Cold and the Crazies Over Run My Day

OK, just writing about today, not doing catch up right now.

Some days just seem harder to deal with than others.

I knew I needed to get up and do things, but really had a hard time getting out of bed this morning.

The morning started with an annoying challenge.  There was lots and lots of my roommate’s hair in the tub and in the drain was clogged with hair. I have a thing about gagging when dealing with hair, but did very well today and got it flowing a bit better, but not perfect. After my shower, I put some baking soda and White Vinegar down the drain in hopes to get it flowing better soon.

And there was an email regarding an ad with a deadline of today that needed some input. I had not responded to a couple of other ones, so felt needed to respond to this one.

I realized last week that my Peak Vista Card would run out sooner than I thought. So needed to get rejected from Medicaid again to go apply there for next year. But things are different this year, so had to start with Colorado Connect and get rejected there first.

I got on the phone about 10:05, my roommate wasn’t home and I had forgotten she has a conference call usually at 10 am and wants to use the home phone. She came in about 10:35, but I had been on hold for quite awhile and again, wasn’t thinking about her call. She did have her cell phone with her, and went to go get it. When she returned, I remembered her call. But she waved me away, so I stayed on hold. And glad I did. About 10 minutes later, almost 45 minutes on hold, a really great person came on the line. He was very helpful, and it helped a lot that he had been self-employed and knew the challenges of what I was trying to do.

These programs don’t want the info or final line from one’s taxes, they want income and very little expenses are allowed to be deducted. So while I don’t even hit the poverty line with my taxes, I look like I have a good income when I can’t deduct most of my expenses for my businesses. And I don’t just have one business, I have many and have a couple of rentals. So it is very complicated.

At the end, I was thinking my Festival meeting was at 2:30. And as this call ended about 1pm, I went into rush mode to get the food ready and the things that needed printed. I usually walk to the Co-op and use the copier there to save ink in the home printer, but didn’t have time. Didn’t print as many items as I normally would, so people would have to share.

I really wanted to do a gluten-free apple crisp using the apples gathered a couple of Sundays ago. When I went to get the silver variegated knive I use every day, it was no where to be found. This had me in a tizzy. I looked in my roommates room as she has a habit of keeping dirty dishes there to wash later. It was too chaotic to really do a search.

This is the knife my last crazy roommate packed when he was moving and told me it was his. He blew up when I told him it was mine and I wanted it back. A few days later, he came into the cottage while I and a friend were working to get it ready for a new tenant. He had his hand behind his back and said something like “Guess what I found?” And he pulled out a knife that looked sort of like mine, but not really. He had found his knife. Then he said “I guess we were both a bit crazy.” and turned and left. Weird.

So now it is missing again, and I am not happy. None of the other knives I have fit my hand as well and it is always sharp. It is the perfect size to peel apples and chop them. So I tried using a couple of others ones, but kept almost cutting myself and having to switch between the size of knife I used for peeling to one to chop them.

Then as I was putting together the recipe, first I could not find my Vanilla, but knew I had some. Went on to gather the other ingredients, and eventually found the Vanilla.

The recipe said to use an 9″x13″ pan, but just reading it, knew that was way to big. Even the smaller pan I chose was too big for the amount of “crust” and topping that was called for. At the last minute, I added some extra melted butter, oats and brown sugar to get enough topping to actually cover the apples. Put it in the oven, and went to do some printing.

When 2:30 came around and I realized no one was showing up, went and looked at my emails to everyone, and realized the meeting was at 3:30. So decided to change the litter box and do a small bit of vacuuming. And was able to get some things more straightened out in the area we meet. Took some boxes out to the car and some recycling to the bin outside. And all the yucky compost plus the apple peels to the compost bin.

I was in a very shaky state. Feeling frustrated with myself about the ASM program, not being able to find products in the US that I would like to sell other than just wholesalers. And on Sunday, my mastermind partner had got me thinking about working with local women to create a product. But that is just CRAZY thinking. It would mean starting another business, or directing them in a business that would mean they would be doing just one thing over and over, which I doubt would entice them. And yes, this energy was coursing through my mind on and off all day long.

Cut up some cheeses, put out salsa, gluten-free chips and crackers. Left the Apple Crisp in the oven to stay warm.

Everyone arrived on time. And a new person showed up. And she is #3 of gluten intolerant members of my committee.

The jeweler brought me some earrings I had admired, not sure if I need to pay her for them, or how much. Took me by surprise and I was in a rush mode to get the meeting started as everyone had a deadline of time to leave. So got it stared and then hurried through the agenda and the 2015 budget items a bit. Had to be very clear why it is not a good idea to cut back on any of the advertising if we wanted to have more artists next year, and keep them happy with being able to bring customers to them again. Just moving back to Memorial Park is not going to totally regain the momentum we had and lost by moving it to a safer, but not so accessible park the last 2 years.

The cheese and crackers were totally consumed by hungry committee members. Brought out the Apple Crisp, not knowing how it would turn out. Everyone loved it!

When they left, decided I needed a break, so watched Survivor and then did some searches for frog images for Sinister Frog.

But the worst part is my feeling very overwhelmed and not on track these last few weeks. ASM program took the second payment today. I need to look at the guarantee to see what I actually need to do if I can’t get myself on track with it. And the health insurance challenge is really wearing on me also.

So time to head to bed and sleep the night away. Have a very busy day ahead and I should do the next step of calling the Medicaid office to get rejected there so can go to Peak Health later this week and get reinstated with that program, or so I hope. It did take a very creative person on the staff there to look at my income and expenses so I could be in the program.

And I really just want to write some more books . . . what have I gotten myself into with ASM? Will the knowledge be worth having to use just for my Nephew’s business? Or where am I going with this? Need to sleep on it and wake up focused tomorrow to handle all the things I need to do before the Chamber Marketing meeting, then a fun event that is a thank-you for advertisers hosted by KRDO. Will miss my Tony webinar, but need the night off and this event was very fun last year.


My How Time Flies When Working On Many Projects

So on Friday, October 24, I met someone from Manifest at the storage unit at 10 am and got the last of the tables back. Still missing a tent. I decided to “borrow” the leaf rake that I had moved time and time again, yet had never been used at the the last 2 Art Festivals. Many days later my new tenants noticed it and and used it to clear the leaves in the yard. Love my new tenants!

I did some other errands, then got some work done at home. Went to the UCCS opening from Sean O’Mealie and another artist I didn’t know. Very interesting show and fun conversations with other friends that showed up there. When that closed I went to Navajo Hogan and had to park far away from the bar. I was hungry, so ordered Fish & Chips and ate with a Deja Vu member far from the group. She wasn’t happy being in her seat, but I convinced her that when the music started, we would just go dance and join in with the rest of the group. And that is what happened. Really fun band. The did not take a break for a long time, but when they did, I headed home.

Had to get up really early to get to the last Farmer’s Market. My new tenants wanted to come along. Stocked up on some things I usually buy at the end of the season. And bought a case of tomatoes that I told my new tenants “if they would can them, I would pay for them and split the bounty.” They were thrilled with this idea. They had a learning experience canning apples they harvested from a tree by the cottage. And I was sure they would have total success with tomatoes. And they are very yummy!

I decided to walk through town with my camera to Commonwheel to see if I was selling any more masks. Sadly no. But got some really fun pictures of the coffins waiting for the parade, then at the end of where they turned around, took photos of the hearses and coffins. I have rarely gone to this event, and I did not stay around for the actual races, but enjoyed the creativity exhibited by those who created the coffins for the races.

The Dead will Dance at Emma Crawford's Coffin Races Egyptian Dead Dancing at Emma Crawford's Coffin Races The Dead will Dance at Emma Crawford's Coffin Races

At 2:00 pm, I was ready for the call for ASM, but discovered that had been moved to Monday. But Module 1 was open, so went in and looked at the videos for that and some for Rapid Crush. Very interesting program. But how to finance it was still a challenge to be resolved.

I met my hiking friend at the MAT for “The Miracle Man” performance. Since I used my free tickets, I bought wine and a treat for both of us. Ran into other friends and had a good chat waiting for the show to start. And it was a very fun show. Plus, he snuck in some very heavy ideas amongst the humor.

On Sunday I met with my Z author and got his “Galloping Wind” book more ready for publishing on CreateSpace. He and my Sharing Inner Health friend both made a payment on their bills which made me think a bit of abundance was on its way to me. The rest of the day, I watched more videos and took notes. Connected with my brother about how this could help him and sent him some notes that he later told me had excited him a bit with the concepts it mentioned.

Monday had a Board meeting that I did some prep for, plus did some other Art Festival tasks.

On Tuesday, I had a marketing meeting at the Chamber.Ran some errands leading up to that. The had an Expert Media Show with Tony Laidig. We set a time for a coaching call next week. I was thinking I had 4 left, but discovered after the call,I only had 3 more calls.

Went for a hike on Wednesday at Catamount. The trail I have usually taken had a sign saying it was closed for the season. So headed off on another one. Here My hiking partner met a neighbor and I ran into Little Ones’ owner’s brother. Small world. It was very different trail, but lovely. Not so much up and yet had some wonderful views of Pikes Peak. 

Pikes Peak from Catamount Trail Nov 2014

I took many photos of driftwood and the peak. I kept seeing dancing images and birds in the driftwood. Both celebrating the wonder and beauty of being out in Nature, as my hiking friend and I were doing.

Driftwood on Catamount Trail

  On the trail I had a very interesting bird encounter. This little one landed in front of me, then hopped closer and closer. Very lovely energy. A little farther along, a very fun and happy squirrel posed first on a log near me, then up in a tree hanging on a branch. Both made me smile big.

Bird and Squirell on Catamount Trail

Then on the way home, I spotted deer in the same place as we had seen them before. We stopped and got out of the car to try to get some photos of them.

Deer near Catamount Trail

I did get a few good images, but they were mostly hanging out among trees and in shadows. This is a photo from the first time we saw them. I got home pretty late, so fixed dinner and watched Survivor. Then late that night, my roommate returned from her adventure with horses. Was glad to hear she had a wonderful experience and was home safe.

