Sunday, December 27, 2009

Those I Have Admired....And a Single Task...

Looking back at the myriad of women I have looked to for inspiration during my lifetime has brought me to one salient point. It is time to be finished with waiting to become someone other than myself. End of story.

Here then, were my heroes.....

Joan Marlowe, my dancing school photo of Miss Joan, only memories...

Tap Shoes

The older girls in my Irish Dance classes...I strove to match their amazingly complicated steps....

Step Dancers

Sister Miriam Joseph, 7Th grade teacher...incredibly beautiful, the epitome of photo available....nor necessary....


Pattie Boyd, girlfriend of Beatle George Harrison, cool, lovely, George's more need be said...

Pattie Boyd

Betty Smith, author of "A Tree Grows in Brooklyn"...I tried to fashion stories as she did...

Betty Smith

Joni Mitchell....sigh...was, and is, an enormous part of my overall psyche...I adore her and cherish how she is a constant in my heart and mind...


Mary Cassatt, artist, Impressionist, free spirit...while attending the Art Students League in Manhattan I once believed I might channel her talent on those most creative of days...

Mary Cassatt

Joan Marlowe, Part Two...while teaching dance in the South Bronx, thought surely that I would perish if not able to follow in Joan's path of choreographing musicals...did not choreograph, nor did I perish....


Elizabeth Berg, fellow Chicagoan, novelist extraordinaire...she writes me....not about me...rather writes ME...

Elizabeth Berg

Amy Krouse Rosenthal, writer, astonishing thinker, "The Beckoning of Lovely" muse....she puts my thoughts, my words, on paper in ways I have not...

Amy Krouse Rosenthal

Lastly, Beatrice Potter, illustrator, writer, ultimately independent woman when independence seemed improbable..

Beatrice Potter

So then, my list....much considered, much examined. Time to allow the list to take wings. Time to find inspiration within.

This years sole task begins.....

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Friday, December 25, 2009

The Merriest Christmas To All!!

My love to each of you with hope for good fortune, good health and unanticipated joy this Christmas Season. I will love all of you always.....

Candy Canes

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

My Favorite Christmas Songs for 2009

"Fum Fum Fum", a traditional Catalan Christmas Carol.....

"Pat-A-Pan", a French Christmas Carol.......

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

A Christmas Tess, Mollie & Me

Follow our holiday crafts, projects, and exciting happenings blog....25 Days Till Christmas.....created by we make the most of this Christmas Season.

Our first project day, featuring our made from scratch Advent Calendar, is up and running....

Advent Calendar

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Christopher - 25 Years Old Today

My firstborn, Christopher Donahue Krueger, was born on Sunday, November 25th, 1984 at 1:34AM. He weighed 6 pounds, 11 ounces, a perfect, beautiful baby. Bill looked at him and said that he looked smart.
CDK Newborn
I called my mother to tell her that her first grandchild had arrived....three weeks early....and told her that he was a "little guy". We called him that throughout his toddler years. My happiness was inestimable.

Today he is still beautiful and perfect in all the ways that matter. My life has been made wondrous by knowing him. Happy Birthday my dear, dear son. I will love you till the end of time.
Christopher-A Favorite Photo

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Thanksgiving countdown banner

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Today is Our 26th Wedding Anniversary....

Our beginnings were simple...

....we wore no elaborate clothes....
Wedding Dress

.....attended no grand hotel reception....
Fancy Hotel

....did not dance the night away....

....nor consume tier after tier of wedding cake...
Wedding Cake

None of these marked our beginnings....we were just this...

A Chicago guy....

....and a New York girl....

...who found each other on the beach in the Bahamas....kismet....serendipity....the best of luck...and so we remain....

Happy 26th Anniversary love to you always...
Happy Couple

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Halloween....Where the Heck Did You Go??????

Halloween 2005...lots of happy, excited Trick or Treaters...scads of costumed kids seen up and down our block and beyond....parents walking with their little ones, beaming as their tiny hands reached for our doorbell...laughter as our ghosts and spiders delighted revelers....

Halloween 2009....less than 20 Trick or Treaters all day and all night, some not bothering to express themselves in costume...streets empty as far as the eye can see....most houses dark...only a few "TRICK OR TREAT!!!!...THANK YOU!!!" voices to be heard....

I fear next year just might be worse....sigh...

