Tag Archives: my hubby

Collaged Times with Dad

I thought perhaps a little photo collage of my time spent with Dad would be kind of refreshing for anyone interested.  Usually I send off a few select photos to those on my ‘little list’, this time I’m sharing them with all of you – on my ‘little list’ and in the blog-o-sphere!

Me, Dad and Terry Colorado 2016

Me, Dad and Terry

So, to continue…

Joe & hubby goofing off after dinner

Joe & hubby goofing off after dinner

Terry got to visit with Dad two times before he had to leave. The night before Terry left, Joe came over and we had a great mini-family dinner.

 

Dad at 93 practising his clarinet 2016

Dad at 93 practicing his clarinet (2016)

 

One day I walked in on Dad tooting the ole liquorice stick…

 

 

 

 

Dick with his first side by side milkshake

Dick with his first side by side milkshake (mine is on the left for art’s sake)

After one of many ‘care conferences’ for Dad, I treated baby bro to his first ever Steak and Shake side-by-side milkshake…and as a dutiful sister, promptly got him addicted!

 

 

Dad listening to Joe play.

Dad listening to Joe play.

 

Later, when Joe and I visited Dad, he didn’t feel like playing. He offered both his sax and clarinet for Joe to play instead. While I held up the sheet music, Joe sight-read an assortment of Dad’s arrangements of Jazz-standards.

Joe, Dad and me

Joe, Dad and me

 

 

 

Joe with his granpa Jazzman

Hamming it up for the photo-op

Wondering why Dad is always wearing his cap and jacket? It’s just all part of the mix of getting older I guess since it was close to 90F outside!

 

Al Bruno at 93

Here’s lookin’ at ya!

 

One day, Dad did decide to shed all that baggage!

 

 

 

Michelle Solorio, Al Bruno, Laura Lilly

Michelle, Dad and me

 

Towards the end of my extended stay, Michelle came into town for a friend’s wedding.

We got to see Dad one last time before I left.

And, I got to cook for my two kiddos…

Brother & Sister Together 4ever

Brother & Sister Together 4ever

I’m Back! (for a little while at least)

Wednesday’s 11:59 PM night flight out of Denver to Raleigh/Durham was very efficient use of travel time indeed. But tack onto the three and a half hour flight time with another two and a half hour drive back to FloTown and the dawning of that new day became very disorienting.

I spent most of my Thursday in a post-flight fog. Nothing like jet lag from out-of-the-country flights, but enough of a kicker to remind me that there’s no such thing as ‘flights of fancy’ (ugh, poor attempt at a pun-y quip!)

Today I awoke to a celebration of life in the now: hubby’s and mine 38th wedding anniversary!

As I reenter the realm of being online, I offer up two previous posts written on celebrating this date – sticky noted and following this post. (found here and here once they are un-sticky noted)

And then, as I ease into a slightly altered routine tempered by perspective gained from being away, more regular posting will resume.

Happy June 17th!

Up a Creek without Secure Internet Access

I know, I know, it’s been a little over two weeks since my last posting.  And I admit my silence was intentional for the first three days of that space of time. Since I usually manage a once-a-week blog post frequency, I figured I had a four day window left in which to post. No problem.

Besides, I had more pressing things to attend to like prepping for an extended visit with my dad. Continue reading

Dear Rep. King: Suicide is no laughing matter

Something from my husband for your thoughtful consideration –

Tuesday’s edition* of MSNBC’s Morning Joe highlighted comments made by Rep. King of NY concerning his party’s candidate selections.

It matters not to me if one is Republican, Democrat, Independent, or even Green…my issue is with the flagrant tossing out of a suicide threat if his preferred candidate is not nominated as the Republican nominee.

His statement, as told to the Morning Joe panel:

“Well, first of all in case anybody gets confused, I am not endorsing Ted Cruz. I hate Ted Cruz and I think I’ll take cyanide if he ever got the nomination.”

This was my response which I sent to him Wednesday evening via his website’s comment section: Continue reading

Today is a Great Mathmatical Day

Today is 22/23/24.

Isn’t it a great Mathematical day?

What an exciting time to be alive.

(I’m always looking for cool date/number relationships; this is the absolute best. In fiddling with today’s date during an unproductive morning journaling, this phenom revealed itself to me. Hubby thought my discovery was so cool, he e-mailed a bunch of people. His enthusiasm inspired me to share the announcement with you, my blog readers)

Swimming with Swans – March(ing) to the Studio

Southern Harmony Recording StudioLast Thursday marked the beginning of forward movement towards the recording of Swimming with Swans: the music.  I met with Ken*, the sound engineer and owner of Southern Harmony recording studio here in FloTown**.  I had a fantastic time sharing my project, discussing needs, working through technical details and listening to his expertise as applied to contexts unique to solo & ensemble classical guitar.

