Saturday, April 9, 2011
It's A Wonderful Life
Yesterday was a gorgeous, sunshiney day here in the Northwest. After spending a little morning time with my animals, I woke up my daughter, who is on spring break, and took her to coffee and Krispy Kreme Donuts. We also went shopping for art supplies so I can get started on my watercoloring before the class actually begins.
When my daughter was young, we kept an art room stocked for her at all times; it was our tiled sunroom that looked out onto our landscape and gardening. It was a magical little room where she and her cat would spend hours at art play. She had her easel and canvases, brushes and acrylic paints in one area, and her sculpting table, with a continuing work of clay, at another.
I homeschooled back then, and felt that accessible art and lots and lots of animals were the key to raising observant and happy children. Part of their Science was to keep a Nature Journal where they sketched and painted things they saw in the natural world. They also had portable flower presses we'd made from scratch. We hiked a lot and, of course, my daughter became my number one riding buddy.
Those were some of the most wonderful times, and being with her at the art supply store yesterday brought much of that back. However, this time the art supplies were for me. (I have a feeling someone else is going to be tapping into them, though.)
After we got home, she had to go to work. My sweet husband was also at work. And my darling son was gone on a snowboarding trip to Whitefish, Montana. So, I was alone.
I spent the afternoon working with my horses in the sunshine and playing with the barn kitty. I also got to play piano for an uninterrupted two wonderful hours and, afterward, experiment with my new paints and waterbrushes.
I can't sing the praises of the waterbrush enough. You fill up the tube with water, replace the cap, and you can take it on the road. I watched the videos (below) about etching squares of color onto a sheet with watercolor pencils, then dabbing into those colors with the waterbrush, for a wholly portable and cheap system. Fabulous idea! It worked perfect. In fact, I created the picture of the Widow Grass with that method. So, you can go anywhere and sketch out, then fill in, a painting in your journal.
Today looks like another pretty one, and I'll spend it with my husband who wants to go out and get the food for the barbecue he's putting together for my 44th birthday party tomorrow. I'm really excited about it because my family is all coming up. Woohoo! That is the greatest gift--having family together. Unfortunately, I will be missing one of my sons, but hopefully we can catch up on the phone some time during the day.
We do have our stresses around here (Tax Day, for one), but I sure feel blessed. I feel loved and surrounded with people, animals, flora and fauna--all that exude sweet spirits. My husband and I have a plaque we put up that says, "It's a Wonderful Life." How true that is.