Friday, December 21

happy holidays and flickr faves

Hello! I don't think that I will have time for a proper post anytime soon so I'm going to wish you all a happy solstice and happy holidays right now! Hope everyone has a wonderful time, whether or not you celebrate Christmas, and a very happy and prosperous 2008!

We've been busy with the house renovations and now we are also busy preparing for our holiday guests and Christmas festivities. This is the first time I've been home for the holidays in about 7 or 8 years and I am super excited. I think it's going to be a blast.

And now for this week's Flickr faves:

1. I hate Christmas., 2. hills, working on his next album ..., 3. juli & will gave US a polaroid., 4. Shout it from the roof tops., 5. Untitled, 6. the first *kiss*, 7. 2007.12.07.21, 8. Untitled, 9. Nothing is ever as good as it was, 10. Vines, 11. Untitled, 12. raul andres walking home

Created w/ fd's flickr toys

Thursday, December 6

Elf Yourself

So far I am finding the nifty Elf Yourself endlessly amusing. Yesterday I spent a good part of the morning making friends into elves and then sending the link to them. Today I made one of me and my boys and it cracks me up every time I watch it. Rocky makes such a handsome elf! So go check out our dance and then make your own! Feel free to post a link in my comments if you do make one.

Happy Elfing!

Monday, November 19

Los Gatos

Rocky and Simon went to the vet this morning for their annual check-ups and shots. Rocky was quiet as a mouse and looked rather forlorn. I think he recalled that he was just there last week and that it wasn't such a fun place. Simon cried the whole five minute ride and cried a good bit in the waiting room. He was angry about being in a cage. And boy, you should have seen how wide his eyes got when dogs passed by. I can only imagine what he was thinking! In Pittsburgh they had a house call vet so it's been awhile since they've had to deal with an actual clinic.

Anyway, Simon got a good report. He's gained about an 1/2 pound since last year and weighed in at 13 pounds, 6 ounces. The vet didn't comment on the weight gain so I guess it isn't a big deal. He's bulking up for the winter. And he's just a big boy.

Last week they weighed Rocky and came up with 13 pounds, 3 ounces which was totally shocking to me. He weighed 16 pounds, 4 ounces last year so that's a little too much weight to have dropped. But today when they put him on the scale he weighed in at 14 pounds, 6 ounces which sounds more reasonable to me. The vet said the scale may have been off last week. At any rate, because of the heart murmur, she was concerned about the weight loss. Rocky had to stay at the clinic for about an hour and it nearly broke my heart thinking of him back in the lab, wondering what the heck was going on. He had x-rays and an EKG. The vet said that his heart is on the large side and while she's not super concerned about it, she would like us to get blood work done and an ultrasound in the next 3-6 months. (Total cost about $450.00) We'll probably get it done sometime in January, after we recoup from today's visit! AND both cats were told that they need to have their teeth cleaned in the next year or so, a procedure that costs about $300 per cat. Holy moly!

So yeah, we're going to be spending more money at the vet for the cats health than we do on our own health, but that's okay. We don't have kids. The cats are our kids. And they are worth every penny. I suspect that Rocky is fine, but you know, I'd rather know for sure. If he isn't fine and needs to be on a special diet or heart medication, I want to know that now, not when it is too late. He's my baby boy and I can't imagine life without him.

And for the record, Rocky used to weigh twenty pounds. He did not like living in NYC so much.


He's done a great job of slimming down.

Rocky in the window

Pretty crazy, right?! He looks so good now and he's so happy. The vet also said it was fine to keep them on the R/D for now...but really, I don't think Rocky needs to slim down much more.

Thursday, November 15

A Little Quiet In Here, Please

I've spent most of my life with a lot of noise in my head. It peaks when I have a bout of depression and all I do is ruminate about negative and/or totally inane things. And it's not fun. All the noise takes up so much space in my head sometimes, it doesn't leave room for anything else. Love, creativity, fun. Nada.

Our lives in New Mexico are fairly quiet and peaceful so thankfully, my head has also been fairly quiet and peaceful. I have my moments when I find myself thinking about something, trying to figure *why* these things in the past happened, things that I have gone over so many times, it's kind of pointless to go back again, but the thoughts fade more quickly now. It's good. (Of course my favorite thing to ruminate about, "what am I supposed to be doing in my life", is still hanging around, especially now that I am growing a wee bit tired of my current job choice.)

Anyway, I'm reading this book right now and in the second part, the narrator goes to India to study with her Guru. Now, I'm not particularly into that sort of thing, and I have pretty mixed feelings about the book itself, but the whole trying to quiet the mind is pretty interesting. The narrator is struggling with meditation because her head won't shut up. I don't meditate, but still, reading about the process of learning to quiet the noise of one's mind has drawn me into this section of the book.

A monk tells her one day, "The resting place of the mind is the heart. The only thing the mind hears all day is clanging bells and noise and argument, and all it wants is quietude. The only place the mind will ever find peace is inside the silence of the heart. That's where you need to go."

I like that. So then, yesterday morning, I find my weekly horoscope in my inbox and this is what it says:

"Dear Rob: I have eight distinctly different
voices in my head. There's a hurt, oddly puffed-up voice that complains
about everyone who has ever done me wrong. There's an hysterical voice
that nags me with the thought that nothing I could ever do or say will
make any difference to anyone, so why bother. Then there's the still,
small voice. It has more gravity and feels more honest. It gives me useful
instructions about specific things I could do to live a more meaningful life.
The only trouble is, the other voices always blabber so loud I tend to
neglect the only one that's actually helpful. Any advice? - Drowned Out."
Dear Drowned: Set aside five minutes each morning and five minutes
before bed. Whisper "Shut up, all the rest of you!", and then listen
reverently to the still, small voice.

