Art Is Everywhere

They say art is a waste of time.

That young minds and old should be focused on more important things like finance and politics and how to earn a living.

Well, art is a miracle of the mind, heart, and soul, too.

I’ve been finding a lot of new and unique artists to share in future Sunday Evening Art Gallery blogs. And with each piece of art comes an overwhelming sense of self. Of accomplishment. Of caring and sharing.

Here are a few of the artist I’ve already featured. Take a look at the thought, the fine detail, the foresight these people had in just creating something:

 

 

Willard Wigan

 

Ana Teresa Baraboza

 

Riusuke Fukahori

 

 

Dale Chihuly

 

Here is a sampling of some of the artists to come:

 

Pegi Smith

 

Matt Molloy

 

Vanessa Davis

 

Just think for a moment all the work that went into each creation. All the thought, emotion, and precise movements it took to get their art just right..

Art is all around you.

If ever in doubt, just open your eyes. Here are a few views of art made by a more “cosmic” artist … be sure to take in this sort of art when you can …

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Take A Break From Yourself

I’ve been keeping under the radar lately, nursing sinuses, body aches, and job pressures. I’ve been entertaining starting my own copywriting and editing business, wondering what to get two grandkids for their birthdays who have everything (a donation to a kid’s charity seems likely), and just mentally blowing out.

So yesterday I took the day off from work and did nothing.

Yep — nothing.

Now many of you know the guilt that creeps up whenever we are home for a whole day and night and don’t do something — dishes, vacuum, even writing. I have a few more new artists to research, my first book I HAVE to finish editing, and nothing new on the writing horizon, as I am shopping around for ideas.

Well, yesterday was the first day in a long time where I didn’t feel guilty about sleeping in, napping, watching TV, and sleeping some more. (That messed up my night’s rest, but that’s another story.)

Why do we feel guilty when we do something for ourselves that involves nothing?

It’s like every moment counts and you shouldn’t let your life pass you by without attempting to do something positive every day.

Alas, most of us believe that taking care of ourselves by not thinking or performing is not positive.

When the world was silent around me, and I hung up my guilt in the closet, my mind became silent as well. I didn’t angst over news stories or bombings or nut cases or deadlines. I didn’t feel overwhelmed about anything.

It shouldn’t take a sinus headache from hell to make me take a day off and just take care of ME. I really liked doing nothing. Feeling nothing. Thinking about nothing. If only for the day.

Do you find yourself pushing yourself to the limit all the time? Or do you take a day now and then to just do nothing?

You owe it to yourself to take a break from yourself.

 

Today I Want to Be a Poet

I’d like to be a poet today.

I’d like to put my angst, my wonder, my emotions in a small, precise package.

 

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Sugar is sweet
And so are you.

Scratch…scratch…cross out…

No, that’s not exactly what I’m looking for. I’ve heard Bob Dylan is a poet — won a Nobel Prize in Literature in 2016:

How many roads must a man walk down
Before you call him a man?
How many seas must a white dove sail
Before she sleeps in the sand?
Yes, ‘n’ how many times must the cannonballs fly
Before they’re forever banned?
The answer, my friend, is blowin’ in the wind,
The answer is blowin’ in the wind.

Bob Dylan, 1962

That’s pretty heavy. It rhymes, but I don’t think I could sound as lyrical.

Scratch scratch…cross out…scratch scratch….

Maybe I should write something in the vein of Percy and Byron:

She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that’s best of dark and bright
Meet in her aspect and her eyes;
Thus mellowed to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.

George Gordon Byron, 6th Baron Byron,  1813

Dear me…how could I ever match that tenor? That creative creation?

Scratch…scratch…cross out….scratch…scratch…cross out….

My Internet friends Ivor, Walt, Dwight, Brenda, Ana, Maxima, and others seem to have a knack for putting emotions with words. Some are more like half thoughts magically strung together; other offer haikus, sonnets, couplets, and other forms I have to look up to know.

They  make it seem so easy.

My very good friend Jane from my Writer’s Association aches and pains over the shortest of poems. She writes, lets it sit, revises, thinks about it. I am amazed there is so much to five or ten lines. But they always sound like music to my ears.

For writing poetry is so much more than writing five or ten lines.

I used to think writing poetry was a breeze. Just find a topic, shorten some sentences, throw in some imagery, and you’re set.

It’s also like thinking you are born a basketball player like Michael Jordan or an artist like Vincent van Gogh — that anyone create a masterpiece.

There is a lot of banter around these days saying “Just Be You.” You already are an artist/poet/soccer player. Just dig deep and connect and “be” that person.

Got news for you. No famous basketball player or artist or singer just woke up one day and had gobs of talent. Talent may lay dormant in your genes, but you have to work at it to get it out. Michael J. didn’t even make his varsity high school basketball team on his first try.  VanGogh only sold one painting in his lifetime.

