a living liturgy for 2017.

refuge

Each month of 2017, I’m choosing to reflect on one word and a piece of wisdom around that word.  These words and wisdom were woven into the 2017 Monthly Calendar (paper sold out, digital available in the shop).  It’s a living liturgy for 2017.  My movements, pondering, and prayers land in the spaces and curves of these words.

January is all about refuge.  Create spaces of safety and trust.  Cozy comfort and safe space to be the you you’re created to be.  Comfort and safety within.  Space that surrounds.  Micro and Macro.

Refuge helps me to think of others as well as the cozy comforts of home.  My home is a safe place, though not all of my homes have felt safe all of the time.  Home expands as I think about those who are Home for me – my wider refuge of shelter.   My thoughts and prayers continue through the month and I record them in my journal.

A few of my pondered hopes I pray these January days ::

Let us create refuge for one another.
Let us create spaces of safety and trust.
Let my home be a refuge of safety and trust.

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I cannot help but have the It is in the shelter of one another that the people live.  -Irish Proverb running through my mind like a song.  My dear friend and public theologian Jayme Reaves shared this proverb with me long ago.  I’ve put it on canvas and paper.  I’ve let the words flow through my mind and listened to them roll off the tongue.

We all need shelter.  Shelter from the storms of life.  Shelter to share a meal.  Shelter to share life’s celebrations.  January I’m taking refuge from hate and vitriol.  There’s so much to take shelter from, and also many to provide shelter to.  Prayers for those who feel unsafe, unwelcome, and distrust.  Prayers continue in the form of lighting the candle, lifting voice, and sending energy.  Prayers through steps in my diverse neighborhood and greater world Home.

Y’all.  Words and actions can be Shelter and the storm.  Anxiety is raised. Love and Hate are real life truths.  Let’s speak in love and create spaces of comfort and trust where we can have honest, open conversations.  Let’s name the pain and heal through the spaces we create together. Let’s be kindness and love.  Let’s Be Love for one another, even when our lights are dim and our heads are spinning.  Let’s take refuge in spaces of love that are our own making.

An Invitation to Gather in the Studio

Good day to you, KindHeart.  I’m so glad you’re here.  You are invited to gather in the studio, gifting yourself the time and space for self care, introspection, creativity.  To sign up for a gathering, email me your registration intentions or send a paypal payment (to slsvinson@gmail.com) with details of the date(s) you’ll be attending.
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The event details are on the Silver Tree Art Facebook page, and I’ll link to the first of each one below.  I’d love to welcome each of you to gather at the table.  It’s the perfect time to gather among women around the table.
The Gatherings for the Mini-Retreats are each $40 per person which includes all materials and a light snack.   Space is limited to 10.

The Sacred Pause Retreat is $145 per person which includes lunch and all materials.  Space is limited to 12.

I accept online payment via paypal or payment in person the day of the gatherings.  For day retreats, a deposit is required to secure your spot.

Evening Mini-Retreats :: Each are lovely gatherings, filled with women who add such delight. You would enjoy these also. Upcoming Tuesday evening dates ::
January 31st 6:30 – 8:45 p.m.  https://www.facebook.com/events/142773079549045/
February 28th 6:30 – 8:45 p.m.
March 28th 6:30 – 8:45 p.m.
Sacred Pause Day Retreat :: a wonderful Saturday filled with lunch, self care, creativity, and poetry in the studio ::

February 18th 9:30 – 2:30 p.m.  https://www.facebook.com/events/398000923924680/

Creative Clergy Mini-Retreats are welcome to women who are in the caring professions and consider yourselves as ministers to the world.  These retreats are infused with a robust language of Spirituality and Prayer.  Friday morning dates are here ::
February 24th 10 a.m. – Noon
March 31st 10 a.m. – Noon
Peace and light to you and yours, KindHeart.  xo.

A Few Happenings

image-1-of-1-454We’ll welcome you to the Holiday Open Studio again this year as a part of the Ginter Art Show.  I’m very excited to welcome you into the studio, as I’ve rearranged and made room for the new since this photo shoot.  Aaah.  Deep Breath.   December 3rd, 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. 3421 Hawthorne Avenue, RVA

The annual Richmond Craft Mafia Handmade Holiday is an absolute favorite show, and Jenn will have the art BOTH Saturday and Sunday, December 3rd and 4th at Hardwood Park Craft Brewery.  I’ll be there some Sunday, and will look forward to cheering the holidays.   Sat, Dec. 3rd, 12 p.m. – 7 p.m.; Sun. Dec. 4th 12 p.m. – 5 p.m. + 2408 Ownby Lane, RVA

The etsy shop is undergoing a spiffy update thanks to Phoebe and her magic touch.  Jenn will continue to fill orders, though we’ll take a brief shipping break for the holidays.

