Mar 2
[pinterest]

I had no idea.  Wait, let me back up.  I have two daughters….one is very artistic, one is very analytical.  I myself am an artist, therefore, I “get” the messy, often scattered, loopy sometimes, naive, artsy one.  The other…well, let me just say that she is what God gave me when I prayed for patience because Lord knows that she tests me enough and gives me situations enough to learn patience from.  Can I get an AMEN!

The analytical one, the brilliant math wizz, the one who would rather sort the crayons by color code and size rather than actually use one, the extreme child, the all or nothing kid, the love hard and fight harder sibling, the dry sense of humorous one, the emotional mess of a girl and I had the night together. alone.

You would think that after 8 years of her existence on earth I would know what to do with her when we have an evening alone.  But the truth is……I don’t (I know….mothers everywhere are gasping).  My daughter and I aren’t alike.  not. even. close.  And while I have a soft spot for her, love her like no other, like only a mom could, I’m a little nervous when it comes to spending “quality time” together which normally means “quality control” and “behavior modification” lessons somewhere down the line……mostly for me.  This is when I said in my I know what we can do for fun voice, “Let’s paint!”  Normally this is filled with the comparison of “I’m not as good as my sister,” and “she’s so much better” and “it’s not right”,  and “I can’t” and, and, and.  Throw a little anxiety in the mix and you have the makings for a perfect storm.

“OK, but what I’d really like to do mommy is paint a BIG canvas”.  Well, OK I thought.  I have BIG canvases that I have never used.  As a matter of fact, I’m donating a painting to a local organization that benefits kids.  Since it’s for  kids, I would love it if she had a hand (no pun intended) in it.  I thought to myself that she could paint uninhibitedly on a BIG canvas, and I would just paint over it.  The more she could paint on it layer by layer, the more texture I would have to work with.

I wish you could have seen her giant eyes that said, “My mom has lost it, but I’m not telling her because I really want to paint that” when I brought out the canvas that was nearly bigger than she was.  Since I knew I was painting over it….

THERE WAS NO EXPECTATIONS.

This is when the magic happened.  I showed her some of my “off limits” tools.  I let her use my very expensive “off limits” paint.  She grabbed a brayer….next, it was red, then blue, then pink, then orange, then green, then more blue and pink.  OMG – where’s the brown I thought as if I was doing the painting.  You see, I love all things brown and what it represents…earth, solid footing, nurturing, and warmth.  But, since I was only going to paint over it, she had free reign.  “Do whatever you want baby….this part is all you.”

 

Colors started to dance.  I found myself asking her permission to join in…..and that’s when things got real.  We were no longer monitoring each other.  No longer testing the boundries, no longer wondering what to do, no longer comparing or expecting anything from anybody.  We just did.  We painted, and painted, and painted.  An hour went by without whining, complaining, trying to get done fast, counting the colors, or comparing ourselves to our other arty family counterparts.  I then painted (with brown) lines and circles and asked her what she saw.  “Flowers and dots mommy”.  OK – flowers and dots it is.  “Where do see the flowers”, I asked.  “Right here” as she took the paint brush in rustic brown (melt melt) and added petals where I definitely would not have.  They were perfection.

“Paint more,” I said.  “OK mommy.”

I used to think that people lived up to the expectations you set before them, but last night I realized that by not placing expectations on my daughter, she actually taught me how to live .

Right now, in the moment, in full color.

Thank you baby girl, you have no idea.

 

 

Jan 17
[pinterest]

 

Creating an extraordinary life out of ordinary mOMents.  Yep, that’s my mantra.  I love noticing the ordinary mOMents that often go undetected in our never ending quest for what’s next, what’s bigger, and better.  What I’ve come to find, is that what I have is already enough if I take the time to be whole heartedly absorbed in whatever it is I’m doing…So, I thought you might be interested to take a peak inside my brain as the creative process ordinarily unfolds.  Here we go.

Ordinary…my table.  I’ve been fine with it the way it is…even if it’s been unfinished (for years now).  However, inspiration found me, and I was pulled to paint it.  I don’t even know if pulled is the right word….it was more like ..begged.  The table was calling me and asking me to adorn it in beautiful colors and matching accessories as if it were attending the Golden Globes.

Since I just can’t resist a good ol’ fashion show….”I’m in”, I replied.

So I took a print of my artwork and cut it all up.  I also took the table outside, one never knows when you just might need a breath of fresh air when creating.  Breathe in, Peace out!

What’s the look we’re going for?  Clean? Simple? Lavish? Glamorous? Still not sure myself, I just put the words around the rim and decided to go with it.  Pretty sure I can change it later if I don’t love it.

Pretty woman makeover.  Off with old, on with new.

 

Primping aka prep work.  I like to think of this step as filing her nails before the paint goes on.  Oh my goodness…are those my moms hands?  Sheesh, I need to moisturize.


Prepping, sanding, wiping….Phew…time for a bit of tea.  I know, I’m normally a coffeeholic, however in the mood for a little Yogi Tea which always comes with a message – like fortune cookies only with tea.  How cool is that!  The note reads:

“Mantra’s you should never say.  I don’t know, I’m not ready, I can’t do it.”

Well, ok then.

Gather + supplies = paper and gel medium.

Away we go.  Ripping the paper, I gently adhere it to the table top.  I don’t know (sorry oh infinite wisdom of Yogi Tea) I can’t seem to get the air bubbles out.  Movin on.

Viola!  Back inside as the sun starts to set and my bones are getting cold, I apply the first stage of make-up.  The foundation really covers the imperfections of the uneven tones and pock marks.   I think I even found the right shade!

Inspired by henna tattoo designs, it’s time to pencil in the eyebrows and add some shadow.  It starts to take shape as the beauty comes through with different shades of paint making their way into the cracks and crevices.

 

 

My acceptance speech of words around the rim is prepared and ready to go.  I add the final touches, more paint, more pencil, more paint, more glue, more paint.

 

 

She’s beautiful. Extraordinary even.  A simple reminder to myself that these are the mOMents that count because in the end, it’s not the days in our life, but the life in our days….in our mOMents really.

 

 

During the process, I felt the joy of inspiration, a knowing, a pull.  I felt the warmth of the sun and cold of the air.  I felt the sticky of glue on my fingers and heard the sound of both my daughters laughter while I painted from my heart…outside…with tea.  I saw my husbands smile….the one that says, you’re amazing.  I saw colors mesh and meld in and out of focus while they decided where they wanted to be.  I felt. I heard. I saw. I knew….These are the mOMents that create an extraordinary life.

I’m not ready I’m not willing to let them go because this is the stuff of life.

I know.  I’m ready.  I can.   Take that Yogi Tea.


Jan 10
[pinterest]

Let’s take a road trip shall we?  A road trip to our a destination that we call…..New Years Resolution City.  Yeah….you know it.  The city you chose that you want to get to this year.  The goal, the resolution, the be all end all of what it is you would like to attain, accOMplish, or achieve this year.   For sOMe, that city is a far far away place that they only dream off…..for others it’s a simple walk across the street.  But to all, it’s most likely a place that they are striving to get to in order to “be happy”.  I’ll be happy when I lose 20 pounds….I’ll be happy when I earn more money….I’ll be happy when I take a vacation….when I have more time…..when I meet the right person…..when….when…when…

But here’s the thing.  We can enjoy the journey and BE HAPPY NOW by noticing the road, the stops along the way, and the people we meet.  We can choose to be in awe and wonder of it all.  Imagine looking at a map and trying to locate where you are…..it’s the big red dot that says…..YOU ARE HERE.  The trick is being HERE all along the way to THERE.  Enjoy your journey.

 

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