By Caroline T. Jackson
This was to be a year of reflection…..kick back….find out what makes me tick and where I want it to take me. In addition we were expecting our first grandchild, and I wanted to be available at the drop of the hat to help them. These were excellent intentions, well thought out and purposeful…..right! I did all the right things, declined some volunteer opportunities which ONLY I could do, got out my art supplies and dusted off the easel as I was going to explore my artistic side. I even signed on to TCP to write because I love to play with the written word and it gave me an opportunity to buy myself a little notebook to take with me when we travel. My husband is very territorial about his computer! Doesn’t this sound like a plan to you?
On September 2, our daughter gave birth to a beautiful baby girl…2 weeks early who just happened to be breach. This prompted an unplanned C-section which required me to stay with them for 3 weeks. Oh, how I hated every minute of that situation! Right……I could hardly tear myself away to return to my home….they NEEDED me. Truth be known, they were probably glad to see me go! So I returned home to ready myself for a long planned trip to Big Bend National Park and the Davis Mountains located in the far corner of West Texas. I capitalized “west” because it is big enough to be its own state! I had joined up with 8 artists to “paint Texas,” and we were off on our first adventure.
What began as a small seed of an idea turned into a full scale organized group of very talented women who wanted to paint together around our beautiful state. Somewhere along the way, I became the “agent.” Because I made the reservations months ago and knew the area, I became the titular head for this journey. We painted each day, all day and then gathered in the early evening hours to critique our personal interpretations of this vast space we were visiting. After 6 days of hauling easels, stools, paints and lots of water to different sites, we had a body of work which amounted to about 60+ pieces. Our seed began to sprout! On the last evening we came up with a name for our group, and decided to have a show upon returning home. This of course required bios from everyone, an article for the news media, preparations for framing and on and on. It seemed like a very logical plan until I discovered two days after returning home that I began to receive bios to edit, information for an article and numerous emails about our upcoming show. Did I leave the room for a short time and miss this assignment or was I so caught up in the euphoria of being a part of this group….many of who have been making a living as artists for several decades….. that I glossed over the fact that I was signing up again!
I guess what it boils down to is that I thrive on doing something even if it isn’t what I had in mind…..maybe kick back is not in my vocabulary. What was supposed to be a blank calendar turned into 3 different colors of ink for the various things planned for the next few months and I am looking forward to them all. After all …..I don’t really get to choose what is on the calendar….God does, and He is not ready for mine to be blank!