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Wednesday, April 1, 2015

A world of new spackling plaster

"Follow Your Bliss!"

It's Wednesday and...
April FOOLS!

Nah, just kidding.  It's the usual blog post today - I've done way too much art to not post some fun stuff today!

Updates... is moving and shaking lately!  Very soon, a writing section will magically appear, where you'll find lots of my essays, thoughts, writings, poetry, published this one, or that one, or a bunch more - you'll see :)
And, some of you are starting to pin on my Show Me Your HeART Pinterest Board, which I love - keep posting your inspiration - it's gorgeous stuff!

Today I'm going to hang my work at City Lights Gallery - I'm very excited to be a part of this showcase - it opens a week from tomorrow!
"Wishing Girl" will be featured there - one of my favorites from years ago
And more preparation is in the works for Beechwood Art's Immersion Salon on Resilience and the power of the Human Spirit.  I'm working on writing a monologue with the key turning points in the past decade of trauma and blessings-in-disguise.
A visual draft of my monologue - should be very fun...

There are really some great artists featured in this Salon Showcase - David Friedman writes amazing songs - one of my favorites is "We Live On Borrowed Time" - there are no words truer and no song more poignant - I really encourage you to listen to it here.

Nancy Lamott is one of my inspirations because she too was a fighter - a fearless and talented woman, who also happened to have an ostomy as well.  David worked with her on many beautiful albums.

I also just found out that James Naughton will be performing, who is a wonderful actor with a beautiful voice.
This is a favorite album of mine.

So much art.  Where to start.

I've definitely been prodigious this morning!  I've started a bunch of things at once and I can't wait to see how everything turns out!

I did a ton this morning!
I have grown to love starting a bunch of things and going back to one every now and then - this way I have some options and everything is just a work in progress - as we all are anyway!
I was very excited to start on this globe I got for 10 bucks at Home Goods - I wasn't sure exactly what I'd do with it, but I have an idea now...(of course, that always changes when I'm actually working on it!)
I primed the globe with gesso, only leaving parts open for clouds - there are some beautiful constellations featured - as a globe, it's pretty useless though!
 Once the gesso dried, I painted it in a billion different shades of blue, some glitter, and put some sparkly modge podge in the clouds - it looks like a beautiful sky!
My plan is to have some flying trees around the globe, but who knows what I'll end up doing.
 Then came the fun part...adding spackle to the base - I was envisioning one big tree holding up the globe.

It's a tree!

 Of course, then I realized there was no room for the tree's head, and I didn't want to make the actual globe the head of the I improvised by glue-gunning a paper-towel together and priming it with gesso!
 So, this is completely an experiment, believe me, but ideally, when everything dries, I'll try to attach the head to the spackle, and it will be like the tree is looking up - hopefully it will stick!!!  (You'll just have to check my blog post tomorrow to find out!)

And More Art! (in the works
And then I just started a bunch of random other things - should be a fun week ahead for me!
I was there for so long I got a bit hungry - and this was the easiest thing to throw in my mouth as I was painting!
Hey, beggars can't be choosers...

Final Countdown to Passover!!! Woohoo!!!
My dad and I wrote our own :)

I know, I'm a bit excited.  Today I wanted to share with you some of the more personal themes that Passover holds for me.  My stomach exploded on April 25th, 2005 - the second night of our Passover Seder.  I remember every detail so vividly - the company we had, how I hosted the seder with my usual spunk and sass, laughter, good food and family - and then a terrible terrible stomach ache that never went away.  After almost two days in pain, BAM - life changes.  Coma, waking up in a different place, self, body, circumstance.  And things I never saw again - my high school, my dog, my grandparents, my house - all gone with the coma, only to live in my memories.

So I do think about Passover with a very spiritual and deep, nostalgic longing.  This holiday meant so much to me as a child and it means 3,000 times more now.  I wanted to share a tiny excerpt of some ooold journaling I did about what Passover means to me - I will share part two tomorrow...

