My Obsession with Spirals


In Maori design, the koru has a dual meaning. It is commonly used in Maori art as a symbol of creation because of its fluid circular shape. Based on the unfurling fern frond of the native New Zealand silver fern, the circular shape of the koru conveys the idea of perpetual movement, while it’s inner coil, the corm with rolled up inner leaflets, suggests a return to the point of origin. In the larger scheme, this is a metaphor for the way in which life both changes and stays the same.


Some have determined that the koru meaning is one of harmony. I can only guess but maybe this is because of the metaphor I mentioned above? Between the chaos of change and calm of the everyday, there is a point of equilibrium, a state of harmony in life. In its balanced shape the koru represents this.

New Beginnings

The koru is also said to represent new life. Literally speaking, the baby fern frond slowly unwinds over its adolescent lifetime as it grows into a mature frond. It then opens into a brand new leaf on the silver fern plant where it ages and then dies. This is the fern fronds life cycle. When the silver fern leaf is a frond in its lifecycle, it’s a baby; therefore people associate the koru design with new life.

Big Trees - Big Poses


A few weekends ago, my daughter went to Santa Cruz for a wonderful Girl Scout camp over.  A wonderful opportunity for her to be with her friends which left me with 30 hours all to myself.  At first I wondered what I would do - such a rare opportunity as an ONLY parent to have that many hours sans child.  Then last week, I received an email from the original yoga studio where I first started my Vinyasa yoga practice. There it was - a weekend Kids Yoga Teacher Training intensive class on Friday night and all day Saturday.  The timing was perfect.  I have had on my list of to-dos (prior to turning 50 which is NOT this year, but in my near future! LOL) and one of them is to take Yoga Teacher Training.  The 200 hour teacher training is a huge commitment both time wise as well as emotionally.  This weekend class was 12 hours and would allow me to dip my toe into teaching - I have always wanted to teach children yoga - to give them the tools of breathing, movement and meditation - all of which I wished I had those in my youth.

Kids are incredible, non-judging and energizing creatures.  I had a specific "target population" in mind - 10-12 year old little girls (as in my daughter and her friends).  The "tweener" age is such a tough spot as I am experience with my own daughter.  So many emotions, doubts, hormones, frenimies, hurt feelings all surging with their constantly changing physical bodies.

I completed my 12 hour training and feel energized to create a yoga class with my daughter for her Girl Scout troop.  One of the activities I would like to do with them is to read the book "Moody Cow" to them and to create meditation jars which would allow each young lady to sprinkle (glitter) their troubles and vexing thoughts into a jar of liquid (think snow globe), seal it up, shake and breath slowly in and out while watching the glitter softly settle.  A great help in learning how to focus your calming breath.  The great thing about teaching kids is that we can get creative with naming our poses - Warrior 2 will be Catniss, the Sun Salutation will be Apollo's dance, Tree pose with be Thalia (who was turned into a tree), Goddess pose will be Athena, and perhaps we will call down dog - Cerberus (Hades doggie).  Ah to find the time to design the class - so busy, I haven't painted in months!  Haven't practiced yoga in months either!

An exhilarating day at Ironstone Vineyards

Dina will place Roots Before Branches print about her soon to be born son's crib.

Dina will place Roots Before Branches print about her soon to be born son's crib.

I was a little bit apprehensive, but relaxed, actually tired this morning as I woke at 5:15 am.  I was driving to Ironstone Vineyards in Murphys for my first Art Competition and Festival where I had been assigned a booth space to showcase my work and meet art show attendees.  Luckily my good friend was with me and she helped me relax, set up and organize my booth.  I was so busy this week with work, that I didn't have time to even make title/price cards for my paintings!  After all, who was actually going to buy anything from me (I thought).

My plan was to sit quietly at my little space and work on my iPad, but I was pleasantly surprised by the friendliness and curiosity of the art show viewers.  I met some incredible people who were so glad that I had been put in their path.  I was able to tell my story and why I painted what they saw. Folks bought notecards and this lovely expectant mother bought a 16x20 giclee print of Roots Before Branches! I was so excited to use my new square to process credit card purchases!  

