Sunday, January 31, 2010

a Pocketful of Sunshine

Transport...what takes you away from your reality, for awhile, a temporary escape?! First thing that comes to my mind is "Beam me up Scotty" an order from James T. Kirk or Spock.
Next, I think of the song "Take me away a secret place....."
I've got a pocket pocket full of Natasha Bedingfield.

My top 3 thoughts of transporting are: I love nature, being outside walking . I prefer a nature trail or the loop around my old neighborhood, which had a warf and view of the
Penobscot Bay.
Second thought is a bookstore/coffee shop/library...anything to do with books. Books are a treasure trove of ideas, there are quotes, something for everyone. The smell of old books as caffeine tickles my brain.
Third thought would be movies. I practically grew up in a movie theatre. The scent of popcorn and the opening image of the MGM Lion logo , Paramount's Mt, Columbia's Torch Lady,and 20th Century Fox, etc. I loved the logos, but it was the musical score that set the anticipation of the main feature. I can see my Dad running the projector and my Mom telling me memories of how many movies they have seen. They met at a movie theatre. She was the concession stand girl; he was the projectionist. I later, worked there at the ticket booth, while they were running a Drive-In Theater, as their 2nd income. I think it was more of a hobby!

So, what is your pocketful of sunshine...these memories take me back to all things creative. I am always jotting down ideas, quotes in the bookstore/library setting. Walking for me is moving meditation. I get ideas or something that is blocked clears, or i take my camera and snap photos. Movies, well, the setting, the costumes, the look of the film, the inspiration of it, set design and
dialogue. These things all get the creative juices flowing and ideas to sprout.

I am scatterbrained, I have so many ideas, my problem at the moment, is to learn the technique that needs to be applied to the project or perhaps the correct glue. I am alright at multi-tasking other things, but my ideas need a bit more breathing space.

A pocketful of sunshine is a great way to deal with cabin fever on a winter's day(ought oh, now I have that California Dreaming song playing in my head).

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Under a Blanket of White

Yesterday when I was out n' about, I ran into a few old timers, who said, a storm from the south, means lots of snow. Their sage wisdom did not disappoint-it started around 11pm last night and it is coming down heavy now. It was all snow, til now, it is sleeting. The neighborhood kids are gathering to have a snowball fight and make a huge snowman. It is strange being from New England and seeing the panic and slowed pace. All you see outside are footprints, no one has moved their vehicle. The local news keeps repeating, "Stay home, if you don't need to go anywhere". When I first moved here, I didn't think anything of it. I can drive in this, I'm from Maine, I lived in Alaska for 4 yrs.
In Alaska, they didn't ice the military base driving was like playing a Nintendo game. We lived in an ice bowl for months.
When it snows in the south, the world almost stops. They aren't equipped to handle it. I now, know better, there are a lot of people who don't know how to drive in it. I stay home, instead of being the rebel.
I am being reminded, I need to come through on my promise to bake cookies. I just need to finish up a couple of projects. Now, the only problem is...they can't make up their mind, which kind, it is narrowed down to molasses, filled cookies or peanut butter. These cookies take work, the traditional chocolate chip, is made the most. I know, I better get busy, the cookie monsters are getting ansy.

Here is what I have been working on, since I came inside, from getting all wet. Hope your weekend is safe n' warm!

Friday, January 29, 2010

Hang in there...

People tell me I have OCD. This means they have been in my craft space.
OCD for me means=Obsessive Craft Disorder. I need to tidy my nest; it has been too cold to be
in my space. I have taken over the kitchen table; I need to be able to get back to my hide away and re organize, reshuffle. I tend to like to spread out. I get all these ideas and
like to set them up, til i can get back to them. It has been a busy week and I thought I'd find time. It did warm up yesterday to 60; today 33. I need 3 days of 50 degrees or above to
be able to endure my FROG. (Furnished Room Over Garage).

I know I need to hang in there, til the conditions are right, , temperature and no appointments.

OCD is no joke; It can take over your life... and it can cause you to do errands with splattered paint on your hands and be oblivious to it. It can make you shock the neighbors when they stop by and you are covered in fibers and have fragments in your hair. It can make people have trouble finding you, when you go through your fabric stash.

Some people call it Obsessive Creative Disorder...okay, either way, just tell me where is the support group? Okay, maybe I should start one.....

