Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Munch's Moon

The moon reflected in Lake Norman.
A few nights ago we had a rare clear sky and this amazing moon was out. I immediately thought, and if you took my advice and went to the Munch exhibit or studied his prints I bet you will too, of Munch's recurring moon theme. He stylizes it very much so it looks like a big lowercase i reflected on the water and you will see it again and again. I prefer to think this a thank you note from Edvard himself, in recognition of my eternal devotion!
I wish cell phones took better photos or it were easier to run with my big Canon camera, because this little photo can't do it justice. Canon, by the way, is my camera of choice. I haven't used anything else since I took photography in college. The moon was huge and low and so yellow it was like a golden globe suspended low as an air balloon overhead. The water was shot through with blue light from underneath and wispy clouds were scudding in. I am definitely going to have to fix it in my mind's eye for a future painting.
And future paintings will be much easier to complete because...drum roll, please...
My new office.
I have an OFFICE again! I haven't had a dedicated workspace since 2009, and my painting stuff has mostly been in storage since then. I had to make a tough decision when we put our house on the market. There was only room for fine art or doll repair and sewing, so I went with the more lucrative doll restoration, but my fingers and my brain have been itching, wanting to do some fine art!
Jerry bought me a beautiful easel years ago. It's my dream easel, wood, with wheels, and it can be positioned upright for oils, forward for pastels (so dust doesn't fall back down on the surface while you're working), and even flat like a table for mixed media. I was so happy to see it come out of storage because I've never been able to use it. I got it right before we staged the house and turned my office into a child's bedroom. Now I'll also be able to get all the sewing stuff out of the dining room (which Jerry has taken to calling the "mad scientist laboratory") and use it as a dining room again.
The other side of the office.
 Jerry and I have been kicking around ways to work with the extreme slope in the ceiling of the office. We are thinking of putting a folding counter all along the low wall so I can sit there and work, but fold it out of the way when I don't need it. I already have a sewing cabinet I'm going to put on the short wall by the door in the other photo. We bought swing-arm sconces to out on that wall last night so I have a lot of light. I'm hoping for a skylight one day too. I am not good at keeping my mind on one task at once. I am usually sewing something and painting something and working on a doll all at once, and I like to switch back and forth. I am routinely reading 4 or 5 books at once too. It drives Jerry nuts, but I get bored if I don't have a lot going on.
I need a lot of storage in the room, too, and that will be a challenge since it's so small. For the time being I will probably just use the sloped corner as an area to stack my tubs of fabric and eBay inventory. I have a lot of little things to do in the office. There are a bunch of nail heads to spackle and paint, and I need to paint one door. The door to the rest of the house is covered with insulation, so I need to remove that and paint it. Then I have to paint the new HVAC bulkhead in the adjacent room, but I need to decide what color I'm doing that room first. The builders would have completed all this, of course, but we asked to paint it ourselves to keep costs down.
Then, I'll be moving everything in. That's the fun part! I love designing rooms. I have to recommend Sure Point Builders of Morganton, NC, if you need renovation done in the Charlotte area. Sam Metcalf, the contractor, let me tell him exactly what I wanted and he got it done just that way. He made some good suggestions as well, and the project came in under budget. The web site is
Today is the first day for weeks I haven't had any workers or inspectors coming in and no therapy or doctor's appointments or anything at all to do. It's the only day this week I have "off" so I am celebrating by being lazy, lazy, lazy. I did have to wake up before dawn to get the kids off to school (our latest bus comes before 7AM) but then I went back to bed until the "baby" woke up. I lay around in my pajamas reading the Wall Street Journal until 11AM and then spent a couple hours emailing Jerry and my sister and my best friend. I'm going to have to run my butt off tonight to make up for my lack of movement all day.
My iMessage and regular text messaging on my iPhone 4S hasn't been working the past couple weeks, and it's very frustrating. One of my friends has a theory Apple is messing with the old phones on purpose to try to force you to buy the iPhone 5. I don't know if that's true. I do have to remember, however, how lucky we are to live in this time and place where we have access to such instant communication technologies. I can't iMessage, but I can email and talk to my friends on Facebook.
I remember when we moved to North Carolina from Ohio, the long lonely letters I would write to my grandparents and my best friend and the endless wait for a reply.  Almost all the way through college I dated a German man and I recall the torturous delays in the international postal system and the expense of phone calls. If we'd held out just a year or so more email would have come along and maybe saved us, but it all turned out for the best in the end. Jerry and I used to write all the time and call during his deployments and just regular duties, as he was based in a different state, and that was very difficult as well. I still have all those letters, and it's fun to get them out and read them again, though! I guess that's what you give up with electronic communications: the historical record.
I should really be folding laundry now or washing dishes or cleaning the floors but I'm thinking of taking a nap instead! My allergies are still just awful. The weather here has been CARAZZYYY, like 70s one day and 40 the next. Today is a hot day and a cold front is blowing in and really blowing. The wind is quite high. I'm going to be shoveling pine straw off the deck all day tomorrow I'm afraid. This house is so dusty, too; I'm sure that's part of the problem. I sweep and mop the wood floors every other day or so but within two days there are really big gray dust bunnies everywhere. They look like dryer lint! I've never seen anything like it. My friend, Cherre, says that will go away after a while. She bought a house that was dirty and empty because the previous owners went through a nasty divorce. I wonder if we should have the ducts cleaned, though. I don't know enough about HVAC units and that sort of thing, but I wonder if sitting empty can make the ductwork in a house get all dirty. If the system isn't used for a while can dust pile up in there? Deep thoughts for the day.
As soon as we get the office set up I'll post more pictures, and I hope to have some new work on the way very soon. I will be listing lots of household items and furniture and stuff in the coming weeks as we edit out things we can't really use in this new house. Make sure to check my store for those listings and sign up for my store newsletter so you'll be informed of new items:

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