Bird & Sunrise photo

Bird & Sunrise photo
Because "someday" is today!

Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Fall Preserves

Wonderful morning sunlight shining through my jars of jam, Taos Canyon, New Mexico
I love the colors.
Summer is officially over when it snows here, and that was on Sept. 21st. My garden is mostly done. I managed to get the tomatoes under cover, but they are still only as big a golf balls. I made a valiant effort to grow things at this elevation, 8500 ft., but it did prove just too cold for squash and pumpkins. There were some potatoes to harvest and some very small corn. Lettuce and chard were definitely the winners.
Growing small corn variety at 8,500 ft.  Still pretty after the first fall frost.
Still pretty, even after the frost.
 Luckily, my family sent me home from Utah with peaches, blackberries, squash, normal size sweet corn and some cucumbers. My creativity has been focused on making jam and trying to bottle pickles for the first time. Thankfully, I had some success. It is more fun when my efforts pay off in good things to eat.

I have been working on some new flower painting ideas, but I am not quite ready to show the results of those. I thought the jars of jelly and jam were quite lovely to share for now.

Jeff's Corner: Now I know why Euell Gibbons was eating pine trees... (and what's in Grape Nuts anyway? No grapes, no nuts...)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Half-Marathon, Anyone?

Success in finishing my first half-marathon and what I learned from the process.
I knew that setting a goal for myself to run a thirteen mile race would help me stay motivated to exercise. I didn't expect to learn other things that I think are applicable to making art.

First. Having other people to encourage me was invaluable. I would have given up in July if my niece hadn't been there with other training strategies and her belief that I could do this. I have read many times that artists can thrive with support from other like minded artists. I have to admit, I have avoided this type of contact because of my memories of "critique sessions" in college. I provide enough critique in my OWN head, thank you. Perhaps it would be possible to connect with others that are not out to destroy me as an artist. One of my brothers actually ran with me, even though he could have run faster. I usually run alone, and I wondered if it would be weird to have to talk to someone while running. We had the best time, it was fun to talk, and I know the physically difficult part of the race, when my legs were aching, went by a whole lot faster with his help.

Second. It was good for me to do something that was hard. I didn't expect the elation and sense of accomplishment that lasted for weeks after the event. I felt ready to set new goals. Write a whole albums' worth of music. Hike the Himalayas. Tackle painting that portrait of my friend! I have more confidence that I can succeed. I wasn't the fastest runner there, but I did beat my own goal of three hours by ten minutes, and that was good enough for me.

Jeff's Corner: I am going to comment about him. Jeff is wonderful! He was so proud of me for finishing my goal.