Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ride 'em in, Let 'em out, Cut 'em out, Ride 'em in :)

Good evening!  Finally!  I haven't had a moment today to hop on a computer and blog.  And I need to blog!!!  So here goes.  My fingertips are sore from drawing class today.  We are working on our huge drawings and they are in charcoal, sooooo my fingers are sore from "blending, blending, blending.  Keep those fingers blending, Though you'll wish it's ending...raw hide:)" It's a long class...from 1:40 to 4:10.  By the end of class I was really tired.  But I like the way my picture is coming.  It is starting to look like something.  And I like the other students in my class.  Actually in all my classes.  I have been lucky this semester to be with pretty talented people....and nice too.
In my sculpture class we had to hand in a paper.  I didn't think it was going to be any big deal so I didn't work too hard on it.  But I was wrong!  The teacher said it was worth 30 points and would be factored into our grade.  Oops!  Then he started going through the papers one at a time and talking to each student about why he was giving them the grade he was giving them.  It was kind of awful, talking right out loud in class while the rest of us were working on our sculptures.  He was really grading people hard too, so I was really dreading having to go up and hear how bad my paper was.  When he called my name I went up and immediately started making excuses of why I hadn't done a longer paper, and how next time I would do much better, etc.  He said something like, "hey, you did fine.  I docked you three points is all.  So you got a ninety percent!"  I really was surprised!  Thank you BYU and all of my wonderful English professors who drilled it into me how to write an essay.  I guess I do know a little about how to write....although you might not know it from this silly blog.
So tonight I have to draw a few frog parades for my illustration class:)  He liked my thumbnail of a bunch of frogs hopping by last class.  And I also have to come up with a meaningful sketch for my painting class so I can start painting tomorrow.  I do have a few good ideas conceptually, but I can't figure out how to depict the ideas in a new and interesting way.  Sigh!  I have to come up with something tonight!
Well, I hope you have had a most wonderful day out there in cyberspace.  And that you have a more wonderful evening!  Take care!!  I'm still pulling for you!  HAVVVVGE!!!  Melody

Monday, January 30, 2012

A Wonderful Life!

Hello again!  Excuse me a minute while I answer my granddaughter's comment.  Dearest Hailey, I will be delighted to come and see you dance and to eat delicious cookies with chocolate chips in the middle, and my favoritest of all ...pink frosting!!!  I really love you too!  I used to be a little shy to dance too, but it is really fun when people clap for you and tell you to dance some more...which I certainly will do!  And Grandpa too!  I love to hear from you so please make sure to write to me some more.  Dear Grandma!
OK, so that was fun.  I love when Hailey sends me a special note, whether here, or on facebook, it is all wonderful.
So I know you are anxiously waiting to hear if my artwork made it into the show....and it did not:(  However, there were 225 entries, and only 37 got picked.  So I guess it was not too terrible.  And I did try. I talked to several other art students that didn't submit anything, so I am a step ahead I guess.  And it wasn't as bad as I thought.  A lot of the stuff that didn't get picked was really good, so I went away feeling OK.
In other news:)  I had a nice visit with my advisor this morning.  He was very encouraging, or at least he didn't say to go back to my kitchen:)  And he said I should come in any time and ask any questions I might have.  So that is good.  In his class today we watched a really hilarious video.  It is an interview of Maurice Sendak by Steven Colbert.  Of course, Maurice Sendak is a fabulous illustrator and author of several children's books, and one of the best in my opinion.  But I will warn you that the language is not virtuous, and the topics either at times.  But I really did think it was a lot of fun, in a mostly healthy sort of way.  Here is the link.  There are two parts.  Sendak 1, Sendak 2.
After illustration class was painting.  I think I am already learning a lot in there.  I have asked virtually every one of my teachers what is the difference between fine art and illustration.  Until today I did not get a satisfactory answer.  But my teacher today said that illustration is like a declarative sentence.  And fine art is like an interrogatory sentence.  It made it all so clear!  Of course I think the line is blurred any more, but at least it gave me some idea.  He also spent quite a while with me helping me to figure out what I might paint about for my first painting, without telling me what I had to paint.  He brought out several books for me to study of different artists too, which was really helpful.  I like his method of teaching.  I think I will like this class.
Well, tonight is family night the world around.  I am glad for that.  I like to spend time with Mel.  We usually watch a conference talk, and I get a lot out of that.  It is sure different without small children to share it all with though.  I will get used to this!  Or not:)
So I hope you have a lovely family night out there in cyberspace!  I'm still pulling for you!  It is a wonderful life!!!  TTTT  Melody

Dancing (in my dreams!)

Good Monday morning!  And it all begins again!  This morning I am meeting with my advisor who is also my illustration teacher.  I need to talk to him about what classes to take and when to take them.  Then I have his class and also my painting class.  Then I have to write a paper for my sculpture class tomorrow and go in and draw on my wall drawing.  I also am going to find out today if any of my art works were picked for the show.  We shall see.  A lot of people entered a lot of cool stuff.  So I am not expecting to get in.  But I am hoping:)
So I have been thinking of dancing this morning.  I may do a three piece painting for my painting class of dancing.  I am still trying to work it out in my head.  But dancing was a big part of my life before I got married.  And it still is for my sister Joy's family.  They all dance!  And not just kinda.  My nephew Seth is the lead in Pacific Northwest Ballet's production of Don Quixote.  I wish I could go see him dance!  Here is a link to a video he is in.  He is the good looking one:)Seth  Here is a photo so you can recognize him.  He really is a fantastic dancer...as is his wife!  They sometimes get to dance together, although this photo is not of her.
Well, I guess I had better get on with my day.  Here's wishing you a wonderful day out there in cyberspace today!  Take care, keep smiling, and remember the good stuff:)  HAVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Sunday, January 29, 2012

No Cussing!

