Totem Animal: Turkey

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Today is the day to honor the turkey. I am happy with how this piece turned out. I used prismacolor markers along with colored pencils on this one. I think it turned out a lot better than my past totems. The colors pop and the shading was easier to accomplish. I’m surprised it took me this long to incorporate my markers. I am going to start using them with all my pieces from now on.

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Turkey Symbolism

The turkey is a huge symbol for connecting with nature. It is known as the Earth Eagle. The males have fleshy growths that hang over their beak called “snoods” that they use when challenging other males. This “snood” represents for the third eye. It is time to open our own third eye. Mother Earth will share her wisdom and guidance. Turkeys are a symbol of the harvest and using the land properly to nourish ourselves. Turkeys live in large groups representing abundance. They live full lives with full bellies and we should be doing the same along side our family.

It can be easy to get lost in the materialistic battle to “get ahead” but it is time to stop thinking that way. It is not about how much stuff you have but rather how many lives you have touched. Instead of focusing on personal gain and keeping everything to ourselves, we must share what we have with others. We shouldn’t be greedy but instead have an open heart and be sure that everyone is taken care of. 

The turkey is a powerful symbol for Thanksgiving. They are the biggest teacher of self sacrifice and giving. The turkey sacrifices it’s life to feed us. We must show respect for the turkey. We should be willing to make sacrifices, as well, to help others in need.

Let us remember to give this Thanksgiving and help anyone who may need it. The holidays can be difficult for many. It is important to look out for each other. Give away!

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Thanks for stopping by today. I hope you have a lovely time with your family and get stuffed with yummy food! What is your favorite Thanksgiving food? Let us know in the comments below. If it’s turkey, remember to show your respect.

Until next time,

“When we give cheerfully and accept gratefully, everyone is blessed.”

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Sources:
Animal Speak by Ted Andrews
Medicine Cards by Jamie Sams & David Carson
Ending quote by Maya Angelou

 

 

 

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Updates from the Road

Hey All!

We’re having a blast in Ohio. My parents, son and I took the boat out on Lake Erie this past Wednesday. We caught a bunch of perch and fried them up the next day for a fish fry with my brother’s family. The kids went swimming in the pool and we hung out with the horses for a bit.

Today we are exploring Grand Rapids, OH and later a bike ride at Oak Openings Nature preserve in Swanton, OH.

Then, tomorrow we begin the long drive home. I have many photos to go through and share, to include my daily photos. I’ll be working diligently when I get back to get all these photos posted! I can also get back on track with my totem animal drawings and their symbolism. I have a few photos of the wildlife in the area as well, mostly aviary. Perhaps one of them will inspire my next piece.

Check in next week to see the adventures!

Until next time,

“Adventure is out there!”

Photo Journal: Kayaking at Round Lake

I tried out my new kayak the other weekend at Round Lake, NY. It was a beautiful area, especially following down Anthony Kill (Tenandaho Creek). There was an abundance of water lilies and dragonflies as well as other marshland critters. The air was cool and the sun was shining. We kayaked all the way around the lake, down the creek and back. It was a total of about 5-6 miles and we sure felt it afterwards! It was worth it though and still very relaxing.

It’s definitely a place I would visit again. Thanks for stopping by this week! Do you have any favorite spots for kayaking? Share a comment below. I would love to check out some new places!

Until next,

“The rainstorm and the river are my brothers.”
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Travel to: Fort Hardy Park

I enjoy taking my son to different parks and playgrounds at various locations. We like to adventure and see new places. One park that he enjoys is one we visit often, Fort Hardy Park. It has a playground, baseball fields, basketball courts, and not to mention various events throughout the year that are held by the town of Schuylerville. It’s a quaint and peaceful park for any family to enjoy.

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Although, it wasn’t always a beautiful, serene atmosphere. In fact, it is the very site where the British surrendered to the Americans after the Battle of Saratoga.

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British General John Burgoyne attacked the American troops on October 7, 1777. Although he hailed a minor victory weeks prior to this attack, he was over confident in his depleted troops and was forced to retreat. The British suffered 600 casualties whereas the Americans lost 150. Ten days later, the British General surrendered to Horatio Gates and Benedict Arnold, the Generals who led the Americans during the battle. This became a major turning point in the Revolutionary War and was the deciding factor for the French government’s alliance.

It’s amazing the history that scatters the globe. Where good men have died, children can now play. Where troops marched along the river to prepare for battle, people now gather to watch parades go by.  Where forces invaded and tried to overtake us, we now live peacefully side by side as neighbors.

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It’s a little late for Veteran’s Day and a little early for Thanksgiving but this post ties into both. So many men and women have made the ultimate sacrifice to ensure that I can live freely with my family and I am eternally grateful.

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Are there any parks you visit that have a bit of history? Share your story in the comments below. Thanks for checking in this week!

