Tuesday, November 20, 2012


A few words to explain my absence...

Mom passed away last Saturday, November 17th.

My heart is heavy. I'll be away for a little while...


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

sunlight and shadows...

Good morning peeps.

Yesterday on my morning walk, i saw this beauty.

Well, not this exact one - but a blue jay nonetheless.

So last night, i did this -
a quick little pencil sketch in my journal...

Then some watercolour...
Not too happy with what was supposed to look like
sunlight and shadow - especially the top part.

It looks like he's wearing a little blue fur coat. :-)

i kinda like the little legs... :-)

a bit of green for the background,
to make the light on his stomach more obvious.

A bit of writing,
and a photo taken in natural light, this morning.

The writing reads as follows:

During my morning walk,
i saw this. A blue jay.
In mid November.
I watched him for a while
and then continued on my way.
Until I saw a rainbow,
from end to end.
I stood in my tracks,
since the sky was clouded,
but without rain.
And for a moment,
with my eyes towards the skies,
I believed the universe
really was on my side.


I don't always believe the universe is on my side.
Now you know i'm not always the optimist.

And then, my morning green smoothie.
I know, it's not green,
but it's filled with spinach, celery, carrots and berries,
so yeah, it's green to me.

Morning reading...

Some of you may think this is too dark a subject
for morning reading,
but it makes sense to me,
considering my world at this time.

Understanding something often leads to acceptance.

I think we shy away from this too much.
No one is untouched by death,
and yet,
we avoid discussing it
like we avoid the plague.

I believe science and nature
have so much to teach us,
if we're only brave enough
to open our hearts to our surroundings...

love and hugs to all of you.
Thank for sharing this space with me.

Sunday, November 11, 2012


hi everyone.

First of all, in honour of all those who have died,
who have served and/or who are still serving...

(watercolour on paper, done in 2011)

Another cool, grey Sunday here...
The perfect day for a walk in the trails.

I wake up in the morning not knowing too much
what to do with myself.

My thoughts go immediately to my mother,
who is in a hospital bed, making the most of each moment.

As much as i tell myself that life must go on,
and that i can't be there with her ALL the time,
there's no denying that it's hard sometimes.

So i lace up the sneakers
and find my way outside, where the air is cool
and the dry leaves crinkle under my feet
and with each step I take, 
the heaviness seems to lift from my heart.

And of course, we're all adjusting to this in our own way.

This works for me.
Let others find their own ways...

Some of us grieve quietly,
some of us cry constantly,
some of us cling to the hope that miracles happen,
some of us worry 24-7... (my least favourite way to deal with anything!)

and others, like mom, accept what is and still find a way to be grateful.

Hers is the example i want to follow.

I believe i get my love of writing from her.

Her journal still sits on her table,
by her hospital bed,
and when she is well enough, she writes.

I remember being a young child
and often seeing her write letters at the kitchen table at night
to family and friends who lived far away.

She always had a deep sense of connection to others.
She still does.

It is this sense of connection that gives life meaning.

For me, more often than not,
it is a connection with nature.

Frank Lloyd Wright once said:

I believe in God, only I spell it NATURE.

I totally get this.

So there you have it -
not much art, but a walk in the trails.

There may not be much art here for a while.

I do hope you still visit now and then,
just in case i should happen to paint my masterpiece
and post it one of these days.

Wouldn't want any of you to miss it. ;-)

And on a lighter note,
my messed up, disorganized book shelf on Friday night..

and then... ta-daaaa!

Cleaned up and kinda colour coordinated!
Isn't this so much more fun to look at?!

I liked the living room one so much,
i decided to do the same thing to the smaller bookshelf.

Maybe i've just officially gone off the deep end, who knows. ;-)

I just know it makes me happy when i see all these colours.

Wishing you all a peaceful, healthy Sunday
filled with gratitude.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

shy, mini painting and power. Yes, power.

Scientists have found the gene for shyness.
They would have found it years ago,
but it was hiding behind a couple of other genes.
Jonathan Katz

I'm linking this to Illustration Friday.
Word of the week: shy

Check out some of the other fabulous illustrations there.
So much talent in this big ol' world...

Another mini acrylic painting on paper,
3" x 3"

From SHY to SKY...
(welcome to Sesame Street!) :-)

Wishing you all nothing but blue skies...

Especially those of you in the eastern U.S.
Sending warm thoughts your way
and hoping you're all reconnected
sooner than later.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

When all else fails, get yourself a happy file. Boom.

hello friends.

I think i need to clear the air
for fear that i may have misled some of you
into thinking that my life is perfect.

Newsflash: it's not.

I am like most of you,
where i have good days and bad days,
and most of my bad days lately
stem from seeing others suffer (especially my mom...)

I've felt less inspired to create lately,
so naturally, i have less to share on this blog.

I've lacked energy and focus
and yet
i feel like i am exactly where i need to be,
doing exactly what i need to be doing at this time.

Being there for mom.

