Sunday, February 28, 2010

Dream Of A Moon

THERE is a dream of a moon outside, rising high in the east. We have just watched the closing ceremonies for the Olympics and look forward to another gathering in 2014 in Russia with nations at peace and more hope everywhere.
As the Canadian official said at the end of the games (not an exact quote) "we hope to one day see children all over the world able to play."
There are some who haven't the energy to play because of malnutrition or disease. Or they have no safe place to play because of war and natural disasters.
Let's try to make it possible for all the world to live to their highest potential - femminismo

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Sumi Ink Skies

TONIGHT the sky looked like a sumi ink painting. I like the pale blue sky with a line of puffy clouds hanging in just enough light so they are dark inky black behind the trees and in front of the horizon.
I wish I had gotten a photo of them, but maybe you know the kind of sky I mean. Perhaps you could paint it. Perhaps I could. Maybe I will.
I feel as if I am facing more outward today and not focusing so deeply inward.
Just wanted to document that today was another day on my life calendar and a special day it was, one of deep meaningful conversation with someone I love. The conversation was heart to heart and reinforced bonds that grow stronger every day.
God bless men that can talk with their hearts - femminismo
p.s. Picasso sculptures, "Head of a Woman" 1962, "Jacqueline with a Green Ribbon" 1962, and "Head of a Woman" 1962. Photo by Gion Mili, Life magazine image, taken in 1967.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Can't Seem To Stop Myself

EVEN THOUGH I have little to say - nothing too remarkable happened today - I feel the need to blog again. I thought this was gone; this excitement to keep track of the days and the moments. But I guess not ... .
This morning I overslept and woke with 30 minutes to get ready for work. Wasn't going to happen. I took a long, luxurious shower and felt very good afterward. Friday is casual day at work so I got to put on jeans and a shirt and not worry about stockings and the proper outfit. Extra sleep and blue jeans. Maybe today was more remarkable than I thought.
It was raining on the way to the desk, computer, and chain to hold me there. That was lucky actually, because yesterday a bird passed over my car and left a truly ugly stain down the passenger's side window. (Must have eaten something really, really bad - and orange colored.) So the rain washed it off a bit and that was good.
The coyote was gone this morning. The city doesn't usually send out crews that quickly to pick up dead animals. Maybe they didn't want the citizenry frightened. I'm wondering if someone wanted the coyote for his carcass or his ears. There's another side of me that believes the "right people" picked up the coyote and took it and gave it a decent burial under the huge oak out in the field near their driveway.
Listen, do you think there's something wrong with me that I dream up stuff like this? Sometimes I wonder.
I loved the image of Steve from Bloggertropolis waving his hand in front of the elevator door, when he knew it was going to open anyway, and then pretending it was him that did it. I'm trying to think if I do any weird things like this or if it's just strange stories I cook up in my head.
I talk to myself a lot, you know; not expecting answers, and mostly to keep myself on task or help me remember things. And I dream up the most extraordinary stories where I turn out to be the heroine, saving someone some trouble or injury. I don't leap off buildings or dodge bullets, but folks end up being grateful. Then I shake my head wondering where "that" came from and go back to whatever I was doing before I started daydreaming.
I can't believe I'm actually typing this out. I guess I'm more tired than I thought and there's plenty to do tomorrow. I'm posting a photograph I took of a window in the Mister's old house and a bouquet of flowers I picked for him, in my efforts to show what a great little housewife I would make - so he would fall in love with me - femminismo
p.s. Candace, what is the name of these orange flowers? Oh, I remember! Globe flowers!

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Intruding On The Wild . . .

