So much good happening this autumn I can barely stand it. I have been so inspired by the good colors and I still can't get over all the Larch Trees we've seen. How come no one ever told me about those? I'm a fan.
Hello? Hellllooooo? Gosh, I have so much to say, and I don't even know where to begin. I've been painting so much lately and it's been so so good for my soul. I've been updating my website (most everything new is in the food section. Yes, I really do love food that much.) if you want to see all the fruits of my labor.
I had my first show of sorts on my birthday. It was a very festive way to end the day! Amavi cellars was having a big open house to showcase their new production facility, so we just set paintings atop wine barrels and on stacks of cases of wine--you know, very professional like. I was unnaturally nervous about it, but it ended up being fun and I even had the whole house sing me a slightly tipsy happy birthday tune!
I included a snap of the semi-truck glamour shot painting I did. It was a commission for a trucking company, and it was actually kind of fun. I almost gave myself an ulcer trying to get the truck just right, because while I might not care how many tires it has, someone else surely might.
And last week I spent a very late night hanging up cloud and vegetable paintings at the Patisserie (first rate gelatto and pastries, yumyum). They'll be there all month, and it's nice to have a very valid excuse to stop in for a pastry :)
There is so much I want to say about these things. But I'm not sure how to quite express it. I have been struggling with my relationship with Walla Walla for a while now. It's complicated, but it really comes down to me being a brat and wanting to live somewhere spectacular. And this place feels sort of ordinary sometimes. I know I know, it's totally stupid. But something I do like about where I live is all the opportunities I have to try and be an artist. It really works to my advantage that I live in this weird wine tourism mecca, and that people who buy expensive drinks are also the type of people who impulse buy paintings. So it's helping me change my attitude. Which is good. And now Evan thinks he's going to quit his job and buy some sweat pants and be a stay at home dad. HA! I don't think so mister. But really, I'm so grateful for how it's working out.
p.s. I disabled my blog comments a couple of months ago. I wasn't posting very regularly, and I was feeling guilty about it. So I wanted to make sure I was posting for me. (and let's be honest, I wasn't sure anyone was reading this besides my grandma (hi grandma!), so I didn't want the lack of comments to discourage me). But I've received some of the nicest emails from readers on my last few posts, full of really kind and encouraging words. It was so nice and maybe I even cried a little bit? I was so touched that perfect strangers would take the time to do that. So anyway, thanks for reading and for being nice. I like you.
I keep thinking of things I should post on my blog and then weeks go by and I realize I've never actually posted anything at all! Whoops. Here is a smattering of photos of the good parts of our summer so far. We've tried to stuff it full of outside time and adventures.
^^ I'm getting pretty fast at making bowties these days.... and so far Harvey keeps them on! I hope I didn't just jinx myself!
^^^Gesso is finally growing out of his puppy stage. It only took four years. And now he's basically a teenager and all he wants to do is nap all day. Fiiiine with me!
^^^ See what I mean?
^^^ I planted these holly hocks from seeds last year and this year they are just outrageous! I've had to tie them up three times -- they are so giant and keep falling over! Not to brag or anything, but I'm pretty proud of these guys, they're like 10 feet high!
^^^ They cover up our windows and I really like it. It makes it feel like we're living in nature. And not a cul-de-sac.
^^^ Every day.
^^ Harvey has a small inflatable pool and when it's empty he rolls it around the yard like a giant wheel. It's hilarious!
I have recently been reading interviews from different women, and there is always a question near the end of the interview that goes: I wish someone had told me___________________
about motherhood. I love reading the
different answers to this question, and the other day found myself thinking about what I might
put in that blank. And, are you ready
for this? I think I've decided:
I wish someone would have told me that taking care of a baby
would be the easy part of motherhood.
Learning/remembering how to take care of yourself once you become a
mother is the thing that takes some practice.
Deep, right? Haha. Well, it's true. I have been so pleasantly surprised at how natural it feels to meet the demands of a tiny person. I mean, yes, being a mother is hard. But not nearly as hard as I expected. Also, it's really awesome, which usually makes you forget that it's hard. But remembering that I need to take care of myself? That's hard. And easy to forget about. Sometimes I find myself looking down at my fingernails wondering who exactly is in charge of trimming those ragged things (it's me, by the way).
Something that makes me feel like I'm taking care of myself (besides cutting my nails on a regular basis) is making the time to paint.And the weirdest thing has been happening!I've found that being a mother makes me a better artist.And that being an artist makes me a better mother.Pretty tidy, huh? Shoot, I love symbiosis (is that considered symbiosis? I'll check later.).
I've been a painter without being a mom, and it seemed like I could never find a good groove. But now that I have small (but consistent!) windows to paint, I am enormously productive. And I've also tried mothering without making time for art. I get awfully restless.
We recently moved my studio into Gesso's old room (oh yes, he needs to be properly put to bed each night or else he goes and drools all over my couches), and we did some wall painting and shelf hanging.Since then, I have been painting like crazy!
I have piles of cloud paintings, and a growing pile of food paintings (which I have been calling my "snack paintings"), and they are taking over my studio.
I also buckled down and finally (finally!) created a website. It's super simple, but I'm really proud of it. I hope you hop over to take a look. I've also put a link on my sidebar (click the cloud painting, yo!).
I have some exciting things in the works to hopefully find new homes for all of these paintings. I am so not a business woman. At all. But I am trying to be brave and figure out how to make this work. Deep breath.
I wasn't in a hurry to make Harvey a baby blanket. I mean, yes, I'd made him like 10 baby blankets, but not his baby blanket. You know, that was quilted and special.
Well, my mom was feeling bad for her only grandbaby, and so she surprised us with one! It's so cute and it's the perfect colors (I'm just assuming he will love deep greens and blues as much as his mama :) .
The aspen fabric is my favorite.
^^^ I love secret messages on quilts!
And because I didn't know she was working on a quilt, I was collecting fabrics for a quilt too! I have been thinking about Harvey's big boy room (it's going to be AWESOME!), and found the perfect stack of colors to go with it.
I didn't mean to start/finish the quilt so fast. I mean, he's still a baby! He doesn't need a twin quilt yet! But whatever, I just couldn't help myself :)
I accidentally sewed one line of triangles upside down, but I remember taking a folklore class in college and learning that in the olden days, quilters would make one mistake in their quilts on purpose. So yeah. Me too. And I made sure to sew everything super tight and strong, even doing a zip-zag stitch around the binding, because I didn't want to risk it splitting open during a jump-on-the-bed party.
Also, my mom made this:
I know! I play with it all the time! All of Mr. Turtle's appendages tuck into his shell. Sigh. It's super cool.
And this concludes the post on how Harvey is super spoiled with handmade goods.