Hi. I'm a painter, a writer and a mother of three teenage sons, one with a severe disability. This is a journal: riotously disorganized, full of art, food, children and everyday domestic events. Unless you are a friend or family member you may not be interested, but you are welcome to look. Artists who are parents may find some common ground here, as well as parents of children with special needs. For art only, see my site: nancybeamiller.blogspot.com
Friday, October 28
This morning I went on an errand to an unfamiliar part of town, and by chance I parked in front of a small row house whose entire (tiny) front garden was dominated by a large stand of these vines. They were definitely not weeds, being planted in orderly rows on tall supports obviously put there for that purpose. I have no idea what they are, but the curling tendrils remind me of the delicate tracery on rose windows in medieval cathedrals. But they can't be all that delicate really, despite their fragile appearance, as this area just got our first frost last night, and they looked fine and healthy.
Thursday, October 27
ice cream cone eating. I hesitated to post this shot because I didn't want anybody to get the wrong idea about how I feed my family. But as soon as I realized the PC train of my thoughts I decided to go ahead: let 'em think what they want!
This is for Theme Thursday's challenge "Food". It was difficult because almost everything in my life, blog and art centers around, or at least includes, food. Hence the blog's name, Genre COOKSHOP (in case you were wondering.)
Wednesday, October 26
END OF SUMMER BLUE
is what I would call the color of this glistening plastic tube, awaiting deflation. It was so chilly today that we all put on sweaters (children) and even jackets (adults) for the first time this autumn season.
Monday, October 24
AN EMBARRASSMENT OF RICHES
It was my turn to go out to the farm a few weeks ago, to pick up the farm shares. They weren't quite ready when I got there and somebody beckoned me, "Come with me. Lets kill a little time." We walked across a few fields and there was the flower garden. "Go ahead and pick a bouquet." I felt almost faint, overwhelmed with joyful possibility, especially when I saw the riot of Tithonia, a flower I love to paint but had not been able to grow this year. The smiling farm helper who'd led me to the flowers suddenly looked as though she had a faint but shimmering halo capping her head. I hesitated only a moment, to make sure I wasn't dreaming, and then plunged right in. My studio is now absolutely crowded with flower paintings.
Friday, October 21
Elizabethan re-enactor. Re-enactress? The little zip-loc baggies she was using were a charming anachronism. Anyway, this was the best I could do for PhotoFriday's challenge: Retro.
Thursday, October 20
In the window of my friend Carla's house.
Wednesday, October 19
We went to the Pennsylvania Renaissance Faire on Sunday. I had heard about it for years, with only mild interest, but one of H's friends is a fanatical devotee and had talked it up to him big time. Suddenly I kept hearing about it, morning noon and night. H is not a loud, in-your-face type of child but he is very quietly persistant when he really wants something. So when a Sunday was suddenly, unusually, freed of other committments (soccer games young and old called on account of soggy fields) I knew this was our chance. We went with dread in our hearts. Well, actually, P and H were full of pleasant anticipation and Henry had no idea what was happening but enjoys car rides. Just Paul and I felt the dread (this thing is both a long drive away and relatively expensive, so if Henry decided he couldn't stand the place we would feel pretty bad!) But, it turned out to be a gamble that paid off: we all had a fabulous time!
There were no dogs or loud mechanical noises at the Faire, Henry's big bugaboos, and there were continuous live concerts of all kinds. He loves music, so he did serial concert attending and eating, while Paul and I traded off taking the other boys to the Maze and the Archery Range and the Sideshow games etc etc. One of my favorite performances, which I got to see twice, was the Gypsy Dancing. And Henry loved it too. I don't think he cared much about the lovely girls, but he adored their very spirited accompaniment of percussionists, who were great in their own right. We also got to experience an amazing heavy metal medieval instrument playing band from Germany called Corvus Corax. Henry made a bee line down into the very heart of the "mosh pit" and stood there swaying blissfully to the reverberations. I guess we need to start dyeing his hair purple and taking him to clubs!
I realize I have gone on at length about this, but it is SO DIFFICULT to find family outings that we can all enjoy (Henry's autism and uncontrollable fears preclude many "normal" activities that other folks take for granted. ) So it feels wonderful each time we discover one more.
Saturday, October 15
We have a lot of Praying Mantises in our garden this year. They seem to have thrived on the unusually dry summer weather. Whenever I hear shrieks of delighted "terror" coming from outside I know that the boys have just spotted another one of the alien looking creatures. Then they come running in begging me to shoot their latest find: with the camera of course!
Wednesday, October 12
Here is a recent mixed media piece by my brother Bruce. He's been working in black & white miniatures lately.
and plenty of them. I am always dazzled and amazed at how glittering and beautiful "junk" is becoming. It seems like it just gets more and more spectacular. If you had never seen anything like one of these iridescent bouncy balls imbedded with strips of holographic glitter wouldn't you think it was a precious jewel beyond all imagining? And yet they are 2 for $1 at the local "dime" store.
Thursday, October 6
The bees were very busy the other day in my neighbor Fay's cosmos patch. Makes me wonder what cosmos honey tastes like?
Tuesday, October 4
Not as elaborately decorated as usual, it is amazing that this cake ever got baked. Yesterday was not only H's ninth birthday, but our friends from Scotland were ending their two week visit, trying to fit in a few more activities and then pack and catch their plane. So I had to wrap presents, bake a cake and supervise after-school kid stuff (arrivals, reports of the day, snacks, homework etc) while juggling a five month old baby! I thought longingly of Sara Lee as I measured and sifted while singing nursery rhymes and wiping up baby spit. The cake tasted especially good though. Baby drool, the magic ingredient!
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