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, October 31, 2007


havin a nancy kerrigan momemt....."wwwwwwhy?!?!?!" wings done - 1 backwards - forgot to remember to reverse the pattern. aaarrrgghhh. these babies will be about 4" thick by the time i'm done! she'll never get off the ground! i need a little more O.C.D. and a little less A.D.D. ....sounds like the title of a country song. L.


diva's kidney clock went off at around 4am, so here we are. i figured i may as well seize the day, even if the day isn't quite ready for seizing....it's still mostly asleep....the night not ready to yield it's softglow moon to the bright sun. i don't need to tell you what i'm doing, eh? while i was taking a short crack-my-neck break, i came across an interview in a magazine with a mixed media artist. in the interview, she said something to the effect of ..."in nature, nothing is ever lost, merely transformed." she was speaking of projects that didn't quite cooperate, but i couldn't help but think, "Ah Ha!" bad news for my cellulite...good news for those persistent and annoying little Things About Myself That I Wish Would Disappear - habits, attitudes, the like. so i spent some time thinking about the past year....a magical year indeed. that annoying and compulsive list-making habit that's dogged me since as long as i can remember, for example, transformed into a necessity - keeping my various spinning plates in the air as opportunities came forth fast & furious. a softer edge to the compulsion, though. rather than lists made almost as a superstition to ward off any unforeseen problem, (if i planned for it, it won't control me), more a list of ideas and plans and scheduling so as not to miss out. i save my little dollar store pocket calendars from 1 year to the next....they contain addresses & phone numbers scribbled messily in the margins as i drove down the hiway. (never did have an urge to corral those in a proper address book. this drives my husband to absolute distraction - he, of cutting edge techno gadgets to manage his time & information. a constant running battle of the PDA vs. the PEN ). this year in August, i checked through my old calendar. i was feeling sad about Kita's Anniversary. as i flipped through the pages filled with appointments and interviews and project deadlines, i smiled remembering those moments. and i realized how much i'd "transformed." things that may have seemed large and looming and totally beyond my capabilities to finish (or even start) now, in retrospect, weren't all that daunting once i just got to it. sound fairy-familiar? i thought i'd grown past the point where i Reacted Before I Thought. nope. i have a feeling this may be a part of me that still needs a little transforming, but to see it right there in graphite and white made me realize something about my creative inner rhythms...left to my own devices, and working on my own art, a piece of metal, or wood, or Something, will catch my eye. that spurs the creative process. there can be no dissapointment...i'm merely creating from the soul. the end result may not "work," but perhaps the time was meant to just touch and enjoy the feel of creating...just for the pure pleasure of it. to create for someone else, with their limitations - be it time, materials, or Whathaveyou, sets up a whole new dynamic. first and foremost is the fear of disappointing them. although they may have no idea how to Make The Project (or else why pay me good money to do it?) they have a sense or an idea of how they want it to look. maybe something they saw somewhere. maybe a feel they want to it, or, in the case of Memory Quilts - to recreate the person it represents. impossible by anyone's hand, i daresay, least of which my humble efforts. so i pre-stress over the end result til i get to the point where there is no beginning result. and time ticks away. and i am convinced that i have been kidding myself all along - i'm no artist. i'm just a good talker. a fraud. a wannabe. so now i have to clear away the negative Stuff, and start to plan, sketch, feel materials, gather ideas, and overcome the mental junk pile. exhausting. yes, i'd much rather make & sell, but commissions can be a lifeblood - not only in the cashflow department, but in the reaching/stretching/growing department. if i stayed in my comfort zone, then it would become uncomfortable - boring, tedious, practiced. but i've wandered. the idea that my idiosynchrocies need not be "fought" just "transformed" is so liberating. rather than spend time gnashing my teeth and feeling disappointed in myself, i can embrace those things, but marshal them - use them for my benefit, rather than let them use me. one of the directors at my Big Girl Job, having nothing better to do one day, composed and sent out actual paper copies of information regarding the outbreak of staph infections in the area. as my boss handed me the memo, i looked at her and said "you're KIDDING, right??" here i was armpit deep in work, and she hands me this.....the Queen of Purel. it started as a joke at work...we got the New Timeclock. you punch in your code, then put your finger on this little thingie and it "reads" who you are and clocks you in & out. i pointed out how incredibly germy that is, and they should keep some antiseptic wipes nearby. it was like using one of those endless loop cloth towel things in a hiway reststop. shudder. "I WON'T use it," i proclaimed. so every morning a new and different flavor of Purel appeared on my desk. i have aloe, unscented, plumeria, "fresh scent" whatever that is. done in a good spirit. but they're all almost empty now. i am NOT the only one using them. so okay, the Purel thing can get a bit, oh, obsessive. but guess who won't be getting staph! oy - wandering again. anyway....the things that make me ME...i will embrace them. i mean, who else should i be?? who else CAN i be?? what makes me unique in all of life is exactly who i was meant to be. so the things that direct me more than they comfortably should - those things need to be transformed. but maybe not discarded. and in the past year, according to my dollar store calendar, many of those transformations have indeed occured. quietly, gently, with compassion to my spirit. without me really knowing it was going on. just being forgiving and gentle with myself, allowing myself to float on the water and just go with it, steering only as much as necessary to stay away from the sharp rocks at the coastline. not a bad ride, all in all. L.

Monday, October 29, 2007

oh, just WOW

my new friend ellen sent me these....i'll pass them on, then say bye, cause i'm busy making you-know-whats....OH! but guess what!! this is HUGE! remember last summer when i went to ask my boss about going part time and was meditating about it first in the shower and had that quiet assurance that "the money would come" because i was afraid i'd starve or be homeless or something after my husband threw me out for going part time? remember? well then when i was walking to the door at work, again that little voice in my head (a different one from the usual) said "the money will come" and i found a nickel on the ground and took that as a sign and felt real certain that i was on the right path? Remember? okay well as i started pre-worrying about how to pay for next semester of the steppers college last saturday, my husbands bonus check came and it's for EXACTLY the amount i WON'T make at my big girl job this year, and EXACTLY the amount we need to pay the college bill, with a teeny bit left over for actual books. wow, huh? so here's the 2 websites CoolEllen sent me: http://www.geh.org/parkeharrison/index.htm http://www.ponderingpool.com/ gotta go.....

