31 January 2010

joy for haiti



each time I sit down to write about my sweet friend myriam and how the earthquake in haiti has devastated her family, I hit a wall. because it's beyond comprehension, this thing that has happened. it's tragedy redefined in new and unfathomable ways. there really aren't words. which is why I struggle with the writing, I suppose.

but myriam tells her story in a way that gently cuts a swath through the hopelessness. her words are clear, unfaltering. and more importantly, full of hope. myriam's goal is to raise 30,000 dollars, all of which she plans to hand deliver to our brothers and sisters in haiti, all of which will go towards the most basic needs. better yet, the entire process will be documented.

you can read her story here and should you feel moved to do so, you can give. there's a chip-in button right on site and even if it's just a dollar or two, it will help. every little bit will help.

29 January 2010

the end of january



and my last couple of days over at habit. time to hand the space over to a new group of voices. and that's the brilliance of it. with each month comes a new collection of words and images. with each entry comes the reminder to acknowledge the small bits of everyday. because these bits, they tend to vanish like the night. you think you'll remember them, but you don't. so many times, you just don't.

a most sincere thank you to emily and molly for having me. 'twas both an honor and pleasure, my friends.

27 January 2010

list three: things I carry around in my bag



1. wallet. because occasionally, I need to pay for things.

2. black ink pens. because I do not joke around when it comes to black ink pens.

3. burt's bees lip shimmer in nutmeg. because it's the most perfect shade. ever. but also, I'm addicted to lip stuff.

4. car keys. because keys are important.

5. minty chewing gum. because I am a fan of all things refreshing.

6. cameras. because I like to take pictures, lots and lots of pictures. and I need a wide variety of cameras at my disposal to accomplish this.

7. handful of crayons. because as long as there are crayons (and scraps of paper) in my bag, there will always be something for the kids to do. no matter what happens.

8. cel phone. because there are important things to say, all hours of the day.

9. moleskine sketchbook. because you never know when the great ideas will hit. or when the kids will say something brilliant.

(three down, forty-nine to go)

step four



finally (and perhaps most obviously): flowers. when all else fails: flowers. yellow daffodils in particular. because january is no match for the daffodil, no match at all.

and there it is. how to beat the winter blahs in four easy steps.

step three



because paper straws make everything better.

26 January 2010

step two



if, while shopping at the aforementioned thrift store, you happen onto a lime green bowl- buy it. you are practically required by law to buy it. there's also a law that states you must fill said bowl with fresh lemons. because it's january and the law is very clear when it comes to people up against january.

p.s. you might also scrape off a bit of lemon peel and rub it between your finger tips. you might also dab a bit of it behind your ears. you might feel silly but you would only be doing what must be done.

25 January 2010

step one



when fighting the winter blahs, head straight for the thrift store and buy the brightest, happiest thing you can find. 79 cents and one daisy-covered plate later and I'm practically a new woman.

22 January 2010

instant happy



yesterday I wrote about garlands, banners and bunting over on poppytalk and now I sort of want to drop everything and shift into 24-hour garland-making mode. I mean it. all garlands, all the time. am dangerously close to hanging strings of colorful bits on every possible surface in my house, plus all the barren trees in my neighborhood. am thinking it would not be the worst thing to cover the world with garlands, banners and bunting. especially with ones that have nice things to say.

20 January 2010

list two: songs I listen to over and over



1. here comes the sun- nina simone (for when everything is wrong)

2. love- mos def (for when everything is right)

3. lo boob oscillator- stereolab (for when I need air)

4. crayon- caribou (for when I need color)

5. feel that way- gift of gab (for when I need light)

6. predatory wasp of the palisades- sufjan stevens (for when I'm steeped in uncertainty)

7. anthems for a 17 year-old girl- broken social scene (for when I'm steeped in melancholy)

8. kissing the lipless- the shins (for when things need to be loud)

9. galaxy of emptiness- beth orton (for when things need to be quiet)

10. starfish and coffee- prince (for when the rain won't stop)

11. from the outside- deepspace5 (for when I miss my brother)

12. will not be sold- dust and poems (for when I miss my hometown)

13. go west- liz phair (for when the road calls)

14. gymnopédie no. 1- erik satie (for when I need to get lost)

15. we have a map of the piano- múm (for the dances in my head)


(two lists down, fifty to go)

18 January 2010

today



"darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that."

