Day 15- Rusting in Flagstaff

Snapped this photo in Flagstaff while on vacation, not sure many got to see it. (It reminded me of Luigi from Cars.) We were at a gas station fueling up for the Grand Canyon when I saw it tucked in the corner of the parking lot. I was going to do some PShop editing filters but decided the photo stands on its own. With the Road Closed sign, parked in scrub brush, it sits forgotten along Route 17 – which is not too far a stretch from Route 66 (which we ventured on and agreed is a letdown:)).

Flagstaff Luigi

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Back on Track – At Every Day 14 or 8?

Crazy hectic week at work, and at home, left little “me time”. But I am back on it today, with an ode to my craze love, Coffee, using a take on the famous “LOVE” sculpture by Robert Indiana…LOVE sculpture as Coffee

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Art Every Day 6&7

Sunday’s art was nothing I created, but what I experienced and supported. I took in La Traviata in Baltimore, my first exposure to Grand Opera (in my part of the sticks we are much more accustomed to the Grand Ole Opry).  More on that on a later post…
Today’s photo was me being festive with Shawn’s snack of Hershey’s dark chocolate kisses before I scooped them into his lunchbox.  Then I played around with color and contrast in PhotoShop to get the pix to pop.

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Art Every Day 5: A Bad Example of Origami- for Westin!

One day my nephew Westin and I decided to make some origami from a kit he received. He did not think much of my frog or butterfly. Today I thought that for him,I would try it again. Here is my fish. it took me 15 minutes and several tries. Don’t laugh. Who would think folding paper would be so difficult?? About my Art Every Day Challenge…

a white goldfish for westin

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Art Every Day 3 – Playing with Vectors

Playing with vector art and colors

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Art Every Day 2 – Drive-to-Work Playlist

Today I jotted down every song I listened to on Sirius on my drive to work and made it into something quasi-creative!

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Art Every Day- November 1, 2011

mimosa flutter

butterfly on mimosa tree in my yard, taken August 2011 and digitally enhanced with Photshop and special brush effects

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My Art Every Day Challenge

This morning on a whim I signed up for the “Art Every Day Challenge” – where I  will be creating some type of piece (sorry no nudes or performance art here) and posting. And since it is art, it is open to interpretation and does not have to have a meaning or purpose. So in this contest it even includes cooking or sewing (but not for me, I don’t even do buttons I use my glue gun).

Art. just. is. But it could have a very profound meaning. It really can go either way, that is why art can be intimidating to so many people, me included. You see it and don’t know whether to be enraptured or to smugly dismiss. And artists are either eccentric or dark and brooding. So most people avoid art like plague…especially here in extreme rural south central Pennsylvania, which is so ironic considering a very famous modern sculptor resides less than ten miles from my house.

 I took one art history course in college, and it turned out to be my best class. So much so that I kept the 9 pound text that accompanied it and will on occasion pull it out to read.  My daughter God love her is an art major. It was her father’s worst fear come to life, but hearing her talk about her projects in progress and seeing her completed works make us terribly proud. I’d rather her study art than, say, elementary education or business. Her life will invariably be more personally robust and open to a much vaster world of connections, interesting people, and experiences.

So in November I will add my meager contributions to art for art’s sake. And I expect to enter December much creatively richer for my efforts.

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Calculated grocery shopping

I slack when it comes to estimating how many calories I consume each day and the cost of the groceries in my weekly shopping cart. But I am getting a handle on that second one.
Looking at what I dole out to feed our small household, which I tally monthly on the tidy Crouse Spend Plan Excel worksheet, makes me want to become bulimic (which would just further blow the food budget….)
So now when I grab my cart I tote out my trusty calculator to make sure I stick to my $125 weekly limit. My mom refuses to shop with me for that reason. She says it is embarrassing, and she walks several yards ahead of me while I punch in every dollar and cent. I counter that what I am doing is not unusual and is a must if we are to combat the ever spiking prices of food and shopper impulse tendencies that the store chains subliminally support.
Yesterday at Wal-Mart in Huntingdon, I took the time – really the first time ever in a year of number cramming – to see if I was the only crazy lady in the store keeping tabs of her spend (okay considering the location I was definitely not the only crazy lady…). Aisle after aisle, everyone seemed oblivious to the cha-ching-ing I heard as they dropped item after item into their carts –and some had two! Not one person was computing, and only a few had stacks of coupons.
And that is what surprises me. That in this age of extreme couponing- which to me is Hoarders, only more organized – and with spiking food costs and the struggles of most families to see it through to the next paycheck, more people are not making overt efforts to track their purchases before they get to the checkout.
The average two-person household spends $76 per week on groceries, but I reckon that takes into account that a lot of diets are beige. Meaning take a look at the color of the food on your plate, and if it resembles this hue – while all the rage for heels- it probably means you are shorting yourself in the nutrition department. I don’t do beige food, so loading up on veggies, fruits, Greek yogurts, and whole grains automatically puts me in the higher cost bracket.
I know my family is far from desolate, and for that I am thankful, but I also get a deep sense of satisfaction when the cashier gives me my total and it is right on budget, a much better feeling than guestimating – which always gives me a deflated feeling akin to overeating. Groceries are now a game. I have to rethink what I really need, then can have the chance to make a small splurge when I am able- like a trashy Okay magazine, which I typically only buy for a plane flight! And I recently downloaded a calorie counting app so I hope to see small losses on the weight front as well. If only there were monetary rewards for sticking within my calorie limits…

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Getting to good enough..

So this is how it starts… twelve days short of one year after I set up this blog I roll out the first post. I am not a procrastinator, I am another p word, a perfectionist, who is wincing as she taps out these few weak lines, cringing as I read what I wrote and apalled that I can’t put together a crisp, pithy sentence. Oh fart just post it. And be done. And move on, to tomorrow, and the day after. Hell  if ten people read this and get a taste of what I am about, and care to come back, that is good enough. My hands are getting crepey- looking, and I wince when I look at them, too, as I am typing. NOt that I have to look at my hands when I type because I don’t- I had Typing II in high school- with a real typewriter. Then I feel old. Because of my hands and the fact that I was in high school back when we had typewriters. Thinking about bad writing is better than thinking about getting older. I can improve the tone of my writing; my skin, not so much. Especially when my insurance no longer covers Retin A and I have to use the generic version. I could go on. But you are getting the gist. This is me, and this is good enough. And fart where is the flipping “save” button here???

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