Sunday, October 28, 2007

bored yet?

here's the most recent incarnation of the fairy wings...sweet and pinkish, with a little shparkle. bits and scraps sandwiched between the pink silk and the pink netting. i guess i just had to tire myself out enough to just do what was in my heart to do in the first place. stubborn git that i am. i hope, if there's a reincarnation, that i do not have to come back as myself. in the middle of my pathetic crash and poor-me burn last night around 3am, i couldn't help but think of how incredibly generous life has been to me...how blessed...how incredible....imagine - to have the freedom and time to feel utterly frustrated because of an art commission...hunh...and to think there are people wasting their time worrying about sustenance, and illness, and getting shot, and getting evicted, and having no heat, and choosing between medications and food. how incredibly incredibly short-sighted and tunnel-visioned. of me. just when i think i've made great spiritual strides, a little tweak sets me reeling. oh the horror of being PAID to make fairywings...and **gasp** PINK no less! how can one expect to survive?? ok enough. yes...we each have our own reality and relative to that, one person's anguish is another's folly. and yet...is it less? not the fairywing thing. but in Real Life. i was taking the train from NYC to White Plains one day after a shopping blitz with my brother's friend, Jim. (raised as the only boy in a family of many women, he had been trained to shop patiently. what a great attribute to pass along!) anyway, somewhere around Scarsdale, the train stopped abruptly. i thought i saw a boot in the snow and figured someone's foot was cold. the truth of the situation, as the conductor announced, was that a woman had thrown herself in front of train. people around me joked that she'd maxed out her credit card. it made me feel very sad, because, even if it were true, THAT was the reality she faced. that was her horror. she may not have lived in a low-income housing "warehouse" that demanded you be inside before dark Or Else. that you sit on the floor, lest a stray bullet come through the window. but that doesn't negate her personal reality...because the scales aren't equal when measuring suffering or frustration. it's all a relative balance. so, no, i don't feel guilty for having food and heat and safety when there are others who don't....i just need to get less tied up in knots and be more grateful when the opportunities for growth & greatness of spirit present themselves...a gift...a treasure. i think part of it is my perfectionism....i need for things to look just so (art-wise, not housecleaning-wise). i know what i want the piece to express, and need to not have time boundaries to limit it's potential. i have a piece that i did a few months back that i have never "bonded" with. i like how it turned out, but it doesn't speak to me in the language i tried to teach it...it doesn't have the same visual impact as the thought it represents. it will be a piece that, if sold, will be missed, but i almost feel like it belongs to someone else already. i'm just not sure who. well, although my computer lied to me and converted daylight savings time already, it actually is my Work Night Bedtime. all day i couldn't figure out what time it was...conflicting reports from electronic sources. FINALLY i reached Kathy, who was way too busy studying, and instead of "hello" i demanded - "what time is it?!" she's accustomed to me. she understands. i fear i may grow into the old, eccentric artist on the street...shooing kids with a broom or a hose in the summer. did i say "fear?" i may have meant "hope." tee. so g'night y'all....sweet dreams and happy slumbers...it's definately a 2 dog night here...brrrr. L

Saturday, October 27, 2007


(not a great pic, but it's completely Angelina, with some little flowers with tiny pearls i glued into centers, and some pink & purple cab teardrop shparkle thingies. it has more depth of color in person, but the blinding reflectiveness of Angelina makes the camera scream) *** ok. with this many aggravations in my life, i have to step back and say "what is the lesson here?" just what am i supposed to be learning here? there has to be some Message that i should be learning, because my magical, peaceful days and nights have turned into an endless stream of flame-outs....and the full moon hasn't helped. i've blamed a lot on the fairy wings, and to be fair, they have thrilled in their torture of me. but there has been a constant parade of moments that have just Pissed Me Off To The 3rd Realm Of Malfeasant Thought the past 4 days. Dreamweaver has taken roost in the diningroom, and diva won't come out of the closet. (she's still on a hunger strike, despite 6 different foods i've tried). so aaanyway, i went for a walk today and tried to find a common thread, an "ah ha" to all these Things That Keep Happening. i'm not sure yet, but i did learn a few things about myself that may help me repeat the same scenarios again. and maybe that IS the lesson....maybe i need to learn these few things, quickly, because if opptys keep presenting themselves to me at this same pace without This Knowledge, i'll crash for sure. First, it was important for me to recognize that I am a very goal-oriented person. to the nth degree. not competitive. but regimented in attaining a goal. a list-maker, a timeline maker & follower. a brutal self-critic. and half-Jewish. i was an excellent producer...always planning for the worst-case-scenario. always building in extra time....way lots extra time. to the point where most of my vacations with my husband start and end in huge fights and tears and stomach aches - he, the God of The Last Possible Second...counterpoint, me, 30 minutes early is 15 minutes late. trying to negotiate a departure time for the airport is like negotiating world peace at the U.N...i worry, become agitated, and am Certain that every item on my "what if" list will indeed happen on the way to the airport. (which is 15 minutes away by hiway). (maybe 20 if traffic is bad) (oh, and construction...add another 10 minutes for that.) (oh - and if it's after 6am...forget it...leave at least an hour). and i've also learned to be of independant spirit. those were difficult, painful lessons to learn. i Earned my diploma. i became myself. and i'm very content with who i am (depite point #1). i am not yet my best self, but in this regard, i have come to stop the inner critic. so now i am able to say, "i am an artist," in a strong voice, matter-of-factly, and without apology, AND actually feel that "i AM an artist," it isn't a little girl at play wearing her mom's dress-up shoes and trying on her lipstick. it IS who i am. and i know my soul-art. and i know my muse. and, yes, i am capable of making fairy wings for a candyland bed, but, you know, it ain't me. i also know that i push myself to achieve, and over-deliver. it makes me stressed and artistically frozen. which in turn frustrates me and then angers me and makes me wonder why i ever picked up a rusty nail in the first place. so, the lessons of the fairywings.....1)don't make art for money UNLESS it is truly MY art. 2)don't overpromise, or accept an unreasonable deadline...if the person has hired me to do the job - they can't do it themselves, so they have no idea what is involved, despite their appreciation for it. 3) don't accept a commission for work that isn't "mine." if i don't love the concept/materials/whatever, walk away. leave time/oppty for something else...it will come. and if you ("you" meaning "me") do find yourself in the unenviable position such as The Fairywing Incident, then for God's sake, shut the F up, stop whining, stop procrastinating, get out there and make the damn things because everyone, i'm sure, is pretty damn tired of hearing about your tortured soul and these frickin wings. so, not bad for a 20 minute walk, eh? is good, ya? L.

