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Memoir or Autobiography?

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Some folks assume that writing a memoir or autobiography serves as a catharsis.  Not always so.

With the impetus of Nanowrimo, I wrote in earnest, every day for thirty days.  My earliest memories took me from perhaps 3 years of age until about 11 or 12 years old.  Was it cathartic?  Hardly.

There are those folks who write about their experiences to heal themselves, to expose themselves, to shock, stimulate or educate or simply to gain notoriety.  My reasons?

Partly, I would like to educate, to show that some children are capable of deep thought, are deeply sensitive and have the potential to become great healers or scientists or anything of their choosing, given the love and guidance required.

Further, looking through the eyes of a child, through that child’s point of view, or thought process gives pause to the question of nature versus nurture.  How does a child come through unscathed in the face of adversity?  How does another child come through damaged, broken?

I believe that to see the world through my eyes as a child is to learn what that, or any child thinks, how she thinks and what she was capable of.  Or not.

Writing the first draft was quite challenging.  I resisted editing as well as speaking in adult terms, with my own commentary as an adult.  I found it difficult at first to keep within my own challenge to BE the child that resides within me.

The thoughts of a child in any situation are mostly unknown.  We can all look AT our childhood experiences.  Delving more deeply into the thoughts seemed more elusive.  We have to become the child again and so the past and present meld into one.

Children don’t have the language or freedom to expose themselves fully.  Living through the experiences again, complete with thoughts, is a rare glimpse into an adult’s mind. Savvy or otherwise, adults wouldn’t have the time and shouldn’t have the inclination to expose themselves and every thought.

Quantum physicists believe that the past, present, and future all exist at once.  Though I haven’t fully grasped the concept of the future existing as I write these words – perhaps a cursory look at the idea will bring understanding – certainly I can say that writing from the perspective of the child I was and being in the present, (now past) while doing so, the past and present do exist at once.

Writing a memoir, or, a work from a specific part of one’s life seems more relevant. A work on a whole life is impossible as a whole life would include a death or the end of life.  Logically then, no once can write an autobiography as one’s death would have to be included.

I’ve let the first draft simmer for nearly a month.  I’m ready to move into a review and rewrite.  The teen years are speaking to me and my list of prompts grows every day.

Why did I write?  I had to.

Who will read?  You.  Me.  Someone.

Shifting position

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I used to get annoyed when companies or individuals started their holiday themed selling more than a month before a particular holiday.  Not sure I have anything to complain about.

Along with some baking and farming, I sew aprons, high style, for the Farmer’s Market and offer them for sale on my FB business page or my personal page, so far.  This winter, I’ll be busy at the machine with aprons for men, women and children along with children’s clothes. 

Decided it wasn’t too early to offer up the suggestion of a Halloween apron for women.  I figured it would be so much fun to be answering the door or spending time in the kitchen with one of these beauties on!  Never too early to plant seeds!

2014-09-01 17.19.45

Here’s the reverse – it’s fully lined and it’s the style I wear to the Farmer’s Market. 

2014-09-01 17.20.25I sold this apron on the first day I offered it. 

So here I am, doing exactly what the big guys are doing,

shoving holiday themed ‘stuff’ in front of people, long before the holiday arrives.   

I already have the Christmas, Valentines Day and St. Patrick’s Day aprons lined up. (pun intended)

I think I’ll stay mad at the big companies for doing the same thing.  What a hypocrite! 

My plan is to offer all sorts of aprons, they’re fun to sew, the variety is endless and men need something to wear, too! It’s tough watching them stand in front of their barbeques without anything on.  😉

naked grillingNo sausage on this grill!!

What do you think?

Incidentally, I take credit cards and can mail them anywhere in the world.  (seriously!)

 

The Day After

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It’s the day after. 

I have a vendor space at a local Farmer’s Market every Wednesday.

It’s the day I have the most fun all week, and get to clown around, show off, shout, laugh, give free hugs, make acquaintances, make people happy, listen to the “Mmmmmmm,” and maybe even offend by accident.

I work hard all week to prepare, and the long hours are getting to me. 

I miss the time in my garden, time with my animals and time to enjoy this beautiful place I live in.

It all started when my daughter asked if I wanted to start a cupcake business with her.  I said, “Yes!”

So, we started, invested, promoted. We had some regular customers, did a few big events, and offer free delivery.

  Fast forward to the day after.

I’m running the business alone, and always trying new things. It’s hard for me NOT to try new things. The cupcakes, though organically made, weren’t the big hit we had hoped for. 

I added French Macarons, for which I have developed a small following. 

Then came the organic, vegetarian, real fruit turnovers, cookies, breads,

all home made with love and the finest ingredients.

I do offer my homemade preserves and other canned delights every week, and fruits, when in season.

In between, I am sewing retro aprons, in a signature style, and quite wonderful, too.

This year, I have donated 50% of all proceeds from my apron sales

to the North Coast Marine Mammal Center here in Crescent City.

It’s getting to be too much.  My dreams of writing are sliding around like a kid on roller skates for the first time.

It doesn’t feel good.

People ask for things and never come back.  I believe they are being truthful when they make requests,

and they are likely, just talking to talk.

Today, the day after,  I have made a decision to stop making breads for the public, keep my eye on the macarons, sew a little more, offer my signature organically made cupcakes and turnovers, offer fruits in season and that’s about it. 

There is so much creativity in me that it’s screaming to get out. 

I have never been fond of baking sweets, but I am fond of making people happy. 

I do enjoy making the macrons, though!

Macaron shells waiting to be filled.

Macaron shells waiting to be filled.

This situation reminds me of my thoughts of not finding readers, reaching people, with the big difference of time.

