Thursday, January 31, 2013

Just Rowing Team

Dear Erica,
Wow last week was really a challenge. When you called 911 to bring mom to the hospital I knew I had made the right decision to fly to Chico and help you out. Arriving several hours later, sometime after 10pm, she looked weak and sick. Her cough just rattled and seized her whole body. My heart sank when the doctor spoke of limited reserves and the long climb back to health ahead of her. To get better she would have to make efforts to move and keep the inflammation from settling in. You looked tired as well, it was the end of  a long day after a series of long days that started with a simple flu running through the entire family. And thus began my first night sleeping bedside in the hospital. Luckily the rattling cough eased by morning and she was able to endure the treatments without much fuss. In fact she did well. Better than expected. The medications and respiratory treatments were quite effective. The acute part of the illness ended after a few days and she returned home.  Now we face a long recovery period that is doubtful to return to baseline.  I struggle to let all of this be normal. Because it is normal and quite natural. She has had a long vital life and is  preparing for a transition to a new world. I struggle to let it all happen in her own time. Not to push it along and not to fight it. I struggle to find that sweet middle spot in which she and I and you can live each day with ease. She isn’t in any pain. She just wants to rest. She wants to sleep in and  nap in-between meals. She wants an early night and to find refuge in her dreams. She is always dreaming good and hard. This is a blessing. It is as if her dream life is now more vivid than the real one. Afterall deams don’t require an ability to talk, to hear, to see to touch etc. Our everyday life so depends upon full use of our senses. Something she doesn’t have.  When she awakes to retell a dream it is always as if she has been transported to another time and place.  She is doing good work the work of going home.

As I have returned back to my own work I feel more at peace. My struggle has eased and my resistance to time has dissipated.  She hasn't died, she isn’t going to get better, but she can still relax and I can relax. Once I accepted that time is not the enemy, I found some peace. And so I remember my dad’s favorite song was row row your boat, (gently down the stream, merrily merrily merrily life is but a dream.. ) She is simply going down the stream and I am too.

All my love,
Your sister Sandra

Friday, January 25, 2013

Mark is getting into my things again!

Millicent was a little nervous. Not every giraffe was invited to the Yellow Cotillion -- it was the height of the social season.

Giraffe by me, the rest is James Tissot. And the concept is my brother Mark Olmsted. I think we are on to something! My brother Mark has always been my muse.  So much fun!

Girl with Strawberry Earring

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Giraffes on my mind today while making pasteries

I am a nervous wreck. I am leaving on a plane in one hour to visit my 87 year old mom who is sick with pneumonia. I am running around in circles and find myself trying to use up the extras in the refrigerator. I will be gone for a week and didn't want anything to got to waste. SO I came across a bit of pastry dough from last night's quiche.  I rolled out the dough and made a giraffe on top from the leftover scraps. It was delicious cooked and filled my need for something special. It is funny how when under stress I go for comfort foods. It reminded me of the times my mom would let me make my own pastry from left over dough so many years ago. Here's hoping the giraffe angel will help me take care of Simone over the next few days.

Morning Munching

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Giraffe Day Four

Water color and ink pen. I used ink wash on the neck to add some shadow

Monday, January 7, 2013

Giraffe Day Three

This is the same Giraffe Draw using pen and ink three times. I am excited to do the same character over and over. I can see progress already!

Giraffe Day Two

This is Griaffe was done in pen and ink.

Giraffe Day One

I am taking a year long course with Carla Sonheim Titled the year of the Giraffe. And so this is day one!