I am so thrilled... I finally have a website!
I have tried a few times in the past to create a website of my very own, but I have multiple excuses for why it never happened, this time I was determined. I will be blogging there from now on, but still stopping by here now and again, too.
My latest post about my trip to California can be found there.
The more years I gain on this life of mine the more I realize how very important it is to experience things. All kinds of things, things that make you feel elated, and things that make you scared, things that make you sit in your car in the driveway crying, things that make you feel stupid and small, things that make you feel important, and things that make you want more. Traveling alone is one way to experience all these things and so much more. Traveling with people you love, traveling to meet people you adore, and traveling to meet people you’ve never met makes it all that more meaningful. My most recent travels to Italy can attest to that!
I am slowly beginning to understand that it’s the things in life that we do experience that make us who we are, it’s what gives us meaning, it’s what inspires and enhances and brings fulfillment to our daily lives. As an introvert I would be perfectly happy (so I think) to spend each and every day in my studio, completely absorbed in the creative process, this makes it somewhat of a struggle within my psyche. But traveling, sharing experiences, and pushing the boundaries of my own circle wider and wider makes the time in my studio all the more special, for I know it’s what I bring back with me that allows me to become a better artist and a better person, if I choose to be.
This year marks my third time teaching in Italy. This trip was especially exciting because my mom and aunt joined me on the adventure and a few friends made the return trip to spend another week with me in Orvieto. This time around felt more like visiting an old friend, a comfort was there that I haven’t felt before. I knew my way around, things were familiar, it felt good, even though fate or whatever you want to call it, threw a few curveballs our way...making the story all that more interesting, with lost luggage, cancelled flights at the beginning and end of the journey, train strikes that leave you stranded in the middle of Italy somewhere late at night forcing you to take a 25 mile taxi ride with two non-English speaking Italians that smelled very ripe, to a huge hail storm in Florence that I will never forget, and many little things that at the time didn’t feel so little, but as I look back and realize they were little, I just made a big deal out of them at the time.
So here it is.... my photo album of Italy 2014, a bit from Florence, a tiny bit from Siena, and of course lots from Orvieto.
The week in Orvieto was magical just like it has been in the past. That place sure is something to write home about. It glows and radiates even when the sun isn’t shinning.
A million thank yous to Bill & Kristi who go far and wide to make this a most memorable & wonderful time for all.
And a million thank yous my students/friends... without you I would be missing something so huge in my life. I am so grateful for each and every one of you.
Thank you. Thank you. Thank you.
And thank you for showing up here to see/read about my musings. I am off to California to teach at Crescendoh, I'll write more when I return... I have a lot of ideas/projects on my mind and look forward to sharing them here.
Want to read/see more of our time in Orveito? check out Bill & Kristi's blog here.
Life is weird. Weird isn't the best word, but it's the first word that came to mind at this moment when trying to put everything I am feeling into just one word. Like the word settle. Everyone keeps asking if we are "settling in" and I guess we are, but are we?
Here's something you might not know about me, I love the dictionary. I am not a great speller, but a wannabe great speller. I love to look up words, often simple words, like appreciate and definitely (I can never seem to get those two right) and words like settle, just to make sure I am fully understanding what I am talking/thinking about.
When looking up settle I feel even more unsettled about "settling in", I don't know why, but it makes me feel that little twist in my stomach as if I had to read out loud in class or nobody to sit with at lunch. Settle in, settle down, settle up... do I want to settle? Are we settling in? All of our 9,000 pounds of stuff is unpacked and in place, if that's what it means to settle, sure, we are settled, but really? I think it took me 6 + years to finally feel sorta settled in Virginia, and here we are in Pennsylvania. I know that nothing stays the same, change is constant. No matter how much I want certain things to stay the same they change and my heart hurts as they do. We all live in a vortex of change and as soon as we start to settle something shifts. What can you do? You do what makes you feel good, unpack, paint the walls, rearrange again and again, love the ones you're with, cook pretty meals for them, explore what's around, love up the cats, make art, and hope for everything to be okay, all while photographing the fleeting moments so you won't forget... holding on to them for as long as you possibly can.
