Creature Comfort

I have a huge love for animals. I always have and my family has told me for years “Robin, you have a strange relationship with animals”

So it is! I’ve always had pets growing up from dogs, cats, birds and fish. My parents weren’t fond of animals, especially my mother However, my father would always find a way to bring an animal home to me, complain about the cost of food, fur everywhere or many other complaints, but I would care for those animals deeply and he continued to bring them home through the years.

Nothing has changed as an adult. Currently I have two dogs who are in their senior years and cost me a small fortune of prescription diets and more.

My mother recently said to me after many years of marriage that she was surprised I married my husband. The remark threw me so off guard, I question her about it. She told me with the amount love I had for animals, she was surprised I didn’t marry a farmer. I laughed and stated that farmers had not been interested in me or I would have. She had said I always told her when I was young I wanted to live on a farm. Yet I married a city man.

She does make a point. When we first moved to the Olympic Peninsula, I had to visit the game farm. It was filled with wild animals and yet I was sad to see them being continuously watched by a multitude of people. I captured many images and wish I could have thrown my arms around each animal and told them how much I loved them even though we had just met for the first time.

Art by Robin Moreau

I believe some animals are partnered with us humans for a reason and the bond is more than anyone could ever have in a human relationship. They provide us with comfort and companionship. Hug your furry friends, because deep down they truly love you.

Love Me, Love You

For the past few years, I’ve made it a tradition to paint watercolor Christmas cards for my family. This past Christmas, I was told by many of my family members, mostly from my husband’s side, how they enjoy the uniquely painted cards.

Each card is different and when I started my new job, I decided to paint everyone of my staff a card. It was difficult but honestly after seeing the look of amazement on their faces was worth it.

I dabble in watercolor, it is not my best media, but I enjoy working with it for small things such as cards.

By Robin Moreau

I’m always disappointed after Christmas as it feels as though the color has faded back to another long year of grey matter. I feel this the most when all of the Christmas lights come down. I decided since 2020 has already been a difficult year, I would take my mini paintings to another level and paint cards not only throughout the year for other holidays, but experiment with painting on glass ornaments.

By Robin Moreau

I need some practice, however the methodical movement of carefully holding the ornament and placing each one of those dots was interestingly a stress reliever.

What I realized is the more I love me and practice self care, the more I love you and your happiness means the world to me.

Love, Robin

New Year, Brighter Sparkles

It has been many months since I’ve posted and I plan to change my URL eventually.

Where has this year gone? I feel a sense of disbelief, a sense of longing and sense of accomplishment. After quitting my job as an Administrator, because I DESPISED working from home and my love for managing staff was ripped from my soul as layoffs swallowed my all too little staff.

I think fate arrived at my doorstep knowing the pain and loss I was experiencing and offered me a lead position with a need for direction. I have never been so humbled.

Four weeks in and I’m finally feeling at home. With the vacant holidays, my mind has been wandering to increase the joy in others through my talents and quirky ways of art.

I’m not a believer of New Year’s resolutions, but I will say 2021 I have a list longer than the days. It is my goal to brighten this dim world, one person at a time.

Image by Robin Moreau

Dingo in Disguise

You are altogether beautiful, my darling; there is no flaw in you.

Song of Songs 4:7

In November of last year, my daughter moved out. She is my baby and it was the hardest moment a mother could ever endure. Although I have worried and protected her, her whole life, the time came when worry was the only thing left for me to do.

Trying not to be overly motherly, my only request was that she texted me at least once a week so I knew she was alive. She was moving to the big city and I cringed at the thought of, well….EVERYTHING!

I am proud of her. She was offered a good job, one that would potentially grow and her talents will flourish.

Then one night she texted me. She was upset because things weren’t working out with her roommates. I had never lived with roommates, therefore I didn’t know what she was going through.

Rather than vomit all of the thoughts and fears I initially had of this big move, I just encouraged her to be strong, not to make any harsh decisions and told her how proud I was of her.

Although she is still living with her roommates and it is not the best situation for her, she continues to persevere.

Then she brought a puppy home.

I told my husband that was the last thing she needed. Something that will cost her money, that will be a lot of work, and I hope she is prepared for this.

Then she sent me a picture. Oh my goodness! That poor little pup was not the prettiest….putting it lightly. Poor thing has oversized ears and brindle in color with stripes and patches going every which way. His name is Bear but honestly looks more like a dingo than a bear. A face only a mother could love.

Bear is actually a blessing in disguise. He has brought my daughter more comfort in these unpredictable times and they are inseparable.

I felt ashamed for thinking this pup wouldn’t bring joy to her life. She sends pictures of him to me and the radar sized ears are kind of growing on me. I just had to draw him which I’m afraid made him uglier than ever. But Bear makes her happy and this is all I could ask for.

Art by Robin Moreau

Sometimes we are quick to judge the choices others make in their lives. I know I am guilty of this. However sometimes those decisions create a path that open other opportunities. It is those opportunities that bring us the most joy.

You, therefore, have no excuse, you who pass on someone else, for at whatever point you judge another, you are condemning yourself, because you who pass judgment do the same things.

