Monday, February 27, 2012

Couldn't Sleep

Couldn't sleep past 5:00 this morning, so I got up, made coffee, read my devotional and laid down some paint.
I could get used to this.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Still Practicing

Still practicing, and I think I know why.
The grief train is coming.
I have been wondering where the sadness is over my mom's death.
There is lots of sadness due to other things surrounding her, but not especially her death.
Anger, yes. Sadness, not so much.
Today I felt a little sad and I was grateful.

Grateful that I felt like crying, but grateful when that happened that I was at the grocery store with Brenna and I held it together.
I know, I know. Crying is healing. But I'm just not ready to loose all composure in a public place with my child in tow.

After the store, we had an impromptu photo shoot.
I was grateful for the feel of the breeze, the color of the grass and the shadows beginning.

I am grateful for goofiness,

being "over" the photo shoot,

and grateful for photos that aren't posed.

I'm grateful to have been able to sit with a friend post-surgery today.

I'm grateful for another friend who was able to call me even though her depression is rearing it's ugly head.

And I'm grateful to experience the simple task of gathering fresh eggs.
Your turn.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Practicing Gratitude.

Today I'm practicing gratitude.
If I don't I'll go back to bed and put the covers over my head.
And stay there for a very long time.

Here goes:
I'm grateful for a day in the art room.

I'm grateful to be able to express emotion through art.

I'm grateful I don't have to have a root canal, nor do I have a cold, and neither does Brenna.

I'm grateful for quiet.
I'm grateful for blogging friends.
I'm grateful for the girl scout cookies in my freezer.

I'm grateful for friends that are also lawyers and realtors.
I'm grateful for my sisters.

I'm grateful I can send gift cards to our friends whose son is awaiting a 5-organ transplant. I'm grateful for the ability to pray.

I'm even grateful for Miss Party, who has been accompanying me in the car when I make the drive to my Mom's house during the week. She puts her head on my shoulder when I drive, or curls up in the front passenger seat and lets me pet her for the hour-long drive if I need to.

Life is blessed.
How about you? Do you have anything to add?

Monday, February 20, 2012

Meeting a Friend

Have you ever been able to meet a blogging friend in person?
I was privileged to do so on Saturday.

Amy, of Vintage Marketplace and I have been emailing for quite a while. It's amazing the friendships you can make while blogging. We met up in our most favorite place in the world and it was like we had known each other forever. We talked for six hours. AND had starbucks together. Oh yeah, dinner as well, but the coffee, well. Nothing like talking over coffee. Sheer fun!! (thanks to her amazing husband who was on dad duty that whole time!)

If you have the opportunity to meet a blogging friend, I hope you take advantage of it. You won't regret it!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Photography 101

Thank you for all the colonoscopy love. I seriously have lost count on how many I have had. Not that it makes the prep any easier, but I kinda have a routine down. Wow. Won't that look good on a resume?
Anyway, no inflammation, so I get to stay on immunosuppresants. Lots of biopsies done, and will get the results from that later. Like you needed to know that.
Well, I figure it's all out on the table now, since I confessed to possibly buying vodka to get the prep down.

Now that I have regrouped a little, I'll tell you about a fabulous photography class I took last Saturday.
It was with Cynthia Shaffer. Yes, please do click on the link. Her blog is wonderful.
I have a Cannon Rebel XT.
I use AUTO for everything.
Until Saturday.

I learned about Manual setting.
And Aperture.
I got familiar with my manual for my camera.
Did I mention F-stops?

With lots and lots of trial and error,

I became friends with the manual setting on my camera.

It's pretty amazing when you have a gentle and patient teacher who is sheer genius when it comes to things like ISO and F-Stop.

Cynthia set up lots of props in the studio.
For 4 solid hours until we said we would faint from hunger unless she let us go to lunch,

We took notes, and learned the settings on our cameras.
And snapped away in between.
Did I mention we took notes?

We learned about bokeh:
(See Cynthia's tutorial here.)

Foam board and lighting,

Shadows and sun.

Light and dark.
The second half of the day we went outside, all around the artist's district in Santa Ana.