Thursday was a webinar with Ben Cummings and another at 2pm. Lots to learn. Still working on how to finance this program.

I also asked the Springs Hosting Company what it would take and cost to have them move the Ellis Web site to their hosting company. The owner wrote back for me to send him info about where it was currently hosted. He looked at it and told me he would move the site for free as soon as I got the hosting account set up. Have been working on that to get info from my brother to him and have the hosting paid for now. By the end of next week, or soon thereafter the site should be moved and I will be totally done with Netfirms. Yeah!

And still working on getting ‘Galloping Wind” up on CreateSpace. Step by step getting closer.

On Halloween, I worked all day at Commonwheel. When I arrived it was frigid inside. Determined that the pilot was not lit on the furnace. Called the landlord who called his handyman who showed up about an hour later. He got the heater working. Then he and his team began to paint the hallway and the basement. The paint fumes were awful! And I was dressed more in costume than for being cold, but I opened windows and the door to get some air into the shop.

At 1:30 two other Commonwheelers showed up in costume preparing to meet the 750+ children saying “Trick or Treat” that would be showing up at our door. All the downtown businesses hand out treats so the children can find treats without chancing going around in the dark in strange neighborhoods. The costumes on both the kids and adults were wonderful! So many different ones. Such creativity had all of us smiling.

Arlene & Kathy handing out treats

And then there were some scary characters. But all in good fun for the day and town.

The Plague next door on Halloween


Our most well known and beloved artist Rockey was sitting out to hand out treats which had many adults smiling for other reasons. So happy to see him enjoying himself in the sunshine.Rockey on Halloween

That was a long day, and I had planned on going to Stargazers to dance. I was going to change into a different more costume dress, but just put on my feather mask and headed out the door after getting a bit of dinner. Tiny Barge and the Big Chill are always fun to dance to, and somehow I found the energy to dance many dances that night.  Lots of Deja Vu members were there and the dance floor was filled with costumed dancers all night long.

I had to get up early on Saturday to get to Commonwheel to sign up on the calendar for shifts I wanted the first 6 months of 2015. I was slow, and got there to be #6 in line, but still got most of the dates I preferred. Then I had to return at 2pm to work a mid-shift for another member. Better paid than by most, but I was dragging a bit. And I had signed up to go to the Townhouse to dance with Deja Vu members that night. I got home and took a short nap/rest, then changed and headed down to the Townhouse. Not too many singles showed up, but enough to do some dancing with and visit and get to know some a little better. When the band took a break, I was ready to head home and sleep!

Sunday, my tenants and I went up to a friend’s house to introduce them to someone with a great garden and get them inspired. She showed them her greenhouses and many plants and herbs that grew yearly in the garden area. then let them loose to pick apples and showed them an “apple picker” to reach ones high in the trees. They were very happy and I gathered a bag also that I hope to get peeled and into a pie and perhaps some more dehydrated. A few days before this . . . maybe on Tuesday, I had peeled and sliced many apples that were getting old. I put them in the dehydrator I had found in its “hiding” place and turned it on. It was very noisy at first, but seemed to be heating up. When I came back about a half hour later, it was stone cold. I guess it just quit. At least it didn’t do anything dramatic, like start a fire or who knows . . . So I placed the pastry papers I had for some reason bought at the Dollar Store earlier this week on 4 cookie sheets and put them in the oven overnight. They came out very tasty. So may do another round of that with these apples after seeing how many there really are and if I can make a pie also.

WOW! I am almost caught up here and did it in an hour. Though I have to admit the images were done at another sitting, some for Commonwheel’s Facebook page and others on an night I thought I would do some writing, but got distracted . . . which night was that, can’t remember.

Monday I had my coaching call with Tony. I wanted to mostly discuss the ASM program and what to do if I could not find funding, which I was pretty sure was going to be the case. He had nothing but enthusiasm for the program and he is not a part of the group that created it or added the bonuses. But he also suggested if i couldn’t pay for it now, to be thinking about when they released it again, which he thought would happen in another 6 months. He and I have some life similarities. If I was 10 years younger and not so attached to where I live, I would be flirting with him. As it is, just glad to have him in my world as a teacher and coach. I hope to meet him in person either in February at the ASM conference, or certainly in Atlanta for the NAMS event in March.

I had finally put my ballot in the ballot box after discovering I could have ended many of the robo-calls and other political calls if I had voted earlier. I had no idea that they could learn who voted and who had not voted yet! Too late to end the calls, but voted.

I had been thinking I needed to get legal with having business licenses for my home business and my rentals. I had recently read an article in the Pikes Peak Bulletin that made me aware of how off the grid I have been with my businesses. But the person I wanted to talk to was not at work that day. So I am waiting and going to talk to my accountant before I do this. I don’t want to be hit with penalties, or get into a legal battle. And it also made me wonder reading through the paperwork if CMWL was doing the right thing with its sales tax that it seems is owed on items a business purchases in another town, but needs to pay more sales/use tax to Manitou Springs. Scary thought.

The Commonwheel meeting that evening had a strange comment from a member that was not true and for some reason she had to diss me in front of the whole group, including new members. I was pretty angry, but did not engage in a disagreement with her in front of everyone, and still haven’t quite figured out what to do with this weird energy. May just have to write an email correcting her misconception with facts, rather than engaging in a conversation. After the meeting the person who had provided half the food, was saying, “If someone doesn’t take this, it is going in the trash.” Not sure why she was so into wasting food, but I and a couple of other people rescued the food that could be eaten later. And feeling I needed to talk out what had happened, I asked a festival committee member and friend if she wanted to have a drink. She said yes. When we got to the Keg, there was my “arch nemesis” from the past sitting with our President. We couldn’t not sit with them. “Arch” ordered some chicken Quesadillas to share. When the order came, one person said “I am gluten-free” and the other said “I am vegan” so neither could share the food. I indulged as the food at the meeting had not actually filled my stomach. Arch talked and talked and talked, sort of interviewing the other two about various ideas she wanted clarification. When my friend drove me home, I told her I really needed to talk a bit about what had happened at the meeting and why I thought it very ironic to be sharing food from Arch. My friend had no idea what had happened years ago between Arch and me, and was totally enthralled with the story. And she totally agreed that what was said at the meeting by the other member was out-of-line and totally not true. She congratulated me on not engaging in any discourse during the meeting and waiting to simmer down and figure out what to do about this later.

I see on my calendar I had an 11am call on Tuesday, but cannot for the life of me remember what that was about. Ah, memory!

I put some emails out to a few people, including to my brother about talking more about this business.Tony’s Expert Media show sounded as if he took a piece of our conversation on Monday and made it more generic about how to “Get Out Of Your Head” filled with the past and focus on the future and getting things done. It also was similar to another show he had done over a year ago. Can never hear this too often I guess.

On Wednesday I had to run some errands, get some groceries, etc. I got back a few minutes late for the AZON training call. These tools are really awesome and I don’t want to lose this bonus.I decided to see how far I could get watching all the videos for Tony’s PhotoShop training that I could sell to others and think about ways to create more income if I don’t get to stay in the program. When I turned off the trainings, I saw an email from my brother asking if it was not too late for me to stay in the ASM program. I emailed him back saying I hadn’t asked for a refund yet, and was going to listen to a few more trainings and could maybe squeeze out one more payment, but that would be difficult. Told him I wouldn’t be home much the next day, but to call me that night.

Took a hike that was suppose to be gentle, but got into some uphill situations and scree areas that we would have to come back down. Twice I asked my hiking friend if we should turn around and she said we came this far, let’s go on. Then after we did turn around and got to more solid ground, she said she hadn’t wanted such a challenging hike. I told her the next time I ask if we should end walking on a challenging trail, she should speak her mind, not just say, let’s go on. So hopefully in the future she won’t continue on in a way she won’t enjoy the hike. And I admit, I shouldn’t have asked, but just said, let’s go back. We also got onto a wrong turn, but that was a lovely sidetrack and gave us some fun views of the city below. Neither of us fell, and the day was sunny and the surroundings were beautiful, so I did enjoy the hike. Really happy I was not sore this morning from the challenging areas we hiked.

My brother called exactly at the moment I was about to listen to a call with Aine for the Full Moon that focuses on direction. When that call ended and I called him back, he said he was too tired and would call me the next day.

When I laid down to sleep, I suddenly remembered that I will be seeing money from an investment I have that is being sold now. That money would more than cover the payments for ASM. I emailed Tony and Rhodes (who I had emailed saying I was going to get out of the program) saying I was looking for ways to leverage future $ to pay for the program rather than ask for a refund.

Today, I went for a body “tune-up” and was a bit stiff. She worked out some of the kinks and felt much better the rest of the day. Plus it felt good to go for a walk. There is a change in the weather coming, so glad to get some sunshine.

Little One was very crazy this morning. She was up on all my desks, meowing, needing attention, then hissing, then all over the desks again. Annoying that I could not figure out what was going on with her.

I decided I wanted to get as much done for the Commonwheel Festival meeting today so I can focus on what I need to do to listen to webinars and make my decision about ASM.

When my brother called, we discussed the things that would be helpful for Ellis Fab that I would be learning. At the end, he agreed to lend me the next payment, and if necessary the following one, as long as I could pay it back when the money from the investment came to me. No problem, I can do that.

I did get many tasks finished for the Festival meeting and have an appointment with our Chamber person on Monday that I will have to add that report to the Agenda.

I have a meeting with “Galloping Wind” author, but other than that, I will be doing more training and looking at ideas for what product I want to use for ASM training. I have some ideas, but need to do more research like they have shown needs to be done. Then look at how to find a supplier for that product. Still have one in mind that relates to products I can sell in the MLM product concepts or related to my books. Just have to see what fits in the guidelines of this program.

At the same time I will be looking at how to use the tools and get a head start on putting Ellis Flail Mowers and Blades on Amazon. I am hoping to use one of the AZON tools to guide me how to write the copy and the perfect keywords to use. I am still amazed that I found flail mowers and blades for sale there, which has inspired me and my brother to get moving on better marketing for this company.

So now I am going to do my dishes and head to sleep having caught up to today!

