Time to Paint

Post by Carina Spring.

It’s been a lovely Mother’s Day weekend. Aside from lots of time with my family, and a delicious supper prepared by my husband and son, Saturday also included plenty of time for creative work.

This Saturday I decided to paint.  What a treat!  I would like to do that more often.

I love the beginnings of paintings, so full of potential.


There are points in the life of a painting, especially one that is largely developed from the imagination, when you have to decide whether to stop or continue. Is it finished?


With this painting, I decided to continue. Maybe I should have called it done at the stage illustrated in the second photo (above), because I really liked how it looked and kind of miss it now.

Somehow, though, it didn’t feel finished, so I continued. I suppose that is part of the learning.


The third picture above is where I stopped painting.   I am not satisfied with it yet, so I know it’s not finished.  It’s time to step back and get a bit of distance from it in order to understand what it needs next.

How I would love to paint every day! Knowing that I would be painting again the next day would help me approach each painting as an experiment- an evolving part of a larger process.

But painting is a very consuming activity, so it is challenging to do when one has a career.  It takes focus and energy that I also need to devote to other aspects of my life. It is even harder when one feels pulled toward various creative outlets: I long to write, and blog, and draw and paint.  I don’t want to – or perhaps just can’t –  choose between these forms of expression.

As I reflect on the past year, I am somewhat encouraged. I have completed several larger drawings, and quite a few small, fun paintings. Little by little, I am finding ways of making visual art a satisfying part of my life.

It takes so much patience, though!!

About the painting…

Images of birds often find their way into my art, and I am sure that is due to childhood experiences that imprinted themselves into the stories that weave through the tapestry of my life.

This painting was loosely inspired by a photograph from a book, as a starting point, but was mostly developed through my imagination.

Though I prefer oils, I worked in acrylics in order to avoid the fumes.


What a great weekend!  Today is Mother’s Day and is also my aunt’s birthday, so we invited my mom, aunt, and cousin over for lunch. My husband made quiches, and we all relaxed and enjoyed a few hours together.

Happy Mother’s Day!

The Shapes in Our Clouds

“Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.”

~Pablo Picasso

I was over at thecreativitycauldron.com for Wordless Wednesday.  There was a simple snapshot of a landscape with a caption that read, “May I never get too old to enjoy finding pictures in the clouds.”

Using it as a prompt, I did a quick, child-like drawing with a few colour markers. As the blue that I used for the sky intuitively found it’s way to the land, I thought, “and may those pictures we see in the clouds add colour and wonder to our everyday life.”


In 15 Minutes

Post by Carina Spring.

What do you really want to do?  What activity really taps into who you are?  It’s odd how, sometimes, that is the activity we most resist, and can’t seem to find time to do.

I struggle with making time to draw.  It shouldn’t be that big a deal or that hard to do, but, lately, I always seem to have a good reason why I can’t get to it. So today, when I got home from work, I set my timer to 15 minutes, opened a book, and simply started to draw. I tend to draw from my imagination, but I thought I would benefit from some old-school representational drawing practice.

I took a snap-shot of my 15 minute drawing using my cell-phone camera (see above – graphite pencil – no editing). The drawing is unfinished, and I will leave it that way.  My goal today was not to create a perfect drawing, but rather to start drawing again, to develop the core skills.

What about you?  What would you like to set a 15 minute timer for today?


Series: Can A Song Connect You to Home? Today: Chuck Mangione

The picture above was used with permission: http://www.aliciaandneilphotography.com/

Do You Have A Special Song?

“What song makes you think of home? It doesn’t have to literally be about home. Just a song that somehow embodies the concept for you, or makes you feel at home in some way”.

Just for fun, since we are in February, the month of Valentine’s Day, I decided to ask one of my best friends the question above.

We’ve been friends since university.  She is smart, hilarious, and looks remarkably like Audrey Hepburn.  Lucky her!

This was her decisive answer:

“Feels So Good, by Chuck Mangione”.

This instrumental piece reminds my friend of her childhood on the Canadian west coast in Vancouver. It conjures that feeling she loves of experiencing nature in a lively urban setting, and images of the beach, the ocean and the mountains.

“To me, home is more than just being in a house. I feel at home when I am outdoors, in nature.”

What do you think?  Is there a song that connects you to home?  Feel free to leave a comment.



My friend didn’t yet know about my blog when I asked her the above question, so I had to smile when I thought about my own answer from December 1st:

http://www.homehurrah.com/?p=93 )

No wonder we’ve been friends for so long.

A Song Called “Going Home” by Kenny G

Kenny G: Best-Selling Artist and a World Record. 

Image by Nuchylee, courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net

I just discovered this song a few minutes ago. I wasn’t looking for music, I wasn’t even on YouTube, but it turned up on an unrelated search and, with a title like “Going Home”, you know I would have to check it out! I did, and I loved it. It’s an instrumental piece.  According to Wikipedia (I confirmed this fact by checking two other websites), Kenny G is the “biggest-selling instrumental musician of the modern era and one of the best-selling artists of all time, with global sales totaling more than 75 million records.”  

Kenny G was entered into the Guinness Book of World Records in 1997 for playing the longest note ever recorded on a saxophone. Apparently, he held an E-flat for 45 minutes and 47 seconds!  How can he hold any note for so long? Circular breathing. I’ll admit, I don’t really know what that means (yet), but it makes more sense than him simply exhaling for that long.

Enjoy this beautiful piece of “smooth jazz”.  I love the tap dancing.



