Sunday, February 21, 2010

kindred spirits

this post is dedicated to our friend renee, who loved to travel (vicariously) with me on my adventures. i loved her company and she'll be dearly missed. she'll be leaving this world soon as this life as she knows it is coming to an end. bless her beautiful heart. safe journey my angel kindred friend.

i invited my eldest daughter to come with me on saturday, up to the small town of arroyo grande. there was someone i was hoping to meet at a special antique sale & book signing.

here we are, at branchs farm, i am sure the weather couldn't have been more beautiful, the sun was shining, the birds were singing, people were smiling...

we looked around, me enjoying more the scenery than anything else. after our recent rains the hills and fields were green and lush, spring feels like it's arrived...

this pile of books represents heaven to me. this is why i came almost two hours (although i would have come four, to meet this kindred spirit, author and illustrator...

Sharon Lovejoy!
what a thrill for me to meet her and her husband, that's Jeff standing behind her. I've been collecting and reading Sharon's books for 19 years now. that's when her first book, Sunflower Houses:Inspiration from the Garden first came out. She's recently released her seventh book, Toad Cottages & Shooting Stars. another gem i treasure.

there is no one that's inspired me more in gardening and watercolors, except my own granma rose. and i am so happy to say that she was even more charming in person and i didn't think that was possible if you know her books. this was one of those days that i'll never ever forget.

thank you sharon, i can't wait to meet again someday! until then i know we'll stay in touch via blogging, if you'd like to visit her go here. (see my new scarf?, finished, well, it still needs blocking!)

susan branch was there too, and many of her books and patterns, stencils and calendars. i met her also and although she was lovely as well, it was brief, there was a long line!

we'll leave the farm now and go explore the town of arroyo grande...

we stopped for fields of blooms...

and antique stores...

we walked (tentatively) over a swinging bridge, with a running creek below...

we went to farmer's market. at one booth my daughter kimberly and i stopped to admire tiny watercolor paintings, all of different scenes of the central coast. a couple was there also asking the artist about the various locations. he said your not from around here are you? they answered no, we're from winnepeg.

winnepeg is renee's home.

my daughter and i had just had lunch and i told her about the latest news with renee and her own daughter angelique. we both had tears as i shared what i knew.

when not an hour later we heard this couple say winnepeg, kimberly and i both stopped. and hugged. and i am sure i saw all the trees and flowers sway suddenly in the wind as if they knew and she knew she were here with us. and i had tears again.

after we crossed the bridge we found yet another antique store, i could keep this up all day, but i wanted kimberly to enjoy it too, she said she was, so on we went...

"be careful with the words you use, they create the world around you" a native american saying i love. isn't this a sweet and simple sign?....

more beauty everywhere, in thoughtful displays...

and soft fabrics nestled in baskets...

new blossoms appearing on a painted sky...

and funny chickens and roosters that mind your business on the streets of this town...

thank you for coming with kimberly and i, now it's time we started making our way home, safe journeys to all of us...

♥ happy sad lori

(i can't seem to leave off the back to the beloved ocean going home photo,
however blurred and an antenna filled it is.)


  1. Hey Lori,

    Your tribute to Renee is so heartwarming. My god.... she will be missed. She has touched many!
    Thanks for taking us on your journey. You pics are always just so breathtaking!! So great that you could meet Sharon Lovejoy!!

    Take care, my friend!!


  2. Lori that was beautiful...
    I can't stop thinking about our lovely Renee. We all love her very much.

    On another note your haircut looks great. I read that post the other day and just now I'm seeing it out and about ;)

    I wish I was there for that road trip you've just had. I would have loved it.... I love what you share 'casue it makes me feel like I kinda was there ;)

    After being away from blogging for a few weeks I'm struggling a little to get back into it. It's been strange returning to the news of Renee leaving.

    I love you Lori. Thanks for being an awesome friend.

    xx Ribbon :)

  3. What a beautiful day.... :D and :(.
    Sending love.x♥

  4. i love these day trips we take together!! you are very good company and very very fun!

    renee is on the minds and in the hearts of all of us. how could she not be? my god, she has rearranged how we see and feel and live. that's quite a feat, even for a Senior Angel.

    lori,i wish you and ribbon and i could gallivant together. wouldn't that be the most fun?! and i have to echo ribbon here: i love you and you are an awesome friend.

    oh, one more thing. when i think of you i think of the pacific coast, so this trip inland opened up my images. i wish you could come to the wed. night auction here. you would not believe the prices, really, i know you wouldn't, because they are 50-75% less than i ever saw around boston.

    we will care for one another and renee will just love that.

  5. Thank you for the love and taking us on your journey. As I think, and say, when talking about Mike...I love him on a different plane now...just as I will with Renee.

  6. Sending loving thoughts...every moment is so precious, isn't it?

  7. Touching tribute. A lovely day shared with us; thanks.

  8. A tender sweet tribute to someone special to you ... I thoroughly enjoyed taking the day trip with you (vicarously) ... I could smell the freshness of the air, and the spectacular wildflowers. It is hard to fatham that those scenes are your reality -- when you live in an icebox! Thanks Lori ... hugs to you and your friend Renee.

