Another year has past and winter in all its beauty and quiet is upon us. Today marks the return of the sun and, paradoxically, the beginning of winter when dark days and long nights prevail. Every year Mother Nature offers her seasonal gift, a time to look within and find comfort in our own skin. Of course this is a challenge with the joy and craziness of the holidays all mixed up together. Maybe a “both-and” approach is called for and “Quiet Craziness” will work just fine. What do you think?
November 12th, the birthdays of my son Terance Olaf Skjersaa ll and his dad Terance Olaf Skjersaa, was celebrated at Anthony’s. Ten Skjersaa’s were around the table celebrating this grand and fun day. Wishing both Terrys a great year to come.
Forum in Terrace Lodge
Tuesday November 13th – 10:00 to 4:00
I hope you can join me, along, with many other artists, for a one-day art show at Bend’s Touchmark Lodge. It is located adjacent to the Bend Athletic Club, just below the Century Dr. and the Mt. Washington Dr. roundabout. I look forward to seeing you there.
I will be showing framed work plus many hand painted holiday cards. Originals and prints are available.
Below are a few samples.
Cards are available at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Originals $15 – $25. Prints $2. – $4.50
Happy Holidays to Everyone
When I lived at Skyliner’s often on a Sunday, or any other day of the week, I would head out towards my “personal sanctuary.” No pews out there, no priests in robes speaking a male dominated tongue, or no hugging the stranger next to you . There are good things about church, but it’s nice, for me, to have an alternative – like The Church of the Beaver Pond.
Through the Aspen grove listening to the little heart-shaped leaves making music in the wind, then on to the little pond where creation, life and death, spoke truth and comfort.
The shapes, colors, and fragrances of Fall are a promise. Fall promises change, a u-turn out of summer and a colorful opportunity to contemplate the truth that nothing stays the same. Winter is on its way and we adapt. We re-style our clothing shedding tee shirts and searching out warmer coats. We revise ourselves with the seasons, hopefully with grace, and Look, there on the stove we find warm soups and maybe a friend for lunch. Humm, that reminds me, my artist group is coming tomorrow, and I have a chicken vegetable, coconut milk soup I have to get started. So, I remind myself, “it’s” all there and we’re part of it, endowed with the ability to hope, and love, and surround ourselves in an atmosphere of the best we can be in any moment. I just watched “Martian Child” twice. The child starring in that movie…he’s just enough to make you “Fall in love.”
Fall is well on its way, and the roses still bloom in my garden. Linda Allen’s album, “October Roses,” reflects the beauty of these persistent blooms in her song by the same title.
Her music can be accessed at http://www.lindasongs.com
Spring roses are lovely, they make my heart sing…And in summer, the roses sweet memories bring…But I most need the rose when the bitter winds call…October Roses are the fairest of all…October Roses are the fairest of all.
Another track star in the family. Jade is in middle school, and a devout athlete. She’s an “A” student, skies, loves water sports, is an outstanding young visual artist, plays piano and violin, and was an up and coming gymnast. Recently multiple joint injuries forced her to discontinue her training. That was a sad transition for Jade. She loved that sport and trained at the gym at least three to four long afternoons and evenings a week. It’s nice that she has more free time to be with family and friends, or not. Her schedule, like most kids her age, is packed to the gills with activities.
Jade, her sister, and other neighborhood kids used to run back and forth past my front window on their travels between each other’s houses. Jade was so little but could run like the wind. They all wore flip flops, the road was a dirt lane, and Jade was usually out in front of the pack – her little legs going like a windmill. (I was often on “grandma alert” waiting for one of them to crash. Never happened…flip flops and all.) You know what they say about early childhood experience! She’s got some fast memory stored in her DNA. GO JADE.
Jade was born beautiful, both inside and out. She is sweet, fun, so funny – and eternally impossible to beat at any board game.
Congratulations to my oldest granddaughter, Ellie Skjersaa, a junior at Summit High in Bend. She took first place in the 2018 NW Classic XC race at Lane Community College last weekend. I just now called her, all excited and proud, exclaiming, “Ellie, congratulations.” Her reply was, “For What?” “The race, you won.” I said. “Oh, that was just a JV race. Can I call you back later?” She ran against 200 other girls in her “just a JV race.” She’s always been a winner, always humble and a very good team mate. Not only that, she’s a wonderful granddaughter, daughter, sister and is loved every day of her life by everyone in her family.
There’s a chill in the air. It’s been cool for the last few days, the wind has picked up, but it seems on schedule. Today is the August full moon. According to some Native American tribal people, this moon cycle is called the Sturgeon Moon or the Corn Moon. Fishermen and fisherwomen are pulling in their catch for winter, and the last of the corn is being brought to harvest.
Most who live in the western world no longer live and learn by the seasons. Lately I’ve been contemplating the question; what would our lives look like if early settlers who arrived on the shores of this contenent had adopted the ways of the First Peoples, those who lived here for centuries before us. Those who respected the land and learned from it and kept it alive and healthy. I wonder if the current devastation to our Earth we are now living with would have been avoided? Would bank notes and credit cards prevail, or might some form of predominate exchange based on altruistic concern be the case? Likely there would have been fighting, some disease, some starvation, and something new we can’t imagine, but how would it have been different?
Sturgeon Moon Under Water
Out of a blast of thunder my Iris took wings. In Central Oregon this time of year hot dry days can create violent storms such as the small, isolated blast that shook me awake from an afternoon snooze. A wave of boldness seemed to overcome me, and knowing this painting was no “show stopper” I relaxed, had fun, put some paint down and am happy with the outcome. (Still no show stopper.)
The temperature here in Central Oregon has dropped from the high 90’s to the low 80’s, so around seven in the evening the garden was pleasant and inviting. The star gazer lilies are abundant and lighting up the back yard with their intoxicating fragrance. Maybe someone named them “Star Gazers” after their star-shaped blooms and the way they tilt toward the skies searching for their mirror-like images that shine in the night. Or maybe not. The ripe blueberries on the bushes got picked – before the birds discover them. Cherry season is just ending here on the eastern slope, and I managed to get enough off my tree to make a few jars of cherry jam. It’s so good.
Greg Brown sings a song, “Canning” that comes to mind as I’m preserving a little taste of summer in my jars:
Peaches on the shelf
Potatoes in the bin
Supper’s ready, everybody come on in
Taste a little of the summer,
Taste a little of the summer,
You can taste a little of the summer
My grandma’s put it all in jars.
Well, there’s a root cellar, fruit cellar down below
Watch your head now, and down you go…etc.