wabi sabi

a beauty of things imperfect, impermanent, and incomplete.
a beauty of things unconventional.

Saturday, December 31, 2011

On Feeling Lost and not Knowing

I seem to have lost my way a bit the past few months so things have been quiet on my little blog. It has been a time of more questions than answers. Doing battle with the choir of self doubt that likes to sing in my head from time to time. (more often than I would like) A time of mostly being unsure of myself, my choices, and my direction. But like all times of darkness and doubt, clarity does come around. This time with the help of some healing work. I am not quite there but I am seeing lots of light. More and more clarity and less self doubt. In the words of Caroline Myss "it is time to call back your spirit". That is my work right now.

We are leaving our little house in Maine and heading back to California in a couple of days. We usually leave right after Thanksgiving but this year decided to stay for Christmas and New Year's. It has been a lovely time. We sold our California house earlier this summer and put our belongings in storage so will be renting an apartment for a few months. We are going to move only what we really need and live very simply for our stay there. I am really looking forward to that. The rest is unknown. We may or may not buy another house. Maybe in California, maybe not. We may or may not take a road trip. We are unsure where we might end up in the winter. It may be different every year. Lots of unknown but it feels like a good opportunity to practice just being where I am and doing what I am doing at the moment without thinking too far ahead. I'm thinking that it's not a bad place to be.

I am looking to the New Year with great hope and anticipation. Lots of adventures, creative time, and general joy making! I wish the same for you.


Wednesday, September 21, 2011

The Beauty That is Squam

sunrise from cabin window

I have been home from Squam for a few days and am still struggling to find words to describe this most magical place. Words to describe what happens there. What I do know for sure is that when that many creative spirits come together with open hearts and outstretched arms magic does happen. Wide open hearts connect with others, every outstretched arm links with the next, and a circle is formed. A circle that fills you with love. A circle that lifts your spirit and holds space for all that you dream of. A circle that will support and encourage you to be your very best authentic self.

It is in this most magical place that I feel most myself. In this place I feel accepted and loved. In this place I feel worthy. And in this place I feel extraordinarily blessed. Blessed to be given space to open my heart and link arms and be part of this tribe.

I will share more over the next few days but for now I leave you with part of a poem that Elizabeth read Sunday morning before we left.

A Morning Offering

I place on the altar of dawn:
The quiet loyalty of breath,
The tent of thought where I shelter,
Wave of desire I am shore to
And all beauty drawn to the eye

May my mind come alive today
To the invisible geography
That invites me to new frontiers,
To break the dead shell of yesterdays,
To risk being disturbed and changed.

May I have the courage today
To live the life that I would love,
To postpone my dream no longer
But do at last what I came here for
And waste my heart on fear no more.

John O'Donoh


Thursday, June 23, 2011

Heading Out

My bags are packed and waiting. The house is clean. The fridge is empty. I am heading out Saturday morning for a couple of days in Las Vegas for a family wedding and then on to our sweet little island house in Maine. I have had a much needed month of solitude and quiet and mostly feel ready to participate in the world again.(Maybe I should start slow!) I have had time to quiet all the external chatter and get some clarity about many areas of my life. I have seen very few people. Mostly my favorite son and my chiropractor. There has been some art making, a little bit of embroidery, lots of journal writing, late evening walks, and listening to singing birds. Lots of self care and nurturing.

Going back to the island is a different kind of nurturing. There is lots of space and breathing room. I am much more social there. For such a tiny little town there is an abundance of summertime events and activities. I am looking forward to having dinner parties, drinks on the decks, long walks, farmer's market, making art, hanging out with family, art receptions, sitting on the deck, and lots of lobster!

jaz and favorite son

I am also very excited to see my puppy! She went to Maine with my husband a month ago so I have been missing her company but I know she is very happy on the island.

I am thinking I am going to unplug for a few weeks. I love being connected to the blogging community and facebook but sometimes I feel a bit overwhelmed by it. So for now I think I will settle back into island life with my family and having an awesome summer. I want to do only the things that truly make my heart sing and be willing to let the rest go.

I wish you an awesome summer!

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

In Solitude

Setting Intentions

Quieting the Chatter

Finding the Silence

Being Gentle

Holding Space for Clarity

Being Grateful

Monday, May 23, 2011

Gearing Up for Summer

For us that means heading back to Maine to our wonderful little house on the island. I always look forward to returning and the ritual of opening the house and settling back in to our life there. The smell of sweetgrass, peonies, and lilacs. We have a wonderful community of friends and family. As much as I look forward to returning, this summer I have decided to take a little extra time before I go East. My husband will leave in a few days to fly back with our dog. I am going to stay in California for a few weeks for some much needed solitude. A few weeks of nothing to do but take care of my own well being. Days with nothing but my own company and my own rhythm.

A few weeks of painting, creating, exploring, and playing.

Time to just sit with my thoughts.

And time to just breathe.

I am still looking forward to going to Maine and having an awesome time. Just a little bit later this year.

What are you looking forward to this summer?

