Showing posts from December, 2008

I Don't Want to Get Any Older - I Want to Stay Just the Way I Am

Such words of wisdom in the kitchen between Larry and Alanna yesterday.

"I don't want to get any older Yiyi, I don't want to be a mommy, I want to be just the way I am."

Funny that a four year old should be thinking of such heavy matter during the Christmas Season.

I sat for a few moments, going back decades, digging deep in the vault of my childhood memories, remembering what it was like to be four.

I am watching our black and white TV, and I flash between visions of the flying monkeys in the Wizard of Oz and the bogeymen from the March of the Wooden Soldiers.

I am looking out the window into the dark inky sky of Christmas eve, believing that if I concentrated hard enough, I could make Santa and his reindeer appear flying between the twinkling stars. (ps I used that concentration when I fished all those years ago with #1 - to get the fish to come to MY lure....)

I am lying in bed trying to go to sleep on Christmas Eve. I feel like I am on speed, but w…

A Visit to the Doctor

I almost didn't go.

I am pretty tough, and I did not think I had bronchitis or pneumonia. By now I know my lungs fairly well, and though I have a cough which could compete with the bark of the dog next door, I do not have the telltale rattle in my chest. I also know my lungs well enough to suspect that at some point in my life they will be the death of me - hopefully at 83, no earlier.

However, I have had no appetite, feel as lethargic as a slug, (in German the word is "stinkfaul", a term I LOVE) and feel like I have inferno pokers in my head. Rare for this type A Speedy Gonzales.

So..I went.

Surprise to me...I have a fever, and probably a sinus infection. No wonder I feel horrid all the time. So it is Z pack time. Thrills. Now I wonder what the fallout from that will be. Hives? Intestinal disorders? Yeast disorders? Stomach pain?

Tomorrow is the journey to Newark to bring Megan and the kids to the airport for their trip back home. I have mixed feelings about it, but …

Some Interesting Gifts

Dutch Master Pen
Monkey Scented Nail File (scented with mint, not with monkey!)

Larry, as always, was extremely generous in his gifting.

Christmas has a history of being frustrating for me, as I am always very busy with shows the last few months of the year. This year was so hectic that I am forced to reconfigure next year and every year thereafter because I can't take it mentally or physically. My body is telling me by being sick.

I always buy Larry nice things; music, books (if I can find the ones he wants in time--which did NOT happen this year) clothes, a sheepskin seat cover, and few other small stocking stuffers. He on the other hand, thinks he comes from Rockefeller money and goes NUTS.

One of my most special gifts from him was an antique mantle clock made around the same time as this house--in the 20's. It has a deep throaty bong on the hour and half hour, and once the company is all gone, it shall act as my mindfulness clock - when it is ringing, I stop what…

I'm Glad I'm Not a Turkey

This is a turkey. This is a turkey having a procedure done by Larry and Mr."X".

Mr. X made it very clear that he did not want his name mentioned or his photo included in tonight's blog as he is afraid that the internet turkey police might come and seek him out for questioning about what happened the night of the 25th. I told him if Sarah Palin can be interviewed on national TV while horrid things are being done to the turkeys behind her, (click HERE to watch video - what the hell was that guy DOING to the turkeys?!) then I thought he was safe. But he does not trust me on that, so I have kept his name out of print.

The thing by the way, is a digital temperature probe. Instead of carving the turkey, they had turned it into a science experiment. They found out that the neck was the coldest part in comparison to any other. And here is a turkey survey question. What part of the turkey are the guys probing?!!!

The turkey was delicious, as was the wild mushroom and cranberr…

Madonna and Child

I have made it through the day, although pretty sick during most of it.

But there were things that made me smile.

My little naked grandson, happy in all of his innocence.

A Christmas card from my cyber friend Judy in Alaska.

The memory of my getting engaged on this evening 13 years ago to Larry.