Yes, Mozart was a prodigy at 7. Picasso made his first oil painting when he was 9 years old. There are always exceptions to the rule. But the rule normally is: you are indeed what you want to be. You have the heart, you have the goal — just do it.

But practice first. Whether it’s basketball or writing, don’t expect a hole-in-one your first time out. You have to learn first. Practice first. Fail first.

And keep on going.

So later this evening I will try writing a real poem. Then I will let it sit. Then I will change a word or two and look at it again.

Then I will get some ice cream, watch NYPD Blue, edit my novel, check Facebook, take a nap, then get back around to look at it again. Make it a part of who else I am.

Only then can I start to be a poet.

The Way Sagittarians Think about Paris

Last month I wrote a blog called Making Dreams Reality, about a pipe dream I have/had about spending a week in Paris next year at a writer’s workshop. You know that daydream — slightly-older-than-middle-aged woman who is fairly ditzy hops on a plane to Paris, hoping to find inspiration, writing, and croissants while she gazes romantically at the Eiffel Tower or parks her derriere on the Seine River with a glass of wine and a notebook.

It sounds so good. Until you stop to think about it.

The seminar runs about $3250, not including hotel, air fare, taxis, and croissants. Add about another $700 for airfare, $1500-2,000 for hotel, $50 for at least one Paris attraction,  $100 for dinners and $50 for croissants, and you’re talking a boatload of bills.

On the plus side of all that bankruptcy, I was fine with that. Chance of a lifetime and all that.

Then I went to the website of the workshop and got a rundown of the writer workshop schedule. After breakfast at 10:30am-11:00am, there are intros, couple of hours on character development, couple hours of perspective, couple hours of writing, couple hours of working lunches, lots of sharing time, and that’s it. You get to bond with fellow writers and learn from professionals. You get some atmosphere, a lot of help, and solid interacting time.

So I made of list of “is it really worth pursing?” things….

List of positives:

  • Paris. Period.
  • Inspiration begets better writing.
  • Side trip to Versailles
  • Leaving hubby behind
  • Self discovery
  • Croissants

List of negatives:

  • Cost
  • Leaving hubby behind
  • Don’t speak French.
  • Self discovery is a life-long process; no instant fixes
  • French wine doesn’t go with chocolate croissants

Now understand that all of this — all of this — is just preliminary babble, baloney, and bubbles. It’s all in the inkling stage.

But creative people are ingenious people. We always are left of center, out of the box, making things up, wandering and wondering. Our borders are transparent, dotted lines that are always moving.

And it’s within those transparent borders new ideas spring up.

So I started thinking in a different direction. I could go to anywhere I wanted for a writer’s getaway — San Francisco, Cocoa Beach — anywhere. I could go to a BnB, Holiday Inn, to my cabin up north.

But I wanted to go to Paris.

And I wanted to write.

So my mind and body started researching hotels and airfares. I’m in the process of researching local libraries, cafes, and spots along the Seine. I’m looking for views of the Eiffel Tower, le petit cafés, and bookstores.

I could always use advice through the workshop on how to develop a character, determine place and perspective, and all.

But what I need to do, want to do, is write.

Not just an hour here and a half hour there — I need a solid 4-5 hours a day for a few days in a row. I need to develop my outline into a story.. Real chapters, real people.

If the situation were right, I could take along an escort husband companion so I wouldn’t get lost walking around the block; someone who can do something else for four hours a day while we hang out in a local library or next to the river while I write. Someone who can “oohh” and “aahh”, both at my writing and at the Eiffel Tower at night.

And I think I can do it all for not much more than the writing seminar alone.

Do I have the self discipline? The fortitude? The drive to section off my days and nights in Paris? Will I learn enough on my own? Can I do enough prep work, enough research, to really let my writing take a turn for the better?

Can I really say “no” to a second…or even a third.. croissant?

Like I said at the beginning, this is only a pipe dream at the moment. Wishful thinking. Daydreaming.

Stay tuned, followers. The journey has just begun.

 

 

 

 

Sunday Evening Art Gallery on Tuesday — Ding Yi

 

Ding Yi (1962-) has been making abstract paintings using crosses and grids since the late 1980s.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Ding is one of China’s foremost Abstract painters, his art characterized by an acute attention to detail, with systematic repetition of forms and layering.

 

 

 

 

The cross, whether a + or an x with thematic variation, is a motif that the artist has declared a formal mark without meaning, in order to emphasize his rationalist approach to painting.

 

 

 

The context of Ding’s work has always been the incredibly fast-paced development of the industrial urban environment in post-socialist China, and the work, whether predominantly black, painted on tartan, or elaborated in intense fluorescent colors, all bear the title Appearance of Crosses with a date.

