Monday, January 30, 2006

Will work for food



My kids have been driving me stark.raving.mental lately.

They are wonderful children, really. Nevertheless, I offered to sell them to my mother, cheap. I said both came with their own wardrobes and furnishings, as well as toys. Anyone in the know knows just how much the accessories cost---far more than the actual children themselves. I also offered that if she acted now, shipping would be free.

She turned me down, without even needing a moment to think (which I offered).

I ask you, is that anyway for a grandmother to behave?

Yeah, I know, she raised her own already.

But did she need to add, "HA! As IF! I thought you were tough to raise but HA HA HA then I met your children!" She laughed some more.

Probably thinking how well that curse worked out. You know the one, "SOME DAY I HOPE YOU HAVE KIDS JUST LIKE YOU! OR WORSE!"

Look at that, bonus curse on me for no extra charge.

Anyway, they are cute but very, very high-maintenance. SHHHHH!!!! I know what you are thinking, what kid isn't? Trust me on this...some are just a little MORE than others. Call them spirited, call them wild, whatever you like. It isn't a discipline issue; it's a personality issue.

Today my kid got time out at school. For using Naughty Language that the teacher would not even repeat to me. I painted total shock on my face...but inside I was remembering calling that little Honda that cut me off doing 90 on the freeway yesterday, and I do quote, "TOTAL AND UTTER BUSH-LOVING SHITHEAD!"

Please oh please tell me it was more inocuous, like poopyhead (a current favorite of her and her group of friends).

The teacher had no further details but did say that my darling had a "rough day" full of "poor choices." She said she handled it---and I am sure she did---and assured me there was no need for further action at home.

Wow...do I have a reputation as an ass-kicker? Of my adorable and sweet little children?

All I can say is that my little precious had her last birthday and was possessed by the spirit of Joan Crawford. My husband and I have asked the local priest---a marvelous Irish fellow full of humor, wit and reality---but apparently the Catholic Church has gotten very iffy about exorcisms. Something about bad press.

I can see the teacher's point; I think my daughter was just having a Manic Monday. Which, of course, will be followed by a Terrible Tuesday, Whackadoo Wednesday and oh, you get the picture.

The most charming moment---yes, something trumped the visual of my angel calling a classmate a bush-loving shithead on the playground---was my sweetie bumping her toe and melting into a quadraplegic pool on the sidewalk, "I-i-i-i-i-i-i c-a-a-a-a-a-n't {snuffle} {sniff} w-a-a-a-a-a-l-l-l-k-k-k-k Mom." Hysterical sobbing.

Her friends looked on with rubber-neck interest, but I noticed nobody said goodbye to her when she left.

Her punishment?

I am so awful.

I let her go home with the aforementioned verbally assaulted child (who is neither a shithead, nor, to my knowledge, a bush-lover) and play all afternoon.

But really, the two for one sales deal---accessories included and act now for no shipping!---is still up for grabs. The little one does tricks (see photo above) and will work for food, especially Twizzlers. Be careful though: her dignity is easily affronted and she makes the big one look EASY.

As for me? Back to the salt mines.

And people wonder why I dress like Mr. Rogers Visits So-Ho: rumply, raggedy, frazzled frump.

By Julie Pippert
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© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Saturday, January 28, 2006

Getting to the center of the matter



It strikes me that George Bush is right: we ought to wiretap and spy upon all who might be up to something we just don't like or might could cast as suspicious. In fact, to make my point easier, let me assure you that I think all people who, for example, use leaf blowers, are actually TERRORISTS who are UP TO NO GOOD WHATSOEVER.

I'm positive that my national security, peace of mind and right to pursue happiness (oh wait, let's not bring the Bill of Rights and Constituition into this) is totally vulnerable and at risk by all people who use LEAF BLOWERS.

Think about it: they are loud, they blow, they spew...

They make excellent weapons of mass destruction, or at least weapons of mass "make my mess your mess and blow out your eardrums in the process."

I secretly think that is the best terrorism ever---better even than make you all afraid of one another and wear you down by constantly keeping you in fear of Something Wicked This Way Comes---to drive each one of us law-abiding, partiotic, US-dwelling, mighty right folks (right as in correct of course) nutty with LEAF BLOWERS.

