Life is about change. I do not like change. That does not mean that it is not going to happen. Change happens, when I suspect it the least.

Recently our dog Bailey was killed. Before that tragedy was my parents dying 12 days apart in the Fall. These are huge changes in our family structure. How do we deal with such giant gaps in our family unit?

I know for myself, the detester of change, this has been a tremendous adjustment. No more Bailey and his darling little tail, great positive attitude and being an athlete.

My parents, the things I miss about them is endless. My dad’s positive attitude, caring ways and humor. My mom, I miss her bright spark and her intelligence. Now there is no  person to ask those family history questions.

I feel as if I have been pruned heavily, I am in the process of recovering from the severe pruning. Hopefully the new growth will be stronger and with bright beautiful blooms.





Cows on Beech Hill

This is what we saw this morning at breakfast, here at Beech Hill.

My husband, born on an Ohio dairy farm, quickly rounded them up. Found the neighbors pasture they came out of and with his help got them back in their pasture. This  is some of the excitement that we have from time to time.

Our dog Corry thought that he would be big and brave and help round up the cows. His bravery was short lived when the cows chased him.

Great morning at Beech Hill

Beech Hill in the Spring

We have given our home and company the name of Beech Hill. We brought the name with us from Ridgeville, South Carolina, when we were the only inhabitants of Beech Hill. In South Carolina my husband created a beautiful landscape that was graced with gorgeous southern oaks.

When my husband was tasked with finding our home in the Northwest he found a home that had a beautiful huge white oak. We have been told it was a council tree and that it is about 200 years old. Sharing the property with this magnificent tree has helped us to bridge the divide between the Southeast  and the Northwest.

I have taken a few pictures of Beech Hill as spring is budding.

oaktree trillium mo's flowerswisteria



Another way to look at color

There have been many theories about color and how it relates to our moods, psychology and reactions.

Our minister during a sermon titled “Are my wants Crowding out my needs?” spoke about Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Here is the explanation:maslow

Color can be looked at as a way to identify where you are on your spiritual path. It is simply another way to analyze ourselves.




Exercise #3 What Colors resonate with you?

Color, some people are afraid of color on the wall in their home and others are all for color, color,  color!

I have written about Life Style, how to get clear about the lifestyle you would like. Color is one of the elements that helps to denote a lifestyle. If I say ” I want a home that makes me feel like I am in the Bahamas every day”, then my home will be filled with the happy colors of the Bahamas. If I say ” I love the sophisticated life style of  New York City” then my home will be filled with neutrals, simple bold patterns and large expanses of similar materials.

The central core of a lifestyle is you. Color is part of your “Kit of Parts” to create your lifestyle. Here are some questions to ask yourself to assist you in making these decisions. What colors do you look great wearing? What color is going to be a wonderful back drop for you? Look at your wardrobe, pick out the items you wear most. Look in the mirror do you look great in the color? Most likely the answer is “Yes”. We do gravitate to colors that compliment our coloring.

Side note: If you are a striking grey haired vibrant woman with sparkly blue eyes, you probably do not want to be in a home that is golds, yellows, and browns.

Color is a huge element of the canvas we are calling “Life Style”. Look at the magazine cut outs that you did in Exercise #1. What are the colors? You may have a few preferences, then go to your wardrobe and match up your clothes to the colors. The predominate colors are what will work well for you, use that to develop your color scheme.

There are other elements to consider, some of them are: amount of light coming into the space, what you want the space to feel like, what is the use of the space? These are a few of the questions a good designer will be asking.

Another approach is to look at nature. Enjoy the inspiration photo’s I have included by Jim Ewing.


Beauty above me, beauty below me, beauty all around me

Spring is just that way, beauty above me, beauty below me , beauty all around me. I learned this saying from a wonderful spiritual teacher Esther Kennedy. This was taught to us in a song with a drum beating. Very enriching experience.What I loved most was that it was a group of women dancing to these words and the drumming all in a circle.

The circle itself is so beautiful, with no top or bottom just the equality of the circle. The drumming and the voices chanting in unison,  bringing together our spirits in the form of song.

More beauty, to be women, the beauty of our faces, our bodies and demeanor.The beauty of our souls, voices and our intentions. We are the ultimate creators, the creators of life.

Today I am celebrating mother earth and her creation of all the beauty above, below and all around me.

