Monday, September 06, 2010


Two posts in one day!!! I'm So used to being chained to the computer, after the push to get the book finished. I should get the proof this week and have copies ready for sale at Art-Is-you in Danbury, CT, on 10/8/10, and on my website after I get home.
I thought you'd like to see a few more pages, and also to know that I will continue to collect and post stories and images, because they are all Just Too Good not to share!

A new story from Holly Bickford: "Ha! Mid-life crisis are great! Truth be known I was with a guy for a while who had a Harley & I hated riding on the back...contol issue maybe?! He helped me buy my own, I got my license, he got transferred to San Diego, and I was supposed to
move there with him a month later. He got there, called me & broke up with me, the next day I got laid off from my job!!!! Yikes!!! But I'm a strong woman & had known Adam for at least a year & we hooked up soon
after that. I guess everything happens for a reason! I'm still riding & loving it, but I still have a lot to learn! Dad wanted to ground me but I told him I was 51 & he couldn't! Lol!


A Wedding in Chicago

What a whirlwind of getting HOT FLASH: A CELEBRATION to the printer, then heading east to Iowa. Balancing ART and FAMILY can be tricky, even when one doesn't have children or a partner. My youngest niece, Serene, and I flew from Seattle to Waterloo, Iowa, at the end of August.

I spent junior high and high school in Iowa, and headed for a coast as soon as possible.

Here's Mom with Serene and with me in front of the Waterloo Art and Recreation Center, which was located in a crumbling school building when I was there,. Now it's huge and lovely. I took some of my first art classes there--Port Angeles needs to get started on our version of an inclusive Arts Center...we're counting on you, Max!

Steve entrusted me with his car to drive Mom and Serene to Chicago for the wedding of Steve's younger daughter, Megan. I am a Confirmed Small Town girl for sure, and it was Really Scary negotiating Chicago, especially the weird toll booths, the 2-hour Friday traffic jam, and streets that were closed. Serene was my trusty co-pilot.

I swear that living in such high density makes people way more aggressive than polite Northwesterners. Luckily, I (narrowly) escaped several potential opportunities for car crashes.
Almost did a head-on with Linda's brother, Phil.

The flat, open Iowa landscape has its own spare beauty, and as we got closer to the Mississippi, the rolling hills are SO Grant Wood. Unfortunately, I was too distracted by driving to take pictures, so you'll just have to imagine it.

My current--and probably permanent--experience of living alone and also collecting essays for HOT FLASH has led me to thinking a lot about male and female roles and how we limit ourselves. There are probably a lot of Dads who have to do driving into scary cities and don't complain about it the way I do...the ability to cope is not a sex-linked trait, more a matter of practice and opportunity. Approach your fears and puzzlements and conquer them! You CAN!

Some pictures from downtown Chicago and Millenium Park where there are trees and prairie in cages like animals in a zoo, the shiny bean, the large rectangles with faces projected on them and water spitting out. It was hot in the 90's and the crowds were filling the streets day and night. The people we met were friendly one on one, but Oh So Pushy when they want to get somewhere. I actually was in sight of the Art Institute, but couldn't switch gears from my family tour guide job. Chicago, I Will Return! I keep saying I hate the process of traveling these days, but there are places I want to be.

Holy Family Catholic Church is Gorgeous, and Megan and Maurizio were, too. We love Mo from past eating adventures in Galena and Mexico. One can tell just by looking at them that they have fun together and share well.

Megan's proud parents: Linda and Steve. My little brother cleans up well. His speech at the reception and first dance with the bride invoked a few tears. We Hastings do seem to love the occasional limelight!

The Hastings/Palmer pew at the church. It's good that parents are no longer so freaked out by their children living together with their Significant Others for seven years before the marriage--just to be sure--and also accepting their children's gay partners as part of the family. I'm proud of you all! Brian was a great addition to all the festivities AND the night-time card games...also Winnie the dog. The boys and their dog included Chicago in their annual car trip.

Because the youngsters were so aggressive about going down the street to grab cabs before they got to us, Mom and I got to ride on the shiny black Party Bus with the attendants. Mom boogied down with the best of them and was quite a hit! That very cute guy may have been one of Mo's cousins from Italy. In my younger days, I would have been sure to grab a dance with him.

The youngest niece and only nephew in our clan: Thayer: just back from 2 months in South Africa, interning for a NGO--hoping for gainful employment, preferably saving the world, next year when he graduates from UW. Serene--career as yet to be decided--so many choices!!!--starting Western Washington University in a few weeks. She's brilliant, gorgeous, and a very talented baker. I know she'll be Very Popular!

For an 86-year-old women who's never really had to develop her independent side, Mom did very well keeping up with the rest of us. I can see and appreciate the parts of her in who I am today...and also see the differences. Could I actually be becoming my Own Person at the ripe old age of 63?...I see it's a gradual growing/evolving process.

I came home last Tuesday at midnight, was at work at 8:45 the next morning, and am enjoying a long weekend at home to catch up. Two days of Northwest sun and Just-Right temps for yard work and stone arranging, and thank goodness partial misty rain for my other two days, so I can get caught up with my business and art lives. I bought yet more rocks on my way home from work Friday. Steve, next door, helped me weed whack and prune the blackberry tangle beside the driveway...sore, but happy, I am.

Part of my back yard rock arrangement.
decided that since I can't seem to make money
with my ART, and I don't want to move to NYC and flog it (the Art), I'll just do what I long as I can keep going to my day job.

I had bought some long, skinny rocks in the spring and set them on end with rebar to hold them for a tiny Stonehenge in the corner.

Like the Outsider Artists I love, I'll create for myself! I drew a sketch for a tall figure in the SE corner of my yard, using rebar, which I find I can pound into the ground with my new mallet (I'm accumulating tools and skills). I'll use up my leftover spray foam and the Paverol and make my-self an outdoor guardian...what FUN!!! even if I don't finish until Spring, which reminds me, I AM going to finish the now almost mythological BIG DOLL--who will be looking for a new home. I'll accept any reasonable offer, which must include transportation by truck for this 9.5' beauty.

Next post will be more pages from my new HOT FLASH book, to debut...Very Soon!!! October 8th!!! at Art-Is-You in Danbury, CT.

I'm looking forward to seeing friends and family in VT, NY, and CT in 3 weeks--Yikes!!!