Recipes from the beautiful Brassicas cookbook.
For today, I will memorize
the two trees now in end-of-summer light
and the drifts of wood asters as the yard slopes away toward
the black pond, blue
in the clouds that shine and float there, as if risen
from the bottom, unbidden. Now, just over the fern—
quick—a glimpse of it,
the plume, a fox-tail's copper, as the dog runs in ovals and eights,
The yard is a waiting room. I have my chair. You, yours.
The hawk has its branch in the pine.
White petals ripple in the quiet light.
In the quiet, a necklace of gourds on the fence.
A mourning cloak on a seeded spray of crabgrass.
An undulant whine of cicadas.
thank you for visiting here and for the thoughtful comments you left on my last post. I appreciate each one so much. <3
wanna hang out with me? I'll be teaching a two day workshop in Southern California early November at Jenny Doh's Studio Crescendoh.
Here I am, wide awake in the middle of the night, in the bedroom I grew up in, thinking about how in the heck I can dust the months of neglect off my blog.
I have a hunch it's gonna take more than a little dusting to bring this baby back to life... but hey, here I am. It's a start?
Physically I am in my old room, but mentally I am not really sure where I am right now. I find myself stuck somewhere between where I used to be, who I used to be, where I am, who I want to be, and where I want to be. There have been a lot of recent changes that have me feeling a little turned around.
It was about a year ago my husband's company heaved a surprised forced relocation to Connecticut at him, not even a year after we had found and settled into a house we loved outside Charlottesville, VA. From there onward I lived happily in denial, thinking it wouldn't really happen, we wouldn't actually have to leave our house. He would find another job in the area and life would carry on at its usual rapid pace. Months past, no new job. So we kept putting off the official decision date... Fingers crossed that we wouldn't have to schlep all our stuff and ourselves anywhere, let alone Connecticut, where we just didn't feel made sense for us to live, being that it was even further from family and our life in VA. The job searched expanded more and more miles from our home... from Richmond, to Pennsylvania, and even California (where he was offered a job... Whole other story). Spring came along, bearing the losses of a very cold winter and unanswered questions of fate. Our bees died, both hives, as well as our beloved fig tree, and the inevitable was beginning to sink in... that we were going to have to move.
Late spring he was offered a job that he accepted in Pittsburgh, PA. He moved north without us while we finished out the school year, prolonging the whole thing. A part of me felt as though I was still searching for a way out of all of this, finally feeling at home in a town we spent seven years in, I wasn't ready to leave. Not yet. I didn't want to leave our cozy home, our friends, our familiar life but, leave we did. The main thing that made it better was knowing our family would be closer. Still, my heart hurt and I was angry, I sulked, but became tired of being a major pain in the ass, and decided to make the most of what is now.
What is now?
I suppose it's time to spread my wings and sail on...
After living with my parents for the past few weeks while everything shifted we are finally moving into our new house this weekend. We are all looking forward to the next adventure...
May it be a good one.
A few discoveries made this summer....
I can crochet,
and frozen bananas make the best "ice cream".
On the very first day of summer vacation my children and I sat down and wrote up our goals for the summer. Slightly unhinged, I had a long list of goals for this summer... way too many for what was ahead of me, I can see that clearly now. I think I accomplished maybe a third of that list and yet, I still continue to add to it. I just can't help it, there's so much I want to do... even if I do spend more time making lists than doing what's actually on my lists. My children did much better than I did with their goals. What can I say, I guess I'm a good role model? ;)
On my list is to design a web page for my pottery/art. I really hope/plan to do that once life settles down a bit. I am so, so excited to get back to my work, my painting & pottery. I am very anxious to see what has become of my work after so many weeks off. I hope to share more and more of it here, too. I also hope to catch up with my emails someday. I am so far behind, it's bad.
"All ya can do is do what you must
You do what you must do and ya do it well" - bob dylan
until next time...