I find it interesting that all paths are pointing to the quieting of the mind this week. I take it to mean that I should pay attention to this message from the universe. Perhaps I can clean some of the junk out of my head that still gets in the way of living from time-to-time. Wouldn't it be nice to have one of those things that Dumbledore had? I forget what it was called, but he could just pull the excess out of his mind and put it in a pot for later.

Tuesday, November 13

Heart Murmur

rocky under my dresser using my running shoes as a pillow

Will took Rocky to the vet this morning to get his chest wound checked out. He got it last week and it wasn't bad so we let it be. It started to scab over, but then yesterday I noticed that he was licking and licking and licking. All the licking re-opened the wound and it was looking really raw so we decided we better take him in. No swelling and no infection fortunately. The vet put him on antibiotics so the cut will heal more quickly and he got one of those cones things to wear if he keeps licking. Poor guy.

Anyway, while he was at the vet, she checked him out a bit and apparently he has a heart murmur. Will called me at work to give me the report and of course I freaked out immediately. But apparently it's not that uncommon and it does not always lead to congestive heart failure. Rocky is in good health, his appetite is fine, he runs around a hopefully everything is fine. We're supposed to take him back in for x-rays or an ultrasound or something so that they can determine what exactly is going on. Guess I am going to be spending all my Christmas shopping money at the vet! Anything for my boy Rocky though.

So yeah, it's not necessarily anything horrible, but nonetheless, I am worried about him. The sooner we can find out more, the better.

Friday, November 9

Working For The Man

Working For The Man by Jeffrey Yamaguchi is another book that I am planning to purchase and you should too, particularly if you have an office job. You can get a sneak peak here. I love this page...there are so many times that I felt that way at work. I actually don't have an office job at the moment, nor am I working for the man, but I am sure I will be again one of these days. That's why I need this book. I'll be ready for the monotony.

Jeffrey is also behind the 52 Projects website and the book of the same name. The book explores creativity and is "a way of turning the ordinary into the extraordinary, and finding a flash of inspiration in our everyday lives." I find all of his work to be incredibly inspiring and he's a nice guy to boot!

flickr faves from this week

1. yelloworangeredvioletgreencyanblueblack, 2. Three, 3. Untitled, 4. a look, 5. nov 5, 6. One More.....

I believe that I have said this before, but I'll say it again, if you are a pola fan, you should check out polaroidjesus. His photos absolutely blow my mind.

Wednesday, November 7

The Kept Man

A short film inspired by Jami Attenberg's forthcoming novel The Kept Man, which will be published in January 2008 by Riverhead Books. The film was conceived and created by Jon Stuyvesant of Milk Products Media. Find out more information at

This a beautiful film short and will only take about two minutes out of your day so check it out. I can't wait for Jami's new book! You can pre-order it at or request it at your local bookstore.

Wednesday, October 31

Frida Kahlo dollhouse

A mom made a Frida Kahlo dollhouse so that her daughter can learn about the Mexican artist. Super cool!


Monday, October 29

not lions and tigers and bear

but praying mantis and grasshoppers, oh my!

A few weeks ago, while pulling weeds, some mating praying mantises latched onto my pant leg. Freaked me out a bit, but I got them off and then ran for the camera:
praying mantis

A couple days later, I found one while I was cutting the deadheads off the dahlias:
another praying mantis

Then there were the scary mutant alien grasshoppers:
these grasshoppers freaked me out

And finally, yesterday evening, I found these two on our front porch:

What next, I ask you?

Sunday, October 28

me-n-my star quarterbacks

In the past few weeks, I've had two dreams about Dan Marino. I don't remember either clearly, but the first one involved going over to his house on Sunday to watch the games on his flat panel big screen television. The second one involved a party in the basement of my brother's house which happened to be full of hot tubs. (For the record, my brother does not have a basement or a room full of hot tubs.) I know, sounds risqué, but Dan was more like my BFF. Then last night, I had a dream about Peyton Manning. Again, nothing risqué, but I'll admit that we were involved in some sort of courtship. When I told Will this morning, he said, "You and your star quarterbacks..."

Methinks someone just might be watching too much Total Access and Inside the NFL.

Saturday, October 27

on any given sunday

on any given sunday

Last Sunday I was watching football, of course, and I got up to do something in the kitchen. When I got back to the couch, this is how I found Rocky, remote and all. Cracks me up.

Wednesday, October 24

stuff you didn't know

A random and interesting list of stuff you didn't know...or at least of stuff that I didn't know! Lots of things about words, but lots of other stuff too like:

A cat has 32 muscles in each ear.

An ostrich’s eye is bigger than its brain.

Tigers have striped skin, not just striped fur.


Cats have over one hundred vocal sounds, while dogs only have
about ten.

(I think I have heard at least one hundred of Rocky's vocal sounds at four o'clock in the morning.)


Monday, October 22

people do the coolest things with polaroids

This Polaroid slideshow is totally awesome. I don't know what the French blurb says, but just click the arrow to get through the series.

Saturday, September 1

trompos! simon!

It's been awhile, hasn't it? I was without my computer for three weeks which made posting a wee bit difficult, plus I just don't know what to do with this space anymore. Maybe I just need to change the template so that things seem fresher around here.

Here in Santa Fe, Evo Gallery currently has an exhibition up by the video artist Manuel Angel Rios that is all about trompos. This past Thursday, Manuel brought some folks together to play trompos at the Plaza. Will and Garret were two of the players and I went down to take some pictures. And wow. I had never seen the game played before; it is super fast-paced and I really didn't know what was going on most of the time, only that it was the black tops vs. the white tops. Tops were flying, ropes were flying, arms and legs everywhere. Garret breaks down the rules in his post. And then yesterday, there was an article about the event on the front page of New Mexican and yours truly is in the photo on the front page, albeit standing in the background. I'm a star! Ha, ha. Kind of neat though. Click through all the pictures and maybe you can spot Will and Garret as well. Trompos!