Romans 2:1

It’s Okay to Love Yourself

Do everything in love

1 Corinthians 16:14

I had forgotten how much joy fresh flowers bring to me! I bought a bouquet the other day because I was feeling down and needed a pick-me-up.

Show yourself love, as you would love others. Don’t forget about you in the hustle of the daily grind.

Bloom Big, My Love

“Flowers appear on the earth; the season of singing has come”

Song of Songs, 2:12

With the hate and confusion of multiple tragedies going on in the world, I turn to prayer and the beauty of my rhododendrons.

How could one not stop and enjoy the beauty of what God brings us and become one with our senses of sight and smell?

Right now, our rhododendrons are in full bloom. I love these flowers so much, our home is surrounded by them. I cannot even begin to tell you how much joy these flowers bring me. Right before they bloom, the anticipation is immense! Similar to a child the night before Christmas, I am consistently checking the blooms, patiently waiting for their tiny petals to open wide for the my enjoyment.

I once told a colleague I was a tree hugger. She laughed and I said I was serious. I told her I meticulously care for my trees and plants, cutting off any dead branches that may be robbing the plant of nutrients. I talk to my plants and tell them how beautiful they are. I thank God for their beauty. It may sound crazy, but I almost bet my plants and trees hear me! They are that beautiful, as though it makes them proud with my compliments.

Lately I am obsessed with trying to capture their beauty. It is good for my art practice, provides me with a form of meditation and peace while shutting out all of the negativity in the world. It captures a perfect moment of beauty that I can enjoy until they bloom again.

Art by Robin Moreau

With love,

Robin

A Little Sunshine

My colleague brought me an array of gorgeous spring flowers last week. I was struck by the kindness of this because it was completely unexpected.

As I was sitting in my office, she popped in and set the flowers on the desk. The conversation went like this:

I said to her, “oh pretty!”

“Those are for you!” She said.

“Wait, what? Why?” I had asked with surprise.

“Because you are so wonderful!” She replied.

“What? Why?” Again to my surprise, I called out to her as she walked to her office. She didn’t reply.

I yelled out so she could hear me, “THANK YOU!“

“YOU’RE WELCOME!” she called back.

A sweet gesture with no given reason. I hadn’t done anything special.

I brought my flowers home to enjoy them on my patio. I tried to capture the yellow pansies as the rain had come and gone so much that week, I had to draw them and bring the sunshine of those happy flowers indoors.

Image by Robin Moreau

I hope there is someone in your life that brings sunshine to your day. We all need a dose of sunshine in our lives!

With love,

Robin

Wonderful World

“God made all kinds of trees that grow out of the ground – trees that were pleasing to the eye” Genesis 2:9

Life is beautiful!

I’m struck by the beauty of Spring. The other evening, my husband took me to the local Home Depot to look at trees. I wanted a Japanese Maple to plant outside my art studio window. Another sanctuary I was hoping to create.

As we walked around, I saw a Dogwood. Oh the beauty of this tree! I couldn’t make up my mind now! We left Home Depot empty handed.

The next morning, over coffee, my husband said to me, “did you think about what tree you wanted?” I sat there a moment and then sheepishly said “both”. I knew the answer would be no. He never said anything, but changed the subject to some pavers he had seen.

We went back to Home Depot later that morning and he asked again what maple I wanted. Then he said to pick out a Dogwood, then he said he wanted an additional Dogwood!

I was so excited I could hardly contain myself! Three trees!

Image by Robin Moreau

Last night I dug a hole for my maple. Earlier my husband had planted the other two. The maple was going to be much harder, as that side of the yard had been neglected. Once I start a project I don’t know when to quit! I had to pull at the least, 10 feet of weeds and prepare the ground. Needless to say, this 46 year old body is unbelievably sore this morning!

There is still much too do, but when I am finished, this will be our little have and the view from my studio will create a peace I have been eagerly waiting for. As it fills in and has new growth, I will be surround by God’s beauty as the birds will enjoy their new playground.

With love,

Robin

Not My Father’s Potato Pancakes

Oh, how I miss my father’s potato pancakes! This man made many wonderful foods when we were growing up. If only I could turn back time.

A short list of my favorites were:

Potato pancakes, shortbread cookies, hash browns, peanut butter and cheese sandwiches.

I know you may be thinking, these foods are so simple, what’s the big deal? Well, food allergies. That’s the big deal.

However, I have substituted certain ingredients and it’s simply not the same, unfortunately. I have mastered his hash browns to the perfect crispy consistency throughout. This morning I attempted potato pancakes from leftovers. I can’t have eggs, nor regular flour. However I did have patience and I needed it! A quarter cup of rice flour, a hot oiled pan and a big prayer for patience.

Just as in 2 Chronicles 15:7, “But as for you, be strong and do not give up, for your work will be rewarded”.

I have been trying to master my father’s potato pancakes for years but they never turned out. This morning was different. Despite the ingredients not being the same, I was patient. And it paid off. They weren’t perfect, and they were thinner than his, but in that very moment, the color is what captured the essence of my father. Perfectly golden brown. I know he looked over me and smiled. I could have cried. I did cry!

Just remember, never give up no matter what you are striving for! Remember God and practice patience because you will be rewarded.

Image by Robin Moreau

And they were delicious!

With love,

Robin