Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Yes, in fact there is such thing as bad weather... no matter how well you dress

There is a quote that states something along the lines of  “ There is no such thing as Bad weather, only poorly attired people”.  Whoever said/wrote/thought/believed that clearly never lived here.  For days now the winds have howled, the trees have swayed and the clouds have vomited a white slushy substance the whole combination much like a giant upturned margarita caught in a tornado.  

This is not weather in which to walk a dog, no matter how young and exuberant.  Particularly when walking said canine involves having to bundle up a young two and a half month old human in some sort of gear that will somehow miraculously allow him to stay both dry, and warm, and still be capable of breathing.   And so... I’ve holed up in my home on the hill (knoll?) and have marvelled in the growth of my Chicken Little, and focused what free time I’ve had on artistic endeavours... (that is when I’m not up to my eyeballs washing Mount Laundry and it’s cousin Diaper  Mound.) Meanwhile the dog, increasingly bored, gallops up and down the stairs, chases her tail and deposits a small arsenal of toys at my side in an effort to expend surplus energy.

Here are a couple miniature paintings I’ve worked up while Chicken Little slept soundly in the snugli.

“Twin Jellies”
Twining together in a bubbling sea two deadly bubbles of venom play.
© RiverWalker Arts

“Deep Midwinter”

The lake is frozen over and the ground is deep with snow.
We are children once again.
Brew me a cup on this winter’s eve and hold me near
For the frosty winds do howl and the glittering snow does fly.
© RiverWalker Arts

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

dreaming of a house on another hill.... gumboots not included.

I never was the one who dreamt of the house on the hill.  But I can imagine that dream.  A beautiful home with a wide covered veranda and a porch swing with Victorian detailing and Queen Ann Spindles, casement windows and elegant gables.   The house sits  perched on a hill that drops away on all sides providing sweeping views of rolling hills, forested groves and gurgling streams.  Sunsets are glorious and in the fall the days are crisp the air is golden, it smells like apples, and cinnamon,  and dry leaves underfoot, the land is alive like a dancing flame in oranges, reds and gold.   It is a lovely dream,  sometimes a lone and ancient tree sits near the house, a perfect place to lounge in low branches and read, write or draw.  

While it was never my childhood dream to live in the house on the hill, there are benefits to living on a hill, and this is especially true when you are surrounded in muskeg that acts like a soggy blanket draped over the landscape  and allows water to stagnate on steep hillsides in addition to the low lying areas

I did, in the end, buy a house on a hill.  Actually my home is  more of a house propped up on a hunk of bedrock that just happens to rise out of the muskeg swamp. There is no veranda, no detailing, or elegant gables,  but it is home. And sitting atop my little hunk of rock, I console myself that water runs downhill (for the most part)  and therefore my yard is drier than most (theoretically).   Especially given that the majority of this island (apart from the stray outcroppings of bedrock) is Muskeg Swamp...  Muskeg itself consists of dead plants in various stages of decomposition, ranging from fairly intact sphagnum peat moss or sedge peat to highly decomposed muck.  (side note: sphagnum moss can hold 15 to 30 times its own weight in water, allowing the spongy wet nastiness to invade even the steepest of slopes. All in all a recipe for very wet feet. Gumboots anyone? )

© Spider Bug
 After 10 or so feet of rain in 2011, and more than 10 inches of that in the last ten days.  I’m feeling a bit waterlogged.  A trip out into my yard to chase my dog back in the house after she decided that digging herself her very own swimming pool in all this wet muck was fun has led me to the conclusion that the water table is variable.  It is not – as is commonly believed -  an inch under the surface... but it is a highly variable height and even on my little knoll raised above the rest of the neighbourhood the water table is exactly one inch ABOVE the surface.  Which may help explain why I have a unique lawn consisting of a form of semi- aquatic vegetation known as a liverwort that grows only in the deepest shade. 


Thursday, November 3, 2011

a boring, self obsessed narcissists blogging mainly as a means to discuss the inconsequential minutiae of my day to day life

I wonder about blogging.  I mean who really wants to read about the life and times of the average middle aged mom?  I live my life and really from personal experience I KNOW it’s not that interesting.. however here i am, a boring, self obsessed narcissists blogging mainly as a means to discuss the inconsequential minutiae of my day to day life .....  

What is a blog really?   An on line forum where I can post which ever strange bits of information I choose to share.  For which friends and family with any interest can visit and read or not as they choose. The odd photo and the latest art work can hang up alongside my text, and the odd inappropriate quote.  

The upside to this hair brained blog is that those who wish to read about the ongoing saga of what was once a very adventurous life turned into domesticated suburbanite yuppie-dom can do so without my clogging your inboxes at random intervals, and those who really don’t care can quit being bothered by the same. .. 

You have to believe most bloggers have few if any actual readers. The writers are in it for other reasons. …after all it is well know that many blogs are loaded with vanity posts, half-truths, rumours, and even intentional distortions… I’m not sure where mine fits in… no doubt smack in the middle of the classic middle class, yuppie bloggers with distorted views of how dull their lives really are….

Don’t get me wrong… I LOVE my life.  Love it.  I’m happy.  My job might not be my dream job, but it keeps me in the manner that I am rapidly becoming accustomed too,  and since yuppies are after all defined by superficial and selfish materialism… I should also state that … I love my house.  I love that it takes me 5 minutes to drive to work… 25 to walk, I love that there are trails near my house and clean air, and deer that sleep in the middle of the cul-de-sac.  I love my husband, and his willingness to indulge my artistic exploits… like painting the bedroom nuclear reactor green… with a hint of lime…

And speaking of green paint...... I’ve finished another piece.  I took that green smear... the I mentioned in an earlier blog (abandoned since before baby)  and with Chicken Little sleeping with his head cocked at an awkward angle jammed in the Snugli I managed to coax an image out of all that smear on paper.

Behold!  The Mossy Grotto!!  A distant relative of Fern Gully  (ok... so you might have had to have been an avid follower of cartoons, or have had small children in 1992 to get the reference... bad joke. sorry. )

Mossy Grotto

© RiverWalker Arts

" Here in cool grot and mossy cell
We rural fays and fairies dwell;
Though rarely seen by mortal eye,
When the pale moon, ascending high,
Darts through yon lines her quiv'ring beams;
We frisk it near these crystal streams."
— William Shenstone (1714-63)
Lines inscribed on a tablet in the grounds at the poet’s residence