As most of you already know, my tale about Simon has a happy ending. Thank goodness.
Two Monday nights ago, he went out as usual...but then, not so usual, he did not come home. We were absolutely devastated. The cats are part of our family and without Simon, there was a giant empty hole in our lives. We checked with the animal shelter regularly, we posted fliers, we ran ads in the paper and we walked around looking for him day after day. It was hard to keep hope. Everyone has a story about how a cat disappeared for days, weeks, months and then returned. Hell, I had cats that would disappear for weeks when I was a kid. But still, Simon has never been gone for even 24 hours and this is Santa Fe. Mountain lions make visits to the Plaza! And then this past Tuesday night (well, Wednesday morning), I woke up at 1:00 AM because I heard a cat crying. It didn't sound like Rocky so I got up and checked the porch. It was Simon! Home at last! We were so thrilled and relieved. He was very, very hungry, but otherwise fine. He was also very, very tired and slept for about a day and an half straight. We have no idea where he was, what happened, nada. It's so frustrating. I wish that he could tell us about his adventures. He was gone for EIGHT DAYS. He is quite happy to be home so we kind of think that his disappearance was not completely intentional, but we'll never really know.

Tomorrow is my birthday. To celebrate, we're going on a hike. I think that's a good birthday activity. And that's really all I have planned.

A happy Labor Day weekend to you!

Monday, August 6

odds and ends

I'm on a borrowed laptop (which is *tiny* and hard to type on) and borrowed wireless because my new computer is now on its way back to the manufacturer for the second time. It may not be dead, but it ain't in good shape and I am hoping to receive a spiffy new black box sometime at the end of next week. So in the meantime, no photography fun online. I have a load of pictures from yesterday's hike many mushrooms! I can't wait to show you. All the different kinds blew my mind. Red, yellow, orange, white, gray, brown and on and on. All shapes and sizes.

I also can't wait to share my best ever Pola double exposure. One of my nieces stayed the weekend with us and we had a good photo shoot.

Hike on Sunday was about 9.5 miles and took about 5.5 hours. My dad pretty much killed all of us (myself, Will and Caroline). A shorter and less strenuous hike than the last one we took up to the top of Baldy, but for some reason, it did us all in. Well, except for my dad who went home and mowed the lawn, etc. We went out on the Borrego Trail and returned on some random loops that my dad picked out. It was rather hot and humid so maybe that's what wiped us out.

Oh yeah, the humidity...we moved here in part for the drier climate and so now of course it has been very humid here. Still not like the NE, but man, too humid for me.

Lee Hazlewood died today. He is one of my all-time favorites and if you don't know his music, you should definitely check it out. He has a huge discography.

Steelers won last night and we missed seeing it happen. Ugh. I tried to convinced myself that I could live without football but no can do. Reading about the game in the paper made me squirrelly. Must not miss the entire pre-season. Unacceptable. DirectTV here we come. Maybe.

I am *finally* working and while I really like my job, I am still adjusting to this full-time schedule. When am I supposed to fit the rest of my life in? How do all you people do this? I miss the more leisurely days of part-time, but I have to say that I think what I am doing now is good for me. A good learning experience, a good way to meet folks in Santa Fe and it keeps me busier than some of the office jobs than I have had in recent years. It's not an office job and while I hate coming off secretive, I am not going to tell you what or where because sometimes I don't want to be found. If you know me, you know. I also love that I get to ride my bike to work.

We have quite a bit going on the next couple of weeks and it is good, but I am looking forward to relaxing again someday. Maybe that's what I'll do for my birthday this year...RELAX. Nah, I'll probably end up hiking or something. (You like that birthday hint, no?)

Oh and so nice to have money again. Today I finally bought the new Spoon...still need the new Yeah Yeah Yeahs, but I couldn't find it today. Also picked up the new Haruki Murakami book which I cannot wait to read. I think I am going to have to lay off Hemingway for a little while. Need to find some cute new skirts but no luck so far and I have to say, life without H&M kind of sucks. Half of my favorite clothes are from there. Perhaps I shouldn't admit such things, but it is true.

On the people front, ran into my roommate from college the other day on my way to work. Not totally shocking as I knew she wanted to move back here, but still, kind of bizarre. If I hadn't gone to the P.O. on the way to work, it wouldn't have happened. And we finally met Mr. Dangerousmeta and his lovely wife the other night. We had an excellent time with them and I am very excited to have some friends in Santa Fe who aren't my parents. Or my parents' friends. And who don't talk about crystals.

Okay, enough with the babbling. I've got to go finish the laundry and maybe chill out for a few minutes. Hope you enjoyed this random update. And pardon any typos, I am telling you, this keypad is a bitch. Or whatever you call it.

Stay cool and have a fab week.

Tuesday, July 10

It's been a long time

since I've rock-n-rolled. But that's another story. It's also been a long time since I've posted here. I think about you everyday, dear website, I really do, but life just gets in the way sometimes.

A few things I'd like to share with you...the other day I started a new group on Flickr called Polaroid Cats. Because there certainly are not enough groups about Polaroids or Cats. It seems that these days I only take pictures of flowers and cats, and there is an instant flowers group so I figured there should an instant cat group as well. Plus when I searched "cats polaroids", thousands of results came up, most of them pretty damn spectacular. A few of my favorites are: *ELECTRICAT*, Ellie Face, Untitled (in Granada, Spain), Warmed By The Sun, and get closer, baby. But really, they are all excellent shots. Check'em out if you are a cat lover.

