Monday, December 31, 2018

31 days of posts the week ahead is 2019 !

seen in a storefront in Boulder
Welcome to this week's Happy Homemaker post.
Tomorrow is a start to a new year.
I cannot believe how much was packed into 2018, and that it's nearly over.whew.

beaded flower from Dillards this week
I forgot about this regular post when I wrote a post on our recent trip into Denver to the Art Museum, so that will have to be on Wednesday. I am continuing  to post daily for a bit.
(How do you like seeing something daily? )

Coming into a new year is important to me, as is starting on the right foot, doing the things the first day of the year that you want to do all year.

The weather
Oh who knows.... it's so changeable here!!!
8" of snow... or... no snow but cold like 5F or so... cold enough that a poodle misses his trimmed hair!
Update: 50's yesterday, 19F today and snowing. Pretty good too. Just started and covering the roads and sidewalks already. Swirly snow, blowing into the porches, the icing on life's cake.
New Year's Day has special traditional food for me as a Southerner. I was adopted into a family from the deep south, so collard greens for money, and black eyed peas for luck are expected.

I am allergic to beef and pork, so we have a turkey ham sliced cooked with orange juice, pineapples and marsala wine is our meat. I make ambrosia too.
We took a trip to Trader Joe's this week, so we are  stocked up with good things to eat.

I will finalize a word and or phrase of the year, write down some goals which I've done a few already. That will stand in for my to do list...

NOT take down the family room tree... it will stay up thru Jan.
Not take down the outside lights, they bring beauty to the dark winter nights
Enjoy the red carnations purchased yesterday at TJ's
prepare the ambrosia, and possibly cook the collard greens for Jan 1 2019
enjoy the last days of DH's time off, by doing things together
Mop the floors and clean the poodle so we start the new year a bit cleaner. (one of them smells like dog spit, well, both might)

I've written out my goals list on this post (link here)

we're into Delicious  from BBC but sadly we're finishing up the last episode made to date, and watching silly funny, Moody's Holidays from Australia as well as some other series on ACORN  We tried to watch a movie on netflix but it was set in Portugal and too violent in content for me. Apparently they are releasing Murdoch Mysteries a week at a time now...

Lea Michele sings a lovely version of Auld Lang Syne

Now that we got the disc player hooked up to the wall speakers, I'm enjoying my cd collection. DH gave me the Goat Rodeo (with Yo Yo Ma ) so it's one of my current favorites... go get it and see! Or watch on youtube.

Listening to another book by Fern Michaels (weekend warrior series) while sewing. A group of older women handle problems with vigilante moves... set in DC.

for sale at Denver museum of art
Art Scene
so exciting... I'm finishing up the Christmas bargello and preparing to quilt. I want to do journal quilts again this year... for me that means 8.5 X 11" quilts using new techniques, or materials, experimenting, documenting the weeks.

I got the Jane Davenport book on drawing women and am totally excited about delving into that. Plus her face stamps were half off at Michaels this weekend and I got one... can't wait!

Made it through this year, so far, one day to go. It was ahem, challenging to say the least.

Lessons learned
I quite enjoyed writing daily, and forcing myself to imagine new short stories on topic. Learn by doing.
It's good to ignore chores while on staycation, and just enjoy going and doing new things.

I hope to write about my word/phrase of the year tomorrow, and do the art museum pictures on Wed and Thurs. So many interesting things in the Rembrandt exhibit to share including our attempts at engraving.

Image result for quotes about new year

thank you for being here... for reading my words, for sharing my life and times, for being my friends tried and true, for encouragement this year, for the experiences shared across the miles.
For being there.
Love, LeeAnna
please enjoy a very cute video of Zoey Dechannel and Joseph Gordon Levitt singing together
(she plays a uke! yea!)

Sunday, December 30, 2018

31 days of posts Sunday Stories... Looking for Joy

No prompt this week... they didn't entice me. I've written on Joy all season, and today's story finishes the season with a big bow...
wishing you all the best life has to offer
Looking for joy

Every year Lorna chose a word of the year. It was a focus sort of, a goal, a guiding force, a vehicle for the universe to communicate with her. 
It was not trivial, oh no. She also found out after several years that it would not always be the obvious lessons learned. Nor would the word only bring good times, no, the universe had other lessons in mind for her. Even a happy word like "happiness" would come to teach her both sides to the coin. What it felt like to be happy, or not be happy, what came from feeling happy, how to do it, what the lack felt like, etc. 

She had struggled nearly all her life, to survive. She was tired. She thought if one more person said, "look at the bright side!" when disaster fell on her, she may shatter into a million pieces. Yes, of course, things could always be worse. She was aware enough to know, even if they could be worse, they were bad enough as is. 

After a while, she wondered if looking at the good side was a form of denial, a way to avoid dealing with the sad side of life. 

