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Showing posts from September, 2013

parish mapping and the love song of plum island

A few weeks ago at a workshop  I learned about what a parish map is , and during Julia Shipley's wonderful class I spent a lot of time musing not only on past addresses, but especially on the place I call home today.  I realize now, that over this past year of shedding, a huge journey into this idea of home has emerged for me.  It's been a year of digging into the ground right beneath my feet, inviting people in, and not looking too far past my own front door for a place to create and connect.  Home is becoming the space that now is nourishing my creative life, a new pivot point of longitude and latitude both for the interior and exterior of my world.  Maybe it began with finally naming this house after living here for almost 6 years, back in the spring.  Like so many of the other personalized and claimed houses here on Plum Island, ours is now aptly called " gone wishing",  part of what began the deep plunge into the heart of this place I call home. There is s

i see things

little cottage filled with big possibility...stay tuned! Yesterday I stopped by a quiet little quilt shop in my neighborhood.  I have always wanted to pop in, but it's the kind of place that often looks like it might be closed, not urgently inviting but curious.  When it has been open and it again crosses my mind to go take a peek, I'm always zooming by on my way from one place to another.  But yesterday, between errands and pre-school pick up I had a moment to stop by, and lo and behold... a little folk art haven!  When I stumble upon the little gems like this, there is a part of me that is always so giddy and wants to climb over the counter to hug the shop girl and thank her for another creative space I can stretch out and explore, another corner of creative landscape to add to my own map. And so it got me thinking about the many kinds of spaces and places that make me feel like this, this potential for creative community.  There really are so many - the cafe with art


It's been a while since I posted something of the more saucy variety, though I always have my eyes and ears perked for what's happening on that horizon, and so I wanted to share a few with you.  From educational to sensational, there is something here for everyone... so check out these links and do a little sexploring! >>--->   If you haven't heard about the Vodka Boycott and the greater underlying issues of the oppressed and persecuted LGBT community by Russian government where it is illegal and harshly punishable by law to not only be out, but to even show support of anyone gay or of an alternate sexual orientation, then it's time to take little a click around the internet.  The boycott has been used to call attention to the issue not necessarily take down the Russian economy or any vodka brand in particular, and whether you support the effort or not, live in Russia or not, this global issue will surely come to a boil for the upcoming 2014 Winter Olymp

pink elephants

It all started with a conversation I had with Alex a month or so ago, something I knew I would write about but just never found the right time.  So, before it escapes me completely I just wanted to say my peace. I've been blogging now for almost 9 years and it really is like second nature to me.  Some days I have important things to spill, other days it's more of my own life in progress that I want to stop and try to capture.  Either way, I am so grateful for all the people who come by to read what I have to share. In the beginning, and for a very long time before blogging came into mainstream focus, all of my readers were people I had never met before, kindred spirits from all over the globe similarly opening up their hearts and lives to find immediate connection and understanding.  I wrote for the pure unguarded pleasure of creating something beautiful and exercising an artistic muscle that was aching to be used, to be seen and be heard, and to build bridges of comm

welcome to the show

"The Art of Possibility" - my next read My days are so full of overlapping beginnings and endings... new projects and collaborations, old loose ends to weave in, beautiful possibilities to follow like breadcrumbs into the unknown, and so many "I"s to dot and "T"s to remember to cross along the way.  It's always a wild mix of hard work, dreamy excitement, and raw fear, letting go of one trapeze in order to catch the next. The zines finally came in all wrapped up in a beautiful shiny bow and were sent out into the waiting hands of sweet souls as far away as Isreal and Australia (!!!) making my heart explode with so much gratitude, and the next issue already beginning to take shape behind the scenes.  I've picked up a bit of knitting I began last summer in hopes to finish the pretty scarf in time for the cold months ahead, reminding me of friends who's fingers flew across tantalizing fibers with such voracity I had to try again.  I was inv

suburban homesteading

Fresh off of the Taproot gathering I saw so many amazingly talented and passionate homesteaders sharing their love and knowledge of things like raising chickens, dying your own yarn and fabrics, making herbal remedies, carving your own wooden spoons and the like.  While the idea of living a low impact, close-to-the-earth kind of life surely has a romantic pull, I know in my own everyday it's not something that totally translates.  I'd love to learn to carve spoons (they were to-die-for gorgeous!), but I  live closer to the in-between.  I'm not the kind of girl who loves the big box store and homogenized commerce, but I do shop on Amazon and love me some Target every once and a while.  I do what I can, and I try not to feel guilty about it. Here's a bit of the suburban homesteading that goes on at my house, a round-up of little projects and efforts to create a space that feels lower impact and supports my natural passion for using up and getting rid of things.

