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(no subject) [Aug. 11th, 2008|12:11 pm]
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(no subject) [Jul. 31st, 2008|07:55 pm]
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Yep!  I'm all laid back and relaxed as I take a break from moving this blog.  There's still a lot to do, but nothing says "relax" like putting your feet up and enjoying a good stogie!  You can visit my new blog here...that is IF Live Journal decides it wants to cooperate with inserting hyperlinks!!  And, of curse course, it didn't!  Here's the link.  Copy & paste it if you're interested: http://henleythegreatdane.blogspot.com/
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Remember the Cost [Jul. 31st, 2008|11:43 am]
I just read a couple of things I want to share with you.  If you're like me, there are times when you find your relationship with the Lord so "normal" or "right" that you tend to forget the cost until an event, a song, or in this case something you read, jars your whole being.  We should never be so at rest in our walk that we forget for one moment what it cost.


From Desiring God:
I was studying Psalm 43 with a friend in Urdu the other day. We came to where it says in English, "I will go to the altar of God."

As I read along in Urdu, I did not know the word for "altar," so I asked my friend what it was. He didn't know how to translate the word into English, but he gave the following English description: "It is God's bloody place, where the throats of the animals are slit for sacrifice."

Of course. It's an altar.

Sometimes I think of an altar as the carpeted stairs and dais at the front of the church meetinghouse. But it's not. It is a bloody place—a place of sacrifice and death.

I need to remember that.

And from UPI:
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(no subject) [Jul. 30th, 2008|12:22 am]
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Didn't get a chance to draw my EDM sketch today because I just had too much going on.  I did buy a very cool box of Derwent watercolor, uh, excuse me, watercolour pencils (UK) today using my 40% off coupon at AC Moore.  I love a bargain!  I've never used this particular medium before and played around a bit with it tonight.  The colors are vibrant, much more so than regular watercolors.  I have a larger drawing I did months ago of a mosaic found in the earliest known Christian church that I've been afraid to paint.  I may dig in with these since they seem to be easier to control.
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Sleepy-time Henley [Jul. 29th, 2008|10:44 pm]
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When we first got Henley he was much much smaller.  I remember coming in the back door from the Great Dane rescue folks in Tampa and Sean seeing him for the first time said, "He looks like a miniature Dane!"  Yep - he was just a cutie pie of a puppy.


He was so little and so sweet that he'd sleep on the bed with us.  It wasn't so bad at first, but as time passed, Henley grew....and grew until now he stands at 42" and weighs 160 lbs.  When we moved into this house I was determined to break him of sleeping on our bed.  I had great success with it, thanks to a baby gate put up high enough on the doorway that he couldn't jump over it without a running start.  Anyway, we've been meaning to buy him a bed but just haven't done it. 

Today my dear friend Pam (primo seamstress/decorator) made him his own bed.  I thought we might have to actually coax him onto it the first time or two.  I was wrong:



I'd say he was one sleepy but happy Dane.  Sweet dreams, Henley!
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(no subject) [Jul. 28th, 2008|09:49 pm]
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Fire goes out for lack of fuel, and quarrels disappear when gossip stops. 
A quarrelsome person starts fights as easily as hot embers light charcoal or fire lights wood. 
What dainty morsels rumors are - but they sink deep into one's heart.
Proverbs 6: 20-22

Okay, now that I've got that out of my system, on to nicer subjects:

You know, I've got to stop comparing my drawings with other people's.  I've never done "neat" artwork.  There's something wonderfully freeing about a brush filled with color that makes me want to spread it on the canvas in a big way.  When I draw, it's with the same abandon.  I looked online to see what other people's EDM drawing of a wallet looked like and just had to stop because all their drawings were perfect.  I know if I looked long enough I'd find someone really terrible, but then, that wouldn't be very nice, would it?  :o)  I draw like I draw.  And, you know what?  It will get better, but I'm not even as dissatisfied with my work as I was at the beginning because confidence is easing in.  Ah!  That's what I remember loving about the art classes I took!  That moment when satisfaction slipped in and the work looked exactly as I wanted it to. 