But who needs a long, drawn out explanation. As our esteemed US Attorney General Alberto Gonzales said (and I paraphrase) honestly, it's just too damn much trouble to go through all those red-tape governmental channels when it comes to spying on folks, American or not. You can't ask that of well, him. People would have to have JUST CAUSE and fill out paperwork, a lot of which would eventually end up with HIM, and he'd HAVE to SIGN IT, God forbid. Really, it is simply too much to ask.

So really, just take my word for it. I am pretty sure people who use leaf blowers are up to no good---some form of terrorism---and I need those Men in Black to spy upon them.

(AHEM...end sarcasm now.)

I leave you with two parting thoughts, both of which have been getting a lot of press lately:

In Germany, the Nazis first came for the Communists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Communist.

Then they came for the Jews, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a Jew.

Then they came for the trade unionists, and I didn't speak up because I wasn't a trade unionist.

Then they came for the Catholics, but I didn't speak up because I was a Protestant.

Then they came for me...By that time there was no one to speak up for anyone.

--Reverend Martin Niemoller

Those who would give up Essential Liberty to purchase a little Temporary Safety, deserve neither Liberty nor Safety.

--Benjamin Franklin or Richard Jackson (it's a little murky who said it; Franklin denies it, but hey, his name carries more weight)

Now Franklin did say:

He that would live in peace & at ease, Must not speak all he knows, nor judge all he sees.

By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
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© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

I am obsessed...I think about it all the time...I compose poems and essays about it in my head...

...and today, it grabbed my photography side as well.

It's the corn in my backyard.

The corn is this huge metaphor somehow for me. Out of that stinking Rita diasaster that followed the Katrina Catastrophe---the big tree falling and swamping our yard, nearly hitting our house, taking out half of our only big shade tree in the back, the horrid and traumatic evacuation, the big shuffle of furniture, the expense, and everything---comes this cornfield.

Somehow, the Hurricane winds picked up corn seed, planted them in a straight row in our backyard, and miraculously, they grew and bloomed...in such an unlikely place.

One ear is almost ripe.

I'm obsessed. It's like my own living totem pole or something.







By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Friday, January 20, 2006

Actually, never too much of a really good thing



Me? Not so great on the direct, but fairly decent on the redirect. At least this is me these days.

My confidence stumbled and stubbed its toe today. I am taking on a lot. I am hoping for a lot. I am betting on a lot. While driving today, it all hit me and I thought, "Good grief, can I do it? Can I pull this off?" There is no wondering. I absolutely positively have to.

On the upside, I am having entirely too much fun with that Bush's brain game.

By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Thursday, January 19, 2006

Attributes



I know it's easy to attribute things to someone who is no longer here. But I miss my cat. *She* would have understood. Yes, I'm still wallowing in my turtle mode. But I think I know why: sick.

In the absence of anything good to say, I will---instead of being quiet---take on the tag challenge my Zama friend set me.

What were you doing 10 years ago?
Ten years ago...1996. After having been packed off to Hell by the economy, my husband and I were traveling the US and throwing darts at maps (not really, that'd be too random for us LOL) looking for somewhere more *us* to live.

What were you doing 1 year ago?
One year ago I decided to not return to the work world in the traditional sense, and I began seriously pursuing photography, not just as a hobby, but as a business. I had a three year old and a newborn and should probably have been committed, but instead people supported me. Thank goodness.

Five snacks I enjoy (Thanks E for making my typing easier here)
1. Cashews
2. Cheese
3. Wheat crackers (with above)
4. Fruit
5. Raw veggies

Five songs to which I know all the lyrics
1. Paper Moon
2. A Little Bit is Better Than Nada
3. Blackbird
4. Anything by Stevie Ray
5. Tainted Love

Five things I would do if I were a millionaire (again, thanks E for the typing saver!)
1. Home improvement list. The whole thing.
2. Build an apartment over the garage and get an au pair/nanny.
3. Hire that caterer who will make me dinners for a week (and the other meals too, if I want)
4. Travel the world. Starting with Asia.
5. Start a humanitarian/philanthropic organization. In my case, this is My Grandmother's House---a refuge for women and children on hard times.

