Art Aware Video

July 8, 2021

Getting High During Covid19 (AND the power of advertising

December 30, 2020

December 30, 2020

I don’t mind getting high but not getting enough sleep is another thing. That will make me quit using CBD oil!

I got up at midnight for a snack this morning – hyped up from the sample CVD oil I got that I used on my skin.

Anderson Cooper recommended it on FB (together with Meryl Streep and a few others). The ad said: “Take it to relieve arthritis pain.”

I’m not the only one getting high during Covid19. My canine great Dane boy and pitbull girl are too. The very convincing FB ad for Nutra Thrive vitamins said that if you see no change in your animals in a week or two, money back. (I even forwarded the FB post to my friend who has horses.)

Well, indeed, in two weeks Shiro (great Dane) and Kohaku (pitbull) became so hyped up (from the stimulants in Nutra Thrive) that I stopped giving it to them.

So here I am, closeted with my family, and we’re all experiencing getting high during the Covid19 pandemic! And deciding that we will not continue on that path.

Bell Ringing for the Salvation Army

December 23, 2020

Bell Ringing 2020 Blog – Written in 2018

“Christmas isn’t Christmas until I hear the Salvation Army Bells,” said someone to me as he put a few dollars into the red kettle.
This is my third year helping the Salvation Army raise money as a bell ringer. It is going onto my thirty-third year as a resident in a poor city and the fourth year existence of a Kroc Center in Camden, New Jersey, near where I live.
God bless Joan Kroc for making it possible to have multi-million dollar Kroc Centers in twenty four low- income cities across the United States.

She wanted “poor people” to have the experience of belonging to a country club.
I don’t mingle much with the country club set, but my mother did. So maybe that’s why I don’t.
I like to mingle with a multi-cultural, multi-religious cross-section of people from all walks of life.
And the bell ringing is exactly the place to do that. Walmart, Acme and a large suburban mall were my locations. I was struck by how nice everyone was.  Was it the Salvation Army Red Kettle that brought out the best in people?  Or was it perhaps  human beings are not “sinners” as my church background taught?  Perhaps human beings are basically saints – if they are allowed to be.  If they don’t have to suffer through world-wide atrocities they are exposed to daily.

Imagine a multi-cultural world where everyone can choose a daily diet of self determination. A place where education, music, sports, church, are available at low cost without fear of judgmental dictatorship.
That is what Joan Kroc wanted to give to our country – through the Salvation Army managed Kroc Centers.

My first experience standing and asking for money from passersby was for a project in Ann Arbor as a University of Michigan undergraduate sixty years ago.

And then there was a huge gap in my street-solicitation experience.
My life-long giving has been through job-related organizations, non-profits and volunteering. In fact, I remember my father getting mad at me as a child for giving some money to a street beggar. Perhaps he wanted to teach that “people are not always as they seem.”

How extraordinary at this late stage in my life, that I have accumulated seventy-four hours of bell ringing for the Salvation Army. My previous experience of the Salvation Army was only through the musical “Guys and Dolls” with Marlon Brando. (See YouTube clip of “I’ll know when my love comes along.”)

Countless stories of people’s pasts came out as they dropped coins, bills or even personal checks into the red kettle.

I like the Salvation Army ad:  “Whether it’s an apartment fire, a hurricane, or a personal storm in life, the Salvation Army is there.”

I believe this is true – and that they do it for all people, without discrimination.

Cooped Up Like a Chicken

December 15, 2020

Cooped up like a chicken in Covid19!

How to think beyond myself.

Yesterday I went beyond the coop to upscale Cherry Hill Wegmans Supermarket and had a sushi lunch – alone – on the balcony looking down at masked shoppers – loading up their carts – loving to see people all ages, sizes, colors, going about their business as if everything were normal.

Summer Camp After Care at Kroc Center

December 7, 2020

100 Kids, ages 6 to 12 and councelors ages 18 and up, listen carefully to our leader give a pep talk on patience and a student give a prayer.

T.J. comes to the table for origami, as she does every day – her patience and skill steadily climbing. Point to point, good creasing of lines, folding over and over, again and again.

It builds character – this time-honored art. It took me a few hours to unfold a flower – to figure out how I had folded it years before, so that I could teach T.J. – a soon-to-be 5th grader.

Over 50 folds. Would T.J. still be doing this in 50 years – like me? I hope so. Jus one p iece of paper turning into a lotus, crane, frog, pinwheel, pig. She has moves and mind to create masterpieces.

Summer Camp After Care at Kroc Center

November 25, 2020


Birds in Cherry Hill Library

November 25, 2020

Origami birds make my spirit soar – together with Sonobe Unit Modular boxes decorated by children from age three on up and myself – because there are challenges to manipulate and to design them.

Just before the March, 2020 pandemic lockdown, Cherry Hill Library let me put up an Art Aware exhibit in the high-ceiling Reference Room.

The glass cases are perfect for inspiring the spirits of library patrons to soar along with the bird flight.

And that will happen again in 2021 when the libraries and the world open up again and the exhibit will still be there.

Not Slipping into a Cave

November 21, 2020

Not Slipping Into a Cave…

When I don’t see my grandchildren,
even though I miss them,
I won’t slip into a cave like
Puff the Magic Dragon.

Rather I will jump to
Shall We Dance from The King and I.

I will climb the stairs to view
the Xmas tree in my 8th floor apartment
in Manhattan and then go to
Rockefeller Center and converse with
the owl in a broken-down-but-beautiful
2020 Xmas tree.

Through the magic of music, words, images and imagination,
I’ll join my precious FB friends in
appreciating the metaphor of a cell
phone image of an autumn-leafed tree
with hundreds of branches, and,

in isolation, celebrate life,
in spite of Covid19, but,
at the same time,

I will pray that those affected by it,
will recover a.s.a.p. and come home
to a land called Honah Lee.


July 9, 2019

20190624_123755I have before me an original 6″x 6″ abstract painting by Carole Leslie, sent from Victoria, BC, Canada

What a treasure! Her website and blogs are too. We met on Facebook. She calls herself “introvert.”

I can’t call myself introvert or extravert or anything in between, because I’m all over the place!

I am a lover of mystery though and arriving at conclusions without needing questions to be asked.

Seeing Carole’s original layered, textured, spontaneous work as a miniature of what I imagined…

…a large oil painting, no less than 3’x3′ high and wide, on an immaculate, white wall, in a room overlooking a land or seascape…

…that is what I imagined would give the painting the dignity it deserved – like one of Toshiko Takaezu’s closed forms

commanding the only attention in an otherwise empty room – requiring one to imagine the mystery within…

just absorbing it like the air we breathe and walk and swim in that we can’t live without.

What is before me is the original art work that I first observed in a tiny Facebook post – it’s like the word becoming flesh, except it’s more than flesh.

It’s an abstraction more than just a word. It’s an expression of an inexplicable wave transmitting light, across the miles, in innumerable ways.

Thank you.

Finding Neverland

June 8, 2019