Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Mary Lou Cook

She was quoted today in my women who do too much calendar - "Creativity is inventing, experimenting, growing, taking risks, breaking rules, making mistakes, and having fun."
I love the quote but hadn't heard of her - but through the wonders of google here she is:
Mary Lou Cook

“Santa Fe’s Living Treasure,” Mary Lou Cook, is a force to be reckoned with. Mother of three grown children, teacher, counselor, reverend, writer, lecturer, not to mention calligrapher, bookbinder, basket maker and tree planter, Cook lives through example, showing us life can be a joyous and wondrous adventure. Inspired by Ghandi, ‘you must be the change you wish to see in the world,’ Mary Lou Cook serves as mentor and activist on several fronts, including: nuclear issues, the environment, women’s issues, Peace Corps, politics and peace.
Throughout her life, Cook has been blazing trails: she was the first woman bank director in Santa Fe at United Southwest Bank; co-founder of the New Mexico acupuncture association which was instrumental in bringing acupuncture to the mainstream and protecting it under the laws of the state; co-founder of Concerned Citizens for Nuclear Safety and Nuclear Watch of New Mexico, which focuses on educating the public; founder of the Santa Fe Living Treasures, a group garnering huge national attention which honors elders who have made a significant difference to the community; City of Santa Fe’s Official Calligrapher in the 1980s, (Santa Fe was the second city to create the position, after Los Angeles); founder of the MLC (Mary Lou Cook) Creativity Center; creator of the popular Black Kindness bracelet, with the word ‘kindness’ printed in seventeen languages to promote peace around the world and Minister and Bishop of the Eternal Life Church, performing ceremonies throughout the year for people from over the world and last, but certainly not least, co-founder of the New Mexico Department of Peace.
For Mary Lou Cook, peace and creativity go hand in hand, “It is so important for us to use our creativity. We are all born with it, but not all of us use it. Creativity is about original thinking, being happy and positive. It is important to understand our main job is to be happy. We always have a choice between peace and fear, why would we choose fear over peace?” Cook’s creativity has inspired her to co-author twelve books including Open Endings, Beyond Fear, When I Listen and Let Your Clown Out of the Closet.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Howloween at Laurie's

Thank you for such a fun day - not to mention Dr. Monica!

Food for thought

I occasionally check in on this lovely lady's blog, One Happy Fool
She's a cancer survivor, teaches art to youth in prison, and challenges herself daily to draw! She takes multiple art classes and faithfully posts her work. She's miles ahead of me, but gives me inspiration.
I almost forgot to mention she has a CCI service dog, released for kidney problems.

Here's one of her works from a mixed medial class.

here's her bio:
Northern California, United States
I'm a woman of a certain age, living with one husband, one daughter, three dogs and one cat. I have more interests than I can name. I especially like to read, watch movies, paper craft, garden, correspond and draw. I sometimes cook, desperately try to clean house and generally keep track of myself. Oh yes, I work parttime too. I like rainy days and most animals. I want a goat. (Not an option, but I want one.) The photo was taken in the chemotherapy suite where I spend LOTS of time.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Look at this discovery!


I'm in awe.
Seldom do I wish to be a different age, but seeing these accomplished artists makes me wish just a little I could do it (only some of it) over again.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Another view from another person I respect, Ryan Duns, S.J.

from the blog of Ryan J. Duns, S.J.
Ryan is a Jesuit Scholastic
He entitled this
Priests and Politics

For quite some time, I have had mixed feelings about weighing in or writing on the topic of politics. "Your realm," a friend once told me, "is to be priestly, not political." I reckon I've bought into this, preferring to pray quietly and to remain silent on many of the issues that have arisen during this election season.

It is not as though my silence is without good reason. For were I to say that I intended to vote for John McCain, there would be cries that I hate the poor; to suggest a vote for Obama would raise cries that I hated the unborn. In particular, I have been dismayed and horrified by the caustic and hateful comments directed toward Catholic bloggers who voice, in any way, support for Obama. Civil discourse seems, yet again, to have been thrown out the window. Is it a wonder why a Jesuit scholastic would prefer to remain silent?

