Blog – Page 4 – Marianne Vander Dussen

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Thank You: A Salute to Community

It's difficult to put into words just how much I love my community. I arrived in North Bay in 2013 as a vagrant with no fixed address. Fresh off of the plane after spending four months backpacking solo through Southeast Asia, I came to the north in search of a new beginning. I thought I'd spend only 8 months in North Bay while working on my Bachelor of Education degree, and when it was over I'd have a better idea of where I'd go next. I never planned to stay. After only a few weeks, I felt in my heart that North Bay was home. That feeling has never left. Before moving to the Gateway City, I'd lived in nine...

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Drawing My Way Through Europe: Oui Oui, Paris!

It seems hard to believe that just over a month ago, I was in the hospital giving birth to fraternal twin boys. They're beautiful. They're wonderful. And holy heck, they are a lot of work. So you'll pardon if I indulge in some mild escapism and take you back to a year ago, when my husband and I embarked on our backpacking whirlwind honeymoon through Europe. In 24 days, we visited Paris, Brussels, Amsterdam, the Hague, Berlin (with an accidental stop in Bad Bentheim and Hanover), Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Venice, Florence, Pisa, Cinque Terre, and lastly Rome. While it sounds oh-so-glamourous, something to keep in mind is that the hubby and I are self-taught backpacking bums who were definitely not...

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Twin Update & New Painting Projects

Paddles for my Paddlers - I hand painted these using blank paddles from Algonquin Outfitters in Huntsville. 36 weeks and 2 days. AHHHHHH, we DID it! Despite being swollen, hot, and tired, there are several reasons why I'm celebrating the fact that I'm still pregnant with my twins. The first is because the average gestation for a twin pregnancy is 35 weeks instead of the usual 40. The second is because of our adventure at the 26 week mark. Getting to Fly in an ORNGE Plane Over the May long weekend, my husband and I rushed over to the hospital due to sharp abdominal pains. The medical staff ran a slew of tests, which revealed there was a possibility that...

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2017 – A Year in Review

Visiting Mona Lisa in the Louvre Wow. What a year. Between getting married, backpacking around Europe, and creating 10 new original oil paintings, 2017 set the stage for a fabulous 2018. As I look ahead to my 2018 goals, I figured it was worth sharing some really noteworthy things that happened in 2017, that wouldn't have been possible without your steadfast support. I am grateful beyond words to have been able to bring the joy of painting into the community, and honoured to have been asked to run so many wonderful events that brought much-needed funds into the hands of worthy local organizations. Paint Nights - A Summary 1,516 people taught, 74 eventsand $10,950 raised for local charities. Of all the...

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On the Eve of 30

Before I delve in, I just wanted to take a moment to say thank you. If you're reading this blog, than you've probably helped support me in some way, shape or form. Perhaps you like my Facebook page, or you've been to one of my classes. Perhaps you've even purchased one of my paintings. Regardless of what form your support has taken...thank you, from the bottom of my heart.  Hello, is this thing on?! I bet you forgot I even HAD a blog, considering the radio silence on this thing since March. For awhile, I really wasn't sure what to do with my blog; what could I really offer my readers that was of value?! After all, you're spending precious...

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