Monday, April 8, 2013

WILBUR the POT BELLY PIG and other stories….

……Brush painting class a week ago Saturday with new students Katherine & Peter, her dad.  Peter said class was like stepping into one of my YouTube videos when he saw me in my ‘white’ shirt!  So funny.


After class it was off to Whole Foods for our Easter dinner. This sign caught my eye.

008 ….and oh the flowers…I settled on yellow Tulips figuring the garden would fill in for the rest.

011 9:00 P.M., the evening before Easter I finally get the table set.


Next morning I awoke to see this beautiful orchid from Vicky and the girls.


Chop, chop, chop, fixings for salad and garlic for the lamb…..


Leg of lamb from Whole Foods with Rosemary from the garden and lots of melted butter with lemon juice to pour over… sorry vegans….


Here’s the finished product…


Vicky, how’s the Orzo????


The salad came out just right with a honey/lemon dressing…

035 Everything got mom’s ‘seal of approval’.


Now how did Charles get salmon?????


Make mine RARE….I’m such a carnivore but mentally a vegan….go figure…


What’s better than fresh strawberries topped with whipped cream sitting atop McConnell’s Vanilla Bean ice cream?


Emma & Nikka liked desert best.  Nikka voted to have it for breakfast!


Sorry we had to cordon you off Kita

046 So, it was a lovely day and to finish it off we watched the video for Odyesso, Cavalia’s stunning production.  Mom loved it and it brought back memories of the original Cavalia show we had all seen.


We then polished off the Godiva and called it a day!


Meanwhile, Kita had other ideas.


Don’t you give me that innocent look.


Eeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeee gads Kita!!!


I guess all that was in retaliation for being cordoned off.

Mid week Kita gets the jumbo-tron of a hot spot.

No Kita, you can’t drive to the vets.


She demanded service…


I don’t know what to say about this one…..


This is more like it……..


And this collar is the greatest……will search for it.


Back home with the collar of shame.


After I brought a somewhat chastened Kita home it was off to Rusnak in Pasadena where Eden in service is my angel.  My air conditioning was out, out, out!

022 So, time for Enterprise……..

023 Dinner at Recess was just the thing for recovery.


So where does Wilbur the Pot Belly Pig fit into all this you ask?  You are asking aren’t you????

Friday evening Tomiko & I had tickets for ‘END of the RAINBOW’, Tracie Bennett’s tour de force at the Ahmanson Theatre.


We met at mom’s & then Tomiko drove.  Half way there I gasped…”I forgot my iPhone”!!!!!! Knowing my new addiction to photographing just about everything you can imagine how bereft I was.  Glumly I sighed deeply and resolved to enjoy the evening.

Dinner at Kendall’s Brasserie was wonderful as always but alas, I can’t show you what I had or the yummy ‘White Russian’ I drank to assuage my sorrows.

Time for the show….we walked out of the restaurant and right there, between Kendall’s and the elevator to the plaza level is the Dorothy Chandler Pavillion ‘BANQUET’ area.  There are glass doors so you can see into the ground floor area which is a small lobby leading to a private elevator.

As we were walking I glanced to my left and said….”Look Tomiko….there’s a PIG”!!! A big Pot Belly PIG!!!

Sure enough, we walked inside and there was WILBUR, all gussied up (or as gussied up as a pig can get) with a big red bow….happily chomping on carrots handed to him by his ‘manager’.  Turns out Wilbur was there because a gentlemen celebrating his 50th LOVES pigs….go figure.  I am astonished that they’d allow such a thing but piggy piggy ruled the day.  And me without my phone.  I grabbed Tomiko’s iPhone & shot these pictures….I mean, who would believe this.  Or, as my mom says, “only you seem to have these things happen”.




To be continued……………….

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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.