 

 

 

Ding is one of China’s foremost Abstract painters, his art characterized by an acute attention to detail, with systematic repetition of forms and layering.

 

 

 

 

Ding’s practice encompasses painting, sculpture, spatial installation and architecture.I thought it amazing how much intricate work went into each painting that I have inserted a close up of the work.

 

 

 

More of Ding Yi ‘s work can be found at the Shanghai Gallery.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Look! Look!

Today I am really overwhelmed with beautiful, fun, magical posts. Color! Poetry! Philosophy! You don’t have to follow them (although you will be glad you did), but go take a peek and see if you don’t come out with a smile on your face!

 

Rich Impressions

https://rothpoetry.wordpress.com/2019/05/20/rich-impressions/

 

Each day…..is a little life…..Purplerays

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

https://purplerays.wordpress.com/2019/05/21/each-day-is-a-little-life/

 

Apple Blossom Breeze — Brenda Davis Harshman

Apple Blossom Breeze

 

Flows — My Monkey Mind

flows

 

Dancing Birds – Make Art – Magic Happens

Dancing Birds

 

Miracle — All of It… — David Kanigan

https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/28060549/posts/48754

 

Each Leaf In Its Own Time — Leaf and Twig

https://leafandtwig.wordpress.com/2019/05/21/each-leaf-in-its-own-time/

 

What Do You Yearn For? — Jan Beek

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Do You Yearn For?

 

Not What I wanted to Hear — Walt Page

https://wordpress.com/read/blogs/127080456/posts/4554

 

Are We Alone?

I am still in the working world. And around here, Tuesday is the worst day of the week. Suddenly I was inspired to write a poem. This is for Ivor and Walt and Dwight and all of you who know what poetry is. I really don’t. But I do feel better.

Are We Alone?

 

Here is my photo of

distant galaxies

So far away at the

edge of the universe

Even our minds cannot reach.

See the large one

on the left?

Spiraling magnificently

somewhere at the edge

where we can never go?

Do you see the wisp

that curls upwards

on the left?

Right there where the

mass splits.

There are billions of stars

in this galaxy alone.

And millions

in this little split.

Do you think

there is a planet circling

around one of those billions

of sun-like stars

full of

life unbounded

where an older woman

with hair of gray or green

depending upon the atmosphere

is sitting at her desk saying

I hate this job

too?

Can we talk?

 

 

Don’t Sweat the Changes, Dog!

A funny thing happened on the way to writing my third book.

I’ve had book One and Two done for like ever — the first one for 15 years, the second for maybe 8. I’m not published; I’ve sent the ideas out to a few publishers and agents during my years, but I was always busy doing other things like working full time and fooling around with my kids and grandkids.

I would whine (I’m a lovely whiner) that I wasn’t published. I hadn’t even sent it to friends to read. The second book was more my favorite than the first. Wouldn’t touch it for the world.

Then I started book three.

And since book three has taken a life of it’s own, I’m going to have to do some changes to book Two now.

Does your life ever work out like that?

Just when you think you know where you’re going something comes along and changes you all around helter skelter?

Why change it all?

Because you have changed.

Something somehow has changed your direction, your thoughts, your interpretations. And it will bug you till the end of your days if you don’t change the things around you (if you can).

Changing your wardrobe to fit your new attitude. Changing the music you listen to. Your job. Getting rid of toxic friends. Life is always a change.

And you must change along with it.

You can’t hold onto the past just because it’s there. It fits like your grandfather’s coat. Big and bulky and totally out of style. Even if you’re a retro kinda person.

I hate change. I love change. Being creative I love and hate everything. But I am smart enough to go along with it when I can see how it can benefit me.

I went to a concert last night to listen to the High Kings for St. Pattie’s Day. They are an Irish tenor kind of group. They sang all these Irish songs that I love. And somewhere between “Finnigan’s Wake” and “Wild Mountain Thyme” I realized my main character in all my books is Irish, and this third book is about him. Not my heroine’s interpretation of him, not the narrator’s interpretation — it’s about him and his Irish roots. Why he is like he is.

And it makes me want to put a musical experience in the book.

Which would change him and his lady and the reader.

And since it’s based on the same experience from the second book but from his point of view, I will now have to rewrite the second book so they “match”.

They say there is no rest for a writer. I’m sure that’s true of a poet, a painter, or a potter. I think that’s a good thing. I want this story to be the right story. Not my version of the right story. But his.

If you have to change, change. Don’t big deal it. Change that shirt, that purse, the color of your hair. Make your painting pink instead of blue if that’s what the cosmos tells you. Don’t sweat the logical stuff.

It’s all you in the end, anyway…..

