Making Cards Is Kind of Fun

The latest creative burst.
Less than an hour.
What's not to love?
Well, I don't love it when my friends break up with their boyfriends . . . but other than that . . .



(*I don't really like the word "suck" all that much . . . it just sort of came out.)

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Counting Down

Today's snow storm seems like as good a day as any to say . . .
Two weeks from yesterday, we are getting on an airplane with the masses of high school juniors and seniors who are allowed to leave the country for spring break (still don't understand that one) . . . flying to cancun . . . saying "peace out, homies" to the high schoolers . . . hopping a ferry and . . . landing at this sweet place for 5 nights and 4 long, sunny days of lounging, exploring, snorkeling, and making out on beaches!!!!!!

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For $125, you can now purchase . . .

It is stuff like this that makes me embarassed to be among the privelaged in the world. This is what we are doing with our creativity and our wealth?

I am sorry.

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Status Check

Current Musings on . . .

Creativity . . . I know I have it, but I think it is stuck. I imagine there is a huge lump of creativity in my right elbow. And it can't get out. And then there are spurts when i have amazing ideas AND the energy to actually do something with them. Lucky for me, these times almost always come when i am driving or working or otherwise unaccesible. Sweet.

Marriage . . . I have decided to begin referring to the first two years of marriage as "The Years of Negotiation". These are the years when you find yourselves arguing (again and again) over things like "does the bedroom door stay open (herb) or closed (cara) at night" and who does the chores. Despite the fact that we have more than 8 months left in the YON, i must say i am really enjoying my man these days. he is sweet and funny and he gets excited over simple things like new undies from the gap with cars on them. it is nice when you figure out how to show love to the one you love! never knew it might turn out to be so simple!

Career . . . I have my hands dipped just a little bit into so many different areas right now. I will let you know if i ever figure out what i want to be when i grow up! this week alone, i interviewed a student for an internship program i am creating, saw a therapy client, volunteered, worked on an art commission, thought about another art commission, and shadowed a Child Life Specialist at the hospital! plus, i have started getting the "mommy bug". i am sure that will go away soon though!

My Butt . . . Sorry. But I really must include this one. After much hard work, I lost 25 pounds this fall. And I managed to keep them off over the holidays! And for the first time since the 9th grade, I bought a BIKINI on sunday afternoon! A real-life, full-fledged, "not your grandma's bikini" bikini! And . . . a size 8 dress. Size 8, people! Again, let me clarify why this is a huge deal! In the 6th grade, I wore clothes from the children's section. In the 7th grade, I wore a size 2 from the juniors section. In the 9th grade, I was a size 12 and have been ever since! Except for the times when I was a size 14. There were a few of those. SO, I am not sure i have ever actually been a size 8! Here is to firsts!

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The Artist Formerly Known As Valentine's Day: Vol. 1

9 am: Couples Counseling, where i played the role of wife married to husband with deep-rooted need for unconditional love; made difficult by a deep-rooted determination to never love unconditionally for fear of being taken-advantage of.

11 am: Interviewed a potential intern for the training program i am developing. The real gem here is when the student asked why I am a therapist, to which i replied something just about as charming as "I did not really pick therapy. Sometimes, therapy just picks you. i have tried not being a therapist, but it just keeps coming back to me." yep. i actually said that. really, as she left, i think we both knew i might not see her again. that perhaps she would like to be supervised by somebody whose reason for doing the job they are training her for is more complex than, “I am becoming a very good therapist.” i wouldn't blame her. I know we all have “those” moments. I just get bummed when they come at a time that actually matters.

1pm: Volunteered at the hospital and made a valentine for my man.

5pm: Picked up my man and scurried across town for a surprise massage at Indulgences Day Spa. I like surprises. And Day Spas. It was lovely. And very thoughtful and sweet of my man.