-martin luther king, jr.

12 January 2010

list one: things I've broken

*

1. three vintage ornaments. over the christmas break.

2. more promises than I'd care to admit plus a few hearts. one in particular.

3. the ragtop of my dad's '68 blue camaro convertible. after scrambling to the top of the car to hide from boys, I heard a terrific rip and felt my nine year-old body slip through the roof and land with a dull thud in the back seat. which is when I looked up, spied a sliver of blue sky and marveled at the sheer size of the hole I'd created. mere seconds before full blown panic set in.

4. the heel of a favorite vintage spectator pump. most likely purchased, worn (and broken) during what I now refer to as my marilyn monroe phase. also known as my sophomore, junior and senior year of high school.

5. my husband's favorite electric pencil sharpener. during an argument. yep, I threw it.

6. my left arm. after popping the most spectacular wheelie of my wheelie-popping career, I hit a bump in the driveway, went flying over the handlebars of my purple banana seat bike and broke the fall with my left arm. thus, fourth grade will forever be known as the year I broke a bone and rocked the plaster cast.

(one down, fifty-one more to go)

the one where maybe I take the list thing too far

fresh 03

doing: a list a week from now until january 2011. starting tomorrow. assorted topics mostly culled from a sweet little site (and book) I love. am approaching this as a weekly writing exercise of sorts-- a soft place to land in the event I lose words or run out of things to say. because ruts are inevitable. and because there's always a list to make. always.

also, what does a year of list-making look like? I'd like to know.

11 January 2010

mondays are for color



so, winter is here. it's really here.



and it's not going anywhere, not anytime soon.



in the meantime, there will be color. and lots of it.



anywhere I can get it, anywhere I can find it.

p.s. more color here. so much more.

07 January 2010

39 things to do before I turn 40

albums

1. own a bright-colored coat.
2. ride the ferris wheel.
3. label the polaroids.
4. make paper hats.
5. ride my bike downtown.
6. introduce ava to the xanadu album.
7. construct an elaborate indoor fort.
8. get lost at the arboretum.
9. transform the found paper collection.
10. make sock puppets with ezra.
11. sample dishes from ten portland food carts.
12. attach a decade worth of charms to one bracelet.
13. create the quintessential prince mix.
14. take twenty dance classes.
15. travel down the 101.
16. unravel the ball of surprises. done
17. make a photo book.
18. throw a backyard party.
19. take the kids to the drive-in.
20. experiment with pinhole photography.
21. make fifty-two lists. (in process)
22. see crater lake. done
23. collaborate with ava.
24. type out a manifesto.
25. drink chocolate.
26. see the city from above.
27. make one hundred paper snowflakes.
28. leave paper snowflakes in unlikely places.
29. rearrange the bedroom furniture. done
30. have dinner at delancey.
31. blow bubbles off the broadway bridge.
32. make garlands.
33. have a show.done
34. bake the super epic rainbow cake. done
35. wear the dress with the pink and red flowers. outside the house.
36. collect paint chips.
37. make fortune cookies.
38. expand the record album collection.
39. begin work on The Big Project.

04 January 2010

if I haven't said it already



it's a blank piece of paper, 2010. a new box of crayons, a jar full of sharpened pencils. at this point, you can do pretty much anything you want. it's a brand new year, peeps. and it's for the taking. 2010= fresh.

(a little photographic collaboration: words to shoot by)

03 January 2010

hello january

hello january

there's a lovely little blog called habit and I'll be posting over there all month long. photographs of everyday life paired with 30 words or less. I get really excited about things like this. really really excited. and I'm in such good company too. stop on by, if you like.