A random babbling on creative spirits-

Random babbling on the creative spirit~painting, sewing, baking, boys, an irresistable God and the next 200 feet~

Sunday, November 29, 2009

telling stories

I love words. Letters really. I like to feel how they form as I scribe them in journals. I like to see them in assorted handwritings on papers of all kinds. I like to hear how they come together to form different sounds.
I love to use words; in my artwork to lead into a story. In my journal to take me through questions and on to a resolution. In my blog to share who I am with whomever decides to check it out.
But I've come to realize that words can come together to tell stories that don't always do good. These stories are told to ourselves, in our heads, and often times, no, most of the time, lead us into verse that is terribly misdirected and does more harm than good.
Planted from an encounter, watered with associations from the past and fertilized by our own fears and insecurities, these stories can grow to become a reality stronger and more real than the one standing in front of us.
What a foolish waste of a beautiful thing! For more often than not the only thing grows from these are heartache, loss and pain. That and an opportunity to learn.
If one is honest to what they are doing-watering a thorn bush rather than an oak tree-fess up to this and release determination to be right in it-to hold onto this story for prides sake even in the midst of contrary elements-one gets to learn. And to grow. And to become better and stronger.
For me it means becoming better at being the soul I was created to be: To walk the talk He planted in my heart. Whatever your analogy, in the end, to be able to embrace the growth opportunity-let go of the selfishness in it and to open your heart to what is in front of you, the stories will lose their appeal. They will grow more faint, carry less verbage and eventually fall away. Which leaves room for other things to fill in its place~
Grace. Abounding love. Getting to live the true definition of happiness. in love. trish.

Saturday, November 28, 2009


Join me in Pheonix in august! You heard me right...Pheonix....August! Three workshops to choose from~can't wait to experience this venue!

Thursday, November 26, 2009


I became my prayer. in love. trish.


Back in July I blogged about not being ready: That my life was at a place that simply couldn't accommodate a romantic relationship-a partner to walk with in mutual, balanced need and understanding (july 31st). I felt I'd been trying, and failing, with great success :)-so I needed to step away and just be me alone for awhile.
I set a sort of challenge, I must confess, at the end of the entry. Not one I truly believed in or thought would come to pass though. It was with a kind of 'oh, please!' thinking that I wrote those final words.
All I can say now is careful what you wish for.... :)

I met someone in the fresh, exposed being of my summer. The sheer stripped down sense of myself that I became and lived in this summer laid me open and left room to draw in those things that would most suit this authentic self. It makes sense then that this someone would show up in the midst of my raw exposure. If not now, at this most pure-self time, then when?!
Each time we meet this person pulls more Me from the deep caverns of me. He causes me to see, feel and think of things differently than I have ever before. By simply being who he is he has made my dream come true; to find someone to walk alongside in complete trust and connection. What's more he lifts and makes lighter what I imagined to be my heart-hardening burdens so that they feel more like treasured totems to be carried in my pocket. This meeting has growns me and propels me further and faster along my path than I ever thought possible.

This relationship comes to me right now to not only fill the void of my laid open exposure, but to fulfill a promise of grace-in having faith. I now see that always holding onto faith in the little things as well as the big things brought about this grace filled gift. Faith that my miles away boys will flourish and thrive. Faith that my choice to not fight for their remaining with me is the right thing. Faith that their father will live up to his primary position of father. Faith that Patrick will grow in his relationships and not suffer the lack of a sibling at hand. Faith that my career will keep moving, my heart remain open, my trust grow indivisible. So much faith to hold onto and seek graciousness in, but so small too: For God's plans for me are so much more grand than even my most fantastic dreams for myself.
So I welcome, more than ever, with open heart and open arms like never before, the splendor of this one rich relationship in the moments right now. And I keep my eyes open to the illumination of the next 200 feet and feel the warmth of it as we choose to walk forward together. Stick around-the future looks bright and beautiful from here! in love. trish.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

tar baby

I can't leave the hardware store alone :)
It's been done before: there are a lot of encaustic/tar artists out there, but this is new to me! I played in tar many months ago and didn't really like the results. Then I have a revelation~now I'm hooked and eating it up....okay, maybe not eating it....! in love. trish.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

have you signed up yet?!

