Rochester Women Magazine: Channel Your Inner Picasso

The latest edition of Rochester Women Magazine is available. I had a lot of fun with this edition. The article features several local businesses that host painting and wine parties. You can find the article here.

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vangogh painting brushstroke haiku

Vincent Van Gogh Painting

Today’s Haiku:

somber winter day
sipping wine and splashing paint
swollen brush strokes

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Does anyone else have recent magazine articles being published?

Enjoy your day!

~Nicole

Valentine Wine & Canvas

Friday night Denise and I hosted a Valentine Wine & Canvas event. The ladies who attended were so much fun! It was a lively group full of laughter and good energy! Here are a few pictures from the event.

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Today’s Haiku:

his soft gentle eyes
speak truth, he asks for her heart
and now they are one

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I wrote today’s haiku back in 2008. I wrote it after Adlai, who is now my husband, proposed to me at the Conservatory in Minneapolis. It was a beautiful proposal. We were resting on a bench in the sunken gardens. It was December 26th and the  area was filled with festive Poinsettia plants and twinkling lights. One of my fondest memories of our life together.

Did you have a romantic Valentine’s Day?

~Nicole

Wine & Canvas: Bottle of Red

Friday night Denise and I hosted another Wine & Canvas event. This event was smaller than the some of the past events, but we had many creative pieces of art by the end of the night.

I want to take a moment to thank each person who participated last Friday night. Here are a few pictures from the event:

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Day five of my challenge: use a writing prompt from the Portable MFA in Creative Writing: Week 6.

Saturday’s prompt was…

In the dream I was…

In the Dream Haiku

Gazing at a harvest moon
in the deep indigo sky.
Creeping bear…

Prompt 6 for Sunday is:

No what I really meant was…

What I Meant Haiku

She only has one shot—
on the tip of her tongue.
No! I meant…

The new week is almost upon us. I hope you enjoy it!

Anyone find a great writing prompt they want to share?

~Nicole

Let’s Celebrate!

What’s Up December?

I am celebrating today because this is my 100th blog post! Thank you to all the readers and followers that continue to support The Whispering Pen! I appreciate you!

This is a busy month. Denise and I are hosting three Wine & Canvas events, I have several assignments with the St. Charles Press, an assignment for Radish, a Rochester Post Bulletin subsidiary, and a trip to my hometown to celebrate the holidays and my mom’s birthday!

December 5th Wine & Canvas Event is “A Bottle of Red.”

Wine & Canvas events for December 2014

December 12th Wine & Canvas Event is a “Snowman.”

December Events Wine and Canvas Snowman

December 19th Wine & Canvas Event is “A Whimsical Holiday Tree.”

I didn’t have time to create this painting over the weekend…perhaps next weekend.

This month I am reading short stories from Stephen King’s, Skeleton Crew, and Sand in My Bra and Other Misadventures: funny women write from the road. I’ll dig into another novel in January when I have more time to devote to reading.

I’ll also provide more tips for poets courtesy of the Portable MFA in Creative Writing.

And, the best part, exploring more haiku.

Memories Haiku

Memories fading
one by one—
journal entry remains.

What are you up to in the month of December?

~Nicole

 

 

 

Wine & Canvas: A Rustic Tree

Saturday, November 15th was the fourth Wine & Canvas event. Denise and I had 21 lovely ladies join us for this event. Thankfully we had an additional easel as we were only set up for 20.

Wine & Canvas Rustic Tree

We had many familiar faces and lots of new faces. Everyone had their own take on the Rustic Tree subject matter. A few ladies wanted trees in a spring or summer setting. I couldn’t blame them, it was 20ish degrees and snowing (again) last night.

There are several pictures below thanks to Denise’s dedication to capturing the process as we filled our canvases with paint.

A big thank you to all the ladies who were able to join us for the Rustic Tree event! We have three Wine & Canvas events planned for December, two are private parties. The next one is a wine bottle and wine glass on December 5th. I’ll have a sneak peek once I get each one painted.

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Wine & Canvas Haiku

Blank canvas
a brush pushing paint
laughter fills the room.

How do you feel when looking at a blank canvas or blank screen?

~Nicole

 

November is in Full Force

What’s up November?

A few days behind…

My first piece for the Rochester Women wine column is coming out in November. The article features Dessert Wines. The latest edition hasn’t been posted on the website. When it’s available I will share it right here at The Whispering Pen.

My first article for Radish Magazine, a healthy living magazine, is available today. The article is about the healing power of Reiki.

I donated a painting to a foundation called Hello Gorgeous. It is a non-profit organization that provides complimentary, professional makeovers and cosmetic education to all women battling all cancers.

A woman from St. Charles is getting a make-over and the ladies hosting it wanted to have a painting for her friends and family to sign.

Hello Gorgeous painting I donated to the non-profit organization.

Denise and I are hosting another Wine & Canvas Event on November 15th. This is our fourth event! We are painting a Rustic Tree. Here’s a sneak peek!