OR IS THE WILD intruding on us?
Our whole planet should be "civilized" by now, shouldn't it? Under concrete and ticky-tack buildings? What use have we for the brown earth, green grass or wild things that nest, crawl, lope, and secret themselves along the hedgerows?
This morning on the way to work, rushing down the highway in my gasoline powered automobile, a sad sight appeared. At first I thought it was a large cat by the side of the road, but as I drew closer I saw it was the lean athletic body of the Trickster, Mr. Coyote.
It is shocking to see any animal left dead by the road, but this healthy looking, beautiful thing of the wild shocked even more. (The images are Life magazine photos hosted by Google. Top photo, 1970, by Stan Wayman. Bottom, in 1947, by Cornell Capa.)
The following is from a beautiful book by Hyemeyohsts Storm, a Northern Cheyenne, born and raised on the Cheyenne and Crow reservations in Montana.
"These, my Sisters, are my Gifts," he said, "and these Arrows are also your Gifts."
The Youngman then Covered three things of War that were in the Middle of the Lodge with the Coyote Robe. He also Placed the Robe that White Wolf had Given him, and the One from Otter, Under the Coyote Robe.
"Under Coyote's Robe is a Gift for Each of you," he Told the People. "They are for you who Sit in the North, the South, the West, and the East. Under Coyote's Skin are the things that will Give you Buffalo. You will not Hunger, nor be Alone, nor Lost."
The Youugman then Told those who Sat in the Four Directions to Pick their Gifts from Under the Robe.
"I will take the Ax," One said.
"And I the Lance," said Another.
"I will Have the War Bow," said still Another.
"I will Take what is Left, the War Headdress," said the Last.
The Youngman then Asked the Grandfather to Uncover the Robe of Coyote, and to Give Each of them their Gifts.
The Old Man Lifted the Robe of Coyote.
But the War Ax was Now a Fragile Pipe Stone, shaped like the Pipe of Peace. The Lance was Now Covered with the Wolf Skin and that of the Otter, its Point Broken, a thing that could not be Thrown. The Last thing was what had Once been Two. It was the Contrary War Bow Now Strung with the Straight Line of Feathers. The Eagle Feathers were Now the Single Brother Feather as is Worn in the Hair. And the Bow was Now One of Peace. It was the Thunder Bow.
"Which of you Now Wishes to Possess for himself the Gifts you See in Front of You in this Brother Lodge?" asked the Youngman.
They All Hung their Heads because they Recognized these things.
-- just a bit of "Seven Arrows" by Hyemeyohsts Storm - femminismo
Prayer for the Coyote
I don't care whether you are dangerous or dirty;
A threat, a plague, a vicious killer of wildlife.
I only see through you a way of life
That used to be and now is no more.
What joy you have known, what dangers you have faced,
What pleasure you have taken with food, drink, mating or
Enjoying sunshine -
Those were my pleasures too.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

You Don't Have to Persuade Me

MR. WENTWORTH, Mr. Darcy - ah! That Jane knew her heroes!
No, you wouldn't have to try very hard to persuade me that Mr. Wentworth was worth the having.
I just finished watching "Persuasion" on Oregon Public Television (On Demand) and it was well worth the time spent, even though my hearing isn't the best and the British accents I enjoyed so in my youth now sound a great deal like Chinese.
This particular production had Miss Anne Elliot looking either sideways or straight into the camera (at the very end) with her wide variety of looks: consternation, irritation, forbearance, confusion or joy. Anne's hairdo made me wince with pain and I could just imagine the headache I would have at the end of the day if I were to try putting my hair up like this.
Here is Mr. Wentworth's letter to Anne that Jane Austen wrote for him:
"I can listen no longer in silence. I must speak to you by such means as are within my reach. You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own, than when you almost broke it eight years and a half ago. Dare not say that man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death.
"I have loved none but you. ... For you alone I think and plan. -- Have you not seen this? Can you fail to have understood my wishes? -- I had not waited even these ten days, could I have read your feelings, as I think you must have penetrated mine. I can hardly write. I am every instant hearing something which overpowers me. You sink your voice, but I can distinguish the tones of that voice, when they would be lost on others. -- Too good, too excellent creature! You do us justice indeed. You do believe that there is true attachment and constancy among men. Believe it to be most fervent, most undeviating in --- F.W. (Frederick Wentworth)
"I must go, uncertain of my fate, but I shall return hither, or follow your party, as soon as possible. A word, a look will be enough to decide whether I enter your father's house this evening, or never."
Wow! Could a woman turn down a man who could write a letter like that? Doubtful!
I got the pictures from another blog with this fabulous quote (mixing zombies and Jane Austen) "It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains." For "single man" you insert "zombie" and "brains" for everything else ... like fortune and marriage.
I'm glad I'm not a zombie. I really don't think I could handle the diet - femminismo
p.s. None of these images are mine.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Third World Thoughts