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More Holiday Open Studio Hours will be posted for December this week, so check back here for additions or on our FB page.

img_3825RVA Folk :: New work is at the new Patina’d Grace on N. Robinson Street, and you can find a wide variety at Orange in Carytown.  The Valentine also has a number of Silver Tree Art goods for purchase in the gift shop.

a season of new beginnings.

A new offering in my growing Prayer Card series is the Advent set featured below.  The prayer seems right fitting to share today, on election day, and really, at any point of new beginnings.  Each day can be a new beginning.  Wearing hope today, lighting my candle, and carrying this prayer in my pocket.

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Advent Prayer Cards and Blessing Buttons Available here.

In this season of new beginnings,
may hope give you wings to soar.
May you be encircled by love.
May Joy fill you with delight.
May peace be in each breath.
May you discover light and beauty
in this shimmering season of
hope, love, joy, and peace.

Holiday Mixed Media Canvas Custom Art

I’m so happy to be offering a limited number of Mixed Media Canvas Originals to you for the Holidays.  You can request custom colors, words, and images to be incorporated into your canvas delights.  For these canvases, current turn around is 3-4 weeks.  To get on the list, each canvas is $175 for a 12×12 and $150 for a 10×10.  these are a beautiful blend of abstract and dreamscape, story and image.  email slsvinson @ gmail.com (no spaces) with your request.  xo.

soul care becomes soul work becomes ministry.

i make art as soul care.

Creating is as natural and necessary as breathing.  There maybe tears mixed with watercolors on a few, too. My soul care always moves into my work in the etsy shop. Shen i hear stories of connection, how the art translates into courage, hope, bravery, support, healing, love, action in the hands and on the walls of others, my soul care becomes soul work and we become connected through it all. My art is my ministry and your use of my art/soul work/ministry becomes your soul care/soul work/ministry, too.

we heal one another.

Healing begins as I pick up my pen, pencil, brush, allow my soul to stir on the page. Then the courageous act of sharing what I’ve put down on paper and boldness to believe you’ll use my soul work well in daily living. My art is act of necessity as i process my own grief and delight, hope and courage.

my art creates space for ritual and rest. healing and wholeness.  

Temporary tattoos become bodily badges of self love and self care and mighty declarations.  Candles hold a flickering flame of hope, courage, and intercession.  Sacred strikes help us to pick up a match, strike in celebration or release.  Art with wise words call our attention toward living a whole life, honoring who we are and what we have to offer the world around us.

we are living whole. 

We are called to be a people of wholeness, living not only for ourselves, but in community.  Whole living for me includes each of you.  Whole living includes honoring rest for my chronic fatigue, showing up with what energy I have to offer, and being present to those who show up with me.

gathering is ministry. 

Today I will gather with some beautiful women around the table.  We will see each other and be seen.  We will celebrate life and beauty, grieve,  and be.  It’s soul work to create together in such community.  It’s whole living with open hearts.  It’s a sacred tablescape of love, learning, and support as we minister to one another.

 

What we most need.

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breathe in.  giving yourself what you most need.

breathe out.  release what you carry that no longer serves you.

These words have become a near-requirement for the guided imagery meditations i lead.  one of the tribe who gathers said that she can finally let go once she’s heard these words.

I repeat this mantra on a regular basis.  So often we’re receiving words, touches, energy that is unwelcome.  Often our own thoughts churn and swirl, carrying us into a dizzying whirlpool.

In many of my gatherings, I’ll often hear “but I don’t know what I most need” and I can relate.  Sometimes what we most need is the breath itself.  Taking the deep breath into our bodies, stilling and slowing our pace.  Making room for that life-giving air.

When I find myself overly anxious or caught in my thought whirlpool, I breathe in.  And breathe out.   Repeating those breaths for 4 or 5 seconds on repeat 4 or 5 or 25 times.  Whatever is most needed in that moment.

By taking the time to ask myself what is most needed, I become more attune to my needs just as I am of the needs around me.  If you’re anything like me, the needs of everyone around me catch my attention and I put myself on hold.  And if you’re aware, you know that does not properly serve life around you.  Caring for our bodies, our minds, and our inner lives is so important, especially in the climate of anxiety and uncertainty.  And when isn’t there a climate of anxiety and uncertainty?

So today, I breathe in. breathing in the light that flows from the sun.  breathing in the smell of fresh flowers.  breathing in the soil as i ground my feet.  And I breathe out. breathing out the distasteful comments heard.  breathing out fear. breathing out the questions that do not need to be asked.  A

And I go about my day.  What we most need is often right in front of us, and most often we know what that is – whatever it is.  Yet we keep it near, in some reserved space for later or when we have more time.  The time is now to breathe in. breathe out. and give yourself what you most need.

Lunch – because, how many of us find ourselves working through?
Water – yes. water.  so simple and wonderful for our daily health.
Steps – moving our bodies in all the forms.
Sitting meditation – yes. yes.
Playing – using our bodies and minds to find delight and joy.

Wherever you find yourself in this moment.  I invite you to deepen your awareness of this moment by breathing deeply and giving yourself what you most need.  xo.