Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Here comes the New Year!

The San Marcos River, below our house

Wow! I can't believe it's going to be 2011 in a couple of days. It seems like the other day I was shocked that the year of Prince's song 1999 came and went without much ado. This year has seen a few changes for us, a new city, new house (one in need of lots of TLC) and we adopted a dog, Tucker. Greg made a career change, he is opening a running specialty store (Core Running Company) on January 10th of 2011. I've been working on my portfolio for Texas Laid Photography.  I've been able to catch up with a few friends from the past, and made some new ones. The future is looking bright and I'm feeling excited, change has always been a familiar and welcome presence in my life. Here's to the New Year! Cheers!

Our Dog Tucker
Core Running Company
Austin, Bowie & Atticus Hula-Hooping



Austin on the old Iron Jungle Gym
Greg sporting the Core Logo Tee

Friday, December 17, 2010

Dad


I just spent two days with my father, I took this photo when we were hanging out. His birthday is February 13th, he will be Eighty years old. I have a hard time thinking about what that age really means. My parents will have been married for FIFTY years in March, their golden anniversary. This is a photo my parents, my dad was 31, my mom was 19.


Some of you know my father, and he is quite memorable. I cannot express how many times in my life I have cringed after he opened his mouth. I remember my first date, my father shaking (breaking) my dates hand, "My daughter is a virgin" like he was telling some Arab Sheik of my worth.  Friends walking through the front door to visit, my father, leaning against the stairwell, "Spell hemorrhoid". Really? Hemorrhoid? That's the test word?  How many hitchhikers did he bring home? Countless numbers, some I remember, others were fly by night, they came and went, strange faces, strange habits. My father hoped to make an impact on their lives, to change them for the better. Looking back it was very odd for my father to take in strangers, he was a very protective father. With a family of nine, seven boys and two girls, things were defiantly not fair, and fairness was never an issue with him, he was old school. My sister and I were girls, so we had no freedom, we fought for it though and little by little gained a bit.

My dad can always shock me with his humor, he is minister, and is constantly preaching the gospel, but he always picks the seediest jokes.  A man with a heart of gold and no sense when it comes to money, he taught me many things in life, how to live passionately, believe in those you love, give when you can and even when you can't. I learned a lot about what not to do in life as well, by watching his many mistakes. I've heard his regrets and they are not the ones you would think. My father was diagnosed with Parkinson's two years ago, he is doing fine, despite the disease, even has a sense of humor about it and is taking things in stride. I love you Dad, hope there are many more years of enjoying and dreading your company.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

up and coming

I started packing for an upcoming trip well over a month ago (is that wrong?) I have really been looking forward to it. We are headed to Jamaica come mid December (my husband and I).

Jamaica will always be a special place for me, we said our marriage vows there in July 1996. We were married in a Gazebo overlooking the ocean, the weather was clear all week, no rain, no storms, but, while we were exchanging our vows, a light rain fell. Our minister scared me, he was very intense and serious, after the ceremony he told me rain was good luck!  I was happy to hear that.

So, this trip is a sort of vacation/ early anniversary trip for us, It will be 15 years in July, July 9th to be exact! Here's to us Greg!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Why I love John Irving

I think I discovered how much I loved John Irving writing's when I was about twenty-one years old. I have had my nose in books since I was five, I learned to read at the age of four (still haven't learned to spell, so forgive that) thanks to my half- brother Chris, who I had never met, until he came to live with us for the year of 1973, bored, I guess he decided that teaching me to read would be fun, or at least pass the time. I am grateful for the time he devoted to me that year. Thanks Chris, hope your prison cell is cozy this Christmas! I remember having seen The World According to Garp when I was a teenager, I felt a bit confused after it ended. Years later when I read the book, I understood that a movie could never do it justice, it lacked something that the book supplied, the soul of the writer.  I enjoyed the movie The Hotel New Hampshire much more, even though it had less acclaim and very few well known stars. I loved Nastassja Kinski as the "bear", she was very sexy and quite masculine, she really captured the character.
My favorite,  A Prayer for Owen Meany, was influenced by Gunter Grass' The Tin Drum which is very depressing.  I laughed out loud so many times when reading Owen Meany, that I  embarrassed myself, as I was often reading in public. It was hard to believe that it could have much to do with The Tin Drum, until the end of course. This was such a different reading experience for me, I had read all the classics and anything else I could get my hands on, Hemingway, Updike, Jane Austen, Alcott, Andersen, Shakespeare, Henry James, Milton, Browning, Bronte, you name them.  Irving's books have always struck a strange cord in me, I feel like he writes these bizarre often unbelievable stories, but to me they are very believable because my life experiences, especially growing up, were very strange and some quite unbelievable.  If you have never read any of Irving's books, or if you have... you might find this list interesting enough to make you pick up one or two of his works.


I've read almost everything that he has written, seen most of the movie adaptations and I think really the only movie that did his writing justice was The Cider House Rules and HE wrote the movie adaptation.  I liked The 158-pound marriage, although I read it right after getting married, scared me just a bit. Until I Find You was a fun read, but then you learn that the writer exposes things in the book that happened to him in real life, then you feel the serious weight of the novel.  While trying to untangle the mess in my head for a novel I've been trying to write/ figure out, I always go back not to the classic writers of our time, but to Irving and two others that I just have to mention, Stephen King and Amy Tan. God, who will ever read my book?