Today's EDM sketch:  draw a wallet

 
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SHOES!! [Jul. 26th, 2008|11:14 am]
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While trying to decide what to draw today I decided to actually go to Danny Gregory's EDM Flickr site and take a look at the list of suggested items.  Once there I found a whopping 178 suggestions!  I may have trouble coming up with stuff, but apparently others don't.  I've already drawn numbers 2, 4, 25, and 154 (what a scamp I am - drawing out of order!  tee-hee!).  I was tickled to find that number one on the list says, "Draw a shoe." 

I love shoes.  I can't afford to spend a lot on them, but have discovered that our local Ross in Destin has fabulous girly shoes at incredibly low prices.  This week I picked up a very cute pair of feminine heels complete with flowers & bows.  They probably weren't the smartest shoe to draw but I'm trying to stretch myself with each sketch.  Whereas my usual flip-flops (required Floridian shoe that I also love) would have been much easier, I decided to go with the adorable $17 find.  There's a major flaw in the drawing because I still have trouble discerning what I'm actually seeing.  Had it been in pencil this is one mistake that would have definitely been erased.  But, here it is:



Today I'm going to pick up that second moleskine, pencils, & kneaded eraser.  This new pencil sketch journal will be for fun!
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"...the unlit lamp and the ungirt loin." [Jul. 25th, 2008|09:51 pm]
I had a grand afternoon having lunch with good friends.  I have to admit, though, that my favorite part of the outing was going with Pam while she took measurements for a client's window treatments.  Some of the older homes in the area situated along the bays & bayous are very beautiful.  Today I went inside not one but two of them.  Pam didn't have the house number with her so we first went to the wrong home.  As Pam was talking to the woman getting directions I noticed this incredible large oil painting hanging in her foyer.  I commented on it and this lovely lady invited us in to view several other pieces.  Ahhh!  Heaven!  I don't know that I would have invited two strangers inside my home, but I'm so glad she did.  The client's home was just as cool with very modern touches.  She had original artwork done by local (mostly Pensacola) artists hanging everywhere.  Much of it was whimsical, with some almost primitive and yet contemporary.  

I taught two students this afternoon and both did really well.  There are times when my piano students don't even try and that can be discouraging, not for me, but for them.  The two today are far enough along that when I take the time to work through a piece with them, they "get it" to the point that you can almost see the light turn on in their heads.

And, speaking of lights... I sketched out my small desk lamp for my daily drawing.  I'm seeing no improvement, but I did head straightway into it instead of going through the moments of agony beforehand.  If time permits tomorrow, I'm going for the second moleskine for pencil sketching.  I'll take it along with me in my bag so I can sketch while out.



I've always loved quotes and it seems that finding quirky ones to go along with the daily sketches brings me more joy than the actual drawing! 
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Day 3 [Jul. 24th, 2008|07:53 pm]
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I had lots to do today so didn't get around to sketching until just now.  You know the old "if life hands you lemons, make lemonade" saying?  If someone handed me these lemons, they'd go in the trash.  If I'm to be positive about the drawing (as instructed by Danny Gregory) then I guess I can say that I did the assignment.  I have no firm grasp on it right now, but practice will make it better.  I think I'll get another moleskine and use pencil instead of pen with it.  I learned to draw using pencil where shading is much easier and more realistic. And then, of course, there's that incredible little item called an eraser.   I also wonder about color.  Black ink on this cream colored paper doesn't inspire.  I'm going to trudge forward using the black pen because I get distracted way too easily and end up getting nothing done at all.  Anyway, here it is:

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"...except they wear waders" [Jul. 23rd, 2008|11:01 am]
Chris Kattan used to play this monkey-boy character named Mr Peepers on Saturday Night Live.  He'd crawl all up and down people while wolfing down apples and screaming, "BAAH!  BAAH!"  I figured since I'm not allowed to curse...okay, I'm not supposed to curse, that I'd adopt Mr Peeper's word whenever I got frustrated or angry.  So, in respect to my Day 2 sketch:  BAAH!!!  BAAH!!!

