Friday, April 29, 2011

Thank You Mindy & Stephanie ...

Dear Mindy & Stephanie,

John and I wish we'd discovered you sooner. That we live only blocks apart, it's a wonder we didn't. With your excellent taste in food and wine, your Happy Hours are the toast of the neighborhood!

Mindy, thank you for reigniting John's (and mine, by proxy) interest in birding. Discovering the wealth of migratory birds in our own backyard ravine has been, and continues to be, one of those little pleasures that makes weekends a thing even more anticipated. Your acceptance and enthusiasm of whatever we find is inspiring.

Stephanie, thank you for challenging me in my endless pursuit of art. Your encouragement and inquisitiveness push me to realize my creative goals, even if I sometimes don't entirely know what they are. And upon learning that I'd given up chocolate for Lent, your gift of hand-made truffles at the end went far in recompense for the sacrifice.

Thank you both for your warmth, generosity, and friendship!


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

A pleasant friendship

I’ve just had the pleasure of spending the weekend with a dear friend. Miriam Tatum, the mother of my daughter Elizabeth’s boyfriend. It’s beginning to feel inadequate to refer to Steven as such, as they have been a couple for 7 years. Miriam invited Grace and me to come along to visit them at Bard College, over the weekend.

Miriam and I rarely have time to engage in more than a quick chat, as we both have busy lives. It was such a pleasure to have that extended time for pointless meandering conversation.

Miriam’s persona is an elegant balance of patience and curiosity. Much of our time was spent exploring the favorite’s of Elizabeth & Steven, the Tivoli Bakery for breakfast, Mexican for dinner, Brahms concert at Fisher Hall on Sat. evening, and sit in, and try to join in, with their shape note choral group on Sunday morning.

I consider myself very fortunate to call Miriam friend.

Just Kevin

Hello and Happy Easter coming up :)

This week I want to thank a friend I have know for about four years now. I met Kevin at a bike rally through a mutual acquaintance those four years ago. When you meet him, you notice that he is very Native American, is a biker and is who he is without apologies about it. I like that in a person. The more you know him, the deeper he gets and he, if he likes you, will open up and share his spiritual thoughts with you of which he has many. The outside really does not match the inside. He really is the soft, gentle giant on his own spiritual path trying his very best to do the right and moral thing in life and leave the bad behind. He knows how to perform Reiki (energy healing), communes with nature because it speaks to him, and loves a good fire with friends around it celebrating life with him.

He loves a good joke, that would be the rascal in him and is a fantastic home decorator. I talk to him at least once a week and he and my husband discuss philosophies of life several times a week. He simply is a good, steady, no theatrics, loving friend whom I am grateful to have in my life. He has taught me many things in his matter of fact way that I never would have learned if not for him. He is loved!

Friday, April 15, 2011

Dear David ...

Dear David,

Can it really have been seventeen years ago that we were having lunch at Insomnia every day when we both worked downtown? Is it possible that we survived on 16 oz. cups of coffee for lunch every day?

I like to think that if we had been told that seventeen years later, we would still be friends, neither of us would have behaved any differently. You still would have shared your finely crafted poems with me, and I still would have given you delicate drawings of dead birds, which is why, I suppose, we are still dear friends.

I rarely see you anymore, certainly not hanging out at the same cafĂ© every day, but when we do see each other we always laugh together as if it's been mere days. When we find a rare moment to meet, I am always touched by your thoughtful gifts and gestures of kindness. You always manage to give me something that I'm never sure how I lived without in the first place. Samples from Penhaligon's of London, one of the world's oldest perfumers; a different scent to delight my senses every day of the week! And Dave Hickey's The Invisible Dragon, Essays on Beauty. You've always known how to renew my passion for art, and provoke me to find new ways of defining beauty.

Thank you for these lovely gifts, but thank you more for your rich and lively friendship.


Tuesday, April 12, 2011


Have you ever met someone that the more you know them the more you respect, like and wish there were many more of them in this world? Well Barbara Wilkins is such a person. I had the good luck to have met Barbara when My Husband Louis and I were shopping for our first Harley 10 years ago. Her Husband and her started Wilkin’s Harley Davidson in South Barre, VT in 1946 and built it into a thriving business. I am very sure that Harry’s (her husband) personality is what made that business soar like it did but Barb’s kept people coming back to buy more along with clothing and gear. Barb looks like a very classy lady with white hair in her seventies. She has a charming smile that comes with a built in twinkle to her eyes and a warm heart that makes you feel treasured by her no matter where you may run into her. So, thank you Barb for being the sweetest and classiest lady ever and for your constant loving hugs and kind words to Louis and I. We sincerely love you dearly and are very proud and lucky to have made your acquaintance in life. Please don’t ever change.

Monday, April 11, 2011

My little Gracie

This week I want to express my gratitude to my little girl, Grace. The youngest of 3 at 10 years old, she has always lived in a world quite a bit older than her. Her siblings are 18 and 20. The thing is, she is one of those that is born mature, “old soul”. She is and always has been one to be open to others feelings. Always ready to convey her care and love often with written word. It would be impossible for me to count the love notes and drawings I have received from her, thousands I’m sure.

Grace is also a very talented singer. On one occasion, she decided to sing a song as a parting gift to a young student intern teacher. She sang, “The Circle Game, a Joni Mitchell song”, plus added her own verse for Michelle. Well, any adult in the room had tears in their eyes.

Well, as you can see, I’m pretty proud of her, and thank her for being so generous with her gifts.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Hello All,

My apologies for not having posted last night. I was actually talking on the phone (for hours) with the one I wish to thank this week. That person is my BFINS which stands for Best Friend I Never See. Her name is Daphne Eve Villanueva Veeder mostly known as Bo. Bo was one of my very first real friends when I moved from Kentucky to Virginia years ago. We supported each other through trials and tribulations, got into trouble together, spent wonderful hours talking and eating together and simply enjoyed each other as naturally as if we were born sisters and even worked together at one point. Sisters we are and always will be even though we couldn't look any different from each other if we tried. Her family always welcomed me with open arms and as ever, always tried to feed me. Her Mom reminded me of mine.

Bo and I can go months without talking, but when we do get around to it, it is like we never stopped. For this and numerous more reasons, I am so grateful to have the pleasure of Bo in my life. She will always hold a special place in my heart and nobody better mess with her! We always use to say and mean that.

Why the dream catcher earrings? Bo has ALWAYS loved the fact that people thought she was Native American when she is in fact full blooded Philippino or pillowpeeno as she jokingly calls it. Not that she puts down her colorful heritage though. She also loves her turquoise and silver and is always looking for the next great piece.

I love you BFINS!


Friday, April 1, 2011

To My Husband ...

Dear John,

My maker of adventures, my musician, my biggest fan, and my best friend. There are few people in the world that I could spend several days with alone, on the road, and never get tired of our conversations, and our silences. Your passion for history, and your curiosity for nature and art are an inspiration to me. "I don't know everything,"  you often remind me. Yes, but you know so very much.

When my camera broke during our recent vacation, you didn't hesitate to help me to start looking for a place that could sell me a new one. You understood it was that important to me, and that's the kind of guy that you are.

As you approach a landmark birthday, I am reminded of a quote from Proust; "Let us be grateful to people who make us happy; they are the charming gardeners who make our souls blossom."

As I type this, you are out with your friend Chris, a secret mission called Operation Shiny Object, while I wait for all of the guests for your surprise birthday party.
Happy birthday, sweet husband. And thank you.