The tradition of a Swedish dinner with Larry's family, complete with Glugg, Aquaveet, dark beer, wine and all kinds of fish and meatballs and cookies.

A visit by Santa the delight of Alanna!

and all my friends who think of us and send their love.

To all who read this, I send you my heartfelt thanks for taking the time to connect with me through this blog. May you have a beautiful and loving Holiday....

Patti O Peace

Prometrium Blues?

Is it being sick? Is it stress? Is it the fact that I have been taking prometrium (some natural form of progesterone) for 10 days? Is is my hormones? Is it a combo thereof that makes me feel totally antisocial and detached from those around me?

I am missing a nice party put on by The Center where Larry works. Richie Havens daughter is catering Thai food. There will be plenty to drink there I am sure, and great conversation with a totally cool group of people, but I have sent Larry and Megan and the kids without me. It feels like the night I worked for all the other senior girls and missed my prom. I find myself wondering what they are all doing and feel left out....

I can't help but wonder if it has something to do with the fat yellow pill. The last few times I have been put on various forms of medication I either broke out in hives or hallucinated. I am very sensitive to medication and hormones, so methinks that something may be up with that, and the fact that I am rapidly losi…

And to All a Goodnight

Photo of Megan decorating the tree, just before Alanna did a big raspberry in her face. She almost went to bed for that one.

I am again sick, and heading to bed. I was just sick 3 weeks ago, and now I have a cold or chest cold descending upon I am coughing to the point of choking. I need to rest lest my Christmas be spent in bed too. Thankfully I have two boxes of Zicam which will be coming with me wherever I go. Of course, I blame in on myself --- letting stress get the best of me, and inevitably when that happens I become a host for the illnesses of the world.

The EOS windows froze to the car this morning, and I was outside trying to free them with De-Icer so that I could open the car door and get to work. Though the roads were horrid, school was on time. TOO BAD --- I WASN'T. I am going to have to buy a car cover, or clean out the garage so that I can garage the car in bad weather.

Hope you are all warm and happy.

Patti O Dreamer

Lessons We Learned in the Snow

Well it has been a hell of a snowy three days here.

I am tired from shoveling and taking an hour to clean off my car. Underneath the piles of snow on the car was a sheet of ice that I had to chip and melt so that I could get into the car. It seems that the EOS is a "high maintenance" car, not something the dealers tell you when you are buying it.

You have to make sure ALL the snow and ice are removed from the frame less windows so that the window will go down the 1/4" or so it needs to in order to get into the car. Any ice, and you are F-----d. You are either locked out or locked in.So I went to the store to get a scraper that I can carry in my book bag in the event I need to scrape ice off the window to get into the car. It doesn't work if the scraper is inside of a car you can't get into. Oh, and I bought a can of de-icer, and a pocket can for my purse. A girl can never be prepared enough.

Then I got stuck in an unplowed parking lot. I was alone, and afte…


Larry and the Snowblower
View from the 2nd Floor of my House, looking out onto the garden

In the midst of all the ranting I did in my previous blog, I forgot to post the picture for it, and about the good things going on, like decorating the mantle with Megan and Alanna listening to my Angel CD and enjoying the time together.

I did spend a few days being rather mopey and angry, but what did it do for me other than put me on constant mascara alert, and be stuck in the middle of my own pity party. So I have had a few days to sit on my thoughts, respond to the perpetrator/s of my heartache and let it go. I don't know how it will be met, it may be that part of my immediate and extended family won't be showing up for Christmas. But you know, if that means I will have peace, then so be it.

It has been difficult to navigate my ex's family all these years. I will always be the one who divorced their son, and the blame for his addictions and failures. My children have often fo…

Happy F-in Holidays

I wrote an entire post today which I posted to draft, but when I pulled it up to edit, it had totally deleted itself. It was probably a good thing as it got too personal, and the universe decided it was merely an exercise in sublimation.

But the holidays are a good time for all the DYSfunctionality to come out of any family, and I mean ANY family.