Good evening!  I just had to let you in on the outcome of my talk....it's over!  And I don't think I said anything I shouldn't have.   And it ended up being even a little longer than 12 minutes.  So that was good.  The rest of church was good.  The other speaker is a friend of mine.  She gave a really nice talk.  I think she was even more nervous than I was though.  She said she went 19 years without giving a talk....but that someone had found out a few years back and now they call on her at least once a year.  I thought that was pretty funny.
After church Kim and her family came over for dinner.  Her oldest is Ellen.  She is a sweetheart, and a pretty good little artist.  She likes me to draw things for her, but I think she will be better than me eventually.  She is already drawing such complicated stuff, and she is only 11.  We had fun though.  We joined the no cussing club.  I found out about it at church today.  It is pretty cool.  By joining, which is free, you can print a member certificate and also a sign for your room or locker or whatever that says, "No Cussing Zone".  Some young boy, 14, started it in 2007, and it has spread all over the US.  I think it is great!  Here is a link if you are interested.  No cussing  I think it is amazing the influence one person can have.  It makes me want to be better at standing up for truth and righteousness!
Well, I guess I have said what I wanted to.  I sure do blog a lot!  Sorry.  It is good therapy:)  Take care and HAVVVGE!!!!!    Melody


Good Sabbath!  I hope it is anyway.  I am a little nervous about giving this talk.  It really isn't twelve minutes long, which is what time I am supposed to fill.  So I will have to ad lib a little, which is what usually gets me into trouble:)  I think I will be giving it about noon my time, so by one o'clock today I should be breathing easier.  I do like the topic I am speaking on, which is having a soft heart, easy to be entreated by the Lord.  I think my material is sound...Matthew 13, and the talk I mentioned yesterday titled, "An Easiness and Willingness to Believe the Word of God".  He uses a lot of good examples from the scriptures, which I am borrowing.  SIGH!  That is what I just did as I was writing this.
Well, I am supposed to be to choir practice very soon.  So here's wishing you a peaceful and pleasant Sabbath day!  The gospel of Jesus Christ is true!  It feels good to know that.  HAVVVGW!!!  Melody

Saturday, January 28, 2012

It's Saturday...where's the beach?

Good merry morning to you!  It does feel like I should be going to the beach or the mountains!  Instead I am in the final lap of my talk today.  Writing it down and filling it with interesting quips and bits of amazingly interesting life experiences:)  Ha, ha.  I am writing it down.  And it would be nice if I could come up with something intentionally funny, you know to warm the audience up just a little.  I will think of something I suppose.
Then I have to run over to the school and draw and sculpt.  I am really enjoying my sculpting class.  It is one of those intense kind of things for me I am finding.  It reminds me a little of reupholstering:)  I am not sure why.  I guess because we are doing a reductive process...chipping away at the plaster.  Anyway I can really focus on just that, and I like it!  In my drawing class we have put our large paper on the wall, so it isn't portable.  And the teacher asked us to come in and work on it over the weekend.  So I will.  It is not as satisfying to me.  It is kind of awkward to draw on a rough wall.  Thursday when I was roughing in the picture, I found a push pin under the paper:)  It was clear and I just didn't see it before I put my paper up.  I'm glad I investigated to see what the annoying lump was!
Well, I best get on with my day!  Time's a wastin'!  Here's hoping your day brings you joy.  Have a gut wan!!!  No, have a very, very, very great wan!   Melody

Friday, January 27, 2012

Night again...so fast!!!

Friday night is date night usually around here....except when we are too tired.  But tonight we ventured out to take butter rolls to my ladies that I visit each month.  Then we went to see "War Horse".  We both really liked it.  Good acting...and I always love a good horse story.  It is very real in the war scenes though.  I wouldn't take a child.  But there was a family behind us who took young kids.
I didn't get everything done I wanted to do today.   But I did get my sisters visited:)  And my talk done in my head.  Now I just have to put it down on paper.
I made a sketch for illustration class.  But the ideas are not coming thick and heavy now.  Sigh!  I guess I need some sleep.  Tomorrow will be another day.
Hope things are good in your neck of the woods!  TTTT  Melody

Mormons (I am one!)

Hi again!  I found this article on facebook.  It is really a wonderful comment on Mormons and Mormonism.  I hope you will take the time to read this!  Mormons
Thanks!  Melody
P.S.  I found information that says that the Paul Allen that wrote this is not the famous one...evidence however I don't really think that changes much.  It is still a good comment on Mormons and Mormonism.

Another Bit of the Irish Day

Ha, ha!  I am having one of those days already.  I had just about finished with this post and I was fixing a word and accidentally erased the whole thing.  I hope it is not an indication of how the rest of my day will be!
Well, once again.....Top of the morning to ya!  Yep I am in an Irish mood this morning.  I guess I am feeling the need for an Irish blessing or two.  Not just for me, but for you too!  So here goes:
There, that is better.  I am feeling just a bit scattered today.  There is so much to do.  So I am organizing my thoughts and then I will get on with it.
Today I need to: get the laundry done; draw some illustrations for my illustration class on Monday; prepare a pallette for my painting class on Monday and draw a few sketches of a painting; do my visiting teaching; and prepare a talk for Sunday.
I think I may start with the talk.  I have been listening to Matthew 13 over and over again as I have driven to school each day this week.  It is an interesting chapter.  I found a talk to go along with it from a general conference talk a couple of years ago.  It is a really good talk. Here is a link if you would like to read it.  An Easiness and Willingness to Believe  It is really a good study in how to have the kind of heart that the Savior talks about in Matthew 13.  I like that there is a way to soften your heart so that it is like the good ground in the Savior's parable of the sower and the seeds.
Well, I hope your day is a wonderful one.  Here is one more blessing for you...and me.  I may need it today:)
Lucky stars above you,
Sunshine on your way,
Many friends to love you,
Joy in work and play-
Laughter to outweigh each care, In your heart a song-
And gladness waiting everywhere All your whole life long!
Have a very, very, very great wan!!!!  Melody

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Nighty Night

Hi again!  I got through the day.  Whew!  And now thankfully it is night time.  Aren't you glad for the night?  It is so nice to have an excuse to sleep:)  Sweet Dreams!  Melody

Thur's Day

Good hilarious morning to you!  I just read a funny post on facebook.  It went, "You may think I am insane.  That is OK, but I prefer...aw, I will just copy it.  That way I won't mess it up.
I like that.  Sometimes the things that go on in my head are hilarious!  But I don't think I am insane....at least most days:)
So I woke up at 5, when Mel gets up. (He was raised on a dairy farm, what can I say?)  I tried to go back to sleep, but gave up at 6.  So by tonight I will be pretty tired since I didn't get to bed til almost midnight last night.  I did get my drawings done...well, almost.  And they are kind of rough.  But here goes.
I like this one
I do have a little time between classes today to finish these up.
I need to draw a bunch of clocks going down the hall.
The sign says, "Exit":)
I may go with this one.  Not sure yet.
Well, I best get on with my day.  I hope yours is spectacular!  Keep smiling!!!  And HAVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Night Song

