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What I did for my birthday week

yep, the older I get it moves from my birth DAY, to my birthday WEEKEND, and now it’s slowly creeping up to birthday WEEK, I imagine MONTH is what follows…I love that the September Squam falls around my birthday, and now that I’ve finally gone, there is no doubt it will become an annual pilgrimage for me. As the wise woman says, it is not a luxury, it is a need.

The last time I went to a retreat was when I was 16. It was called ECHO and was at the Craigville Conference Center. And while there were girls there I knew, there were also those there I didn’t. And while it was a Christ-centered retreat, it involved much storytelling, art, creativity and all around sharing as does SAW. Which makes me wonder — spirit, God, art, nature, creation…isn’t it all the same? I know the message of Squam was the same as the message of ECHO — whether we knew each other or not when we arrived, we felt the same thing when we left — one LOVE. Mmmmm, blessed synchronicity.

Millbillies and the Mainstream

 I keep putting off this post but every week that goes by I want to write something for Siobhan. I have never watched American Idol except in occasional blips when my daughter’s had it on telly.
When I have caught it, I find it to be a rather cruel show like many of these competition shows seem to be.

That being said, last week was glorious and sunny, and I decided to finally get out and take photos of all the banners around town supporting Siobhan. At the vet a few weeks ago, my son, John and Susan (our vet and his wife) were reminiscing about the high school days when Anthony would be jamming in the basement with Colin, Rory and Mike, while Siobhan ran around upstairs chasing Colin’s younger brother Miles. Molly came home from school one day in high school and said to me, “remember Anthony’s friend, Rory? you should hear his sister sing — she should be on American Idol.” And so here she is today, a big girl on American Idol. Marching to the beat of her own drum. Which is very hard to do in our culture with more “I don’t get you Simons” out there than “this is who I am Siobhans.”

Perhaps Simon would “get her” if he knew the context of this place called Cape Cod, where Siobhan is from. I left for almost twenty years, and when I came back I felt like Rip Van Winkle. Many of the players were older but they were the same players running the show. And when they weren’t the same, it didn’t matter — it was still the same act, just a different face and name. Sometimes, I feel like an outsider here among the SUV and hydrangea painting fans. But there is an underground offbeat culture that permeates the backside of this peninsula and that is where I feel most at home. I’ve found it through music, dance, nature, offbeat cafes and other venues of creativity. I seek the subculture out as best I can.

There’s a dusky mauve Cape in Marstons Mills with a big banner for Siobhan in the yard — possibly her house, as it looks like a house that has lots of kids and energy (she has about 5 siblings). It’s a burst of magic in the midst of the mediocre. Many years ago, when I first saw her dad at one of the boys’ concerts on the town green, I was thrilled to see a long-haired, tattooed sleeves guy (also a musician). The whole family is a quirky, talented and creative blend of renegade Cape Cod natives, something I’ve sorely missed. It’s good to still find it here.

** You  might have to click on the collage to see the whole thing…

Private

I’ve decided to make my blog private for awhile — haven’t been posting much and am deciding what sort of direction I want to go with it. I put the photo of Julie Arkell up just to make the post pretty 😉

She’s a favorite artist — last I heard still with no email and no website! Can you believe it?

She’s BookNut007, Who Are You?

In my journal Saturday, I created a persona for a blogger I’ve become friendly with and it reminded me of Mia’s and Stephanie’s workshops. And got me thinking about my own goddess self and who she is. As I watch 1930’s movies, read female writers of that era, and reflect on my grandmothers (one born in 1899, Gardiner, Maine; the other born in Doon, County Limerick in 1905), my goddess persona is beginning to reveal herself to me. But I’m not ready to share her yet. So I’ll share this other femme fatale —

Booknut007 is her handle. Definitely “Film Noir”, trench coat, Chanel Red Lipstick, and truly espionage worthy. Complete with fedora (and an engrossing paperback stuffed in her pocket). She has one of those mini-cameras I always wanted as a child. Slim as a lipstick tube. Hey wait a minute! It is her lipstick tube.

She drinks a lot of coffee, but is particular about her joe — it’s gotta be the original (like her) that got the trend started in the first place — Dunkin’ Donuts. None of the fafa stuff for her. Good thing, because her contact is also a DD fan and what better place for clandestine meetings — easier to blend into a mob scene and it’s a rare Dunkin’ Donuts that isn’t a mob scene.

Her handle is scrawled across her lower back in a sensual script from bygone letter writing days circa 1922. Her only tattoo. One is enough and it says it all. Booknut007. Watch out!

Me? I can’t drink coffee so I’m envious of that Booknut chick. Oh yeah, I can drink decaf, but gee whiz — decaf is my Shirley Temple to her Jack Daniels. No, I drink tea. Chai to be exact. Think Rumer Godden, Passage to India, saffron, Kipling, elephants and monsoons. Mystery, magic, life and joy living out loud even in the face of despair.

