Sunday, January 31, 2010

bella and zoe are learning . . .


the best time to get into things is when mommy is reading


how to use the doggy door


to sit pretty for a biscuit for jenna


to walk on the leash with layla

the joys of sun bathing


there's no place like mommy's lap & some mac time

the best place to be after a bath is in front of the fireplace

Saturday, January 30, 2010

a silent prayer


life is like a marriage
you have to take
the good with the bad
some days are bright and sunny
others are dark and dreary
you get tired of the same old same old
you yearn for some new adventures
sometimes you're motivated 
and a joy to be around
other times, not so much
sometimes you're overwhelmed
with the joy of living
and the creative journey
that you're on
other times you feel the weight
of the world resting on your shoulders
you know how to fight back
and keep your chin up
but you give in to it all
and feel just a little sorry for yourself
you choose not to blog
because really what positive thing
would you have to say
who would want to read about
your lacklustre feelings of tiredness
but one morning you click
on the new post button
and just that one instant of action
starts to ease the burden of life
your heart beats just a little faster
you realize that 
you do have something to say 
about life and living
about the good and the bad
about how the valleys are what
make the peaks so very special
your fingers clickety clack
on the keys to the rhythm
of your heartbeat, ever faster
bursting with joy
you feel the sunshine
radiating thru the window
and you feel reborn
you hope your message
is heard by others
who may be burdened
just a bit by life
who may need to know
there are others
out there who feel the same way
you close your eyes
and send a silent prayer
out to all those soul mates
who may be suffering
you offer support
and joy
and hope and belief
that life is good
and you click publish
feeling oh so much better
ready to face the day
ready to make a difference
one word
one action
one photo
at a time
you feel 
oh so blessed

Thursday, January 21, 2010

wishing for

more time with my grandchildren

a few more textures for my background library

a reading road trip

a long walk

play, play, play


peaceful solitude

i'm not one to wish my life away but today i'd like to be anywhere but here (work!!).

woe is me!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

view of a window

"view of a window"
original mixed media collage

12 x 12 x 1.5"
gallery canvas
(c) 2010 julie king

since one of my favorite things to photograph is old buildings, especially brick ones, i thought it might be fun to do a collage series featuring well, you know, old brick buildings. actually, this one started out with a window; i've been wanting to do a window for some time now. then it just naturally seemed to evolve into an old brick building. it was fun and i've already started the second in the series. i may wake up tomorrow morning and decide to add a few more details to this one. we shall see.

my dad was able to go home from the hospital today and will have physical therapy and a visiting nurse come into the house for treatment. hubby and i spent part of the day there ensuring that mom can take care of him and that everything was in place to make him as safe and comfortable as possible. it was a relief to get him home where i know he will rest and eat better. thanks for all your support and prayers!

while in hagerstown, hubby and i drove around looking for houses for sale. we're thinking of buying a small, older fixer-upper that we can stay in on the weekends and eventually live in when we retire. it was fun and we already have our eyes on a couple of cute ones that are listed at remarkably low prices. it would be nice to be able to go to hagerstown on the weekends to spend more time with my folks and also my kids and grandkids. wish us luck!

p.s. thanks to christine for letting me know that this piece would be a good addition to the creative tuesdays art contest hosted by toast. his blog is all about tea, so wonderfully designed and a delightful read. be sure to go over for a spot of tea and a sit down! 

Friday, January 15, 2010

tooty fruity sky

tooty fruity sky
flying high
kaleidoscope of color
whizzing by

colors draw me
into their spell
soothing my worries
relaxing my shell

focus on the positive
try not to cry
let my mind wander
to the tooty fruity sky

it's friday and my body and mind are yearning for a good long sleep and a day or two in pajamas. so tired!

dad is hanging in there although he has not responded well to the antibiotics prescribed to fight the pneumonia. hopefully the new meds will kick in today today. it looks like he'll spend at least a few more days in the hospital. he seems to have given up but we're hoping he will fight back once the meds start working. i'm sure we have some tough decisions ahead regarding his ability to come home. 

i'm feeling sad and a bit overwhelmed. i'm smart enough to know all the reasons but too tired to push them completely aside. i love working but it's times like these that have me wishing i didn't have to juggle a full-time job and life in general at the same time. 

