KpacoTa CnaceT Mup-Beauty Will Save the World

(Quote from Fyodor M. Dostoyevsky's THE IDIOT, 1869)

Friday, June 26, 2009

Ocean City- wanna' meet up?....:)

Pictures from last year's trip with the wild horses of

nearby (to Ocean City), Assateague Island, in Berlin, Md.. (click to enlarge and to see horses in the distance).
This guy seemed to have been excited by everyone who came by.Larissa is not trusting him much, especially since he was feeling rather virile.

This marshy grass is so pretty, especially when you click for a closer look.Beautiful paint in the road where people were exiting the park.

We just had to get this shot, although the others were yelling at her so they could get home and probably go out to eat. I mean, really, we just HAD to stop for this shot!!! Wouldn't you?

They know that it's the end of the day when the alarm sounds to close the park, so they all start coming in from the marshes (click to see the horses in the marshes in the distance on earlier marsh shot), because the tourists are leaving. You will see this at the end of the day or early am we were told.

Larissa was about to pet one, when they decided to leave. This all just happens suddenly, so one must take the opportunity to get the shots as soon as they occur. (see Victorian Vignettes recent post to see baby and Mama).
Hubby called to tell me about Ocrean City between 9-15 July. Friends have once again offered their beautiful place for a few days-just a minute's walk from the beach. We'll go sometime during that time,probably just for 4 days.

We'll definately have crab cakes at the Crabcake Factory- the BEST, OMG!!!

I'm bringing artwork to work on. Have to watch the sun with the antibiotics- although I will be out there. Love walking up and down the shore to find pretty little shells w/my daughter.

So, if you're planning a trip at that time to OC, and want to meet up....I'm just sayin':)

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Favorite Places...

(This is what my kids do when they have nothing better to do-like jump into the air & catch the shots with the new camera. have a few of these shots taken all over the house).
So I have once again updated my Favorite Places -on the right, down a little bit. Jump on over and have some fun!

Later Alligator:)

Monday, June 22, 2009

Note about A Much Belated Win!!!

Deborah's Spunky

Deborah's Pumpkin
Oh, Lucky Me!!!!

Deborah has this really neat blog called Chew Gum & Walk (way cool blog name). She does wee little artwork, has 2 beautiful kitties, and posts fab artwork from Etsy to stimulate and inspire.

I am sooooo late in posting this here-Plz., please, please excuse me for my tardiness, Ms.Deborah:) So I won a very nice Mary Kay kit in sweet little black mesh bag-kind of like a little black dress, truly useful and essential:).

She had a giveaway entitled Kitty Cats in Blogland around the end of April, and on June 1st Sandy Mastroni won 1st prize, and I won second! How cool is that!!!?! You can even see one of my kitties, and one of Sandy's kitties on Deborah's blog. ( I told Kippurrs that he was famous now, and he was much impressed, although feigned nonchalance-these poofy kitties, ah!)

Sandy paints eekingly ,stupendously, fabulous kitties and people, etc.. She loves painting on fabric. I just adore her work ! (Kids, you can get me anything from her Etsy site!)

I haven't tried the Mary Kay products yet, but can't wait , because I heard very nice things about the products:) !

Deborah is a truly inspirational sweet individual, who is so positive and reinforcing of the positive. She will be launching a new Size Three children's clothing line in the somewhat near future, and opening up an Etsy site. She does very fine crochet work, this I know, and these very sweet clothespin dolls. ) I too am trying to get organized enough to open my Etsy shop).

And to further add to her talents, she also just started a great blog called The Cat Art Gallery. She heralds artists and their art and their ever inspiring and lovingly gorgeous kitties. What a TERRIFIC idea!!! Give me a little more time, Deborah, my info and pics are coming!:)

The pictures above are of her 2 gorgeous kitties, Spunky and Pumpkin. Are they adorable or what?!?!!!

So get on over to the 2 blogs and take a peek. Got some little kitties? Write Doborah about them, and join in the fun!!!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Happy Father's Day Pop

Time........... (c.La2009)
L... is for I love you.(c.A-G2009) Every day, even though you are gone 29 years+.
Even though you're in heaven, I feel you with me in the beauty of a sunset.(c.A-G2009)When I look up at the sky , I know you are with God. But, I still miss you.(pic.c.Lag2009)
I don't know what to do sometimes, and wish I still had you here to talk to. I miss our talks, where I blabbed on, and you listened.