The tattoo? Don’t got one. Still haven’t figured out where I can hide it from Marty (he abhors tattoos). So I have the pierced nose. And I dig Mehndi in a big way. More India. But that’s all I got for now — what you got??

** photo attributed to this awesome site — it would be the UK natch!

LOve BoMB BEAR


Made a few changes to the retreat which you can find here and here and here. So if you’ve ever thought of creating your own love bomb, everything’s in place for it, just get your group together and we can make it happen!

The BIGGEST changes are:

1. BEDS are NO LONGER SHARED, they are all individual

2. Spots are limited to 12 on-site participants

3. I am considering offering a small number of spots to commuter participants — cost to be determined, and it would include lunch and workshops both Friday and Saturday

4. COST for on-site participants has been reduced to $450. inclusive

** image from here, copyright 2007 Susan Eleanor Boulet Trust (one of my favorite cards in my deck and very apropos for me at this time).

Who are you?

In my journal yesterday, I created a persona for a blogger I’ve become friendly with and it reminded me of Mia’s and Stephanie’s workshops. And got me thinking about my own goddess self and who she is. As I watch 1930’s movies, read female writers of that era, and reflect on my grandmothers (one born in 1899, Gardiner, Maine; the other born in Doon, County Limerick in 1905), my goddess persona is beginning to reveal herself to me. But I’m not ready to share her yet. So I’ll share this other femme fatale —

Booknut007 is her handle. Definitely “Film Noir”, trench coat, Chanel Red Lipstick, and truly espionage worthy. Complete with fedora (and an engrossing paperback stuffed in her pocket). She has one of those mini-cameras I always wanted as a child. Slim as a lipstick tube. Hey wait a minute! It is her lipstick tube.

She drinks a lot of coffee, but is particular about her joe — it’s gotta the original (like her) that got the trend started in the first place — Dunkin’ Donuts. None of the fafa stuff for her. Good thing, because her contact is also a DD fan and what better place for clandestine meetings — easier to blend into a mob scene and it’s a rare Dunkin’ Donuts that isn’t a mob scene.

Her handle is scrawled across her lower back in a sensual script from bygone letter writing days circa 1922. Her only tattoo. One is enough and it says it all. Booknut007. Watch out!

Me? I can’t drink coffee so I’m envious of that Booknut chick. Oh yeah, I can drink decaf, but gee whiz — decaf is my Shirley Temple to her Jack Daniels. No, I drink tea. Chai to be exact. Think Rumer Godden, Passage to India, saffron, Kipling, elephants and monsoons. Mystery, magic, life and joy living out loud even in the face of despair.

The tattoo? Don’t got one. Still haven’t figured out where I can hide it from Marty (he abhors tattoos). So I have the pierced nose. And I dig Mehndi in a big way. More India. But that’s all I got for now — what you got??

** photo attributed to this awesome site — it would be the UK natch!

Why-tos and wherefores…or something like that

Actually, I was just trying to think of a clever name for a post. I haven’t much felt like writing blogs since the laptop crashed, as this computer just has too much stuff on it (and that confuses me, distracts me and so on from my work, more than the usual internet routine). I also don’t like to blog when I’m in pessimist mode.

I’ve been rather gloomy lately, my mood matching the weather. Intended to edit some photos for my etsy shop, but cannot find or open the files on this computer. Just as well because I need to get out while the day is young — scoot to Falmouth and possibly Sandwich for some fresh Thanksgiving veggies.

I haven’t been totally grousing lately — still enjoying books, old movies and developing vegan cookie recipes — low in sugar, high in fiber (trying all kinds of flours but my old unbleached standby). No matter how down I get, I never lose my enthusiasm for simple baking. Maybe it’s because of the yummy reward afterwards? My latest experiments — peanut butter cookies and then gingersnaps yesterday turned out awesome if I do say so myself (Marty, who is Mr. Carnivore himself agrees they are dynamite).

I leave you with my latest polaroid of the Beech Tree, taken this past weekend. It about sums up how I’ve been feeling — bare, exposed, worn.

February

I’m looking forward to going to an art show reception tonight featuring this Brooklyn artist’s work tonight — I’ve been following her blog lately and love her embroidery. I was thinking how I’d love to check out her show in New York tonight and then whoa! saw that she’s got a couple of pieces in tonight’s show practically up the street from me…

Thanks for the notes about where I can get help with my blog banner, etc — gotta eat supper now or I’ll never make it to the show…have a glorious weekend. And if you’re in snowy parts, stay warm, eat chocolate and drink lots of tea. Some snuggling with a honey’s always good too!