GRIT

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

People often ask me how I achieved my successes and how my artwork has become known. I'm sure they think this has happened overnight in a few months or maybe a year. They always lean in, as if they are going to hear some nugget of inspiration that will suddenly catapult them and their work front and center someplace - quickly. They always seem a bit disappointed when I tell them they have to have passion and to never give up and to give a hand to others - that no one can do it alone. Then they walk away (literally or off into cyber land).

STANDING IN URBAN OUTFITTERS IN COLUMBUS OHIO HAPPILY HOLDING SOME OF MY ARTWORK FOR SALE IN THEIR STORES AND ONLINE.

I've always been an artist, although I did not call myself that until recently. It has always been a passion - a light that burned strong and hot inside my soul. It is how I walk through life. My photography is how I experience this thing called life and this planet we walk on. It was in many ways a necessity that I sell my art. But that is a whole other blog post!

Most people believe that things happen instantly. the mindset of magical thinking. But the things that truly matter and are worth having or being take time and and lots of work. This morning while having my coffee, I was listening to a morning news show and my ears perked up when Angela Duckworth began talking about GRIT. She said that talent alone does not guarantee success (as so many hope). She said in the age of talent shows, talent is really not enough to instantly become a success or star. Her research discovered that something she came to call grit was needed to achieve great things. She described grit as a combination of passion and perseverance for a singularly important goal, and that grit was a hallmark of achievers.

I looked up the definition of grit in the dictionary. GRIT: firmness of character; indomitable spirit; plunk. Synonyms: fortitude, courage

It's been a while since I heard the word plunk (or grit), but I'm really liking them. So next time someone asks me for words of wisdom on how to achieve success, I'll tell them when they lean in.... You need to be a gritty person. You need to have a bit of plunk and indomitable spirit.....


LISTEN

Friday, April 29, 2016


WE HAVE TWO EARS AND ONE MOUTH SO WE CAN LISTEN TWICE AS MUCH AS WE SPEAK. ~ Epictetus (Greek philosopher)

We all have days where we become overwhelmed - by life, by circumstances, by fear........ In those times we often feel alone. We reach out, and feel misunderstood or like we are not being heard. Then we are more overwhelmed.

A friend reached out to me the other day. She was overwhelmed and it was building up and building up. When she called it was like she just popped the cork out & it all came tumbling out..... and out, and out. I caught myself starting to offer input or suggestions, and then realized that all that was needed of me was to listen. Listen! To just be there for her to let it all out. To be a safe and soft place to land for that moment. and so, I shut my one mouth and opened my two ears. That simple act can be such a gift to give to a friend - or anyone. And I found myself in the similar situation of feeling overwhelmed and in came all the suggestions from very well meaning friends! And while I appreciate their caring and love and desire to be helpful, I ended up feeling more overwhelmed. In the future when a friend needs an ear, I'll really pay attention to opening my ears more, and if I open my mouth to offer something, I hope it will be - "How can I help you? What, if anything, can I do? I'm here for you. I care."


Don't Blink

Friday, April 22, 2016

It seems time is running a race with itself lately. I blink and 5 days have passed. There is a song that says "don't blink..." I get that now. Each morning I have been doing a yoga flow where I start the day being present - mind, body, heart all right there - present with the new day. Then I set my intention to guide me and focus on for the day. This practice seems to have slowed time a bit - I'm more aware and present during the day which is awesome - no mindless chatter or random thoughts racing through my mind, or me racing through the day. Sunday was my birthday - I won't say which one since my spirit is young, but I feel wise in living! It was nice to stop all else and give myself the gift of time wandering up to one of my favorite destinations to get away from the city and just relax in the moment. I took my camera and let creativity show itself. What a wonderful day in the sunshine exploring Kingwood Gardens. Not much was in bloom yet as Spring is late this year. But I did find much to photograph in the greenhouses. It was nice to take the time to see the beauty and uniqueness of each plant and slow time a bit even if just for a day.





SPRING BEAUTIES

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

On the days that I can't go out wandering in nature, I bring a bit of it indoors on to my various vintage tables. Things just happen on the table! I don't usually have a preconceived notion of what I want to do..... I gather my materials, grab my ladder, put on some music and just start letting things happen! Happy Tuesday!








LUCID DREAM

Friday, April 1, 2016

My copilot and constant companion Maggie May has been gone 4 months.The amazing times we shared and adventures flew by so quickly. Now, looking back, I wish I had blogged about those adventures for the days when the memories are not as sharp & easy to recall. I read an article several weeks ago that was about regrets. It said the biggest regrets people had in their lives were not things they had done, but rather things they didn't do. That is resonating with me now. Thankfully I have many photographs and videos of Maggie May. But I regret not having written about the amazing lifetimes we lived and lessons learned in our 14 years together. They are all in my heart bound up & tied up in the bond we shared. So now, I have decided that it is better late than never. It is appropriate that I begin a new blog for this new chapter in life I'm learning to navigate without my sweet Maggie May.

I had a dream about her the other night. Have you ever had a dream that was almost not a dream but a form of crossing over or connecting in some surreal way? A dream that was happening exactly in the present time - almost as if you were awake? It was 4 AM and in my dream I awoke and there was a dog next to my bed just staring at me. She was similar in appearance to Maggie, but was a dark chocolate with brindle markings and ears that were more greyhound than Maggie's flying nun ears. I got up and took her downstairs by the collar not sure how she had gotten in or why she was there. As I came to the bottom of the steps and neared the front door, my sweet Maggie came around the corner, looked at me and began wagging her tail. Quickly I opened the door and let the other dog out. I looked at Maggie and said "You can't really be here. This must be a dream because you can't really be here." She came up to me and I wrapped her in my arms, and could actually feel her fur and warmth. I held on wanting to remember it all, but she pulled away to go to the back door. The dream was in color because I remember I got the green leash from the closet to slip over her neck as she did not have a collar. All this was happening at 4 AM in the dream so it was pitch black outside when I opened the door to take her out. When we stepped outside, I saw the other dog there. I went to tell it to leave and then the leash slipped from my hand and Maggie disappeared into the night.

I woke up sitting on the side of the bed.

That "dream" stayed with me all the next day and still now today. A bit unsettling, but also wonderful. So, I have decided to begin blogging again - about Maggie, about adventure, about life and about new beginnings.

Maggie taught me the art of living in the moment and being happy to just be. She taught me about love and trust, about adventures and that the best adventures are shared, that you are never too old for new adventures and that old dogs can indeed learn new tricks. So  it is good to end this first post with a video from our Grand Adventure 1 when Maggie was 13.

video