Saturday, June 03, 2006

My Quest For Woodstock

"All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt."

-Charles Schulz

As I said in a previous entry, I visited the wine country town of Santa Rosa this past week, so I could photograph some public art, and at least some of the Woodstock sculptures that will be on display throughout the summer months. This Woodstock was my favorite one of the day. It sits at the gift shop, which is adjacent to Snoopy's Home Ice- The Redwood Empire Ice-Skating Rink. Right next door is the "Warm Puppy Cafe," where Charles Schulz had coffee every morning before he would go to work in his studio to create the world of "Peanuts." Both the ice rink and the cafe sit directly across the street from the Charles Schulz Museum. Each of the 76 Woodstock statues has a unique title and this one is, "Expecting Company." It didn't get photos of all the statues on this trip, so I will just have to continue my quest at a later date this summer. :) Here are a few of the Woodstock sculptures I did manage to capture Thursday. Enjoy!

All of the following quotes are by Charles Schulz. :)

Chops Stock

"I think I have discovered the secret of life, you just hang around until you get used to it."

Explorer Admiral Bird

"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today, it's already tomorrow in Australia."


"I have a new philosophy. I am going to dread one day at a time."

Traffic Is For The Birds

"There is no problem so big, that it can't be run away from."

Village Gardener

"Life is like a ten speed bicycle. Most of us have gears we never use."

Smooth Jazz In Wine Country

"Aunt Marion was right, never marry a musician, and never open the door."


Woodstock Summer

June 1st, 2006

Santa Rosa, California

Friday, June 02, 2006

John Scalzi's Weekend Assignment #114: Things You Like Now But Not Then

"Life is one grand, sweet song, so start the music."

-Ronald Reagan

Weekend Assignment #114: Name a thing you like today, that your younger self would probably roll his or her eyes at. People, places, things, ideas, philosophies... all of it is up for consideration.

Extra Credit: Name something you didn't like then that you still don't like now.

-John Scalzi (By The Way... )

This may come as a bit of a shock, I was once, for a brief time, a republican. LOL. Yes, I Carly had taken a walk on the conservative side. When I look back at that time in my life, and I try to figure out why I would do such a thing, the only possibility that comes to mind is that I was dating a minister at the time, and he had some influence on how I looked at the world. Well, my relationship with him didn't last that long, because I didn't belong being a republican, and he didn't belong being a minister. Sheesh... what the heck was I thinking?

I was, and still am a democrat. Period. So, in my youth, I was not super thrilled with Ronald Reagan as a president. In my frustration, I didn't particularly care for the man personally. I didn't really see that the man, the ideas, the philosophies, and the politics aren't necessarily the same. It also hadn't occurred to me, just how much Ronald Reagan really did love his country. Now, years later, I have more information to go on, and while I still don't think I would vote for him as president, I believe in my heart that he made decisions in office out of a genuine love for his country... he was a less selfish president then some. Just for a moment, put aside your feelings either way, while I share a few quotes I looked up tonight. Quotes that reflect his personal philosophies...

"We must not look to government to solve our problems, Government is the problem."

"Middle age is when you're faced with two temptations and you choose the one that will get you home by nine o' clock."

"Excellence does not begin in Washington."

"Peace is more than just the absence of war. True peace is justice, true peace is freedom. And true peace dictates the recognition of human rights."

"Peace is not absence of conflict, it is the ability to handle conflict by peaceful means."

"Today, if you invent a better mousetrap. The government comes along with a better mouse."

"To sit back hoping that someday, some way, someone will make things eight is to go on feeding the crocodile, hoping he will eat you last... but eat you he will."

"There are no constraints on the human mind, no walls around the human spirit, no barriers to our progress except those we ourselves erect."

"I've always believed that a lot of trouble in the world would disappear if we were talking to each other instead of about each other."

"I've often wondered, what if all of us in the world discovered that we were threatened by a greater power from outer space from another planet... wouldn't we all of a sudden find that we didn't have any differences between us at all?"

So, I guess you could say that I have a whole new respect for President Reagan today, and I appreciate him more now, then I did in my youth.

