Friday, September 28, 2007

It was a bit of a cartoon week

I met another Illustration Friday artist. This time around it was Doodlestreet! What fun! She is an incredible cartoonist and is such an extremely warm and endearing person.

She and her wonderful friend, Annie were up in my neighborhood and dropped by my house for a visit.

I gave them a tour around my town including taking her to the home her mother lived in as a baby under a mile away! And how could I resist taking them by another cartoonist's studio?

Yup. A quick sneak peek of Charles Schulz's former studio where he drew his lovely comic strip Peanuts. After all, Doodlestreet is a cartoonist. The gate was open and pulling in to the entrance just outside the gate, I asked, "Ya wanna chance it?"

I reminded them of the last time I was there. A friend and I were locked inside the gate for hours in the dark and cold.

"Sure!" they said. Because, really. Who would have believed it would happen a second time around?

So we drove in, did a quick jaunt around the parking lot and driveway and as we turned to make our exit, I could not believe my eyes. The door had closed shut. Again! Locking us back inside! We were trapped! And hungry. And it was growing dark.

Fortunately, because of the many Snoopy statues that once adorned the streets of Santa Rosa were on view at the softball field by the Charles Schulz Museum, we managed to find our way down there to find a very kind security guard who left his post to rescue us.

Thank you Pam and Annie for our meet-up and for the fun time together. I am wishing you a safe trip home.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Snippets of Conversation

A conversation overheard in a restaurant bar by a table of older women:

Woman: "What is your name?"
Waitress: "Thindy."
Woman: "What an unusual name!"
Waitress: "My real name ith Thynthia."
Woman: "Oh. That's even more unusual."


Woman: We would like to order a round of Lolitas please.
Watiress: Thank you. I'll be back with your order.

(she leaves and returns a few moments later)

Waitress: "I'm thorry. The bartender hathent heard of a Lolita. Can you tell me whath in it?"
Woman: "It's a popular mexican drink. It has tequila in it and salt around the rim. You can drink it blended or on the rocks."
Waitress: "Ohhhh, do you mean a Margarita?"
Woman: "Yes, that's it! I always get those two mexican names mixed up!"

Sunday, September 23, 2007

My father and me

Growing up, I was always told I look just like my father.

And I did. And I do. As a baby, I certainly did.

And now, growing older, I recognize my eyes in him when I stare into the mirror. And my nose. Yesterday I was told I have his mouth.

Whenever he smiled and now when I smile, there is a pucker of skin around my upper left hand smile that we both share. Not surprising. After all, I am his daughter.

He died way too young. In another 12 or 13 years I will have outlived him.

I often wonder what he would think of his children now. My sister. My brother. And me.

Certainly proud of us all. Each of us are living out an element of one of his dreams. And. I believe even though he's no longer alive, he is aware of our accomplishments. I truly believe that.

I tried to pose myself in the same position of my father's photo. I think my ears are flatter. My mom prayed we'd have flat ears. I never heard of that. Mothers praying for their children to have flat ears. (Or maybe she prayed He would spare us from bony legs. In both cases, God granted her wish). I can't even carry a pencil behind it. I have tried. Once I crammed it behind there... and then gave it a few seconds and it automatically popped up and vaulted across the room like a rocket ship.

Well. Even though I may look like my father, I am not my father. I actually have the personality of my mother. But still, I am completely me. And today, I'm off to make the most of it. I will make choices that add enjoyment and goodness to my life the best way I know how.

Wishing you all a wonderful day, too.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Paddle and Ball

Remember the Paddle and Ball toy? Bam! Bam! Bam! Bam! For the first ten years of my life, I think I must have received this toy at least once a year.

"Be careful, so you don't put anyone's eye out!" my mom would warn me.

I almost forgot about this fabric I designed. I drew four or five variations of the paddle and ball toy and I sprinkled them around to make a repeat pattern ... then, I put 'em in the oven at 350 degrees for 45 minutes and presto! Fabric!

Well. It didn't happen quite that way, but it sorta feels that way.

I feel so fortunate to have the wonderful opportunity to design fabric from time to time.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Another growth spurt

I always get thrown off kilter when I come across rude people.

I realize their behavior is about them and I've become better at not taking their rudeness personally. But still. It can really throw me off course for a time.

Since early January I have been working on some very high profile illustration jobs for a client who works with all the large toy companies. She warned me at the beginning that there will be short, demanding deadlines and she was right. Often times, I would get a call late into the evening requesting a turn-around by 8 that morning. I met every deadline without complaint.

When she emailed me last weekend asking me to complete two large projects within nine days, I knew it wasn't possible with my heavy workload during my day job. Going to bed regularly at 2 am and waking up early was beginning to take it's toll. So I wrote her back asking her for an extension to the deadline.

Though I was disappointed, I was not surprised she fired back some really ugly words toward me and basically told me to take a hike. She was asking me for the impossible and I knew it. And she knew it, too. I was perfectly willing to work with her, but I needed extra time to meet my deadline.

She would not budge and in that moment, after she fired me, I discovered that its up to me to take charge of my own work habits. To take care of myself.

By putting everyone else's needs first, I neglect my own. Every time I say YES to some thing, I say NO to some thing else. It's important for me to really examine what will suffer for every commitment I make. And, if I don't respect my personal time, no one else is sure going to.

I am grateful for these growth spurts. Though painful for a time, it only stretches me to become better to myself and others.

"Life moves pretty fast. If you don't stop to look once in awhile, you could miss it". - Ferris Bueller

Monday, September 10, 2007

VW Parade

While driving to work this morning, I felt the palms of my hands begin to sweat tiny little beads of perspiration. My heart starting palpitating and my breathing increased so quickly I wondered if I was about to hyper-ventilate. Everything inside me screamed out, "Pull off the road!!!"

I drive a green volkswagon beetle. So you can imagine how embarrassed and self-conscious I felt when I was driving behind two other identical cars down the street. For awhile, we were the only ones on the road.

I thought, "How weird is that!" And then I thought "It would be weirder if we were all wearing clown suits or dressed like ladybugs while driving our bugs in a row." Like that would ever happen. Well, maybe if it was Halloween.

How would you feel if you were following two other cars that looked exactly like yours?

Lucky for me, I was able to whip out my camera and take the photo of my experience.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Tyler Turns Three

My darling nephew turns three. This lovable, happy child who lights up the darkest room with his smile and laughter. I am so happy to be his aunt forever.