from William Martin’s “That Parent’s Tao Te Ching”

that parents tao te ching by william martin

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Bubbles, Candles and Music

Rudyard Kipling has been credited with the quote, “Delight in the little things.”

I’ve been thinking on this trying to work out what the “little things” are.  My conclusion is they are the things we take for granted, the things you do not miss until they are gone often those same things which when you had them were accompanied by a lack of gratefulness.

My thoughts lie with my old hot water heater, which is now sitting on my driveway with the hope some resourceful person may want it for parts.   It has served me faithfully for one and a half decades, but 18 months ago it began to fail.  Until then I’d never given it a minute’s thought.  Over recent months  I’ve managed to “bandaid and/or fix ‘er up a bit” but as she was laid to rest today I came back to Kipling’s quote and realised that the simple pleasure of having running hot water on tap must be one of those little (first world) things to delight in.  I am grateful.  I am grateful that I have a home, that I have a job which can help to pay for the replacement of said hot water system.

I am grateful I have the time to delight in the little things.  This evening I will be expressing that by indulging in a hot tub with bubbles, candles and music.

May your little things be amazing.

bubbles and candles.jpg

Merino Wool, Silk Sari, Raw Silk and Golden Threads

There is an artist in me.  I am sure of it because I wanted it to be so since I was a child, as a teenager, as a young adult and still now as a woman looking towards retirement I want it to be so.  I participated in a few years of art classes at high school, following all the guidelines, principles etc and produced some works considered good enough the school asked to buy my end of year folio.  However there was something not quite right from my perspective, it didn’t feel wild and exciting, like I thought it should be and I was a little disappointed.

So I dabbled here with a little textile, there with a little photography, a bit more in clay, followed by more classes including one where I used art as therapy to reach some dark places in me, jewellery making, then pencil and charcoal. Nothing ever seemed to fit, but something stuck was always trying to get out.

I’ve learnt in recent years art does not have to be perfect.  But it must be a rich, deep form of SELF expression, a contemplation of one’s own truth.  That is what has been lacking, it’s not been the me I know speaking through the mediums I’ve tried.

“To me art is making mistakes; it’s the undetected magnificence of everyday life and the pleasure of creativity.” Unknown.

This quote I came across a while back invigorated me.  Recaptured in my mind the wild of my garden, something I created which is becoming a beautiful fabric of wonders.  Observing the magnificence of my garden and responding to it as a living, breathing system has given me that simply amazing pleasure of creativity.  And it’s a glorious mess of nature.

So now without perfectionism, without exams, without expectations I am heading for another rollercoaster ride.   Last weekend I produced the magic of felt for the first time.  It was tactile, I had a blast and am back on the artist train again.

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Oh Joy!  My heart is crying out for more.  Colours, clay, swirls, paper, faces and trees, trinkets, feathers, paint.  And more felt, fabric, ink.  I am ready to play again, like a child.

Brigid’s Ritual

brigid wanna be

Yesterday, I trimmed and tidied the lemongrass in the garden.  Today, I find this photograph which puts me in memory of my beautiful, black feline, Brigid, who delighted in lemongrass as opposed to the more mundane catnip or cat grass which I grew for her and her sister.

Well actually, she more than enjoyed it, she revelled in it.  It was a sudden change, one day she was happily chewing on cat grass, the next she was all over the lemongrass like a dog who enjoys a dead fish on the beach <phew!>.  It became an addiction, if cats have addictions.  It became a ceremony.

Every morning I would hear a bleat from her and never having been very vocal all her 14 years it was an amusing thing for me.  Out the door, a quick squint in the sunlight, then to check on ‘her’ lemongrass.  She would slink around it once, eyeing off the juiciest leaves, then settle down and chew for about five minutes releasing the aromatic oils.  The young leaves would drop around the base of the plant.  Following said mastication she would lay down, roll and squirm among them for another five.  I found the scent arising from all the bruised leaves to be invigorating.  I am sure Brigid did too as I could swear she had a smile on her face after engaging in her morning ritual.

Today, like most days, I miss her company.  But simple memories bring her back.

RIP Brigid.