Beautiful Farm Commando Brigade…

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© James Currie

Help Hoe Hay Harvest for Victory. Much like the Soldiers of the Soil in WWI, “The Farm Commando Brigade of the Ontario Farm Service Force is composed of all those men and women who offer their services to those engaged in producing and processing food (farmers and canners). The work they offer to do starts from early spring seeding (tractor, force drawn or hand sown) through hoeing, haying, harvesting, canning, threshing, silo filing, etc.”

During WWII my father was too young to enlist so he joined the Farm Commando Brigade of the Ontario Farm Service Force and worked on a farm in southern Ontario, Canada. He was born and raised in the city of Toronto, but he really came of age on the farm. The lessons he learned about farmers, large animals, raising crops from the soil, and the farming community stayed with him his entire life. More importantly, he learned about hard, physical labor – the value of honest toil – and he passed these on to his children. I carry these with me today, long after his service on the farm ended.

Beautiful moonglow…

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© Joan Currie

It must have been moonglow, way up in the blue
It must have been moonglow that led me straight to you
I still hear you sayin’, “Dear one, hold me fast”
And I keep on prayin’, “Oh Lord, please let this last”
We seemed to float right through the air
Heavenly songs seemed to come from everywhere
And now when there’s moonglow, way up in the blue
I’ll always remember, that moonglow gave me you

Moonglow also Diana Krall

The moonglow crept into my room last night. It beckoned me to the window to make a wish on that magnificent orb in the night sky.
I thought of you.

Ten Beautiful Things I Like About a Soldier…

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© Joan Currie – Soldier watercolor


Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends. John 15:13 KJV

  1. The way he looks in his dress uniform.
  2. The way he pays attention to detail in his turnout.
  3. The way he cares for his equipment and weapons.
  4. The way he lives by his regiment’s motto.
  5. The way he looks after his buddies.
  6. The way he keeps himself in good shape.
  7. The way he stands, even when he is not on parade.
  8. The way he can stay calm under extreme stress.
  9. The way he understands that he is at the pointy end of the stick.
  10. The way he always remembers his family and loved ones even when he is far away.

Ancestral imprinting…

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© Joan Currie – Opa watercolor

When we know about our ancestors, when we sense them as living and as supporting us, then we feel connected to the genetic life-stream, and we draw strength and nourishment from this. – Philip Carr-Gomm

I have only a few memories of my Dutch grandfather, however, he certainly made an impression on me, and I wish I had had more time with him. When I looked through some photos of the first few years of my life, I noticed that there were many, many pictures of us together. I can’t help but wonder how not just his DNA, but his physical presence influenced my growth and my life.

Aspirational weight…

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© Joan Currie – Blue nude watercolor

There is nothing more rare, nor more beautiful than a woman being unapologetically herself; comfortable in her perfect imperfection. To me, that is the true essence of beauty. – Steve Maraboli

When I renewed my driver’s license recently, I was surprised at the weight listed on the new license. I had made no changes during the renewal process, so all of the information was the same as it was several years ago. Was the weight listed my true weight at the time or an aspirational weight? If it were an aspirational weight, I wonder by how much? Short of requisitioning my medical records, I truly have no idea!

Down Up to Up Down…

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Map from my grandfather’s 1930 school atlas.


Amsterdam is like the rings on a tree: It gets older as you get closer to the center. – John Green

I love Amsterdam, not only because my maternal grandfather (Opa) was born and raised there but because of the canal houses and houseboats, art museums, flowers, and chocolates.
I have visited Amsterdam many times, but until recently, I have always stayed in the southern part of the city. From there I explored on foot, but even with a good map, found it difficult to navigate and was always taking wrong turns. This time I relocated to the northern part of the city and had no difficulty at all finding my way around.
I am still amazed that a simple change in orientation made such a huge difference. I now see the benefit of changing perspective everywhere in my daily life.
Thank you Amsterdam!

Making do with what you have…

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© Joan Currie – Saluda, South Carolina

Life is not always a matter of holding good cards, but sometimes, playing a poor hand well.

Over the last several years I have taken many online and in-person art and craft classes. Instructors routinely have provided students with a list of materials needed for each class. At first I thought it was necessary to buy everything on the list, but unfortunately, practically every instructor had a different set of material preferences so the cost of the more expensive supplies became prohibitive. I finally decided to start making do with what I had.
One of my favorite mop brushes came from the town of Saluda, South Carolina. I was walking along the side of a dirt road when I noticed a very large, and thankfully dead, rattlesnake in my path. Oddly, next to the rattlesnake lay a watercolor mop brush. Although it had seen better times – the wooden handle was chipped in many places and the ferrule was dented, the bristles appeared intact. I snatched it up and quickly moved on! On closer examination, the bristles were soft and full, and it has turned out to be the best brush in my stash for doing large color washes.
I have made similar but not so exciting finds at Goodwill, garage sales, and in nature. Not having all the designated workshop supplies has not been a barrier to entry for my creative pursuits. In fact, sometimes the found supplies have been the most enjoyable to use!

Beautiful blue inside and out…

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© Lauren DiMarco


Blue are the people here
That walk around
Blue like my corvette its in and outside
Blue are the words I say
And what I think
Blue are the feelings
That live inside me
I’m blue

From Blue by Eiffel 65

I came across a bin of bed linens in the attic during this year’s spring cleaning purge. In it I discovered a much-loved Ralph Lauren blue duvet cover that I had packed away long ago for a bicoastal move. I had searched and searched for it for many months, but finally gave up assuming it had been lost.
Instead of replacing the duvet, I decided that the new surroundings demanded a change in color palette: from the light and dark Denim blues and Linen whites that suited the clapboard Colonial house of the northeast, to the Celadon green, Tuscan orange, and creams of my new Hacienda-style home in the southwest.
Over the years, I never really embraced this new color palette, so when I found the denim duvet cover, I placed it on my bed and instantly felt as if I had gone through a portal to wonderful times gone by. Blue has always been my favorite color and I started to think about how not only had I given up the comfort and familiarity of my exterior landscape when I made the move, but how my interior landscape had changed as well.

Model: Lauren DiMarco

Welcoming My Muse…

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My Muse watercolor © Joan Currie

I had only to open my bedroom window, and blue air, love, and flowers entered with her. – Marc Chagall

Merely opening the window does not ensure that my Muse will arrive – she is attracted by genuine intent. So when she appears, I am truly grateful. And if she appears after my opus is complete, she still guides me on my creative journey, which is never-ending.

One of my favorite Chagall paintings, Les Amoureux (1928), is discussed https://youtu.be/5v7C2nMnZjc