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Monday, April 9, 2012

Mom Vs. Time Bandits

When I was a child, I loved to read stories about mythical creatures. One of my favorites was a book about elves and fairies. My imagination would traverse through the garden of make-believe and I would envision a world where these little pranksters would wreak havoc on mere mortals, bending time and space. Shakespeare  wrote about these as well in "A Midsummer Night's Dream",the trickster Puck proclaiming "I am that merry wanderer of night". I now find myself believing that there is some truth in these stories of old, not literally of course(my mind has not gone completely around the bend)but rather in a metaphorical sense. At least once a day, one can hear a reference to time and its elusive concept..."Time flies when your having fun", "Where has the time gone?", "I didn't think this day would ever end." Science is too technical on it's definition of time with Einstein's theory of relativity, Quantum physics and Wormholes in Space. How can one term, have so many dimensions? I have decided it must be the work of little creatures, tiny bandits of time, that zip around and warp our consciousnesses. How else could one explain the suddenness with which my children have gone from toddlers who laughed at all my jokes, and loved for me to "wrap them up like a little burrito" when I would tuck them in at night, to independent teenagers who roll their eyes at my corny jokes and  hurry me out of their room at night so they can do their "Homework"? What other explanation could there be when my oldest daughter advises me on health issues, telling her Dad and I to lay off the sugar, and read labels carefully?...that used to be my job. I believe the nano-sized winged monster flies into ones ear, flits around and leaves traces of memory mixed with nostalgia. That would explain how I remember only the good when I look back at the past, but none of the pain. Wow, that is clever, they can actually cause humans to live in the past, rather than look to the future. That is why we should all listen to mom when she says "clean your ears"...if not we would never know how precious the present time is. The  most remarkable aspect of these winged bandits is that they cause me to think about my childhood again. I find that as my children grow up and become adults, I have gone back in time to find myself. Once again I enjoy the things I loved as a kid. When there is no one around at supper time, I can just grab a low-sugary snack, head outside and explore nature. I can sit down and write or blog for hours, or maybe read a book..and finish it. Who knows I might even climb a tree, provided I can find my way down. Motherhood has taught me how to fight these time bandits, or maybe I am just co-existing with them. I still dread the time when the bandits will steal my children from me, and send them away to exotic lands or college, but as  I let them go, I learn to create again,although they were my greatest creation, to imagine again, and look forward to the future with hope and anticipation.  I have now informed my family that if they don't hear from me for a few hours, don't worry, I have probably fallen through the looking glass of time...but I will be back soon, however long that is.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Growing up "country"

My Country Girl; fourth generation
I have been thinking a lot lately on what defines "country". When I heard someone say "that's country" or "you can tell she's from the country", I was sometimes offended because the remark implied a void of either intelligence or style. Growing up "country", as I did, made me a bit of an outsider at times. Beauty had to be found or created, not bought and paid for. I seldom had new store-bought clothes. Occasionally, my older sister would make me really cool outfits in her homemaking class. These were simple dresses and pant suits that reflected the free-spirited colors and designs  of the seventies, so for a little country girl, I had some pretty groovy duds. On the occasion that I could pick something out of the catalog, I always embellished it with some kind of lace,patch or bling; who can forget "bedazzlers"? As I grew older, I realized that I really didn't like department store clothing.  I bought my share of department store clothes as I got older in an effort to fit in with my peers and  potential employers. In conservative west Texas, the gypsy country style of clothing was not exactly catching on. I could hear remarks such as "she just doesn't know how to dress" or my favorite put-down term of endearment-"bless her heart". Being a West Texan though, you have to be like a cactus growing in the pastures, tough on the outside, but sweet and tender inside.
My hunter-gatherer instinct has become more pronounced as I age. I adore bringing the outdoors inside, and prefer old and imperfect over new and shiny . We can't just keep throwing things away-there is no Away. This sounds a lot like my mother and grandmothers who kept every button, every scrap of ribbon, they "used it up and wore it out". Being country feels pretty good, whether its in style or not. At my house, old bread goes to the birds, potato peelings go in the flower bed, and newspaper is used for cleaning windows(when I get around to it). Right now, being country is popular again; flea markets are huge, Retro is all the rage and being environmentally aware is certainly "intelligent". In the end, being "Country" is about the land...it is where it begins and where it ends.  
On Wildhorse Creek bridge

