October 30, 2008

Love Is Colorblind

"In our life there is a single color, as on an artist's palette, which provides the meaning of life and art. It is the color of love." --Marc Chagall

October 28, 2008

Spreading The Wealth

"Nothing that you have not given away will ever be really yours."

...C.S. Lewis

I have debated on whether or not I should post anything at all that has to do with the upcoming presidential election. And I am still torn about it. However, I do feel that a CHANGE is what is needed in America.

When I think about "Spreading the Wealth", I think about giving and making a difference for others. I am interested in both of these ideas and I try to do my part.

The world needs more people who care for and about others. Americans need to care more about one another. Let's remember the words inscribed on the Statue of Liberty...

"Give me your tired, your poor,Your huddled masses yearning to breath free; The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, Send these, the homeless, Tempest-tossed to me. I lift my lamp beside the golden door!" ...Emma Lazarus

We have so much in this country to be thankful for, and so why not reach out and give to someone else who has less? Can you make a difference in someone's life? Why not start now?

October 22, 2008

Thoughts On Mom-A Flower of Life

"And so, I believe, it is with your life: you are a flower, needed for a
moment and maybe nothing more. But in that moment, you make the
all-important difference. If you were not there, the day would not be the
same. You are important; you must believe that."

... Linda Hager

This quote that I took from my mother's book of poetry, Children Of The Mind, is part of a story that she told about picking a flower to take to a friend who was having a hard time. How, if the flower hadn't been there, she still would have visited the friend, but the flower added something more to the visit, something that she alone would not have been able to do.

At 58 years young, my Mom had accomplished so much. She was an author, a photographer, a journalist, a wife and mother to 2 children. She had been an advocate for women's rights, civil rights and a lobbyist at the Virginia General Assembly. She had been the editor of a small newspaper, a columnist, a reporter and a speaker. She published several children's books and wrote a play about the life of Jefferson Davis for which she was honored with a medal by the D.A.R. So many accomplishments for such a short lifetime.

So, after I picked up her book of poetry again recently, and read the words that I have quoted above, they rang so true for me. As if she had written those very words just for me. Because I believe now like she did then, that I am a flower and I am here to share with others, however brief, and I will make a difference.

I miss my Mom and I love her so much. I am thankful that she made such a difference for me and for each person that shared a moment with her.

October 19, 2008

Recent Watercolors

I painted these flowers about 2 weeks ago.
The first photo is a detail of the original below it. The dimensions are about 5" x 12".
The next watercolor is about 5" x 10".
I must start working on some more soon!

October 16, 2008

School Supplies for Blueaurie Primary

Basic school supplies that are plentiful in classrooms here in the United States are lacking in Jamaica's classrooms. Many children in Jamaica are unable to attend school because of the poverty that is prevalent throughout the country.

This week I packed a box with pencils, sharpeners, pens, flashcards, coloring books, crayons, history books, a doll baby, and a letter. I sent them on their way to Blueaurie Primary School, Friendship P. O., Jamaica. Almost all of the items were purchased at the dollar store.

My first hand written letter for Danielle (see previous post on Making a Difference... for reference) included a photo of me. I complimented her on her writing skills and encouraged her to always do her best in school. I described where I live and work and how important her education is.

Along with the school supplies I included a doll and some hair bands for Danielle. I want her to feel special and know that I care about her.

I am anxious for Blueaurie Primary to receive the supplies. It will take 10 days for the package to arrive. I am encouraged by Danielle's letter to me and I know that not only can I make a difference for her but for other children in Jamaica if even in a small way!

October 11, 2008

Making A Difference for Danielle

The opportunity to make a difference for Danielle was all a part of His plan.

Months before my trip to Jamaica this past July, I was on a mission to sponsor a child to go to school. Even though attending school is offered to all children of Jamaica, you must have the means to purchase uniforms, books, supplies and school lunches that is required. Many families in Jamaica struggle to afford this very basic opportunity for their children.

All of my efforts through emails, message boards and even folks I had met on prior trips to Jamaica to send a child to school just weren't working out. At one point I thought I had finally found someone who could help me accomplish my goal, but in the end I resigned myself to the fact that on this particular trip, it just wasn't going to happen.

