A little blog about the life of a somewhat lost dreamer....looking for my grace in this crazy world.

31 July 2014

I'm so lost...

My long time lunch date, my Dad, passed away this afternoon. I'm just lost.

20 July 2014

Chaos...

I still have not assigned mail art partners everyone, this week has been quite the whirl wind... and not in a good way.

Last Tuesday I got a 4:30 am wake up call from the facility where my father is, he was being sent to the emergency room because he was having unusual bleeding.  This would be our second visit in five days.  Our first visit ther was horrible, so when I learned that they wanted to admit him and that UK had no beds available in the hospital (a massive hospital by the way), I asked that he be moved to Good Samaritan. 

The move took hardly any time at all, and we were at Good Sam within the hour.  He was checked out, and we decided to take a conservative approach based on his health issues, so we were going to wait to see if there was more blood. There was.

Thursday he was scheduled to have a colonoscopy.  They found a mass, and as they were trying to maneuver around it to see if there was more his bowel ruptured.  One of the doctors came to tell me, and informed me that he needed to be in surgery.  They had the team assembled before his Internist made it down from the third floor. 

I was told the risks, that he either had to have the surgery or he would definitely die, but because of his heart issues, his dementia and his kidney issues there were lots of other possible risks involved. They were telling me this as they were whisking him down the hall into surgery. 

As I sat all alone there in the surgery waiting room I think I was really just numb.  The entire event seems like a bad movie.  A very long, very bad movie. 

The good news is that he made it through the surgery.  The bad news is that he has cancer, and a great many other health issues, so now I'm waiting for the pathology to find out just how bad it is.

In the  mean time I will be trying to come to some sort of balance between being there for Dad, trying to get work in, and trying ever so hard not to lose the rest of my sanity while doing both.  While I know, in the end it all works out... right now that seems a little shaky.

I promise that I will get photos up of the mail art from the last swap, I just don't know when... so please bear with me.  I'm going to try to get the emails out with the partner addresses tomorrow... so please, again, bear with me...

16 July 2014

Running on empty...

Ok everyone, let me catch you up with what is going on in my world...

Last Thursday my father had a pretty good fall and we spent the entire day (a very long, and very frustrating day) in the emergency room...

 Exhausting, both mentally and physically... but, I did get to find my painting on the wall in the hospital...
Fuzzy pic, sorry, I only had a second before I had to get back to him.  But, look, it's there, and it was very exciting to see it hanging.

Things were going along relatively well until 4:30 yesterday morning, when his care facility called me to tell me they were transporting him to the ER again.  So... to the ER I go to find that what I thought was going was completely and totally wrong.  But, after about an hour of figuring things out they decided to admit him to the hospital.  Unfortunately, all their beds were full and he would likely have to stay in the ER.  Totally not appropriate from my point of view, so I asked to move to another hospital, still within the same health care system so his doctor could still see him, but a smaller one that I prefer.  To be honest, they seemed shocked.  But after the experience on Thursday where there was a section of the day were we did not see any hospital staff for four and a half hours, staying there was simply not an option in my book.

Within the hour the transfer was arranged, and he was transported.  The difference in the experiences between the two hospitals has been night and day... they have been absolutely amazing at Good Samaritan, where he was admitted and has been ever since.  The original plan was to watch him, and if there was no more issue (he had some unusual bleeding), we would go home. My entire day was spent in the hospital, and I started all over again this morning.  Unfortunately, through the night there was more bleeding, so there will have to be some relatively invasive tests to find out what's going on... that's scheduled for tomorrow, and the earliest he will leave will be sometime Friday.

I tell you all of this so that those participating in the mail art exchange will know that it isn't likely you will get your partner assigned until this weekend.  I am simply mentally and emotionally, and really physically as well, exhausted. 

Of course, you know Good Sam is where my other paintings are hanging, and I had to go get a photo of them as well...

Yup, there they are.  Now I've seen all three, I just wish it could have been with a gaggle of my girlfriends with all of us giggling rather than dealing with this... but you know how the Universe is, I make plans, it laughs and changes them for me.