Sunday Morning, on CBS (Feb. 21), there was a segment by a writer named Steve Hartman who travels the world looking for stories because he believes everyone has one to tell. For starters, this past Sunday, he had an astronaut twirl a floating earth globe in the spaceship's weightless atmosphere and - at random - point to a place where he should go and choose someone - also at random - from a phone book.
I love seeing how other people live and the way they make a life for themselves and Steve takes us all over. (Most of these stories contain great morals and a great deal of inspiration.)
Steve went to India for one of the stories and I think everyone in the world should watch this one YouTube video on a 78-year-old man, quietly living life the best he can, to find out if your life actually sucks as much as you think it does.
Someone commenting on the YouTube site said at least this man was living in a house. (some live in cardboard boxes on the street) I think there were 13 family members altogether. If you watch it you will find out. (Watch out for the Welch's grape jelly commercial at the beginning. Time for a quick bathroom break there.)
Lately this third world view has intruded in my life - not a bad thing - and I find when I use plastic bags or bottles, I try to reuse them as often as possible. I wonder what treasures these might be in a third world country. Would a Glad bag with a ZipLock top be a balloon or a ball, filled with air and zipped up to toss around and bat back and forth? Would it be a way to collect rain water - safe to drink?
But even in my own town I worry about those without a home or people to take care of them. There is a man in town with three shopping carts full of possessions. He pushes one of them along the sidewalk, towing the other one behind. He then leaves the two of them and walks back to get the third one and when he has them all together he starts over again.
When is the last time this man had a good meal I wonder - as I drive by in my nice warm car without stopping. (I'm always on my way somewhere - like to a restaurant to buy a nice warm meal.) There is one thing I have not learned in my life - yet. That is how to approach someone who may not want to be approached.
When was the last time he had a hot shower or clean clothes? Who is there to take care of him?
I do not quite believe the story of the lilies of the field. Some things, some people, need more than air, rain and sunshine. Do you know how to approach someone who may not like human contact? Let me know how to get brave and do it in the best way possible, if you can - femminismo

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Birthday Girl and Violets

JUST a short note on today: Shey's birthday was celebrated tonight. She looked like a very happy 17-year-old girl. Movie and dinner with friends and a chocolate, chocolate, chocolate cake with them and family and then presents. We've all come a long ways together ... .
Today was bright with sunshine and tonight may set a February 21st record low temperature. I hope all those violets will still have their bright eyes shining tomorrow. Here's how they looked today when I gathered a bunch of them in a cup - femminismo
p.s. See my new gloves beside them? There is work cut out for the gloves!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Got Food?

YES, do you have food?
I hope so! Many in Oregon - and throughout the U.S. - do not.
"Food insecurity" - better known as "hunger" - touches too many families. If you had a nice dinner tonight and don't have to worry about tomorrow's cupboard rations, you can be very, very thankful.
After watching the movie "Food Inc." I was looking around the Internet and googling places nearby that sell g
rassfed beef. That's how I came upon Mossback Farm in Yamhill, Oregon. After reading more about their farm, I see they even offer opportunities to come and stay, work and learn how life on a farm really goes. Very tempting, what with the exquisite scenery and all. I just might have to put that on my list of things to do one day. Rich, the farm co-owner, noted that he was blogging for food. I had already made a Valentines Day donation to the Oregon Food Bank, but wanted to let others know they had an opportunity to donate. (Or choose your own state's food bank. I'm sure they've got one!)
I know the "food" I show in this photo is not what one might serve for dinner, and half its calories come from fat, so it's truly not a good choice for your main meal. (The candy is actually in homage to Steve's recent blog/rant on Cadbury's and Hersheys. No mistaking the chocolate for a tea packet, Steve.)
But ... back to hunger: I
f you're like some unlucky folks, and you've already spent most of your income on rent, heat, lights, water and medicine, where else will you cut back? For a lot of people, they cut back on food.
Hungry is an awful way to live.
Children who are under nourished don't develop properly either - physically and mentally. What does that mean to our American future?