Poorly drawn, but at least it's done.  I hate embarrassing myself (again!), but here it is:

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Bring me a bowl of coffee before I turn into a goat! [Jul. 22nd, 2008|06:57 pm]
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[Current Mood |accomplished]

Day 1 sketch - Done!  I actually completed my first sketch this morning.  It's pretty bad, but that's not the point.  The point is I did it, and with practice I should eventually get back to having a better grip on perspective, angles, shapes, etc.  As it is, this morning's sketch of my coffee cup is all "wonky" on the bottom of the cup.  And, yes, I realize that "wonky" is probably not a word, but it certainly fits the way I drew the cup.

The instructions are to commit to the line you draw.  That makes it hard for me because when I draw something that is so off, I want to fix it.  Still, I'm somehow satisfied and feel accomplished.  I included a crazy funny quote by Bach:  "Bring me a bowl of coffee before I turn into a goat!"  Gotta love that!

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Stinkin' little worthy goal! [Jul. 21st, 2008|11:22 pm]
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The first art class I ever took was a drawing class.  I can still hear my art instructor Steve Phillips say, "You see it and then you draw it."  I think I muttered something along the lines of  "Some people have better eye sight than others."  He also insisted that we actually draw daily.  Each of us had a sketch book and a huge drawing pad that we had to fill because the more we drew the better we'd get.  He was right.

I drew all sorts of things, but I really found myself loving drawing people.  From time to time I'll take out the sketch book and see pictures of children from the emergency shelter I worked at or of kids at church.  I even drew Paul McCartney & John Lennon...and you could actually tell it was Paul McCartney & John Lennon!  But, like so many others I let life get in the way and I stopped drawing.  What I could once do fairly well is now pretty bad. 

Last night I watched several videos by Danny Gregory of "Everyday Matters" fame.  If you're not an artist he won't be famous to you.  Outside his art, Gregory is probably best known for his encouraging nature.  I like that.  I think everyone needs a "Barnabas" in their lives and for struggling wanna-be-artists he's it.  The very basic idea to get a person back on track is to draw one simple sketch every single day. 


His supply list is comprised of two things.  The sketchbook must be sewn bound.  That's because he knows we are notorious about hating what we do and ripping it to shreds.  He looks at this simple daily drawing exercise as a journey where we can see our growth, so no tearing up our work!  If a page is torn from a bound sketchbook it's not a clean tear; the evidence of a torn missing page is always there. Tonight I purchased my first Moleskine (mol-a-skeen'-a).  It's a nifty little Italian sketch book used by artists for over 200 years.  They're nothing fancy but very well made.   The second item on the supply list is a pen.  No pencils are allowed because we are to learn to "commit" to the line.  It takes away the urge to hurry through and supposedly makes us take the time to consider shapes before the pen hits the paper.  It doesn't have to be expensive or fancy, but waterproof is better. 

I'm supposed to photograph and upload my daily sketches, but I doubt I do that.  I'm not one for embarrassment if I can help it :o)  Right now, I'm just hoping to follow through on the goal of one drawing a day.  Such a little goal, but a worthy one.
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Kira knows! [Jul. 18th, 2008|09:14 pm]
"In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God's angels when even one sinner repents."


This adorable little girl is Kira and she is New Hope's newest Christian.  As I talked with her today about Jesus it has never been more apparent that a child understood just Who He is.  She knows she sins and she knows that God is perfect.  She gets it that sin keeps her from God. She understands why Jesus had to die.   And, today she put all the pieces together.  I've never walked a child through the steps of salvation who cried tears of joy when she prayed for Jesus to come into her life as Lord and Savior.  Adults, yes, but a child?  It was incredibly sweet and I am so thankful that God blessed me with being there today.
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The Beatles & Christianity [Jul. 14th, 2008|06:10 pm]
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John Lennon © Eli
 
