Artist Tawny Chatmon is phenomenal!! I was introduced to her work today, and I just have to share it with you. My blog is about how we can increase our love for one another. Well, one way is to love and appreciate the shared talents of others.
The girls are soooo beautiful! I wish I could have copied the art work in its entirety… but you get the idea. Be sure and check out the blue link above because it’s the rest of the photo (the dresses) the show you the artist’s embellishments. So gorgeous!
Aren’t they beautiful??
I hope you enjoyed these lovely young ladies as much as I did. If you haven’t done so already, go to the link at the top and see the full photos. I could only show you the top of each!
Have a good day.
I have surgery on my hernia at 12:45 pm Mountain Time today. ❤ Prayers appreciated! ❤
I know a lot of you love art as much as I do. I am the president of our Ennis Arts Association. As such, I rub elbows with a lot of talented people. Today I met a new artist: Akie from Japan. I LOVE her art! Take a look:
Japanese artist Akie Nakata (known simply as Akie) transforms found stones into animals you can hold in the palm of your hand. Isn’t this amazing? You thought it was a real bird at first, huh? I did, too.
Here are some more of the rock art creations:
Which of them do you like best? Have you ever tried painting on rocks?
Today I am having a COVID-19 test. I have no symptoms, but the test is required before I can have surgery. I am scheduled to have a hernia repaired on Tuesday. Should be a simple in-out procedure.
Please keep me in prayer that the robot knows what it’s doing. I’ll keep you posted.
Hope you are having a Marvelous Monday. Love, JanBeek
My good friend, Lisa, who lives in North Carolina, sent me this sunset video last night. I was home here in Montana on a dark, stormy night… missing the chance to see a sunset here… and along came this gift:
In the past, Lisa has sent other sunsets … and a lot of sunrises … along with prayers for blessings and health and happiness. What a wonderful friend!
My collection of sunsets and sunrises come to you with prayers and love, too.
If you love the way God chooses to start and end each day as much as I do, let me share with you other sunsets I’ve received:
And I love sunrises just as much. Let me share a couple of those with you:
I shared that last one with you a couple weeks ago, but I couldn’t talk about sunrises and not include hers. Talk about beautiful! Isn’t God the greatest artist ever??
So, whether you are ready for your next sunset, like we are here in Montana, or your next sunrise, like my daughter in Switzerland, let God’s handiwork amaze you…
… and share your love of the Light with all you meet. Have a blessed day – and a restful night. I’ll see you tomorrow.
Today my Writers’ Group friend, Janet Muirhead Hill, joined me to share what we’ve been working on. (I was disappointed that three others who might have joined us were unavailable today. Hopefully they’ll be here for our next meeting).
I was inspired to write the poem you see above. Janet shared the book she has just completed and published, Prism. It was started by her deceased sister, Joan Bochmann, who knowing she was leaving this earth before she could complete it, asked Janet to promise she’d finish it for her. Here it is… available on Amazon … I have my own autographed copy… yay!
During our time together, Janet and I used a prompt by
Do click on Clint’s link above and see how he finished those sentences. His site is a new discovery. Living in Africa, his photos are phenomenal, and the way he helps us glimpse at his beautiful country through his words and photos is such a gift!
I wrote the following using his prompts:
“It is the world outside where we find birds, trees, clouds, friends, travel opportunities, and space. It is the world inside where we find peace, God, self-confidence, acceptance, and opportunities. We are especially blessed when from the inside we can hear and see the birds, we can look out at trees, clouds and blue sky, we can feel peace and acceptance from friends, we can plan travel and invite friends to travel here, and from the inside we have space to grow spiritually and the self-confidence to capture opportunities to do so.”
From the inside, we remain child-like, free to paint as well as write, free to dance as well as stand, free to openly express our true selves. Free!
