Tuesday, May 29, 2012


 P.s-mothers to be......

At one point you will realize in shock and horror that your child has been walking around in shoes that are two OR MORE sizes too small for them.....yes, you read that right. You and your husband will look at each other, both of you guilty for shoving those wittle shoes on his wittle feet thinking oh, he's just curling his toes ( I mean it is a struggle anyway)...um, yeah, he is CURLING his toes, because he doesn't fit into the shoes you bought him just 4 months ago....you will change shoes like an Oscar host changes outfits
And when you ask him, "Kiddo, why didn't you tell Mommy and Daddy?" He will say something like "A ga ga dinosaur, wanna go play...." Because he is 2 and doesn't have the slightest clue of what you are talking about.

Also if you do nurse, you can justify about 1600 dollars worth of whatever you want because you just plain deserve it-that's what is estimated you save by nursing. And if some new study comes out about breastfeeding or exactly how much money is actually saved, who cares, you did it, there is no blue ribbon so treat yourself.

strawberry pickin'

J and his cousin (a.k.a the cutest baby girl ever)

future tennis player?  

been meaning to get back into my relief printing days and thought it would help me work better with designing stamps-more coming over at www.stampingbella.com  

rusty but we'll take it!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

A Beautiful Change

donut distraction.....

People love to hear about how you don't eat donuts anymore.
They say, ohh, how good for you and in their minds they are planning to clobber you with a Papa John's Supreme Pizza as soon as they get the chance. They love to hear you talk about eating better as they bite into that Dunkin goodness.....they love it......and soooooooo

I thought about this post for weeks. Elizabeth Dillow's sister Katherine Willis Pershey has written a book called Any Day a Beautiful Change  (I haven't read it yet but plan to.... She asked us to write about our beautiful change that has either happened or something you want to change......mine, oh yeah, it has happened, like a bakers dozen over my head. Change, yes, beautiful change....

Having kids, yes that was a huge change, beautiful and mind blowing (see last post). But I have to say that the beautiful change for me was also the ugliest (I kid you not) and it happened precisely on June 9, 2009, when I got really, really really sick. The kind of sick I can't describe on this blog because it would attract too many weird people (like that's a bad thing). Let's just say, I was getting beat up by my insides.

It started as what I thought was a nasty bug in that June.

And then I forgot normal.
I couldn't remember when I didn't take two immodiums a day just to make it through teaching sixth grade art. The panic and terror of that, I can't tell you. It was like middle school nightmares all over again but now you are the one standing with your back to the classroom (well, not really but, you get my drift).

It soon became normal to be nauseous after I ate dairy and wheat and stay that way for hours. It was normal to look like I was sixth months pregnant because my body wasn't processing dairy due to the damage in my intestines (yes, we called it a cheese baby) . I was quickly becoming a 70 year old who when asked how they were doing launched into colonoscopy talk (don't ask). I couldn't believe I was 37 going on 77. And I felt that way too, along with pains in my hands and arms that would keep me up all night. I was diagnosed with celiac disease in January of the following year 2010.

Let me tell you. I remember saying over and over, I need to eat better.....I really should eat better. I mean, don't we all? Little did I know that I wouldn't have a choice.

What this beautiful/ugly change in my life has done has made me look, really look at the foods we eat. The fuel we put in our bodies, wow. And it's made me understand what it is like to be chronically sick. The disease forced me to be more responsible with my health and also be a complete pain in the ass when going out to eat and traveling (ask my husband, no wait, don't).

It took me awhile to actually go gluten free. Why you ask! It's a diet. It's not chemo, there are no drugs, you are lucky. For God's sake woman, how hard can it be? But we are dealing with me here.....I practically took two years to admit that someone other than myself was.....wait for it.....right. (To my defense, I do have my reasons for taking so long. But it simply had to be MY decision, it had to be MY beautiful change.)

Sooooo, last November I threw the wheat towel in (from sheer desperation-I couldn't draw because my hands were in so much pain), went on a no gluten and no cheating diet and all, yes, ALL of the ugly, it went away. Somebody pinch me.

This change in me, this is a BEAUTIFUL change.

 P.s-this post is to celebrate beautiful change not to make you feel guilty about eating a donut, trust me, I had a DELICIOUS frosted GF cupcake yesterday that was the size of my cat's head, yum.

P.s.s going GF has not been without some grumbles though, I mean, you simply HAVE to when it's that Thin Mint time of year.

P.s.s.s  I am noticing that ((((my parenthesis are turning into some type of literary matryoshka dolls)))))

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A Letter

 (A letter to my expecting sister and expecting sister-in-law that is just for entertainment purposes only, anything said or done in this letter should be completely taken out of context and laughed at.) 

Dear Susan and Katie,
As you are preparing for becoming a mother here are a few observations I have made recently that you could benefit from, pay attention.

You will be amazed at how much stuff kids can take out, pull out, drag out, stuff you didn't even know you have, sometimes you will thank them for finding that cord to your cell phone you've been looking for for eons but most likely it will just be things in powder form that spill all over or 10 decks of cards you used to break out in your pre-kid days when playing cards and staying up late was by your own choice-52 pick up (x 10) will have new meaning soon.

also you will find yourself sampling brown stains off floors and walls to sniff and smell if it's poop....because honestly, 9 times out of 10 it is and then you have go and find the culprit because that little sampling is the least of your worries now.

you will be amazed at the amount of paper work that comes home from school, it is enough to make a small paper hut with, oh and that will be a third grade project so just remember to keep it all anyway. It's probably no more than any of us used to bring home as kids. But in our culture of putting everything your child creates in plastic Ikea oversized frames in monogrammed binned rooms it seems like you have to KEEP everything. You'll feel bad using the best tool you have-the BLACK garbage bag (thank you Rosie O'Donnell for saying this years ago before I had kids and thought you were mean, mean, mean for talking about using the big black bag for a lot of your kids school papers. I am eating those words right now.....with ice cream).

