Hiking Toward Home » Hiking In Grace & Capturing My View

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So that guy I had a crush on that didn’t like me too much… well, lets just say I changed his mind. 

And he helped to change mine too, but I will get to that later.

Though he may have thought me to be a monster while helping to get the Student Art show juried and hung, by the time the show opened I knew his name and by the time the show closed in May, just a few short weeks later, we were dating.

How did he help me change my mind?

He took me to church.

In October, 1991, we visited his dad’s church and I liked it and wanted that hope and peace that trio of ladies sang about. I wanted to have the secure anchor that guy sang about. I stood there with white knuckles gripping the pew but I came back week after week. Finally, on Christmas Eve, I accepted Christ as my Savior. I felt such a huge weight lift right off of me. I was ‘saved’ and on my way to heaven, I had become a Christian.

The church wherein I received Christ however was rather legalistic. If you were not doing A, B, and C then you better “check your salvation”. Even though the doctrine of Eternal Security was preached, it was overshadowed by all the legalism. Though I was now a follower of Christ, I was trapped in a box of legalism and it would be 18 years before I would realize I was inside a very small box.

I sat as a new Christian and listened to someone preach their personal opinions, which regarding art and literature were very slanted, and I was very influenced and being immature in my faith took everything in as though it were solid doctrine.

His negative opinions in the areas of art and literature were taken in and it changed my thinking hence putting me in a trap in which I was caught until 2009.

I loved the pastor who lead me to Christ and when he taught the Bible, without his opinion mixed in, he was a fantastic teacher. I learned so much sitting under his teaching and it did give me a great doctrinal foundation. He influenced me for a lot of good. He gave me a thirst for reading biographies of great men of the faith and missionary stories and the like.

However when it came to art he could only see the negative in all of it and would only refer to that. For him all art was bad and something to be avoided with maybe the exception of Albrecht Durer’s Praying Hands.

When it came to the subject of literature he did not read anything fictional. He had a disdain for C. S. Lewis and J. R. R. Tolkien which I never understood. He loved Bunion’s Pilgrim’s Progress but had nothing but negativity for Lewis’ Narnia.

When it came time for me to transfer colleges to finish my Bachelor’s degree, I was intimidated to try something new. Going to a big university as opposed to the small community college I was so comfortable at was overwhelming to me. So I just didn’t. I stopped my education at an AA degree. I decided that I didn’t need a college degree to get married and have kids. I don’t regret my choice either, I couldn’t imagine life without my wonderful husband and fabulous kids.

What I regret is shutting down to art. Even though I hoarded art supplies and dragged them half-way around the world, and desired to instill a love for art in my kids, I seldom did anything except snap photos. I didn’t even doodle.

When the kids started having drawing assignments in their art books for school, I dabbled a bit with them. I wanted them to be creative and I wanted to still do creative stuff, just not as a career. Though I craved being creative, art had been lowered to not even a pastime or hobby and I made no time at all for creativity.

When we first arrived on the mission field I drew this as a card to send to a friend who was about to become a mom. It was the last thing I drew for a long time and it obviously was never sent.



I did very little art-wise for 18 years.


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If you have missed the first two parts of this story you can find them by clicking the links below:

Part One

Part Two

Part Three

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I shared some with you all about my college in my last post about how much I hated high school.

Though I discussed college a little bit.

I ran across some old photos from that time that I have decided to share.

This is the first painting I ever sold. I painted it while taking Painting 1 at the University of Maryland during the summer semester of 1990.



I sold it for $75.

It was for an assignment that we had; to do several paintings influenced by different Masters of our choice. I did this one based on Jackson Pollock.

This is me when I was the Vice President of the Student Art League of Prince George’s Community College, Fall 1990…



One of my favorite teachers was my Watercolor teacher. She is the one who instilled my love for watercolor.



In the Spring semester of 1991, I became the President of the Student Art League. The Advisor for the Student Art League was the Sculpture and Ceramics Professor, John Krumrein. He was another one of my favorite teachers. He was a bit crazy which made him all the more fun.



As the President of the SAL, I had to type all 250 labels for each of the pieces that was accepted into the exhibit. On a typewriter. And I could not use whiteout to fix my typing mistakes. So I had to type some of  them more than once. There was one in particular that I kept messing up. I typed the title wrong or forgot to capitalize something or misspelled his name. I was getting really mad. But whoever he was, his photo had won first place in the Photography category.





As it turned out the guy who’s name I had to retype so many times… was also the cute red-head I had a crush on. By the end of school that semester we were together every. single. day.



I’m so glad I was able to change his mind about what he thought of me.

If you missed the beginning of my Art Journey you can find them here:

Part 1

Part 2

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In High School I didn’t end up taking an Art class with the exception of a single semester of Photography in my Senior year. In High School I focused more on the music (instrumental and vocal); choir, chamber choir, county honors choir, marching band and concert band. In my senior year I was the VP of Tri-M, which is the music honor society. Being in Tri-M awarded me the ability to wear a pink tassel at graduation, which, at the time to me, was very cool; as it meant I had done something different and wasn’t wearing the same tassel as everyone else.




In my Junior year, I disliked High School so much that I wanted to sign up for concurrent enrollment for my Senior year. Attending High School for the first four classes of the day and then going to take classes at the local community college for the remainder of the day seemed like a great way to escape the High School social scene. I worked hard to maintain the necessary GPA to attain the concurrent enrollment status for my Senior year. Besides, if I did concurrent enrollment then Mom and Dad would have to provide me a car of my own to drive from the High School to the college as they could not possibly taxi me around. (Okay, so I had some ulterior motives for doing concurrent enrollment other than just getting an education.)