Skipping Ahead Past the Elections

Manitou Springs had a big issue on the ballot this election.

Should we prohibit Recreational MJ or allow it to be sold in our town?

I had friends on both sides of this issue.

At the same time this petition was submitted, two more bars were were approved to open in downtown Manitou Springs. This seemed very counter-intuitive to me. Protest the use of a plant for relaxation and health reasons, while supporting more options to indulge in alcohol.

I have always said that the biggest mistake the country made was to make Hemp illegal. Hemp has many uses and has no drug potential use. It is easier and better for the soil to grow than many plants, including tobacco. It could make a difference in our need to import oil, as it is a fuel that can be used in many ways. It can create cloth or paper saving many trees. I won’t go deep into this, but I hope the brave farmers in Colorado who are legally in Colorado growing hemp prove to the rest of the country how it is a beneficial plant that needs to be made legal again!

The second biggest mistake was to make MJ illegal. Why cause prohibition of a plant, but allow the distillation of plants to be consumed for the same concept? To get a buzz.

Now I have seen people addicted to MJ, but many more addicted to alcohol. I have seen people abuse MJ, but way more people in my world have been know to abuse using alcohol. I have seen people drinking become violent, but I have never seen anyone using MJ become violent. I have seen MJ help with many illnesses cope with pain and depression. Now some people may claim the use of alcohol might dull their pain, but more often than not, they will drink so much they also cannot function. And which one of these drugs do you think contributes to depression, rather than eases it?

And have you ever heard of a disease being cured or eased by the use of alcohol? Yet hundreds of children have been helped with a variant of MJ that has been created to relieve seizures. And the relief from pain and post traumatic stress documented by users has been growing.

I am hopeful that the two, yes, only 2 stores that are open in Manitou Springs will continue to set a positive example of how this plant can be regulated similar to alcohol, and causes fewer over all problems in our community and surrounding communities.

Manitou Springs has a new tax base to support its business and art communities and serve as an example of how educate its youth in using all mind altering substances in a mindful way, rather than abusing them.

Education is key!

How Many Things Can You Do In A Day

There are times when I look at my list in the morning and wonder how I can get even half of it done.

But what I do is chose what must be done, and get that done first. Then move onto the next must do item.

That is why this blog gets so far behind. It is at the bottom of the list most days.

The whole reading and the dark Spirit coming in has been a strange detour. First the reader and a Shaman told me that Spirit needed to cross over. they wanted to come to my home, which was fine with me, except it needed to be when my roommate was gone for a week. During that visit they were going  to help or force him to do that. Then it morphed into my being the portal, have to take responsibility for him still hanging around, and that I would have to take on this task. Well, I have paid for other readings that people tried to convince him to leave, and he is still here. I just mostly ignore him, or if he does show up, thank him for the good things he did, but tell him I don’t need or want to have his energy anywhere around me. And then go on with my day. So after many conversations, I just told them, I had no time or energy to learn a new skill and not sure how it was up to me to do this. Haven’t heard back since I wrote that. And this is a very condensed version of almost two weeks of conversations.

So in the mean time, I have gotten my “How To Plan A Sustainable Event” book finalized on CreateSpace and fixed the Kindle version. And today I received 20 copies to sell and share with people and start promoting it. There is an event I am trying to be at on November 8th, but need to reconnect with those people and should have done that tonight, but at the group meeting I got distracted and forgot about having that conversation.

I also finalized “Galloping Wind” and fixed its Kindle version. Just need the author to order a proof copy and then move forward. He has has some Real Estate work that has kept him busy, so not as on top of the book as he could be. But getting it done.

And met with another friend who we want to work together on books and other projects. First we got together on a Sunday and she gave me some very yummy heritage tomatoes when I left. And a book to read about Coconut Oil and all the healthy things about it. I learned some about her healing journey she had been on the last 2 years. Then this last Sunday, she came to my home with more tomatoes. We discussed many aspects of what we could do together and separately. I gave her some “homework” and she left here excited and I had some new ideas also for where I want to go with the Journals. I have a couple started, but got distracted. I am going to have withdrawals when I run out of these tomatoes.

I went to the Holistic Fair and found an interesting product there. Relates to natural healing and pain removal. It is a not launched yet, but not sure I want to get involved in another multi-layer company. I will continue to look into it, but next added another complication to my world . . .

I went on a webinar for the Amazing Selling Machine course offered. there were over 1,500 people on this webinar and only 2 prizes.  I won $1,000, which is the down payment for the course of $4,000. That seemed like a sign I should do this. So I signed up for it.

After looking at the web site and all the training and steps it will take, I am feeling very overwhelmed, and thinking I should have just taken the money and invested in other projects, but the guarantee is amazing. So here I am, focusing on this new project to see if I can actually do it.

I asked my brother if he could handle one piece and that interested him a lot! Then we got to talking about other products that could be created in a welding shop and I gave him some ideas that he thought might work. Later, I saw a YouTube Video of a piece of equipment and sent that to him and that was also interesting to him. Not sure where that will go, but at least giving him some leads that could coincide with this Selling Program.

Juggling more things than I know what to do with right now. Festival follow up tasks, hiking, books, connecting with others . . .

My new tenants showed up on Tuesday night, a couple days ago, the same day my roommate traveled to Wyoming. Both said the trips took much more time than they had planned or expected. But all arrived safely.

Tenants are very into gardening and canning and riding bikes and vegetarians. They seem to be really nice and interesting young people who will be a delight to have as tenants.

Watched the movie GMO-OMG and it really was an eye opening Oh My God sort of experience. Some pieces were really scary. It could have been a bit shorter for more impact, but then the information shared from the journey this young took was very interesting and presented in ways that really brought home what he was trying to share.

Karma Hour at Bristol Brewing Company was a bit of a stretch, since that was the Dark Spirit’s favorite hangout. Though is was in a new location and I only went there a few times with him, so not so powerful. But one of the men closely watching our member singer playing that night and had another member concerned, came up to our group and asked if we were all from Manitou. Then he introduced himself as my roommate’s ex R. I did not recognize him, hair seems a different color and I only met him a few times. But really put a chill down my spine when he did that. There was some money raised for the MSAC and had a lovely time with a friend who showed up an we had a bit of a visit and chat about various things, including writing books.

I went to Millibo Theatre to see “The Miracle Man” on Thursday night. But there were not enough people for the show, so they bought us a glass of wine and gave us Comp tickets for another night. Tomas, the actor chatted with us. I had another shiver when I had seen how he spelled his name and it was how my Aussie Con Artist Ex spelled his name.  I also chatted with Jim about putting some of his scripts into a form that could be sold on Kindle and CreateSpace. he was interested.

I invited my hiking partner to go to the theatre on Saturday and we did. Ran into other friends that night. Really understood why he needed a larger audience, as he interacts with them a lot. It was a great show! She liked it and the venue also.

On Friday, my hiking friend called me and wanted to know if i could be Spontaneous as she had tickets to a comic up at the Air Force Academy and the friend she had planned to go with had bailed on her. I wasn’t totally enthralled by the idea, but said yes. I first stopped at the Commonwheel Gallery opening, then dashed over to her house.

It was a lovely ride up there, but the show was really disappointing. He interacted with the audience, but not if a very fun way in my opinion. When he did his own material, I found that a bit more fun, but not really very entertaining, which is why I rarely go to a comedy club – actually only been to one. My friend said this show did not reflect what she had expected either.

The Millibo show was far superior and when I left there, my jaw hurt from laughing so much. Some of that show was just silly, but also intermingled some profound thoughts. Plus, how this tiny man found so much strength that he demonstrated when he had 4 men push against him, and they collapsed on themselves, but could not budge him. Anyway, you would have to see this show to understand how amazing he really was.

Before going to Milllibo dashed over to the gallery on Ruxton to see a couple of artists who had an opening there. They had quite a crowd and were selling well. Then afterwards I was compelled to go hear “Edith Makes A Paper Chain” at Stargazers for the final set of their CD Release party. Stargazers’ owner was at the ticket desk and just told me to go in for free as they were almost finished. Got one good dance in and a heard a few of their new songs. Felt good being there for them even if just for a short time.

Been working on the Festival Thank you notes and now have to gather some of the thank you gift certificates and get them handed out next week I hope to be done with it. But other tasks need to be handled as discussed at the Festival meeting last night.

I am very disappointed in my Etsy and Commonwheel mask sales leading up to Halloween. I even posted on 3 Facebook pages some fun mask pictures. It would be lovely if more would find faces to go play on before the end of the month.

The date to go to the Paint Mines with my Greek hiking friend came this week also. She had 2 errands to do on the way there and I had one. So it was a slow start, but since both of us had things to do out East of the Springs, got them accomplished. Her errand was with a woman that knows many of my friends also, but I had never met. Fun connection. My errand was picking up old magazines, but when I got them, not sure what to do with them. And they were not is the best of condition, so would be hard to resell. I had hoped they would be more diverse, but mostly woodworking projects. I had hoped to get my plumbing friend interested in writing some articles using these as “seed” articles, but may not work how I had hoped. And ASM has distracted me from even looking at them. Still 70 magazines should have some value, just not sure how they will get used.

It was a beautiful day! We arrived needed to eat lunch immediately. My friend had made me a lovely turkey sandwich. At the only picnic table near the parking lot was an interesting couple of people. I gave my card to them and will see if anything comes of that. I had decided we would just go walk in the formations rather than take a long hike first to some far ones. We walked up every side trail among the formations. I was totally enjoying myself and so was my friend. And saw at least 5 bunnies. Some poised for me very nicely. And a hawk danced in our sight for quite some time.

OK, wish I had time or energy to go and find some photos to post, but not going to happen tonight.

I have skipped over many other things I have done since the last post, including a Festival meeting, but these are the highlights. Time for sleep, as I have a hike planned for the morning. At night, I want to go to UCCS opening for an artist friend, then signed up to dance at Navajo Hogan with Deja Vu group. Just saw the music starts at 9pm, so that will make it a late night.

It would be great if I could do some of the preliminary and bonus trainings to get a handle on ASM a bit before the official opening of the program on Saturday. Which is also the last Farmer’s Market and Coffin Races. But I doubt I will get that done with all that is planned for Friday.