Frida Friday

I find Frida Kahlo's work unique; I can relate to her. It
was 5 yrs ago, when I fell on my deck; It was the straw that broke the camel's back. I had been in a car accident years ago and the wear n' tear of life contributed to my
back pain. I went to a chiropractor, my neck was jutted out. I had to wear a sling like Frida. I looked like I was hanging myself. I had sciatica down both of my legs. I had to quit my job, as a fitness trainer.

Later that year, I went to a neurosurgeon and had surgery.
I am lucky; I could have surgery!

I thought it would be fun today, to honor Frida since she has been on my mind lately and the Flea Market is closed today. A huge winter storm from the south is headed our way. I haven't got Frida quite right, her lips are too big, etc. One picture of her, reminded me of a rose, the way her hair is wound, and flowers or nature injected. I bet if
Frida was alive today, she would be pain free. Her only pain would be heartache over Diego.
I always pause when I type the word heart; heART is in it. Didn't she put her heart into her work?! She used her will to survive her limitations and be successful. If we follow our heart and do what we love, whether it is art, sports, cooking, etc. Even, if we aren't famous, doesn't the art of doing what we love make enduring the thorns, just a bit easier, no matter what they may be.

Painting completed my life.
Frida Kahlo

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Free Will

Write the following on a piece of red paper and keep it under your pillow. "I, [put your name here], do solemnly swear on this day, [put date here], that I will devote myself for a period of seven days to learning my most important desire. No other thought will be more uppermost in my mind. No other concern will divert me from tracking down every clue that might assist me in my drive to ascertain the one experience in this world that deserves my brilliant passion above all others."

I use to live in Brunswick, Maine, back in 1999. I am from Maine, but loved the European vibe in this midcoast town. I loved the community, the flowery downtown shops: Morning Glory Natural Foods and Second Hand Rose.
The town was always pretty; Bowdoin College in town. The community embraced the college vibe, lots of music in the park, weekly Farmer's market,(when weather permitted) and lots of artistic events.
The local grocer catered to this crowd; they had a section, to purchase home based type meals, individual packed, a lot of vegan foods and an abundance of produce. I grew up in Maine; I had shopped at this grocer, my store was not stocked the same. The demographic alternated their wares. I was thrilled, I have moved a lot and was happy to have such a wonderful selection, within walking/biking distance from my home.

There was a local free paper..always available on Fridays...i would grab it and read this unique
horoscope, Free Will Astrology. We moved(my husband is in the Navy); Later on, I find out they were online. I checked at random the wisdom of the week. I do think with horoscopes, there are certain personality traits of each zodiac sign. I have had my zodiac fit perfectly, one time I was leaving to fly to an island. My father in law and I share the same zodiac sign. He clipped it out of the local newspaper and gave it to me. You will soon be surrounded by water and you will be calm. I hadn't seen my spouse for 4 months, he was stationed on an island in Alaska.
I also think if we listen there are signs everywhere. I was pregnant, had 1 more appointment before my official due date. Everything was fine; we decided to do lunch. We chose Chinese, my fortune cookie, said Monday would be a special day. It was, our son was born, our lst child, my 2nd pregnancy.

I try to listen to my intuition, be open. One time I didn't and I was in a car accident. Exercise your free will; Your choice...(yes, there are outside influences that sometimes alter our choices).
I do think I need a tune up, seems like my family is detouring me. I hear my name...
MOMmmm, so much for free will!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Brace Yourself

My daughter had her braces removed today, a process that took 2 1/2 yrs. We had ankylosis teeth(this is when teeth are fused to the bone) an over bite, and crooked teeth. She does need to have them professional cleaned, but we are thrilled ; It is like the sun shines when she smiles.
She thought her teeth looked like baby teeth when the braces went on, so she was stunned when they came off, "my teeth are big" she kept saying.

So, what does she want when the braces come over..GUM: gum balls, hot cinnamon and bubble gum. She smacked all the way home and I loved every minute of it. We blew bubbles and cranked up the tunes and sang loud. She is 13, we had a great day, but her smile faded when she sent a pic via cell phone to her boyfriend and his comment was "You look weird". Bad choice of words, young man and soon, she was crying.
I told her( close up photo via a phone camera) it wasn't a great pic. You look beautiful ! I am sure he didn't mean it that way.

Brace yourself ,if you have a child that will have some type of aesthetic treatment, whether it is glasses, braces, contact lens...emotions are in full swing and it is easy to bruise a delicate ego. Second thought, you still need to brace yourself, even if they don't have any treatments.