Good evening!  I feel a little overwhelmed today, just too much to do in the time I have to do it.  I still have to charcoal in three drawings before class tomorrow afternoon.  I have the scenes penciled in, but the decisions of light and shadow are still to be made.
I did a really courageous thing today, at least for me.  I hate to tell you about it, because if I do badly I will have to fess up.  I entered the Emergent artist juried exhibition.  It's the first juried art thing I have ever entered.  I entered three pieces...my quiet knife, my giant squid, and the painting of His Eye is on the Sparrow.  It can be any medium in any discipline.  There is a juror coming from out of state to judge it all.  I will know on Monday if I made the cut.  I figure I have nothing to lose unless I never enter one of these things.  So I bravely marched my work over to the Visual Arts Gallery today.  I know it is a little thing, but it was hard to do.  One giant step for me, one little itsy bitsy step for mankind:)
Well, time is marching onward and I have to get with the program.  Charcoal pencils, sticks and conte crayon....here I come!  Take care out there in cyberspace!  And have a wonderful evening!  Melody

Hi again!  I have to admit I spoke too soon this morning!  I had no right to brag because my teacher said in class today...."No dialogue".  Which was confusing because the example he gave had dialogue.  Oh well.  I will get this.
Now I am going to a scout night with two grandsons. :)

The Daydawn is Breaking! The World is Awaking!

Good morning!  I am feeling great this morning!  I came up with lots of ideas for thumbnail sketches last night...ha, ha!  The picture that came into my mind was of lots of sketches of thumb nails:)  But what I meant was I was able to come up with a bunch of ideas for our assignment today...which was to come up with a bunch of ideas for our assignment of implied narrative.  The funny thing is that I haven't been able to shut it off.  I dreamt of ideas, and kept coming up with ideas all morning!  Crazy, huh?  I just hope my teacher likes at least one of them.
Well, I don't have time to write much.  I just wanted to brag:)  I hope your day is wonderful and inspired out there in cyberspace today!!!  Take care.  And HAVVVVGW!!!!  Melody

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Evening Report

I'm home!!!!Yay!!!!!  It was a long day today, but I feel like I accomplished a lot.  And I figured out something for my found object sculpture.  My teacher is very nice to me in there.  I showed him my sketches and he picked the one he liked!  No one does that, but I am glad he did.  Then when I was getting things ready to pour it wasn't like the sketch.  But it turned out kinda cool I think, and I got good feedback from him.  I also have a friend, Albert, in that class.  He is also in my drawing class.  And last semester he was in my painting class.  He is a pretty amazing artist, and a really sweet young man.  He has a wife and a daughter, and I think he values family life.  When we were talking today we found we had some other friends in common.  It is such a small world.
In drawing class things went well too.  I really like my teacher in there.  In fact I like all of my teachers this semester.  I think I will learn a lot.  And classes are fun, even though with the time crunch things get stressful.  I have to have my three small drawings done by Thursday.  But I think I can do that.
Tomorrow is illustration again.  I need to make some thumbnail sketches tonight for that class.  And I have to find 6 things I don't mind parting with for my painting class.  We are doing a collage tomorrow.  Or at least starting it.  He thinks we should have more than one painting going at a time.  So we are starting the collage, but it isn't due until the last day of class in May.
Well, that's my world today.  Busy and fulfilling....and exhausting!  My back hurts, my knee hurts and I am really tired.  But I wouldn't have it any other way. (Well, I could do without the aching.) I love school!  And I feel like I am making progress today.  I may change my mind again tomorrow:)
The other good thing is that I am feeling a little thinner....not much yet.  But I feel like I am on the right track....the downhill slope track.  And I feel healthier already:)
I hope things are good in your neck of the woods.  I'm still pulling for you!  We're all in this together!!!  Have a most wonderful evening!   Melody

I think I can, I think I can, I think I can.....

Good morning!!!  I am up and ready to go to school.  It doesn't start for 2 1/2 more hours though.  It's good I am up early because I need to re-examine my sculpture sketch....and add and subtract until it is a good idea.  Ugh!  I will be glad when that class is under way and I can talk to the teacher.  I feel just a bit lost in there.
So...I am greeting the day with a song...lalalalala!  And generally trying to stay positive.  I can do this!  My painting teacher said yesterday the most important thing was to have a willing heart.  I think I do.  As long as it doesn't cross my boundaries:)
Well, I can see I am full of gibberish this morning.  Hopefully I will get my head on straight for the day.  I just wanted to say.....hello, how are you, hope your day is wunderbar!  Keep smiling...I'm smiling...and laughing!!!!  Melody
P.S.  The sign downtown..."Footnote - sole music":)

Monday, January 23, 2012

Monday Night the World Around!

Hi again!  I am back in the throws of the mysteries of art.  OK.  So here's my problem.  I have this found object that is kind of cool, and tomorrow morning we are going to dip it into plaster and make a sculpture around it... but what do I sculpture around it?  Do I make something that is recognizable, like a frog, or a motorcycle, or a submarine?  Or do I make it totally abstract and unrelated to anything recognizable?  I don't know.  The problem is of course that I am once again in a totally new artful territory.  The only sculpture I have done is playing with play do.  And I really am at a loss as to where to begin.  I am frustrated with this part of art.  I prefer instruction when I am first learning some new skill.  Sigh! It feels like I am once again instructing myself.  I think I wouldn't mind so much if I didn't have to draw it out first:)  Oh well, this too shall pass. Hey wait!  I just had a marvelous idea:)  I am going to make some playdo and try it out on this plastic runner of a water hammer arrestor!  See?  Blogging is so helpful!
I did find a most wonderful article today while researching artists for my illustration class.  It is a satire on what art is.  You may enjoy this as much as I did.  Here is the link. Express Yourself  It made me laugh right out loud!  Of course I am in the middle of all of the theories and things they are pushing as art.  It is an old article...96.  So if you are already acquainted with it...sorry:)
I already am loving my illustration class.  Today we got our first assignment...which is to draw or paint or digitalize something with an implied narrative.  He gave a lot of examples.  My favorite is Chris Van Allsburg's "The Mysteries of Harris Burdick".  Maybe I like him so much because he was born in the same year I was.  No, I think it is because he is an amazing illustrator.
Two weeks passed and it happened again.
In this book he has several illustrations like the one on the left here with just a hint of what is going on.  It makes the reader want to know more.  And so that is what we are supposed to do for this next assignment.  I think I can do it if I can come up with a good idea.  We shall see.
In my painting class we watched a movie called "The 5 Obstructions".  I only had to hide my eyes for a small part of it.  Most of it was quite interesting...I think.  I am still deciding.  My teacher thinks it is life changing:)
Well, I had better get back to sketching and molding weird plaster carvings.  Take care out there in cyberspace!  I'm pulling from this side!  HAVVVGFHE!!!  Melody

Monday, and it all starts again!

