Saturday, June 13, 2009

Reach for the sky...

At long last she’s finished—and I’m delighted! I completed my ‘Tree Woman’ piece this week, although I’m still trying to come up with a more fitting title for her. It’s been a hectic week with the boys in the art camp at the John Waldron Arts Center in the afternoons and the HoA (Husband of Artist) visiting the GPUs (grandparental units) in Michigan for a few days. I’ve been running around like crazy this week, but I just decided it was time to start attaching the branches. Then came the leaves, which was exactly what I needed to bring a measure of control and completion into my life. I’ve been scavenging little windows of time to get things done—a little poking here, a little grass-making there—until things came to a head Friday afternoon. Jacob had his friend Claire over and I convinced all the kids to come into my art studio and work on projects. That let me focus on my piece at the expense of the art studio floor turning into a disaster zone. I gleefully finished the grass and flowers at her feet. These were a composite of linen yarn, jute, cotton, fake evergreen boughs from a Christmas wreath and latch hook rug remnants. Everything finds its own niche around this place. When I called it done I showed it to the kids for an opinion. After a brief refocusing of three engrossed children (what—you mean you were working on something too Mom?) the consensus response was ‘wow!’ I’m really savoring having her hanging on the wall, and I’m patiently waiting for her to tell me her name. Every time I look at her I’m reminded that my favorite feature is her belly button, even if she does have a little wool in there.

It’s good to have the HoA home again. The boys have been a little sad, especially at bedtime. The world is set straight again, though, as the HoA triumphantly returned with cheese from ‘The Cow’ in Linwood, Kluski from Kryziaks, walleyes from Saginaw Bay, and Spatz’s hot bread from the bakery in Bay City. He even brought a few Tim Horton’s doughnuts home for his Canadian expatriate spouse. We’ll eat well this week!

The experience without the HoA in the house gave me a newfound respect for the trials of single parents. Life was full and boisterous, and herding 2 to 3 kids for meals, cleaning up, art class and bed is quite an adventure without any help. The week did have its highlights, though. At the boy’s art camp, one of the teachers was Rob of Bloomingfoods fame. He brought a wonderful fresh outlook on art to the camp. Rob introduced them to many new artists, techniques, and ways to think about creating art. He inspired Jacob to write a book entitled ‘How to Draw Aliens’, who told Rob he’d be willing to sell him the book. Always the entrepreneur, that boy. Jacob also made a beautiful vase, although the fact that it isn’t watertight will limit its applications. Tommie made a very nice dragon sculpture in the section with Jan Arbogast. It was a great two weeks, capped with an art reception to which we brought many brownies and brought home none.

My last big discovery of the week was the Monroe County Historical Society ‘garage sale’. I called my friend Cappi Phillips to ask her if it was worth going as she trundled off to the Talbot Street Art Fair. She recommended it as huge, fun and loaded with treasures. She didn’t need to tell me that twice! It is held in the old RCA storage building behind Cook Pharmaceuticals, and it was indeed huge, fun and loaded with treasures. I brought home a new dye pot, a basket for my cards and some very useful wire. I also just had to bring home a little nutmeg grater with a storage space on top and a cute little lid. It even had a hole on top to hang it on the wall! How could I ever leave such a special little thing at a big, impersonal place!

Until next week…

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