This morning I drove her to school; science project is due today. Boyfriend was standing outside waiting for her, he smiled, she lit up...all is well, for now. There will be plenty more brace myself moments. Braces are like a metaphor for the teen years....except the teens are the teeth and
the parents are the braces. We try to hold them in check, keep them straight, clean up your..........., and position them for adult hood. Then a retainer is needed to keep teeth from going back to their original state ; we as parents, still need to do this, remind them over n' over again.
We have to be like an orthodontist, lots of check ups, except we need to check in! We need to keep things open, not their jaw, but the lines of communication. Braces are painful, but the results is so worth it!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Play One's Ace

"......just because we've been ..dealt a certain doesn't mean that we can't choose to rise above-to conquer the boundaries of destiny that none of us
wanted~Edward to Bella (TWILIGHT)
author ~Stephenie Meyer

I was making this valentine, thinking about the book series, and found this quote. I thought, how it fit in with
cards. The deck of 52, 4 suits and playing the hand we are dealt.
Then I thought about the colors, red, black and white. How they symbolize life/passion, evil/unknown, and good/purity.
I thought more and more of the Twilight series. Good vs. evil and the colors reflective of the vampire folklore. How pale white vampires are, how darkness and danger is appealing and how red is symbolic of life and in a vampire's world death or the afterlife. How vampire stories/books and movies...blur the lines and combine all 3 symbolic colors...colors of the deck of cards.

You can tell your fortune from a regular deck, spades mean the unknown, crossing boundaries,
a shift and anger. Clubs refer to achievement and recognition; Diamonds reflect material concerns, land, and money.
Hearts are the favorite, they equal emotion, passion and creativity. Then there is the odd facts,
there are 52 cards=52 weeks in a year, 4 suits=4 seasons, 13 cards in each suit=the lunar cycles, etc.

I thought it was interesting to tie cards into the Twilight series. We do have unforseen circumstances that sometimes redirects our path in life. We have to fold our cards and get dealt a new hand, hold them or fold them, either much as fate does intervenes.
We hold the cards to our dreams.....the trick is even if you stop playing for awhile, that you don't fold.

Stephenie's quote to rise above-to conquer the boundaries of destiny, sure sounds like breaking
out of your mold and unearthing who you really are. It is about trying to find your soul's plan; what your talents are and how to succeed with the hand you were dealt. Sometimes we have to adjust our strategy, up the ante, stack the deck, use our poker face and use that ace up our sleeve, remember it's in the cards(your hands).
Life is like a game of cards. The hand you are dealt is determinism; the way you play it is free will.”~Jawaharlal Nehru quotes (Indian Prime Minister. 1889-1964)

Friday, January 22, 2010

Flea Market Friday

In the mail was my new issue of the Pottery Barn. Wow, so spring like, lots of bright colors, birds and egg motifs on everything, pillows, plates, wall hangings, etc.

I love this fresh spring look of coloring you nest. So, when i went to the flea
market, i was on the look out for bird items. I feel fortunate the issue landed in my hands, when it did. The store was busy today, as I moved around the maze, I found this pillow case and
bird candle, threw the candle part away...small bucket shaped. I found another use for it.
It brightens my mood to see a glimpse of spring, even if in a catalog. It give you the promise of brighter days when spring starts to unfurl.

Don't you just wish you could jump into the rooms on the page, for a bit, that is how, soothing they are, clean lines, well organized and blotches of color, like a
well kept garden.

Winter will linger here for awhile, as we
shed out warmer gear. We will molt like the birds do, then reveal our plumage. We will proudly, see spring fashions, strutting down the runway or catalogs
filled with new ways to preen.

You know that expression " for the birds"...well, I think the definition needs to be changed. I would love some of my decor to be "for the birds".

A song of praise

I found this quote yesterday and thought it truly described, what i felt when i received this wonderful gift in the mail, recently. "A friend is one who can touch your heart from across the world or across the room"~ Anonymous~

I have admired Becky's work, since I bought the 1st issue of Somerset Apprentice.
I have seen more and more of her work, since. I decided to see if she had a blog and peer into her creative world. I love the simple graceful style she adds to her work. It has a soft, comfort quality, with elements of surprise. She used soft cotton batting with a touch of sparkly tulle, tea/coffee dyed dryer sheets..add a worn, warm element to this unique little book.