I wasn't giving up, but I had decided that if it was meant to be than, with time, it would happen. I had so hoped to arrange a meeting with the family and child that I would sponsor so that it would be a more personal experience for both of us.

Now I know why I couldn't make it happen! God already had a plan in place.

During our trip we had made arrangements to visit Mayfield Falls, a beautiful sanctuary of nature in the mountains of Jamaica. On the 2 hour drive to Mayfield, we passed through many small towns and rural areas that were absent of all modern influence.

Our driver, Patrick, noticed a lady standing on the side of the road and asked if we would mind if he gave her a ride. Because we had hired and paid Patrick for our transportation, our ride there and back was chartered. Essentially this meant Patrick was our private guide for the day. Clearly Patrick was a giving person and his genorosity was apparent in his desire to offer a "free" ride to this lady.

Paulette stepped into the van. She was well dressed and soft spoken. She informed us that she was walking (in 97 degree HOT sun) to a teacher's meeting at the Blauwearie Primary School and she very much appreciated the ride.

Paulette and I spoke, exchanged addresses and telephone numbers and made big plans. I explained my goal of sponsoring a child in Jamaica. Paulette had the perfect candidate... 7 year old Danielle. Danielle was a student in Paulette's class at Blauwearie Primary School, but was only able to attend school part time because, like so many families in Jamaica, her family was not able to afford all of the uniforms and books she needed to go on a full time basis.

Joy of joys-I could help her go to school everyday!

The letter and photo you see here I recently received from Danielle. In her letter, 7 year old Danielle writes... "I am in the 3rd grade. I would like to thank you for the kind gesture to assist me in going to school. I'll make the best of this opportunity and make you and my mother proud."

God really does work in mysterious ways. That hot hot day in Jamaica on a trip to the mountains proved just how glorious He is. How He has all the plans in His hands and how if we just trust Him, it will all work out.

I cried tears of joy in the van that afternoon when we dropped Paulette off at the school. I knew right then and there just how much God loves me and loves us All. He's always got our back and He always has our best intentions in mind!

Thanks be to God for all of the blessings that he provides!

October 9, 2008

Natural Things

Nature is all around us. If we just STOP and take a look.

Throughout our daily lives we are offered so many natural and beautiful things. How is it that we don't see them?

Taking time to observe, watch and notice nature is quiet and reflective.

A child notices natural things right away. Why? Because they take the time to. As adults we get so caught up in life and living that we fail to notice the natural things.

...And they are provided to us all daily; free of charge, free of stress, and waiting there for us to notice.

Take the time today to look, notice, watch and observe. You'll be surprised just how much you will see and how wonderful you will feel once you do!

October 3, 2008

Muralistic-Giving And Receiving

Making art is a Passion. Not only does it allow me to express myself; it also allows me to share with others.

During my college years when I was learning all about Art; painting, drawing, design, and color; it was all about me! I believed that I would paint and draw, and this is how I would earn my living. People would purchase my Art and in turn I would earn money and be noticed in the Art world. It was all about me!

Now that I am older and have learned quite a bit about life and living; I know that my art is a gift. A gift that I am blessed to have, one that I must share with others. This talent I have is not for me or about me. It was not given to me so that I can boast about it or receive recognition. It wasn't even given to me so that I could earn a buck. My gift is truly that. A Gift! One that I must use not for my benefit but for the benefit of others.

Recently I have come to this realization. Once it took hold, I learned exaclty how my gift can benefit and help others. A million opportunities to share my gift have suddenly presented themselves to me. What a wonderful thing! The cards and flyers contained here were designed and printed by Andy Thompson at Keith Fabry Reprographic Solutions. This will allow me to share my gift with others by being able to pass on my information.

This week I met with Ellie Coyne with the Pallative Care unit/Massey Cancer Center at the Medical College of Virginia who has great plans to utilize my gift in her unit. I am donating wall murals and art that will dance on the walls and allow others to receive the gift that has been bestowed on me. And for that I am truly grateful. I truly am lovin' life!

October 1, 2008

More Lovin' Life - Neptune Festival