Wednesday, July 30, 2014


It's been a month of upheaval with no time or no computer to do my blog, but for today at least, I can post one.  Today, I thought I'd talk about JOY.


Joy comes in so many ways.  Doing something fun fills us with joy.  We laugh and smile and generally feel great.   Dogs are very good at expressing Joy - there's just no holding back.                                 Joy also comes with being with your best friends.  You can relax and laugh and be yourself.                                                             

This week, I was watching one of our dogs standing back and looking a his buddy playing fetch with a ball.  We had tried to teach him the game, but we hit a blank wall every time, so rather than keep stressing the little guy, we just let him watch while someone else played.      Something else distracted the ball player and he ran off, just as I threw the ball, and the dog watching, suddenly became lit from within, and with a huge sheltie smile thrown back over his shoulder to me, he took off after the ball, picked it up and did a flawless return.  I wish I could show you the overwhelming joy on his little face!   "I DID IT!!"   Now we are all happy - Darcy is in the game too.    It made me think of the joy we artists feel when we get something right, something that has up to that moment been elusive and difficult.   I also thought about the joy I get in learning.  When we  were all tender young artists, unsure of ourselves but not  wanting anyone to know, I think most of us were reluctant to           share what we knew about techniques and materials, and hesitant about learning from others or (gasp!) asking for help.     Happily, most of us now have gained the confidence in our own unique gift to share things with other artists when they ask  and sometimes even when they don't.  As this blog so often proves. :D    I Hope all of you will take joy in whatever it is you are doing today.  It costs nothing, spreads like wildfire, and makes your world a much more inviting place to be.                                                                               

Cheers,                                                                                         Heather Anderson                            

Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Realizing a Dream

Today is Canada Day, and as I was enjoying a peaceful breakfast, looking out at our little haven, I thought again, as I have so many times, how lucky we are, those of us who live in a country where you can make a dream come true.  I'm talking about all the countries where this can happen, not just Canada, although I have to admit that I do love my homeland.

My big life dream arrived when I was about 12 years old, when I was given my first Albert Payson Terhune book about his Collies and Sunnybank.  He had passed on  years before I was born, but his books were still popular and easily available at the bookstore.  I became entranced, and as soon as I finished one book, I'd be off to the most wonderful bookstore (I'll tell you about it one day) and select another one.  Happily, I had a very indulgent Grandmother and Aunts who all wanted to encourage me to read!  About half way through those books, I decided that when I grew up, I wanted to live in the country, work at home, painting and writing, (even then I knew I had to paint), and have lots of dogs, cats and a horse.  And with lots of help from above, it happened.  

Granted, we have half an acre in a tiny village instead of 40 acres on a lake, and after my first couple of dearly loved Collies, we made the life long switch to Shelties, but making a dream into reality calls for a little compromise here and there.
And the odd thing is that over the years, I have come across many people who have had the same dream. Some have tailored the dream to suburban living, some have managed the whole acerage, but I know these people at once - the Clan of Terhune.  They have Collies or Shelties, their homes exude peace, there is a beautiful garden, and when we first meet, there is an instant friendly attraction. Some of them have become wonderful, loved friends.
So lets be sure to celebrate today and again on the 4th of July and give thanks for living in a country where dreams can come true.  And Thank You Bert Terhune, for giving a reachable dream, a wonderful way of life as a pattern for living, to all of us who have met you through your books.  

Heather Anderson