I want to ask you …

I want to ask you …

What makes your heart skip a beat?
What memories cause goosebumps on every inch of your skin?

I want to ask you …

Who has hurt you so deeply that you have lost all confidence in who you really are?
What loss has caused bitterness in your soul?

I want to ask you …

If you could be anywhere right now, doing anything you wanted to..
where would you be, and what would you be doing?

I want to ask you …

When you take a deep breath and close your eyes, what is the first thing you think about?
Does it make you happy, or does it make you sad?

I want to ask you …

What makes you want to jump out of bed in the morning?
What makes you smile when you go to sleep at night?

I want to ask you …

What do you think life is really about?
What is our purpose?

I want to ask you …
but is it okay?

Maybe I should just ask you …
How was your day?

Isn’t that
the polite thing to say?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Just Do it Anyway

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA - September, 2017

Elvis the Penguin at the National Aviary, Pittsburgh, PA – September, 2017

Just Do it Anyway!

It might be scary.
It is probably risky.

What if someone is watching,
and it turns out to be a flop?

What if people laugh?
What if they say, “I told you so.”

There’s a pretty huge chance it won’t work out.
But guess what?  That’s the point!

Be brave!
Just Do it Anyway!

 

This is a mantra I am trying to reiterate to myself.  I am taking on new experiences, new challenges, new risks – with my art, writing, self-development….

It might turn out to be a great big flop, but I’ll never know if I don’t just do it anyway!

Is there something you’ve always wanted to do?  Pick up a paint brush?  Write a book?  Travel to a faraway place?  Learn a new skill?  Begin a new relationship?  Record a song?  Learn to fly?  Heck – maybe it’s even just a new hairdo?

It might not turn out……..

But then it might?

If you don’t just do it anyway, how will you ever know?

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

 

Broken

"Broken" - Abstract Watercolor 11x14 140lb Saunders Waterford Cold Press

“Broken” – Abstract Watercolor 11×14 140lb Saunders Waterford Cold Press

The broken
will always
be able
to love harder
than most.

Once you have been
in the dark,
you learn
to appreciate
everything
that shines.

Zachry K. Douglas

Embrace
the brokenness
and let
your light
shine.

Cheers & Hugs
Jodi

"Broken" - Abstract Watercolor 11x14 Matted and Framed

“Broken” – Abstract Watercolor 11×14 Matted and Framed

 

Lately…

Mars, PA - Late Summer Sunrise - August 20, 2017

Mars, PA – Late Summer Sunrise – August 20, 2017

Lately…

Lately, I’ve been reading
“The Storyteller”
by Jodi Picoult.

It has touched my heart deeply,
profoundly moved my soul,
and makes my hands
want to bake Chocolate Babka.

It’s made me consider,
Inside each of us is a monster.
Inside each of us is a saint.
The real question
is which one of them will
we nurture the most?
Which one will smite the other?”

Lately, I’ve been binge-watching
Bloodline
on Netflix.

It’s made me realize
how past family secrets
and hurtful lies
can cause lasting scars
and shatter lives.

Lately, Hubby was out of town
on a business trip.
Not far. Not long. But not here.

It’s made me realize
how much I truly miss
the little things
I too often
complain about.

Lately…
I’ve been thinking about
a new perspective.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

No Trespassing?

Private Property - No Trespassing Sign

No Trespassing…

I pass this sign, and many others like it,
on a daily walk with Charlie along the country road we live on.

The other day, in particular,
it struck me as being so sad.

What is so important that we must stop people,
that we must block them…. from entering what we feel is ours only?

I wish there were more "All are Welcome" signs along the road.
I wish there were more "C'mon in," "My House is Your House," "Peace to all who Enter."

Remember the song we sang as children?
"This land is your land.  This land is my land….  This land was made for you and me."

Let's open our hearts.
Let's open our arms.

Let's open our eyes.
Let's open our ears.

Let's open our homes.
Let's open our land.

And if you have time, I urge you to quietly listen to this deeply moving version of "This Land," by a young Bruce Springsteen from over 30 years ago.

Let's keep trying!
This land was made for you and me.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

The Magic of Moonlight

Full Moon over Scottsdale, Arizona - July, 2017

Full Moon over Scottsdale, Arizona – July, 2017

The Magic of Moonlight.

The full moon’s smoldering glow
illuminates the evening desert sky

Peeking and hiding amidst billowy clouds
in shades of creamy coral and milky opal.

Palm trees elegantly pirouette
with delicate fronds fluttering fluidly

While the wind whispers a soft lullaby
in hushed tones of serene tranquility.

Good night sweet summer day…
sleep peacefully in contented slumber.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

The House by the Lake

The House by the Lake in Black and White Nostalgia - Lake Arthur, Moraine State Park - May 2017

The House by the Lake in Black and White Nostalgia – Lake Arthur, Moraine State Park – May 2017

I’d like to spend a day
in this house by the lake.

I’d spend some of the time
roaming the rooms

Looking and listening
and smelling and touching

Imagining the stories
of the occupants through the years.

I’d spend some of the time
on a reclining chair in the lawn

Watching the sailboats and fishing boats
and birds and fish and wildlife of the lake

Imagining the stories
of its occupants through the years.

I’d like to spend a day
in this house by the lake.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

You may house their bodies, but not their souls…

Your children are not your children.
They are the sons and daughters of Life’s longing for itself.
They come through you but not from you.
And though they are with you yet they belong not to you.

You may give them your love but not your thoughts,
For they have their own thoughts.
You may house their bodies but not their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow…

-Kahlil Gibran

Next Sunday is Mother’s Day.
Last Saturday my youngest “child” got married.
My greatest honor in life has been being a mother.
But as this wise verse from Kahlil Gibran in The Prophet reminds me,
I may have housed their bodies, but I cannot house their souls,
For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow.

I am so proud of the men my boys have become.
As I watched the youngest celebrate marriage, and the oldest toast his brother last weekend,
my heart swelled.
Somehow we managed to do a good job.
And I couldn’t have done it without my husband – their father – by my side.

As I look at this photo I took at Phipps Conservatory in Pittsburgh a few weeks ago of a Momma Duck (made of flowers by the way) and her little ducklings, I was once again reminded of the privilege I was bestowed in life to be a mother.  I am now also blessed with two beautiful “daughters”-in-law and the great privilege of being a “grand”mother.

I am so grateful.

Here’s to all the moms out there!
Cherish the moments.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

Be Bold

Pink Rosebuds Watercolor 5x7 140 lb Cold Press Saunders

Pink Rosebuds Watercolor 5×7 140 lb Cold Press Saunders

Be Bold.

Be bold…
in doing what you love,
in doing what feels good,
in doing what makes you happy.

Be bold…
in making your own kind of beauty,
in being your own kind of beauty,
in seeing the beauty in others.

Be Bold!
Be You!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Quick, loose painting done on Saunders 140lb cold press watercolor paper using Daniel Smith Rhodonite Genuine and Sap Green watercolor paint.

Just when…

Just when you think you are over
the hurt, the sadness, the loss…

something happens.

It can be something
lovely and loving and special,

but still it is a reminder.

Sometimes a loss is a choice…
a deliberate decision

that has to be made to preserve your soul.

And your soul  is worth it,
so save it

and cherish the moments you are given.

 

Hugs,
Jodi