Thursday, October 25, 2007


I got this in the mail today from the gallery owner....here's some felted work...it's called Fury. now, you know there's a story behind it, but just a little one. Back in the old days (april-ish) when i still worked at my Big Girl job full time, i decided to take a day off. husband was going out of town, and the steppers were not scheduled to be at the house. so i planned Linda's Big Day of Felting. now if you've ever felted, you know how labor intensive it is. plus, i have to convert my kitchen into a koi pond in order to do it, because the garage is too darn cold or hot, and my upstairs studio is not water resistant. the floor is the ceiling from downstairs and neither is capable of ignoring THAT much water being poured upon them. so i empty the kitchen of all extraneous floor model things...shoes, garbage can, dog bowls, etc. Took a huge huge waterproof tarp thingie and spread it out on the floor, careful to duct tape it to the cabinets part way up in case of splashage. two of my looong folding tables comes in from the Testosterone Temple. Roving and yarns and netting and plastic sheeting and Dove for Dishes and buckets and whatall get dragged in and assembled, some spilling into the dining room area. pool noodles crash into the chandelier 4 or 5 times before i remember to look first. the coffee pot is loaded. the CD player is going. I lock the door from the garage to the kitchen Just In Case someone forgot something and comes in and blows all my nicely placed roving into a maelstrom. it was a wednesday. how do i remember that, you may ask? well, because wednesday is the day the steppers USUALLY come over, but Not This Wednesday because dad is out of town. he switched weeks, because what would be the point of visitation, when the vist-or was not there? so i spent the morning dyeing some silk, dried it and then began laying out the most beautiful pattern. to die for. your eyes wouldn't be able to behold it. half way through, the front door bangs open and in come boychild, who goes right to his room, cellphone in ear, grabs his guitar , comes back into the livingrom, turns on the TV. he is now on the phone, playing guitar, and watching TV. as the door opened, my zen flew out. i was beyond rage...it was FURY. i had finally carved out a few hours of peace and quiet for myself...diva was actually at Camp Grandma's for the day, even. and now BAM. so, what do i say...excuse me, but you have to leave? that doesn't seem right to do. i reminded him that his father wasn't here that night. oh he knew. had a fight with mom, so is going to crash here. THAT was it. i grabbed up all the roving and threw it in the air. decided i would NEVER EVER EVER felt again. EVER. there would never be enough peace to do it. as the roving floated back to the silk like snowflakes, it landed pretty much like you see above. i kinda liked it. and i figured, in for a penny-in for a pound. i couldn't waste all that roving, after all. so i felted and felted and rolled and rolled. finally - out of fury came Fury. and that, my friends, is a true story. Linda

for the men in your life

....that is if you know any Tim Taylor Tool Time types....http://www.livevideo.com/video/537FF9DA20B44560845DEE157D1F9DD6/man-made-card.aspx how men make cards and still feel butch. oy. so i'm back to normal (for me...it's a relative thing) . I let DreamWeaver scare the pants off the girlchild, and we settled in sufficiently to get some Good Thoughts in, and to re-center things. same old lesson keeps coming back to haunt me: Follow The Peace. i had happy, peaceful thoughts about doing the wings in muslin. i tried to make the non-muslin look like muslin. The commission-er originally hired me based on a doll of mine that she saw - made of muslin. and guess what? i have Just Enough Muslin on hand to make these wings! i love them (even in their naked state). everything feels right about the project now, and some revised sketches i did make me smile. if momma's happy....aaanyway. the chaos and frenzy feeling have dissipated (as well as the Red Bull) and i have a feeling that i may actually finish this on time! hunh. i'm going to try to get a picture of this maple tree down the road...it is breathtaking in it's autumn red/orangeness...i daresay it's downright showing off! well back to the beadwork. ahhhh.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

shriek II

ok forget all those pictures...back to the drawing board...have i mentioned how much i love/hate commissions? nice that someone cares enought to HIRE you to do work, but aaaarrrggghh the anguish of getting it right - someone elses Right. i got an honest & true 17-year old opinion....she loved it. then i told her how much i was getting paid for it, and we agreed that it looked good for Someone's Kid's bed, but not for THAT amount. so i'm heading for the comfort & predictability of my painted/beaded muslin. (of course that's today). oh how i crave some rusty stuff. Linda


so i cooled out a bit and started working...just mindlessly working. Dreamweaver the crow helped a bit. i tried to knock the pink & purple down a bit with some fabric paint spray, but it got all gloppy...i'll try some sponging.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007


ok...i put on my Big Girl Pants...quit whining long enough to realize that this is NOT such a big hairy deal...and just got busy. it was the construction of the wingspan that was getting me, so i realized - duh -that this is Halloween. the worst that could happen is that i BUY some fairy wings and sew my pre-constructed beadwork onto them. we have 2 excellent costume shops nearby that are open year-round,so they're stocked to the gills most days. so tomorrow at dark o'clock, yours truly will head out for a just-in-case purchase. whew. here's a peek.....