thanks for all your sweet and encouraging words on my last post! ((hugs)) to all of you sweet friends!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

seeing through it all

for me, one of the trickiest things about human relationships is being able to see past the words and the actions to reveal how a person is really feeling. my dad was admitted to the hospital today with pneumonia, dehydration and heart concerns and is scheduled for a battery of tests. i spent a long day there keeping mom company, looking out for dad and trying to buffer the harsh looks and words between the two of them. they are such opposites in so many ways. dad just wants to be left alone and mom insists on hovering over him. on my drive home from indiana, i thought over their interactions today and how i think they must be feeling.

at 83, dad has lived all the life he cares to live; he's not afraid to die and won't opt to live without his idea of good quality of life. although he lived the bulk of his life with extremely good health, he's tired of being poked, prodded and asked a million questions. his motto is, if it's not bleeding badly, i don't need to see the dr. for it. he bristles at the question "how do you feel" and usually responds with "must not be all that good if i'm in here". as a proud man, it must be very hard for him to lose his last shreds of dignity -- his ability to care for himself and be mobile. frustrated, in pain and out of patience, he lashes out, saying things i can only hope he wouldn't say under normal circumstances. oh, but wait, i realize that this is his "normal" and my heart is heavy with sadness and empathy.

at 81, mom is used to being the sick one in their relationship. diagnosed with a heart condition 20 years ago, she's been thru major heart surgery and a long list of heart-related procedures over the years. she is the perfect patient, taking every smidgen of her dr.'s advice as gospel and living it to the letter. she's confused and scared by dad's refusal to go to the dr. when he is obviously so sick. her hovering over him is the one way she can feel a bit in control of the situation. and no matter how grouchy he is with her, she comes back for more again and again. for mom, this is her normal and really it always has been.

besides all the differences between them, they have one really big thing in common. neither one of them wants to be the last one to go. after almost 60 years of marriage, i'm sure the thought of life without each other must be inconceivable, or maybe just conceivable enough to be unwanted.

and, so i try to do the best i can to support each of them, to defray the frustration, to understand what each of them individually is feeling and needing. and then i do 2 things: 1) send a silent prayer for just a bit more time with each of them and 2) wing a silent apology out to each of my kids for the things i'm going to say and do one day when i'm old and need them to be my advocate. i hope they'll know that my words and actions are driven by frustration and not lack of love. just as i had to understand with my dad today.


Monday, January 11, 2010

show of hands

everyone ready for warm weather, hands in dirt, buzzing bees, the sound of the lawn sprinkler and a good read in the sun, raise your hands!!

happiness is





having your own race track
in the back yard!!!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

foggy 4 am


frozen rose blossoms

copper clad bird feeder

gate latch

icy cobwebs

fence knot hole

when i was up with the dogs at 4 am this morning there was a thick fog outside. we woke up to a beautiful winter wonderland of icy crystals on all the outdoor surfaces. i'm sure there's a name for this meteorological phenomenon but mostly i just care about all the photo possibilities it creates. it was 7 degrees when i took these and even without gloves it was bearable since there is no wind.

bella under the honeysuckle bush

of course, i had my girls keeping me company. they're sleeping right now and then it'll be bath time followed by a quick face and toe nail trim.

my vow to eat healthier and lose some weight is paying off. i lost 7 pounds last week, most of it probably water from all the salty holiday food. today i started my early morning stretching exercises again. i'm fighting back.

enjoy the rest of your weekend!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

message in a bottle



message in a bottle
nikon d-6o photos
(c) 2010 julie king

some playing i did in the art room last weekend. the sun was streaming in, casting wonderful light and creating long dark shadows. shooting these messages in a bottle was fun and energizing! it got me thinking about life before creativity (lbc). i can close my eyes and be back in the old days when i was easily frustrated, bored and lost in a goal-less haze. i read constantly to fill the void. i yearned for something but i wasn't sure what it was. i envied the creative souls i worked with and often felt left out. soul searching and a desire to becone a more creative and fulfilled me led me to collage, mixed media, blogging, photography, poetry and so much more.

i could live in regret for years lost but i choose not to. i could revert back to that young woman who let her identity be defined by what was done to her but i choose not to. i could give in to moments of depression and sadness but i fight on. no one but me will define who i am in my heart. no one but me can send the message out into the world that i choose to send. my message is one of empowerment, hope, belief and dreams realized. my message is personal, yet universally shared. my message is brightly lit with love and the knowledge that forgiveness is the first step toward spreading your wings and flying free.

what is your message to the world?