Becky shares words of wisdom on her blog, one is about "Sit Still", i think of her crafting, gathering her tools to
weave a nest of artistry. When she is done, her work sings, it makes you smile.

I can't thank Becky enough for her unique gift...I will treasure it and as I wear the Believe necklace, I know, that the word, she chose for me, is to coax me to test my wings, and fly.

"Use what talents you possess; the woods would be very silent if no birds sang there except
those that sang best"~Henry Van Dyke

I guess, I need to go practice that tune in my head.

Thanks Becky, I love it!

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Ancestor Art

These are my paternal grandparents, Winona and Clifford Jackson. I think this was taken back in 1933 ?
I printed their image out on iron on transfer paper. I ironed it on a sheer material and then arranged in an embroidery hoop. I then added another piece of sheer fabric behind it, with various images. Can you see the ferris wheel, the rose, the bird and the house..probably not all. I missed
the sun today, so i took a pic, up close to a light fixture.

They met at a dance; he had a band, he was the drummer.
Their love for music brought them together, they later married and he discovered she played piano. They had
2 children, a boy(my Dad) and a daughter(my Aunt).

They were a unique pair, he was known for his patience and humor; she for her laughter and cooking. They had
good n' bad times, but over all a long marriage.

Their wonderful memories waltz thorough my mind as
time marches on.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

White out

I called home(Maine) they are getting hit pretty hard...lots of snow.
I want a storm, a blanket of white, the comfort of curling up inside and justifying cocoa and crafting.
I know I don't need to justify it, but I do love the peaceful, calm look of the fluffy white flakes
dancing in the wind. It brings back wonderful memories of all things snow, sledding, making a snowman/snowwoman and making homemade vanilla ice cream..(we used snow instead of crushed ice).

Instead, I guess I will sort thru white items and make a grouping...sometimes this will satisfy, or
go browse my photo albums of Maine and Alaska.

I guess I can pretend it is a snow day and do what I want, but it just isn't the same. We have a
tradition when it snows, we make homemade molasses cookies the size of elephant ears or ginger snaps. It is a team effort, everyone has to be involved you can mix, shape or bake them.

I will be patient and hold out for Mother Nature's glistening white blanket and the aroma of
ginger in my house. I will share the recipe, soon...

for more view of snowflakes ; credit due to photographer, Patricia Rasmussen

Monday, January 18, 2010


Today, we honor the memory of Martin Luther King, Jr. I wonder how he would feel if he were alive today?
I have read a few articles, all seem to trend in this direction, there is always room for

I agree, there is....

I discovered a book this morning,watching THE TODAY show. InterSati Method, is an exercise book,
, that uses affirmations, that help you, mentally and physically,by building a momentum of good thoughts while exercising.

Inter means intention; Sati is a Sankrit word that means mindfulness.

It is about combining the best of both worlds and
how our thoughts affect our outcome.

"Feel the dream growing, the vision getting bigger,
the inspiration in you growing momentum". ~Patricia Moreno~

I somehow think the principles in this book, could be applied to many facets of life. You start out doing
a vision board, even though this is an exercise book, it also is about dealing with negative thoughts.

The author shares her struggles and how finally, blending these 2 worlds, affirmations with exercise, she didn't regain her weight. Isn't this true for a lot of bad habits, when we change and find healthy ways to deal, we quit smoking, emotional eating, and other addictions. She states it changes brain chemistry. We do think different when we don't listen to our negative thoughts or when we listen more to our positive ones.

So, what is your dream....somehow, no matter whatever it is, it will take hard work and some form of positive feedback, some type of re enforcement, to fuel your fire, your passion to continue. If Martin Luther King, Jr. could see a glimpse of today, I think his passion would be
reignited and more sparks(speeches) would be given.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Flea Market Friday

Well, I am a day, late, but I did go to the Flea Market Store yesterday; I will take a pic of it, next week, so you can see the outside.

I found this rattan type suitcase, which i am thrilled will.
It will great to pack creative supplies to take with me.

This fabric was so different; I am sure some of the fabric is old, especially the rose printed one it has polka dots on it and the roses are flocked. This book is amazing with lots of birds and floral it!

The shop was a maze inside this time, but i was satisfied with my treasure hunt.

It is a place, when you stop to browse, you want to be alone, to let the ideas flow and not to be interrupted in your creative mindset. I have tried to take people with me, but it is a solo act, for me. Once in awhile i can take an artsy friend, but sometimes, even she willquestion...whatcha buying that for.