Sunday Evening Art Gallery on Friday — Chairs

We look at an old chair and wonder 


whose bottom once sat there. 


Was it someone Royal 


or someone posh 

 

with lots and lots of dosh, 

or was it someone poor 


that treasured a comfortable seat. 


No matter whom it was, 


just look and wonder 


at the history of that old chair, 
then just sit on it 


and put more history there.

David Harris

Changing Styles

“How Do I Start This Story?”

You know I love to write. I love the process of developing worlds and chaos and love and confusion. As if real life is any different.

Well, I’m thinking of writing another book.

Every now and then I try a new style, just to see if I can “do it.” I put those words in quotations  because it’s not easy for me to go from one style to another. From a murder mystery who-done-it to a historic love story. From a modern-day time traveler to a scientist in the future.

I still have a hard time writing 3rd person. I’m much better writing from one person’s point of view, not several.

But I’ve been reading some  literary fiction lately, and thought about giving that a try.

What is literary fiction, you may ask?

So do a lot of others, it seems. There are as many answers as there are stars. But basically genre writing highlights a specific area, is narrative driven, has a predictable formula, and provides entertainment. Literary writing is language driven, there is not any real style formula, and it provides meaning and cultural value.

When I think of genre writing I think of what I’ve written: time travel, other worlds. Genres includes horror, historical fiction, and mystery romance. Stephen King and Harry Potter. When I think of literary fiction I think of Jane Eyre and The Handmaid’s Tale.

I know I know — write what you know. Who you are. All of that.

But don’t you sometimes want to try something different?

If you play tennis, don’t you want to try squash sometime? If you bake nothing but chocolate cakes, doesn’t a complicated strudel call you now and then?

In order to grow, to explore, to be a master at creation, you have to test the water of new worlds. It doesn’t matter if you succeed in those worlds. But you have to immerse yourself sometimes in something new and different.

I am also drawn into the Gothic style of Poe and the Lovecraftian style of H.P. Something deep and flowery and intense and full of obscure words and inferences. I suppose you had to be there to write like that, but why not experiment a little?

I’ll let you know how the experiment goes. If it rocks the roof or just sounds like Claudia on mind enhancing drugs. I can’t totally destroy my style, but I can try and change my shoe size now and then.

I will just have to stuff the toes with kleenex…

 

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Robert Finale

The powerful and captivating works of the artist Robert Finale flow naturally from a deep-rooted passion and God given talent for capturing the intrinsic beauty in humankind and nature.

The artist is no stranger to struggles and adversity. At the tender age of two, he along with his family left the country of Cuba for a life of freedom ad opportunity in the United States.

His paintings transport you to a time and place of private charm, a haven of pure and quiet delight.

Each painting is a journey of unspoken words and hidden whispers of freedom, nurturing the hopes and dreams that exist within all of us. These feelings are resurfaced and unveiled through beautiful city images in romantic surroundings placing the viewer in the dream world of unconscious thoughts.

As Robert places the final brush strokes on the canvas, he is conscious of the fact that the art is a universal language. Therefore, one canvas represents the window to millions of different emotions that have existed and exist through all of us, giving the viewer a powerful, tool to look within his own world, for the understanding of life’s journey.

More of Robert Finale‘s wonderful paintings can be found at http://robertfinalepaintings.com/.

What Is Your Title?

Things are swinging around here lately. It seems like I haven’t felt like writing lately, except for my blog.

Me. A writer. Not writing.

I seem to be getting more into the Art thing more than the Writing thing. I’m finding more and more artists that I want to share with you, and finding less and less creativity in the short story department.

Does that mean I’m still a Writer?

Should I change my title to Art Director?

Some people live and die by their title. I can remember working in downtown Chicago in the 80s….people were respected (and paid) by how many windows they  had in their office. Pity the fellow who had a beam going down the middle of the window. It wasn’t nearly as  respected as one who had a whole window.  The CEO at the time had four windows — a corner office.

You can see whose title meant the most in those days.

I’m sure it’s the same today. I don’t work downtown, so titles aren’t as cutthroat as they are in the city. Yet I’ve seen ledgers with Vice President of Marketing, Assistant Vice President of Marketing, Director of Marketing, Assistant Director of Marketing — what does that all mean?

Back to my title.

I consider myself a writer. Do I dare consider myself an Art Director?

According to Wikipedia, an art director…… is the charge of a sole art director to supervise and unify the vision. In particular, the art director is in charge of the overall visual appearance (I do that) and how it communicates visually, stimulates moods, contrasts features, and psychologically appeals to a target audience (I do that too!) . The art director makes decisions about visual elements used, what artistic style to use, and when to use motion (I do all that too!).

It’s funny how so many of us are judged by our titles. I was a IDCAS who did writing, yet I didn’t get the acknowledgement of a writer until they called me Digital Writer. I’m sure those chains hang over other artistic branches as well.