Extra Credit: Calamari...NEVER liked it...NEVER will! :)

"Presidential Beans"
Jelly Belly Jelly Bean Factory
Fairfield, California
Spring, 2005

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Art About Town...San Francisco

"Whether he is an artist or not, the photographer is a joyous sensualist, for the simple reason that the eye traffics in feeling, not in thoughts."

-Walker Evans

In the spring of 2004, the city of San Francisco had a lot of heart. Well, they still do, but it was during that spring and summer that the city held an awesome public arts program called, appropriately, "Hearts In San Francisco." Similar to Chicago's art project, "Cows On Parade," The San Francisco project used the city's almost signature icon, the heart, to symbolize the acceptance, tolerance and open-heartedness that it is famous for. The hearts were eventually placed in various locations around the Bay Area. They were installed on street corners, plazas, and parks. Over 130 up and coming artists designed and hand painted the hearts, including singer Tony Bennett, who created the one in the above photo, which now sits permanently in Union Square.

The hearts remained on display through October of 2004, then in November some of the hearts were auctioned off, with the proceeds going to San Francisco General Hospital Medical Center, for the enhancement of patient care. The original goal of the project was to raise $1 Million for the hospital, by February of 2005, the project had earned over $2 Million for funding from additional both online and one held at SBC Park. A limited edition book about the project was also made avail for purchase, and also benefited the hospital.

As you know by now, hunting down public art and photographing it is a great passion of mine. It began last year, when I drove to Santa Rosa to photograph the awesome display of Charlie Brown sculptures that dotted the town throughout the summer. Like the hearts, the Charlie Brown sculptures were eventually auctioned off for charity. And the tradition continues. As of last Monday, the town of Santa Rosa is again decorated with sculptures of a beloved Peanuts icon. This year Woodstock will be placed at different locations, around town. That is where I am off to tomorrow... Santa Rosa. I am spending the day photographing as many of the pretty yellow birds as possible, and I also hope to be able to photograph some other awesome public art displays as well. Santa Rosa is a art lovers paradise. It inspires me every time I visit there. Ahhhhh... "Life is good."

"Tony's Heart"
Union Square
San Francisco
May 27, 2006

Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Ladies And Gentlemen...The Beatles!

"If everyone demanded peace instead of another television set, then there's be peace."

-George Harrison

As promised yesterday, here is one of the better photo opportunities the geese, in San Ramon, presented me with. When I saw them crossing the road in front of me, I couldn't help but think about my favorite album by the Beatles, "Abbey Road." You know... the one with John, Paul, George & Ringo crossing Abbey Road. That album was released in the United States on October 1, 1969. The cover for the album was photographed by Lain McMillian, who was given just 10 minutes, at around 10:00 AM, to get the shot. It's very cool that there is now a webcam, and all you have to do is click on it to see Abbey Road today. God I love the Internet!

Music is so important to me, it inspires me and makes me feel good inside, even on the harshest of days. One of the most romantic songs they wrote was, "Something." A song which has now been in my head for the last 24 hours. LOL. It's a nice, pleasant song, but when I need to just feel that, "Life Is Good" I always seem to put, "Here Comes The Sun," on the CD player. It's a song about hope, and how if we just hold on through the rain, eventually the sun comes around again...and warms us to the goodness in life that is just waiting to happen...

Here Comes The Sun...

Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, it's been a long cold lonely winter
Little darling, it's been years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Little darling, the smile's returning to the faces
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been here
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say it's all right

Sun, sun, it comes
Sun, sun, it comes
Sun, sun, it comes
Sun, sun, it comes

Little darling, I feel that ice is slowly melting
Little darling, it seems like years since it's been clear
Here comes the sun, here comes the sun
And I say, it's all right
It's all right.

Go somewhere today, and smile. :)

"Abbey Road"
San Ramon, California
May 29, 2006

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

In The Air

"In our dreams we are able to fly... and that is a remembrance of how we were meant to be."

