One Word

I've committed to doing the 365 project, which is a great task in it's self, then I thought about interpreting some words and scriptures through photos to keep the creative process fluid and active. Then Shutter Sisters announced the One Word Project starting in February. With prizes! As much as I long for a Lensbaby, I really don't think that will happen; but I'm game anyway - just to be creatively challenged.  And if I couldn't think of any words, Shutter Sister linked over to Ali Edwards blog post with an extensive list of words.

So whether or not you play along with Shutter Sisters; whether you are a photographer, painter, scrap-booker, mixed media artist, etc - let Ali's word list inspire you to create with one word this year.And create often!

WW - Why I Love Winter

Living in a warm weather state...

It's the only time I can wear one of my two favorite pairs of boots.

[My only two pairs of boots]

Happy Wordless Wednesday! See more here and here!

Another Bloggy Birthday!

One year ago today I got the hair-brained idea to start a second blog. One that wasn't about posting pictures of Harrison for family but rather - Just. For. Me.

I got sucked into the blog world - hook, line and sinker.

Love it.

I actually have virtual friends that are truly- friends! Crazy.

So in honor of my blog birthday, I ate a piece of...


Gingerbread House.

It was really yummy.

On another note Natalie tagged me a while back, so I thought I would oblige (though at my age and constant lack of sleep, I don't like unedited pictures of me).

There are rules but as you know, I'm a rebel and I don't tag others too often. Sorry.  I'll still list the rules because at the same time, I'm a "rules girl".

It's a constant internal battle.

Not really.

Here it goes.

1) Take a picture of yourself right NOW!
2) DON’T change your clothes, DON’T fix your hair… Just take a picture.
3) Post that picture with NO editing.
4) Post these instruction with your picture.
5)Tag 10 people to do this.

Finally the picture.

Did I mention I was too lazy to change out the 50MM lens from my camera?


I think I'll go break off another piece of that gingerbread house.

Redondo Beach Pet Photographer | And Now a Word From Duke-the-Dog about Picture Taking

As soon as I got down and pointed the camera at him, he walked right up to the lens and started doing this...

he would stop, check me out and if I had the camera to my face, he let out another bark or three.
Apparently, he's been taking lessons from Harrison as he gave me his cold-shoulder routine next.

But in due time I got a few new shots of Dukie-doggie. And took care of today's shot for my 365 project.

Good Doggie.

Why I Love the 99 Cent Store!

These puppies cost $6.99 in the craft stores.

99 cents each and the 99 Cent Store!

Rock On!

I'm Not Trailer Trash - I Just Lived in One (or how I came to be a magnificent obsession)

I went to college in a small town that doubled in size when school was in session. I loved that town and the University. After a couple years of living in the dorms (which I recommend to all in-coming college Freshman) I moved to off-campus housing. I didn't do the Sorority route, so in this small town where trailer parks were the norm it was common for students to rent trailers. I lived in two during my stay there, both owned by the same person.

The first trailer was a quaint little place - tiny really. Snug, I call it. It was very vintage with a small little 50's fridge and happy, pin-stripe primary colored wall paper in the kitchenette area. I had to walk through a room that had purple shag carpet in it to get to my tiny bedroom.  It was a cold little place, I had to use a space heater often. I really didn't know how cold it was until one winter day after staying overnight at a friend's house, I came home  to find a miniature snow drift in my little living room; to this day I'm still stumped at how the snow got in there, because I didn't find anything open. I probably didn't look too hard in my naive, college student frame of mind.

Other weird things happened in  that trailer -to the point where I thought it was may be haunted. One night I heard someone walking around my trailer in the snow. It would crunch under the feet, but the next day - no prints in the snow. Nothing. Ugh... Or knocking on the outside wall at night. Drove me nuts.

Several months later, I had to bring my dog to school with me, therefore I had to move because my trailer park didn't allow animals. The person who owned that cute little trailer had another one available - one block over. It was bigger and it didn't snow inside the living room! I loved my larger (but not too much) bedroom, it felt like a cruise ship cabin. Wood paneling all around with built-ins. I loved my kitchen too, it was big and roomy and I laid down carpet in it to keep it warmer on my toes in the winter.


