Sunday, November 13, 2011

Lynn's childhood home

There is a story............there always is.  We all tell one.  The story can be good, bad and/or ugly.  Stories, just the same.  The most important story is about how/where we grew up.  About the early years that shaped us into what we are today.  And how we can change that story whenever need be.

This isn't my story.  This is my husband's (Lynn) story about when/how and where he grew up.  This painting is with regard to the place where he spent most of his formative years.  The place where he created very important memories.  The memories he has shared with me over all the years we have been together.  The memories that shaped this portrait.  Lynn was the oldest of five boys.  He has the earliest memory of any of his brothers when first moving into this house.

His mother (who was the best mother-in-law anyone could ever have) had the most pristine yard and home.  She was an amazing daughter, woman, teacher, wife, mother, grandmother and great grandmother.  She welcomed me in to her home that Christmas eve of 1968 with open arms.  It has been an honor for me to paint the portrait of this place aptly called "home".  A home that housed ALL boys.  A home that welcomed (with loving arms) my visiting family members whenever we came "home."  The back patio was the popular hangout for visitors.  And we all came together on that spot for years.

Lynn's mother passed away in 2003.  His father continued to live in this house until he died this past Feb.  He was able to stay home, due to the loving care of two family members.  He spent his last warm months sitting out on the patio, feeling the sunshine, welcoming visitors and taking a snooze or two.  He loved his patio.  He loved his home.  It's a good story.

Photos show the progression the house portrait.  If you are a family member (extended or otherwise) and would like a free print of this painting, let me know.  I present this in loving memory of Roger and Ruby Hill.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Presentation of "Living in Spirit" at Unity in Community on August 21, 2011.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Recent watercolor projects

There is a sweet story behind the Sparrow and the Cricket.  This was a gift to my friend who recently lost her mother.  The Sparrow is a reminder of my friend's mother's prayer for everyone.  The cricket is symbolic of the child presently growing within the granddaughter-in-law.  It is a sweet story, but not one that I am privy to share.

The bowl of oranges was my attempt to work with a dark background.  Let's just call this one "fiddling around". 

Sunday, July 3, 2011

Quality "painting" time with granddaughter, Johanna

While daughter and hubby were away last week, I spent quality time with my dear grandchildren.  I brought some of my watercolor supplies with me.  Granddaughter, Johanna wanted me to paint a portrait of their dog, "Rose" to give to her mother.  I would rather use acrylic for portraits, but I find that I can use watercolor for still life paintings.  So, I opted to paint a single rose.  Johanna opted to watch the process.  

After a while, I suggested that she try her hand at painting.  She told me she couldn't paint, but she could
draw.  I suggested that she could paint, if given the basics.  So she opted to sketch and paint a butterfly for her mother.  I showed her some basic techniques and here is the result of her efforts.  I think it turned out quite fantastic.  Her mother was really impressed and pleased with the outcome.   It was delightful to share some "art" time with my beautiful and talented granddaughter.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Young Miss Switzerland

So here is our Johanna donning her swiss attire.  She wears it proudly and that makes my heart sing.  She did a great job on her exhibit, as well.  Such a lady of detail, organization and skill.  She writes well, just like her mother her report was amazing.

Didn't spend that much time with her, though.  After about 15 minutes, her mother picked up on J's stress and suggested we move along.  Jenaye  is amazing and always tunes in to her children's needs.  As does Josh!

Johanna (I will refer to her as Jo from here on out, so as to differentiate between Jenaye and Johanna.......J's get confusing.......let's not forget the dad, Josh!   I do know that Johanna only likes certain people to use the name "Jo" for her.....and I don't think I am one of them.  But for now, I use Jo!  I like it alot!  Blah, blah, blah, blah!  Onto the point of this babbling.

I respect both Jenaye and Johanna's concerns, re: awaiting the first graders to come through and pose many questions about Jo's country.  So, she kept looking for them to enter the gymnasium.  I visited a couple of her friend's exhibits in the meantime.  I was quite impressed with their efforts and willingness to share.  I know many of her peers, so it was fun to see their projects.  My how these lovely people have grown and matured.  I can't believe my granddaughter will be in middle school next fall.

Do you remember being in 5th grade?  I went to Catholic school, so I attended elementary school in the same complex through 8 grades.  Never knew what it was like to go to different classrooms until then.  High school was a nightmare for me.  There is something to be said about middle school.  A smoother
transition?  What do you think?

I don't know why Jo chose Switzerland for her project.  I neglected to ask............but I will!  The interesting thing is that when I purchased the pattern for her costume, I noticed it was printed in four languages.........which included Swiss/German, etc.  While I was cutting out the pieces, I saw the first half of my maiden name in the directions.  I knew that my maiden name (Zwischenberger) meant "Between the mountains"  Zwischen meaning between.  Berger meaning mountains.  Imagine my surprise and delight, when I read the word for "Gathering" was Zwischen.  Zwischen - between, among, gathering.  Wow!  A gathering in the mountains.  So sweet.

So I related that to Jo today and she thought it was pretty cool.  Before I left the building, I touched her arm (she is at that age where she would be embarrassed by a hug from Grandma in such a setting,,,,,and I respect that) and said:  We are leaving you now, so that you can pay attention to the Zwischen (gathering) of the first graders.  She laughed and then smiled so sweetly and said, "Thank you for coming."  It was a good day for me.  I hope I left her with some good thoughts about her heritage.

Monday, May 2, 2011


I have made many a costume for my children over the years.  Most recently I have made many a costume for my grandchildren.  I never thought to post them on my blog, but I am re-thinking this.  I need  to go through many pictures (digital, hard copy, etc)...........and will post them at a later time.  Thanks for visiting.

Sooooooooooo (sew)...........I love to create.  Be it making beautiful children, painting art, gardening, affirming, etc.  It is all there within me.  And I embrace it.  This is my latest endeavor.  A project for my beautiful granddaughter.  She requested that I make a costume for her school's International Fair presentation this week.  Since her country is Switzerland, she wanted a Swiss costume.  I found a pattern for her and inquired about the colors she wanted.  Her answer was: sky blue dress with a black apron and grass green ribbon for the lacing.  No problem!!!!  So, here is the end result.  I added a little sparkle here and there (per her acceptance).  I am so looking forward to being there to watch her presentation .........which she also requested from me (be still my beating heart!).  Photos of she herself donning the costume will follow.