between storms

Last I heard, our area had received over 13″ of rain in the month of april. This is quite above average. A number of roads and schools are closed and rivers large and small rage and swell with each storm. We have had some nights broken by the sound of tornado sirens warning us of yet another wave.

Between the storms though, life is going on like usual. I love to go outside and look at the Irises in our creek. They have not yet bloomed but are about a foot or more tall. It is simply amazing to me that they withstand the levels of washaway-waters thrown at them this spring. They bend a bit as the waters rage but when it’s past and back to a trickle, they are once again standing straight and tall.   (The pictures below are from today, a small and beautiful sunny break between storms, more of which are on the way.  The rainy video above, was just a few hours ago.)

I could learn a lot from these plants…

Speaking of learning, I have a new batch of students at the Art Academy. This particular bunch is extra special because they will be traveling together, with me, in a matter of weeks (!) to Taos, NM. Each one is at a different and very individual point in their artistic development. I have the arty and intrepid Joanne whose gorgeous blind contour drawings are teaching me a lesson in just-doing-it. There is Jo, normally more of a reader-writer type, making lovely observational drawings of details that a number of months ago she wouldn’t have even noticed.   She is learning to see!!   There is Penny who, like Jo, is a ‘repeat offender’ having taken my class in the past. Once upon a time Penny “couldn’t draw a straight line” and now she is head cheerleader to other self-proclaimed ‘non-drawers’. They are each amazing and already pushing themselves to reach beyond what they are comfortable with or ‘good at’ to grow a little bit. I am so proud of them all and humbled at what I am already learning from them. I look forward to sharing some of their work and growth from upcoming classes and the Taos trip in the weeks ahead!

I have been thinking a lot about cases lately. I am building cases at Carroll Concertinas, trying to stay one step ahead of the crop of instruments that will be built this summer at the shop. In between cases I’ll be learning a few of the other jobs that make it all happen like sanding and polishing. But frankly, as much as I love learning new things, I am really happy to simply be gainfully employed. And then there are suitcases. I have always been a bit of a back pack girl myself but I have taken to borrowing my mom’s mini roller-bag for trips and it’s a heck of a lot easier on my shoulders! So now I am shopping around trying to find the perfect suitcase for what amounts to a whole summer of travel. I am a light packer and plan to carry-on vs. checking my luggage, even to Ireland, so we shall see what comes of it.  In an ideal world some suitcase manufacturer would sponsor my travels with the perfect roller-bag….

I love really love all kinds of cases, especially old ones.  I have an old make up case that I tricked out to house my flute and whistles. I keep my quilting fabrics in stacks of antique suitcases that double as coffee tables.  I keep a collection of collagey materials in an old samsonite case I got at the thrifty store.  But this summer it will be one, more modern case, my fabrics and even my regular flute (I have a travel flute made of a heavy duty composite material) will be staying home while I go on walkabout.  This is all tremendously exciting!!!

Here’s today’s doodle…

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