Monday, May 17, 2010

Experimenting Again...

I have not been very busy creating new work lately, but I recently was fooling around with a combination of software programs and thought I'd share to see what kind of feedback I get. I had fun doing it and am pleased with the results, but not sure it creates enough visual interest to sustain more than a few images, as the color palette is relatively limited using the process I have used. Below each of my "experiments" you can see the original photograph.

I'd love to hear your feedback!

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mothers are Angels

Everyone has a mother. Mothers are not rare. Yet we all believe that our own mother is somehow supernatural or elevated beyond the realm of mere humans. And we are right. The umbrella provided by a mother's love protects us from much of life's unpleasant surprises when we are young and provides us with the knowledge that we are not alone when we are adults trying to provide the same umbrella for our own children. Mothers tend to our hurts, offer guidance, and are never happier than when they see their children are happy. Mothers put the needs and wants of their children before their own desires and expect nothing in return except for the smiles brought to their faces by the fulfillment of their children's dreams. They do their utmost to see that birthday and holiday wishes come true and provide enriching experiences while teaching their children to be grateful and not to feel entitled to anything they haven't earned. Mothers encourage their children to pursue their passions but to keep one foot on the ground while their heads are in the clouds. They multitask, are in several places at one time, and always seem to be there to catch us when we fall, all the while juggling a myriad of jobs.

My own mother has been my teacher, my mentor, and my biggest fan, my voice of reason, my medical advisor, my loan officer, my conscience, my source of inspiration, and the most perfect example of maternal love that I could have asked for. Even now, with a family of my own, I am comforted by her unconditional love, rely on her realistic (yet supportive) advice and assistance, and bask in the warmth of pride reflected in her voice and face when something I've said or done has pleased her.

I have a tendency to think of most holidays as retailer's opportunities and not be very enthusiastic about planning special days just because the calendar says we should. I am a bit Scrooge-ish in this way. However, what I frequently end up realizing is that when a day is set aside to celebrate those we love and to allow ourselves to be celebrated, our thoughtfulness is heightened, our affection is demonstrated more freely, and we appreciate more deeply the things that sometimes are taken for granted.

Mom, I am so grateful for the sacrifices you have made, and continue to make, for your family and for the love you have so unselfishly bestowed upon us. Thank you for putting us first in your life and for making us feel like there is nothing you enjoy more than being surrounded by your family.

And a special thank you, too, to my mother-in-law for raising a man I love and respect more than I ever thought I could love and respect any partner. He is a living legacy of your love and your mothering. In addition, your acceptance of me as your daughter has meant so much to me, and I only regret that our infrequent visits and the distance between our homes makes it difficult for me to show you just how much.

Thank you to all of you hard working, caring, deeply loving mothers out there. You are all angels on earth.

Happy Mothers Day!

Tuesday, May 4, 2010


After an amazing weekend spent with my family in Sequoia National Park,which is in the Sierra Nevada Mountains of California, I've returned inspired once again by our world's vast display of flora and fauna.

Within hours of leaving our home, we saw cacti, an amazing variety of wildflowers, plains, lakes, rivers, mountains, citrus trees, oak trees, redwoods, Giant Sequoias, a bear, numerous deer, snow, and sunshine.

One breathtaking view after another, wonderful smells, and the sounds of nature (accompanied much of the time by a range of music sampling the last 50 years and crossing several genres)...

It was such a feast for the senses that we barely thought about eating, but when we got hungry, we enjoyed our meals all the more for their addition to the completion of the total experience.

I could live for a long time on the road, I think, traveling and exploring our country's national parks. What a gift they are and how thankful I am to all of those responsible for ensuring that our parks are protected, cared for, and available for all to experience.