I believe we should be any title we want. As long as we don’t lie about things like past jobs or education, what does it matter what you’re called? Of course, I don’t really need a title. I just do what I do and like what I do.

I am the owner of Sunday Evening Art Gallery.  I also choose which artists to showcase, the layout of the site, who to promote. That makes me an Art Director if anything does.

I could also call myself Art Gallery Marketing Manager, Gallery Curator, Museum Director, Art Gallery Administrator, Art Gallery Museum Director…..

It was much simpler when I was just a writer.

 

Make Sure You Want to Hop That Fence

This is one of those posts where the title could go either way:

Don’t give up on your dreams

or

Be careful what you dream for

Those of you who have followed me through the years know I’m a 65 year-old granny of three, an Internet Data Specialist (fancy title for data entry), lover of chocolate and spaghetti, and a writer.

Writer is always last on my day job resume. Until now.

Yesterday my job title was changed to reflect the writing I’ve been doing for my company blog and other media.

I am now a Digital Writer.

I’m not telling you this to get your congratulations — I’m telling you this so that once you get to your greener-on-the-other-side-of-the-fence place you are prepared for what’s there.

All my life I’ve been a writer. I do not have a college degree — perhaps the one regret I have in life. But no matter. I’ve been a secretary most of my life, moving to a coordinator 15 years ago which included proofreading. Right up my alley.

I’ve worked my way up the proverbial ladder, although the rungs are narrow and so far apart I need another ladder just to move up one. We had a company blog that just sat there, some nebulous person posting every three months or so.

Because I am a blabbermouth on this blog, it was a natural to start blabbering for the company. The form has changed, but I now blog for the company two times a week.

After yesterday’s meeting, I found out I’m going to be doing a lot more writing than blogs and an occasional Facebook post.

And I’m nervous.

It’s one thing to toot your horn when no one is listening; it’s something else to put your money where your mouth is. Now all of a sudden I’m going to have to perform. Diversify. Research. Take a few online courses.

Am I up to it? After all, I can retire in 9 months.

I am going to give it the best I can give. I’m going to work my a$$ off to keep up, twist around, speak up. I am going to do the thing I’ve always wanted to do and do it the best I’ve ever done. I’m going to make this position a POSITION.

The purpose of today’s sermon is to reaffirm to you not to give up your dreams. And make your dreams reasonable. I mean, you can dream you are the first artist to walk the moon, but, you know…

But if you dream to have a better job, lose weight, get out and see the world one city at a time, don’t give up. Work towards it. Finagle your way around it.

I wouldn’t have had this opportunity if I hadn’t bugged my boss to take over the blog. It went to once a month to twice a week, and I fear more often in the future.

I might have been a 65-year-old pain in the a$$, but I did listen to Kenny Rogers:

You got to know when to hold ’em,
Know when to fold ’em,
Know when to walk away,
And know when to run.
You never count your money
When you’re sittin’ at the table.
There’ll be time enough for countin’
When the dealing’s done.

Showing Off the Gallery

Good Evening!

Just opened another gallery over at Sunday Evening Art Gallery, and running through all the different galleries, I decided to show off a few of the images you didn’t see here. It is my hope that you wander over to http://www.sundayeveningartgallery.com and take a look at the wonderfully creative artists I’ve come across.. These people blow my mind. I hope that if you’re not following me over there, you’ll think about it. I have a ton of artists waiting for Sundays here, then exploding in their glory over at the SEAG. Come and stay a while!

 

Bubbles

Craig Haupt

 

Library Interiors

 

Faberge Eggs

 

Kevin Zuckerman

Rita Faes

 

Spencer Biles

Tal Peleg

 

Unmasked Group

 

Willard Wigan

 

Natalya Sots

 

Le Chat Noir

 

Svetlana Bobrova

 

Snowflakes

 

Mézesmanna

 

Mihai Criste

 

Kiragami

 

Jennifer Maestre

Orange

 

Maud Vantours

 

Doors

 

Wine Glasses

Water Drops

Sunday Evening Art Gallery — Ellie Davies

Ellie Davies has have been working in UK forests for the past eight years, making work which explores the complex interrelationship between the landscape and the individual.

Davies notes UK forests have been shaped by human processes over thousands of years and include ancient woodlands, timber forestry, wildlife reserves and protected Areas of Outstanding Natural.

As such, forests are potent symbols in folklore, fairy tale and myth, places of enchantment and magic as well as of danger and mystery.

Against this backdrop, Davies’ work explores the ways in which identity is formed by the landscapes we live and grow up in.