Also cat-related...some of you may know Mr. Bones who lives in Bushwick, Brooklyn. He's a big boy. Black and white like Rocky. But bigger. And this shot is one of my all-time favorites for sure.

wolfgang schnitzelheimer, originally uploaded by fiesematenten.

This picture blows my mind every time that I look at it because I swear it looks like he took the photo of himself. I LOVE IT.

I've been rather Polaroid crazy lately, as I think I have mentioned. I just can't get enough of the SX-70, and I am quite pleased with some of my recent shots. On this past Saturday, I spent the morning at the Georgia O'Keefe Museum, and talk about mind blowing. I absolutely love the current exhibits, Circling Around Abstraction and Illuminated. Of course she painted many, many flowers and so when I arrived at my parents' house, I definitely had flowers on the brain. (A quote on the wall at the museum: One paints what's around.) So I walked around my parents' garden and took pictures. Here are a few of my favorites from the day:

peach tree
Peach tree branch. We picked a few that day, and since then, we've picked lots more. They are the best peaches. It's been a long time since I've had fruit straight from the tree. Mom made jelly today and I plan to bring some home to make pie or cobbler. Peach heaven.

echinacea 1
Echineacea. I love my mom's echinacea and she has it all over the place so I'm going to transplant some into our garden at home. Such beautiful flowers. (The dog loves to eat it.)

I have a couple more, but I haven't posted them to Flickr yet.

PhotoArts Santa Fe starts this Friday so I am looking forward to checking out some of the photo openings and other events. And on Saturday, we're finally making the big hike up to Baldy, Santa Fe highest peak. Of course my biggest decision is what and how many cameras I should take! It might be time to take the digital SLR out since I haven't been too happy with my point and shoot on hiking adventures. Maybe my nice husband will put it in his pack. Heh.

Well friends, that's it for now. I hope you are all having fantastic summers and staying cool.

Tuesday, July 3

you are beautiful

You Are Beautiful.

You Are Beautiful is a simple, powerful statement which is incorporated into the over absorption of mass media and lifestyles that are wrapped in consumer culture.

The intention behind this project is to reach beyond ourselves as individuals to make a difference by creating moments of positive self realization. We're just attempting to make the world a little better.

Intention is the most important aspect of the You Are Beautiful project in its idea of purity. Nothing is sacred. Everything that has a perceived value becomes commodified. We work extremely hard that this message is received as a simple act of kindness, and nothing more.

Advertising elicits a response to buy, where this project elicits a response to do something. The attempt with You Are Beautiful is to create activism instead of consumerism.

You Are Beautiful uses the medium of advertising and commercialization to spread a positive message.
Projects like these make a difference in the world by catching us in the midst of daily life and creating moments of positive self realization.

Tuesday, June 26

flickr faves

Still playing catch up...

elston's untitled.
maditi's shadows. I wish I could take polas like this. so lovely.
~KIM~'s fat and lazy. beautiful cat. beautiful pola.
Johanna Nelson's red lines. dreamy.
LW Lens' terror on the yellow frog ride. Still can't believe they are destroying Coney Island.
polgaroid's .544. birds. love.

Thursday, June 21

a few polas before I go

tues. evening sky
The sunset on Tuesday was lovely. Some day I will live on a hilltop so I can see more sky.

lemon zest petunias
Lemon Zest Petunias. Will picked these out at the nursery when we went garden shopping. They are in full bloom now and such a vibrant yellow. Both of these polas were taken with my SX-70. I purchased a neutral density filter a few weeks ago so I could use 600 film with the SX-70. (They discontinued SX-70 Time Zero early last year.) The 600 film is much faster than the Time Zero so without the filter, the polas would be overexposed. Anyway, the little piece of plastic was a bit on the pricey side, but man, it was worth it. I absolutely love the polas from this combo.

When my nephews were here this past Sunday, I took a few double exposures with my Spectra and they were fascinated that this could be done. "Do one of me now!" One of my favs from the day is this one of Aaron taken in front of the mirror.

And lastly, check out this pola-wall. Awesome.

Wednesday, June 20

hiking and what not

As I mentioned in the last post, my brother and his family came up to Santa Fe for Father's Day. Dad's choice for the morning was to go on a hike so we hiked! We had to keep it short since my nephews are 10 and 7, and while they are quite active, they haven't hiked a lot. We went about 2 miles, up to the top of a small peak and then back down. It was fun despite the heat. We were on the sunny side of the mountain for much of the hike. Later we had lunch at San Francisco Street Bar & Grill and then my brother and his family came over to check out our apartment. Will entertained the nephews by showing them his music gear and recording software. They both walked out here with CDs of their playing in hand. I am sure my brother and sister-in-law were psyched to listen to the recordings over and over again on the way home!

Because we are still jobless (actually Will is at an interview RIGHT NOW and I am hoping for one next week), we decided to go hiking again yesterday. We invited Dad and Katrina (the dog), but Dad was busy and Katrina has a yeast infection in her ear (yuck) so they decided she shouldn't be out in the woods. So it was just me and my hubby. I wanted to do something a little more bad ass (but not too bad ass) so I picked a hike to Spirit Lake. It's off the Windsor Trail, a trail that I love but haven't followed out further than Puerto Nambe in the past. According to the internet, it's an 11.4-mile hike. And so beautiful. I love hiking through the woods. I love the grassy meadows. The big rocks. The critters. We saw squirrels and chipmunks, one random pheasant trucking along in front of us early on in the hike, and lots of smaller birds. Will was hoping for bears and mountain, not so much.

pine cones
The sky was a brilliant blue and the trees so very green. Loads and loads of pine cones everywhere.

spirit lake
The lake was quite lovely and peaceful. We were the only ones there. It took us about 2 hours and 40 minutes to reach the lake. We had lunch, relaxed and took some double exposure photos with the Spectra (to be shared later). And then we headed back. It was much hotter on the way back and we ran into quite a few other hikers. Some solo (mostly men coming down from hiking Santa Fe Baldy) and some groups. We made it back to the car in 2 hours and 30 minutes; legs a bit sore and heads a bit delirious. An excellent day all-around. I can't wait for the next hike. I am itching to do Baldy myself! I have lots more hiking photos to share. I'll post some tomorrow before we leave over at my Flickr.

