Tuesday, July 18, 2006


From a few weeks ago, but something about the sentiment seemed to be about on target. Did I mention my a/c unit stopped working a few days ago? Great. Did I mention that it's been pretty warm? And humid? Great.

Anyway, I've been enjoying Robin's new sketches, and had been noticing how much I've also been enjoying her sharing quotes. Somedays you just read or hear things that are worth passing on, compared to being able to sit, write and end up with something original and inspiring. Some days the inspiration and coherence are harder to tap into. So, today's S'Bucks cup came with this, which somehow seemed generally appropriate, actually -

The irony of commitment is that it's deeply liberating - in work, in play, in love. The act frees you from the tyranny of your internal critic, from the fear that likes to dress itself up and parade around as rational hesitation. To commit is to remove your head as the barrier to your life.
- Anne Morriss, Starbucks cup, "The Way I See It" #76

Everyone that's been holding back: Take a deep breath, close your eyes, and jump in.
With both feet.
The water's just fine.

Hope everyone out there's been doing well and keeping safely cool.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

A visit with JWK

About halfway through our stay at Glacier National Park, we went to Idaho to visit one of my high school teachers, Jim Kline (JWK). JWK retired the year I graduated (perhaps our class did him in), which was [ahem] a while ago. Although mostly through Christmas cards, we managed to stay in touch all this time. When we arrived, JWK exclaimed, “Wendee, it’s like you just stepped out of my class!” How nice is that to hear?

JWK had moved to Idaho after retiring, to a house he’d spent summers before building. The house is great, open, and full of things that would remind you of Hawaii. He and his wife have a menagerie of pets, and J spent a good deal of time romping with the six large dogs. JWK and J also traded talk of teaching (AP Calc and AP Physics), backpacking and the great outdoors. It was a short overnight visit, but so nice to be able to enjoy the comforts of home and to see a very friendly, familiar face.

So, we're both older, slower, and there's a little bit more of us to love, but the affection that we have is, indeed, almost as if I'd just stepped out of his class. Old friends are so very precious; remember that.

AP Physics geeks, you know who you are: You ought to drop Old Man Kline a line. Send me an email and I’ll forward you his address/phone number.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006


... So,I get home late Tuesday nights after class. Almost two months ago, I came home to the flood. Tonight I came home to restored carpet in the livingroom. Finally. Since they reused the carpet, I wasn't sure if the creases could be stretched tight over the new padding, but if all looks pretty new, clean, and the carpet is poofier.

Beyond having the room back to normal, isn't that the best feeling - Squishing your toes into new, fluffy carpet.

Karen and Robin should be saying this with me: "Ahhh!"

I'm still catching up on scanning and posting sketches, mostly done during class, actually, from the past few weeks. But hopefully things will slowly get back to being more normal, and I'll be able to catch up with that. I'm hoping for a productive weekend, moving stuff back into the living room and office. I'll admit that I've been itching itching itching to get back to painting and some serious quilting, and it'll be good to have things set up so I can get all that really good, fun stuff. The Summer of Wendee, indeed.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Pencil sketches

Sometimes it seems like the only time I get to sketch is before or during class. This is from a few weeks ago.

Guess I'd left work really early that day, or was speeding (me? No!) or something, because I had quite a bit more time than normal that day before class. When I have more time I like to work in pencil and play with shading and all that fun stuff.

House update: How hard can it be for these people to accurately schedule service appointments? Could they try to not over-book the carpet installation guys? They goofed last week and never showed up; maybe tomorrow they'll be here and put in new padding. How great would that be? Then I'll be able to put my living room back. It's been almost two months. And, gee, how long does Adelphia take to figure out to schedule me in for cable installation? I mean, really... Guh!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Highlights – GNP 1

Did I mention? 3800 miles in the Mustang?

Our cabin at Glacier National Park looked out onto a stream (a river by SoCal standards). We’d wake to the sound of waves lapping, a loose tree, half submerged, bobbing and clunking lazily in the water. The cabin was built around a few trees, and some of the eaves were cut to accommodate the pine trees. At night, when the wind blew, the trees would sway, moving the roof and cabin with it; the whole place would creak late at night.

We had a tv, but... why bother?

We got to spend a good deal of time eating out on the picnic table outside the cabin, grilling up sausages, soup, and hot chocolate.

I spent one afternoon painting, finally getting to break into the travel mini watercolor set that I’d bought a few months back.

Out in back of the cabin there were wild roses, which were pretty. I’d taken photos, hoping to paint them … but you know how real life manages to get in the way... [sigh]

More later. Next: a visit with JWK