Sad Pumpkin

Friday, October 16, 2009

"Jonah Returns".....A Short Film Featuring My Brother...

I received this in my email today from my brother, Kalichi who lives and creates in Ireland. The music you hear is his.

As I watched the movie* I thought that I might somehow know this man Jonah. At the movies end, I realized that the man playing Jonah was indeed my big brother, Jimmy/Kalichi.

He looks like my father. Handsome Irishmen the both.

Jonah Returns

Jonah Returns, is a film about a man coming back to Greenore, a unique
railway village on the Cooley peninsula, County Louth, Ireland. In the
1870s, an impressive hotel was built to accommodate the many patrons who
flocked to stay in its 'state of the art surrounds'. Unknown to Jonah, the
hotel was demolished in 2006. His return is marred by sadness, as he
searches the land for past memories of happier times.

This is the first movie project that brings together the creative talent of
3 friends, Kalichi (musician), Philip Darling (art director) and Ken Walsh

The movie was conceived/directed by Philip, music composed by Kalichi, and photography and editing by Ken.

Monday, October 5, 2009

We woke Up This Morning to Find.......

....that Tess had her photograph appearing in our local newspaper, The Daily Herald.


This photo, taken at Sunday's Northwest Suburban Music Teachers Association's 2009 Festival of Pianos, was once again held at the beautiful Northbrook Court Shopping Center. Tess is shown playing with fellow piano teacher Edie Kayne of Mundelein. They had just met that morning and played together beautifully.

Much to our surprise, we ran into a friend who was also playing at the festival with her grandmother/piano teacher. This evening, with thanks as always to my dear Robin, we found that they ALSO will be appearing in a local newspaper, The Pioneer Press, which comes out this coming Thursday.


What a wonderful way to begin our week and to end our evening!!!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Learn More About Me: A 100-Item Bucket List

This is a called the bucket list. You review 100 items and put in italics the ones you’ve already achieved in life. Here then, with annotations, is my bucket list:


1. Started my own blog – haven’t kept it up much lately, a case of the blahs has hit
2. Slept under the stars – camping in college
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than I can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland/World – Disney World yes, Disneyland no
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sung a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea – sort of, watched it at Fort Myers Beach, FL
14. Taught myself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning – way too many times
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty – I’m counting this one since I walked halfway up carrying Max as a baby
18. Grown my own vegetables – every year since living in Chicago
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight – as a kid with my sister
22. Hitchhiked – lots during my Hippie years, not smart
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill – now and then when I was working
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse – a few times
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset – many times
31. Hit a home run – once as a kid, that I can remember
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of my ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community – Amish Acres, a lousy trip my family will NOT let me forget....ever
36. Taught myself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied – I’m pretty much always satisfied about money
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelo’s David – saw the Pietà at the NY 1964 Worlds Fair, so I’m giving myself this one
41. Sung karaoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight – Jones Beach, NY
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had my portrait painted – again sort of – a street artist asked to do a study of me in charcoal in Central Park in the ‘60’s, sat for it, but didn’t get to keep it
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain – now and then
53. Played in the mud – at a music festival
54. Gone to a drive-in theater – not for a long time – most are now closed
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business – engineering business with Bill – closed after 17 years
58. Taken a martial arts class – in the South Bronx while working with Mother Teresa’s nuns, one of the volunteers taught a class there for free
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen – also in the South Bronx, Fort Apache to be exact
61. Sold Girl Scout Cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason – from Bill of course
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma – routinely at Iona College
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi concentration camp
67. Bounced a check – during college, didn’t mean to though
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy – my Teddy Bear Sammy, I tried to wash him in the washing machine years ago and he basically dissolved, I’m still sad about that
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial - twice
71. Eaten caviar – once....never again
72. Pieced a quilt – when I was pregnant with Christopher, for his crib
73. Stood in Times Square – lots in the ‘60’s
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone – more than once, wrist, ankle, toe and finger
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle – once, fell off while rounding a curve, first and last ride
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person – beautiful because I did it with Bill and my kids
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car - twice
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had my picture in the newspaper – with an article about our homeschooling
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House - twice
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox – when I was little, still have a scar from it
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury – in NY, a trial about drunk driving
91. Met someone famous – just the other day…James Galway!!!! And Stevie Wonder when I was 12
92. Joined a book club – several times, did it for the cheap books
93. Lost a loved one – my mother, grandparents, friends, neighbors, too many to think about
94. Had a baby – four amazing, wonderful times – I wish there had been many more
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a law suit – with W.T. Grants department store for my broken wrist when I was in 2nd grade…trial finally took place when I was in 5th grade
98. Owned a cell phone – yes, an iPhone thanks to Melissa
99. Been stung by a bee – for the first and only time last summer
100. Ridden an elephant – at the Bronx Zoo when I was little, my brother Jimmy shared the ride

Six Flags Homeschool Day 2009

Christopher, Mollie and Tess....three of my four having a great day together at Six Flags!