I came home one day to find my dog gone. After a long, stressful search throughout the small town, I found her at the Pound. As I relayed the story to a friend a few days later she said, "maybe she got out through the hole in the window where the air conditioner fell out?"


I have an air conditioner??

Apparently, behind the large, dark-orange ceiling-to-floor, wall-to-wall curtains was a window air conditioner that fell out one day when I was in class. I could have used that thing! It gets HOT in South Dakota in the summer; but I never opened those curtains, I never needed to. I was rarely home. I. Was. A. College Student.

That person who owned the trainers helped me out tremendously. He had read a book, which was made into a 1954 movie by the same name, Magnificent Obsession, and had chosen to live by the same ideal - To help others, selflessly and in secret. I had taken a semester off then returned to school, I struggled financially in college and this person offered me a home - rent free for the remainder of that first year until I moved to the larger trailer. Even then he helped me with phone service and only charged me minimal rent so that I had a chance to concentrate on my studies. The only condition was to not tell anyone and to some day - do the same for another. Over the years I have tried to do just that when opportunity arises.

I don't know what happened to him. I contacted him once via mail years ago to let him know I was well. I received a very nice letter from him.

He had a daughter my age, we even had classes together in college. She moved out to Los Angeles a few months before I did. She lived in the heart of Hollywood. Not a fun place. Her father helped her move back home only a few months after that. I never saw her again; I hope she is well.

I hope she learned a magnificent lesson from her selfless father.

I know I did.

And I know there are still good people in this world.

WW - Is He Human...

Or is he Dancer?

We're Spring cleaning around here - hope your week is great.

More Wordless Wednesday here.

Crafty Tuesd, {no} Wedn {no} SCREEECH!!

I've come to a halt with sewing.

which has left the Harrison-the-Great-Designer a bit out of sorts since I can't finish sewing the other arm to his softy-robot.

what's the problem?

that bobbin ran out of thread.

I don't know how to thread that bobbin.

I don't think I like sewing machine bobbins any more.

Not that we ever had a tight relationship to begin with...


16 Things About Me

I am

a believer in true love
happily married to MY one true love
a procrastinator
a mother of two sons, one by birth, one by marriage
hoping to travel to Italy some day
a pajama girl
a dog person
a child of God
addicted to my morning coffee
always happy in a warm cozy bed
a secret fan of scary movies
never tan
always trying to find more time
a wanna-be artist
rediscovering my passion and talents
fueling that passion with the 365 project

Tracey over at Mother May I tagged her readers for this Flickr meme. She was tagged by by busymomma66.
I accepted the tag.

Let me know if you accept the tag!

About That Left-handedness Thing...

[Quite] A few years back I was in an acting class [one of many throughout my short-lived actress days] and we got to talking about left-handedness. I had read something about common character traits of left-handed people - three to be exact.

So I decided to share this information with my friends as I am horrible at spelling.

I said, "There are three common traits of left-handed people, poor spelling, forgetfulness...


...and I forgot that last one."

True Story.

To this day...

I still can't remember that third trait...and my spelling still stinks.

Did I mention that it was a Improv-comedy class?
I wasn't acting.

And we hadn't started the class yet.

Natural comic timing at it's finest.


That is the reoccurring word that keeps coming to my mind for 2009. That's the theme that I have to take on for the coming year. Ironically, resolutions are all about making changes, so really the changes that I need to make really can be counted as resolutions. But I'm not keen on resolutions, I never make them. They are more of a tradition than anything tangible in my experience.

But changes - they NEED to happen. Am I going to list them all here? Nah, that would turn into a glorified list of resolutions. Are they anything extreme? Nope. But it's the little things that add up in life - like not getting to bed before midnight on any given night, no matter how hard you try.

So I'll see what happens and maybe document it here when it happens.

On a another note, after looking at my pictures from last year, I realized that I picked up my camera to take pictures 205 days last year. I was only 160 short of 365! That means I took pictures at least twice a week, every week of 2008!

So with that, I'm going give 365 a try. Will I take a picture every day? Only time will tell...

I don't know if I'll do a weekly summary, but I added 365 it to my sidebar.