And Another Two Weeks Have Flown By

The day after the Dome Rock hike, I had a lovely Green Drinks “meeting” up in Crystal Hills. For some reason, I thought we were to bring food, so I baked some Bean Project gluten-free corn bread and added diced green chilies. I surprised the hostess with this, but it was perfect, as she had prepared vegetarian chili. Not a crumb was left. And I was able to hand off the dozens of plastic pots that I had gathered from under my porch and yard to a gardener after the dinner.

Next day, besides my business, worked on Sharing Inner Health’s web tasks. She has gotten back the School of Inner Health and needed many changes to incorporate that info onto her web site, not wanting to put up another web site for the School right now.

Saturday, even though I was feeling really tired, I felt compelled to go to the Sustainability Conference to see the vendors. Met up with a woman who we chatted about many things and found connections we had no idea we had. Future marketing and working together will come from this meeting. And another person there was a great connection for web tasks and concepts, including video.

Had a couple of meetings up at the Commonwheel storage area, but still don’t have everything back. A community member died in a car accident right after Manifest and that has shaken many people to the core. Very sad.

Also had to do showings of the apartment. Some very unlikely candidates and a couple possible. But the best candidates were the young couple from the Midwest. So I called them and asked if I was to settle upon them, could they send the deposit by Paypal and a copy of the signed lease. They said yes to both, and within an hour, I had both items. I have never rented to someone without meeting face to face and having them climb the metal stairs a few times, so this is a new experience. I do feel it was the right choice and look forward to meeting them on October 23rd.

I am giving up doing the Facebook and Tweets for the gallery for pay to someone who wants to do it as her committee job. She has a daughter that needs to be at 3 different schools and that makes it difficult for her to do other committee jobs. So I met with her and gave her insights of what I do and will let her take the reins for that, except for the Festival Facebook page that she doesn’t want to work on for this committee work. Will see if I can still get a small payment for doing posts about the Gallery there . . .

The Aine phone healing circle gathering was really beautiful. Talked about our guardian angels. I shared it with a few friends.

Started off October Art Month with a party called “Artini” where made some new and reconnected with other friends. Jerry my camera salesman friend was there and we talked a bit waiting for the drawing of the Las Vegas giveaway. He is allergic to my rose oil that I wear at public gatherings, but told me it wasn’t bothering him in this venue. One woman friend wanted to create a peacock feather bustle and we made a date for her to come and make sure what I had was what we would need to order for her. And I do need to order feathers also. That turned out as a lovely meeting with her and another friend, but I was shocked when I put in the order of the price and a possible delay in shipping as Michael, the owner got on the phone and told me that  at M. Schwartz they were very busy and might not be able to ship that week. I did a little plead, but will see when they get here . . . I really need pheasant skins for the blueish feathers I use around the eyes.

In the last month, I have sold two wild and large masks that I made years ago. I had almost taken them out when I brought some other masks in, but decided they made the space look more full. So glad I left them there! One had two really tall red Macaw feathers and the other was my full Aztec mask with curled pheasant tails. So glad they get to go play.

On Thursday, my hiking friend and I were going to just go to Lovell Gulch, but she said she would drive if we wanted to go to the Crags. I was up for that as I hadn’t been there in many years. Not since my nephew had visited. We did not find the trail head parking that I normally used. Not sure why we couldn’t find it, but headed off on the trail head for Devil’s Playground and the Crags. Not as many aspen as she had hoped, but it was a really lovely hike. Lots of fun driftwood roots and rocks to photograph. And we did make it to the wonderful 360 view.  It was hard to head back down, but we did. Another longer than planned hike, but oh, so inspiring and uplifting of spirit.

Crags Rock with 360 View


Reservoirs Viewed from Crags

Really, really need to catch up on my hikes on my hiking blog. Just been too much going on and lucky to keep up with this one.

Cedar Trees at Crags


Meanwhile, back at the computer . . . I have gotten my “How To Plan A Sustainable Event” on CreateSpace. It should be showing up there tomorrow. I ordered a physical proof and immediately saw some things that needed correcting. Now I need to add those corrections to my Kindle version, then do a launch to my personal email list and perhaps do a Free day or two for the Kindle version.

I began my next project of creating some journals. The first one is a Dream Journal and has some pages created. Been distracted since I started that last Sunday, but it is in the works.

Monday I tried to get as much done for Commonwheel as possible. I also had to supply the Pizza and all the food for the Festival’s “thank-you” meal for the membership at that night’s meeting. Some day I will pass this job off to another committee member, but not this year. Hell’s Kitchen gave me a great deal on the pizzas and I found some gluten-free cookies and other items at King Soopers. Did not get as much done for the Sponsor thanks as I had hoped. I did take the posters to get laminated at Office Depot, and they had a much better price than at Kinko’s, so will return there for future Art Festival lamination needs. And easier to park too!

The meeting that night was interesting as always. We have had a turnover of about a third of our membership in the last 48 months and so many other things have changed. I looked out and realized I have many new members to get to know and connect with over the next few months.

At the Chamber Marketing meeting on Tuesday, I strongly suggested they include advertising in the newish art magazine called “Colorado Journeys” and they agreed. The next day, I learned that Maria Battista will have one of the bronzes that is in the Commonwheel Gallery show on next year’s cover. Very exciting. And Commonwheel has an page ad split with two other galleries in Manitou Springs. Looking forward to seeing that next May.

Expert Media was canceled that night due to Tony travel schedule. So I worked on getting “Galloping Wind” that is already on Kindle ready to upload to CreateSpace. That version is being reviewed and ready for us to perhaps order a physical copy to look at for proofing. 

Marketing and better web sites are in my plan for the next few weeks, besides creating journals. I really wish Tony would respond to my coaching email, but he had some really big projects the last month, so hopefully when he returns from his trip, he will respond to the email that I plan on resending this coming week.

So that takes me to last Wednesday, when my hiking partner and I set out to go to Catamount and I was driving. The aspens still looked really inviting and as we drove up the pass, we talked about where else we could go. My hiking partner suggested the other trail at Dome Rock that we had never taken. So I kept on driving past the Catamount road and up to Dome Rock. This trail followed a river and we got to a point where it spread out in a long pond with an incredible view. The aspens and sun were absolutely perfect! The rocks had many faces in them that I tried to capture also.

Dome Rock Aspen Path

Just as we finished our lunch on our rocky perch overlooking the pond, a couple came up the path leading two horses. My friend really loves getting to see horses and asked if she could pet one on the head. We got to talking and she asked where the young girl was from. It turned out she had grown up, many years after my friend, just a few blocks from her home back in New York. Small world #1 moment. She raises and trains horses in the Gaucho style of riding and her horse was a winner in competitions. Small world in that “Gallop0ing Wind” talks about Gauchos as the first real cowboys.

Dome Rock Lunch View

I chatted with the gentleman and discovered he had an eco-tourism business in Alaska. Small world #3. I gave him both of my cards-yes, I have them with me even on hikes. I really hope he does email me and we can connect in some way about sustainability. We parted ways and headed back to the car. I had been worried that since this hike started going downhill, that it would be difficult going back, but it wasn’t at all. The downhills had been gentler than I realized and we were out in no time at all. Well, we did stop for many more photos again, as the sun was shining even more brightly and the aspens looked even more glowing than our inward journey.

On the way home, decided it was still sunny and drove up the road to Catamount just to see the aspens. On the way back out, we spied a group of deer. I turned around and drove down that lane. They hung out with us and I took some photos. One worked better for my “Sustainable Event” book than the scruffy deer picture I had in it. So that was a bonus for the day’s trip.

Thursday I focused on books again and tried to listen to a training and caught up with some emails and wrote up some bills for HieroGraphics for Z and Sharing Inner Health. I had created a flyer for myself for KM to take to the Holistic Fair along with my Essential Oils books also. A very computer day. 

Friday as I was getting ready to pack up a mask sold on Etsy, I felt compelled to check my email to see if another one had sold. There was a conversation from someone wanting to know if I could get a mask to her by next Friday. No problem, I assured her. So she ordered it and I then packed both masks.

So that was yesterday-yeah! almost caught up! And yesterday I was scheduled for a tune-up of my body at Sharing Inner Health. She was a bit behind schedule, so suggested I do a reading by Darlene first. That was very interesting and went longer than planned. When she began and asked for my Guides to come in, she was surprised by a very dark energy that came instead. I immediately knew who it was. She described the energy and actions of asking for forgiveness and a few other things so there was no mistaking the spirit’s earthly connection. It is time for him to “cross over” and leave all of us alone that he messed with when alive and still in the Spirit world. This is one of the stories I really need to write out, but when?

Although he never totally left the room, she was able to actually give me a reading relating to my question that I had come in with to receive some direction about. Very interesting and affirming that I am on the right path with my writing and publishing ideas.

I usually can let go of this dark spirit energy, but he was very determined to be part of this session, so we went back and discussed how to help him “cross over” willingly or not. But I can’t talk about it with my roommate and maybe no one else until after a Shaman steps in to help with this challenge. A shiver went up my spine as I write this, as much as I try to not let his presence come into my world, it is hard to ignore, as I am using the computer and monitor he gave me and sitting in a chair that was in his office. The chair may need to leave, but have to just keep doing clearings for the equipment. Feels like a sage clearing is in the plans for tomorrow.

I created some masks and have sold some on Etsy and at the Commonwheel. I do hope Halloween season keeps sending me some more mask sales both places to have a really good month and I can afford tires in November from those sales!

So today, I got up and photographed the masks, put two on Etsy. (I keep getting hints that I need to use some of the head shots with masks for books or journals or something.) Took 3 to Commonwheel and got them in there. Went to the Farmer’s Market. No roasted chilies, dang. I had a breakfast burrito instead of the sweet treat I had thought I would eat. Then up to the Holistic Fair, got lost trying to find it. Had some treatments. Connected with people about writing books and a possible new business opportunity relating to both sustainable practices and healing. Made a date to go up to one of my Essential Oils down-line to come to her home and maybe get some extra garden items and talk about what she is learning and wants to write about tomorrow. Stopped at Costco for 2 items, as that was all the cash I had on me. Enjoyed the beauty of autumn colors without my camera-yikes, I forgot that again. But it was alright, I just enjoyed what I saw.

