Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Photo Challenge: HOPE/WISH/DREAM

If you all remember back to when I put out the prompt I made it vague on purpose. I wanted these pictures to help us think about the year we're leaving and the one we're leaping into. Since that's happened my family has gotten a couple of pieces of sad news, making the new year celebrations feel more melancholy. I hope you're getting good news for the new year and I think these photos will brighten even well-lit days.

Thank you for a glorious year in images. I'm truly looking forward to another year of sharing this tradition with you.

Our Cindy has taken some wildly Christmasy photos this season. I can feel the wishing sparkling out of this one.

I spent the holiday in New England and was unable to connect with Our Janet in person. If we'd managed it I assume it would have looked like this.

Our Sara lives with a perpetual dreamer. Even discarded on the street he had to try this pogo stick to make sure it didn't work.

The friendship here is the fulfillment of so many of my hopes and dreams.

I don't even know what to say about what Our Bethany offered here. It feels like everything I felt when I posted the prompt. I miss her.

One of the unexpected sadnesses for my family this week is that my uncle died. Sudden heart failure in his home. One of my greatest continuing challenges is learning to release things that I cannot or should not control. In view of both those things let's have the first prompt of 2016 be LET GO. How's that?

Please enter by 9am Tuesday January 12th for posting on January 13th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and LET GO. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Monday, December 21, 2015

A Wolf in No One's Clothing

You all know Our Janet from the photo challenges.

I met Janet online because she was writing some brave pieces on her experience with cancer. Spoiler alert: She's in remission. Part of what drew me into the story is that she had two dogs at the time and during her treatment one of them had to go live with a friend. I couldn't imagine how hard that would be. I could see how it was necessary but thought that missing the comfort of my crew would make things so much harder.

Funny, though, I have never asked her about that.

The Final Photo

This weekend I got a message from Janet wanting to let me know that she had to help her dog, Wolf, on his next journey. While it wasn't wholly unexpected she didn't think it would be exactly now. It's less than a week to Christmas. She could have made another choice, waited until after the holiday, snatched some time to get used to the idea but she thought about what was right for Wolf and for him she let go.

Treats for everyone, you guys. No, more than that. No, little more. Yeah, just a couple more and then a few for the humans and then a couple more and there we go.

Much love to Janet and her Dave from over this way and to all the rest of you too. May your days be bright even if the merry is tempered.


Wednesday, December 16, 2015

Photo Challenge: ADVENT(URE)

Well this one was fun! I think the next one will be interesting, too, so please scroll down for the prompt and join us!

Quick announcement before you go, though. Today Neil Kramer's 10th Annual Christmahanukwanzaakah Concert (he says it's the final, I plan to deny that for as long as possible) went live in the wee hours of the morning and it's glorious as usual! You'll see Our Sara and me in there along with our talented canine companions.

Our Sara's Bu's life is one giant adventure. Ever the optimist, the player, and the flirt.

This is funny, I always think of Our Cindy as the leader of all great adventures. Nice of her to let the rest of her family take point on this one.

I took some photos of Our Sara's chorale rehearsing for their holiday concert. Holiday music makes me feel adventy.

Speaking of dogs whose lives are an adventure. Our Janet has been on an intrepid journey every day with this one. Lucky girl.

The next prompt is the last for the year. I'm calling it HOPE/WISH/DREAM but the idea is to post a photo that either sums up what was important to you for 2015 or what you're looking for in 2016. Have fun with it!

Please enter by 9am Tuesday December 29th for posting on December 30th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and HOPE/WISH/DREAM. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, December 09, 2015

Treats And More Treats

Just a couple of months ago we sent our love to Our Audra on the passing of fabulous Wylie Coyote.

Yesterday she said goodbye to Wylie's partner in crime, Raleigh Todd. A majestic beast, he was. He held on as long as he could.

As is our custom, please give everyone treats for just being here. Being here can be hard.

Wednesday, December 02, 2015

Photo Challenge: CRAZY

You know what's CRAZY? I lost a whole week and didn't realize the photo challenge timer was buzzing! Here we are with some CahRAYzee photos!

We're coming close to the first anniversary of the start of Our Bethany's family's epic journey. This photo makes me think of that story.

This crazy festive tree captured by Our Janet is speaking to my (cold, shriveled) holiday spirit.

A family around the block from me fills their yard with jack-o-lanterns every year then lets the squash families compost in place. I love it and always take pictures of multiple points in the decomposition journey. For the first time I've been "caught" photographing by the human family...twice. Both encounters I've simultaneously felt that they thought I was crazy while feeling that they thought that I thought that they were crazy. They're cool.

I'm still feeling kind of crazy. Let's have the next one be ADVENT(URE). So it can be Christmasy or it can be adventure-y. You can go full religion, partial religion, or no fucking religion dammit! Anything you do will be the right thing.

