1000 posts!

I can't believe it! This post marks 1000 posts I have written here since December 8th, 2006. yikes! I did not know that was true until I decided to write a short note to tell you that I would be taking a blog break for a while . . . but if you are a regular reader, I bet you guessed that already. I just finished my Nia white belt training last friday and if you have not been here since then, I changed the main photo of the blog to reflect that -check it out here if you are reading via a feed. The Nia White belt training was intense: long days for an entire week, but very well worth it. I learned a lot and have also signed up for the Nia Green belt training held in Sarasota in February. (That tells you something!!) The Green Belt is an optional training based on embodying the skills to teach Nia. : ) In the meantime, I am PACKING! Boxes and boxes. You would think I would be used to this by now, but no I am not - I am slugging through it all. I do think though, that Steven and I have found our home. One that is really for us, on a canal off the Braden River. Not too far from my mom, either. Our moving date is November 6th - So, I am signing off for a while. Thank you for visiting and for all your comments these past six years!!!!!!!!!!

On tuesday I went to Siesta Key beach for Nia class and took this amazing photo . . .


At least it was amazing to me!! Click on it to view larger. I hope you enjoy and I'll catch you on the other side : ) sending love to you and yours, lenna 

Elbow grease is the best polish.
  ~ English proverb





by the sea chunky ATC

I had never heard of a "chunky" ATC before until I read about it on Lisa Busch's Collage Stuff Blog -go there to check out just one of her beautiful samples. Lisa owns a business called "Collage Stuff" where she sells wonderful collage stuff!  I often find just what I might need for a project and also, collage items that inspire me to start something new! And Lisa runs super art swaps through her yahoo group - check that out too! I learned from her that a chunky ATC is a variation on a trading card made on a wood block, 2.5" x 3.5" x 3/4" wide. This was a one-for-one swap, sending directly to the person Lisa signed you up with. Here is what I came up with -a bit of my creating process. First some gathering . . . I have collected lots of lovely shells living in Florida!
 I did not have to, but decided I wanted to paint my block white. I got my blank chunky wood ATC from Collage stuff - follow this link and scroll down a bitThey are high quality pre-sanded blocks.
I used Goop glue (E6000) to secure the various shells.
The little gold sequin stars I got from Collage Stuff, the pearls were a broken bracelet.
The dictionary page came as a gift from Lisa with my last order -perfect!
Now my chunky ATC has shell "feet"!
For the back, I wanted a business card that had a copy of "Shell art" already on it.
(ATCs I created for another swap)
But Lisa wanted the back arted up too, so I stamped various images on white tissue paper using permanent ink. When adhered to the block with matte medium under and over, the tissue paper melts away. Only the image remains!
From the side . . . 

From the top!

The front, from the top. The crinkly wire wrapped around is from collage Stuff.

That was sure fun to do! Thanks, Lisa for the inspiration and organization.
My chunky ATC is in the mail as of yesterday, swimming it's way to Andrea in Texas. I have already received a beautiful chunky ATC from Gloria - what a great swap!


Be not afraid of growing slowly, be afraid only of standing still.
  ~ Chinese proverb

beach, clouds (amazing) and nia

I took these photos over the last two days locally on the Gulf of Mexico here in Florida. Sometimes when I take photos from far away, they come out of my camera with a painterly quality.

Aren't the clouds amazing? You can click on any photo for more detail if you wish. 
The photo below was my blip for July 5th on blipfoto (my photo journal).
The following photos were taken at today's Nia class on Longboat key.
Nia is a sensory based movement practice. What better place to practice than on the beach?

As you may note, I played in Photoshop with these two -fun!!

warm wishes of good health and lots of sunshine to you! 

