Friday, May 28, 2010


Hello loves.
Greetings from the edge of the earth. I'm sure I fell off last week.
My long trip home held some surprises. Some were anticipated, and some were not. But my discoveries of the past week have put me back into that wonderful place of life. It's not that I've been depressed over the past few months, but after so much wondering and wandering, one runs the risk of becoming a little listless.
But no more. It's nice to be me again. (Isn't that a nice place to be?)
Here's what happened while I was in Atlanta.

1) I popped on the plane out of Boulder just a few hours after presenting a lecture on Marian Iconography, examined through multiple art historical, cultural, symbolic, and spiritual lenses.
It was so well-received, and I gave it twice more while in Atlanta. After meeting with a number of different people in liturgical ministry and adult enrichment roles, I've gotten lots of support for this endeavor.
Now I just need to put it into article form, see if I can get it published, and start on my next lecture....

2) I wrote my Bryce Dallas Howard article on the plane flying home, and then edited a slew of articles for the publication, New York Moves Magazine. I think the BDH article came off fairly well.
She was delightful to interview, and so enthused about so many different subjects, and she served me my concluding paragraph on a golden platter. I love that she was so interested in Grace as an empowering attribute. (We think alike...).
3) Discernment is not an easy process... particularly when you're multi-interested. I can see myself doing a lot of things. A lot of things. But I spent most of the week trying to figure out the best path for me, because applying to every corporate marketing position I can dig up hasn't been working. It's time for plan B.
So I've decided to try to cultivate a writing career, and drum up some new clients,
while simultaneously finding some sort of part- or full-time position with a not-for-profit, preferably nestling myself into the arts community. And I'm casting my net wide, for Fate to send me what she will. Because if I can find a lovely NFP spot, but it's not in my backyard...well...I've already learned that I'm good at picking up and moving, right?
With the art historical lectures, I've decided to try to head back to school in a year or two. I'm spreading knowledge to the masses with my little B.A. I imagine I could do some real damage with an M.A. or a Ph.D... And I always have my singing, too... I was promoted to Head Cantor while I was away. I'll be singing all summer!

4) has to do with my last post. This was the truly unexpected surprise. And though the ruminating on career options re-invigorated my mind, this surprise made me sit up and breath deep the joys of being.
You know those moments when life comes knocking, and you just open the door and let it in? That's what I did. It has to do with some great music, a great man, and a series of rather delightful moments. And I'll tell you all about it.

photos: imaginary friend by *mOthyyku at deviantART, Edge of the Earth, Edge of the Sky by Enrique Fernandez Ferra, image by Perhydrol from 500px, Joy Division, Bouguereau's Pieta, Henry Ossawa Tanner's The Annunciation, Bryce Dallas Howard, image from, Fork in the Road from, visual inspiration from, happen from, Jump in the Sky by ~Loona5, Lovestory from

Monday, May 24, 2010

Keep on Dreaming, Even if it Breaks Your Heart

I have something to tell you...

but I'm buried in writing edits right now, so I'll have to tell you later...
photo: Untitled by Kristin rocketequalslove

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Welcome Home, Little Girl.

I'm bursting. There's so much that's been happening. But let me first say:
It's nice to be home.
Granted, the outrageous humidity level in Atlanta makes me feel like I'm swimming. During the drive home from the airport, with the windows down and the radio blasting and my two brothers cracking jokes, I could feel my skin and hair absorbing the moisture like thirsty camels. Forget altitude adjustment. When I get back to Colorado, it's going to take me 3 weeks to get my hair straight again. When I start exclaiming that I feel like I'm drowning every time I take a breath, my brothers look at me and say, "What? This? This is nothing."

And then we pulled in the driveway. Mom and Dad were sitting on the porch listening to the Yanni:Voices CD I burned for them. (side note: Nathan Pacheco, yes, I will marry you.)

You know that feeling when every cell in your body seems to exhale, unexpectedly, at the same time? That's the feeling I had. And then I smelled the jasmine growing on the deck,
and the big magnolia out back,
and mom brought out chips and guacamole from my favorite Atlanta mexican restaurant (side note: Willy, of Willy's California Style Burrito Bar, yes, I will marry you), and heard the thump thump thump of my puppy's tail against the wicker furniture.

You know one of my favorite things about being home? Books.
I amass books. I devour them, and then keep them, stacking them or lining them up or squirreling them away. And do you know why? Because my mother does the same thing. As I walked around the house, greeting it after months of being away, I realized that they are everywhere. Everywhere. Absorbed into the decor of the living room,
standing in as a support system for the painting in the den,
challenging the Tower of Babel in the front hall.
I even found my Gardner's: Art through the Ages textbook,
which was not, as I had thought, tucked away in my closet, but had rather been unearthed and put to use.