 I need to decide if I am going to purchase the Thrive Themes and get more serious about using web sites for commercial purposes. This current theme doesn’t easily work for me that way. And I emailed the responses about old books and magazines with offers to purchase for what I could afford. Will be interesting to see if either or perhaps both accept my offers.

And once again for about the fourth time this week, I will not get to bed until about midnight. Gotta quit that. Makes the day too short by not being able to get up by 8:00 am. Not that I don’t work many hours, just would be better for connecting with others and going to meetings if I could start my day earlier.

FantaFaces Heads talking



OMG-Has It Really Been Two Weeks And No Posts?

Yes, I guess it has. My how time flies when your word is filled with multiple jobs and tasks that need to get handled.

And tomorrow I flip the calendar from the fun picture of a Blue-Footed Booby to Snow Leopard. Time to get serious about my publishing business.

Wednesday I was ready to go on a hike at Lovell Gulch. My hiking partner called to say she wuld be early, a first for her. And then she asked if I wanted to go to Deckers? I had given up on seeing Deckers and the S. Platte River this year. So I joyfully said YES! I was almost ready when she arrived and off we went. It was a really beautiful day.

South Platte River at Deckers

We were pleasantly surprised by all the different stages of plants up there. Some brilliantly in bloom, others changing colors and some gone to seed in a beautiful way.

Flowers at Deckers in Colorado

We hiked as far back as we could, until we reached a rather tricky section of the trail and decided to turn around and find a place to stop and eat lunch. My hiking partner took off her shoes and waded to a rock a bit off the shore of the river. I walked up a bit and took more photos. 

Sumac and view to South Platte at Deckers

The sun made the river sparkle and the colors of everything seemed almost surreal in some areas. The sumac was particularly brilliantly colorful red.

Sumac at Deckers

That brought back memories of my childhood in Illinois and the colorful leaves turning colors each autumn. I love autumn colors and miss the oaks and maples a bit. But this day I totally enjoyed the colors surrounding us.

The hike back always takes less time than going in, as we usually hike up going in on most hikes. We saw lizards and ducks and many birds in the air. All in all, a wonderful time out in nature.

And someday I need to get back to posting my full hikes on my Spirit Renewing Hikes blog . . .

I had to be back for an MSAC meeting, but that was at 6pm, and I made it time to change shoes and even walked there after our 6+ mile hike that day. I almost didn’t, but was glad I did, as it was a lovely night in Manitou Springs also.

I did miss a training by Tony for Adobe Illustrator that night, but I had decided with those trainings being on Wednesday nights, I would just have to listen to the replays.

The next day I worked all day at the Commonwheel Co-op. So glad for the shorter hours now. Maria Battista and Roger were hanging her one-woman show: “Renaissance: Sculpture as Poetic Pilgrimage” that had bronzes, sketches and jewelry. It took them all day to get it how she wanted it to look. It is a fantastic show! She is such a talented artist and a beautiful person in all ways. I took some photos to do the blog posts on the Commonwheel Facebook page. I did have some fun with people who bought a couple of my FantaFaces Masks that day.

My roommate had left for a music festival for the week, so Little One and I had the house to ourselves. I came home, fed the kitty and went to bed early.

I got a lot of work done Friday, then headed out for 3rd Friday Art Walk. This is always a fun time to connect with other artists and enjoy the food and drink offered at the various galleries. A couple of guys were playing the trumpet and the electric piano in front of Green Horse Gallery, making a beautiful noise in the night. I actually made it to the MAC for a friend’s opening there, then back up to Mountain Living Studio where she was serving very potent Margaritas. I staggered home, fed the kitty and fell into bed.

I asked my tenant again if she had made any decisions about staying or moving. It was a hard decision, but she will be moving out. That said, I had to post it on Craig’s List. I was going to get some signs made, but that never happened for various distractions came about before I got to doing that. A few days later, I also posted it on Postalets. I had decided to raise this rent by $75. I had never made that much of a leap in rent, but thought since I had a month and the cottage had so many people wanting it, I’d try the new rate for a week and see if I got responses.

I had so much to do that I decided to skip the Artist Studio Tour this year. Just wasn’t into driving around town to visit and enjoy art and food offerings at many friends’ studios. Mostly wasn’t into driving and felt I would rather spend time off hiking among the Aspens, which was my next scheduled hike.

And then there was Manifest happening on Sunday. I had volunteered to help with the demo booth set-up for Commonwheel members to do demonstrations. I got that done, then walked down to Memorial Park in time to join the Aqua Luz Yoga Spiral and ran into my hiking friend. We spiraled in and out, blessing some crystals that were then tossed into Fountain Creek. All over the country people were joining in to do a blessing of the waters like this. I wandered around to other groups, then went to dance to Mo Mungus. The music got moved indoors as the weather looked threatening, but it never did rain that day. Danced to the Reggae sounds, then got back with my car in time to take down the demo booth set-up, which is still in my car . . .

Monday, I worked hard to get some reports done for the Board meeting and did some work outside. I cleared out lots of things from under the front porch. There were dozens of empty plastic plant containers! I was very wary of the possibility of spiders after hearing of one of my Festival committee members 2nd encounter with a Brown Recluse. What to do with all these empty planters? I hate to send them to the landfill, not very sustainable of me. So I emailed a gardener friend and she said I should bring them to Green Drinks on Thursday, and if no one else wanted them, she would take them. So into my car they went.

The Manifest review meeting was canceled, as someone in the community had died in a car accident and others were not up for a meeting. So my car was still filled with items to return and that needed to go to the storage unit or get on my porch. And many plastic containers.

I had suggested to my hiking partner that we could go out east to visit a friend with a Clydesdale pony that was heading to a new home Oct. 6th, but with the weather predicted to be still very warm and the Aspens were calling us, she wanted to drive the Golden Tour Route and I wanted to go on a hike. We decided to do both on Wednesday.

I worked hard to get my book finalized, but just too much to do and I kept wanting to add more photos. I was also cross referencing the Kindle Book and making corrections there. I attended the Expert Media Show and got pretty far on the book, but had to quit so I would be well rested for the journey into Aspen Country.

I think this was the most beautiful Aspen trip, or one of the top three in my memory. Hiking with another friend for her 60th birthday 4 years ago to Pancake Rocks was pretty spectacular and the view up there was awesome.

I did get some very excellent images including this one with the barn in it. I was snapping photos while my friend was driving and even some of those came out really beautiful. But for this one, she had pulled off for the view and I got out and took a series of photos, including this one.

Aspens with barn in front

I think this is my new favorite image.

After the drive which we took the opposite direction than most of the traffic was going, as we started in Florissant and went to Cripple Creek and Victor, so that we could easily catch the road to Dome Rock and do our hike there.Aspen Path at Dome Rock

The colors this year were brilliantly golden with more reds and oranges than I have seen in many years. We hiked for 5 hours! I took dozens of pictures, my friend rested and enjoyed herself immensely being out in this incredible beauty.

Aspen Groves near Cripple Creek

I believe in always looking up in life and I have tried for many an aspen season to capture a photo or more that fits that concept. Some came close on this trip.

Looking up through the Aspens

But the sky didn’t totally cooperate and was filled with clouds when I found the group of trees I wanted to stand under and take photos looking up to the sky. A fun exercise and a different way of viewing the Aspens.

I gave us both a NingiaNitro as we were approaching the final uphill climb we both wanted to surmount. It really did give us a good boost of energy and we got to a lovely view point. I went a little farther as my friend rested and enjoyed the view. There were incredible driftwood logs and I was almost lured to go further, but remembered the last time I did that and how how the the uphill climb was to get back to my friend’s resting area. So headed back myself. We ate lunch and there was this ant who had to have piece of cheese to take back home. It was almost as big as he was, but he carried it away and hopefully to his nest.

We headed back and the aspens were glowing in the setting sun.

And now I haven’t caught up, but it is time for me to get some sleep . . . and my leg is swelling up from sitting too long so will do some oils and elevate it . . . until next time.

Catching Up With My Own Life and Commonwheel Reports

This last week has been filled with doing reports for the Art Festival for the Festival Committee meeting and catching up with many things in my own world. Plus a couple of hikes.

The weather has been so very beautiful, I just couldn’t resist hiking when my friend called as mentioned, and then I called her when she was in her car heading to take a short walk in Red Rocks. I told her I could change clothes and meet her there and take a longer hike if she wanted on a trail we had passed up a few times for various reasons. I was ever so glad I did this! We got back into a forested area and that was totally delightful and filled with quiet moments. We sat for a bit and talked and just listened to the birds and squirrels who chattered at us.

It was very good for my spirit to take this time away from everything and do something nice just for myself.

I would add some photos, but am backing up my whole computer into a new cloud storage area that is really reasonable and haven’t taken the time to get the photos off the camera. This back-up is taking a bit of time and I don’t want to add new photo files while it is going on, but soon it should be done and I will get a photo or two posted here.

I got the masks that didn’t get checked into the Commonwheel Gallery onto Etsy, plus a few pairs of earrings. Halloween is coming and I do hope to have some sales there again this year. I need to look at that site and figure out how to sell a few more Estate Items, but that isn’t as high a priority as getting my Sustainable Book updated on Kindle and published on CreateSpace.

And a coaching session with Tony to push my financial situation into a better one by Christmas. (Goal)

I do need to get my inventory of what products I have, books, etc., and what are in the works, not just for this call, but for my own edification, to get motivated to do more marketing and get a bigger list. Too bad, no one is actually reading this blog currently, but it is a good practice of journaling. And some stories will surely be based upon it.

Next, need to catch up on my hiking blog that has more potential for a couple of books and finding an audience.

I did meet with the banker who set up the car loan that just repaid itself for a very small amount of added interest. That loan finished and we did another one with even lower interest. It pushed my Credit Score over the 700 mark and that is amazing in lieu of the fact that my bankruptcy, thanks to Miss Barbara Leuin and her pal Enrique Montiel, is only a couple of years out.

