Joy filled days.

Joy filled days.
May your day be filled with a bouquet of simple joys.

Friday, February 18, 2011

The Old Barn

 God never closes a door without opening a few windows 

I had forgotten about the following, (pictured below), time in my life - It seems like only yesterday.  But then seems like a life-time ago.  A lot of living has happened in the past 5 years.

God has clearly closed several chapters of my life.   Through these experiences I have gained a new awareness and appreciation for my many Blessings.  New windows are open.  I pray that I can clearly see the path outside my window and openly follow where it may lead.  A path wide enough to walk side by side with Jesus.

O.K. - so the above sentences don't really correspond to the photos I am about to post.  What I was trying to convey with my words was the idea that what I used to do on a daily basis is now very foreign to me.  I have a hard time remembering what my life used to be like.  Was I really living in the same body as I am now.  Once you have been diagnosed with a life altering illness such as lupus and M.S. it is difficult to view your body as it once was; a very able and capable person.

I still have a lot of living to do - places to go, people to see.  God will see me through and He just might unlock that door someday.

I ran across an article written about the, "Barn Quilt Squares". 
As you are driving along the Interstate and local highways in Tennessee, Kentucky, Indiana, Ohio and several additional states, you are bound to see the side of a barn with a large painted quilt square.
In 2006 I was contacted by the "Appalachian Quilt Trail"  about painting 
a quilt square for a barn here in Johnson City, TN

The neighbors next door allowed me to set up in their garage.

 I painted for over a week.

 The finished square. 

It took 3 men to fasten the quilt square to the barn.

There I am - in the hay loft.

The farmer and owner of the barn and the family quilt the
quilt square was patterned from.

Such an honor and fun experience!
Check out the following website to read more about the "Quilt Trail".

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Paint - on the Walls

A few years ago - maybe more like 6 or 7, my husband and children would return home from school and work to find freshly painted "art-work" adorning the walls.  The freedom a blank wall surface can provide a creative soul is limitless.  I have painted and re-painted many surfaces throughout my house.  Several of my projects have been just that, a project of trial and error.

The great thing about paint is that a mistake can always be covered over with new paint. The problem with this however is the waiting time involved in allowing the paint to dry before beginning again.  There have been days, drawing into weeks and then months, before that mistake on the wall would finally disappear.  Once I have the creative urge to begin a project, that urge may not happen again for months.  My poor family.  What patience they all have.  I can only remember one comment, which was received from my daughter.  She openly shared  that the "realistic" scene, the one I had just painted in the upstairs hallway, was not visible from the front door.  She was very pleased that the full sized donkey and mother pig and piglets were not painted somewhere in the main living room.

 I admit that I had a dream of living on a farm at some point in my life.  My husband promised me a barn when we moved to TN - I received a lake house instead.  I have come to realize that the painting on our walls have become a significant part of our lives.  Our "signature", so to speak.  Who can say that they have a family of farm animals adorning their upstairs hallway, or a basement with chipmunks and freshly caught fish hanging on the walls?  That would be the Nelson family.  We are a very loving and happy family.  We are a family that is truly Blessed in every way!  My children and husband can say with assurance that they are "blessed" with a wife and mother who is truly "different" in many ways.  I love them for their patience and their, "putting up with me" attitude through out the years.  Our home is truly a house filled with love and a few stray animals adorning the walls.
        The following photos are only a small sampling of the view from inside our home through the years.

 A litter of Puppies sleeping in our hallway.
 A Rooster perched on a white picket fence - the view from the staircase.

 A pair of birds splashing in the bird bath as a gander of
waddling geese meander about

A freshly caught perch - hung on the wall with the fishing jacket?
Thank goodness this is in the basement bedroom.

A view to your dreams.  
Painted in the master bedroom.

Picnic baskets and bunnies - kitchen decor'

A sunny wreath of flowers, everyday of the year.
Painted above the fireplace in the master bedroom.

The photo you have all  been waiting to see -

The donkey along with a mother pig and baby chicks painted 
in the upstairs hallway.
They are all house-broken and I must add a friendly
addition to the Nelson Family Home.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

The Night Owl

Late into the night...............or early morning, it is way past midnight and I am still awake.  There is something about the stillness of the night that allows my mind to run wild.  The silence of the night draws me into a creative trance.  Not a distraction in sight or sound, with the exception of the barking neighborhood dogs and my snoring husband and basset hound.  Turning the pages of a newly received magazine or relocating a cherished craft book is all it takes for the minutes to turn into hours.  Give me a few yards of fabric, a couple of needles with thread and throw in an assortment of buttons and lace; that's what I call contentment.  To gather my random thoughts and ideas and quite possibly create something- or nothing at all.  This is what I call time well spent.