a Tiny description

a full time artist, stepmother, radio personality, and mom to an energetic Chug dog, tries to get through the days without committing a felonious act. My life is a rickety Zen circus.


Wednesday, November 29, 2006

kick my butt

sorry i haven't posted in so long....believe me, i miss it. this job is just kickin' my behind in a big way. i've worked there going on 3 weeks and i have a urinary tract infection to beat the band AND a huge cold/sore throat thing. i'll whine here: i have no time for anything and i'm quite cross about that - even dreaming about art time. done whining. also done posting - i'm just too tired. L.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006


we've got a new routine, little dog and I. every morning she wakes me up at 7:30am to go for a walk. these daily walks started in August - when it was warm. i needed the walk to clear my head, and she needed them to clear the puppy energy that persists well into her middle age. but now, it's cold, and the thought of bundling up and booting up and gloving up is just almost too much. my mom's in the hospital so i was up late last night on the phone and worrying. the 7:30 am walk was the last thing i wanted this morning, but dog's can't tell time. since she'll be alone all day again today - husband is out of town - i gloved and booted and bundled to go across the street so she could check her messages. wow! it was worth it. the sun was glinting off the frozen grass and bare tree limbs. a coating of shiny white frost was everywhere. sunbeams danced and reflected off rainbows made from the encased grass and leftover unraked leaves. a mist crossed the pond as we made our way across the footbridge. i wished for a camera, but knew the image was best saved in my heart. well, work calls, so it's warm warm shower time, then off to the salt mines. have a happy holiday tomorrow....make time for loved ones. L.

Sunday, November 19, 2006

the luxury of waste

the idea of time has been on my mind a lot lately....especially in the past week when it seems like i haven't had enough. Time. the passage of time. the changes that time brings. wasting time. what a luxury to have enough time to be able to waste it! i think back on the past few months when i've either been home by 9am, or not working at all, and think - what a gift. to have the whole day and evening ahead of me to use as i please. i'm sure there was some time in there that i wasted, as if i'd always have enough. i valued it, yet sometimes, i wasted it. doing nothing. doing unimportant things. napping. fussing about something. but feeling like i had enough time that if i spent a day accomplishing nothing, it would be okay - there was a day after that, and another to follow. and days rolled by. yes, i did create some amazing art during that time. and i suspected that a job would soon follow that would not be as conducive to wasted time as my lifestyle had been. but what a luxury. to have enough of anything that you can waste some of it. i have teeny tiny scraps of fabric that i refuse to throw out. i know i can never reproduce them, or find them to buy again. they have a high value to me and i guard them. only my most special projects, or most certain outcomes of projects, get a sliver of those fabrics in them. likewise, i suppose, is my time. do i spend it here or there? which activity, or non-activity, has the most value to me? which will hold few regrets if i use some precious time to do them? do i spend time cleaning or dyeing silk? (easy answer!) do i spend time fussing and arguing with my husband over something, or just bite the bullet and go on with my day? what holds value? what is the priority? arguing is probably the least productive, but like laundry in the hamper, the issues build up. then it becomes a priority. then the time becomes wasted as it intrudes on your "other" time - your "self" time. any time little dog needs a hug or a kiss, i drop everything and gladly indulge her. and myself. i've learned that time spent enjoying love - especially when it's wrapped in fur - is never wasted time. even if it means something else gets pushed aside. i think of my friend katie. she is out of time to waste. she must make every minute count now. she does not have the luxury of saying she'll do something tomorrow, because there may not be tomorrow for her. a valuable lesson for me. i don't feel as though i should be going going going like a madwoman every second, but i do feel like the important things that need my attention or warrant my attention, should get bumped up in the priority chain. i've learned throughout the past year that things change and time is impatient. there's a song that says something about learning tolive like you were dying. that's the advice i give myself. L.