If you can all spare even $5 each, consider how much that can help the cause when it's all added up. Click on the beet/turnip (?) to the left and you'll suddenly be at the Oregon Food Bank. Donate and I can assure you it will make you feel much better about life with that good warm glow in your heart.
Now for somethi
ng completely different: I FOUND my dragonfly earring that had "gone missing" in ... what? January? I have made many sorties looking for it and have discovered that I am completely demented when it comes to giving up on something I am determined to have! (Have I ever told you about the Mister's and my courtship? Well, another time, perhaps.)
Anyway, there I was at lunchtime walking in the sunshine, taking photos, and I suddenly realized I had dropped my camera bag. (See a pattern of losing things here?) I retraced my steps and recovered the bag, but now my walk had changed direction. I was headed where I had been walking when I lost that earring. I looked closely at the ground hoping something would glitter. I noticed a paper clip on the cement near our local BiMart and thought, "My earring is just about that big, so if I noticed the paper clip I surely would see the earring." Lo and behold, there it was about five more steps away next to the pallets holding clay pots. It's not difficult to determine which was out in the weather, is it? It will need some help before it goes back to work.
The weather here in Oregon has been awfully pretty lately. The witch hazel is almost finished blooming, so I'm glad I got a picture of it during my walk. There was a magnolia ready to pop, so I'm sure you'll be seeing that soon.
And this tree bark that naturally separates into what could be "sheets" of parchment for a book. I wonder if I started pulling it apart if I would be arrested. (It does not belong to me.) Isn't it going to fall off anyway? Such a great project piece! I used Photoshop on the tree, so it's not totally "real" but close enough - femminismo

Saturday, February 13, 2010

The Other Side

DOESN'T dream time seem like that? The "Other Side"?
A few nights ago I struggled with a man who was in my house and I kept trying to tell everyone that he meant me harm. "They" said he seemed harmless. He said, "All right, I'll leave now."
But I knew he didn't mean it and as soon as the other person was gone he was attacking me again.
I screamed. I shouted. I hit and tore. I ran from the house - along with someone else (?) - and jumped through uneven fields full of blackberry vines. I didn't mind the running or the tears from brambles. I just wanted to get away.
Then I dreamed "they" were trying to kill us all. I asked, "Isn't there an alternative?"
"He," abruptly dropping his weapon and evil persona, said, "Well, yes, I guess there is." Turns out it involved something akin to selling my soul. However, I didn't get killed, so I guess I took this alternative.
If you gave up your soul there were only two things you could not do: You could not wear the "signs of the Zodiac" and you could not drink alcohol.
In my dream I saw a man lying "dead" because he was wearing a sign. Then I absentmindedly took a sip of wine. Oh no! Alcohol! I waited for the black smoke to pour out of me, because that's what happens when you drink alcohol with no soul. (where does this stuff come from?)
A better dream was last night's trip to The Other Side, when everyone (well, almost) wanted to kiss me on the cheek because I was "so cute." I must have been regressing to when I was about 5 years old.
No, no! Don't try and flatter me by saying, "What do you mean, when you were 5 years old?!" (Oh, OK. Go ahead.)
The Mister did celebrate his birthday, along with my sister, Miss Murphy. Aren't they cute? And this is proof!
On Valentine's Day the Mister and I took a drive through the country and you could see the creeks were swollen and the buds on the trees are ready to burst. The beavers on one creek had taken a tree down and skinned all the bark off it. The little cabin shown by the creek had ferns growing all over the roof. It was behind a large bush of bamboo and in the summer must be quite the secluded hideout. It is always cool in this spot, we heard from neighbors. Not much sun at all, but lots and lots of rich green moss.
There were chickens rooting around in the mud under netting to protect them from hawks. Chicken hawks.
The day was lovely and of course over too soon. But I did get an orchid from my sweetheart for Valentine's Day, so I was pleased - femminismo
p.s. The picture at the top of the post is from Life magazine images hosted by Google. It shows a father in West Germany showing his son the view on the other side in 1961. They were lucky to be looking over and not living a scary nightmare on the other side.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Happy Birthday, Mister!

HERE is just a little something to warm up the day a bit. The Mister is celebrating a birthday, Valentines Day is getting closer, and Little Miss Murphy will celebrate a birthday also.
I think I will be busy baking cake tonight and maybe cookies also. So I'm going to blog ahead a bit.

