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August 2018 Desktop Wallpaper

Inspired by the yearly migration of the Monarch butterflies  –

For the desktop, click on the image below to view the large size image.

For the iphone wallpaper, navigate to this page on your phone and then click and hold on the image you want. Select ‘Save image to camera roll’. Then from your camera roll set your home screen/lock screen or both.

iphone wallpapers:

November 2017 Free Calendar Desktop and iPhone Wallpaper

November is my favorite transition month. The days moving from autumn into winter. Enjoy this cozy new wallpaper for your screens. Much love,

Betony

For the desktop, click on the image below to view the large size image.

For the iphone wallpaper, navigate to this page on your phone and then click and hold on the image you want. Select ‘Save image to camera roll’. Then from your camera roll set your home screen/lock screen or both.

iphone wallpapers:

July Free Calendar Desktop and iPhone Wallpaper

How is it July already!?

Our house has been listening to all our Independence day mixes this morning. This year is our first “quiet” at home July 4th we have had in a while and we can’t wait.

Make sure to also read this fun list of July ideas. Also, here is a list of some of our favorite summer books.
Enjoy this new summer desktop wallpaper inspired by explorations into the wild and quiet summer reads!

 

For the desktop, click on the image below to view the large size image.

For the iphone wallpaper, navigate to this page on your phone and then click and hold on the iphone images. Select ‘Save image to camera roll’. Then from your camera roll set your home screen/lock screen.

High Resolution Desktop Wallpaper:

JULY 2016 desktop_fin

iPhone Wallpaper:

iphone_July 2016

June Free Calendar Desktop and iPhone Wallpaper

Happy June friends!

Here is a fun summer reading list to dig into, a “Collection” of ideas for June from last year, and a little poem just for the month.

Enjoy this new desktop for your screens – open roads, broad skies, and so much green.

For the desktop, click on the image below to view the large size image.

For the iphone wallpaper, navigate to this page on your phone and then click and hold on the iphone images. Select ‘Save image to camera roll’. Then from your camera roll set your home screen/lock screen.

High Resolution Desktop Wallpaper:
JUNE 2016 desktop_v2
iPhone Wallpaper:

iphone_June 2016_v4 iphone_June 2016_v2

Branches Online Art Show: Feature # 2

Happy September! We are excited to share the second installation of our “branches” themed art show with you. All last month we asked artists to submit pieces on this theme and we had a really wonderful turnout. Enjoy these lovely interpretations!

tree_up view_betony

Betony Coons

 

Brittany_IMG_20140119_140928

Brittany Schmidt

 

Brittney Maddox

Brittany Maddox

 

Garrett_leonnigIMG_1078

Garrett Leonnig

 

Celtic Table 5

Nancy Lynch

 

Thanks to everyone who submitted! For a peak at the first feature go here.

Four Generations of Artists and an Apple Tree Sketch

Betony Coons, of Giants & Pilgrims, comes from an artistic background and we thought it would be interesting, beautiful, and true to our theme “branches” to see this experiment:

Betony, her grandmother (82), mother (57), sister (33), and finally, daughter Lucy (5), have all drawn sketches of an apple tree. The art here comes not only from the drawing but from the idea of a legacy and heredity of a family given over to being creative. Enjoy.

Below Pictures in order: Lucy (Betony’s daughter, age 5)/ Betony Coons (30)/ Elaine Williamson (Mother, 57)/ Katie Flindall (sister, 33)/ Chris Snyder (grandmother, 82)

lucy_tree

 

 

betony apple tree

elaine apple tree katie_tree MamaGoose Apple Tree Again-1

Branches Online Art Show: Feature #1

We are so excited to share with you the first set of artwork from our open online art show “Branches.” Photography, drawing, painting and writing are represented here.

We’d love to hear/see your interpretation of the theme “Branches” and will be accepting submissions through the end of August and be posting new pieces. Perhaps your piece could be/ will be in Feature #2.