Friday, November 17, 2006

welcome to the working week

there's a song by Elvis Costello called "Welcome to the Working Week." catchy tune by far. the verse goes: "welcome to the working week/ i know it don't thrill ya/ i hope it don't kill ya/ welcome to the working week/ ya gotta do it/ gotta do it/ so ya better get to it." well, it almost killed me! so this is how other people do it! this has been the loooongest week of my life. monday was long and tiring, but i had that adrenaline/new kid thing going. i could have been shoveling coals in Newcastle, but would have had that "new thing" eagerness. monday night - feet swollen and screaming. smoking 3 cigs at a time on the way home. didn't have the energy to eat dinner but felt i should since my husband cooked the wegmans recipe i left for him. tues. - almost cried in the shower. is it possible to be this tired and live? my little girldog was out of her natural mind. she doesn't understand why i keep leaving her all day. she's bored and scared. i went to bed at who knows when. wednesday - do i dare quit?? the people are nice. my feet are numb. i get 30 mins to throw down lunch and smoke and call whomever on my cellphone. but the lunchroom is nice and the coffee is free. have not left work at 7pm yet. the cash drawer is always off. I'm tempted to keep a roll of change in my purse and just throw in the missing dollar or whatever. just let me go home! went to bed at 9pm. thurs - got up at 7:30am and took little girldog for a walk. showered at my leisure and went to work. wondered when i would carve out a minute or 2 for art. that part is making me sad, but i had a good attitude about going to work since i wasn't feeling guilty about girldog. came home and decided my routine would be to go to bed at 9-9:30 and get up at 7-7:30 and walk her. it's really the only time i get to walk all day - mostly it's standing in 1 spot for 8 hours or moving within a 15-foot area. she's happy, i'm happy. friday went very well. everyone gets along well at work. it's not horrible. i'm actually starting to learn what it is i should know. despite my misgivings at 11am on monday. i even got a copy machine to work today! yippee! i will never take a saturday or sunday for granted EVER again. even if i win the lottery this weekend, which i'm praying i do. don't let me kid ya - i'm not cut out for the working world. so my friend katie is dying. she found out about 8 months ago that she has melanoma and was sent home to die. she is one of my Most Special People. she's been fine up until about a week ago. i don't want her to suffer - she's too good for that. she doesn't deserve that. but i also don't want her to die. i want to be able to call her up and say "KATIE JANE!" and she says "hey Linda Lou. How you doin'?" i've never heard Katie swear. not in all our years at 911. the closest she came was on a night when the 4-letter words were flying like goose poop and hell had unleashed itself upon the city....shootings, stabbings, fires...name it and there it was. she said "effin'" and i think "what the hell-o." nothing bothered her, at least not to where she'd take it out on someone else. even though that was allowed at 911. she cared deeply but took no shit. in her own southern-fried 5-foot tall-can't hear without her glasses-on way katie let you know how it would be. my stepkids were threatened with quotes from Kate - "don't make me beat your ba-hind," "i will beat you, and don't even think about callin' no police, cause hah-ney (honey with a southern accent) they gone see the name and they won't be comin' to help y'all." she has a way of saying "shoot" (as in - darn) that lasts forever. something like "shee-oooot" with the "e" and "o" sound all smushed up together. and everything ends in that "hah-ney" that defies spelling. If you meet Katie, you either love her or fear her. and if you fear her, you didn't take time to know her. and that would be your loss for sure. it's not likely she will live till Christmas - a holiday she never celebrated anyway, because she's a Jehovah Witness. it's unlikely i'll ever be able to tell her what she has meant to me. there aren't words. and even more unlikely that she'd ever let me finish telling her if i started. she's all like that. but no matter how hard, i will try. she never got a computer, or email, or callwaiting. so i can't hide behind a keyboard, or caller ID. remember the days? you'd have to actually talk to the person. or write a letter. when words meant more, i think, because they were thoughtfully constructed. not just flung out into the internet or cable with the click of a mouse. when you actually have to take time to find a piece of paper and a stamp, then you think a little harder about the contents of the envelope, i think. not that it's all about me, but this has been a year of losses. it has helped me focus on what i have, even if i don't HAVE it, and appreciate it more. like saturdays. and girldogs. and Katie. L.