just bead it

ha! yes - i am funny. bead it. hilarious. 3 cans of Red Bull (diet) and 4 continuous hours of beading ahead of me. pink beads. oy. i can't do anything but my best, but there's the rub....if this 1st set of fairy wings comes out good, then there will be 3 more to do. *sigh* so here i procrastinate. many wonderful things have happened in the past few days, but i'm jittery and high on Bull, so i will wait till another time to relay them. suffice it to say that as a cosmic trade-off for completely humiliating myself in front of the CEO of my Big Girl Job (social retard that i am), the universe has provided me with an unending supply of FREE alginate. a substance i only recently discovered, despite the fact that my Cubicle is 1 floor directly over a motherload of the stuff. who knew? and you know when you do something oh-so-stupid, you feel compelled to share it with 20 of your closest friends? no? just me? oh. well. so when my bosses boss called me into her office to discuss the Incident with Bob (the CEO), i almost jumped out her window. it wasn't until i was throwing myself across her floor begging for an end to my misery, that i noticed a slight twitch at the corner of her mouth. i held onto that twitch (mentally of course) and reasoned that maybe, just maybe, i was being set up & punked...much like i had done to many a coworker, using lesser tactics. maybe not, though...a risk to inquire. worth it? why not - any fragment of ego was long forgotten...i had most certainly lost my part time employment at the only job that let me be me, as long as i was Someone Else with the customers on the phone. oy. the strangling decision. i went for it. stood up, looked her in the eye, and said brilliantly, "heyyyyyy!" (the defense rests). whereupon i realized i'd played the right cards...i was punked. now how do you like it missy, i ask myself. so okay, i know...back to work. isn't life just all chocolate sometimes? check out the anatomical chocolate heart (and brain, etc) at http://www.pushindaisies.com/ ...very nice! Linda

Sunday, October 21, 2007

my Lake

yes...the lake really was that beautiful! and diva enjoyed herself immensely! more later!

in case you wondered

so this is what i was up to at 4am.....how 'bout you? miles and miles of bridal lace....freshly ripped from the hem of a very froofy gown (which diva has been claiming as her bed). the gown was not mine. either time. there was a certain satisfaction in the ripping sound! i kept hearing Billy Idol in my head. hey little sister... aaanyway...my broseph is coming by to drop off organ parts and to get his birfday gift.....it's awesome if i do say so myself! and i managed to keep it a secret. i usually give gifts way way early because i'm too excited, or way way late because i get caught in the detail work. next year - gift cards! (kidding). later today - off to the Lake with diva! hope to get some swell pics. hey if anyone has some pink beads laying around that they don't want........Linda

Friday, October 19, 2007

i'll show you the door

here's a sampling from http://www.significantelements.org/ ...i regret that i did NOT make it to FREE friday....these are stolen from their website. 400 doors...corbels o plenty...i regret missing out on most free things...however, the universe had other plans for me today. remember the headboards commission? i met with the commisson-er ...an incredible person who loves me more than she should....and has faith in me to create wonderful beautiful things. i am humbled by her praises and confidence. truly. and i will do this project for her because she is an Important Person to me. but let me say this - when you think of wispy, pinky, light and gracious fairy wings upon candyland pink 4-poster canopy little darling beds, if you know me at all, then my name would never come to mind as the person to create such a sugarplum delight. so i guess i should be double-honored to do this, all 4 beds to start. but the part of me that makes me ME is in full leather studded revolt. i'm excited to do the project, don't get me wrong. but it's just so......PINK! so very very pink. and not like-the-singer-Pink. bubblegum pink, with a little heartsy shape over the "I" pink. pink pink pink. i really really hate pink. but i love my friend, and i love the concept and so i will wrassle pink chiffon into fairy wings with uber-beadwork and little faschizzles all over them. i may even *gasp* make a life size fairy-person to come up over the headboard to wear these wings. now that would be fun. maybe i could sneak a little tattoo on her! gotta work fast tho - deadline for sugarplum #1.....11/13. my photog has proven himself incredibly talented and equally as unreliable. after 3 cancellations, you just don't want my business bad enough. onward from there. diva and i snuck in a post-rain walk, and the smell of the pine needles....oohhh! heaven! maybe i should make a pine needle fairy. a little on the asking-for-trouble-when-a-little-eye-gets-poked-out side of things maybe. pink. hunh. so i'm off to try to find a dumpster load of pink beads and ribbons and chochkees to sew on. i refuse to glitter though. i stand firm on the glitter issue. there is a bonus here tho...a rusty lining to a dark cloud....my friend's basement is crammed with old rusty tin ceiling tile. she slyly gave me a piece to take home and fondle, with innuendos of more to come. that one ain't stupid! i am not in the least ungrateful, tho for entertainment purposes i rant on. it's true i don't at all like pink. but work is work i guess! and i hope to be able to exceed her expectations. i will, however, be preparing tactful protests of No More Pink. maybe with a little seafoam green............Linda

Significant Elements

what an exciting day in store!! Significant Elements (google em) is having Free Friday!! a day in which they round up a huge bunch-o-Stuff from their magnificent 3-story warehouse and plop it into the parking lot....and it's yours for the hauling! i emailed the head guy there (thank you for the intro Kathy! okay DC likes you as much) for a hint as to what may be in the Pile today. his reply included items thoughtfully numbered 1-20...with the first 10 being "doors". i needed to know ahead of time because Ithaca is about an hour and 20 from here, but 3 hours back home. there is no easy way to backtrack the 1-way & construction-site streets from the warehouse to the hiway. at least not for me. and i usually end up in an area where i am the only english-speaking person so asking for directions is pointless. add to that the tentative nature of my driving abilities with my NEW glasses, and you got a high frustration level just banging on the door. but there IS a sink scheduled for the Pile. and a chandelier. and i'm hoping to weedle a few of these incredible chairs outta them. we'll see. no pun intended. this place is just mecca...plain and simple. diva dog heard Something around 4am and began barking furiously. she wasn't sure just WHAT it was, but it was coming to do Great Harm to her humans. or maybe she DREAMED that Something was coming to do Great Harm. but you can't be too careful. so the alarm went out. soon, Coco and Ollie picked up the message and THEY started in next door, which alerted Sasha across the street who woke up Ginger (the mini pin) and Chauncey up 1 house, and of course Smokey- the -dog -who- got- hit- by -the- neighbor's- truck -and -survived got into the mix waking up his family, including 4 month old Julianna the fairydoll baby and little matt who's 3. soon, everyone on the street could be heard griping at their dogs to Shut Up...except my husband who slept through it all. amazing. he can hear me trying to steal his credit card - er borrow- from his wallet at 6am and 1 floor down, but this wild cacaphony of alert doesn't phase him. i feel safe. well...the hands are sore and twitchy today...time for some heat and massage. will try to bring back pics of the Pile. if i make it back. does St Anthony do directions, or just help you find your keys to go get lost? Linda


i just wanted to prove that i actually do get up and try to be productive THIS early on my days off.

