Starring in this holiday card that I painted in 2001 are Gooey (dressed in the Santa suit, of course), Dixie, Peaches, and our dear geriatric blind cat, Marbles. As usual, my husband Jimbo and I are outnumbered. Sadly, all of these animals, with the exception of Peaches, have passed on, but their lights still shine in our hearts.
I did this painting shortly after I began my fourth year as a volunteer art teacher at a local junior high school for at-risk teens. I had been doing some serious reflecting on the many rewards I was reaping from my interaction with these kids. Through my work with them, I had gained insight, compassion, and patience, and I got to thinking about how each and every one of us has a special gift that, if shared, has the potential to inspire others and impact their lives in a positive direction. I wanted to paint something that would motivate people to recognize and honor this delicate thread that connects us all.
Believe in yourself and what you have to offer. Find the darkest places and let your light shine. We are all connected.