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Soulful Art or Teen Angst in Paint?

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Some pictures from my very brief painting phase in high school art class. I never liked paint much. Even though you hold the brush, it still sorta goes anywhere it wants to. I have always preferred pencils and markers and stuff. Things that are a more controlled extension of my hand.

Ya, I have control issues.

With no further ado, I present to you my crappy collection of high school art.

Mother Nature is weeping at the destruction we have done to our earth.  She is a part of ground, the trees, the clouds.

Mother Nature is weeping at the destruction we have done to our earth. She is a part of ground, the trees, the clouds.

This was from my “Save the Earth” phase.

I had T-shirt that said it.
I got it on my class ring.
I did reports on it for school.
I took Environmental Science (and I hate science).
I watched Captain Planet.

Not that I still don’t want it saved, but now I have other priorities. Actually, after 20 years, there is now actually a convenient location for me to recycle at! Imagine that!

A wolf who is so cool, he howls at his own moon.

A wolf who is so cool, he howls at his own moon.

This was sort of supposed to be like “Live Your Own Life”, “Do Your Own Thing”, etc.

It was me as a teenager trying to embrace that I would never be in the popular crowd. I would never wear turtlenecks under my sweatshirts or have expensive jeans or my own car to drive to school.

If you take it literally, then you will realize that the Earth only has one moon, and then, well, it just loses all meaning then…

What I Learned A Year Ago – 3/17/13

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My Great Grandmother's tombstone

My Great Grandmother’s tombstone

A year ago today I was out documenting relatives in local cemeteries for my family tree research. Most of my relatives are dead, so this is the best way for me to gather information, although it can have inconsistencies and drawbacks just as much as an Internet search does.

"Grandma" is written on the back of this picture in pencil.  I believe this may have been Martha Elliot.  I am guessing the guy next to her is Phillip Bracey.

“Grandma” is written on the back of this picture in pencil. I believe this may have been Martha Elliot. I am guessing the guy next to her is Phillip Bracey. It is a great old picture, whoever these people are.

I was at the cemetery for a small, nearby town. I knew a lot of my father’s family was buried there. But then I just happened to walk by two flat headstones with different surnames than what I was specifically looking for. But, luckily, I saw them and recognized them! It was the tombstone of my dad’s maternal grandmother (my great-grandmother) and her second husband! All the information I had gathered from the Internet had led me to believe she was buried in Lucas County, Ohio somewhere. One of the next things on my to-do list was to try to figure out where she was buried. And here I had found her right under my nose!

This picture is labeled "Grandma & Grandpa Bracey".  But I think it is labeled by my mother, so she was either relying on what someone else told her, or the memory of what someone else told her.

This picture is labeled “Grandma & Grandpa Bracey”. But I think it is labeled by my mother, so she was either relying on what someone else told her, or the memory of what someone else told her.

And why am I telling you this, on St. Patrick’s Day? Because I believed it was a magical coincidence for me to have found her on St. Patrick’s Day, as she was of 100% Irish descent!

This picture says "Grandmother and Uncle Will" on the back.   I do believe Martha had a brother William.  But does this guy look like the old guy in all the other pictures too?  Hard to say.

This picture says “Grandmother and Uncle Will” on the back. I do believe Martha had a brother William. But does this guy look like the old guy in all the other pictures too? Hard to say.

Born Martha Elliott in Stone Ridge, Ohio, in 1861, both her parents had been born in Ireland. Martha married my great grandfather Alva Goodin around 1883. They had four kids together that I know of. One of them is my father’s mother, who I never knew. All these people died before I was born.

Alva left Martha to marry her younger sister Isabelle around 1893. They had three children together. I am guessing that would have been kind of scandalous back in the 1890’s.

Martha got remarried to Phillip Bracey sometime after 1892. They did not have any more kids that I know of. Most of this came from Internet research, that may be flawed. But for someone who just thought they were a mutt until just a few years ago, discovering I am 1/8 Irish is pretty exciting!

Phillip Bracey b.1855 d.1936

Phillip Bracey b.1855 d.1936       I think he may have had children from a previous wife.

If anyone stumbles across this post and actually has more info on my relatives for me, please leave me a comment on this page or send me a direct message on Facebook. I would be super-excited to hear from you!

"Taken on Grandma's 90th Birthday at Ray's-1951"

“Taken on Grandma’s 90th Birthday at Ray’s-1951”  Pretty sure that this would be Martha Elliot.

If I Had The Guts To Karaoke, I Would Sing. . .