Remember that time I thought that you didn't hear me, downstairs in your office? ...and you said that you had listened, even though you were so quiet? Remember I said,"Well then tell me what I said?", and you did. You heard everything. I so loved you.(pic. c.LAG2009)
I still do. Others may not know what kind of an unbelievably unconditionally, loving father that you were. I still do. When you were in the funeral parlor at your wake, remember how the people who worked with you, who we never met, knew exactly who each of us was? That's because they listened to your love. I do.

Remember how there were so many people at your wakes, that they were wrapped around the building waiting to come and see you? I do. Remember the poem I wrote you in tears, and mounted it in a drawn heart , and stood it on your coffin, and you were buried with it?...and I sent it to the local paper, where you wrote your opinions about the world that they always published , and they published my poem to you? That was my first published piece. I do.

Remember the hours you would spend in the window, combing out the knots in my hair when I would open the car window (and my hair would blow all over the place), because no one else had the patience to?...and I would cry in tears from the pain when others tried to help, but never for you because you were so gentle. I do.

Remember how you loved long hair on girls and women, and loved Nina's and my hair, and would always tell us so, but would always then add that the best hair was "your mother's" long curled locks when she was younger, before she cut it off into the shorter hair style? I do.

Remember how Nina and I had so many articles of clothing at the ends of our beds, when we were younger, and we would hide under the clothing when you came looking for us, and you couldn't find us, and then you would go looking elsewhere?...and did you fake that or were we really that good at hiding???:):):) I do- I do remember.

Remember how when I was sick, I couldn't wait till you got home, because you took care of me without complaining, with so much love. I do.

Remember when you were mad at us, and you would go down on the floor with Pooshok, or Punkin Puss, and talk to the kitties, telling them how you couldn't talk to anyone except "you kitties", because the 'women' just didn't understand (when the guys were already out of the house)? I do.

Remember how I would roll my eyes when you talked politics, like my kids sometimes roll theirs, when I do? Remember the corny jokes you constantly told, and now we four tell corny jokes as well? I do.

Remember driving Nina and me to J.A. Rhodes to buy Barbie clothes with our earned and saved up $2-3.00? ...and you would wait in the car out front, and told us to hurry, and we'd be so excited over the chosen outfit ,but you always somehow made the time? I do.

Remember, us going up and down the stairs to you singing in the choir, just to be with you, and searching you out at midnite service when Christ was Risen on Easter, and we couldn't wait to kiss you? I do.

Remember when I broke my right arm right before 3rd grade at camp, in the field playing football, and you made an army style sling out of a magazine till we drove home the hour and a half to two hours, and you said,"and maybe you'll get to stay overnight in the hospital" with a lilt in your voice, thinking that it would excite me, when it scared the pants off of me, probably because I'd been in Intensive Care without family allowed when I was an infant, and remembered everything, and then you calmed me down, and how the actual army sling hurt me more, and I liked your magazine one better, but had to wear the army one overnight, before we could go to the emergency room? I do.

Remember the broken chocolate you would bring us home from Von Leeson's in town, and I wrote a poem about it after you died ? I do.

Remember the scar on your belly from your biopsy for the Hodgkin's and you wore just your shorts/swimtrunk, with the straw skirt that you had traded in France at the World Scout Jamboree, while you were stationed in Europe, wangling a furlough from your CO in Germany to attend the Jamboree-'always a Scout!'. .. and you wore a visor and flip -flops, and the doctors said that you could smoke pot for the pain, but you never would, but you the conservative dad joked about smoking a joint,(made out of paper that we rolled up ), just to take a picture, and that you would never joke about pot, but you had the Hodgkin's and well, your life was swimming in front of you, and you stepped out of your boundary,so you did it-ie:faked it for the picture, and we all laughed and joked around, and couldn't believe that you would joke around about it, and you would tell us that for a quarter, you'd let us scratch your scar on your belly, and you thought that it was the funniest joke, and we thought it was the corniest, and we all laughed and laughed, over and over again. I do.

And remember the time I asked you to draw a picture of me, and you did, and it was good, and I was so impressed? I do.

And remember how you would darn your own socks, because you had been a scout, and knew how to sew, and wouldn't have thought of asking anyone else to do it, and you would darn them in the comfy arm chair that I now own that has been recovered, with your legs over the side arm, and you would occasionally fall asleep in it? I do.

And remember how you were excited by new gadgets, and had one of the first printers where you had to use fluid each time, and heat, etc. just to print off/kind of like mimeograph copies, and how even though we didn't have computers for the average person then, that you would've had one when they got popular, and even now you'd know all about them, this we all know, and that you'd have a Mac?hahaha. I do . I know this. You probably have a fancy, super, dooper, fun one there in heaven, helping to organize things there, and did you know that all 4 of us organize well like you. I'm sure you do.