Sometimes i don't know, just there is a pull towards an item, that I know I will find a use for later. It is an intuitive shopping trip, i wonder is it like this for
most people that craft?! It is like a mind melding journey into my rt brain vs left brain reality.

I love looking at older items and wonder where they have been, how used, celebrations, etc.
What is their story? I love that today, we can take what is old and make it new again in a unique using fragments from the past to make something special with a history.
Recycling at it's finest~

Friday, January 15, 2010

Diet, Debt and Destruction

So, far the New Year, seems to be following the D the calendar changed to 2010.
We start to focus on losing those holiday pounds. Then the credit card bills, start to arrive.....not to mention, what is going on in our country.
Now, we are dealing with a devastating diaster in Haiti.

I think we should perhaps switch to H, Hope for Haiti, Helping and preserving their History/culture. (even if in art, stories and photos, etc.)

My husband is involved with the Navy for aid and relief; I have read Rebecca Sower's blog for
awhile now. She was just there and has many stories to share and has started an etsy shop
Haiti by Hand.

She can put a personal touch on the people she met and how they touched each other lives.
She is helping them sell art to change their world, prior to the earthquake, but now, it seems even more important. Art hopeful Can Save, some lives.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

January's Hope

I was in one of those home improvement type stores, when I decided to go look at the plant section; hubby is off, looking at wood. I love the curly bamboo and the beautiful unique florals this time of year. I was stunned to see, the seeds were already out...huh? It is early, i have received 2 seed catalogs so far, but really, I can buy seeds now. I was thrilled, honestly, i love to buy the little peat pots and put them in a window and see if i can get an early start on gardening. Sometimes I succeed, sometimes things fail. I love to grow things, the metaphors for life, we have to weed out,
add nutrients back to the soil, dig, mix and then plant the tiny seeds of hope.

We hope we do well, i mean they do well; We hope our herbal garden grows with abundance, our roses bloom, and our cukes are a bumper crop.(yum pickles)

We hope everything we plant blooms,..but like gardening, life isn't like that. Sometimes plans i mean plants fail.....
I do love though, that as the New Year progresses we can replant,
try, try again, and sometimes we need to tweak the soil or perhaps, there was too much sun or rain. It is never to late to try again to plant the seeds of hope; One just has to begin, again.

Find the seed at the bottom of your heart and bring forth a flower.
- Shigenori Kameoka

The love of gardening is a seed that once sown never dies.
- Gertrude Jekyll

More grows in the garden than the gardener sows.
- Spanish Proverb

~Let's hope that they still find survivors in Haiti, so sad~

I am shocked by the destruction and how bad it is; My husband says there are 4 people on his ship, that have family in Haiti. The Navy is sending ships, there now; they are also starting a fundraiser. Seems like anything at this point, would help.....we don't realize how fortunate we truly are.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Shifting Gears

Yes, you can guess, I did receive a yoga book n' dvd for Christmas. I am open to trying anything that will help with self doubt and fear.

I received this book that i have picked up and glanced at for awhile, "The 8 Human Talents".
This book discusses our aura as the 8th human talent, there are 7 chakras. Chakras are like gears/wheels of energy. When you aren't in balance, having negative thoughts usually more than 1 chakra is off. What is neat is how color and emotion is part of this and certain exercises help keep your energy up. There are a lot of quotes and positive messages thorough the book.
The basics are that the fields stimulate and aid you in your emotions: Acceptance, Creatitivity,
Commitment, Compassion, Truth, Intuition, Boundlessness and Radiance.

"Words are not a small things. Words are the real power. The whole universe is a magnetic field. If we create positive words, we feel love. If we create negative words, we feel hatred."
~Yogi Bhajan

If you glance at the book, you'll see that the message is positive, so i am going to walk this path and see if it helps me,
kick that devil off my shoulder the devil of self doubt. My angel is tired of the barbs and arrows of angst.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Flea Market Finds

On Fridays, I frequent my local Flea Market, I should call it Flea Market Fridays...there aren't too many times, when I'm out n' about, that I don't stop by.

Sometimes I score big, other times...nada. It is neat in the front,
arranged in order, art work off to the right and home decor items to the left. Then it feels like your aunt's or grandmother's
attic, as you reach the middle of the shop, piles of baby blankets , sheer curtains and books, etc.

