love your life

Thursday, July 31, 2014

a forest of cosmos fronds / my own strawberries / first year for lots & lots of sunflowers - very thrilling / Miss Itsy Bitsy Betty loves the help (?) me in the garden / love cosmos, no white this year (sad face) / windowsill cat pillow with geranium / IBB posing / poppies another favourite / our sweet Bleet also in his 16th year / purple lavender potted love / a blue blue wild thing / my cat, my cat I adore him - pretty fancy office eh ? / cherry tomatoes / scarlet runner beans / Me & my girl Miss Winnie Dixon on our on morning walk / my little raised bed garden plot ... mostly flowers ;-) / lobelia / green bean blossoms & more handsome cosmos

It seems to me that almost all our sadnesses are moments of tension, which we feel as paralysis because we no longer hear our astonished emotions living. Because we are alone with the unfamiliar presence that has entered us; because everything we trust and are used to is for a moment taken away from us; because we stand in the midst of a transition where we cannot remain standing. 

That is why the sadness passes: the new presence inside us, the presence that has been added, has entered our heart, has gone into its innermost chamber and is no longer even there, - is already in our bloodstream. And we don't know what it was. We could easily be made to believe that nothing happened, and yet we have changed, as a house that a guest has entered changes. We can't say who has come, perhaps we will never know, but many signs indicate that the future enters us in this way in order to be transformed in us, long before it happens. 

And that is why it is so important to be solitary and attentive when one is sad: because the seemingly uneventful and motionless moment when our future steps into us is so much closer to life than that other loud and accidental point of time when it happens to us as if from outside. The quieter we are, the more patient and open we are in our sadnesses, the more deeply and serenely the new presence can enter us, and the more we can make it our own, the more it becomes our fate. Rainer Maria Rilke

love your life ... though there is much to be sad about, there is also SO much to love ...

* a sweet Buster the dog update - he's still at the vet being watched & tested f0r various potential senior abused dog ailments. He had several large growths under his chin and near where his much too tight collar was digging into his flesh. If he has something terminal-cancer he will be euthanized but if not he will soon have a foster home where he will live out the rest of his days in comfort & hopefully joy. It's obvious that he did not have much socialization with people though he is calm & gentle. He's eating, sleeping, drinking and being fussed over. I originally, in my overly emotional rescuer state, volunteered our home as a potential foster home, now that a few days have passed I realize that may not be the best solution but if they can't find a home for him he'll be coming to live with Winnie & Sam, Doug & Me & the rest of the crew.

the sea, the sea & me

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

finally the FINAL ;-) goodness you can tweak & fuss & add & remove & fuss some more

Those who live by the sea can hardly form a single thought of which the sea would not be part. Hermann Broch

Something completely unheard of has happened ... seriously  I cannot remember a time when this has happened. I am madly in love with a piece I just created . I was asked if I would donate an art piece to a fundraising event for the nearby (Parsborro) Ship's Company Theatre - even though attending (gasp !) a live theatre event would mean leaving my much adored hermetically sealed bubble it sure doesn't mean, at all, that I 'm not thrilled to support such an fantastic regional cultural organization.

So ... on the heels of my recent Lilla Roger's Bootcamp Nautical themed illustration assignment,  (after all I do live in a tiny seaside village in Nova Scotia & I can sea the ocean from my studio windows, it is exactly 139 steps to the harbours edge) ++  my fear, with this impending move (& selling of the beloved 29 Black Street) that I will somehow lose the sea ... my sea. Because I know not having easy access to the sea would damage me - I know that clear & simple. All this to say I've been on a bit of a, clinging, nautical kick (which is a really good thing) - of course a few flowers and butterflies find their way into all my creations but the sea, the sea has been my theme of late.

Turns out I love this new mixed media piece the sea, the sea so much that I know I cannot part with it - but alas and thank goodness a back-up plan is always in place and instead of donating the nautical themed piece I will donate one of my favourite botanical collages - pictured in photo 4 & 5 - framed with the help of that indispensable Prince of Every Darn Good Thing You Could Imagine - Doug.