Thursday, October 18, 2007


remember the skier Pikaboo Street? the old joke about her donating $$ to the hospital? it would be for the Pikabo ICU. aaanyway. no - i don't CU yet....the Drama Of The Glasses continues. i need a helmet that's for sure. what an entirely different day it was with over-impaired vision, though! Do Not Drive near me. i suppose i should be more responsible about being on the road, but being half Canadian, i drive badly on a good day! so today i amused myself on the endless calls by trying out different accents. the Scottish brough seems most natural...although a daresay a Scotman would cringe and wail like a bagpipe if he heard it. Yiddish was a shoe-in. Brooklyn (you talkin to ME?!) was fun but close to that line of being sent to the naughty chair. at one point during the day, my boss was monitoring my call (beeeep beeep in your ear) so i put on a clinic. all in all, what i lacked in vision, i made up for in entertainment value. plus, we've all invented a new game called Make Your Co-Worker Snort. (listen...unless you've spent the better hours of your life in a cubicle, just shush). you write something funny on a sticky note, and tack it to the little window-like glass-ish part near the top of your cubby. then email your coworker to look up. i raised the bar a bit. SOMEone put a stress ball in my desk drawer on one of my days off. it's pink and it's filled with gel. it is a breast. nipple and all. so after hitting the "send" button for the "look up" message....you guessed it - smoosh. i cannot believe how infantile and degrading this must sound....you wish you could play too, huh? and to think we complain about the infantile & degrading comments our customers make. now i need to find out just who in the cubby farm put that breast in my drawer. so tomorrow is ART day! i have an early afternoon mtg about the beds. Yay! today was so exceptional...despite all of the above. each day i feel more confident that Big Things Will Continue. i'm so happy to be in the place i'm in now...mentally, creatively, internally. i feel very centered, and not like i have to be all serious and spiritual...actually, i feel so much more spiritual and "in tune" now then ever before - even when i'm goofing at the cubby farm. and i feel it boomeranging back at me...returning the joy and compassion with a few more bits attached to it...then back out again, and the return ever increasing. it is so amazing. the law of attraction thing in full force. i am so grateful for the opportunities that have presented themselves to me....at this time in my life...when i can examine each with the wisdom of the past 49 years and decide true or false/yes or no/productive or draining. my husband spent dinnertime trying to get his questions answered: Why do i jump from "trade to trade" and master none? why can't i focus on 1 medium? blah blah. in the past i would have been hurt beyond repair (or smacked him with a pan). but i explained to him that, indeed i had mastered all that i do...as much as is needed for the project and a little growth...and that doing 1 thing over and over is not how i work. that i enjoy rust & wood as much as felt and fiber. that the muse strikes differently at different times, and i was blessed and grateful that i could be available for whatever medium was needed for the particular message that needed to be wrought. now, i should have stopped there, you know, but it was a long day. so i asked the same of him...why did he hunt AND fish AND take photographs AND golf? and never really brought home anything from these trips in the woods? oy how tiring he can be....$6million dollars and my dream house by the end of the year....$6million dollars and my dream house by the end of the year. so i'm off to focus on some beadwork for a doll i'm making for a wonderful co-worker...so shy, so insecure..i feel a warrior inside her though. Linda

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

sseeing ddouble

okay...i'm blind as a bat...contacts or thick lens glasses. so when i get a new pair of glasses, it's the mortgage money, so to speak, and a side order of angst. those cute, trendy frames look like drew carey specials on me. so imagine my excitement when i found a pair of frames in the color and style i actually like! the fact that my vision provider misquoted me by, oh, $350 is another story for another day. so part of the deal is also that there is no way to get these lenses in the advertised 1-hour or less. i know that going in and i am fine with it. so today, i got a call that My New Glasses are ready...a week early!! whoo hoo! so i get there, ready to sigh that they looked good on the rack, but here we go with another Frames-As-Birth-Control look. au contraire! i love them! so what's the catch, you may be asking yourself. well let me tell you....i can't see out of them. the lens was made wrong. sob. after much wrangling and adjusting, the eye guy says "wear them a few days...blah blah vertex..blah blah something technical...adjust." so i agreed because i love them, stood up and knocked down a nice display of wipes and cleaners. then bent over to try to fix it and hit my forehead on a Ray Ban display. needless to say, making it to my car was frightening, increased only by the fact that i now had to make my way home in this vehicle. somehow. but i had errands to run. important ones. to the rust emporium. i got the key in the lock on the 2nd try - a good sign. 2 is a lucky number isn't it? i crossed myself as best as i knew how, put the car in gear, and away we went. i say "we" but "I" was the only one in the car - both of me. things went from fishbowl-y to double to wavy. "don't eat the brown acid." so i figured by dinnertime, things would stabilize, but not so much. it is somewhat recreational, but for the love of cocopuffs, i have to DO things that require focusing on them....boiling water...gluing things...not dropping diva dog. WAAAAA! plus now i'm noticing these glasses are just a leetle bit too big...sliding down my nose ever so slightly - just enough to really stir the pot, vision-wise. sigh. but i love these glasses....they hardly look like coke bottles, and the frames are swell. i just can't see out of them. am i asking too much? maybe. i looked into lasik, but there's just something unnerving about intentionally shooting a laser at your EYE. you only get 1 chance at it. and it's not cheap. every once in a while i sneak a peek at the grocery scanner just in case that will do just as good. i guess that's why i wear huge-o glasses. aaaaanyway. so i got a call today from an interior designer who wants to commission me to do some headboard work for her. "not the babydoll head stuff" Sheesh - you put 1 babydoll head in one piece and you're branded for life. but it turns out that there are many headboards and they will be spotlighted in a Very Big Venue. and since she's an awesome awesome friend, i said yes. (kathy if you are reading this....you know who i mean, and she likes ME better. she told me. yeah.). i will try to do something "nice" and not lose my mind over it. it just never looks done to me unless it has schmutz on it! so hey - now i can do 2 at once if i leave my glasses the way they are! i feel like man-friend Kato in the Pink Panther movie when he disguised himself as a Chinese waiter and wore those "bug-eye" glasses on top of his usual glasses! (not to be confused with Kato Kalen). so i'm off to try the stairs now! say a prayer! Llindaa

