Category: art

A Watercolor

Flowers-5

Flowers-5

I have never been interested in doing watercolor paintings, as they are a whole art unto themselves.  But lately, I’ve been drawn to try watercolor.  I have no idea where this has come from.  I’ve never even really liked watercolors.

But, now that I’m paying more attention to them, I see they are really beautiful.  They are delicate and so interesting.  I never know exactly what a brush will do.

Yesterday at Skip Allen Paints, Skip posted ten videos showing him painting a watercolor.  If you use Painter, then you really should check Skip out.  He makes wonderful brushes and videos.  All free.  This, to me, is incredibly generous.  He could be charging a whole lot of money for what he gives away.

Skip just posted a new brush set on his blog.  You can download it here.  They are Flower Brushes.  A set of mostly watercolors including this fabulous brush, that when used with the right kind of paper, will paint flowers.

I’ve had all kinds of fun making papers to use with the flower brush.

So, yesterday, while watching Skip’s videos, I painted along and came up with these purple flowers, which look to be Hydrangea.

By the Skin of My Teeth

Play-02a

Play-02a

I haven’t yet seen a subject in the Daily Prompt that inspired me.  But today’s did.

A quick aside, I’m not in pain today, Yeah!

When I was about 16, an incident occurred where I could have been murdered.

What was I doing at that age in such circumstances?

My friend, Jill, and I had gone out for our usual Friday or Saturday night fun, which, for us, always involved drinking.  Somehow we had connected with an older woman.  She had been having us to her apartment for drinks, and we were more than happy to visit her.

This particular night, her boyfriend came by.  At first, I didn’t pay him much attention.

It turns out he was drunk, and an extremely unreasonable person.

He became jealous of my friend and I being at this woman’s house.  Initially, I just thought, what an idiot.

Then he got out his gun.  OMG.

He held it to my head and threatened to kill me.  I don’t quite recall his reasoning for this, but he was determined.

All I can recall is the woman begging and pleading with him to not shoot me.

Obviously, he changed his mind.  But what I really recall, is that it took a really long time to change his mind.

What blows my mind about this incident is that it didn’t really affect either me or my friend.  I don’t recall either of us talking about what had happened.  Why we weren’t scared to death is beyond me now.

In fact, it was not until I was in my late 20’s that I even thought about this incident again.

This scares me a lot.  When I was younger, I thought I was so cool and together.  I had such intolerance for just about everybody and everything unless it fit into my box of coolness.

Just exactly how cool is a person who gets into a situation where a loaded gun is pointed at her head by a drunk, crazy man?

I continued down this particular road of beliefs into my 30’s.  Then I got hit by a bolt of lightning and woke up.

I came to understand how much broader life could be, and know that there was a God.  There had to be.  Who had looked out for me all those years while I ran around like a crazy person?

I’m so grateful that I was able to realize who I am and that love is what is important in life, not who or what a person is.

I find that putting love first, will always lead me in the right direction.  Of course, this is not easy, and I often back step.  But I believe my path of life, and it looks like many other experience this, is two steps backwards for every three steps forward.

Writing about this makes me really grateful to be alive.

So, Love to all of you this holiday season.

A Wonderful Group That Helped Me

Untitled-03a

I was floundering trying to figure out how to live some kind of a life with FM.  I had spent most of my time in bed, and basically had no life.

One day while on the Internet, I came across a group called CFIDS & Fibromyalgia Self-Help.

This was truly an example of being led to help by God.  I never was much of a surfer on the Internet.  I was too sick.  But I know God led me to these people.

They teach small, on-line classes showing how to live a life with FM, CFS, etc.

They teach a concept of pacing yourself.  By pacing, I learned that I don’t go out and overdo and then crash for several weeks.  I learned to use what they refer to as an “energy envelope.”  Each day, I get up and decide, as best I can, how much energy I have in my envelope.  I then can figure out how much I energy I can spend on what I want to do that day.

If I’m able to be up and around, then I pace during the time I’m up out of bed.  I take lots of rests.  I do things in small bits of time.  Do something for 20 or 30 minutes, then rest.  If I recover, then do another 20 or 30 minutes.  By taking rests, I have found that I’m able to extend the amount of time I can stay out of the house.

I’ve also learned that I have limits.  Usually, I can easily do two hours out of the house.  But four hours is my absolute limit.

