Claude Monet


Claude Monet (France, November 14, 1840—December 5, 1926) is remembered as the founder of the Impressionist school of painting. In fact, the name of the movement was taken from one of his early paintings, Impression, soleil levant (Impression, Sunrise).

Impression, soleil levant, by Claude Monet

He always wanted to be an artist. As a boy, he drew charcoal caricatures, which he sold for ten or twenty francs each. His mother, a singer, supported his artistic dreams. His father wanted him to take over the family business, selling groceries and shipping supplies.

Water lilies, by Claude Monet

An early influence was Eugéne Boudin, whom he met on the beaches of Normandy, and who mentored him in oils and plein air (outdoor painting) techniques. While other young painters copied works of the masters, Monet preferred to work directly from subjects. He was particularly interested in how changes of light affected how things appeared. He often painted the same scenes multiple times, in different seasons and at different times of day, to catalog how the differing light affected the colors.

Water Lilies and Japanese Bridge by Claude Monet

The traditional way that painting was taught in France in his day did not appeal to Monet. He preferred to dab the paint on, placing different colors next to each other, allowing the eye to blend them rather than blending them on the palette. He and his friends (among them the likes of Manet, Renoir, Degas, Pizarro, and Cézanne) broke with the Salon de Paris and put on their own exhibitions.

Weeping Willow, by Claude Monet

Monet married his first wife, Camille, in 1870. She was the subject of several of his paintings, and they had two sons together. She died in 1878. A friend’s estranged wife, Alice, helped him raise his children along with her six.

Camille Monet on a Garden Bench, by Claude Monet

In 1883 Monet rented a property on two acres in Giverny. He and his extended family improved the gardens, and Monet did some of his best painting there. His dealer was very successful selling his paintings, and Monet bought the property in 1890. When Alice’s husband passed away, Monet married her.

The Cliffs at Etretat by Claude Monet

Click here to see Claude Monet in action.

OctPoWriMo Day 19


Today’s prompt is being in the present.

my husband gets ready for bed
I hear him snap his hearing aids into the charger
the water runs
he spits toothpaste into the sink
I hear the dryer’s signal
I still have work to do
I’m tired, too
my day’s been long
with chores and errands
I want to sleep until I wake refreshed
but we have an early appointment
his, not mine
but he can’t do anything alone anymore
our days are logistics problems to be solved
nothing is easy
we don’t know when things will be “normal” again
I remember a different time
when I was sleep deprived
caring for our five children
never a dull moment
laughter and tears
the days seemed endless
but their childhood was over in a blink


Monday Morning Wisdom #280

Monday Morning Wisdom #280

Laws are spider webs that catch little flies, but cannot hold big ones. ~Honoré de Balzac

Sunday Trees: Blazing


Taken last December in Boyce Thompson Arboretum.

More Trees.

From the Creator’s Heart #277

Scripture, singing, joy

OctPoWriMo Day 17


Today’s prompt is dancing under the stars.

Dancing with the dog
the dog wants out
and I dance around the pool
weighed down with an extra 10 pounds
the result of staying at home
it used to be I’d dance for three hours every Tuesday night
now we don’t gather
so I’m limited to a few minutes under the stars
and music only I can hear
I sway right and left
touch heel and toe
one foot crosses over the other
and my fingers snap in rhythm
slowly I make my way around the pool
then slip into the backdoor
the dog prancing in behind me


Weekly Photo Challenge: Magic Hour


Click here for the rules.

A Few Things I Know For Sure


My intention for today’s post was to write an article about the craft of writing. But lately I feel like I know very little about the craft of writing. I’ve put aside two of my big multi-year projects because I just can’t make any progress on them right now. I’m a total writing idiot.

elements of fiction
Photo by Startup Stock Photos on

I spent hours on writing websites looking for a topic I could write on.

Then I watched this TED talk with Anne Lamott.

And I thought, I could write an article like that. But what do I know about life?

It turns out I know four things for sure.

  1. God loves you. God loves me. God is love. God is good. Even when it doesn’t seem like it. Even when life sucks. God is the epitome of good. If you’re having a rough time, He’s crying with you. He’s right here, ready for you to lean on Him. He might not remove you from the situation you’re in, but he will walk through it with you. When we reach out to others in love, we reflect the God who created us in His image.
  2. The government can’t save us. I am hoping with all my heart that this upcoming election in the United States will be a game changer. Please vote for the people you believe are motivated not by gain but by the desire to serve our country. Our government could be doing a much better job. But it will never do the best job. However, individuals—you and me—can do much to make things better and more positive. When this pandemic first started, people went out of their way to help their neighbors. I feel like that’s lessened somewhat as the disease has continued to drag on. It’s up to us to identify what is needed in our communities, and then pitch in to get it done. Our small individual acts add up to a huge impact.
  3. Things are not as good as they look. Years ago, we belonged to a small church. I loved that congregation. Those people looked like they had it all together. But the thing about small churches is you eventually know everybody’s business. Those people had the same challenges I did. They had skeletons in their closets. They had failed relationships. They had disappointed their parents and their children. They had made huge mistakes. They were looking for ways to put their broken selves back together again. Don’t be deceived—nobody has it easy.
  4. Things are not as bad as they look. Yep, stuff happens and there are long-term implications, but things pass. If you’ve done something you’re ashamed of, try to make it right. Apologize. Ask for forgiveness. In time, it will lose some of its horrendousness. You can rise above your mistakes; you can even rise above the injustices done to you. Take a deep breath, and take the next step, and the next one, and the next. One day, one hour, one minute at a time.

That’s it. That’s all I know.

Inktober 2020 Day 16


The prompt is rocket.

Creative Juice #212

Creative Juice #212

I much prefer these uplifting, creative articles to the news these days.