Posts Tagged “thankful”

Lucky Number 2013

I really have very little sense of what I’ll be doing over the next 12 months. I’ve made concerted efforts to leave things “open,” but now I’m dealing with cold feet.

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WE DID IT!

Yesterday we set the World Record for “Largest Rainbow Parade” with 179 beautiful, colorful souls! I couldn’t believe it when RecordSetter announced the final count because 79, the year I was born, is my lucky number!

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Sisters

Parts (only parts) of today were messy and ugly. I needed to find something beautiful to focus on, and then I saw a tweet that it was Siblings Day. (Yep, it exists.) Actually, Siblings Day was April 10, but nothing helps move me out of a funk like finding a way to remind myself exactly how lucky I really am. (Lucky so and so, right?) Well, my sister totally does the job! This is my only sister, Amy. Here we are with my mom in New Orleans this past winter.

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Rainbow Rosie Sushi for Amy

My sister Amy lives in Starkville, Mississippi, so I don’t get to see her nearly as often as I’d like. But whenever I’m home, we always have the best time. She and her husband own Starkville’s best restaurant, and we like to close down its bar with a slightly intoxicated style all our own… She commandeers the sound system, we play our favorites for each other, then we end up dancing like idiots who don’t care who’s watching.

Here’s to my sister on her birthday. I love you and the person you’ve grown up to be. The best is yet to come!

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Forever Young

Living in Brooklyn, most of the people I interact with are somewhere between their twenties and fifties. But being back home for the holidays, conversations and activities tend to revolve around what babies have been born, who’s passing on and who’s past. Mantles overflowing with family photo Christmas cards in all the homes I visit are a testament to the births. Obituaries filling nearly a page in the 8-page daily newspaper I read while eating my breakfast of grits are a testament to the deaths. These consistent reminders throw a wrench in the gears of my normal world view, but maybe that’s a good thing this time of year: a time for reflection and resolution.

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Smoking Rainbow Pipe for Cameron

I’m so thankful for the inspiring setup we’ve got here at work. Sure, the view is phenomenal, but what makes it truly special is the camaraderie shared by all the studiomates. Coming to work is like showing up to hang out with friends, and by friends I mean amazingly talented, creative, motivated people I somehow get to collaborate with. Every day is an adventure in smart people and projects, and somewhere at the center of it all, you’ll usually find this guy. He’s an instigator who pushes everyone to “do something.” He’s got a zero bullshit policy, so you have to be willing to back up anything and everything you say. He’s also a warm, fuzzy heart who calls himself a “sad panda” if he has to miss out on any group fun. You can count on him for either honest perspective or pee-your-pants humor, depending on his mood. Actually, a lot of the time it’s both. Everyone should be so lucky to have Cameron Koczon, lover of pipes, music, scotch, westerns and awesomeness, in their lives. So today on his birthday, this thank you reads…

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Rainbow Song and Dance for Mom

The numbers five, six, seven and eight, in that order, are very special to me. They evoke the sound of a needle crackling as it drops onto a record, the scent of sweaty lycra in a gym bag, and the sight of my mom front and center in a packed auditorium using her right hand to balance some sort of massive recording device and her left to point towards an exaggerated smile on her face.

Between the ages of 18 months and 18 years, I attended weekly dance classes. According to my rough calculations, that’s more than 1,000 hours of ballet, jazz, and tap, but more to the point, that’s more than FIFTY recital costumes. Sure, the teachers got to choose the costumes for the group numbers, but if you signed up for a solo or duet, which of course my sister and I always did, you got to choose your own attire. Somehow I talked the teachers into letting me borrow the costume catalogs so I could take my time contemplating exactly what concoction of spandex and sequins truly embodied Billy Ocean’s Get Out of My Dreams, Get Into My Car. If I couldn’t find a ready-made match, my mom and I would set to work, and after a few magical evenings in her sewing room, we’d emerge with a perfectly customized costume.

For an Itsy Bitsy Teeny Weeny Yellow Polka Dot Bikini routine, when Wal-Mart failed to yield suitable dotted fabric, my mom and I painted our own dots onto yellow satin. Then there were leotards, ears and tails, all made out of pink faux fur, so my sister and I could realize our vision of the Pink Panther theme song. And in case you’re wondering, for Billy Ocean, I decided on a shiny magenta unitard with royal blue leg warmers, briefs and a headband. There were many, many others, and I remember each and every one. The little voice inside my head is saying, “Wait a minute, this is all making perfect sense!” Maybe I love costumes like Billy loves the lady drivers because more than simple self expression, devising a costume reminds me of a special time in my life when I got to collaborate with my mom.

Not all kids get to go to dance lessons. Not all moms are willing to carpool to them, and pay for them, and sew costumes only to have to sit through four-hour recitals because of them. Mine was. For that and about a million other reasons, I’m thankful. So this note reads…

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Rainbow Nods and Winks for Stephen Doyle

There’s a correlation between between luckiness and thankfulness. I’m not certain how to articulate it yet, but I’m working on it. In the meantime, I can say for certain, I owe massive amounts of thanks to massive amounts of wonderful people. I decided to create thank yous by getting cut-and-pastey with the pages of old textbooks I picked up at the Palmer Home Thrift in Starkville, Mississippi (only two dollars per book). I’m committed to getting some of this thankfulness off my chest!

This card is dedicated to the gentleman and poet Mr. Stephen Doyle. Stephen is a design giant, but you’d never hear him even hint at such a thing. He’s a light-hearted, down-to-earth delight of a person. Talent sans ego makes Steven a rare bird. The inside of the card reads…

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