Opening and closing apertures, asking each other if we remembered what number was what on our cameras.

"Freezing" water, one of my favorites.

Watching the girl scout troupe play something called, "What time is it, Mr. Fox?"

Using classmates as models.

It was the best.

If you are interested, there are spots available for her March 17 class.
Click here for more information.

Have a great day!

Monday, February 13, 2012

It's That (Dreaded) Time Again...

I really, really have so much to tell you.
My life is really, really upside down right now.
I have things to tell you about a photography class I took, stories from emptying my mom's house, the Hello Soul, Hello Business class I'm taking, a little bit of artwork I'm doing.
But the upside down part is getting in the way.
Like getting notices from my mom's insurance company telling me they are canceling the fire policy on her house and I have to find a new one. The electricity meter-reader-guy couldn't get to the meter to read it, so I have to call them. Oh, and they will cancel all utilities unless I get everything transferred to my name. (Which costs extra) Not to mention every day life at my house....and a little procedure called a colonoscopy that I've put off no less than three times due to upside-down-ness. I have lost count of how many I have had, thanks to having Ulcerative Colitis.

Today is a day where I can have only clear liquids and the real fun begins around 6 p.m. and then again at 3 a.m. About 2 hours into not eating and I'm a total mess, no matter how much broth I have.
All that to say, is that I'm really, really looking forward to posting, but today I'll leave you with my favorite article by Dave Barry regarding having a colonoscopy.

