“Ode” to Sugar

31 Aug

Refined sugar is my drug of choice.   Lately I’ve been on a binge.   When my energy is flagging sugar is my go-to drug.  It’s also my choice when I’m bored . . .in pain . . . when I’m sad, happy . . . when it’s raining . . . snowing (anywhere in the world) . . . cloudy, clear, night or day . . .  

O’ lovely sugar

sweetest seductress ever

you never grow stale

*

O’  sugar of mine

as pure as the falling snow

cooling my senses

*

O’ sugar my love

with pangs in my head &  heart

you are a goner

I’ve not been feeling very well lately and no longer know which comes first – sugar or my symptoms.  Ultimately it makes no matter for I know that sugar is not good for me.  For the next month I’m going to ATTEMPT to keep refined sugar and it’s “carrier” white flour at least 10 feet from my lips.  (I was going to say mouth but I need those extra inches for safety.)

judy's journal, collage

judy’s journal, collage

I’ve tried abstaining from eating refined sugar before . . . . wish me strength of character and will (luck isn’t going to cut it). 

P.S.  Rosemary Lee, Seeking Equilibrium, is joining me.  Anyone else?  

Add your name in the comments box.  I dare you!

Year of the Fairy Tale – More 12 Dancing Princesses

30 Aug

Wanna see some incredible interpretations of the 12 Dancing Princesses?!  

Ya gotta click here: Carla Sonheim

judy journal, collage & "stuff"

judy’s journal, collage & “stuff”

Healthy Chocolate Cake – 2 (or 3) ingredients!

29 Aug

My motto: Never, ever give up on healthy eating when it comes to chocolate!

Brownie mix and pumpkin . . .  well you’ll have to read my first attempt 3 ingredients to Eat Healthier and lose cravings . . .  not so delectable.  So back to Google and trying cake mix instead of brownie mix.  I also used an ORGANIC brand of pumpkin but the “batter” was so stiff I couldn’t stir it.  So I plopped in an ORGANIC egg . . .  and of course, flax-seed to make it a COMPLETE health food.

judy, judy pumpkin eater

won’t let one failure beat  her

Duncan Hines, it’s on sale

this time she can’t fail.

ALL organic

ALL organic ingredients

Now she’s got a plan

one egg, organic pumpkin in a can

350 degrees, let it bake

Voila! a chocolate cake

Health Food Chocolate Cake
Health Food Chocolate Cake with organic garnish

 

Frankly Freddie, Discerningly Yours

28 Aug

Dear Human Beings,

I’ve been very busy bringing solace, comfort and smiles to my clients and my human being.   Solace, comfort and smile bringing is time-consuming, you know, so I’ve not had time to blog.  Yesterday I received a very nice surprise in my comments from Mr Suchled which inspired me. (I hope I may call you Suchled as I can’t find any other name on your blog Scattered Words)

Mr Suchled, Thank you for the poem you wrote JUST FOR ME.   I wrote a poem JUST FOR YOU too.

*        *        *

Fred was a mongrel puppy
When first I him did spy
A mangy frightened poodle cross
A cast in his left eye.
But as the years unfolded
His silky pelt revealed
A dog of great discernment
My broken heart he healed.

by Mr Suchled

*        *        *

Reading, writing and . . .  resting

Reading, writing and . . . resting with discernment

Humans are the best

Mr Suchled, you stand above the rest

Your poem can’t be beat

(but doggie cookies are a better treat)

by Freddie Parker Westerfield, CDT

Canine Dog Therapist

Sneek a Peek into my sketchy book – Irritating Doodle Birds

27 Aug

Irritating Irritated Birds Haiku

Birds of a feather  

dislike flocking together 

When annoyed, wing it

Doodle w/ watercolor
Doodle Birds w/ watercolor

 

S’more Irritating Irritated Birds:

Irritated Birds collage in the Drink

Irritated torn paper Birds, the originals

Irritated Birds collage – Let Sleeping Birds Lie

3-Ingredients to eat healthier . . . . . and lose cravings

26 Aug

I’m eating more vegetables!  Pumpkin is very healthy so I googled pumpkin recipes.  Two-ingredient chocolate & pumpkin brownies!  I added flax seeds to make it a bona fide health food.  Can’t go wrong, right?

DSCN6016

judy, judy pumpkin eater

mixed chocolate with a beater

added it to a pumpkin batter

tasted so bad it didn’t matter*

Pumpkin-Flax-Chocolate Thing with walnut garnish

Pumpkin-Flax-Chocolate THING with walnut garnish

Not a brownie, not a pie

a waste of chocolate, I could cry

rather tasteless what a mess

no cravings here,  I’m blessed

* Original nursery rhyme
Peter, Peter pumpkin eater,
Had a wife but couldn’t keep her;
He put her in a pumpkin shell
And there he kept her very well.

No Rhyme or Reason – Muffet & the Spider Pome

25 Aug

Little Miss Muffet and the Spider

by judy

Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet

eating her chips and dips

along came a spider

who sat down beside her

DSCN6012

and said with dread,

“It’s my fate.

Chips & dips don’t go to my hips 

just straight to my thighs

times eight.”

DSCN6011
Fat-thighed, chip eating purple spider (only the purple ones gain weight)

 

 

 

Hooked on Haiku – No BONES about it

18 Aug

My bones are creaking

past sinking, future winking

ain’t it glorious!

judy journal page, mixed media

judy journal page, mixed media

Haiku Horizons - prompt BONE

Haiku Horizons – prompt BONES

Year of the Fairy Tale – Dance the Night Away

16 Aug

The last fairy tale The Twelve Brothers was too morbid for me - too much pathos – but The Twelve Dancing Princesses is my kinda story!