         "The more I think about it, the more I see I can learn from the story of Moses. Moses was born to a Hebrew mother who hid him when a Pharaoh ordered all newborn Hebrew boys to be killed, and ended up being adopted into the Egyptian royal family.  I let my soul fly free while the Egyptian scissors and serpents of the Nile threatened my body.  My soul went into Grandma’s hands, into the trees, hid itself in all the treasures I would have to go into dark, deep places in order to uncover.  After killing an Egyptian slave master, he fled and became a shepherd, and was later commanded by God to deliver the Hebrews from slavery. After fighting back against all of the doctors and the wrongs they had done me, I went into my own whirlpool of chaos, only to see my own burning bush in the wind chimes and hear Grandma speak to me.  I took on the task of healing and the secrets that only a wounded healer is enlightened with just like Moses was given the heavy knowledge of the Ten Commandments.  After the Ten Plagues were unleashed on Egypt, he led the Hebrew slaves out of Egypt, through the Red Sea, where they wandered in the desert for 40 years. And hopefully I can grow to be a kind of leader like he was and carry on our Jewish legacy...
            ...Just like Moses’ sister Miriam waiting at the other end of the river, watching the progress of baby Moses in his tiny basket to make sure he safely reached the other wise, Motherly and Thriving Amy have been waiting on the other end for Wounded Amy to make it through the trauma, and now they are all ready to embrace as one big happy family, now that the threat of danger is gone.  The Pharoah’s daughter picked up the baby in the river, but after a few of the Egyptian women tried to unsuccessfully nurse Moses, Miriam came into the light and asked permission to nurse the baby.  And just like Miriam I am ready to take on the task of caring for my soul again."  (from my journal, around 2007)
There are just so many themes of Passover that not only I can relate to, but everyone - finding redemption, leaving our own "person Egypt", breaking free and traveling to safety, and taking that journey our hearts tell us to venture out on.  Spring is my new beginning - it is my birthday season after all.  And with each breath, I hope to start anew, with every new moment and new miracle, and growing, growing, growing each step of the way.

At the end of every seder, we say "Next Year In Jerusalem" to symbolize that next year, we will be in a land of freedom - whatever that means for us personally.  And every year that I couldn't eat, I would tell myself, "Next Year In Jerusalem" - which for me, meant "next year I"ll finally eat, we'll finally have our seder again, and next year, everything will be like old times, and all innocence restored, and everything will be happy and better and just like I remember."

"We Have Secrets"
But everything can't go back to how it used to be.  I learned that slowly but surely as I think we all do.
This is our
But I am so happy now.  I know I've written that a bunch lately, but it took a long time to reach this place.  Of acceptance.  Once you come to that point, not only accepting the good and the bad, but loving it - absolutely going crazy for the awesome blend of pleasure and pain that life can offer us - every day is an adventure.  It's amazing to feel again.
When I couldn't eat, I just made a lot of food out of clay and felt!

When I couldn't eat, I became very numb.  I didn't feel like a person in a real body, in a real world.  It was like I was an observer who was hardly there - I hardly knew I even existed.
For some reason, I really missed protein shakes and Oreos...

Now, I feel like I am finally making a mark on the world.  I am sharing my story and having an impact.  I am experiencing life in brighter and deeper, richer colors than ever before.  Finally, I can fearlessly love what has happened to me and how I have happened into this life.  Finally, I can feel again, and I can bring what I've learned into the world.  It means so much to me to be able to share this blog with you.  Thank you.

"The Best Day Ever"
Ken Keyes Jr."Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude."Denis Waitley
Maybe every painting of mine always have a heart as well as a teardrop.  '
Cuz that's what it's all about.

See ya tomorrow :)


  1. such a beautiful entry Ames, espec in this season of new beginnings

  2. We lived on borrowed time was such lovely song to share

  3. Wow! That's a lot of neat art! I think I'll show a few of these to my students tomorrow. I've got some who are particularly passionate about art! Thank you for sharing!

  4. Beautiful testimony. May The Creator Bless you!

  5. Oh my goodness the globe is SO fun!
    xo, Caitlin
    And Possibly Dinosaurs