Sunday, January 27, 2013

Surviving Winter in Seattle

To love the Seattle area for 1/3 of the year is easy. It's jaw-dropping beautiful on every horizon. However, those other 2/3's are challenging:
  • gray skies when you wake up until the sun you rarely see goes down
  • happiness for day-long "showers," since a "rain" means  mud slides & sometime flooding
  • cold weather that penetrates
  • a thriving green lawn that's not grass, but moss

I wouldn't live anywhere else! The secret to happiness here is a fulfilling job, sports, or hobby. Duplicate Bridge & jewelry making save me... AND the certainty that deeply hidden in that grim sky are majestic, tall mountain ranges I will see again in a few months on the eastern & western horizons, PLUS The Mountain (our name for Rainier) to the southeast. (DIGRESSION: In 1973 when we moved here from New Orleans, I could not understand why the traffic snarled over our 2 major floating bridges on perfectly sunny days with no auto accident reports. So I turned on the radio for the traffic update. The cause? "A sunshine slow-down over the 2 Lake Washington floating bridges because The Mountain is out!") Yep, we Satellites (I'm one of them now) don't take nature's beauty for granted!!!

So after looking out my windows for these last few months at gray wetness, the green, mossy lawn, & garden patches of brown, limp, dead flower stalks, I spent last week creating my own flowers. I hope these roses & peonies go to a good home because they're my favorite flowers, but they got me through another gray week & they won't go limp in the weather.

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

An Artist-Gremlin Emerges

Miles (6), Vivian (9), Gus (3)
Greg & I enjoy the magic in our lives -- watching as our 3 gremlins (ages 9, 6, & 3) grow, evolve, & develop into little characters with unique likes, quirks, talents, & personalities. Then when we're exhausted from all that magic, we can leave them with our daughter & son-in-law & retreat to our quiet home to recover. It's the best of all worlds:)

By age 3, Vivi's favorite pastime was drawing. During "overnights" with us, she was clearly the early bird. We quickly learned to place papers & colored pens on the table so poor Grandma could sleep another 2 hours. Some of her creations are memorable. My Box of Treasures includes Vivi's jewelry design suggestions for me, created in GREAT detail at age 6. (Hint: You'll laugh IF you click on these masterpieces!)

Our emerging artist is now 9. Last Sunday Vivi received an award from Seattle's school superintendent as 1 of 12 finalists in Visual Arts for her drawing "Finding Flower Fairies." Then with a stage presence that floored us all, she stood at a mic before at least 75 parents to explain the inspiration for her drawing -- how she likes to build "fairy houses" & place them in the woods around their vacation home in the mountains, hoping to "catch a fairy." WOW! We were so proud of her drawing & her composure (!). But the drawing I received for Christmas is my absolute favorite. Her class was studying Klimt (Yes, 3rd graders!). Then the students were asked to draw a picture of themselves. Instead she drew all 3 gremlins-- separate, yet one. Our daughter had a copy of the picture made for us. Soon it will hang on our wall in The Place of Honor. "3 Gremlins" wins my award hands-down!