Happy holiday greetings! I hope you have warm, enjoyable days throughout
Christmas, Hanukkah, or whatever your spiritual beliefs and ways are, as
well as a wonderful New Year!
A word about the art on my Christmas card-this is a piece of art I did as
an exercise of creating "white on white" satin materials as well as using
reflections. As the project progressed I wanted to use a vivid color to
accent the piece and I hit on the idea of red Christmas elements. Then
with the semi-transparent curtains I decided I really needed a landscape
background behind them and chose an ocean scene... All of a sudden it
looked to me like a California Christmas- at least for all that live
near the coast! Adding the kittens was just pure fun. Keep in mind too
that there is a tremendous amount of work that goes into creating
something like this on the computer. I have had some problems with my
finger joints so I had to change the types of hardware I use to
communicate with the computer... meaning the type of mouse I use, as well as
learning to use a pen and tablet for art. It was pretty difficult at first
but I came to really appreciate that I could do more with these
tools-especially the pen that acts like a true paintbrush! While it's hard
to see in this tiny image, I actually pen-brushed out the edge of the
kittens fur to make them look more realistic.
At the very least, I hope getting this sort of sexy Christmas card from an
old lady will make you smile!
It's been a wild year and a half for me, what with having to lose all my
teeth and learn to talk and eat without them. (I decided not to get
dentures because having Fibromyalgia means that nerve pressure points
anywhere on my body including inside my mouth can cause me a lot of pain.
Plus the food I eat has to be pretty mashed up anyway) What I didn't
realize a year ago last September is that having that type of major oral
surgery would cause my Fibromyalgia to sort of "ramp up" a level! Meaning
all the symptoms get worse. Any sort of major trauma to the body of a
person who suffers from this syndrome, seems to either activate it in the
first place or increase the severity of the symptoms. So I have been
working on readjusting my daily life and activities around this new
I also lost my last pet - my cat Nickie - to illness and age. I made the hard
decision that at my age and with my health, it is just too much work
to physically take care of a pet anymore, in this lifetime. So that was
another major adjustment... and of course I still miss my little guy... but I
don't miss cleaning the cat box every day. I suppose you could call that
an upside to this situation?
I do spend most of my days doing a lot of food preparation work for the
way I have to eat. It takes a good chunk of time out of every day, what
with using my food processor to puree each meal, plus the time it takes to
"gum it to death", to swallow it. Those hours I would rather be doing
art! So life is teaching me a lot of patience nowadays! At least I can
have groceries and most everything else I need, delivered right to my door
in this modern world! I'm very grateful for that!
I still make two loaves of
bread at least two to three times a week and it takes me a whole day to
prepare a weeks worth of the tender chicken breast meat that I steam-cook
and wrap up in one meal packets to keep in the freezer. The upside to my
food situation is that I still actually enjoy my sweet tofu "flan" meals
which is like eating a desert plus my chicken and noodles which is a salty
meal. After all these years of eating this way I hardly miss having the
variety of food that most people eat.
When I am not having to do those practical chores, I squeeze in time to do
my artwork and/or spend time in the on line art communities that I enjoy
so much. Other times, I just rest and watch my TV shows. Almost every day,
I have phone visits with my very best friend, who also deals with health
syndromes (hers is "RA" which interestingly, is like a "sister syndrome"
to Fibro, having many of the same symptoms) and is an artist with the
computer as well.
These activities are like a reward and/or distraction from work and health
frustrations. My doctor just looks at me rather cross-eyed because I'm so
far "outside the box" and yet here I am at nearly 70 years old with a
sharp mind and a relatively healthy body, syndromes aside.
You may have heard on the news about the recent terrible fires that hit
much of Southern California which were made worse by the "Santa Anna
winds". One of those fires was just about 10 miles north of me and it was
a very tense time for several days. I only live about 15 min. by car from
the ocean and I have never experienced the weather here being at such low
humidity day after day! As I write this, the humidity during the day is
still below normal only 10 to 15% which is just weird! I can only hope
that it will break soon and we will get back to more true winter, albeit
Southern California winter... which pretty much just means cooler days.
One bright bit of news to end the year on, is that both my lovely
granddaughters are getting married! Actually Alycia got married on
December 10th. She had a gorgeous Christmassy wedding given to her with
the help of her creative and loving parents. (She of course did a lot of
the preparations with her girlfriends and relatives too) Since I am unable
to travel or be in a big crowd of people, my son will be sending me a
video with photos and recording of the event, which I know I will enjoy.
Brittanie will be getting married in the fall of 2018. Both these young
ladies have grown into such smart, loving, creative and giving human
beings, that I could just burst from pride!
I pray that 2018 brings a peaceful and good New Year for all of us, free
from any more horrible natural disasters!
I do think of you all very often with lots of love!