Think Christian is a blog favorite of mine.  It tends to take an open-minded look at things by asking questions in a worthy attempt to make a person think for themselves.  I like that.  Today's blog takes a closer look at The Beatles relationship with Christ and the institution of the church.  The original article from the UK Telegraph can be found here

A side note - Apparently FireFox 3.0 has some sort of bug when it comes to inserting links into a post on LiveJournal.  They're working to repair it.  If the above links aren't working try these:

Think Christian:  http://www.thinkchristian.net/
UK Telegraph article: http://tinyurl.com/5bw5hc
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Paradise [Jul. 8th, 2008|10:40 pm]
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David and I took time today to head to the beach.  I promise that every single time I round the corner at Henderson Beach in Destin I feel like a kid again.  I almost squeal with delight!  There is no place on earth as beautiful as the sugar white sands and emerald waters that we are blessed with here.  I told David that I imagine God must have created this place and then said, "They're going to absolutely LOVE this!" 





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(no subject) [Jun. 28th, 2008|12:00 pm]
What a horribly sad and cynical look at love, marriage, & life:


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Must Read... [Jun. 25th, 2008|02:49 pm]
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Awesome book.  Read it.

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Complete! [Jun. 24th, 2008|08:45 pm]
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Joy!  Oh, Joy!  The tedious wine label art is complete.  I've discovered that removing wine labels is incredibly tedious work.  Can I add the word "contrary" to an inanimate object, because one label would come off perfectly fine and the next would be the stubborn step-child of labels!  But, with help from David (he held the unyielding labels taut while I gingerly painted on glue remover) all the labels were ready.  I used an organic technique to dye the labels...okay, I used coffee to dye them, but doesn't organic sound more arty?  Matte medium, gesso, and acrylic paints were used on the 5 x 5 canvases.  I'm pleased.

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IF [Jun. 24th, 2008|08:33 pm]
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James 1:17 says that every good gift in our lives has its source in God.  That tells us a lot about the nature of God if we'll make the connection."   - Nancy Ortberg "Looking For God: An unexpected journey through tattoos, tofu & pronouns"

God has been doing one of those "working things" in my life lately.  I told David about it a couple of weeks ago and his reaction was, "Uh-oh!" I, of course, asked what he meant by that and he told me that every time God worked in my life so palpably it usually meant trouble for him.  Once again, it's all about him (I'm saying this with a huge grin).

It seems that over time I've become quite the cynical sarcastic person.  A pastor's wife can only deal with so many times of well intentioned comments toward herself or family, or those infamous "I thought you might need to know what's being said about your husband" conversations that pierce the heart before said heart becomes hardened by a protective shell.  I've found the problem with this personally is that my flippant, cynical, sarcastic side, which many of my friends find hilariously funny, was affecting my view of people.  I no longer saw people with the loving compassionate heart of God because I just knew that somewhere down the line they'd be trouble.  I lost my tenderness and God was letting me know it in a big way.

So, now I'm on this journey back.  Back to the days of innocence when I didn't look at people with a critical eye toward whether or not they were out to get me or my family.  I'm having to make conscious decisions about it, too.  I'm having to think twice and sometimes three times before I speak.  David is probably getting really tired of hearing me say, "No! Nope!  I'm not going there" before I start to comment on something or answer a question.

I also found that I'd lost my thankfulness.  I had turned into a complainer looking at every person or situation for the bad.  I can just imagine God looking down at me saying, "Enough with the whining, already!"  Without even knowing it, I'd lost one of the most basic parts of being His.  Remember when you were just a kid?  The first prayer we were taught was usually "thank You for Mommy, thank You for Daddy" or the simple "thank You for this food."  Teaching children to be thankful and praise God is one the first and simplest prayers there is.

