Change of Plan: Lose the Plan

Today is my birthday and I’m officially on the far side of thirty. It’s interesting what age does to you. There are so many good things about aging–worrying less about what people think of you, speaking up instead of sitting sidelined, wasting less time on the stuff you don’t care about, sleeping more. And there are […]

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Travels with Emmett

When we announced that we were about to embark on this not-so-little journey, most people asked what we were going to do with Emmett, our other partner in crime. It was a surprising question to both Brian and I because I can’t imagine the answer being anything other than “he’s coming with us.” There is […]

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Good-bye Orcas, Hello World

While I was in Port Townsend, WA for my second MFA residency, Brian was wrapping up all things house related. Most of my time was spent dog-paddling through a sea of words and books and writers and writerly tools, but when I had a moment to spare, I worried about this guy. I wasn’t worried about how much he had to do–after all, Brian is nothing if not a workhorse. He’d get it done, I had no doubt.

No, I was worried because the idea of saying good bye to your home is emotional. I was trying to pin down what the emotion is, though and I struggle. 4XXX Orcas was a great house with a great yard, and a great community, but there are million of those out there. It is not, despite the real estate market, a unicorn. We’ve had several great homes, we’ll find another. So I guess it’s the memories, the nostalgia, that is emotional.

Brian says the Orcas years were our first really awesome years. They were the first years that we weren’t paycheck to paycheck. The Orcas years led us to begin the process of unearthing what it was that we were the most passionate about. Brian’s art changed substantially. I started writing, like for real, not just in the stolen minute in the early morning or on a random Sunday.

We aren’t losing those memories, we’re taking them with us. So, why is it so emotional?

I think it’s a funny mix of overwhelming gratitude, breathtaking apprehension and solid, grounding knowledge that you’ve taken a risk and that it was a brilliant decision.

Brian made this video, because how else do you really show what it’s like other than to see it?

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Artist on the Road

I have spent the better part of two months without my oil paints.  I’d be lying if I said I didn’t miss them.  The aroma of fresh paint mixed with the sickly sweet smell of my homemade glazing medium is etched into my being; I don’t think I’ll ever be able to forget it. This […]

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“When people talk listen completely. Don’t be thinking what you’re going to say. Most people never listen. Nor do they observe. You should be able to go into a room and when you come out know everything that you saw there and not only that. If that room gave you any feeling you should know exactly what it was that gave you that feeling. Try that for practice.”

Ernest Hemingway, to writers. Died this day in 1961.

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Let Freedom Ring!

I know how lucky I am to have this guy legally attached to me til death do us part, but I just feel like the world should know how lucky it is to have a Mr. B in it. I’ve watched (and, granted, I am a biased third party) over the last several years as he […]

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“Once a journey is designed, equipped and put in process, a new factor enters and takes over. A trip, a safari, an exploration, is an entity, different from all other journeys…We find after years of struggle that we do not take a trip; a trip takes us…Only when this is recognized can the blown-in-the-glass bum relax and go along with it. Only then do the frustrations fall away. In this a journey is like a marriage. The certain way to be wrong is to think you control it. ”

~John Steinbeck, Travels With Charley


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We’ve got an itinerary, folks! In just two weeks I’ll be hitting the road for my second MFA residency in Port Townsend. Can I take a minute to marvel at the fact that I’m already about to start my second of four semesters? What? This has flown by like no other education experience has–seems like […]

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Love Letter to Seattle

For me, Seattle is like that boyfriend/girlfriend you just can’t quit. I had a big huge crush on her when I was a baby-hipster back in the late ’90s (were we hipsters then? I don’t think so, we were…grunge babies? Gen X-ers? I don’t know. That’s another blog). I finally got the chance to live […]

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