On January 6, most of the Hispanic world celebrates “El Dia De Reyes”, the Epiphany, remembering the day when the Three Wise Men following the star to Bethlehem, arrived bearing their treasured gifts for the Baby Jesus.
Even though it’s a Religious event, in Argentina, everyone celebrates it as more of a fun, gift giving holiday.
On the night, of January 5, before going to bed we used to put our shoes outside our bedroom door. We would also leave hay and water for the camels, and some cookies for Melchor, Gaspar and Baltasar. We would leave the hay and the water near a door or a window left open so Los Reyes Magos can enter.
The next morning, we would wake up and had gifts next to our shoes. For us kids it was one of the most fun days of our summer vacation in Mar del Plata.
My cousins, my sisters and I would sleep up on the 3rd floor and try to stay awake waiting for the Reyes Magos. We would take turns looking out the window. Of course we would all fall asleep while waiting.
As we got older this is what we found in our shoes…
This work is part of my Hiraeth (meaning “homesickness”) series.
During the summers we went to the shore. My grandparents had a wonderful house in Mar del Plata.
After school was done in December (Dec. 21st, 1st day of summer), the baúles (trunks) would get all packed and we would get ready to go for the summer. A company called Rabbione would pick them all up.
I remember being at my grandparents house while everything was getting packed as well. They had lots of trunks. They would take everything since we were there for the whole summer.
They would also take everyone who worked at their house, the cook, the housekeeper and the housemaids. It sounds like Downton Abbey, I said to my mom today. She said “Yes, that’s how it was”. I’m sure it was, but in a much smaller scale. The houses were definitely not as big.
My aunts and uncles would also come. My grandfather, my dad and my uncles had to go to work so they would leave on Mondays and come back on Fridays. They didn’t stay for the whole 3 months like the women did.
I remember that my grandparents bought me a little chair that they always kept there. It was my princess chair. That’s the 1st thing I always looked for as soon as we arrived.
We spend the holidays there and stayed until right before school started in March.
We would all go by train. I recall the name of the train was “Marplatense”. “The Marplatense”. was all silver and had stainless steel wagons. It had air conditioning and an elegant restaurant. It would take us about five hours to get to Mar del Plata. The most fun on the train was the restaurant.
Their house was wonderful. It had beautiful gardens very nicely manicured by the gardener. There were lots of flowers all around and great big trees that we could climb.
I do remember that the kitchen was big and they had a large commercial refrigerator that looked like the photo. The house was always full of people.
This work is part of my Hiraeth (meaning “homesickness”) series.
As many of you know, I am the co-owner of a summer day camp. This is our 25th summer!
Due to my long summer camp days, I am finding that lately I have neither the time nor the energy to get to my studio. This will be the case until my camp ends at the end of August. Saying this does not mean, however, that I am abandoning my art. That would be impossible, unthinkable. I live in the beautiful city of Philadelphia and ride a train to and from camp where I am inspired daily by the beauty that surrounds me. Equipped with my handy-dandy iPhone camera, I can’t stop taking pictures. I will continue to share these, my summer art, on my facebook art page and here on my blog. I hope you enjoy seeing them as much as I enjoy taking them.
I have been painting homes and buildings. My latest pieces are homes I find while walking around center city Philadelphia. This house has an interesting story. When I was 16, I had my 4 wisdom teeth out at one time. In those days, the late 60’s you had to stay in the hospital for this. It wasn’t out-patient how it is these days.
While in the hospital I had a room-mate, someone who was married and older than me. We did become friendly and she invited me to her home on 18th street around the corner from Rittenhouse Square. I remember falling in love with the house and with them. I thought it was so cool to have older friends (early 30’s) and that they paid attention to me. Both she and her husband were artists. I was fascinated with their studios and their art. I kept in touch with them until I left to go back to Argentina to Art School.
Walking around the other day I passed by the house. This was the house where my room-mate lived. I took some pictures and painted this piece from the photo. I am planning to use it as one of my paintings on my 2015 calendar.
My new 2014 calendar is on its way. High quality square 8×8 calendar. The theme this year: My trip to France. Every page has one of my paintings followed by a month page with a quote. You can see it below in the sample.
To see what it looks like: Click on link below (be patient while it is loading all the pages) to see the whole calendar. Please remember that this is a low resolution sample of what the calendar looks like. The colors might be a bit off as well.
As promised last week I will be posting a painting-A-week starting today.
There is a story behind this painting:
About 2 weeks ago I drove by our old house … the one we lived in while the kids where growing up…the one on “the best street in the city” according to a former neighbor and friend. But…I was a bit disappointed to see that the new owners painted it a red color and took down some of our beautiful plants that had grown so nicely. It was sad to see them gone…and to see the other changes like the color. We did move about 8 years ago…and the nerve of these people to change everything. It’s funny how much we don’t like change.
Last week for my 1st painting-A-week I decided to paint our beautiful Wellesley Road home.
Following is a photo I took of the house on that day:
It takes hands to build a house, but only hearts can build a home. ~Author Unknown
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