Thursday, October 29, 2009

Tangled up in the Studio

'Grey Skies are Turning Blue' Art Cowl

It's really getting cold here in Chicago. We already switched our summer clothes in our closets with fall and winter outfits. Ofcourse, these breezy weather calls for accessories to keep us warm.

At this time of the year, my studio morphs into a fibrous stead. Skeins and spools of yarns, threads and laces take over the canvases and paints. What once used to be a jar of brushes is now stuffed with knitting and crochet needles. 'It's that time of the year.', my husband would say. My sketchbook is getting filled with designs of scarves and other yarn projects.

So, pardon me if you haven't seen me writing much these days. It's because I've given in to that irrepressible calling to turn those yarns into something extraordinary, while wrapped up in my favorite cozy and sipping my favorite peach white tea.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


Fine Art Photograph by Sherie Sloane. (C) 2009

Has it really been over two months since my last post? If you've been following my blog, I apologize for the stretch of time I missed you.

So, what happened in the past months? You must be wondering. I was compelled to 'dock' and refuel myself, just like that 'tugboat' I photographed in Fort Walton, Florida. It was a much needed time to pause, reflect and plan. You know the old adage, "When it rains, it pours"? That's exactly what transpired in my life and in the lives of the people I love and care.

First, there was the happy news of another pregnancy. We can't believe our little man who just turned two will soon become a big brother. Then, there were the sad news from families back home. Last month, our beloved uncle passed away. He was that 'one' uncle we call our second dad. When dad passed away ten years ago, he took it to heart to look over us, providing the fatherly love we missed.

'Typhoon Ketsana'
Image courtesy of Wikipedia.

Two days after, typhoon Ketsana hit Manila and nearby towns in the Philippines, my home country. My sister's house, and most of their belongings were soaked in water seven feet high for days. Thankfully, she was working the day the typhoon hit. My mom was stranded in another town and wasn't able to get home for almost two days. My other sister was in her class when the water started rising outside their university. Thankfully, she was able to reach home safely.

But most were not as fortunate as my family. The highest rainfall in history, heavy flooding and landslides claimed hundreds of lives. Tears were streaming from my eyes watching the news. I knew a lot of friends in the most affected areas. The images of kids separated from parents and stranded in their schools were heartbreaking. I couldn't fathom what it must have been like for those families. Their loved ones, everything they owned and worked hard for, all gone in an instant.

It was a bitter reminder of what matters most - life itself. As we said our prayers from our comfy home here in Chicago, we realized even more how immensely blessed we are. We have each other and the meaning of 'modest living' has now become 'abundance'. The help we sent seemed meager compared to the magnitude of the disaster poeple there have experienced.

'My Boys'
Beasley Park Beach, Ft. Walton, Florida

I was plagued with those sad images for days. It didn't help that my morning sickness was reaching its height too, all these on top of raising our very active tooddler. Going to my studio to paint and create felt like a chore.

My husband who's been working so hard thought it will do us all good to take a little breather. We flew to the charming old town of Fort Walton, Florida to celebrate our son's birthday. He loved the sand and we all love the sugarsand beaches there. The quiet town was the perfect place for us to rest and reflect.

Watching my boys build their sand castle, I felt the first kick from the baby inside me. Perhaps telling me, 'Mom, it's time to put the worries away for now. The rains back home will soon stop and God will wipe their tears one at a time.'