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High Gear…

I don’t know what has opened the flood gates, but the ideas have just been tumbling in and I’ve taken to keeping a notebook close at hand to write them down because I know a dry spell will come when I need the ideas! 

I’m working to get a few new items done to display/sell at Artists in Action as well as settle ideas for what I want to work on at the museum while people watch me. I’m slowly getting things organized as to what goes with me and what stays here and what I need to “prep” to work on there. 

This also means my studio that was finally getting settled is now getting torn apart again! ☺ My wire cubbies are coming out of the closet to go with me to hold fiber for spinning and felting. One of my wooden rolling carts comes with me with all of my threads for sewing. (I’ll have to many little items I’m taking to sew to narrow the thread selection) I’m taking a couple pieces of grid wall to set up to hang some of my origami pieces for display and sale, but those aren’t out of my studio. The tables going along with the grid wall though will come from my studio. My nice chair, my big rolling magnifier light… Not to mention my treadle sewing machine and spinning wheel. 

I’ve got baskets and bins galore to hold all sorts of items whether it’s zippers for dresses/messenger bags or paper for my origami or vials with felting needles, I need to try and keep it all organized. I may have to label things over there because I may waste time looking for things since they aren’t where I’m used to finding them. 😊

And once this great adventure is done I will have to try and put things back together again at home. I know myself and I will never remember where I had everything!!! 😄 So for now I tear apart, have fun creating, and worry about the other end later. 

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Art · life

Artists in Action…

Annmarie Gardens Museum and Sculpture Gardens holds a program each year called Artists in Action where they host artists in the museum in “mobile studios” for various amounts of time so visitors can watch the artists and see their art and how they work. I have had the honor to be chosen as one of these artists this year.

From Jan 28-Feb7 I will set up a studio space in the museum and work on my art each day while visitors watch. (gulp) Kinda makes me feel like a zoo animal at the thought of it, but I’ll be “on display”, examples of my work will be on display and for sale, and I’m to answer questions.

This should be fun and yet at the same time it’s a bit daunting. Now to decide on exact projects to work on while there and get the supplies lined up and order any I need!

I hope all of you are having a wonderful holiday – this was a great Christmas present for me!

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The press is on…

I got the tile down on the floor of the attic space off my studio yesterday. Today we get the studs and insulation covered so it’s cleaner in there, brighter when the light is on and a better environment for me to store some of my supplies. What a chore! But so much better once behind me and I can finish clearing out the storage unit and be done with that. Of course we’re expecting 1-3″ of snow today!

I had planned to empty the storage unit today because a unit close by is apparently being used by FedEx or UPS as a drop point for drivers to come collect packages to deliver. The last three times I’ve been there I’ve had to wait for them to leave to pull up to the hallway for my unit or drive around the building and use the door at the opposite end of the hallway to access my storage unit. My next payment is due in the 24th and their use of their unit won’t slow down any so I will have to grin and bear it until I make these last few loads to clear it.

Then the rest of the week is spent clearing the remainder of the boxes, putting up the last of the Christmas decorations, getting the RV ready for us to move into it when the in-laws arrive for their visit… It’s going to be crazy.

I need to run by the shop with a display of my felted acorns. I have two Christmas trees in the shop and apparently everyone wants them individually! Now they can buy them either way.

I think I will be moving my needle felt supplies temporarily into the RV for the evenings while we are out there until bed time while the in-laws are here and if I have time to work on something while in the house I’ll knit infant or preemie socks that are needed at the shop. 

I’ve applied to an Artist in Residence program at a local museum. It would only be about a two week stint and I would not actually reside there, I would commute daily, but we shall see if I get selected. I have my doubts, my husband and some friends say not to worry… I’m a worrier. 😊

As the season gets busier, as the hustle and bustle gets more and more, find some quiet time each day to just “be”. This move has about killed me, but the cabin itself has been such a gift. The peace here is beautiful. I love to step out on the back porch at least once a day just to take a moment to listen and relax when everything else around keeps going at warp speed. Or take the time to watch the deer when they come through the yard. It’s these little moments that help us deal with the catastrophes.

