Arts & crafts

  • Aging well,  Arts & crafts,  Motivation


    “One day you will look back and see that all along you were blooming.” ~ Morgan Harper Nichols, author and artist I found today’s quote while preparing for an “aging” workshop I’m leading at a local library tonight. An issue that appeared often in my research is the nagging belief that we “haven’t done enough” with our lives. No matter how accomplished we are in any arena, most of us undervalue our achievements and overlook our daily victories. But if you take inventory of all that you’ve done with your life, you’ll realize that you deserve more credit than you’ve been giving yourself. When you list your own moments of “blooming,”…

  • Arts & crafts,  Autumn,  Change,  Motivation,  Nature,  Personal growth

    Creative cycles

    “For a seed to achieve its greatest expression, it must come completely undone. The shell cracks. Its insides come out and everything changes. To someone who doesn’t understand growth, it would look like complete destruction.” ~Cynthia Occelli Nature often reminds us that growth and creativity are preceded by change — or “complete destruction” — especially in the fall. Here in the Midwest, some of our trees are just starting to drop their leaves and seeds, and soon will stage a brilliant color show before shedding completely. Likewise, the best way through a creative road block is to remove something that’s getting in the way. Sometimes I have to “undo” a…

  • Arts & crafts,  Home & Family

    Riffing on a recipe

    “Once you have mastered a technique, you hardly need to look at a recipe again, and can take off on your own.” ~Julia Child One of my favorite fall recipes is a spicy posole that I found in the “Pantry Raid” section of Better Homes and Gardens magazine 10 years ago. I’ve made this Mexican stew so often — sometimes trying my own variations — that I don’t even write a list of the ingredients I’ll need before heading to the grocery store. Mastering any technique takes practice, whether you’re whipping up an omelette, knitting a scarf, or building a house. But as Julia Child advised, there’s plenty of room…

  • Aging well,  Arts & crafts,  Empty nest,  Oakland Press columns,  Where I'm published

    School supplies for Mom

    “I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way — things I had no words for.” ~Georgia O’Keeffe Shopping for brand-new supplies was a favorite back-to-school ritual when my son was a child. Is there anything more fun than browsing through aisles of colorful pens, markers, crayons, and notebooks? Even if you’re an empty nester, you can recapture the fresh thrill of back-to-school shopping — and maybe discover a new craft or hobby of your own. That’s the topic of my new Oakland Press column. You can read it in the Sunday print edition (August 14) or look for it online here.…

  • Arts & crafts,  Photo stories

    Your life is your art

    “An artist’s real contribution isn’t what he paints, but the way he sees.” ~Martha Beck Whenever I visit an art museum, it strikes me that many of the same basic themes and subjects have been rendered throughout the centuries. Mothers and children. Landscapes and seascapes. Fruit and flowers on tables. Yet each painting is completely different in style and mood, reflecting the individuality and vision of the artist. So it is with everything we create — whether it’s a painting, a piece of writing, a garden, a photograph, or a recipe. How do you express your own vision or viewpoint? ~CL For more like this: Check out additional posts and…