Sunday, April 26, 2009

Shutter Click & Chat 4/26


"Art washes away from the soul the dust of everyday life"~Pablo Picasso

The above image is of a photo by my friend and fellow Etsian Kate Kehoe of Chicalookate. For more equally awesome photography and fun recycled things visit her shop here. Got soul? Let's have a look.

Shutter Click & Chat 5/3 Prom!

Share your prom pics and a story or two. Joseph and I have never been. I was homeschooled and he was...well not into social situations. I'll be virtual shopping for some 80's prom music and goodies for fun. Oh! Music, that's right, "Take it away Huey..." Keep your eye on the "whoa ohh" guy...hysterical!

Have a wonderful week!

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Not Quite Twitter: 2

If you're new here, my first Not Quite Twitter Post was created to encompass all of the goodness of micro-bloggery under time/brain constraints and none of the social networking. Feel free to share your Not Quite Twitter moments in the comments or, grab my schmancy image and do a whole damn post! Ready? Let's tweet. (I know the jargon and all, it's like a cult I'm telling you.)

-This weekend I stepped out for some prom fang sharpening, er... I mean suit selection with the minion and offspring. It isn't looking good for the opposition. Tuxedo Counsel- or the Prom Orisha, as I have coined her, is on board with Team: His Momzilla. Her face has been omitted to protect the innocent.

-Pretty in Peace is closed temporarily while we pack! The Hive is relocating, not far from where we are currently. The move should be complete by May 1st. My posts will likely be sporadic until then.

-New from Moo! I added some of my art collages to my Moo calling cards images. You'll be seeing more original art and photography in my shop go forward.

-I'm an audio-bibliophile in the making. While the first run, McSweeney's Field Recordings Volume III was not the experience I'd hoped for, The Book of Night Women is captivating. Marlon James really does it with his novel of love, life and rebellion on a Jamaican sugar plantation. And the narration, the slow deliberate pace of Robin Miles really helps to set the emotive setting of this riveting tale. Get it in print, on Kindle, on MP3, just get it, you'll be glad you did.

-Kicking it old school: I've been on an old film kick, lately. I don't think you can fully appreciate a writer's brilliance until you challenge his relevance across decades. I just saw Being There, the 1971 Jerzy Kosinski socio-political satire on film starring Peter Sellers and Shirley MacLaine; loved it! Politics is not my thing, but the sociological aspect of the film is brilliant. If you have Netflix, it's available for instant viewing.

What have you been up to?

Until next time, Peace

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Shutter Click & Chat 4/19


Joe unwinding with tech toys and wine after a long Saturday.
Why yes, that is a Peace flag, that's how we roll!

I had something altogether different planned for today's post, but after yesterday's adventures, I had a change of heart. Collectively, as a family we have been on quite the journey lately. There has been family illness, stress, depression; both economic and emotional. There's been monumental growth and change in ways we could not have anticipated. Through it all Joe, the one you all know as the Favorite Guy has been courageous, strong and steady; keeping up the pace and at times setting it. He's been my muscle, my core, my heart.

And for extra corny I give you John Mayer, Only Heart

Next week: Shutter Click & Chat 4/26: Soul
Can't have heart without me some soul! I promise not to embed Huey Lewis next week. Well, I'll try.

Have a great week!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

I like old stuff and I can not lie...

Tuesday's thrift shop score, project du jour; a $25, too-short-for-dining-too-tall-for-coffee- we'll-use-it-for-reading table. The first two pics are the before shots, taken in the middle of the local Goodwill store, under the watchful, wincing eye of the Favorite Guy. He dreads "smelly, dirty, old junk stores". The third WIP pic was taken yesterday as I gleefully wrapped up two days of stripping and sanding. Will you look at the brass! I sanded away all of the scrapes and scuffs. I'm not a fan of shiny though, so I'll use some jewelry antiquing tricks as a final touch. Tomorrow is fang I mean tuxedo shopping; if I make it through without incident, I'll begin staining. How about you, whatcha doin'?

Peace and productivity

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Care to wager?

Original image taken from here

Jordan enters stage left interrupting her whilst she sit in peace, working on jewelry and eyeing the Favorite Guy as he drops crumbs on the sofa.

