Artist Roads 

Ramblings about Travels, Trailers & Paintings


Life Never Stops (from Early June)

Posted on June 20, 2012 at 11:00 AM Comments comments (0)

     Summer is heating up the afternoons as we hit countdown. Graduations and new beginnings. The closing of books and the starting of lives. We have all been intertwined for so long. Webs are supposed to catch things. Ours, of family, friends and neighbors, has caught so many memories in the 12 years we've lived here that I am full to overflowing at the sights I am seeing now. At the youth turned young adults. At the dreams of parents for their children turning into the tomorrows of our futures.Life never stops. Like my canvases, it is constantly being repainted and worked over and those of us, that think we've got it figured- well, we are dead wrong. If we try to box it, to keep it- It will change so fast we don't have that chance at keeping those moments in our hearts. It just doesn't work that way. Maybe it's one of those Murphy Laws. Maybe its just the great circle.  We do all "Touch" as the new show suggests. We are all islands, and yet the waters on our shores reach us all. I have been so lucky to have shared in so much. Small town I'm sure, but amazing from the heart of an artist that sees with picture eyes.

 I just completed my first hike down into the Grand Canyon. I drove Route 66 with my best friend and a vintage trailer. I met people who made me laugh, who were pieces of art themselves, who taught me things I didn't know. I saw jack rabbits jump. I saw ravens fly. I saw Burma Shave signs! I went 120 feet down into the largest dry cave in North America and climbed around in a helmet and a headlight. That was just last weekend.

The news spills out more junk each day than you can shake a stick at. Most of it hard and not happy. We are still here. Wishing, dreaming, loving and growing. We have no choice but to get up and get going. It's in our nature and the belief of a better tomorrow is in our hearts, even if it's buried by the cold hard events of the day.  So any aches, any whines, any thought that this country or it's people or it's future generations are not still a real hope for the future. Well, it's just stupid. 

We are all here. Just quieter than the media, the politicians and the fame seekers. We are the people and I've come to find that, well, we adapt. and, eventually, we overcome.

Spring, Springing, Sprung

Posted on March 21, 2012 at 9:50 AM Comments comments (0)


The snow is covering the California Mountains in that beautiful way that can only look right with a few palms swaying across your vision of them. That blue white horizon of mountains against orange groves that I remember from my youth. Cool nights, warm days. That wish you get as you step outside that it just might be warm enough to hit the beach or lay out by the pool. Ah! The West Coast!

   I hate all the people,the smog, the cars, the lack of planning on the freeways and at needlessly long and over filmed (traffic cameras!) intersections. But, then again, a walk through the farmers market in Costa Mesa and lunch at the end of the Balboa Pier at Ruby's 50's Diner-well, I can forget about the fact that I'm older and slower and can't wear a bathing suit like my daughter (that's where my college body took off to-she has it!) and just breathe the salt air and smile at the sun on the back of my neck.

 I remember life at the age where you didn't know what to expect. When love is something you were still wanting to attain and every morning was full of crazy busy school, homework, and freelance jobs. I'd paint anything, including names on boats in the harbor and van murals. Design logos and 2 nights a week, draw portraits in the lobby of a bar. The most interesting part of that being keeping a drunken client still enough to draw them at 2 AM.

   Now, the stairs give my right knee that little "froggy" noise as I go down them to start the coffee at 5:30 AM, and the coffee itself is medicinal as well as enjoyable. I have the arms of two wonderful children to encircle me as they enter the kitchen and a sleepy husband who, as I, gets up and goes all these years coffee in hand, out the door again on those freeways. That thing I searched for; Love- I found it on those freeways. In the eyes of a young Marine on a motorcycle, who somehow thought I was the one- and thought it was worth the years and time and work to make a life with me.

Children are young adults and colleges call. Love is tantalizingly close but (I hope) not for a while for them. At least that marriage type. I live vicariously through them and yet realize as I see them "going", that I am again getting that chance, that freedom, to be more than "Mom" again. It's scary, and exciting and the chances I see ahead are inviting. Times to share and enjoy and to travel. To hold hands with my Sweetheart and date again. To figure out who I am and to sit back, just a bit, and enjoy what my children are becoming....

(Mine's in the middle....)

May into June

Posted on May 17, 2011 at 4:05 PM Comments comments (0)

 So life has me busy and running. Murals, Ball wall murals with elementary kids and private homes. Classes to be taught at Michael's craft stores and family, always family.