So, my mail art participants, I'll get your partners to you this weekend, and hopefully, the next exchange will go MUCH smoother!  Thanks for your patience everyone.

13 July 2014

The early riser...

I'm an early riser.  Truly, I'm an insomniac... or, I'm one of that small percentage of the population who has a genetic anomaly that allows us to function well on fewer hours of sleep.  Either way, I am a very early riser (generally about 4:30), and I've come to love those early morning hours when most of the world is still sleeping.  It's almost like my little corner of the world is all mine...

And, sometimes, I'm joined by the sweetest guests.  This little guy was sitting outside by my step this morning when I took the dog out, just sorta waiting for the sun to shine.  The dog didn't even notice him.  I couldn't resist giving him (or her) some treats to start the day since she (or he) had made my morning special.

The strawberries were a huge hit.

Don't forget, if you want to play with us in our mail art exchange let me know!!!

11 July 2014

What a week...

I took a couple of days off from work to take a breath and get myself in a less stressful place mentally.  Spent Wednesday at the zoo... an absolutely perfect day, perfect temps, perfect blue sky with perfectly fluffy clouds... getting some AMAZING photos...

She literally took a few steps from behind a rock and struck the classic gorilla pose for me, then waited while I took the photos.  Isn't she amazing?

And, ended up spending all day yesterday in the emergency room... and I mean ALL DAY.

My dad had taken a fall and hit his head.  He was out of it through it all... me, I got to sit and wait.  Impossible to get a straight answer, although I did get a whole lot of "let me find someone who can answer that for you".  Most frustrating day I have experienced in a very long time.

Card created by Claudine Criner for our last exchange

I haven't had the chance to remind folks very much, but signing up for the current mail art exchange is still going on... originally it was due to close tomorrow, but I'm going to extend it through Tuesday, July 15th... as much to give me time to get reorganized here as to allow others to get signed up.

So... in case you have just run across this and have no idea what I am talking about... here's how it works:

You sign up, and after the close if sign ups you will be matched with a partner.  You create a piece of art that is post card size, address the back, put a stamp on it and tuck it in the mail, all the while your partner is doing the same but with your address on the art.

Here are the really tough rules:
  • If you agree to play, you must play.  If you don't carry through someone will be disappointed, and we don't want that.
  • You do NOT have to be a professional artist, you just have to want to play.
  • We absolutely LOVE having new folks join in... and guys, you are welcome to play too!
  • What you create should be able to go through the postal system... otherwise it wouldn't really be mail art, would it?
  • The size should be no smaller than 4" x 6", and no larger than 5" x 7".
  • Once you sign up, you need to email me your mailing address if I don't have it from another exchange.  My email address is in the left sidebar of the blog.
  • If you wish to play in this exchange leave me a comment on THIS post!
This is a one to one exchange... you sign up, you'll get paired with one person, and the two of you will exchange cards... although, admittedly, I tend to send to more than one person. Your mail art should be mailed by August 9th.

Simple, right?  So, what are you waiting for... get signed up! 

05 July 2014

Nuthin' like the last minute...

Well, I am burnt to a crisp today.  Our fine city is putting a facade over the front of the parking garage where I usually watch our Fourth of July parade from, so this year I got a street level view, along with sooooo much more sun exposure than I expected.  On the up side, red is one of our patriotic colors!  I can't complain though, the weather could not have been more perfect... 79 degrees and LOW humidity, with a cool breeze blowing between the buildings.  Truly, absolute perfection!

I think I have mentioned it before, but in case I haven't, I am a HUGE fan of Natalie Chanin's work.  Loving it and being able to afford it are two completely different things... but one of the things I love about her work are the books she produces so you can do your own, and the fact that you are encouraged to create your own style.

Since I've never really had anything in my closet specifically dedicated to the whole patriotic theme, I decided this year I would change that.  In April I bought some cotton knit in red, white and blue and went home to conjure up a theory to design a skirt for myself. 

