Tag Archives: Art

Just Another Day

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Two kids playing two different sports, with one assistant coaching the other, and our morning routine has shot to H E double hockey sticks.

We have not made the bus more than once in the last three weeks, and Monday was no exception. 

Monday was a two sport day with a golf tournament two towns away and a game for the other after school, so we loaded up the car with gear and got to the bus stop to see it pulling away. It was OK, it was an opportunity to go over the schedule for the night and review the to-dos for the rest of the week–testing and more testing for college, prom fittings, and of course the all-important play date. 

The last thing on my mind was creativity. I didn’t even have time to congratulate myself on setting the alarm clock two hours earlier to make sure it happened Monday morning. I’ve been drawing and sketching every day and working on illustrations for a children’s book but have not been in the mood to stop and soak up and/or paint the landscape.

The missed bus stayed two cars ahead of us for most of the drive out of our 300 person town. As we reached a main road, all I noticed that grey morning was the line of brake lights in front of us. 

Thing1, however, was scanning the entire scene as he waited to guide the car into what Vermont calls “traffic”. As I went through the to do list, he leaned forward and glanced up at the sky. Then he looked at the mountain that rows up behind the nondescript garage across the street.

“Mom,” he said, “look at that light. do you see that little sliver of sun hitting the hill?” I nodded no I had not and still didn’t look up as we had seen that particular hill at least twice a day every day for the last 16 years. 

Thing1 does not go gaga for art as his brother and I do. He draws very well, but his passions lie elsewhere so his next words demanded me to look up.

“Now that’s a painting,” he said.

I closed my list and listened and looked at the mountain. The parting clouds had refracted that sliver of sun so that the three-day-old leaves on the trees were infused with gold. Golden mist from the rainstorm that had past 10 minutes earlier diffused the details of the scenery in front of us, and just like that I was back into landscapes.

All it took was an overly busy, completely ordinary day and the observation of a kid who is pretty smart for a math major to point out the forest and the trees.

Love the One You’re With

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They say the best camera is the one you have with you. It’s one of the reasons I abandoned my SLR camera in favour of one-handed point-and-shoots while Thing2 still wanted to hold my hand everywhere we went.  

I’ve found the same holds true for art supplies. I have a drawer full of watercolour supplies, but lately, it’s the $6 purse-sized watercolour tin and purse-sized journal that have been winning the title of ‘best art supplies’.  

Date Night

Last Friday night Thing1 had a hot date, and the Big Guy had a gig playing guitar with his Québécois band at the local country store, so Thing2 and I decided to have Mommy-Thing2 evening.

We got to our favorite pub in Manchester, VT and, after ordering our drinks and appetizers, I pulled out my sketchbook and started sketch the candleholder.

Right on cue — as he does at every art museum or any time I’m sketching on the road — T2 asked if I had an extra journal. For once, i had thought to pack an extra, and the two of us sketched together in silence until our food arrived.

We came up with with wildly different pictures and spent the rest of the meal talking about art, architecture on Mars and art supplies.

It made for a different but quietly wonderful kind of date night.

Minions in the Morning

The neon tetras are hilarious to watch sometimes.

I got a bonsai so Herman the Hermit could have a retreat for the more social fish, but the the tetras, a.k.a the Minions immediately claimed it for their daily 3PM game of tag.

Herman got sick of the ruckus and gave up the shady spot under the bonsai to spend more quality time with the thinker girl.

Make Me Smile

We decided to reconnect our granola, earth-sheltered house to the grid before the first snow fell last November, and, after years of watching every watt, we indulged. 

We used an electric dryer over the winter and  renewed a relationship with our crock pot. I even adopted a school of tetras and a guppy, setting them up  in style with a few plants and a little stone thinker girl.

I added a Plecostomus, also known as a Suckermouth Catfish — technically a bottom feeder — to control  algae.  He was a little shy at first, so I named him Herman the Hermit, resisting the urge to name him after some politician.

Soon, I caught him whispering in thinker girl’s ear, and her smile seemed to grow (he must have been telling her how well he’d clean the tank because he did). Her beaded hat gleams, which made me realize most politician are not bottom feeders.  Bottom feeders performs a useful service, after all.
 
And, anyway, how many politicians would think to make a woman smile by cleaning up without being asked?