Friday, January 8, 2010

let it snow!

let it snow, let it snow, let it snow! and, boy has it!! we have about 6 inches on the ground so my heart has soared with all the photo opportunities. i've learned that it is nearly impossible to take photos with 2 puppies on leash but i've still given it a try.

work has been very busy and i'm so happy it is friday and i get a couple of days to snuggle up with hubby and puppies at home. bella and zoe are getting along great. they come when we whistle, have almost mastered sit and now we're working on lay down. they love the snow but get chilled pretty quickly since the snow is deeper.  i let them get in bed with me yesterday morning after we came in from the first potty break. they had snow balls on their legs and needed to warm up. they loved it. this morning they seemed to know the routine and jumped on the bed after i took their leashes off, wanting me to put them up there. they've learned to jump up on the footstools in the den by using their toy shoe box. it was too cute the first time bella did it!

i hope to spend some time in the art room creating this weekend!!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

joyful hearts gather together

"joyful hearts"
fine art print
(c) 2009 julie king

lots of joy here in the julie king art studio!! the 2nd of my little bird series originals has sold (thanks, cindy!!) and the puppies are silly little fur balls today. the print at the top is now available in my etsy shop. it's my altered version of the original with the addition of "joyful hearts gather together".

we're off to granddaughter layla's 2nd birthday party!!

Saturday, January 2, 2010

life . . . dream, believe, live!

"life, dream it"
fine art print
(c) 2010 julie king

"life, dream it"
mixed media collage

8 x 8 x 1.5 canvas

(c) 2010 julie king

i'm working on a new series of small 8 x 8 canvasses and i'm so enjoying the process. i'm going for a very simple, fresh look with soft spring colors. the second photo shows the original which sold very quickly in my etsy shop. the top photo is the altered version with text added in photoshop. the print of either version is available in my etsy shop.

"flowered birdies"
mixed media collage

8 x 8 x 1.5 canvas
(c) 2010 julie king

"birdies on wire"
mixed media collage

8 x 8 x 1.5 canvas
(c) 2010 julie king

these last two are originals available in my etsy shop! i'll showcase the altered photoshop versions once the originals have sold.

zoe and bella are up late with me in the art room -- sleeping at my feet. they are such sweet babies and are bringing so much joy. bella discovered that she can bark (a REAL bark) today and seemed to delight herself (and us!). their current favorite toy is the box my new snow boots came in. they like to lay inside and wrestle together or stand on top of it and play king of the mountain. too cute!

Friday, January 1, 2010

casting shadows, lasting footprints

this time of year is so inspirational to me. it is a time to reflect on my life, where i've been and where i'm going. dreams found and new hopes born. did i cast long shadows of joy and leave lasting footprints of inspiration in 2010? did i challenge myself to be a better person and to grow in new ways? where did i succeed . . . or fail? here's a quick peek at my scorecard for 2009:

blogging continued to be a big source of joy and a soulful creative outlet for me in 2009, allowing me to spread my wings and soar to new creative heights with my poetry, writing and photos.

photography -- i realized my dream of owning a nikon camera and have relished the challenge of photographing interesting subjects and altering them in photoshop.

i had a goal of dropping 15 pounds in 2009 but alas i weigh at least 15 pounds over what i weighed on this day a year ago. i guess that just means that my shadow is wider than it used to be.  hee hee

i joined facebook and twitter. facebook i enjoy. twitter not so much!

my dream of selling prints of my art was realized early in 2009 when i bought my epson r1900 printer. love it!!!

for 2 years in a row i've set a goal of being published in a craft or art magazine like somerset news or cloth, paper, scissors. and for the 2nd year in a row, i failed. i didn't even submit anything for consideration. maybe 2010 will be my year!!!

in the fall of 2008 i promised myself that i would do anything in my power to keep presley as happy and comfortable as possible for as long as possible. i learned a lot about myself and what i'm capable of during the process of caring for him in 2009. the toughest lesson of all was that sometimes the best way to love is to let go. i still miss him every day and in that i continue to learn and grow.

we were blessed with a third grandchild in march -- benjamin matthew. i'm still amazed by my heart's ability to love so deeply. and, i can't imagine a better way to cast shadows and leave lasting footprints than with my grandchildren.

each of you has played your own unique role in spurring my creativity and growth in 2009. your sweet words of encouragement and support have been the wind beneath my wings. your blog posts are a constant source of inspiration. and your friendship has cast loving shadows and lasting footprints on my heart, dear friends. my cup runneth over!

goodbye 2009. hello 2010, a new year of hope, peace, love and joy. here i come!