But enough grousing. Time to move forward . . . except need to do just one more grouse – had a call for a “quick” public opinion survey that went on for almost 15 minutes . . . That is not what I call “quick”. And it was very biased in many of the questions. Wonder who really was doing the survey?

On Friday, there was a gathering at MAC for the governor and all the individuals who received Grants after the flooding of 2013 and other important entities in getting Manitou Springs back on track for businesses and the mitigation work. Since Commonwheel recieved one of the Grants, our President and I were invited. I decided to bring one of my Flood Books along and if the opportunity arose, give it to the Governor. There was a lovely buffet and connected with some people I hadn’t seen much this summer. And the opportunity arose to give the book to the Governor’s assistant, who then had me introduced to the Governor and there is supposedly a photo that was taken that was to be sent to the Chamber for a FaceBook post. Forgot to ask them for that today when I went to a marketing meeting at the Chamber. When I get it, I will come back and add it to this post.

I am still doing the FaceBook posts for the Gallery. The person who may take it over and I have not been able to meet yet. So glad to have the income, but it is time consuming. Plus, I don’t know exactly how much she wants to do. Maybe meet next week.

My roommate is leaving for a week tomorrow morning. It will be good to have the house to myself for a short time. Not that she isn’t gone a lot, but I am hoping to also get some rearranging of the house and more chaos sorted out without someone else around. You know how sometimes when clearing spaces, they get worse before they get better. And I anticipate that as a possibility with what I need to look at for getting the house more aligned with the items that are just hanging out in places that they need to leave. And just realized I don’t know where I put the images from the 36 Views of Pikes Peak show. Not Good!

My upstairs tenant is not sure if she is renewing. I mentioned this to a friend who wants to know “right now” if the place will be available and wants to see it. Can’t really make that happen as the upstairs tenant has until the 22nd to give me notice or say she will renew. I guess I will try and talk to her tomorrow, just wasn’t up for it today as I had 2 meetings, a drive to the bank out east and a training today. Just couldn’t put anything more into my day or energy.

The Manifest folks wanted to borrow some signs and tents. So I met her and her two strong helpers at the Storage Unit. She got excited about the number of tents and sides she could borrow. The space was a mess. They pulled out almost everything to get at what they needed. Then put things back in an orderly fashion. I got a tent for Commonwheel’s demonstrators and some chairs put into my car. Then I decided to take our some items that we would never use and get rid of them myself. The guys offered to get rid of the leaking sandbags for me and tossed them into their truck.

One of the Manifest supporters has a storage unit just across from where ours is located, so they put some of the items in there for ease of access on Saturday. The said they would touch up and make look better some of the signs they took. Win! When they put things back into the storage area, it looks much better than it was. And with the items I took, although a pain for me right now, will avoid being moved many more times and not used for anything in the future.

At the Chamber Marketing meeting, I brought up the concept all event organizers should look at what we can share, what signage we could make look better and brand for Manitou, and in general maybe spend less on storage units if we banded together. Something to think about.

I need to get up in the morning and after getting everything ready for a hike, get some of the items out of my car, so on Manifest Sunday, the items we need will be easy to get in and out of my car.

And this hike was to be a different one, but the heat of 85 degrees made it not as interesting to go out east to see a young Clydesdale. Let’s start with and email I sent to a long ago High School connection that I keep seeing mentioned in a column in the Gazette. I was going to go out to his place last year, but then the flooding happened and I didn’t get out there and hadn’t connected in awhile. When I read his name again, I decided to email him and ask about a visit to their “ranch” and just reconnect. When he saw my email, he immediately responded because he has just written one to me, but his wife, who has a strange condition that causes electrical machines to turn off, or die, had walked in the room and his computer shut down. He had to rewrite the email that he was sending asking me if I knew anyone who did Kirlian Photography. I don’t, but had a suggestion for him where he could find that service. We got to chatting via email about his home and the area around it and other health issues. I called RE and asked him for his friend’s phone number that has this same electrical body issue. I thought to connect them to see how each handle it. Not sure where that will go, but got out of the middle of the conversation about that.

My hiking friend loves animals, horses in particular, so I thought a visit to these folks would be a perfect adventure and they have lots of interesting historical things to be seen around their land. But the prediction of 85 degree heat does not sound enticing, so we will have to put this adventure off, but not too long as the young Clydesdale leaves for a new home on October 6th.

This seems like a good place to end tonight.

Sustainable Commonwheel Art Festival Not as Successful as in the Past

When I heard the number for how much waste was diverted from the Landfill this year, I was a bit disappointed. Then again, I had to realize that the main person who has headed this up the past 3 years was in Minnesota at a conference. And so were about 4 other people who had been very helpful as Bin Guardians in the past. Still there were many people who put in a lot of time and effort to reach the 70% diversion this year. And that is still a huge amount of waste that was either composted or recycled compared to it all going to the Landfill.

Commonwheel Art Festival 2014_Food

I was told at the waste facility a great deal of compostable waste was in the Landfill containers. I believe if we had compostable bags for the Food Vendors that would help bring the numbers up. They are so overwhelmed and busy during the Art Festival, it is expecting a lot of them to be totally aware of how they handle all the compostable materials. Much of it got bagged into plastic bags, which meant some of the more focused Bin Guardians had to slit the bags to dump the waste.

Commonwheel Art Festival 2014_Bins

So we will see what happens next year.

And I sent my Sustainable Festival book off to someone who has helped with this the Art Festivals Waste Wise side since the very beginning after tweaking it a bit more.

I was totally exhausted the next few days. But had many things to catch up with as follow up after the Art Festival and in my own life. It has taken days for me to feel even close to back to a normal energy level. Thanks to my Sharing Inner Health person, I did get a longer Tune-up session as no one was showing up in the time slot after me. Then her next person was late also. That was my Greek hiking partner, so I offered to walk with her to my house and back with my camera so she would have something to do besides just sit and wait until the person who was on time was finished.

I had wanted to get a picture of the Horse Chestnut tree with its spiky fruits and a picture of the house again.

Horse Chestnuts at Sharing Inner Healt

Which reminds me, I need to go put those images on that web site tomorrow.

I had asked my friends who watch “So You Think You Can Dance” and “Survivor” if we wanted to watch the “Dance” finale over dinner on Wednesday. She emailed me and said she would fix dinner, and yes, let’s do that, as she knew I needed a break. I did bring Gluten-Free cookies for her husband and she sent me home with a loaf of her Chocolate Desert Bread. It was a lovely evening.

On the Friday after the Art Festival, I returned keys and did a couple other errands. Then I bought myself a lunch at Wendy’s and sat at a picnic table in the Garden of the Gods. I walked out onto an very easy trail from there. The Sage was shimmering silver and the strange alien purple flowers were very beautiful.

Garden of the Gods Sept 2014

But I still wanted to do a longer hike and get into the rock formations. So I drove over to another parking area and took a trail I had never been on before. I was very fascinated by the two red rock faces and the white sphere.

Garden of the Gods Sept 2014I took many photos of them from all different angles. Each twist and turn of the path took me higher and gave me different views of these formations that I had seen from other areas of the Garden of the Gods. But this trail got me very close to them.

Garden of the Gods Sept 2014-2 Formations

And I found them even more fascinating the closer I got.I am always amazed at the trees that seem to be growing out of solid rock. The contrast of the green against this white rock which also is a stark contrast to the red rocks that surround it fascinate me.

It was very hot this day. I did have plenty of water with me and my meal had me feeling comfortable fueled for the hike. I was enjoying the continuation of sunny days after all the rainy ones this summer. Still I wouldn’t have minded a bit of cloud cover over me. And as you can see there were clouds in the sky, but they all missed covering the sun. I found myself enjoying the heat for the most part. But did sit on a shaded rock to just drink in the beauty of this special place I am so blessed to be just 10 minutes away from and can drive through or hike many times.

Garden of the Gods Sept 2014-Pikes Peak

I saw this stoney formation that looked like its out reaching arm was holding Pikes Peak. And then there was the smiling face in the cloud above the Cedar tree. I am so far behind on my hiking web site, but at least am almost caught up here. And can share glimpses of the hikes that have renewed my Spirit these last few days.

On Saturday, I slept later than planned. Headed to the Farmer’s Market and took coolers so I could go to the What If . . . Festival without having to take my produce home. I missed all the members of the Deja Vu Singles group, but ran into other friends while watching Edith Makes a Paper Chain. Then enjoyed the Chalk Art on the sidewalk. The most fun thing was the cardboard box maze created by Concrete Couch.

09-09-14_What If Boxes_LifeUpside_3091

Watching the children crawl into this maze and then pop out with smiles on their faces was very fun.

And then there was the dragon . . .

What If Dragon_72FB_3095

Led by young lady that made me think of Alice In Wonderland by how she was dressed. All in all, a very delightful experience.

I had a few more trainings with Tony Laidig. But have missed most of the ones for Adobe Illustrator. He announced he may be doing only one more training this year, then taking a break from trainings, except for the Expert Media Show. That would give me a chance to catch up with some I have bought, but not watched.

On Sunday morning my other hiking friend called just as I was getting dressed. She wanted to know if I wanted to join her on a short hike in the Garden of the Gods. It was another glorious day, so I said yes. Got dressed, had a quick breakfast then met her at the trail head. Yellow was definitely the color of the day for flowers.

Yellow Flowers in Garden of the Gods

 This is a pretty easy loop with great views of Pikes Peak.

Pikes Peak Garden of the Gods

And once again, it was a very warm hike. So glad I had put ice cubes into my water bag.

When I got home from this hike, my Greek hiking friend rang my doorbell. I wasn’t up for another walk. She had some lovely Einkorn based cookies to leave with me. Yum!

I had to get Facebook Posts and Tweets done to thank a few people, but more importantly for the upcoming Gallery One-Woman show. I spent some very focused time doing that. I will be sad to see the pay checks for this go away, but someone wants it as her co-op committee job and she does Pinterest also. So we will she how that all works out. We need to soon to discuss what she does and doesn’t want to do. I know I will still be doing the Festival Facebook postings, and I hadn’t gotten paid for those before, other than when I posted Gallery posts on this page. Changes are coming.