  9. Dear Lori, It's so hard to read anyone's posts these days without great joy and great sadness. Sadness for us at Renee leaving and joy at the love she has spread and the friends she has brought together! I am forever grateful to her that I met you!

    Your day looked just wonderful, and to be able to share this with your daughter is extra special! I love how close you are to your children... And that, too, reminds me of Renee and her family!

    Thank you for taking us on your journey with you!!

    Much love, Silke

  10. Thank you for taking us along with you and your daughter for such a beautiful day, full of sunshine and lovely shots.

  11. I loved yesterday and meeting you, but I am sad about your Renee. Imagine though, the love she has felt from you and all the other lives she has touched. What a tribute.

    We had a ball yesterday, didn't we?? I met so many wonderful people and felt like I was walking in a dream. Yes, my Jeff is great and he had a good time yesterday too.

    Your words about my writing and illustrating mean the world to me. Sometimes, when I am slaving over a chapter or a drawing I ask myself if it is all worth it. Then I connect with someone like you and the question is answered for me.

    I KNOW we will keep in touch. And oh, my son Noah and I always went to the Children's reading hour at the old Arroyo Library. Then we sat in the middle of the swinging bridge and read and listened to the voices in the "fire trees" (cottonwoods along the creek).

    Happy you had a good day too. Today we celebrated my grandson's third birthday and we've had a house full of guests for three days.

    Love to you and your beautiful family,

    Sharon Lovejoy Writes from Sunflower House and a Little Green Island

  12. as always...totally beautiful, glowing and inspirational! sorry about renee...lots lots love lori darlin'! XXXX

  13. What a wonderful and sad journey. May your friend Renee be surrounded in love and light- with no regrets.
    Your photographs are stunning and creative. How joyous for you to connect with your longtime favored author.
    It's a richly textured life your living, Lori. May spring warm and energize your loving heart.

  14. Oh Lori, thank you for this wonderful journey through pictures, they are beautiful, and I enjoyed this post so much. Your friend Renee sounds like an amazing soul, and am sorry you are losing her.
    I admire your strength, and the way you mingle your pain with joy and a love for life. You are an amazing woman.
    Love, Dawn

  15. Renee was with you and Kimberly in Arroyo Grande. She's begun traveling to her favorite places and visiting friends met through the Internet. Two nights ago she was in my dreams, I woke up and found Angelique's post with the latest news.

    She has touched so many of us. I will miss her.

    Another wonderful, relaxing and peaceful post, where you take me with you in these magical places. Beauty everywhere.

    I love you
    Lola xx

  16. what a beautiful post...full of emotion, gentleness, beauty and magical moments.

  17. Oh Lori this is so touching!
    I have goosebumps and tears in my eyes. Lovely trip

    I adore the white fabric in the basket!!!!!


  18. I am so sorry about Renee, I didn't know here blog but I can tell that I missed something special. I did visit today and send warm wishes to her family.

    Happy to read of your happy day out Lori. The life and colour in those pictures warms my heart. xxx

  19. What a lovely place to visit. Thanks for taking us there with your photos. It is too sad that Renee is coming to the end of a long battle, taken too soon from her family and us. A blessed release from pain. It almost seems like she was holding on for her mom. Life can change so much in an instant.

  20. Hi Lori...first let me tell you that your friend Renee is on my mind...that is a heartfelt and touching tribute.....

    the pictures was fun to see being that it was in my own backyard....john and i drove by it just the day before with buddy to see the set up.....

    wished i could have met you...looks like you had a good time..and i was in those SAME antique shops the other day too...looking for vintage stuff....

    and the chickens and the bridge....

    glad you saw buddy's picture..isn't he sweet buddy.....

    wishing you a wonderful week

    hugs to owen

    sending love,

  21. beautiful, beautiful photos... my heart and my thoughts and prayers go out to Renee.

  22. I always love your pics Lori...I don't know Renee, but bless you for remembering her...

  23. Sending lots of love, prayers and thoughts to you and Renee.
    Beautiful post and pics...... the scarf looks great Lori.

  24. Hi Lori... I just read your comment on 'if i were'.... the funny thing is that I was just thinking the same when I did it ~ I thought mmmm ask me tomorrow and there's a good chance the answers won't be the same :)


  25. Hi Lori! I enjoyed meeting you at Susan Branch's show last Saturday (I'm the cupcake lady)! After you shared about Carpenteria, I had a chance to stop in for just a minute on my way back from LA yesterday. Just lovely!! Happy to meet you and find your blog.

  26. Looks like a lovely day indeed.

    Wishing all the best to your friend Renee on her private journey...sounds like you were both fortunate to have each other as friends.

  27. What a beautiful day, Lori. And a sincere and heartfelt tribute to our dear Renee. She would have loved this trip, and I'm sure she flew to you in her dreams and saw it all. Were you aware that her favorite color is butter yellow? That field of flowers would have made her smile big time. I am so thankful that she introduced me to you. She connected so many of us, didn't she?

    Absolutely wonderful for you to meet one of your favorite authors! And those fabrics in the basket are gorgeous.



xoxo lori