Five bad habits

1. I hate to floss.
2. My emotions go to irritation and anger way too often, when those aren't really the right emotions anyway.
3. I think more of others than myself, sometimes not in the right way.
4. I think food will help me feel better.
5. I nag.

Five things I like doing
1. Reading
2. Photography
3. Watching documentaries/learning
4. Writing
5. Floating on a pool, reading, with no worries. I'ts been...hmm close to 20 years since I did this.

Five things I would never wear, buy or get new again
1. Narrow high heels or shoes that don't feel okay.
2. Expensive kiddy toys.
3. A crib.
4. Big plastic earrings.
5. Flavored lip gloss.

Five favorite toys
1. My camera
2. TiVO
3. The Internet
4. Flashcard
5. Caller ID

So here’s the deal: Remove the blog in the top spot from the following list and bump everyone up one place. Then add your blog to the bottom slot

So, it’s come down to this
OmegaMom
All Hail Suburbia!
OmPowered
Ravin Picture Maven

I'll tag others...

But who has been tagged and not?

Halushki?
Lemony?
Imzadi?
Musings by Jacqui?
Momma Star?

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Little do they know



Something is festering inside me. It makes me irritable and impatient. I either float along with the current, like a buoy with no option, or fight the current madly.

Ah the melodrama.

I really don't know what is bothering me. I definitely feel a pull to "turtle in shell" mode, though. Also a pull to sweets, phone avoidance, procrastination, slacking off on my neat freak chores...all sure signs.

Until I figure it out, I've sort of got an emotional side screen up. Only problem is...it blocks incoming and outgoing.

The kids are making me crazy, demanding every single second, both of them competing for Most Needy award I think.

I don't know whether that is the cause or effect though.

It might be being blitzed with an overwhelming amount of good news/bad news scenarios recently. Our oven---the broken one that needed at least $400-$500 worth of work---magically began working. The next day, my tire went flat. The following day, I got it fixed for free, but we learned our other car needs at least $660 worth of work. And we got notified our electricity bill is going up by $150 a month. That should just about suck up the extra amount of money I am bringing in.

It might be sending my energy in several new directions. I've taken a larger leader role in my club, started that new job, and am still trying to get my business to be, well profitable (which means successful).

The upshot is I have something out of balance and feel a lot of forces working against me as I try to get things moving in a more positive direction.

This requires some thought. Hopefully whatever it is will either sort itself out or I'll figure it out and sort it out. Hopefully very soon.

My laundry sits wrinkling in the dryer as I type...

Oh, and apropos of nothing, what does it say about this country that we can't even seriously consider a woman for President and yet both a South American and African country can elect one? US...so progressive...

By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Monday, January 16, 2006

Beginning the justification for a new lens



Only imagine how fabulous this picture would have been...had I had the proper lens. I squatted for a Very Long Time to get the birds to Not Notice Me (ha ha ha). And then...despite careful setup and timing, it isn't what I had pictured in my head. I need an upgrade. I admit it: I like photographing birds. This requires a new lens.

I wonder...if I begin panhandling on street corners, how long will it take to amass the AHEM $2500 I need?

By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Too much of a good thing

It is beautiful. I will say, however, that sometimes, there can be too much of a good thing.





By Julie Pippert
Artful Media Group
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Sunday, January 08, 2006

One more ranuculus




Julie Pippert
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.

Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Waves of beauty



I found this flower---ranculus---and it has usurped hibiscus as my muse. There are several varieties (different petals, leaves, colors) and they are all stunning. A friend said the most beautiful wedding bouquet she ever saw was made up entirely of ranuculus (ranuculi?).

By Julie Pippert
Museum Quality Digital Art and Photography
Limited Edition Prints
Artful by Nature Fine Art and Photography Galleries
The Golden Orchid: Original and Unique Wearable Art

© 2006. All images and text exclusive property of Julie Pippert. Not to be used or reproduced.