In the mean time, I've been *crafting* don't faint. I've only been taking about doing it since I started the blog.

The real breakthrough was that I finally figured out how to turn on the loaner sewing machine that was delived to me before Christmas. True story.

I couldn't even find the stinkin' on-switch! And hand stitching...forget about it! I'm horrible at it and horribly S-L-O-W. I made harrison some felt food like two years ago and haven't finished yet because I was waiting to get my sewing machine back.  And as I've said, I have it. I just don't have the power cord/foot pedal for it.

And speaking of foot pedals, did you know that {some of}these newer machines don't have a foot pedal? So I'm supposed to turn it on and off with the button I push while trying to guide my fabric and keep it from going too fast. (wildly out of control - more like!) Does anyone else have this problem?  And to ad insult to injury, I'm left handed, I keep trying to use my left hand to control the sewing machine with the button on the right.

My conclusion. If they are going to eliminate the foot pedal they better make a left-handed sewing machine. Now before you go all right-handed postal on me, I'll let you know that I use knives and scissors with my right hand and well as play guitar normally (those lefty guitarist are a little odd). I was given left-handed scissors, I still couldn't use them with my left hand. I still have them and use them - in my right hand. Apparently the grip is just shaped to be more comfortable. Whatever.

Oh yeah, what have I been making? Birds and felt strawberries, and I sewed up a felt fish finally ( I cut it out two years ago). And more birds.

I'm digging the birds.

I've made a couple more since this picture, including one for Harrison from fabrics he picked out - complete with wings.
I found the pattern here along with a cute idea for a mobile, but I think I'll do something different with those I keep (some of them are late Christmas gifts).

I only have two small problems. First, I only have three bobbins with this machine with red, blue and white thread so I'm limited on what I can sew (since I'm a maniac about color-coordination) and second, the red bobbin is about to expire.

I don't know how to thread a bobbin on this sewing machine.

(remember, it took me a month to find the power switch.)


15 Years Ago Today.

To type that number breaks my heart as if it were only yesterday. The truth is time doesn't always heal a broken heart, it only helps us learn to live with it, to even overlook the broken areas.

15 years ago in the early morning hours before the sun even thought about rising, I got the call. The call no one wants to get, only I knew it was a matter of time before I would receive this particular phone call. My mother had passed away from complications of cancer only moments before. My best friend, who is like a sister to me, was with her along with the hospice nurse.

Why wasn't I there? I had been home for the previous two months, by her side; but my leave of absence from work was ending and in all my stress and confusion, I couldn't just quit. I had bills to pay, medical insurance, financial responsibilities, so I flew back to the West Coast on December 22 to return to work. Most likey against my better judgment. Dear friends took me in and comforted me becuase I had given up my apartment and put everything in storage - another reason I should have just stayed.

I remember the last time I kissed my mother, the last look back at her as I was leaving the house.  I remember it like - yesterday. I knew it would be the last time I saw her alive. In that moment I wanted to stop time. Stop it, stop everything. Stop her dying. Stop her pain. Stop from leaving that room.

After returning to work for less than two short weeks, on Friday, December 31 (New Year' Eve) my company laid me off. They made me return to work on December 22, knowing my mom's condition, and laid me off on New Year's Eve. I planned to make arrangements to return to South Dakota for following week.

But I was too late.  At 2:00 am on Monday morning I got that call. 

My whole world changed in an instant.

I still miss my mom - for that matter, I still miss my dad. Especially when I look at my own son. My parents would have loved him so much, been so proud of him; and they would have dug the Guy I Dig.
But enough of that.

15 years ago today my life changed. I wrote about it shortly afterward - about that turbulent seasons leading up to and after my mom's death.

In memory ~


           Summer floods
My vision with it’s blistering heat
      radiating off the road of my memories.
Vacation takes us driving
Through desserts, mountains,
Rainstorms and Milky Way nights.
                          Laughing ~
Seeing her – youthful, radiant, hopeful.
Strong again, my beautiful mother.
Beautiful in her love, her devotion
Always giving, always listening.