I decided that I'd do something "flagesque"... red and white stripes and white stars on a field of blue.

I have a pattern that I created for myself from another project and I used that to cut out a "base" for the skirt.  From there I really sort of winged it (as I so often do)... drew some stars on a piece of paper, used that to create a stencil for myself... stenciled the stars on the blue fabric then laid that fabric at the bottom of the skirt and stitched it on.  Then the stars that had been stenciled on the fabric were stitched around, some with a single line of stitching, some with a double.

Then red stripes were added and stitched down with double rows of stitching.  Overall, I think it turned out relatively well.  I added the very last stitches about an hour before I wore it.  Nuthin' like finishing something at the very last minute, huh?  Every single stitch in the skirt was created by hand... not a thing was sewn on the machine, not even a side seam.  Of course you know, after spending two months creating this to wear one day a year, I can never gain an ounce.  Ah well...

And now, some photos from our little small town parade...

This was my starting point... vendors everywhere.

Art in an unexpected place...

 Our Circuit Court House, the backdrop for my parade viewing...

 
And here we go...

The parade this year was dedicated to our military...

Our horse patrol represented... we're known for our horses 'round about these parts you know, so there are lots of them featured in our parades...

Of course, with all those horses, there also has to be some clean up...

A military float...

And, look... I found Elvis!

Our very own Tuskegee Airman...

And a horse designed to honor the Tuskegee Airmen...

Men in kilts...

Our mayor, up close and personal with the people (it's an election year you know)...

It wouldn't be complete without at least one fire engine (there were many)...

Our Latino community representing...

And, where else but a small town parade would you find a political entry for the re-election of a coroner?

Our Chief of Police...

Our 2014 Pride Queen...
And the Imperial Court...

And a whole bunch of scooters... I want this aqua one with the side car!

All in all a lovely day for a birthday!

30 June 2014

Woah... am I behind...


But then again, it is summer, and who isn't?  I've actually done a great deal, and I'll be sharing soon, but for right now we have to get the next mail art exchange up and running!!!

The theme for this exchange is the Desiderata... "desired things" (Latin), written by Mas Ehrmann.  If you have not read this poem, you should... if you have not contemplated it, you truly should.  From the first time I read it I've loved it.  "...be gentle with yourself.  You are a child of the Universe...", oh the times I have had to repeat that to myself!!! 

It's not a terribly long poem, but it is a very lovely one, and one well worth celebrating in my opinion, thus, the theme for the mail art exchange.

So, just in case you've not read it, here it is:

Go placidly amid the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons.

Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.

Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain and bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.

Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.

Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.

Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass.

Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.

Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.

Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here. And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should.

Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful. Strive to be happy                                                 
                                                                                                                   Max Ehrmann

How will you interpret it?  Will you use just a line or two?  Maybe create something that reminds you of it?  Perhaps something entirely different?





Sign up for this exchange begins now (a few days ahead of schedule even, yay me!!!), and will close on July 12th.  Here are the rules:


  • If you agree to play, you must play.  If you don't carry through someone will be disappointed, and we don't want that.
  • You do NOT have to be a professional artist, you just have to want to play.
  • We absolutely LOVE having new folks join in... and guys, you are welcome to play too!
  • What you create should be able to go through the postal system... otherwise it wouldn't really be mail art, would it?
  • The size should be no smaller than 4" x 6", and no larger than 5" x 7".
  • Once you sign up, you need to email me your mailing address if I don't have it from another exchange.  My email address is in the left sidebar of the blog.
  • If you wish to play in this exchange leave me a comment on THIS post!
This is a one to one exchange... you sign up, you'll get paired with one person, and the two of you will exchange cards... although, admittedly, I tend to send to more than one person.

You will need to have your art in the mail no later than August 9, 2014, and this is open to folks all around the world, you don't have to live in the States to play.  Last exchange I mailed art to Italy, New Zealand and Australia... it's gone to France, South Africa...

If you have any questions please feel free to ask... you can email me, or leave them in the comments so everyone can see the answer...

What are you waiting for?  Get that art started!!!!

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