Mary Beth Writes

Last week I went thrift shopping with my friend Franc. We saw this mobile made from dried paint brushes.  It’s hanging from the ceiling in the Habitat for Humanity reStore in Wauwatosa. 

I appreciate eclectic things made by real humans – as opposed to all the cool, anonymous stuff straight from a design team in some random place you’ve never heard of, that comes in an appropriately designed box, and it looks just like everything else. 

What is an object in your life that you love, that you would like to take with you to your last apartment and beyond?

Don’t pick something that reminds you of someone else’s love for you. Pick something YOU crafted, cobbled together, picked up at some off place on a fragile day. Something that helped you transition from who you used to be to who you are now.

What are you proud of that wouldn’t exist if it wasn’t for you?  And not your kids, yeah, we all know our various kids are the best thing we did (or the worst, but we still love the knuckleheads). 

But what did YOU make or find and then keep and use – that comes from you only?

Also, Happy Pi Day.

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When we downsize - a few of my baskets will be going with us. I look at them and can’t believe I hand crafted them. They are sturdy, pretty and useful. I absolutely loved basket making. Basketmaking is messy and takes room to do. The results are amazing. I might have been a pioneer woman in a past life

I've made many things; baskets, paintings, drawings, jewelry, blankets, quilts and so much more! I surprised myself when creating that list...I sound like a craft factory! I could live without all of those creations, but I knowcI would keep the small cabinet my son created in junior high (Goodwill must recognize such objects when they show up!). It is only 7 inches high and 3 wide with 3 drawers and a door made of balsa wood and tiny nails. We have used it as a storage container for life's necessities such as rubber bands, safety pins, key rings, and keys for mystery doors. It is an essential part of our lives now after 25 years. I treasure it for it's usefulness, design and facinating oddness!

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Some Sore Paw Thoughts

 Last night I read on the sofa for a couple hours. Then I came upstairs, brushed my teeth, and went to bed to read some more. Honest, that’s it. That’s mostly what I did yesterday. A few chores and errands. A lot of reading.

Then while turning one more page - my foot started to hurt! One moment nothing; next moment a big twitchy thing flared along the side of one foot. I rubbed it and tried to stretch the muscles but that made it worse, so I took ibuprofen and went to sleep. I woke this morning and although it hurts less, it still hurts.

Genius & Why you Shouldn't Judge a Fish by What it Can't Do

Someone asked me what I thought might be the definition of genius. (If you send me an open-ended question I might try to answer you, too.)

Here are some of my thoughts.  Because on Halloween, plus the day the House of Reps votes on how to proceed with the impeachment proceedings, plus California is on fire, plus there is a half of foot of snow out my window – why wouldn’t we talk about shades of genius?

Sometimes it's calming to talk about a situation that doesn't exactly affect many of us. 

Why I'm Lukewarm on Heroes

I was emailing with my very smart cousin about heroes. He wrote (in a longer email): Are there heroes left? It seems like some of us have been pretty busy debunking our heroes, and if taking the varnish off is the objective, they’ve been very effective, IMHO. And the follow up question, what are the consequences of a hero-less world? 

 I’ve been thinking about this for weeks. So instead of posting the 17 pages I have written, let me say SEVEN things about heroes.

The Erie Canal; Means and Dreams

This photo is from Schoharie Crossing State Historical Site. The crumbling infrastructure is the oldest part of the Erie Canal -where it crossed Schoharie Creek. 

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Crown Point, Ticonderoga, and Saratoga

Not everyone wants to see where the American Revolutionary War got up and got going - but we did.

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The summer after college I worked in my family’s printing business, trying to earn and save enough to move out. To where I was not sure, but somewhere!

"The best laid schemes o' Mice an' Men, Gang aft agley..."

Thank you, Robert Burns, for that title. 

We were driving from Gaspé to the next town when this happened.

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