Wine & Canvas Rustic Tree

Rustic Tree Haiku

Off in the distance
a tree is drenched in rich hues.
Winter skies are near.

I’ll be traveling to a few local wineries for the next edition of Rochester Women Magazine. We are featuring Sparkling Moscato and Sparkling Cider.

And finally, what am I reading? A true crime book by Anne Rule, The Stranger Beside Me: The shocking inside story of serial killer Ted Bundy.

The Stranger Beside Me by Ann Rule

I literally went to Barnes and Noble and asked an associate for a book that would scare the bejeezus out of me. I told her that I wanted to be scared to go to sleep at night! I love all things creepy.

Oh, there will be several haiku poems to round out the month! Here’s to a great start to the week!

What’s everyone reading?

~Nicole

Save Room for Dessert

Hello Everyone,

Today is the last day of September, and though I planned to end the Haiku Challenge today, I decided to continue this process. However, instead of posting one haiku per day, I am going to post one per week.

What’s Up October?

My upcoming schedule looks about as hectic as September.

October 4th – Blacklight Bubble Party 5K. I cajoled some of my fitness friends to join me. It’s at 7 pm in Rochester and starts at Silver Lake Park. It ends at Legends Bar.

October 9th – I need to complete a piece of artwork to donate to the MMPA silent auction. Not sure what I am going to paint.

October 12th – Reiki article due. I am almost finished. I am hoping to turn it in early.

October 17th – Wine & Canvas. We are featuring “Make a Wish.”

Upcoming paintings

I’ll also be working on three more paintings. I have the “Make a Wish” painting to finish and the other two are for children’s painting events that are both on November 1st. I am keeping these on the October to-do list so Denise can post them on the Illuminate Yoga website. I am also planning another November Wine & Canvas. We already have one scheduled for December 12th. Yikes! Lots of painting coming up!

And, the Haiku Challenge lives strong this month. I hope you have enjoyed them as much as I have.

Wine Tasting-due to privacy reasons, images have been omitted. I will repost when the article is released.

Last night, some friends and I indulged in dessert wine, decadent chocolates and spectacular cheeses for an article I am writing. A few ladies from Rochester Women magazine gathered at Jorrie’s house for an evening of food and fun.

Jorrie is the editor and publisher of the magazine and she asked me to take over the wine column after the current writer moved out of the area. Since many of the wines we feature are made from local wineries, it would have been impossible for the writer to continue writing the column.

I’ll give you a taste of our evening, but only a sliver. I want it to entice you to read the article when it’s published November 1st.

 

Last night, we tasted four different dessert wines from four different local wineries. We had Chocolate Truffle Pig from Elmaro Winery (does the name sound familiar? Adlai and I were there a couple of weeks ago), Bootlegger’s Red from Cannon River Winery, Dark Skies from Salem Glen Winery and Riverport White from Garvin Heights Winery.

 

Jorrie put together a delicious spread of blue cheese, gorgonzola cheese and brie cheese (not shown) from People’s Co-op in Rochester, Minnesota. She also shared a plate of dried fruit and mixed nuts with us, along with the white and dark chocolate from the Chocolaterie located at University Square in Rochester, Minnesota.

 

Day 30: Haiku Challenge

Grapes, berries, and spice.
Cordial glasses filled for an
evening delight.

Do you prefer dessert wine or wine that is appropriate for dinner?

~Nicole

The Tree of Life at Wine & Canvas

Happy Monday! (Is there such a thing?)

Friday, September 19th marked the second Wine & Canvas Event. Once again we had a great turn out. There were 12 spots that sold out within a week of the class being advertised. We even allowed two more to join because of the popularity.

Denise and I had everything set up by about 6:15 and had a little time to catch our breath. The painting we completed was the Tree of Life.

We painted the Tree of Life for Wine and Canvas

 

Everything is set up and we are ready for Wine & Canvas

Everyone arrived around 6:30 p.m. They poured their wine and hand-picked some of the delectable cheese and crackers Denise had purchased for the event. There was cranberry cheese and honey cheese and more…

For the painting, the background was a mixture of warm and cool color swirls, and once again, all the paintings were unique.

We started by painting cool colored circles mixing greens, blues and purples.

We started creating cool colored circles.

 

Wine & Canvas paints a tree...creating cool colored circles Wine & Canvas paints a tree...creating cool colored circles Wine & Canvas paints a tree...creating cool colored circles

Then, we moved on and painted the upper half of the canvas with warm colors—reds, yellows and oranges. After the upper half was completed, we painted our landscape and trees.

Wine & Canvas paints a tree and landscape

Wine & Canvas paints a tree Wine & Canvas paints a tree

And the finished product…

Wine & Canvas paints a tree Wine & Canvas paints a tree Wine & Canvas paints a tree Wine & Canvas paints a tree

Wine & Canvas paints a tree

The next painting coming up in October is Make a Wish! Stay tuned for details.

And now for the haiku challenge.

Day 22: Haiku Challenge

Blended colors pose
in the background while The Tree
of Life grows roots.

Have you been to a Wine & Canvas event?

~Nicole