Most summers we go on a week-long family vacation to Lake George in New York State for quality time with my family and fun water activities. This year we planned to spend our vacation week with Joe’s side of the family.
Last week we were supposed to be in West Virginia for a family reunion to celebrate his dad’s 80th birthday. Unfortunately, Pop was reluctant to travel and so the trip was canceled. So instead, we stayed home and enjoyed activities that bring people from other states to sunny Florida.
It took me half the week to forget about work. By Wednesday though, I was weaned off my computers and happily engrossed in a new book. We relaxed on the beach and cooled off in the sparkling turquoise water of the Gulf of Mexico. While there, my husband went fishing on the pier where he caught mackerel and lost his live bait to playful dolphins. We had a picnic and drank iced beer from a cooler. It was wonderful to “get away,” and be rejuvenated by the therapeutic power of the ocean.
Another day we went kayaking in salty mangroves. We saw majestic osprey gliding in the blue sky and a mama manatee and her baby drifting in the warm channel. Our dogs were happy to be included. They love car rides, boating and just being with the family.
To liven up our paradise style vacation, we dressed in bright Hawaiian prints and went out to dinner to an island themed restaurant. We listened to island music, drake sweet cocktails and ate crispy coconut shrimp.
Crafts are a summertime tradition for me. When I was a kid my family and I spent our summers in a tiny cabin nestled deep in the tall pines of the Adirondack mountains. Each year my mom would let me pick out a craft project to pass the time between my friends visits. I continued the craft tradition with my girls, and so we took a trip to the craft store to buy art supplies. We haven’t made the mosaic tray yet, but we have that project to look forward to.
For my craft project I set aside time to draw. I know, I draw all the time. This was different though because it had nothing to do with making glass art and it wasn’t a drawing intended for another medium. I kept it simple. The sketch was the art. And even better, I drew an image from a summertime childhood memory I’ve saved in my mind for years. It’s not done yet, but I can see the finished scene as clearly as if it were already popping off the page.
My creativity didn’t stop there. I also worked on a personal essay I’ve been writing for months. Last week I dedicated time to make it tighter and put a polish on my words. It was a huge accomplishment to finish it, as I plan to submit the essay to a competition in September.
In the kitchen we cooked culinary delights you’d expect to find in gourmet restaurants. We cooked tequila marinated chicken and served it with tangy, homemade mango salsa. Another night we broiled scallops and had crab stuffed mushrooms on the side. My family really enjoyed the new flavorful dishes. I know because everything was gone in minutes.
When was the last time you assembled a jigsaw puzzle? It’s a family vacation thing we do every year. The kids built a round puzzle on the coffee table. The intricate image featured a vibrant underwater scene with tropical reef fish and dolphins. I’m always amazed how much fun it is to find the right piece and lock it in place. Building puzzles is therapeutic. It takes your mind off your problems. Plus, it’s a terrific group activity where all ages can participate and proudly contribute to the finished puzzle.
Our family vacation week wouldn’t be complete without a horse day. We loaded chairs and a cooler into the truck and drove to the barn for my daughter’s lesson. It was hot, but the shade of big oak trees kept us cool and out of the sun. Niki had a productive ride with improvements on every level. After the lesson, Jessie and I had fun playing with the frisky kittens that live there.
Towards the end of the week we enjoyed working in the yard. I weeded the front beds while Joe trimmed the hedges. I’m not sure if Jake, my awesome son-in-law, enjoyed the yard work as much as we did. He pressure washed the driveway and sidewalk. Let me tell you, our driveway is long, and it gets longer when you start to pressure wash. He did a great job. The pavement is now bright and clean. After the yard work we soaked in the hot tub and watched songbirds swing from my bird feeders.
The last day we designated as a relax day. That was the hardest day of all. Sitting around is exhausting for doers like us. I’m glad we forced ourselves to lounge around and chill. In the end, those small changes in routine are what made the week different and special.