the Lady of the Lake

Maybe it's the light, the way it hits the water and sparkles like Mother Nature decided to sprinkle glitter all over one of her best works of art elevating it from simply dreamy to absolutely sublime.  It's the grande stage that is set for imagination, inspiration, kinship, and transformation.  Each time I travel there I feel even more deeply embraced by the paths that are now becoming more and more familiar, by the lake that is like a love note from the universe, by the women who come to share with all that they are and all that they have, and by my own truest self who is wildly awake and seamlessly woven into the tapestry of twinkle lights and heart-centered intentions. Here, I am fully alive and present.   The Lady of the Lake works her magic. This time at Squam , hours away from where I live, I dug deeply into the notion of Home mapping memories on paper back through childhood, from the cocoon that was my pink and green bedroom, to the little sanctuary of our

heading to the lake

It's been an incredibly full week of work and family, and I am ready to spend some time communing with the Lake and immersed in the magic of Squam once more.  I'm realizing this time around that I am living a happily-ever-after story with this place that I never could have ever predicted.  I have more to say about this on the flip side, when I return overflowing with the goodness of creativity, sparkle lights, serious girl time with some of my favorite people, and inhaling and exhaling gently into the earth, but  right now it is all on the tip of my tongue, thoughts not quite formed into words... just a deep feeling of knowing . So, I'll see you on the other side.  There will be stories to tell, for sure.

it feels like handing them the sky

I crossed the milestone yesterday with unexpected melancholy... the first day of having two kids in school.  Really, I thought I'd be excited, ready to shake off the first thick layer of Stay-At-Home Motherhood.  The emotions  caught me off guard. I was excited for my new preschooler, all decked out in his big brother's "cool" backpack and the shiny blue heart keychain he bought himself with some of his birthday money over the summer, but after dropping him off with a flourish and easy success I felt like the wind was knocked out of me in that startling way that keeps you from taking a deep breath, waiting for air.  I got in my car to leave, and I cried. I think part of it is because it was just so easy , the pure relief of making it through early childhood with a typical child.  He's completely ready and capable and happy for whatever's next.   Motherhood during these younger years was so different for me the first time around.  Having a

open wide and say, YES!

I am gathering a circle of women for the purpose digging deeply into soul work.  As much as this idea intimidates me, it's also pretty thrilling and feels like it's just the right time.  This is another one of those thoughts that I've had a million times over the years, visioning it in so many different ways... women sitting on cozy couches in a little cafe... coffee cups amidst a sea of notebooks, pens and paper at my kitchen table... a group of girls settled into a nest of colorful blankets at the beach with the sound of the sea as our muse. But it's not about the, how.  It really is all in the,  Why? In the safety of a circle we can share our desires, offer up ideas and resources and solutions, be each other's cheerleaders and true-believers, stoke the inner fire and see the fruits of our labor come to be. Because this work is our lifeline.  It is as necessary as breathing. I've worked alone for the most part, on much of my creative journey, sitting

twilight mom

My head is the freshest and most clear for writing in the morning without the weight of the day pressing down on me or the beckoning of my bed.  I long to be a night owl sometimes, a mother who kisses her kids goodnight and then sets off to her own flights of fancy, lighting a candle and the creative fire in the waning evening hours.  That is so not me.  I'm the mom who on most nights falls asleep alongside my four year old after telling each other "fishy stories", our little bedtime ritual that began with my oldest long ago.  If I am up past nine on any given night, it's a rarity. The new morning routine of no screen time, i.e. video games, ipads, laptops, means that I am not writing at my usual time.  I've agreed to commit to the same rules as my kids so we can spend the time focusing on the morning routine and getting ready for our day in a space of relative calm and attentiveness.  In the past there might have been struggles over getting off a gam

underneath it all

"underneath it all" 14x11 mixed media on canvas Life is so layered.  It's how I live, paint, write and experience it all.  Because there is always so much more than meets the eye: This is the year he begins carrying text books, the year he moves upstairs at school with the "big kids" way beyond his years "in the circle" where his little brother will be begin next week.  He's come so far. I'm ridiculously proud of him. We went to the Lantern Festival in town Saturday night and I posted some photos that were simply sublime, which felt so at odds with where we were.  Moments of beauty amidst the less than perfect.  The truth?  It was buggy.  And hot.  And my kids were totally not into it, and tired and cranky.  But it was beautiful none the less. I'm nervous about how the zine is going to come out.  It's at the printer, and I'm anticipating its arrival tomorrow with something just shy of terror mixed with blissful excite

the septembers

Septembers bring change and a big upsweep of energy.  Always.  It is easily one of my favorite months out of the year.  Though like my little guy, who says "They're all my favorite!" of everything from colors to ice cream flavors to t-shirts, every month is my favorite for one reason or another and I suppose I could wax poetic about the charm of each celestial turn.  But if you asked me which month I could live eternally, over and over again, it would undoubtedly be September.  It's when I feel both the most grounded and the most possibility.  Even more so than January. Hello, lover. The ninth month just has it's own momentum and it feels kind of like coasting down a big hill on your bicycle, streamers flying, wind in the hair, and all you have to do is smile and try to maintain your balance while embracing the wild ride.  It's life with a plan and a shiny new container to put all your stuff in... a new grade, a new schedule, a new blank notebook, a ne