A place to see the light turning glass into art.

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Step 1: Pattern play

I’m working on an original pattern for “nellyglass studio”… this piece is 2ft x 0.5ft and will hang over my studio in the basement. The first 2 hours were spent playing with different fonts on the computer until I settled on “Cooper”. The next 3 hours were enjoyed designing the pattern and cutting out the tracing pieces. Amazing how 5 hours can fly by like that. Creative juice gives you lots of energy but makes you forget the time.

I find pattern creation to be the most creative of all the steps in producing a finished product. With original patterns especially, the connection to the piece runs deep. I’m already feeling it.

The template shown here is yellow but the finished product will be multi-colored.  Hope to have it done in a few days… stay tuned.
Total time for pattern prep = 5 hours.

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Next: Step 2 Glass selection

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Wilderness Discovery

There is so much beauty in our province and much of it goes undiscovered by the vast majority of folks. I have lived here 25 years and never knew about Bald Hill just a few kilometers north of Saint John (Bald Mountain to the locals but not to be confused with Big and Little Bald Mountains in the north of the province). Saturday afternoon Ron and I went for a drive and ended up here just 15 minutes from Welsford. It’s an easy half kilometer hike from the parking lot and the view from the summit is jaw-dropping. At 217m (712 ft) it ranks as the 369th highest peak in New Brunswick. The presence of huge rogue boulders near the summit are a reminder of the glacial powers that sculpted this landscape thousands of years ago. What a wonderful day we had, exploring back roads, fishing secret woodland lakes and taking a few pictures along the way.

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A weekend at Youghall Beach- doesn’t that just sound wonderful

Monica and I were very fortunate this weekend to be overnight guests of Diane and Chris Carson at their cottage on the magnificent and moody Youghall Beach in Bathurst. The weather wasn’t promising any sunshine and in fact was downright insistent on showing us what “windswept” really means. And we were blown away by the beauty and the power of this place.

We arrived at noon and were welcomed to the cottage and promptly escorted to the dining table for a tasty tuna salad sandwich lunch with veggies and chips. What a way to start our visit and such service! Chris’ culinary prowess is second to none. I stand in awe and intimidation at his skill with a knife. It’s hypnotic to watch him cutting vegetables.

After lunch, the rain in the forecast was still holding off so we jumped at the suggestion of a beach walk on this stunning 7 km stretch of soft quartz sand. The tide was out and the shallow sand bars were exposed making for easy walking way way out from the shoreline. We walked and walked and talked and talked…what great therapy! I couldn’t resist pocketing a few colorful beach pebbles to add to my garden at home.

The day was cool by summer standards and as we returned to the cottage, a fresh breeze was coming in from the north-east. That meant drama on the high seas.  Because it’s so shallow, the breakers start way out on their long rolling journey to the beach. It takes so long for one wave to arrive that you can actually see 9 or 10 of them coming at the same time lined up one behind the other. You really have to see it to appreciate the tranquility of the place… even in high winds and driving rain, the surf is so consistent and rhythmic… it’s peaceful.

Inside the cottage was anything but peaceful and anything but boring. Between the joking and laughing and philosophical discussion, we managed to uncover life-long memories and stories of our past and present and reveal dreams for the future until the clock struck a new day. We touched on everything from how modern technology has transformed the sport of  distance cycling (good luck in Ottawa, Chris) to how our children have shaped us as adults… and continue to do so. Conversation with Diane and Chris is always so adventurous (I mean that in the exciting exploratory way).

Meanwhile, Chris cooked up a storm on the BBQ and we feasted on chicken and sausage, potatoes and salad and cheered to our friendship and good fortune. We really had a great getaway and it’s always wonderful to see our friends. Thank you for the wonderful hospitality and another blog-worthy memory of Youghall Beach.

Here are the photo highlights.

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All dedications lined up together at the perfect moment in time

Just like my home page says, “This site is dedicated to the following…” i.e., all those things I said I would dedicate my site to, well they all just happened to come together this week at the same time: 1) I’m itching for a new stained glass project and have something in mind for my bathroom downstairs (hint: marine theme). So, while I was looking at some glass possibilities, I snapped a pic or two. Selecting the glass is step #2 in the process, after pattern preparation, and is perhaps second only to patterns in terms of the creativity factor. I love searching the colors and patterns in the glass for the possibilities. 2) There was sushi involved (thank you above for the Japanese who perfected this culinary delight centuries ago). 3) My favorite two celebrations of the year are back to back…our anniversary and Canada Day. Monica and I always love to celebrate our lives together and then have a holiday the next day. She somehow masterminded that 31 years ago, and I’m ever so glad she did. Two wonderful occasions to celebrate and I couldn’t be any more proud and patriotic of both.

Here is a quick photo reel of the highlights.

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Lorna, wish you were here.

Monica and I always said “Lorna brings the sun with her from Ontario” and today was no exception. Peter, her husband, with all of us in tow for support, gathered at Fairhaven Cemetery to finally say goodbye to Lorna. It was a really beautiful service. Poor Peter stood solid, patiently sweating away in his black suit under the hot sun… not a cloud in the sky. We could tell he was far away with her at the moment and our hearts broke for him, again. At least it didn’t rain which was good for Lorna’s 92 year old Mom who was there with us. Imagine her thoughts.

Goodbye Lorna, old friend. You will be missed forever, especially when the sun shines bright in New Brunswick.

 

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Celebrating 35 years of service

Monica is officially on vacation for the next three weeks, but when asked what it feels like to never have to go to work again, she can’t answer that just yet unless “surreal” is enough of a description. So what do you do when you’re feeling “surreal”? Celebrate! … easy though, we’re not 19 anymore.

I picked her up at work on Friday for her final farewell to her microscope. My job was to carry the gift bags and snap a couple of photos. Lots of hugs, a few tears and promises of summer reunions and we skipped down the stairs and out to the parking lot as if not a care in the world…and at that moment there wasn’t.

Off we drove to watch the sunset over cocktails at the York Bistro on the waterfront. Then a fantastic dinner at Italian by Night in the Urbandeli restaurant. A truly wonderful evening. Next day, Monica put me straight to work as she attempted to cram as many of the list of retirement chores into one day. We did find time, however, to relax and reflect on her 35 years of service to the health care system of New Brunswick. She is proud of her legacy and is going to miss the people at work, for sure…already is. Now to discover what lies beyond the Horizon Health Network.

Here are the photo highlights of the first 24 hours of vacation/retirement.

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Fantastic fishing with my buddy, Ron

Late spring fishing is my absolute favorite trip of the year. I’d like to say “The bugs aren’t out yet” but that’s not quite true. We got hammered this weekend! I think they all hatched at once and WE were the only things to eat. Nevertheless, there were moments of no bugs. Like, when the temperature suddenly fell to zero and we got a snow squall surprise! Seriously… not that we should be surprised in late May, but we were. Or the next morning when a fresh breeze picked up and blew the bugs out to the Bay of Fundy (no bugs…hard to throw a fishing line though).

Most of the time, however, was sheer tranquillity as Ron and I explored some of south-west New Brunswick’s beautiful water ways and pristine old growth forests. We fished all Saturday afternoon right into evening and the coyotes sang us home to the camp. How hauntingly beautiful to hear them so close.

Saturday night was for feasting and playing cribbage. I lost, but what a fight! In both games, we were both right there at the finish. Darn pegging points!

Sunday dawned beautiful and clear and we explored more territory and discovered new waterways where we teased the trout. They were very wary I must say. But, we had a ball. A picture is worth a thousand words, so here is the photo reel of our weekend. Enjoy!