Artfest happens in March this year-are you coming!? This fantastic multi-day adventure in art is held in Port Townsend, Washington and I have the privilege of teaching encaustic all three days of the extravaganza!
Check out all the great workshops still available and make sure you come say 'HI' to me when you are there :) in love. trish.

Monday, November 16, 2009

let them help!

I'm learning to ask for help-slowly turning to one who cares about me and asking for assistance when I need it. Man! It's hard!!! I've grown so independent-so self reliant over the last two decades that I'm no longer sure of how to ask for, let alone accept, help. But I'm working on it! The benefits are abounding and I know the ability to accept care will multiply my well being, sense of self and internal peace. It will alleviate stress, reduce anxiety and grow appreciation. All benefits as I see it! It's been so difficult in the past-deciding that it was just easier to do it all myself instead of having to deal with what I ran up against as the alternative.
Coming back to a way of life and living that includes accepting care is more difficult than any other step to wholeness I've walked. It's hard to let go of this kind of control! There's just something about releasing the hold I've had on myself that has been tremendously frightening and somewhat debilitating.
I really have never learned the art of receiving: Shoot, I've never had a 'real' massage, have felt terribly guilty the few times I've had a manicure and didn't even do the 'salon indulgence' for my own wedding! Why is it so hard to receive graciously!? Duly note-I would've been paying all of these 'receipts' at that!
Maybe because for so many years it wasn't 'receiving' it was 'taking' and it always cost me something. My heart is rooted in giving and caring; but these tendencies were mixed up until confusion and doubt ran rough shot over my own natural instincts. I learned to doubt myself and yet build a shell of protection as well. Accepting assistance or care became a hazard instead of a helpmate and the blessing it should be.
But people can learn and grow and heal. We are amazing creatures. Without vindication, tit for tat expectations, placing blame or pointing fingers we can choose to strengthen and grow into healthful living. So I chose. And now I'm trying to adapt to this choice! I'm trying to move further into this concept of asking and receiving. To reap the benefits of having someone care for me. To trust in another being to not trod on my heart :) To throw some more caution to the wind and believe that I wont have to pick myself up because there's going to always be someone to offer a loving hand. Unconditional generosity exists: It's come to me for years from my dad. Now it is time to trust in it from someone who doesn't love me based on the fact of birth :)
I'm throwing off old notions of independence and freedom and embracing the true freedom in caring and sharing with someone else. This means believing in what's in front of me instead of bracing myself for the moment it starts to taste like flavors of the past. Letting someone care for me and help me means releasing a lifelong hold and embracing trust in someone else. And in this I am discovering unbound freedom and joy. Imagine that....in love. trish.

'Opening the heart is like inviting someone in for tea and secretly hoping they don't break anything :)'

Friday, November 13, 2009

new workshop venue added!

Newly added! Catch me in April at Artiscape in Columbus, Ohio! A new venue for me, and a great opportunity to experience a new arena of encaustic enthusiasts~
Not only am I excited about this opportunity to delve into a new workshop format and an all new venue, but I have been asked to be one of five presenters at the opening night gala. Wow! I intend to give it my all and feed the fever for encaustic in this weekend of indulgent art!

Also just added, a second venue with two workshops in Texas! I am already in the Dallas area January 28-30 and now have added San Antonio! February 4 and 5 and then another Febraury 6 and 7. Two inter/adv workshops to choose from or indulge in both! michelle@michellebelto.com
in love. trish.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

rejection...but not mine!