The Twelve Princesses are 12 very sneaky princesses.  Every night they secretly leave their castle to dance to dawn until their shoes are worn out and then they sneak back to bed.  The only evidence every morning is a pile of their worn-through shoes . . . .

Mixed media, pastel and pencil, The 12 Dancing Princesses
Mixed media, pastel chalk and pencil, The 12 Dancing Sneaky Princesses
Pencil sketch

Pencil sketch of One Dancing Princess – won’t show her face

because she’s sneaky

Want to read the story?  Click HERE

 

 

 

 

The Roving Typist

15 Aug

Ingenuity has no bounds!  This brought a smile to my heart!

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/86963435″>The Roving Typist</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/mark”>Mark</a&gt; on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

A film by filmmaker, Mark Cersosimo)

http://rovingtypist.com/

How to Live Life with Your Head in the Clouds

14 Aug

I’d forgotten how I’d lay on a blanket on the front lawn when I was a child finding images in the passing clouds . . . until I saw this:

You don’t need to plan an exotic trip to find creative inspiration. Just look up, says Gavin Pretor-Pinney, founder of the Cloud Appreciation Society. As he shares charming photos of nature’s finest aerial architecture, Pretor-Pinney calls for us all to take a step off the digital treadmill, lie back and admire the beauty in the sky above.”

Cloud Appreciation Society

 

 

Sneek a Peek into my sketchbook – Elephant’s have their day

12 Aug

Elephants have always been one of my most favorite animals in THE WHOLE WIDE WORLD.   I follow the blog Sunshine & Chaos and todays post is about World Elephant Day, August 12th!  

Click HERE and read Maureen’s really  informative post about elephants and World Elephant Day 

Scan Scan 1 Scan Scan 1_3

For years and YEARS now I’ve been collaborating with Ramesh Sood on the unlikely tale of  Elephant & Ant.  (would love to publish but have not been able to figure out how!) Above are a few of  my preliminary sketches for the heart-throb male “lead”.

Elephant & Ant preview posts:

http://judithwesterfield.com/2012/01/07/elephant-ant-will-the-real-eleph-please-stand-up/

http://judithwesterfield.com/2012/08/05/elephant-ant/

and Ramesh’s blog:  A Little More Than Ordinary

 

Sneek a Peek – Let Sleeping Birds Lie

11 Aug

Irritated Birds . . .

sleep on fiber fill

not to insult fellow birds

down pillows offend

*       *        *

Cable network down

irritated bird snores

Network TV bores

Mixed Medium, Irritatingly Irritated Bird

Mixed Media, Irritating Irritated Bird

 

just can’t cut it out

got nothing better to do

What more can I say?

I'm not lisssssssstening . . .

I’m not lisssssssstening . . 

Haiku Horizons - prompt CUT

Haiku Horizons – prompt CUT

Sneek a Peek – Irritating Irritated Birds in the Drink

10 Aug

Who Nu Haiku

Much too much to drink

Irritated birds can’t fly

water – logged” will sink

Mixed media - Irritated Birds
Mixed media – Irritated Birds
"There she goes . . .again"

Bob the Blobfish sez: “There she goes . . .again”

Sneek Peek at Summer Camp – “Irritated Birds”

9 Aug

Serendipity is a wondrous thing - Art Camp bird lesson “Put a Beak on It!”  and Ramesh Sood’s haiku were meant for each other!

Irritated Birds Haiku

by Ramesh Sood – A Little More Than Ordinary

Ah, rain and sun and 

 rain and sun and rain and sun;

irritated birds . . . 

Scraps of paper

Start with scraps of paper

 Irritated birds; 

winds fail to pick up songs when 

passing through the trees

Put a Beak on It!Put a Beak on It!

I was asked about the birdies personalities by one of the Carla Campers.  Here’s my reply:  The birdies are very different – left to right: Morley’s emotions boomer-rang all over the place, Humphrey likes to be babied even tho he’s “older than Methuselah”, and Methuselah is very stodgy and smokes cigars. (the two babies were just born and haven’t developed any personality . . . or bad habits . . . yet . . .)

 

 

 

 

Sneek a Peek at Summer Art Camp Critter

8 Aug

Me and my paint brush just weren’t getting along so I turned my affection toward my oil pastels (I think the paint was secretly relieved).  So here’s my possibly, probably final version . . . I think . . . of my “Splish-Splash-Painting-Drawing-Thingey-Critter.

If you want to see what the steps were to this point click here:http://judithwesterfield.com/2014/08/07/sneak-a-peek-at-summer-art-camp/

Paint & I decided to part ways at this point

Paint & I decided to part ways at this point

Reunited with oil pastels
Splish-Splash-Dab ‘n Draw Critter Thingey

THE END . . . probably

.

 

Sneak a Peek at Summer Art Camp

7 Aug

Haven’t had time  . . .  or energy to do much of anything lately.  Here’s a peek at one of the only assignments I’ve started.  It’s not finished but thought I’d share some of the process:

Take a canvas – smear paint on it, squirt it with water, let the paint drip, put stencils on it, smush paint it around somemore, find something that resembles something and do whatever you want to bring it out. .

#1 = old unfinished painting

#1 = old unfinished painting

#2 Covered old painting with splashes of paint and water

#2 Covered old painting with splashes of paint and water

#3 - added stencils

#3 – added stencils

#4 - outlined discovered image

#4 – outlined discovered image

#5 - white-washed background

#5 – white-washed background

  . . .  to be continued . . . at

http://judithwesterfield.com/2014/08/08/sneek-a-peek-at-summer-art-camp-critter/ 

Summer Art Camp plus crabby haiku

29 Jul

Instead of buying candy I been saving my allowance for Summer Camp - Carla Sonheim’s Summer Art Camp.  As you might have guessed by now I LOVE Carla, her classes and emphasis on having fun with art.  The first camp assignment is drawing 3 crabs (better than 12 princes!) with non-dominant hand and then a water-color of sea shells (to come).

