Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Here we are, and thank you.

Today I got my current copy of National Geographic, this issue dedicated to the exploration of space, with a forward by Ray Bradbury.

Very soon, I'll read it from cover to cover and get a little lost in the photos. And for a short while I'll be a little girl, lying on the grass in South Carolina, wondering at the stars, asking my future self if people will ever reach them.

This is time travel. I still watch the sky and wonder as we all do, about the big questions that make us feel so small.

For tonight, I have a little white Russian in my iced coffee and we are off to sit cross-legged on the floor with a bit of Berlioz (thank you, Alison!) and we'll tape and wrap and wish the best to all the other humans on Earth.

And especially to you.

Thank you.

Christmas Eve

It's Christmas Eve and though I remain firmly agnostic, I grew up with this holiday and continue to celebrate a version of it.

This morning the tree is beautiful and the fire is lovely though I'm not looking forward to the wrapping to come.

As with all holidays, this one carries sadness too. We look behind us, and ahead of us, too much. And measuring where we are, this year.
Possibly we should try to focus on today.

So far, the best part of the day is looking at the owl Orion made for me at school. I've put it in a place where I'll see it often, because it's impossible for me to look at it without smiling.

Hope your day goes well. I hope you carry what is good with you, and leave the things behind that are not. I hope you find kindness out there, wherever you are. I hope others find kindness in you.

Now, to find out how Brate and the squitypips fare...

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Friday the birthday


Yeah. That happened.

I'm thinking...for all the birthdays from here on,
I might like to give presents
to other people.

I'm thinking...I have a lot of decisions to make.

I'm would be wise to take a bit of time off before I
start making them.

Birthdays can lead to thinking. Enough with the thinking.

Gurtie stalks the cake.

She likes the cake.

She is weird like that.

The puzzle table is a collaboration with Spencer, who appears here to have just phased in from another dimension. It's not as big a jump as one might think.

I have photos of the making of the table. I'd like to get them onto the forums.
It's on the list. I'll do my best, but you may have to nag me a little.

Alison and Orion hung out at Strange Too after our meeting.

Orion was very brave at the dentist's office.

The dentist's office is a difficult place to be brave.

We rounded things out with some Mario.

Mimi Ko took these photos. She helped with the tree, made apple crumble and translated directions for the new version of Rez, from Ben, Samantha and Joyce.

Aubrey made a pound cake, which tastes even better today than yesterday. Pound cakes tend to be like that. They improve if allowed to sit for a few days. But, that never happens.

Thanks for all the good wishes, calls and emails.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ravyn says "She might kill me...."

.... But before she kills me, please join me in saying:


We loves you! - - ravyn

Monday, December 15, 2008

Wet. Clear. Crystal. Shiny.

It's morning, around 7:45 and I've dropped Aubrey off at school. It's raining and I'm wearing my beloved military issue raincoat over pajamas. Rachmaninoff piano is playing on the radio. I've caught Orion's cold (Orion who is sleeping in today because of it) and am experiencing the ultra clear-headedness that inexplicably appears sometimes when I'm muddled with congestion. As I drive over the bridge I find myself in one of those moments when everything falls into place. One of those crystal clear moments where all the disjointed bits of life---including the aches and worries and bills---come together in a mosaic that makes perfect sense.
I am where I belong.
Perhaps it's because the desert is dressed in rain. The mountains I've come to love are mantled in cloud. Possibly my raincoat is secretly magical. More likely, I'm experiencing some weird sort of cold tablet high.
But I don't think so. I recognize the sensation. It's a rare thing, so rare that I remember the last such moment of clarity, which occurred as I stood on the edge of the swimming pool with Orion in the summer of 2006.
If this is happiness, I'll take it. I much prefer the quiet, deep sort of contentment that slips up without bells or whistles or identifiable cause to a giddy imp skating on temporary surfaces.
Even now, as I type by the windows overlooking the gloom, the essence of clarity remains.
In moments, the phone will start its ringing and the day will fill up with activity and distractions. I can try to carry the moment with me, but I know that is akin to trying to carry a handful of sand. Instead, I'll deeply appreciate it now and hope that appreciation will lend balance to the rest.

