It's hot out there. Like almost triple digits hot. I don't mean to complain. Those of you living in Las Vegas or Texas or, say, Death Valley, have it bad. But we've had such cool weather for weeks on end this sudden heat has caught us all off guard. The grocery store line complaints shift from "is summer ever going to get here" to "this heat is killing me" overnight. I drink so much water that it sloshes around in my belly but I'm still thirsty. I picked a big handful of chocolate mint from the garden and brewed a couple of gallons of iced tea and that is satiating my thirst much better. Some things seems to be loving the heat. The tomatoes, cucumbers, and green beans, for example. I'm surprised the kale still looks very happy and lush.
Theman is home today. Again. A mild back injury that is keeping him from work. He likes to work so this is all slightly irritating to him in more ways than the obvious. I smile and take ice packs to him and then slink off to the back office where I slump slightly in my chair and wonder if we'll live long enough to experience that time of life when things are easy, simple, and worry-free. I turn 36 in 12 days. I'm that much closer, right? :)
A little over a week ago I participated in the Lake Oswego Arts Festival where we artists in the park were watched over by a mother osprey feeding her fledglings. What a beautiful city and lovely people! We stayed with friends who treat us like family. I never tire of the garden tours I get when I go. I brought home a few paintings from the show that i have listed in my etsy shop now. I wishwishwish I could convey the luscious surfaces in photos. Touching these pieces is where the real interaction lies.
I'm scheduled to teach in Mexico in October and into November for a few days. I'm excited beyond words to see another country, to immerse myself in the energy of San Miguel, to breathe air that is laced with art and color and history far older than my pacific northwest. But as much as I am excited to go, I am equally aching for my family to join me. I went to Australia a few years ago, alone, and though the experience was divine in so many ways, there was a little blue cloud shadow that followed me while I was there. It felt, I don't know, off, to be seeing it all without my brood. The light, the birds, the scenery, the ocean as we flew over Figi. I should have had my family with me.
So here I am, working towards Mexico, having chased every trail of possibility that i can see to fly them there on gifted airmiles or other creative means. Dead ends all the way 'round. I'm paddling like mad to do all I can do to raise the funds to bring my family with me. Time is short and so I've listed my show paintings to help toward that end. I'll be making some other things over the next few weeks to add to the shop and if you are inclined to support my efforts to bring my family with me to Mexico through the purchase of my goods, I will be eternally and deeply grateful to you. So very much. (Thank you also to all those who have registered for my Homesteader's Metalsmithing Revamped online workshop! You are supporting my Lee Herd (gently) Stampedes San Miguel dream too!)
And Theman. My sweetheart and beloved, my twinkly eyed safe haven. He tells me he's fine not going but what I hear is "I don't see how it can happen so I won't let myself want it". I just nod understandingly and then get back to my plan. He takes in new sights better than anyone i know. He drinks it in, he wears it for a long time after, he appreciates it. APPRECIATES it. Like, some people dream of getting drunk and partying hard in an exotic new place but not him. He drinks in experiences with every vibrant sensor set to maximum receptivity. This is what I want to witness. This is what I want to be a part of.
I know you all have a lot of goings on, pulls in every direction and if there is a place in your heart where giving towards our goal feels easy and light and in line with all the beauty you are creating in your own lives, you can donate any amount to help our little herd (gently) stampede San Miguel. My gratitude will not be able to fit in the largest of hugs that I will send you.
In the meantime, I'm also preparing with my dear friends, Katie, Judy and Misty for our Roots & Wings Retreat in Layton, Utah coming up the second week in August. We've done some wonderful logistical reconfiguring to make it even more intimate and special than we had initially planned. As a result, we only have a few spots left. If you'd like to join in, it's not too late! Three full days of classes plus meals and wonderful goodies INCLUDING a copy of every single one of my ebooks as well as an ebook of my upcoming Homesteader's Metalsmithing Revamped workshop. (That's about $300 worth of ebook content!! Homesteader's Metalsmithing Revamped, Handbook of Elements, & Pipe Dreams and Off the Chain - both brand new!!)
If you are interested in joining, we'd love to have you come along!!
((Stay tuned for the release of my Pipe Dreams and Off the Chain ebooks coming up soon!))