Saturday, October 13, 2007

all messed up

so i've had these weird, uncomfortable feelings in my studio lately...nothing huge and horrendous...just one of those "did i turn off the iron??" sort of feelings....a sort of Somethings Not Quite Right feeling. i tried to figure it out sneaky-like ...didn't want to give the feeling too much attention, lest i feel important and begin to grow like that plant in Little Shop Of Horrors. but today at 4am i had an AH HA! moment. i stubbed my toe on a giant sterlite bin holding various and sundry items to be glued, dissasembled, reassembled, painted, disrespected and re-respected. do you know the frustration of jamming your toe that hard that early when everyone is sleeping including the dog and if you scream/swear/cry out to God then everyone will wake up and ppfftt there goes your Alone Time? can i get a witness? just like on TV, i slapped my hands over my mouth to hold the sound back. my mouth is not actually playing on Team Linda on a day-to-day basis anyway...letting all sorts of information and commentary just slip past the guardian gate. so something as exciting as a banshee scream, well, there would be no possible way for the Mouth to keep that one a secret. so the Hands did their best, and the scream came out of my Eyes instead....i swear if i could see it in slo-mo replay, tears would be shooting straight out from the Eyes like a Super Soaker squirt gun, or a paid mourner with grocery money on the line. once the Lungs began to take breath again, the Brain, jarred awake with all the internal commotion Had A Thought. and i'll share it here: my studio is too organized. i spent about a month purging and organizing. i wanted it to be like those pictures of organized studios in books...little pencils in little soup cans decorated with scraps and bits...paintbrushes all neat and at attention in some antique vessel that they , hunh, just happened to have laying around in the barn....quirky, fun, organized. i remember the feeling when i was doing all this...like when Cheryl Hess & I used to pretend we were Barbie, or Skipper or Scooter (the lost ones - Barbie sure ditched them quick when Ken showed up in his flashy new car promising adventure. bet barbie was surprised on their 1st sleepover in the Dream House. aptly named). anyway..back to my original digression. i felt like, well, if i can make it look like THAT, then i can break this creative block...i'll just turn on the lights and la la la la drift over to my worktable la la la la and pick up a brush and some glue and VOILA! a masterpiece la la la la! then, i'll go downstairs and make a meatloaf and frozen peas and mashed potatoes and a nice bundt cake for dessert. isn't it just ginchy Gidge? so that's how i felt in some very subtle way. if it had been less subtle, i would have stopped and burned everything in a Donna Reed Wakes Up Moment. but NOW i realize...my studio is TOO NEAT. not real neat - and certainly a sty by the book's standards, but not roughed up enough. i NEED to see everything all around me. i don't trip on it then...it's inspiring as i work and my eye catches this or that ....it's like having diva sleeping on one of her many beds nearby...i love her...i love to look at her while she sleeps....i love my rusty metal - i need to see it out and around me. it makes me happy. so today, maybe.....un-purge!

Friday, October 12, 2007

what's with this???

okay...some very weird stuff is happening..you be the judge. first, my friend jennifer (www.happyuterus.com) asked me to do some PTMA work on her new piano. Then (actually simultaneously) another person inquired about the same thing. THEN my brother "found" an organ (piano-like, not pancreas-like) on a loading dock and stripped it somewhat of some vital parts as a gift for me me me. THEN a friend of his mentioned that she has an organ (again, the piano variety) she wants to give away. okay, so i played the flute in 5th grade for about a minute because i had a crush on Mr. Russo the band instructor. nary a piano in my life. not ever. so what's this all about, Alfie? if you figure it out, please tell me. oy. plus, the whole calliope aspect of Gramma Lana's life. (cue the Twilight Zone music).....fade to black. bye for now. L

Thursday, October 11, 2007


i keep forgetting...i need your help! i nagged at someone to do something and they (finally) did it, which now requires me to do something with their something...or else. they are threatening to tell Santa on me. (sharp intake of breath). yes, it's true. please please help! you know how i love christmas...and my birthday which follows 3 days after ..ahhem...please go here: http://www.gabriellewis.com/ and click on the flashing Halloween contest link at the bottom (if you have a teeny cheesy monitor like mine, you have to scroll down a little). make a costume...say it's being done in proxy for me! i started my own, but am not confident it'll be done on time and we're talking a full-blown-Grinch-threat here! thank you thank you....gotta go - for all the world it sounds like shots fired outside...this is Radisson for God's sake...that is not approved! we can't even have a shed! L

sneak peek

she's almost done...here's a sneak peak...."She Had Dreams." isn't she lovely? L.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

let them eat cake

(**note - the picture is NOT cake. we'll get to the picture later. **) if you love cake like i love cake....check this out http://www.shetakesthecake.com/ oh my! these are something special i tell you! the baker is also a sugar artist. never heard of such a thing, but i'm sure she's never heard of Post-Traumatic Mosaic Assemblage either, so.... i didn't know you could do things like this with cake! to call it "cake" isn't right. seems so plain. but it's cake, and some of these designs are downright Very Cool. i have to meet this person. i mean, the cakes aren't weird or un-cakelike shapes (for the most part, although there are a few...) but the sheer artistry of it all is wonderful. this is a day of visual stimulation for me, i guess! my angelfriend Georgia is going on a trip to India to see sacred sights. she gave me the link to the group she's going with, and i looked through the India photos...absolutely moved to tears with the beauty of some of the temples & shrines. http://www.scottstours.com/ i guess they have different tours you can take. i just looked at the India one. if you read thru the "before you go" and "what to pack" parts, it gives an interesting glimpse of the culture & customs. very cool. although i mostly travel vicariously through other people these days, husband & i are going to St. Thomas again in february. AND he actually suggested that we extend that trip by adding on Sedona or somewhere in New Mexico. i am sooo looking forward to that. having missed Burning Man for the past 49 years, this will definately make up for my wanderlust. somehow looking at art cakes just isn't the same as experiencing the sights, smells, spirit of a place. ya think? so anyway, enough procrastinating....back to my worktable (having resolved the design issue of the decapitated babydoll head. who knew plastic melted like that when a dremel was applied? little bits of flaming plastic landing in my hair...sheesh. i'll know next time! L