And remember how as camp counselor and/or camp counselor director, at Tolstoy Farm(Foundation) Camp you, would be about to be thrown into the pool, but would quickly grab your wallet and pass it to me or someone else so it wouldn't get wet, as they were dragging you, to throw you in?..and this would happen quite a few times, because you were oh so loved? I do.

And remember how the campers who didn't speak much Russian would call you 'Daddy Kola', because they didn't know how to pronounce 'Dyadya Kolya', which means Uncle Nicky because in Russian you give respect to your elders and call them uncle, or auntie, or grandma, or grandpa, even if you don't know them?... and how years later when I applied for a job at a Russian camp in another state, the director wrote back to me asking if I were Lydia A. of Daddy Kola fame, of which of course I replied that I was such offspring, and how he proceeded to tell me how wonderful a man that my father, Daddy Kola was, and I knew. And I do. I do remember.

And when you liked something, like say lemon baked goods, for they were your absolute favorite, these lemony things, or the homemade tomato soup that you made out of the sauce that you tweeked and labored over, that was so good and you liked it and you would say, "I like that", in that certain way that you would say when you really liked something...and you were so proud of that soup because it tasted so good, and how you liked my tasty leftovers as I became a teenager and learned to cook, and you would say how so very delicious they were. I remember. I do.

I remember it all Pop. I remember it all, and then some. And I remember, the things that you probably thought I wouldn't, but I did....and I do . And I'll never forget, and I'll never stop loving you. And I so very much miss you, and you were taken from us way too early, at the young age of 52, and that's what I am now, and I miss the living daylights out of you, and I always say that if I could be half the parent that you were to me and to us, that my kids would come out alright.

And I feel like the friend of Dances with Wolves, in Dances with Wolves, when he leaves the group with his new wife, and his friend cries out, "Do you know who I am, I am..." ..."and I will always be your friend", ........and I will always be your daughter, and I will always love you Dad, to the ends of the earth.

That's how great a man my Dad was to us. That's how wonderful a Dad he was. That's why he was taken from us so early, because he already gave us what he was meant to give. And when you have something, and it is truly yours, you can never lose it. And you are meant to give it away, because you will never lose it and it is a gift. It is the most precious gift. And that's why I am a lucky cat. But I still miss you Dad. I still love you. I do. xo Lyeeda

Breathe...ahhh....(1 of 3 new posts)

Ok- So new camera is showing great promise. One major thing off my ever extended , long list . We are so excited with this camera, and its video capabilities. :):):):):) !!!!!!

If you are interested in this Sony Cybershot DSC-H50B, just click here. Sony's price is great, and we used it to price match at Best Buy. Got an extra year for less money on the accidental extended warranty, too!

It's actually a point & shoot, but is more like a step before a DSLR, which costs way may. It's got a Carl Zeiss lens, which seems to make the difference. Nikon has a nice Coolpix too, that was very user friendly, but the price started to hike with that one. This camera zooms in video mode, and has a high optical zoom-15x. Down side is it takes memory sticks, and they are expensive. We got them online and they are CHEAP online.

What sort of pictures do you enjoy viewing online? For me it is art work, or beautiful shots, anything that inspires me- maybe vintage furniture in a nice setting, or seeing what others do with their finds or art or house, or even recipes.(I know, I have to post my Russian Teacake recipe).

More New Pics...(click to enlarge for better detail)

My beautiful kitty, Kiska. Yes, he understands so very much, just the way he looks. (Click to enlarge, this one is fabulous). Puma Pumata's paw, while washing himself.

Vintage pretty ethnic looking doll on chair in our dining room.Larissa & friend Krissy, about to go out to Karaoke, their fun 'hobby'. I love this picture. (dresses are sleeveless casual summer fun dresses).
Another Sheriff Bunny picture.
What shots look best to you?

New Camera...

This yellow rose picture is the same as the next picture, but it was cropped and I used a few effects in my I-Photo. The bush was a gift for my birthday. I love the red highlights. (Click to enlarge for great detail).Sweet little rose bush. I can also tweek the picture from the camera,but still learning the basics.
What's on my daughter's prismacolors.
Old x-mas bulbs washed up and frosty.
Sheriff Bunny-(click to enlarge, this has great detail).

What do you think about our first pictures in easy mode? What do you like about your camera?

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Cooking up some art......

OK- so I've been clearing out areas, because I've pulled too much out. It's constricting me. So last night I spent an hour and a half going through a couple of cases of paperwork to pull for artwork. I use my instincts mostly. Organizing...

Then I worked on placement of a collage...

