Even pipe dreams are bigger in Texas.
It all began when my high school sweetheart (J) and I had a dream of living by the lake….but how would we, a public school art teacher and him an engineer, be able to afford it with twin boys and Bubble Gum, our lovable, but curious Welsh Terrier?
Well, wouldn’t you know it? In the midst of the worst drought central Texas had ever seen, where parts of the lakes were near rock beds, we struck location gold; three acres with a view of God’s green earth, and all the glorious colors of an unobstructed sunset over Lake Travis.
The structures on the property, a 3-story main house and 2-story barn with converted living spaces, were a different story. Old Man Crady, who originally owned this place, was a bit of a dreamer himself. He owned Cypress Acres Mill, and had large logs brought in for his craft. We began to discover all his hidden treasures of hand sawed woodworking in the house. J and I have been fortunate enough to salvage some of his craft, leaving our 1946 house mostly untouched.
But to say the place needed remodeling was an understatement. After we purchased the property J rented 4 thirty yard dumpsters to clear out the debris left over from years of neglect and hoarders that rented the place. Sigh…..
We became weekend warriors measuring our movements with each sweep of a broom and swing of a hammer. As we worked I couldn’t get the bee out of my bonnet about how awesome it would be to have an art studio here. I found myself planning workshops where ideas become tangible, manifested by paper, paint, and clay; every kind of art I can get my hands on. As we cleared pile after pile I saw light spread across space where friends and family could meet, and for a few hours out of our busy lives, we make art happen.
I kept talking to J about it, who suggested I put a plan together. I dreamed out loud to my childhood best friend, Sylvia, who is pretty artsy herself, who encouraged me to find instructors. I pieced together a plan and through word of mouth, began finding artists who want to teach workshops. I also work with an AMAZING staff of teachers at Bush Elementary in Steiner Ranch who are incredibly supportive of my new venture. With their support and the love from the families I teach, my heart is filled with overflowing LOVE that pushes me forward.
Slowly we are pulling back the curtains, but all the labor falls on my husband’s two hands, …oh and his crew which consists of our twin boys who are 8, and me. As of this writing, we are planning with workshops for adults, teens and a few weeks for a children’s art camp starting June 2018.
Art Barn ATX is a creative space for all you dreamers out there who dare to Dream Big. Thank you for coming on this Journey to Dream Big with me, my friends, and family.