Dance and Create
After that initial activity prompted by Clint Bulongo’s blog, we tried our hand at creating “Eifchen.” This form of poetry was introduced to me this morning by bigskybuckeyeLifeElfchen
Using his definition of this German-inspired poetry, Janet and I wrote our own “Elevenies.” I wish I had saved hers to share with you. Richard, at bigskybuckeye had three of them on his post. Here’s one of his:
Overwhelmed Life’s pace Quickens and races Time to reorder life’s Priorities
And here is one that I wrote:
Numbers Bear meaning Forty is magical Seven represents God’s completion Prioritize
Try your hand at an “Eifchen”! Dance with it freely, like my Boston Terrier, Taze, is dancing up there. Don’t let anything stifle you!!
After sharing our “Elevenies,” we read to one another some samples we brought with us of writing we had been working on at home.
Share Your Writing
Janet shared an introduction she has written to go with her book, Prism.
Then I shared some of my journal writing. One of the things I shared was the peace prayer of St. Francis of Assisi sung by Susan Boyle. Janet was not familiar with Susan’s angelic voice. This is too beautiful to keep to myself. I’ve shared it with you before, but it is worth hearing again:
I sang along with the words to the song, written on a page in my journal. Janet listened – enthralled – to this gorgeous rendition of the prayer.
Then Janet said, “Oh yes, I used to have that prayer memorized. Haven’t thought about it in a while.”
Time to put those words in our souls, my friends.
Make Me a Channel of Your Peace, Lord. Help me seek to console, to understand, to bring hope and light, and to just love!
Do you have a place for writing, and people who love to write with whom to share your writing? Tell me about it – and them.
I was nominated to participate in this fun blog post. I was nominated by https://charlotteannrobinson.com/ Check out her blog. It is fun, inspiring, upbeat, and always worth the read.
When she answered the question, “What are your ten favorite feelings?” she added graphics to each answer. She made it fun to learn these things about her. You will enjoy seeing them.
Simply list 10 of your favorite feelings and then pass on the nomination to one or more of your favorite bloggers!
loving and being loved
I find peacefulness in Derrick’s garden. He shares wonderful pictures of the work he and Jackie do almost every day there. Their relationship demonstrates the reality and importance of interdependence. We all need one another!!
I love looking for Nugget, their feathered friend. When Derrick’s not in the garden, he shows us his travels through the countryside in his area of Great Britain. I nominate him for best daily inspirational post… derrickjknight
“Good art is as close as people get to overcoming mortality.” Nick J. Wood
How do we recognize “Good Art”?
Nick J. Wood wrote on his WordPress blog, Artfully Bridging The Ages — The Nature Of Art, “… although the styles of expression change, it is the way it (art) touches the inner-self, the part normally obscured by mundane routine that confirms it as having artistic value.”
Architecture is art as much as creating sculptures or painting on the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel. I believe “good art” preserves history in a myriad of ways.
Sewing is an art. I have a quilt hand-sewn by Bob’s mother, grandmother, and great-grandmother in 1933. Talk about history preserved!
Photography definitely is an art. The way it preserves history is evident.
Yes, art takes on many forms; and artists come in every color, age and size. Who decides if you are an artist or not?
Is poetry an art? Nick J. Wood posted this video on his blog. I love the poem and the voice recording it. Listen! You’ll love it, too.
How about gardening? Is it an art? Ask my friends, Lexi Sundell or Nancy Smrka, with their greenhouses… They’ll tell you! Ask Bob as he tends our spring flowers.
What about cooking? Yes, they call it “culinary arts” for a reason! My son-in-law, Andre’ is a chef who creates the most delicious, artistic plates imaginable. (This isn’t one of his… but you get the idea)
Music is an art, too. Through their gift of song and instrument, musical artists live on long after they have left this earth. Karen Carpenter died young. She suffered from anorexia. But she has overcome mortality – her voice lives forever in my heart.
I love good art – art in all its many forms. And I love artists. They are so predictable …
Hah! Don’t be fooled. This is a cute little cartoon/meme, but with artists being as diverse as they are, believe me, they are ANYTHING but predictable!
