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Support matters

I didn’t want this sweet little scene to go unappreciated. How lucky we’d all be if, when we’re older and we can’t walk by ourselves, we have two friends who want to walk with us, slowly on a Sunday, in the middle of the street.

Please Leave Gate Open

I live in (or close to, technically speaking) a really sweet, beautiful neighborhood and walk around in it as often as I can. Yesterday morning I walked by this sign on this open gate and then stopped, turned around, and took a photo.

How often do you see a sign on a gate asking to be left open? I was in a metaphor-kind-of-mood and thought about being open, in general. How often do we ask to be open? I want to be an open gate. More intelligent-sounding thoughts to come later, maybe, or maybe this is as deep as I’ll get and you can fill in your own philosophy.


Let this change you

Here is a river flowing now very fast. It is so great and swift that there are
those who will be afraid, who will try to hold on to the shore. They are
being torn apart and will suffer greatly.
Know the river has its destination. The elders say we must let go of the
shore, push off into the middle of the river and keep our heads above water.
And I say see who is there with you and celebrate. At this time in history,
we are to take nothing personally, least of all ourselves. For the moment
that we do, our spiritual growth and journey comes to a halt.
The time of the lone wolf is over. Gather yourselves. Banish the word
struggle from your attitude and your vocabulary.
All that we do now must be done in a sacred manner and in celebration.
For we are the ones we have been waiting for.


Twice now I’ve used this sunny theme in my art


The day after leaving that chalk drawing at my friend’s house I woke up and turned on NPR. Nothing but doom and gloom and it got to me. It left me with a sense of dread that I sensed was not going to be easily shaken. I pulled out a blank canvas and all I could see was darkness. The sun rays from the day before were still there, but they were covered in blacks and grays.

So I painted this to remind myself that the brightness still exists.


As the day went on I realized it was the winter solstice and latched on to it’s meaning as a way to understand the day’s icy cold tone.

Winter solstice marks the beginning of winter – the darkest day of the year. Sounds depressing if you stop there. But if you don’t stop there, you realize that from the darkest point – it can only get lighter.

It only gets brighter from here.

Things that help

“I’m good, in this moment,” Carolyn said, when I called her today to tell her that I was sad. We all have sad moments, and then an hour later we’re happy again. And then sad again an hour after that. I usually have sad moments on Saturdays and she reminded me of that, and that helped. “Oh yeah, Saturdays are my hard days, I forgot.”

Talking to friends always helps, so talking to Carolyn helped. I came up on this majestic beauty when I was talking to her, so I took a picture of it because nature helps.

After we got off the phone I secured my face mask (that she made me, in fact), and having a mask that I love that fits my face helps.

Then I walked for about an hour, and that always helps too. Where I live, one of the streets dead ends on both ends, with about 10 blocks of tree-lined, car-free (mostly, these days) neighborhood in between. Living by this street helps.

This street has become less like a street and more like a walking path, where people walk to one end and then walk back to the other end, on the sidewalk and in the street, on repeat.

Tonight I walked past a house where two were people sitting on a porch, watching the people walk by. We waved and said hi to each other. I didn’t have sunglasses on so my eyes were visible, but I promised myself the next time I smiled at someone from behind a mask, I’d tell them I was smiling.

“I’m smiling,” I said, “but you can’t tell.” The woman smiled back and said, “I can tell.” And for some reason, that helped the most.


*I’m writing this as someone who hasn’t (yet, at least, fingers crossed) been directly impacted by the health consequences of the coronavirus. My job is in tact and I can work from home. I recognize my privilege in all of that.

The skies are more clear than they’ve ever been. Everywhere. I live in Los Angeles where that has made a noticeable difference.

When I go on walks, I’m blown away by how vibrant and beautiful everything is. Either I’m appreciating the little things more, because all there is is little things now. Or there is literally a visible change because the new clear air quality makes the sun shine differently on the trees. My guess is it’s both.

Tonight I was struck by the idea that not only the skies are getting clearer. I feel like the smog has been cleared from our metaphorical vision as well (well, from some of ours).

All of a sudden people are realizing what is important to them and the rest is dropping away. The world shutting down around us has allowed space for a powerful light of clarity to blast through. I personally feel blinded to things that don’t serve me anymore. I realize what’s important. To me.

Supporting others. A daily self-care routine. Honoring connection over safety (ok well not right now, this is a nod to my lack of a relationship b/c I’ve always been so afraid of getting hurt). Connecting with my family. Thinking of how to make the people I love feel special. Surrendering control. Trusting that my life is exactly as it should be, for my highest good. Honoring a place of not knowing. Blogging. Painting. And going to sleep when I’m tired.

Good night, I love you.

Little griefs everywhere

Today I tried to watch last night’s episode of Saturday Night Live, At Home. The cast put an episode together, all from their own individual houses. Watching SNL on Hulu on Sunday morning has been one of my favorite ways to spend a Sunday for several years.

Today though, it made me sad. Watching them try and be funny in the face of the pandemic, from their homes, just served as another reminder that life as we knew it is not happening right now, if not over entirely. It was another old reference point that, when I went back to visit for comfort, found that it wasn’t there. I didn’t finish the episode.

After I hit stop I called a friend on Facetime, told her daughter how pretty her ballerina outfit was, checked my email about 10 more times for another email from my dad, looking for proof that he’s ok and not bored, told a friend that I was sad, and now I’m watching a new documentary on Estevan Oriol and Mr Cartoon, two iconic culture creators of Los Angeles.

Grieving the old. Embracing some new.

Closing in

Ever since California started shutting down around me, I’ve been fearing the moment they tell us we’re not allowed outside at all. I’ve felt that I can handle this as long as I’m allowed to leave my apartment and go on walks, or see my friends from a safe distance.

What I didn’t expect, was that I’d stop wanting to.

May I remind you, please

The start of her art collection

The vibe around my office can be tense at times, and especially between mine and this one other team.  Natalie is on that other team and through the battles that our respective teams have gone through, Natalie and I have always found a way to laugh with each other.

She asked me to make a “be grateful” painting for her blank room, which she’d recently realized was too blank.

By the time I sent her the picture of the final product, she’d made a second art purchase, inspired by the one I was making for her!

I’m excited for her new art journey, and honored to be part of the beginning.