Saturday, October 11, 2014

This I Believe

This I Believe-a project for a class.

Words mean things. But I do not always believe.

The spoken word is power. It can inspire. It can encourage. It can entertain. It can elicit joy. It makes vows to last a lifetime. It deepens friendships, binds lovers, and makes meaning with inflection and volume and tone.

 But spoken words are impermanent. They can lie, deceive, and mislead. Vows are broken, friendships torn apart by words that wound instead of heal. So, because the spoken word is fickle and inconstant, I do not believe.

 The printed word is power. It can inform. It can lead. It can direct. It can entertain and teach and inspire. It is permanent and can be shared with just a few or many. It can outlast generations. It can speak for the invisible and represent the emotions of a multitude.

But printed words are careful. They can be edited, changed, and manipulated. They can be misconstrued or taken out of context and made to mean something other than intended. So, because the printed word is subject to interpretation, I do not believe.

The written word is power. It is intimate. It is raw. It moves from the heart to the hand in elegance or in scrawl. The form doesn't matter. It invites. It thanks. It shares deep ideas without thought to publication. It can convey emotion by implement or technique. It can be secret or shared.

 But written words are fragile. Paper ages and becomes brittle. Ink and pencil fade to nothingness. They can be crumpled or burned or carelessly lost. They can be marked up in anger or diminished by tears. So, because the written word is impermanent, I do not believe.

The Word is power. It speaks through spoken and printed and written words. It survives efforts to destroy it and is never affected by humans. It judges perfectly. It grants hope to the hopeless, comfort to the sorrowing, challenge to the arrogant, restoration to the repentant. It does not deceive. It is its own interpretation. It cannot be lost or damaged or carelessly ignored. It is both public and private. It is intimate and vast. It is inexplicable and understood by children. It is both beginning and end.

 So, because the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, I believe. This Word I believe.

Thursday, September 18, 2014

Something Pretty

I had a photo shoot at Gluten Free Cutie today. The extension is nearly ready to open and so I got a few pics and then the new grab-and-go lunch menu. This pretty arrangement hangs on the wall, and I couldn't resist combining the image with one of Kim Klassen's lovely textures.

Photo: mine
Overlay: Kim Klassen PinIt9

Saturday, August 16, 2014


Summer session for grad school was beastly, but it's done. Since then, I've done a few photo shoots and worked on projects for Nosh Fest in two weeks (yikes). We've also almost finished rearranging the house: studio moved upstairs, guest room across the hall, and Caty Mae to the basement. My blog is neglected. So, here are a few photos from the last couple of weeks!

Monday, July 14, 2014

A Journey

Slim Fast Can. Eleven ounces of quickly digestible calories with a balance of protein and fat.  And potassium. Why that matters, she doesn't know. What she does know, and what really matters, is that the chocolate liquid with its 220 artificially flavored calories will be absorbed along the one mile walk to the middle school. Mother and daughter walking. Mother walking and watching, making small talk while desperately trying to prevent her 6th grade daughter from starving to death. On purpose.  Her head already balances precariously on her tiny frame, but no one believes in purposeful starvation. Precise elimination. So it comes down to a daily can of Slim Fast in a cheery red can, watchfully consumed on a walk to school that seems shorter every day.

Family singing at Christmas Eve candlelight services. Final songs sung. Fragrance of Frazier fir lingering and mingling with smoky candles and peppermint canes. Tradition for 12 years, come to an end. Moving truck gone on before. Everything packed in two cars. Christmas lights inside the van, trying to capture the spirit of the holiday.  Loaded with possessions and dog, an empty-eyed teen and her sisters.  Santa knows hotels on I 5, right?  Don't cry; it's a grand adventure. Let the hope lights lead the way.


White on white. Lace or not. Ballgown? No. Mermaid?  Can't dance. Beading and sequins and appliqu├ęs.  What kind of neckline? Halter? Sweetheart? Daddy says, "You're beautiful in a burlap sack." He's not invited on this quest. No help at all.  Strapless, yes. Tulle? Maybe a little. Shimmer? "Um, no, Mom. That's so 1987." Wink, grin, whispering.  "I'll wear your veil as my something old." Ouch.  Yards and yards of white: eggshell and ivory and cloud and whisper and natural and champagne. Who knew white came in so many colors? Little girl disappears into a fitting room and walks out a woman, a vision, a bride. Ready.

Sunday, June 29, 2014


One of my classes has us writing thank you notes. I thought I'd use the opportunity to make cards again for the first time in a long while.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Small Gifts

I remember trees.

I remember the three fruitless mulberries I used to climb with a book in one hand. I remember making my way around the top branches as they bent beneath my weight.  Finding the just the right perch to sit and escape for hours.

I remember the cherry plum tree. It was another tree for climbing, but not a place for reading. The reward of this ascent was the sticky sweet fruit, small as a cherry, flavor of a plum. Eating fruit, spitting seeds, sharing with the birds. Until they cut the tree down to expand the driveway.

I remember the apricot tree. It wasn't our tree. It was part of Mr. Parr's perfect yard. His yard was an oasis of order and beauty. Fragrant roses lined every wall. Flowers bloomed in season without fail. But his prize was the apricot tree in his backyard. It only bore fruit on alternate years, but when it did, it was a bountiful harvest. Branches heavy with gold hung over our fence. Mr. Parr allowed those branches to grow, his quiet gift to us, granting permission to eat any of the fruit that shadowed our yard.  Warm from the sun, fleshy, and sweet.

            "You must not eat them all."

            "We must make cobbler."

            "We must make jam."

            "We must turn them into something else."



Each one is perfect as it is.

                        Warm from the sun.

                                    Sweet and fleshy.

                                                Fully ripe.


A Metaphor

Before this,  I was the cool chick with the sporty car
Like a bumblebee savoring the sweet nectar of summer but flying fast, racing--
Like a blaze of yellow sun streaking down the highway, windows rolled down, 2/55.
It was glorious with black vinyl seats, manual transmission, and 8-track player.
And then Dad gave it to my kid brother.
Who promptly crashed it.

And after that everything changed because I drove the luxury sedan
Like a tall glass of very grown up iced tea, windows rolled up, A/C blasting.
Like an elegant old woman in pearls striding smoothly in automatic
Pushed to be an adult while still a teenager.
Unlike my kid brother.
Peter Pan.

Someday I will be the cool old lady with the sporty car
Like Halley's comet whizzing by earth every 75 years
Like silver mercury conducting electricity gliding over the road
Enjoying glorious freedom with the convertible top down and manual transmission

Better hang on.

My Graduate English class is challenging me in a number of ways. This poem is one of our assignments.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Wedding Cake

I needed a creative break from school, and since I had just done photos for the bakery...

Cake by Gluten Free Cutie
Photo: mine
Overlay: Kim Klassen
Quote: unknown