Wednesday, December 30, 2009

"Today" for Today

A most spectacular sky full of clouds-T.Allen-Mercado 2009

Today is a new day, a day full of firsts: my first thought, my first sip of coffee (not necessarily in that order), the first cat/ child/ phone call to greet me; my first smile

Today is a new day, a day full of choices: forgive yesterday's foolery, reward today's accomplishments, forget old worries, forge ahead, take precautions, take heed; learn

Today is a new day, a day full of love: birdsong, trilling, laughter, familiar voices, a restful sigh, winds blowing, branches rustling; a joyous high

Today is a new day a day full of peace; silence

Tomorrow is unknown, seize your today

I wrote this off the cuff, inspired by a series of blog posts I read whilst sipping on the java; posts about yesterday, posts about's one for "Today".


Monday, December 28, 2009

This Art-filled Life II

J-Murk (Jordan) performs in Scottsdale, AZ

Saturday, also known as "The Day After Christmas Crash" I sat sated, pensively feeling on a handful of new beads; both in my hands and mind's eye. Only one eye though, as the other ogle my new journal and color scanner; key components in my quest to break off the monitor and into print with my doodlings and musings. Yael Rose sit in her whimsy-filled quarters, focusing intently on her new skateboard and instructional guide for girl skaters. Joe is fidgeting with gadgets I should surely know by name after 20 years of art and love. He has that look...the one we all get around here when we're trying to balance the beckoning of the muse against the bellowing of real life. And the phone rings...(per usual I'm the only one who hears it) Grimace.

Hello... Din of voices. Hello...Hello Mommy? It's Jordan who has gone to a local venue to audition for their New year's Eve event. "Hey, how'd it go"? Most admirably restraining the desire to squeal-a mother knows these things, he says, "They liked me." Mom-always needing further clarification says, "Oh good, so you made it". To which he says, "Yes they liked me!" We exchanged a few more words then I hung up and told Joe the news. Yael Rose (yes, the same one who didn't hear the phone) enters and says, "Cool, Jordan made it!"

I go back to my spot and the playback begins, "Mom, they liked me..." It echoes through my thoughts in an almost surreal manner. For a moment, I'm frozen. I need to organize these thoughts, I need to make sense of what I'm feeling. Part of me feels like I need to have a grade school-like talk about self-acceptance and self esteem. But, I know better. In my heart, I know that Jordan is confident and self loving, I know that Jordan is a well-rounded young adult. In my [he]art though, I also know what he just said, what he is feeling is indeed genuine; completely honest. He does feel an overwhelming sense of acceptance at this moment, greater than even a mother's love. It's what we've been unknowingly preparing him for all along. Jordan is an artist; the Self and the craft are one. Pauses in ambivalence. Somehow, I suspect this realization weighs more heavily on me than him.

Peace, art and love

Saturday, December 26, 2009

The Santa Cause

Blu's first Christmas here with us in in her forever home.

Last year I made up my mind that I’d add Santa Claus to the list. Yes, the list; I’d jot his name down right under religion and politics and there he’d sit forever in conversational purgatory, and then…well, it happened. You’ve heard the adage about great minds, yes? I bet you’re thinking, “great minds think alike” ironically enough, it’s been changed to none other than “great minds are subject to change”. That being said, today I’m going to talk a bit about the dude and his cause.

I am a lifelong supporter of the “Santa Cause”, my parents were supporters, my grandparents were supporters and short of a mischievous childhood friend or two and perhaps an evil cousin this was working for us. Or so I thought when I donned my red hat and took oath to bumble about in the wee hours of Christmas morn whilst (oft-unsuccessfully) trying to recall all the spots I’ve been stealthily securing goodies since the blasted day after Thanksgiving sale. Breathes heavily. It seems now I’ve been told this practice- along with doling meager donations for cute little, mottled, milk teeth, and hiding eggs at springtime is dishonest and a disservice to my children. Gasps.

You mean I’m doing them a disservice by engaging in benevolent fantasy play, by upholding traditions that have been a source of joy and fond remembrance in our family and many others for centuries? Hmm. I’m not sure I’m buying it. In fact, I can back that up by saying that NOT one of the now adults and parents with whom I shared far from “Cleaver-like” childhood experiences has been adversely affected by the presence of the fat guy, the tooth fairy or the springtime bunny-well, there was that one time I ate too many Peeps, but overall it’s all been a good run.

So, after much rambling, in closing I guess I’d just like to say I confess, “I have lied”. Rises whilst the big guy, the tooth fairy and the spring bunny remain seated. “I am the real Santa Claus, tooth fairy, and the springtime bunny. Wait, before you declare my penance: my kisses, they’re frauds; they have no FDA approved medicinal properties. I just dole ‘em out, cause well, I like kissing my children’s boo-boos. Oh, and perhaps there are smarter, prettier, more handsome children out there, and that’s a lie too. Mea culpa. Hmmm, oh yeah…that time at the dance recital, I did notice my angel turning in the wrong direction…I guess I should have told her instead of saying I hadn’t noticed and neither did anyone else. Instead, I took the low road and told her she was flawlessly graceful. Hangs head in shame. Not! Laughs. I learned that from the kids. Okay, okay…the real truth is, I’m not sorry at all. I’d do it all over again, and fully intend to, season’s greetings!

This post was originally published on Moms of Hue where you can read more of my musings and those of several other talented writers.

Peace and joy

Friday, December 25, 2009

Sweet Victory!

Front to back:
Dark chocolate & almond cookies, lemon ricotta, butter cookies,
and chocolate crinkles.

My first Tiramisu layer cake.
Aah, yes...a culinary success story.