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My painting had a very interesting placement, definitely front and center.  However the downfall was that no one could see the 3-D detail in the heart leaves.  This was a wonderful event that I hope to be able to take part in again next year.  What a beautiful special place!

The artist reception was a wonderful wine and food pairing - delicious.  Ironstone has some tasty, inexpensive wines!  Looks like some wine maybe making its way home with me tomorrow!

Show goes thru May 11th.

Your heart is a muscle...exercise it

Opening your heart to something that you know you would eventually lose


In January, my daughter convinced me to go "dog window shopping" at the ASPCA which strangely didn't have any dogs, and off to the Sacramento County Shelter we went.  While waiting for the doors to open at noon, we both saw this cute puppy that looked exactly like our 16 year old cat Gimlet.  Glmlet is getting on in years, but has a beautiful silvery gray coat and beautiful white markings on her face and chest and paws.  I stopped to pet this cute puppy and called her a 'gimlet' dog.

Inside we introduced ourselves to the 'Foster coordinator" and gave her my cell phone to let her know that we would have some time (when I was not traveling to foster) and that we liked bigger doggies.  We went looking thru the kennels with lots of doggies needing homes and then my cell phone rang.  Another foster mom was dropping off a puppy because she already had a house full of 2 german shepherds and a litter of 5 puppies.  The foster coordinator asked us to come back up front and there she was...our little Pangaea.  Carenna has always wanted to name a girl dog pangaea after the original ancient continent on earth before the lands shifted to make our geologic world as we know it.

We loved and kept Pangaea for 6 weeks, a 5 month old puppy, lots of work.  But then we found a wonderful loving home with one of the 8th graders at our school who saw us walking Pangaea to school.  Sad but relieved and joyful that we were able to love and house this wonderful sweet pit bull puppy, I wondered if all this loving and letting go was a good thing for Carenna and I? My counselor told me, "your heart is a muscle, and you need to exercise it"  this is good for you.


And you know what, I think it is.  I'm trying to relearn how to open my heart without fear... and without expectations.  Valentine's day is usually a day I boycott because it is so wrought with expectations. I was enjoying the afternoon with my daughter (my forever valentine) and a wonderful unexpected package showed up at my doorstep - made my day.  

...good news, amidst the blues

This weather and time of year has me hibernating a bit and a little blue. But this week I got great news :).  I have been invited to Spain for a study trip (for work).  A great honor and I will be able to take my daughter out of school the last week and she can experience both Northern Spain and then off to Paris we go.  Quieres venir con nosotros?. Non, mais je vais vous rencontrer à paris.  I will have to hire a nanny to come be with Carenna and take her around Barcelona, Pamplona and Bilbao while I work!!


The Spiral -symbol of the journey of life

Some consider the spiral a symbol of the spiritual journey. It is also considered to represent the evolutionary process of learning and growing.  The path of life more closely represents a spiral.  We seem to pass the same point over and over again but from a different perspective each time.  To walk and then stand in the center of a spiral or labyrinth has been a psycho-spiritual exercise for centering the consciousness.

The SPIRAL stands for coming into being.

The SPIRAL is the journey of life.


Here's a song that stunned me when I heard it

It's  slow song and not typical of Chrisina Aguilera, but a friend sent me the link because it reminded him what I was going thru in December.

It makes me sad, to have to give up on someone that you love, and to have them not doing or saying anything while you walk away. But in hindsight, it took a lot of strength to walk away from a situation that was not healthy for me to remain in.  But so bittersweet. We all often question our judgement and wonder how we could be so wrong or so imperceptive to the status of our interactions with others.

I've been through a lot these past couple of years and I need to give myself a break, if my intuition and ability to protect myself has been a bit compromised.

Let me know what you think.

First Blog

I have been thinking about a blog for the longest time and it has evolved into this website.  Eventually I want to do a video blog where you may hear my voice and see some images, perhaps just my eyes.

In addition, I will be updating this blog space with new songs, lyrics and youtube music videos as i hear songs that move me to paint, feel, dance etc.  I would love to hear comments about what you think of while the song plays, want images come to mind, what you feel when you hear a new song that I post.

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