Sunday, June 15, 2014

Where Do I Begin?

When I was in high school, I used to write a ton when I was unhappy or thinking about stuff or feeling lonely or just experiencing the usual teenage angst.  When I was happy, when I was feeling like life was going my way, there was so much less to write about. Not because it wasn't important, but because I was busy living instead of writing about living.

These days, I find that the same is true. I am finding ways to inhabit my days. Not in any special way, not in super memorable ways. Sometimes, yes. Sometimes, no.  But importantly, I am inhabiting my life.  For a long time, I didn't feel like I was.

I have been noticing this in large and small ways.  One funny thing was that I noticed that for a long time, I didn't really have any pictures of myself - either with people or alone. That seems weird, but in this age of selfies and digital photos, it seemed notable in some way.  Then suddenly, a couple of months ago, in some moments of extreme joy, photos started appearing. Smiling, happy photos. Photos where I am me and not afraid to show my true self. I know it sounds a little narcissistic. That's not my intention. I just felt like I disappeared for a while. And now, I'm back.

Friends, life is good. It isn't always easy. It isn't always fun. But life is good.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Good Times - Ashland 2014

 Christopher Robinson, Todd Agan and I at the Bowmer after interpreting "The Sign in Sydney Brustein's Window". Intense show, intense experience. Fantastic. Makes me miss being "just" an interpreter.

Monday, March 24, 2014

I Wonder

Is it really such a bad thing to see the world through rose-colored glasses?

I should read up on the origin of the saying...

Vulnerability in Sharing

I realized at some point that I did not feel comfortable sharing all the little things that make me happy. Or all the thoughts that travel briefly through my mind and then leave again. Half the time, I think "who cares about what you have to say?" and the other half of the time, I don't want other people to be privvy to my inner most thoughts.

Fickle, right?

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

100 HappyDays Day 2: iPhone for work

When I started working at my place of business almost 10 years ago, I was given a TMobile Sidekick  II for work purposes. It was an early precursor to the smart phones of today. I loved that stupid thing. Easy to use - lots of features. My hands didn't feel too big for it, I could hit all the keys...there WERE keys.  After 5 years, I still had my sidekick - in nearly mint condition, until TMobile turned off the Danger network. They got bought out by Microsoft or something and they no longer supported the sidekick network. I literally had the thing on until the moment they turned off the service one evening at midnight.

Luckily, I was in California, working at my corporate headquarters. Everyone in IT was snickering at me for being one of the last holdouts, but they seemed to understand my reluctance to change.  I was given a Blackberry Curve in exchange for my beloved Sidekick II.  It was not a love match.

Blackberry is small and has keys, yes. But it took me a long time to figure out how to TURN IT ON and OFF. Embarrassing, yes, but honestly, I tried everything and apparently, I just didn't hold down the buttons long enough. My fingers are too big for the buttons, so I never could really use it for sending emails or texts. Everything about it seemed like more work. And Blackberry didn't support AIM or if it did, it was too difficult to figure out. My love affair with smart phones was over.

Now, almost exactly four years later, I have been forced to give up Blackberry. For some reason, about two weeks ago, the phone decided to stop delivering any email messages. It still reminds me of all my appointments, but no emails. And texts are intermittant and randomly disappear for no reason. I have a weird text from a former student from 3 years ago, but an employee message from last week disappeared. No rhyme or reason to any of it.

When I contacted my IT guy and told him that Blackberry was acting up, his response was, "GAH! You STILL have a Blackberry? Let's get rid of that. I will send you an iPhone. What color do you want?"

I didn't expect a color option but I asked for yellow. Or pink. I thought those would be happy colors. After the iPhone was sent to the building we were in 5 years ago, it finally arrived today.  I was all prepared for my yellow iPhone - almost excited, but daunted by learning a new and foreign technology.  When I opened the box, I found this:

Although it isn't yellow or pink, I think it suits me perfectly. It is a toned down version of the color of my current handbag, just a little less...bright.

So, today, this is Day 2 of my #100happydays.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Lemmings and 100HappyDays

I generally avoid joining in the line of people leaping into memes or activities for whatever random reason, however, as I get older, I am coming to see that there is a beauty in participating in something that other people find useful, fun, beneficial, etc.  I also like having a bit of a challenge to keep me on track.

So, call me a lemming, I don't care.  A friend posted a link to 100HappyDays on Facebook today and it intrigued me - I think it was the Happy and the YELLOW!!  Either way, I'm going to try it. It asks people to use a hashtag, which I still don't really understand. What if no one else has the same hashtag as you? It seems like people are creating them all the time...  Well, I'm not letting that hold me back. I'm all over stuff that helps me focus on being grateful and happy in the life I have.

