Sunday, May 13, 2012



I'll bet you were able to read the underlined word above even though all the vowels are missing.
that is .... for those of you who even realized the word "unfinished" was misspelled!
Life is like that .... some pieces are missing 
but still recognizable.
Just like the "Unfnshd Masterpiece" named
Monica .........

When I was a baby and grew into a child
I slowly picked up bits and pieces of information about my world.
Mad and happy people.
And that you get your knuckles smacked with a ruler -
 in the first grade for talking in class -
by a lady named "Sister" who wears a dress that makes
her look like a penguin
and has no body beneath that huge black dress, just floats .... but I digress!
But most of all,
imprinted in my
developing-artist-Monica brain,
was the beauty
all around me ...
At times the "colors" of my life
became discombobulated ....
Blue ..... Red ....Yellow ....Purple.

However, that's okay because artists
aren't supposed to
color within the lines
or make every tree green.

one tendency I seem to have
rather consistently is
I'm a fantastic starter ......
but a dedicated Unfnshd Masterpiece.

 For instance ......
paintings I've started over the years:

BUSTER ... my beloved Grandpuppy

Buster grew up,
won our hearts,
and left us way too soon.
And I still haven't finished this portrait of him as a puppy.
If there are dogs in heaven,
Buster paved the way for Eldon right before
he also left us way too soon.

BettE .... please tell me if this is Keekee  or Coco (sp ?)
Do you still have that coffee table?
Sorry about the glare.
How old is .... whichever kitty this is?
All I have to do is finish the eyes ....

Ahhh .... Mexico!
A quaint fishing village in the
Sea of Cortez, Baja Mexico.
Do you know how long ago it's been
since we were sailing the Sea of Cortez?
The children of that village are all grown up now
and having children of their own!
And I still haven't put the finishing touches on the scene.

I have a light sketch my sister Chris did of the house she stayed at
in France before she was married .....
wants me to paint a picture of it.
France has gone through riots, changes in government, revolts,
and headed for bankruptcy - and Chris has married and her son is 18 years old,
and I have YET to sit down and make my own sketch of her sketch.
Sorry Chris. But it is in my pile of "URGENT To Do" drawings.

This painting isn't half bad .... only because I copied it out of an art book.

Hmmm .... I wonder where that book is now.
That might be the solution to my
starter-but-Unfnshd Masterpiece life.

An artist before me has filled in the spaces
and colored all the shapes
and figured out the shadows.
Wracking my poor old brain to figure out
shadows, dimensions, perspective, mixing colors,
color wheel mind is spinning!
I could simply follow along with what
another struggling artist created.
Nahhhh!  That's cheating.
Back to the drawing board .... pardon the pun!

"Family Treasures" is my most disturbing
Unfnshd Masterpiece!
I won't even TELL you when I started this painting.
Let me just say,
 the paint has been dry longer than some of my grandchildren are old.

 It looks fnshd to you?

That's so like me.
There are areas in my life
that need a bit of paint here,
a dab of shadow there,
a truer perspective in this area ....
some "sketches"of me  are so poorly drawn
that I find it difficult to tackle
my imperfections.
Where it once was okay for me to color outside of the lines,
I now find it troubling to stay within the lines.
 My life has changed so drastically
 I can't seem to get the
"colors" right.
They're all mismatched and clash.
The perspective is all wrong
and I don't know  
where the shadows belong.

But hold on!
Not to sound depressed or out of whack ....
"Only God can make a tree ......"
 Wasn't it a man with a girl's
last name who said that so famously?
That's a pretty puny looking tree on the right.
And to think I paid $90.00 for lessons to come up with it.
Not the instructors fault.
He is a brilliant water colorist.
But when we try to copy what God has created
it's only an illusion
compared to His brilliant artistry.

These trees and the winter stream aren't half bad ....

would that make the painting half good?
it is half fnshd.

As per my instructor's directions, I did a study in painting with  watercolor

wet on wet
wet on dry.
If I wasn't careful all the colors would bleed together into
the most famous watercolor-color:
mud tone.

