Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Feeling My Way Into The New Year

It's been about a month since I last posted here. Christmas has passed. New Years too. I had a lovely holiday...but also a very melancholy one too. Missing my mother so much this year. My sister and I tried to soldier through in our own respective ways. We went through all the family ornaments that had been collected and hung with love each year on moms' tree. It was bittersweet. So much of the way we felt this year could be summed up with that word; which is ironic and sad. The name my parents' gave to their boat was Bittersweet; they said that it was a perfect summation of life: which is both bitter at times and also sweet. Seeing some of those treasured ornaments on my own tree was comforting; so many memories...
But this holiday season was also sad and heartbreaking for us. My little dog, Shelby, went into kidney failure and had to be put to sleep. Our hearts were truly broken. She was our sweet little girl; she and her 'brother' Bailey were adopted into our home 3 years ago from a local Humane Society. At 7 and 8 they were considered senior dogs. Shelby was actually quite sick when we got her. She had a history of bladder stones and, in the time we had her, had to have two surgeries to have them removed. After the first surgery--shortly after we adopted her--it was as if she was having a second puppyhood. Her personality came out; her spark and joy at being a little dog in a loving home. She loved to be contrary and stubborn. She loved to gambol about our huge yard, with Bailey...and sometimes my husband, at her heels. She loved to give the squirrels endless grief. She loved dinnertime and petite carrot treats. She loved to meet other people and dogs. She was a gem. I'm glad we took the chance and got to know this amazing little dog. But I have to admit, I might think twice about taking another dog with an unknown health history. It seems Shelby also had a history of kidney stones and had had a kidney removed some time in her past. We didn't know until she became so sick.
We are considering getting another little dog. Bailey is so melancholy. He lived his entire life with her; he seems kind of lost without her. We are looking into a Shih Tsu rescue organization and the possibility of a younger female. I've been going through pictures and profiles online on Petfinder. Of course they all tug my heartstrings, but I want to make a considered choice and not just an impulsive one. No more heartbreak...if possible. Post Christmas...I have been sick myself. What seemed to start as a typical cold; took root and has had me pretty well laid up for the last week or so. I am only just starting to feel like myself a little bit. These pen and ink drawings were done last week-- Thursday, Friday, Saturday--as a way to distract myself from how bad I was feeling. And as a way to make good on my personal New Years resolution to make or work on some kind of art every day...no matter what.

They are loosely based on the idea of a zentangle, but not really a true zentangle... I think they are very stream of consciousness though. I tried not to think too much about what I was drawing as I was doing them. I love the black and white; the starkness of them.
I am really trying to keep to my resolution.
I should also resolve to be more dutiful in my blog entries.


  1. Sorry to hear about Shelby -- she runs with Artemis now. Glad you're starting to feel a little better now after your cold. And love those psychedelic hands!

  2. Hi Kelly
    I was so sad to read your post today. I'm sorry you had some sad times recently. I lost my mother many years ago, but the holidays always seem to bring back memories of her and the good times as a child. I know your pain will lessen in time and you'll find a smile replaces the tears when you think of her♥
    I'm also so sorry about your sweet pup. That is so hard because they really do become a member of our family, don't they?
    My shepherd turns 6 this year and I know he's heading into his old age too soon. He's still full of spunk and I enjoy him so much.
    I LOVE petfinder and I hope you find just the perfect playmate for Bailey! I had a Shih Tzu for 13 years (Maggie) and she was wonderful! Best of luck for a happy and healthy new year to you and yours♥

  3. :( It really is bittersweet!
    Continue to feel better Lady. I know how hard this past year has been for you. I like your resolution and have considered making a similar one myself! Ya know I love the hands! :)

  4. awwwww bless all of you xxxx and bittersweet is soo tree- life comes with it the good times and the bad- sorry about shellby toox
    you really have had a tough time- i send the biggest hugs and brighter times are on the harizon xxxx lovely to think of your mums decorations on your tree- my nanny and gramps table cloth and glass wear came in handy in my house this christmas- there spirits are always around us xxxx

  5. I am so sad to hear about your sadness. How is it that life can be both so magical and heartbreaking? Your hand drawings are very very interesting. I like them a lot.

  6. Oh, honey, I am so sorry about Shelby! We went through the same thing two Christmases ago and it is so very heartbreaking. Sending a great big hug and lots of love to all of you!! Silke

  7. so sorry and hope you feel better wishing you a good 2010.......... love the hands great details x

  8. Hi Kelly! Sorry to hear that the season brought you heartache. Hopefully the memories you treasure will help you heal. Wishing you a fast recovery!

  9. Hi Kelly, such memories and beautiful people you are missing so dearly. I imagined as you read about opening and placing your mother's orniments on the tree, how you must be feeling through this time. To add on your dear little dog died and how poorly you felt. Bless you so much.
    Your etchings are truly beautiful, my favorite is the houses in it and trees, awesome!
    Hope you have a better months and feel stornger and more refreshed!



    P.s I wanted to thank you for your advise about playing in the snow, I took note and ran through snow in a near by field with my family, making tracks and hearts.

  10. I am so sorry about shelby. you gave ton one another a special moment.
    Take care!