 Comfort ~ Inspiration ~ Ideas

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Another Song Called “Home”

Phillip Phillips, Greg Holden, and “Home” Videos.

Image by digitalart, courtesy of freedigitalphotos.com

This song, “Home”, is from a few years back. The talented Phillip Phillips, winner of the 11th season of American Idol, made it famous as his coronation song and debut single. The song was co-written by Greg Holden and Drew Pearson, who produced it

A friend recently told me, “This song settles me.”  I agree – it’s a comforting song.

Maybe you’ll enjoy a relaxing listen – click on the links below. 

I am posting two videos for you:

The first one is Phillip Phillips’ official video.   The images of rainy windows and distant mountains, in the video, remind me a bit of road trips to the mountains when I was growing up.   I remember the first time I saw the mountains – it felt like coming home in a way that no other place ever has… but that’s a topic for another post.

BTW: The comedy “Parental guidance” plays this song at the end of the movie.  


The second video features Greg Holden, the co-writer of this song, performing it live. That video was posted on Youtube by Greg Holden himself. The footage shows a great performance by Holden, but the camera is a bit shaky at parts. That’s when I just close my eyes and listen.

I am curious to know: What do you think of Greg Holden’s version? Feel free to leave a comment with your opinion.








A Song Called Home.

“Well, Sometimes Home Is a Person.”

~ Beth Revis, A Million Suns.


Today’s song, “Home”, by the indie band Edward Sharpe and The Magnetic Zeros, reminded me of the above quote.  It’s a fun song (a bit strange at parts, but maybe there is a story behind falling out of the window?),  with a cute little video featuring the large, exuberant band (Currently at 10 members).  My husband recently heard this song included in a playlist, and thought I might want to share it on my blog. He was right, and it’s really worth a listen.

Sometimes, home is a person.  Enjoy!


 Home, Life, and Living.

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Series: Can a Song Connect You With Home? Today: The Wailin’ Jennys

The picture above was used with permission: http://www.aliciaandneilphotography.com/

Do You Have A Special Song?

“What song makes you think of home? It doesn’t have to literally be about home. Just a song that somehow embodies the concept for you, or makes you feel at home in some way”.

In this series, I am asking the above question. The idea of home is complex, and there are many ways to define it, and connect with it.  Sometimes, a certain song expresses this connection  for us.

Today, I want to share one of several songs that does this for me. The lyrics of this melody describe how I see the world at my best moments; when I am authentic and at home with who I am.  It also expresses a connection and oneness with nature – the change of the seasons and the beauty of life – that feel like home to me.

As the poet Gary Snyder said, “Nature is not a place to visit. It is home. ”

Here it is:

The Bird Song, by the remarkably talented Wailin’ Jennys.


Thanks for visiting homehurrah.com and I can’t wait to share my next post with you!

If there is a song that answers the above question for you, leave a comment with the name of the song and I will see if I can include it in a future post!


Home, Life, and Living.

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Can A Song Connect you to Home? (Series) Bon Jovi, Tesla

Do You Have A Special Song?

“What song  makes you think  of home? It doesn’t have to literally be about home. Just a song that somehow embodies the concept for you.  It makes you feel at home in some way”.

Today, this question popped into my head out of the blue.  Curious to ask someone, I posed the question to a friendly acquaintance. He is an eclectic and talented individual who, after taking some time to think about it, was happy to  share his thoughtful response.  It went something like this:  (I am paraphrasing)

“First, my mind started to go to my childhood home, then to my current home, although I’ve moved a lot, which brought me to the idea that home is where you bring it. So home is what makes me comfortable. That’s when I thought, Tom Petty. He makes everything better. Then I thought about it a little bit further, and another song came to mind: Caught up in a Dream, by Tesla… It’s a hard rock band that is totally positive and uplifting. Then, finally, I thought of a song by Bon Jovi: Welcome to Wherever You Are.  That song is basically about acceptance, and believing that life has brought you exactly where you need to be right now, so embrace it.   To me, home is a place you want to be and return to even when you feel crappy. Both of these songs make that happen for me.”

A great definition!  So here are the two links.  I had never heard either of these songs before.  If there is a song that answers the above question for you, leave a comment with the name of the song and I will see if I can include it in a future post!



Home, Life, and Living.

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Thanks for visiting homehurrah.com.  I can`t wait to share my next post with you!

Activities Around the Home: We All Love Listening to A Great Tune

I Love CBC

You know how sometimes you hear a song, and it immediately resonates with you?  Well, that happened to me on my way to work.

I was listening to CBC, Canada’s national radio station, and this great song came on.   I love CBC because Canada is such a huge and diverse country, and CBC helps all of the people and cultures connect, and helps us understand our country – our home.

Elliott Brood

The song is called Northern Air, by Elliott Brood.   In the summer, I spend a lot of time out by the lake – it’s like a second home. The imagery of the lyrics tap into the affection I feel for that geography and spending time connecting outdoors.

I hope you enjoy it!  By the way,  the first time you click on the link, it will play the song.  The second time, it runs a big CBC play list.  So, if you have the time, you might want to get a glass of wine , sit back and relax.

Just to let you know, since relaxing with music is such a great home activity, and homehurrah.com is all about how home activities can enhance our living, I  plan to share music links every now and then.  It will be a pretty eclectic selection, not just from one genre.


Thanks for stopping by homehurrah.com, and I can’t wait to share my next post with you!