Tuesday, September 28, 2021

Changes (Seasonal, etc.)

This is me: I love the seasons. And I love the changes that come with each season. Through the years, I have learned this about myself: I like change.

Now, hubby always raises his hand when he hears me say that. “I hope you don’t want changes in ALL areas!” Obviously, there are many things that I DO NOT want to change. I also love stability and the familiar. But I like change more than most people do, I believe. 

Some say, “I will never move again.” Having just finished a very difficult and complicated move (in so many ways, not just physical and not just emotional), this might be a logical time for me to say that I will never move again. But even now, I don’t feel that way. While I don’t like all the work involved, and the emotional “tearing apart,” there are many things about moving (changing houses, changing towns, changing states…) that I do like.

Back to the topic at hand, I love seasonal changes (would probably not be thrilled to live where there are no seasonal changes), and always, through the years, no matter my location, my favorite season is fall. Maybe it’s the colors (my favorite), the trees, the leaves, the fragrance from the kitchen (baking with pumpkin or apples—and always, cinnamon), the need for sweatshirts, sweaters and boots…and lattes…and snuggling. This year, as a St Louis Cardinals fan, I’m loving the coming of baseball post-season.

Since I started watercolor painting a couple of years ago, another thing I love about fall is the seasonal art subjects. It makes painting even more fun. Actually, from September through December, it’s a time when I’m drawn to painting seasonal subjects more than any other time.

The mushroom was an easy one, following a tutorial by Maria Raczynska.

Possibly another reason why I have these positive feelings about the autumn time of the year would relate to the fact that most of my life has included “Back to School,” (as a student for 16 years, and then as a teacher for many years). I would still look forward to buying new school supplies (is that why I love buying new art supplies especially in the fall?)… hmmmmm…

I’m thinking of some Scripture verses that cause us to be thankful that some things never change. And then there are other verses that mention good things about change. I suppose it’s part of how we are made, to embrace both!

“I the Lord do not change.” - Malachai 3:6a

“Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” - Hebrews 13:8

“Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.” - James 1:17

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” - Isaiah 43:19

“To everything there is a season…” - Ecclesiastes 3:1

There is a right time for everything.

#seasons #change #watercolor #fallwatercolor #autumnpumpkin #singlemushroom #watercolorpractice

Saturday, September 25, 2021

Beautiful Early Fall in the PNW

It’s upper 70’s and sunny here in southwest Washington. We are intentionally enjoying this weather, as the typical climate out here sets an expectation of the onset of “rainy” season (as in rain most every day for months) most any day now. 

I do my Bible studies, art, and scrapbooking projects from the table in the dining area, where my position gives me a beautiful view of evergreen trees and blue skies, out our sliding glass doors.

Working through “Joy is a Person: A Deep Dive into Philippians” by Robin Meadows as a personal Bible study right now, I will be adding to that a regular study through the book our church women are using for a mentoring program, “Flourish,” as I will be mentoring a lady from our church.

Determined to get back to the place of “where I left off” when I took the break from art while we moved from Missouri to Washington, I am working on watercolor pieces most every day right now. I can feel a little bit of progress, and truth is, the “place where I left off” was not much beyond beginner anyway. So I press onward. Here are some of the pieces I have completed since my previous blog post:

This one almost went into the trash before I finished it. Feathers and fur are much more difficult than still life, so why did I start my “return” with birds? Because I love them… Here is the reference photo this was painted from:

Next I painted a much easier, loose-style painting of a hummingbird. Along with starting back after several months away, I have changed brands of watercolor paint (from Winsor and Newton professional to Holbein professional), and while I do like the new paints (more creamy, spreadable, and more vibrant), there is a noticeable difference, so more to learn.

Then on to something easier—a poppy.

On a personal note, we are enjoying being in ONE place, living near to our son and daughter-in-law, our grandson and granddaughter-in-law and their two little ones, our great grandchildren. We love being in the same church were our son is the lead pastor and our grandson is the worship pastor. Tomorrow there will be a parent/baby dedication which will include our little 6-month old great granddaughter. 

God is good, and we are blessed. 

Closing with this verse from my study this week:
May the blessings of divine grace and supernatural peace that flow from God our wonderful Father, and our Messiah, the Lord Jesus, be upon your lives. Philippians 1:2 (The Passion Translation).

#FlourishAMentoringJourney #JoyisaPerson #watercolorpractice #watercolorbluebird #watercolorhummingbird #watercolorpoppy #PNW #PNWFall

Friday, September 17, 2021

“Back in the Saddle Again”

I realize that “back in the saddle again” is a very old-fashioned phrase, but it’s very descriptive. I have not done any art, or posting on my blog, for the longest time I’ve ever been away, I believe — five months. Lots has been happening in our lives, and the easy way was to just let it slide. Most of the time during that five months, when I was “in the mood,” my art supplies were not with me. Then when I had the supplies handy, I wasn’t in the mood!

This piece was done a few days after my last blog post. I really like this one, and I think it’s because I tend to like bright and vibrant colors.

During the five months, we sold our home in Missouri, gave away almost all of the furnishings in that home, packed up two big UHaul trailers to make two different trips (second time with help from son and grandson) to transport remaining belongings to Washington, and got all settled into our home in Washington (where we had lived about half of the time for the last three years). Everything is now unpacked and organized. Once my baby grand piano is delivered (in a few weeks), all my “stuff” will be in one place, for the first time in a very long time!

In the middle of selling the house and moving, I had Mohs surgery on two squamous cell carcinomas, one involving a skin graft as well. Still not all healed, but “on the mend,” at least.

I was also five months behind with scrapbooking, so the first thing I did after getting settled into our ONE home now, was to catch up on that project. Very relieved to have that done!

Now that “I’m back,” (as in “back in the saddle again”) with life being settled into a routine, I do want to return to the fun hobby of watercolor. So, this week I tried to see if it really was like “riding a bicycle.” It is not. I don’t have it “back” yet and so need to keep practicing. Here is my first “return to art” piece, completed earlier this week. Not happy with it.

#bluewatercolorbird #watercolorpractice #backinthesaddle #needtoworkhardertogetitback #scrapbooking #crosscountrymove #MO #WA