my cure

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Winnie Dixon

Oh sweet Dee, you are my cure ... for everything

maybe not

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

more oriental poppies, a favourite here at 29 Black Street

nepenthe - a drug or drink having the power to bring forgetfulness of sorrow or trouble

oh my how I'd like to have a little stash of you nepenthe ... or hmmmm ... maybe not

new {to me} word via Kelly's blog and why do I always forget about you - oh so beautiful french brackets

fill your heart with smoke

Monday, June 28, 2010

street side at 29 Black early this past Saturday morning

How to fight loneliness
Smile all the time
Shine you teeth til meaningless
Sharpen them with lies

And whatevers going down
Will follow you around
That's how you fight loneliness
You laugh at every joke
Drag your blanket blindly
Fill your heart with smoke
And the first thing that you want
Will be the last thing you ever need
Thats how you fight it

Just smile all the time


oh my what a beautiful voice, and beautiful song how these lyrics speak to me - it's from the soundtrack of Girl Interrupted a recent evening movie presentation here at Black Street. Last night we watched Iris, also excellent and so very sad. It reminded me so much of Jake ... which may sound strange, losing him has been my only experience of watching helpless, as someone I loved so completely & someone I needed so desperately... slipped slowly away from me.

p & p

Sunday, June 27, 2010

oh my ... the peonies are in bloom

We love peonies here at the terracotta gardens of Black Street.

I have quite successfully divided and transplanted bits from my few original peonies (something the gardening books often tsk, tsk attempting) and now we have thriving peonies, in three colours, all over the place. Short lived but tres spectacular in colour, form (those packed layers of petals gradually unfurling from their tight ball shaped bud into a wild rose like bloom as big as your open hand) and fragrance - one of the delicious scents that says - hey ! it must be summer.

The cowboy has so pimped, my grass cutting, ride.

Uh Huh ! La Beast Rouge has a new look and brand a new 'tude. She's all scruffy and raggedy looking, he's stripped her down to the bare necessities, she's no longer shiny red from her oh so occasional usage, and after spending a day in the cowboy's workshop she's returned a much different machine. No longer the persnickety maybe I'll start, maybe I won't mower which drove me to near insanity. And she was a cared for lawnmower that I religiously took in, each Spring, to various small engine/mower repair shops for a her yearly tune up & sharpening - OK girlfriend come on let's do some mowin'. She more often than not declined these requests. Sigh. If you remember I sometimes found if I dragged her out of the shed and allowed her to bask in warm sunshine for awhile - she might decide to start (emphasis on sometimes). But it was always very hit or miss ... mostly miss.

I realize now that most of my intense aversion to mowing was working with a machine that was so completely unreliable. Worrying all the time that if I had to stop for any reason, my zooming around with her, she might decide to not start up again. Standing in front of this old brick house yanking on that !?%&!! rip cord, over and over again like an idiot, with nary a sputter ... only to eventually just say !!?%&$ and lie down in the needing to be mowed grass dreaming & waiting for my Prince with a pick up truck to arrive.

And arrive he did ... Yes Pam (your comment yesterday so bang on) that darn mower is now tame, capable, and starts with a gusto never before seen and at the very first pull of the cord - it's life changing I tell ya. I think maybe La B. Rouge has a wee crush on the cowboy ... not that I could blame her. Wink.

la list

Saturday, June 26, 2010


the cowboy
grackles chattering
cats snoozing
lawns to be mowed
the refrigerator to be cleaned
teak topped desk to be tidied
farmers market
the library
good books to be read
missy d to stroll with
fifa to watch

ahhhh .... la Saturday list


Friday, June 25, 2010

blue spirit* - paper collage 2001

All that spirits desire, spirits attain

Kahlil Gibran

It's true that there is a mean & scary ol' creaky roller coaster ride built sturdily in my head and my thoughts are like some 12 year old thrill seeking boy with a seasons pass.

Up, up, w-a-y up we creep along ... slowly, slowly creaking to the top OK stop ! I like it here how about we stay awhile but oh no there's always that sudden plummet, that deep, fast scary drop into the lands of what ifs and oh nos. Then around and around and around endlessly for a time and sure enough Oh boy ! hang on tight 'cause we're climbing up again. Sigh. I am not a 12 year old boy and I hate roller coasters but oh my, you'd think by now I'd be used to them.

I also know, in my heart, if I wasn't worrying about my barely there Creative empire and where my next pay cheque is coming from and the oh nos ! what if it doesn't ever arrive - I'd find some other collection of things to worry about. But the thing I'm realizing, and the thing I'm thankful for is my roller coaster moves at a pretty good clip, it's fast. So while yes it does have a mean and steep, at times terrifying plunge ... it seems the next thing I know clickety, clackety, clickety, clackety ... I'm slowly making my way back up again.

