Wednesday, September 26, 2007


My experiment with moonflowers is paying off; these night blooms are a remarkable sight and I've not smelled anything like them. They sit right outside the bedroom window. They started like this --

And this is what they look like now -- I plan to plant a lot more next year.

Friday, September 14, 2007


Yesterday I attended a Greenbuilding Expo here in Columbus. It didn't take long to realize this event was geared toward contractors and commercial projects vs. homeowners and residential projects like mine. Nevertheless, what I really wanted to do was to see and touch the products I am considering for flooring for the entire lower level of my home, now that the subfloor is laid and everything is level.

The toss-up is between bamboo and cork; the holdup on the decision is of course price, but also durability and quality of product. Reading so much on the internet does not help clarify. The other factor is whether to carry the same flooring from the teaching studio / great room and into the kitchen.

The three samples on the left are cork, the other six are bamboo. For now, yes, that really is the color of all the trim and baseboards in the house.

Luckily, I ran across a local green building supplier at the expo -- Greenovate. They are building a green home just down the road. I'm so excited they are so close and carry all the products I've been researching. I was able to see firsthand another product I've been reading about -- Marmoleum Click, a natural linoleum in a variety of colors. (Sigh). Yet another consideration.

A visit with L two days ago help me realize how I've started to stall out, and not just on the house. She recently returned from her first trip to Italy and is on fire with ideas on what next steps to take in her life. I am so grateful that she is sharing her fire with me -- I needed a spark to reignite my own.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Nova Madrugada

Last Friday night's performance was another liberating exchange of fiery energy. The location this time was the Columbus Music Hall, a refurbished firehouse near downtown Columbus. Musicians on the roster; Roger Hines on bass, Stan Smith on guitar, Dan Thress on drums, Ron Hope on percussion, Mark Donavan on sax, and Matt Adams on sax. Adams and I were in the same music classes at Capital years ago, and this was the first time we've seen each other and musically conversed since then. Scott Woods recited his amazing poetry, backed by any one of us he felt was appropriate for the poem's theme; he chose harp for a love poem -- ha.

These photos were taken from a phone -- all the other players are off to the right. Our playlist consisted of original compositions and a myriad of spontaneous inventions.

I love the surprise and pleasure the harp seems to bring both listener and fellow musician/artist.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Treasure unearthed

Who would have known, right down the road. Literally two miles away, over the river.

Limestone Vale is the home of the Lucey's, a vibrant creative family who owns a house I've long admired on a stretch of historic highway. It wasn't until yesterday that I learned they invite the public to congregate around a campfire and under the stars, as musicians play from an open barn on a stage equipped with an incredible sound system. Wine from a local winery, cheese and crackers and fruit, s'mores made on the spot...

Tonight's performance featured two musicians from the California Guitar Trio, Bert Lams (guitar) and Tom Griesgraber (Chapman stick). They performed their own compositions as well as stunning arrangements of Bach, Chopin, and yes, Bob Dylan.

Where is my camera when I need it??

A day like this can be so heavy with grief and fear. This night for me, spent this way, reminds me that life is beautiful and evolving.

A bat comes rocketing out of the barn -- it's trajectory appears careless and aimless. In reality it is guided by an innate knowing, an unfailing trust. In this gorgeous place I feel suspended in time and space -- what a gift it is to be among others so deeply in love with life.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Alfredo Rolando Ortiz workshop

This past Saturday, Alfredo Rolando Ortiz came through Columbus and offered a workshop and concert for local harpists. Our most gracious host offered up her fabulous home and delicious food, both of which were just perfect for this intimate gathering. Thank you, Kate!

Ortiz always does an excellent job of conveying the importance of a relaxed technique when you play the repetitive rhythms and bass lines of South American music on harp. Paraguayan harps have such a full sound, in part due to less tension on the strings; his technique allows the instrument's rich tones to fully resonate. He challenged us to look at our own technique but was careful to add that he's not advocating we change it. I love that he is all about efficiency of movement with the least amount of tension, and to be conscious at all times of what we are doing and how we are doing it.

A picture of our group -- a few attendees had left before it was taken.

Tuesday, September 04, 2007