In still moments by the sea life seems large-drawn and simple. It is there we can see into ourselves. Rolf Edberg

and photo of this piece actually framed - I am crazy about it - that never happens !! ;-)

like a super hero

Monday, July 28, 2014

It's Queen Anne's Lace season - oh my the incredible fields of beauty, beauty, beauty 

Yesterday I was clever, so I wanted to change the world. 
Today I am wise, so I am changing myself. Rumi

Yesterday, early in the morning I rescued a dog. As Winnie I walked along the boardwalk I could see a dog, a senior dog walking along the beach on the other side of the harbour. No cars & no people in sight. Instinctively you know when something about the picture your viewing is not right, the dog seemed weak & wobbly. I asked the Prince to drive me over to the other side because in some ways I am  so Captain Courageous and in other ways I am the biggest Chicken you'll ever meet - I struggle near daily with these opposing factions bickering and fighting in my head. But strength in numbers, I decided + my dear Prince Doug is truly fearless. 

I took a leash & food with me. The dog was walking back and forth along the waters's edge, Doug stayed back in the shadows as I approached the very scared & very weak senior dog. It took a long time before I was able to lasso my leash around him. He was wearing a collar so tight, & obviously on him so long that it had begun growing into his skin, a cheap scratchy nylon rope wrapped around the collar many times appeared to be the manner which he had been tied somewhere? Approaching a dog like this is tricky business and although I do have several merit badges of Courage (which I wear proudly) I also am very timid and cautious. I didn't want to be bitten, I admittedly was a little afraid. But ya do what ya gotta do in these situations. Gradually, gradually he and I walked back and forth up and down this long stretch of beach together, he between the water's edge and me,  he always keeping himself just out of reach but finally after about 20-30 mins he gave up, he turned and looked straight at me as if to say OK - I'm tired, I'm thirsty & I want to trust you. He knew his options were limited. Bless him, dear, sweet, tired old dog.

I lassoed the leash around his neck and we walked slowly up the grassy meadow like hill and he had a big, long drink of fresh water. Meanwhile the Prince went to retrieve the only person I knew of who could help me and who would take the dog - Jane Jorgenson of Paws by Wallace Bay a Saint - a kennel, grooming spot and all round animal haven place. I often refer to she and her husband Gordon as Dr. & Mrs. DoLittle. While Doug was gone Buster (or Boo) I couldn't decide which name best suited him, he & I layed in the sunshine in the grass & clover with blue sky & puffy clouds above us and it felt perfect, he even snored snoozing a bit while we waited for our rescue chariot to return I felt so happy, proud, relieved &it felt like such pure LOVE, like the only really true LOVE there is. I patted his head and stroked that place on a dog's forehead between their eye's and down their nose that they all seem to love. I spoke to him gently and told him he was safe with me. I told him I loved him - which was very true. We delivered him with Jane's help to his new, perhaps temporary home where he will experience love & affection, food & water, comfort, cuddles in ways I suspect he has never known.

The funny thing about saving one dog is that that one wonderful event cancels out at least temporarily 10-12 awful bad dog situations you're aware of but in the end you (I) feel haunted by the way that dog's life was and the knowledge that he's just one lucky guy & there are 100's, 1000's who suffer unnecessary & unspeakable cruelty.  I am disgusted, furious, disillusioned & depressed by what humans do to animals. By writing this post I'm not expecting accolades, clapping, cheering ... please. I could not stop myself from doing what I did - no matter what the outcome - I had to try & help.

What I want is for everyone reading this to remember ... to not walk away from something, a situation like this one, do not say to yourself "oh well, there's nothing I can do". Instead put your BIG girl pants on (or big boy pants - for John ;-), gather a friend an ally, a partner in animal rescue crime ... and try to help/save even one animal. 

As we drove to Jane's Paws by Wallace Bay sanctuary, me in the back with sweet old Boo or Buster, the look in that dogs eyes I will never forget, I felt like a freakin' super hero & that felt indescribably amazing.

