The World is our Oyster

The World is our Oyster

As we grow older,
we sometimes wish
we were that beautiful young girl or boy we see
who looks so “effortlessly” attractive
in their skinny jeans and tank top
with skin that is tight and glowing
and hair that is long and soft and flowing.
They appear so confident and self-assured.
The world is their oyster.

When we are young,
we often can’t wait
to be those older girls or boys
who are able to choose what they do
and where they go
and make important decisions
and be independent.
They appear so confident and self-assured.
The world is their oyster.

When we are down or sad
we often think
everyone else
has it better
or easier
or is happier
or is smarter
They appear so confident and self-assured.
The world is their oyster.

But you know what?

Nothing is really quite like it seems.

Let’s try to own and like
whoever we are
at whatever stage
of life we are at.
Let’s try not to compare
our insides
to others’ outsides.
We are all kind of a mess.
The world is our oyster.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Another Day

Starting a New Day in Mars, PA – June 29, 2018

Another Day.

Another sunrise.
Another beginning.

Another chance to smile
and make someone else smile.

Another chance to give
and also to receive.

Another chance to win,
but also learn to lose.

Another chance to change
something you didn’t do well yesterday.

Another chance to speak kindness
to someone who is lost.

Another chance to do something for the first time,
or maybe for the last.

Another chance to see and smell
and listen and taste and touch.

Another chance to hug
and say, “I love you.”

Another day.
Another chance to embrace the beauty of this life.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

PS – It is July 1st, which means World Watercolor Month begins today!  I haven’t had a chance this past week to do any watercolor painting, but sure plan to do some this month (and hopefully today!) to share.  Don’t forget you can support #WorldWatercolorMonth and The Dreaming Zebra Foundation by purchasing one of these Limited Edition WWM Souvenier Zippered Pouches with My “Terry’s” Yellow Canary Watercolor Design on it.  100%  of proceeds on this product goes to The Dreaming Zebra Foundation! These flat pouches vary from small to large and can be used for pretty much anything.  I’d like to give one of these away to one of my faithful followers and friends here at The Creative Life in Between.  If you’ve read this far and would like entered in the random drawing, which I’ll announce the winner of next Sunday, just add a comment saying “Enter Me in the Drawing!”  If you’d like to purchase one, simply click on the photo below.

Unfurl

Young Fern in Spring, Mars, PA – May 2018

Unfurl.

Spread out your arms
and show your true beauty.

Open up your heart
and show your true love.

Unwind your mind
and show your creativity.

Unpack your burdens
and feel the lightness of hope.

Uncover your inhibitations
and welcome the unknown.

Reach beyond the tightness
and ease into peace.

Unfurl.

 

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Take Flight

Take Flight.

Take flight
above
the turquoise sea,

amidst
the pink and golden
sky.

Stretch
your wings
and soar so high,

let
freedom
guide your heart.

Embrace
the feelings
that you get

when you are
creating
art.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

Just some words and feelings that came to mind when looking at this 5-minute practice painting I did one day experimenting with techniques.

What did I do?  I dropped in some granulating colors – lunar black and quinacridone gold to a wash of alizarin crimson.  I then splashed in some creamy white gouache to create a soft, but dramatic sunset sky.  I scraped in some flying sea gulls with a couple simple scrapes of a palette knife.  I blended cobalt teal with a dab of prussian blue and splashed in some more creamy white gouache.  I then splashed some drops of water from a mister bottle and dropped in just a couple flakes of sea salt.    I then walked away and waited for the magic to happen…. (the hardest part of all).

 

Dear Kitchen Table

This week leading up to Christmas, I am sharing a few of my favorite posts from the past.  This letter to my kitchen table makes me smile.  It still remains sturdy and proud in our kitchen – though it is usually covered with a table cloth these days.  I love the memories formed around our kitchen table.

Dear Kitchen Table

kitchen table

My Dear Ole’ Kitchen Table –

I know you are growing old and tired and worn (and as I look at this photo I took of you just yesterday, I realize it even more!)  There are days I think I want to replace you – or at least refinish your surface.  Many a discussion has been had about you!

But then I remember all the things we’ve been through together… The memories you’ve been a part of…  The people that have sat around you…    the food and festivities you have held…    the activities that you supported….   the different homes you have moved to with us through the years….  and I have a hard time parting with you.

Remember all those Christmas cards we colored on you?  Hours and hours over the years of markers and ink accidentally sliding off the paper onto you, which you gracefully accepted.

Remember how many times milk was spilled on you?  It often slithered through the cracks and off the edge onto the floor, but you never complained while we all scampered to gather clothes to wipe you off and rearrange dinner.

Remember homework, filling out school papers, permission slips, sick notes….?

Remember science projects and art projects?

Remember gift wrapping sessions with paper and scissors and tape and boxes and bags and tags?