This is from Miami Herald's newshound Dave
 Barry's Colonoscopy Journal:
 I called my friend Andy Sable, a gastroenterologist,
 to make an appointment for a colonoscopy. A few days later, in
 his office, Andy showed me a color diagram of the colon, a lengthy
 organ that appears to go all over the place, at one point
 passing briefly through Minneapolis
Then Andy explained the colonoscopy procedure to me in a thorough, 
 reassuring and patient manner. I nodded thoughtfully, but I didn't
 really hear anything he said, because my brain was shrieking, quote,
 I left Andy's office with some written instructions, and a
 prescription for a product called 'MoviPrep,' which comes in a box
 large enough to hold a microwave oven. I will discuss MoviPrep in
 detail later; for now suffice it to say that we must never allow it
 to fall into the hands of America 's enemies
I spent the next several days productively sitting around being
 nervous. Then, on the day before my colonoscopy, I began my
 preparation. In accordance with my instructions, I
 didn't eat any solid food that day; all I had was chicken broth,
 which is basically water, only with less flavor. Then, in the evening, I
 took the moviPrep.
 You mix two packets of powder together in a one-liter plastic
 jug, then you fill it with lukewarm water. (For those unfamiliar
 with the metric system, a liter is about 32 gallons.
 Then you have to drink the whole jug. This takes about an hour,
 because MoviPrep tastes - and here I am being kind - like a mixture of
 goat spit and urinal cleanser, with just a hint of lemon.
 The instructions for MoviPrep, cle arly written by somebody with a
 great sense of humor, state that after you drink it, 'a loose,
 watery bowel movement may result.' This is kind of like saying that
 after you jump off your roof, you may experience contact with the
 MoviPrep is a nuclear laxative. I don't want to be too graphic,
 here, but: Have you ever seen a space-shuttle launch?
 This is pretty much the MoviPrep experience, with you as the
 shuttle. There are times when you wish the commode had a seat belt.
 You spend several hours pretty much confined to the bathroom,
 spurting violently. You eliminate everything. And then, when
 you figure you must be totally empty, you have to drink another liter
 of MoviPrep, at which point, as far as I can tell, your bowels travel into 
 the future and start eliminating food that you have not even eaten yet.
 After an action-packed evening, I finally got to sleep. The next
 morning my wife drove me to the clinic. I was very nervous. Not only
 was I worried about the procedure, but I had been experiencing
 occasional return bouts of MoviPrep spurtage. I was thinking, 'What
 if I spurt on Andy?' How do you apologize to a friend for something
 like that? Flowers would not be enough.
 At the clinic I had to sign many forms acknowledging that I
 understood and totally agreed with whatever the heck the forms said.
 Then they led me to a room full of other colonoscopy people, where I
 went inside a little curtained space and took off my clothes and put
 on one of those hospital garments designed by sadist perverts, the
 kind that, when you put it on, makes you feel even more naked than
 when you are actually naked.
 Then a nurse named Eddie put a little needle in a vein in my left
 hand. Ordinarily I would have fainted, but Eddie was very good, and
 I was already lying down. Eddie also told me that some people put
 vodka in their MoviPrep. At first I was ticked off that I hadn't
 thought of this is, but then I pondered what would happen if y ou got
 yourself too tipsy to make it to the bathroom, so you were
 staggering around in full Fire Hose Mode. You would have no choice
 but to burn your house.
 When everything was ready, Eddie wheeled me into the procedure
 room, where Andy was waiting with a nurse and an anesthesiologist. I
 did not see the 17,000-foot tube, but I knew Andy had it hidden
 around there somewhere. I was seriously nervous at this point. Andy
 had me roll over on my left side, and the anesthesiologist began
 hooking something up to the needle in my hand. There was music
 playing in the room, and I realized that the song was 'Dancing
 Queen' by ABBA. I remarked to Andy that, of all the songs that could
 be playing during this particular procedure, 'Dancing Queen' had to
 be the least appropriate.
 'You want me to turn it up?' said Andy, from somewhere behind me.
 'Ha ha,' I said. And then it was time, the moment I had been
 dreading for more than a decade. If you are squeamish, prepare
 yourself, because I am going to tell you, in explicit detail,
 exactly what it was like.
 I have no idea. Really. I slept through it. One moment, ABBA was
 yelling 'Dancing Queen, feel the beat of the tambourine,' and the
 next moment, I was back in the other room, waking up in a very&n bsp;
 mellow mood. Andy was looking down at me a nd asking me
 how I felt. I felt excellent. I felt even more excellent when Andy
 told me that It was all over, and that my colon had passed with flying
 colors. I have never been prouder of an internal organ.
 ABOUT THE WRITER: Dave Barry is a Pulitzer Prize-winning humor
 columnist for the Miami Herald. On the subject of Colonoscopies...
 Colonoscopies are no joke, but these comments during the exam were
 quite humorous..... A physician claimed that the following are
 actual comments made by his patients (predominately male) while he
 was performing their colonoscopies:
 1. 'Take it easy, Doc. You're boldly going where no man has gone ; before!
 2. 'Find Amelia Earhart yet?'
 3. 'Can you hear me NOW?'
 4. 'Are we there yet? Are we there yet? Are we there yet?'
 5. 'You know, in Arkansas , we're now legally married.'
6. 'Any sign of the trapped miners, Chief?'
7 'You put your left hand in, you take your left hand out...'
8. 'Hey! Now I know how a Muppet feels!'
9. 'If your hand doesn't fit, you must quit!
 10. 'Hey Doc, let me know if you find my dignity.'
 11. 'You used to be an executive at Enron, didn't you?
And the best one of all.
12. 'Could you write a note for my wife saying that my head is not
up there?

Eat something for me today, 'cause I'm seriously considering going to the liquor store and buying vodka.

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Go Big!

Preparing to go big today, friends...
What's up for you today?

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

I thought fifty was the new forty. I shouldn't get this for another ten years. Or so.
What do you think it means when they get your name wrong? (my middle initial is not D.)

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

It's In The Brooklyn Art Library....

An email I received today:

Dear Lynn Richards,

Thanks for sending in your project for The Sketchbook Project: 2012! We just wanted to let you know that your project has now been cataloged into the Brooklyn Art Library! It can be found on the shelves with a call number of 157.4-8. 
Please stay tuned for more details about the project.

The Art House Librarian Robot

Art House Co-op

I love, LOVE that life still has beautiful news to give us, however small it is.
I'll take it.
I hope you hear of something today that makes you smile.

(sneak peak of the whole sketchbook....I'll put it all together later this week!)

extra x's and o's.....