Wonderful morning!  It is here:)  I am down 10 pounds!  I guess I shouldn't be so excited about this, but I am super excited because it is not hard.  In fact I was surprised to have lost more weight.  Now if I could just lose years:)
Today should be a great day.  I have illustration and painting today.  I think we get to watch a movie in both classes.  I just hope the ratings are good.  I am grateful for eyelids!!!
Well, gotta go.  Here's wishing you a wonderful day in cyberspace today.  Take care and keep your stick on the ice.  And here is a special hello to sweet Hailey (my 4 year old granddaughter who likes her mommy to read my blog to her:).  Love you cutie!!! And miss you.  Are you still making cookies?  Decorate them with pink frosting!!!  And paint lots of pretty pictures.  I want to see them!  You are a fabulous artist!!!  HAVVVGW!!!   Grandma aka Melody

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Night Note

Hi!  I just filled out my profile for mormon.org!  It didn't take too long, the picture was the hardest :) and it felt good to do it.  I guess it won't be able to be accessed for a week or so.  But I think it is a neat way to share my testimony of the church with whomever might be interested.
Well, just wanted to share:)  Hope you've had a great Sabbath!  Melody

A Day of Gladness

Hello and happy Sabbath!  It has been a good day here in Melodyland today.  It started off going to sacrament meeting to hear our daughter Kim give a beautiful talk on forgiving yourself.  It really was wonderful to hear her so happy and in a good place.  There was a young boy....probably 12, that gave the youth talk before her.  He spoke about repentance.  And it was so refreshing to hear him speak.  He didn't say much except that why wouldn't we want to repent when we have done something wrong?  Wouldn't we want to stay close to the Savior?  It really was very straightforward and innocent.  The Bishop's wife also spoke.  Her topic was forgiving others.
Then we rushed home to put a roast in the oven.  After which we went to our own ward's sacrament meeting....which was also on repentance....and also very good.  Then Sunday school was about Nephi and his vision of his own posterity....Nephi 12 and 13.  It was pretty interesting...all about pride and repentance.  We have a really good teacher in that class.  And then in Relief Society we had a lesson on repentance also.  So I guess someone is trying to tell me something:)  And all of us really.  The message of the gospel is after all, repentance and faith in the Lord Jesus Christ.  And I am so very glad that it is.  I cannot adequately express how much I love the Savior.  I know that He loves me, and has given His life for me.  And most importantly He has allowed me a way to be forgiven through His Great Atonement.  I am so very grateful for that.  I just hope I can live better each day as I continue to repent and grow stronger in doing what is right.  I think I am better than I was:)  But I still have a long road to go to learn to be like my oldest brother.
Right now I am smelling the leg of lamb that is in the oven.  Mmmmm!  I bought this and froze it before Christmas.  So it feels like I am cooking a frozen treat:)  Kim and kids and Liz and her family are expected to arrive soon.  Should be a fun family dinner.
I hope your Sabbath is filled with good smells and good people!  Take care out there in cyberspace!!!  I am still pulling for you!  We're all in this together!  HAVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Wake Up and Do Something More!

Is it breaktime yet?  I am hoping so.  I have done a preliminary sketch for my first drawing.  We have to do three small drawings of 8"x10", then we will pick one to draw 40" x 50".  I did a detailed sketch, mostly because I don't know if he wants the little drawings done in charcoal or graphite.  I figure if I get good sketching done it will make the drawing easier.
Are you bored with this yet?  Probably.  I would take a picture of the sketch to give this more interest, but....I don't want to give it all away just yet.
Speaking of which...there is an art judging thing coming up at the university next week.  At least the submissions are next week.  I am toying with the idea of entering.  I would like to enter, I am just not sure I have anything worthy of entry.  But I suppose I have nothing to lose...except my pride, and that is long gone.  There was also some mention of selling them.  I am not sure I like that idea.  I'll think on it some more.
Oh, the sign downtown...."Snowmen are sent from Heaven....unassembled".  I kind of like that one.  And I can't remember any of the rest:)  Oh wait..."olive...none die" and there is one more about music.  Hmmmm!  Nope, not there.  I can only remember the punchline.  That happens to me a lot, and I think it has nothing to do with old age.  I just have never been very good at joke telling.
Well, I hope you have a lovely evening.  I am going to go watch Mel play basketball.  They are having a ward game tonight and they asked him to be on the team.  He is excited about it I can tell.  So I'd better find my pom poms and go cheer him on.  HAVVVVVGE!!!!  Melody

Being an "Artist":)

Good morning, Guten morgen, and Howdy!  I am off to a late start:)  Well, not really.  I was up around 3:30 this morning.  I couldn't sleep so I looked up trains and room interiors and different artists on the internet until I felt tired.  It was fun and brought back memories of riding in the dome car through the Feather River Canyon.  However, I have decided not to draw the interior of a train.  I think I can make a more convincing argument of my interior through a front room or a bedroom.  I like the idea of having a fire place...or at least a pellet stove:)  And a mantle of course that I can draw symbolic things.  And I like the idea of a door open and a large picture window.  I really love the picture in "The Polar Express" (the book) in the last pages where the boy is standing at the door looking at the train in his yard and waving good-bye.   And I like this drawing, By the Sea, I found on Chris Van Allburg's website.
I love the ocean out the window!
 We can't have people or animals in our picture, but I think I can figure out other things.  And of course I can't copy the beautiful illustrations by Chris Van Allsburg.  But I like the mood of the painting, and especially the lighting.  I will be busy today figuring things out.
And of course there is the sculpture.  I still have no idea what I will do with that.  I have thought maybe the bottom of a toilet plunger:)  I don't know!  It is still cooking in my brain.  I have a lot of books on sculpture that I still need to look through to see if I can get any ideas.  And of course I have been searching the internet.  It is such a convenient resource!
Well, I had better stop the fun and get to the work.  I do love blogging.  It kind of clears my "interior":)  I hope you have a most wonderful day out there in cyberspace today.  Keep smiling!  Melody

Friday, January 20, 2012

It's Morning Time!

