Musings from the Moonroom

Thoughts on Art, Inspiration, Creativity and Spirit


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Post Show Hangover

The days after a show are like having a hangover; a post show hangover without the bed spins or dry mouth.  The excitement and nervousness that builds prior to a show has dissipated.  Whatever inventory remains has been repacked and not necessarily in the order it went to the show.  The table coverings aren’t folded as nicely and probably need cleaning.  The drive home always seems shorter and faster than the drive out.  The car needs to be washed. 

My head feels a little fuzzy and my eyes a little heavy.  It takes several hours to really feel awake.  The computer stays at home so I have to thin out the email and respond to those that are most important.  Is there a Murphy’s Law stating wholesale orders shall increase in proportion to the number of days one is away at a show?

Eventually I organize the credit card receipts and call in the information.  Cash and checks will be deposited.  New names and addresses will be transferred to my customer mailing list.  I make a note to research email newsletters and to update transactions in Quickbooks.

Then I sit and stare at the plastic totes that need to be put away; back under tables or stacked behind the wire shelves.  That will wait for another day or at least until I trip over them one too many times.  My work table needs to be cleaned and cleared of whatever it was that I last worked on before I left for the show.  Sigh; I forgot to switch off the pasta machine motor.  Fortunately it is plugged into a pedal so, technically, it wasn’t left running.

Now where to begin as I emerge from my haze.  There are bottle stoppers to be made and card cases too.  A few more new sculptures are also on the list.  No rest for the weary; this is true.  Not much room for down time as there is always something to fill in the void.  I know this is better than nothing to do and twiddling my thumbs.  But for just a few more minutes I’d like to just sit here and rest in the sun.


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It’s Showtime Folks

The postcards were sent out a couple weeks ago.  Unfortunately I still haven’t gotten into the habit of sending email announcements to those folks who only leave an email address on my show mailing list.  That is another task to add to the goal list; investigate an email newsletter service or just get better about sending emails to the customer list.

The table coverings have been pressed and folded and boxes of inventory packed.  I’ll start loading the car tonight and pack my suitcase.  Then I’ll have a few hours to relax before the excitement begins.

I’ve stated my intentions for the show like mantras and I’ll keep repeating them throughout the weekend.  The weather is supposed to be nice; sunny with temps in the 70′s and maybe 80.  Nice weather always makes a show easier to handle.

My booth is in the main building, booth #618.  If you happen to be in Northampton this weekend, please stop by.  Go here for directions to the Paradise City Arts Festival.

I’ll be back to blogging next week after a period of recovery.  I have pictures of the finished sculptures and some other new pieces to post when I return.

Have a great Memorial Day Weekend!


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Cairn 2008 Four Ways

As expected, the stone cairns I created in various spots at the edge of the woods last summer fell over during the past winter.  Here is my favorite cairn, recreated for 2008.

In full color:

In black and white:

In sepia tone:

And in the negative (I love the little purple leaves):

I’m intrigued how the mood of the image changes with each photo manipulation.  I shall remember these images come next winter because I know, as someone has said, that these 2008 cairns too shall pass.


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Quotable Monday

I cannot hold up any book and say, ‘Here. This is what I believe.’ I do not know of any church where I would feel at home.
But I do believe that what people call God refers to something real… I would even go so far as to say that this God of mine makes demands.

To learn, to teach, to engage.
To be aware of and respect the world around me.
To acknowledge that there are things greater then myself and to be humble in their presence.

-Dan Jackson

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


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Stress Manifests in Dreams

How often have you laid in bed at night comtemplating all the things that you need to get done by a certain date and then had that stress manifest itself in your dreams?

Last night I realized I was starting to get a little nervous about the little things that need to be accomplished before heading to Northampton next week for the Paradise City Arts Festival.  Now I know that worrying about these details won’t accomplish anything except more worry and stress.  And I tried to convince myself of that as I drifted off to sleep.

In the misty space that creates dreams (usually right before your alarm goes off), I found myself in a rather curious dream.  In my dream I awoke to feed the cats.  I came down to the kitchen (which really didn’t look like my current kitchen) and found stacks and stacks of dirty dishes in the sink and on the countertops.

I walked over to the sink with a feeling of dread and disgust (where did all this stuff come from?)  I look up and notice that there is water trickling down from and through the light over the sink.  Above the light and behind the light I see small flames dancing about.  I could see the flames through the wall too.  Suddenly what had been the light over the sink morphs into the exhaust hood over the cooktop.  (I hate that morphing thing.) 

I grab some baking soda to douse the flames.  (Now I know this is not recommended for what appears to be an electrical fire but this is a dream where even the impossible can happen.)  The flames go out and when I look down the sink has now morphed into the cooktop!  It is white and looks like a stove we had years ago.  The surface has burn marks and some of the dials are melted and a small fire is burning on one burner.

Now I hear a noise outside.  It sounds like the lawn company is here to mow the lawn.  There is a knock on the door.  As I open the door I notice that there is snow on the ground!  One of the lawn guys asks if he can use the bathroom (which they never do in reality.)

I show him the bathroom which happens to be adjacent to the back door of this house in my dreams (and now I’m thinking I must be in my childhood home because this is just how it was in that house.)  The bathroom looks almost identical to the one in my childhood home; pink ceramic tiles on the wall and that shiny silvery based wallpaper and the pink shaggy cover on the lid of the toilet seat.  Even the sink counter is covered in a burgundy like fabric.  (Okay, that really did not exist in the bathroom of my childhood home.)

I turn to the lawn guy and say “It’s my mom’s bathroom” and walk out.