7pm: Now we are at Blockbuster. Sweet man offers up Marie Antoinette. To which I point out that he has no interest at all in this film. But he says he would do anything for love . . . even that. He suggests Season Two of Project Runway but after realizing that Tim Gunn might not be featured very much, we give it up. In the end we decide on a film with the charming Ryan Gosling. He plays a young man in the 1930's. He is a poet at heart but society sees him as nothing more than one of the rough neck mining kids. Except for of course the lovely Rachael McAdams. He sees her. She sees him. He convinces her that she is a tight-a**, and furthermore convinces her that in order to cure this, she should lay in the middle of a road and stare at the stoplights. And when her life is almost whisked away from her as a car plunders through, she doesn't proceed to kill him, but slow dance with him. Back in the middle of the street. What is wrong with this girl? She will never get admitted into Sarah Lawrence if she keeps behaving this way! They fall in love. Her parents tear them apart. He leaves for the war. She goes to school and falls in love with the right man this time. Cal. Who falls in love with Cal? In the end of course, the guy who deserves the girl gets the girl and we tear up a little bit and swoon. And then fall wildly into each other's arms. This last part was pretty awkward when the film was being shown in the theatres. But now that it can be rented . . .
But this is not the film we rented. We got that other Ryan Gosling film. You know, the one that was nominated for something on one of those awards shows? The one that nobody really recalls being in the theatre. Yeah. That one. About the charismatic teacher who speaks the language of his inner-city students . . . oh, and apparently smokes the crack pipe on a regular basis. It is one of those films where there are silences as long at 13-15 seconds. Sometimes longer. It makes me want to smoke a crack pipe. In the end, I don't.

So, his prize student finds out his secret. And apparently he finds out about a secret she has. But I never felt too clear about that. I fell asleep. But I did wake up in time to catch the girl picking her teacher up from a cheap motel after a binder and taking him home. Oh, and a very poor rendition of the "Interrupted Cow" joke. A real feel good movie.

At this point, I wandered upstairs and collapsed on my bed because apparently a massage, a slowly nursed glass of wine (oh wait, that was herb who slowly nursed his wine. i think i practically slammed mine. might be part of the problem), and a generally sensitive body don't go well together. And tiramisu. I really love tiramisu. And so i ate some. But I don't think it was all that useful. The reason I am saying this is because I actually heard ringing in my ears. I didn't know this actually happened to people. I thought it was an expression. For what? I am unsure. But there was ringing. And then a very strange and inexplicable mystery "white noise" and even though sweet herb humored me very well, it was clearly "my very own special noise".

So I slept.
Until I didn't.
That would be until about 3 am.
Because you see, I normally have a small white pill that tucks me into bed at night. But with the wine and tiramisu and whatever weird massage toxins where floating about . . . not to mention the inexplicable noises . . . i skipped the sleeping friend. It just seemed like if I took it, I might not wake up until next Tuesday.
So here I am.
At least it gives me a chance to do my 5 am blogging that I just love doing!

Hope you had a great day!

Who made YOU feel loved yesterday?

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No, It Isn't At All Like the Movies

Our friend Libby says that Herb and I are perfect for each other because we both have that "urban hipster" appearance . . . but it is a mere disguise for our down-home, mid-western sensibilities.

It's true. Herb single handedly led our block into a "barn raising" this week . . . he has been out in the ally for two weeks, chopping the 8 inches of ice with an ax. Eventually, the other men whose families share our ally began to come out and help him. By Sunday, we had four men out chopping . . . and I brought out a pitcher of water while another wife scurried inside to retrieve a plate of homemade cookies.

Despite my nose ring, my charming cynisism, and my tendancy to be a "christian cusser", at the end of the day, I like having my car door opened for me, baking cookies, and I look forward to being a (mostly) stay-at-home mom in a few years. And while I would love to be like my cooler friends who can say, "Valentine's Day is just a holiday made up by vendors to trick piss-poor husbands into spending way too much money on one contrived day to make up for their aloofness during the other 364 days of the year", I just am not that cool.

The thing is, my husband is not aloof. He is sweet, and kind, and funny, and home every night for dinner. He makes me laugh. He is faithful. He is a hard worker. He shovels the snow and makes me a smoothie any morning I am running late. He repeatedly plays my favorite dice game with me even though he has only ever won twice!