Today was kind of a lost cause. I ran with Dad this morning and cleaned the apartment, but after those activities, I just never settled into anything else. Tomorrow we are headed to Albuquerque to hang out with my nieces while my sister and brother-in-law are away so I won't be posting again until next week. Hope you all enjoy the rest of the week and the coming weekend!

Saturday, June 16

friday evening art and saturday morning farmers market

As I mentioned yesterday, we went out yesterday evening to check out some art along Canyon Road and Delgado Street. There are countless galleries in the area and we didn't do the whole stop in every gallery thing. On Canyon Road, we walked up to Galerie Corazon to check out the Lisa Chun collage work. It's a sweet little gallery (which doesn't seem to update their website), and the collage work was nice, but not completely inspiring. I much prefer the work of bugheart and gracia, two collage artists I stumbled across online.

We also popped in Seven-O-Seven next door because some work in the window caught my eye.

art at seven-o-seven
Unfortunately I can't remember the artist's name and I can't find the piece on the website. It is a ceramic piece using the Raku technique.

"Love Boat" by Jorge Santos
This piece by Jorge Santos ended up being my favorite at Seven-O-Seven. It's not something that I would consider my usual taste in art, but for some reason it jumped out at me. The piece is titled "Love Boat".

After our brief venture up Canyon Road, we went back down to Delgado where we went to the the openings at Randall M. Hasson and In Art. We also stopped in Galerie Esteban and Eight Modern. Neither were too impressive, but I did love this piece at Eight Modern as well as the chain-link sculptures they have (but can't find on the website). The In Art show, Outside the Lines, was the best of them all. It was the 4th Annual Gay Pride Art Show showcasing GLBT artists of New Mexico. Lots of really great work. I especially loved the work by Mark Garcia (which may be a regular artist of In Art and not part of the Pride show, but whatever). It was a good time.

This morning, I got up early, went running and then pedaled over to the Santa Fe Farmers Market. I've been dying to go ever since we got here, and finally today was the day. It was pretty exciting for me...there are so many meat booths Sheryl! Grass-fed pork, grass-fed beef, happy chickens, happy lambs...not that I am a total meat freak, but Ms. BamBam and Rebby turned us on to the grass-fed stuff and it is outstanding. I didn't really buy anything today, but don't you worry, I will. There were also loads of local farmers with greens, tomatoes and peas. Honey. Jam. Chile. Oh yes, chile. And lots of garden plants. Oh and goat cheese that was quite delicious. I rode home with two new plants for my garden.

a trip to the farmers market
Dahlias and daisies. New flowers for my garden make me oh so happy! And shooting 600 film with my SX-70 Polaroid makes me oh so excited!

The rest of the day was maybe not so good as I did something really stupid and it's going to cost us way too much money to fix, I am sure. But c'est la vie. Shit happens. (Car-related, driveway-related, mirror-related accident.)

Tomorrow it's hiking with dad, hubby, bro and nephews, the perfect Father's Day hike, no? A happy Sunday to you all and Happy Father's Day to all the dads out there!!

Friday, June 15

peony polas

Because I can never just use one camera!

pink peonies
Pretty in pink.

white peonies
White blur.

Double exposure.

I am happy for the rain we've had lately here in Santa Fe, but it cut the lives of my mom's blooming peonies short. I was hoping to cut more for a vase home, but they are all pretty mangled from rainstorms and wind. Alas.

It's been a good week.

show and tell
I tooled around on my bike a lot. I also pulled a lot of weeds. A LOT. I am a weed pulling machine. I scanned a lot of Polas and I am almost caught up. Yesterday I went over to mom and dad's so I could read in the courtyard. We have a lovely front porch here, but the courtyard gets more sun and it's nice to sit amongst all the flowers. Mom was on her way downtown for an historical event so I tagged along. It was interesting, but it made me sleepy. After it was over, we walked to the library so I could get a library card. Yea! I love going to libraries. It was a lovely day.

Today I am quite tired as I drank too much wine at dinner and did not sleep well. I don't like feeling this way, but it happens. This evening we are going to some art openings along Canyon Road. We haven't gone out much since we moved here so I am looking forward to it. Hope you all have lovely evenings and weekends!

Monday, June 11

tuesday's flickr faves on monday

Greetings, my dears! Hope you all had lovely weekends. We had a nice time in Albuquerque hanging out with the kids. Instead of taking pictures of flowers and cats, I took pictures of dogs! I know you must be thrilled.

ginger & dallas
Ginger belongs to my sis and her family and the wee pup, Dallas, is staying with them while his owner is in Hawaii. Hard to resist the cuteness here, right?

New Mexico is not known for tornadoes, thankfully, but on Saturday, if we had left for Albuquerque about 30 minutes later than we did, we would have run right into this one. Granted, I might have gotten some tornado pictures but sitting in traffic for hours would not have been much fun. I am glad we left earlier than planned.

So, I haven't done flickr faves in quite awhile, and I usually do them on Tuesdays, but there's no telling what I'll be doing tomorrow, so I'm going to post a a few on this Monday evening. They go back to mid-April or thereabouts.

gayla's white cat (birch and horsetail).
fubuki's are you freaking coming?.
polaroidjesus' disco ball. polaroidjesus is one of my favorite Polaroid photographers on Flickr. His work is stunning.
bloody p.'s Dirty Faces @ Howlers - 4/28/07. photo by blazzzer, I believe.
also from bloody p., Weird thing on Butler St.. by bloody p. herself. love it. (and okay, yes, I can't stop with the cats.)
johanna's tree. perfect.
nel's blaetterdach. magnificent colors and light.