The owner, has a row of antique dishes, some depression ware, some of the prices are outrageous, then there are item that reasonable. Sometimes, she will, just give me this or that. I love to browse, the sewing section, the odds n' ends of fabric, tins with buttons, you can browse and pick out just a few, and old seam
binding. Then there is the linen section; I found this old table cloth and embroidery pieces.

It is a hit or miss and her inventory is always changing and it feel good to buy local and support your town, put money in your own back yard.

I have gone to the closest city and scored on other unique items, but for a real vintage feel, this is the store to stop by. Check out your back yard and see what you uncover; You never know what treasures you may find. ( I took awhile to go in, thought it looked like a junk shop, so don't let the view, fool you)

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Soy Soap Box

I love soy, i do, but i think we as a country, our government standards, via FDA, are going to far.

Why, you ask....well, i think the key is everything in moderation.

I also know for a fact, that this product is not good for everyone. I am one in fact that discovered this a year ago. Yes, i still can have small amounts in moderation, yes....but one may be surprised how much of this product is in your diet.

A year ago, my cholesterol was up a bit, not a high # 180's but the LDL was up. I asked my Dr, could i eat a vegan diet...i asked, because i have thyroid disease, autoimmune. (Hashimotos' thyroiditis)
It appeared after my last child was born, it took 3 yrs to get diagnosed(there are 11 million women, perhaps more, running around, exhausted, and don't realize it is their thyroid not working right).
Dr's do not commonly order this blood test, common symptoms are depression, weight gain or
weight loss depending which type you have, brain fog...there are lots more. Here you can take a little quiz to see if maybe you need to be screened further. You need a TSH test(Thyroid Stimulating Hormone) 0.5-3.0 is the range, but not all doctors, prescribe to the new numbers. I was 6.9 when diagnosed and the old chart is 0.5-5.0. I feel best at 1.2 and then can lose weight and feel like myself. How do i know this, because when i felt my best, i went to the Dr and found out what my # was.

Okay, back to DR and vegan, i ask, she says, it would be fine, as long as i don't eat
soy in the morning, when i take my thyroid meds. Fine, i go shopping get all kinds of products,
well, at first great, lighter food, not heavy...i feel good. Then I notice, my heart is racing a lot and
my face is swelling and i am anxious and hot, like my thyroid is hyper. I ended up in the ER
and everyone thinks i am hyperthyroid, can't sit still, motor mouth, etc. I wasn't, my level was in the normal range; it was the soy, it aggravated my thyroid.

I read a lot of food labels, these days, but you think you have seen it all, but one needs to keep checking their food, IMHO. I found soy in my tuna, my peanut butter, , ice cream, candy, crackers, most baked goods, that i picked up, cereals, chips, salad dressing,etc. It is in our clothing as dyes, candles, make up, facial products...more n' more every day. I am shocked, how i thought i was avoiding soy and yet it is in almost everything i bring home. Let's not forget when you eat out, how you really don't have a clue what you are ingesting!

Then there is another point, it has estrogen in it....okay,a plant based diet is healthy, but be cautious, if you have thyroid disease in your family, eating too much can throw your thyroid a
curve ball. Then what about young boys, that ingest this product for years...research shows links to cancer what i mention is in paragraph, "Early puberty".

Let us not forget how lawyers wrote the food pyramid, not Nutritionist/or Registered Dieticians
back in 1986. We know how that all played out....Type 2 diabetes.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

Heart Arrival

A piece of my heart arrived safe n' sound, there was a glitch in Chicago, due to a delay from
Kodiak Island. The commuter airline would not fly, due to high additional $ was needed to get the ticket active again, from that point on..different airline. ( a 1 day delay)
My son n' friends took care of this online, prior, but the email hadn't come back with a conf #, so i was worried.

He had a wonderful trip, brought home a few gifts, handmade from the natives on the island. (yes, this dream catcher, was one of them) When we were on Adak, there wasn't any natives....Kodiak, is sooo much more civilized. They have a Wal-Mart, I am stunned.

Memories of what we endured as a newly married couple on Adak, an island in the Aleutian chin, off the Alaskan coastline(about 1,500 mls from the mainland).

When i arrived in Adak, it was like being on Junk Yard Wars(tv show), all the vehicles were rough looking, bits and pieces.
There was only 5mls of tarred road, on the island, a pet cementary, which i had just finished reading that, Stephen King novel -...spooky, the National Forest had 24 tiny pine trees...maybe 3ft tall. We had at least sixteen, earth tremors a day,we had to evacuate to Bering Hill, if a tsunami was spotted.
There was a gossip rock, people would spray paint this huge rock on the main road, like Happy Birthday, Congrats; Sometimes the messages weren't so positive..i saw so n' so with so n' so.