Art · downsizing

It’s beginning to look a lot like Christmas…

dresstree.jpg

I have had the idea for the “tree” for roughly 4-5 years now. It was to be a display for an ornament show/sale and I never got around to using it, so I finally did it here at home.  No more waiting!

I also had to get a couple of projects done to get out in the mail. One to a flamingo lover who also loves anything sparkly –

momwreath

And the other one is for a baseball lover. I saw the ribbon a few days ago and immediately thought of baseballs and knew I had to somehow come up with a wreath for it.

skipwreath

I hope both recipients enjoy them!

On the moving front, about 1-2 more trips in my Subaru Outback and I should have the storage unit cleaned out and be done with it! It’s just a matter of getting it all put away in the “attic” space off my studio and the work room downstairs. Once I get done with all that and get everything situated I can then get on to even more art work. And presently that consists of needle felting.

If all goes well I’ll be taking part in an Artists in Residence program at a local museum associated with the Smithsonian. Wish me luck!

 

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Home made Christmas

tree

I’ve been busy cleaning up after Thanksgiving and transitioning the home to Christmas. Some things are in place and set, some are a work in progress and some I have not even begun.

I’ve been working on hand felted acorns to decorate with and finished the first Christmas tree to list for sale. Working on a white grapevine wreath with the acorns on it as well. It’s hard to tell in the photo but there is just a little bit of micro glitter to the acorn tops. I used a mica powder in the protectant I coated them with prior to using.

I had time to make some “MD crab” resin ornaments. (pictures to come) Those are mostly blue for Maryland blue crabs, but I did pour some red ones as a special order and will probably pour a few of those for sale as well. I have a multitude of little snowflakes in all sorts of colors. 

The snowflakes I like, but a few were disappointments. I used some “interference” mica powders for a few. Those colors are a pearlized color but the color; red, green, blue, violet; only shows when you tilt the piece so the light hits the mica powder at the right angle. The snowflakes are small enough that you don’t get much effect there like you do with a pendant for a necklace.

I’ve got to run by the storage unit this week to get more of our Christmas decorations out. I’ll get more stuff settled here and set in the work room downstairs. My goal is to get rid of the storage unit asap.

On top of all of the art, getting the home ready for the holidays, that kind of thing, I have to get the cabin ready for my in-laws to come stay for Christmas and our 5th wheel ready for us to stay in while they visit. Since we have no second bedroom (the teeny, tiny “second bedroom” that you could maybe fit a twin bed in is my studio) we’re out in the RV during the visit. So I’m pretty busy here these next few weeks! Maybe I can catch my breath in January.

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Ever thankful…

There have been times when this year has been very trying and just physically exhausting, including right now. 😊 Overwhelmingly this has been an amazing year though. I have truly been blessed and so much to be thankful for and I am truly grateful.

I have some wonderful friends who have been there to support me throughout the trying times this year and I am so blessed to have them in my life. Just to have an ear to listen to me whine and moan, a shoulder to cry on, was such a comfort at times. That enabled me to pick myself up, dust myself off and get going again. To laugh with me, sometimes at me, during the good times, celebrating the ups along with shoring me up during the downs, I thank you. I couldn’t get through the daily grind without each and every one of you. 

A wonderful friend who was just fighting for his life in a medically induced coma, diagnosed with Toxic Shock Syndrome, has fought his way back and may be going home from the hospital soon. What a blessing to have him come back like that. He still has a road ahead recovering, but that’s better than the alternative.

For the most part I have my health. Sure I deal with fibromyalgia (and other things) and have good days and bad days, but I’ve had more good than bad I think. I’ve been dealing with the Achilles tendon here lately and physical therapy for the micro tears, but that will all heal.