Hope springs eternal though. When hope leaves there is only darkness left behind. The human spirit needs hope like air, water, and nourishment.
So, if she picked JOY this year, would she feel the joy she longed for? She was not new here... the year she chose self esteem it never manifested, she only learned she had to form it from within and she didn't have the building blocks.
So, Joy... was this her word? 

Joy walked behind Hope... could you ever seek it, or must you wait for it to land on you like a butterfly? Could it be manufactured? Created by thinking a certain way? She was so tired... she didn't have the energy inside to create it. She didn't even know the ingredients to gather to form it. Or if it could be formed by will. Wouldn't that be fake?

She would start by observing Joy in others. Noting how it showed on their faces, or watching little humans under the age of 2 (when the word NO took over) seemed to feel joy, or the look on a dog's face when it's given a chew toy or sees it's human coming. Joy was illusive, and dropped in unannounced. It was surprising, and untouchable. It brought with it hope of good things to come. 

She thought to when she had ever felt joy... yes it's a good thing. When she found the missing keys that time! (in the fridge) and when she picked up her new puppy, leaving together with all the joy of connection in place. She felt joy when that special guy said he loved her... again a connection of spirit. She remembered when she saw a quilt she made hanging at a big show with a ribbon on it! Unexpected happiness... Joy. Joy is not just relief, like a knife being dropped and missing one's foot. It's not contentment like coming into a warm house from a cold walk to smell dinner cooking. Joy wasn't the same as good feelings that grew. 

It tapped you on the shoulder!  It landed on you like the butterfly, out of the blue! It won't be ignored or unnoticed... it made an entrance! 

One can't live in a perpetual state of Joy, it would lose the luster. No, it was illusive, and surprising and unmistakable when it showed up. It was the star of the show. It was not to be stalked or sought, it couldn't be preserved in a jar for when you needed it, or conjured up with the right ingredients

It was simply a gift

She decided to choose a different word, but she would keep her eyes open this year for Joy when it arrived, welcome it in, provide a place for it to live inside her, alongside hope 

Saturday, December 29, 2018

31 days of posts Random photos and goals

random pics of the week.... cows at the feed store in Castle Rock
Can't tell if this is sick or not...
Welllllll, my pup looks better than we do!


we see llama stuff everywhere now!

 sad to see Christmas dec go away for a year!
brilliant Christmas lights outside will be turned off for the long winter's nap in a few days. I'm seeing trees without foliage and enjoying the texture
Three trees?
one tree... with bones! or many trees in one tree?
I've written many stories about Joy this season, and have loved the exercise in imagination. The stories seemed to write themselves and I enjoyed them.

We have now been in Colorado for one year. I cannot say we love it here yet...

...but we like some aspects of it. It was a year of changes some we chose, some we didn't. We needed to move.( because of pesticides overuse.) The job was here so here we came.

I have changed a bit,
I'm alone more here and am surprised to feel kind of okay about it. I seem to need to nest and settle right now. The quiet time has brought more writing moments and I've enjoyed that. Age has brought more acceptance that I am what I am.
I haven't settled on a word for the year yet. I choose a word or phrase each year, and the universe teaches me lessons all year on it. It may be Explore. It may be "good things happen"

Some things I want to explore next year: 
Use my supplies with abandon even on work that will not be shown or competitive
learn to use my digital camera and software to edit photos
write a lot, pursue publishing
dance again
open each box even the basement and garage boxes
meet like minded people who are accepting and smart, funny and creative, and kind.
see the area...get in the car and go to new towns
Do some more studio visits with artists for the blog
Make time to visit with far away friends.... distance means little when it comes to matters of the heart

want to chat with me? email me with your  phone number and we will. I would like that!

Linking to
all seasons

Friday, December 28, 2018

31 days of posts viva Cuba exhibit

Here are some shots of the Cuba exhibit at Denver's science museum...
I grew up in Tampa Florida. It was a mix of many ethnicities, including white folk (the term "crackers" comes from people who's ancestors worked driving cattle and cracked whips) Cubans (people who moved there to make cigars in Ybor City and people displaced during the revolution).