... also this am and early pm.... dragging... everything feels like it's just dragging. I always have a gazillion ideas- I love to do so much. But, everyone looked and liked but said, 'ehh' to this or 'I don't know' to that. What I need is a base to put the collage onto. Does that make sense?

So I reorganized, cleaned out stuff in my dining room, because I had pulled out too much. I'm working in the kitchen right now.  The dining room is adjoining. It gives me a sense of order to work in one room, but keep the extraneous items in another, when I work in our living space.

 I paint in the kitchen on the island, because it's all washable and nothing becomes damaged. I have a great big basement waiting to be made into my studio, and at the very least,it awaits more electricity for more light. So, I go up and down the stairs, as the basement holds the bulk of my art supplies. Oh, yes, I have my paint in a bottom kitchen side cabinet, and artist papers in a dresser in our dining room, and ribbons and such in another cabinet in the living room...

 I sew and sketch in my bedroom at night. Paint on the kitchen island, collage on the kitchen or dining room table, and machine sew on the dining room table. The sewing machine is there right now. So I reorganized my prepping materials that will get paint/and/or glue, etc into 2 sturdy fabric bags. With every item I think, 'oh, I want to work on that now, or- wow, I forgot all about that. But, overall, the prep day was very productive. Then I washed a lot of yard sale/thrifting finds. I'm a big washer. Only clean makes it into my artwork.

So, Alex left me a few of her finds to wash. How did I get those jobs???

So why the mushrooms? I love mushrooms, and sometimes, you just have to stir the pan, to let those yummy fresh sliced garlic pieces do their thing. Huh??? Well, if you add the garlic in the beginning of the recipe, the flavor is more delicate. And likewise, when you add it to the end of the cooking, it's a much stronger flavor.

So, I'm adding the 'garlic' early for a bunch of pieces-so they will be more delicate?????hahahaha.... something like that!

Did you know that mushrooms are super healthy for you as long as they are cooked in any form? Good mushrooms that is....obv...Uncooked mushrooms do nothing for you. And garlic and olive oil is a healthy combination. But, they cannot remain  in the frig, for longer than about 2 weeks, I believe, without some preservative like good old vit. c (ie- citric acid).

Just clearing away the old to make room for the new- that's how I COOK UP some Art!!! How do you do it?

Sunday, June 14, 2009

How cute, and how beautiful?...and we finally got our new camera!!!!Yay!!!

My adorable nephew going out to dinner to celebrate his super wonderful Mom's birthday.My beautiful and wonderful niece recently in Paris. The picture is just so cool. She graduated Berkley in 3 years!!! How smart is that???Hope you don't mind the pic. Nat.xo
...and L and I finally got our new camera. Just charged it today. Yoo Hoo!!! Too bad I have some tax deadlines approaching. Sorry for the sporadic posts, but my scanner is missing since I upgraded my Mac, and I'm kinda' dreadin if the wireless goes out while putting it back in, with the workload that's piled up around here. And the old camera had gone kaput, so ...........much to tell.....later alligators  . Lydia

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

10 years ago today...

Mamochka's roses... Mamochka passed away. They had just figured out what kind of cancer she had. They couldn't figure it out for a long time. It was ovarian cancer.

She went in to the hospital for the first time for illness. It was the first time since she'd given birth to me, the baby of the family. She had just had communion when Fr. came to see her. She had just finished the first bag of chemotherapy -the first chemo that she'd received ever,as they never knew earlier what kind of cancer it was. They were changing the bag for the second bag of IV chemo, when she took her last breath.

We were talking by telephone, interstate, and she told me,(read with very thick ByeloRussian accent) , "Lyeeda,..... I want you come...... before I ..die." "When do you want me to come, Mama?" ".....Dis .....week..end."The dots are the length of time in breaths that she took to speak to me. She'd never been this short of breath before. Two of my siblings said that, oh, it was just Mom trying to get attention. I thought they were nuts. It was so obvious.

We went to NY and stayed a few days. The day we left she went into the hospital. She passed away that Thursday.

That spring my then 3 year old son had a dream and told me that Babi(as they had nicknamed her, as we had nicknamed my grandmother), had died. This was so strange, because my son has always been so above average in intelligence, even as a youngster.You could write a police report by what he said/says. I knew that he knew that she was alive. So we called her up. He spoke to her, said that ok she was alive. But then he kept repeating that she had passed. We kept on talking with her. They diagnosed her with the cancer in spring, but didn't know what kind for a while. Of course, I never told her about the dream.

