The last book took three years. This one took three weeks.
Well, ok, a little longer than that, but when something wants to be born, sometimes it just HAPPENS.
It started as a letter to a friend. Pieces of what worked for me in my faith journey of the past two years.
Then I shared it with a few others.
They encouraged me to explore the topics a bit more. And a little over a month later, a book is born.
Whether what I did will work for someone else, I don't know. I simply had to write it down one night when I could not sleep before I did.
It's called "The 10 Things - an invitation to dive in." You may learn more about it here.
If it calls to you, I hope you might listen.
With thanks - and wishing you blessings.
Some things are made to last for decades. I don't believe a mattress is one of them.
I've been sleeping on the same one for the past 20 years, more or less. It's time has come, and gone. I noticed on the last laundry day that it actually had a sag in the middle. No wonder my back hasn't been so happy. That's the old one in the picture.
So what? Is this really blog worthy? It is to me, when I think of the changes it has seen and weathered with me during the past 20 years. I won't bore you with the details. Not right now. The mattress served me well. Fulfilled its purpose. Took care of me when I needed it.
Today, the new mattress ordered online arrived. And tonight, my head resonates with the phrase "you've made your bed, now lie in it." But rather than a negative tone, it is kinda exciting.
Because this afternoon, at almost the same time the mattress arrived, I uploaded the files for my next publication. Titled "The 10 Things - an invitation to dive in." It's about as opposite from my novel as can be. It's nonfiction. Faith based.
If all goes well, I will have copies in hand and ready for distribution on March 16. Possibly sooner. So figuratively, I made a new bed today, speaking out on behalf of God. The book is testimony to my faith journey of the past several years.And that's all I will say for now.
Tonight, literally, I make and sleep in a new bed. Fresh. No memories - good, bad, or otherwise. Just... peace. And rest.
Wishing blessings and love to each and every one of you. Much more to come in the weeks ahead...
Every now and then we are caught by surprise by something so lovely that it moves us to tears.
I just had one such moment.
Who would think it could come from a few random moments on Facebook?
Finished lunch, ready to move on to the next part of my work day, and took a moment to look at my FB feed. Saw an article posted by my daughter, about her work. A blogger interviewing her.
I thought likely a simple PR piece, but I'm procrastinating other tasks on my to-do list right now, so why not.
Then I read the second question to her, the one asking about her background. First she mentioned her momma was a painter. Ok, that's cool. It was what followed that moved me to tears. I had no idea that my attempts to making a living as an artist during her younger years - while not necessarily as financially lucrative as I might have hoped for at the time - had such an influence on her.
We know our life work isn't just about money, though of course it is always good to be responsible and do what we must to pay the bills. But this hits at a particularly poignant time in my life, as I am seeking to embrace more fully my 'jobs' of artist, and author.
More on that topic another time. For now, I simply want to share this... show the world how proud I am of my beautiful, amazing daughter, Anna. She is seizing life for all that it offers to her, and putting together the pieces in her own graceful, lovely, engaging way.
Hope you enjoy reading her blog interview (Blog post here) about her and her market in Brooklyn.
Artists and Fleas.
Love you to the moon and back again, Anna.
In Chapter 50 of my novel (Painting Lily), Lily is invited to participate in an art auction that will require her to write accompanying descriptions of the paintings. Her friend Sarah, responsible for her participation in the show, tells her, "They want to include a couple of paragraphs with each piece, you know, words from the artist about why you painted what you did. What's your meaning behind the painting? That sort of thing."
Lily balks at first. Her response is "You mean the thing I've always said I hate?"
To which Sarah responds, "C'mon, Lily, hate's a strong word. Just tell a little bit about how the painting moves you, why it called you to create it."
I'm the one who wrote those words. Like Lily (I created her - so yes, we share some thoughts about life and art) it has always been my preference to hear what others think my paintings have to say. But lately, I've been reconsidering that idea (been reconsidering a lot of what I used to think.)
So, I'm going to give this thing a shot. Over the next several days and weeks I will be writing longer narratives to accompany my paintings on my website. I invite you to check in periodically, and take a look. Please feel free to comment on what you read! First two posted here - with "The Quilt" and "Laundry Day."
I'm doing it just for fun. Let's see where it goes!
Oh - and yes - the blog is coming back, too. Lots of new thoughts and writing to share. Including an inspirational book to be published within the next several weeks - a target date of March 16 to debut it, at the DRIVEN conference for women, where I will be presenting a workshop titled "Driven by the Muse - Creating with Purpose."
A LOT going on!!! FUN!!!!!!!!
It's good to be back. Thank you for reading.
xo and blessings to all.
I did it. Took the 90 day blog challenge just a little bit further. 90 sounded incomplete. But 100? Voila! Now I may rest.
Thank you to all for following. Thank you for your thoughtful responses.
Time to let it rest now, for a little while.
Writing will be on the page instead of on the computer for a little while.
Thank you. Truly humbled, honored, and encouraged by the experience of having shared the past 100 days with you.
I wish you lovely blessings and joy.
Let's just start by saying that Halloween has never been "my thing." My mother wasn't into it, so we didn't get excited about it when I was young. And while yes, I may be adept at other artistic endeavors, making costumes, and the crafty sort of paraphernalia that goes along with October 31 - well, no, thank you, it's not in my wheel house.