DSCN1052

Crabby judy!

Deep Fried Crab Haiku

Used to be hard-shelled

Age has marinated me

Now I’m a softy*

 

*Soft-shell crab is a culinary term for crabs which have recently molted their old exoskeleton and are still soft.[1] This means that almost the entire animal can be eaten, rather than having to shell the animal to reach the meat.[2] The exceptions are the mouthparts, the gills and the abdomen, which must be discarded.[3] The remaining, edible part of the crab is typically deep fried.[2] Wikipedia

 

Non-dominant hand, pen

Unhappy Crabs, Non-dominant hand, pen

 

Hooked on Haiku – CLEARly Showing Men How It’s Done

28 Jul

Never been so clear

a new world order is here

bitter, painful birth

judy journal page

judy journal page

You decide: A political post?  a psychological post?  A sociological post? A  post about the sexes? . . 

 Merkel Shows Men How It’s Done

“Would women be better than men at running the world? There’s a case to be made on the example of Angela Merkel, currently the longest-serving — and most popular — leader of a Group of Seven country.”

With an approval rating of 71 percent, far beyond what the leaders of other big industrialized nations could hope for, Merkel shouldn’t need any further justification to stay in power. She has, however, an unexpected one: “I have, at least so far, incredible curiosity.” It’s not just about highbrow lectures. Merkel is the rare politician who listens rather than talks, which is one reason her public pronouncements are famously bland and repetitive. One sometimes gets the impression that Russian President Vladimir Putin calls her so often (he did it yesterday, too) because he finds the sessions therapeutic.

Thanks Sandy W!!!!

Read the entire article: http://www.bloombergview.com/articles/2014-07-18/merkel-shows-men-how-it-s-done

Haiku Horizons - prompt CLEAR

Haiku Horizons – prompt CLEAR

Making the Invisible Visible

27 Jul

YOU HAVE TO WATCH THIS!

 “Mysteries of the Unseen World, is aNational Geographic 3D Imax that journeys into invisible worlds that are too slow, too fast, too small and too vast for the human eye to see.”

“We live in a world of unseeable beauty, so subtle and delicate that it is imperceptible to the human eye. To bring this invisible world to light, filmmaker Louie Schwartzberg bends the boundaries of time and space with high-speed cameras, time lapses and microscopes. At TED2014, he shares highlights from his latest project, a 3D film titled “Mysteries of the Unseen World,” which slows down, speeds up, and magnifies the astonishing wonders of nature.”

“When you realize how perfect everything is you will tilt your head back and laugh at the sky” 

Buddha

 

A “Don’t quote me” Haiku

26 Jul

Enough said . . .

unnamed

*    *    *

 Renouncing reason

 not very reasonable

It’s just logical

 

 

Year of the Fairy Tale – It’s GRIMM

25 Jul

Our new fairy tale is The Twelve Brothers by The Brothers Grimm.  The Brothers GRIMM live up to their name.  I DO NOT LIKE this fairy tale – BAAAAD king wanting to kill his own kind,  evil x 12.  We are supposed to read it 3 times.  (Thank goodness 3 and not 12!).

I know, I know . . .  all fairy tales have curses and evil and such but for some reason this one unsettled me even though it has the proverbial happy ending. Maybe there are tooooooo many brothers . . . Maybe it is tooooooo parallel to the murdering of “own kind”  all over the world . . .Maybe I’m getting verrrrrrrrrrrrrrrry sensitive in my “old age” . . . just maybe . . .

Even the drawing part is overwhelming to me since there are 12 prince brothers to draw.

(This “posing prince” is Carla Sonheim’s son Wes!)

Fast 2 minute sketches

 6 of 24 two-minutes STANDING sketches

Our first drawing assignment is 24 quick sketches of PRINCELY POSES, courtesy of Wes. 

4 more out of 24 (two minute sketches)

4 more out of 24 two-minute SITTING sketches

A look into my sketch book

24 Jul

The Year of the Fairy Tale has been on “vacation” for a couple of months now.  It is hard for me to keep creating without an outside “container” or “reason”.  The other day  I decided to break that pattern and just DO IT on my own. (knowing that The Year of the Fairy Tale was about to start again!)

 I have always been fascinated by figure drawing, probably because I’m fascinated by people.  This pencil sketch was done fairly quickly as I was trying to capture the essence of the figure – rather than realism.  (Also, it’s easier to sketch essence!) Here’s what evolved from my DO IT.

Three “Muses”

Inspired by The Seven Valleys – a mystical book written by Baha’u’llah.  This Baha’i book doesn’t specifically focus on longing, pain or remorse – it’s just what evolved in my psyche.

Longing, Pain, Pencil Sketch

Longing, Pain & Remorse – Pencil Sketch

 

Hooked on Haiku – prompt DRIVE

14 Jul

Don’t drive me crrrrrrrrazy!

be gentle with my psyche

I’m already nuts.

P1020543

"There she goes . . .again"
Bob the Blobfish sez: “Here she goes . . . . . again”

Driven together -

I’m crazy, you’re crazy too

Love is always blind

 

 


JK Rowling: The fringe benefits of failure

13 Jul

 Wonderful Harvard Commencement Speech.  Listen carefully – it’s much quicker and cheaper than a Harvard education.

“As is a tale, so is life: not how long it is, but how good it is, is what matters.”

― Seneca .