I am so glad I went with my gut on using this studio for my solo pieces.  The selection of quality recording studios nearby is limited.  I vetted several this past year covering a 3 hour driving radius and came up with a scattering of possibilities all over the state, but really, the best for my needs are located in Raleigh/Durham, NC.  Hubby being my #1 patron and supporter of my art is keeping those options open for me to use if I decide to go that route, regardless.

Original musical monkey in journal

A page from my journal…

I have to admit that until moving to and living in Florence, SC I took basic musician needs for granted.  This scarcity of a vibrant, well-rounded arts-scene will no doubt be a foreign concept/truth to grasp for many of my colleagues.  It certainly was for me, but – it is what it is and I’m thrilled to have cracked the code to a satisfying solution; enabling me to thus move forward and march*** to the studio.

There is one other semi-appropriate studio in Colombia that Joe and I toured during his Thanksgiving visit.  It was more attuned to the needs of classical/jazz musicians, but the space didn’t feel good.  It offers the use of a superior quality grand piano, but that’s not something I need. Also, the sound engineer didn’t have any project tracks to play for me to listen to that were relevant to my instruments.  The ones we gave a listen to were mostly of brass instruments, which sounded great…but.  After doing some of my own digging on the internet for sound samples from his client list, I found a few background tracks with acoustic guitar that sounded – well, let’s just say they were not to my liking.

As a musician, the bottom line is one’s tone, one’s sound. If that gets messed up, no amount of playing technique or flourish will save the day.  After listening to some of Ken’s current projects highlighting a variety of acoustic instruments, I believe I can trust his ear.  We certainly have a great rapport, which also counts as a keen element in the recording process/experience.

The Prisloe, Mo Giolla Mear, the ZOOM H4n & PillowMeanwhile, I’m doing time on the ole’ practice stool, fine tuning my solo pieces, getting ready for recording and keeping up my chops.  I hope to start sessions by mid-late March.

I am definitely psyched…

 

 

*If you visit Southern Harmony, you’ll find Ken is quite modest…his creds include an impressive resume of work in the LA scene for most of his 20 years of experience before moving to FloTown,  yet not listed on his website.
**Local name for Florence, South Carolina
***Yes, pun is intentional.

Celebrating a Singular Between-Time

 Today is bd Day.
A between-time of singular personal significance.
February 6th of any year is bd Day – Ma’s birthdeath Day.

February 5, 1929 Marylou Mawicke (married – Bruno) was born.
February 7, 2007 Ma passed away.

In those last two and a half years we had left living in our home in Colorado following her death, I spent countless days visiting her new cemetery home – talking to her, sitting against her head stone or laying down beside her. During those two years after losing her to COPD/emphysema I mostly sat cross-legged facing the grey-streaked white marble marker praying, crying, touching her name, cleaning the engraving, walking amongst her neighbors, sometimes bringing Dad along for his own face-to-face time(s)…always leaving gifts – tightly closed rosebuds from our climbing rose bush in the front of our home in Colorado or small rocks and Indian Paintbrush stems gathered from our family’s mountain property, or other tokens like ticket stubs to movies or concerts or Broncos stickers…Most of the more traditional offerings of floral bouquets consisted of blossoms cut from my own abundant garden(s) in our home in Colorado, especially when those Bruno Purple Giant Irises were in bloom that first Spring after her passing.

Once hubby and I sold our home in Colorado and began our between homes time, we’d return from time to time and I’d visit Ma, leaving bits of where we’d been – a perfectly flattened blue hued skipping rock from the shores of Lake Superior gathered in the Upper Peninsula my first birthday away from family and our home in Colorado; a sprinkling of white sand from the White Sands National Monument outside Las Cruces, NM gathered on respite outings after particularly hard days of elder-caring hubby’s mother; a half-opened milkweed pod found along a meadow path in North Webster, IN; a handful of Leggy Lady’s tail/mane hair from the grooming brush gathered during our time on the compound in the desert; a slice of Saguaro Cactus spine from Fountain Hills, AZ…

Each of the two Februarys we had left living in our home in Colorado, I spent February 6th as a Day for visiting her grave as a sort of ritualistic honoring of her life.