I sent out three promo portfolio PDFs sent yesterday morning to potential new customers and by evening I'd received one very positive response. Hooray & thanks for all the cheering !

* found this blue paper collage while trolling around in my massive (and mostly forgotten) portfolio archives

in between

Thursday, June 24, 2010

peonies, cut yesterday, from the terracotta gardens - a polaroid

I'm how you would say in between projects. Yikes. The self employed designer's least favourite time. It's almost impossible not to think Oh Oh ! this is it, I knew this was coming (in your best Eeyore voice) doom, gloom and very likely never, ever another high paying design job ever again. In the past I would often find this cloud of negativity so absolutely mesmerizing that with cloud in tow I would plod off (mentally) to lie in the needing-to-be-mowed grass for awhile or better still retreat in denial to the nest of down and cotton, fingers crossed, to read a good book praying to the patron saints of freelance designers in between chapters. Sigh. All the while asking myself Oh my, why did I decide to be a self employed solitary freelance designer ? - oh yeah, because I totally love it ! ... when I have work that is.

But ... this latest in between time, with the ongoing support & love of my two favourite people, the cowboy and best friend, coach and most recently wee zen master - that darn MLou, I have been using the time to do some serious rethinking and renovation of that ol' Creative Empire's weak, neglected and crumbling foundation. New blog portfolio website (coming soon), promotional resume/portfolio PDF's that I can whip off to potential new clients (until blog portfolio link is ready), and organizing, what I'd forgotten is a massive amount (nearly 9 years) of scanned archived illustration and design work ... etc ...

Perhaps the in between times will become good times.

end of day

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

our main man, Oliver (avec his mouse) lounging in the chocolate brown bedroom

The chocolate brown room has the most amazing end of day light.

a moment or two

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

my favourite pinky coral oriental poppies

watch out !
you might get what you're after

David Byrne

It's perfectly still, humid and lush feeling this early morning. Our big windows are all wide open and I can hear the grackels cursing at BleetNess from high up in their trees as he does his morning black velvet chicelet plod around these terracotta gardens. I've had a 5:30 coffee date with a cowboy and now ... well I'm off to the races ... at least for a moment or two. Wink.


Monday, June 21, 2010

Miss D and I, yesterday, in the meadow behind the cowboy's house ... oh my the scent of clover

The huge expanse of meadow behind the cowboy's house. A meadow that stretches up gradually to the tree line. An ocean of green with occasional bits of colour, mostly clover. Missy D loves to swish through the tall grass. And yes she's on a leash, a long retractable leash - because she is a mad if it runs it must be prey terrier and her Mama is way paranoid and tres overprotective.

I'm still glowing from my lovely, restorative visit with MLou. Sigh. Lots of chatting and more chatting, coaching, support and friendship and now back to my real world. The real world of seeing if I actually do have an Empire (creative) to build, after much consultation and discussion avec MLou*, I'm back with some helpful new goals with schedules and deadlines. Just another amazing quality of that kind of friend - they have the ability to help gently steer you on the course toward your dreams but they'll also tell you honestly the goods you're going need to get there. For example - to work more efficiently (in my case way more efficiently), to set serious deadlines for accomplishing things, and hey ! the ultimate question that will need to be asked is are ya making enough money following this darn dream - to survive, and well ??? or do I need to plan a new course, a new career, a new income generating scheme ??? will I need to get a real job. Crash of thunder heard from stage left. Good friends help you to see the necessary reality checks of your life, as hard as some might be to look at.

I'll admit ... I have been drifting. I'm not making enough income to survive. So it's time to put up a new sail, set a new course and give myself one year to reach that distant CE shore. I finally need to find that safe mooring of satisfactory & growing income for my creative endeavours.

* she herself is a very busy successful self employed designer

best friends & dogs

Sunday, June 20, 2010

34 scenes from a quick, but oh so incredibly wonderful stay, with MLou & Missy J (Jigs)

They live in the most amazing treetop house completely surrounding by green and forest and a quick jaunt along wooded paths leads to their gentle and protected harbour. A lot of chatting, a little shopping, a little sight seeing, a lot of relaxing, a little reading, a little walking (avec Missy's D & J) ... an absolutely fantastic, though brief, trip to the city*. Merci MLou !

Most images from in and around MLou's 'hood and a few from our wee ventures out and about. She has the most amazing wooded yard and garden and big, beautiful porch perfect for summertime lolling with best friends and dogs. As you can tell by Winnie's photos she looks a little tense but overall she had a great time too - expanding her horizon's along with her Mama.

* I drove home - heart attack city ... but I did it. Hooray for me !