Saturday, March 19, 2016


Two things came together today:

1. I was feeling totally stuck (pun acknowledged) about where the heck to go with Scrappy.

Scrappy, work in progress
overworked, busy, not cohesive

2. I suddenly knew that today was the day I was going to tap into an excerpt from a novel I read a few weeks ago.

My Aunt Joyce died in Vermont in late January, and my cousins have been very much on my mind. We exchanged a flurry of emails in the week or two immediately following Joyce's death but then Judy's first grandchild was born, Dee returned to Alabama, Cilla returned to Spain, and we each picked up the respective threads of our day-to-day rhythms and responsibilities.

I think of my cousins often as I move through those rhythms and responsibilities.

Here are the lines I jotted down from Elisabeth Egan's novel A Window Opens, from a scene following the death of the main character's mother:

  One by one, the guests left my mom's house. They promised to check in soon and made us promise to let them know if there was anything they could do.
  News flash: nobody is going to give you an assignment. Just do something.



No one is going to give me an assignment with Scrappy.

No one is going to give me an assignment to let my cousins know I'm thinking of them.

News flash to self: just do something.

I cut Scrappy into pieces.

The first paper prayer goes to Dee.

Paper Prayer 35
2x5.5", acrylic, ink, and collage on wallpaper
[not for sale]

Its journey:



  1. What a wonderful idea, Dotty! You've spurred me into action, too. Time for me to do something, too. Maybe an email to the three of them...

    1. Joje, thanks for your comments. I've got to get Dee's paper prayer in the mail now.

    2. I want Dee to get your Paper Prayer first, so will send them an email In a few days reminiscing about the Easters they spent with us. That was a lot of females under one roof!

    3. Thanks for waiting, Joje. That'll increase the impact of my Paper Prayers. I'll let you know when they're in the mail.

    4. Absolutely. I in no way want to steal your thunder!

  2. Oh I LOVE this, these, ALL! Made me happy when I opened the email. Makes me smile to know their purpose. And yours.
    JOY. Spreader of Joy. That is you Dotty :)

    1. Sheila, thanks for your warm joyful comments! I get such pleasure from creating a little light to shine out : )

  3. Hi Dotty,

    I like the harmony that comes with postcard #18 in those white geometric shapes. But all the while seeing that cross underneath. Nice!
    Also, boy are you right in today's message: a friend of mine lost her 15 year old grandson to Leukemia in September. We talked recently about her son and daughter in law and how they were doing. She explained to me that her son (the boy's dad) is afraid that people won't talk about him, that maybe they will even forget about it. He understands that people are afraid of what to say. But his plea is "please talk about him!" "Please share memories!" "Please bring it up!". In other words, just as you say......."do something". You won't be given an assignment. This is what helped me when our 19 year old nephew died suddenly of an unknown heart condition in November. So tragic are both cases, but I try to make it my business to bring it up, share memories, etc. I sent them a painting I did of him. Sorry to ramble, but you brought something up that is so important. Remember them, bring it up, and do something! Thank you! Also, I LOVE Paper prayer #35. May be my favorite!

    1. Laurie, your comments touched me in so many ways.

      Thanks for your appreciation of postcard #18—I knew you'd see through to the cross underneath! I'm taking such enjoyment in the cruciform lesson from Jane Davies that now informs new painting adventures.

      Oh, so, so sad to hear of your friend's grandson's death. I hope her son is able to invite conversation so others can offer it up.

      And, oh, so, so sad to hear of your nephew's sudden death in November. What a huge heartbreak, Laurie. I'm so sorry for your family's loss. What a wonderful gift to be able to send a painting of your nephew.

      I am consciously and actively grateful that my family is comfortable talking about my mom.

      I remember vividly when my best friend's mother died when I was 12. We were living overseas at the time but my mom had me write a letter to Betty and directed me to share a memory of her mom in my letter. I was horrified, thinking Betty wouldn't want to have me remind her of her mom's death. What an important gift my mom gave me in teaching me to "do something."

      Love that paper prayer #35 is getting such accolades! Thanks!

  4. Your Mom was obviously a very wise woman!

    1. Thanks, Laurie. Gonna send you an email.

  5. It is always wonderful to cut something up! Especially when they turn out that beautiful like yours!

    1. Cutting up paintings has opened doors for me more than once. I'm so glad I discovered that option! Thanks for your comments and support!