Please enter by 9am Tuesday December 15th for posting on December 16th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and ADVENT(URE). Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Photo Challenge: OVER/THROUGH

It's a quiet time as I try to stave off the holiday craziness. It's coming, though! Enjoy these photos while you can.

This happens to be a challenge with all New England photographers responding. This flower through the leaves image by Our Alisun feels like a perfect representation of New England to me.

There's something about the clarity of the writing and the murkiness of everything else that makes me feel like this one represents marriage well.

Our Janet provides us with a perfect send off. The only way forward is through! (Or over, depending on your perspective.)

Now that we've been soothed with pretty pics let's have the next prompt be CRAZY. I feel like that won't be difficult to fulfill.

Please enter by 9am Tuesday December 1st for posting on December 2nd. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and CRAZY. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Monday, November 09, 2015

15 Years Ago

Fifteen years ago today I was at a very different job (though not that different) thinking about very different things and I got the phone call that was not just different but unique. This gent had passed.

Some years I think of him all day. Some years I pass the day wondering why the date seems so weird to me and only later realize why.

Still miss him.

Still hope he's proud of me.

Wednesday, November 04, 2015

Photo Challenge: CHILLS

There were thrills and chills over Halloween in my neck of the woods. How about in yours? Sadly I got not one photo of my pup in his costume but there were plenty of other things to snap. We've got some great ones here.

Our Bethany and family were in Maine as the temps started to plummet. Fortunately their house is on wheels so they could head to warmer climes.

This photo from Our Cindy was the first time I saw the phenomenon of vampire-o-lanterns. They crack me up! Especially with the hephalump sitting there all, "Hey guys, hows it going? No, I am not tasty and delicious at all!"

So basically Our Janet has captured what I'll be like even after death - just sitting around snuggling my dog.

Me and one of my favorites just, you know, chillin' at the library.

Since we're staring down the chute to Thanksgiving I've got Over the River and Through the Woods as an ear worm.  (I know, technically it's supposed to be a Christmas thing but my family sang it year round whenever we went to see a grandparent.) So let's go with OVER for our prompt. I will also accept THROUGH if that moves you.

Please enter by 9am Tuesday November 17th for posting on November 18th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and OVER or THROUGH. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Photo Challenge: ACCEPT

Thanks to everyone who participated despite me not promoting the challenge or reminding you much.  I'm fortunate to be going through a very busy time but am getting to the point where things are blowing through the cracks a little. Sorry!

On to the photos! (And the new prompt below.)

But wait! First, here's a link to Our Ana's photo. It's her birthday today so many happy returns to her! I couldn't download it (and I accepted that!) so I'm linking and hope you'll all click through to Flickr to wish her a happy day.

Can you see why Our Janet submitted this one? Subtle and cool.

Our Cindy plucked my heartstrings with this one. I'm really mourning the end of summer.

Part of that mourning is apparently posting sunflower pics. I guess I'm not ready to accept.

In honor of Halloween and the ever-changing temps let's use CHILLS as our next prompt. Looking forward to seeing your interpretation of this one!

Please enter by 9am Tuesday November 3rd for posting on November 4th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and CHILLS. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Wednesday, October 07, 2015

Photo Challenge: MEDITATE

It feels like so long since the Pope was here that I'd forgotten the reason for the prompt. Had to meditate on it for a minute. Heh.

Our Cindy makes kayaking look perfectly meditative. I think one person kayaking would be. My limited experience with canoeing tells me that steering with more than one person is less relaxing.

I love Our Janet's deep collection of poppets and tiny personalities and the way she records their lives. Jack Sparrow surely benefits from some dedicated mindfulness time.

What I love about New England girls like Our Alisun is that they have a grasp of the classic. This chills me out to no end!

I don't know. This guy seemed meditative to me.

I'm having a hard time with the seasonal change. Seasons aren't going to change the way they change just because I'm having a hard time, though. I'm going to use this prompt to help me deal. To help me ACCEPT. OK?

Please enter by 9am Tuesday October 20th for posting on October 21st. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and ACCEPT. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Saturday, October 03, 2015

This Day All Over Again

Yesterday Alison and I went to Sean Casey to walk Bear (pictured, left). Viv had generously given us a harness to use with him and the results were marvelous. We saw a lot more of his personality since he wasn't choking himself to get to the next smell.

While we waited for someone to be able to take him back downstairs we saw Sean in the store holding a German Shepherd on a leash and talking to a man.

I thought, "Oh. Oh yeah."

I moved Bear down the way because he isn't a big animal lover so Alison is the one who overheard the conversation. We aren't sure but it seems like the shepherd was being surrendered right then and there. He (or she) was beautiful.

I said "Oh" because today, you see, is the sixth anniversary of my deciding it was time to help Emily die. Turns out this day still sucks.