By my fourth lesson,
the "trees"
I painted
began to look
a bit more like the
ones God made.
But all artists know
the trees, flowers, sky, and people
artists paint are only illusions.

Encouraging myself to paint again  is
yet an exciting time as an artist and a woman.
Sometimes my colors bleed together and mud happens.
And then sometimes something wonderful happens.

A memory,
an image .....
a happiness deserving of
red and blue,
yellow and purple,
green and brown
come from my heart
to my brain - the right side of my brain-
and appear on paper,
 as if someone else drew the image.
I'm in awe and near tears as the charming scene slowly appears before me at the end of my fingertips.

It's a scene out of my past:
Eldon working in the garden,
Monica carrying in produce from the garden for lunch,
and Perro wanting to play "chase the stick."
And just when I decided the painting was finished
 and ready to be framed ......
I found flaws in it.
I didn't think the roof perspective was right ....
I didn't like the trees in the background behind Eldon ...
His hat and shoulders,
legs and color of skin wasn't right.
So I scraped off the color in those areas -
this is oil pastels - and I'm in the process of
perfecting it.

If only life was so easy
as to simply scrape away the parts we don't like and  .......
 but how do we know if  the new colors, or dimensions, or perspective would turn out any better.
No question mark at the end of that sentence .... it's a statement.

I'm working on many drawings and paintings right now ....
some done on scrap paper, poorly done - 
a couple will turn out to be  "Fnshed Masterpieces".

These sunflowers are lovely ..... although I find areas I will redo ....

and the bottom section isn't near finished.
 But true to my self .....
 it may remain unfnshed for years.

A peaceful scene ...
barn with hay stored in the loft, streams of water cascading over
waterfalls into a rocky pool.
If I dwell on it I'm sure I can find areas to re-do .... touch up ....
apply water and sop up the color to make it better.
I'm peeling away the colors of
my life that are "muddy"
and learning the skill of bringing everything into pleasing perspective,
not perfection.
The "Unfnshed Masterpieces" on my easel/life need but one final dab of paint. Not perfection but satisfaction with a job well done.
Contentment with the "colors" of who I am.
Peace that surpasses understanding ....
and less criticism of
because  God sees me as
His beloved,
" Finished Masterpiece. "
Not the end,
just the beginning!

 Elizabeth Ann "Betty" Kaemerer

A poem I wrote and sent to my Mom on Mother's Day
May 12, 1991
I asked the Lord to give me love,
the love I see in you toward all your children.

I asked the Lord to give me joy,
the joy I've seen in you in small blessings.

I asked the Lord to give me peace,
the peace I've seen in you during the most
uproarious situations.

I asked the Lord to give me patience,
 the patience I've seen in you to see a difficult task completed.

I asked the Lord to give me goodness,
the kind of goodness you and Dad had for each other
and enough left over to share with us.

I asked the Lord to give me kindness,
the kind of kindness you show to strangers.

I asked the Lord to show me gentleness,
the kind of gentleness that comes from your heart and wraps around me......and others.

I asked the Lord to give me perseverence,
the kind of perseverence it took to raise so many children you
can be proud of.


I asked the Lord to give me self control,
the kind of self control it takes to allow me to be who I am
and not try to heal all my wounds,
but be there if my hurts don't heal.

And if I asked the Lord to give me the perfect Mother .....
He would have only one choice,
that would be you.

I put this Mothers Day
poem in my journal many years ago.
There are a few notes written on the side and bottom
of the page:

"Written for my Mom, Betty Kaemerer on Mothers Day,
May 12, 1991"

"12/23/98  I just read this to Eldon ...
we both got tears in our eyes ....."

"She died Dec. 12, 2005"

Here's to you Mom!

And then she was alone in the cute little house she and Des built .....

But surrounded by people who loved her....

And then she was gone. 

With a smile
and a toast
we bid you ado ...
but cherish
we have of you.

Happy Mothers Day and blessings to the "Moms" in my family.
I love you with all my heart.