I distinctly remember the first of these two bd Days. 

That day in 2008 was unusually grey with a stiff wind signaling an impending snow storm. It didn’t deter me from my mission, though.  I needed to share something with Ma, alone, without family members who’d be gathering the next day marking the first anniversary of her death.

Driving through the Fort Logan National Cemetery on my way to her gravesite, I rehearsed what I had to say and how I was going to do what I needed to do. Coming upon the curb area closest to her headstone, I parked, opened the door wide and pressed play on the car’s cd player.  Walking towards my destination, I heard the beginnings of the music blasting forth from a few feet away…

“Ma, this is what I wanted to play for you the day before you passed away; I wanted you to be the first to hear it – finally finished and ready to record – I wanted you to know – to feel me there with you, to be a part of your leaving us. Me.

But I was too afraid…It’s taken me this long to understand why.  Somehow deep inside I thought if I could play it for you, it would work its musical magic and you’d awaken – and be back with all of us. I couldn’t face you awakening somewhere else, someplace I couldn’t go along with you.”

find the flaw in the fabric

Havin’ a great time with my guys hangin’ around…It’s a funny thing, I’ve gotten a lot of stuff done even with the extra re-focus on providing regularly scheduled and substantial meals.
I’ve found snippets of quality time between meal prep to tweek grant wording and mull over certain sections yet to be written. My days are peppered with long walks with my son, engaging in family banter, and havin’ a great time with my hubby and son hangin’ around…

About ‘find the flaw in the fabric’: Yep, it’s another blogging placeholder, hope you enjoy it.
During my computer monitor’s time off, I place lengths of fabric over it to make it seem less intrusive in my creative space. Lately, this fabric has been staring me in the face. It seems fitting as it represents shared family memories of when us 7 (Ma & Dad, me & hubby and our 3 kiddos) toodled around London, Paris, Rome, with a spattering of New York thrown in for good measure. And then it dawned on me: there’s a flaw in the content of the fabric picture…can you find it? Please let me know in the comment section below…

london, paris, rome, (new york) fabric

yeah, it’s out of focus…your phone camera is better than my old digital…but the flaw is easily seen regardless.

find the flaw in the following quote

I am currently enjoying getting ready for our son’s 10 day Thanksgiving Holiday visit starting Monday. Very excited. He’s coming straight from his 2.5 month vacay in the Dominican Republic on his way back home to Colorado, so we’ll have even more catching up to do! I’m also frantically working on a grant that’s due the end of the year to help fund recording expenses of my ‘Swimming with Swans: the music’ …thrilled with the prospect of the assistance, but won’t know if I will be awarded anything until after the New Year. Meanwhile, I will be getting ready for our middle daughter and son-in-law’s visit with us over the Christmas Holidays and hubby’s b-day. They’ll be driving from their new digs in Michigan, so we’re hoping the weather will co-operate and allow us this treat. I love it when things get bunched up because of family gatherings…for me, this is true bliss.

As concerns my blogging frequency: I keep trying to finish several blog posts I’ve got in the queue, but just can’t seem to focus. So, please accept this little quirky, made-up-by-me game “find the flaw in the following quote” as a sort of blogging peace offering and placeholder.   Continue reading

This is What We Saw on Our Way Back from Colorado

Saturday, October 24, 2015: hubby’s phone alarm went off at 4 AM initiating our practiced paces to get out on the road quickly and efficiently. Heading east on US 36 through to I-70E, hubby and I enjoyed the clear pre-dawn sky.  Littered with glittering stars, planets and satellites, we absorbed the 180 degree view of the Eastern Horizon.  Knowing our unobstructed high plains views would be left behind with each mile driven back to our current place of residence in South Carolina, we reminisced about our numerous past night-sky adventures.  Amidst our gazing, talking, dreaming and driving we both realized something extraordinary was occurring in the left, northern most part of the eastern sky.

“Ah, yes, there’s Venus, but what’s that bigger planet? Jupiter?”

I grabbed the mini-binoculars always at the ready in our car and saw a third red dot curved below the other two planets.

“Terry! It’s a trio of planets, Mars is there, too.”

With hubby at the wheel, we both sky-watched as this glorious oddity continued to shine forth throughout the unfolding of the dawn, well into Kansas.  What exactly was this?

Turns out, October 24, 2015 was the absolute best day to observe this rare Dawn Triangle of Planets,  marking the beginning of the best week to observe it as well.

(It’s not too late to get out and see this for yourself!)

Also, turns out that the biggest planet was Venus…my bad!