-Madeleine L' Engle

Yesterday, Monday, I went to the San Ramon Art & Wind Festival, specifically to see the hot air balloon launch and a hang gliding demonstration. I love balloons. Living up in the hills, means that every now and again a balloon will find it's way up into the hills and into my yard. A few times, I have seen them glide ever so slowly overhead, and come to rest in one of my trees.I always like to imagine what occassion might have brought them to life. A birthday party, a wedding, maybe an anniversary or perhaps it was a balloon purchased on a first date! :) Going to the demonstration was going to be difficult, but I just couldn't miss the hot air balloons. Nope. That would have been too much wonderment to miss.

The balloon launch was scheduled to take place between 6:30 and 7:30 AM. Yikes! I usually go to bed at 4:00 AM, so my body was not too happy with me. :) Also, my I was in a fair amount of pain from my legs and back, but I was determined to go and get the shots. It has been a long time since I have gone and done any photography on my own. Alan is fun to go places with, but I need to get back some of my independence when it comes to going and doing things. Sometimes my legs cramp while driving, and it can be really uncomfortable. If I am swollen beyond a certain point, I don't push it, because I refuse to get behind the wheel if I can't drive safely. Nothing is so important that I am willing to risk that.

So, what's a girl to do? A girl does her meditation, she does her T'ai Chi and she does some positive visualization. A good friend reminded me last night, how wonderfully positive it is to take a few minutes to concentrate on the things that bring comforting thoughts and emotions to mind. It works for anxiety disorders, it works for depression and it works with pain management. I don't like to take my pain medication, I just don't like the idea of developing a dependency on it. I want to give my alternative regimen a real chance. I did well, and managed some sleep deep enough to wake up feeling ok.

I drove from Berkeley to San Ramon, which is a moderate distance, and got to Central Park with about 45 minutes to spare. Parking was horrendous. LOL. I should have known it would be difficult, but it was ok, it gave me a chance to do a bit of exploring around the area, and I found some lovely surprises along the way. Some lovely geese that live at the AT&T center in the adjacent, Bishop Ranch, industrial center, were feeling playful. They are beautiful birds, who have the right of way in San Ramon, and who have seen a camera before! They put on quite a show...really made it fun to be out taking photos at 5:45 in the morning!

The balloon launch time came and luck this morning. The wind conditions weren't safe for lift-off according to the balloon pilots. It was blowing at north/southwest/east, and needed to be south/east-north! LOL... or something like that. Still, I was able to find a really good parking place up close, when some folks decided to leave the festival early, and it was fun to see the colorful balloons fully inflated. The energy of the kids at the park made me feel young. Very cool. I had a blanket in my car, so I placed it down in on the grass, and sat for a while, to enjoy the crowd, and my own company. :)

I stayed for about a half an hour, then braced for the long ride home. By the time I arrived back in Berkeley, the overcast clouds were lifting, and Elvis was curled up in a ball on the bed, waiting for me to come home. He was warm from the sun coming through the window, and really nice to cuddle up with. What a nice, comfortable sleep he and I had, for about 30 minutes, until his friend Molly came knocking politely at the back door. :) Oh well, friends are important, I'm sure she had some piece of information that she wanted to share with her pal, Elvis. Friends are important. Especially good friends. :)

"The balloon seems to stand still in the air, while the earth flies past underneath."

-Alberto Santos-Dumont

"Flying Low"
Central Park
San Ramon, California
May 29, 2006
Memorial Day
Early Morning

Monday, May 29, 2006

Where For Art Thou?

"War is a poor chisel to carve out tomorrow."

-Martin Luther King Jr.

There have been 71 journalists from around the world killed covering the war in Iraq.

There have been 2,464 U. S. Military deaths in Iraq.

There have been 17, 648 U.S. Military wounded in Iraq.

There have been 37, 972 Iraqi civilians killed since the beginning of the war.

This is a war based on lies. Every single day it continues, we lie one more days worth. It's obscene! This war didn't have to happen. This war shouldn't have happened. Please remember the journalists, who risk their lives to bring us the truth! Remember the truth! And by the way, where is Osama Bin Laden?

"I can picture in my mind a world without war, a world without hate. And I can picture us attacking the world because they would never expect it."


