Wednesday, December 28, 2011


i have never really made new year's resolutions. as my favorite hobby is self-improvement, i make resolutions all year long.  some i keep, some i don't.  what i don't do is decide one day to begin to do something forever and expect my mind to stay on board the boat.  i'm a gradual girl.  i've found that a blast of motivation is essential early on, but it's the slow burn that manifests the idea as reality.

so, my new year's resolution 2012?  stoking the fire.

i resolve to engage and play and stay interested. in april, that may mean something different to me than it does now.  by october, i will undoubtedly have conceived new methods and new tools for new goals. gathering my wood and preparing my kindling, i wish to be constantly mindful (or a close likeness) of how i'm approaching my thoughts, my challenges, and all those accomplishments that the new year will bring.

happy new year!


Friday, December 23, 2011

100th post : winter wonder

winter is a mysterious, exciting, beautiful, and wonderfully transformative time.  such reflection on what has been and such anticipation for what is to come. for me, present events are far and away noteworthy, as i'm sure they are for most folks this december. although personal, i can say these transpirings have been complete game changers. not the least of which is the return of silk nog.

stay cozy.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

event : oh elle

the benefit fundraiser that i've co-coordinated will be this saturday! 
divine emanations + oh elle events
in association with artificial music machine

a benefit for the Scarlet Woman Lodge

featuring music by:



Thomas Fang


Steve Arceri

Sassy Wife

plus artwork by Hammer Art

december 10, 2011 ev
doors at 8pm, show at 9pm
cover $5, BYOB
The Scarlet Woman Lodge
1514 Ed Bluestein Blvd ste 303/304

Monday, November 28, 2011

into port

thanksgiving vacation was supercalifragilisticexpialidocious. i sneezed a lot and baked linzer hearts, watched the parade, made a lovely turkey supper with the handsome man, dreamed up and reflected on future plans, caught up with friends over pie and hot chocolate, and ignited the fireplace to bless the season. lots of laughing was had. 

and things learned:
1. my friends are rockstars.
2. silk nog is now at whole foods.
3. it's okay to give myself some credit sometimes.
4. i really enjoy retail environments that play jazzy christmas music.
5. stevia can be bought in flavors


Wednesday, November 16, 2011

current wayfinding

1. the kitchen
     a. coconut tart
     b. chicken curry
     c. wheat bread
2. big conference weekend
     a. visiting friends from out of town
     b. church
3. huge tidal wave of event planning
4. and
     a. a strengthened conviction
     b. pinterest!


Monday, November 7, 2011

destination : vienna 1791

'The Magic Flute is noted for its prominent Masonic elements; Schikaneder and Mozart were Masons and lodge brothers. The opera is also influenced by enlightened absolutism. The Queen of the Night represents a dangerous form of obscurantism or, according to some, the anti-Masonic Empress Maria Theresa. Her antagonist Sarastro symbolises the enlightened sovereign who rules according to principles based on reason, wisdom, and nature. The story itself portrays the education of mankind, progressing from chaos through religious superstition to rationalistic enlightenment, by means of trial (Tamino) and error (Papageno), ultimately to make "the Earth a heavenly kingdom, and mortals like the gods." (wikipedia)

Monday, October 31, 2011

destination : halloweenland

marc antony accompanied me, cleopatra, to halloweenland on saturday evening.  after passing through a ghoulish foyer and sitting room, bedecked with spiders, hanging bags of bones, and webbery, we thankfully found ourselves in a lively, smart kitchen.  we were reunited with friends, dinosaur girl and horny devil boy, just dave, bacchus, and dr. frankenstein and his whore creation.  over cupcakes, punch, pita chips, and guacamole, we reminisced about our time spent in tarsus, the latest plot to undo octavian, and my bitumen fortune. divine!

** this weekend was notable for a few other absolutely happy making elements like:
- greek food
- saturday morning radio show bed lounge
- art collage time
- feeding ducks at the park
- root beer
- shopping for costumes
- gorgeous weather


Friday, October 28, 2011


hey, guess what's gonna happen for halloween weekend 2011!

i'm going to drink this and
wear this
and play this and
sit in front of this.

there may also be book reading, costco shopping, cooking, and finishing a painting project. 


