Sunday, June 29, 2008
Like "shibui." From Mr. Genn's May newsletter "Shibui is a broad term that can mean irregularity of form, openness to nature, roughness of texture, and the naturalness of daily life. Also known as Shibusa, it refers as well to the Japanese "Seven aspects of being," which are simplicity, implicitness, modesty, silence, naturalness, roughness and normalcy. It's seen in raku pottery, architecture, folk crafts, haiku, gardens and painting. Shibui is worth thinking about no matter where you are or what your art."
Sharing this particular newsletter topic with my road trip buddy, Carroll, she began lamenting that she had zero artistic tendencies. I vehemently disagreed. She is a fabulous cook, putting the term "shibui" into play with each dollop of cream or sprinkle of herb. Rarely does she use a cookbook, choosing instead to pull culinary masterpieces together from what's in the cupboard on any given day. She does this successfully day after day with yummy results. THAT is artistic, as are her cottage gardens that are delightful paintings of blossoms sprouting up randomly and sporadically through flagstone pathways. Man...can you get any more artistic than that? I think not. Cooking and gardening are shibui in action.
Had I known of this term before I might have titled my blog "Shibui." Many of you are aware of the inner struggle I'm having with whether to keep my blog random or reign it in to one subject. However, Life blesses me with so many lessons each day that I just can't hold it all in. One day I'm compelled to write about a family member and another day some bold insight comes to me during a walk and I have to share it. My thought process is irregular in form. Obviously, I'm extraordinarily open to nature. I'm drawn to roughness of textures, whether tree bark, surfaces of stones or pollen covering a bee's legs. These details and patterns tell a deeper part of nature's stories and reflect the naturalness of daily life.
My blog is an artistic outlet for me. Blending music and photos with writing feeds a need deep within my soul. Further, communicating with like minds and meeting people around the world deposits another layer to my personality and character. My blog shall remain random and will remain Giraffe Head Tree as the concept of shibui will always be in the back of my mind.
If you are interested please do check out The Painter's Keys and sign up. I promise you will not be disappointed.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
Monday, June 23, 2008
A good friend recently shared with me her need for change in her life, to which I replied "me, too." She and I are so much alike. Similar ages and stages, similar unmet needs, similar ponderings.
I'm at a point in life where I know I need to make some changes, but am unsure of the direction. Neither journaling, blogging, praying, photographing or even drinking too much wine have offered enough insight to date. There is a fear involved when one begins to think of change in their lives, which is why I chose the quote that I did today. Whatever I choose to do to bring one or more positive changes in my life will indeed cause drawbacks and discomforts in some capacity. It sounds odd, but this quote struck home this morning. The knowing ahead that upsets will occur grants me some sort of ease. I'm better prepared, maybe. It's the flow of life.
It think change is rather like this tree you see above. It has changed over time, as evidenced by it's crooked trunk and random branches. The tree is not perfect but I was drawn to its stark, uneven beauty nicely silhouetted in a morning mist. This tree teaches me that one can change, endure the discomforts and still come out beautiful and happy in the end.
At least, that's what I see.
Sunday, June 22, 2008
I love living on water. The sights and smells and noises have become part of me. This place has given me inspiration, unleashed creativity and catapulted me out of myself, revealing the spiritual well within my soul. I cannot imagine another place that fits me better than here, on the water, surrounded by nature.
Saturday, June 21, 2008
Wednesday, June 18, 2008
There's much to be said for optimism. Optimism is seeing liquid pearls instead of brusquely brushing away annoying spiderwebs. Every day we are inundated by negativity. It surrounds us in every form of media. It's easy to get sucked into the mire and spiral down into a pit of hopelessness. Our challenge is to face the world with optimism and enact positive change in our own small way. Daily.
I'm an optimist, which annoys my husband and embarrasses my daughter.
I'm an optimist anyway.
Monday, June 16, 2008
I had a great childhood. Not a "perfect" childhood, mind. My father taught me the love of exploring, that you're never really lost on country roads, that bobcats are cool, that trees make noise, that there's nothing anywhere as nice as the smell of woodsmoke from a campfire, how to make s'mores, that simple things are best. Take your kids out into the wilds and let them experience our natural world. It will stay with them forever, as it did me.
Monday, June 9, 2008
Diane at Alberta Postcards did this game on her blog, and I found it fascinating. It's too hot to work outdoors today so I'm learning how to do this thang. Here are the instructions from Diane on how to play:
Here’s the how-to for playing “the Game”:
a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page of search results, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.
The Questions: (my answers in parenthesis)
1. What is your first name? (Debi)
2. What is your favourite food? (linguini w/white clam sauce)
3. What high school did you go to? (Sparkman High School)
4. What is your favourite color? (red)
5. Who is your celebrity crush? (Sting)
6. Favourite drink? (Merlot)
7. Dream vacation? (Tuscany)
8. Favourite dessert? (strawberries with chocolate)
9. What you want to be when you grow up? (happy)
10. What do you love most in life? (daughter)
11. One Word to describe you. (creative)
12. Your flickr name (bradford)
My challenge was to figure out how to get the mosaic onto my blog. I'm HTLM-Challenged, I'm afraid. But, I'm learning....I'm learning.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
My hotel faced a small man-made lake, punctuated at the center with a tall exclamation point of a fountain. The lake was healthy and popular, as evidenced by the presence of several varieties of ducks and the ubiquitious Canada Geese. I was delighted that a family of 5 were constant residents. I watched them over coffee in the morning and wine in the evening, enjoying the peaceful and tranquil sight. The parent's protective posturing was constant as they kept the three goslings close by, usually in between the two of them. They were a joy to watch, but I was careful to keep my distance so that Mr. Goose wouldn't become alarmed and give chase.
Monday, June 2, 2008
She had to stay on the Auburn University in Montgomery campus, so The Mama got to stay in a hotel. All. By. Herself. The hotel was new and located right smack dab in the middle of the exclusive EastChase shopping area. There was a fitness room, a pool, business center and great shopping and restaurants nearby. The suite had a separate living room with kitchenette, and a bedroom with two queen-sized beds that were THE most luxurious and comfortable beds I've ever, EVER slept in. I wanted to take one home. Actually, I didn't want to leave.
I decided to read and rest, pamper myself, and simply visit nearby gardens and museums. The first was Blount Cultural Park, which are the photos you see here. "Uniting art and nature which fosters education and the preservation of open space." This park was calling my name.
The lighted amphitheatre is the center for outdoor musicals, plays, concerts and lectures, in addition to being a prime location for weddings and receptions.