Until next time,

“As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter the words, but to live by them.”  ~John F. Kennedy

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sources: History.com , HistoryPlace.com

 

Travel to: The Hyde Collection

Thanks to a dear friend, I had the opportunity to check out a wonderful art museum located in Glens Falls, NY. The Hyde Collection was dedicated to the community in 1952 by Charlotte Pruyn Hyde. She was born into wealth, her father being the sole owner to the paper manufacturing company, Finch, Pruyn & Company. Charlotte married a young law student, Louis Hyde, who was convinced by her father to join the family business and eventually become vice president of the paper mill. The family, to include Charlotte’s two sisters, commissioned an architect to create three houses on adjoined properties for them to reside and overlook the Hudson River. These buildings now encompass the Hyde Collection.

Over the next few decades they collected works from their favorite dealers in New York and from frequent summer trips to Europe.

The museum is broken down into three sections. One of which being an educational wing for art classes, seminars, and other related events.

The Hyde Gallery, you can guess, is where the art shows are held. The current show is “Transforming the Hyde: The Feibes and Schmitt Gift. There is also an exhibition going on until December displaying the works of artists from the Mohawk Hudson region. There was many great pieces that took my breath away. There were also many works that made my lip curl. I definitely recommend having a look for yourself and seeing what you like…but no cameras!

The Hyde House is set in a home environment with bookshelves, antique furniture, priceless art hanging from the walls, tapestries, busts, statues, a grand piano…I mean, it just keeps going. This place was gorgeous. There was a great room with a high glass ceiling. Even the architecture was historical art. It was fantastically overwhelming. Luckily, I was able to take pictures here although I only had my phone available.

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I brought a small sketchbook with me as well so I could sketch some of my favorite pieces. I could not pass up sketching an original Picasso. I could literally get close enough to touch my nose to it. It was called, “The Boy With the Blue Vase”. You can learn so much from concentrating on the details of a master’s work. I also came across a Greek statue from 4th century B.C. called “Mourning Woman”. The head and one of the arms had broken off. I feel like it added even more to the emotion of the piece. The figure clutched a piece of cloth in the hand that was left, perhaps the remaining piece of whom or what she lost. She was draped down to the toe in a heavy blanket-like material. The sorrow literally hung from her. It was a very moving piece.

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Hyde Collection. It really made for a great day for my artist self. I also discovered that it is free to the public the second Sunday of every month. I have a feeling I’m going to be sketching there more often.

I hope you enjoyed taking a peek into the Hyde House. Have you been to an art museum or exhibit recently? Which place is your favorite to go to? Share your story below in the comments! Thanks for stopping by this week!

Until next time,

“Look beyond the paint. Let us try to open our minds to a new idea.”

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Travel to: The Palace Theater

Last week, I was finally able to visit the Palace Theater in Albany, NY. I’ve heard many people talk highly of it and I had an opportunity to check it out for myself.

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For my husband’s birthday, I got him tickets to a Rob Zombie concert. It was a great show
and we had a blast.

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The theater was amazing! It was ginormous! It was built during the depression in 1931 and was the largest theater in the city. It still has the old fashioned architecture which is a marvel to look at. There were paintings throughout the theater that were stunning as well.

I didn’t have an opportunity to photograph the outside, unfortunately. Being that it was a big name concert, professional photography gear was not permitted inside so I could only use my phone to take pictures. I’m glad I could at least get these photos though!

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I hope you enjoyed this sneak peek into the Palace Theater. If you’ve never been there, I am now one of those people that highly recommends it.

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Rob Zombie put on an amazing show! Honestly, it was the best concert I’ve ever been to. What’s the best concert you’ve been to and where was it held? Share your story below in the comments!

Until next time,

“Now raise your goblet of rock. It’s a toast to those who rock!”

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Travel to: Saratoga Monument

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Atop the tallest hill in the area of Old Saratoga (Schuylerville, NY), sits the Saratoga Monument. The obelisk reaches for the clouds at a towering 155 ft! What is this monstrosity doing in a tiny town, you ask? It’s to commemorate the American victory of the Battle of Saratoga, during the Revolutionary War. This area is rich with history and the Battle of Saratoga is said to be one of the most important battles within the last 1000 years.

The monument was not built after the battle in 1777 but rather a hundred years later from 1877- 1882. A group of citizens banded together and after acquiring the plot of land, built the monument to commemorate the American victory and to teach and remind people of the American Revolution.

On each side of the monument, resides a statue honoring the generals that had a great influence on the war. Facing north is General Heratio Gates, to the west General Daniel Morgan and to the east General Philip Schuyler facing the direction of his home (another historical site I will explore and share at a later date). But wait, that was only three statues. Facing south is an empty niche recognizing the leadership of Benedict Arnold.

There is a staircase that leads all the way to the top of the tower. I have yet to check out this feature but hopefully soon I will be able to see it for myself and share my photos with you!

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I hope you enjoyed my mini tour of Saratoga Monument. There is much more to learn and see. If you are ever in the area, prepare for a history lesson!

On a side note, a few weeks ago was the Turning Point Parade to honor those who fought in the Revolutionary War. This is an annual event and another reason to visit Old Saratoga.

Thanks for reading! I hope you enjoyed learning a bit of American history. Have anything to add? Leave a comment below!

Until next time,

“Aim small, miss small.”

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This isn’t how you leave your mark in history. Please don’t vandalize!

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Sources: www.revolutionaryday.com , www.nps.gov