Good morning!  It has been so far!  I woke up late:)  That was a nice start to my day off of school.  Then I took my blood sugar....it is normal!!!!  And that is without medication, so I am extra excited about that.  My diet is working!  And besides better blood sugars, I have lost 7 pounds so far.  So I am off to a good start.  I think I can just eat this way for the rest of my life.  And walking around on campus is more exercise than I have been getting for the last few weeks.  So it is all good.  I will have to up the exercise when I have lost more weight and it doesn't hurt my knee so much.
So I have a link to share...just in case you missed the Colbert Report last night with James Taylor.  It is always good to hear James sing, and it is kind of a funny jab at politics.  James Taylor 
So today I have homework!  Sketching and drawing and writing.  It should be a good day.  Mel remarked this morning that he was glad I had school to keep me busy:)  I guess I have been complaining about how boring it can get being home alone.  I feel so energized with classes to keep me thinking and busy.
Well, I had better get on with things.  Here's hoping your day is wonderful!  HAVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Thursday, January 19, 2012


Hi again!  I thought I would post this very cool link to an artist I saw today.  There are three videos, but you can skip ahead if you don't want to watch them all....or you can just ignore this.  Your choice:)  Sawa
Well, that is all:)  Me

Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

Good evening (in my best Boris K. voice:)  So, how's it going?  I love that line from Nemo,  when the fish is talking to herself in the reflection on the side of the tank.  Today has been a better day than yesterday.  My teachers were nice today and very helpful.  I think I am going to love both classes!  I brought a "found object" to my sculpture class.  I guess it is kind of an art term. Anyway, I brought in one of Mel's plastic parts...a plumbing part that he molds.  It is kind of cool looking when it is still on the runner.  My teacher really liked it.  Then he liked my sketch of it and what I wrote about it.  I felt like a good student in his class today.  Then in drawing class we had to come up with a sketch of an interior space that is a little off...in perspective and scale, and compare it to our own interior of our mind.  I made a long list of rooms that I frequent, and as I was sketching a little restaurant in McCall that I love it reminded me of a train.  So then I tried sketching a train and it seemed like a good metaphor.  My teacher really seemed to like my idea.  He wasn't so excited about the toys I drew in the seats...a couple of lego guys, a Barbie and a stuffed puppy.  He said, "No people!"  I answered, "They're not people, they're toys."  And I explained to him my world was full of children.  So he backed down a little and said that I must draw them as toys and not put any animation in them. Darn!  I think it might have made a really fun train ride.  But I may change it altogether.  I could make it a scene in a beauty parlor, or a fabric store:)  I have a couple of days to toy around with it.  It could be fun.  The harder thing is to figure out how I will carve plaster around a water hammer arrestor...my sculpture project.
Well, it is fun to be thinking again.  That is the hardest and the best part of school.  I really do have to stretch my brain to come up with all of these new and creative ideas.  Perhaps it will ward off the Alzheimer's for a few more years.
I hope you have had a wonderful day out there in cyberspace!!!  I am still pulling for you.  Keep your stick on the ice, now that there is some again.  Have a happy evening!  Melody

Bom Dia!

Bom dia!  I am feeling rested this morning and ready to tackle a new day.  I have Sculpture and Drawing classes today.  It should be challenging and fun!  If not, well it won't be my fault:)  I will write more later, just wanted to send a cheery "hellooooooo" out into cyberspace!  Take care and keep a smile on your face! Life is great! :)  HAVVVVVGW!!!!!  Melody

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

The Latest Scoop

Good evening!  I live in a world of slush this evening.  The snow came and went and now it is raining.  Such a fun mess outside.  I have Kim's kids over tonight as she is being a personal trainer tonight.  But it is fun.  They are good kids.
I had to write and say just a little about my painting class.  It is going to be HARD!!!  But I think I will learn a lot.  We are only doing four paintings, so that is good, more time usually equals better quality work. We are also going to explore all sorts of different media, artists, and do a lot of research.  That sounds like the hard part to me.  But I need to learn more and this is certainly going to help.  He is really into developing ideas that lead to content, so the first couple of classes are watching movies and learning about other artists.  I think he is also very sensitive.  I like that about him.  The other thing I really like is that he said that format for a work should come last!!!!  I really like that.  I am so tired of being told what the format will be when I haven't even come up with an idea yet.  It seems so canned or something.  So hopefully I will be able to paint more comfortably in this class.
Well, I thought I would give you a link to that painter I liked so much today.  So here it is. Joan of Arc  I think you will really enjoy it or I wouldn't keep talking about it.  It is done so beautifully!
Well, I had better get on with dinner and homework.  I hope you have a wonderful evening!!  Melody

Breaking it Up

Good morning!  It is still morning here, but what a transformation the world around me has taken!  It is completely white, and so beautiful!  Of course the drive over to campus was crazy!  Even though I gave myself an extra 40 minutes I was still late for class.  But I think I got the best part of the lecture.  So it is all good.  This morning was my illustration class.  I think it will be amazing!  I have really grown to like this teacher, and he really does know his stuff.  He encouraged us to use our sketchbooks and draw from life.  Of course I love to do that, but I need to be more conscientious about it.  I resolve to draw in it at least once a day....and more as I can.  I love to sketch, but I always seem to find other things to occupy my time.
He also showed us a video that I thought was really wonderful.  If you go to gurneyjourney.com and scroll down to the video on the painting of Joan of Arc and watch it you will see what I mean.  It made me tear up just a little.  I think because that artist was doing what I want to do.  And it made me think that I can learn how to paint like that.  I just have to keep at it.  I think I will order that video to help me learn though.
I have another hour before my next class which is oil painting.  Yeah, I am taking it over because I have heard this teacher is so good.  Also you are allowed to take it a second time for credit.  So it should be good.  I just hope we don't have the same assignments!  But we might.
Well, I wanted to look up a few books.  I hope your day is going well!  Take care out there in cyberspace!  Keep smiling!  Melody

Morning Hi!