The forest becomes a studio, forming a backdrop to contextualize the work, so that each piece draws on its location, a golden tree introduced into a thicket shimmers in the darkness, painted paths snake through the undergrowth, and strands of wool are woven between trees mirroring colors and formal elements within the space.

More of Ellie Davies’ fantastic photography can be found at https://elliedavies.co.uk/.

 

You’re A Writer, Huh?

Happy Saturday Y’all!

Warmth came to Wisconsin today, teasing us with sunshine and soft breezes. Makes us think Spring is here. But we know better…

So sitting down to write (and I don’t mean commenting on others blogs or chatting of Facebook) it came to me.

Does your mate/friends/family ever ask to see your writing?

I use writing as the subject because people can always peek into your studio to see what you’re painting, or what you’re making with your beads covering half the kitchen table.

Writing is different.

They’d have to turn on your computer, go to your files, click on what you’ve written, and sit and read with the computer on their lap.

That’s too much work for most.

Now I don’t mean do your friends and family support you — I think in one way or another they understand your craft and are happy that you are happy.

But do they ever sit down next to you and ask what you’re writing? Ask to read anything you’ve written in the past the last 20 years?

Writing is a funny business. The minute you write anything more than a paragraph you are an AUTHOR. Yet if you are not published anywhere that AUTHOR title doesn’t feel right. I wonder if I were to publish a bunch of books would my kids bust down the door and grab the computer and see what’s next.

I doubt it.

As I’ve said many times in blogs through the years, I love my hubby to death and back. Same with my boys, my grandkids, my best friends, my cats…I want them to be who they want to be. Financial Manager, Daycare Director — it doesn’t matter.

I’d just like them to want to read my rambling once in a while.

Maybe writing is more a personal things. I don’t know how many people beat the door down to read J.K. Rowlings or Steven King’s next book. Maybe they had to get their prose and poetry to someone who could pass it along to the world.

My family knows I write. Knows I have two sets of novels written, along with dozens of short stories and poems. But they never go further than “hows the writing going, mom?” My husband isn’t literary in that sense, so I can’t expect him to glom over every  chapter.

Maybe that’s okay. These worlds I create of mostly for me anyway. Maybe I’ll take the next step to get published, maybe I won’t. But I will keep the fire burning for no other reason than to keep the synapses firing.

So if you have a friend that writes, ask them about their writing. Ask to read their writing. Sit down and write with them. Don’t keep your distance just because you’re not a writer.

You can also be a learner.

And for you writers, keep on writing. You are an AUTHOR.

It’s WHAT Day?

I am a blogger in my day job, if not by title then surely by osmosis. I write blogs that relate to the nine or so catalogs we publish. Usually the topics are pretty general…March is Youth Art Month for Arts & Crafts, Warm Ups and Cool Downs for PE, Merrily We Rover Along for Science. They are short, informational, and I hope fun to read.

Sometimes I go to the website Holiday Insights  to get ideas for different sorts of holidays my teachers and readers can identify with, like Pi Day March 14th. And there are days in there I can see celebrating like Brothers and Sisters Day and Sally Ride Day.

Then, of course, there are those which have no explanation. Who or how these days were chosen to be celebrated I have no idea. And some I don’t want to know. So I will share these mysteries with you, along with the links (just click the day) so you can wonder along with me.