But I still enjoy the idea of being over-the-top romanced for no reason at all!

As it stands, Valentines's Day has been a bit of a sore subject in our house the past few years. I really love the idea. A day to be showered with romance and affection. Herb is not only disinterested . . . he is actually turned off and fairly disgusted by the whole thing. And I totally get that! But it makes the days leading up to February 1-4 a little tense around here.

After a few tears, some unkind words (on my part), and some last minute planning for this year, I think we finally negotiated it for next year in a way that will please us both. There will be some sort of reallocation of the 14th to another, non-commercial, non-publically celebrated day. And that is fine with me. See, it only took us three years of Valentine's to figure that one out!

Before we offically canceled Valentine's Day for the future, I did a little cupid-ing of my own . . . but because I do not care to look or feel like this:

I will in fact, NOT be wearing this tomorrow:

I guess I learned my lesson about buying into cliches.

To my credit (I hope), it did not look like this AT ALL in the pictures when I ordered it. It is not quite what I had in mind for accomplishing a romantic valentine's day look. In fact, I think my sister and I had some jammies for our Barbie Dolls that looked pretty similar to this. But, Herb did give me a good laugh by trying it on for me before I mail it right back to where it came from!!!!

In other Herb news, please note our casual breakfast conversation from today. While looking at the blisters on his hands from all of the shoveling and chopping of snow and ice this winter, the man said (with a straight face) . . . "It's a good thing I wasn't in prison back in the 1920's . . . I don't think my hands could have handled being on the Chain Gang. Or in France during the time of Bastille."
To which I replied: "I get the Chain Gang thing . . . but, France?"
Herb: "Oh, I am mostly basing that off of Les Miserables"

At this point, my ice chopping, snow shoveling, ugly pink liangere tutu wearing man began singing the first song from Les Miserables . . . complete with ax swinging sound effects.

Love is sweet. You just sometimes have to look for it in places other than roses and wine. In the end, I much prefer his silly humor and his faithfulness to me over a box of chocolates. It all just takes a little readjusting of the expectations!

So, sometime in the middle of April or October . . . you might find us unavailable . . . because we just might be off spelunking or taking a couples karate class . . . you know, to celebrate our Non-Valentine's Day!

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Out of Focus

Sometimes I get so caught up in things
like organized closets and clean refridgerators and bills
That I loose sight of myself
And I am so caught up on doing and list checking
that the doing and list checking doesn't get done.
My heart
Gets blurred and wierd
and when that happens
it is hard to live,
really live,
from it.

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There Are Others

This is a piece in our new art museum addition.
I told herb that if i was in the third grade again, i would have felt like seeing this huge striped canvas was a sign that i was not alone in the world . . . . it would have meant that there were others out there beyond the windows of my mom's station wagon that were also tired of trying so hard to pay attention in school and being bad at sports and pressed ham on white bread for lunch everyday.

It meant that one day i could be glamorous and silly and wild and free.
Oh, and eat McDonalds Chicken Nuggets whenever I felt like it!

It meant that there were people that would say, "If you want to paint big flowers on your bedroom wall, let's make that happen!" "If you want to wear striped leggings with plaid boxer shorts over them to school, go for it - you will not be mocked or chided in any way!" "Sure, it makes sense that when you lay on the edge of the couch in the living room with your head hanging off the edge that you could spend hours contemplating what life would be like if we had to live on the ceiling." "Go ahead and throw a little temper tantrum if somebody is mean to you just because you tend to be a little backwards . . . they are a bunch of boring jerks who will grow up to work in middle management! When you are done crying we will go throw eggs at them!"

So, here's to you Mr. "Big Striped Canvas For Absolutetly No Good Reason Other Than You Felt Like It" Painting Guy!

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My first official commission.
So wild.
Does this mean I am an artist now?
I have green paint smeared on my table and everything!

Paint, handmade papers, dictionary page, ink, found objects, wrapping paper, oragami paper, metal, tissue paper, and a whole lot of Modge Podge!

20x20 inch wrapped canvas

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