Jordan: Nervously Um mom, [she] says she won't go if I don't wear this tux...pointing to tuxedo he doesn't like

Mom: Breathes deeply rolls eyes
Favorite Guy: Fidgets nervously and dons the cloak
Jordan: And her mother said she likes it too...
Momzilla: Rises from sofa, drops beads and wire and, begins to roll neck: Is her --- mother going to wear the tuxedo? This is getting ridiculous already! [Forget] it! Don't go, let her dance with her manipulative ---mother.
Favorite Guy: Can I get my money back?
Jordan: Laughing
Momzilla: Joe this is ridiculous. I have been good every time she has changed colors, (orange, turquoise, gold/white, silver/white, coral, fuchsia) I did my part getting limo quotes, and I didn't say anything (admirable restraint) about the dress the mother liked even though it wasn't flattering for [her daughter's figure type]. How is she gonna tell him what not to wear, she isn't paying for the [tux].
Jordan: Laughing at the parents and looking at a family friend as if to say, "I told you my mom's was gonna trip"

The phone rings...Jordan laughs harder...
Momzilla: Get that woman off my phone Jordan! If you want to talk to [the daughter] go ahead, but keep her ---mother off my line.
Favorite Guy: Resumes Seinfeld DVD for a moment , pauses, turns and says "Eh, just get the money back and don't worry about it" (The Favorite Guy is um...frugal)
Momzilla: Sucks teeth and rolls eyes

Next Day: Jordan logs onto his MySpace account to see a picture of the tux he chose and the comment U-G-L-Y posted to his bulletin by his potential prom date.

The shoes and earrings are off and the battle begins. We're picking up the tux on Saturday. Who will reign victorious? Promzilla, Her Momzilla or His Momzilla; the undisputed "T-Wrecks" and her invisible, albeit faithful minion. Care to wager? The victor will be crowned on May 2nd at 6:00 PM. Laughs, this parenting shit is comical at times...

Peace and victory!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Fasting on the Slow Road

I said jokingly during a "conversation" with an internet pal that I was partaking in a "friends and family fast", and it got me thinking... (Oh no, she's thinking again!)

Fasting in its widely used context has been said to bring people closer to their God; heighten consciousness, increase feelings of peace and clarity. I'm currently experiencing much of these same feelings on an emotional level. I'm feeling closer to who I am-who I really am, not who I am to this one and that one. Who I am within. It's been a clear and peaceful reckoning in a dark and sometimes very lonely place.

It's been almost a month since I opted out of the narcissistic relationships that were feeding an unhealthy and seemingly involuntary need to please and nurture. The recent distancing has shed some harsh light on the problems surrounding my parentification and how it has shaped me. Yet, there hasn't been a day-since the last blaze of anger died down, that hasn't been met with a flickering clarity amidst the slow, low simmer of hope.

I know it's only the beginning and with any lifestyle change the beginning is, "Gung-ho time, get up and go time. Eight days later I'll try again next time". This is why I've chosen to write about it, all of it (not all publicly)-the highs and the lows of it. I'm keeping a tangible record of my hunger for change lest I ever forget how long it took me to make it this far.

What change(s) have you been hungry for, lately? What have you done to make it happen? (You don't have to share, but you will have to act, eventually.)

Peace and Persistence

Note: For all interested, the Practical Yoga: Calm Heart Challenge begins today.

Monday, April 13, 2009

Craft it Forward!

The blogosphere is such an amazing tool for spreading cheer! Last week, I happened upon Etsian Polly & Ester, author of Curse Words and Birds and, gracious host of Craft it Forward. Craft it Forward is an art-based pay it forward-where each participant "pays forward" a random act of kindness through art. So, like any good Etsian, blogger, crafter- I joined the fun.

Now is your opportunity to get an original piece of Pretty in Peace art, jewelry or photography and partake in the further spreading of blogosphere cheer. All you have to do is 1) be willing/able to pay it forward 2) be one of the first 5 bloggers to comment on this post.

Here's more:
After commenting, send an e-mail (link in right sidebar) with your full name and snail mail address. Then, head on over to your blog and pen a post letting the blogosphere know that you too are spreading cheer by participating in Craft it Forward! And, so it goes.

Note: Let's keep Mother Earth in mind in all our crafty endeavors and make full use of existing and recycled materials and shipping supplies.
Peace and art

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Shutter Click & Chat 4/12


And, not a moment too soon. I'm breaking out of my funk and into the kitchen today, with laughter and music and lager-not necessarily in that order.

I've also decided to join the 40 day Create A Calm Heart challenge over at Practical Yoga. Per the hosts, Bill and Jeff, "[the challenge] goal is to help you overcome fear and live in the faith that anything good is possible - even in times of great uncertainty". I'm all over it, care to join me? {Details}

“So as long as a person is capable of self-renewal, they are a living being.”
-Henri Frederic Amiel

Shutter Click and Chat 4/19:

If you guessed "heart", you guessed right. As always, any and all interpretations are welcome.