 Perhaps this is where I give the ode to my Auntie Jan- second mother, endearing friend. As she loses the fight with life and illness, I cannot hug from California to Washington a hug big enough to say what I want. To do what I want. She encompasses the word family for me as much as my own. Her husband, my Father's brother, is recently gone too. I think she is missing him much and the fighting lessens as this happens. So hard to accept, I must admit, I am angry and hurt-as if my personal loss is what matters.

My youngest spent Saturday morning preparing for the prom. Off she went in royal blue, sweeping by me more beautiful than I could ever be-and again, I am so proud but wish my Mom could see her. Wish my Mom was here. Gosh- I have so much to tell her (and I do) about life and love and all that I have struggled through and become over the years. I do think she knows-and that is my hug from heaven.

 I know that she has welcomed my Uncle and will my Aunt-that they were so close in life and will be together in the after.

 My daughter, the amazing, laughing, tired girl who drifted in happy and exhausted around 1 AM, will look for me some day in the future and know that while I am not here on earth-I follow her in love and spirit-as I will my crazy son. Have I told them they are amazing? Yes- but not enough- not enough....

Fall Starts

Posted on October 6, 2010 at 3:35 AM Comments comments (0)

The weather feels like fall today-clouds gray and looming across the sky this morning, waiting to spilll some rain and sprinkles across the fields in front of the house. Its cool and dark inside, I don't want to turn on the lights and wander in my household duties in socks and sweat pants. What a nice feeling, to not have to go anywhere and to simply be a Mom and housewife for a day.
 I spent the morning on Bing, looking up photos to inspire my fall floral painting workshop. 
Wickard Farms in Menifee puts pumpkins out to enjoy every fall. On hay and hay bales under a great elderly oak. White and orange of all different sizes and shapesare spilled out. It's become our tradition to go buy but, also to swing on the rope swings under the other oak set next to the teepees they rent out for gatherings. I have years of photos packed away with memories of my children growing up, going to the pumpkin patch there and in Riverside. That one, unfortunately, fell victim to the housing boom and time.
I think its the excuse to stay inside and curl up that makes fall so nice. Especially after the horrifically hot and strange Summer we had. A good nappy blanket- soft and snuggly. A movie or a book. The smells of cinnamon pine cones as you enter the grocery stores.

Thin, Slow Days

Posted on August 1, 2010 at 9:03 PM Comments comments (0)

Thin, slow days are ones where everything moves too fast and you feel too slow. The heat is on, the people are busy and everything is rushing by as you stumble along. That was this whole weekend.

 For unexplained reasons, my heart was sad and hurting. I felt too old and too bent to function right. I felt so unlearned and unknowing that I had no words to explain it and Life just beat me and I let it.

 One feels like there should be more depth, more things, less stress-but then you create so much yourself that you get jumbled in the fishing net and don't even have the knife to cut your way out.

 I feel like the bones of the camper this weekend- hoping for a new skin- knowing I'm the only one that can make one and have it come out right. Blaming myself and having to answer to that blame- looking in the mirror more times than I would like.

Not Quite August

Posted on July 27, 2010 at 1:55 PM Comments comments (0)

It is the last week of July and the fields of Menifee have become that golden, dry ,rolling expanse that the heat brings. Cars rush to their destinations and I am clocking in at the local (two actually) Micheal's Art Stores to demo in acrylics for the new Grumbacher Art workshops I am teaching. I haven't clocked in at a job since my early 20's so it's an odd sort of feeling and the fact that it is done with the swish of a card with a readable strip on the back- well, that just makes me feel old!

It's interesting to watch the types of people coming and going. I muse with humor when (3 times now) children ask me if my painting is a paint by number-wish they knew the tuition I paid in college! Most are perked into an interest as I paint and watch for a moment before carrying on with their shopping and projects.

The mornings have been cooler, I rise early and open up the doors to let the light fog drift through the screens. Diva, the cat, preens in front of one or another- wishing to escape the confines of her royal shelter.

Summer is up in Mammoth,CA at a X-Country running camp. The teen is experiencing thunderstorms and time away, but texts me with updates thayt make me miss her arms as they hug me in the mornings and wish I was young again. It is something that she will carry forever as a memory of her High School years and I am glad at that. The training is an experience and a gain also, but her stories and friends are the biggest plus I think.

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