<p><a href=”http://vimeo.com/1711302″>J.K. Rowling Speaks at Harvard Commencement</a> from <a href=”http://vimeo.com/harvard”>Harvard Magazine</a> on <a href=”https://vimeo.com”>Vimeo</a&gt;.</p>

Weird Wonderful World – The Elephants Knew

12 Jul
The Elephants Knew* 
. . .THE ELEPHANT’S JOURNEY TO PAY RESPECT, BUT HOW DID THEY KNOW?
Lawrence Anthony, a legend in South Africa and author of 3 books including the bestseller, The Elephant Whisperer. He bravely rescued wildlife and rehabilitated elephants all over the globe from human atrocities, including the courageous rescue of Baghdad Zoo animals during US invasion in 2003.

On March 7, 2012 Lawrence Anthony died. 

He is remembered and missed by his wife, 2 sons, 2 grandsons, and numerous elephants.

Two days after his passing, the wild elephants showed up at his home  led by two large matriarchs. Separate wild herds arrived in droves  to say goodbye to their beloved ‘man-friend’.

A total of 31 elephants had patiently walked over 112 miles  to get to his South African House.

Witnessing this spectacle, humans were obviously in awe not only because of the supreme intelligence and precise timing that these elephants sensed about Lawrence’s passing, but also because of the profound memory and emotion the beloved animals evoked in such an organized way: Walking slowly, for days, making their way in a solemn one-by-one queue from their habitat to his house. Lawrence’s wife, Francoise, was especially touched, knowing that the elephants had not been to his house prior to that day for well over 3 years! 

But yet they knew where they were going. The elephants obviously wanted to pay their deep respects, honoring their friend who’d saved their lives – so much respect that they stayed for 2 days 2 nights without eating anything. 

Then one morning, they left, making their long journey back home. 

Sharon, thank you for sending this.
* I did check this out on Snopes’ Urban Legends and it is listed as” undetermined”.  Despite my checking I LOVE elephants and know they are one of the most intelligent animals on the planet.  It’s well documented that they will mourn and bury their own.  No doubt that Lawrence Anthony was one of their own.

Hooked on Haiku – prompt PARTY

9 Jul

Life’s not a party

Our one chance to learn lesson -

How To Be Humane

 

images-1

Haiku Horizons - prompt PARTY

Haiku Horizons – prompt PARTY

The Fruits of NO Labor

9 Jul

I’m an accidental gardener.  It’s a very inexpensive and quite a suspenseful, way to garden.

Let me explain:

I used to have a ginormous composting bin that was too hard for me to maintain.  Now, I just dig a hole in the garden dirt, throw in the compost “stuff”, cover it with dried leaves and more dirt.

VIOLA!!! All sorts of interesting, unknown, plants germinate and grow from the “compost” seeds.  Some times the accidental plants are flowers whose seeds blows in.  Sometimes the accidental plants even produce a crop.  One year I got  huge crop of bad tasting cantaloupe.

Mary, Mary, quite contrary,
How does your garden grow?
With silver bells, and cockle shells,
And kitchen refuse all in a row.

Here’s some pictures from my accidental garden for this year!

DSCN5952

Green pepper and accidental weeds

DSCN5947

Plopped a branch from a neighbors fig tree in a pot – baby fig tree!

DSCN5946

Accidental Flowers 

DSCN5940

Accidental Strawberry plant

DSCN5945

Cucumbers that never turn green?

DSCN5950

Accidental “Compost” Garden and a few plant that are still unknown

 

Birds of a feather aren’t necessarily birds

7 Jul

Believe it or not this ain’t no bird!

AreallydThis a woman in full body paint!

  • Her right side is toward you.
  • Her left leg is pointed down like a tail.
  • Her right leg is bent with her foot on top of the stump.
  • Blending into the tail, her right arm is braced on the stump.
  • Her other arm is folded over her head.
  • The bird’s eye is in the center of her forehead.
  • DO YOU SEE HER NOW?
  • Her nose is at the bottom of the right side of the white coloring.
  • The white of the bird’s head is the right side of her face.

Once you see her she’ll just jump out.

Thanks Sharon!

 

Hooked on Haiku & Love

5 Jul

July 4th

Independence Day

when hate and greed are banished

from land of plenty

P1040188

 Fireworks of mind

respect, compassion and love 

sparklers of the heart

P1040239

It’s freedom for all

when the world is lit in love

until then we pray

P1040232

 

My New Favorite (Polish) Saying!

2 Jul

A client and I were talking how we needlessly take on other people’s “stuff”.  She told me a Polish saying that was a great reminder to separate ourselves from others’ issues, feelings or reactions.  I’d never heard this saying (even though I’m half Polish . . .).  Does this create a brrrrrrrrrrriliant reminder, or what!?

“It’s not my circus, not my monkeys”  

Ponder on that!

Ponder on that!

nie mój cyrk, nie moje małpy

not my business
literally: not my circus, not my monkeys

images-2

It sounds catchier in Polish.

Man’s Best Friend LimERICKs

1 Jul

LimERICK by Rick

Dogs are incredibly likeable creatures
with many commendable features.
They sniff and they lick
and rarely get sick
whether named Freddie or Duffy or Peaches.

(couldn’t find a name to rhyme with features)

Duffy, Ozzie and
Duffy, Ozzie . . .  and  . . .  Peaches?

*     *     *

LimeRick by Freddie

There once was a dog named Freddie

he sleeps a lot in his beddie

never wears clothes

checks you out with his nose

much more cuddly than any teddie

Freddie Parker Westerfield

Freddie Parker Westerfield

 

Hooked on Haiku – prompt DECLINE

29 Jun

 Growing old beckons

Decline the invitation

and you will perish

One-line drawing by judy
One-line drawing by judy

“Inspiration Porn”

28 Jun

You gotta take a few minutes to listen to this thought-provoking look at how we objectify people with disability.

Stella Young is a comedian and journalist who happens to go about her day in a wheelchair — a fact that doesn’t, she’d like to make clear, automatically turn her into a noble inspiration to all humanity. In this funny talk, Young breaks down society’s habit of turning disabled people into “inspiration porn.”’