Far and away the best prize that life offers is the chance to work hard at work worth doing. 
~ Theodore Roosevelt

Nia and healing

I went back to Nia class today for the first time in 5 weeks -yes, 5 weeks! Back in February I started having trouble with my right arm and shoulder. I thought I had tendinitis caused by over-stretching in a chest opener in yoga class. I kept going to Nia, but my arm seemed to be getting worse and not better, so in March I decided to rest my arm entirely and not go to class. Unfortunately, it still did not get better so I saw a sports medicine orthopedic doctor this week. It turns out I have a frozen shoulder, yuck! Doesn't that sound terrible? He gave me a cortisone shot which has already helped my movement and loosened my shoulder up. I'll start physical therapy next week. He told me that movement (within reason) would not hurt my arm -in fact, it would help it. Even though I still cannot raise my right arm over my head, I went to Nia on the beach with my friend Kathy today and it was really good for me in more ways than one. I felt very grateful and emotional standing there barefoot on the beach as the music started . . .



http://youtu.be/04L-rzzI5vI

This very short stop-motion video is made from photos I took while taking a break during class today. I am learning how to make different kinds of videos and this was fun to do. My friend kathy is an awesome teacher and has helped me to think positively about my predicament . . . .
I am healing my shoulder. xoxo  http://www.nianow.com/kathy-oravec



If at first you don't succeed, you're running above average.
  ~ M. H. Alderson



they say it's your birthday . . . .



My friend Kathy, who teaches Nia and gave me a really spectacular birthday today! 
Balloons, singing, a handmade card, a cupcake, her smile, her energy, a fabulously taught Nia movement class, her warmth, friendship and more -so sweet! So wonderful! 

Yes, Nia classes on the beach!  (I put together an animoto for kathy-click on the link)
I cannot tell you how wonderful this mind-body movement program has been for me. 


Nia has made me feel like a kid again!!!!!!!!!

I'm 55 today and loving it : ^ ) 
xo




creative things


Tomorrow, 2/5 is Conscious Movement here in Sarasota and I am so looking forward to it. This is the closest thing I have found to the modern dance improv I did growing up and for many years after, that I love. The photo above is a Photoshop version of 2 photos I took at the last conscious movement event. I love taking just a few quiet photographs during the hour and a half and then bringing them into Photoshop and seeing how I can tweak them artistically. Tomorrow we may have visitors from St. Pete join us, so I think there will be lots of energy and spirit dancing in the room!

Today, I went to a wonderful Zentangle® class taught by certified Zentagle instructor, Mary Masi. I met Mary through Conscious Movement and Nia classes! Here are the two 3" x 5" tiles I completed in Mary's excellent class today . . .


Zentangle looks like doodling, but is really so much more. From the Zentangle® website, "Our Zentangle method is a way of creating beautiful images from repetitive patterns. It is fun and relaxing. Almost anyone can use it to create beautiful images. It increases focus and creativity, provides artistic satisfaction along with an increased sense of personal well being. The Zentangle method is enjoyed all over this world across a wide range of skills, interests and ages." Find out more about Zentangle here on the website. I found it so relaxing. 

I also visited a new studio and Gallery called Artspace on Anna Maria Island this afternoon. My friend Cheryl who hosted my collage class earlier this week, told me about Deborah and her husband who are opening this awesome space. It is bright and beautiful, with a gorgeous view of the Anna Maria Bay.

The view!! It is above the post office, 101 Bayview Plaza, Anna Maria Island, FL

It looks so good! They are going to have their first show to coincide with the Grand Opening on March 23 and I am definitely going to make a "Spring Cleaning" piece and enter! 

Afterwards, a quick trip to the north of the island . . . 
ahhhhhh . . . i love the beach. 


happy weekend! 
lenna 


every single moment you are . . . .





. . . . writing the story of your life.

I just realized, watching this animoto video I made, that it was actually about healing. The art you see, the Nia/dance, the beach, the sun, water and shells, taking these photographs, my dogs and my family, especially my husband, have been my way to heal after the loss of my father. I am so grateful for all I have and I hope you enjoy the sand and sea.






*I suggest watching this in full screen by clicking in the bottom right corner!
If you cannot see the video here, use this link.

p.s. this is the first time I have ever tried using video clips and I think it worked well!
To view more of my videos, visit my YouTube channel.

: ) lenna