Thursday, April 30, 2009

Prison Break

"...if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed." (John 8:36)

"For we know that our old self was crucified with him so that the body of sin might be done away with, that we should no longer be imprisoned as slaves to sin— because anyone who has died has been freed from sin. Now if we died with Christ, we believe that we will also live with him. For we know that since Christ was raised from the dead, he cannot die again; death no longer has mastery over him. The death he died, he died to sin once for all; but the life he lives, he lives to God. In the same way, count yourselves dead to sin but alive to God in Christ Jesus." (Romans 6:6-11)

I did this assemblage called "Prison Break" tonight. I had gone down to search in my basement of treasures and junk for some ideas for another assemblage and came across these things that just seemed to fit together. Praying hands upon broken mirror pieces (our broken self), enclosed in a "jail or prison", a stone cross sitting in a burlap bag, a bird sits on the cross and some wire, beaded "vines" encircle the cross. To me, these passages and the title just seemed to fit.. since we all are imprisoned in some way or other, even if we aren't actually IN a jail cell, we still let our lusts, greed, apathy, etc. imprison us ...without God to set us free we aren't truly free at all.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

The Anatomy of Assemblages

Today I received via UPS a torso I had bid on and won at shopgoodwill's a leather covered one with stitching, in really good shape...look at those abs!! I have yet to determine how to use it, but it was too cool to pass up!

I also found at the local Good Will store one of those smaller cardboard type torsos on a stand for just $1.99 which I couldn't pass up either, and this cute old fashioned doll...I love her hair style, her eyes open and close when you tip her too, and she was only .99 cents.

So those are the embodiment of my finds today ... now to form them into the body of an assemblage or two or three...

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fun & Busy Three Days with the Granddaughter

We were blessed with having Jorden with us on Wednesday to Friday. She is talking so much more than she was just 3 - 4 weeks ago, and is such a sweeetheart! It was a fun seeing her do so much more. I took her to see her great Nana & Papa, to the grocery store, spent some time on the porch swing, and pretty much stayed close to home where she explored all the nooks and different areas of the house. She loved Kasey AND her shoes too! (such a girl! *L*)

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Lending a Hand...Getting Plastered..

A friend of mine had sent me some plaster strips that I had used a few times to mend some items I was working on, but I had really gotten the plaster strips to be able to cast body parts with. So, when my son, John, had some time, I asked him to be my hand model. *L* We lotioned up his hand, and then I started to apply the plaster strips.

We decided to not cover the end of some of the fingers and that I could build them back up as well as repair the places we knew we'd have to cut off once it was hardened.

So, after about 30 minutes the plaster was hard enough to remove, I took a few hours to repair and build up the fingers and a hand is born! But I still need to sand it down, and then gesso it and use it in some kind of assemblage.
Pictured here is another hand that I found.. I thought maybe it could be used with the plaster hand... to me it kind of looks like Beauty and the Beast right now..*L*
More to come with these items... but first I need to be more inspired in how to use these.
Thanks John for your help in getting plastered...*G*

Monday, April 20, 2009

Grandson Jake rocks the School Board with his speech!

Our 7 year old grandson, in 2nd grade, is active in forensics at his grade school. He competed with kids from 5 other schools a few weeks ago, and received a FIRST for his speech and received a trophy as well!

His speech is "How Hockey Players Get Set For a Game." He tells about the equipment they wear and why, with some humor added.. he did it all without any notes too! WOW!! Gramma and Grandpa here were certainly impressed and proud of him, as were many people! There were 3 other students who also gave their speeches, and they were ALL excellent!! Even the school board wanted to pose with the kids after they were done..ha! These photos were taken by daughter Kasey...good photos, Kasey!!

Way to go JAKE!! Loved your speech, and love you too! xoxox

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter, Dad's Birthday & Annual Candy Pelting of the Kids

After Church today we headed to our family get-together at Chellie & Bill's. We had dinner, many of us sat outside and enjoyed the sun and 50 degree weather, although it was a little nippy in the wind. My Mom was able to be with us, she got a special release from the nursing home for the day (hopefully she'll be released from there later this next week and be able to be home!), we celebrated my Dad's 78th birthday as well. Here's Dad as he walked into the middle of the "Annual Easter Candy Pelting of the Kids", one of the traditions we now do on Easter as well..ha! Watch the video of the weird and whacky tradition..*L* Sorry that Susan and Todd and their kids couldn't join us for the day, but it meant more candy for the others..*L*

After that we headed over to the other side of the family celebration at Mary and Pat's and had dinner ..and another egg hunt for the kids. It was a fun day, filled with good food (too much!), family and fun!

Alleluia! Christ is Risen! The Lord is Risen Indeed! Alleluia!!

Happy Easter everyone! Here's the altar at our Church decorated for the Easter Celebration. (click on the photo for a larger version of the picture)

Saturday, April 11, 2009

REDEEMED - It is finished...

REDEEMED latest assemblage, finished on Holy Saturday, April 11, 2009.

I had found this broken doll, in bad need of restoring, one hand is missing, the arms and legs and face are cracked and peeling, yet she had a quality I loved, she was NOT worthless to me... it reminds me of how God looks at each of us...we are worth SOOO much even in our broken state, in need of repair, and yet, God gave His life for us because God loved us THAT much.

Some of the words from Psalm 107 came to me as I found things to put with my redeemed doll. "Let the redeemed of the Lord say so, who He has redeemed from the hand of the enemy..."
I took off her moth eaten clothes, added sack cloth, wings, a heart, a rosary, the frame which John made a box for and I made into a sky scene to house the redeemed angel.
Letters encased in brass on the bottom of the frame spell out REDEEMED.