I'll try to get back in the swing of weekly flickr favs. I don't know how many of you look at the links, but no matter, I enjoy sharing my flickr finds.

Also, I keep meaning to mention that the Polaroid Self-Portraits group has grown to 115 members and I couldn't be happier about it. You should click through the group photos. There is some amazing work posted. And if you haven't already, you should post some of your own!

Saturday, June 9

peonies and other bits

more peonies
My mom's peonies are absolutely gorgeous.

Well, my parents' garden in general is beautiful, but right now the peonies are my favorites.

peonies in a vase
Mom let me cut some to bring home with me and they make me smile every time I walk by the kitchen table.

I suppose you all are tired of nothing but flowers and cats, but some times that is what my life is: flowers and cats. Not so bad, right?

This past Thursday was my parents' 38th anniversary. We went out to dinner with them last night to celebrate. Mom's choice: the Steaksmith. We used to eat there a lot when I was a kid and I remember it as being quite good, but I suppose my criteria has changed since then. Last night I found the meal and the atmosphere mediocre at best; it was a bit disappointing. But it's all part of my Santa Fe restaurant research! The Steaksmith can be crossed off and marked as one that I will not be in a hurry to visit again. Yesterday while I was running, I was trying to remember the restaurants we've dined at since we moved here, because I am serious when I say I want to try them all. Or at least most of them. Here's the list so far:

Rio Chama Steakhouse
Cowgirl Bar (3 times!)
Tomasita's (of course!)
San Francisco Street Bar & Grill
Second Street Brewery
Mucho Gusto

I think that's it. I'll try to keep a running list...for my memory's sake if nothing else.

A few other bits:

  • I went to the dentist a few weeks ago for the first time in...well, in a long, long time, and the dentist told me that I have very nice teeth. The hygienist told me to keep doing what I am doing (except for not going to the dentist). What a relief!

  • It's been super crazy windy here the past three days. It kills my eyes and makes me flowers unhappy. So far this morning it is calm and I hope it stays that way. Wind is not my favorite thing.

  • We're going to ABQ later today to see a show with my sister and her family. A rock show, that is. Local acts, none that I know. We're mostly going to just to see the family.

  • Between the cats rolling in the dirt and the wind blowing dust in the house, all I do is sweep, sweep and sweep. I guess it is good that our apartment is not so big otherwise I would have to spend the entire day sweeping. I am also going to have to keep up with dusting here, one of my least favorite cleaning activities.

I thought I had more for you, but I a blanking now, plus I really need to get going. It's time for my morning run. Hope you all have excellent weekends!

Tuesday, June 5

you might be wondering, part two

Sometimes I still can't believe that we really live in Santa Fe, New Mexico now. We have settled into a routine of sorts, but neither of us have regular work and so sometimes it all still feels like a dream. A *good* dream, of course. There's also been a lot passing through my mind, bits and pieces of our journey, of our life here, randomness. So instead of trying to write paragraphs about it all, I am going to make a very, very random list.

  • It took us three days to get here. I forgot to record the mileage from my odometer, but it was somewhere in the neighborhood of 1650 miles. It amounted to about 27 hours in the car.

  • I saw a lot of hawks flying around throughout the drive. I also saw two dead coyotes and lots of roadkill in general, including a lot of armadillos in Oklahoma and Texas.

  • In Texas, I stopped at a rest area that had a "watch out for snakes" sign posted and doubled as a tornado shelter.

  • Excluding the first few days that we were here, it has been sunny every single morning. Let me tell you, waking up to sunshine every single day is awesome. We do get rain, but it usually doesn't come until the afternoon, and when the storm clouds roll in, they generally do not stick around for very long.

  • There's no need for Demeter here, I smell like dirt most of the time on my own. It's been quite windy here so I guess I get covered in dust. It's not a bad thing, just different. Although today I smell like weeds because I pulled weeds for an hour and an half.

  • The Santa Fe Community College offers a class called Introduction to Roller Skating. How awesome is that?!

  • Everything takes longer to cook here. It's been so long since I lived here, I still forget to read the high-altitude directions on boxed stuff.

  • I've planted quite a few annuals since we've been here and they are doing quite well, but gardening is definitely more challenging for me in this dry climate. Things do not automatically thrive like they did in Pittsburgh.

  • One of the things I miss most about Pittsburgh - not including friends and bands - is Groceria Italiana. No Italian store here.

  • We hang out with my parents a lot. Almost daily. And I have to say that it is pretty awesome. It's been 18 years, more or less, since I lived in the same town as them and so I guess I'm making up for lost time. Will and I pick their brains all the time about Santa Fe, their childhoods, I'm really enjoying it and I think they are too.

  • We've been to the Cowgirl Bar four times since we've been here. They have the best frozen margs I've ever had. (We used to go to the one in NYC a lot too. After last night, I am feeling like the NYC one has better food.) Margs on the rocks are a little weak. One of the last times we were there, we sat at the bar and had a great conversation with the bartender. He and Will have similar stories; it was kind of bizarre. He's one of my favorite people we've met so far.

  • We went to Trader Joe's for the first time today. They have a lot of good stuff. I think it is slightly larger than the one in Pittsburgh? Lately we feel like all we do is shop for food.

  • We like food, yes. And living in Santa Fe, the small city with a zillion restaurants rules. Since we arrived, my dad is on a mission to try a bunch of places that he's never been before and he wants to take us along for the ride. I am not complaining. Last week we ate at Mucho Gusto and I had the shrimp enchiladas. Delicious.

