Tonight I am traveling clear across the U.S. to see my three Cali kiddos. Why? Well besides the why the heck not, it’s time to get the party started! October is my birthday month, and as I intend to keep it as joyous as possible, clearly, being greeted by these smiles is the best way to start. Most of us, myself included, never find it easy to shift decades, to make the leap from one seemingly big number to another even BIGGER one, especially in our youth-celebrated and fearing-the-future culture. But in the spirit of all those fabulously daring women who were still dancing at their 80th, and have forged a colorful path ahead of me, I too plan to make an even bigger splash next year, and the one after that, until, well… I’ll be floating beyond all of this…
Please don’t start this post unless you are willing to finish it. It is a twisting ramble that may seem to be heading straight down into a black darkness; but I promise to get somewhere lighter, together, by the end. So trust, and read on…
Not able to dash to New York, London, Paris or Milan this September for their respective #FashionWeek did not prevent me from seeking a runway extravaganza. In fact, I more-than-happily attended a local favorite, a fundraiser that gets everyone hooting and hollering even more so because all the designers and models are non-professionals: this STRUT is nothing short of fabulous over-the-top excitement. But, first, there was my own outfit to consider, which took special consideration, and several attempts. Well, of course it did!
Despite the #SeptemberSummer we are experiencing these days even in far Northern Vermont, our farm stands and Farmers’ Markets are exploding with winter squash and root vegetables. Time to think about oven cooking, right? Well, that’s what we thought too. Here’s a fast, vegetarian, (and easy to convert to vegan), gluten free, and low calorie meal you can whip up during cocktail hour, and eat before 7:00! Ready to stuff an acorn squash? Well, here we go… Continue reading
Man creates divisions. Labels and categories. Lists of ingredients that make up our individual peace or community discord. Political parties create further divergence and careers choices further separate our education, lifestyles, even viewpoints. Over here are our scientists, heralded as those to solve the unsolvable while the engineers continuously redesign our pathways and roadways and pipelines and even the vehicles that move us; labeling deems some as teachers in a school building while the rest are only students despite the grey lines these labels cross over within the school building. The law abiding stand on one side of the bars and those who transgress reside firmly on the other yet of late we too often must question the validity of each stance. Bound by these allotments we trudge through our dull days. Yet somehow, almost miraculously, living in defiance to every man-made divider are those that challenge the status quo: the artists existing among us. Instead of maintaining practicality and order, their daring shapes and colors mystify emotion and intellect. In an artist’s hands every medium is played with, messed up, combined anew to create a different vantage. For me, lingering in one sorrow, an afternoon to view the old masters to the new ones is like drinking a nutrient rich and satisfying smoothie, lifting me beyond compartmentalizing into a free floating joy.
As Labor Day approaches Summer joys seem to be evaporating like dawn mist does at daybreak: all that wonderful stuff receding into memory. But before we venture too far into September I want to linger, splash in the still-warm lake water, cut open one last watermelon, savor the ripening tomatoes, let laughter with special friends ring loudly across the valley until nothing but stars appear overhead, and feel some Summer, lingering still.
There is more to a person’s legacy than diamonds and pearls, although seeing those valued trinkets passed down the generations does warm my heart. My mother’s real legacy is her reminder to stand back up after one has fallen into tough years, and not with her words, but with her actions through all those tough years. It is easier to reminisce about carefree summers on the beach or raising a hopeful glass on New Year’s Eve than admit to harsher seasons, but recalling how my mother navigated with 4 teenagers plus 2 younger children, a husband who was intently searching for a way out of his own angst, all amidst the turbulent 1960’s, those years show what tough really looks like. We didn’t have an easy time of it. She most of all. Family photos reveal more about the unseen than anticipated. But never did she stop believing that we would make it through to a sunnier day.