Birds of a Feather – Pelicans & Me

27 Jun
  • Fossils of pelicans date back almost 40 million years ago.  My body is already fossilized . . . can’t imagine what I’ll look like in 40 million years . . .
  • Pelican pouches can hold up to three gallons of water (2 – 3 times the amount their stomachs can hold). My stomach can hold up to 1/2 gallon of ice cream at one time ( 2 – 3 times the amount my mouth can hold)
  • Depending on the species, a pelican’s the body length can range from 4 to 6 feet and the weight can range from 10 to 30 pounds. I only wished my height and weight were in similar proportions.
  • The brown pelican dives on fish from above and snares them in its bill.  I don’t have a bill – have to use my fingers to eat fish.
  • Gulls will often sit on a pelican’s head to steal its fish when it opens its bill to pour out the water.  What can I say?  No one steals my food and lives to tell about it.
  • Pelicans are social birds and typically travel in flocks, often strung out in a line. I am a social creature too but I will never admit to being strung out.
  • Pelicans incubate their eggs with their feet. They hold the eggs under the webs that stretch from the front toes to the hind toe, standing on the eggs to warm them.  There are easier ways to boil an egg . . .
Non-dominant, fish hand drawing
Non-dominant, fish hand drawing

 

Mind over Matter is what Matters

24 Jun

Thanks Sharon!

Sneak Peek – I’m nuts about summer

21 Jun

Here’s how cashews spend the first day of summer in Southern California

(Warning!!!  “R” rated – it’s a nude beach)

Life Chew
Life Shew
Hang-one
Hang-one
Roasting
Roasting

Thanks Sharon for the inspiration!

Where Do Cashews Come From?
Ever wonder where cashews come from?  You might think they grow inside a shell, like any other nut, but their true origins are far more bizarre.
First of all, cashews are not actually nuts, but rather fruits from the cashew tree, a large evergreen tree that thrives in tropical climates.
The tree produces red flowers, which in turn produce yellow and red oval structures resembling apples.
These so-called cashew apples are very juicy and pulpy, and their juice is often added to tropical fruit drinks.  However, cashew apples are not actually fruits in a scientific sense;  the real fruit of the cashew tree is the kidney-shaped formation growing at the end.
These fruits, also called drupes, are harvested and become what we know as a cashew nut.
In their raw form, the outer layer of the fruit contains multiple toxins, including anacardic acid, a powerful skin irritant similar to the toxin found in poison ivy that must be removed prior to eating.
Roasting the cashews destroys the toxins, but roasting must be performed carefully outdoors,
because the smoke can irritate the lungs, sometimes to a life-threatening degree.
When they are roasted, cashews change from their natural greenish-gray color to the light cream-colored nut sold in stores.
Next time you crack open a tin or bag of cashews, take a moment to appreciate the long journey and the efforts of many to get those little C-shaped nuts from the tree to your table!

 

Frankly Freddie – Andy Warhol Goes to the Dogs

21 Jun

Dear all my Human-Beings,

My Aunt Jamey and Uncle Hank gave my human-being an “Andy Warhol” pillow.  She thought it looked like me and laughed and laughed.  (Jamey & Hank are much more cosmopolitan than my human-being and would never see a resemblance)

Before

Before

I immediately called Chris from Maws ‘n Paws to give me a make-over.  

My Human-being means well but I don’t want to encourage her.

(I took off my glasses for the photo shoot so you could see my eyes.)  

Andy, eat your heart out!

images-2

Andy Warhol

Sincerely yours,

Freddie Parker Westerfield, CDT

Canine Dog Therapist

P.S.  Aunt Jamey, Uncle Hank – if you give my human any more pillows make sure they are floral prints.  A new hair-do is expensive.

Despair = Suffering without Meaning

19 Jun

At the risk of jinxing myself I’ve been puzzling over why I do not suffer as much from fibromyalgia than the women (and men) I know who are in more pain, have more co-morbid conditions and debilitating symptoms than I do.

And because they are, for the most part, held hostage by their medical conditions they are unable to continue to work in their professions and live a “relatively normal” life.   I’m not sure my life is “normal”.  I’m often stopped in my tracks by exhaustion, distracted by pain but I’ve been blessed by being able to continue to work in a profession that gives my life purpose and meaning.

What’s prompted all my questioning and thinking?  

I’ve been reading books written by Viktor Frankl an Austrian neurologist and psychiatrist who was a Holocaust survivor. In his book Mans Search for Meaning he writes about his incarceration in nazi death camps where he observed that those who did not believe their existence had meaning succumbed in greater numbers from starvation and disease than those who held the belief that their life had meaning.

Their purpose didn’t involve grand schemes of saving the world, curing people or groundbreaking discoveries. Purpose ranged from finishing a manuscript of a book begun before incarceration, staying alive for a family member or simply believing God had an unknown reason for them to live.

So?  What part does purpose and meaning play in our lives? in your life?  Does having purpose and meaning help reduce emotional or physical suffering?  I don’t pretend to have the answer, just the question.

Here’s Dr Frankl in an interview about finding meaning in difficult times.  (He talks about his experience in the concentration camps toward the end of the interview.)

“. . .the man on the street knows that meaning may not only be found in creating a work and doing a deed, not only in encountering someone and experiencing something, but also, if need be, in the way in which he stands up to suffering.” Viktor Frankl

 

Brain Drain & Take a Look Sketchbook

14 Jun

Fake Flowers

by judy

Love me, love me true

I ask NOTHING of you!

petals NEVER fall

no watering at all

Don’t be mean

I’m ENVIRONMENTALLY green

gathering dust all the while.

WHEN YOU SEE ME – SMILE!