We have our new home, our “cabin in the woods” that is so peaceful and full of inspiration. We have deer and squirrels visiting all the time and I even caught a fox sneaking through the yard early one morning just at the break of daylight. It is our refuge.

I’m thankful for our kids who helped with the move. They were awesome and graciously spent several weekend days throwing their backs into the heavy lifting. They helped out with the staining of the interior logs of the cabin prior to us moving in too. It definitely helped to make the move run more smoothly.

I became the proud owner of a 2018 Subaru Outback and also became a #SubaruAmbassador! I love the brand and vehicle so much I applied to be an Ambassador and was accepted. So now I get to spread the #SubaruLove any chance I get. 😊

And last, but by no means least, my husband. He’s been there through thick and thin, good and bad, stressful and smooth sailing; supported my crazy art ideas and art explosions all over the house; believed in what I was doing even when I was sometimes unsure myself of the course I was taking; always my best cheerleader; and above all my best friend. Even though he can be exasperating at times (I admit he is getting better about giving me back my tools) I still love him dearly.

I hope as each of you looks back on this year you find you had more blessings and goodness than you realized. I hope you have family and friends to share your load, your joys, your sorrows, and your journey. And as you begin to look forward to the new year approaching, and it is fast approaching(!), I hope you will go into that new year with inspiration, plans, and a brightness glowing in you that comes from a soul inspired to do more, explore more, give more, share more, and just “be” more.

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It’s been too long…

This move seemed like it would never end! We are finally out of the old house as of the end of October, thank goodness. Most everything is in the cabin now with only a small storage space that needs to be brought into here. 

I have to say my 2018 Subaru Outback, lovingly known as “Scoobyru”, was the hero of this move! We rented a truck a couple of weekends to move big furniture, chest freezer, get the larger items over here. But the lion’s share of this move I accomplished with Scoobyru. It’s amazing how much you can pack in the back of an Outback! It was like a clown car at the circus when I would unload her – things kept coming out, box after box after box. 😄 I made countless trips back and forth between the house and the cabin, to the thrift shop to donate stuff, to the dump with stuff that should have been disposed of long ago but just collected. She has been a trooper!

I’m still getting things settled, still shifting things as I figure out what works and what doesn’t. The kitchen is ever changing right now. I have about half of it definitely set, the rest is in place but not necessarily where it will stay. 

I’ve painted furniture, stained unfinished logs, painted unfinished window sashes, painted doors… Some art is hung in permanent spots. Some are just hung because there was an existing nail there so I put something there. LOL Those things will probably change. While all of that is/was creative to a certain extent it wasn’t creative in my artistic, have to create sense. I was withering inside going too long without my arts.

A few days ago I took the time, set up some molds, mixed resin and did a pour. That was nice. I spent some time spinning and feeling the fiber slip through my fingers was so therapeutic! I finally felt like I was home! I’ve been playing with needle felting too. And I’ll be adding wet felting in there, probably pulling out the dye pot after Thanksgiving… I’m back! 😄

Being surrounded be nature here at the cabin just feeds the soul and sparks the creative juices. I’m trying to be disciplined and get work done around the home each day before I start playing. LOL If I don’t do that we’ll never fully get settled for months to come, and we have company coming for the holidays! So I have to get this cabin in tip top shape.

After Thanksgiving I’ll have to get to the storage space and get all the Christmas decorations out so I can start putting some of those touches up around here. We’ll have to wait until closer to Christmas to put up the tree of course since we put up a live one. 

Oh, and in the middle of this move I managed to get micro tears in my Achilles tendon and was in a boot for about half the move. Yay, that was fun! (Full on sarcasm if you didn’t realize it there folks) Yeah, had to go through the whole process of xrays, MRI, ortho doc, all that. I’m now doing physical therapy until Christmas, I think my last appointment is the week before in fact. I will be glad to be done with that and have that off my plate.

I seem to be slowly finding a “new normal”. I know that won’t really settle into existence until after the holidays, but it’s sorely working its way here. Much closer now than a couple of months ago and for that I am grateful!