Tuesday, June 4, 2013


…………began the moment the fragrance of Gardenia’s enveloped me as I walked up the garden path to her front door.  You know I turn into a pumpkin at 9:00 so I arrived right on time which was probably early but that gave me a chance to take some pictures before the crowd settled in.  The party was for the Neurology and Clinical Neurophysiology’s Seizure Disorder Center which is to say I was surrounded by a bunch of brainiacs.

There were so many charming spots in two garden areas…


So very charming…..013

Here’s a spot in what Miss Judith has named ‘The Magical Garden’.  Do I ever agree!!!024

Gorgeous flowers were everywhere……023

……being beautifully arranged by Patty.


Oh my, where is that one going Amanda?


More……I told you they were everywhere!!!025

Back in the Magical Garden.026

People were milling about in each area but as I got involved in conversations I neglected to take photos.027

Yummyness abounded but I didn’t get a photo of the most delicious sushi EVER…..trays of it on a very long table ….heavenly….oh my! Probably busy stuffing my mouth.015

Now there’s a story behind these Cherry Cheesecake’s. (I had to leave before dessert time.) These perfect creations were made by Dr. Marc Nuwer….a #1 Brainiac who was so delightful to talk with and probably the most humble man in the universe considering his background.  I think Dr. Marc loves to cook and bake as a stress reliever ……just saying.


How cute are Dr. Vivian Hoang and her precious daughter Claire!031

O.K., When this handsome couple walked in someone said to me, “I think that’s Richard Gere.”  I made a beeline and decided Barry Sattels is way more handsome than R.G. and combined with Lisa London, his beautiful wife, make quite a stunning couple. I bet you want to know more…..Barry is an actor/director (surprised?) with so many credits to his name you’ll just have to GOOGLE him.  The latest is ‘Divorce Texas Style’ now in post production.  Lisa is an accomplished actress and singer and I would have loved  spending more time talking about being directed by Clint Eastwood in ‘Sudden Impact’. These two are awesome and soooo nice but you can see that by their picture.033

Gosh….the niceness continues….Elena and Lee Danielson.  Elena is also an artist and intrigued  by Asian art. I wish I had more time to talk with them.036

Here’s Dr. Christine Baca with Jonathan, a twin, with hubby Mike holding his brother Zach who besides being adorable won the biggest baby contest of the evening.  The Baca’s also have a 4 year old, Seraphio who had decided to pull a Garbo.018 021

Amanda, our lovely hostess with son Aiden who is quite possibly the nicest young man you’ll ever meet!040

And now my favorite peeps…Miss Judith & Eileen! The young man in the background did his residency in Chicago & is now a Fellow at UCLA…..loved our Chi Town talk.


I wish I didn’t have to leave just when the party was getting started but how I do thank you Amanda for including me in an evening I won’t soon forget!!!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Nan - you simply are one of the most amazing people I know and absolutely are the best chronicler of parties and special events that are lucky enough to have you as a guest. I was at this party at the Magic Cottage & Garden and am ashamed of myself for not being as alert as you were to all the wonderful conversations & accomplished people surrounding me. Thank you for providing the perfect description of the ambience & people at the gathering before "you turned into a pumpkin". Hostess & neighbor Amanda never disappoints! Eileen


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.