I'm thinking this might be as close as I can get, being a silly human, to poppet vision.

I'm off to the studio, with my imaginary handful of sand, seeking translation.

Hope you have a good Monday.

Friday, December 12, 2008

Spirit of Days Past

Days go by. Years. Sometimes memory is a gentle snow. Sometimes memory is a maelstrom.

Holidays tend to bring on these sorts of storms. They rage and swirl behind the candles and dinners and smiles.
Behind our eyes.
They bring depth and understanding, the weight of our pasts anchoring the present, allowing the lights of today
to shine more brightly.

Yes. You were right. I needed winter, so I made some.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

More work

Work now, words later. Hope your Thursday is good.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Days like this

Frankly, I'm having one crappy morning. It started out fine--crisp cool air, kids on the playground before school.
Then a seeming avalanche of stuff came crashing down around me.
It happens. It's life. I know.
But on days like this, I want that time machine---I want to be back on the playground, thinking about how I'd like to read aloud to these kids once a week or so.
It would be fun. I'm half there already. They always seem to gather around me in the mornings, waiting with Orion for the bell to ring.
Possibly they sense a fellow alien mind. Possibly I smell like bacon.

Anyway. I'm older now. I've had my cry. This stuff will pass. Always does.

In the meantime, here's some of the new work. We're still working away. No doubt more will be forthcoming.

Let me know if the video for the music box works. You should hear "Puff the Magic Dragon."

Hope your Tuesday is going better than mine. I continue to know that in a grander scheme, things could be lots worse, that things are lots worse for lots of people, that I have to make the best of my own troubles and not let the larger ones---disasters I can't control or help---shut me down.

Deep blues, dammit. And the water's too cold---no hiding there. I must do what I always do---make art. Time for toys, it seems. As my wise friend the Neil Gaiman says--if the work is good, the rest will rest. Or something like that.
Thanks for checking in. More later.

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Dreaming Winter

People shoveling snow right now would at best think I'm insane right now---I'd likely tell them to get in line---and at worst would want to punch me for my winter longings.

I've got mostly blue skies and palm trees here, day in, day out. Whaaah. Right, hate me if you wish, but it's all relative. Too much of a good thing is, well, too much. Human beings need seasons and change for renewal. It's that simple.

But today is cloudy, and I can sit outside with hot chocolate and blankets and pretend winter. So I'll appreciate that. Poppet tells me winter dreams are usually better than the real thing. And I've spent enough time trudging in snow to know that when my feet are numb, the romance becomes reality.

I am a very silly human, hiding in my own head.
Thank you Poppet, for pointing that out, once again.
I'm working a lot and will be adding new photos throughout the day, as we get them done. Hope you like them. And, if you are dealing with winter, don't forget to warm your feet and drink warm things. And if it would make you feel better, I'll put up photos of palm trees.

Monday, December 01, 2008

There is a season for Crash of the Titans

On the forums, we've been talking about how difficult it can be to make the creative drive behave itself enough so that we can function in everyday life.

Well, that's what I've been talking about. Still, it's a discussion about balancing the things we must do against the things we want to do, things that give our lives meaning. That pretty much applies to all of us.

On days that seems less productive, it helps me to know that later, when I step back a bit, I'll see these experiences in context, as part of the mosiac and then, they'll fit.

That said, I'm...still working on it.

I'm ending this day with a huge list of things to do tomorrow through Friday and a resolve to be up before six to start doing them. On Saturday, I plan to put everything aside for studio work. And Sunday, for feet up and TiVo. Well, that's my plan.

But most importantly, on Wednesday at 3pm, I have a date with Orion, to ride huge honkin' monsters and crack through walls and smash evil. Crash of the Titans.

It's a start.