In High School I had what my kids now call a Padawan braid. (Any Star Wars fans out there? We just called it a rat-tail.) My best friend and I both had them and I kept mine well past my senior year.

As my Senior year began, I had a friend who was in Art School. A whole college devoted to nothing but Art I thought that was pretty ‘out there’. I thought it was so cool to be able to pursue a life as an artist but never thought of myself being “qualified” to do such a thing. I was encouraged to at least take a Drawing 101 class at the community college in my spring semester. I loved it so much that I declared Art as my major and worked toward a degree in Fine Art.




I loved all my art studio classes and my art history classes. Taking Art History finally made me appreciate my parents dragging me kicking and screaming taking me to Europe and forcing me to walk all over the place to look at boring old paintings and museums and architecture enabling me to see first-hand; great works of art, beautiful buildings, and captivating cities all over Europe. (My Aunt and Uncle living in Europe at the time made it possible for these trips as I was growing up.)

Again, in college, my favorite teachers were my art studio class teachers. I don’t remember any of my other teachers’ names but I could name for you all of my Art teachers. I lived for my studio classes. I got to be good friends with many of the “Lifers” too. Those were senior citizens that would audit art classes over and over just for the instruction and the fun of it.




In my second full year of college, I ended up following the same type of path as in my high school senior year of “doing something different” and attended a meeting and ended up as the VP of the Student Art League, then as the President of the Student Art League the following semester. (The guy I had a crush on described me as the “Art League President from hell”… but I got the job done. Let us remember that I didn’t come to know Christ until a bit later. We were different people when we first met. I am glad I was able to change his viewpoint as he is now my husband and best friend and we have four gorgeous kids.)




While in college I found that I really like watercolor. I had not painted much since childhood, most of my work was done in pencil. Pencil is cheap. I had never taken a painting class before college. Acrylics were okay but I enjoyed watercolor much more. I still have never worked in oils. Maybe someday I will become a “Lifer” at a local college and then I will take a class in oil painting. For now, Watercolor is my preferred medium when painting and I still work a lot in pencil.




If you haven’t read part 1 of my Art Journey, you can find it here.

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Thank you for joining me for Wednesday Wandering. Today we will continue down the Oregon coast.

It has been quite a while since I posted an Oregon Wandering Wednesday.

The day these photos were taken it was a very stormy day. Lots of low cloud cover and rough ocean was the scenery for the day.

We stopped at an over-look to see what is called The Devil’s Punchbowl. I am sure it is quite a sight to see when it is high tide and the water in the bowl looks like it is boiling. However we caught the punchbowl at low tide so there wasn’t much to see.





One of the lighthouses we visited had the coolest bench just outside.





And only now as I posted this photo did I realize that the rest of the back had constellations carved into it. I was in a hurry to  not get rained on when we were there.







Thanks for hiking along today!

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“It’s a very good place to start, when you read you begin with A-B-C when you sing you begin with…”

So how many of you read that title and had a familiar melody pop into your mind?

I’ve been a Sound of Music fangirl as long as I can remember.

If I had said this title out loud at my house several voices would have finished it in song. I love that my kids enjoy classic musicals and modern broadway too. I love that they have a taste for all sorts of music not just one genre.

My daughter and I recently went to see Wicked… but that is a story for a whole other post. 

A few posts ago I shared with you my future hopes for this space. The more I have thought about it, the more I think I should start at the very beginning of my story; because without the foundation of my story my journey back to art would make little sense. Why a journey back to art?


I have always liked to do art.

I remember a very long time ago, honestly can’t remember how old I was, I just remember that it was probably before I began Kindergarten, my mother set up a little table in our kitchen and gave me some paint and a fold out picture that almost covered the top of the little table I was working on. I remember it being Jack and the Beanstalk. While Mom scrubbed woodwork, I painted. I loved it!

The Arts were always my favorite subjects in school. Art class ran equal with music class. I wasn’t too great with the other subjects. I lived for Art and Music. Every year, in every grade, my music teachers and art teachers were my favorite people.

I remember in 4th grade having drawn a self-portrait I was so proud of. I remember looking at it stapled up on the bulletin board and my fourth-grader-self thinking that it was one of the best pictures I had ever drawn and thinking it actually looked like me. I knew my mom had it somewhere so I called her up and asked if I could have it. (Sorry Dad.) My poor dad ended up digging through lots of  boxes in the attic but his day in the cramped attic was successful and now I can share with you one of my first “I liked what I did” pictures.



On the opposite page of this portrait was my life story, written at the ripe old age of 9.



“I love art also I hate school.”

Interesting, I don’t remember liking Science class. And I know the line about “liking ALL my teachers so far” was a bold-face lie, but do you write that you hated your 3rd grade teacher when she is still teaching in the room next door? And is likely to read what you’ve written?

I had to blur some stuff out because, believe it or not, my mom still works at the same place she did 35 years ago. She’s never worked anywhere else. Job longevity like that now-a-days is almost unheard of!

And I’ve written about the friendship with that adopted girl from Binghamton, New York before.

I ended up traveling several times to Europe since my Aunt and Uncle and cousins lived there. When I was older, I appreciated being dragged all over Europe so much more than I did in 5th grade when I went on my first trip to Europe. And that is also a story for another post.


The rest of the Art Journey…

Part 2

Part 3


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