#100HappyDays Day 1 for Jean:

My February Snow Day List for 2014

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Snowpocolypse 2014

Seems like every couple of years we have a snow "event" and somehow, I never learn my lesson.

They thought the snow was going to come in at around 3:00pm, but it started WAY EARLY.  I finally left work at 1:30pm and made it home by 6:30pm.  I had music, radio news, a good heater, a full tank of gas and lots of patience.  I just decided I would make it home safe and try not to stress out.

I drove from Vancouver, WA to my home via I-5 South to 405. I couldn't get onto Sunset Highway because the onramp was filled with spin outs after 2 hours sitting at a standstill on the top deck of the Fremont Bridge. Ugh.  When I realized that the Frement lane I was in was not moving (for like an hour), I moved over and then heard on the radio that there was an accident just on the west side of the tunnel, so no wonder!  So I took the 6th Street exit as it was getting dark out and drove Barbur Boulevard around to the Burlingham Fred Meyer and took that road up behind the Fred Meyer to go down to Beaverton Hillsdale Highway and then all the way home.

I have photos on my Blackberry, but the email function isn't working, so I'm trying to figure out how to get them transferred off the phone.  It was 16 degrees out when I got home. There were about 4-5 inches of snow and it was still coming down.  Tomorrow looks to be another mess, so we'll see what it looks like in the morning.

Be safe out there. I will be packing an overnight bag to keep in the car for next time. You'd think I would have already done that. Denial is a powerful thing.

Monday, January 20, 2014

Art Projects

So, right now, I'm working on the Brene Brown/Oprah LifeCourse - "The Gifts of Imperfection", which includes some art journaling. I don't think I will always post what I do as it is supposed to be very personal work, but for now, I'm willing to share some of what I'm doing.  I'm also doing "The Documented Life" Project but I'm behind and I already didn't know how to do something and did it wrong already. I'm trying to get over myself about that (this is related to the class that I don't want to pay a monthly fee for).  I'm also working with another art journal which is helping me to get over the problems I have been having with "The Decorated Life" planner (from here on out, TDL planner).

Anyway, here are some works in progress photos:

This is the original composition book style

This is a side by side comparison of the front of one decorated comp book

Back side of comp books

Yellow book - glued pages. Compared with regular comp book

The Gifts of Imperfection

Permission slips

The Decorated Life planner (TDL)

More TDL Planner

Mighty moleskine with washi tape on the edges

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Beginning 2014 on an Artful Note

Yesterday, I committed to myself that I would have a low-screen day (less time on computer) and do some art, read and maybe watch a movie or something.  I did manage to have less time on the computer, I did some art - started working on my planner and a new journal. I put in the movie version of "Les Miserables" and worked away.  I took some photos but I have to find the usb cord that goes with my camera - the one I have here is too big.

First, "Les Miserables" is good every. single. time. It just is. The only reason I didn't bawl was because I was working on my art journal and planner.  I finished putting washi tape on the edge of the planner - it looks cool, although I looked at the photos of some of the other participants and I have no idea how  they got them all so even and perfect. I have a couple of pages that frustrated me to no end, but I decided that a little imperfection was good for me.

Then, I decided I wanted to access a class that was showing some techniques for decorating the planner, but I found that the hosting place where I need an account to access the class (supposed to be free) just changed to $25/month. I'm just not into paying monthly fees for things like that, so I struggled mightily with myself before deciding it wasn't worth it.

I'm kind of excited about this art stuff that I'm doing now - it just feels good again. I'm really focused on letting the activity itself be the part that is meaningful - not just the end result. Imperfections are allowed.  It's such a stretch for me, but I'm getting there.

Today, the Brene Brown ecourse started. "The Gifts of Imperfection". I'm doing it again and taking the second part, as well. I'm very excited to do this again - more time and more commitment to it this time.

Photos later this week, I hope.

Friday, January 10, 2014

Behind Already but Giving Myself a Break

I'm starting some art projects and some other stuff and I'm already a bit behind. I sometimes can't keep up when I'm trying to get ready for a show, so I just decided to give myself the extra time. I want to be sure to photograph my progress on some of it and I have already missed a couple of steps, but it's all good.

I'm disappointed that I can't do one of the classes I was hoping to do.  It was not very expensive, but you have to sign up for a NING account - they used to be free accounts but now it is $25/month to have an account. I just can't see spending that money, even though I really had wanted to take the class. The instructor originally thought that NING provided FREE accounts, but turns out that NING just changed and revoked all free services. Kind of a bummer.

Anyway, I hope to be posting some photos over the weekend. I'm feeling the itch to get my hands a little dirty.


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