Peace and Renewal

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Elephants in the Room

I've been a bad blogger. In fact, I've been a bad insert anything that doesn't involve indie film marathons, Diet Coke, coffee and Pepperidge Farm's 3-layer Coconut Cake. That being said, I've amassed quite a few elephants (read: pressing projects and issues, not my weight) that are growing restless and vying for my immediate attention.

As of this moment, my ETA is oh...I'd say around Friday, but who knows it could be sooner. Until then, peace and peanuts.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Shutter Click & Chat 4/05

April is the cruelest month, breeding lilacs out of the dead land, mixing memory and desire, stirring dull roots with spring rain.

Another favorite from this summer's visit to the galleries at Tlaquepaque in Sedona, Arizona. The sculpture rained, forming the rich green patina you see here...heavenly.

Shutter Click & Chat 4/12: Renew, renewed, renewal Any and all interpretations are welcome.
Have a great week!

Saturday, April 4, 2009


This is the shadow cast of me, drafting this post in my head.
For more shadows, head over to Hey Harriet's, where Sunday shadow shots abound.

It's been...I don't know...what, two weeks or so since my grandmother's stroke and subsequent familial acts of assholery? And, I'm still shaking it off?! I'm in that place; I'm screening my calls, writing open letters, rehearsing cuss-outs -replete with neck and eye-rolling in front of the master bath mirror behind a closed door, and a closed heart. Of course I know better, but there is a familiar comfort about this place. Anger, like oft-worn shoes, we know each other well. We've traveled many miles anger and I, for many years.

I sat out back yesterday for what felt like an eternity; pursed lips, tense shoulders, shaking my head in that doubtful, hopeless way. It was breezy-cool even, for an Arizona afternoon. As the winds blew, I took notice of the leaves that had grown on frail, young trees; some have even blossomed. For all I know, they could have grown as I sat. My thoughts, my ideas, my surroundings have all been blurred behind an angst-filled film.

Something though- something about the day felt brighter, it felt fresh and new. And, I knew my gut to be true in that intrinsic way that you just know things have got to get better. The birds, the large maize butterflies, their weightless fluttering, their directionless flight, the fortuitous deliberation of their presence and of mine, of that moment. In a whimsical legato, they beckoned, "free your mind, let it go, shake it off". So, I did it, and it worked, and I grew as I sat.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Who I am is...

what I eat. You what you eat or what?

Saturday's lunch with Anna: hummus, fruit and cheese salad, pita, falafel, babaganoush

I've been thinking about food lately. Not like, what will I eat or cook, but really thinking about the ways people think of food. It started when I joined Facebook. There is an application titled "ghetto snacks". Eye roll, grimace. Now, I'm all for having fun and was thrilled to receive several other less...uh what word am I looking for [insert] applications, but this one stuck in my craw. Many of the items are candy, but a few stood out to me as regional/ethnic foods (plantain chips, pork rinds, Malta etc.) and, that sorta saddened me.

I grew up in a GeeChee/Gullah home for the most part. Sure my grandmother in her quest for ultimate northern exposure made pasta and potatoes which my resistant grandfather would eat in addition to rice. We ate rice everyday, and I still do. It is a part of the coastal Carolinian culture, it is part of who I am. As a Native New Yorker and a vegetarian, rice and West African peoples' rice history has been one of very few cultural items I've been able to incorporate and pass on to my own children. Rice also conjoins the Carolinian and Caribbean cultures Favorite guy and I share. Rice though, is not served at high holidays, weddings, graduations et al.; rice is low brow, rice isn't classy-rice is ghetto.

Low-brow, ghetto food?! This didn't make sense growing up, but now at 35 I'm tainted enough to understand and have even partaken in the food caste system. Perhaps, seeing the Facebook application opened my eyes to just how ignorant (that's the word) this practice is. I have to say, I was flooded by thoughts of all the ways in which the things we eat define us. From Ernest J. Gaines' salt meat reference in The Sky is Gray, Jill Scott's, "rice and gravy, biscuits baby and black-eyed peas", Machito's Sopa de Pichon and many others. Yet, this tale and songs of which I speak aren't tales of poverty and despair, but rather comeuppance, joyous occasions, kinship and love even. Attaching caste and class to foods and the people who eat them-food shaming, if you will, is the antithesis of the true meaning of food and dining, of culture, of civilization.

So, let's dish-Who are you? What are some of your regional/cultural/childhood food favorites?

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