Tuesday, January 1, 2013


Les Miserables…with Laurie…..


We had to wait in line but it was well worth it…Glad we got there early…


Got a refill on my ‘large’ popcorn and then went into Armani Exchange to get a bag for the bag.  You get the idea…don’t you?

Later at Katsuya…delicious dinner and time to open ‘Presenting You’  Laurie’s fantabulous new book hot off the presses.  Yippee!!


Here’s Laurie’s book:


Americana all sparkly…


Thank you Laurie for thinking of me in such a beautiful way…..I’ll try to take very good care of this treasure!


Sandie and Jim at Far Niente on Brand in Glendale where we had a relaxing dinner before seeing Lincoln.


For you foodies… Parmigiano Reggiano and imported Jamon serrano..yum, yum!


Waiting for Lincoln….the L.A. Times had an interesting article Monday about the ending of the movie saying it would have been better leaving it when Lincoln is walking down the hallway….you know where he is headed.  I think I agree.  Other than that it was just about a near perfect movie.  I’ll see it again.


Kita’s new job (she’s a ‘working’ dog after all)is waiting sentry style for the new neighbor’s Yorkies…..she’s obsessed by them.


Getting ready for New Year’s eve dinner…..


Made the stuffing the day before….it’s sooo good!


Thank you Mr. Turkey….you gave your all and we sure appreciate it.


I love having the neck for lunch……shared with Vicki.


Poor Kita….so near….so far…..


Ready set….into the oven with you….


Vicki said that we needed to have 13 pieces of fruit (they’re all there) for a New Year’s blessing.


Yams with all sorts of good stuff, cranberries, oranges, nuts, lots of butter & spices.


I had quite a few ripe avocado’s sooooo…….


Congratulations to me….I didn’t burn the turkey….it came out just perfect as I did not use the ‘convection’ setting this time!


O.K., you probably know how great these table favors are.  Besides our paper crowns with musical scores printed on them, there were little horns in each.  Everyone gets a number and then the conductor (me) points his baton to various ‘numbers’ to play the tunes.  It’s so much fun because it gets quite confusing and people don’t always come in on cue so the laughing begins and the whole thing falls apart.


Examining the little horns (they come in various sizes to make the different pitches).


Vicki had the longest……she was #1.


Charles was number 2 and did quite well.


I of course love to toot my horn!!!!  (No comments please.)


Remembering the Stork Club as 2013 begins……

035 Cheers for the New Year!


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Victory Lee Malon said...

Dear Nan, When I said that Hai and I never go out for New Years Eve, I think you have just changed my mind. Looks like you had a blast and again....no snow. Kita is so cute, some dogs just don't ever take a bad photograph. I see you got your hair dut a bit too, you look great! Happy New Year Nan and to your friends and family! - Victory Lee

Victory Lee Malon said...

Dear Nan, forgot one thing...according to your photographs, do you ever not have a good time? All of your pics make me smile big and wide. I would loe to hop a plane, land, run to the ocean with my bare feet then go and see the Masters of Chinese Brush Painting starting with the Grand Poo-Bah....Nan herself! I will check my email to see if you have been able to pin down an ETA on your video series. The word obcession is drifting into my head quite frequently wondering about that series. I can't seem to get the iris to look like anything but a boo-boo. Hoever, my plum blossom that I did night before last turned out well enough for my husband (he is Vietnamese) to say, well, honey, that really looks Asian. What a nice compliment. Well it is 5:30 am and I think I should go back to bed and dream of warm sunny days in Huntington Beach CA. Absorb a ray for me if you can......V


There is no avoiding the pull of the internet, the blogs, the YouTube imaginings. It's as if we're all 'On the Road' with Jack Kerouac each in our own world of meanderings. When we tell someone to 'get a life' it might be a bit difficult when you're dragged into other people's 24/7.

I've come to realize two foundational principals, there are no accidents and everyone has a purpose. More and more I'm desiring everyone to come into a full realization of their purpose as we all find our way on this little jewel of a planet.

For me, as a professional 'Western style artist', I stumbled into Chinese Brush Painting after a trip in 1980 to Monet's home/garden. Seeing all of his collection of Japanese woodblock prints was an ahh haa moment for me and when I returned to the States I started painting in the Chinese manner and never looked back. The first year was extremely painful for me as I felt that I should be able to master the technique since I was a 'trained' artist. Not a chance ... that just gets in your way.

Now, after teaching close to 3,000 students and having my book 'The Ch'i of the Brush' published by Watson Guptill, I can say that every one of my students does better their first day than I did my first year! Why? Because I insist that they leave their critical parent outside and just enjoy the journey, respecting the work that they do. I never let anyone throw anything away because that just ingrains frustration and defeat.

We really only begin to learn when we stop and figure out how to 'save' a painting. It works every time.I am so proud of my students, their receptivity and eagerness to express themselves is a continuing blessing for me.So, back to finding your purpose. Perhaps it starts with realizing 'it's not about me'. It so easy to want our needs met and to filter everything thru this attitude. When we realize that we're here to be of benefit to every life that we touch the universe really provides the ways and means.

The best part is that it's really exciting to not have yourself on your mind all the time!I'm re-reading a wonderful book about authenticity and in my next meandering I'll tell you about it. In the meantime I'd love to hear about your journey and am here to answer any and all questions about Chinese Brush Painting.