Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Anatomy of a Refrigerator Door

I have never been one of those "blank" refrigerator door people - no matter how much I want to be, and no matter how much I try to be. There is always something that needs to be there . . . even if it is just one little magnet or piece of life that I want to remember.

But the thing is . . . for me, it is never just one little magnet.

Right now, it's about 18 little magnets. Give or take a few.

I took a look at my chaotic and quite cluttered fridge door the other day, and decided it was time to clean it up.

The only problem . . . was that I couldn't remove thing. Not one single thing.

Because, believe it or not, each and every part of that door means something special. Truly.

So, I decided I should share the Anatomy of my Refrigerator Door with you, my beloved blog friends. Because it is silly, and so something I would do - to "air the dirty laundry" . . . or in this case, "air the fridge door".  Here it is - 1 to 18 - and the meaning behind it all:

  1. Silly Comics . . . given to us by Phil's Aunt Rose, who I absolutely ADORE! The comics are Starbucks related, and since Aunt Rose knows us so well, she knew we would get a kick out of them. She is right! And every time I read them, I laugh. 
  2. Keep Calm and Drink Wine . . . because it is SO us! Saw them up at the dollar section of Target a while ago, and they just had to come home with me. 
  3. Leg Lamp Magnet . . . got this one during a family vacation to Cleveland when we visited the actual "christmas story" house. It is holding up a piece of paper that Aunt Rose gave Katie and Ella that reads "Open Another Door". Not sure what that means, but it made my kids so happy when they received it, that I had to hold on to it. 
  4. Cathy Thorne Magnet . . . absolutely love cartoonist Cathy Thorne (click her name to link to her website) and her Everyday People cartoons. If I could fill my whole refrigerator door with her work, I would. They are adorable and oh-so true! 
  5. Aunt Rose, Phil and Lill . . . photo from a trip to Canada Phil took with his mom and his aunt this year. It makes me happy to see him with these two ladies. They mean so very much to him. 
  6. Frank Lloyd Wright Magnet . . . a little remembrance from a trip Phil and I took to the Arizona Biltmore Hotel in Phoenix years ago. Was a wonderful weekend away!
  7. I Love Lucy! . . . because I DO LOVE Lucy! Can't remember where I ever got it (probably from Phil or my sister), but I LOVE IT! 
  8. LIFE . . . truly, one of the best reminders I have ever read about doing with you love in your life. I read it often. My favorite line in it : LIVE YOUR DREAM. 
  9. One of my Magnets . . . to remind myself of what I am capable of. 
  10. Katie's "Rock Star" Magnet . . . that she bought herself during a trip to Six Flags a few years ago. I leave it there to remind her that she IS a Rock Star! 
  11. Fan Magnet . . . from the Impressionists exhibit at the Art Institute a few years ago. Loved the exhibit and this little reminder makes me smile. 
  12. Ella's Seasonal Artwork . . . this time, it's fall leaves. I love to see her little drawings on there. She is so sweet, my Ella bella. 
  13. Kelly Rae magnet . . . reminds me of what I can be. 
  14. Isabel Eaton magnet . . . from my dear friend, the artist Isabel Eaton. I won this when she was having a give away years ago, and it is so precious to me . . . I will always have it on my fridge! 
  15. Aquarium Photo . . . taken in February 2010, when Ella was 3 years old. This was the day when we lost Ella in the Aquarium. Yep. We did. For a few minutes. But it was a day I will never forget. And this photo will be on every fridge I own for as long as I can have it. . . (you can read about the story that day at this old blog post here.) 
  16. Chocolate Magnet . . . because it reminds me of the day I met a real-life Willie Wonka!!! (Or, someone as close to the real-life Willie Wonka.) It also reminds me of the day when I took candy from a stranger. Yes, you can read about this story at this old blog post, if you'd like. 
  17. Clip . . . because there is always something that needs to be hanging from the fridge. Always. 
  18. New York Subway Magnet . . . specifically one that leads to Little Italy. Because Little Italy is beyond special to Phil and I (and the exact place we went to for dinner the night we got engaged in New York - those many years ago). 
So that is it, my friends. the Anatomy of Our Refrigerator Door. It's been fun looking at each piece and reminding myself of the story behind it - and fun to go back through some old blog posts to see what I wrote about. Warms the heart, for sure. 

I wonder if this is what the story of your refrigerator door is, because I am sure many of you have stories - just like mine. 

Next time you grab something from the fridge, take a look at the door and think about what you keep on it. It's kind of fun to remember what makes each of them so special to you.

Wishing you happy memories, dear friends.



Monday, October 20, 2014

Colors of my Doors


I love the colors of this art journal page that I did the other day . . . bright, vivid colors - they make me happy.

We tend to react one way or another to a color that we come in contact with, don't we?  Soft shades of blues and greens often bring a sense of peace. Reds bring a feeling of passion and great enthusiasm. Yellows bring on happiness and joy like no other. I absolutely love to take those Facebook quizzes that, after answering a variety of silly questions, tell you exactly the color you are. Some days I don't need a quiz to tell me what color I am feeling . . . but other days, I'm not so sure. 