By pacing and resting, I have managed to put together a bit of a life.  I am so grateful for this group.

FM is so hard to live with.  No one really understands how sick I am.  Sometimes, not even my husband seems to understand.  (But, he is incredibly supportive most of the time.)  But the group of people I met in this class and now in the alumni group (which is free), I have met a wonderful, supportive and informative group of people who really know what I experience.

If you are feeling stuck and like your life is out of control, you may want to check this group out.  They also have a wonderful library of resources.

Click here to find them.

OMG

OMG

OMG

I have never been able to really draw faces very well.  I recently took this free, online class from these great guys at Drawing Coach.  They show, very simply, where everything belongs.

I have had this sitting around for a long time.  I just wasn’t sure it was good enough to post anywhere.  So this morning, I painted it, and here it is.

This is probably how many of us with FM, Lyme, CFS have looked over the years.

Spaced Aliens

Spaced Aliens

Spaced Aliens

I’ve painted up a storm lately.  Here is a painting I did this weekend.  I did one like this before.  You can see it in this gallery.

I had a very nice Thanksgiving with some of my family yesterday.

My husband does all our cooking, as I cannot.  We order a lot of food from the Kitchen Door here in Seattle.  They deliver meals ready to warm up.

I miss turkey leftovers, so I got a great idea this year and ordered turkey from them.  I’m looking forward to my turkey sandwich with ketchup and mayo.  Yummy.

 

The Dragon’s Loyalty Award

Treasures-4

Treasures-4

I’m overcome.  I’ve been given two awards in one day.

When I started blogging, I had no idea there were awards involved.

This one is the Dragon’s Loyalty Award.  It is given to someone who follows the blog and comments regularly.

Fabulous Jenn at My Fibrotastic Life, gave me this award. She writes an awesome blog and does craft work that she has for sale.  So be sure to check out her blog.

There are rules to the award.  They are as follows:

1.  Display the award on your site.

2. Link back to the person who gave you the award in your acceptance post;

3. Nominate 15 other bloggers for this award and notify them they received the award.

4. List seven interesting things about yourself.

OK, on with the awards,

Here is my list with links to their wonderful blogs.

Dawn Hosking

Ewa, at Fibromyalgia and Self Disorders

Trisha, at Notes From the Fog

Susan at Owls & Orchids

Heather at Sincerely Ms. Roberts

I also include one of my most loyal readers, Leigh, who doesn’t blog, but reads mine regularly.

OK, seven interesting things about me:

1.  I am first and foremost an artist.  That is my being, my soul, my everything.  I have to do art.  It is not a choice.

2.  Before I got sick, I was a Risk Manager for a health cooperative.  The most interesting part of that job was negotiating settlements of medical malpractice lawsuits.  These settlements usually ranged in the six to seven-figure dollars.

3.  I have known my husband since 1969 and have lived with him since 1970.  He is the best husband in the world.  I can’t imagine life without him.

4.  I love dogs.  We have always owned dogs.  After our last dog died, we decided that since we want to travel when Warren retires, that we couldn’t be putting a dog in a kennel for long periods of time.

5.  I am totally into social media.  I never thought it would happen to me.  I started on Facebook and then gradually Pinterest, Twitter, Instagram, Flickr and others took over.  I have discovered that these are great places to post my paintings and get feedback.  I belong to several private Facebook pages that are for artists.

6.  I am learning to be a photographer.  My husband is getting ready to retire in July.  We bought him a new camera.  While doing this, I realized I already had a pretty good camera.  I am learning to do my own settings with it.  This will give us something to do together when he retires.

7.  I am going to learn Photoshop.  I just got a Cloud membership from Adobe.  Adobe no longer sells most of its software.  One has to rent it.  Thank you all those jerks who ripped Adobe off and didn’t pay for their software.  But it’s not totally unreasonable.  I got a really good deal and opted to get all their apps. Most of them I’ll not bother with, but I will try to learn Photoshop, Illustrator and Lightroom.

My next challenge now is to figure out how to put up a slide show of my awards.  That is one of the requirements of these awards.  At first, I didn’t want to do this.  Being an artist, I’m very fussy about the design of my blog.  But now, with all these awards, I feel I should be showing them off.  I’m going to copy Jenn, and set it up like she has.  Wish me luck figuring it out.

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