Shabby blogs

Friday, March 28, 2008

The C.M. Russell Auction

We have been studying Charles Russell and decided to go to the CM Russell Auction and Art Show in Great Falls. It is a yearly event that started 40 years ago. Our friends, the Nelsons, have an art gallery here in Kalispell and not only do they have a gallery room at the auction every year, but Kirk Nelson, Doug's dad, started the auction with 5 other people. It was an incredible event. Every year, over 200 artists and dealers transform the Heritage Inn rooms into their personal galleries. Both Friday and Saturday nights is an auction supporting the CM Russell Museum, where in recent years they have grossed over 5 million dollars. In addition, on both Friday and Saturday nights, chosen artists participate in the Quick Draw event where those artists have 1 hour to create a masterpiece which is then auctioned that evening to benefit the museum as well. It was an amazing event. We had such a great time walking through and seeing the incredible talent that exists in western art. The kids got a great hands on experience in art appreciation. The artists were quick to talk with them and were very encouraging. We listened in on a colorful panel discussing 40 years of history with the auction and show. The Museum, located at the site of Russell's homestead and studio, gave us an extensive look into his life and work. My favorite part of the museum was viewing the art that was to be auctioned off that night. Wow!! We all came away with some favorites. They include Jeff Walker, Nicholas Oberling, Nancy Dunlop Cawdrey, Carol Hagan (whose bear painting went for $14,000 on Friday night!), Graham Flatt (one of Brad's favorites), Randy Van Beek, Steve Seltzer, Jan Mapes and many more. We realized that we have very different art tastes. Brad and Josiah like horse/cowboy/traditional western paintings where I prefer landscapes or ranch/farm scenes or tradtional subject matter with a twist (hence my attraction to Carol Hagan and Sheila Reiman works). The kids all like bronzes best. We all went away with a great appreciation for the talents that God has bestowed on his creation! photos here.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

At Day at the Office with Dad

Brad is out at the ranch every week for two days and he has been taking the boys with him. It started out with just one kid going each week and then, being the smart boys that they are, they knew a good thing when they saw it, so now all three go along. It is nice for Brad to have helpers out there with him and it is great for the kids. They work their tails off and occasionally they freeze! :) There are great advantages in going anywhere with the Treat Guy Dad; hot chocolate, ice cream at night, a movie before bed, etc. Now the bad side is (at least for them), that the homeschool Nazi Mom loads them up with school work so that they don't get behind. They have to do it on the trip out and back and after the long day's work. Dad is happy because everyone is busy in the car and not talking his ear off! :) A couple of weeks ago, on Josiah's birthday, we all went out for the two day stint. It was fun visiting Dad at one of his "offices". We went with them in the tractor to check on the bison and the horses, checked the fencing, and fed some hay. The weather was perfect - it was crystal clear and sunny. It is always a great time out there. Of all the places to love, I think that the ranch is our far! More photos here.

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Josiah's birthday

Well, my baby turned 12 last week. How can it be? He is so talented and so mature. He has a very witty sense of humour, is a great baseball player, reads like crazy, is gifted musically, is beautiful, is very fun to be around, enjoys art, enjoys people, loves to talk, is a faithful friend, and LOVES horses (he has requested I think every book that is available to us on horses in the Flathead Library system. He will be a professional by the time we get our own horse). Josiah is a really interesting individual. I am glad that he is my son. We went to the ranch for two days on the morning of his birthday and then we went to the CM Russell Auction and art show for the weekend in Great Falls. For his gifts, he wanted a pair of Muckboot Britt Riders so we split them with Grandma and Grandpa Riggs (the older they get the more their toys cost!). He was so excited. We also got him a hardback copy of Black Gold (a horse book by Marguerite Henry) which is his favorite book....he read it all on the way to the ranch. He received money from both sets of grandparents and "The Dog Whisperer" dog training book from my mom and dad too. We road around in the tractor with Brad and the boys feeding out some hay and watching the bison and went to check on the horses. Josiah said it was the best birthday he had ever had and LAST year we went to the Padres Spring Training in Peoria, AZ so that was saying a lot!! Want to see photos?

reading list revisited

Well, the problem with loving to read and even making a reading list, for me, is that inevitably I find other things taht I want to read instead of my original list. I didn't do too well for Feb. Although I am making up and reading those books this month, but that means that I am not reading my March books. I am almost done with "The Heart of Anger" by Lou Prioli and it is outstanding. It addresses the issue of evaluating and then responding Biblically to every problem and situation that we face ourselves. He THEN runs you through teaching our kids to respond Biblically. It has changed the way that I communicate with my kids becuase I am constantly evaluating both my and their responses. There is a great section on manipulation techniques (not how to use them, but how to spot them and respond to them). It has been eye opening. I can spot a lot of manipulation techniques as they come up , but didn't realize how often I respond to them instead of bringing the communication right back to the Biblical standard. I sometimes answer the question or respond to the spouting off instead of bringing the kid back to "you are being rude, and I will not answer your question until you come back to me with a compleley respectful attitude" or "that is not the issue, the issue is that you are being disrespectful" (can you tell what issue we are dealing with here????!!!)
I also read another book instead of one that I had on my list for Feb. It was called "I Don't Read my Bible Enough" by Ron Smith. Ron and Judy Smith are in charge of the YWAM (Youth With a Mission) base here in Kalispell and they have started bible training schools all over the world. They are great people that we met through the ranch. It was a quick, easy read and I enjoyed it. Ron gives an easy, encouraging path to Bible reading and study. Did you know that it takes only 5 minutes to read all of I John? And less than 5 minutes to read some of the smaller NT books and even some minor prophets in the OT? Ron quotes statistics aobut how few Christians actually read their Bibles regularly and also explains that because of knowing the Bible he was able to stick to the truth instead of believing the liberal-minded philosophy that he was being taught in SEMINARY!!
So, I am not really on track with my list, but I am reading!! And wishing that I could read more. I spend days thinking about reading....isn't that crazy? I still need to read "Salad Bar Beef" from Feb. and my two listed for March (sigh) and I'm not sure how that's going to fall out, because I just got "John Adams" by David McCoulough at the library and it is looking pretty thick!! I think that my problem is that I love books. I really do love them. I have passed the same obsession on to my kids! This is funny, but one of the things that I miss most about San Diego (other than my friends of course), is the Friends of the Library Bookstore!! We bought many a steal for 25 kids would rather go there than the candy store! So many books; so little time!!