LIfe is rarely black & white
Flower doodles

DSCN5903

DSCN5904

Life is rarely black & white

 

The Frog Princess, A Fairy Poem

8 Jun

It’s a little known fact that not all frogs are princes in disguise . . . there are two genders, you know, one of which is the weaker sex.

The Frog Princess

by judy

DSCN5570

There once was a Prince

With a perpetual wince

In his kingdom alone

No wife for his own.

He looked far and wide

For just the right bride

He sailed the seas

And if you please

Roamed over the land

for a princess’ hand

Not one maiden fit

DSCN5901I’m ready to quit

Many too greedy

Most too needy

A lot too tall

Some too small

None, not one, right at all”

The prince was bereft

The only place left

Was to take to the sky

Learn to fly

He was up for the ride

To find the right bride

“I’ll learn to fly”

he said with a sigh,

“Where I can spy

my princess from on high”

I must find a wife

To be in my life”

DSCN5551

“I’m of delicate sorts

Need to change into shorts

So my legs can kick

Don’t want them to stick

And my knees are free

to fly higher, you see”

Just as he should

he ran fast as he could

landing in mud

With a resounding thud.

Jumping from trees

Catching his knees.

Try as he might

he couldn’t take flight.

Then spotting a cowDSCN5896

“She’ll surely know how

Take me up to the moon

It can’t be too soon!

Yes, a cow will do

Four legs to my two!!”

the Prince cried.

And the cow replied,

“I’ll try, if you will

foot all of the bill

Now with all your might

Hold on tight.

My tail! not my udder!”

She yelled with a shudder”

“How now

brown cow

Run faster please

I’m scrapping my knees!”

 

The prince cried

And the cow replied,

“Ok Prince, guess you’ve found

I’m better on ground

Where grass is green

That’s my scene,”

It’s just not my ilk

I’m going back to milk

 DSCN5899

The Prince spied a spider

who was an outsider.

“Spin me some webs

to attach to my legs

They’ll catch the breeze

when I bend my knees!”

 

the Prince cried.

And the spider replied

“I’ll spin if you will

foot all of the bill.

Take my web if you please

(To catch a breeze)

Wind ‘round your knees

attach to your tie

(take to the sky)

flap your legs to fly.”

Help! I’m dropping like lead

catching flies. . . . Instead!!”

the prince cried

as the spider replied,

“Have you lost your mind

My webs are fine!

Guaranteed not to tear

No matter where”

You’re no flyer I fear

just a prince, my dear

It’s just not your thing

To take to wing

Stop sticking around

stay on the ground”

 

The prince wasn’t mad

Just terribly sad

Sitting down to mope

He felt like a dope.

When lo! High up in the sky

a frog flying, No LIE!

Breaking the mold

With wings of gold

Froggie swoops down

wearing a crown.

A crown of red

perched on her head

The prince rubs his eyes

Looking up to the skies

An impossible sight

In a golden light.

“I can’t believe my eyes.

From out of the skies

I see a frog flying

without even trying!!”

the Prince cried

and the froggie replied,

“I heard you say

that you will pay.

I’ll fly you high if you will

foot all of the bill.

“Hop on my back,

I’ll cut you some slack

But don’t talkback.

I want no flack.”

So off they go

the Prince in tow

hanging on for dear life

looking for a wife.

What a wondrous sight

From this vantage of flight!

Still, all I can see

None suited for me

Many too greedy

Most too needy

Some too tall,

or much too small

None, not one, right at all”

Not one maiden fit

“I’m ready to quit,”

the Prince sighed,

as froggie replied

“You needn’t fear

Your bride will appear.

Your wish will take wing

IF you say the RIGHT thing.”

 

“Acbracadabra! cried the Prince

Making the flying frog wince

“Let there be light!”

Shouting with might

“No! No! that’s not right!

 

Bippity, Boppity, Boo?

1,2,3 Buckle my shoe?”

 

“Open sesame

Bring a bride to me!”

 

“Ok, let me focus . . .

Hocus pocus?”

 

“Free! no charge!

Small, medium or large”.

 

“I give up, let me go

much too taxing, you know”

 

“I’ve spent my life

Looking for a wife

On land, in the sea

Someone perfect for me”

 

“Now in the air.

“It’s just not fair

None fit to a tee

None suited for me

Many too greedy

Most too needy

Some too tall,

or much too small

None, not one, right at all

It’s an eye-opening site

From this vantage of flight

A perfect bride doesn’t exist

Once again, I’ve missed,”

the Prince sighed

and the froggie replied,

Perfect you’re not

YOU are lacking a lot

Can’t even fly

on your own in the sky.”

 

“You’re not very fair

for a prince with no hair

And It may be moot

But you’re short to boot.”

 

And the Prince sighed

as he replied,

“You’re right I fear

I’ve looked far and near

no matter if tall

or very small

Whether blue, red or green

Tall, wide or lean

Please stop my flight.

Maybe all are just right”

For a prince with no hair

I’ve not been fair.”

And lo the skies shook,

not by the book,

A sight to behold

Breaking the mold

comes a princess so fair

it’s hard not to stare

Shimmering green

A wondrous scene

A crown of red

perched on her head.

Hard to grasp

As the Prince gasped,

“From out of the blue?

Too good to be true!

No matter if tall

No matter at all!

No matter if green

You are my queen!!”

The Prince cried!

And the princess replied,

“Well! It’s taken awhile,”

she said with a smile.

And drops the prince,

with nary a wince,

face first in the mud

with a resounding THUD

The Prince spun his head

as the Princess said,

“Now know! When you take flight

morning, noon or night”,

She said with great mirth,

“I promise to bring you . . . back to earth”

 

At last he knew . . .

his wish came true . . .

P.S.  Stayed tuned for the rest of the illustrations.  They are drawn, not colored, and don’t show up very well.