I went up to the North Library to see the 36 Views of Pikes Peak show. Good thing I did! It was the last day. Buy I couldn’t pick up the photos or Tina’s painting, as it wasn’t scheduled to come down until that night.

36 Views of Pikes Peak at North Library

I actually had two photos selected.

My 2 Views of Pikes Peak at North Library

After the whirlwind glitch filled attempts to get them printed and delivering them late, I was very glad to see them there. “Serving up Pikes Peak” came from a hike on Ute Valley Trail. I did a bit of manipulation to get it perfectly aligned, but thought it was a very fun image.

Though I think the one with the water wheel should have been there also. But the Peak was a bit subdued in that one. I am still planning on doing a book with inspirational sayings with many views of Pikes Peak that I had started before this exhibit. September is “Book Month”, but not sure if that is one that will happen in September. Still, in the works.

Stopped by the place I bought the printer. They say no printer will print landscape legal without being very expensive. She did give me the promised inks and they offered if I bring it in, to show me how to force it to print landscape legal pages. A future project, as I only need that for the Festival Park Map.

Talked to my upstairs tenant and she is thinking of moving out when her lease ends late October. If she does, I am going to raise that rent quite a bit. And will talk to some people who might be in the market for a new space. Still with utilities included and hearing what other places are renting for, I am sure I can get my asking price this time. Especially with such a tight market for apartments and people wanting to live in Manitou Springs.

A piece of good news came when I called a banker where I have a car loan that is just $13 from being paid off. I did this to help raise my credit score and it worked well. After such a short time from the bankruptcy because of B. L. defaulting on all the loans I had made to her & another “holistic” practitioner, this is really amazing and good news. Now if I can just get my income to look more solid, I will feel much more comfortable when  my house loan changes in 2017. Wish me luck.

I did make some progress on clearing up some of the chaos in my home today. And harvested some catnip and peppermint to dry. Then took photos of my masks and earrings to post on Etsy tomorrow.

I believe I have almost caught up to today. Yeah!

And with adding all these photos, it is late again. And my bed is not made . . . Time to give Little One her last feeding she is telling me, then get my bed made and crawl into it for a good night’s sleep.

Catching Up After the Commonwheel Art Festival Part 2

Looking back at this year and all the years I have coordinated the Commonwheel Art Festival, I came to the realization that I have put a very personal touch to how I do this job. I am very vested in it coming out well. And I am where the buck stops. This last year it took more of my time than I was paid for by many hours, hell, days. And I let it take over my life quite a bit. From August 9, 2013 when Memorial Park and much of Downtown Manitou Springs was flooded, including the basement of the gallery, I became enmeshed in making the Art Festival survive and successful for its 39th and 40th years.
But now that I have accomplished that, I realize how much it took out of me to make that happen. How to handle it for this next year and what its future will be must be looked at very seriously by myself and the Commonwheel members.

But now back to catching up with this some other events that happened before and during the Art Festival.

Just before the Art Festival, I had to switch out the cottage with an new tenant for the 3rd time in 5 months. During the time when both tenants were not living there I had wanted my Handy-man Friend to do a couple of simple fixes. Adding electric to the bathroom where there never has been an outlet before, and putting a new one in the kitchen. Then do a fix of an area of the foundation. But when we got in there, the ceiling in the kitchen looked really bad. Was worried there was still a leak. So that became a huge project. The electric cost quite a bit more than I anticipated and the ceiling fix was very expensive. I decided to forgo the foundation work, but the bills came to more than 2 months rent, which I don’t have in savings. And with the Flood insurance coming due to the tune of almost $1,900.00, I could only pay part of those bills. A large part, but still, not all of them. Hopefully everyone who owes me money will pay me in time to take care of my monthly bills and the Flood Insurance. This is not how I like to do business, and am looking forward to making a change for the better in my financial world in the very near future.

Then on the Wednesday before the Festival, my Sharing Inner Health client told me that the person she had sold the School of Inner Health to, had given everything back to her, as he could not make it a success. So she needed me to do some work on the web site to let people know that Module One for the Craniosacral training would still be held in early October and somehow get all references to the School’s web site removed. Just before midnight on Thursday I worked on it and missed some connections, but did get a page up for the class. Not something I had time or energy to add to my life right then.

And I had to start the process of getting the info off the web site that we needed so it could be shut down and the domain name moved back to KM’s possession so she could work on finding someone to buy the School again as she kept it alive by doing the trainings she is so skilled at doing. But that had to wait until the week after the Festival was over and I had a day or two to rest and recuperate.

So after the call from Security that the sprinklers came on on Friday night, I dreaded what I would discover or hear from the food vendors in the morning. Since it had drizzled rain during set-up, it seems no food vendor actually realized that the moisture in the area was new and caused by sprinklers. No one asked me or the Security person about anything. And so I assume there was no real damage incurred. Whew!

The Saturday morning check-in went fairly smoothly. The Food Vendor area was the most challenging. And later, had a complaint that the BBQ person was advertising hamburgers & hot dogs & Brats, which he had been informed was to be sold by a vendor that only had those items. He argued a bit, saying he just was told to now “emphasize them”, not exempt them completely. He had some very unique items and real BBQ items that we had wanted to have there. It was pointed out to him that he had them at eye level on a hand written menu. Not very discreet. So he erased all but the Brats. Not the perfect solution, but as the days went on, it became clear he wasn’t really a good fit for future Art Festivals. No need to go into reasons here. Except, to note that as everyone was checking out on Monday, one of his helpers came up and asked what they were suppose to do with the “juice.” I asked him, what type of “juice” was he talking about. The frying oil was what he then told me. I had the perfect answer. “It is a state law that anyone who uses oil for frying in a commercial setting is responsible for the proper disposal of that oil.” He didn’t look happy, but couldn’t argue with me. Hopefully they handled it correctly.

About mid-day, a couple of artists came to the Info Booth to tell us that one of the photographers with a double booth was not the artist that did the work. That the person there was a rep. Totally against our rules. I was pretty tired and went over to look at the booth. He had many large photographs not just on the walls, but lined up on the ground. They all had paper on the corners. I asked the person in the booth if I could talk to Mr. Gertz whose signature was on the “art” hanging there. No, he was in Arizona and Santos was there as his business partner. We moved to the back area of the booth to continue our conversation. I made it clear that he/they had broken the contract that was signed by the artist that was suppose to be in attendance.He argued that we had accepted both of them. I repeated that the artist who signed the work needed to be at the Art Festival, and not one of the images had any signature but Gertz, who was not there.

Then I pointed out that his booth looked more like Walmart than an artist’s booth.I suggested that he remove the items that were on the ground and he agreed to do that. I asked him if he looked around the Art Festival, if he thought his booth fit into how the others looked. He was looking pretty sheepish at this moment. 

Now I was talking rather quietly, but clearly make him understand that this booth was not acceptable and that they had clearly broken the signed contract.

Suddenly a woman came up and and told me I should not talk to this man this way. She and other customers were feeling really distraught by my “ranting” at him.  I pointed out that I was the Festival coordinator and he had broken a very important rule in our contract. Then she raised her voice and told me I had no right to talk to him this way. Or that I should do it behind the booth. We were at the back in the opening to the back of the booth, but not behind the booth. She got louder and declared she was leaving the Festival because I had upset her so badly by treating this man so rudely in public. By this time, she had quite a few people much more distraught than my quiet conversation had caused. And later, I heard another artist talking about her ranting about my actions in his booth to his customer’s discomfort. Not sure how many times she did this, but hopefully not many.

When she left, Santos said he would remove most of the items that were stacked up on the ground. So I left it at that.

The next morning, another one or two artists came to complain about this booth. I gathered a coupe of Festival committee members together to discuss what to do. And I had the contract in hand. It was only signed by Gertz. On member said she would be willing to ask Santos to leave. We discussed whether to do it immediately, or let him stay one more day. She was adamant that it needed to be done now and for him to pack up so other artists could see that Commonwheel stood by its contract with them. She stated what she would say, and circled the two most important lines in the contract. That  the artist needed to be present and if the contract was broken in any way, he would be asked to leave with no refund.We went to his booth. She asked to speak with Mr. Gertz. Of course, he was not there. Then she produced the contract and asked him to pack up and leave. He did not argue, but said he would need help getting a parking space for his truck to get out of the Festival. We were able to provide that help. So he left and many artists were impressed and thanked us for removing this interloper.

I had to ask three other groups of people to leave that set up without being part of the Art Festival. That is an easy task for me and has happened many times in the past. I just tell them we “own” the park for three days and everyone in the park has juried in and paid a large sum of money to participate in this Art Festival. Each day, they did pack up and leave. One uninvited vendor’s partner tried to convince the other one to stay, but I hung out until they were packing up felt sure they would leave. If they had not begun packing in earnest, I would have had a second conversation that would have informed them that I would have a Police Officer there to escort them out of the park. I hate having to go to that level, but usually just the mention of having the Police come in gets an uninvited vendor packing very quickly.

But mostly the art work was awesome and some artists had phenomenal sales, whereas others didn’t. Sort of “par for the course” as my Dad used to say.

Commonwheel Art Festival 2014_BirdHouses

These are the Bird Houses that made the front page of the Gazette on Saturday.

A person claiming to be part of a non-profit told the Info Booth Attendee that he had permission from Officer Johnson to set up a table on the edge of the Art Festival. I called him and said, he did not have our approval. Then I called Dispatch to find out if Officer Johnson would come talk with me. Two other officers showed up, but were pretty sure Officer Johnson was not working that day. By the time they arrived and searched the perimeter, this person was no where to be found.

One of the best things for me this year was that even without my being present much in the Group Booth, my Fantafaces items sold better than usual. That was a welcome piece of news each day. And actually without the jeweler who usually was there and took up a large area with her beautiful display, the booth looked more open and inviting and everyone in it seemed to sell better than year’s past.  Something to think about in the future.