It seems my mother, like myself, likes to have books around. They remind us what we've read, what we've learned, what we promised ourselves we'd learn more of. They inspire us to keep an open mind, and (particularly the books in our room-scattered-library) show us beautiful things.
My heart beats a little faster when I see a gorgeous coffee table book, filled with pictures of castles, or fashionistas, or movie stars, or art, or shoes. (side note: Manolo Blahnik, yes, I will marry you.)

And as with many other personal idiosyncrasies (including this unruly hair), I blame my mother.
photos: LCTurner Gloriosity - Atlanta, 2010

Monday, May 17, 2010


You know those days when you're in up to your knees with stuff to do, and getting through it is like wading in the water?
Or those days when things are getting a little desperate and you're in up to your neck?
And then there's days when you're just underwater altogether.
Well, today actually feels a little more like I'm under this:
I'll be back in action in a few days... with a REAL blog update.
photos: Heavy Water by Nishe from flickr, Ohyoumakemesmile from, Vintage Underwater Photography from the blog archive at wazzzat?!, Ghost Town buried in Sand by Fogonazos/Kolmans, Vintage comic book cover from Google Images

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Quick Update!
I interviewed Bryce yesterday, and it was a breeze.
She's as sparkling and charming to talk to as one would imagine, looking at her picture.
Now I just have to capture that in print...

Sunday, May 9, 2010

The Arts: Bryce Dallas Howard.

Tomorrow, I'm interviewing Bryce Dallas Howard.
She's Ron Howard's daughter, but has made quite the name for herself in her own films (The Village, Lady in the Water, As You Like It, Terminator: Salvation, and, of course, the upcoming Twilight: Eclipse).
But what I think I love most about this girl is that she's smart.
Well-studied, well-read, and well-philosophized, she prefers Kierkegaard to Freud, Existentialism to Nihilism, and promotes things like Biodynamic Farming (which is based on the fascinating tenets of anthroposophy.)
This photo of her reminds me of John Singer Sargent's Madame X. It's like a modern day rendition.
(Things have come a long way since the 1884 Paris Salon, where scandal and outrage made Sargent withdraw his "anonymous" portrait of Madame Gautreau and paint her strap securely in place.)
I must admit- I'm a little nervous about this interview. I still haven't figured out my angle, or what I want to distill from her. Perhaps she'll do the talking and let me think on the fly. (Forest Whitaker took awhile to warm up to me, though, so I'm hoping this one starts a little better...)

Wish me luck!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Today's Lesson.

I'm putting together a presentation on Marian Iconography, explained through Art, History, and Tradition. I'm anxious as all get out. But ever since I timidly called my parish office the other day and asked to use the main meeting hall in a couple weeks, I've gotten some outrageous feedback.

This tells me several things:
1) People like Pretty Things. (Pretty-lovers of the world, rejoice!)
2) People still love to learn.
3) Despite the lingering misgivings about moving across the country in pursuit of an unknown goal, People are nice. It's nice to be taken seriously.

I spoke with my grandfather this morning. I told him that sometimes I worry that I'm not succeeding in a conventional way (you know... thriving career, ring on the finger, indisputable life map, monstrous savings account). And this man, with traditional values and traditional beliefs and a traditional life, told me: "Ches, if you had that, we'd be worried about you. Just keep doing what you're doing."

4) It is really, really nice to be loved for who you are.

So, my bloggy internet pretty-loving friends. Rejoice in who you are. That's today's lesson.

lesson part 2: This is Madonna della Seggiola, or "Madonna of the Chair," a tondo by Raphael. What I love most, so near to Mother's Day, is how the limbs of Mary and Jesus are intertwined in a rhythm. I also love how Jesus is just a squirmy boy - see how he plays with his feet and toes, like any other baby. The painting was commissioned by someone in the Papal court, or possibly by Pope Leo X himself, which is hinted at for the viewer by the chair, which resembles the Papal Faldstool. Mary is an aristocrat in this image, and the bright Venetian colors are cool around the periphery and become warmer in the center, to draw your eye to the face of mother and child. John the Baptist hovers in the background, with a symbol of what lies ahead for this chubby baby boy. I saw this painting in real life. It's gorgeous... and smaller than you think it is.

Monday, May 3, 2010


I feel like the clock is ticking on my life. And despite my in-depth knowledge of all types of fairy tales, mythologies, and fables, I haven't a clue as to what will or will not happen at midnight, or what I should or should not be doing to prevent/prepare for the unknown eventuality.
I do see a million different futures, some a little similar, some utterly different, and all just lying on the ground waiting to be chosen.
I'm also afraid that if I hang out too long thinking about things, I may end up collecting cats, clothes, and decor, for lack of a life.
A little lost, a little wonder-y, a little wander-y. A whole lot of (??). And not a lot of (.).
So. What'll it be? Where am I going? What's my horizon? Where's my star?
photos: clocktower: orkut- myorkut from, mirrors by Cari Ann Wayman, cat photo from Dust Jacket Attic (lovelovelove), forest pic from 500px by perhydrol, cityscape from 500px by Liq.