I'm still trying to make sense of illness and death
I'm a slow learner... ;-)

But I do know this:
that it is a natural process,
and one we too often try to avoid at all costs.

So i look to the stars every now and then
to remind myself that i don't know everything,
that i don't need to know all the answers,
and the twinkling skies always bring me solace.

So tonight, to lighten the mood,
i dug up my happy file.

I'm not the only person that has a happy file, am I? 

Old photographs from a dear friend
who was a fabulous photographer... (yes, she took these)

Sadly, she passed away almost 2 years ago at the age of 50.

I know, you're probably thinking,
why the hell is this in her happy file?

Because of the memories, baby.

We went on many photo excursions
and we laughed till we peed our pants.
Yeah, i know. Inconvenient truth. ;-)

So whenever i see these,
i don't think of the loss of Liz,
i think of the fun we had while we were together.

Her self portrait... 

And then i found this, and it fucking cracked me up...

A letter written to me by my son when he was about 3 or 4 years old.
He wanted to write, just like his mom. :-)

Crossed rifles and revolvers.
I know, SO far off from who i am today.

I trained in my younger years as a security guard
and worked for a while in the penitentiary here in Canada
and while training, i just happened to discover a hidden talent.

At targets, not people. :-) 

Check it out. Weapons. 97.8%

And today, i can't kill a fly.
Or maybe i don't want to now. :-)

How is this ever NOT funny?!

And the most precious...
a dinosaur drawing from my son
when he was obviously quite young. 

I love the eye... and that small tail.
It cracks me up every time.

So there you have it.
Not much art from me tonight,
but part of my happy file.

I'll bet you're feeling pretty privileged right about now. ;-)

Thanks for giving me some space
in your busy lives.
I am very grateful to all of you.

Monday, November 5, 2012

art heals - and so does Neil Young

hi everyone.

I thought i'd get a chance to catch up on all your blogs this past weekend
but alas... life had other plans.

I look forward to connecting with all of you again soon...

Any bit of spare time i have these days is shared between
visiting mom in the hospital,
checking up on dad,
being a mother,
making meals,
and seeking sanity on a daily basis. ;-)

Hence, the sheet music painting tonight.

sheet music painting = sanity.

I hadn't done any in a while... and it's oh so meditative for me.
It just takes me to another place where time stands still.

I put on some music,
and within minutes,
i'm flying, far far away.

No, there are no drugs involved. (giggle)

I love the last part of a painting,
where the blacks and the whites are added.
It's where the painting comes alive, don't you think?

I'm guessing i'm not the only one who loves this part of a painting.

And even if once the painting is done,
i look at it for a few minutes,
and realize that the eyes are crooked,
and the nose is wrong,
and the mouth doesn't look quite like Neil's mouth...

I'm still smiling
cause it just felt so damn good to paint SOMETHING.

It's been hard for me to concentrate on art lately,
for obvious reasons.

My head knows that it's good to do something that i love,
but my heart has a hard time getting started sometimes.

Once i get myself started, it's all good.
But sometimes these days, sitting in the blue room is a bit of a challenge.

Art helps me feel grounded
so whenever i go a while without it,
i literally feel out of whack.

But still, i do something that many of us don't do often enough.
I go easy on myself.

I cut myself some slack.

I remind myself that the paints will be there tomorrow,
if i feel like painting,
or the day after,
or the day after that...

Tonight was one of those "day after's".

When i sat in the blue room, i felt like being there.
I knew it would be a good painting session before i even began.

Some things, you just know.

I have so much more to say to all of you,
about so many things,
but it'll have to be for a later time.

It's getting late and i'm running on empty already.

I'll leave you with one of my favourite Neil Young songs...
and i wish you all star filled skies this week.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

mini ghost, abstract flowers and hope

hello folks.

I'm linking this to Illustration Friday... 
word of the week: HAUNT

I used cardboard from the Halloween chip box.
Yay!! free cardboard!! ;-)

I had fun making this little guy...

i'm a big chicken when it comes to scary stuff,
so i'll stick with the fun ghosts, thank you very much.

And then a bit of acrylic painting on paper...

It always seems to come alive for me when i add the dots... ;-)

and the black and white...

this photo (above) was taken last night, in my room...

and this one was taken this morning, 
by the window, with natural light...

What a difference, huh?
Colors are so much closer to the real thing.

For those of you who have sent such kind messages of concern
about my mother - thank you.

She is still in the hospital but in good spirits.
It's been an adjustment for everyone, 
so we're taking things one day at a time.

Just like the alcoholics do.  ;-)

It's hard not to worry all the time,
but then i'd be digging my own grave
if i spent every waking hour obsessing about mom
and cancer
and illness
and death...

So rather than go against the tide of what is our current reality,
i remind myself that she is in good hands
and that she is exactly where she needs to be right now.

She is doing well, despite everything,
thanks to her remarkable outlook on life and death.
The first thing she said when i went in to her room the other day was:

"aren't the leaves in the trees beautiful?"

We could all learn something from such a grateful heart,
don't you think?