Wednesday, May 30, 2012

One Hour Vacations

I need a vacation!!!

The reality is that a vacation right now is out of the question. I'm not even available for a day trip. It is time for the entrance of the One Hour Vacation. Like a super hero flying in with red cape in the breeze, the one hour vacation swoops in and carries me off to some remote place of peace and refreshes my energy and outlook. I get more work done after a one hour vacation.  Sometimes I take an even shorter break to rejuvenate sagging spirits and energy.
                             Here my one hour vacation was fishing in Mansfield Hollow ( CT) at sunset
Caffeine is a wonderful thing but it is not a substitute for the  peace gained in escaping for an hour! Calling it "vacation" is a mind trick to help me get the most of the time.

Goodbye frenzied schedule

Goodbye deadlines that loom large on the horizon

Goodbye workload and cluttered desk

I'm on vacation....see you in an hour

It takes a little time and space for me to clear the clutter in my mind. It takes getting away from the desk and the computer screen! Sometimes I actually think about what I was working on, the distance seems to give powers of reflection a stronger presence. I've come home with decisions made.
The sound of water is soothing for a raw spirit and I found an hour at Eagleville Falls a perfect elixir for busy day.

Racing off to work and needing that deep breath before I move from one project into another I have even found a one minute break will help clear my thoughts like a fresh palette for a painter.  The video I took in Mansfield Hollow allowed me to enjoy the break one day and then on replay reap those benefits again and again.

Other breaks might be for music or reading or another activity.

Take a moment to reflect on what makes you feel better. Leave your suggestions in the comment box below of other one hour retreats I might try.

Monday, May 28, 2012

 Graze 101

read more in a post  from  the "Udder Side" blog by Ryan Bright 5th generation farmer!

of course party crashing cows  are not unique to Ryan Bright's farm, Mountain Dairy cows have been known to party on occasion.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Anna Deveare Smith's Treasure Found

     A treasure chest  holds something of value and some unexpected jewels and glittering remembrances. A treasure chest inspires deep searching, and a cultivation of a hard work ethic to obtain the treasure within. Every bit of this comparative to a Johhny Depp scene in his Pirates film is true of a 2006 production of "Letters to A Young Artist" by Anna Deveare Smith and read by her on an unabridged 4 CD set.

She opens with Dear BZ,  the young artist she is to mentor through a letter writing  association. BZ is fictional, a repository for advice and gleaning from a life in the arts. Her words written and read in letter format on many of the ups and downs of any career in arts. Experiences shed light on  the journey and a few places to spend your time and energy to  make the trip more worthwhile. The title directs attention to a young BZ character, but I found the advice relevant and timely as I pursue my interests in performances as a storyteller.

   Here are  four CD's packed with info in easy to manage portions. Each letter a chance to stop and think about  the contents application as it pertains to your art endeavors. New artist, seasoned pro or anyone in the middle of that journey would spend time well listening to the treasures this CD reveals .

Produced by Blackstone audio at
ISBN : 978-0-761-7475-1 here is the  Amazon link

Read more about Anna Devere Smith's career diversity at

At IMDb for her movie/T.V. info:

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

A CT. Maritime Story from Geneology

     Digging through the reams of family tree material for a perfect story could be a needle in a haystack, but is more like a diamond in the rough.  From the start I had an idea that Uncle George would have a story to tell. He was eccentric - maybe, artistic - for certain, and lived over 100 years ago - perfect! Geneology can be a treasure to a storyteller!

     Now that I had a place to begin, the search narrowed to a singular branch in the family tree that was  vibrant in the times when our nation was struggling through the Civil War. It is part Connecticut history as well since Uncle George was born and raised in New Haven. The son of a sea Captain, George was raised on the docks of New Haven with the world at his front door. Early on he was allowed the benefit of the old sea salts stories as they gathered evenings  in the store near a crackling wood stove.  He had fishing pole, a small sailboat of his own, and free range of a world class harbor town. This boy, began his own life adventure when at 16 he set out to become his own man. Thrust from a carefree childhood into the need to make and pay his own way he began his story wandering the streets of New Haven in search of the inspiration that would seize his imagination and provide apprenticeship and keep.
     George lived a story that came down through time and left behind reminders of his talent and his determination. Like the lives of characters in books his father brought from ports all over the world he crafted a life worth remembering and sharing. I am working on several short pieces from his childhood right now. Preliminary tellings to try out a surprise entrance and a  twist at the end which I love to add to my storytelling have been done and the tweaking of George's story continues. Research continues of New Haven in his lifetime, and a comparative to today where Dunkin Donuts marks the corner of Church and Chapel street where his life was forever changed.

My stories have a goal performance, the first is the Mystic Seaport Sea Music Festival  with storytelling stage. I plan to share these Connecticut gems on that stage June 10 between 12 and 4.  Mystic Seaport in collaboration with the Connecticut Storytelling Center have come together to bring a number of tellers to a two day story stage at the annual event. I am excited to introduce these tales as part of the event when I share the stage with several storytellers all with sea story repertoires. I believe Uncle George would be delighted that his story is still being told and in a venue like Mystic Seaport that honors the heritage of Connecticut maritime history.

Parts of this performance will also be shared June 3 at Mansfield Historical Society opening day Rte 195 Storrs, CT. and at Scotland ( CT.) library July 12 at 6 p.m.Sea Stories and Sea Chanteys. I might even practice a piece at VoiceMail open mic storytelling on Tues ( special day) May 29,  at Mansfield General Store in Mansfield Center.!/pages/VoiceMail-Open-Mic-for-Storytelling-at-Mansfield-General-Store/197283876991691

Now I just have to tell you the final reason I was drawn to share a bit of Uncle George, and invite you to come hear the rest of the story. It is his name, George Story!

Friday, May 4, 2012

Longears in Connecticut - Donkey News

Friday, May 4, 2012

The Day - Timely respect for the longears | News from southeastern Connecticut

The Day - Timely respect for the longears | News from southeastern Connecticut
written by: Suzanne Thompson

The link takes you to a article in The Donkey and Mule Show Saturday at Bishop's Orchard in Guilford, CT. I'll be there announcing. Come join the fun!!

My Friend Jassper owned by John & Melissa Lavoie

Awwww! Got to love a face like that!

There are several other events throughout New England for the Donkey and Mule enthusiast.

Sage sports a fly mask for pleasant trail riding

Online enjoy the Donkeys Here
For my favorite online piece about Donkeys check out this blog about Jassper & Tobassco's Daycation :

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Mom Will You Be in a Ad?

Story, this ad has it. I connect with all the mothers. I remember weekends in bleachers, 5 a.m. at the pool, sunburn after a horse show. Coffee was a staple in the get the kids delivered shuttle I ran.

In just a couple minutes this ad takes us there, brings back those mornings and celebrates motherhood.This is a stellar example of storytelling in advertising/ marketing and it is aimed right here at me. I am like many of those Moms and missing the days when my kids were living Olympic dreams, or on a personal quest in athletic learning. I miss the shuttle, the quiet rides, the moments.

Now I am thinking how do we tell this story as a spoken word artist. I will watch it again, feel choked up, remember a morning so common among mornings and create a story that captures that special moment. Do you have a Mom  story?

Other links of similar content: