Still Moving Up

Brian couldn’t stand that he had created stress. He had tried so hard to do a good thing for me. He diligently and with great determination, went up to my studio to help me find my Ruling Pen Workshop. He went straight over to the spot where he thought it might be, where I had already looked many times. He listed the workshops I had there. Gothic, Italic, ….and Ruling Pen. I thought he was kidding. Nope. There was my Ruling Pen Workshop cleverly disguised as my Ruling Pen Workshop. 

Moving Up.

My little studio had been carefully organized and designed. I shared it with a bedroom for guests but it was still mine. I knew it intimately and it fit very well. 

On a weekend when I wasn’t here my husband kindly moved the entire contents up to our newly finished attic so I could have a much larger space. From small intimate to large unfamiliar. I feel a bit lost. 

I reach to find my balance amongst random. This is the result of much searching on a rainy afternoon.


The earth may laugh with flowers but i don’t get the joke.

No paintings. No drawings. No sketches or thoughts. The flowers substitute the need for paints. The gardens replace the canvas. Yet no great works have emerged. An urgency has been lost. To create beauty out of the rough is where I fossil my fuel. The dust upon which our house existed begged my attention. Now this old house is surrounded by lush gardens in various states of beauty and order. Sorting nature is like herding cats. One section is worked and deemed under control until I turn away. I look back and it has returned to its previous state of unkempt.

Some people, I am lead to believe,  enjoy this endeavour. I find it as relaxing as working towards deadlines. A close tie to housework. Maintenace is dull. But creating takes strength and energy both of which have been rationed over the past few years.

A sift in perspective is needed. What can be enjoyed and how much can be done. A work in progress even before the work is started. Fall will be here before I figure it out. And all the while there is a plethora of reminders that life is too short; fleeting and precious. I run to catch up to the starting line, where everyone else waits placidly. I catch my breath and try to decide how I’m ever going to enjoy myself.


The workers came, went, hammered, sang. I sat in a corner with my journal and drew. 


The gift of having a daughter. Absolute. Luxury.

The delight of calling her friend. Sheer. Magic.

Mother’s Day is a favourite. The day I freely bask in joy.

This site is has been crucial to me.

Victoria Secrets. Nail wraps. Calligraphy workshops. Mary Kay.

Life beats with the constant steps of friendship and common threads.

Thank-you Vanessa.


Silly little tulips. Drawn with inspiration from an unknown source. I love the abundant essence of tulips but can seldom depict them realistically. Perhaps my inspirational source is simply cheating. However, these little tidbits of essence seem to make people happy. That in itself delights me even more than aknowledged talent. As Renoir said, there is enough ugliness in the world. I choose to paint beauty. In my case I scribble in attempt.


Again I stick to my computer like a child clinging to a parent on their first day of school. It is safe here and I’m having fun finding old paintings. Another experiment with acrylic and pastel, painted on a random piece of cardboard. It’s been in my studio, looking inferior, collecting dust. I brushed it off and brought it down here to scan. Something to play with as the hammer bangs insistently in the next room.


Okay. I don’t know how to make these smaller so here they stay. Tulips. Requested by Vanessa for my May favicon. Finally got round to it because of being ‘caged’ in my studio. I hate to say there’s always a silver lining but in this case there was. I’m lucky to have a studio I can be caged in. Accomplishing something that bottlenecks progress is such a fresh breath!!! Phew.


Living with depression is akin to living with a volatile, temperamental child. Easily disturbed, disappointed, distressed.

I began feeling comfortable in my ‘new’ surroundings at the Toad.  After three years of severe depression, I finally felt safe in my self-contained routine while numbly longing for improved surroundings. Fresh walls. Old brown revived to life. Perhaps I was confusing walls with self.

Yesterday they began the floor. Not my preferred order. Backwards in fact. Ceiling first, walls second and floor last. Just saying. Clear everything out. Bring back only good.  Life would be fresh. Begin again. Right way up. But out of my hands. So I impose a numbness that keeps disappointment at bay.

The new floor is being put in today. I don’t know if the ceiling will be considered or just left to peel, a glaring reminder of failure.

I hide now as my safe place has been completely disrupted, feeling quite like that disturbed, distressed child.

The depression has not really improved as I had thought. It had just been masked with routine. As with asbestos, it has become agitated and volitile with the disruption.

This old house. Two humans growing older. Slowing down. Heartbeat of purpose waning. A heavy shroud of numbing protection descends to conceal the anguish behind the mask. A nod to survival.  I fiddle with art and remember this old painting.