Actually, I'm a lot more than a little behind. June went by in a flash, and I am several weeks behind in emails, and not caught up on shipping. If you are waiting for an email from me or a shipment. Hang tight. I'm dancing as fast as I can.
I aint no hero, that's for sure. I'm just a regular gal who is trying to make it through the day, day by day.
IF you want to learn a little more about me this is a reprint from something I wrote several years ago, for a public speaking class (of all things) that I was taking. Our assignment was to tell the class who we were, within a certain amount of time. So, here's what I wrote - and I still think it does a pretty good job of summing up my philosophy of my life:
Generally speaking, I am the kind of cookie who crumbles, not the
smart kind. Still, the smartest things I have ever done have been
admitting that I was powerless, and then sharing with others, all of
life’s joy and pain. Not holding it in as if it were mine alone.
Yeah, I am a cookie who crumbles, but life has graced me with the
knowledge that even the crumbs are sweet.
For years, when people would hear my stories, they would respond by
telling me, "Chelise, you are so strong." But I never believed this.
I always thought they were wrong. I can see now, what they were
talking about. It’s the fact that when life is a roller coaster, I
have a tendency to wrap my arms around the people and places and things
that I love, and hold on.
My mother once wrote a poem, and in one stanza she vowed to "bring
beauty up." I hope she knew, before she died, that she had
accomplished exactly that. Like all parents, fostering the miracle of
life - bringing beauty up, is exactly what my mother did, when she
raised my brother and me.
I think it was Albert Einstein who once said, I don’t know one
million of one percent of anything, and this is definitely true for
me. I am a veritable plethora of misunderstanding, every day that I
get up and walk out my door. But who can argue with the fact that as
long as you are still breathing, you still have the chance to learn
more? We are all like Michelangelo, who, after painting the Sistine
Chapel, said, “I am still learning.”
As I stumble around out here, there are a few things which make the
journey more beautiful. I may not know much, but these are the things
I do believe:
I believe in sunny days, and I believe the rain washes the world
clean. I believe in preserving forest and rivers, natural places,
spaces that are wide open and free. I believe in redemption and
healing. I think you can find them by eating applesauce, or reading
the Tao out loud. Or sometimes, simply by realizing that you have made
your mother proud.
I believe in the sacred wisdom of Buddha and Krishna and Kali. I
believe that Christ was a prophet in our time. But I also have some
problems with organized religion, I think there is reason why the terms
rampant insanity and Christianity rhyme.
I believe there is at least one angel sitting in every tree, and
that when you learn to see them, all of life opens up and becomes the
most lovely kind of poetry. So I believe in reading poems to your
children, and helping them with their writing. I think parents waste
their time when lecturing their kids about coloring inside the lines,
or minor indiscretions, like nail biting.
I think the Bible is full of wisdom, and I do believe that for
everything, there is a season. I believe we all suffer periods of
sadness, rage, and, grief that seems unbearable. But I think that if
you focus on why me, you are way too caught up in searching for an
I don’t think that grief needs a reason to be. And in truth, when
it comes to my own grief, the word unbearable, has never applied to
I think it is something wonderful, and a miracle in addition, this
gift we all get called the human condition. Who could ask for anything
I know that airplanes can be guided like bombs and fly into
buildings. But I know too, that heroes will follow. I think everyone
on this earth should be wary of blind patriotism, I find the military
concept of necessary losses, awfully hard to swallow.
I believe the Rolling Stones were right when they said you can’t
always get what you want. And I think they were on to something, when
they suggested that sometimes, you just have to let it bleed. But
unlike the former song, my experience has been you don’t even have to
try, you still get what you need.
So I believe in music, reggae, rock, hip hop and the soul soothing
that comes from listening to a slow country ballad. I believe that art
is everything we are, it can show you the way we are distinctly
separate, and also that we are one huge collective we.
I’ll tell you all this, these few things I know. But I’ll also say
I’m wary of the word believe, I worry about assumptions, I try not to
espouse rigid philosophy.
I know that the ones we love sometimes leave us. That even what
seems permanent, gets annoyed by assumed permanency, and responds by
going astray. But I also believe in reconciliation, and the fact that
we are all energy. I believe in quantum physics, because physics will
tell you that energy never really, goes away.
So mourning, like joy, and pain, and sometimes lovers too, will indeed come and go.
But just like the sunrise, all of it, is as it should be.
To bring up a child in the way he should go, travel that way yourself once in a while. ~Josh Billings
Happy Father's Day, Dad.
Thank you for being creative, for being an artist, for being a writer. Thank you for showing me that self-made is something that is possible and worthwhile. Thank you for showing me that creativity in any form is a worthy endeavor.
I saw. I paid attention. They were good lessons.
I love the picture above. My brother looks just like like my fabulous little nephew (his son) Adin, and oh my, something was making me giggle, wasn't it?
I don't know who the littlest boy is, in this picture, but I love that my brother and I have matching windbreakers on. And that my father is quite intent on making that cow be his friend. But what I like the very most about this picture (it makes me cry a little) is that beautiful smile on my mother's face.
My Dad, early 70s, standng next to our prized "Art Car" - a 1957 Chevy station wagon, that my parents collaged top to bottom.
Here I am atop my father's shoulders. We were at some kind of street festival. There are so many things I love about this picture. Where to start? My faux fur jacket? My fathers shirt (!), or the fact that when he put me up on his shoulders, he took off that silly bowler hat, and put it on my head. And I'll just bet I was proud to be wearing it.