 

Animal Truth

5 Jun

ATT00019 ATT00031 ATT00010 ATT00037

Thanks Lyn!

Hooked on Haiku – Retreat

2 Jun

Retreat from my life?

Wherever I go I’m there

no way  possible

DSCN3382

Year of the Fairy Tale – Fleurs of the Forest

27 May

Doddling while watching mindless TV.  (When I’m fatigued I find myself sitting and watching mindless T.V.  HGTV is my favorite channel – no violence, swearing, mayhem or pestilence.)  Decided to take advantage of my mindlessness and mindlessly doodles.  Through NO intention I ended up with a forest of fleurs which goes with the French Fairy tale  “Blondine, Bonne-Biche, and Beau-Minon”  (My favorites below are #2 & 3 – I like it simpler)

Fleurs of the Forest #4

Fleurs of the Forest #4

 Before #4 I doodled with black marker

DSCN5895
Fleurs of the Forest, #3

 Cut out fleurs arranged on blank paper.

Fleurs of the Forest, #2

Fleurs of the Forest, #2

Doodle #1.  UGLY! – so I cut out the fleurs (hate to waste ANYTHING)

Fleurs, #1

Doodle Fleurs, #1 – SEE! I told you it was mindless.

In case you want to refresh your memory here are links for my other illustrations for “Blondine, Bonne-Biche, and Beau-Minon” 

Ossytrish (Ostrich)

Ducky-Swan takes a stroll

Swan Lake Yupoed

The Enchanted Forest – Yip Yippee Yupo

What a Wonderful World – SPECTACULAR!

26 May

Ya gotta watch!  National Geographic Wild HD (Living Music Action)

Thank you so much Rosemary – Seeking Equilibrium Blog – for sending this!

Can we handle the truth?

25 May

Veteran’s medical care and the private medical system. I rarely post about current events or politics.  After reading  a clear-minded, HONEST and APOLICTICAL post by Dr John Mandrola I’m making an exception.

Here are just a few thought provoking paragraphs from his post. (bold/red print is mine)

The VA healthcare system — Can we handle the truth?

by  JOHN MANDROLA, MD

“I am also connected to veterans’ healthcare. For it is in the VA system that I learned to be a doctor—a feeling doctor, an imperfect doctor, a human doctor. It’s ironic, and not often said, that the $48 billion-dollar VA healthcare system gives as much as it takes. It’s impossible to put a value on the benefit to society from the legions of caregivers who emerge from years of training in the VA system. Algorithms be damned; wealthy Americans benefit from what young doctors learn in the VA system. Veterans give when they serve in battle, then they give again as patients, as teachers.”

“And it’s not just the past that connects me to veterans’ healthcare. My wife Staci works as an attending physician in hospice and palliative care at the Louisville VA. When we share stories, I mostly tell of relieving the palpitations of the rich, she of relieving the suffering of dying veterans. Another irony of the VA: you don’t get Staci if you have private insurance.”

imagesIndicting Obamacare:

“This is a huge mistake. Obamacare fails because it lacked the courage to do enough. Its proponents avoided the truth. (Maybe they had to.) What policymakers set out to do was to correct a great American scar—that a country this rich does not provide basic healthcare to all its people. The problem was that Americans were not told the truth. A leader (or leaders) should have said that to get care to all people, excesses and inefficiency would need to be removed. Hospitals would not look like luxury hotels. Medicine and surgery would be for the ill, not the worried-well. Evidence, not eminence, would guide medical care. And prevention of disease would come not from doctors but from patients.”

“But Americans didn’t get the truth. We got magical thinking about metaphorical free lunches, insurance reform, cost-saving EHRs, patient-safety “quality forums,” and the like. Nonsense. All of it.”

“The VA system is the truth. Rationing is the truth. Triage is the truth. Imperfection is the truth.

And yes, death, too, is the truth.”

 

Failure to see the obvious:images-2

“You simply cannot deliver suburban excesses—the antithesis of efficient and honest healthcare–to the growing numbers of veterans. Thank goodness. Both Dr. Harlan Krumholz and Dr. Kevin Pho remind us that if evidence, not hype, is considered, the VA system performs either better than, or comparable to, the private sector.”

“Yet this should be obvious to anyone who reads anything about US healthcare. It’s clear that the private system is broken. If you hold up the US private system—with its humanity-extracting EHRs, expanding layers of bureaucracy, conflicts of interest, expense, inequalities, and geographic and racial differences in care–as a model that the VA should aspire to, you are not mastering the obvious. My colleague at theHeart.org Dr. Melissa Walton Shirley suggests veterans should be moved to the private system. I wouldn’t do that; veterans deserve better than our mess”.

images-1“Yes, of course, patients die waiting for medical care. It’s utter nonsense to call that a scandal. Why? Because patients die regardless of medical care, and too often, as a result of medical care. This death-denying culture has led to a major humanitarian crisis, one playing out in nearly every ICU in this country.

But please don’t misunderstand. I’m not arguing that medical care is pointless, or that we should not try to extend and improve human life. Rather, it is time to adjust the mindset that more care or faster care is always better care.”

Read the entire article click here. Can We Handle the Truth?

 

Year of the Fairy Tale – Free! Princess & the ? Zine!

24 May

Our assignment, should we accept it, was to do a sketch of what MIGHT be under the princess’ mattress . . . other than a pea.  

