Tuesday, December 03, 2013

ABC Wednesday,
Dec. 4th, 2013

The letter is U, for Maurice Utrillo

b. 1883    d. 1955
On one of our trips through the alphabet I included paintings by
Utrillo's mother, Suzanne Valadon, who was taught and encouraged by Degas.
Her child, Maurice Valadon, whose paternity was never recognized,
became Maurice Utrillo when Miquel Utrillo, a friend of Suzannes, in a spirit of kindness
 bestowed upon him his own name.
Maurice was a highly neurotic child and by the time he was eighteen he was
committed to an asylum temporarily because of his alcoholism.   One of the doctors there
advised his mother to encourage him to take up painting as an emotional outlet
 to help him regain his equilibrium.
Despite many alcoholic relapses with self destructive tendencies,  through his lifetime
 Utrillo produced thousands of oils, gouaches, water colors and pencil sketches,
becoming a legendary figure who in 1929 was awarded the
 Cross of the Legion of Honour
by the French Republic.
Many regard him as the century's greatest painter of urban scenes, and recognize his genius.
"Above all, Utrillo has an eye for Montmartre, the old, picturesque and
relatively quiet artists' quarter as it existed before the First World War.  He is fascinated
by the sad little streets and miserable bistros of the industrial suburbs."
In his fifties Utrillo married the widow, Lucie Pauwels, who managed his
interests so ably that he was able to live in 'grand' style in Paris,
 and both she and his mother, Suzanne, are credited
with the peace, rather than tragedy, with which his life ended.
Find more representations of the letter U here, at ABC Wednesday
with thanks to Denise and Roger and all others
who make this meme so Utterly Fascinating. 

Sunday, December 01, 2013

This and that

December 1st, - White Rabbit Day,
 and when I woke at 3 a.m., early into the morning, I made my way to the ensuite all the while muttering, White Rabbits, White Rabbits!!!

And that's just what I feel like - a White Rabbit, hurrying Time, late for a very important date.......

I have oodles of baking to do this coming week for our tiny congregation
who are bravely holding their annual Christmas Bake Sale and
 'come for cookies and coffee on us'.

And for the Bell Choir who plan to distribute bell-shaped sugar cookies from white baskets at the Light-up Parade and Celebration this coming Friday.....

I offered to help decorate the Christmas Tree at Lodge (Tuesday morning)  in lieu of climbing ladders and putting up garlands - I do know my limitations!!!

Bell practice Monday and Thursday evenings, and in the meantime I am frantically playing triplets and arpeggios, trying to get the accompaniment to Helen's wonderful Bell solo up to speed.  "O Come O Come Emanuel" - beautiful, but I have a dreadful horror of missing a beat and coming in a bar behind the star, as we finish!!  Five concerts to play......

I think I am too old for all of this, - all I had really planned to do for Christmas was finish the digital album of Charles' life, to keep his sweet memory alive.
And now all this, and all that!!!!

Pray for me!
I am off now to add music to the digital album and immerse myself in
marvelous memories of younger days
when all this was a piece of cake!!

If you don't hear any more from me you will
know I have fallen down the rabbit hole -
or the 'memory hole'..........