*pretty play painting by casey o'connell

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

recipe mapping

i am aware that i am somewhat behind the times, being thirty years old and having just cooked with raw chicken for the first time in at least seven years. (there was a stint there when i was twenty 22 or so where i attempted it and then spent the rest of my twenties being vegan, vegetarian, or having other people prepare it for me.)  but, i did yesterday evening!  baked chicken is awesome and i will be adding it to my kitchen alchemy repertoire.

photo by the pioneer woman

Monday, October 24, 2011

an october weekend

some of things the handsome man and i did:

grilled outside : burger night is so much fun.

attended the dia de los muertos party that i helped to organize : lots of silliness and stories told and heard.

watched the second half of dagon after sunday breakfast : because that's what you do on sunday mornings.

roamed around half price books : 1. witch hunts, 2. tea, 3. hellenistic art. 

it was a good october weekend.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


i buried myself under covers last night to keep cozy, and although fin wouldn't venture under with me, he snugged into my face to keep warm.  this morning, first heater of the season.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

some things

maybe today is the first chilly day of autumn.
maybe i spent thirty minutes this morning taking phone pictures of myself.
maybe i went on a date to the symphony and remembered that i want to listen to debussy all of the time.
maybe my desire to bake bread will go away soon.  probably not.

p.s. i am simply dying to go to a farmers' market. anyone else?
i have been reading lots of this (don't judge) and loving this.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

destination : north austin medical center

apparently there were some experiences i needed to have before i entered my thirties.  so, i spent the eve of my thirtieth birthday in the emergency room, being tested for brain and heart damage and getting stitches on my chin after a strange fainting spell.
lesson here: my thirties demand blood sacrifice.
lesson there: i am a victorian waif afterall.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

autumn project I

i spent most of the day yesterday with j + v who have been hard at play learning the ins and outs of brewing their own mead.  apple pie mead, strawberry mead, pina colada mead, mead mead! part of their operation follows a low-tech process that has been dubbed "macgyver mead," as the materials used in the brew itself and the storage and implements used to facilitate the process can be found around the house or at the market. we sampled apricot and blackberry mead and discussed how one would go about brewing mead inside of a pumpkin.  take that macguyver. autumn project number one?  yes!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

lost + found post

Creative Creativity: Inspiration and Tools for Creativity
David Wahl

Everyone remembers being afraid of dark spaces as a child. Even the shadowy space under your bed was a potential monster hideaway. The bigger your imagination, the worse the monsters you imagined.

A friend of mine posted her 7-year-old son Chester's school project on Facebook. To celebrate their one hunderth day of school, his teacher asked each student to bring in a hundred of something. He decided to bring a list of one hundred monsters.

At first, as with all scary things, it seemed like there were an infinite number of monsters. So many monsters, in fact, that he decided to group them into tens. Ten dragons, ten cryptoids, ten movie monsters... Also, it wasn't enough to just have the name, he had to look up each one and learn about it. He then painstakingly wrote each one, learning how to spell even the Kaiju monsters. With each step the list got more and more manageable until, toward the end, it was hard to even come up with enough monsters to finish.

It struck me how helpful it would be when you are faced with completing an impossible, scary project to list your monsters. Sometimes just a blank piece of paper is the terrifying dark closet that contains everything that scares you into inaction.

Instead of letting yourself get overwhelmed by fear and inertia, why not list out all the things that are stopping you from starting? Get a piece of paper and write them out. Break them into sections if you want, anything to make them more manageable.

In fact, try and list a hundred things preventing you from moving forward. It's not easy to do. I bet it's hard for you to get past twenty. You can start with the teacher in the fifth grade who told you that you'd never amount to anything and then move on to that nasty commenter on your blog that tells you that it's hard to read your writing because there are so many grammatical mistakes and run on sentences.

Once you see the monsters all laid out neatly on a piece of paper, I bet they're no scarier than Spongebob Squarepants. Who, if you look carefully at the picture above, you'll see in the Sea Monster category between the Gloucester Serpant and Gill-Man.

Image copyright 2011 ampersand duck

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

remember the tooth! (and a road trip)

after having my wisdom tooth (#32) pulled out on friday afternoon, the handsome man gave me chocolate pudding and we got back in the car for a road trip to dallas for the weekend. i was loopy on medication, frustrated by only ingesting sweet flavored liquids, had dozens of creative ideas sparked off by the training during the day, and much love and laughter the whole time. - although i had trouble opening my mouth very wide, so i had to giggle through mostly closed lips. also, i had a fabulous mango smoothie at denny's, of all places.

thank you dallas + see y'all again soon!