January

2nd – Run up the Flagpole and See if Anyone Salutes Day

3rd – Fruitcake Toss Day

7th – Old Rock Day

11th – Step in a Puddle and Splash Your Friend’s Day

21st – Squirrel Appreciation Day

February

3rd – Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day

7th – Wave All you Fingers at Your Neighbor Day

11th –Don’t Cry over Spilled Milk Day

13th –Get a Different Name Day

20th – Hoodie Hoo Day

March

3rd – If Pets Had Thumbs Day

7th – National Crown Roast of Pork Day

15th – Everything You Think is Wrong Day

16th – Everything You Do is Right Day

20th – Extraterrestrial Abductions Day

29th – Smoke and Mirrors Day

April

3rd – Don’t Go to Work Unless it’s Fun Day

4th – World Rat Day

4th – Walk Around Things Day

13th – Blame Someone Else Day

16th – National Eggs Benedict Day

26th – Richter Scale Day

May

3rd – Lumpy Rug Day

4th – International Tuba Day 

9th – Lost Sock Memorial Day

11th – Twilight Zone Day

14th – Dance Like a Chicken Day

22th – World Goth Day

June

1st –Flip a Coin Day

13th –National Weed Your Garden Day

16th – National Hollerin’ Contest Day

19th – Juneteenth

19th – World Sauntering Day

22ns – Take Your Dog to Work Day

July

2nd – I Forgot Day

3rd –Compliment Your Mirror Day

3rd – Embrace Your Geekness Day

15th –Be a Dork Day

17th – Yellow Pig Day

27th – Take Your Houseplants for a Walk Day

August

5th – National Underwear Day

6th – Wiggle Your Toes Day

8th – Sneak Some Zucchini onto Your Neighbor’s Porch Day

27th – Just Because Day

28th – Race Your Mouse Day

September

2nd –Internaional Bacon Day

5th – Be Late for Something Day

7th – Neither Rain nor Snow Day

22nd –International Rabbit Day

28th – Ask a Stupid Question Day

October

2nd- Name Your Car Day

3rd –Virus Appreciation Day

8th – American Touch Tag Day

9th – Moldy Cheese Day

10 th – Take Your Teddy Bear to Work Day

14th – Be Bald and Free Day

21th – Count Your Buttons Day

November

2nd –Look for Circles Day

6th – Marooned without a Compass Day

9th – Chaos Never Dies Day

15th – Clean Your Refrigerator Day

19th – Have a Bad Day Day

30th – Stay At Home Because You Are Well Day

December

1st – Eat a Red Apple Day

3rd –National Roof over Your Head Day

6th – Put on your own Shoes Day

6th –  National Chocolate Covered Anything Day

11th – National Noodle Ring Day

30th –National Bicarbonate of Soda Day

Which day are YOU going to celebrate?

My Melty Smelty Heart

Good Evening My Good Friends!

I have been silent these past four days. I know…me…silent?  I have about 50 blogs to read tonight because I have spent the last four days up nort’ in Michigan at our annual family Ski Trip. 

Now, I don’t ski. Telle Tubbies don’t ski.

My hubby and I, our kids, our grandkids, my kids friends, their kids, my daughter-on-law’s parents, their kid — it’s a grand ‘ol trip we have taken every year for at least 12 years. I  cook, sit around, talk, drink, sleep, walk around in the snow — all the things you’re supposed to do on vacation.

The great thing is that I did most of those activities this year with my grandkids.

Funny how life turns around and around.

I used to love doing that with my kids. Making snow angels,  pulling them on the sled, watching them snowball each other. My boys started skiing around high school. I remember picking up my youngest from the closest ski hill 25 miles one way every week for 8 weeks. My oldest became a skiing whiz when he met his wife-to-be.

Then there was that big gap in time. You know — that dramatic pause in life where one life fades out and another fades in. My oldest fell in love with his skier, whose parents skied, so here we went again. They taught my oldest grandson to ski at three; the two-year-old wasn’t interested this year, but next year, watch out.

So here I am again, walking around the snow-bound block (really a country block) with my little guy, striving to remember those walks of 26 years ago.

I’ll take my memories however I can get them. And if someday I mix up a grandkid with my kid, who cares — there was love bursting out all over with both of them. My life has been one big, melty heart.

Only one lesson learned on my ski weekend, though — don’t try matching shots with your oldest. You’ll do a fourth as much in half the time and still fall asleep at 6…

Watching TV My Way

It’s actually kind of funny that after 36 years of marriage (plus a few more added on for living together first), I have to re-adjust to being around my significant other.

They say absence makes the heart grow fonder. Indeed it does, but it also makes our shared time a confusing mess.

The last couple of years my other has been working the night shift. Not a big deal for most couples. Not a big deal for us. Except just as get into my girlie routine being by myself, he’s home an extra night and I’m thrown off base.

The first 2/3s of my life I spent every evening with him. Kids, dogs, family. Mowing the lawn. Doing the laundry. Playing video games. Reading books. Like synchronized swimmers, we did a lot of things either in tandem or complimentary to each other.

His work hours  these days are Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, and every other Saturday night from 5pm to 5am.  So I do Japanese Movies with English Subtitles on Monday, Horror Movies on Tuesday,  binge watch series and write on Saturday, and watch dramas and tearjerkers and do Art Gallery pictures on Sunday.  I throw in a little pretzel housework between movies or chapters — it’s a little dizzying but it works for me.

You say, why don’t I include him in my pretzel activities?

He thinks I’m nuts already for the Japanese movie part. He thinks B horror movies are a waste of time. Breaking Bad didn’t interest him, nor did Stranger Things, both of which I power watched. I text, write, surf, watch, fetch and wash at my own speed. I eat what I want when I want, not fearing eyes watching me have a bowl of ice cream before bed.

Yet when we do spend the evening together and we’re not working on some “project” we crash on the sofa and…watch TV. I don’t care for the Ultimate Fighter or  the Beverly Hillbillies and I cringe watching anything with commercials, so I usually pull out my laptop for a couple of hours.

I’ve worked 64 years on developing this wonderful, quirky personality. Or rather it’s taken me 64 years to accept this wonderful, quirky personality. Either way, I like things my way. The pretzel way.