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Teahouse Studio and Blooming True

There is nothing like a group of women who have all gathered with open hearts and creative spirits. We gathered at the beautiful Teahouse Studio in Berkeley to paint, be inspired, and Bloom True with the amazing Flora Bowley.

This was my second class with Flora and I feel like I have just scratched the surface. What I get from her and her process of painting is about so much more than painting. It encourages me to stretch past my comfort level and how I look at life. Flora's philosophies about painting ring true for me about how I want to approach my life. There are no mistakes. Trust yourself. Recognize "happy accidents". Be authentic. And so much more to carry with me.

These are the two paintings I worked on over the two days. There will be many more layers added before I feel like they are done.

The Teahouse Art Studio is a great space full of light and energy. Mati, Tiffany, and Stef have created a wonderful welcoming space to gather, be inspired, and create. They have some wonderful classes lined up and more coming. If you haven't checked out their website I encourage you to visit often and go take a class. You will meet the most amazing women and have tons of fun! Give yourself a gift.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Old Interest Revisited

When I was young I wanted to be a designer. What I was going to design changed from time to time but the desire was always there. I remember in high school reading an article about Vera Neumann and her painted scarves. The idea that you could have a business painting on fabric was fascinating to me at the time. This of course was after periods of being equally fascinated by designing clothes, jewelry, and rooms. I have again become interested in the idea of painting on fabric. Right now I am really inspired by Lotta Jansdotter and Lena Corwin. I bought Lotta's stencils several months ago and finally took time to play with them. Super fun and easy! A canvas bag from Michaels, fabric paint, and about 1/2 hour later you have a cute bag. Next up is trying my hand at carving my own lino blocks and stamps. I have a stack of napkins and tea towels ready to go!

I am off to Berkeley tomorrow for a play day and then a 2 day workshop with the amazing Flora Bowley at the Teahouse Studio. Looking forward to an awesome weekend!

Wishing you an awesome weekend!

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Flora Inspired

Are you familiar with Flora's work? Take a minute (or several) and spend some time on her website. You will be inspired. In a couple of weeks I will be heading up the road (more like the freeway) to Berkeley to take another class with her. This time it will be two days at the Teahouse Studio. I am very excited. I love the intuitive way she paints and can't wait to explore it more. I am needing some inspiration.

Check out the Teahouse Studio sight if you haven't already. They have some great classes lined up!

Are you taking any fun classes?

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

I Had Good Intentions!

I had great intentions after Artful Journey. I really did. I wanted to share the weekend with all its goodness and inspiration. But instead I fell into the dark hole that I sometimes fall into. I am working on crawling out but this has been a tough one. But the sun is shining, spring is here and there is always a new day.

I don't really have a lot of words right now so I w
ill just share some pictures of my art that I worked on during my amazing Artful Journey.

My work from Stephanie Lee's plaster class.
Plaster on burlap glued to a board.

Plaster gauze wrapped around cardboard.
More plaster applied over a stencil.

Pieces in progress

I had so much fun playing with the plaster. Taking such simple materials like plaster and cardboard and creating art. They were painted with inexpensive craft acrylics. I had not played with plaster since grade school when we poured it into milk cartons and then carved it. There is nothing like getting messy and making art.

There is also the magical place and the awesome ladies from this adventure. I will share those soon.

Happy Spring!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011


One year ago I attended my very first art retreat. It sounds so simple now but a year ago I was terrified. I wrote about it here and here. It was the beginning of a year of finding my way again. I still have a lot of self doubt and criticism. I haven't quite found my center yet but the fog is beginning to clear. I am learning my own truth and listening to my own voice.

Thursday morning I am returning to An Artful Journey. I am beyond excited to be back at this most amazing retreat. Cindy has lined up the most amazing group of teachers and after much agonizing over which class I wanted to take I finally followed my gut feeling and will be getting messy with Stephanie Lee in her plaster class. I love her work and am looking forward to all she has to share and exploring something new. I will reconnect with friends I met last year and meet new ones. We will talk and laugh, make art and share our stories. I will feed my soul, heal my spirit and expand my heart.

Will I see you there?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

How Did That Happen?

My little boy turns 25 today! How did that happen? I feel like he was just at the stage that I was trying to get him to understand why he should sleep more than 2 hours at a time and now he is a grown up. We have not always had a easy time of things, he and I. Being a single mother of a boy child is not a easy thing. My mama bear instincts have always been and still are very fierce! There were many years that I fought with him, about him, and for him. He has taught me as many lessons as I hope I have taught him and now here we are. A very proud mom and her adult child. I am blessed and honored to be his mother.

Happy Birthday Mr B. I wish for you all your heart desires

Tuesday, January 11, 2011



to take up especially readily or gladly
to avail oneself of
to take in or included as a part, item, or element of a more inclusive whole

So that is it. My word for 2011. I will show up fully and embrace every day and all that is offered within that day. My creative journey, my relationships, my dreams. All of the big moments and the not so big moments. I will embrace opportunities and gifts and growth. The perfect and the not so perfect. I will embrace it all and I will celebrate it.

what is your word?