I'm reading through Philippians this week and I keep stopping at the tiny word "if" in the second chapter.  IF you have encouragement from being united in Christ, IF any comfort from His love, IF any fellowship with the Spirit, IF any tenderness and compassion...if I don't, then I'm the one with the problem!  I think God got tired of me not making the connection. 
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(no subject) [Jun. 21st, 2008|12:58 pm]
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There are times while I'm reading when a passage will just stop me dead in my tracks.  I'm in the middle of The Dogs of Babel by Carolyn Parkhurst.  It's a strange tale of a linguistics professor whose wife falls from an apple tree and dies.  Her death was ruled accidental with the only witness being their dog.  The guy is heartbroken and decides that he must find out what actually led up to her death.  Here's the strange quirky part - he decides to teach his dog to talk so he can find out what happened.  Yeah, I know, but it was a best seller and I got a good price on the book.  Anyway - this paragraph describing his grief slayed me:
I am forty-three years old.  I may yet live another forty.  What do I do with those years?  How do I fill them without her?  When I come to tell the story of my life, there will be a line, creased and blurred and soft with age, where she stops.  If I win the lottery, if I father a child, if I lose the use of my legs, it will be after she has finished knowing me.
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(no subject) [Jun. 20th, 2008|09:05 pm]
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This:         

became

This:         

which became:

This!          

And This!  


With more to come...
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He's home! [Jun. 20th, 2008|07:21 pm]
After a week away on a mission trip to Kentucky, our "baby" is home! 
 
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Sweetness! [Jun. 17th, 2008|08:14 pm]
Teaching piano, like most professions, has its good and bad sides.  Frankly, it's unusual to get a student who absolutely loves it and also shows signs of talent.  Last week I started a new student, a tiny little girl who won't start first grade until this August.  She's petite with long blonde hair and big eyes that are so very expressive.  That might be enough but this little one is something else!
 
I teach piano at the church and the kids there have gifted me with all sorts of shows of love.  I have artwork, bead dolls, clay figures, and candles given to me by these sweet children.  There's a shelf of sorts down by the pedals of the piano and I have collected all these lovelies there.  When this sweet little new student came last week for her first introductory lesson she noticed the treasures right away.  I told her that it was my "shrine"...probably not the best way to put it, but this little one remembered it.  When she came in for her lesson today she had a half dozen sheets of notebook paper with penciled drawings she'd rendered of herself with me along with "I love Mrs. Bunny" (oh, that the rest of the world could love so quickly and easily!).  The stick people had these big fat hands with long lines drawn for fingers.  I said, "Look!  You drew them perfectly with nice piano hands!"  She was tickled when I held our hands up together and showed her how our fingers were long and perfect for playing piano.  Then she asked if she could put the pictures down with the rest of the treasures in my shrine.  Cute! Cute! Cute!
 
She's adorable and so quick to pick up on the lessons that it made the whole day sweet and precious!
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Frida/Favorite Collage continues... [Jun. 13th, 2008|02:05 pm]
A couple of additions to the project, one being a crazy cool medallion from a pendant Dave bought me for Christmas.  It was too large to actually wear, but found a happy home on this piece.  The second addition came with using the website Wordle which takes blocks of words and arranges them creatively.  It's a cool tool to use on websites, yes, but I'm excited about using it in my art work. 

I feel like I need to add one more big piece in the apparent open spot.  I've not decided what that will be yet.  Then, I have to figure out some way to make it all cohesive.  I'm considering either some patterned paper running through it, or a solid textured paint (which is what I'm leaning toward).  That, along with a single wash of color and then a coat of gloss medium and it should be complete.

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Celebrate! [Jun. 8th, 2008|08:05 am]
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Latest artwork [Jun. 1st, 2008|03:39 pm]
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Thanks to Pam, I have a wonderfully lovely bedroom.  Whenever any one walks into it the first word they say is "spa" when describing it.  I got the idea for it from a Southern Living magazine and Pam carried it out perfectly for me.  Once I get everything together I'll take pictures and post them (AND send them on to Southern Living!).

Adam gave me a gift certificate for Mother's Day and I purchased 6 of the small 5 x 5 wide edged gallery wrapped canvases.  Happy girl!!  I finally got out yesterday and purchased the much needed gesso and a deeper color paint that should go with the coverlet.  I got it home and  ugh!  Too much contrast.  So, I mixed a huge glob of white to lighten it; I ended up with a garish turquoise.  So, I called Diane and she advised putting some orange in with it.  Who'd have ever thought?  I guess I really need to pay attention to all those color theory articles I "read" instead of passing them so quickly.

