Thursday, June 26, 2014

Paper Tearing

The paper I use for sumi-e is Chinese xuan paper. It comes in these super duper huge sheets which you can tear down to size. I don't like to do large paintings, especially since I'm still practicing, so one sheet tears down to six sheets. I had ordered 100 sheets a few months ago and had forgotten and then reordered again. It was too late to cancel and it does go fast when you are practicing.

I've been spending a lot of time tearing 200 sheets into 1200 sheets. It's taken an incredible amount of time to do this.  It also doesn't help that it is summer so the lawn needs to be mowed and weeds need to be pulled. I'm not going to even talk about the trees and bushes that need trimming. Yikes!
But this is what the paper looked like when I finished. I also had some crafty kits I bought when we moved back to Korea in 2011. It turned out I was so busy with all the Korean crafting that I never had time for these kits so I'm trying to get those done now too. I'll post on them when I'm finished.
We also celebrated little Ezra's third birthday. I can't believe the little guy is already three. He is truly a joy just like his two brothers.

We've also been getting a ton of rain up here. We haven't had any flooding but we've been lucky.  So many homes have been damaged. We have already reached the second wettest June since record keeping and with the torrential rain that is expected this weekend we should easily surpass that.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Sumi-e Class with Susan Frame - Peonies and Cliffs

Last Friday I took another sumi-e class with Susan Frame at the White Bear Center for the Arts. The focus for this class was peonies and cliffs. Peonies are one of my favorite flowers and it just so happens to be peony peak time here in Minnesota. I didn't venture into color ink but stayed with black to work on my strokes as you can see from my paintings.

 I also did a couple of cliff paintings. I don't know why landscapes intimidate me so much but they do.
I really have enjoyed all the painting classes I've taken and will definitely continue. It makes me less homesick for Korea where I was taking some kind of Korean craft class every single day.
I'm also learning to listen to my body and to not overdue especially when it's hot out. Yesterday, I wasn't planning on mowing the lawn as Rocketman has been in town to do that so I went on my 3 1/2 hour walk which I do every morning.  When I returned home, I heard on the news that we would have rain starting in the afternoon. Rocketman was going to mow that night so I decided to mow and so I began around noon. It was in the mid 80's and humid.
Our mower has also been acting up with thick black smoke that spouts out of it as you mow and the blade decides at will to disengage. It's extremely frustrating but we only have one mower so we make due. I had finished the front and was working on the back when I started to feel lightheaded and I was also sweating profusely. I came in and drank a bunch of water and rested for about a half hour and went out again.
I mowed for another 20 minutes or so and it happened again only I felt a whole lot worse. I came in and drank lots of water and rested again. I ended up taking three breaks to finish the lawn. I came in when I finished and felt horrible and knew I had heat exhaustion. So I took it easy the rest of the afternoon including dinner which was a frozen pizza which Rocketman did not mind at all.
I was feeling so poorly that I went up to bed early and slept nearly 12 hours. This morning I was still feeling pretty tired but I did do my daily walk anyway but that wore me out for the rest of the day. So I know now for the hundredth time that I can't do my walk and mow the lawn during these hot summer days. I need to remember this next time and you can be sure there will be a next time. Will I ever learn?


Monday, June 9, 2014

Reiki Master!

Reiki is hands on healing. You can find more information here. I began my Reiki training in 2012 when I took  Level 1 and Level 2 classes. I have done Reiki  mainly on family members and friends. Last year I made the decision that I wanted to become a Reiki Master. But to become a Master, I needed to repeat Level 1 and Level 2. I found a new teacher in the Twin Cities and repeated my Level 1 and Level 2 earlier this year. Then this past weekend along with two other classmates, I completed my training to become a Master.
We also had time to visit a store which sold all sorts of crystals and we all had a lot of fun shopping. I learned this weekend how to use crystals in my Reiki practice. As with my past classes, the few days following class due to the attunement I received, I feel like I've run a marathon and caught a case of the flu. When I returned home last night, I laid down on my bed and that's where I stayed. This morning, I ache all over and feel exhausted. I'll be taking it easy until I feel better but I am over the moon that I am now a Reiki Master! Let the healing continue.

Monday, June 2, 2014

The Week Flew By

My dear friend, Lynn, invited us up to her place for a good old fashion barbecue.
Then Hannah also did a lot of cooking at our place. She LOVES to cook and who am I to deny her:)

                                                         This is kimbap she made for us.
We also visited my sister's place and she surprised Hannah with a pair of sunglasses. She was soooo excited.
     But we always managed to get home in time for Hannah to make us a delicious Korean dinner.
This is what my kitchen looked like all week and it smelled even better.
We shopped every single day. We hit the Outlet Mall, Mall of America, Maplewood Mall, multiple TJ Maxes, Burlington Coat Factory just to name a few. She would come home and take a picture of things she had bought for her sisters and brother. Louie had to get into the picture this time.
We ate out a lot too. This is Hannah and Rocketman in front of the Cheesecake Factory. Here is where we hit: Taco Bell, Donatellis, Noodles & Company, IHOP, Red Lobster, Twin Cities Grill, and the Olive Garden.
                        I learned a new way to open a bottle. A spoon, who would have thought!
We also had to pick up another suitcase because of all the shopping we were doing. It's a good thing we did because both were packed tight.
Hannah also managed to get both Rocketman and I addicted to yet another Korean drama. Luckily, "A Gentleman's Dignity" is on Netflix and we watched an episode or two every night and finished the drama last night. It was fantastic and we loved it but could someone please tell Korean drama writers to knock it off with the wrist grabbing of female characters by male characters. Hannah says Korean women love it but it bugs me, a lot.

We dropped Hannah off at the airport and ran into a problem with her reservation. She would miss her connection through Detroit and needed to find a new flight due to a delay with her plane that was coming from St. Louis. We were at the counter well over an hour. The Delta ticket agent had to call to find a solution even though she was staring at a computer screen. It was frustrating to say the least and Hannah ended up on a flight from MSP to Los Angeles, then she had a 7 hour layover until her flight to Incheon. She arrived Tuesday morning at 4:15 am and had to also work that day so I don't know how she fared. She arrived in Incheon today at 2:15 pm our time.

She said it was the best vacation she had ever had and as we watched her make her way through security tears filled my eyes. I miss her and Korea so very, very much. But I know we will return sometime.
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