Friday, October 28, 2011

And They Still Keep Coming

Good Morning all you wonderful Bloggy buddies. Hope everyone is well and looking forward to the upcoming seasonal events which will be upon us very soon. Tomorrow, we'll be heading out to Mesilla, NM for their annual Dia de los Muertos fair. I love going there every year and seeing all that is "skelly!" Also, if I get a chance, I might head out early tomorrow morning (early...hmmm) and visit the local artist fair in Downtown El Paso. Might have time to visit the Occupy Wall Streeters who are also there till Nov.

Last Sunday, I was sitting in our living room reading the paper and enjoying my first cup of coffee when it happened....JEHOVAH'S WITNESS'! Are you kidding me...Sunday morning...why aren't they in church?? Around here, the JW's usually speak "English very few," so I was prepared. As soon as I answered the door, they smiled and began talking...I immediately told them in Spanish, "Soy Judia," "I'm Jewish." The said "oh" then asked if they could leave their literature anyway...I said no gracias.

Now I'm not completely telling a little white lie, my great-great grandmother was a Jew, an Irish Jew...didn't know they existed, but apparently so. My dad thought maybe that part of the family, my maternal, was a result of the sinking of the Spanish Armada off the Irish coast circa, 1588. So some ol' relative, who was a sailor on one of those vessels, swam his way to the beach, and was absorbed by the Irish culture. Now my question was how in the hell was he able to practice his religion since the Spanish weren't particularly tolerant of Jews and the Moors??? He, like so many Sephardic Jews, hid their religious practices and attended Mass like good Catholics, did all the Catholic stuff but come the Sabbath evening, Friday, they did their Jewish stuff on the sly. A few years ago, there was a surge of local Mexican-Americans who realized they were descended from these Jews who jumped ship, or so we think. They realized that even though they had been reared Catholic, there were some unusual traditions within their Christian festivities, so they officially became Jews. I can't recall any kind of Jewish traditions intermixed with our Catholic ones, so I suppose my great-great grandmother left all that in Europe when she married my great-great grandfather in Paris and then immigrated to Mexico...go figure. However, I grew up in predominantly Jewish neighborhood, Catholic school girl by day, Jewish pal by...well, after school. All my friends in my 'hood were Jewish, and I always felt very comfortable...part of the family...their "Bubies" (grandmothers) were great cooks, always feeding us kids and they were very much like my Mexican family, very festive, loud and lots of laughter!

Now going back to the JW's. I do have a very funny story concerning these very charismatic, religious, hard-working people. This happened many years ago in my previous life, when I was married to the dentist, the father of my 3 children. It was one early summer day and I decided I needed to clean out the garage, which had accumulated much junk, as many of you are aware of garages's as if the junk lays eggs, they hatch, making more junk!! Anywhoo, I found this nasty, very stinky rams skull that my brother-in-law had given his brother, my ex, after he hunted, killed and ate the beatsie. There was still down on the horns and fur on the head and it had been bagged up in a garbage bag in that hot garage for who knows how long. So I decided I was going to throw that nasty thing away. I went out into the driveway and there, up the street, I spotted a group JW's. It was then I was hit with a very bad, but absolutely wonderful idea...wickedly wonderful. I closed the garage door, took the skull, inserted it into an old broom stick, went to the hallway closet where I had my grandfather's black, wool, cape with a maroon velvet lining.

A side story here, my grandfather grew up in a small town in Northern Mexico in the state of Sonora. When he was a boy, the wealthiest man in town wore a little black beret and a black cape which he had purchased in Paris. My grandfather thought that this was just too cool, so when my "Pachito" became a successful bidness man, he did the same. He and my grandmother went to Europe on the QE II and when he was in Paris, he bought the cape, however, he got the little beret in Barcelona, Spain which was more symbolic of the Basques than grandfather's family were descended from the Basques, so it just made sense for him to honour that part of his heritage by wearing the beret. Well, when I was a kid, I loved that whole ensemble. Every Saturday when they came over to visit, I would don his cape and walk around the house in it, acting like I was Dracula's offspring or something. When he passed away in June of 1972, 6 months before I married the a-hole. My mother came home from taking care of things at the funeral home in Juarez, Mexico, which is right across the river from us, and she brought with her the cape and beret. For some odd reason, my brother, Fred, got the beret, but I got the cape! I still have that wonderful piece of black wool hanging in my closet right here in my office. Don't know who will inherit it since none of my children have shown any interest.

