Monday, December 31, 2007

New Year's Eve, Pacific Grove

As the sun sets on the last day of 2007, I'm grateful for all that has been, and all that will be. Happiest new year blessings to all of my friends and family!

Sunday, December 30, 2007

Gull-friends forever

I woke up in a perfect mood today. The sun is shining, my dog is by my side on this beautiful walk, and my gull friends have been waiting for me! Not really, they would have been hanging out anyway, but when I came around the bend they all turned towards me as if to say, "Where have you been? We've been wondering when you'd get here."

I'm off to the studio later. I haven't been there much for the past couple of weeks because I've been so busy. I'm looking forward to it! I'll be working on the ATC's for my holiday giveaway. Some friends will be stopping by to visit, too. Today I'm grateful for waking up jazzed and looking forward to the rest of the day. I hope your day is a beauty!

Tuesday, December 18, 2007

Rain and Memories

We got some much needed rain on the peninsula today. One of the things I love about a good downpour is the freshness of the air. I also love the bigger waves and even taking a walk with Emma. She's not too fond of getting her delicate little feet wet though!

One of the other things I love is how things look after the rain. I was opening the gates to a house where I'm taking care of a kitty friend, Sammy, and at the edge of the driveway is an old apple tree. I was struck by how many apples were still hanging on in spite of most of the leaves being long ago blown away, and also the vibrancy of the yellow against the wet, dark branches. The tiny red leaves from the hedge below made for a stunning composition. I only wish I could have captured it better, but it was dusk already~not the best time for certain photos.

I opened the door for Sammy so he could get a dose of the crisp air since he was kept in all day. That's him to the left of the fountain. If you remember, he's the survivor of the pet food poisoning. Sadly, his companion of ten years, Little Girl, didn't make it. I still expect to see her when I go there. I know her parents still feel her around the place, as do I. Sammy, too, I'm sure.

Today's gratitude is for rain and bittersweet memories.

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Orchids in the Afternoon

One of the things I'm grateful for is sunshine. Even if it's cold outside, I'm okay if I can see the sun for at least part of the day. I have this little rainbow maker gadget my father-in-law gave me last year. You put it in a window that gets a lot of direct sun and a solar-powered wheel turns the prism so rainbows dance across the room. It's wonderful! I have it in the main gallery room of my studio. When I have the door open the rainbows go into the hallway so passersby can enjoy the show.

I usually keep fresh flowers in the studio on weekends when I'm open. I thought the sunlight on these orchids was so pretty I had to take a picture or two. Such simple things bring me joy.

Monday, December 10, 2007

I finally decorated the studio for the holidays yesterday. I'm so dedicated to my pet nursing service that I've neglected my creative self and my studio, which I consider my sacred space. I waited until I was fifty to fully embrace the artistic life and "just go for it." When I'm at the studio everything seems peaceful. Even if I'm not feeling creative or inspired, I look at books, or sit on my fantastic balcony or sometimes I just go around the place and view the art as if I'm seeing it for the first time. So, when I came into the studio yesterday I did just that. I looked at it with fresh eyes and realized I had neglected a dear friend. I got out the decorations from last year, went and bought a few more bulbs, made snowflake confetti in shades of blue and then I celebrated my space. I bought a real wreath so it would smell like Christmas used to smell for me, placed the blue and green bulbs in various nooks and table tops, sprinkled the snowflake confetti around to make it look more festive, and then I looked at my Grandfather's picture and wished him a Merry Christmas and thanked him for blessing me with a little portion of his talent. That's my greatest gift of all, and of course, helping all those wonderful animals.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

My Girl

You've all heard me mention Emma in many of my Illustration Friday posts. Now you can see why! I'm grateful for the joy she brings to my life, and she's grateful, I'm sure, for the life we gave her by saving her from further abuse and neglect. She's my faithful companion...and she also loves the beach as much as I do. Yes, that's sand all over her mouth!

Beautiful Bliss

This is my cat, Bliss. She was a starving stray five years ago. She's now fat and happy and loving life. We're grateful for each other in many ways.

My Daily Walk

This is a photo of the path at Asilomar Beach where I walk at least twice a day with my dog, Emma. It's a special place for me. I just feel so peaceful the moment I get there, and grateful for such a beautiful place to start and end my day. The path goes for miles along the coast. The smell and sounds of the ocean and wildlife is like a nature tape playing in my head. Whenever anyone from back home visits, (which is hardly ever) I make sure we walk here so they can remember this special place when they go home and I can have the memory of their company.