            October changes
My heart with its cool breeze
      Blowing away dust from my past
I feel it coming
The metamorphosis of time
Long phone conversations
Expedient travel plans
                         Apprehensive ~
Listening to her staunch optimism,
I can hear the tears fall
From her eyes and shatter into crystal
Droplets onto the cold tile floor
Of a hospital room.

             Winter freezes
My mind with it’s frostbitten fingers
      Stopping my future, altering its course
Illness takes me home – across miles
Away from home. Days spent with
Soap operas, candy bars, holding hands
Drinking up time
                           Praying ~
Watching her deteriorate
She’s different now – her youth gone
Robbed by the cancer raging through
Her body like a defiled passion.
A cycle of death.

             April awakes
My soul with it’s renewing rain
      Showering down on dormant
Seeds of promise. Rebuilding my future
Relearning to hope
I struggle with reverseless event
Stretching my arms upward – waiting!
                          Living ~
Missing her, an empty room inside my heart
My beautiful mother – so wise
Strong, protective, unconditional love.
           Now she lay down to sleep
           I pray the Lord, her soul to keep.

One Last Thought of the Season (a.k.a The Great Santa Debate)

Christmas for a 3-year-old is not an easy task. There are questions to answered and more questions to be answered. And in case I didn't remember the first round of questions, they need to be asked again. Santa, and Jesus, and Snow, and Rudolph, and the fire place, the three kings, and presents, and how many cookies, and the candy canes - "When can I eat the candy canes!?"

As Harrison watched Super Why on PBS one morning last week, the story centered on 'Twas the Night Before Christmas, at the end of the show Harrison turned and yelled, "Mommy! Santa like cookies! We need to make Christmas cookies for Santa!" That sealed the deal.


We stayed out way too late to leave cookies under the tree. Luckily, Harrison forgot about that well-known fact, and fortunately it never came up again.

But there's always next year...

In fact, Christmas morning came and Harrison stood next to the tree in a tired daze as his daddy cried, "Harrison look! Santa came! Look Santa brought presents!" After a moment the haze lifted and Harrison started opening.

And now, after chewing on the thought awhile, he thinks EVERY gift under the tree came from Santa - all our gifts. AND that Santa is responsible for his birthday gifts as well. We'll work on that later.

We kept the focus on what is important to our family about this holiday - the birth of Christ Jesus. We talked about how Santa is a man who loved Jesus and wanted to show his love by giving to others. Remember, Santa is also known as Saint Nicolas.We focused on the giving to others. Then on Christmas morning we sang Happy Birthday to Jesus. Just like Harrison wanted to, just like his daddy always did as a child. That's our tradition.

We went through the Great Santa Debate this year, to Santa or not to Santa, that is the question for so many. Bottom line for us, why not.  Really people, none of us have ended up in therapy over finding out that Santa wasn't real. I don't have any deep-set scars from believing in and finding out the truth about Santa. And ss much as some feel we "shouldn't lie to our children - about Santa" I believe my child doesn't need to know the cold hard truth about this messed up world at three-years-old. Call me what you want. I let Harrison be the guide on believing in Santa. He has decided that he believes in the magic. We'll see what next year holds...wanna come along for the ride?

For us it all goes back to that fact that childhood magic is childhood magic. Santa is part of the magic of childhood, the magic of what Santa represented continued in my house long after I knew he wasn't real. In fact, I probably thought he wasn't real for a long time before it was confirmed... but my mom didn't let the magic die with the knowledge of his existence (or lack there of).  During this season when we give to others, whether it be our time, resources or money; when we feed the homeless; when we put money in a parking meter that is about to expire; when we spontaneously buy a cup of coffee for the person behind us in line at Starbucks - we are spreading the magic that Santa (St. Nicholas) started so many centuries before. I know it was because of his great faith. And an act of goodwill is magic.
Matthew 25:34-40
Hebrews 13:2

Whether you're a Chirstain or not, this year don't let the spirit of giving stop with Santa or Christmas - stretch yourself and Pay it Forward.

Or let it become a Magnificent Obsession.
But that's a story I'll share another time.

Wishing You and Yours a Happy 2009!

We stayed home and watched the ball drop in Times Square. Exciting life, I know.
Related Posts with Thumbnails