Sunday, September 11, 2011

an unexpected turn

impacted wisdom tooth: excruciating, writhing pain. as i am not usually in pain, this vantage point has offered up some interesting observances. namely, that all of my senses are heightened when i'm in extream pain. everyone seems to be yelling (or meowing very very loudly,)sleepy but can't sleep, just want to feel better soon.

Thursday, September 8, 2011


this evening i'll be leading one of my first, of hopefully many, art and design workshops. a truly exciting way-point on my map, and one that i am passionate about.   

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

sap of the tree

over the labor day holiday weekend, much long awaited relief was to be had, however paradoxical and formed with cheshire grin.

the cool front blew in on friday night, dropping temperature highs below 100* for the first time in months, and also fueling towering out of control fires all over austin.  amazing, fast, and destructive.  fin and i sat by our open patio door with eyes closed and enjoyed the coolish breeze on our faces.  it was glorious.  picture perfect days for those like us who could enjoy the cool sunny weather and be so so grateful for our safe homes away from harm.

monday morning and afternoon, i sat down with canvas, paint, and other supplies and a plan of artistic action that i actually implemented instead of just conceptualizing.  i took my time and kept with it.  i got my hands dirty and created something that, at least outside of my mind, did not exist before. pretty cool.  these creative juices always cause me to meditate on the nature of limits. - usually in the context of defying limits.  but in order to think of boundary busting, my thoughts are also drawn to those struggle places inside where i seem, to myself, to be hopelessly limited. painting brings the focus on trepidation and places where i might be holding back and then on the breakthrough, the bold line, the courage to make a mark.

this week is all about holding close all possibilities simultaneously and choosing my most perfect outcomes, at least with regards to those outcomes i can influence. this week is all about sculpting out a big inventive life.

Friday, September 2, 2011

Ganesha Chaturthi : September 2011

change change change change 
all above and below the place.  autumn is so close, 
time is ticking over, and i am in love 
with it.  all of the high pressure cooker richness of the summer is 
starting to spill open, 
for what is being cleared away 
moment by moment.  

seen this week:
* a lone dildo sculpture in the middle of the sidewalk near my home.

heard this week:
*good news

taste of the week:
*spiced indian lentils and potatoes

felt this week:
* mad venusian love

touched this week:
*potting soil

{blessed blessed september}


Monday, August 22, 2011

the personal stamp

what's your mark?

party planned : lessons learned

1. allot twice as much time to complete all event preparation tasks.
2. provide guests with unusual things to look at.
3. clean up in bits and pieces while the event is taking place ( without looking crazy.)
4. create and post a menu for the food table so that folks can know what they're eating without asking.
5. have a stated end time to the party.
6. get help somehow, from someone.

next stop, my treintañera!

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

a life map

The Tao of Travel

Post written by Leo Babauta, Zen Habits.
I’m not the world’s most seasoned traveler, but I have made a number of trips lately and have learned a few things that work well.
This year I’ve traveled to Guam for a month, to Portland, New York City, Las Vegas, London, Paris, Southern California. They’ve all been beautiful trips, and I’ve never taken more than a small backpack.
Travel lightly, with no set agenda, and you’ll have an amazing, stress-free trip.
Traveling doesn’t have to be stressful. It can be simple, if you keep it so.