Friday, November 10, 2006

a big Stepford wife howdy

it isn't often that i get this excited about anything to do with household chores, (in fact - never) but this is HUGE! i'd started feeling like a freeloader at my own house. depressed over the job propects not looming before me, and feeling the impatience emmanating from my husband, i decided to cook a really nice dinner. just to make nice. so i went to wegmans to find a good frozen dinner i could doctor up a little. or at least not burn. at the front of the store, they had a tasting area by the Menu magazine thing. a guy named dave (according to his name tag) said the asian bbq brisket was simple to make. it seemed like it, and he seemed sincere. all the ingrediants were helpfully grouped right there, so onward i went. it was incredible! i was a hero in my own home for a change! the kids actually LOOKED at me! so i went back the next day and found another recipe and - BAM! same thing! so, now i'm hooked. i made dinner for an entire week with no insult or injury! in fact, it may be a struggle to get the boy-child to go home to his mother for her week of his fabulous company. so i actually bought a menu magazine. now, the story shifts. i got a job! good. good. i'll be working 10:30am-7pm. bad bad. for now my culinary addiction will be curbed. so i decided i was not going to start eating frozen stuff again, or get home at 7:15 to find a table full of people staring at me waiting for my emeril impression. i went to the wegmans site and am soooo gone! i swear i'm not getting paid by them! you can actually make up your shopping list from their pull-down selections on the website, and when you print it out, the damn thing puts it all in order by aisle! holy smokes! PLUS - and this, my friends is huge- you can find a recipe, and click on it. it will print up the recipe AND you canadd the ingrediants to your shopping list! huge! PLUS - oh yes, there's more - plus, they have online video cooking lessons. i mean, i had no idea how to blanch vegetables. now i do. pan searing, you ask? oh yes. i have even gotten a fussy 17 year old to eat and like BOK CHOY. ya know, a part of me is reading this as i write it, and is wondering who put the Stepford pills in my coffee. i don't get it either. i would love Nella Meeks job...or is it mary ellen burris, now? and why do i know that?? i don't know. yes, i am a little worried, but i feel like i have some "kitchen cred" now. i guess, at least for a few weeks, i had a purpose and a place of importance in the household, and it was cool. instead of the wild-haired cigarette-smoking she devil in the bathrobe till noon (or later), i held the power - food! power through polenta! i will miss cooking during the week (who said that?!?!), and i will miss going for walks with my little darlin' every day.we had a small but regular life. walk, art time, dinner. things will change quite a bit in the next few days. it will be nice to be working again though. cross your fingers and say a little prayer for me as i head out to my new job monday morning. i feel like it's the first day in a new school! hey - maybe mary ellen burris will retire soon, and i can take over! could ya just...! so if my posts become somewhat sporadic, please be patient...i'm adjusting to my new schedule. and my new head. this cooking thing has me all sorts of turned around! L.

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

by the way

i have had problems with posts not publishing - waiting waiting waiting for the little green segments to make their way across the bar at the bottom. so my apologies for the inconsistant postings. but my patience with technology is thin, so i end up just shutting the computer off and losing the post. so that's why it seems like days in between. L.

crispy and warm

i took little dog for a walk yesterday....the BIG walk. we'd been inside for a few days without one and she was getting ants in her pants. the leaves are mostly fallen - butternut and caramel colors scraping across our path whenever a light breeze danced past. crunching underfoot as we walked along. a few geese and ducks stayed behind this year, squawking out territories in the pond. some winter birds already house hunting in the bare branches - their 3-note warbles calling to friends returning from last year. the sun warmed my back as little dog slowly made her way along the familiar route. it's a long walk even at a regular walking pace - about 40 minutes or so. but to little dog, each leaf and hidden blade of grass holds a tale to be told, so i wait patiently at the other end of the leash as she sniffs through the piles of leaves looking for her messages. there's one spot in particular that must be the neighborhood bulletin board for dogs, and we could spend long minutes there while she "reads" each note. i didn't mind...it was a beautiful day. and probably one of only a few left. then the paths will rest under heavy blankets of snow. the craggy ice will trip up our progress and turn our ankles. i savored every sound, every smell of woodsmoke from leaf piles, every last treetop conversation. the world seems so much quieter wrapped in snow blankets. muffled. huddled. i guess it's that burst of exhuberant sound that makes spring so special - that makes you run outside for a long walk without your scarf and gloves and heaviest coat. and the smell. winter bundles up the earth's perfumes to save for spring. then, as the sun begins to strip away the buntings and cloaks from the ground, the essences begin again to fill your nostrils. remember when you were 16 - just got your permit or license. the first real spring day - didn't we all roll down the car windows and want to drive a million miles an hour? of course, we were all invincible then! but just the promise kept that yes, green and gold and yellow and red and purple would return again. friday is supposed to be sunny - i'm thinking - 1 last lake day! one more day mindful that it's almost nap time for our part of the world. i have a friend who lives here in summer, then in Australia for the winter. their seasons are opposite ours. i thought - how glorious is that! but she has tired of endless summers, and says she longs to feel the snap of the cold and breathe the snow freshened air. she moves from one garden that needs tending, to another that's ready to wake up and be tended. i'm not sure how long it would take me to tire of that, but i'll take her word for it. i guess. so enjoy your day - whether it be rainy or sunny today, damp and cold or relatively warm. there's still a little life left out there! L.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