Ciao, Bella

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My Mother

My mother loved beautiful things. She also loved items of historical value. Then there were the momentos of family trips and of relatives she loved so dearly.  As my brothers and I have been shifting through all of these things I realize how much my mother loved beautiful things. 

Here are a few of the items she held dear:

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Spring Clean UP

I do not know about you, but I get an itch to clean in the spring. This year my studio is my first focus. I need assistance to stay on task. My neighbor, who is the best person to assist me in this troublesome task, was willing to come over.

Today was the day to start on the studio. We actually have one section cleaned out. Some items were boxed for yard sale, some for garbage and others (the hard to let go pieces of art by my son) went into the memories box. My favorite part of today is when my neighbor said” Okay these old tubes of paint that I went through, really are dried up and they need to be given to your husband so that you will not go back through them” Here is what I want to know, how did she know that I would do that?

It is so hard to let go of little dabs of paint that could make a piece perfect..I am not sure if I am an artist but I do certainly hold onto items like all these items have a potential for an amazing collage, card or painting. Letting go, is an effort and I have to keep telling myself, that it is freeing..

Happy Spring

Happy New Beginnings

Happy Easter to allmissionsanmig

Exercise #2

What I have been talking about “Life Style” is important at any age. It becomes even more important when you reach retirement. So when you fantasize about retirement what comes to mind? Columnist Gary Peterson wrote”Waking up to the sound of the surf? Watching snow fall from your rustic chalet? Zipping the golf cart down the block, for a round with the boys/girls?”

These are such strong visuals that I had to repeat them. I have a few to add to the list ” Waking up to the sounds of horses nickering for breakfast? Watching the sunset on a tidal river in the South? ” The list goes on, what is  most important is, what resonates with you. We all have only one life to live, how do we want to live it?

Exercise #2

This is from page 45 in Denny Daikeler book ” What color is your slip cover”. Start by laying or sitting down in a comfortable spot. It is suggested that you record this meditation and play it back to yourself or have someone read it to you.

Close your eyes…feel every part of your body…relax completely into all those parts…notice your breath as it moves in and out… follow the breath in a very relaxed way… let go of your challenges, errands, activities of the day.. move into total awareness of all the sounds and feelings in the room… begin with your feet , relaxing the toes then the soles… relax your ankles… let go all through your calves… relax around your knees…up your thighs, front and back…let your pelvic bone hang loosely at the end of your spine…relax the small of your back…relax around each vertebra, staying with each until there is no tension…relax around the shoulder blades… relax the shoulders, allowing them to lower and rest on the floor… relax your fingers… the palms of your hands…your wrist… let go in the lower arm…all around the elbow… relax the upper arm…relax the muscles in your neck, allowing them to hold no tension…relax the base of the skull…around the ears…across the forehead…down the nose…behind the eyes…in the cheeks…around the mouth…relax your heart…totally let go….Now see yourself lying in a sunny, soft grassy field…soak in the sun…enjoy its warmth…Now allow a second image of you lift out of the first and slowly walk down the field. . notice a path. . follow this path for a while…are there any trees?…notice a pond..take it all in…come to a bridge that crosses a stream at the end of the pond…notice what the bridge looks like…follow the path on the other side until you see a hedge… follow the hedge until you find an opening…go through the opening…there in front of you will be a house…go up to the front door…notice the door knob or handle…notice the type of door…open the door slowly and go inside…You are in a room just beyond the front door.. notice all of its details…then move to the next room…what room are you in?..notice all of the details…what does the ceiling look like?..the windows?…the woodwork?…the furnishings, if there are any?…Go on to the next room…notice a book shelf there, with lots of books…go over and chose three of your favorites…what are they?…Now notice a desk in the room..on top of the desk is a portfolio with your name engraved on it..what do the letters look like? …also on the front is a word that describes you.. what is the word? Open the portfolio and see what is inside… now notice a figure coming toward you…the figure has a gift …what is it? …Move away and turn to leave the house..close the door behind you.. follow the hedge notice if it has changed…find the opening and come out on to the path…As you cross the bridge, notice if the pond has changed in any way…continue on along the path..what are you wearing?…return to the relaxed first figure of yourself…join it..slowly return to the room, counting from  five to your eyes.

When you have finished the visualization, journal all the sounds, colors, feelings, words, facts, objects, essences, gift and names of books.

There is a lot to interpret from what you write down. You can send your observations to me and I can send back my interpretation or you can purchase Denny Daikeler’s book “What color is your slip cover?” and read pages 46 through 49.