Merry Christmas, friends

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

The Baking Undertaking

So, I'm baking and once again, I'm asking myself, "Self, why do you bake when it troubles you so?" Baking, much like sewing is an exact science. Tameka, much like her children [insert grimace here] has grave difficulty following direction. She just isn't happy unless she adds her own "creative spin".

My butter cookies needed a bit of almond extract. My tiramisu needed more instant coffee powder in the batter, less liqueur and more confectioner's sugar in the frosting. My chocolate crinkles needed to cook a bit longer. My lemon ricotta cookies needed a less lemony glaze. And now I need a Valium as I'm filled with worry that all of this tweaking will render my recipes inedible.

Stay tuned and cross your fingers, will you?

Peace and bad carbs

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Little Things, Big Smiles

Buddha, a twisted tree, rock garden and captured raindrops in downtown Sedona, AZ.

...just a few feet away from the rock garden, this whimsical pinwheel and perennials peeking through the moss and earth.

A walk after the rain with the one that makes my heart sing.

I hope your Sunday is filled with a warm heart, the beauty of little things and great big smiles.

Peace and love

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Linear thoughts are overrated...

{excerpt from page 53}
The Highly Sensitive Person, Elaine N. Aron Ph. D.

Seemingly out of nowhere, yes? Darn the Universe is good! I read this while we were vacationing, (I am now back at home and quite refreshed.) and immediately felt a tinge-you know the one when you realize; hark, this is me. Yes, well that one.

I'm either all the way in, pining about my seeming lack of motivation and trying to jumpstart it with all matter of caffeine and brute force, or all the way out at sea drowning in brilliant-albeit overwhelmingly exhausting, creative ideas. Right now however, I'm in a good place and hoping I can ride this feeling out at a comfortable pace through the holiday hoopla and into an exciting, but tolerable new year. Which incidentally will begin sometime in February, likely on a Tuesday because the pressure of beginning at the beginning is far too great.

I hope you've all been doing, feeling and living well!

Peace, love and random banter

Friday, December 11, 2009

Before Santa arrives...

Original collage by Elena Mary-available on Etsy .

I need a reprieve, again. Somehow I'm not looking forward to Christmas this year. Frowns. Something is missing, so we're going up north sans outsiders and distractions, ringing phones and obligation to find it. Yes, we are headed north to do absolutely nothing but look at each other, talk to each other and reconnect. We're going on a love junket before Santa arrives.

Peace and love

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

'Tis the Season

For Swappin'

One of the many benefits of the blogging and arts communities is the prevalence of swapping. We love it, we live for it-and damn it, we're good at it! Above is the contents of my Brown Paper Package swap hosted by Max & Ellie.

I received the most insanely delicious VEGAN Sweet & Chewy Coconut Chex mix complete with the recipe! In addition, there were some beautifully hand-sugared pears and one of my favorite things in the whole world to adorn my favorite body part: (in case you didn't know) a handmade scarf! Woot!

Now, my turn...I'm working on my gifts now. We got to choose a winter holiday for the swap and I chose the oft-ignored New Year's. Wait'll you see what I'm shipping to Exeter!

Peace and happy swapping!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Downtown, Selling My He[art]

Pretty in Peace at Crafeteria 3, Phoenix Arizona

Urban Adornments' owner/artist, Gina Hullum

One of several super Indie bands who kept my mind off the bitter temperatures and on topics such as love, art, humanity, and the oft-inhumane and quite insane Sheriff Joe Arpaio.

The violin's playing like lo-o-o-ovely singing... A song from Glee Club, yes of course I was a member.

Wonderful patrons, like seriously... which is good, because I'm so not built for the craft show nightmare patrons I've read and heard about.

The terrible, horrible, very bad view of all that was fantastic in downtown Phoenix Friday night!

The Dish:
I did well!

The Very Best Part:
I met a sweet woman and her even sweeter little boy who recognized a pair of my earrings. He'd purchased them from Frances Vintage, with his own money, for his mom on her birthday. She mentioned that she loved them and had worn them to work just this week. We spoke about how well he-at such a young age, knew her taste and how they were happy to continue to support me. She took a card, we shook hands, and I felt all warm and fuzzy. It was indeed the very best part.

The Fabulous Future:
I received great feedback on my Moo cards, which feature my collage work. I'm thinking prints. Hmmm. And, speaking of prints, I'll be in print! Yup, me in the College Times along with pics of some of the editor's favorite Pretty in Peace pieces. Isn't that fabulous? I'm thinking it's pretty fabulous. Thank you, for all of your well wishes for health and success.

Peace and art

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Crafeteria is here...

as is what appears to be some strange stomach virus-like thing. Cripes! Sighs, sips tea and clenches glutei. Which oddly enough rhymes with TMI.

At any rate, I'm no stranger to the Law of Sir Murphy...I should've known when my less than $10 display came out like this there'd be some turn of events!

Stubby beer bottle covered in leftover tulle from the gold themed X-mas bin and ribbon from a recent gift exchange. Glittery ball thingie NEW! Cost: $3.00. Twine bust also covered in same tulle and ribbon, bracelet pillow sewn by moi from corduroy and other cotton fabric scraps-Cost: FREE!

Last year's brass goblet and glass plate creations, polished and now seated atop the brass colored chargers from our dinner party 4 years ago. Cost: FREE! A runner made of more corduroy fabric scraps; I added the lace, a recycled embellishment from a recent purchase. Cost: FREE!

Last years's tablecloth, I removed the duct tape and put in an actual hem! Cost $3.00 for matching thread.

Now to do something with these jewelry making hands of mine, lest I scare the patrons! Wish me good health and luck for tomorrow!

If you are in the Phoenix area:

Crafeteria is at 10 W. Camelback Road, 6:00-10:00 PM

Peace and Indie love

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