Tuesday, November 11, 2014


I love my job for numerous reasons: drawing on the whiteboard is one such reason!

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

My Friend Gary

My friend Gary died 5 years ago today.
I was there when he took his last labored breath.
My hand was on his bare ankle. It was the first time I ever felt Life leave.
Mysterious.  Glorious.  Heartbreaking.  Beautiful.

Gary was a significant part of my life for 17 years.
But grief can glamorize our memories.  I don't want to do that.
Gary was not perfect. He drank too much, ate too much and was highly, and sometimes, annoyingly opinionated.

But he also loved deeply.
Gary loved me more that I ever knew.  He loved me like a daughter.
I learned how deep his love was just a few days before he died.

You know you have lived, and died, well when people can remember the good and bad about you, but instead they choose to move to Love, then and now.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

People Have Asked

A handful of people have asked what I have been creating lately.
I'm knitting a new purse.

Knitting is good therapy for me. 
I have to slow down. 
I have to accept process. 
There is NO instant gratification in knitting.  
One stitch at a time is the only way I will get to the end.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Art Journaling

For many years, I have been intrigued by art journaling. It's fun. It's therapy. And there is no wrong way.
For many years, I have been intrigued by art journaling.  And it always made me angry. What are the cool pens, the right pens, the pens you can't afford...the wrong paper, the crappy paper, this technique...that technique! No. I'd throw my soul into an internal arms-crossed-eyes-closed-head-turned to-the-side pout. "Humph! No. I WON'T play!"

Friday, a coworker was kind enough to show me her latest art journaling book.
I was inspired!
"Hey, I wanna play, too!"

I did! I played.

THANK YOU, She-Who-Likes-To-Remain-Under-The-Radar.

Saturday, August 9, 2014

Monday, August 4, 2014

A Cold In August

Stayed home from work, napped...twice, drank tons of water, watched a movie. At the closing of the day, sometimes you just have to COLOR!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

Late Night

Drawn late at night while talking to my daughter on the phone.  Happy.

Wednesday, July 30, 2014


My latest non-dominant hand drawing is complete - a good balance of realism and wonkiness.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Twelve Years Ago

Taken in 2002, Winter Sawdust Festival, Laguna Beach, California.
'Twas my first non-hometown art show.  I was terrified but I did it.
This particular art show was a tremendous amount of work.
I did the show one more time in 2003. After that, I vowed never to do an art show again.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Monday, July 14, 2014


My husband grew it.
It's minuscule...and it's the only one. But I was excited!

'Tis pretty amazing that a tiny seed knows how to grow into a carrot...even if a rather wee carrot.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Before We Say Goodbye...

I once read that before we can say good-bye you must first say thank you.

Thank you for telling me that if I ever tried speed, you'd cut my nipples off.  I never did try it.

Yes, you tortured me with boogers and you farted on me often, but you never spoke unkindly to me.  Thank you.

Thank you for letting me wear your denim, skull jacket at the Billy Idol concert.  I actually felt cool.

Remember that time you pulled up on your motorcycle just after my mom had backed over our two new cats.  They were alive, but terribly injured.  Thinking you could quickly put them out of their misery, you put them in a brown paper grocery bag and grabbed a hammer from the garage, disappearing around the corner of the house.  You weren't gone but a minute, returning with the bagged cats and a look on your face of tender despair. "I can't do it."
We drove to the vet.  You held the bag on your lap.  And that look on your face...
Thank you for showing me you have a compassionate heart.

It is because of you I have one of my dearest friends, Shannon.  On the first day of school in 7th grade, she came up to me and asked, "Does your sister date Paul Baylink?"  Thank you.

Thank you for trusting me to keep Tim's medical school skull for a wee bit.

Thank you for your beautiful photography.

Thank you for sharing with us all your tremendous love for your daughter.

In the wee hours of the morning, when your heart continued to ache beyond methods of self-medicating, I am grateful to have been one of the people you'd reach out to. Thank you for trusting me with your pain and vulnerability.

Thank you for asking me to draw a picture for you when you grieved Tim's death.
Thank you for offering me one of your photos in return.  And thank you for giving me a CD of over 500 photos to choose from.  Because of this, we have some of your photos to remember you by.

Even after saying thank you I still really don't want to say goodbye.
You. Are. Missed.