And the new sound person kept the music at a level that was enjoyable and had very few, almost nil complaints from artists. I had been a bit worried as the Music Tent was set up closer to the artist booths than I had anticipated. But it worked out well and there were many compliments of the music selections this year.

Commonwheel Art Festival 2014_Music

I did an interview on Friday with someone from the Gazette. Artists asked why someone would come on set-up day, but I said, if it gets us a story on Saturday or Sunday, rather than Monday, I would be very happy. I was thrilled when I opened Saturday’s paper and saw a photo of the Bird House creator filling almost a third of the front page. He got many people looking for him and we could not have asked for a better story!

I met with the Live Remote Radio Station people. The DJ was a bit cranky, had bad instructions to the park and could not get a signal. The woman with him was new to the area and was delighted by everything she saw and loved the give-away items I had for them. She wants to keep informed more about art happenings in the area. And just now realized I need to connect with her very soon.

On Monday, a TV station showed up for an interview. I asked our President to do it. I was not feeling peppy or pretty. Plus, I was afraid I would say something about how sad it was to let people see all the things they wouldn’t have a chance to see as by the time this would air, the Art Festival would be over. So best for me not to do that interview. She agreed and I am sure presented herself and Commonwheel in a very positive light.

Signage was still a challenge. Getting it where it needed to be was not an easy task, even when I drew maps for people. Thank Goodness for RE’s help. But even he missed placed one important sign that I got moved with the help of a strong man who saw me struggling to get the informative sign closer to where the Shuttles stopped.

And the Shuttles, geez, the drivers just had to be talked to every day. They were giving confusing instructions about which shuttles to catche and where the first day. I tried to meet with each driver the next two mornings and had fewer complaints.

Each night I went to dinner with two of my long distant girl friend artists. We were joined with different people each night. At the Keg for our Chicken Berry Salads, an artist couple joined us. Pretty interesting dynamics between them. Made for interesting conversations.

Another night a young man from Denver who we had met last year and had brought a couple with him to the Art Festival. Quite a few of this group had dietary restrictions, sowe all went to the Ethiopian Restaurant that K had introduced me to and was a safe bet for vegetarian and gluten-free meals. A couple of artists were not comfortable with the “we eat with our fingers” and finagled a fork. There was mixed reviews of the Teff rolled and spongy bread. The Denver woman and I had a very interesting conversation about blood clots and we learned more about the young man and his love of rocks and gems. I had driven us all there, which was good since parking was scarce and I couldn’t imagine 2 or 3 vans trying to find spaces. The young man and the artist painter had just met went to different restaurant the next night with Tofu Salad as their goal.

On the last night, getting all packed up was quite a challenge. I ended up having to do much more than I had planned to get things packed up from the Info Booth. And had to figure out the logistics of getting the stage to the Chamber’s storage unit, then the rest to ours. But I forgot to instruct them to leave one of the tents, the really short one in the front of the Storage unit to use on the 21st. I am afraid to go up there and look at the chaos. Plus the gathering of signs was another challenge. JM & RE were tasked with working on that on the next day.

I also forgot that I had told RE that if he didn’t find another ride back from the UHaul place to the park and his vehicle to call me. He must have called when I was without my phone when I was changing out of my wet shoes and pants caused by stepping into a muddy puddle hidden under straw when I went to get the eclectic switched off. Or perhaps he called when I was at the noisy restaurant. I had gone home and emptied some items (the tax money and the prize box) out of my car and changed clothes, then picked up one artist and headed downtown for dinner to meet with the artist friend who had come down from Denver. He got a late call also, as the artist with his phone number had forgotten to call him, but caught him just before he ordered at another restaurant. He is a very interesting young man. And his partner is a published author. The artist is a very hyper person, hope they make it as a couple. They did seem very much in love and had just moved in together with plans to move to one of the Carolina’s in a year. We had a pleasant meal, and fun conversations. Sadly, I walked out without my To-Go box and that was to be my lunch the next day. So it goes.

And again, I have gotten late into the night and not even close to today. But will have to take a break and hope to spend one more evening of writing to get brought up to the day I am writing.


Very Quick Update After Commonwheel Art Festival

It is too late to begin catching up completely.

It has been a very long time since I was able to post here. Between getting all the finalizing details for the Commonwheel Artists 40th Annual Labor Day Weekend Art Festival in place and doing the Art Festival, then trying to recuperate, I just haven’t had time to post here.

I did get in my hike in the Garden of the Gods, but not on the 23rd. I went to the Farmer’s Market and then thought I had a Life Celebration to go to that day. Turns out it was on Sunday.

So on Sunday, I got up and dressed to hike and go to the Life Celebration. I had planned to take a short loop, but went off down the path to my favorite off the beaten track hike. It was just me and my camera and I kept finding new and interesting rock formations to take photos of on this path. Then I realized I was near an area that I could get up to my favorite trail into the Ancient Cedars. So, up I went. It was a glorious day and I really needed this break from the Festival and everything else going on back home.

When I finally decided I absolutely had to head back down, I found the trail I have used many times in the past and headed down that way. I rarely will go back the same way I came, so this felt good. Suddenly I came upon a cliff, a drop off of more than 20′ where I could see the trail in the distance again, but I couldn’t get there. So I did a bit of bushwhacking and found another trail, that also lead to another drop off. OK, this time I had to climb back up. Luckily I had lots of water and some trail bars with me, as I was getting a bit tired now. And then I remembered I had a Ninja Red packet. That really helped keep me alert and able to figure out how to get back to a trail that would actually take me back to the parking lot.

I hiked for 4 hours. Much longer than I had planned, but it was a delightful hike and I felt rejuvenated in spirit, ready to finish the last days of tasks leading up to the Art Festival.

I made to the Life Celebration a bit late and very hungry now. Had a platter of cashew encrusted prawns and a Bloody Maria. Lots of conversations with friends. Gave his wife two of Emanuel’s books in hopes they would be of some comfort to her. Such a waste to see another young and talented person leave the planet. And just like with Robin Williams, it was tied into depression.

Now being this far out from some of those days, they are just a blur of activities that needed doing.

 On Monday I met with a beautiful Red-head and she bought me lunch. We talked about essential oils and books and the Art Festival. Another welcome break. Then there was the Board meeting that night. Challenges handled and coming in the future discussed. That meeting is a bit of a blur right now also . . .

On Tuesday had a Marketing meeting at the Chamber. Was very glad to see the Festival banner was up. Future connections for more advertising opportunities seen. But mostly Chamber business. I also washed off my display stands and got them into my car.

I took a bit of time to work in my studio somewhere in this time-frame. I had a decent showing of earrings, hair clips and masks. Had to tag them on the night before the Festival. But got it done!

Had a three webinars with Tony Laidig scheduled this week. Made the one on Tuesday and Thursday. Will have to just watch the replays for the Adobe Illustrator training as I keep missing these on Wednesdays.

I discovered on Wednesday night that the new printer will only print Legal Portrait, not Landscape, which is what I really needed a new printer for, but didn’t notice that little note on its description papers. OK, I am a clever person and figured out a way to print the park layout for us to use in the morning to mark the park for booths. I took a screen shot of each page, then took it to PhotoShop where I had to size them to match and put them in a Portrait layout to print. Very tedious, but it worked. And I was ever so grateful that I was able to do this instead of having to work with Letter sized copies when marking the park.

Four of us met at Fields Park Thursday morning and set out to mark the park. There were numerous extra obstacles, the ditch down the center of the park created some challenges. Fortunately, there were fewer booths and we were able to work around this without putting it in the center of any booths. One helper had to leave before we were finished, but we were almost done by that time. My measurements and placement of booths was fairly close, so I didn’t have to do too many changes. RE and I left Miss A to write the numbers in the booths so we could move the flags and get the small tent out of the storage unit before he had to be at the Co-op to work. By now I was hot, tired and hungry. Went home and ate, then worked on making the corrections needed on the map to be ready for tomorrow’s check-in at noon. Miss A called to tell me we had an extra booth in one of the aisles, so I had to do some moving around of names of artists to fix that. Took an artist away from a space I hadn’t liked, but just moving that artist didn’t work well for who she would have been next to for media conflict. But got it done and printed out with the tricky way I had to do that. Would hope to not have to do that again this year.

Not sure what I will do about the printer, as I won’t have time to go back to where I bought it until tomorrow which is weeks after purchasing it.

Friday was the big push to check artists in. There were of course a few artists who needed to have a booth change. I was able to make most of the them happier. I had made one weaver who traveled far and had health issues extremely happy with her booth location. A jeweler friend was unhappy to find herself looking at a booth that she did not enjoy the art displayed there, but was very happy with being close to the street for an easy loading and unloading situation. Earlier I had a report that that FA booth was infringing upon another booths space. I wasn’t at my diplomatic best and told them not only that they had to move back a bit, but that in year’s past I had had complaints about them taking more space than they paid for by spreading out. She said they would gladly pay something extra, and later that day brought an envelop to the Info Booth with a check in it.

The kids area was a huge success. All three activities were located together and across from the Info Booth. But sadly, I saw a sign on the Balloon Artists tent that said that after 17 years doing this festival, he would not be back. Time to follow other opportunities. Never got to talk to him at the Festival. Will wish him the best of luck and I am sure there are other magicians or balloon twisters who would be happy to be here next year.

I went to dinner with my 2 favorite women and a new artist. The Loop was perfect. They all parked in my driveway and we walked down there. I had a much needed Martguerita, which my jeweler friend bought for me. Then we all headed to sleep for an early morning the next day.

And it was early for me! I had a call at about 9pm, just as I was about to get ready for bed. The security person said the sprinkler system had come on in the food vendor area. He was able to divert some of the water and I called the Dispatch who said they would find out who was on call for the parks. I drove down to the Police Station and they had no idea who was on call, but assured me dispatch would take care of it. Dispatch is no longer located in the Manitou Springs Police Station, but in Colorado Springs. My Security checked in and said the sprinklers were off, and perhaps nothing was damaged. I was perturbed enough to call and leave a message on the Mayor’s phone who I later learned was at a concert at Red Rock in Denver.

Not quite caught up, but my back is aching and it is time for me to head to bed.