Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Polar Bear with a Red Bowtie ...

See this bear?  It sat on a shelf in my mom's kitchen my entire childhood and it always fascinated me.  A few years after moving out of mom's I stopped in for a short visit.  Mom was sorting through all her 'junk' in preparation for a yard sale that day. On her sorting table was this little bear. I was crushed and told her how much I always loved this little bear. Originally it belonged to my grandmother and then it was my mom's so I felt it needed to stay in the family.  I asked if I could have it.

As a bit of background my mom never communicated very well. She was easily angered but would never discuss why. She would just stop talking for a few days and any necessary communication would be in short sharp sentences.  Then she would appear to just get over it - the anger gone as mysteriously as it appeared.

So, when I arrived at mom's that day she was already angry and when I asked for the bear she refused to give it to me.  So I checked the price tag, doubled the amount and left the money with her. After placing the bear back on it's shelf, I asked if she would hold it for me until I returned later in the day. She didn't respond and was still angry when I left.

Well without going into detail, I returned later that day as promised. But she had taken the bear off the shelf and put it in the yard sale. It was one of the first items to sell. When asked why she sold it and she said because it belonged to her and she could do whatever she wanted with it. I was heart broken, but not because she sold the bear.  I was heart broken because I told her how much it meant to me and she didn't care. I was hurt and she didn't care. I left to go home.  Later that evening I discussed the whole thing with my brother and then just put it behind me.

Fast forward 32 years. I was browsing through a junk shop located in an old house.  There were long halls and room after room full of everything you could imagine all spread out over 3 floors. I wondered around and found myself in the same damn room again and again.  So, I settled into a comfy chair to review the map of the shop. From that chair my eyes scanned the room and on the very very top of the tallest shelf I saw a polar bear.   It was covered in so much dust it looked grey but I knew it was THE bear.

I could hardly contain my excitement when I let the shop owner know I wanted that bear. The room was packed solid with merchandise but she skillfully navigated a tall ladder around all the breakables. I just kept my eyes on that bear. It had been on that shelf for so long it was stuck and made a crackling sound when she pulled it down. I asked where she had found the bear and she used the number on the price sticker to find an index card where she had recorded the town, street address and amount she paid.   She purchased the bear from my mother's yard sale for a dollar, brought it to her shop and placed it on that high shelf where it stayed for 32 years.  True Story.

After the initial hurt of the great yard sale incident and the healing conversation with my brother I never thought of that bear again; never longed for it or thought of it wistfully. But, I believe there are no coincidences. There was a lesson in this for me and this is what I decided: while I never thought of that bear again, I did resent my mom. I never talked to her about it but it was there and probably impacted our relationship in ways I will never truly know. This is not to say discussing anything with my mom would have worked.  As I said before she did not communicate well and would not have accepted or participated in a discussion.  The lesson for me is to be sure there are no white polar bears with a red bow' in my relationships.  Things mean nothing but relationships are everything.

Thanks for stopping by !!  

Monday, August 5, 2013

What Makes My Garden Grow ...

This is definitely not the best year for my flower garden.  With days of heavy rain early in the season the weeds got a foothold and are doing very well thank you.  In fact we have declared the weeds the winner in most of our gardens.  Why not, at this point the weeds have invaded like an alien force in a bad, or good, SciFi movie.   In the world of SciFi good and bad are sometimes synonymous.

But there is good news too.  Volunteer flowers.  These guys are annuals grown from seed that cannot survive a cold winter.  Isn't nature great !! They bypassed their 'annual' and 'not winter hardy labels' and popped up on their own.  They don't care - they just want to GROW!

The Dwarf Cosmos seeds from WildSeed Farm in Texas.
I plant orange and a few in yellow.  Love these flowers and I
plant them every year from seed - except this year.

Psycho White Cosmos also volunteered this year.  I had
not planted seeds for this in 2 years.  This flower is
gorgeous - the pic does not do it justice.

Close up of Orange Cosmos.  If you scroll through my
blog you will see many pics of cosmos.

Half yellow and half orange.  No one is going to tell this
flower what color it is !

Another orange cosmos

Yellow cosmos and friend

Seeds are a great inexpensive way to fill your yard with color.  They do take time to sprout, grow and bloom but they are worth the wait. Especially flowers like these cosmos. With no work involved they will remain in bloom until frost.

Thanks for stopping by !

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Art Supplies ...

Who doesn't like art supplies?  There is no better shopping experience than browsing the aisles and finding the perfect new toy. I also hoard collect of all kinds of art supplies and there are some in my collection that have not been used at all. Pencils, pens, paper and especially paint.

This hoarding collecting has to end - the art supplies need to be used so I can buy more there will be more space in my working area.  Why I don't use more of my supplies is a mystery to me.  It is not as if they are so expensive and therefore too good to use; some are down right cheap.  After thinking about this for a while, I decided maybe it is because I just like the familiarity of the items I do use; I know how they will look, I know what to expect.  Ok, so how do I get past this pitfall?

I grabbed one of my many inexpensive thin paper journals and decided to sample all of my supplies especially those I don't use.  Maybe this will lead to using them more and it is a great way to handle and use your art supplies after a long day at work.

This is the journal I am using. I have since
collaged the cover, but this is the basic
journal.  The paper is maybe 90 lbs.

I began with the pencil sets I bought at Ben Franklin.  I have used these but they are not my go to pencils. Notice they are all sets...I loooove sets.  It never occurred to me I would be sharing this with anyone - I did this for my own use.  Sorry about the mess!! :-)

Fantasia Pitch Black Sketch Set:

I love these pencils - they are smooth and slide easily across the
paper.  They are also inexpensive - bonus!!

I have to admit, the art work on the boxes of all
these sets really appealed to me and probably
contributed to why I purchased these .  

The next set is the Fantasia Earth Tones Sketch Set:

The same sketching pencils are in each set.  I love these pastel pencils.
Love the color and they are again very smooth.  There is also a white pastel
pencil that I used to highlight a portion of the samples.

There is also a description of the pencils as
well as tips on using the pencils on the back
of the box.  Don't you love this fox?

The third Fantasia set I have is this one - Grey Tones Sketch Set:

Some of the greys surprise me - like the blue grey - because I
con't see this as a grey at all.  This also has a white
pencil, as well as sketching pencils

These sets were only 8$8.99 - not bad !

In case you are wondering, I do not in any way work for nor am I paid by Fantasia.  In my own way 
I am just trying to use all the supplies I have.  I have more pencils sets and will talk about those in the 
coming days.  Then on to my watercolor sets.  

Thanks for stopping by  !!!

Friday, August 2, 2013

One Step at a Time...

In order to give myself a little kick start back into blogging, I joined this Blogalong with Effy.  I've only missed one day so far.  Yippee!!

Check it out and join in