I decided it was time to push past a comfort zone about the whole thing this year. Signed up not just to be a volunteer at Cape Cod Church's Trunk or Treat event - that's way too easy - but instead to actually DECORATE my car, and go in COSTUME!!!!!!!
The theme was "cartoons." Took me far too long just to choose one. My first two ideas were already taken, so I landed on Cinderella - with me as Fairy Godmother. In truth, it was inspired by a blog post I wrote a little while ago - titled "Im-possible" - based on a song in the Rogers and Hamerstein version. (you can read the blog HERE if you missed it.) That was October 20. I had roughly ten days to come up with my ideas.
Thought I might decorate the car as the coach. That was WAY too elaborate. Ended up instead with a diorama inside the back of the car. And me in costume as Fairy Godmother herself (God bless the children tonight who thought I was Cinderella! At age 56?! LOVE IT! Bring on Prince Charming!!! oops - that's another blog entirely - back to the topic at hand...)
Spent the past week picking up some of the parts I would need. A friend's Fisher Price toy castle. A styrofoam pumpkin. Some glitter spray and tinsel. A magic wand and tiara. Didn't start to actually assemble it until about 2 o'clock this afternoon.
May I say that about 20 minutes into the endeavor I started to laugh out loud? At myself? For how ridiculously absurd it was that such a task should be such a challenge. Threw myself into the project, acknowledging that I didn't have to do it perfectly, and could let go of comparing myself to all of the others who would certainly have far more elaborate set ups. And I simply had FUN!!!!!!! Loved every minute of it.
It turned out - okay. Not great. But passable enough that some of the kids recognized it.
Most important? I never knew I could have so much fun handing out candy to several thousand children!!! It was a DELIGHTFUL Halloween night!!!
Though next year, remind me, please, to choose a warmer outfit? Perhaps a polar bear?
ps - one of my friends at the church handed me some Bible verse fortune cookies she special ordered (too cute!) - mine was (random) - Matthew 19:26 With God all things are possible. Not so random. Remember where this started? Fairy Godmother - Impossible?! Just can't make this stuff up!!!!!
Do you know the difference between good tired and bad tired?
Good tired comes at the end of a day where we feel like we used the day well, in whatever we did. Maybe it was work. Maybe it was play. Maybe we volunteered. Or mowed the lawn. Or cleaned out the garage.
Bad tired, for me, is the result of frustration. Or anger. Or irritation.
Tonight I am good tired. I did a LOT of music today. Played the service at Christ Lutheran Church. Attended worship service at Cape Cod Church. Worked two hours as rehearsal accompanist for the Falmouth Theater Guild. Then back to Cape Cod Church for Christmas Choir rehearsal, asked to step in as alto section leader since the regular leader was sick (poor dear...wishing her FAST recovery.)
That was a whole lot of music. And church. And time at the piano.
And tonight, I am good tired. A day WELL spent. Working together with a whole bunch of wonderful people, who added so much to my time.
Now, I go to sleep with the sound of a gentle late October rain.
Thank you, God, for blessing me in the simple things. AND in the big things.
I just spent the past three hours going through "stuff" Office stuff. Piles that had been sitting on the floor for weeks. Files of papers. Throwing out old things. A desk drawer. It started this morning with a drawer in the kitchen that I call my tool drawer. Screwdrivers, my hammer, and a whole bunch of junk that just ended up there.
I have a whole lot of thoughts about this but honestly it is 11:14pm and i just want to drink a cup of Sleepytime tea and go to bed because it is a long day ahead tomorrow.
So, if I forget, please remind me to write more about the "stuff" topic. Because it is important stuff rolling around in my head right now that I want to share.
Watched the movie "Miracles from Heaven" tonight with a group of women.
Let me say - my tear ducts got a good cleaning.
Based on a true story, it says. Which raises all kinds of question.
Most important - it raises the question I posed a while back. Do we REALLY believe in miracles? We pray for them. We hope for them. But when we hear about them, how much do we try to logic our way through them?
Some call it magical thinking. I call it trust. In God, above all else.
Going to keep it that simple tonight. Love to each of you.
I'm going to go pray now... some people in my life who I know could use a miracle or two.
I read a FB post today that quite sarcastically did what I will call "Millenial bashing". A video that depicted them as lazy and extravagant. And I spoke up.
Initially because my own daughter is a "millennial" who has a work ethic that puts my own to shame. As do her friends. Yes, they live in Brooklyn. And they go out on the town more than I do. AND they are investing in IRA's, and working hard at their careers, and paying their own way.
After I posted my rebuke, about an hour later as I mulled it over (rarely do I "rebuke" on FB because I don't want to incite debate) it occurred to me that the video in essence was a form of racism. No - not based on the color of someone's skin - so maybe racism isn't the word I am searching for at 11:33pm (I'll come up with the more appropriate word while I sleep) - but in the sense of bashing an entire group because of the less than favorable behavior of a few. If one looks hard enough in ANY group less than favorable examples may be found. As well as favorable ones. Back in the days, a similar group of youth were called hippies. How quickly one forgets.
We find what we're looking for, now don't we? Seek the good, and the light, and you will find it. Look for evidence to the contrary, and, well, there it is.
Day 95. oops - I was supposed to stop a few days ago! Oh well!
xo to all.