I’m sure my hubby doesn’t mind it either, otherwise he wouldn’t have stayed with me for so long. But when the day is done and the two of us are together and we’re not going crazy with grandkids or mowing or other lovely pastimes, I say —

To think I did all that
And may I say – not in a shy way
Oh no, oh no, not me
I did it myyyy wayyyy…….

 

Holding On While Sleepy

6009A strange combination of emotions has struck the Goddess’s circle this evening.

I’m sure you all go through the ups and downs of life, the reality of which thickens or thins, depending upon your mood.

My kids and their kids have moved out, finding their own slice of paradise, finally free of bubbling-over grannies and know-it-all grandpas. We love our kids, and I know they love us. But it was time for the baby birds to fly, leaving behind a mix of sadness and relief. I can now go back to being the granny who makes root beer floats with her grandkids at 10 o’clock at night and dances in the summer rain and splashes in all the puddles and gets her grandkids full of mud. I know mom and dad’s expectations, and can now go back and dance around them whenever we get with the grandbabies.

I am sad my 5-year-old grandson isn’t here to play Unicorns and Dragons with me; he isn’t here to read Pete the Cat to or to watch the Lego Movie for the 30th time. Part of my youth has moved out with him.

But I’m also relieved that I can come home from a hard day at work and chill and write and watch TV and watch scary movies or bloody movies. That I don’t have to get up at 2 a.m. with grandbaby #2 or figure a way to entertain him for more than a few hours.

There is a reason 63-year-olds aren’t first-time parents.

But back to the strange combinations.

Like pickles and ice cream, wants and needs are often at odds in my little world. I suffer from insomnia, and it sometimes affects my day job. Having said that, now that the kids are gone I can go to bed (even though I can’t sleep) at an early hour and practice the routines that everyone has insisted bring on sleep.

We’ll see about that.

For the kids’ moving out is just at the wee-beginnings of Spring, fostering a yearning for something new and fresh in my life. The birds and their melodies, the frogs in the ponds, the breeze through the pine trees, all are promising me the beginnings of yet another wonderful year. A year full of confusion, joy, laughter….and writing.

Of course.

With all the promises the Spring Cleaning Lady offers, I need to do some Spring Cleaning of my own. To stop being a slug when it comes to moving forward to the higher aspirations of things like getting published. Or increasing my readership.

Do you feel the turn of the tide when the seasons change?

The onset of autumn, or winter, both with their silent and sparkling worlds; summer, hot and sticky and full of jazzy clothes and music; burrowing in or digging out.

I need to listen to my Muse. She’s bugging me to leave the two novels I cherish behind and get into something fresh and new. And she is right. I love the things I have written, but they are of a different tint, and the Spring seems to nudge me towards something fresh and exciting. I am thinking about new worlds, alternate worlds, mystery and fantasy in this world.

Which leads me back to the insomnia.

This is where the paths cross — crisscross — back and forth. The excitement of writing something new, of research and experimentation and new characters, are at direct odds with my erratic sleeping schedule.

I am a firm believer that YOU CAN’T WRITE ANYTHING FRESH IF YOU ARE STALE.

If you struggle during the day to stay awake, your faux burst of energy at night won’t take you far. If your moods swing like a tire swing, you won’t be able to stay on task very long. If you are pushing yourself to the limit, you won’t have much left in you for romance or adventure.

And your characters will suffer.

Writing can be methodical. Writing can be spontaneous. Writing can come crawling in the front door or spring out on the patio. Inspiration, too, ebbs and flows. Just like our bodies.

Learn to work with the swings of your own psyche. Don’t push it when you know you can’t. Feel the glow when you can. Find time to dance in the inspiration of your own words. But get enough rest first.

For there’s nothing worse than your character falling down…and they can’t get up.

 

Shameless Self Promotion

Dear Friends, animated-gif-jewels_precious-36

I don’t do this often — you know — really sparkle my own diamond. I love to write my blogs, I love the discoveries I’m making in my art gallery.

I know the people who follow me do so because they get a kick out of what I’m saying and/or showing. And I hope to entertain myself — oh! and you — for quite a while into the nebulous future.

So here comes the sales pitch.

If you could share my Humoring the Goddess blog (www.humoringthegoddess.com) or my Sunday Evening Art Gallery blog (www.sundayeveningartgallery.com) with just ONE friend, it might just open a new world for them — and me. They might bring a smile or smirk to someone else’s face, or eyes of wonder as they look at the incredible art I find around the world.

My Facebook page (https://www.facebook.com/sundayeveningartgallery/) could also use a few followers — the sole purpose of this account is to share unique art to those who can’t always go through the galleries.

Either way, I’m done selling for today. Hoping you continue to grow, to dream, and to have fun. We only go one way in this life — let’s make it real.

Where’s the nachos?

Love,

Claudia