Remember daily family dinner time conversations?   Arguments?   Laughter?   Prayers?   Tears?

Remember games of Chutes and Ladders, Old Maid, Monopoly, Life, Trouble, Five Crowns, Rummy, Yahtzee, Set, Operation, Battleship, Trivial Pursuit, Cranium, and the hardest of all on you – Jenga!?

Remember breakfasts with friends with strips of sizzling bacon, stacks of pancakes, bowls of eggs, and cups and cups and cups of coffee?

Remember when the boys were in high school and we hosted weekly Thursday night flag football games for 5 or 10 or 15 at a time – and then served pots of spaghetti or chili or whole hams or turkeys or roasts to all for dinner – always with a cake or pie or plates of cookies for dessert for hungry growing boys (and girls!)?

Remember vacation-planning sessions discussed around you – like our trip to Hawaii with Jill & Todd – or reminiscing about favorite vacations like our Caribbean Cruise where we met our wonderful Bubby and Glenn or our ultimate excursion to Alaska with our sweet Janet?

Remember our first Christmas reunited with Dad and Carole and Aunt Gwen and Uncle Frank and John and Jeff and Dawn and Jen and the whole gang?

Remember bantering and jokes between Pap and Ron?

Remember shower and wedding planning discussions for Jake and Colleen?

Remember meeting Liz and seeing how happy she makes Nick?

You’ve cooled cookies and cakes and pies on warm summer days and cold winter evenings.

You’ve held fresh flowers and birthday cakes and candles.

Each scratch and fade and mark is a reminder of all of these times….

Thank you for being with our family and helping to keep us in touch with each other.  You were often the center of important deep and meaningful conversations.  Other times you were pounded on as we laughed until we cried…..   or cried until we laughed.

You may not be as beautiful as you were 24 years ago when we bought you from the quaint shop that sells handmade Amish-built oak furniture, but neither am I?

And I’m ok with you if you’re ok with me.

What we have together goes much deeper than superficial “looks.”

Thank you, my dear ole’ kitchen table, for all you have given to our family.

With love,

Jodi

*This post was inspired by Thursday’s Daily Prompt at The Daily Post, entitled:   Literate for a Day:   Someone or something you can’t communicate with through writing (a baby, a pet, an object) can understand every single word you write today, for one day only. What do you tell them?

Let the Rain Fall

Goldfinch in the Rain - Autumn, Mars, PA

Goldfinch in the Rain – Autumn, Mars, PA

Let the Rain Fall.

I watched you as you sat proud and beautiful
while the rain fell on and around you.

You didn’t need
the sun to make you shine.

In fact,
you stood out even brighter in the cloudy drizzle.

And I was reminded
true beauty comes from within.

It can’t be soaked or drenched
or washed off.

It can’t be dampened or doused
by the storms of life.

Let the rain fall.
Let the storms crash.

And continue to shine
your authentic beautiful self.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

On this Road called Life

Early November Morning Walk after the Storm - thecreativelifeinbetween.com

Early November Morning Walk after the Storm – thecreativelifeinbetween.com

On this Road called Life.

There will be ups and downs…
There will be twists and turns.

There will be sunshine and rain…
There will be seasons of change.

But straight roads
don’t make skillful drivers.

And flowers can’t grow
on smoothly paved roads.

This road called life
is your path to choose.

And if you don’t like the one you are traveling on….
pave a new.

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

 

We had an unseasonably strong thunderstorm this past Saturday night, but Sunday morning brought shiny, clean beauty on my morning walk with Charlie that was made even sweeter by the extra hour of sleep gifted from “Falling Back” from Daylight Savings to Eastern Standard Time and the gorgeous colors of Autumn leaves.

Daily Stretches

Daily Stretches.

Stretch your muscles
to move about with ease.

Stretch your eyes open wide
to see the beauty in this world.

Stretch your mind
to explore new experiences.

Stretch your wallet
to give to those in need.

Stretch your heart
to give more love.

Stretch your imagination
to create art or music or beautiful words.

Stretch your arms open
to embrace in a hug.

Stretch!

Cheers & Hugs,
Jodi

10 Months Ago Today…

10 Months Ago Today.

I crossed the railroad tracks today,
like I do so many days.

And I realized, after the fact,
that for the first time in 10 months

I didn’t get a lump in my throat…
I didn’t hold my breath…

I didn’t think of you
and the decision you made

10 months ago today.

It caught me off guard…
Made me both happy and sad.

Only 10 months ago
you were still here…

barely hanging on…
but still there was hope.

10 months later
there is no more hope

and the memory is beginning
to fade.

I want to be happy,
yet that makes me sad.

10 months ago today
you took your life away.

Rest in peace dear brother.
Rest in peace.

Love,
Jodi