  • Santa Fe real estate is ridiculously expensive. Apparently something like 40% of local Santa Feans have had to move out of the city because of unaffordable housing. This depresses me.

  • The crime rate is not great here either, being such a small city. That depresses me as well.

  • This past weekend, I ran a race for the first time since the Pittsburgh Marathon in 2000. It was just a 5K, but I hope to do some longer ones down the road. I am not particularly competitive, I just think races are fun. But I ran with my dad and he made me run fast. Here I thought I could run faster than him now, but nope, at age 67, he is still ahead of me. We came in at around 28 minutes. He places third in his age group. I placed sixth in mine which was shocking to me considering that the 30-39 age group for women is FAST. But I think this race was more about community than attracting the super speed competitors.

  • I've been taking a lot of Polaroids. Polaroid film is super cheap at Sam's Club and that makes me very, very happy. Not feeling super good about the results though. My photo skills seem askew right now.

  • We saw Spiderman 3 a week or so ago. Boo. I didn't like it much at all and it was way too long. Haven't seen the new Pirates movie yet. Summer movie that I am looking forward to the most: Harry Potter!!

  • Due to no longer having cable, we finally joined NetFlix. It rules. We watched Fur most recently and it took me awhile to digest. I love Diane Arbus - I know, who doesn't? - but this is not really about her; it is inspired by the biography by Patricia Bosworth and in many ways, has little to do with reality. But it is a beautiful film nonetheless. Worth checking out, I think.

  • We've seen quite a few folks here wearing Steelers gear and/or with Steelers stickers on their cars. Have to say, I am already looking forward to football season.

  • I've been reading some fluff since we got here. Borrowed some of my dad's Elmore Leonard books. Not bad, but I got burnt after two so we went to Border's the other day as it is just down the street from us at Sanbusco. My main goal was to see if they had a copy of Jami's book, Instant Love, in paperback. They had one copy which I promptly bought even though I already own the hardback. I'm all about supporting the art of my friends and acquaintances. Also ended up buying a book of stories by Manuel Muñoz just because it caught my eye. And I was thrilled to find that they not only have Haruki Murkami's new novel in stock; they have every single thing he has ever written in stock. This blew my mind because before we left Pittsburgh, I was trying to find a copy of Blind Willow, Sleeping Woman and on one had it.

  • The cats are going outside now and they LOVE it. They roll in the dirt constantly. And Rocky wanders the perimeters smelling flowers, just like Ferdinand the Bull.

  • Our mail never arrives until after six o'clock. Not a big fan of this schedule, but I am getting used to it.

  • I had a job interview last week. It went okay, but I am thinking it is not the job for me so I must continue with the search. Job hunting stresses me out.

  • Today I took the day off from stressful activities and it felt excellent. I got so many other things done, including the pulling of the weeds that never cease growing in our parking area and yard.

See, quite a bit in my head, wanting to come out. I must stop now though because it is 6:30 and I have to go check the mail, plus, um, are you even still reading this?!

you might be wondering

Well, hello there. I didn't mean to disappear for so long, but between the move across the country and computer problems, I just haven't had time to focus on the blog. To be honest with you, I've been thinking of a post for quite awhile now, but when it comes down to it, I would rather sit on the porch and read my book than sit at my computer. This makes sense, no? Which is not to say that I haven't been reading *your* blogs and looking at *your* pictures, because I have. Just not as obsessively as usual.

What have I been doing? Well...

Hiking with Will and my dad. My dad knows the Santa Fe mountains like the back of his hand which is very lucky for us. We've only just begun our hiking adventures.

On top of Deception Peak with Dad and Katrina. I was dying from hiking straight up the mountain AND through knee deep snow AND at an altitude of over 12,000 feet. Nonetheless, we had a great time.

another new houseplant
Building up my house plant collection again since I left most of mine behind in Pittsburgh. I miss my old plants - some of them were over 10 years old - but I also love picking out new ones.

will and the girls
Hanging out with my nieces and nephews. This is one of my main reasons for moving back to New Mexico.

living room
Getting the apartment in order. Things are looking good. We get great light here which makes me very, very happy.

Hanging out with my parents' dog who absolutely loves us. She's a beautiful pup.

part of my stuffed animal collection
Going through the closet full of my stuff at my parents' house. I packed up like 5 or 6 boxes of books for my mom to sell at one of her club's rummage sale. It is painful for me to get rid of books, but I just can't justify keeping them all. I still haven't gone through my stuffed animals, but I can already tell you, I am probably not going to be getting rid of them. They were my best friends when I was a kid! The two pictured here belonged to my dad when he was a boy.

Taking pictures of my mom's garden. Everything is so beautiful. I need to get over there with my camera again to photograph the peonies which are in full bloom right now.

...and that's just some of what's been going on! It's hard to play catch up. I'll have more for you soon. If I keep going now, the post is going to be way too long! Happy Tuesday!

Friday, May 18

welcome to new mexico

welcome to new mexico

Yes, we are still alive and kicking! It's been awhile, I know, but we just got DSL at our place yesterday. It's nice to be back online, but it is also overwhelming. I have no idea where to start here and so I may skip backtracking altogether and just move forward. We'll see.

I have lots of photos to add to my Flickr, though I have to say none of them are really mind-blowing. Taking photos has not been a priority lately, and while I miss it, my head is a million other places. Uh, we just moved across the country and let me tell you, it's takes some time to get settled in. Our apartment is actually not filled with boxes anymore which is quite nice, but we still have loads to do. We have been quite busy since, well, since before left Pittsburgh.