It was a crazy place, we were closer to Russia then the U.S. One Navy wife, would call home and tell people, what planes she saw. She was warned to keep day, the military police came to her door, told her to pack and she was put on a plane, homeward bound. You had to have a clearance to be there, even all the spouses and other civilians that lived there, had to be
investigated(background check).

Fond memories of a place that is like no other in the world~ or at least not like any in the Lower 48.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

A Piece of My Heart is Flying Home

My son, a 21 yr old, college student, was given an e-ticket for Christmas, from his friends on
Kodiak Island, Alaska. I was thrilled,(and nervous) for him, I have lived on Adak and in Anchorage. It is
a unique place to visit and/or live. You either love it or hate it...there is no, in between. I lived there a total of 4 yrs and never met anyone who was on the fence. It is an experience of a life time.

Alaska is beautiful, bold and can be brutal. You have to be respectful of it's climate, people and let's not forget the bears.

My first year living there, we had 101 inches of snow. My second year we had a volcano, Mt. Spurr drop ash on us. We could not go outside for 3 days.
The ash blew around for months, since Anchorage is bowl shaped with mountains surrounding it.

My son said, he had a wonderful time and is headed home now..he called, he is now in Seattle, funny it is colder here in NC then in WA?! I am on stand by to call him and make sure he boards his next flight..I know, he is grown up. I think of Alaska like being a parent..lots of uncharted territory and lots of wilderness, things can happen. No one, prepares you for what
your journey with your child will be like or how your heart strings will be constantly yanked and tugged or how much joy you will discover and how much your child will teach you! So, as a piece of my heart returns home; I will be grateful and try to prepare for all the uncharted journeys ahead. We are all like explorers with our children, there is treasure to be unearthed and many discoveries ahead.

Their journeys define who they are, but also shape us~

Sunday, January 3, 2010

The Key of C

I found this article today, going thru a folder of things i had typed up, The C's of Fitness. I don't know who the author is....but it can apply to all different aspects of one's life, not just getting fit.

The C's are:

COMMUNITY. ( I will share a tidbit of each)

CHANGE-examine what hasn't worked, a new start, begin again

COURAGE-move beyond your fears, do you want to stay where you are?

CHALLENGE-moving out of your comfort zone, push yourself in new ways.

CHOICES-Your choice, you choose daily to try or not to begin or not, to move forward or not.

COPING-Change can add stress, find new ways to cope, perhaps write out your emotions, make new habits. You know what hasn't worked in the past...

CONSISTENCY-this will build confidence, stick with it, You are in control

CREATIVITY-Creating is a gift, it allows you to feel joy, find bliss, a new way to express yourself

CRAVINGS-(remember this applies to fitness) listen to them, being aware, if you do give in, move on, forgive and remember no one is perfect. I think of times when i crave being alone, a
walk, a thrift shop outing.

COMMUNITY-find people like you, exchanging ideas and info, helps you grow, builds self confidence.

I thought it was interesting how these words, can apply to all things we are attempting, trying,

I think of music, the terms major and minor apply, it is one of the most commonly used notes ,
it is often thought of as the most simple, it lacks sharps and flats. The C major scale lacks black keys, which doesn't fit the natural positions of the fingers. (COMFORT is lacking; but we CHART a new path, we do go out of our comfort zone)

This key can be described as happy or a note that is dull. There is so much variation with this note, but one thing for sure, music theory begins with this note. When someone asks what key
you want to start a song is the root note, they are asking. When playing scales the key thing to remember is to be able to turn the pattern into music. It takes time and practice, lots of practice and remember there are many other notes, besides C.

I find this Fitness article, so much more, then guidelines for getting in shape, physcially, but mentally i need to practice my crafts, so my heartstrings can sing.
(as many musicians know, it is what our heart desires/craves for us to do, then we need to as least attempt to play). If we don't like this one, there is always another one to try.....

Comfort in the Cold

I found this recipe i had cut out of Family Circle mag, years ago....Minestrone Soup. I have a problem, though. There are only a few recipes i follow, most i alter....a bit more of this or less of that , I usually receive praise and empty plates/bowls i continue.

I will share both versions with you...the orignial
and the tweaked. Either way, both are good, one is just a bit thicker with a touch more herbs.

