Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Ten Things (At Least) In Two Days

Just came from a Zumba class with Caroline and her friend Jessica. There were almost 100 hundred women and a couple of men in a big room with Madora, one energetic, very good teacher/dancer, who also happens to have a child in the same school as Charlie Bean. I was supposed to dance/move/participate too and paid my money, but after a minute, maybe two minutes, I knew I'd not keep up with the pace and the beat was so intense that I knew my heart would begin to skip. I sat it out and took not-very-good photos.
Had supper with Lulu Bell and Charlie Bean before we left. Caroline de-stemmed organic strawberries for the kids and said that we should eat only organic strawberries because pesticides easily penetrate the strawberry's thin and fragile skin. Yuck! Of course, I surmised this, but it's been hard to resist those Mexican strawberries at Fiesta that arrive during winter months.
Somehow when Caroline said it today, I regret eating any kind of strawberry but those organically grown. We do know, after all, that we are being poisoned because it's easier to grow more strawberries if one sprays for bugs and other vermin that eat berries. Caroline also cut up a small watermelon and I am sure it was organic too. Guess who loved it?
Today was cold and rainy. Rainy with big drops. We picked Charlie up at his school at 3:30. Each day after classes he and half dozen friends stay late and play with their bey blades. A sort of modern day top that has taken a lot of little boys by storm. A mom will bring a plastic stadium and these first grade boys all are totally absorbed, play well together and look like they're shooting craps or watching a cock fight. All huddled in a circle and so into what they're playing. Their moms get a visit and the boys wind down from a big school day. Seems to work for everyone.
Hard to drag Charlie away for a 4:00 Kung Fu lesson, but off we went in the rain. By then, it was windy too. Awful weather. He seems to really like his class and I really liked seeing the various kids 'fight' with helmets, hand guards and finesse. We should all learn how to fight well and strategically. Will be interesting to see how far Charlie advances in this very disciplined system. Hope he goes for it.
BYW, over spring break, a stray duck built her nest under a bush right at the edge of the courtyard leading into the school. Must have seemed like a quiet safe place. Alas, hundreds of children returned to school after she'd settled in and laid two eggs. Staff has taken care to rope off the nest area and everyone is watchful. Today the moma duck was gone, but had covered her eggs with feathers for warmth. She may have thought she'd selected a quiet place, but even the school buzzer bell is directly overhead. How must this setting be affecting the baby ducks inside their eggs?
Caroline showed me a small intimate magic garden in the back of the school that was created by parents. Lulu loves the small secret doors and window placed on rocks or the concrete retaining wall. What a magic place.
The garden shed has a green roof and rain water falls through the plant roots and into a water collector. Children are planting rows of seeds in specially tilled soil and trellis are built for vines to grow. Must have planted beans? What's not to love about this garden?
Cherry blossom petals have been falling like pink snow on the ground along the side of Caroline and Steve's house.
This afternoon when we arrived home in the rain, the ground and sidewalk were covered with pink petals. Yesterday, Caroline shook the tree to loosen petals from their flowers. Lulu loves the 'pink snow.'
All these happy moments occurred after 3:00 p.m. today. I met Jeanne at 11:30 after a morning visit with Dad and she and I drove downtown to the Seattle Art Museum (SAM) to see the Nick Cave exhibition titled "Meet Me At The Center Of the Earth." His work is wonderful, fanciful, powerful, eccentric and totally engaging. I sure would love to see dancers inside his 'sound suits' dancing in the streets. Would that we could all do that. After all, what is Mardi Gras, but a time to put on a mask, dance and change identities or perhaps really find ourselves. Seeing his work, I was reminded of Barbara Ehrenreich book "Dancing in the Streets, A Story of Collective Joy," a wonderful book that chronicles human beings natural responses to life which are to celebrate, dance and make music. I think Nick Cave captures this proclivity with force and drama.
This fellow was made of cast-off sweaters still with their L.L. Bean and Gap labels. Love the left leg of this figure.
Photography was not allowed in the galleries, but I slipped a few in. The exhibition was wonderful and I began to think how many ideas might be played with in the new fabric work floating around in my head. Wanted the catalogue, but it was very heavy and I think I can buy it on Amazon and have it sent home. The show was so well merchandised. They were selling color socks, copies of vintage metal tops, books on felting and crochet work, wrapping paper that looked like close ups of his figures, note cards, a sticker book for kids.
This was the bottom of a wonderful garment made of wire screen over laid with crochet dollies and encrusted with buttons held on to the mesh of the screen with those bits of plastic that hold sales tags on garments. There were hundreds on this one, each holding a button.
Jeanne and I had lunch in the museum tea room before we saw the exhibition. Very pleasant.
indeed to have several hours with out the demands of small children. We loved every moment.
And just before leaving downtown, we stopped by the Traver Gallery where she and Dan were married. I especially loved Nancy Worden's jewelry. Her work is stunning. Even bought the catalog. Here is a piece she made with Selectric typewriter cartridges - covered with gold. What a piece to wear.
Yesterday was a big day. We picked Kelan up at his school and spent the afternoon on the front lawn in the bright sun Such a different day than the cold raininess of today. I finished crocheting Lauren's very bright pink scarf and added a tiny pocket/purse at one end where she stuffed a couple of dollar bills. She loved the little purse part of the scarf and even wanted to cut it away from the scarf so she could carry it separately. Jeanne stopped that just before she picked up a pair of sissors. I guess I will have to crochet a tiny purse? Soon.
We've reached ten things that happened in the last two days. These are not the only things that happened, but it's enough to keep me busy.
Tomororw I pick up Dad and take him on a drive back into this old neighborhood of his.He wants to see Discovery Park, feed the gulls near the locks and the salmon run in Ballard. We'll drive by the house and through Magnolia to see the flowering fruit trees and now the beginning of the rhododenrum displays.
And then I need to spend the afternoon packing a couple of boxes with things to ship back to Houston. It is always thus.
And then there are the emails and calls back and forth to Houston. Dean Ruck and Dan Havel will show off their piece for the new Houston Permitting Center late Friday afternoon and then disassemble it this weekend in order to get it ready to cart over to the facility next week.
We are still working on getting Dick Wray's piece fabricated so the integrity of his design is intact. I found that semi-gloss paint will be just fine for covering two walls with wallpaper text. Good news. Things are moving forward and I'll be very busy hovering over the installation process for the next six weeks after I return from Seattle. And then there is that call to jury duty, my first day back in Houston. Perhaps I will not be picked to serve?
Off to bed. It's after mid-night here in Seattle. Love to all.

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