Daniel called me Saturday. Michigan State University turned down his application. He called not only to inform me of this, but to brainstorm ideas and get my opinion on how to proceed. In other words, he hasn't given up hope! The tone of his voice was light and eager: If I hadn't heard him say the contrary, I would've thought he'd been accepted!
It broke my heart to realize he was experiencing this rejection and I couldn't take it from him. I'm starting to see that this will last my lifetime-feeling pain for my children and wanting to carry it for them. They'll be 60 years old-I'll be in a bungalow with my cats and paint brushes- and I'll still want to pull their pain and disappointment from them and carry it myself!
Yet, Daniel is proving beautifully resilient and quite fine without my arms to carry him~
Perhaps this resilience and positive, forward looking mentality is my carrying him. If we are to look at our children and assess from where personality traits are born, Daniel's positive attitude would be attributed to my gene pool. His ability to look through loss to opportunity is grown from the Baldwin part of his brain power! So in this perhaps I can say I am carrying his pain-helping him to move through the disappointment. Some of the best things in my life have grown from loss and rejection. They have not ended in the pain of them, they've thrived in the potential they create for growth in new opportunities.
And now it's time for my children to make these realizations and grow from their own pain. I pray I have been the model in which they can identify peace and opportunity in their difficulties. Even a little excitement in it; knowing that the rejection is just making room for something bigger. As it has been for me. Always look forward Daniel! in love. trish
earth is crammed with heaven.

Monday, November 9, 2009


Brian's football banquet was last Tuesday night. I got report of it the next morning via a text. Hurray and congratulations are in order as he lettered-and even more wonderful, was awarded 'most improved player' by his peers. What a blessing~
I will extol the greatness of this achievement to him when I call this weekend. He will poo poo it and make it seem it is no big deal. But it is~he moved to Michigan with the primary intent of growing his football career so that it might take him to MSU-maybe even on a scholarship ride. So, he is doing amazing things. And he deserves the kudos coming his way! So, kudos my baby! Enjoy the spot light and keep up the great work :)
And to me? All you mothers out there, can you feel what this did to me? Bittersweet, aching heart, fighting back tears of pride and longing. Yea, something like that......!
I never made it out to a game; life just happens sometimes. I don't have any anxiety or disappointment in this~I got to see some great photos-thanks to Daniel!-and heard the results of the game each weekend. I trust that he is thriving in his life there due to these achievements and recognitions-that and the grades I get updates on via teachers' emails! :) Yet, sometimes that's a lot of trust for a mom to put out there and rely on solely. I get caught in the pain of it and feel myself gripping and clenching the ache for him when events like the banquet occur. It can hold me for hours; sometimes for days. This one kept me clenched for a day. Okay, a day and a half. :) I think I've let it go completely now, but boy it socked me at the onset!
Bottom line though, I let it go. Did I just resign myself to it and say 'oh well that's how it goes' and move on? Did I lie in bed and feel sorry for myself over what I have lost in this? Did I weep in anguish from the heart pain of wanting to hold him?! (okay, I did a bit of that :)
No. I relaxed. I turned to listen~To my heart. To my soul. To my insticts. No more listening to my mind. It is the evil stepsister of joy and happiness! I went quiet and listened; gave thanks for what I have, sent praise up for all that the boys are achieving, looked for the lesson and the grace of accepting things just as they are. Life moves much more easily when I get quiet and listen this way, I've found. I can not control what comes and goes; what happens and doesn't happen-not in my life and most assuredly not in my children's lives. I guess you can see that while I definitely have feelings of loss, pain and still sometimes want to grippingly control things, in the end (and thankfully each 'end' comes more and more rapidly now a days!) I can let these feelings go and rest in the peace of knowing someone better, much, much better, is taking care of my children. Is taking care of me. Is setting the stage and building the foundation for things beyond today and today's pain. I can let it go and trust, love and jump into life~and have faith that my children are jumping in as well. in love. trish.

Friday, November 6, 2009


I was baptized this past weekend. I never expected to say that in my lifetime. Even a year ago, when I sensed I was moving along a more spiritual path and looking back, could see that I was coming up against undeniable needs for this growth, I wouldn't have predicted baptism in my future.
I was raised in the Catholic church. CCD once a week, regular confession, the memorized routine of it. To this I was baptized as an infant. Without question I followed this design because it was what I was born into and what one just did. Many embace this church but it never spoke to me. I did not find God in the Catholic church.

