Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Happy International Women's Day!

As we head into March 2017, I can't help but think that this month is aptly named!  It's a time where we march out of winter into spring, we march toward lighter days with daylight savings time (yes we turn the clocks ahead an hour this Sunday!) and we march into the beauty of the unknown!  I know I love waking up to the cacophony of birds this time of year, so spirited and marking the beginnings of warmth. 

Since it's 'marching' month, I've decided to put my best foot forward and pay it forward to a very important cause, the American Heart Association, and help sponsor my friend and former high school Vice Principal, Dr. Thomas Mawhinney, as he walks his 4th year in the Dutchess & Ultser Heart Walks.  Dr. Tom has been in the education system as long as I can remember, serving as a VP at Hoosac Valley Hight school and Bethlehem Central School, in addition to being Principal at Rhinebeck High School for ten years.   In 2012, Dr. Tom suffered a cardiac arrest on Good Friday, while working out at his local gym.  Thankfully, with the help of an EMT working out next to him, he was revived, and a week later (on Friday the 13th no less), had a quardruple bypass.  Grateful for those that saved his life, Dr. Tom now fundraises and annually walks: to help raise awareness, celebrate life, and give back to those who helped save his life.  I have the pleasure of knowing 'Mr. Mawhinney,' as I was used to addressing him back in 1993, during my high school years.  Being known as a 'slight rebel,' or as I see it, 'one who marches to their own beat,' Mr. Mawhinney and I didn't exactly hit it off right away.  I guess you could say I was a teen who questioned and challenged authority and pushed my limits, and perhaps quite a few buttons.  Nevertheless, he persisted in trying to better understand me, and looking back, I can smile about and say that this is someone who went the extra effort, probably one of my first lessons in the power of connection, and for that I am eternally grateful.  So with that, I'd like to pay it forward and am pleased to offer this month's newsletter and promotion!

In honor of Dr. Thomas Mawhinney's fundraising heart walk with the AHA, I am offering my support and donating half of all sales to support his walk.  Beginning March 8 and running until March 22, for any sales made through my websites, I will donate half of all sales to his cause in your name (anonymous if you prefer) and mine.  You will get a a beautiful item of your choosing shipped to you, while also supporting a worthy cause on a local level.  On March 23, I will present a lump sum all donations raised/sponsors directly to the AHA on behalf of his walk.  I hope you share my enthusisam in the connection of friendship and consider paying it forward to celebrate life!

 To read more about the walk/organization, please click here:

To view a list of available work to help fundraise, please visit any of my sites:

Friday, March 3, 2017

Memory: sitting & looking, thinking, reflecting, remembering.  It's a tricky thing sometimes.  It is part of us.  It helps make, create and, at times, define us.  I have a friend who swears by my memory and would not question it (as they say, 'an elephant never forgets'); though sometimes I do, based on memory jogs, internal brain misfirings and of course, self doubt.  Regardless, memory has always been strong with me, ingrained or perhaps burned into my brain.  At times it's hard to forget and others hard to let go.  There's both good memories and those that aren't so good, but all those were once experiences that helped shape who we are.  In growth, we take the good memories with the unpleasant ones.  I find sometimes that it's the unpleasant ones that at times are the most defining, leading to growth of character.  And as such, I love the memory of dreams; I don't mean the 'hopes and dreams' in life, but our actual dream state of sleep.  There is something even more peculiar about that type of memory, because many times a dream memory is not so lucid, but rather, tiny bits of information processing in a different functional state, conscious memory vs. sleep-dream sequence, or some filtering of both.  Like a definition, I find writing it all down, yet another function of memory, a written remembrance to look back upon from time to time; much like the art being created to feel and convey the physicality of memory.   

* the image is one of my 6"x6" encaustic paintings, combining layered papers, pigments and drawings: loose images I had saved in a sketchbook from 2004, text from a recent read, and a paper printout of memory that a peer had randomly handed me while teaching a class.  To see more in this series, please visity my website: