Newness for a New Year

Thursday, March 31, 2011

I love this car...

I want one of these:
You can see more of them here.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Saturday, I went to the BYU production of Persuasion. It was a fairly traditional read of the play, although they did include a young Anne and Captain Wentworth throughout. The two would come on stage and provide memory moments for the older Anne and Captain Wentworth. It was a fun addition to the play. It seemed to really reflect how life is... we are living in the present but with constant views into our past. Even being down in Provo drew all kinds of memories fresh to my mind and heart. I was walking in the present and past simultaneously. That is the way of life.

The one thing I did not enjoy about the play was the shocking absence of my favorite line from the book.

It is Anne, who after seeing Captain Wentworth again, says, "There could have been no two hearts so open, no tastes so similar, no feelings so in unison, no countenances so beloved. Now they were strangers ... it was perpetual estrangement." These lines are the crux of the entire conflict. They are so beautiful, drenched with the hope of what could be and the loss of what is. It is the division that must be overcome...two people so complete when together and yet apart.

I've had many people ask why Persuasion is my favorite Jane Austen. I guess it all started by chance really. I was 18 or 19 at Ricks College, and I used to scour the bookstore for good reads. Well, I had read Pride and Prejudice in high school and loved it. I picked up Persuasion on a whim and took it home. It cost me $3.95 (the sticker is still on the back). I read it quickly and with much adoration. Little could I know what foreshadowing that book would have in my own life. But, I think I liked it because Anne was older, and she had felt deep loss. It felt so real to me. And, then there is the letter from Captain Wentworth at the end. Can words be any more beautiful and love feel any more splendid?

Perhaps love can survive distance and time. Maybe waiting for love can help refine our senses. This was Jane's last completed novel. It seems to embody the maturity of her writing. And, I'd like to think that maybe she longed for love once close that was, by then, gone away.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

25-year Anniversary of Pretty in Pink

For those of you who love Andrew McCarthy like I do... here is an article about where the cast of Pretty in Pink is now. Oh, and he was on White Collar this season.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Some of my recent wares...

I haven't posted any of my recent creations, so I thought I'd share a few things.

I've gotten back into painting lately. Here is the cover of an accordion book that I did.
I've been looking at some Art Nouveau prints and remaking them into my own designs.

And, as for the book making. A friend of mine asked me to make a book for his photography class. He wanted a book to hold and collect his design inspirations. I figured that a leather book would be flexible enough to expand to fit everything he could put in it. It was such fun to make. I even think I'm getting better at make man books. They aren't all that easy, but leather definitely is a good option. This book was a little bigger than an 8 1/2 x 11 with a medium weight paper inside. The top buttons keep it together.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Missing: One Green Heel

I'm not sure how it happened, and frankly, I'm baffled at where it could be. How do you lose one shoe in your closet? I remember wearing them and then taking them off and slinging them into the bottom of my closet. Now, poof. One is gone. The part that really irks me is that I have no idea how I just have one beautiful, green heel left. The only way out of my room would have been in the garbage? But, I think I would have noticed since I have a small garbage in my room.

But, I can't get rid of the other one because then I'll find the missing one and still be down one perfect shoe. Maybe it will show up again ... somewhere...somehow. If my dad were reading this, he'd simply say, "It looks like it got up and walked away!" Ha. Ha.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011


So, today I had one of those moments when a memory rushes over you and you are completely taken to a different place. I was drenched in the memory of a person who means a lot to me. Something small triggered it, and I wasn't even thinking of the person at the time, but then it hit me, saturating all my senses.

It is remarkable how that can happen. The people in our lives weave their way into our souls so much more than we taken notice of. We really are carrying around parts of all the people we've met. Obviously, some people take up more room inside of us than others. Some are more welcome, and some are dearly cherished. Maybe we really are the total of who we meet and form relationships with. I like that idea because it means I get to carry around parts of the most remarkable people. It is like we give out pebbles to all the people we meet...pebbles of our soul. We give pebbles to everyone and we collect pebbles from everyone. Some pebbles are generic because we give those out to all we meet--the pleasantries of politeness and general kindness. Some people get more of our pebbles than others, and some people get larger pebbles depending on how much we open up to them. There are the few people who get our most prized pebbles because they earn them by being true to us. Still others help us find the most beautiful pebbles we have to offer.

We have this collection of pebbles from all the people we come in contact with. A little bit of them that stays with us. They become part of who we are.

It should be that way. To take some portion of the people in our lives helps us remember that we are not alone. And, on nights like tonight, I love to sit and look at my pebble collection. I take them and look at their beauty and diversity. No two are the same. I get caught away in memories of songs, laughter, tears, and conversations. I linger on some pebbles, those that I keep in the most treasured places. They often are the pebbles that I've swapped for my most precious pebbles.