We went to Ybor city a lot, to eat at the Columbia restaurant. Then as a young adult, I went to party with other artists who took up residence there before it became chichi. I went often to grab a Cuban sandwich, cafe con leche, baguette of cuban bread, or bowl of black beans.
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so I thought I knew about Cuba. This exhibit was a wonderful lesson in the forming of 4000 islands into a country, of it's people, religions, history, natural wonders,

Nature "painted snails"
archeology, economics, and most of all ART!
cigars were a big export, but also sugar cane. My Dad used to bring home sugar cane from a days work buying and selling crops of citrus. I remember chewing the fibers to release the sugar.
Being so close to Florida, it was a place to see and be seen on vacations.
being careful not to be eaten by a jumping croc!
this was a stone cave painting... there was a land bridge from central America at one point, and so the ancient art reminds me of old Mexican artifacts.
The have a form of carnival

and at least 7 religions, outlawed for a while under Castro, but now legal again. There is nearly 100% literacy among citizens who also receive health care. Castro gave up smoking in the 80's I think, as a model for others to quit too. 

the artists working now are producing some gorgeous work.

 there were interactive touch screens to see it all

 I enjoyed the wall of posters as well as fine art being made all over the country

a poster... isn't the graphic cool? Love the mouth and the words in white
another poster... love the way the street map forms a croc!
Hope you enjoyed the little local museums!

We also loved going through the mind bender exhibit one more time, and I noticed this for sale...
I'm almost done with the 31 days of posts... I'll be going back to about 3 posts a week in January

Thursday, December 27, 2018

31 days of posts... I Like Thursdays # 121

Welcome to this week's list of likes. Boy this week passed by quickly didn't it?

I loved the full moon this week, very dramatic!
even my little point and shoot captured the magic!
 along with the interesting clouds we almost always have, it was gorgeous!

I liked the neighborhood church doing a Christmas Eve service in the park so we could walk to it!
singing, a few prayers, kind of a sermon. It was very cold, but they had hot chocolate for us to sip, and all were welcome!

I love singing!
Earlier that day we had gone to the Science Museum, always a treat...

lots of BIG crocs in Cuba!
...(we're members) and seeing two exhibits... one was about Cuba. I learned a lot, surprising me as I grew up in Tampa Fl. with the Cuban culture and many Cuban friends. Definitely miss true Cuban food! I got fun pics that deserve their own post to come later this week!
Cuban coffee for everyone! Viva!

We visited the brain games area too. What fun! I was so happy to see so many smart people challenging their problem solving skills too. It was fun to watch teens and younger kids solving complex puzzles. We did pretty well ourselves, and on one game Drew and I won equal times, whew!
Those who are married know what I mean!

I loved getting some gifts from long distance friends this week. Not expected at all, but so full of terrific things that show how well they know me!
Pat in NY sent these really cool fabric fat quarters she collected for me on a trip. She also included some floral scraps, knowing my extreme love of scraps!
flamingos with gnomes! Flamingos with hearts! COWS!!!
I know a person can cut up yardage and voila! Scraps! but still... there's nothing like getting someone else's scraps!!!

My friend Ellen sent a box chock full of treasures!!!
every time I look in I find some new treasure!!!
 How exciting that was.. kind of like opening a stocking to find lots of things! Fabric including this cowboy one! LOVE IT! a mesh bag of threads, pins in pretty colors, stamps galore to use in creativity work this year, patterns to make me happy,  oh so much to love.

I love her for doing this, it lifted my spirits and I felt connected to her. Connection is the one thing above all that I seek in life. I like my comfort, I surely love my husband and pup and fabric, but the connection between me and my friends... priceless.
see Mary there on the left, and me taking the shot?
We spent part of Christmas day in Boulder with my friends Mary, Ben and Paul. Mary gave me this lovely hand made pin cushion and some caramel cookies to be enjoyed this week.

It's been terrific to hear from friends around the globe via cards this week too. Thank you to all for the connections we share.
I really wanted this mug from Anthropologie (in Nordstrom)  but how many mugs can a person keep???
Bonjour! with hexies! Whee!
it was next to this way cool mixer
I liked the little beaded snowflake ornament we got in Castle Rock when we had a lovely visit with our friends Rose and Bob this week

Milo's Moments
finally it's my turn!
Barking out loud! I love Christmas! I got some new toys, and my Mama and Daddy are both home with me all week! Whee! Lots of rideinnacar's too.

 I liked walking around Boulder and meeting a 7 month old Airedale puppy Mia... we romped best we could on leashes
note the tiny hexi tiles
 and I liked this baby I met at a hotel lobby... how cute is she? She knew already how to be gentle on my naturally curly hair! I know babies are delicate and I might grab Daddy but wouldn't never grab a little baby. Nope, you gotta be gentle with them.
And hope they drop a cherio.

I have never yet met a black lab I don't like! I met my friend Onyx one morning and the two of us ran and ran and ran and ran on the golf course.
We had to stop when some guy wanted to play through.

Well, gotta go work on destroying these non-destructible toys...

Mama says
“The difficult we do immediately. The impossible takes a little longer.”—Motto of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
then have a new snack!
Everyone having lots of naps and snacks this week? Hope so! And play!

please visit these peeps also doing lists of likes... think about doing your own to share here! 

Mary in Boulder
Minou's Minute 

Linking to parties! 
Pink Saturday!
http://sky watch Fridays Thankful Thursday Pets
Thursday Thirteen