Meanwhile, around the same time, she had a dream about my son. She kept asking me how he was. Well, on Easter he came down with pneumonia out of the blue. He and his sister had been cleaning out the shed, and swinging on the swings for the first time since the winter had faded. He got some nasty spider bites. The one on his neck was awful, so inflamed and puffy. They put him on antibiotics right away. Within about 2 days he came down with the pneumonia. Met the doctor in their offices on a Sunday, Easter. He responded to the medicine albuterol. Didn't know anything about these meds at the time.

A month later he got pneumonia again. Something told me he just wasn't right. Hubby said to roll over and go back to sleep. NEVER DOUBT A MOTHER'S INSTINCTS. I didn't , and we took him to the emergency room. They diagnosed him with acute asthma immediately-sticking epi pens and other needles into my poor crying little man.

We never told my Mom about his pneumonia or the asthma. That would just worry her way too much, and she was losing weight and strength. I think her dream was not a good one about my son. He went on to have 2 more pneumonia's that year and was hospitalized twice.

My doctor said,"Don't worry, you'll get to be an expert with all this and these medicines." I said, "I don't want to become an expert."

A few years back, at my son's bi-annual visits to his pulmonologist, she mentioned casually about how in the beginning we'd almost lost him. She used other more definite words. He is doing well, and now I believe, is asthma free. I pray it is so. We'd gone through so much with him and medicines and scares. He had almost $2000- worth of damage on his teeth from the steroids. He was on daily, serious meds, with meter readings multiple times a day.

He never was limited with sports, but yearly has been sick to the point where we always get notices home. The last few years, he's barely needed his medicines. But, after what we'd been through, after what he's been through, I don't take any chances. I let him heal. And he's so dang smart, that he never misses a beat.

So, my dear Mamochka, is now gone 10 years. I miss her so. I miss the way she answered the telephone when I called. "Hi Mama." "Lyeedochka!!!..with a lilt in her voice, as if she were singing to hear my voice. And my Mamochka heard tears. She was very compassionate, and felt people's tears.

She was a true survivor. Born prematurely in 1923, you had to be good and tough to make it in the world. She always said that she was a brown baby. Well, the family kept correcting her that she was a blue baby. A number of years ago I saw a special on preemies, and how white babies are brown when prematurely born. Well, her sister, Zina, in Byelorusse, always told me how she got the oven. For anyone who doesn't know about the culture and their homes at that time, the oven was reserved for the grandmother usually. It was considered the best sleeping spot in the house. So, the baby of her family, the ninth child, my Mamochka, got the oven.

She had one brother who married a Jewish girl. They had a baby. As a youngster she saw the Nazis come and take the baby out of the parents arms and crush the baby on the ground. Then, when she was a teenager, she was grabbed out of her mother's arms by the Nazis.

She worked for the Germans because she was healthy. She worked as a governess, and in some fields and factories. But, they never acknowledged her when she later in life applied for remuneration through a special fund. I filed the paper work. The money she could receive was not much. But they denied her, because they' couldn't find her'. Even though we had the proof, Then right after she passed away, they said that the money would go to the living. I just wanted some acknowledgement for what she'd gone through.

What most Americans don't know is that millions of Slavs perished in the war. These Slavs were not Jewish. We are not Jewish. My mother was not. And most Americans don't know anything about a little pact made in Yalta between Roosevelt, Stalin, and Churchill. That pact and what ensued because of it, was called Operation Keelhaul.Any Soviet citizen was to be re-patriated back into the Soviet Union. Stalin, the mad man, would then have them shot dead on the spot, or put into horrible camps in Siberia.

My mother was at a major repatriation point, and the nozzle of an American soldier's rifle was in her cheek. She was about to be repatriated, when a Polish Catholic priest came along and told the soldier that she was Polish. That priest was a hero. I am alive today because of him. My children are here because of him.

My mother did not have an easy life, but she always said that she was one of the lucky ones. After she died all 4 of us siblings felt that she had been violated by the German soldiers. In her own words, her jaw was beaten up by them, ie-broken. And her war time friends knew of her trials, for they themselves had suffered . They were all chipper, bouncy, and full of life. That's how they dealt with their experiences. And they all said that they were the lucky ones.

My mother was a survivor, and as such, at times, could be very stubborn and difficult. People either loved her, or couldn't deal with her. But , she had a fierce love, and you always, always ,always knew that you were loved. She was so very generous , especially to me and my children, and the children that she watched, when older.

You know what they say, "Generosity of spirit is the true measure of a person". HERE'S TO YOU IN HEAVEN, MAMA. Give a smooch to Papa from me:) XO

ps- she's still watching out for me in heaven. She sends me roses in winter.