Deadly Attack


Memorial Day 2006

"I know not with what weapons WW III will be fought, but WW IV will be fought with sticks and stones."

-Albert Einstein

Will it ever end? Sigh.

Golden Gate Cemetery
San Francisco, California

Sunday, May 28, 2006

National Hamburger Day :) My Challenge With Steven

"Food is our common ground, a universal experience"

-James Beard


Today is National Hamburger day, and the third time in a row I have celebrated the day with my good friend Steven, author of the blog, "(sometimes) photoblog." Each year we challenge each other to capture the perfect burger in photo...and taste. Steven is a fabulous photographer...and from the photos of the burgers he has cooked up in the past...A fabulous BBQ master as well. I suspect he might be a gourmet. LOL. My hamburgers would probably not be considered gourmet...but they are tasty.

1 1/2 lb. Ground Beef

1pkg Lipton Onion Soup Mix

7 dashes Lea & Perrins Worcester Sauce

6 Lg. Mushrooms chopped

1 Red Onion, sliced

Condiments to taste.

This year we decided to have potato salad, and fruit salad for our side dishes, and put Swiss cheese on the burger as opposed to our usual imported Cheddar. It was mighty tasty. Just ask Elvis! :) Thanks Steven...see ya next year for year 4! :) Go see what wonderfulness Steven has grilled up this year!

Berkeley, California
May 27, 2006
6:00 PM

10 Things That Make Me Say... "Life Is Good!"

"Happiness comes of from the capacity to feel deeply, to enjoy simply, to think freely, to risk life, to be needed."

-Storm Jameson

How fun! My friend Suzanne has tagged me for a new meme. As you know, I love doing memes, especially ones that lift my spirits and make me feel warm and thankful inside. That's what this one does. It's called, 10 Things That Make Me Say, "Life Is Good." Thank you for thinking of me Suzanne, and away we go...

1. The long drives I take once a year or so, to get specialty items. Such as apple juice from the Apple farm or chocolate from Ingeborgs, in Solvang, California. It makes something as common as chocolate all the more special when I get it at a place that is special to me. My new favorite place to get chocolate ice cream is at the corner of Haight/Ashbury. Just simple chocolate ice-cream cone from this Ben & Jerry's, is all I need to make me a very happy girl.

2. My blogging friends. The people I have met through my blog/journal have inspired me, have given me hope, made life a lot less lonely, and they have given me a lot more courage to face those day to day struggles that we all have. You are more then blogging are true friends. :) Smile, you know who you are! :)

3. Art. I just love viewing all kinds of art. Be it the public art on display throughout the Bay Area, that I have been showing you this past year, or the art in the galleries I visit. Even the natural art that nature tends to display is joyful to me. All I know is that it calms my nerves, and warms me up inside. Life is art...isn't it?

4. Finally I have a diagnosis. I hadn't been feeling good for a long time, finally my doctor moved to a different Kaiser facility and I was given a new doctor who did the proper tests and found out what I had. Fibromyalgia. It's painful, but I am learning to deal with it. Which leads me to #5 on this list.

5. T'ai Chi, Meditation, Yoga. Since I began studying and practicing these principles this past few months, I have felt much better inside and out. I have some very painful days, and not all of them work together all the time, but each one is helpful in it's won way. Without them, I think I would have given up photography all together.

6. My cat Elvis, especially when he wakes me up with paw pads and kisses. So sweet. I LOVE that cat!

7. I LOVE my camera. :)

8. Free rock concerts on the beach. They are about to begin again in Santa Cruz, and I can't wait. :)

9. Fresh fruit and vegetable from my garden. I can't wait for this autumn, when everything will be ready for harvest. I have already started creating some recipe ideas. :)

10. Cooking. I LOVE cooking. Italian is a specialty of mine, but I have started branching out into other types of cuisine as well.

Okie, dokie...there's my 10 things. Now I think I will tag, Karen, Pat, Charley, Patrick, Duane, and Steven. I hope you will pay a visit to Suzanne's journal and read her list. She is an awesome lady and friend. I enjoy her very much. Thanks darlin!

San Francisco, California
May 25th, 2006