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

close your eyes

i ask you...is there anything more disconcerting than trying to dremel off the top of a babydoll head, and the eyes keep opening & closing? i think not. i feel evil. sorry these are so blurry...but you get the idea, eh?

Monday, October 08, 2007

cost me an arm & a leg - not

can you believe this??? all this great stuff for 25-cents! a quarter. two dimes and a nickel. yikes! what are they - crazy?!? big score at the flea market fer shizzle (as youngblood says) (i hope that means "for sure" and not something offensive). oops - thunder...diva dog is near crazed with fear...gotta go...L


here she is...Caliperia....a shrine to remembering to slow down, enjoy the wabi sabi moments and treasures that are right there in front of us...beside us....around us. slow down...center yourself...breathe..enjoy life like chocolate....today marks the beginning of my "new" week - my "more ME time week"....and as a bonus, husband will be gone till friday, so i can work in my studio uninterrupted. just diva dog to keep me company. silence...music...meditation...it's my choice. phone on or off. i usually need music to get my creativity going. then silence as i try to work out a design issue. the forecast says rain all week, which is good for my creative soul....the sound of the rain on the roof....watching the leaves fall outside my wall of windows....and nothing says "stay inside and work" like a rainy day. the past few months have been so hectic. mostly good hectic, but hectic all the same. so much growth has taken place, it brings tears to my eyes to think of it...how did i come to deserve such grace? such compassionate teaching? such abundance? i'll never know, but i'll never forget. when i look at last year's datebook - August, September, October....all months that brought big change in my life. all months that heralded in a new life for me, even as i said goodbye-for-now to my Kita. who could have guessed that my journey had begun in earnest? who would have guessed that the tears that wet my pillow at night would cause such growth? i am not the same...yet i am. i guess it feels more like a few layers have been peeled away....the center always the center - just more able to breathe, to be revealed....like when the first real warmth of spring comes - boots and gloves and scarves are left behind...wool coats are replaced by sweaters or light jackets...travelling lighter...moving with more freedom...making the journey easier. as fall gets going full swing - i wish you a happy spring - inside. L.

Sunday, October 07, 2007

finally quiet

finally...peace and quiet. i'm still feeling out of sorts and restless. today is the anniversary of my dad's death...a weekend filled with passings. it's made me a bit more thoughtful and needing quiet - although my last post was pretty thoughtless. i think i just need more quiet time, more alone time than some. and my recent life has been anything but! i give a lot of myself at work, then come home exhausted. but try to push on and start my 2nd and 3rd jobs...artist and suzy homemaker. i like the house to be neat...it's not a huge priority, i admit, for ME to do the actual cleaning...but if the house is in some semblance of order, then i can think better. starting this week, i'll have more time to get EVERYthing done that i want to. so - butter my butt and call me a biscuit....all week i've been thinking there was a ghost or something following me around. i didn't FEEL a presence, but kept seeing little flashes of something in my periphery. and a lot. i tried to be quiet and feel who it may be, to no avail. I was feeling all special and spiritual about this. finally last night i realized what was going on....i wore my contacts yesterday, and when i went to peel them off and put my glasses back on (all 40lbs) i noticed the lenses were scratched up as if i'd taken a nail file to them. so the ghosties were actually refracted light getting caught in the scratches. double bummer. i was looking forward to meeting this shy spirit, but now it looks like i'll be laying out $200 for new glasses. yeesh. i always get frustrated with the optometrist....there should be a more accurate way of determining my correct prescription than relying on ME to answer questions ..."is it clearer now, or is this better...A or B?" there usually such a slight difference, and the pressure mounts. then you have to pick out frames. oy. now i ask you - how can a half-blind person pick out frames for glasses unless those frames have THEIR prescription in them??? you can't SEE the mirror, let alone make such a big decision. plus, those cute little frames you pick out never look the same with your actual lense in them. instead of asking "A or B" they should ask me "Coke or Pepsi?" since my lenses always feel as thick as a soda bottle. i thought about laser surgery. katie had it...hated it. they have a disclaimer/disclosure in t-i-n-y writing at the bottom that says something to the effectthat if you're over 40, you may see halo-ing around stuff and other blah blah. most everyone i know over 40 has had to wear glasses after the surgery anyway. but at least the lenses wouldn't proceed me into a room. it's funny - i wore my glasses friday to the calling hours because i went right from work (too dry for contacts at work). saturday i wore my contacts and half the wisconsin contingent re-introduced themselves to me ...uncle someone said he didn't even recognize me. i guess they figured my husband had more than 1 wife....is wisconsin close to utah or something? i told him he should show up to the sunday brunch-a-thon with a sheep. that'll get 'em going. i joke, but most of the people i met were very nice, and there were a few i'd even hang with briefly. but they're all just LOUD. very very loud. like let's fill the void here with chaos....that kind of loud. and i don't get the whole mausoleum thing. i had a bad-stepmother moment when we went there and husband's girlchild asked why the names were on the walls. now, mind you, i was already 2 days past tolerance with this whole family thing, cramps to beat the band, and had to sit thru one of the worst funeral services ever - the priest arrived late and was so disorganized. he hadn't bothered to find out any details about the person he was eulogizing, and told stories about being married to an italian girl who couldn't cook pierogies. a cousin got up and gave one of the most beautiful, heartfelt eulogies i've ever heard. then the priest goes, "it looks like i've been outdone!" duh. and uncle someone (loudly) proclaimed "AMEN!" i mean, some people want a certain amount of ceremony to guide them thru the grieving process. especially older people, i think. if you've lived to the age of 97, you deserve more than this guy gave. so we go to the mausoleum, after a brief and confusing memorial service, and girlchild asks me the question,"why are all the names on the walls?" so i explained that the walls were filled with people. (i say GIRLchild - she's 17). so now she's very very curious, and a little creeped out. that kept her quieter than candy in church. till then she spent the day asking "when are we going home?" and texting her friends. i don't mean to sound disrespectful of bill's grandma...i liked her. she was spunky. i just have issues with the whole funeral process as an industry. i know when my time comes, i'll hang around a while to make sure they get it right - control freak that i am. and i'll be disappointed if they don't make it quirky and memorable. but there are ways of doing things that are wonderful, non-traditional shall we say, and won't make you re-mortgage your house. i mean, if i'm dead...i'm dead. do not spend a bunch of money on me - i do not need it and will not be impressed, at that late stage of things. no pun intended. i am deeply respectful of people's customs and traditions, and would never ever make jokes about the death of someone's loved one. however...the funeral INDUSTRY just gets my works churning. it's almost as bad as the wedding industry. let me say this now while i can...i want to be cremated...i do not need a dee-lux edition-4 on the floor-under hood blower edition- chopped chromed & toasted model casket for this. do not buy it - i won't use it - can't make me. save your cash. flowers - yes - i love flowers, and will be watching to be sure things go right, so flowers are acceptable. especially sunflowers. some righteous music would be good. my brother is a dj, he'll do something. now here's the most important part ....the food. get this part right people. much like a wedding, THAT'S what people remember. yesterday as we all gathered at Nestico's for brunch, no one could stop talking about the salad dressing. salad dressing. you heard right. we each left with a styrofoam cup of it....compliments of the owner. THAT'S how much they liked it. it was oil & balsamic vinegar. maybe in wisconsin, they don't have that...who knows. girlchild and i had a secret moment of eye rolling on that. so music...food...maybe a few nice words, anecdotes...respectful but with some thought to who i was. so now i've been up 2 hours and managed to bore even myself....i'm going to the flea market to look for rusty stuff. i really think i need a blog break till i come up with something interesting to talk about! aaaanyway.......L