It helps some to have other dogs around. My dog, Bear, that German Shepherd...

I was supposed to volunteer at a big dog-friendly event all day today. It was a coincidence that it fell on October 3rd but it seemed like a nice way to honor her memory. Unfortunately the weather was crappy so, for our safety, it was canceled.

Instead I spent the day hanging with Ed. We went on a long walk, he got a huge pig ear, we napped hard, we went to the pet food store, we took another walk, and now we're torturing the cats. Well, one of us is.

When I sit on the couch Ed sits in the middle, right up near my feet. It's been cold so he's really been snuggly, even begging several times to sit on my lap. Emily had her spot at the very far end of the couch. She only slept in the middle when two humans were here. There was plenty of room here on the couch for her today but she wasn't here to fill it.

She will never again be here to fill it.

So, as we do every year, please have a treats for everyone day in her honor. Not, sadly, solely in her honor.

Please read this wonderful tribute Nancy Davis Kho wrote to her late co-worker. Also, please send your love to Our Audra who said goodbye to one of her beloved shelties, Wylie Coyote, pictured below.

Love them as fast and deep as you can. It'll be over before you know it.

Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Updating Here or, actually, There

I updated my Performances and Appearances Page. Hope to see you soon!

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Photo Challenge: STEP

A lot of funny choices here. I can never predict what will show up for a prompt. That's the very best part.

Our Bethany offered several options and I chose this for the humor and the history.

Our Lisa has been hiking her butt off for a couple of months. So many steps!

You should see Our Janet's other entry because it's really gorgeous. I'm a sucker for Dave's goofiness, though!

I am powerless against the cute of tiny feet. Did Our Cindy know this?

I went super symbolic on this one. The step was doing this photo shoot and working to build my business.

The Pope is coming to my town tomorrow. I will not use pray as a prompt. I will use MEDITATE, though. That's a compromise I can live with.

Please enter by 9am Tuesday October 6th for posting on October 7th. Tag your photos with PHOTO CHALLENGE and MEDITATE. Check out the wonderful work in our Flickr Pool for inspiration. Also, let me know if you have any questions. The  appropriate email for that is Kizzbeth117 at gmail dot com.

Monday, September 21, 2015

Saving It All For You

I've been saving articles all over the show but never sharing them with you. Let's get on that!

It's nice to lead off with something light. Tom Hardy is a big dog lover. This basset hound confirms.

Some misguided (and ridiculously repressive) parent in TN is called to have The Immortal Life Of Henrietta Lacks banned in her kid's school. Our Cindy, an actual scientist in the relevant area, took that on gloriously.

I learned something about Madeline Kahn and Clue I never knew before.

A brave and courageous abortion providing doctor has added some information to his patients' paperwork. Added information. Surely that's against the law in TX.

The short version of John Oliver's review of a particular sex education curriculum is "Learning nothing would have been better than learning that."

Fellow LTYM team member, Deborah Goldstein, lays out some critical information about interacting with lesbians if you're not one. There are too many great lines for me to give you a quote to start. Just go read.

I have been bitching and moaning about cyclists in NYC more and more lately. Even though some of a native New Yorker backing me up in my slightly conflicted but genuinely angry view.
my best friends are cyclists (yes, I know what I did there). I'm glad to have

I never really framed my difficulty in living with other people like this but it's so true. I understand why it was not enraging but exhausting for me to live somewhere that leftovers never survived.

"I'm so tired but I can just go home and eat that last serving of beans and go to bed."
"I ate those."

So a woman ran a marathon while menstruating and without wearing feminine hygiene products. I have run into some widely differing views on this one. I don't think it'd be for me but running a marathon isn't for me so that's not surprising. Also, I thought there'd be more blood.

I have been listening to the Nerdist podcast a lot and so hearing some stories about terrible fan interaction. Some of them have made me feel bad about my, mostly very normal, interactions with people I admire. Neil Gaiman, as usual, makes me feel better.

Maggie Mason's short recollection is delightful in so many ways.

In news time this happened ages ago but let's bring it back to the front. Hillary Clinton met with some Black Lives Matter members after the excitement where a Bernie Sanders rally was shut down and not handled very well. There are videos of the H Clinton meetings.

A Tumblr highlighting everyday activists. Very cool.

By the way, if you really wanted to see the Stonewall movie please know how the story has been altered.

Brett Easton Ellis gets properly taken to school in 140 characters or less.

I'm still thinking about Sandra Bland. I hope that you are, too.

At BlogHer in July one of the keynotes included a pitch session for women starting charities and businesses. A woman named Majora Carter stole the show! She valued her passion, her intelligence, and her vulnerability and it paid off. It was amazing to watch.

Let's end on that  up note, too. Well bracketed. Whew!

Friday, September 11, 2015

September 11 Straight From The Camera....Phone

Now a tradition.