Good white and wintry morning to you!  It is an ice rink I am told.  At least it is here.  But the crews are on it.  And I am giving myself an extra half an hour to get to school this morning.  Gotta go!  Hope you have a great morning!  Melody

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

First Day Back

Hola!  I am home from the first day of classes.  It wasn't as bad as I thought it would be....and much worse:)  This morning started with beginning sculpture.  Our teacher seems pretty excited to be teaching.  He is an adjunct though, so this is his second job.  There is a lot of that at BSU.  They don't pay well....unless you are a football coach:)  The class sounds like it will be very demanding.  Besides sculpturing, we also have to research contemporary artists for each project and write a paper.  But I guess I have been doing that for my painting classes already.  The first project is going to be interesting.  We have to find an object with meaning for us and then envelope it in plaster and then carve and polish the plaster.  I guess I thought we would actually be sculpting something...you know a doggy or a donkey or something.  Oh well.
The next class was in the afternoon.  It is a drawing class.  We are going to be drawing large drawings for that one....and not just drawing.  There will be painting too.  I am kind of excited about that, but I know it will be challenging too, so I am feeling overwhelmed with the idea.  My only assignment for that class so far is to get the supplies...or gather in what I already have.  Luckily all my organizing will pay off for that.  I have separated all my drawing materials into one drawer, so I just need to come up with some kind of container to carry it in.  But I also need to purchase paper and a drawing board.  I really am shaking in my boots for that class.  I recognized a few of the kids in there, and a couple of them are super talented.  But I am remembering that I am not in competition with anyone...just trying to better my own skills, and maybe I can learn from others.
I do have a library tale to tell.  I went there to research plaster casting or whatever I could find.  I got a laptop from the desk and was headed for a carrel when I heard my name called out.  I looked at the person calling my name and she didn't even look vaguely familiar.  I stared at her trying to recall something, and then she spoke.  I recognized her voice!  Not so amazing when you realize she has an Australian accent.  It was a lady that used to be in my ward.  She has changed her hair color, grown her hair long, wears glasses now and had also gained some weight!  I am so glad she spoke or I would have embarrassed myself with some silly comment about I don't know you at all:)  It was nice to see her and visit for a while.  She is not as old as me, but older than most of the students, and she was saying how lonesome she felt there at school.  I feel that too sometimes.  So it was nice to find an old friend.
The other thing that happened was that I found out you don't look in a periodical index anymore for magazine articles.  They have a tab on the library web page you push and it takes you to all of the magazine articles online.  Wow, the world is a different place.
And yes, I have heard of the terrible cruising tragedy in Italy.  And no, I still want to go on a cruise:)  But this will definitely be another excuse for Mel to not want to go.  Sigh!  I am much more afraid of airplane crashes than sunken ships.  Although both are equally terrifying if you get to experience it I am sure.
Well, I am going to read the magazine articles I found and put my feet up before I have to come up with a dinner.  I hope all is well out there in cyberspace today!  Take care and remember I am still pulling for you!  We're all in this together.  I will keep smiling...and laughing...if you will!  Melody

Monday, January 16, 2012

Control Freak

Good morning!  It is only morning for 15 more minutes here:)  But I like writing good morning.  It gives me the illusion that I am actually writing to someone:)
Sooooo...not much new here today.  I have been working at cleaning up my little studio...and I am kind of in a quandary.  I think I have made a bigger mess than I started with.  I just have too much stuff!!!!  But I hate to eliminate things because everything is so expensive.  So I am trying to figure out how to organize things so that they are accessible without being in the way.  I had a good box for matte board I thought, but it is just a smidgeon too small.  So, now what do I do?  Cut down the matte board?  Or try to find a bigger box?  Boxes are hard to come by unless you happen to be married to a man who orders boxes for his business.  So I may have to call on Mel's help with this.  Right now I am just wallowing in the frustration so I thought I should blog and get a better perspective.  Oh, I know, I will turn the board the other way so that it is standing more vertically and it will sort of fit in the box:)  See?  Blogging helps:)  It is how women solve problems anyway.  We talk out loud (usually to someone) until we can see the problem better.  Usually I don't need feedback....just a listening ear.  So this works great.
I am feeling a little upset today.  I think it is because school starts again tomorrow and I am having all of those self doubts that creep into my head.  I keep telling those negative voices to quiet down.  And when they don't do that I tell them I am on the Dean's list again, so they don't know what they are talking about.  But they are sure persistent!  The loudest one tells me I am too old and surely this will be the death of me:)  Another yells that I don't have enough talent.  Then another pipes in that my teachers won't like me anyway.  At that, one laughs and says, "The teachers?  What about the students?  You won't fit in."  So I think I am going to leave and do some shopping therapy:)  Macy's is having a fantastic sale here.  But I promised myself I would get this little room uncluttered before I allow myself that fun today.  As I write this I am kind of laughing at myself.  I really sound a little cuckoo!  Oh well.  This is wonderful therapy...I hope.
When I think of it I really am more upset at other things that I really can't write about on here.  Things I have no control over.  I guess that is the thing about life that I am still adjusting to...that I have very little control anymore.  Grown children are pretty much on their own.  Grandchildren are not my stewardship for the most part.  And I just have me to discipline anymore:)
Well, I am so sorry to be flabbering away.  But it helps somehow to write it all down.  I hope you are having a most lovely day out there in cyberspace!  I'm still pulling for you!  Keep your stick on the ice if you can find any.  And HAVVVGW!!!  Melody

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Evening Newsflash!

