|3rd Annual Challenge of Music|
The rules for the challenge this year:
- Pick a significant year in your life history. Now pick a song to help tell that story. Your playlist is as unique as you are! The music of your past weaves a story that only you can tell. The choices of song will tell us a lot about who you are, where you come from, what is important to you and give great insight.
- Create something of your choice - jewelry, accessory or some other artistic representation - that helps us experience this special song. I am opening this challenge up to any artistic interpretation. Whatever way this inspiration moves you, follow its lead!
You better grab some coffee or tea - and maybe some food - because this is going to be a long one.
In 2013, mom and I decided to have an extension built on the back of her house, there was turmoil at work for both of us, mom had health issues, which made for a very chaotic year for us both.
I thought I would share pictures of our piece as I told our story - the piece for this challenge is called "Hope".
Some highlights of our journey of frustration, despair and flickers of hope:
- The first shock to mom was the destruction of her yard. She had to have several trees removed and some moved around the yard - the yard was a complete and utter mess. The yard mom worked on for 13 years was gone. Mom just about bawled, and all I could tell her was "It's okay mom."
- Next shock - when they built the house originally, the contractors laid the water/sewage pipes from the street under the driveway and the sidewalk to the front door. We had to get an exception to connect directly to the street - then more destruction.
- The concrete - oh boy - the concrete. The subcontractor who usually does their work was going through chemo, so the builders tried another crew. That crew set us back five weeks, and they left mountains of dirt and debris piled up in the yard, over poured concrete, damaged the back fence and further demolished mom's yard.
- Next - the venting and furnace subcontractors (do you see a pattern yet?) - they couldn't work us into their schedule, so another subcontractor is hired and put us behind another 4 weeks. When they finally showed up, they started the work one day, left aluminum ductwork hanging from the ceiling and then they didn't come back.
- Had to then wait for the original subcontractor to have an opening, and once they got to the house we found out that the prior subcontractor had barely made specs, had vents in the wrong locations and not enough of them, and they were not big enough. They had to tear everything out and start over.
If you are still with us - thank you - but we have still more 2013 chaos to share. You might want to stop and get some coffee - I will wait :)
Mom's health surprise. Mom was diagnosed with Type 2 diabetes in July. Also in July mom was told she would need double knee replacement surgery down the road. Then in October, mom finally decided that after years of neck/shoulder/arm pain to have the neck fusion surgery (C5,6,7) and then discovered that she is no longer a candidate for the surgery. Let me tell you, if mom wasn't swearing by now, I would do all the swearing for her. I am sure she would learn some new words :)
At work mom has been trying to actively raise awareness of bullying in higher education among faculty and staff by writing the president of the university, human resources, and employee relations. Many avenues were being pursed with a high personal cost to mom both emotionally and physically. Also, mom just lost her boss to another college, and she was trying to keep the team going in the interim (new boss started in December).
And, of course, the turmoil with our small business. Because of the flooding in the garage and damage to the tools, equipment and supplies, we were very low on inventory and it was, and still is, impossible to work in the garage. Both mom and I are panicking! Then unexpectedly, we were not accepted as artists in two of our best-selling juried art shows. We had participated in them for years, and we were caught off guard. It was a blow emotionally and financially. Mom and I were left scrambling to figure out how to replace the loss of that potential income.
But - there is always hope! In late November mom was searching YouTube for something (and of course she can't remember what she was looking for) and she stumbled upon a clip called "Shy Boy and his Friend Shock the Audience with The Prayer - Unbelievable".
Mom has no idea why she decided to watch the video because she usually only uses YouTube for training videos, rarely for entertainment purposes. Mom said that Jonathan and Charlotte began to sing. Mom was stunned by the magic created by the duo - she was totally blown away. Mom can't remember any other music that has affected her so profoundly. Mom said her chest seemed to swell with emotion and her mind started to slow down (mom's mind is constantly racing) allowing her to enjoy and absorb what she was hearing.
Mom said she watched the clip over and over. Mom then asked me to download their first album "Together". Mom has listened to the whole album every day since I downloaded it for her. You can see more of Jonathan and Charlotte by going to their site or their Facebook page.
Mom still can't understand why she loves the album so much, because some of the songs are in Italian and she doesn't even know what is being said. The only way mom can explain why she loves their music is because they epitomize hope!
Everything in the last year has been dragging both mom and I down. Both of us, I think, had given up on hoping for something better.
Mom says that Jonathan and Charlotte gave her a gift - every time that she listens to their album (I have mom and the waiting list for their new album) - mom is reminded of that gift and is thankful.
So - that is how we (I should say mom) came up with our piece for the Challenge of Music. Mom drew up two pendants (one for her and one for me). I sawed out the exterior of the pendants and mom sawed out the interior. We then filed and sanded the pendants, and then I enameled them. Mom wanted her "Hope" pendant in red.
go here you can see what I based my colors on. I still have to make beads to go with the pendant and then I will assemble it at a later date.
If you made it to the end of this long-winded saga, you are a real trooper!
Mom and I want to thank Miss Erin for the wonderful challenges she provides everyone to participate in. The challenges are always fun and exciting.
I am going to try using the InLinkz tool. If it doesn't work, please go to Erin's blog to see a list of everyone who is participating in the Challenge of Music.