Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Another Year Older



This week I turn 60. Aging has never been as big a deal to me as it seems to be for some. I don’t search for new wrinkles or pluck grey hairs. If, like some do, I chose to ruminate the disappointments of my lifetime, I imagine it would feel similar to the time in my youth, when having ventured too far into the ocean; I was seized by a wave. It dominated me. My tender, na├»ve body, was tossed wildly about, and then repeatedly pummeled against the ocean floor. Just when I was sure I could hold my breath no longer, up I popped. Wobbling back to my blanket, attempting to look unscathed (not out of pride, but fear of punishment for venturing too far), I had my first “Ah-Hah” moment. With perfect clarity, I understood my own mortality. Remember the lesson, not the pain, move thankfully forward. Surviving another year is cause for celebration. Party on!

This year, I bought myself an En Plein Air Pro easel for my birthday. It is time to get out there. Last week I set it up in the studio so we could get to know each other, and I could save face when I venture out  in public.


Even at this new, ripe, old age, it was quick and easy. YAY! If anyone is interested, I’ll write a review on it in a future blog. Just let me know.

 Birthday blessings continued to rain down upon me. As I painted and puttered about the studio, tweaking drawings, deepening shadows, and mentally preparing for my future plein-air excursion, I glanced over at the computer screen. There, next to the message icon was one of those little red flags, I had a message. I did what any studio-bound, solitary artist does. Click. 

Sharon Dodge: “Vicki and I will be at Oak Island Labor Day Craft show on Saturday. I have a bag ready for you.”

That simple message made my day brighter; actually it turned my week around! Sharon is a wildly talented potter. She started a tradition a few years ago, of presenting me with a bag of “goodies” from her kiln while I visit her stand at the yearly craft show. The show just happens to be held within a week of my birthday. I’m convinced she has no idea how much that little bag of ceramic treasures means to me. I can never open it in front of her, because I know I’ll cry. 

Sharon’s thoughtfulness over the years graces my space. Little bowls hold the seeds and nuts I snack on while painting, wall vases keep my pencils, pens, and rulers, within easy reach and organize my kitchen tools. My prized handmade oatmeal soap rests on one of her little plates, and she created the perfect dish to keep my brushes wet, without ruining the hairs. No room in my home is untouched by her friendship.

My “goodies” this year include the PERFECT tiny dish to hold my evening teabag, another lovely nut cup (you can’t have enough of those!), and a bowl now designated as my yogurt and fruit bowl, destined to ease me into many creative days.


Thank you, Sharon. Your art fills my home; your generosity and thoughtfulness fill my heart. You are a gift to my spirit.

As for me, I’m ready for another trip around the sun. I’ll keep all the jewels of joy from the past year, and cherish those people that have made me feel loved. This year I’ll explore new opportunities whenever and wherever they arise. I’ll create new happy memories to reflect upon next September, and be thankful and excited about the new year to come. That little girl on the beach healed from her wounds, learned that life is fragile, and embraces each and every day.

Turning 60 is going to be a piece of cake, chocolate I hope, with ice cream!

Love from my studio,
Marilyn

17 comments:

  1. Beautifully written birthday girl and I love the little pottery treasures. You have such a love of life and anyone reading this can tell that. Big hugs girlfriend, I'm right behind you. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Barb! Big hugs right back at you! We'll have to go out for some cake soon!

      Delete
  2. Nice writing. Love the way you've tied your thoughts together. :) 60 is going to be a great, productive, creative year! Rock on, Marilyn!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ellen, thank you so much for stopping by my blog! I love yours too! 60 is lookin' good eh?

      Delete
  3. Glad I made your day ~ Hope you have a beautiful birthday ~ Vicki and I both thought you looked great ~ You sure you won't be 50 instead of 60??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The WEEK my dear, the WEEK! Sharon, from the bottom of my heart, thank you! I appreciate you always remembering me, always being so kind, and now...the 50 or 60 compliment...You have a friend for life! Love Always my friend!

      Delete
  4. Lovely thoughts from a lovely lady! Glad you are gonna get your plein air on. What fun it will be!!!! Hope your birthday is delightful, like you, my friend.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Laura! Not only am I gettin' my plein air on, YOU get to witness the whole experience! It's going to be AWESOME!

      Delete
  5. I am so fortunate to experience your "try out" with the new easel first-hand. :) Your birthday will be a spectacular gift of friends, art and travel and I will be right there with you :) I am pleased as punch to share it the celebration with you.......a week or so later, but still a celebration of YOU! :) Can't wait to meet you my friend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Dear Debra, you have been in my corner for so long now. I have no words to express the thrill of our upcoming opportunity to be present in time and space. What a way to start a new decade! WOO HOO!

      Delete
  6. Marilyn Sweets, you have such a wonderful way with words, as well as with paint. Thank you for sharing your thoughts with us on turning 60. I'm not even two years behind you so it's good to look ahead and see it looking so darned GOOD! I wish I could deliver your birthday hug in person, but please know I wish you everything wonderful and full of love.

    ReplyDelete
  7. My dear Susan, how much of all of this is because of your initial inspiration! This very page exists because of YOU! One day I hope to thank you in person, and make a toast to you with some mighty fine wine. Until then, I thank you for the demonstrations, workshops, advice, friendships, and the beautiful karma you have brought into my life. Great love & bright blessings to you my dear friend.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Marilyn, how inspiring your words are, I rarely think of my age as I just don't like to think about it, but you have embraced the years with beauty and grace. Thanks for sharing your thoughts and your friends beautiful gifts. Yes I would like to hear your thoughts on your new easel I have been toying with the Idea of a new one, mine is a heavy wood one, does the trick and gives me a work out. There is a soltek that J Vloothuis uses I have been going to check into. I enjoy your art and your beautiful word.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Margene,to me it really is just a number...lol! I also looked at the Soltek, and I'm sure it is an amazing piece of equipment. So far, this is just as serious a piece of equipment, but I'll let you know more when it's "field tested". Thanks for stopping by!

      Delete
  9. Oh Marilyn, you have become so dear to me! You, along with the other ladies, have become my inspiration. I am thankful every day for your friendship, advice, and influence. I cannot imagine my life without you. I will be a smidgen late for your birthday, but by God's grace, I will be there! Hugs, my friend!

    ReplyDelete
  10. Nina, sweet, sweet, girl! Thank you for sharing your feelings, and please know, you are loved!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Hello Marilyn! So, I would be interested in your review of the Plein-Air Pro Easel. It looks simple and efficient.....two things that appeal to me as well. :)

    ReplyDelete