Those funny, endearing, quasi annoying things that your husbands used to do will, in fact, in your sleep deprived minds be grounds for divorce but.....you will find those same things not so offending in if the baby does them. (disclaimer-I am NOT talking about making a "beer-a-mid"-I think I just made up that word, I'm pretty darn proud of myself.)

Going to the bathroom by yourself will become an absolute luxury.....unless of course, you married a nosy, no boundaries husband, and then you have never known the solace of the potty room.....in that case, I can't help you there......and I can't imagine why would you have married one of those guys anyway, which I'm pretty sure you didn't but it's funny anyway (hi Ned and Taylor).

The bathroom also has the only door you can really lock without feeling "mom" guilty.  Locking yourself in your bedroom, or well, any room of your home that would hold other possibilities than relieving oneself will just make you feel bad and wonder if escaping is really worth the pounding on the door with "Mom- WHAT are YOU doing IN THERE?" You will hear this often. You really do not have to answer that one if you're in the bathroom (I do however, loudly, which is probably why it took me so long to become friends with my neighbors as yelling, "I am making a poop, THAT is WHAT I am doing",  really loudly in an adult voice is crazy talk.....which brings me to the whole appendix of Things I Never Thought I Would Do Before Becoming a Parent but that is a whole other post....


P.S-Your life is about to become about poop. That is all.....for now.

(I can't imagine the traffic I am going to get for mentioning poop so often in this post.....poop, poop, poop.)

Also, poop ws the FIRST word that my son learned to write, because really it is four OOOO's with two lines. Think about it.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

Is It Bad?

Is it bad that I am jealous of women who lose 50 pounds and then have all that fun buying new clothes for their new body? And you say, well, you could do that too....but alas I've only got like 10 to give and that certainly does not deserve even a spree to Target. Waaaah...it is so unfair (please detect my I'm not really serious but kinda tone here). I've worked really hard to stay in pretty decent shape for most of my life. Now don't me wrong, I am not one of those easily skinny people who irk the hell out of me (and I can say this because I am married to one. I threw out all of his high school clothes a few years ago not because there were holes or that no one wears Jams anymore but simply because I am vindictive and annoyed that he can STILL fit into them.) My body is, in fact, is "athletic build, I can practically make muscle out of my eyelid skin . The problem is is that although this build is great for, let's say, SPORTS, it does not always translate as well past age 35 (unless of course you are Brooks Laich of the Washington Caps-Go Caps!). Because, dear friends, muscle turns into fat. Yep, I bet you didn't know that. (ha ha ha). And so while others actually have to make all of the fat which does take time, all mine has to do is say abracadabra to the mass I already have and voila the muscle turns into fat. Yep, it's like magic.

Speaking of sports....is it bad that....I get cranky with all of my 40 something friends who have just suddenly discovered running and triathlons and other various feel good endeavors? They are climbing ladders of mileage and discovering muscles they never knew they had, feeling so accomplished. And I, I have tendonitis because nobody told me NOT to do this at the tender age of 26 because I would have NOTHING to conquer in my late 30's and 40's. (I know, I know, you have already erased me from your blog list right now)
 But seriously, the only thing I can think of that could possibly fit for me is like one of those muddy buddies with obstacles courses, but I'm pretty sure I've already done that too, one night in college after too much grain punch (Mom, close your eyes).

 Is it bad that I am becoming that mother that feels she has to explain her daughter to everyone over and over again? Because folks (and I know this will come back to haunt me), it is official, I have a daughter who is a.... boy. Okay, okay, that's a little harsh. I just mean to say that she,well, let's not sugar coat this, she is made of cockles and shells and puppy dog tails. We were invited to her friend's 4th birthday party. All the girls were in dresses, hair brushed, proper accessories in the proper places and then there was my daughter in......jeans with small hole in the knee (which was full blown by the end of the party), sneakers, Star Wars socks and to complete the ensemble, the beloved Brett Favre jersey size 4T family heirloom which was worn by all three of my kids practically every other day when it was their turn to fit into it.
"I'm sorry," I said to my friend who truly didn't care about Anna's toggery, "I try to get her to wear things that are a little nicer when going to a party but she just goes and changes anyway. If I try to fix her curly hair, she messes it up (she does)...." etc. etc. Nobody really cares, but I guess, I do, more than I care to admit. Shucks.
I can just see it now in ten years....
"Young lady, you are NOT walking out of this house in your brother's over sized, body covering jersey! Now get back in there and find something with spaghetti straps and plunging neckline!"

(I am in so much trouble).

Friday, May 04, 2012

Wednesday, May 02, 2012


part of the kids workshop-making buttons

Amy Oliver's piece

Jen Stone's installation and performance piece-beautiful

My Postcard to Myself workshop participants and friends!

amazing what they made-wonderful!

my Artful Blogging Summer 2012 in the mail........where I am so happy to be featured in the mix of great artists, writers, photographers and creative minds. I can't wait to see it. When I get it I'll photograph it very artfully so as to make a full circle!

Tuesday, May 01, 2012


still working on this (it got a little "muddied")....but you get the idea. I owe a little something to everyone right now. But in order to give anything, I've got to make things. Images get stuck in my head and start demanding ransom fees from other important thoughts. My creative brain gets crammed. So it may look like I am procrastinating, ignoring, shuffling my feet but really, I am doing the work. And paving the way for other adventures. It pays off. It does. It's like cleaning up to make room for everything else. If you looked inside my brain, you may think of an episode of Hoarders. Spring cleaning time.....