Monday, February 8, 2016

the artist's way

lots of creativity going on at 846 & 1/2 which is what i call my art studio. 
this embroidery (in progress) was inspired by melodie stacey aka maidolls. i love both her embroidery and her paintings. 
this little darling is a flipped transfer from a teabag just rubbed on while still wet onto a puece if wrapping paper
just a groovy watercolor face in my art journal
more stitching
i've been finding old pieces and adding or subtracting and finally framing a few
as in this applique
mixed media handstitched necklaces
and a gabdstitched cuff
it's been fun re finding my art in boxes that had been in storage during the mexico sojourn. 
every day i stop for a little sketch or something or other. mopping the floor doesn't quite define me. 

there's always some stitching going on. the thing is to finish quite a few works in progress. then there's the what do i do with them? 
tiny
scribbles and dibbles
watercolor 

"WE ARE WHAT WE REPEATEDLY DO"
Aristotle

Monday, February 1, 2016

the potting shed and a birthday


philosophical thought as i turned sixty
in january we lost many greats and i could not help but embroider a little tribute to alan rickman.
and i finally closed the chapter in mexico
crossing the border three times to haul my belongings back to california. it was a revealing seven months. i grew just that little more.
and now i am home. the best journey always takes us home. 

even though i feel i'm suffering from burn out (there is so much a heart and soul can take without consequences), the responsibiity to keep things relatively together and functional remain. so i am finally half settled in the new house. kitchen, bedrooms, bathrooms and living room are all pretty much set up,








 so now onto a little bit of fun to see if i still have in me to take the trouble to write another chapter in my story with zest and gusto. and it all centers on the potting shed, one of my favorite bonuses of the house together with the front entrance lampost, the bird bath and the fireplace ofcourse. 
i love potting sheds. probably as much as art studios. and i love everything that goes in them and without: straw hats and watering cans, wellies, aprons and pockets for pinking shears and spades, buckets and seed packages, terra cotta pots and fresh smelling soil as well as gardening books and magazines, and wicker baskets for pickings. 
in between, i turned 60! yikes ! and got a surprise from tatiana who had bought tickets to the LA ART SHOW. 
and company arrived the following day: full house .it was a blast. jon and claire came from san francisco and most of my closest friends came as well as family. we set up the firepit, sat in a circle, sang songs to the guitar and lit candles for wishes come true. 


i danced in my pretty green flouncy dress

and now onto some creativity
it's about time

Saturday, January 2, 2016

resolute, the trip back parts one and two

 
it's raining....what better time to catch up with my diary. because this is mainly why i blog, to keep a record of my life and my creativity as it unfolds. i love looking back at some of the pages i've posted and remember, much like when my children and i take out the photo boxes and sit next to the fire laughing at photos of when they were little, or reading old letters and cards from my brother. old old letters wrapped or tied up with a ribbon from the days when mail was fun.
life has gone by way too fast. i turn 60 in a couple of weeks. 
and i have have changed, grown, big time! both on the inside and out. for the first time in my life i feel older. by older, i mean i am now thinking of this last stretch of my life the years that remain will too go by fast. i think of my dreams, the ones that went down the pipeline and the ones that came to be and the one or two still remaining: a re visiting of my beloved england and the possibility of a little vintage winged camper to hook to my car for trips up the pacific coast. but i have shed expectations, part of is no more, another mysterious right of passage has unfolded.

the romantic in me prevails though, THAT will never die as you can see, in spite of all the twists and turns of life.

i think about my legacy thinking of my parents', my mother's being her exquisite taste and 5 ***** cooking, my father's his intellect and drive to write all those books. what will mine be? i hope that it will be the values i taught my children and (chuckling) that some of my art will be treasured and not end up in the dust bin. unfortunaletly they have not inherited my love of books but both have become great cooks and unique non-mainstream beings, both artistic and slightly exotic.

tatiana
jon

mamma bear 

so much has happened this past year. it was the chinese year of the ram and i am a ram. they say to beware of your chinese sign years, to be careful. boy are they right. 
i lost my partner, my home and my country, and i became a bit hard core on the inside. i guess it's what is recauired going forward into becoming a senior.  i now recover my country as i dive into in the throes of packing yet again and bidding farewell to mexico where i chose escape from the scene of the crime. and with my move come resolutions. my energy now will be mostly MINE, as harsh as it sounds. and i state it without an ounce of remorse.

back to california, i miss my family and friends. the quiet solitude of rosarito taught me alot about myself. and i was able to realize the importance of a social network, people above all over things. so i travelled the distance for christmas, found a house and set the wheels in motion. i stayed in topanga with my brother and a few with tatiana where i worked hard to cover the logistics of another move.

i have stopped counting the times i have had to move; being uprooted just about every year or so. starting gardens over  and over, the draining, the expense. 

at martin and andrea's i stopped one morning to watercolor the sightings.
and then back to mexico to pack
and here i am, a week or so later
re-acquainting myself with familiar surroundings, doing it at a slow pace, gently.
peacefully
i am not rushing anything although i can't wait to get back to painting and sewing.

crossing the border was bittersweet. i love mexico. good thing it is relatively close and i have where to lodge when i return to visit my friends marucha, nancy and víctor. 

had to leave most of my plants behind which hurt. 
my garden is my church so it will once again become a priority in the new house.



and the hutch with it's touches of britain

handmades by some of my favorite brits

and some of my own

i have never been one for new year's resolutions, my resolutions usually pop up randomly throughout the year, sometimes in my head, sometimes by way of lists. but this year is different.
after a year that will go down in my memory as the most challenging of my life, (even more so than when my eldest son died) i have had many enlightening thoughts and reached many conclusions about myself, my life from from this day forward, the people i want in my life, the people i don't want in my life, the importance of stopping to assess, rather than just continuing in a frenzy.
so.....
i choose this new year to make some changes.
firstly i have concluded that i have had too much background noise, been over stimulated and wasted way too much time online. therefore, i have closed my facebook page temporarily until i can retrieve all the photographs and important posts. i have also deleted hundreds of people who are mainly looky loos and really don't contribute by way of comments, friendship or support. the same goes for instagram and flickr. i am keeping my tumblr and pinterest accounts solely for inspiration purposes. the main deletion has been unsubscribing from the emails i receive from vendors. in summary, i am turning back the clock to a simpler time. 
secondly: that my future will encompass nature tenfold. it is there that i find my greatest solace.
thirdly: that chile is no longer an option. sad as it is, my native country will not be where i return to retire although i would like to be buried there in el quisco or vichuquen, two places where we holidayed that made me immensely happy. 

and fourth: that i will put this past year to rest with forgiveness towards the person that betrayed me at the last hour with a deathbed altered will and pray that if he is looking down on me from his resting place, he realizes the cruelty and injustice of his behaviour to one who always looked out for his and his family's best interests, often putting herself aside. 



i go forward in gratitude for the gift of strength and common sense, not a self-righteousness but a true thankfulness that i am still standing, still true to myself, still forgiving, still adamant about not letting "the world" or darkness drag me down or letting the bad guys win or bitterness or resentment fill me with "toxic waste" i am here to learn, to choose good over evil, to be an example to those i encounter, to "watch the things i gave my life to, broken and stoop and build ’em up with worn-out tools" to walk in grace. 

café gratitude in venice during my december visit
beauty in popotla
am i really home now?