IMG_8972

Bill Youmans. He says of the above piece, “notice how the branch from the upper left becomes 3 branches, and then following the stem of the leaf as it spreads into the leaf structure, the 1 into 3 pattern repeats itself over and over, smaller and smaller.”

 

Elaine Furister_The Velvet Tree

Elaine Furister – See more of her work on Facebook

1-branches

 Kelly Cook – To see more of her artwork and purchase this piece

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Brittany Schmidt

 

Essay by David Shelley:

Grieving Lost Branches

As I write this, two younger, more vigorous men are cleaning up the mess in our backyard. A heavy, wet snow came through one night. It brought much-needed moisture for our trees. But it arrived at the end of October, before the trees had shed their leaves. The heavy snow collected on the leaves, and branches as thick as my waist snapped like fortune cookies. Nature’s pruning took away locust, aspen and maple branches, and half of our old willow. A lot that once looked forested now looks as though a tornado had passed through. One young locust had the pliability to bend all the way, its top touching the ground, before I broomed off the snow, allowing it to spring back. But it straightened only halfway. It now leans like an old man with his walker.

A tire swing once hung from one of those willow branches. My father loved to swing his grandchildren when they were small. He, like that once-mighty branch, is gone now, and his grandchildren have grown and left the house. This was expected, but I dwell on it with mixed feelings, not unlike the mixed feelings I have had when saying good-bye to too many departed friends.

It is natural and good to get snow in October, and natural for mature trees to shed major branches at times. There is a time to break down, and a time to build up, Solomon noticed. But we do not merely notice such seasonal changes. We mourn them. I will miss the massive beauty of the willow, and the welcome shade it brought. It is now in a season for starting new branches–not because it is spring, but because most of the old branches are gone.

The willow itself does not seem melancholy. It will prove hardy. Years from now, it will have great branches again. I am the one who mourns the loss of those branches, because I enjoyed watching that tree spread its green canopy, its shady glory, over our home. I enjoyed watching my father play with his grandchildren. It is the past tense that lingers like a dark cloud.

A friend of mine said that when his father died, he felt as if his covering had been removed and he was exposed to something–I’m not sure what. Looming mortality, perhaps. I think of him as I look at our willow, now looking as ragged as a family name after a scandal. I feel the incongruity of that welcome water, feeding the tree it broke, renewing the process of beautifying and beneficial growth. Will we ever see unlimited growth without pruning, I wonder, or will we gain an eternal appreciation for the necessity of breaking off branches to reinvigorate new growth? Will I someday experience heavenly pruning and exult in it? Or will I never be pruned again? I long for a pure faith in the Vinedresser, a faith that trustingly welcomes either option, because I am tired of grieving the loss of old, familiar branches. – November 2012

 

To hear more from David find him over at Facebook

August “Branches” Activity: Leaf Collecting

Take a walk in your favorite park and gather some leaves from the trees. Find a guide online and see if you can identify the trees from the leaf shapes.

You can keep the leaves to do a “pressed” collection, turn them into a  stamps activity or create leaf skeletons.

Pressing Leaves:

Find a heavy book like an encyclopedia or dictionary. Place leaves between 2 sheets of paper to protect the pages of the book. Leave at least 1/8″ of pages between pressings, weigh the book down and wait a couple of weeks.

Alternatively, you can put the leaves and paper in between two ceramic tiles, rubberbanded together, in the microwave and zap in short bursts, 30 seconds to a minute at a time Let cool between zaps, opening your press to let moisture/steam escape while cooling. Don’t over do it; avoid burning your flowers. Repeat until almost done, then put in a different book or flower press to finish drying.
Making Leaf Skeletons

  1. Press leaves between old book pages. They should remain inside the books or heavy objects in a dry, undisturbed place for several weeks.
  2. Make a solution of washing soda. Carefully lay the pressed leaves into the solution.
  3. When the flesh becomes pulpy, take the leaves out of the washing solution.Rinse them carefully in cold water.
  4. Gently brush away the pulp with a toothbrush. They’re now ready for use as a craft or art item.


 

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