My sister and I have amazing parents.

Our dad sent this to us several days ago:

"Do not spoil what you have by desiring what
you have not; but remember that what you
now have was once among the things only
hoped for." Epicurus

that said: joy

Although I don't spend too much time talking about this online, anyone who knows me knows that my family is my life. When I saw that Emily Dickinson had written "Home -- is the definition of God" it resonated beyond any explanation I could supply here.

That said (and it says it all for me), home is of utmost importance. As much joy as it brings to find things -- a chair, a house, a painting, a photograph, the work of an artist who sees things in such a way that it brings immeasurable happiness and beauty into other's lives -- the greatest joy I find is always, ever, looking into the faces (or just being near) those I love. Second to that is the joy of being near things (or finding things) that remind me of treasured times. And all of the (treasured times) things are humble. And will remain humble. In the long haul, that's what matters. I find that looking into those faces, reading the best words, spending time with those we love, being surrounded by humble things that bring joy, and perhaps -- if I am lucky -- being able to create some of that joy for someone else: that is the measure of life, it is home. And home, as Emily noted, is where we really need to be.

(This blog was started, as mentioned before, as a lark; an exercise in learning how to work blogger so that i could post about children's books. It took on a little life of it's own, and somehow changed mine. Only now mentioning all this because I suppose I will try to include more family...if they don't mind. For me, they are true home. And that definition.)

Here's hoping you have a magnificent weekend.

royal quiet deluxe


just a blur

these snapshots were taken two summers ago;
the only reason i kept both is that (i still feel)
simply looking at them the sense of (flat out)
awe which swept over me when i was standing
in the presence of Sargent's incomparable work.
[the room at the met was empty for a few minutes,
and i stared in stunned silence at the majesty (it
could only be described that way) all around.] so
it is with great delight that i send you to little augury,
where the v. masterful pgt is waxing eloquent about
Sargent. you'll learn much more from her, and see
why there is space for nothing but quiet and pure
amazement when you are stock still next to him.

same time last year

did a quick zip 'round a different set of highways

there and back again

two day trip.

drove down the five, and back home on 101.
saw five colleges. quickly witnessed a bit of
football (very well played) on skateboards.

let it be noted that the last week of school
makes a university campus (especially one
on the beach) look awfully good. bikes lined
up in candy-colored columns. kids in swim-
suits sauntering toward the water. nary a
book in sight. happy faces all around. just
sayin'--one of those moments when living
in our sunny state seems like the best of all
possible worlds--but before you get all starry
eyed about being in the best of all possible
worlds, make sure you've gassed the car up
as you leave Santa Barbara and head north
on 101. it's a long, dry drive 'til you get thru
the Gaviota tunnel & cruise into Buellton
(location of the next gas station you'll see).

don't ask me how i know.

all in all, it was a simply magnificent and
unexpectedly memorable trip. love this
sweet state of ours. it's good to remember how
remarkable (& astonishingly beautiful) it is.