Monday, August 26, 2019

A Bit of Earth🌱

"Might I," quavered Mary, "might I have a bit of earth?"

..."Earth!" he repeated. "What do you mean?"
"To plant seeds in--to make things grow--to see them come alive," Mary faltered...

Mr. Craven got up and began to walk slowly across the room.

"A bit of earth," he said to himself...When he stopped and spoke to her his dark eyes looked almost soft and kind. "You can have as much earth as you want," he said. "You remind me of someone else who loved the earth and things that grow. When you see a bit of earth you want," with something like a smile, 

"take it, child, and make it come alive."
~The Secret Garden

One of our favorite summer movies is the Secret Garden!  We like all versions of this classic movie.  It's about a little girl named Mary that experienced tremendous loss and was just numb with grief and anger.  Her life began to change with the help of a bird (a robin) after a magical gust of wind blows the ivy away from a mysterious door and she discovers a secret garden.

Her healing was evident as the garden came alive, so she too came alive. All the toll of plowing and planting, the plants bloomed and she bloomed and it touched those around her.

I was finishing up this painting and there was a loud commotion outside my window.  I looked and it was a rental company putting a sign up on my neighbors yard.  The commotion continued as I was painting but I get very involved (tunnel vision) while painting and I didn't look up a second time.

An hour later I walked the dog and everything was gone in a patch of landscape by the sidewalk except a sign that it was treated with pesticides.   I have been fighting the use pesticides for years and thought I won, until a rental company (that doesn't even live here) didn't like the ornamental grasses in my front yard and removed them with poisons and put my pretty pots and landscaping rocks in front of the rental side, because it looked pretty.    (As I'm writing this I just got off the phone with them and they denied that they used them). 

"The next time we do this we will leave you a note" she said.  

You have no right to come on someone property and do this, ever! Put yourself in my place, how would you like someone to rip out your plants and pour poison in your yard?  I said, I lost one dog already. Never again! 
 He makes all things new!
“She stopped and listened to him and somehow his cheerful, friendly little whistle gave her a pleased feeling--even a disagreeable little girl may be lonely, and the big closed house and big bare moor and big bare gardens had made this one feel as if there was no one left in the world but herself. If she had been an affectionate child, who had been used to being loved, she would have broken her heart, but even though she was "Mistress Mary Quite Contrary" she was desolate, and the bright-breasted little bird brought a look into her sour little face which was almost a smile. She listened to him until he flew away. He was not like an Indian bird and she liked him and wondered if she should ever see him again. Perhaps he lived in the mysterious garden and knew all about it.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

So my carefully planted and landscaped spot is bare dirt now and I took my pots back off the rental property side and I'm thinking today about this beautiful strong woman in the painting.  How happy it is for her to have a bit of earth in this world.  How lovely are her growing plants that she is watering and cultivating to feed her family.  

What a completely liberating thing to do!

Irene (I just found out she has my mother’s name) is watering plants on a farm plot in Malawi. She’s cultivating high quality seeds that will yield valuable crops for her family.
Photo reference/World Vision
Painted in 
Art project for charity 
“A bit of earth”🌱
Sharing seeds with friends and they also grow into blooms. Titus.

Proverbs 31 woman- She is strong. She is brave. She is loving. She is real. She is a follower of Jesus.
She is strong, because she is a woman.
The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in him, and I am helped: therefore my heart greatly rejoices; and with my song will I praise him.
Psalm 28:7
“She made herself stronger by fighting with the wind.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden


Photo credit/World Vision 

“At first people refuse to believe that a strange new thing can be done, then they begin to hope it can be done, then they see it can be done--then it is done and all the world wonders why it was not done centuries ago.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

“If you look the right way, you can see that the whole world is a garden.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

If you would like to sponsor a girl 🎋

Or donate to hunger with World Vision, donate here.🎋

“And the secret garden bloomed and bloomed and every morning revealed new miracles.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

“However many years she lived, Mary always felt that 'she should never forget that first morning when her garden began to grow'.” 
― Frances Hodgson Burnett, The Secret Garden

The LORD will surely comfort Zion and will look with compassion on all her ruins; he will make her deserts like Eden, her wastelands like the garden of the LORD. Joy and gladness will be found in her, thanksgiving and the sound of singing.
Isaiah 51:3

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

In Limbo🌺

 “It’s sort of hope amongst the ruins, I think. To me we’re all in the great wide open. I think life is pretty wild; I really want to like the world, but at the same time I have to write about what I see.” 
~Tom Petty

I have been busy planning an event over the last few weeks.  It was a big one for me and I had to spend a lot of time on it.   At the event we bounced out some cult members and their leader, a mime and a drunk, but besides that children were sponsored and four paintings sold for charity, I think the outdoor festival went well.  I was grateful for our safety with all the tragedies happening right now.  Unfortunately, looking for escape routes is part of the planning. but it can't compare to running for your life (with your children) and having no place to go that is safe, like it is for a refugee that is fleeing violence.   
The women that fixes up their home, beautifully and grows a garden, who sometimes walks daily to their friendly grocery store, connect with friends at church, chat with their neighbors for the latest happenings in the neighborhood does not want to leave their home town for a life in limbo, feeling unwanted and labeled "Refugee". 

With painting number 10, I wanted to do one that would highlight the refugee crisis but which one would I do, when there are so many refugees right now!

The statistics are staggering,at this time there are... 

1 Syria 5.6 million refugees 2 Afghanistan 2.5 million refugees 3 South Sudan 2.3 million refugees 4 Myanmar 1.2 million refugees 5 Democratic Republic of the Congo 833,400 refugees 6 Somalia 809,273 refugees

More than half of those refugees are children.

The one
that I chose was a refugee mother and a little girl named Jannatul (which means best heaven) holding each other because its all this mother has left after losing her husband and two other kids.

At night, Jannatul's mother sings her to sleep with a quiet lullaby. 
            Photo Credit World Vision 

“I pat her back and hold her closely in my arms,”says Salima. In the dark, there is peace until morning. The world's largest refugee camp is located near Cox's Bazar, Bangladesh.   Families live in small overcrowded and hot shelters made of bamboo and plastic tarps that often leak during monsoon season storms.
Photo credit World Vision/Jon Warren


[ hos-pi-tal-i-tee ] noun
1) the friendly reception and treatment of guests or strangers.
2) the quality or disposition of receiving and treating guests and strangers in a warm, friendly,generous way.

Do you remember a special time 
where someone was hospitable to you?🌺

"Aloha Spirit"
 ''Aloha'' is more than a word of greeting or farewell or a salutation. ''Aloha'' means mutual regard and affection and extends warmth in caring with no obligation in return. "Aloha" is the essence of relationships in which each person is important to every other person for collective existence. ''Aloha'' means to hear what is not said, to see what cannot be seen and to know the unknowable.
Source University of Hawai‘i / Law of the Aloha Spirit


Sponsor a child World Vision

PuaMana (easy version) #Ukulele
All in all it was fun, 
and where else can you see an iguana in a pink stroller? 

The scary thing is that he liked it!

Donate this summer to my fundraiser for hunger

Photo credit World Vision/Jon Warren  

Well reported of for good works; if she have brought up children, if she have lodged strangers, if she have washed the saints' feet, if she have relieved the afflicted, if she have diligently followed every good work.
1 Timothy 5:10