If I spend as much time writing, as I have in the kitchen each week, I’d have a book finished in no time.

After an exhausting week, and the realization that I am just not going to have the resources (financially) or regular assistance, (an extra pair of hands) besides my dear husband,

I am not going to have much of a business in rural Del Norte County.

There, I’ve said it.  Ouch.

I’m certain that if I lived in a metropolitan area, my clientele would develop quickly.

Everything tastes SO GOOD!

Just before bed last night, I received three inquiries for my French Macarons. 

I will follow up, and expect nothing.  There will be no disappointments. 

And writing and creating art with paper, fabric and other media, will feed ME, deep inside.

What are your thoughts? 

I would love to hear from you. Thank you for taking the time to read and comment.

 

Jammin’

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Life is tough in far Northwest Coastal California. 

We like to take it easy.

We like to take it easy.

Art-ificial Flower

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 “I’d rather view a corpse than an artificial flower.”

Decades ago, having read that quote, (author unknown) I thought it odd, glib, even morbid.

In a contest between a corpse and an artificial flower, the corpse reigns supreme?

  The meaning of the statement can be applied far beyond the simple components – ‘corpse’ and ‘artificial flower.’

Here, they serve perfectly for points of discussion.

An artificial flower:  imitation of a living flower, the essence of a natural flower, a stand-in for longevity.

  When I read the quote decades ago, flowers were plastic and wire and a poor copy of living, fragrant flowers. They looked cheap, manufactured, pitiful. They smelled like plastic and lasted for as long as the dust could be washed off if their limited colors didn’t fade.  They were placed by gravesites, in permanent arrangements at home and even in public gardens.  The artificial flowers were a small indicator of a very large lust for longevity.

Though we see the hopeful creation of real flowers essence in paper, silk, ribbon, fabrics, more delicate plastics and other materials of the art-ificial flower art-ist, there is no equal for a living or even a cut, dying, genuine flower.

The volatile components of a real flower, incomparable, the optical spectrum, brilliant.  Bees and birds dance on real flowers, our sense of touch, should we so wish to summon it, evokes delicate, unequaled perfection on our fingertips. Wind moves flowers, shuffles the leaves, immersing us in a glistening hush.

What of the child who sees in the dandelion, flower or seed head, the love of Mother?  The child selects the living flower, crushes the stem with eager little hand and offers the gift?  The flower becomes more than a living thing, more than a dying thing, and is further saturated by love.

How, then, does a corpse become more remarkable than an artificial flower?  In all cases, the corpse, having once lived, all the fragility, beauty, strength, uniqueness and complexity of a human being parallels the simple, natural flower.   No artificial flower could be nearly as memorable as a life, of any kind.

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A Measurement of Self

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At six a.m., I woke to hear noises of splashing, thrashing in water.  As it continued, I became concerned that one of the rabbits had escaped, found her way into a large bucket of water in the bathtub.  We use the bucket to collect water while it warms, for our showers.

I didn’t interpret the sounds to be life threatening, but I decided to get up and make sure all my creatures were safe.

It’s cool in the early mornings and the horses were running, playing, as the sun had already risen.  All the little creatures were in their proper places, and the water bucket untouched.  Likely, my daughter’s cat had found an activity in the next bedroom which sounded quite the same as water play.

I went back to bed, to rest my weary back.  The price for weeks of gardening and yard work is terrible back spasms.   The warnings are waning, and for the rest of the season, I hope to be smart enough to pace myself.

Surprisingly, I fell to sleep again and dreamed a theme I’ve visited throughout life, for as long as I can remember.

I walked into a large, crowded restaurant.  For the large number of people present, it was fairly quiet.  I looked around and decided to fly above them, to show them, perhaps, that it can be done.  

I used my take-off technique –  a little bounce to get off of the ground.  I felt gravity release me and as  I moved forward, covering about 15 feet,  kept my legs bent behind me at the knees.  Successful on my first attempt, I  gained altitude and sailed above the crowd, under my own power of thought and technique.  I was aware that I could crash down at any time, and had to hold my technique in the forefront of my thoughts.  I recalled other times I had flown for long periods or could not get off the ground at all.

Most folks didn’t notice or, if they did, they remained quiet, unchanged.  Though it was a restaurant, I noticed no food on any of the tables during my flight.

Time to come down, I suppose.  I decreased my altitude and came down to the ground/gravity in a somersault position, with a slight bang. I didn’t execute the somersault, simply used it for protection upon landing.  The entire process, quite fluid. 

The restaurant continued in quiet status. 

As I was back on my feet, I felt pleased that I was able to fly, so effortlessly this time. 
I experienced a sense of peace, knowledge of self and power.

Have you ever dreamed of flying?

If so, what did your dream say about you? What was it telling you?

What do you think of my dream?

I would enjoy hearing from you!

Opinion: A Case for Cruelty-Free

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Please consider going cruelty-free. The PETA site has a very good list of companies. Even the big box store has its own brand, though not labeled as such.

MODA Magazine

by Jen Anderson

crueltyfree

What if I told you that the eye shadow you’re wearing was tested directly on the eyes of innocent bunnies that reacted so badly to the product their sight was permanently affected? What if I told you that the product was still put on the market despite this outcome? Though this is a fictional example, very real and often very worse results are a horrific industry norm.

Animal testing is a troubling reality, and especially scary given that more and more cosmetic brands are choosing to test their products on animals in order to expand their reach to other countries and customers. Animal testing is not safe. It is not painless. And it is certainly not valid. It is unjust to raise animals for the sole purpose of testing, to make naive animals suffer in the name of beauty.

bunny

Recently, I became very concerned when I discovered…

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