Ice, Ice Baby by Vanilla Ice

While to the world I just look like a little geeky white chick with glasses, I am secretly an awesome rapper. Well, for that one song anyway. And a song called the “Punky Power Rap” I invented in the 6th grade. But no one should ever really hear that song beyond my asbestos friend and my husband. And even they just smile and nod.

How did I get so good at singing “Ice, Ice Baby” around my house? Because I have been practicing for 20 years, that’s why. Several years ago I even bought the music-only karaoke track off iTunes so I could practice in my car. The problem with that is that I didn’t have a copy of the correct lyrics in front of me at all times. I am pretty sure that over 20 years I have mutated some of the lyrics from their original form.

The other night I dreamed that I was writing rap songs with Vanilla Ice. I woke up with “Ice, Ice Baby” stuck in my head. Now, I totally realize that Vanilla Ice is a kinda skeezy, dumb guy. But “Ice, Ice Baby” is still one of my favorite songs after all these years and I believe that it stands the test of time. Especially since it is sampled from another successful song.

If you want to see a funny take on a very Vanilla Ice-style character, head on over to CW.com to watch webisodes of Stupid Hype, starring Wilson Bethel from Hart of Dixie (he of shirtless Wade fame). I am Wilson’s friend on Facebook. His actual friend. Mostly because no one apparently told him to make a separate Fan Page for his fans.

Wilson Bethel as Wade on Hart of Dixie
Photo: The CW

For a short taste, check out the official music video here:

What would be my second song I would karaoke if I was brave enough? Why, “Picture” by Kid Rock and Sheryl Crow. Who would I duet with, you ask? Isn’t the answer obvious? Myself:)

Being a Kid Rock AND Sheryl Crow fan, I can easily mimic either while singing along to my car radio. (Note: I never said that I did it well!)

But, alas, my gifted performances will never touch the world, because I am not brave enough (and I generally don’t drink) to perform in front of other people.

If I had my own karaoke machine in the privacy of my own home? THAT might be fun!

Yup, yup.  Word to your mother!

[What does that even MEAN?!]

Funky Friday!

As seeing Hello Kitty always makes me smile, this picture always makes me giggle. It is dirty, in a very elementary school way.

Enjoy!

Heeheehee.

Heeheehee.

I LOVE THIS PICTURE!

I flippin’ love this picture!

I totally love this picture of my son. But alas, I seem to be the only one who sees the ultimate beauty and meaning in it. It was taken of my son playing in a gazebo when we visited the Huckleberry Railroad and Crossroads Village earlier this year (for more info on that adventure, click here.)

I took the picture with my old 5 megapixel camera. But I totally love that camera. The sun was shining, so I couldn’t even really tell what I was getting as it was hard to see my LCD screen.

The picture turned out so stinking well!!! The steps draw you in. They are wonderfully aged and crisp white at the same time. The railing and even the beams of the ceiling draw you in to the picture as they head for their unseen point of convergence. (And looking at it I don’t even think about how many bee’s nests are up in the rafters, although I did think that when I was there in person.) The plant life is so green and well balanced. I love the hint of yellow in the upper right corner. Except for the clothing, this picture could have been taken a hundred years ago, or yesterday. (Timeless.) I especially like that you can’t see any hint of his diaper between the bottom of his shirt and the top of his shorts.

I had an 8″ X 10″ made of this photo. (As a print, all the colors and objects totally pop.) I put it in a matted frame. I feel like the picture should come with a great quote about climbing into your future or stepping into your life. (I Googled. I couldn’t find one:( The image just represents so much for me. I see it as my son aging with each step he climbs. And I am so thankful for that, especially after having the same major surgery twice in 2011. He is stepping up into a world of endless possibilities.

It also looks like it could be used for a motivational poster in a corporate office. It would have to have a motto like “No progress is made until we take the first step”, or something boring like that.

I know years from now, he will be all grown up and I will look at that picture and wonder what happened to that little boy. My little boy.

I also think the picture looks like one that might come in a picture frame when you buy it (except then it would probably be black and white–Oooooo. How good would that picture look in black and white?!!) I strive in life for things like that–to meet the standard of consumerism. I sometimes make dinner and try to get it to look like a restaurant meal when it hits the plate or table. I even do it with simple things. I love getting a dill pickle spear with my sandwich at a restaurant, but normally don’t think to add it to my plate with my chips unless I am thinking with the “restaurant” state-of-mind.

It turns out black and white didn’t rock, but blue-tint is awesome!


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