Here’s just a hint about my sketch and what I know is REALLY under the mattress.  To see my sketch and everyone else’s click here:

The Princess & the Pea Zine

Spot illustrations for The Princess-Zine
Spot illustrations for The Princess-Zine

Scan

You will really enjoy what others in the class drew.  Some of the illustrations are spectacular and all of them are wacky (“wacky” is an artistic term, rarely used). You can access The zine and download it here: http://carlasonheim.wordpress.com/2014/05/24/new-princess-zine/

Watch at your own risk – (and haiku)

18 May

Baby elephant Navann plays in the mud pit and takes a dip in the river with his mother and nanny at Elephant Nature Park in Mae Tang, Chiang Mai, northern Thailand.  

all elephants fly

on joyous spirit wings   

as they roll in mud

Haiku Horizons - prompt FLY

Haiku Horizons – prompt FLY

In the Mind’s Eye!

17 May

There are marvelous and mysterious “things” that exist beyond human comprehension.

This short film explores the philosophical idea called solipsism. Solipsism.  Whether you ascribe to the idea that nothing exists outside your own mind it’s worth watching the beautiful visuals.  (I liked watching how it was made before watching the actual film.  Either way you watch, it’s fascinating and visually wonderful.)

How the video was made

 

Here’s the finished video

“SOLIPSIST is an experimental short film by Andrew Huang that won the Special Jury Prize at Slamdance 2012. 

“Solipsism (Listeni/ˈsɒlɨpsɪzəm/; from Latin solus, meaning “alone”, and ipse, meaning “self”)[1] is the philosophical idea that only one’s own mind is sure to exist. As an epistemological position, solipsism holds that knowledge of anything outside one’s own mind is unsure; the external world and other minds cannot be known, and might not exist outside the mind. As a metaphysical position, solipsism goes further to the conclusion that the world and other minds do not exist”. (Wikipedia)

Sneak a Peak into my Journal

14 May

There once was  little weird fellow

who looked like he was quite mellow

but his teeth were sharp

always hitting the mark

drawing blood that was lemon yellow

A judy-journal page
A judy-journal page
"There she goes . . .again"
Blob the Blobfish: “There she goes . . .again”

When hungry he will quietly swallow..

Know, his belching won’t be shallow..

He’ll get himself well fed

What he eats is pretty red

Then why would his blood be yellow?

By Ramesh Sood

A Little More Than Ordinary

Mama Cormier

.... my journey to a healthy life, making new memories and so much more

scattered words

a brief history of mine

What's cooking on page 32

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Plum Tree Books Blog

"Where Words Grow On Trees"

Begin Again

Slow Down, Begin Again: Spiritual Practices in Context

Ailbu

Short Fiction

Oh Pithy Me

I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.

Haiku Horizons

A Haiku prompt/meme site

Global Dashboard

A way to keep track.

CREATIVE JOURNEY

We have miles to go....

Design of the Picture Book

the intersection of graphic design + picture books

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Exceptional Learning for Infinite Minds

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an international collective fostering peace, proximity and healing through our love of the arts and humanities

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Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

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Unbelievable to the Max

Poems, Plays, Pictures & Prose from the Murky Recess of My Mind

Picnic with Ants

My life disABLED with Chrnoic Ilnnesses, it just IS. Taking one moment at a time.

poetry diary

Reflections of the moment

Day by Day With My Adrenals

Fighting the monsters everyday of my life

Ping-O-Matic

New offsite pingomatic.com blog

Whyteferret's Blog

Embracing life: challenges and blessings

sunshine and chaos

Things that amuse and bemuse me as I wander the wilderness that is invisible chronic illness.

Hibernationnow's Blog

FOOD, LOVE, FIBRO, FUN

Mo is blogging...I think

Just another WordPress.com weblog

Real Life Artist

An unapologetic marching band against the forces of darkness!

Phylor's Blog

pain, poetry, bipolar, prose (and a little whimsy on the side)

Ask Daru

Bariatric, Bypass Surgery, Emotional, Psychological and Spirtitual Healing for Success

alisaburke

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

Curious to the MAX

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

WordPress.com News

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

Mama Cormier

.... my journey to a healthy life, making new memories and so much more

scattered words

a brief history of mine

What's cooking on page 32

Just another WordPress.com site

Plum Tree Books Blog

"Where Words Grow On Trees"

Begin Again

Slow Down, Begin Again: Spiritual Practices in Context

Ailbu

Short Fiction

Oh Pithy Me

I myself am made entirely of flaws, stitched together with good intentions.

Haiku Horizons

A Haiku prompt/meme site

Global Dashboard

A way to keep track.

CREATIVE JOURNEY

We have miles to go....

Design of the Picture Book

the intersection of graphic design + picture books

Welcome to the OLLI at UCI Blog

Exceptional Learning for Infinite Minds

THE BARDO GROUP

an international collective fostering peace, proximity and healing through our love of the arts and humanities

Support

WordPress.com Support

SEEKING EQUILIBRIUM

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

A Little More Than Ordinary...

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

Unbelievable to the Max

Poems, Plays, Pictures & Prose from the Murky Recess of My Mind

Picnic with Ants

My life disABLED with Chrnoic Ilnnesses, it just IS. Taking one moment at a time.

poetry diary

Reflections of the moment

Day by Day With My Adrenals

Fighting the monsters everyday of my life

Ping-O-Matic

New offsite pingomatic.com blog

Whyteferret's Blog

Embracing life: challenges and blessings

sunshine and chaos

Things that amuse and bemuse me as I wander the wilderness that is invisible chronic illness.

Hibernationnow's Blog

FOOD, LOVE, FIBRO, FUN

Mo is blogging...I think

Just another WordPress.com weblog

Real Life Artist

An unapologetic marching band against the forces of darkness!

Phylor's Blog

pain, poetry, bipolar, prose (and a little whimsy on the side)

Ask Daru

Bariatric, Bypass Surgery, Emotional, Psychological and Spirtitual Healing for Success

alisaburke

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

Curious to the MAX

Stuff that makes me love, learn and laugh. ("It is good to laugh. Laughter is spiritual relaxation." -Baha'i)

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