Middle of October? 2021 is winding down...

It seems like this moment in time was only yesterday, when it was the last week of July. We were experiencing the Heat Dome and were all wondering if air condintioning was a good investment. We stuck with fans and a room air conditioner for our southwest facing bedroom. This is a photo of my feet in the water at Lesser Slave Lake. The weather was marvelous and the water so clear. On our first day we had great waves and we played in them for hours. We have been camping at this lake for for 26 years and now the whole family comes together for camping. The campground has changed over the years, when we first started camping here it felt very isolated and quiet. Now it has become a camping hotspot and it is very hard to get a campsite. We are some of the few tenters remaining. This is also a reminder of how time flies as it seems like yesterday that our daughters were small and playing on the beach. Time is a reminder to take each day slowly and enjoy the small moments.

Covid has brought this all home for us as 2021 winds down. We need to appreciate our support systems and say thank you daily for the small and large things that get us through the day. We were all hoping that 2021 would bring the light at the end of the tunnel but instead the tunnel became longer and the light further away. I see the changes in my students as they continue to grapple with Covid and how it has affected their collective daily lives. At this moment they are still so happy to be back in class, sitting, working and creating with their peers. As Covid numbers continued to increase this fall I was continually asked if we would be coing back online. Teachers have played hopefully a postive role in allowing their students to ask questions, speak their concerns and in return support and reassure them. Daily I tell my students how much I enjoy being with them again. However, talking to 30+ students through a mask is exhausting.

My studio time has become more than just a place to create it has also beceom my place to ponder, energize, reflect and find much needed quiet. I know that without this space, the Covid year (s) would have been a very different and much more difficult time. I am thankful that not only to have this space but that I have the ability to find creativity in such a very unusual time.

Christmas for some of us is just around the corner and we all hope that this year we will be able to connect and gather with our families and loved ones. For me it is time to spend with my daugthers and grand babies. It is about the food and the decorations, we are all major Christmas people. We are all ready counting down the days until we can decorate and this year will be so much more important as we realize how fragile time can be. If you have never been to Greenland Garden Centre just outside of Edmonton you must go, it is Christmas magic. I after many years of Christmas I have a large collection of ornaments but every year I pick up a few more. Before it sadly closed a tradtion was to go to Wellington Gift and Garden, another gem. I started collecting bird ornaments and now my tree has many, maybe too many but Christmas is the one time of year that decorating to the point of overload is allowed.

I have decided to stay at the Bountiful Farmers Market until the end of January. I mulled this over for a few weeks but feel it is the best soluion to my busy life. It has free parking, I don't have to bring a big table, the lighting is wonderful and it has a great vibe. So I will be there on Saturdays from 9-5. I saw a great post on Instagram the other day and did share it on my stories. It stated that local artists are not having problems with Covid delays or production. So I encourage you to think about giving gifts from local artists, craftspeople and artisans. Not only are you supporting your local economy but you are also giving a one of a kind gift. On that note I am busy making for the busy fall/winter market and learning how to do gift cards of Square. I hope to see you at the market. Staring in November I will have weekly sales and giveaways.

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