This year the universe has decided to duel with me again. I am having some deep family issues in spite of my investment in years of therapy, many Al Anon and ACOA meetings, all the self-enlightenment and meditation I do. I still feel the STING of the sword as it goes straight for the jugular.

It reminds of many disappointments, of my ex ruining the holidays with his drinking and inevitable violence, and then the kids....the trips in the snowstorms to and from the psych ward for Christmas Dinner, the holidays where they were home for a "trial visit" from residential, the nights of wondering why they didn't call, and if they were …

Expect the Unexpected

Thanks for the lovely comments some of you posted about yesterday's blog. Once in a while I touch upon something which is universal to all of us at any age.

And, I wanted to add...Janet wrote "EXPECT THE UNEXPECTED" which is an upbeat mantra which also involves the Law of Attraction.

Not in the "oh I want that necklace so badly that I will wish it on me" attraction in that hokey segment of The Secret, but in the sense that if you put out good, you will attract good. If you put out negativity, that is what you will get. If you focus on prosperity, that too will come, but perhaps in ways that you would not expect.


And I feel a bit two faced. (no pun intended) Here I am talking about how we have to accept the way we are no matter what form, and I used Photoshop on my photo with Jesus on the blog last night. Took out the puppet lines, and some of the lip wrinkles....just a few things as Larry got in our faces with the camera, and it was oh-…

Sunday Ramble

In yoga today my teacher talked about acceptance of life and of self, something which is a challenge to both the young AND the old.

I was thinking about that yesterday when I was passed by my new full length antique mirror which leans against the wall in my hallway. I pass it from the shower to the bedroom every morning.

Sometimes I stop and look and remember when I had the body of a runner, when there was no inch of pinch, or bulges, or dimples. Now, I look and chuckle, noting the attack of cellulite, the bumps, lumps, scars, spots, and veins, though if I squint my eyes and keep the light off, I can still see the framework of that runner’s body.

I chuckle now because I am comfortable about my body. It took 50 years…many wasted with negative thoughts about my self which were so crazy. Part of my acceptance might also be the unconditional love that I have in a man who loves me for who I am and never says a thing that isn’t kind. (sometimes I hate that Larry..because it makes me look …

What's Next?

I decided to stop writing my art blog last night.

I thought I had to run two blogs. One that was personal, and one that was art, as I read that some people don't want to read about the artist's life, they only want to see the art, or read about technique or marketing strategies.

At first I thought...ok, I can do this. But then over time I realized that I don't have TIME to keep up 2 blogs, and that I cannot separate my art from my life and visa versa. So readers, Catskillpaper will become defunct as a blog. I figure, if I write a blog that does not talk enough about art, or does not interest you, you can pass it by. And, I think many of my patrons like to know what goes on inside of this zany head of mine!

I have to do that with my websites too. I have three websites, none of which are maintained the way they need to be. I like having the domains, it is cheap enough, but shoot, I have to figure out how to make them work for me!

I spent much of the later part of the day l…

Bet You're Wondering....

So ya all been wondering.....what happened to Patti, and what happened in NY?

First of all, I got really hit hard by the ice storm...power outage from dinner time yesterday till some time today. No electric, no phone, no computer. Had to make dinner for the 5 of us by candlelight and keep it simple - spinach salad with cold chicken. Alanna was crying because she was scared, which made Randy cry....and I was running around lighting candles and waiting for Larry to get home with the Vodka. We had plans for a Bloody Mary celebration party as I have ended the long stretch of working 2 jobs, plus Megan LOVES my Bloody Marys.

(The mixer in case you want it!)
Tomato Juice
Fresh Squeezed Lemon Juice
Worcestershire Sauce
Hot Sauce
Fresh Ground Pepper
Lots of Horseradish
some garlic and herb salt
Dill seeds if I have some fresh from my plants
And of course...a goodly shot of decent Vodka - doesn't have to be top shelf, but something Like Pinnacle, Stolis is OK. I save the Ciroc/Chopin/Grey Goose …

New York Flash Back

I was young, maybe 17. I was naive - a geek.