The trip out here went quite smoothly and despite some of the setbacks we've had since our arrival, we are thrilled to be here. Even the snow we got that first weekend - snow! in May! - did not dampen our spirits. It's absolutely beautiful here and it is exciting to be somewhere new (well, okay, I grew up here, but I haven't lived here in a very, very long time) with so many things to discover. The cats are settling in and seem to like their new pad. There are lots of windows to sit in and that keeps them happy. They are getting quite restless for the outdoors, but we're not ready to go there yet. Maybe next week.

Right now we are awaiting the arrival of my best friend from high school. We're going to dinner and an art opening. It's our first official night out in Santa Fe and I am looking forward to it even though I am exhausted. And then tomorrow we are heading to Albuquerque for the weekend as my eldest niece is graduation from high school. The party is tomorrow and the ceremony is on Monday. I am looking forward to spending the weekend with my sister and her family. They crack me up like no one else.

So that's it for now. I'll be back on Tuesday or so and hopefully I'll have some better pictures for you. Happy weekends to you all!

Friday, April 27

this is it

star tulips, i think

Yep, this is it. I'm packing up the computer after I get done here. I shall miss you all, but a break from the computer is always nice.

I have little more to add...stomach is still crazy, but eh, what can I do? We have to get to Santa Fe, upset stomach or no. I am sure that once we get going, my nerves will mellow out.

Have a fabulous weekend and then some! I'll be back here in a week or two.


Thursday, April 26

on driving across the country, part three

When I initially started posting on this topic, I wanted to do a series of posts about some of my travel adventures; but as luck would have it, between preparing for the big move, work, and computer issues, I never got around to it. And I am not going to cover it all now. Suffice it to say that after the Dead summer tour of 1991, I did not travel cross country (by car) again until 1995 when I moved to Pittsburgh.

Which isn't to say I didn't travel. When I was in my 20's, I took a lot of good road trips, some by myself, some with other folks. Two of my favorite road trips were taken with my friend Birdy. On summer I drove her up to Montana where she was going to working for a few months, and then headed back south via Spokane, Portland and California. I drove down the coast from Portland to San Francisco and I remember it as one of the most beautiful drives ever. I really would love to do that again. Then it was San Francisco to San Diego where another friend, Christine, met me and we made our way back to Albuquerque. The second trip with Birdy was my first and only trip to Austin for SXSW. That was an adventure.

There were also smaller trips to Colorado, Arizona, and California, mostly for shows, and well, not love but crushes. I drove to Seattle by myself once and man, I loved that trip. I wanted to move to Seattle so badly and then ended up in Pittsburgh. Go figure. Rains a lot in both places. And I did travel cross country by train once, another awesome experience. Oh yes, those were the days. I may not have been fearless, but I definitely didn't have some of the travel anxiety issues that I have today.

So all this babbling is just leading up to telling you that we are taking the middle route to New Mexico. We could take I-70 West just about the whole way to Colorado and then head south to Santa Fe on I-25. Or we could take a more southern route through Tennessee where we could hit I-40 West and take that all the way to Albuquerque. That's basically the reverse of what I did when I moved out here. We wanted to see Graceland so we drove to Memphis from Albuquerque and then headed north from there. But we're going down the middle. I-70 West to Missouri (I think) and then down into Oklahoma where we'll eventually hit I-40 which was take us through Texas and into New Mexico. This route is the shortest, with a route distance of 1627 miles and driving time of 24:31. If we weren't going to have the cats with us, I would love to meander our way to the southwest, but since we will have the cats with us, I want to get to Santa Fe as quickly as possible.

The cats have both moved before, but neither have been on a car trip that lasts more than a day. I have no idea what to expect, but fingers crossed, all is going to be fine. My guess is that they'll cry for awhile and then settled down for the car ride. I think they'll be way more freaked out by funny smelling motel rooms than the car. Cats don't like change and being in some random room without any of their normal furnishings is not going to be fun. I can't blame them. On the other hand, cats are pretty adaptable and I think they'll make it without being too traumatized. At least they will be with us. Anyone have any cat travel trips?

When I moved out here with my cat Jed, he flew by himself. And that did traumatize him. As well as me. When I got to the airport he wasn't here. No one told me that I had to go to the cargo airport which was an entirely different place. It was awful. And he had taken a mild sedative so he was freaked out and groggy and it broke my heart. He was a bit changed after that. So I have no desire to put Simon and Rocky through that experience.

As for the stress from watching the Today show, they were showing tornado and flood footage from Texas and the Plains area and while it was nowhere that we are driving through, it got me thinking about bad weather. Being that I am prone to high stress, my head whirled right into a near panic attack. I can just see myself in water up to my windows on the interstate with two cats and all my cameras. "Don't save me, take the cats and the cameras!" Oy. I am joking, but man, I have been super anxiety-ridden and unfortunately for me, it all comes out via my stomach. Which makes me more stressed which makes my stomach worse and so on. I stocked up on Tums, Pepto and Maalox so hopefully I don't spend the trip stopping at bathrooms.

That said, I am feeling mostly positive about the trip. I am trying not to focus on my fears but rather on the good stuff. The open road, the wind blowing in my hair, me and the cats rocking out to all the cool music people are burning for us. It'll be good. It'll be fun. It'll be an adventure. For sure.

Okay, well, sorry to ramble on for so long. I'll be online for awhile tomorrow and then that'll be it for awhile. Oh, I did put Twitter back up in the sidebar so I may send a few words from the road. And I may post some pics tomorrow. If not, see you on the flip side. Much love, madorange.

snaps from the weekend

[me-n-bambam. one of my favorite snaps from the weekend.]

stare down
[Will in a stare down with a scotch egg.]

SKNKS @ Gooski's
[Will rockin' it with SKNKS. I love the graininess.]

anita fix & bambam @ gooski's
[BamBam rockin' it with Anita Fix. I love the green!]

[Hanging in the backyard. We had such a lovely couple of days with Matt & Sylvia. Thanks for the visit!]