Saturday, October 06, 2007

family matters

sorry for the break.....Bill's grandma passed away and we've been busy with that....will post again soon......like maybe tomorrow. i'll try. it's quieter here, so i'll really really try. his family is loud and extensive. the dog is going crazy, and i've about had it with that wisconsin accent at volume 11. sorry. i know that makes me a bad person, but i don't even like my OWN family enough to spend this much time with them, even given the circumstance. plus i have cramps. so if all this doesn't just toss nicely into a bitch salad, i don't know what would. plus someone gave diva dog too much of something and now she's got plenty of diarrhea ...oy vey. i need a good "go home hillbillies" curse or something. now tell me again why why did i get married?? oh - okay - i'll just get this little evil tidbit out of the way now while i'm at it. you all know the strange and bizarre tale of my 1st marriage...well, remember the really cute funeral director that was filling in? guess what? he's the guy doing grandma's funeral. this is all just so bad bad bad of me. i mean, no harm...no bad intent...just an observation that he is a very handsome guy. NOTHING happened. i just looked. so i mentioned to my (current) husband that, hunh, there's that cute funeral director i told you about from my 1st husband's funeral. so it was all out in the open, and i sure got a lot of teasing about it. so i offered a 2-fer if he didn't zip it. aaaaanyway. i need more wine and a pillow to put over my ears. so time to let diva out AGAIN. hopefully i'll redeem my sense of propriety and hate myself for writing this when i read it tomorrow. 'night Ellie Mae.

Monday, October 01, 2007

lions & tigers & bears...!

oh my! some scary times, my friends.....i actually got my full time job changed to a part time job. uh oh. now i have to really get busy! one minute i'm on cloud 9 ...certain that i'll be o-so-productive with my extra 2 days...the next i'm thinking, "who do you think you are? an artist.....yeah right!" so back and forth i go. too late to turn back now...so i guess it's time to take that leap into the cold water and get it over with. geez, i know - it sounds like i just signed up for the family pack of mammograms or something! after all, isn't this what i've dreamed of - fought for - wished for - for years? Big Daddy still is in the dark about my little plan. i wanted to wait until i had the official nod, and was going to tell him when he called tonight from the road, but his news was a little more compelling - his grandma passed away this morning. so i'll wait. i guess that's the part that's making me nervous....somewhere along the way, this warrior girl started believing the myth that i was actually superwoman...able to leap tall piles of laundry in a single bound! away from the house 11 hours a day, then cook a delicious, nutritious meal for the family, satisfy my husband, clean the house, take care of 3 special needs dogs, blah blah and blah. oh - and make art. well, how the hell those thoughts got woven into my fabric, i'll never know. i mean, i can barely cook...laundry is, well, let's just say it's easier to go buy some new underpants than it is to wash a pile of em...a clean house was never on my priority list...and as for Big Daddy - who the heck can even spell s-e-x when you're this tired! so it all makes sense to be home at least as much as i'm away. and the strange thing is, some very Special Coincidences have happened in my life to make me believe that it will all be just fine. in fact i'm very certain of it. i've finally found an awesome photog so, the website will be live and wonderful by the end of october...i'm planning to go full tilt with my workshop schedule...and am finally mentally in a place where I AM. despite the aforementioned moments of doubt, self-doubt, self-critique, etc....i still have that feeling of assurance that must have gotten Popeye through the rough times ....I Yam Whats I Am. and it's all good. so ...time to paint a shrine...fittingly, it's Caliperia...a shrine to slowing down and seeing what's around you. (made from a brake caliper, of course). pictures soon. thank you all for riding the Big Girl Roller Coaster with me! oh! i spoke with Grandma Lana again...part 2 in the next few days. an amazing woman! such a life. a shared heritage. just like chocolate, my life is.....L.