Hi again!  I thought I would take a minute and write just a bit.  How do they say it....hot news flash!!!!?  I have one...no two.  I went to choir practice this morning and on the way in the bishop asked if he could speak with me.  I said sure and then he extended two callings!  Which is funny because I have been without a calling for some time now.  Anyway I was sustained as a new Relief Society instructor today:)  The other calling is a couple's calling, we will be the mid singles' sheparding couple.  I am excited about both.  I love teaching, and I love young people.  Good combination!  Anyway I think I will be busy, which is good for me.  I need to be busy.
Not much else to report.  I was just excited about this so I thought I would record it here.  HAVVVGW!  Melody


Good Sabbath!  I am feeling encouraged today.  I changed my diet this week and my blood sugars are fantastic and I am dropping weight too!  Yay!  I have been struggling with this for a while, so I am glad I have finally found something sensible that works.  I am sure it will solve a lot of health issues.
In other news:)  I had a fun day with Taylor and Gabe yesterday.  I took them to the movies, made them dinner and then we all played Cranium with Mel.  We had a great time.  And I have to say they are a wonderful resource for funny tales.  Gabe especially is constantly coming up with things that make me laugh.  He is six years old...anxious to be seven.  As he was putting on his shoes, he said, "Grandma, I love these shoes!  When I wear them I feel like I am seven!"  Then later as we were driving, Taylor said, "Grandma, you know those guys who talk with their mouths closed?"  I said, "Ventriloquists?"  "No, they talk with their mouths closed and they have puppets and stuff."  :)  Then they both started talking with their mouths closed.  It was sooooo funny.  Gabe however could actually make it sound like his mouth was still open, and Taylor and I were properly impressed.  Gabe said, "Wanna know the secret?  I use my tongue."  He cracks me up.  Remember he was the escape artist when he lived here a couple of years ago.  I have no screens on my front window because he busted them out escaping from the house.  He is still a real wound up personality....constantly going.  I recently bought some decorative balls that sit on a dish in my front room on the coffee table.  We walked into the house and I was putting my purse down and I heard him say, "Cool!"  He had a ball in each hand and was headed for the door:)  So I explained to him that they were decoration and not real balls.  He did not want to put them down, but after more persuasion he did.  He is really a positive, happy little person, but sooooo inquisitive....and speedy.  I think he would make Dennis the Menace look like a model child.  In such a short time he had checked out the whole house, touching everything and changing things here and there.  He is fascinated by a clock we have hanging in the dining room, and I noticed the time was off when we ate dinner in there:)  He loves to play the piano.  I have to start teaching him, and Taylor too.  Taylor is a quieter personality.  He is very musical and I showed him how to play "Heart and Soul" and he had it down before they left.  He is pretty patient and able to practice to learn.  Gabe on the other hand is a quick study and if he can't learn it fast he loses interest.  Still as he matures he will do well I think.
We went to see "Happy Feet 2" in 3D.  I was surprised that I really enjoyed this one.  I didn't really like the first one.  This one had more character development, and a couple of crill that had some really funny one liners...like "Good bye crill world."  Kept me laughing.  To show you how ridiculous I am though, I cried a couple of times from the music.  Music really gets to me any more, so I am careful what I listen to.  I guess it is a hormonal thing.  I am not sure, but I felt a little silly crying in the kids' movie.  I wasn't sobbing though.  I think I have done that at a couple of really sad movies over the years, like "Beaches", sigh!
Well, I hope you have a wonderful day today.  I am so glad for the Sabbath day!  And it will be nice to be in our own ward today.  I look forward to the good spirit and the wonderful messages we are bound to hear.  Take care and keep the faith!  I'm still pulling for you!  We're all in this together!!!  And I know we are loved by our dear Savior.  HAVVVVGS!!!!  Melody

Saturday, January 14, 2012

More Silliness

Good morning!  Well, you may notice that I keep changing the background on this blog.  For some reason it doesn't want to stay the way I fixed it, so I am going back to plain and simple....kind of like me:)  Actually I am pretty complicated.  I can't even figure me out.
So, the countdown is getting close.  I only have today and Monday before I am back in school.  My main goal today is to clean this art studio!!!!  I guess what happens is that I get so rushed with school that I just start making piles.  Piles of photos, piles of paintings, piles of drawings, piles of books, piles of good paper, piles of bad paper, odd pieces of mat board, brushes for acrylics, brushes for oil, brushes for watercolor....you get the picture.  It is a small space so I am going to have to be super organized!  I have a whole bookshelf full of books on organization:)  I am not a born organized person.  It is something I struggle with, but I can say I have improved somewhat over the years.  In this room I think the problem is that I don't have the proper storage for things.  I would really like a flat file, but I think I am going to have to improvise on that one...or maybe look on Craig's list or something.  Oh well, my problem.  I will figure it out.
The big news:) is that I have been asked to speak in sacrament meeting on the 29th.  I am supposed to speak about Matthew 13...the parable of the sower.  It's certainly a good topic.  I am already nervous about it though.  I guess I have had a few bad experiences speaking.  The worst was at Hayward high school when Bruce Brieglieb counted how many times I said, "uhhhh".  I think it was 24:)  Anyway it made me a little too conscious of saying uh.  And another time I embarrassed myself in a student ward when I said something like I was looking forward to being married (my topic was temple marriage) and would welcome the sound of feet pitter patting around the house...and quickly added, "little feet", upon which the audience started laughing, but I mistook their laughter and said something about how I had made Mel blush, further complicating things because we were only dating...not engaged or even very well acquainted yet.  I forget what other silly things I have said out loud to an audience, but I know that I often have the audience laughing when I didn't intend to....enough said:)
Well, I guess I will be busy today.  Besides cleaning this little room I promised to take Taylor and Gabe on an outing.  It gets hard to do when homework starts, so I figure I had better be a grandma today.  I hope you have a lovely day out there in cyberspace today.  Isn't the weather unbelievable?  I love the warmer temps and no snow, but I suppose it is the beginning of another drought.  We heard that from people everywhere we have traveled....that the weather was so beautiful, but we need rain and snow!  I was especially surprised flying over the Sierras.  They really looked dry!  And going over the Blue mountains in Oregon it was the same.  So....have a gut wan!  Ha, ha!  That is an odd way to end a blog.  Melody

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday the 13th....Aaaaack!

