Saturday, March 12, 2016

help the helpers

If you are one of the millions of people who spend any time whatsoever on social media, such as Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, or any other sites you can think of- hell, if you've ever been on the internet at all- chances are you've seen (and enjoyed, and shared) at least one cute animal video. I'm willing to bet you've seen (and enjoyed, and shared) more than one of these videos...a LOT more. Cats, dogs, owls, bats, eagles, hawks, bears, bunnies, whales, you name it. Unlikely interspecies friendships, reunions with humans who had been apart from their animal buddies, hurt critters being nursed back to health, and on and on. I've never met anyone who doesn't respond positively to a cute animal video.

A week ago, one of the "trending" topics Facebook lists on the right-hand side of their "home" page caught my eye: my hometown, Bellport, New's been years since I lived there, but it's where I'm from. Bellport is a small town, and not one that often pops up in the news, especially for someone who is sitting in front of a computer in Maine. Sadly, Bellport wasn't in the news for a positive reason: a pit bull puppy had been found hanging from a tree, beaten and lifeless. Several days later, another story was making the rounds on Facebook. Once again, it was animal cruelty: a man had been arrested for beating a black lab puppy. This time, the location was my current hometown: Brunswick, Maine. 

While the case in Bellport has become an investigation, the case in Brunswick still has hope. The abused puppy, Buddy, was brought to The Coastal Humane Society to be nursed back to health. Buddy's leg was amputated, but he is in a caring environment and responding well to the love, kindness, and medical treatment he is receiving. 

It goes without saying that the people who committed these heinous acts should be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law. It is difficult to even comprehend that anyone could be capable of such behavior. When things like this happen, I can't help but think of the famous quote from Mister Rogers:   

It is important to look for the helpers. Not only that, it is important to help the helpers. Before I had even heard about either of these incidents, I had decided to have the Coastal Humane Society in Brunswick as the charity I would split the proceeds from the raffle ticket sales for my next Brushstrokes With Impact (tm) "Paint-a-Thon" event. I'm grateful for this opportunity to help the helpers. Would you like to join me? I will be at Wild Oats Bakery & Cafe (149 Maine Street, Brunswick- inside the Tontine Mall) on Saturday, March 19th, from 9am-5pm. Raffle tickets ($5 each, 3 for $10) will be available both in person and online on my Carii community page, Brushstrokes With Impact (tm)  (click the "fundraising" button on the left). Feel free to share the Facebook event page, if you'd like to spread the word- it's public:

Friday, March 4, 2016

marching forth

Time is zipping by! It's March already...not just that, but it's March 4th! I like the fact that today's date is also a command, a call to action. Before I "march forth," I must do a little recapping!

My most recent Brushstrokes With Impact (tm) "Paint-a-Thon" was on Saturday, February 27th, and it was VANtastic, indeed! The staff at Wyler's made me feel so welcome: thank you, Sylvia, Sharon, and everyone else for all of your help! Visits and hugs from friends (and my very patient husband, Terry) helped to power me through the day, along with some excellent music. I had a wonderful time, and between all of the online and in person raffle ticket sales, together we were able to raise $340 for ArtVan! I'm incredibly grateful for all of the support. Thank you!

my setup at Wyler's! 

The winning raffle ticket was drawn, and on Monday, "Paint Tube" was mailed out to its new home in sunny South Carolina! Thank you, Chris- I hope you enjoy it! 

"Paint Tube"

The tireless Keith Spiro was with me for a huge chunk of the day on Saturday, documenting the event and being incredibly supportive, as usual. You may have seen some of Keith's photos in the papers recently...and if you haven't, allow me to share a couple of them with you!  My press release made it into the weekend edition of the Times Record (the photo is from my "pop-up" show at Cool As A Moose):

woo hoo! 

...and this is from the March issue of The Cryer, featuring photos from the Joy of Art reception at the Topsham Public Library! Clearly I wasn't the only one having fun that day. 

Action shots are all the rage! 

In case you were wondering, my next Brushstrokes With Impact (tm) "Paint-a-Thon" is coming right up! Mark your calendars for Saturday, March 19th, otherwise known as St. CATrick's Day! Okay, March 19th is not really known as that, but in my little world, that's what I'm calling it! I will be setting up my easel at Wild Oats Bakery & Cafe and painting from 9am-5pm (an early start for me- eek!). This month's charity? The Coastal Humane Society! Here's the Facebook event page in case you'd like to share it:
...and here's the link to the Carii fundraising page!