Ok, so back to the JW's....I waited patiently for the bell to ring and it finally did!! I answered it, wearing the cape and holding the rams head on a stick!! I also applied red lipstick (when I was teaching Vacation Bible school one summer in that other life, I heard one of the Baptist ladies say I was one of Satan's minion since I wore red lipstick, nails and my hair was tied up in a bun and I made scarves into partial turbans for my head and wore big earrings...yea, I really stuck out among those ladies). Damn, I wish I had a camera, because it was a mongo Kodak moment!!! My daughter, Andria, was watching this from her bedroom window which was adjacent to the front door. I thought she was choking, but was actually in hysterical laughter. So I asked them with this rather large, Cheshire Cat smile if they would like to come in since they might be thirsty...they politely refused. They asked if they could tell me about their faith and I told them only if they would take a minute to listen to mine!! One woman screamed out, "Es bruja, es bruja," "She's a witch, a witch!" You have no idea how I had to maintain my composure because I wanted to do exactly what Andria was doing, go into total hysterics!! I've never seen a group of people run down my walkway as fast as these people. Needless to say, I was never, EVER visited by them again at that address.

I really don't know which was funnier, the ram thing or the nanist thing. Oh well, I'm condemned no matter what, but I think I'll be in good company!! LOL Quite frankly, I believe God has a wonderful sense of humour, just consider the penguins and orangutans....and lest we not forget the sloths!!

Before I hang it up for the day, I wanted to show you some of my new little ladies. I was never much into the images of Frida Kahlo since she's been done soooo much. I had a drawing prof that always said she was so over-rated and had become cliche. I think she was just jealous especially after seeing her work hanging up during one of the faculty shows...oy!! Now I have loved Frida since I was a child. Once while visiting my grandparents across the river, I noticed a magazine in my grand's living room. It was like Mexico's version of Life magazine and they had a full article about Frida and Diego. I was about 8 years old, so that would have been 1960, some years since they had both passed; she died in '54 and he, in '57. Anyway, they had photos of their work, of them, their home in Mexico all was intriguing. I asked my grandmother is she had known them, typical for a kid to ask that. Of course she hadn't and called her, "Esa Comunista y su sapo!" Which translates to, "That Communist and her toad!" I guess my "Machita" wasn't a fan, but I was, immediately. When I was in Mexico City back in '69, my friend and I went to her house...wasn't ready for the public, but we got to see it from the street. When I returned for my honeymoon with the ex in '73, we were planning on going, but I had drunk the water the night before at a 4 star eatery and the water wasn't 4 star...Moctezuma found me!! So anyway, here are a collection of my little Frida Christmas ornies that can be purchased through moi, if anyone is interested. My Etsy shop needs a mega overhauled so they won't be there.

I'm planning on making more...just had too much fun making them. The one on the far left has a new owner, my dear friend, Judy, who was my partner in crime back in high school. She's the one I wrote about in an earlier blog about our adventures in Mexico City back in '69. Her birthday was in Sept., but last night was the first time either of us could get together, so I gave her one of my Fridas. We celebrated at Chili's, her pick. I told her last night I hadn't been to Chili's in a few years since every time I ate there, I'd get food poisoning. I told her that whatever I ordered was going to be deep-fat fried to insure that nothing lived on!! I ordered little sliders and they came with a side salad but Judy told the waitress about my experiences there and they brought her the side salad instead...she passed!!! LOL

Also, wanted to show you my little pumpkins I made for my grandsons. The one of the left went to Aiden in Chicago and the one on the right to Austin. Now my guys in Austin feel I should send them one every year....maybe I better stock up on those fake pumpkins at Michaels right now while they're at 50% off.

I also got my paper mache masks from my buddy, Judah. He's such a sweetheart...said he wants to be paid in a decorated mask...going to gesso it today!! My daughter also found some of those coffins at her Michaels near her house in Austin, so I should be ready for more Halloween fun early on next year then I'll invade Michaels in August for my paper mache stuff...sigh, Halloween in August, or is it July??