I know this may not look like much (David!!), but I'm thrilled with this first stage of texture/paint.  Updates will be posted as I complete them:

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Family [May. 31st, 2008|05:56 pm]

Adam & Shonda
There's nothing as good as having family around.  Adam & Shonda have come for a visit and we're so thrilled to have them.  Dave and I were talking the other day that if there is one thing we did well, it was to raise two sons who love each other.  It's an awesome thing to see Adam & Sean interact as if no time has passed at all.
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How Sweet!! [May. 31st, 2008|04:44 pm]
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God must really have His heart warmed by this tiny child of His.
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Me and my Honey! [May. 30th, 2008|09:01 pm]
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Harvey Korman - RIP [May. 30th, 2008|10:31 am]
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I know this video features Tim Conway more than Harvey Korman, but I will forever love Korman's lack of control to stay in character without cracking up.  I think that was the best part.
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collage/frida/favorite [May. 24th, 2008|07:38 pm]
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I'm to the point of not even knowing what to call this, but I have worked a bit more by adding a couple of Picasso favorites, my "life verse" of scripture, a Frida photo, and a small tribute/memorial to Ana.  I realized that if I'm to do a piece that entails the important parts of my life I could never leave her out.  But, that made this not one of my favorite things, because with Ana, it's all broken...

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Mother's Day For Me [May. 8th, 2008|07:10 pm]
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The absolute hardest thing I've ever had to do in my entire life is leave Adam behind in Macon when God called David here to Valparaiso, FL.  Understand that we ARE family.  We may not be average or what might be considered normal...no - with the way society is today, I'm going to leave it at "we ARE family."

This is a snippet from a conversation via AIM with Adam right now:

BunnyClinard: Hey!  What's going on?
Adam: oh you know, just thinkin' about mothers day!
BunnyClinard: awwww!
BunnyClinard: no...really
Adam: lol
BunnyClinard: Well, you know that this mother loves you more than life itself!!! 
Adam: awww i know
BunnyClinard: long as you know and never forget!!

It may seem like nothing to many, but to a mother's heart - awesome.
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Democratic Race in 7 Minutes [May. 2nd, 2008|10:41 am]
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Pretty interesting take:


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Favorite Things update [May. 1st, 2008|09:18 am]
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I made a few additions to the ever evolving Favorite Things collage.  I glued down the metal top piece that came on a bottle of champagne.  Don't know if you'll be able to see it or not, because my photography using the digital camera is lousy.  I apparently shake and end up with blurred pictures.  Anyway, I followed Henley around the other day with said camera trying to get a great shot of him and he is either always sleeping or just plain uncooperative while he's awake.  I point the camera at him and the next thing I know I have a giant Great Dane schnoz in the camera lens followed quickly by that long slobbery tongue trying to lick the camera.  So, I went through all the pics we already have of him and decided that the goofy one I use on the side bar of this blog was perfect.  The distorted view suits his personality.  I added that photo along with a "floating" head of our beloved Ellie (we all miss her so!).  There are more things I want to add, maybe some quotes, but I'm not sure of that yet.  I did receive a phone call yesterday from St Augustine's San Sebastian Winery people.  They're sending me labels for the piece.  Yay!!  I'm excited about that!

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Better [Apr. 29th, 2008|03:44 pm]
I've got to admit, it's getting better, getting better all the time (can't get much worse!)...