I found this great picture on Google's Life magazine hosting space and couldn't resist doing something arty with it with Photoshop. I hope the photographer would approve - femminismo
P.S. The photographer was John Dominis

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Time To Report What's Been Going On

NOT MUCH, that's what's been going on.
Well, actually, I must count a Friday off work as something going on. I met up with two lady friends (as a matter of fact, two of the best people I know) and we went to a great restaurant in our town, Syun Izakaya. It is an excellent place to eat, with marvelous fresh ingredients of the highest quality. Courteous servers and ambiance galore. Take a good look at those orchids (just part of them) that greet you at the door.
Eydie loves the sushi, but Sandi and I must have our food cooked. I adore the salmon with homemade teriyaki sauce and part of Sandi's thrill with the food is saying the name of the dish. It's something like "Nikooniki," or close anyway. Eydie's sushi included a little of everything from the sea and what looked like watercress in a fresh green bunch on top. Wasabi added a lovely green, of course, and there was the colorful pink of octopus, which once turned out to be the only sushi I could stand because at least it was chewy. Soft, soft fish textures sort of start my gag reflex going.
Hmm. I'm beginning to think it might be time for a new computer. This one is getting awfully slow about loading pictures. I've been waiting for the sushi far longer than Eydie had to. The red button on the hard drive tower is flashing frantically. So ...........
I've rebooted and the sushi is finally here. That also allowed me to get a fresh cup of tea and my materials together for Judy Wise's healing quilt square. I think I am going to put something special on my square - a seashell. A shell that holds a secret memory for me that is both tantalizing and pa
inful. Maybe most tantalizing memories are ... a little bit ... "that way": painful. Judy can put her fingers on this seashell, the one with the hole in the middle, and savor the mystery. Perhaps through her fingertips it will tell her a story.
We had a Superbowl party at our house on Sunday and it was a topsy turvy day of emotions for me. Not because of football, but I think it has something to do with age. Wisdom come too late. Experiences missed. Mistakes made. Opportunities not taken. Explorations not made. I spent the day with people who mattered though, and now that I think it over a lot has been going on. It's just when it happens an hour at a time, it's not much. But when you look back over four days it's a whole bunch of stuff - femminismo
p.s. It's the Mister's birthday tomorrow. I'll tell him you said "Have a Happy Day!"

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A Prayer For Judy Wise

MAY she heal quickly and her eyes be active soon! Artists and journalers, along with family and friends, everywhere are thinking tonight of Judy Wise and wishing she is well soon.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

In Dark Alleys You Can Find Your Inner Artist

I GUESS you can find your inner artist just about anywhere, but I had almost given up hope of finding arty places around "home." Out in the dark, walking around city streets, a light rain falling on my hair-sprayed head, I was walking back to the car when I found a touch of New York City.
A very light touch.
It was First Wednesday downtown, with art, wine and words. There was even a very famous writer, Jean Auel, in town. It is the second February event she has graced us with her presence.
There was chocolate and wine everywhere you turned, with Grendel's offering chocolate pear tart and Urban Decanter swishing wine around the glasses for the just right tasting of their goods. At Valley Art there was a beautiful window display. None of the pictures I took really did the stained glass work credit, but I tried several shots.
Like I said, there were writers and poets. There was also a woman with a turtle that "drew" pictures. The turtle, a live one, "chose" a crayon, which was picked up by someone from the audience. The woman holding the turtle then held him/it up to the paper and he "drew" with his/its mouth. The helper used the crayon and drew over the turtle's line he'd/it'd drawn. Soon a "picture" appeared. I wish I had gotten their photo but I was too enthralled trying to understand what I was seeing. Even the Mister believed me. He said even I couldn't make up a story like that.
One of the nicest, most talented local artists was also on the scene - Jan Su Hirst. She offered to let us help with a silk painting (a valentine) she was doing. Tomorrow I'll show samples of some her silk scarves - femminismo

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Dangers To The Heart

I'M NOT talking about cholesterol here or being a couch potato.
It has lately occurred to me *again* of the dangers of love and caring.
Elizabeth Stone said, "Making the decision to have a child is momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body."
And just when I've finally gotten used to my children out there in the world driving to and fro, flying to and fro, loving to and fro -- then *they* go and have children and I've got to get used to the fact that something bad could happen to the ones they love and how would a mother ever fix that?
It's not like a sore throat where medicine and soothing drinks and Popsicles will help. Not anything like a fever where a couple of aspirin and cool washcloths will suffice.
So the grandchildren get older and they've made it through all those stages where they just might be OK, and then they go and have children.
I will tell you something: Don't ever start thinking of bad things happening. If you want to take your mind off these things, imagine a baby straining its teeny tiny sweet kissable neck to lift its head and aim a mouth in the direction of food. Imagine itsy bitsy fingernails, about as big as the tip of a ballpoint pen, but perfect in every detail.
Cradle a little foot in your hand and think ahead 10 years. Better make plans to get up off the couch and improve your diet so you can keep up with him then - femminismo