My aunt arranged for me, Ms. Teenage Geekess, to meet with a head honcho at one of the huge advertising agencies in the Big Apple where she worked- J. Walter Thompson.

Me, who spent my spare time drawing fantasy creatures in my journals, illustrating dramatic poetry about unrequited love and the underlying sexual frustration of a good Catholic girl.

I put on my heels, a dress which was probably too big for me, and took the bus into the city, carrying a portfolio larger than life. I remember walking, my heart pounding in my chest, navigating my way through New York City. I saw more people in one day than I had seen in the country for the six or so years I was living there.

Mr. Corporate Art Man was nice enough, encouraging me to keep up my work, but gently telling me that I needed basic training.

I left there feeling any fantasy of being a hot shot artist in New York quickly fade away. Besides, I hated the trip.

It was humiliating actually, …

I'm Just a Bush Whacker

I am not well, I am tired, I am cranky.

One thing I am NOT is creatively constipated.

Tonight I had a good time blaming it all on Bush.

I wonder how these will go in NY. I stand strong in my views and the way my art intertwines around my life. Funny but still holding the knife to your throat.

As the parent of a disabled Iraqi Vet, and mother-in-law of a soldier in Afghanistan, I feel I have the right to be open about my views.

So for tonight, scans of my moments of revenge and voodoo. They will be for sale in NY on ta da....

Digitas Craft Fair
December 10th from 11am-2pm
355 Park Ave South, 4th Fl (between 25th and 26th st)NYC

Bring ID as you have to sign in...but if any of you are in that area of Manhattan, come say HI!

Pattio Bush Whacker

Skip the Wine - WHERE'S THE VODKA!

I am sooo tired that I can't go out to dinner. Then again, I am not even hungry. The kids at the show kept coming around asking if I wanted food, and I managed to gorge myself on scones, chili, cookies, champagne (in secret hahaha) to the point of disgust. My stomach is still sending out SOS signals.

It was a bit of a slow day for me, had to work very hard to sell very little. But in general I can afford the heat for the studio part way into the winter, and after NY maybe I can keep it open ALL winter, and even buy supplies!

And yes my cheerleaders, I am going to do NY. You can't win if you don't play the game. And I am so wanting to play in the big(ger)leagues. I will spend the next two afternoons trying to fill up a bit on inventory, and give it a whirl!

What is great about this New Paltz show is the quality of the crafts, the camaraderie of the sellers and Unison staff, and the customers who patronize the show and my booth year for 15 years.

This year I bought a lot o…

Show Report Part 1

All shows went fabulously well.

I have done the Unison show for 15 years, and have gotten to know the people that belong to the arts organization, as well as the many local people who come and shop at the show. It is like going to an all weekend party. The 7 hours FLEW by yesterday!

It is a show where you won't find the typical wood crafts, dried flowers and crochet toilet paper covers. You will find hand made bowls, pens, beautiful wreaths and holiday arrangements, and crocheted one of a kind hats from a little old lady who never makes the same hat twice...because she never follows a pattern! There is homemade body products, hand spun wools, local jams from my favorite-- Kathy of Grey Mouse Farms- a single woman run business. There are Kitty Babendreier's shadow boxes filled with found objects d'art which can be purchased online at Earth Angel Toys. Beaded jewelry by two sisters who will knock your socks off with their work and fabulous prices. Stehpanie Stillwell'…


I set up the show last night. It's the first time I have set up the night before so that I can go into the show this morning and not be running like a maniac hauling stuff in, setting it up, JUST BARELY in time before they let the crowd in the door. Then we headed to Lemongrass for Thai food...which was very mediocre, though at least they were still serving at 9:45 at night. Never going back, am I spoiled by good food...It wasn't that it was bad, it was just that it wasn't that good either. (like no taste and iceberg lettuce with peanut dressing?!

