Dowshifting to autumn tempo

The only thing that beats my love of words and watercolor is having people to share both with. I’m sitting in my favorite cafe, Bean & Bakery in Concord NH, indulging in the most amazing pumpkin raisin muffin I’ve ever tasted. I think it has random bits of ginger in it too, little surprises to delight the senses. That’s what my life is about now– celebration of all the senses.

This last month has been full of surprises, the biggest one being a bit of a health scare only a few hours after my big birthday. This was not the “Welcome to the 70s” I expected! 

The good news is that after lots of tests for blood clots, etc., I’ve happily arrived at the land of “Love what’s left of your body, or lose it!” I’ve been exercise-averse my entire life for no special reason, but I see now that a sedentary life is a luxury I can no longer afford. Happily, I have enticements to help me do the next right thing. It started with a birthday splurge— a chair, ironically!

I finally indulged in buying a very high-quality sketching stool that I’ve had on a wish list for over a year. It is the Walkstool Comfort 45, 18″ seat height, and it folds to easily fit inside my backpack.

 I stopped driving about four years ago, and now when I go for a walk for pleasure or errands, I know I can confidently stop anywhere for a little rest, pull out the Walkstool and my minimal art kit, and turn exercise into a very comfortable sketch outing as well.

For those of you who struggle to travel light when sketching, here’s the kit I’ve used for years.

 I keep thinking I can improve on it by eliminating or adding something, but always come back to this. It’s pretty close to the Bare Bones Kit at the beginning of “Look at That!”

When I stopped having a car whose trunk was a “traveling art supply studio/chair storage area,” I had to get seriously streamlined. And like it says in “Look at That!,” the fewer supplies to choose from, the fewer minutes wasted in decision-making. 

Weekly Sketchers’ Meet-Up Resurrected!

As some of my Facebook friends know, I restarted a sketchers’ meet-up group here in Concord a few weeks ago, a throw-back to the group I started in 2014 (see page 42 of “Double Take.”) We meet weekly for now at a spacious, well-ventilated café a block from where I live. We’ll meet through the end of November, and I hope we get some warm, sunny days so we can use their beautiful patio dining area as well. 

Here at the cafe now, I’m smiling because the midday music they’re playing is Rod Stewart, Cat Stevens, Jim Croce, Elton John…wow, they have us Boomers pegged. The café is very busy early in the morning, so I picked the midday lull (11-1) to have our Drawing Attention Sketchers’ Group meet on Tuesdays. My goal is two-fold: first, to meet with other sketchers, and second, to support this privately-owned local business.

The Covid Quarantine Months made me aware that loyalty choices are powerful. You might want to ask yourself:

Which local small businesses (the ones that have been here through thick and thin, recessions and blizzards) do you want to support right now, to let them know verbally and financially that you honor their hard work? I didn’t need that delicious pumpkin raisin ginger muffin, but for today, I made a deposit not only in my happy tummy, but also in a good business in a wonderful city. My sphere of influence is smaller than a ping pong ball, but nevertheless, I persist.

How are you doing as we enter a new season of the year? Is your art practice playful?

Are you moving those rusty joints just enough to keep everything flexible and strong? (I’ve recently discovered rope flow, the most unlikely of activities for this elder lady, and have fallen madly in love with it.  For us non-jocks, it is shockingly enjoyable!) 

Are your head and heart and hands in alignment with your deepest values and dreams?

If not, can you take a breather and gently ask yourself what might need a shift, or a little clear-out? 

As those of us north of the equator snuggle in for the coming externally fallow, internally rich, season of the year, I hope you take time each day to uncover, recall, and live your very best autumn dreams.

Down by the Merrimack River on a gorgeous day, with the best of friends.


As always, feel free to forward this post to anyone you think might enjoy it.

Questions? Comments? Public comments can be posted below.

Private questions or comments will reach me by using the Contact link here.

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Finally, thanks so much for spending some “aloft” time with me.

About Bobbie Herron

I live surrounded by watercolor brushes and paints, fountain pens, sketchbooks, and journals- often wanting more than anything to write and paint at the same time. If you like what you're reading, feel free to share it with others. If you see something that needs correction, please let me know. Thanks for visiting!
This entry was posted in 2- Bolts: Sketching Tools, Book #2: Double Take, Look at That! book, Musings on Life, Sketchbooks, Sketching tools and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

3 Responses to Dowshifting to autumn tempo

  1. We’ll golly, I thought I postponed the “publish” date, but alas, no. I won’t be there today, at Bean&Bakery Cafe, but hope to be back next week.


  2. Mary says:

    What a lovely post! I wish I could join you but alas I am on the other side of the U.S. Keep up the good work moving all the joints. As one who already knows, the 70’s aren’t for sissies and as my mother used to tell me, “Use it or loose it!”
    Thank you for your inspiring post and when you get a chance fill me in on what ropes flow does for you. I shall have to research the words as I’ve no idea what it is. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thanks for your comment, Mary. Rope flow is a playful way to move your body, at your own pace, and play with a silly rope at the same time. There are many videos, some take it seriously, other just go slowly and have fun. It was invented in 2004 by a man named David Weck. It’s a great way for me to step away from the laptop for a bit of play in the middle of the day.


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