At the end of the week my screen time was down 30%. My emails piled up, but that’s okay. Even though we didn’t change states, the change of attitude along with the vacation atmosphere we created relaxed and rejuvenated our spirits. I’m now inspired and excited to start and complete new projects that I’ve been planning.
The lesson I learned is this, don’t underestimate the power of little things to elevate your mood. Make time to nurture yourself. Restructure your days. Find joy in ordinary things and it will improve your perspective and overall well being.
You got this!
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Make a Fused Glass Sink Webinar, August 27, 2020
Creating a stunning dichroic glass sink is easy when you know how!
In this comprehensive Webinar, I’ll guide you step by step through the time-tested processes I use to make large-scale, functional vessels.
You’ll learn safe handling techniques for cutting oversized circles, how to fuse and slump thick pieces to retain consistent bowl height, plus trade-secrets for worry free drilling.
In addition to fabrication know-how, you’ll receive a complete supply list, specifics on kiln requirements, source information for the slumping mold and drill kit, as well as helpful installation tips.
With all the professional tricks revealed, you’ll gain the confidence and knowledge needed to make your own dazzling beauty.
In addition, I’ll demonstrate how to make a glittering dichroic sink. I’ll also show you how to make a cast glass sink from nipped glass pieces, dichroic bits and frit. Plus, you’ll be guided through the various cold-working steps I use to finish the cast glass sink edge to a glamorous, professional, quality polish.
Sculptural Fused Glass, 4-Day, Hands-on Workshop
November 10-13, 2020
Only 1 seat available. Register here
Wesley Chapel, Florida, 4-Day, Hands-on, Class size is limited.
This is the turning-point workshop you’ve been waiting for.
It’s hard to describe what it’s like when I’m feeling the creative flow. Time flies. Hours pass in what I thought were minutes. My naturally distracted mind is focused on what my hands are doing, and nothing else. I get lost in my own world. When I return to reality, I feel rejuvenated and spiritually uplifted. That’s why I like sharing my studio space with others. I try to give them that experience and hope they feel the same inspiration and fulfillment I do. -Lisa
This class is for you! Any skill level can attend. Beginner, intermediate and advanced students alike will learn how to advance their glass fusing skills and expand their artistic style.
Join me and I’ll show you all the pro tips and tricks I use to make stunning 3-dimnesional art. You’ll learn how to combine advanced techniques in new ways to create extraordinary sculptural pieces of art.
You’ll leave class with several completed glass sculptures, my custom firing guides and a deeper understanding of sculptural fused glass fabrication. You’ll have the knowledge, confidence and inspiration you’ve been craving to take your artwork to the next level.
Materials are included, that’s a $150.00 value! Plus, a professional photo shoot of your artwork is also included.
Here’s what the students are saying about the workshop.
“Instruction was clear, help was always available, and Lisa’s explanation of the equipment was great.” -Sherry
“My favorite thing about the class was the friendly atmosphere that encouraged open thoughts and sharing ideas.” -Lyn
“I enjoyed making all the projects, especially the flow piece and the freedom to be creative with our work.” -Joy
“My favorite thing about the class was the ability to see multiple pieces of art that originated from concepts taught.” -Vicki
“Lisa is very professional, knowledgeable and freakishly talented. House, art, mosaic, her work – really fun and beautiful.” -Lorna
“Incredible class. Lisa shared her artistic knowledge of color flow and her technical knowledge of glass.” -Larry
“I had so much fun! Lisa is a great teacher!” -Brenda
Things that surprised the students about the class.
“I was surprised by the photo booth demo-it was very helpful.” -Joy
“I was surprised by the limitless glass we had access to, for our projects.” -Lyn
“The valuable education on glass art photography surprised me.” -Sherry
“I was surprised by the hominess of your hospitality!” -Vicki
Watch it NOW! Start fusing today!
Downloadable instructional videos for every skill level.
Check out my eBooks for elegant patterns and detailed fusing instructions.