A few years ago I began to see that I was doing everything in my life as if I were a lemming: No thought-just forward motion, one foot in front of the other where ever the person leading me chose. My years, months, weeks, days and hours were managed by the laws of 'supposed to' and 'shoulds' of someone else's design. The choices I was making were solely based on the rightness of them by society, institution and spoken and unspoken familial expectations. I locked myself into such a routine of preset rules and guidelines that I could no longer feel the warm spark of my God given passion and intuition. There was nary a whisper of the voice within that would guide me more surely than any external force along my unique path. The ability to listen, or to hear, was squelched for many reasons-the choice to retune the dials to my own frequency was my own obligation.
While this retune is not to me credited alone, situations and forces stronger than my own will would not let me mute the station any longer; I had to make the choice to hear the song.
So I began to listen. I chose to begin to listen. Huge, life altering changes took place that I couldn't have predicted as I began walking to my own tune. And not just once at the get go did this happen, but several times~each change bringing me closer, deeper and more trustingly in tune to what is for me in this life.
And the latest of these changes was to be pulled to God. No, make that yanked-square in your face-see what is here waiting for you-slammed up side the head-pulled to God. I got baptized. It started with a small creeping in of spirituality. A denial, really, that what I was searching for was God based. I looked to the universe; to yoga and meditation and women's groups. I opened books on all kinds of spiritual paths seeking a connection that would call to my heart. But I wasn't finding it. I needed to break apart just a little bit more for my spirit to let my real need speak and find a resting place.
And so this summer I broke. I didn't know it at the time; didn't completely recognize all that was happening to me as it happened. But I definitely broke. And on the other side of that breaking, God waited. A desperate, connected, faithfilled trusting comfort waited. A tune I'd never been able to hear before was playing. I jumped in. If you ask my sister, I tend to do that-jump in. There is no dipping the toe in to test the water, slowly stepping down into the depth-no I jump. And now, I've jumped into this pond. This healthy, honest, true to myself pond. One that is opening doors, filling in question marks and throwing opportunities into my sites. The water is just right. I'm going to stay and swim here for a lifetime or so. Hang out and come along for the ride!~in love. trish.

Monday, November 2, 2009

sammies for dinner rock!

My sister made this for her family and came away drooling. If my brother in law liked it, I figured I should give it a try! :) Except for missing the step of adding balsamic vinegar to the tomatoes, which would've caramelized them in the oven-yum!-it was scrumptious! My dinner guest and I agreed it was a do over~in love. trish.
Hearty Chicken Sandwiches with Roasted Cherry Tomatoes
4C chicken shredded from a rotisserie or roast chicken
1 T+2 t olive oil
2C halved cherry tomatoes
2 T + 1 t balsamic vinegar
1T chopped fresh thyme
1/4 c low fat mayo
1 T whole grain dijon mustard
1 clove garlic, minced (i roasted mine first-yummier!)
2 C lightly packed baby spinach
6 focaccia rolls (couldn't find any in time-used sub buns :)
3 oz brie, at room temperature and sliced
Heat 1 T olive oil in skillet and add tomatoes. Cook until they begin to soften; 4 minutes. Remove from heat and add 2T vinegar. Sprinkle with thyme and salt and pepper to taste. Put into 3oo degree oven and roast until aromatic-15 minutes. Remove from oven and cover in foil to keep warm.
Meanwhile combine mayo, mustard and garlic in a small bowl. In a large bowl whisk 2 t olive oil, 1 t vinegar and salt and pepper to taste. Add the spinach and toss gently to coat.
Preheat the broiler. Spilt the rolls and place them on a baking sheet-cut side up. Brush with olive oil and place under broiler until toasted, about 2 minutes.
Spread mayo mixture over cut sides of focaccia. Arrange brie on one bottom half of each roll. Top with chicken. Toss tomatoes into spinach and scoop onto chicken. Replace top half and serve with some luscious wine~and napkins!