Musings from the Moonroom

Thoughts on Art, Inspiration, Creativity and Spirit


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Happy Halloween, Happy Samhain

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Samhain, pronounced “sow-in,” is Irish Gaelic for “the summer’s end” and represents the death of the summer sun god Lugh.  Samhain is the beginning of the Celtic and Wiccan New Year.  It marks the end of the harvest.

Samhain is considered a time to eliminate weaknesses.  It is now customary to write one’s weaknesses on a piece of paper and then to burn the pieces of paper.  It is also a time to plant the seeds of new projects, to allow them to germinate over the winter, and to end old projects.

If you catch a falling leaf on Samhain before it touches the ground, it will bring you good luck and health for the coming winter.

Halloween originates from the ancient Celts celebrations and is based on their “Feast of Samhain.”

To learn more about Samhain and other Celtic festivals, visit here and here.


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Time

If I could save time in a bottle, the first thing that I’d like to do…
-Jim Croce

Time continues to creep into my mind.  How we perceive time.  How we use time.  How we abuse time.  How we fear time.

It started earlier this year when I took a collage class.  Assigned to create an accordian fold book an idea came to me for the book’s content during savasana in yoga.  One side of the book would be black with the words “Who, What, When, Where, and How” stamped in white.  On the other side a collage would be created interpreting the words.

whentimecollage.jpgThe “when” page featured the white rabbit with his pocket watch, a man’s wristwatch with an eye peering out from the date, numbers and the following quote: “Time bears away all things…even our minds.”

Later in the year, the concept of time again worked its way into my head.  I was contemplating sculpting dolls inspired by time related quotes, such as “Pressed for time.”  I’m intrigued by how we verbally describe our use or abuse of time.  The images these words conjure up can be quite funny.

In recent weeks thoughts of time reappeared when I wrote about harvesting your wealth.  And my friend Karen told me about a new book she bought, Slow Time: Recovering the Natural Rhythm of Life by Waverly Fitzgerald.  The concept behind this book is quite fascinating; it encourages readers, through exercises, reflections and stories, “to experience the flow and the rhythm of natural time.”

This past week I haven’t felt like much like posting; not feeling very “wordsmithy” and my time in the studio has been lacking.  It certainly isn’t like I haven’t had time to devote to these areas; it is usually quite the opposite since my days are pretty much my own to schedule.  But this lack of “motivation” (for lack of a better word) made me think about how time and seasons impact our productivity.

When we are little time seems to move so quickly.  The days rush by as we play and enjoy life.  Then, somewhere along the journey (perhaps in our teens?), time starts to slow down; days and months drag on.  Everything is so boring.  Soon, however, time starts to pick up again and we feel like we never have enough time to complete all those tasks we set before ourselves.  We are overbooked.

Now, again, for me at least, time seems to be slowing.  And though I have several items to complete on my task list I can’t get myself moving to get them done as quickly as I’d like.  And what I realized late last week was that I needed to take a break from my expectations.

After my last show I gave myself minimal downtime.  I had orders to fill and shipped out several of them straight away.  Last week, however, instead of cranking out production pieces, I made a few here and there.  I’m still within my proposed schedule for deliveries so this little break had minimal impact.  I believe that my decrease in motivation was my spirit telling me that I needed to take the break that never really happened after the Paradise City show.

I’ve been cleaning in the studio and by clearing out boxes and setting stuff aside for donation, I can feel a weight lifting.  Clutter can suffocate creativity.  I’ve visited a couple bookstores and probably spent too much money but sometimes certain books call out to you.

This week I feel a little more refreshed and ready to do production work.  However, the impact of time and what we make of it remains fresh in my mind.  I’m giving myself permission to take more breaks away from the work table.  The work will get done; it always does. 

When you feel like your schedule gets the best of you, that your creativity is suffering, look at how you’re perceiving time, how you use time, and what your spirit might be telling you.  We have nothing but time (as we’re always being told) but time is not something that we can control as much as we try to do just that.  Perhaps your spirit is responding to the natural rhythms of time.

(And those kernels of ideas for interpreting time through my art are still percolating in my mind.  They’ll let me know when it is their time.)


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Positive People Day

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Today is Positive People Day here in Massachusetts.  Positive People Day was started 10 years ago by Nancy Purbeck.  A unfortunate experience with a rude cab driver inspired her to create Positive People Day.  Positive People Day promotes the simple act of doing something positive for other people, whether that be sharing a smile, giving a hug, saying thank you, or other acts of kindness.

Positive People Day is celebrated every year on October 29.  And with October 29 falling on a Monday this year, what better way to start your week than with a simple act of kindness.  So give someone a hug, hold open a door, let someone squeeze into the line of traffic.

What simple acts of kindness do you perform during your day?

For more information on Positive People Day visit here and here.  For more information on Victory Over Violence, click here.


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Harvest Your Wealth

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Autumn is a time for drawing inward.  A time to reflect on the past (summer) and a time to prepare for the future (winter; the new year.)  It is a time to reap the harvest and celebrate our wealth.

John O’Donohue wrote in Anam Cara

when it is autumn in your life, the things that happened in the past, or the experiences that were sown in the clay of your heart, almost unknown to you, now yield their fruit.  Autumntime in a person’s life can be a time of great gathering.  It is time for harvesting the fruits of your experiences.

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This autumn I feel that I am embarking on a new time in my life; harvesting what I’ve learned in the past and learning to speak the truth from my experiences.  Learning to listen to my heart and my feelings.  I want to learn who I am truly meant to be.

How are you harvesting your wealth?


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Sculpture in Santa Fe

The art in Santa Fe is simply amazing and inspiring.  And the sculptures are, for the most part, very large.  Even the small indoor sculptures are at least 12″ tall.  I kept hearing Bruce Baker’s voice in my head as he encouraged artists to make their art larger for those art collectors decorating their large homes.

Here are some of my favorite sculptures.

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What a great place to read your favorite book!

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This sculpture of a female Native American is larger than life.  The quilt work detail was simply stunning.  Unfortunately, I can’t recall her name; she is an actual person from Santa Fe’s history.

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And they say everything is bigger in Texas.  I think Santa Fe is giving them some competition.  This ant is actually a chair.  Would you like to sit on his lap?

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We had the pleasure of meeting Bill Worrell the artist who created this piece.  He is a former art teacher in his early 70′s.  These pieces were inspired by cave drawings.  Bill was white water rafting one day and had to pull out of the water due to inclement weather.  While taking shelter in a cave he noticed the cave drawings and as they say, the rest is history.  In this gallery he had smaller sculptures, wall hangings, mixed media paintings and jewelry all using the same character.  One of his smaller sculptures came home with us.

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I love the flow and shape of this sculpture.  There are four turtles rising toward her, each in successively smaller sizes.

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Who said the moon is a man and made from cheese?

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It is said that this is what will happen if you stay in Santa Fe too long.  I’d like to try out that theory.

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