Here is an artist I love. He has a special spot in my heart. He and his wife, Lexi paint, garden, make jewelry, and create art by their very existence. Bernie Sundell is one of the first persons we met when we moved here. He helped Bob select and buy and go to Idaho Falls to buy his drift boat. He tutored him on rowing and casting and catching fish on the Madison and he painted a fabulous picture of Bob that hangs in our dining room. Here’s artist, fisherman, friend Bernie:
And here is the painting of Bob on the Madison River. Bernie created it after one of their memorable outings. It’s a beautiful rainbow trout – but here it’s only catch and release! Toss it back in, Bob!
Do you have a favorite form of art? A favorite artist? Do you create art? Tell me about it.
Paul Holdorf posted the following beautiful, eloquent essay on FaceBook today to accompany his wonderful photograph above. Do yourself a favor and take time to live in the scene with Paul and me for awhile. I am still there… in the arms of love and contentment.
No further comment from JanBeek necessary. Just savor Paul Holdorf’s creativity. ❤
“I can’t help but wonder what life was like for the occupants of this home. One might at first say that life sure is easier now, but is it? To be sure, it was a hard life, but it must be so rewarding to directly benefit from hard work. Very few things had to be purchased. Most things were made from whatever was available. A hard days work did not have to be converted to cash in order to benefit the family. The same soil that had to be scrubbed out from under fingernails, when properly tilled and watered, grew food for the table. It also grew food for the livestock that in turn also provided sustenance for the inhabitants of this home. As I stood there, I could hear the life that once resided here. A chair scraped on the rough wood floor as Dad got up to go make sure all was well outside before darkness settled in. The children helped clear chipped and faded dishes from the table as Mom brought in a pale of water to rinse things off. There was enough light left for several hours of exploration, so soon the distance sounds of laughter blended in with the clanking of dishes and the splash of dirty dishwater being thrown out the open door. Next to the door, in the corner of the room, stood an old broom, patiently waiting to remove the gravelly evidence of an evening well played. Later, after the children were all played out and tucked into a crowded bed, a silhouette could be seen in the warm light of the setting sun. Out in the yard, next to the swing hanging from a tree, a tired but fulfilled couple sat on an old log bench with their arms around each other. She leaned her head on his strong shoulder, and he thankfully leaned his head over hers. They watched the golden light dip behind the distant mountains and spread a blanket of oranges and reds over the high mountain valley much like the bedspread that would soon bring warmth and comfort to this couple. They work hard, they sleep when the sun sleeps and rise with it in the morning but it is a good life. Nothing is wasted, and everything is wisely used. I walk away from my daydream as they drift off to sleep. Stars begin to twinkle and an owl calls from its roost out in the forest. Rest and rejuvenation fill weary bodies with readiness for the next day, when they’ll do it all over again with joy and contentment in lives well lived.”
When I was a child at Bonita Elementary School in Crows Landing, California, May Day was a very special occasion. We always created a May Pole around the flag pole at the front of the beautiful, two-story brick building. We dressed in colorful clothes and practiced days in advance to be sure we knew how to weave the ribbons properly. Parents came to watch as students assembled in the front of the school. The band played. The principal spoke, and teachers did special art projects in the classrooms.
I especially remember Mrs. Horwedel, my 4th grade teacher, who had us go out into the fields near the school and pick wild flowers. Then we made paper baskets, filled them with the flowers, and created unique cards.
They weren’t as pretty as the one pictured here, of course, but we thought they were! Some of us took them home to give to our mom. Others hung them on a doorknob of a friend’s house as they walked toward home. (You hang it, ring the doorbell, and run to hide). It’s a surprise! A few decided to hang them on the door of a favorite teacher’s classroom.
In today’s world, there are few schools surrounded by fields with wildflowers, and buying flowers is too expensive. So, the tradition of the May Day baskets has pretty much gone by the wayside, right?
But May Poles didn’t cost much. Just a few bucks for some crepe paper or ribbon strips, and time to practice. I think it’s a shame that in most places we seem to have forgotten this day’s history and we have failed to preserve it.
