Whirlwind Day!

Watch this campfire oil painting come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse)

Mellow music, marshmallows on a stick, and dancing flames – a fire can be welcoming and sentimental – childhood memories, family vacations, and warmth on a chilly evening… or, it can be devastating, ravishing, and life altering. Today’s was life altering, but in what looks to be a good way. Instead of a Dumpster fire, it was like a campfire on the last night of summer camp, when everyone sings sentimental songs and wishes they could be with their best buddies forever, but just around the corner summer will end, school will start back up, and the days toward adulthood will fly by.

A dear friend was thinking of me today and texted me. She has a spiritual gift of contacting me right when I’m going through a major life change, and is a calming force. I say “force” because her method of reassurance is helping me see a situation for what it truly is. This isn’t a passive kind of help, it’s the real kind that makes a difference.

Well, after some conversation about how things stand, a few things were meanwhile happening. One thing led to another and there was a flurry of calls, texts and e-mails between me, a realtor, and my husband. It all started when I got fed up with refreshing the rental listings screen yet again and finding nothing new. I wondered if the housing market in general was short on houses. So I checked homes for sale and found quite a few options. I wondered if we were too soon to give up on the possibility that we could buy a home sooner than planned.

I requested information about a house and was surprised to get a quick response. It turned out that this home had no garage, and my husband is a woodworker, so that’s a deal breaker for us. Of course if we truly had no where else to go, we’d do it, but we still have a short while to make something wonderful happen. It seems too early to give up and commit to a house that we don’t want. So, I explained this to the realtor who’d listed that house, and she started asking me what we were looking for.

I told her our situation, how disappointing the rental market is, and how we’d planned to buy next year (because my husband’s new job doesn’t start until June), but we have to vacate this rental by May 31. I said we can’t find a house to rent and we may need to see if we can buy a house earlier than we’d planned.

I’d imagined spending all of next year getting excited about the new house, saving money toward it, and organizing, packing, etc., then happily house hunting for as long as it took to find our perfect house. Because, every move we’ve ever made has been under a fast deadline with few choices and a fair amount of panic. I wanted a fun home buying experience. But, deep down I guess I knew that’s not how we roll.

We went the other direction- instead of less pressure, we’ll do MORE this time around. LOL, well, maybe that’s how the best of me comes out. I thrive under pressure. Even so, I’m happy that my friend got in touch with me today- she was holding me steady when all of this broke loose.

The realtor put my husband in touch with a local lender who got the ball rolling for us. It looks like we will be buying a house!!!! I’ll know more tomorrow, but my fingers are crossed and my prayers are lifted high! After years of this long journey and several detours, we may finally be HOME!!!!! I can hardly keep up with how fast my life is changing. Now it looks like the GOOD kind of change! Isn’t it wonderful how I knew that all along, and was completely calm and cool the whole time? HA HA HA, if you’ve been reading my blog you know better. 🙂

Still, there’s a long way to go from “working toward financing” and being settled into our new home. We haven’t even started looking at houses yet. So, easy now. I’ll see what tomorrow brings (but it’s okay to shout out a WOOT!). 😀 Thank you for your thoughts and prayers. Let’s bring ’em on home, keep praying!

I hope all of you are doing well. If you’re also dealing with unexpected changes, stay strong! God bless and keep you. May His face shine upon you and give you peace.


New Painting – Campfire

Watch oil painting “Campfire” come to life in 2 minutes (time lapse)

Relax for a couple of minutes and sit by the fire.



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Fear

Watch me paint “Forest Fire” in 1 minute (time lapse)

What scares you? Fires, hurricanes, storms, floods, criminal violence, car/plane/train crashes, losing a loved one, medical issues, loss of freedom? Open spaces, closed spaces, heights, water, heat, cold? Social anxiety in a crowd, or isolation when not in one? When things stay the same, or when things change? Finding your own way, or being told what to think?

Faith is about believing even when there is no evidence of our belief. We just “know”. Some call it intuition. Others think of this as a spiritual commitment to hold certain truths in our hearts, never wavering or disloyal to a higher calling. Usually this relates to living a moral life, defined by our personal values. For animals, faith seems much less complicated. Little birds may be literally pushed out of the nest by their mothers, but in a few short seconds they believe that they can fly- and indeed, they can.

When we believe in who we are, and the abilities we were born with, we trust that we can do what we were meant to do. Faith comes easier, requiring no proof of our claims, if we make a spiritual, intellectual, and physical commitment to be true to our purpose. If we believe we are meant to be strong, healthy, and positive for our families and communities, we can act in faith to BE strong, healthy, and positive.

Fear can be a mysteriously beautiful thing, just like an out of control forest fire. When we are afraid, we are aware of how fragile life is, and how vulnerable we are. We are aware of how precious time is. We may see our role in this universe as very small, but each of us are a tiny intersection point on a vast web. We matter. Every life connects to other lives. When we lose a connection point, part of the web falls apart. All of this may come to us in a fuzzy sort of way that we don’t analyze, but on a gut level our focus is sharper when we are afraid.

Fear is an opportunity. Do we rise? Do we respond with cowardice, submission, and defeat? Do we abdicate our responsibilities to others, and let them dictate our lives? When we give up our authority, when we surrender our sovereign self, we allow fear to be an excuse to abandon who we are, to lay down our purpose under the cloak of compliance.

When we choose to rise in the face of fear, some may call it choosing faith over fear. But perhaps it’s more fitting to say that we choose faith through fear. Fear can be an exhilarating journey; when we are aware of death, we are aware of LIFE. Our passion to live may be ignited, cultivated, and utilized to provide lasting change. We may “level up” spiritually, intellectually, and even physically. Mind, body and spirit are always connected. When we elevate in one, we elevate our full selves.

Fear can be a blessing. The choice is ours. Fight for your purpose. Never give in, back down, or give up in the face of fear. Embrace what scares you and stand firmly rooted in who you are. May your responses be in alignment with your core values, and never compromised by the demands of other entities, agendas, or people.

I finally started my new painting today, after two days of planning to do so, but getting distracted by family things. I don’t regret going with the moment and focusing on the family. Awareness of time helps us choose what’s most important. Even though my vocation is very important to me, work is work. It is here today, and gone tomorrow, even if I become successful enough to be legendary. One day my art will mean whatever people want it to mean, with or without me. 

But love is forever. What we invest in people lives on spiritually, eternally. When we experience fear, we understand this concept in a heightened way that is a blessing, should we accept. I accept. I hope you do as well.

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