Wednesday, June 28, 2017

hello hello! (it's me again ...)

Truly, honestly, hopefully ...

I'm bahhhhh!

I won't lie, it has been a bitch of a season ... or two, or three.  I was probably (read: absolutely!) in denial of the depths of my funky-funk and so I kept myself moving forward by thinking Tomorrow I will be back on track and ready to dive into my life

Oh, I was deep into my life, just not the version I wanted to be my normal. But somewhere along the way I realized This is it; this IS my normal. That was my surrender moment. Of course, a whole slew of gifts manifested once I accepted my new snail's eye perspective.  When energy is low, it becomes really easy to discern the essential from the inessential.  My world narrowed down and that afforded me opportunity to dig deep and anchor myself with the basics.   I returned to my yoga practice (stretching, breathing exercises, relaxation) which in turn has brought me back to teaching.  

My art making practice has also been an exploration of why I feel the need to create and what that process nourishes: slowing down, looking, seeing, celebrating and remembering.  Back to line drawings, back to quick sketches just as my asana practice has been a return to the fundamentals to keep things fluid, open and moving. 

I had cause this morning to search back through this blog (it really is a form of memory holding for me) and I was inspired by the color, by the play, by the childlike joy in creating and sharing.  I've missed that connection with myself ... and with others.

So this is my humble return.  

We took a family camping trip at the beginning of the month to the Boundary Waters Canoe Area in northern Minnesota. It was my first time canoeing! We rented our gear from an outfitter who took us to an entry point, loaded up our canoe, handed us a map and compass and with a wave sent our little family off on a 4 day, three night adventure.  We had no set agenda other than a rendez-vous point down (or was it up?) river at a take out point.  We started paddling and pretty much were immediately lost in the sense we could not discern distant shoreline from the many small islands. We had to find a portage point (the first of many) and I admit, there was almost a mutiny among our grumbling crew.  In such matter, listen to the children. The Girl pointed out other boaters and by following them, we found our first portage.  (There is nothing more obnoxious than a preteen lording over her parents the fact she was right!)

The rest of the trip (after the long portage carrying heavy packs up and over rocks, through mud and through a rainstorm; after the thunderstorm brewing up while we frantically paddled in hopes of arriving at an empty campsite; and after the mosquitoes that feasted on any and all body parts bared no matter how brief the reveal) was an exquisite adventure. Few people, no devices, moonlight over pine trees, night time serenades by the loons, daily Bald Eagle visits, campfires, s'mores, fishing, tent time and laughter and stories and snoring.  A.Very.Good.Time.Indeed.

preparing our first night's dinner

Our second campsite came with a resident turtle and 2 fearless chipmunks

Now I am settling into the summer routine here. The Girl has been in art lessons and now a horse riding camp.  I have been putting in extra hours at the equine therapeutic riding stables where I volunteer, due to a health crisis (new virus) that hit the horses. It is winding down now, but it was intense and scary and one sweet horse was lost. I've had the horses on my mind and want to return to sketching portraits of the herd.  I know for myself such "projects" keep me on track while also stretching my muscles and honing skills.   

sweet Lucy, who is truly in the sky with diamonds now

Speaking of projects ... I also am slowly making my way through the creation of a final deck - Fire! - of Inner Alchemy Cards (a project created and mentored by Mindy Tsonas)  It all of my own creation (my other decks were created during a online class) and it is challenging and rewarding to be determining the concepts that evoke Fire for me.

Of course it is the absolutely perfect subject for me to be working through as I make my way back ...

What sparks, motivates, and inspires me to action? What qualities provoke change, growth and transformation?  

How could I forget?! I know you want to know about Moose! After a long struggle with various and minor ailments (but none-the-less frustrating AND costly) I am happy to report he is a new boy and living life with the bowl half-full-of-kibble attitude. The very high tech "button-therapy" (sewing his eye shut with a real button on the lid to keep the skin smooth, the eye closed so it could heal) was a miracle treatment.  He is back to both eyes operational although he chooses to rest them frequently (the key to his longevity: lengthy and multiple naps through the day and night).

Moose, with his button (his left eye)

And that, my friends, is all for now. I will return soon-ish. I promise :)