Two large onion, chopped fine, carrots cut into thin coins...2 or 3, 1 1/2 c. chopped celery, 2 med sized chopped zucchini,cut into 1/2 inch chunks= 1 1/2 cups, 2 cloves garlic, minced, 1/3 canola oil...i know it sounds like a lot, i drain the oil off and pat some of the oil off the veggies, 1 pkgs (10 oz) frozen spinach, thawed, 1 can (14-15 oz) Italian style tomatoes, i usually get diced ones, 1 can (14oz) of dark red kidney beans, drained and rinsed, 1/2 tsp black pepper, a pinch of salt( I skip it, you'll see why later)1/2 tsp oregano, 1/2 tsp basil, both dried, can use fresh, but use more, 1 can chicken broth, 1/2 c. parmesan cheese.

1. Saute onions, carrots, celery, zucchini in oil when they start to appear translucent, add minced
garlic. This step takes about 5min, then add garlic.
2. Remove veggies with a slotted spoon to a large pot, than add tomatoes and all the liquid, add spinach, beans, pepper and herbs and dash of salt, stir gently and put on low heat.
3. Now put in chicken broth...i use a bouillon cube and add a bit more water =3cups. Bring this
now to a boil; then lower heat and simmer on low for 30min. Serve with a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and my family likes garlic bread.

Okay, I follow above guidelines, but i add a bag of frozen bell peppers, red, yellow and green and a small frozen bag of green beans, i don't add salt, i add 1/2 a jar of tomato sauce I use Classico
Tomato and Basil, i also add 1 1/2tsps of oregano and basil. I add all the ingredient in the soup,
but if i didn't have zucchini, i would substitute something else.

My family loves this soup, it is thick, chunky and satisfying. I thought i would hear complaints,
not a one. You could substitute pasta for beans, a different kind of bean, more or less veggies, different ones, that you like. I let it cook longer than, 30 min on low, and it still is good!

I hope you will try it, it does satisfy the soul, when the window panes are fogged and you are trying to eat more healthy, since the calendar turned.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Year Of Color

It was fun to be part of a wonderful blog called "A Year Of Color IV", it was hosted by the talented, Kari Ramstrom, Twelve full months of inspiration!

This is a membership blog, that featured a new artist and a color theme for each month. We had such fun, lots of inspirations, swaps and features; We hope she does another year, but time will tell.
The nice part is she still is giving members, access for 6 months after to have time to reflect and print out and try all the featured tutorials. The membership, is worth it, when you think of all that you get. She also had give aways; i happened to win the very last one. I won
"Blogging for Bliss" book, vintage party hats and Anthropologie felt coasters...really represents the Year's view. I was stunned; haven't won anything in years!

Artsy Mama's blog is filled with stunning pics and inspiration, just so you can get a glimpse into her world, a perfect host for a colorful blog, as you can see.

Thanks Kari for the rainbow filled journey and thanks to the artists for sharing a piece of their

Happy New Year!!!!

Friday, January 1, 2010

Transition, Time and Transform.....

I think of today as a transition day, a day to sift thru one's thoughts of reflection and how one wants to move forward.

My husband wanted to detox today, i said, "Go ahead, not me..I'm in transition"....I am not going to start anything sudden or rash today, so by Valentine's Day, I will notice my motivation

I think of the tortoise n' the hare, when i think of changing one's ways. The slow, steady progression tends to build vs. the fast
let's do it, let's go, too much to soon method.

I then grabbed my 2 favorite daybooks to see what the lst day of the NEW YEAR suggests:

In my SARK daybook, Procrastination is the focus, she mentions
how perfectionists are too hard on themselves and rehearse more than most the ideal in their mind and then do nothing.
This revelation does ring a bell in some facets of my life.... She states one needs to be tender with themselves. She goes on about living in the middle, don't over or under shoot.

My 2nd favorite daybook(I only have 2) is SIMPLE ABUNDANCE the author Sarah Ban Breathnach, mentions Fresh Starts, a new chapter in life, new questions to be asked. She talks about carving out a quiet interlude for yourself, with pen in hand. Instead of writing resolutions she proposes you write your aspirations, the longings you have tucked, hidden away.

They both mention, being gentle and to pace one's self, instead of the rabbit rush in style.
They both prescribe to the thought of "Believe in Yourself".

I believe this is a great way to transform, by taking the time to transition oneself, one's thoughts, one's dreams.