Tuesday, September 28, 2010

St. Laurence - Finder of Lost Electronica

THANKS, Seth, for the name of Sir Laurence. I will post him quickly - hopefully - and then be on my way to the meeting I *must* attend tonight.
He found my camera and cell phone and perhaps he can locate something in platinum for me that I haven't lost but would like to find! - femminismo

Monday, September 27, 2010

Good Grief! It's Raining Eggs!

HOW could I allow you to worry all this time about my electronic devices, my dear blog!?
I found everything - phone and camera - shortly after posting the picture of Sir Laurence and was actually going to immortalize him as a saint through some nifty Photoshop work ... but then that plan fell by the wayside. The universe did look out for me once more.
I had better post something tonight, however, because I have a meeting tomorrow night and may not have the time.
-The picture of eggs is from a magnificent collection at the Pioneer Museum in Tillamook, Oregon. Go if you ever have the chance.-
Today I listened to a voice mail from Barb in Michigan, one of my dearest, dearest friends and she said she reads this blog (oh, isn't she the dearest?) and she said it sounds as though I'm leading an interesting life.
I had to laugh since I have been feeling quite recently (yesterday) that my life is depressing and meaningless. I have been (still) reading "Reading Lolita in Tehran" by Azar Nafisi and in the book she quotes from Henry James' "The Ambassadors" as Lambert Strether, the hero of the novel, tells a young painter, little Bilham, whom he has unofficially appointed as his spiritual heir: "Live all you can; it's a mistake not to. It doesn't so much matter what you do in particular so long as you have your life. If you haven't had that what *have* you had? I'm too old -- too old at any rate for what I see. What one loses one loses; make no mistake about that. Still, we have the illusion of freedom; therefore don't, like me to-day, be without the memory of that illusion. I was either, at the right time, too stupid or too intelligent to have it, and now I'm a case of reaction against the mistake. For it *was* a mistake. Live, live!"
And, yes, there were times when I was too stupid or too intelligent to take a different path than the one I'm on right now, and there certainly are some regrets. All the time I've wasted for instance. Some would say I'm doing that again right now, but not me.
The Mister and I spent Tuesday, Sept. 21, celebrating our 14th anniversary in Oceanside, Oregon. We walked through the tunnel carved into Maxwell Point and came out on the other side to dig through rocks to find another heart-shaped one for our collection. Lots of great finds and it was a beautiful day on the coast.
This Friday I am joining a friend to hit the Art Harvest Tour in Yamhill County. That area of Oregon looks a lot like Tuscany, only the hills are farther away from each other and the lanes are much longer and dustier with no impromptu boccie ball in the fields. And on Saturday the same friend and I are taking a travel writing workshop. This is our second one together and soon we will have to do some traveling for research on an article to $$ sell $$! Then we can take more trips.
And I've saved the best for last: On Oct. 10 I am taking Katie Kendrick's Art & Soul class in Portland, "Every Face Tells a Story." If I don't have actual artwork to show you after that I don't know what my excuse will be. Check out her blog if you want to see some of the wonderful work she's produced. So now I guess I'm not living a meaningless life. It's a self-directed life toward more art and travel - femminismo
p.s. The sunset picture, with fishing boat and gull on pole, was taken after dinner at the coast on Sept. 21, 2010, in Tillamook.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Feeling a little D.O.O.M.E.D.

WELL, a picture-less post is not really what I wanted to give you tonight, dear old blog. I wanted to fill a post with pictures of the Chalk Art Festival in Forest Grove, but then I found out this morning that my camera is missing. So is my BlackBerry.
I don't know where that "last place" is where I laid them down.
Do I feel sad?? - Is the sky gray? Do mules have pointy ears? Are 2 and 2 still 4?
I hope my Principles of Universal Gratitude and Righteousness pan out and all is right with the world tomorrow, when I get an e-mail from someone that they found my camera and handed it in to someone in charge and it's waiting for me someplace. I don't really care about the phone.
JUST GET ME MY CAMERA - femminismo

p.s. Found this Life magazine archive file photo of Sir Laurence Olivier. Hope it helps ... this little prayer.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

August Little Books

TODAY I was out taking some photos for work, to use in a new advertisement we will have for October. These little mums seemed especially fall-like.
And here's another flower that's seen the warmest part of the season. Now it's gathering a little gold from a nearby tree.
This is that time of year when I feel I should be buying woolen skirts and sweaters and hiking for the school bus clutching my Pee Chee folder. I wonder if Pee Chees are used only in America? Or if nowadays they are even used at all. Probably a thing of the past. (Well, no, I guess not according to Wikipedia. -click on link- The entry says they had "fallen out of use during the 2000s" but I guess Mead still makes them.) We really used to decorate ours!
Tonight I have officially gotten every one of my little August books - all 31 of them - in painted envelopes. Each little book is hand sewn and I've copied poems in most of them. (These books are not collector's items, since they are not works of art. But they are interesting, I think.)
They will go next to three ladies who are going to add some decorations to them. I can hardly wait to see what they come up with!
I have put on torn out pictures and stamps and all sorts of little bits of things that have been waiting for some time for a good home.
Jeff Bridges (photo by Mary Ellen Mark) is my idea of a saint I could worship. Saint Jeff, patron saint of women who still get fired up thinking about the early Elvis.
Now I'm just going on and irritating people. Ah, well! If this is my daily/weekly/monthly diary, then I get to write what I darn well please.
Speaking of Saint Jeff, there's also Saint "Don Draper" to adore. Such a scoundrel! Is anyone else out there hooked on "Mad Men"? I actually sit down and devote an hour each Sunday, and then sometimes another hour on Monday, soaking in every last bit of dialogue. This last Sunday had quite a few laughs in it. One almost thought a bit too many, but it was enjoyable.
One last book to show you and then I'm off to dinner (a late dinner). Love - femminismo