  1. Pack little. I take a small backpack, and don’t pack it too heavy either. I’ve found through experience that I just need a pair of jeans, 2-3 T-shirts, 2-3 quick-dry boxer briefs, 2-3 pairs of quick-dry socks, maybe a light sweater. I wash things in the shower if they get dirty and hang them to dry overnight. I bring my laptop so I can work for 30-45 minutes every morning. A paperback novel, maybe a small notebook. Minimal toiletries: deodorant, toothbrush, razor, Dr. Brommer’s liquid soap, dental floss. I never wait to check my back or get the bag after the flight, and I can pack in 5 minutes.
  2. Have no agenda. I often ask for recommendations from locals, and get a list of incredible things. I’ll also put everything on a Google Map, so I can see where everything is. Then I toss all that out and let the day lead me where it will. Having no set agenda means you aren’t pressured to get anything done each day, which means you can enjoy yourself fully.
  3. Walk a lot. The best way to explore any place is to walk. Walk all over, with no set directions. Get lost.
  4. Eat lightly. Eat anything you want, but don’t eat a lot. I like to mix fruits and veggies in with the heavier stuff, so I don’t feel so heavy.
  5. Find space to relax. Most people try to do too much, and rush around all day. Stroll casually, find good coffee shops or tea shops to relax in, or a good sidewalk cafe with good wine. Find parks and enjoy them. If it rains, walk in the rain. Read a lot.
  6. Be present. Don’t be on your smartphone or laptop all the time. Don’t always think about what you’ll be doing later, or work stuff. Be fully present, and you’ll have a great time.
  7. Smile at people. Talk to the locals. Ask for recommendations. Find out about their lives.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

brain melt 2011

(Classical Nahuatl: Tlālōc [ˈtɬaːloːk]) was an important deity in Aztec religion, a god of rain, fertility, and water. He was a beneficent god who gave life and sustenance, but he was also feared for his ability to send hail, thunder and lightning, and for being the lord of the powerful element of water. In Aztec iconography he is normally depicted with goggle eyes and fangs. He was associated with caves, springs and mountains. He is known for having demanded child sacrifices.
it is so disturbingly hot and folks are becoming nutty.
desperate texas sun zombies.
send the needed rain.
please and thank you.

Saturday, July 30, 2011

fresh familiar things

this past week i had the good fortune to be in the company of three (3)  long time friends rarely seen and in the basement headquarters of one (1) austin jazz haunt, not visited in many years.  i encounter that "thing-" where experience yields itself exactly as one remembers, but nevertheless changed in light of time and circumstance.  i encounter the oh yeahs and the oh yeahs.....hugs and are you still working there and remember when that thing and really, you're not carding me anymore at this place?  i remembered to love past lives, not just in theory or for experiences learned, but because of experiencing those people and those places alive, thriving, so different, and so exactly the same.

i also, through these interactions, smushed energy with an awesome, gorgeous, well tattooed waitress named celeste, a date (the fruit) stuffed with gorgonzola cheese, a walnut, and drizzled with wildflower honey, a dear man, robert davis who i had a special relationship with and will always hold a glass to, and conversation that left me feeling both comforted, and glad to leave.

i can love some of the past in my present, and i'm glad to leave some of my present in my past.

Thursday, July 28, 2011


A position of strength

Let your feelings be your choice. There’s no need for the twists and turns of circumstance to hold your feelings hostage.
In each moment, let your outlook be determined by your highest expectations. Observe the world from a positive perspective, and you’ll see the most valuable possibilities.
You never have to be dismayed in an attempt to be realistic. Though reality is what it is, you always have the choice of what to make of it.
It is easy to think you need to feel sorry for yourself. It is far better, though, to avoid the waste of time and energy that your self-pity would produce.
Your feelings are powerful, and they are yours to choose. Whatever may happen, you always have the option of dealing with it from a position of strength.
In every challenge there is great potential value. Choose to feel powerful and positive, and that value is yours to create.
— Ralph Marston

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Monday, July 18, 2011

(dolce vita)

sunday was a big day for me.  i spent the morning folding origami swans in preparation for a birthday party, i accepted an invite to dolce vita in hyde park to meet up with a visiting friend despite a very strong desire not to leave the house. as it turns out, a large amount of relief and laughter can come when you least expect it. into the evening i played model in a photo shoot for an up and coming austin photog friend that is sure to be the next big thing with his new show. and, unfortunately, disappointment struck just before bed, which is always the most inopportune time for disappointment, i believe. i suppose disappointment arises from holding on to expectation.  but, we all have to hope for something, right? perhaps it would be helpful to take advantage of disappointment and let down as highlighters of other elements to be thankful for. disappointment couldn't take away the beautiful swans i made or bright faces over perfect cups of coffee, or giggly picture posing with vials of kool-aid.