Ha, ha!  Just kidding.  I had a really nice day today.  First I got my hair cut, then I worked really hard and had company over for dinner and a game.  The game was Settlers of Cattan.  I had heard it was a really fun game, but as it turned out, it was also a really complicated game.  We spent most of the evening after dinner trying to figure it out.  Luckily, everyone else was better at figuring it out than I was.  Before the game was over though, I was starting to understand how to play it.  And it was fun.  But most fun was having good friends over to talk and compare notes a little.  The Slades just returned from their mission in Indiana.  They had good stories to share, and it made me more determined to make that our goal.  I would love to serve a mission!
Well, just checking in before checking out.  I am debating about whether to include a picture of my new haircut.  But, hey, what the heck.  I didn't smile, because I look so cheesey!  But I do like this hair cut.
Well, I am headed to bed.  Nighty Night!  Melody


Good merry morning to you!  I am up and ready to face the day.  Only 5 more days until I am in school again!  So I have to organize everything, do a spring cleaning, and be Mrs. Perfect to start the semester:)  Of course none of that will transpire.  But maybe I can clean out the fridge, shop, and make sure the laundry is all caught up:)  I think they call it "selected neglect".  It worked when I had all of the kids home. And it works now when I am getting older and get worn out more easily.
So I do have a couple more shots from our vacation.  They are the end of the trip shots when we were driving home through the Oregon high plain desert.  I should have taken pictures of the little town of Sisters which we drove through coming home.  It is in the mountains before you hit the desert, and it is a fun little town, very picturesque.  Here is a shot from the internet.
We stopped and walked down the main street, looking in the shops.  But it was early Monday morning and most things were still closed.  They seemed to have an over abundance of gift shops.  I guess tourists help with the local economy.
I love the name of the town.  I will have to do a little research and find out its origin.  I have my own story made up in my head:)  I do that a lot I guess.  A carryover from childhood.

This is the way the rest of the trip home looked for about 6 hours, until we came to our little valley.  It is nice to be home.  I love our little house here on the hill overlooking the lake.  It is quiet and peaceful and quite beautiful in its own way.  Lately the geese and ducks and other common waterfowl have been migrating back and forth between the lake and the river and they fly right by our house.  I can watch them from the couch!  Kind of like a nature TV show:)  It is nice to see....and hear.  They are quite noisy as they fly over.  Much more social than I ever imagined.
Well, I hope this day finds you well and happy.  Take care out there in cyberspace!  I am definitely still pulling for you!  We are all in this together after all.
HAVVVVVGW!!!  Melody

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Rhapsody in Blue

Hi again!  Here are the photos promised.  These are my favorite.  I think because we went here to Sunset Bay and the Shore Acres gardens the first summer we had our motorhome.  It was the last vacation we had before our kids began to be married.  We took three weeks and traveled down the coast and this was my favorite place because the bay was so calm and the kids could all play and I didn't worry about them being carried off to sea.  The cliffs however are a different story.  But they didn't go to the cliffs, only the bay to swim.  At the cliffs we stayed behind the walls and just watched.  The day we were there a little baby whale came very close to shore and everyone there was very excited to see it.  It was pretty amazing.  Anyway, pictures are not the same as being there, but you kind of get the idea:)
The first three are the bay.  It was very misty so the pictures are not super clear.

This is the entrance to the gardens.  I think it is spectacular:)
Not many flowers were blooming yet, but these brave azaleas were quite beautiful.
Must be sand hill cranes:)

This is the view from behind the gardens.

 This little green path led to the other side where the most famous waves are.
The other side:)

 This wave started right below where I was standing.  I thought it was pretty wonderful that I wasn't down in it!

Another wave!

 Farewell shot as we were leaving.  I am still a little sad having to leave it all behind.
 You might remember this watercolor I did.  It was from a postcard of the cliff in the photos, I don't know if the wave was photoshopped, but it caught my imagination and I just had to paint it.  It was rather challenging!  Now that I think of it, it had to be trick photography.  No one would have survived a wave like that, standing by the little railing.

Well, that's it.  I hope you enjoyed the show.  Remember...Még mindig húzza az Ön számára!  :) HAVVVVGE!!! Melody

Morning Update

 Good morning!  I am posting a few pictures before I run off to meet some friends for lunch.  These were taken at the beach in Florence.  I got a little wild with a pointed stick...Mel got tired of being asked to smile:)  I like the wide expanse of the ocean beaches!  Looking at these I can almost hear the waves and gulls and feel the wind on my face.
Well, gotta go.  I will post better shots this afternoon of my favorite place....Sunset Bay and the cliff beside it.  Take care and have a wonderful day!!!  Melody

Wednesday, January 11, 2012


Hi!  I think I finally have a moment to write.  Book club was interesting today.  Instead of reading a book, one of the ladies gave a presentation of her three week tour in Italy, Greece, Israel, Turkey and that region. They started their trip in Rome without the tour group for a week, then they cruised with some other LDS groups.  It sounded so fun!  I want to go on a cruise! Especially to Italy!  It is fun to just gab with these ladies.  They like to talk politics sometimes.  I am afraid I am not quite as conservative in my views.  But we all love goodness and truth, so it is all good.  It was fun for me to see everyone and to share what has been going on with all of us.  I felt like I got my bucket filled.
Well, I promised some more photos, so here are some more.  I suppose I will just keep posting these til I've had my fill.
Lighthouse near Newport
In Newport we stopped at the first ocean lookout where there also happened to be this lighthouse.
First Glimpse of the ocean

Seal Rock Area

We stopped at Seal Rock and hiked down to the beach where most of these photos were taken.  I had to take these of the modern petroglyphs carved into the sandstone of the hill.  Pretty funny, huh?

The sun starting to set

Some silly people we met on the beach:)

Elephant Rock

Trying to get the sky colors

 I was lucky to catch this wave.  I must have taken forty pictures trying to "catch a wave".
The same wave a few seconds later.
 I was a little disappointed in this photo.  The sky behind the trees was a beautiful sunset pink, but it didn't show up very well.
I thought this was a cool shot

From our balcony in Florence...it was pretty cool!
After frolicking on the beach we drove on down to Florence and found a cute little motel on the river there.  It was so late we didn't really get to enjoy the scenery until the morning.  But then it was kind of special.  Their breakfast room looked out over the river and on
up towards the ocean.
Well, that's the pictures from Saturday.   I'll post some from Sunday tomorrow. Are you enjoying this little trip to the coast?  It really was fun!
Hope all is happy on your side of the internet.  Take care and remember we are all in this together!  HAVVVGE!!!!  Melody
P.S.  I almost forgot...the sign downtown.  Balderdash - a rapidly receding hairline:)