What do you remember?

What is your earliest memory?  You know, the first thing you recall as a child.
Mine is probably quite different than most.

I was sitting on the floor by the sofa.  My Dad was lying on the sofa watching TV.
TV back then was small and black and white.  My Dad liked to put his hand on my head and pet me like a dog.  I know that’s weird sounding but he said my hair was really soft and I think it’s how he watched me with out having to “watch” me.  It would make me sleepy instead of running around like I usually did.  I remember wanting to be near my Dad when he was home.  I was, I guess, kind of awestruck by him.  He was tall, with dark hair, and handsome and I thought of him like a king and mom his queen.

Anyway, the memory is - he was watching TV and I was watching with him. I know now the movie he was watching was Ben Hur.  It was at the part where Jesus was crucified on the cross.  I started crying.  My Dad said to my Mom, “Nell, she’s crying!  Do you think she understands?”  My mom who was in the kitchen, which was kind of open to the room where the TV was, said, “No, she’s too little to understand.”
Dad seemed unsure.  He seemed to think maybe I could understand.   What I remember was thinking, why would they kill him?  He was good and they killed him.
Didn’t they know who he was?  They wouldn’t have killed him if they knew who he was!  Everyone was hurt and crying because of it.  I didn’t think they should do that.  I understood God was not happy. When my mom said I was too young to understand I remember thinking, “no, I’m not!”  But I don’t remember trying to tell her that.  I just remember crying. 

When I think back on this, I felt like I belonged to God.  I know that’s a lot for a child to understand but it was simple in my mind. 
I also think back to this scene and remember that Mom was pregnant.  What I can’t remember is – who was she pregnant with?  If it was Terry, I was only around a year old.  If she was pregnant with Stuart and Trish I was around 3.  I have thought that made more sense but you never know.  I also described to my Mom, in trying to figure out if this was actually a memory or maybe a dream, what the place looked like.  I told her where the TV room was in placement to the kitchen where she was working and she said yes that it sounded like the place we lived when we were in Texas.  We moved to Texas sometime in my first year and lived there until I was 8.  So, that's my earliest memory.  What's yours?

Random other things;
The other night I thought I would try doing "zentangle".
After, drawing this and then coloring a copy I researched "zentangle".
According to some websites it is repetitive patterns but
others say it could be something like this.  Now I'm confused
as to what it really is supposed to be but this was fun.
I did a lot of this in high school 
and I sold quite a few to other students.  

Minion waiting for his mommy when she takes a shower.


New painting using new easel

I'm still trying to learn how to paint better.
I think I may have said this already, can't remember but 
I decided to do one painting weekly:  
one week a still life, 
one week a portrait,
one week a landscape, and
the fourth week whatever I feel like doing.
With surgery last week, I didn't get anything done.
I did set up a still life which I started yesterday.
So far I've only used these two brushes a 3/4 flat
and a 1/2 flat.  I also used the same limited palette of
red, yellow, blue, black, white and burnt sienna.
I haven't really been timing myself because I don't feel like it.
I stop painting when I get tired.

I really like the easel.  I like being able to 
hang my water from it and I can 
lay my palette on the brush holders.
Thanks Chuck!


recuperating and early birthday fun

The last two days have been take it easy, watch tv and
movies, and just recuperate.  
This evening Chuck made
me an early birthday dinner but I didn't realize that's what
it was until I finished eating because I would have photographed
it.  He made me a delicious perfectly grilled steak, baked potato
and salad.  He even fixed my potato and salad and brought it
to me, so sweet.  
Then a couple hours later when I was
figuring out what my next painting was going to be he gave
me an early gift - a new easel, for in studio or plein air
painting.  I'm looking forward to trying it out this evening.
And it comes with a nice carrying case too!

Some photos from the day before surgery and this evening.

 My rose bush is blooming.  I can't believe I haven't killed it.
 Lizard watching me


Day after surgery

Yesterday was surgery.  I had been dreading it so much and was full of fear.  I don’t know why since it was supposed to be a minor surgery.  I think all of the paperwork you fill out can be part of the issue.  When you have to sign something that says, “may cause death” and all the other serious side effects it’s a little frightening.

Despite my fears everything went really well and I had the best nurses ever. 
Yesterday morning before going to the hospital I read from Jesus Calling:
STOP WORRYING!  And then Streams in the Desert:  Do not be afraid for I am with you.  Genesis 26:24
It’s amazing how what you’re reading can be so relevant to your situation.  I think it helped a lot.

Thankfully, it is all over and I’m doing well. Taking it easy.  My last nurse said, “no cooking, cleaning, laundry, vacuuming, or dusting, for 6 weeks.”  Chuck’s response, “The house is going to be a mess!”
Thank you to everyone who prayed.  I really appreciate it and believe it is why everything went so very well!

Dragonfly on the bird feeder
 Two cardinals on the bird feeder.  Don't
know how they fit since the space is so small
and the feeder rocks back and forth when they
land on it.
 When Donna was visiting we walked to the lake
lot at Mom's house.  These were taken
on the way there and at the lake.  I can not believe I
didn't take any photos of her or with her.  I don't know
where my mind was.

 This was a toy boat that one of the neighbors 
was playing with.

Donna found this.  We both thought
it was very interesting.  I can't 
remember what plant it came from.

 The other morning this guy, or girl, was on our 
back gate.  I took this through the screen that's why
a little fuzzy.  He just looked at me while I took this.
Then he flew off.  He came back to the other side
of the house.  I tried to sneak up on him and get another 
picture but just ended up scaring both of us.

I think this was around 8:30 in the morning and you 
can already see the heat and steam coming off the wet
fence.  It's that hot in the morning.