Well, my friends, as always, I got a bit mouthy or fingery, but hope you all have a wonderful weekend and have lots of this time of year!! Peace out and Nano-Nano.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Funny Story and other Stuff

While I was in Wimberly for my friend's birthday bash, a bash of 3, I came to a very realistic conclusion, I'm sooo out of shape. It's not an epiphany, Lord knows, I have a mirror and a doctor who every so often tells me to exercise to control the cholesterol and diabetes. I'm unable to take statins for the that 2% that develops muscle problems in the legs...fell flat on my face in front of the Liberal Arts building a few years ago while attending college while being on a statin for just 2 weeks. Yep, I ate granite and only one young man came to my aid while the rather large group of students just stood and watched. What was really bad was that as I fell, my heavy backpack hit me in the back of my head!! I shuffled into my Humanities class, all the while during the 1 hour and 20 min. lecture, thinking how I was going to get back to my car parked in what's called "Cardiac Hill," let alone just get up the hill to the Fox Fine Arts building. Cardiac Hill is the parking lot adjacent to the Sun Bowl stadium. My concerns were more important than what some dead Roman statesman had to say! I was able to get myself up the hill to the Fine Arts building where I called my hubby to come pick me up and take me to my car. Once home, I looked up the side affects on all the recently new meds I had been prescribed, and there it was...if you develop muscle pain, discontinue use and immediately call you doctor...great!! Long story already too long, I luckily didn't develop whatever complications I would have had I not had this little incident on campus. I also gave away my heavy, Doc Marten sandals to my daughter and stepdaughter...ya know what it's like to shuffle in those heavy things???

Anyway, as usual, I digress. So here we were in the lovely Texas Hill Country, and I do mean "hill," lots of them. Now I live in a hilly, mountainous area, but that's why I have a car!! My friend loves to take nature walks, me, well, not so much. So the majority rules, I went along, with great difficulty. I noticed certain activities that I could perform a couple of years ago, were either more difficult or almost impossible. The camp was very rustic, steps to the river were made of large stones and the walk down there was almost vertical...oy!! Later on that day, they wanted to go to the "Bamboo Forest," which was another vertical escapade. As we were going down the rocky incline, I noticed something on my right side, a female deer had heard or smelled us before we saw her and she panicked and attempted to jump over a wire fence, but her head got caught in it and she was struggling to escape. I freaked out...that poor animal was going to perish because of us! I started back up to the road and they followed. Fortunately, she freed herself and successfully jumped out of the small pen.

Sooo, I decided 2 weeks ago while struggling to breath as I walked along the piney and rocky roads, I had to do something about my physical condition. It was a major wake-up call and the Universe was not going to accept anymore denial and I certainly didn't want to push my luck, next wake-up call could be a heart attack or stroke. I came home, looked up a gym near my house, HerGym, and Monday went and joined. Due to a minor mishap, I was unable to go on Tuesday, so yesterday, I took my first Zumba class. Of course, the instructor was adorable, petite and moved like an exotic Vegas chorus girl. I loved the Latin/Tribal sounds and realized that the Zumba moves were very similar to the age-old high impact aerobics. I took high impact aerobics for 10 years between my mid-30's to my mid-40's. Stopped due to a little life change...a horrible separation and divorce, plus I was working, then returned to school. So as all those sweet young thangs were moving their bodies, arms, legs and hips in sinc, I modified back to the old aerobic moves. I sweated like a whore in Mass and I actually felt pretty energetic the rest of the day, however, moving very slowly! But by about 5 last evening, I was exhausted from the days activities. Well, in a bit, I'm going to start it all over again, except with a personal trainer, she's part of the price, no extra charge, is going to show me how to develop a weight training routine with the machines.

Well, my lovelies, I'm back and my hamstrings feel like butta and my arms, like rubba!! I'm actually liking this, really!! The trainer, another gorgeous, sweet young thang, was very helpful and showed my how to operate all the machines for both upper and lower body, then told me how create my own routine in the time I've allotted for my daily workout. So we'll see just how well I can move tomorrow for another Zumba class. Folks, I mean it, I'm dedicated to lose the weight and get most of this "fluffiness" off of me. I was going to join Weight Watcher, but, nah, I really don't have a big appetite (of course you should have seen me Sunday at this eatery in San Miguel, NM after we hiked and did some fossil hunting...I ate every bit of my 3, rather large tacos, didn't eat the refried beans and rice, though, but topped it off with a homemade cherry soooo bad..hey, I hadn't eaten since early that morning!!) and besides, I really don't like those meetings.

