Saturday, April 30, 2011

Bricks & Mortar

Seaside Cottage
Oil on Canvas Panel
on sale at

Blue Giraffe
Watercolor, Florida

I am so glad you haven't forgotten my address! It's been too long since we last visited. I have an amazing story to tell so come on in and make yourself comfortable. This past week I was wishing I was in this little seaside cottage. Instead I was with my husband and children in North Alabama playing in the Alabama High School Association state tennis tournament. The tournament was scheduled for April 26 & 27 a Tues. and a Wed. We arrived Monday night to check in our hotels and practice a little tennis at the Pointe Mallard Tennis Facility. The director asked teams to report at the courts on Tues. morning for play at 8:00 sharp. We arrived only to play a little tennis and we had a rain delay until 1:00 in the afternoon. We resumed play and we played until midnight because we had lost so much time and were anticipating a little bad weather on Wed. Truly exhausted we made it back to the hotel and had not been asleep long before we were awakened by sirens signaling a tornado warning. Having been through a million warnings I must admit my husband and I did not race for the hallway or basement, instead turned on the television to see if it was really near us or not. My husband (who wishes he was a weather man) said,"Baby get your stuff we are heading downstairs for  this one."That was at 5:00am and we barely left the hallway until 8:00 pm. We held our breath for about 11 warnings. I have never experienced wind or rain quite like that! We sat in the hall of a hotel with the boys and girls tennis teams a couple of coaches and a few other parents. We had no power and very little cell service. We of course had granola bars and gatorade, but nobody planned for meals or flash lights or anything of that nature. My husband and I went out to find some food and it was as if we were in a ghost town. Nothing was open. The moon was no where to be found and it was pitch black dark and eerily quiet. We charged a phone and an I pad in the car just in time to see news of utter destruction all around us. I have to say it was a sobering experience to know that our lives had been spared that day and yet neighbors above us and below us did not survive the deadly twisters. We finally made it home on thursday night in bumper to bumper traffic and extensive lines at gas pumps(once we found gas) . The devastation that we witnessed on the drive home was not like anything I had ever seen. Homes gone, trees gone, homes crushed, light poles bent like toothpicks. In some places there was nothing left but foundations and bare ground. It makes a decision like what countertop to put in your dream home meaningless. Today I am safe at home with my family. Humbled and thankful. My heart aches as I watch the news of families who have lost all they had including their family.     " Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God" Ps.20:7. This verse echoes in my mind as I have heard story after story of people clinging to the strength and safety of a basement or bathtub. My question today is are you trusting in bricks and mortar or are you trusting in the Lord God Almighty?

Sunday, April 10, 2011

The Wait

Waiting on a Ride
Oil on canvas panel

Hi! I am so glad you stopped by. I love this painting and I love getting to share it with you. My son took this photo at Universal Studios. Priceless. Waiting! These women were waiting on children to ride a roller coaster and judging by their faces, I think they were both hoping that their children would ride the coaster multiple times. HA HA HA! We have all been there! Waiting for one thing or another. I have to share with you my most favorite "wait" ever was waiting on our twins. It was March 13, 1996 and my husband and I arrived at the hospital about 6:30am. I did a little paper work, put on my hospital gown, got an IV and at about 8:30 am the twins were ready! Because I was not having a C. Section, my doctor asked if I minded a few people observing. I said I did not mind and on his cue about 10 people in plain clothes walked into the delivery room. I got eye contact with my husband and non verbally said "Are you kidding me? " I will say I quickly forgot they were there because at 9:06am Fox was born, all 7lbs.5oz of him. The crazy thing was that the minute he was born I visibly watched KK stretch completely out in my belly and decide to stay a while. I "waited" 45 minutes for that 7lbs.8oz little girl. And man was it worth the wait! Sitting there that day with all 5 of our babies on my bed, I would have waited a lifetime for that moment! However, "waiting" does not always have a happy ending. It is not always waiting on roller coasters or babies or even a grocery line. Sometimes it is waiting on a test result or waiting on a loved one to return, or waiting on a broken heart to heal. Waiting.   I love the verse in Isaiah 40:31" Those who "wait" on the Lord shall renew their strength. They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint."    We live in a society that does not wait for anything. Everything is right now. But the truth is we have all waited for something. Imagine if we waited on God and trusted Him to fulfill His promise...He will renew our strength. Waiting on Him and with Him is much better than without Him.     Share your story of waiting with me! I love your stories! Come back again you know my door is always open! love love love Ruthie


Sunday, April 3, 2011

Sweet Spot

It Takes Two
30x40 Oil on deep edge canvas

on sale at
Gallery East
Montgomery, Alabama

Hi! I am so glad you dropped by today! Seems like forever since we have talked. Spring is so busy at our house with sports and school that I don't get to my studio near as much as I would like. I love this painting! It has "holiday" written all over it, which,by the way, is my favorite word. Which reminds me of my favorite place... the beach. This time of year I head to the beach for the Seaside half marathon. It really is fun. Tons of people come out and run and there is food and bands and one cool thing is that Vera Bradley is one of the sponsors of the race and if you finish the 13.1 miles you not only get an awesome medal, but a Vera Bradley bag as well! I love that! Anyway, two years ago I ran the race with one of my boys(kinda, he was way in front of me but we were out there together) Anyway, I must admit my training that year was not great. It consisted of me jogging a 7 mile loop near my house maybe 3 times a week for about a month. So I can do this. We are off. Luke is way out in front, I am taking in the scenery at a nice conservative 10 minute mile pace. I get to the turn around and I see my family there with posters and yelling my name and all of a sudden I feel like I am in slow motion and I can't hear a thing. My heart rate begins to pick up and I am feeling a little panicy( I don't think that is a word but you know what I mean) I get eye contact with my sweet husband who is cheering me on with all of his heart and I mouth to him... I am not going to make it. He is cheering away and I am now looking at him over my shoulder and my eyes begin to fill with tears and I am quickly loosing my breath. I begin to self talk like you would not believe to keep from losing it. I ran on this woman's shoulder for a minute and she did not like it and she moved ahead. I was feeling rejection and defeat at this point. At mile 8 I got water and this packet of Goo hoping it would be like a magic pill. Instead it sat in my throat for the next 2 miles as I crept along at a pathetic pace fighting tears the whole way. At mile 10 this woman in a pink jogging suit and pink hat pulled up beside me and obviously noticed I was not doing well, and she said" Come on, let's jog this in together. We can do this!" Y'all, the pink jogging suit girl carried me 3 miles all the way to the finish line. To this day I don't know her name, but I love her with all my heart, and I will always remember how she stayed with me and encouraged me that day. Some days...most days "It Takes Two" My challenge for you is to be the girl in the pink jogging suit for someone today. And if you have a pink jogging suit girl in your life share your story with me. I'd love to hear it! Be strong and courageous in whatever you do! You can do it!
Come see me again! You know my door is always open! love love love Ruthie