It's pretty cool how I was able to finish it on the Vigil of the celebration of our Redemption - Easter... very appropo for the season!

Friday, April 10, 2009

Madame Bailey - the newest member of the Bailey Family

My girlfriend Deb gifted me with 6 of these Bailey cups/mugs..she had seen the Bailey family assemblages I had made using similar cups. She included a note saying, "selfishly hoping you might make me one little Bailey for my birthday and enjoy the rest for yourself!" ...Thanks DEB!!

How can I wait till your birthday? I can't!! So see the other photo for your Madame Bailey creation .. hope you like it...I'll bring it to the Easter Vigil Sat. night...Happy Easter Deb!

Madame Bailey reminds me of an older french woman, her body is a sugar cup (upsidedown) the handles are her arms, her hat is the top of the sugar cup with some decorative touches, she has a beaded skirt with white doll legs underneath. She sits on a white candle holder with a silver plaque that reads, "I wish I could afford vintage wine." Her wild red hair and other decorative touches add to her grand look.

Madame Bailey joins these other members of the created assemblage Bailey Family... at least for today, tomorrow night she goes to live with Deb.

Good Friday - Community-wide Ecumenical Service

Our Church was host to the noon Good Friday Ecumenical Community Service today. It was a good one...9 area churches joined together to worship. Celebrants included left to right: Elisa Brandt - Luther Memorial Lutheran; Gerald Peterson - Sugar Creek Lutheran Church; Laura McLeod - United Church of Christ Congregational; Marlyne Seymour - Christ Episcopal; Mike Ida - First Baptist Church; Brian Armstrong - Delavan United Methodist; Rey Diaz - Vida Abundante Hispanic Ministry UMC; Brian Holbus - St. Andrew's Roman Catholic; Bill Myrick - Christ Episcopal Church.

The veneration of the cross included putting thumbprints of the ashes from Ash Wednesday on the cross as we came forward to venerate the cross during the service.

Maundy Thursday - Seder Meal, Prayer Chapel

The Seder Meal that our church did along with the Methodists and the Lutherans was a wonderful service and meal.

Approx. 90 people attended the ceremonial service and dinner. We had so many great volunteers who helped in so many ways and provided food as was a great blessing! Here is a photo of the ceremonial plates and table settings from tonite.

After the Seder there was an overnight prayer vigil at the Altar of Repose in the Chapel at our church. I used a few of my assemblages in a prayer station before entering the Altar of Repose.

The altar of repose is always set up so beautifully. The flowers for the Easter services are used there. It smells heavenly, and it's a wonderful place for meditating, singing hymns, praying and just spending time with God.

We have people volunteer to take an hour to pray there from about 8:30 on Maundy Thursday, until Good Friday Morning before the Noon Service. My time was from 11:00 - 12:00 Midnight. So, now I'm home, have some photos posted and time for sleep after a loooong, but blessed day! Thank you Lord!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

37 years and counting....

How can time go by so fast? 37 years ago today, we were was a colder day, with some clumps of snow still on the ground here ... it had snowed the day before, but much of it had melted... not so upnorth however. We went to Eagle River, then up to Siren for our week long honeymoon...there was 3 feet of snow on the ground there. Guess it's not so bad after all here (today) for this time of year..*L*

Anyway... old married folks, we are... since we went out last nite, tonite we just ordered pizza and sat home and watched TV. Good pizza... reruns on TV..and falling asleep as I watched..*L* Whatta celebration! ha!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

The Pièce de Résistance

Tonite our daughter, Kasey, fixed dinner for us.. she prepared a delicious cuisine of Grilled Honey Almond Salmon complimented by a colorful blend of grilled Broccoli, Red Bell Pepper & mushrooms atop a bed of white rice lightly drizzled with honey & sprinkled with almonds...and it was GOOD... YUMMMMMMMM!!

Of course, being a photographer, she had to photograph it to add to her portfolio too... here's the delicious dish before we ate it!

THANKS KASEY, you can cook for us ANYtime!! xoxoxoxox

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Ahhhh, the smell of Mod Podge in the morning....

Contrary to what I've NOT posted here lately, concerning my art... I HAVE been busy, in my head, and in shopping for items, and ideas for assemblages when I finally have some time to myself. And lo and behold, I found a few hours... (which I really shouldn't have since it's just a few days before Holy Week, which will be a madhouse week for me...but that's another story)... anyway.... Here are some sneak peaks at my latest assemblage in progress... I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this one!!

John made me a shadow box to add to the frame I already had to house my sweet broken doll who is being REDEEMED. I am in the process of trying to make a "sky scene" for the background..not sure how it will turn out, I may have to scrap it and start again? But we'll see....

Here is my inspiration for this piece...
I love her...she is soooo broken, needs so much repair..her appendages are cracked, broken, she is missing one hand, many flaws, a lot like many of us, eh? But I see her beauty still...Her face and her features somehow remind me of my granddaughter Jorden and my sister Harriett ... I have fallen in love with this angel. I took off the clothes she was wearing, added "sack cloth" and a heart feature, and some wings I found.

This is the frame that will go over the shadow box ... a great Good Will find!

And this is the title of the piece... I think I am going to use these letters on the bottom of the frame...we'll see as it progresses...

So, that's what's on my workbench ... I am excited to finish it, but it may be weeks before I do... Holy Week and Easter are almost upon us... I know My Redeemer Lives, And He Is Near Me, Closer Than a Heartbeat...