But can I, in conscience, stay silent? Am I so wholly removed from the world of politics that I am permitted only to direct silent prayers for the coming of the Kingdom, but I am not to speak of how I envision this coming about? As a Jesuit and a son of Ignatius, it is my life's labor to be a contemplative-in-action, one who brings himself to prayer in order to discern better how it is that God is calling him back into the world. My ears grow attuned to the cry of the oppressed, they strain to listen to the countless silent voices squelched by sinful and oppressive structures. I open my ears and let their words and stories penetrate my heart. I lift these voices up in prayer. And yet am I to remain in silence about the political structures that both abet and promise to alleviate the oppression that is a scourge to so many?

So let me say something about my politics. It seems to me that most of our problems are man-made. Lack of food, the general disregard for the value of human life (from the womb to healthcare to education to care for our elderly and infirm), war, an unconcern for the environment, an economic crisis precipitated by greed and lust for money, and pernicious forms of prejudice and discrimination...all of these can be traced back to human artistry. We need look no further than to one another to see who the real architects of our malaise is: it is us.

As a Christian, I cannot help but to look at the suffering and strife of so many and ask, "Lord, where are you in this?" Again and again, I am drawn in prayer and reflection to the realization that Christ is now where he always has been: with the poor, the helpless, the downtrodden, and the oppressed. As a Companion of Jesus, these are the men, women, and children that I have pledged my life and heart to serve as their brother and, God willing, their priest. As much as I'd like to say, "Let me give you spiritual counsel, but let's leave politics to the politicians" I would be remiss in doing so.

You see, my question at the end of the day is, "With my vote, how am I contributing to the furthering of God's Kingdom?" Is there a place for abortion? Is there a place for war? Is there a place for children to be deprived of an education? Of healthcare? When I enter the voting booth, I am certainly going to follow my conscience in asking, "Which of these is building up God's Kingdom better?"

I will vote for the candidate whose social policy will contribute to the declining rates of abortion in this country while also addressing the sweeping social policies that are necessary to make abortion an un-exercised option.
I will vote for the candidate who manifests a deep sense of the dignity of human life,
I will vote for the candidate who will assess fairly and accurately our military presence in foreign countries and make an informed decision about out the role of the United States in the future of the international community
I will vote for the candidate who demonstrates a sense of the scope and depth of the current economic crisis. This candidate will realize the breadth of its impact and will promote ways to address this is a healthy, balanced manner.
I admit that there is no ideal, or perfect candidate. But it is our burden, and our privilege, as citizens to be able to vote for the man who will lead our country for the next four years. In my mind, I am trying to vote in and for the narrative of God's Kingdom, a Kingdom that Jesus Christ embodied in his ministry on earth. I can no sooner be a one-issue voter than I can, in conscience, refrain wholly from voting. So it is with a discerning eye and an open heart that I will approach the booth this year and, in casting my ballot, I will do so with a prayer-filled confidence that the person whom I envision leading our country will embody more fully the values of the Kingdom.

A prayer that gives me pause for thought

May God bless you with discomfort,
At easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships,
So that you may live deep within your heart.

May God bless you with anger,
At injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people,
So that you may work for justice, freedom, and peace.

May God bless you with tears,
To shed for those who suffer from pain,
rejection, starvation, and war,
So that you may reach out your hand to comfort them
and turn their pain to joy.

And may God bless you with enough foolishness,
To believe that you can make a difference in this world,
So that you can do what others claim cannot be done.

—The Most Rev. Katharine Jefferts Schori
"Franciscan Prayer"

Saturday, October 18, 2008


Originally uploaded by Hélio Norio

love my desk lickr that lets me see great shots like this!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

yea - a great ending!

"Reading good books ruins you for enjoying bad books."
one of the many quotes that caught my attention from this entertaining and educating book.
It concerns the German occupation of this this small island in the English Channel during World War II.
One of the islanders says, "We thought we'd be in the audience like, not be on the stage itself."
As, in my own life, their saving grace was the love of reading, many of them having never read before.