Thursday, July 31, 2014

In Memory of....

Frank Lloyd Wright came up to my Mom when she was working in NY at an architectural firm, looked over her work and supportingly said, "Creating.... creating.... creating."
Albert Einstein said hello to her when he walked by her on the sidewalk in Princeton, NJ.
She told me how hard it was to get accepted as an artist in the 40s, 50s and 60s because if certain galleries found out you taught art...they didn't consider you a "real" artist!
Mom, a lover of art, nature, animals, her special family of friends she knew, and holistic/med-free living left us this month. The shock will never go away. Words can't express how much she was loved by her family and friends (human and animal). Mom, you were the highest quality work of art there ever was.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Home Maintenance as a Scientific Art Form

I have an unusual habit. Whenever I’m proclaiming to add a brand new focus into my lifestyle….. I find myself clearing out and cleaning the space where this activity will take place. When I find myself doing this clearing ritual…. I know my whole body and soul has committed mentally, emotionally and physically to this new focus.

Lately, life situations and events have been showing me where my life needs to go, focuswise. So, the clearing rituals are rampant! There is nothing like the FEELING of having a space that invites clear and organized energy for your new focus/activity to get into action. Who'da thought cleaning could be FUN????

I hope, if you’re not already a fan or subscriber of Clean my Space/Melissa Maker, that her work will become as addicting and inspiring to your well-being as it has for mine!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

She did it!!!


Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Making the Invisible Visible

When I was a hotel singer I used to walk through the hotel kitchen to get to my job. A baker who I greeted nightly, once said to me,

“You sure are lucky. I have to be here slaving away for 8 hours a day. You just work for 3 hours and get to go home.”

I responded, “It may look that way, but looks are deceiving.” and kept on my route to my job.

This got me thinking. Things rarely are as they appear. This baker had it in her head that my job was easy and that I roll out of bed and just sing and go home. All the invisible work…the daily workouts to get the breath going, the all-important vocal warm ups, the researching and learning new songs for hours, the putting songs in my key on the page for the musicians to play, the nightly make up, hair, clothing and preparation rituals…. were all invisible.

This is one reason I was attracted to reading the book “Daily Rituals” that I talked about in the last blog entry. I just finished the book today and loved how each successful master of their craft created personal rituals based on their energy level, passion, dedication, addiction, obsession or deadlines.

The thing these masters had in common was they knew to honor their talents by arranging daily life to focus on them. Each in their own style….conservative or quirky, healthy or unhealthy.

I’d say the hugest thing that stood out to me from reading all the rituals was that a few of the successful masters had invisible support people behind them. Supports who did the cooking, meal serving, cleaning, everyday survival chores...some even giving up their own bright careers (or holding extra employment for income) to support “the alpha talent. “ A few supports received no gratitude in return either! Not all were like that, but now I will always think about the invisible angels behind the gifted masters. The invisible angels who made it possible for the masters to shine.

I highly recommend this book to anyone who needs inspiration and encouragement to keep at their passion. You are not crazy to honor your gifts in a serious way. And we each have our own way of doing it…or not doing it.

Of course, once I finished this book, I wanted more rituals to read because they were so entertaining. Hopefully Mason Currey will write another book on more rituals of the gifted...when he can fit that into his daily rituals!

Monday, March 31, 2014

Rich You Wills

I've always been fascinated by how creative people choose to spend their day. This book is a peek into the lives of many masters of their art form and how they schedule(d) their daily rituals. Some choose a path using some "help" to stay inspired that eventually catches up with them. Some exercise daily. Some sleep a lot. Some hardly sleep at all. A few may surprise you and make you wonder how they ever work on their art form with such a schedule!
 Daily Rituals: How Artists Work is writer Mason Currey's first book focusing on the working, living, and sometimes quirky habits of nearly 200 masters of their chosen field. A fascinating study of how artists choose their helpful and sometimes not so helpful habits. A book that certainly makes one reflect on their own process choices.

Friday, February 28, 2014

Happy Number Crunching

I understand how people with insomnia sometimes turn to prescriptions to get the sleep they need to make through the next day. But if you’re into natural cures…doing taxes…even with such cuddly help…is the best insomnia cure ever! 

Friday, January 31, 2014

Some Warmth Amidst the Arctic Freeze

Usually I avoid Winter travel. But this month we slipped in between the cracks of the ongoing Arctic Freeze to celebrate a special birthday.

Happy 90th to the one who:
  • ·      Raised me to consider the “make it yourself” philosophy when desiring a mass-produced item. She, being an artist, also taught me to purchase from fellow artists.
  • ·      Teaches by example… how to nourish our temple and take care of ourselves using natural options, avoiding prescriptions, if at all possible.
  • ·      Shares a love of nature and art that makes every day a multi-sense-filled experience.

    • ·      Surrounded me with creativity, art, dance, music, health, healing and beauty when not all in the world supported those things
    •      Stocked up on our fave comic books when we kids were out of school, sick. Yes comic books! (Richie Rich, Archie and Jughead, Little Lotta, Wendy, Casper the friendly ghost, for me. Peanuts books, Mad Magazine, Superman, Batman, Green Lantern for my brother.) These all were a huge childhood influence to my drawing.  She also made little books with original stories and we were to draw the illustrations. Kinda makes one too busy having fun to realize they’re sick.
    •          Put meals on the table despite an exhausting/demanding University schedule and later a challenging Jr High Art Teacher’s career.
    •           Is currently appointed mayor of bird, squirrel and chipmunk city by the local wildlife. She keeps them well nourished, as she has done with her family.
    • ·       Is responsible for my knit addiction that started when she took me to learn to knit at a local knit shop in 1965!
    • ·      Created sweet little drawings and notes I’d find in my school lunches. I enjoyed that so much I did the same to my little girl's school lunches. I would not be surprised if that practice is passed down to future generations.

    • ·      Introduced me to kitties which turned into a life-long love.

    This list is far from done. I know I’ll wake up in the middle of the night often and wish I added more to this list.

    Happy Birthday, Mom!  Thank you for being such a creative, artsy influence! I hope your birthday wish comes true!