Tuesday, May 28, 2013

A Perfect Memorial Day Week-end: Creativity, Friends, and Gratitude

What a great Memorial Day week-end.  I feel lucky that I had so many opportunities for creativity, along with so many opportunities for spending time with friends.

On Friday, I hosted one of my newer friends who needed a place to stay while her house was being treated for termites.  I felt slightly nervous:  she's a new friend, and we haven't spent huge swaths of time together.

I needn't have worried.  We had a great dinner (grilled salmon, salad, potatoes, and peas), great conversation, and most happily, some creative time together.

I'd told her about our experiences with alcohol inks, and since we had time, we experimented.  She's a painter and a printmaker, so she was eager to try them.  We had a huge tile, so we had a surface to go with the supplies. 

Here's what we made:

Not the best shot, but it gives you an idea.  Later in the evening, we cut paper into flame shapes for a Sunday project.  As the evening wound down, I started to cut the shapes, and she asked what I was doing.  I explained, and she asked if she could cut too; she says she finds cutting paper to be soothing.

On Saturday night, I took my poems over to an art gallery.  I wrote this blog post with more details.  It was a wonderful night.  I drove my friend home, which I didn't mind--it gave us a chance to talk.  We talked about old houses and new houses.  She pointed out that we're both in parts of the county that we love, and why should we give that up?  She also said she had a good feeling about my memoir, that it will be wildly successful.

I want to write that down so that I hold on to it. Writing of all types has taken a back seat to curriculum developing and house hunting. I will get back to it.
On Sunday, I took the flames and other supplies to church--for more on what we did and why, see this post.  We ended up with posters that look like this:

On Sunday we went to a delightful barbecue and got home in time to watch our favorite Sunday animated shows on Fox.  Alas, car racing was on instead.

But that turned out to be OK.  I had a song in my head about walking a lonesome river/valley and having to walk it by myself.  I Googled it--I found it!  I watched many variations of the song. I fell in love with Pete Seeger all over again.  Go here to see/hear my favorite version.  Watching Doc Watson and Pete Seeger, with a verse from Woody Guthrie--well, it makes me proud to be an American.

 My spouse figured out how to play it on the violin.  We had a songfest.

We played other songs.  I wrote a poem--finally!  I've been writing down poem ideas all week but never actually getting around to crafting a poem.

On Monday, I wrote some blog posts and then turned my attention to a report that's overdue.  Not a work report, but the final report for the Create in Me retreat.  It's a process which involves sorting through participant feedback sheets and doing lots of tabulating, lots of chart/table making, lots of selecting the best quotes.  It was wonderful to have a huge chunk of time to work on that project while my spouse worked on the lawn.

We met friends for pizza at 2:00.  We went to Anthony's, a coal fired pizza place; they make the only chicken wings I've ever liked.  We ate wings, salad, meatballs, pizza, and shared a bottle of wine.  It was lovely. 

The best part about meeting for a late lunch instead of dinner?  We got back in time to finish some chores, like laundry.

I love having a Monday off.  I love the expansive feeling that I have all week-end, just knowing that I have a week-end off.

We ended the week-end by watching the Memorial Day concert on PBS.  It was good to be reminded of why we have this holiday.  It's good to remember the people who didn't make it home to enjoy a barbecue or pizza with friends.  It's good to pay tribute to those who died so that I have the freedom to create the art I want, so that I have the freedom to go to church.

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