6 Flags Homeschool Day

Monday, August 31, 2009

Found This in My Mail Today...........

Amazing piece. The Perpetuum Jazzile chorus creates a "rainstorm" using nothing but fingers, hands and feet. Followed by one of my favorite songs from the '80s, Toto's "Africa."

Friday, August 28, 2009

Happy 18th Birthday Mollie!!!!!!!

So much has changed in eighteen short years, yet some will always remain much the same....

Mollie Then

Mollie 2009

Mollie-2 2009

Happy birthday Mollie. May all of your dreams come true.

My love always,


Monday, July 20, 2009

Yet Another Loss....Gordon Waller of Peter & Gordon....

....died this past Friday. I had listened to Peter and Gordon throughout my teen years, buying each of their newly released albums, and playing them until they were white with wear.

Recently, I rediscovered them while watching Dave Stewart's My American Prayer video during Barack t Obama's presidential campaign. Finding Peter and Gordon performing together once again was more than I could have hoped for.

I had been following their tours dates in hopes that I would someday be lucky enough to attend one of their concerts. I will always be saddened by this missed opportunity.

I thought they were fabulous. I still do.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Disappointing News.....


Tess is out for the count for the next five weeks....a two places...left wrist will remove her from several concerts with the Arlington Heights Community Concert Band this summer....which is the first disappointment.

Second...the upcoming concert on the 15th was to have featured her much anticipated, much worked for flute solo. Fortunately, this will be rescheduled within the fall concert series, but still.....

This also means no piano, no guitar, nor any other musical pursuits for five long weeks. To a musician, this is an eternity.

When she of Tess' purple cast will follow. Life intrudes....

Friday, July 3, 2009

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Summer Reading........just part of my list.....

....on my overflowing night table....books, glorious books...

Story Sisters


My Fathers Tears

Sketchbook for the Artist

Dandelion Wine


Teach Yourself Paint Shop Pro 7

Things I Want My Daughters to Know

The Diary

Creative License

Geometry Sisters

Girl Who Stopped Swimming

I'm afraid to walk into the library...or step foot into a bookstore...for fear that I will begin scribbling more and more cryptic notes about yet another book I HAVE to much to read and so little time....

Monday, June 29, 2009

Gale Storm 1922 - 2009...Goodbye Margie.....

One of my favorite television shows from when I was a little girl...."My Little Margie"....starring the lovely Gale Storm....

Saturday, June 27, 2009

Disney World Trip - Post #4 - Characters and Max

One of the unexpected delights of our "Best Trip Ever" journey to Disney World was meeting & taking photographs with the Disney characters. On previous trips to Disney we never had a chance to do this. Little people waiting patiently in strollers in the hot sun did not lend itself well to such pursuits.

This time however was different. Not only did we have a chance to meet and greet the characters....we had a grown-up Max along to make the experience a total joy. I have long said that when Max smiles, the room fills with light...and these pictures reflect just that light.

The Crystal Palace was a beautiful restaurant filled with good food and visits from Winnie the Pooh and friends....much to Max's obvious delight....
Max & Winnie the Pooh
Max & Winnie the Pooh #2
Max & Piglet
Max & Piglet #2
Max & Eyore

We encountered Captain Hook outside the Pirates of the Caribbean....
Max, Mollie, Tess & Cap. Hook

A quick rest in a comfy chair at Mickey's house....
Max in Mickey's Chair

Heading to the Toontown Railroad we met Snow White...
Max & Snow White

Lastly, on our way out of the park on our last night, we found an area filled with several characters and a chance to take photos with them all!! This was one of the most enjoyable, spontaneous moments of the entire trip.
Max & Mickey
Max & Minnie
Max & Pluto
Max & Donald

More characters photos to follow......