Words from Lennon/McCartney that could never be more true than now.  The dark cloud of grief seems to be lifting and I'm praising God for that.
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Still Remembering... [Apr. 27th, 2008|09:35 pm]
[Current Mood |broken]

“My grief lies all within,
And these external manners of lament
Are merely shadows to the unseen grief
That swells with silence in the tortured soul”
William Shakespeare



Fleeting, life goes on, as it should with silly joyful moments and quiet ones that pass without a thought.  And, then Ana comes back to my heart's memory...and I crumble all over again.  I remember cradling her lifeless little body, still warm from her mother's womb.  I kissed her little tiny, tiny hands...six years should ease the pain and yet, somehow, it's worse this year.
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Favorite Things [Apr. 25th, 2008|09:32 pm]
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[Current Mood |artistic]

A couple of months ago I began a collage project that has been progressing s-l-o-w-l-y...but that's not been a bad thing this time.  I've enjoyed the time of walking by it and spending time just thinking it over.  I've never done a collage and have finally given myself the freedom to DO it - maybe the technique is wrong, but if I don't do something it will never get done.  Anyway, it's a work that includes my favorite things.  This is the beginning of it.  Don't judge it harshly because it's no where near completed, but I'm fairly pleased thus far. 



To the left is Frida (of course!) and beneath that is a brochure front from St Augustine's art community.  Below that - a champagne label.  I do love champagne.  I don't get it often, but it's my favorite beverage.  Of course, in the center is family, my sons, parents, and husband.  At the top right is a scroll work of paper to represent the ocean and in the middle of it (tiny) I've put a picture of myself because if no one else in my family loves that incredible part of nature that God made, I do!  I'll be adding Henley and our beloved Ellie.  Then, maybe some words...can't decide yet.

I need to define the areas and am thinking along the lines of washes of color, but I'm not sure how to go about that. 


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Six Years [Apr. 25th, 2008|10:49 am]
I will never get over the loss of what could have been...



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Venuto e Gusto! [Apr. 24th, 2008|10:15 pm]
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[Current Mood |pleasedpleased]

IF my Italian is correct (and that would mean that Babel Fish was right), then these are a couple of invitations I made up today for an intimate get-together with a few girl friends the 15th of May.  Hopefully "venuto e gusto" means "come and taste."  I'm still not comfortable with watercolors but am trying to loosen up.  I seem to do my best artwork when I'm not trying too hard.  I did a quick sketch in pencil, then did a wet-in-wet watercolor technique.  From there I took a black ink marker and outlined for emphasis.  I'm fairly pleased!  Here's the results:

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(no subject) [Apr. 22nd, 2008|06:01 pm]
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Very soon now, I'll be posting our bedroom re-do.  It's just a lovely calm and serene take on a photo I saw in Southern Living Magazine nearly a year ago.  I have a very talented friend, Pam Roberts, owner of  Torn Veil Interiors, who took the photo and did a FABULOUS job for me.  I bartered with her (she did my bedroom and I taught her lovely daughter Jamie Neal piano) so I have something I'd never have been able to afford normally.  It's a lovely serene room.  I've now begun hanging artwork on the walls.  The big deal about this is that for the most part, it's my very own artwork...and I'm psyched about it!!!  I'm waiting until a trio of impressionist ink/heat pieces come back from being framed before I post the whole before/after of the room.  But, for now, here's two of my works (plus a very uber cool print of Frida with a blue cat we bought while in Savannah last summer).



A nude I did in watercolors in a "floating" frame.



The "Pool of Siloam" which is a mixed-media piece I did above the very cool Frida by James Dean (not that James Dean!)
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Persecution [Apr. 17th, 2008|12:33 pm]
From Christians in Context today:


 
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Want to test & blog about Glove In A Bottle? [Apr. 12th, 2008|04:31 pm]
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If you're reading this and have your own blog and would like to try my favorite moisturizer/shielding lotion "Gloves In A Bottle" let me know and I'll get you in contact with Pete Grimaldi, the PR man for the product.  He'll send you samples to try out so you can blog your own review of it.  I don't do this type thing regularly.  But - I am one of those consumers who email companies when their product is good or bad.  This one - A+ so you should give it a try!
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Two things... [Apr. 11th, 2008|09:26 pm]
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This movie...see it.  Rent it, buy it, whatever, but make sure you see it. 