patience and trust

well, my nails are bitten down to the finger for no good reason. i'm waiting rather inpatiently to hear word about a job i applied for. i thought i'd hear by friday or saturday. i called saturday, and lo and behold - they aren't open saturdays....surprise & bonus! i have to trust that if it's meant to be, no outside force can change that...not my begging God in the shower, not my promises to be good, to stop swearing (i know better than to promise to quit smoking). if it's not meant to be, then it's just not going to happen. and i should be grateful that i didn't end up in a job that looked like birthday cake on the outside but ended up moldy cheese on the inside. been there. done that. got the t-shirt. i hate actually WANTING the job i apply for - just for this reason! i truly do believe that all things work together for good when you are looking at God as the uber-controller. it's weird....i walked away from the church and so-called organized religion years ago. since that time, it seems that i have found more of a spirituality outside of the walls-and-pews than inside. i hate it when people try to shove their ideas at you, and make you doubt your own beliefs. i read the Bible - i know the important parts (the ending is better than anything Hollywood could come up with!). but walking through the woods on a crispy autumn day, or a warm summer evening....that's when i feel more churchy than when i was in church. when someone was standing in front of me telling me 8 ways i was a sinner and could never be good enough to please God. well, i actually think i do please Him from time to time, and i think He gets a kick outta some of the things i do, or predicaments i get into. feeling right, and centered, and comfortable with my beliefs about my beliefs was the single most empowering thing that's ever happened to me. which is strange, since when i walked away from the church, i felt like i'd always be ducking behind a post and hiding from God like a kid who forgot his homework. so although i really really want this job, i will have to be patient till Monday, and trust that the right decision was made - either way. i've never been good at patience, and trust is an iffy thing with me as well. so this entire exercise is one big lesson, i guess. i hope to pass. i hope to make it through without a heart attack. i hope to not end up begging like a spoiled, cranky kid in a grocery store for something that the parent knows is no good. i say "i hope to" because i know all too well that i can still be that tantrum-throwing gimme gimme brat- not out loud, but mentally. i'm feeling that it's time to go to work...it feels right. and i guess the anticipation is what's making me edgy...like when you waited to get the letter from school to find out who your homeroom teacher was going to be. anyway, till then, i promise i will try to be good. and not mope and whine. and not beg incessantly. and trust. and be patient. but i will not quit smoking. l.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

the smell of Dove

i've just spent part of last night and most of this morning (6am on) wet felting. last night as i did some dinner dishes, i squirted a little Dove for dishes on a plate, and realized how much i missed the feel of roving becoming felt. (i use Dove in the process.) Okay...the dish i was washing was actually from my dog's dinner. if you know me and my culinary abilities, you know that when my husband is out of town, it's pizza all the way. in fact last year on Halloween, my 1st trick-or-treaters were firemen. it was definately no treat. anyway, i laid out roving through the night, getting it just right, adding a little purple here, some brown, some red. i wanted to convey the feeling i had walking through my beloved fall woodspath. after many arduous hours spent elbow deep in cold, then hot soapy water, rolling and rolling and rolling the delicate fiber to make it strong and bonded, my efforts were rewarded. the fabric i created is tasty. i've left it outside to dry, hoping the smell of the woods, and my neighbors fireplace will lock into the fiber. my husband will be out of town for another night, so, i'm headed back to immerse my senses in the craft. felting is such an organic process....you can only tell the fiber what to do and hope it listens. it goes this way and that at will & whimsy sometimes, or so it seems. to think that you are recreating such an ancient art. to have actually "met" the sheep that provided it's wool to you is unexplainable. before i start, i ask my muse to help me, so as not to waste or disrespect what the sheep has provided. so different from metal. each fulfills a need within me to create, to express. the expression different with each medium. the music i play while creating with each, different. the story given by each piece created - different. so, back to it....hoping my floor dries before i'm found out, and that the wrinkles in my fingers fill in soon! L.