Fireworks and stuff

Kid: It’s the 4th of July!
Me: What’s that?
Kid: Fireworks Day!
Me: Is that all?
Kid: The day America was declared a country.
Me: Oh, cool!

Happy We’re A Country Day!













Snowman is not impressed

So, we went out to dinner on Thanksgiving. Since cooking a big meal like that for three people is pretty much the same amount of cooking as it would be for 10 without the extra bodies to help with cleanup (and cooking, I guess), I don’t like to do it.

So we’re out to dinner and as usual I like to take some pictures.


First, I take one where someone is not looking at the camera. But it’s still a fairly nice shot of the dudes. So I try again.


Hey, that’s much better. People are looking at the camera. and smiling. Cool.

Then I decide that in the interest of making sure that there is photographic evidence that I exist and not only exist, but exist in the same physical plane as my child, he should come over and sit by me so Daddy can take a picture of us.


Look! There we are! But wait. Somebody isn’t looking at the camera. Let’s try again.


Okay, so we are both looking at the camera. And obviously THRILLED.

But it works.

So I start to fool around with it.


And I make it my cover photo on facebook.

And then I go back in time to use an old photo of a snowman for my profile picture. Since the two pics are in such close proximity, it becomes very apparent that

this guy:

and this guy are thinking pretty much the same thing.


I see a lot of people posting around on the internet things they are grateful for every day for the month of November. I applaud them and think that anytime you can be grateful is a good time to be grateful.

But I do kind of wonder why we have to wait until November to get that going.

Although I am as guilty as anyone of falling behind on keeping a gratitude journal, I don’t like to limit it to just this month or time of year.

So here is mine:

Gratitude Day 319:
today I am grateful for the strength in my body,
that in spite of whatever I have done or not done to my body it is healthy.
for the many opportunities I am afforded in this life
that I really want for very little and certainly nothing in the way of necessities.
for love and kindness. It really does make the world go round.


It’s way to early for this stuff, but I’m getting started on pieces for two holiday bazaars in the first week of December. (Um, yes I know that I’m late on that part. I just meant that I like to keep xmas stuff until later. I’m not a fan of Christmas creeping up earlier and earlier.)

This was my first stopping point. I really like the sketchy look, but wasn’t satisfied with some of it. Of course, I started fiddling with it and then did it some more. Until eventually I got to this:

This is oil pastel which I blended with some kind of turpenoid or something*. (My friend gave me a little of hers since she paints in oils and has the requisite paraphernalia and I paint in acrylic and therefore do not. I can’t remember what it’s called, of course. At any rate, it is great for blending the oil pastels.)

That’s my funny little Santa

*Update: it’s this stuff here.

August Six Word Friday=Fun

lots of fun things in summer

bear the heat

best you can

take a swim

to cool off


gather together with

friends and family


chill out

take a deep breath

look out

summer flies by quickly.

Awkward Silence

Have you ever experienced that thing that can happen where you haven’t talked to someone in a while and you know you should call them but it feels awkward so you don’t right away and the longer you put it off the worse it gets?


Me neither.

At any rate, the last few weeks have been a whirlwind of traveling up and down our west coast from L.A. to Seattle and back again. I’m home for a few days sans kid, which has nearly never happened before. Next week I will jump on the planes again to go retrieve him (and spend a couple days) from my Aunt’s.

After that we will return, no doubt, to our regularly scheduled summer programming which includes laying about interrupted by swim lessons, soccer camp, and regular soccer after that. We were going to try football this year, but unfortunately they didn’t get enough sign ups to have a season this year. Oh well. It overlapped with soccer and, I think, was going to be a *fun* scheduling challenge.






Memorial Drive

Generally I try to stay home on holidays.

But today I needed to run over to the Big City to get some ink for my fairly new, nearly obsolete printer. (Darn you, Kodak!)

I snapped a few snapshots on my way.

New Year

I’ve decided to move (most of) my celebration of the New Year to March.

January doesn’t really feel like the beginning of anything. It’s still right in the middle of the deep cold and, in fact, the worst of winter is still yet to come. (Usually!) I appreciate the need for a festival of lights at that time of year. But I feel like it’s more of a celebration of having crossed the halfway mark, than of the end or beginning of anything.

But March.

March feels more like a time to get things started. Just ask the plants and animals. Babies are being born, seeds are sprouting, the weather begins to show improvement. I start to feel the itchiness of the possibility of things to do. Spring fever sets in.

It doesn’t really help that my birthday is in March. This is for me, time to start a new year.

For my birthday yesterday we went out for typical Irish fare at Rancher’O. Doesn’t everyone eat fajitas for St. Patty’s Day? It was nice. Although we wussed out and were home by 10:00pm.





Happy 36th New Year!

The Art of Living

I am an artist.

I have always been an artist, but only recently have I felt like I’m starting to come into what I’m supposed to be doing as an artist. (I suppose that’s the point of the art degree.) So it’s only been the last few months that I’ve made an internal shift that allowed me to stop saying that I’m trying to be an artist. Now I can just say that I am an artist.

What that means for me is that I get to take part in this magical process where I see the world around me in unusual (so I gather) ways. To me the world is full of shapes, forms, patterns, and colors that I look for and see everywhere. So I take that in and then it gets mixed around with things I’ve seen before and some I’ve imagined to form some new idea which I then get to manifest into reality. Magic.

As I look ahead to the new year, my “resolutions” haven’t changed much since last year. I intend to do more.



More loving.

More playing.

More exercising.

More art making.

More traveling.

More cleaning.(boo!)

(Now that’s some cleaning I can get


Six Word Friday: Focus

At this time of the year

Amid the chanting ads and sales

It can be hard to hear

The true message behind the holidays.

The message on TV is clear:

Save by buying! Money equals love!

In reality we save by saving

and love equals love, not money.

Getting caught up in the hustle

(and believe me it’s a hustle!)

and stress of buying, trading, bartering

boxed up symbols of love’s quantity

is no good way to celebrate

our cherished love for each other.

Taking some time to slow down

and reevaluate our priorities can provide

a much needed shift in focus.

What we focus on will expand.

Instead of focusing our energy and

precious time on gifts you buy,

what if we focus on gifts

that cannot be bought or sold.

Give someone the gift of time.

We can spend an hour shopping

or we can spend an hour

with a friend, focusing on them.

Personally, I love getting  handmade gifts.

I know that what you spent

making that for me (time, thought,

energy, creativity) is worth the world.

So I propose we focus on

those things that matter the most.

Those things that are not things.

Those precious intangibles that are what

we truly want to exchange anyway.

Let us begin to focus on:

Family, friends, food, following our hearts

Opening our hearts, ‘onoring each other

Charity, cherishing loved ones, checking greed

Unity, understanding each other, unrestrained delight

Sharing: souls, songs, sustenance, some hugs

Now you can go over to see Melissa for more to FOCUS on!

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