Here's the funny story that I have to share, at least I think it's funny. So I went into my nearby Michaels to get a jar of fixative, was running out, and decided to also get some of the Fall coloured flowers for my paper mache masks for next year. I go to the floral section and there, singing her little heart away, is a young mother. As I listened, she was singing her praises to the Lord. Ok, I have no problem with people who are enthusiastic about their faith, I admire it. I turned to look at her and there she was, Crazy Eyes! I smiled politely then began sorting through the flowers hoping she wouldn't start a conversation. Well here is how it went; I'm G and she's CE, for crazy eyes:

CE: Hi, isn't it a beautiful day?
G: Yes, it is (then I looked away again)
CE: Have you found the Lord?
G: I wasn't aware He was lost!
CE: Are you a Christian?
G: (ok, this is where I decided to mess with her, if I believed in Hell, I know I'm going there)I'm a Nanist.
CE: What's a Nanist?
G: We worship the great Goat Goddess , Nan. (inspired by "nanny goat.")
CE: (eyes even crazier and her voice goes up several decibels) You mean you worship a "BEAST!"
G: (Me trying not to have an accident in my undies) Not just any beast, she's very special, she's the great Goat Goddess, Nan!
CE: I've never heard of such a thing.
G: Oh yes, it's a very ancient religion...older than "Rambo." That's the worship of the great Ram God, Rambo.
CE: (backing away from me slowly) Well, I've never heard of such things, I hope the Lord forgives you. God bless.
G: Thank you and Nano-Nano. (Hoping she's never seen old re-runs of "Mork & Mindy!")

After she backed away and couldn't leave the floral department fast enough, a woman who was on the other side of the display, came over and asked me if I was really telling the truth, told her "Nah, I'm Catholic." We both laughed and she said this woman had been singing away and had asked her the same question about her religious beliefs and she said she was Jewish and that the girl just turned away. I suppose her religious group are intolerant of Jews and Nanoists!

Sat. Oct. 15.

So I decided to finish this blog and send it out to the blog world while I can still move my fingers. After 2 Zumba sessions, Wed. & Fri., and one hour of learning the machines, I found myself almost immobile yesterday. After two days of energy to spare I totally crashed yesterday. I came home from Zumba and I thought I wasn't going to make it to my front door. I sat a bit to cool down then drug my very sore body to shower. After that, I just sat on the couch and decided I was going to just veg for the day. I watched two wonderful movies on TCM, "Far From the Maddening Crowd," based on the novel by Thomas his work in my senior year of high school...what a depressing bloke!! The next one was "The Three Musketeers," the 1973 version with Michael York, what a babe he was...was soooo in love with him. He's now an old creepy looking guy!! LOL The other day on the radio, the host of the program I listen to was talking about the new version of the "The 3 Musketeers," and what a flop it was. I told my hubby- guy that my favorite was the one done back in the 70's. How lucky I was to have the opportunity to watch it!!

Today I 'm going to stay put in the studio while my honey and my son attend a children's birthday party. How lucky am I not to go!!!! LOL I really have to hunker down and complete the rest of my work to send out to the gallery in Chandler, AZ next week. Due to my mother's illness this past summer, I was running a bit behind. I didn't make as much this year as last, but I'm gearing up for next year thanks to Judah of , who sent me a dozen paper mache masks from a Michaels in Atlanta, GA and my daughter who also found paper mache coffins at her Michaels in Austin, TX. Hey Judah, if you're reading this....send me your address...I have your return address in Atalanta, but don't you live in TN?? Anyway, let me know which address to send the reimbursement. Sent you a message on FB too.

During my very energetic moments on Thurs., I put up my Halloween tree up:

My little ornies are a collection of prizes I have won throughout my time on Blogger. The doll was from a doll exchange last year and created by the lovely Marfi from

Also, here are my little coffins I created for Xico, Inc.'s Dia de los Muertos celebration next week and into Nov. I bought these coffins a couple of months ago and didn't know what do with them till one Benedryl induced night, I dreamed these up. I wanted to make more, but as usual, our local Michaels were out of them and didn't anticipate any more inventory. They are from l to r, Daniela, La Danzarina (the dancer), Chepa, La Chismosa (the gossip) and Ceci, La Sirina (the mermaid).

Well, time for me to check out and make some art. Sorry about this blog being a bit long, but that's what happens when life gets in the way and you have to write about your "happenings" in increments! Peace out...NANO-NANO!! LOL