Monday, December 12, 2011

December 2011 - Catching up on some of our travel adventures.

Well, obviously I've been busy!!!! :) There's been no new posts here for quite some time, although I visit, sporaidically, here and there, when I remember "I have a blog!" LOL! Life has simply been crazy! I make it through one day thinking that tomorrow it will be better, offering a chance for me to slow down, but somehow when tomorrow arrives, that doesn't seem to happen, so I'm going to try to make the most of it and attempt to post some of the highlights of our year. I left off taking about and preparing to post some of our Outer Banks vacation trip, but more importantly you should know I left my heart there and  I cannot wait to go back! {This year's lease agreement & cashier's check are already in the mail! :)}

Anyhow, returning from our vacation... seemed to fill my life with a void I didn't know existed. I quickly realized just how little there is to actually do here on a daily basis, but the restless I feel prevails. Don tried to help me, purchasing me a kayak, taking me out to paddle, either at Alum Creek or Richwood's little park with its nice little beach and flat water pond, perfect to paddle in.We began riding in the dunebuggy more, going on a Memorial Day run over to Indian Lake with friends, a day trip {just the two of us} to the Lake {Erie}, a group ride over to Mohician Valley, where we cruised down the road with the kayak on top of the buggy! and I even did a few hours of kayaking before returning to camp to fix some cheeseburgers for the boys! In late autumn, we took a "Covered Bridges of Union County" tour with Mike and his Trykes. We even went "busting water" down along the side of Bigelow Bridge!!!! It was a freakin' blast!!! So much so that had it been about 20 degrees warmer, I doubt they'd gotten me outta that creek so fast, LOL! It was then, that I, got bitten by the bug! So, No. I didn't hesitate to make a couple runs to buy up some dunebuggy bodies, chaises, motors, and transmissions, in fact, I think I even encouraged it, LOL! We made a run to Toledo for one; and an all day run to Traverse City, Michigan to drag a basket case of a buggy home. We're still not certain that this one is a Manx.... it has all the makings of one, except for the wiring tubes on the underside --- who knows, perhaps someone cut them out, but that's neither really here nor there, the fact is this one is for ME! :)

Besides, vacationing, traveling for dunebuggies {parts & pieces}, we've been blessed with a grandson! Jonavin is 5 months old now and is a very vocal baby. I believe that boy is gonna be talking soon! I also found his first little tooth the other day ---- Yep! Grandma's proud of that known fact! ;) I've been watching him throughout the week while his momma returns to college and he is the joy of my days!!! Alexxis is in the first grade of school this year and is doing wonderfully well. I love hearing about what she is learning and the excitement she has for learning to read is amazing. So much so that we bought her some workbooks for Christmas just to help her practice more since she enjoys it so much!

My Mom and Dad are doing good.... considering their ages and although we had quite a scare with my mom recently. The week of Thanksgiving, my sister, Karen and her husband made it home to share Thanksgiving dinner with us {They were our houseguests.}and Mom was admitted to the hospital with CHF - Congestive Heart Failure, which fortunately, they can treat and help with the symptoms, although there will never be an actual cure for her... she can slide in and out of it, but it will never totally disappear. Mom is back at home now... but the scare of losing them still lingers.

Somehow, during all this I had this overwhelming urge to learn to paint and I found solitude and strengths I never knew I had while creating some of these paintings. I've posted them in the order in which they were created and after the first one a friend commented, "I didn't know you could paint!" I had to admit to her that I didn't know I could either until I did it!" Although, I'm sure there's room for improvement, I've had no formal training in drawing, sketching, or painting, but I'm certainly enjoying the process I'm making and am proud of my efforts ( --- otherwise, I'm not so certain I'd share them, LOL!)

The canvas on this painting was so stretched on the frame, straight out of the packing, I thought about returning it. Instead I decided to try to add some tissue paper over the canvas and it helped to not only tighten the canvas on the frame; it added depth and texture that I could work with! It is one of my favorites to date. I also experimented with a heavy bodied tar gel and mixing acrylic paint more in shades and tints. The reflections in the water had me stumped but with the help of some Flow-aid, I was able to obtain the dream, watery reflection I desired and the texture really helped to add some sense of motion to the painting. Well, at least, I think so.... ;)

And last, but never the least is my newest piece of artwork in progress. I feel deeply in love with the Currituck Beach Lighthouse and knew I wanted at least one of its images in my collection of paintings, so I "Googled" it and found a picture whose composition I liked and began sketching right onto the background. It's been a little tricky getting the sides of that lighthouse just right, I finally got smart and resolved to use masking tape to keep the lines straight!!! LOL! Oh, the tricks you learn in life! :)