Monday, February 16, 2015



….is how last week started with a trip to Disney Hall.  Marsha and Stu, my snowbirds from Chicago and I had lunch first at the Patina ‘Concert Hall Cafe’ and as always it was fresh and yummy!

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We then went to a wonderful concert…..showcasing Mozart and Haydn (one of my favorites). Haydn's Trumpet Concerto in E-flat major  featured Thomas Hooten, Principal Trumpet, who was absolutely amazing!  You may have read the article this past week about the orchestra that featured Hooten in it. My favorite seats face the conductor and fortunately Marsha and Stu agreed.

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During intermission we went to the Founders Room for drinks and I invited Toby Lewis here from Spain on business for Global Corporate Venturing to join us.

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If you went to the LACMA docent tour of Japanese Ceramics given by Pricilla Gibbs you’ll remember how knowledgeable she was.  I had invited Pricilla to the tea for Lisa See as we have a lot of friends in common and quite naturally thought it a great idea to meet now to compare notes on the upcoming trip to Japan. We had lunch at Little Dom’s on Larchmont….another favorite place.

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Grilled shrimp, chopped spinach, avocado, egg romesco….IMG 4730

Don’t even go there….I know, we were bad!  Mint chocolate sundae if you must know….

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You know I love Pooh bear but Paddington is a close second and I so hope you get a chance to see this darling movie.  The back story is that author Michael Bond, now 88, was inspired to write Paddington’s story  “….. because of memories of seeing evacuated children at rail stations in England during World War ll.  They all had labels around their necks and were holding on to their treasured possessions.”  Paddington's tag, ‘Take Care of This Bear’ makes a lot of sense now.

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Paddington comes to England from darkest Peru…….

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…….having eaten a suitcase of marmalade during his stow-a-way trip and always has a marmalade sandwich under his hat.

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 Good advice I’d say.  

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Nicole Kidman was an excellent villain….hope it’s not type casting!

I’m not even going to tell you where this is…..

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O.K., so if sweet bears who love marmalade aren’t to your liking there’s always a Liam Neeson movie to get your heart pumping.

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This isn’t a pun but I do have a lot on my plate this week so I’m now going to be in hiding until the Calligraphy class on Saturday.  Nikka is very proud of me that I’m actually learning to say no to wonderful goings on.  

I got hooked onto Papaya on the cruise as we had some with every meal.  Decided to continue the tradition ‘cause it’s soooo yummy and good for you too!

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Kita went to the spa in preparation for Valentine’s day.  She always looks like a different doggie when I get her.  Sooooo white….a big snowball!

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All ready for our Valentine’s Day photo opportunity!


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And another…...

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I vote this photo the cutest ever!!!!

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Thank you Nikka for the beautiful roses and sweet, sweet card!

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All I can say is ‘Oh that Amy’!!! She came over with the most exquisite arrangement….I’ll try and show you a view from all sides.  The interesting thing about this is that I felt as if I entered a garden all my own….it’s so charmingly captivating!  Amy’s putting the finishing touches on the arrangement….

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The white flowers are exquisite Tulips!IMG 4909

A view from the top…..

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And again….

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Calligraphy class was on Valentine’s Day…..

Here’s Violet with Shantien ‘Tom’ Chow…….They combined their Ch’i to say ‘the greatest harmony…earth & people all in harmony’.

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I don’t know….the kiddies table gets awful grownup during calligraphy!

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Time for Valentine’s dinner at Bar Verde.

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Hiro, the Manager, always takes such good care of us….

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Had the salmon…..

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Did I forget to photograph dessert again?  We had the Apple Cobler with Ice Cream.  Hi mom!

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I love you darling…...

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Wishing you a Happy Chinese New Year filled with every manner of good things to delight your heart!

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No comments:


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.