Friday, April 25, 2008

Naked Blondes and Jackson Pollock

Today was a buh-u-ti-ful day in Chicago! Gusty but warm and partly sunny. The air smelled of summer, the clouds were ominous at times. The sun burned thru some of that. Sometimes it rained a bit.

I've been out all day - twice to the fountain in Lincoln Sq and then the park this afternoon. We greeted and hung out with almost every dog along the way (Aislin loves doggies). When we thought the rain was finally going to win out, we high tailed it home for some creative fun! Thanks to my friend, David, at the Palette and Chisel who, smitten by my daughters, gave them his red tool box filled with old acrylic paints and some plastic painting knives.

The photo of Ais on the slide was taken by Indigo! Great job Inderella!

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Interesting Observations

I had some interesting observations today while driving out to the burbs. My 1 year old and I volunteered to be chaparones on my oldest daughters field trip to the Kohl Children's Museum in Glenview, IL. The major highway (The Edens - 94 to you purists) has just begun a major construction project. Being resourceful we drove the side roads. Here's what I found out there in "happiness-land" (aka the burbs):

Yes, is April 24, 2008 and this sad sap finally decided to toss the live Christmas tree. Shocking that it actually lived for so long!

Next... nothing says "Happy Mother's Day!" like a new wheel chair or walker. If you can't read the signs in the window of this Medical Supply store in Glenview it reads: "Mother's Day Special - Lift chairs, Walker Specials, Scooters". Geesh - nothing like having kids to make you crippled in your old age! I was tempted to stop in and check out the deals!
Of course, I also observed more than one car turning out of the forest preserve at 9am. What the heck are people doing in a Forest Preserve before work on a weekday? I'll note two cars were waiting to turn out of a forest preserve. Both cars contained male drivers. They looked like they were dressed for a job or work in an office - in moderately priced cars. Still is makes me wonder. I mean shudder.
OK, let the cuteness ensue. Need I say more than the 1000 words this photo provides. Ahh, all in the day's work of mothering -- no forest preserve required.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Fun Runnin' - Kids RULE

I blew off plein air painting to run for the lives of Kids this morning. My daughters and I participated in the Pilgrim School Kids' Care Fun Run. It supports Pilgrim's Kid Care; an organization of kid volunteers that makes food and meals for homeless kids in Chicago. Did you know the average age of a homeless person in Chicago is 9 years old? Shocking! I'm moved by the compassion of the kids. It's good to start young.

I'm so proud of my daughter for running her heart out in the 400 yard kid's dash. When finished she said
"Phew, that's a long way, I'm tired!".
I know just how she feels! I ran with the grown ups in the 5K. I came in just around 27 minutes! Not too shabby for an old geezer like me. I was completely outpaced by a gaggle of 5th graders (Ok, all of them).
It's a blast running with kids. They are easily encouraged and have lots of energy. And they don't really complain. I loved going through the tunnels or under bridges and whooping it up just becuase there was an echo in there. All the kids were doing it! Copious high-fives were cheerfully distributed by me along the route. Had I done this with adults I'd be getting sideways glances (haters!). The students at Pilgrim are a fantastic bunch. I'm so glad that I know them (from teaching Artsmart). It's a blessing.
I'd like to thank my love handles, big booty and thunder thighs for getting me into the gym every morning. I'd also like to thank my heart - who decided to keep on beating despite ridiculous amounts of overexertion. You guys are the best!

It was a muddy, cloudy, misty morning but we had a great time! Despite their great encouragement, I'll soon have to say goodbye to love handles or give them a stern talking to. Or just accept reality and name them - they've been with me so long ;-)

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Being a Whiner is better than being a Whino

It's been a busy month for me, Wow! Here is a small recap of what I've been up to. Disclaimer: Yes, I KNOW some of these things have nothing to do with me, directly. They were taking up psychic space nonetheless.

I was trapped in the house when the kids got sick with 5th Disease and ear infections. We played lots of games and watched loads of cartoons (PBS only of course)

I participated in the 4th annual Plein Air Painters of Chicago Exhibit

I solicited and wrangled food and beer donations for above exhibit (drink Goose Island Beer and shop at Trader Joe's)

I solicited more donations for the upcoming Project: ARTSmart Gallery 4300 on 5/3

I taught the last session of Artsmart for this year

My friend, Laura, after having GD and mandatory c-section for her first baby was a rockstar and delivered a bouncing baby boy no problemo. And she now looks great in all of her photos (biotch)

My Dad died.

All my 5th and 6th grade art students made homemade condolence cards for me (they were so sweet and funny)

I wrote an obituary which my sisters didn't use

I ran the Shamrock Shuffle

I continued to train for a 10 miler in May

I prayed diligently for my mother-in-law who had a breast tumor removed

I went to Damato's bakery and spent $55 on chocolate shell canoli (best ever) and Italian cookies (for family in town for the funeral)

I attended 4 kid birthday parties

I ate 3 cheeseburgers w/ fries at Rockwells (favorite local burger) on different nights

I got my hair colored really, really blonde

I had an 8th grade boy tell me he was going to make his art project the color of my beautiful eyes

Qwelled my fervent desire for inclimate weather and being in it - and those caught up in the maelstrom. It would take a direct blow to cut me loose.

There were many other aggravating and delightful factors and situations related to the above. All I can say is that if this keeps up "impending doom" may be more fun than usual. On the bright side I did get a tax refund. Thanks for allowing this constipated brain dump. Too bad I'm still full of shit!

PS - Blogger formating BLOWS

Monday, April 14, 2008

Paying it Forward

Not so fast big sis! I know my colors!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Freaky Play-Doh

Not sure why, but Black Play-doh exists and we own it. In fact it was one of the only pliable colors available in our old collection. My 21 month old had no problem playing and stamping away. We were having fun so I decided to film. I've also been feeling guilty lately that I don't have near enough Ais footage as I do Indi. Hmmm, maybe the video below explains why. Bad mommy!

Monday, April 7, 2008

Turpentine and Beer

Friday, April 4, 2008 marked the 4th Annual Plein Air Painters of Chicago Exhibit. For those of you new to this blog or out of the loop -- this is the second exhibition of my paintings - ever. The PAPC are my peeps and I was so excited to be part of the show. We sold $2600 of paintings on opening night - which I think is pretty good.

The show continues until April 13, 2008. Don't miss it.
On the party front, I want to give a huge shout out and thank you to Goose Island Brewery -- Chicago's Hometown Brewery - for donating mass quanities of free beer! That's right folks, there was literally a ton of free beer at our exhibit. There was a nice spread of food and wine too. Another huge thanks to Trader Joe's for donating snacks. They are always so generous. The house was packed to the rafters. The 3 hour exhibit flew by. I had a chance to greet and talk to many of my friends who attended (they Rock!) as well as a few fellow artists whom I had not yet met. If any of y'all are headed over to see these fantastic paintings of locations around Chicago, be sure to give me a shout - I'll give you a tour!