The story begins with our volunteer, Kimberly. She works for the FAA, her husband is a Veteran. Their first encounter with Fisher House was coming in to prepare Christmas dinner for the families in 2013. Since then she has looked for other opportunities to support the guests. She knew about Corks and Canvas and approached the owners, Lisa Cryder and Stefanie Hare, about doing something at Fisher House. These fun events typically take place in restaurants or wine cellars. Participants receive instruction from an artist as they enjoy libations and paint one of many offered themes. But Corks and Canvas also take their show on the road and Lisa, who has known Fisher House for a long time, and Stefanie jumped at the chance to bring the fun to Fisher House. Working closely with Assistant Manager Carrie Barnhart they crafted an event for our guests, deciding on the "Seattle Skyline" theme. On Saturday, July 12, instructor Ann arrived with paints, canvases and inspiration to lead an enthusiastic group to their inner Van Gogh. Kimberly came along and made delicious virgin margaritas with fresh strawberries and limes.
"It was absolutely fantastic," Carrie said. "It was a great experience and everyone had so much fun". She said that one guest, Vicky, took her finished painting to her husband's hospital room and ever since people have been asking to have it. "They thought it was done by a professional artist," said Carrie. "She keeps telling me about all the people asking her how much she's willing to sell it for!"
Studies suggest that creative pursuits help a person to relax, distract one from daily cares and thereby reduce stress.That's why Craft Corner is such an important guest program. As a guest once put it, "My mind feels so free". Using their hands and employing a different part of the brain allows our guests to take a break from their worries and connect to sources of inspiration. Sometimes they even end up with a masterpiece!
Carries says that she's working with Lisa and Stefanie to provide "Corks and Canvas" on a quarterly basis. Someone needs to alert Sotheby's.