 

And then, go here and type in Glen Hansard to hear the music from the movie (Falling Slowly = awesome).  Both the music and the movie are great.
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Gloves In A Bottle [Apr. 11th, 2008|11:03 am]
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A couple of months ago I posted a review of Skin MD Natural.  In that post I said I was going to try the less expensive Gloves In A Bottle.  I was having  trouble finding it locally when I received an email from Pete Grimaldi (public relations man for both Skin MD Natural and Gloves In A Bottle).  He offered to send me samples.  All I can say is "Thank you, Pete!"  Whereas both products are shielding lotions I overwhelmingly prefer Gloves In A Bottle.  Skin MD may be all natural, but apparently my skin reacts better to chemicals.  I don't know what that says about me, but frankly I'm tired of dry heels that just won't soften up.  The shielding lotion is thinner than a regular moisturizer and you use much less of it.  I've been applying it several times a day (whenever I think about it) and at night before climbing under the covers.  There is a marked improvement!  Go - no, run - to your nearest supplier and give this product a try.  Oh, and it's fantastic for artist's hands when you've decided the only way to get that paint, paper, medium down is with your hands.
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The most awesome RickRoll ever! [Apr. 8th, 2008|06:20 pm]

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Hilarious!!! [Apr. 8th, 2008|12:21 pm]
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Life Before Death: Walter Schels/Wellcome Collection [Apr. 4th, 2008|10:00 am]

This sombre series of portraits taken of people before and after they had died is a challenging and poignant study. The work by German photographer Walter Schels and his partner Beate Lakotta, who recorded interviews with the subjects in their final days, reveals much about dying - and living. Life Before Death is at the Wellcome Collection from April 9-May 18

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What a Difference a Year (or 24) Makes.... [Apr. 1st, 2008|01:08 pm]
[Current Mood |cheerfulcheerful]

I finally cleared out the photos on my cell and came across this one:

 

Compare it with about 24 years ago:



They both crack me up!
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Without Marriage... [Mar. 27th, 2008|11:16 am]
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It seems like living together before marriage is just the normal thing to do now.  We brought up both sons to honor God and also to respect women.  Even with that, the moment we moved to Florida and left our oldest son in GA, his girlfriend moved in with him.  It wouldn't have happened had we not left, but that's neither here nor there now.  The point is, couples no longer date and then marry.  The norm now is to date and then live together.  I have to wonder if there aren't thousands of young women who are missing one of the best parts of a lasting relationship - the romance. 

God's design for women is so carefully and lovingly planned.  There's nothing like that first night together as husband & wife in a carefully set up home.  And, if you've lived together before marriage, unfortunately it's an evening you'll never experience.  Sure, you can have sex, and it can be sex as "husband & wife" for the first time, but you'll never have the first evening together under the same roof as husband and wife if you already live together.  There's romance to be had there, and it's lost forever on those who choose poorly.  It becomes a "been there done that" thing. 

A new book by Mike and Harriet McManus, "Living Together: Myths, Risks & Answers" speaks to the issue using numbers.  It says 67 percent of cohabitating couples who marry eventually divorce.  How sad.  Divorce is tough.  I can't think of any divorced couples who look back on it without regrets.  Maybe the regrets aren't toward the actual divorce, but more so toward a relationship that shouldn't have been consummated in the first place.  Say you find your Prince Charming the second time around.  Can you think of a single person who doesn't wish it were the first time around?  Regrets.  Regrets that don't necessarily have to be.  Oh, that we women would follow our hearts for Christ and not our hearts for self!  Oh, that men would do the same!

The worst quote from the book: 

"Men and woman cohabitate for different reasons," Mike McManus told BP. "Women see it as a step toward marriage. They think they can audition for this job. Men do it because they like to have the ready availability of sex and having someone share their living expenses. Women should heed their mother's advice -- if you give away the milk, he won't buy the cow."
"...to share living expenses" - - how lovely, caring, and romantic.  And, women thinking they can  "audition" men for the "job" just makes me wonder what alternative universe I now live in!

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(no subject) [Mar. 24th, 2008|11:17 am]
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