Heading out to the show soon.

This weekend I am at the UNISON ARTS AND CRAFTS SHOW at the New Paltz Middle School.Fabulous cards, art, collaged journals, arty practical magnets...some of the nicest ones around ---- they make refrigerator art a new genre! Today and tomorrow, from 10-5.

Then tonight if you are local stop by Donskoj Gallery for the opening of We're Only In it for the Money (an artists response to …

Kipling Quotes

Today was a day of facing some things about my life. I cannot tell all here, but take my word, I am being challenged on many levels. Fortunately with hard hard work, my vantage point is a bit clearer now than it has been in the past, but it still a difficult journey.

In regards to the NY show, someone asked me if I was afraid of success. I know I am not afraid of failure, as I am secure in my feelings about my work, and low sales can be from a variety of factors (like the economy, the venue, the crowd) But success...that is another story. I really had to think about that.

If I was hugely successful, how would that change my life? I no longer can hold onto old misconceptions and messages drilled into my brain that I am not good enough? Old ghosts will have to be banished? I might have to let go of what is comfortable, even if not productive in my life's journey?

Thank you to those who commented, and to Ross who has made me an offer I can't refuse if I decide to accept it. …

In the Workshop

I am too tired to post much tonight, but I will leave you with a few of my cards that I just posted on Etsy.

I have sold all of the vintage Santas that I listed, so I put up a few more.
I know they will sell at the craft fair, but I am also trying to build an Etsy clientèle. It is a slow process in such an economy. It is a slow process in a GOOD economy.

I am not going to do the NYC show. It could be my big "break" but the reality is, it is an awfully long day, and a lot of stress to get there. A two hour plus drive into lower Manhattan, having to unload, set up, then find parking, sell for three hours, and then leave to come back home. And, it is a gamble.

In some ways I am unsettled with this decision as I have been waiting for an opportunity like this to come along, but at what expense? I am working 2 jobs 7 days a week.... me out here folks...augh! Me, who is so clear and focused doesn't know what to do!

It is on Park Avenue, in the 30's...a lar…

Why We're Starving Artists

Yesterday and today I dropped off the art for the two fine art shows I am in.

One show has two pieces of mine. Because the gallery owners want the art to sell in this economy, we had to price them "reasonably". Each piece was priced at 150.00. Which means I will get 100.00 for each one after commission, IF I sell it. Now the average price for each piece with frame and glass and spacers was about 25.00. It took me at least an hour to frame each one, so figure 15.00 for my time (and I refuse to work for less than that!) which brings the profit to 60.00 for a piece. Entry fee for each piece was 5.00. We are now down to 55.00. Then there is the cost of the materials for the art (who knows how much that is..) and the time it took me to make it. I am guessing after all said, I am making 15.00 an hour, with a bonus of 15.00 per piece. Or, that adds up to 22.50 an hour. Not that much for a professional. And I am not counting in the heat for the studio, the electric, blah …

Necessity is the Mother of Invention

My friend Bonnie D (hey BONNIE!!!) gave me a shopping bag of cool vintage trims, threads, and as I discovered, fabric.

There were a few piles of nearly perfectly cut discs cut from 40's vintage fabrics, probably cut in preparation for a quilt.

"What do to with them?" I pondered. I remembered the big tub of lavender that I had stashed away under my paints, and figured I could make some sachets out of them.

Problem is, when you have to close the openings once you put the lavender in, it is very hard to maintain that perfect circle which you have so carefully tried to maintain while sewing.

So I played around with some trim and buttons, and VOILA, a wonderful little hang able "purse" sachet.

The scan does not do these little gems justice. They have buttons on each side, some have trim on both sides. Many have sections which are hand stitched. Most of the materials used are very old, except for the lavender.

I asked my daughter what she would pay for them...and …