And these days, I'm a variety of colors. Truly . . . every color of the rainbow. Each and every day. 

Moments of calmness in my days are quickly taken over by feelings of overwhelm and great concern, then the joy peeks in, followed by worry and despair. It's a never ending ride of a very blessed and colorful time. I've spent a great deal of energy this year trying to truly understand the difference between empathy and sympathy. I'm trying so very hard to not lose sight of my own happiness at the expense of others.  I refuse to carry the drama this holiday season, and will do my very best to stay focused on me and mine. Yes, I do often feel as if I have a quiet war going on with the colors in my life. 

It's crazy . . . for most of us, I am sure. 

But I would rather be all colors of the rainbow, then have no color at all. 

I wonder if most artists or creative types feel this way - the roller coaster of emotion. the highs and lows that come with creating. 

I bet they do. 

The page above was my way of reflecting all of that. The highs and lows. The whirlwind days, the chaos, the happiness, the love, the joy, the differences. All of it.

When I showed it to Phil - he said, 'Oh, I like it! It looks like doors. That's cool." 

And I laughed, because I thought that is exactly what I want it to be . . . I want my art to be whatever it is that YOU feel when you look at it. Whatever YOU see.

Emotions. Or doors.


We took a lovely ride to an Apple Orchard a couple hours away this weekend. I was so inspired by the changing colors of the leaves - it was a beautiful day, for sure.

There is this lovely little spot along the highway with the most charming red walled farms and buildings. I absolutely love the view from the road - and with the colors changing, it was a perfect picture taking opportunity. Next time, I am going to pull over and make sure I have the 'good' camera with me.  I think I see a mixed media art piece coming soon . . . sigh.

I think I could sit there and watch the colors change for days. I'm pretty sure of it.

Wishing you peace, in all of your glorious colors, my friends.


Thursday, October 16, 2014

heART Journaling


So, I'm am ALL into Art Journaling lately.  It makes my heART feel happy. 

And I love the play on words - the heart and art. They truly are the perfect combination for me. 

I am a great admirer of those who pour their creative words and creative selves onto the pages of a sketch book. I could spend hours on Pinterest looking at one image or another of someones art journals. And sometimes, I do just that (spend hours on Pinterest). It fills my creative pitcher, and sometimes - it is exactly what I need. 

I bought a new sketch book strictly for my Art Journaling. This will not be one full of doodles or zentangles, like my other sketch books. This won't all be happy and sappy. The main purpose of this one will be to art journal. In the coming weeks I hope to share many of my new creations with you here. 

But . . . I must preface this by saying the following . . . 

- This is an art journal.
- I will be sharing some deep thoughts, and some not-so-deep thoughts.
- I am ok.
- Please do not worry about me.
- If I share a page that is working through some feelings that I have, please do not read more into it.
- It is not a cry for help. 
- It is me, figuring it all out. 
- Like I used to do on my blog - although I stopped doing that, because I would inevitably get that phone call from a worried friend or family member saying, "I read your blog - I am worried about you - are you ok?" 
- Trust me. I will always be ok. 

Because even on dark days, 
I ALWAYS see the light. 
It's just that sometimes I need to turn it off for a bit.  And re-group. 

Does that make sense? 

I started to think about why I have taken such a long break from my blog. A great deal of it has to do with feeling like I couldn't be totally open and honest with what I wanted to write, for fear of worrying those in my life.  I was proud of the fact that my blog was a place of honesty and truth - it is, was and always will beI always said that this blog was a lot cheaper than therapy, and it was my way of working things out in life. The good. The bad. The ugly. Some point along the way, some forgot that. Maybe I forgot that.  I began to feel like some were watching a little too closely, and felt like too many questions started as far as what I was writing, and why I was writing it. So, I needed to break free from the responsibility that I put on myself.  I need to focus on why I kept my blog to begin with. And slowly, I am making my way back. 

Again, I repeat . . . 
I will always be ok. Because even on dark days, I do ALWAYS see the light. 

I feel better getting that out. 


So, back to the Art Journaling. 

I like it. And if you aren't sure what it is all about, feel free googling "art journaling", or spend some time on Pinterest looking at some awesome images. The world is full of some brilliantly talented people - and I feel blessed to take these small little glimpses into each of their lives. Truly. I am in awe of the talent in the world. 

You should try it - really. Pick up a journal and some paints or markers, and just be free. Write your thoughts - your dreams - your fears - whatever it is that you are thinking of. Or look at the photo above for some other suggestions on journal ideas. I just did that page above as the first page in my new sketchbook. If I am ever stuck, I hope to turn to it an find inspiration of one or more ideas of a page. 

As always, thanks for letter me explore my art and my heart . . . all right here. 

It feels so good to be blogging again. I truly can't even find the words to explain how good it feels. 

Until next time, 

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