Monday, July 11, 2011


An analogy for bodhichitta is the rawness of a broken heart. Sometimes this broken heart gives birth to anxiety and panic, sometimes to anger, resentment, and blame. But under the hardness of that armor there is the tenderness of genuine sadness. This is our link with all those who have ever loved. This genuine heart of sadness can teach us great compassion. It can humble us when we’re arrogant and soften us when we are unkind. It awakens us when we prefer to sleep and pierces through our indifference. This continual ache of the heart is a blessing that when accepted fully can be shared with all.
- Pema Chodron -

Monday, July 4, 2011

destination : emerald city (follow me?)

from the beginning to the middle of july, i think about all thirty-one flavors of independence. i think about choices and the courage to make choices and stick with them.  i think on the nature of change and how the promise of a desired outcome can sometimes be worth the ordeals and challenges of a reconstruction.  i think about gatherings with friends and family because i like to remember that being independent doesn't mean having to be alone.

may your fourth of july and bastille day be fierce and sparkly.

Monday, June 20, 2011

destination : in and out of a car : movement

i have had the good fortune over the past few days to hold authority over a car, and the only real thing i have to do in return is feed some cats.  i have been able to attend events and patronize shops that i would not have been able to (or just decided not to.)  and strangely, after a day of driving hither and yon, i am so much more exhausted than i imagined i could be, considering that driving basically just requires one to sit upright and awake. in the car and out of the car and in the car and out of the car and in the car again.  i am thankful for the opportunity to run errands and to feel an independence that i do not normally have, having to rely on others to move around. and, i am also very appreciative of my carfriends who take the time to pick me up and drop me off.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

wish : mapper

all i want for my 30th birthday this year is anthony bourdain, some flowers, and a pony.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

the treasure house

'O Glory be to Thee, O God my God; for I behold Thee in the gilded rout of dancing-girls: Thou hast garlanded their naked middles with fragrant flowers, so that they may pace forth the Glory of 
Thy Name.' 
The Chapter known as
The Twelvefold Glorification of God and the Unity thereof
I adore Thee by the Twelve Glorifications and by the Unity thereof. 
liber 963 / the treasure house of images

Thursday, May 19, 2011

lunch errand : urban outfitters

i crossed the street and became trendy.

(i used buying a gift for a girlfriend as an excuse to ogle vintage inspired 

Sunday, May 15, 2011

destination : fredericksburg, texas

yesterday, we blew the popsicle stand for a fredericksburg scouting trip. we headed south on 290.  i drank lots of blue sky lemon lime diet soda.  we laughed a lot. along the way, several wineries were made note of, rainwater collection system ideas shared, and i definitively decided that i will own baby goats instead of children.

once in fredericksburg, the handsome man and i dropped into the visitors center to load up on brochures and plan future trips. (glen rose, texas, hello?!) there was the national museum of the pacific war, main street, i had my first wine tasting, and spotted loads of texas women in floral prints with faces made up like clowns.  after finding ourselves literally lost in the christmas store for a spell, we walked back towards the car and a pleasant restaurant for dinner.

we liked the german stone buildings and the messina hof pinot grigio.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

07 may 2011

the world may end later this month, but today is how to live a saturday.
the handsome man just happened to be out of breakfast supplies this morning so oh darn, we had to have brunch at the the new black of breakfast eateries, cafe java.
then, we loaded back into the car and drove downtown to the pecan street festival. t'was my first time attending, and we had so much fun! we saw a camel and spoke with a compost lady and hung out in a hot sauce shop and remarked about how the stuff for sale honestly wasn't crap. -and frankly saw some of the coolest paintings of naked ladies wearing goats heads that we'd seen in a while. and i got a free strawberry lemonade sample.
then, i bought a new bikini while handsome man went to market to purchase us a fine fish for supper.
soon, an evening walk, dinner making, a movie about sailors, and some colored pencils.
then, sunday.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

destination : bus stop

which came first, the chicken or the egg? -
where chicken=homeless person and egg=crazy.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Monday, April 18, 2011

adapt or die.

weekend / business: pleasure

things done:
  • walk in gilleland park
  • persian food!
  • kissing
  • laundry
  • business meeting
things seen:
  • rushing water and a blue jay
  • iranian flags and gazebo rally
  • dear friends i hadn't seen in months
  • a just hit by a car squirrel (horrifying)
  • hanna
things planned for:
  • becoming green energy magnates
  • signing up for a marathon (and buying better shoes)
  • defying limits
  • mystery weekend