Thank you for reminding me that even in our pain we can't take things too seriously.  Remember the poem I shared when you were hurting?  I thought it was quite profound.  Your email reply was PFFFFT!  Thank you for the laugh.

.  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .

Paul Baylink dated my sister for 5 years, long ago in their teens.  He was with us most of the time, a member of the family.  Thankfully, we kept in touch over the years.

Thursday, July 3, 2014

New Coloring

'Tis my first colored pencil drawing in a long time.
2.5 x 3.5 inches

Monday, June 30, 2014


I am being pulled to do something.
But with the soulful pull comes Resistance, which rears its ugly head as self-doubt - the easiest hook.
"You are not educated enough! You don't have the proper credentials!  Why would the world want you? You couldn't help because you don't TRULY understand."


But I have agreed to pursue it anyway.

I believe in the power of creativity.
Creativity is a place to pause and a place to discover, a place to move through.
It has helped me muddle through grief and lead me depression.
It has helped captured moments of great joy and allowed my mind to rest by simply watching a colored pencil move back and forth on the paper.

I am being pulled to provide creative opportunities for people in grief, particularly mothers grieving miscarriages, stillborns or infant loss.

It's huge.  'Tis more than I can get my head and heart around.

"God, you must have gotten me confused with someone much more qualified."
Nope.  The signs keep pointing which way I am supposed to go.

I shall go.

Thursday, June 26, 2014

My Grammie

Last weekend, while visiting my family in California, I made sure to take time to visit my Grandma.
When I arrived, her dusty-blue jammies matched her dusty-blue upholstered furniture and her brand new dusty-blue carpet.  Her pink socks were the only thing that stood out.

My visit was heartwarming and heartbreaking.

At one point she asked, "What do I do with the rest of my life?"
What do you say?

Over her shoulder, I noticed her box of hair rollers; the same box she has been using since I was a little girl.  Getting to stay up late and watch her put rollers in her hair was a childhood favorite!

Once in my late 20's, during a round of depression, I was able to watch my grammie roll her hair.  It was the only thing that made me feel sane for a wee bit.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014


Orange ya glad I didn't say Orange Things In Heather's House?

Well, these are.  And orange is my favorite color...most of the time.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

I Will Comb Your Hair

I adore my sister.
We are like Ernie and Bert: quite opposite.

She is cool. I am a nerd.
She's social.  I'm a home-body.
The list goes on.

One deeper difference is I am not afraid of sad.  She is.
She won't let me sing Old Shep or Puff the Magic Dragon.
She didn't understand the feelings I shared when a friend was dying.
"Have you ever had something be so sad it is beautiful?  Or something so beautiful is breaks your heart?"
"No," she replied.

Last January, my sister spent a week in the hospital was a very severe case of double pneumonia.
I arrived on day 4 of her stay.  And for 4 days no one had brushed her long mane of thick hair.
It was a tangle mess!
She was on oxygen, exhausted and felt like absolute hell.
I grabbed the unused fork from her lunch tray and told her I'd comb her hair while she lay there.
It took a long time but it worked!  Once finished, I braided her hair and she smiled-ish.

I didn't think much more of that moment in time until a few days ago.
Via Facebook, she was commenting on an image and using words that don't usually come from her, regarding HappySad.
With predictable teasing, I replied, "Is that you?"
She typed: heartbreaking+happy=your sister brushing your hair with a fork.

She gets it.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

What I Do When...

 ...I wake up in the middle of the night.                                   ...I have a headache.                  

Coloring is good medicine.

Saturday, June 14, 2014


Although drawn 3 weeks ago, this is fitting for this evening.

One minute you are talking about someone at dinner.
Then next minute you receive a text that they are gone.
House fire.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

One Time When I Was A Photographer


Online photo editing.  Endless filter choices.  They make me think I'm a photographer.
But I'm not.
Except this one time.
Five years ago, in my hometown Redlands, California, I  took a walk early one morning.  The day before it had rained long and hard, saturating everything.  As I walked, the sun came out and brought steam out of every field, lawn and tree.
Don't know if I was a photographer momentarily, or simply lucky to be at the right place at the exact right moment.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Non-Dominant Hand Drawing

The process is slower, but more enjoyable.
The accuracy is close, but allows for some slight wonkiness that give it more character.

Almost. Done.

When I draw with my left hand, the inner critic shuts up!  I love that!