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Rare September Daze

THE twilight between the seasons ... that's what the last two days have been. The farmers market was good for Gravenstein apples and beer tasting (and buying) on Saturday. The apples will go into a pie or cobbler - whichever can be made with the least amount of calories. I know: Good luck!
I met a beer maker at the farmers market and unfortunately didn't catch his name, but the beer is brewed under the moniker Captured by Porches. Click to see their Web page for more information on this unique beer brewing "company."
I tried Rebecca's divine wit, which was unique without being off-putting. However, I settled on the other beer - Invasive Species - since I thought the fruity flavor might go with food better. Food, yes. Another evening of food, me thinks.
And I spent the rest of Saturday at Valley Art Gallery helping with a reception for Forest Grove High School graduates who have continued their art adventures. Good for our gallery to feel like they had a small part in that.
And this coming Saturday, September 18, is the Chalk Art Festival - the 20th anniversary event. Maybe there will be birthday cake for the gallery??? Even if there's not, there will be chalk art drawings on the sidewalk and I can't wait. Maybe this will be the year for another balloon hat - femminismo

Friday, September 10, 2010

The Day of Awe: Rosh Hashanah

"MAY you be inscribed and sealed for a good year." A tradition to say and my blessing for you.
The holiday ended tonight but last night (Thursday) we had our celebratory meal. I enjoy marking holidays because it gives me the inspiration to cook and discover new foods. Oh, and eat!
Somehow the Force was with me last night and the roasted chicken, rice pilaf and chard dish all turned out at the right times to come together for a fine meal.
The challah was from the bakery because, hey! Who has time to knead, let the dough rise and braid the challah with a full-time job? It was delicious though - everything was. And now I am a new fan of chard.
My stepson says it is "nutrionally dense" and I am sure he is right. I sauteed garlic in grape seed oil and then cooked about 8 cups of coarsely chopped chard. A little kosher salt, some paprika, cumin and red pepper flakes. Freshly ground pepper on top. Cook a little. Then you add 1/4 cup vinegar or lemon juice. Instead of chard you can also use beet greens. Those would be awesome, I'll bet.
I have begun paying more for my fresh roasting chickens since I can trace down their ancestry by typing in the code on their package to find out what farm they came from. They are very tender also and don't have all the added salt, unlike those frozen breasts from unnaturally huge poultry bodies. Poor little chicks!
The chicken cooked in apples and onions and had cinnamon and sugar sprinkled over it all. Chicken broth, and a wonderful Chardonnay that also accompanied the meal in glasses, was used for basting and made everything even yummier.
An entire large onion, finely chopped, was cooked in olive oil with pinon seeds/nuts, and then rice was added, along with nutmeg and a little coriander and water. Delicious, with a hint of the spices and more than a hint of the sweet onion.
For dessert we had a prune tart I had made the night before. A cooked butter and flour crust, the bottom spread after cooking with fig jam and whiskey. Then the fresh Italian prunes were quartered and laid in spiraling circles. Topped with lemon zest and cinnamon, it smelled very good cooking and tasted even better with a little vanilla bean ice cream. Bon appetit - femminismo

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Profound Ignored Changes

Our political rhetoric is empty, vacuous and vapid, but things are happening. Profound, ignored changes are underway. - Llewellyn King

1999: Hillary Clinton, Millennium Lectures
What are we to do today, when leaders hijack holy traditions, even history; not to lift people closer to God or their own human potential, but to push them further apart? What do we do about those who try to constrict the circle of human dignity by convincing us that our differences -- race and religion, gender, ethnicity and tribal origin -- are more important than our common humanity? If this violent century teaches us anything, it is that whenever the dignity of one is threatened, the dignity of all is threatened as well; and none can or should remain silent.
Imagine how different life would be today for the people of Kosovo and in so many other troubled parts of our world if the evil that was allowed to run free had been stopped by those who stood up and broke the silence, that indifference did not in any way paralyze those who could have taken action.
In 1999, it isn't enough to refuse to commit crimes of hatred, stereotyping one another, going along with the crowd. It isn't enough to look deep into our own hearts and say we find them free of hatred. We have to do more. Every time we let a religious or racial slur go unchallenged or an indignity go unanswered, we are making a choice to be indifferent, a choice to constrict the circle of human dignity; a choice, I believe, to ignore history at our children's peril.

We have a lot to consider as we begin the new year - or continue it - femminismo