Be grateful for whoever comes, because each has been sent as a guide from beyond. Rumi

nearing the ending

Saturday, July 26, 2014

3 of my favourites, 2 favourite art pieces of mine + Oliver snoozing on the bathroom counter / wild blue daisy - chickory near the water / the view from my studio office chair - we love hummingbirds / that 3.99 Walmart mini rose is not so mini anymore / wild & tangled / rudbeckia ? / Miss D in the front garden - I love this house / more seaside wildflowers / & more orange roses / phlox / NessieNess loves this time of year / still life with audio books (all from the library) / crazy about the miniature forests of moss & lichen / where we left off last - not-so-brave / not sure what these sweet white blooms are / this photo shows where we live - look closely centre-ish of photo - that's our front ocean facing yard / & the above photo taken from this boardwalk exactly 139 steps from our front door 

All transitions are composed of an ending, a neutral zone and a new beginning William Bridges

I used to have a copy of William Bridges well known & much loved book Transitions: Making Sense of Life's Changes - I bought it years ago way before I met Doug and was in the process, by necessity, of getting ready to leave/sell 29 Black Street. Even though I'm in a much different & much better place now and the leaving is by choice & desire not by necessity I'm still finding the transition difficult. The end(ing) feels like it's just begun even though I've been planning this move, & knowing about for ages. It's become a reality and not just a fun dreamy topic of conversation.

I am nearing the ending, feeling the grief, sadness & worry, worry that I'll have regrets and at the same feeling quite confident that in the end I won't - I've been planning this move for a very long time. I'm ready, so ready to welcome the neutral zone + I'm almost there & then !! what's more exciting than a brand new beginning.

I'm ordering a new copy of this book today. Happy Weekend to all ;-)

I'm not gonna lie

Friday, July 25, 2014

so SO much to love about living here - my naturalist spirit loved coming across this periwinkle snail lounging outside his or her shell in the early morning sunshine / what can I say - the beautiful & magnificent sea, the sea / 3.99 Walmart (mini) rose planted outside in a sunny spot mulched well for the winter months has been doing a gorgeous peachy, apricot. orange-ish bloom-a thon / queen anne's lace along the harbour's edge / sea wall with seaweed / ocean shot with seaweed / blue wildflowers called Chickory (reminds us of our Blue Mountain friends) / seaside wild blooms / seaweed & sand / oh my I do love t,he miniature worlds of moss & lichen / the Prince made me a bracket for my new second floor studio hummingbird feeder - it's been non stop hummer traffic - LOVE / more queen annes's lace a different perspective / & sigh - along the crescent beach - I will miss so much

It's funny really ... I have thought, planned, schemed & dreamed of leaving here 29 Black Street for forever - since way before Doug, the Prince of All fantastic things - but now as that time actually becomes real, close, imminent I am struck with dread, with foreboding, with worry, fret, anxiety. What if I have regret ? What if I miss this place ? What if I long to have it back ? What if I feel like I've made a huge mistake ??

How strange that the nature of life is change, yet the nature of human beings is to resist change. And how ironic that the difficult times we fear might ruin us are the very ones that can break us open and help us blossom into who we were meant to be Elizabeth Lesser

I love my home, my house, my gardens, my property, my big, natural, beautiful, private incredible bubble + I love my easy access to the sea (139 steps exactly). Period. I do not love anymore the small village-ness, the lack of stimulation, the work & maintenance of a huge house & double size lot (actually that is Doug's dept. but he doesn't want to spend SO much time with that constant up keeping) up keeping that I know I have no desire (or time) to try and take on. I want, we want a way smaller, simpler, easier life  - tiny life, a really tiny life so that we can focus our energies on our individual passion & efforts on things we love to do rather than things we feel we have to do (and fortunately we each have loads of passions in spades). No boredom here !

But ... I'll be the first to admit that the closer this gets the more it makes me feel - a little crazy (in the bad way) I'm hoping that the person(s) that eventually buy this beautiful home & property will take over it's stewardship for us, that they will love & care for it as we have & ultimately that will give both Doug & I great peace of mind - it's amazing how attached you can become to a home. I'm not gonna lie this process is freaking me out a little, it's been feeling really hard, harder than I expected - it's a huge life transition.

Here's our current short list of potential new home locations (listed in my personal favourite order)

Charlottetown - PEI
Lunenburg - NS
St. Andrews -NB
Bear River - NS
Digby - NS
Annapolis Royal - NS