybee.
And, noisy when Mouse decided to dress like a fairy and parade around the house singing and stomping.
And, everything, really, but blogging and crafting. *sigh* June will be a horse of a different color since I am already scheming up a few new craft projects to share in this nifty little spot.
Off to bed. Much too late.