Sunday, July 29, 2007

Beachweek

road trip!!!!Sam took this pix on our way to the beach. I was the driver. Not to worry, we were stopped in traffic before we even got to the Bay Bridge. Seems like more & more people head to the shore each year. Traffic is a given, so we make the best of it. The B hats? Kerry is the Boston fan. So we all donned the caps, turned up the radio and rocked on. We had perfect weather all week. Cool breezes, low humidity and sun, sun, sun.

night fallsThere were 20 of us in one house, no fighting, no harsh words, no nerves on edge. Did I say ideal? 14 adults, 4 kids, 2 babies. 2 blocks to the beach. I took scads of artwork with me and spent the whole week reading (The Icarus Girl, in preparation for 21 year old, Helen Oyeyemi's 2nd book which has rave reviews, The Opposite House.) I needed that - even my husband commented that I hadn't read a novel in such a long time. It's because I have the choice - make art, or read. They are both all consuming. So why did it take me a week to read one book...family. You know, you're reading, but also listening to conversation, watching kids run in and out of the surf, stopping to calm a crying baby, and sometimes just pausing to let it all sink in ~ the beauty of a week with my family. So many pages, paragraphs, sentences were read, re-read and read again, which actually brought the character of Jessamy more to life for me - she became part of my family.

another LaLa LandI truly was in LaLa Land all week. This charming, artist decorated restaurant was too expensive for me to eat in, but I took pleasure in peeking in the windows at the hand-painted interior, chair fabric included. Rehoboth Beach is an artsy town on the Delaware coast that has grown so much over the years since we first came in 1971 It was a joy to have everything within walking distance ~ especially the ice cream shops - a must-do after dinner walk.

I even left my camera in it's case most of the week, wanting to be a participant rather than an observer. I didn't feel compelled to record the way I have on other trips. But there were plenty of other cameras snapping all week. That said, I did capture a few memorable shots ~ some of my favorites you see here. Not the typical beach shots,julia in her cocoonbut the moments that make a lasting impression in your heart.

Now it is time to get back to the business of art. I have a book to write and classes to teach. I'm home for 2 months until it's time to travel again and that will be a whirlwind 6 weeks. Best get busy.




night fishin - dad & daughter
I might even try to sneak in another book or two, in between paint, stitch and glue. Any suggestions? What have you been reading this summer?

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

What's Really Important?

on top of the world at the Grand CanyonIt's been a while since I have posted. Please forgive me. But really, when it boils right down to it, this blog takes the backseat to my "real" life - my family. I am rolling around in the grass of family, wrapping the blanket of family around me and diving into the pool of family water. I love it. It is what I have been missing the most for the past few years while I have been being an artist, teacher, author, and editor. And as if to coincide with my yearning, my family has blessed me with their presence, both geographically and physically, multiplying by leaps and bounds. I am literally on top of the world.

kelly viewing the canyon
It still amazes me that through my art I have been not only able to see so much of the world this year, but to share it with my husband and even my daughter ~ trips that would not have been financially possible otherwise. I love what I do. As much as I love to see the light in my daughter's eyes as we gaze at the Grand Canyon or listen to Native American storytellers at Idyllwild, my fantastic Idyllwild class, minus CarolI love to see my students eyes shine when they do a successful transfer, or discover the talent that lies within. I don't think of it so much as teaching, but as sharing what I know and instilling confidence in those who come to my class. Sounds a lot like mothering, doesn't it? It's the same thing, to grow stron, confident people who can succeed with their dreams.
so close, yet so farIf you look closely, you can see the Colorado River in the upper right corner of this photo, the green dash. With my simple point and shoot camera, it is hard to get a sense of depth in this photo. That is exactly how I feel when trying to get my head around the depth of my love for for my family. I created six children. Children who are now creating their own. New mothers who need my presence almost as much as they needed me when they were born. As many of you know, I am taking next year off from traveling and teaching. When I made the decision, it was to refill my well, to find new directions in my art and spend more time with my parents as they age. The art part may still happen, but for now, it looks like it will be the year of family. I'm not complaining. Saturday we leave for a week at the beach - all 18 of the extended family in one big house. People say we're crazy ~ I couldn't be happier.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

Yawn.........


We're all good here. Grandma has been by every day. I am eating well and gaining weight. Yesterday I went to grandma's house for my cousin Emma's 9th birthday party. The weather was perfect. Of course I was passed around to great-grandma Junie, various aunts, uncles and cousins. It was fun but tiring. Four more days until grandma leaves for Idyllwild. What's Mom gonna do?