Now I’m drifting back to a semi-awake state in bed and I’m trying to determine if I really did set my alarm clock for 6:00 A.M.  I can’t quite reach the button on the clock to tell, by braille, if I set the alarm.  I force my eyes open to look at the clock.

It is 5:54 A.M. 

The illuminated dot on the clock face tells me that I did set the alarm. 

I look around and see the cats are snuggled on either side of me.  I take a deep breath and close my eyes for the last few minutes before the alarm goes off. 

What a bizarre dream.  I guess I shouldn’t eat Mossaman curry in the hours before going to bed!


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Power Objects

A recent passage in Shakti Gawain’s book Awakening described power objects.  Power objects are those items that we are drawn to while we walk.  You know what happens.  You’re out walking, looking around, and something on the ground catches your eye.  It could be a stone, a leaf, a stick, a pinecone.  Sometimes you pick it up, look at it, and toss it back to the ground.  Sometimes you pick it up, and for whatever reason, you place the item in your pocket or backpack.

Those items that we pick up and really examine are somehow meaningful to us.  Those are our power objects.

Here are two items I picked up on a walk last week:

This was a whole rock that split into two pieces.  It was laying off the road in the sand just as you see it here, in two pieces side-by-side.  It reminded me of angel wings (or perhaps a pair of lungs?????)  As a pair of wings, it reminds me that angels are all around us.  As a pair of lungs, it reminds me to take a deep, cleansing breath now and again.

     

I’m not sure what drew me to this stick.  I liked the smooth surface and the two tiny branches.  It looks like it has weathered several New England storms.  What I found really neat was the worm or bug trail that is etched into the surface of the stick.  It looks like some ancient code or symbol from a long dead culture.  Of course I also thought “what a neat body this stick would make for a sculpture.” :)

What objects catch your eye when you take a walk through your neighborhood or through the woods?  Have you discovered any power objects?

 


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Vaughn Hills Sprites

Somewhere between the mist of the morning and the dew on the grass,
below the fallen leaves and the moss on the path,
live the Vaughn Hills Sprites.
 

The 2008 Vaughn Hills Sprites have left their words of inspiration and encouragement carved into tiny rocks.  Typically shy and slightly mischevious creatures, the sprites are showing their faces and a wisp of a wing alongside the tiny rocks.

If you’re quiet they may let you hold them in the palm of your hand and receive their energy. 

 

 


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Your Inner Purpose: A New Earth Webcast Chapter 9

As soon as you rise above mere survival, the question of meaning and purpose becomes of paramount importance in your life.

What is our inner purpose?  Why are we here and what are we supposed to do?  Isn’t that the ultimate question that we frequently ask?  From the time we are old enough to think about what we want to do with our lives, we ask this question. 

Eckhart believes each person has two purposes in life: an outer purpose and an inner purpose.  The outer purpose is the DOING of our lives; thinking about the future, where we’re going and what we’re doing.  The inner purpose is BEING; the aligning of our lives, where we are right now, with the present moment.

When we realize our inner purpose, our being in the present moment and being aligned with life, then our outer purpose will be fulfilled.  And it begins with awakening.

Throughout The New Earth Eckhart talks about awakening, of becoming conscious and dropping the ego, and how if we learn to quiet our minds, to take a breath (or many breaths), and focus on the present moment, that we will discover our inner purpose.  He also stresses that this is not some miraculous transformation that happens over night.  (Sorry, I haven’t found the Fairy Godmother of Awakening with her magic wand…yet.)  This is a process.

Eckhart describes awakening as a shift in consciousness; a time when we are not lost in our thinking or where thinking runs our lives. 

That doesn’t mean we stop thinking or stop having that voice that pops into our heads.  That voice shows up almost every morning when I get in the shower.  It reminds me about an email I need to send or a phone call to make.  Sometimes a problem gets solved or a creative idea is born.

Yet what is different is that as I become more aware of this voice in my head (remember, I once named her Esther), I remind myself to get quiet and focus on the present moment.  To feel the warmth of the bathroom floor (we splurged and installed radiant heat.)  To listen to the birds chirping.  To listen to Pippin purr as he settles in on the rug.

When we awaken, we become aware.  And when we become aware, we can make a conscious choice to be present rather than let the useless thinking take over.

And what does that have to do with inner purpose?  It means that we need to connect whatever we are currently doing now, our outer purpose, with our inner purpose.  By connecting the current activity with inner purpose, we bring deeper meaning into what we do.

So, for example, when you have to cook dinner after a long day, and you really don’t feel like it but you need to do it, you can piss and moan about it and resist it, which does not make it a fulfilling task for your or your family OR you can accept it and say “Okay, I have to fix dinner now.  This is what I need to do and I need to bring my full attention to it.”

The next thing you know, you find that you actually like cooking and maybe discover a long forgotten cookbook or a recipe you haven’t fixed in a long time.

Another cool thing about increased awareness is synchronicity.  As you become more aware, more present, the universe begins to bring things to you.  You might notice “coincidences.”  The wholesale order you hoped for arrives in your email.  You get accepted into an important show.  You win an award.  Perhaps unexpected money comes to you or that car you wanted to buy is on sale. 

Would some of these things happened anyways?  Perhaps.  Would you have noticed them?  Maybe.  Would you have struggled to make some of it happen?  Possibly.  But there may be no joy in it.

Our outer purpose will change over time and varies from person to person.  Our inner purpose is to awaken.  Finding and living in alignment with the inner purpose is the foundation for fulfilling our outer purpose.

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