For a couple of decades, maybe since moving to Oregon, I’ve created this yearly musing. Sort of stock taking, history or overview of a year a conversation with you my loyal family and friends. For more than 35 years I’ve made an image and sent it out in the form of a Christmas card. Really it’s a fine art drawing, many of which are now printed in a limited edition Geclee. It’s one of the ways I connect to you near and far and show you I’m still arting and alive and expressing myself. Hope you enjoy both.
Last year’s message of my first wife Cathleen’s passing has been followed by Meghan and her family coming back to the states from Paris, France to live permanently in her house in Culver City, [L.A.] Which is excellent for more access to them for me and the rest of the family. And I’m headed south for Christmas with everyone. Hopefully the gang will come north to my Carberry place for a while this vacation too. Emilien and Lucien need to play in snow and, of course, we grown ups do too.
This year’s image is again of Cathleen, nursing Bethany early in our 13 year marriage together so many years ago: 1970.
Last summer started with a visit from Neil, a great friend from down south, who installed a new generator, electric water pump [no more gas cans!] and a new inverter. These improvements were followed by additional installations of a second inverter and new solar panels and an upgrade of four times as much power as I’ve ever had all these years in this off the grid house. It’s even on an automatic system that keeps track of the systems needs and starts the generator by itself whether or not I’m here! How deluxe.
The summer proceeded with several meditation retreats and a wonderful family reunion at Lake Coeur ‘d Alene, ID with Aunt Nancy and Uncle Shaw presiding and a total of about 30 family members. Heading home I visited most of the Greeley Wells family. Mom and Dad doing well at 87, my sisters Barbara and Elizabeth, all in the Seattle area, are quite well too. In Portland I visited my daughter Kiesha and husband Das and their two teenagers: Lief and Athena. All are well I’m glad to say. Kiesha and Das are working on their place too and it looks great.
Celebrated a modest 64th birthday with 20 or so good folks out here at the creek. Some outdoor games, some live music and great food and a fire as the sun went down.
It has also been the summer of the stairs here on the creek. Two sets of stone and concrete stairs to access the creek and a third from my house to the lower lawn overlooking the creek is a bit more formal using river rock and a hand rail made of Pacific Yew wood. These efforts fulfill dreams and designs that are beautiful and fit into my aging life and make the property more accessible to the older and less steady like I’m becoming.
Two group shows had my art work this year in Ashland: the Bohemia Gallery and Hanson Howard Gallery.
So Merry Christmas and happy new year along with my love and hugs.