History of May Day Celebrations
According to Wikipedia, “May Day is a public holiday usually celebrated on 1 May or the first Monday of May. It is an ancient festival of Spring and a current traditional spring holiday in many European cultures. Dances, singing, and cake are usually part of the festivities.”
Let’s get back to dances, singing, and cake! Let’s reinstate the celebration of spring. Let’s recreate the May Pole. Let’s make it a part of our “new normal” once this VOVID-19 pandemic allows us to go back to our schools and hug our neighbors. What do you think?
Not everyone who reads my blog has a blog of their own. Not everyone who writes a blog has anything published anywhere else.
Must you write a blog or have something published in order to consider yourself a writer?
Does writing in a journal qualify you to call yourself “Writer”?
When you create a grocery list or a list of your “To-Do’s” for today, you are writing. Does that make you a “Writer”?
Definition of Writer
a person engaged in writing books, articles, stories, etc., especially as an occupation or profession; an author or journalist.
a clerk, scribe, or the like.
a person who commits his or her thoughts, ideas, etc., to writing
(in a piece of writing) the author (used as a circumlocution for “I,” “me,” “my,” etc.): The writer wishes to state….
a person who writes or is able to write: a writer in script.
The Key to Being a Writer
The key to being a writer lies for me in the definitions number 3 and 5 above. It’s so obvious!
To be a writer, you must write! You must commit your thoughts and ideas to writing! Not just the ability to write (like writing your signature on a check or signing your name on a card), but the ability to put your thoughts and ideas down on paper or computer or someplace where others can read them.
Are you a writer who writes for others?
Play at Writing
Write like a child at play – words are the beads; string them together one bead at a time.
Writing should be fun! Cristian Mihai on The Art of Blogging says, “Just punch the damn keys.” In his post today, he reminds us also that we are never finished in our quest to be anything… writers, artists, body builders, you name it!
Cristian Mihai wrote in the blog I imbedded above (for your ease in going to read it in its entirety), “… we are all works of art. And we are never, ever, ever complete.”
He quoted 70 year-old Seneca who wrote,
“I am still learning…”
Cristian went on to remind us,
“One thing of extreme importance in life is never, ever to be complete.
To always strive for more.
To be able to reinvent yourself on a constant basis.”
He said, “We are not nouns, but verbs. Action is what defines us. And we can change what we do as we learn and develop new skills.”
I appreciate the ideas I glean on a daily basis from Cristian Mihai. He helps me put into action some of my better impulses, and to do it with the Spirit guiding me.
Let the Spirit Guide Your Writing
Let intentionality yield to spontaneity. Let the spirit guide you.
Spiritual direction is as important to the life of a writer as good editing is to the life of the mind. Both deliver us from the blindness of a solitary thinker.
Being a solitary writer squeezes our vision and makes us myopic. Being short-sighted cuts us off from the wonderful world of criticism. Your spirit can guide your creativity, but seeking one’s own center does not mean we should discount others’ opinions.
Writers Are Not Indifferent
In his book, Saints and Writers – On Doing One’s Work in Hiding, Belden C. Lane wrote the following about prolific writer, James Joyce:
“James Joyces’ wife, Nora, loved him for his ordinariness. She paid little attention to his writing. With critics, Joyce had to second-guess himself. With Nora, he never had to prove anything. It was worthless even to try. Loving indifference can prove a safe place – a hidden center – from which one’s creativity grows without being turned back onto itself.”
I am not indifferent to the responses of others to my writing. Unlike James Joyce, who evidently came across as “ordinary” to his wife, my husband treats me like I am anything but ordinary – a very special, talented writer whose ideas are worth reading. He reads each of my blogs before I post them. I am not indifferent to his editorial ideas, and I appreciate his input.
Let Your Creativity Grow
Just as Cristian Mihai reminded us in his blog today, never ever be complete! Never consider your skill set as mastered. Always keep learning and growing and seeking ways to improve.
You ARE a writer! You DO commit your thoughts and ideas to writing.
A few of your ideas expressed in the comments below will not be met with indifference by this writer. I LOVE hearing from you. You help me to keep growing!