Who would we be without the people in our lives? I wouldn't be the person I am or who I hope to be. People help us become ourselves.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Nana Part 1

I'm starting a new project. It's one that I've been meaning to do for a while but haven't until now.

April 2008 my Nana passed away. I've written about her before, but I find myself writing about her again. I have her journals, and I'm typing them up so that everyone can have a copy. Well, everyone in the family who wants a copy. Besides being a really good thing for genealogy, I'm already seeing how amazing it is to read her words and feel close to her again. It's been a long time, and I miss her.

She wasn't a prolific writer, and she didn't write for any other purpose than for her grandchildren, at least that is what she said. I think she also wrote to pass the time. She was very lonely a lot of the time. She never married and only ever had my mom. She had very little family besides us kids. We were everything to her. I know that because that is what she wrote about--us. And she wrote several times that we meant everything to her. She lived for us. She would spend her very meager income on us, she spent her free time with us, and she gave us all the love she had to give. I knew that we always meant a lot to her, but I never knew how much she relied on us, needed us. Can we possibly know how important it is not to be forgotten? Having people in our lives is vital. We need to love and be loved. We need to be needed.

I admire my Nana for her strength and for her endurance. I can't imagine the loneliness she felt. As much as we spent time with her, she was still lonely at times. We all feel that at times. Even people who are married with kids must feel lonely at times, right? I can only imagine that loneliness is not just about having no one in your life. We can feel lonely when no one understands us, or we have somehow lost part of ourselves. Maybe loneliness occurs anytime we aren't being seen in some way.

All this makes me want to reach out more to people. To help the people in my life feel needed or to be sure that they know how I appreciate them. A phone call, an email, or a visit. All these can be ways that we help the people around us be seen. I want to do better at remind myself that people are always the most important and that everyone needs to be seen.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Mixed Tape from 1997

Perhaps there is a voice inside us all that needs to be heard. We can yell and scream all we want in order to feel the release. That voice can materialize in words, song, paint, dance, or so many other things, but we must figure out a way to get what is going on inside—out.

I think it has always been writing for me. From when I was little, I remember starting Mead spiral notebooks with stories of a girl much like myself, only she was everything I wanted to be and wasn’t. She was bold when I was timid. She was strong when I was weak. She was beautiful when I was awkward.

The story was much the same and it never really took off because it wasn’t my voice. It was the voice I thought should be mine. It was a voice I created to mask my own insecure. We do that though…all the time. We look around us and try to share a voice that isn’t always ours. I’m not sure if we can always be truly authentic, but I would like to try. There is beauty in owning your story and being strong enough to share your voice. It sounds liberating doesn’t it? To be okay with who you are. Knowing where you can improve but being patient with yourself in who you are. Looking back with a sense of wonder at where you’ve come while being hopeful in what lies ahead.

We can’t get away from who we’ve been. The long story that is our lives is built by all the interactions with people and experiences. I found a mixed tape of mine circa 1997, I think. The case is covered in stickers and the songs are scribbled on. I thought I’d include it here as a reminder of voice from a long time ago that makes me laugh a bit today. I know for a fact that some of the songs on this tape were included because my cool siblings liked the music, i.e., "Girlfriend in a Coma" and the U2 inclusions. It was a mixed tape of who I was and who I wanted to be. If I were to create a mixed tape now, it would probably be different in that I would include songs that are mine and songs that I love because of other people not because I want to be cool like other people. In a way, our lives are one big mixed tape. All the songs that reflect our voice and then all the other songs that others contribute. I like the idea...creating a soundtrack for our lives.

Side A:

Kiss Me (Six Pense None the Richer)

Slide (Goo Goo Dolls)

Open Arms (Journey)

Land of Canaan (Indigo Girls)

She’s Every Woman (Garth Brooks)

For Life (Colors)

Dust in the Wind (Kansas)

Girlfriend in a Coma (Smiths)

More than a Feeling (Boston)

A Long December (Counting Crows)

Wonderwall (Oasis)

1979 (Smashing Pumpkins)

Side B:

Night Swimming (REM)

When you Say Nothing at All (Alison Kraus)

Fishin’ in the Dark (Nitty Gritty Dirt Band)

Can’t Fight this Feeling (REO Speedwagon)

With or Without You (U2)

Angel (Sarah M.)

Hobbit (Toad the Wet Sprocket)

Sunday Bloody Sunday (U2)

Peace of Mind (Boston)

Ireland (Garth Brooks)