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

A River Runs through it...sort of

"To everything there is season, and a time to every purpose under heaven". (Ecclesiastes 3:1)
Last year about this time, the county was ablaze with wildfires, the likes of which have never been seen. In Mitchell County, at least four-five homes were lost in one night. The drought situation continued to decimate the landscape, and old-timers were recalling similarities with the drought of the fifties. Record high temperatures continued through-out the summer, crisping everything in sight. Just as promised, however, in Ecclesiastes, there is a time and purpose to everything under heaven. When I go out in our pastures now, I see green in all directions. This "river" is actually the result of a tank's spillway overflowing...Overflowing, another biblical reference"my cup runs over".   In this political climate of promises made to the left and to the right, I know the only true promises are the ones God has made. Each of us can reflect upon a time when circumstances were beyond our control, and hopeless, only to see the sun rise again the next day with  optimism, foreshadowing the good things to come. What about you? Have you witnessed the beauty of God's promises lately? I would love to hear.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Where Women Create: What if...

 This is from where the writing flows... or not. This office has turned out to be a favorite hang out of my teenagers as well. I literally have to run them out so that I can get some work done. Durn.. just when I think I am old enough to have a space of my own, I still have to share it. Oh well, I guess my goal of achieving a comfy, inspiring, thought provoking space has been achieved. Thanks again to Magnolia Pearl.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

More inspiration from Magnolia Pearl(Beautiful)

Beautiful Layered Victorian Sofa
This is from Magnolia Pearl's book A Bit of Velvet & A Dash of Lace, which I mentioned in a previous post. I would encourage anyone who is interested in learning this layering style, to read this book. I can never get enough of it, and it makes a beautiful coffee table book.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Bohemian Style- Magnolia Pearl

Inspiration can come at you from any direction, in many forms. For me, I have found inspiration in a Textiles artist named Magnolia Pearl also known as Robin Brown. Many of you are sure to know her, as she  transcends beyond clothing designs and now inspires others with her unique application to Victorian Style. For me, she has quietly become a mentor. We both were born in the mid-sixties, and were influenced by the Bohemian Styles of the time that flourished in the early seventies. She does a show every fall and spring at Marburger Farms in Round Top Texas. Oddly, I have no talent whatsoever in sewing, but I do enjoy writing, and find that I must be surrounded by beautiful things in order to write. I enjoy decorating, and  can sew just enough to apply her unique brand of "Layering" to some of my treasures I find at flea markets. I no longer enjoy new furniture; I prefer dinged, chipped, and a bit worn, just like me. You can find her website at magnoliapearl.com. Her book, "A Bit of Velvet, and a Dash of Lace" is filled with beautiful pictures of her home in the Hill Country. It is one of those books you will enjoy often. What about you? Do find inspiration from unexpected places? I'd like to hear your story.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

The Horse Whisperer and Smiling Horses

"The Horse Whisperer." It is amazing how horses have an innate ability to be gentle with another gentle spirit. Horses have such a mystique about them. I Love the way they smell, the sound they make when they munch on the soft grass, the gentle nudge from the nose to let you know they are glad your here, the knowing look when they trust you. Horses, like people, want their privacy. I know when my guys want to be away from humans, and  when they yearn for a friendly touch. My grandson says he knows when they are smiling. That may be true; nurturing children, and animals have many similarities. They both require patients, an ability to look them in the eyes and tell if they feel sick or sad. Horses, like children must know that there are boundaries they can't cross, and forgiveness if they do.  Do you have a story about horse sense that you would like to share?