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Friday, May 26, 2017

Fretting about My Furball

I hope Sugar is ok. She is not herself. I took her for blood work today and will get the results tomorrow. She is 13 years old, 85 in dog years.

God bless my little angel. She has added so much fun and beauty and friendship to my life.

  1. Eating those fruits and vegs. Let's see, today it was salad with grilled shrimp; a plate of raw pepper; roasted eggplant; frozen dark cherries. 
  2. Walked Sug twice.
  3. Texted some friends. 

Wednesday, May 24, 2017

Don't Know Much about [Art] History

Sis is a member of the Bruce Museum in Greenwich and she took me as
a guest to this talk tonight.

I loved going to the Bruce Museum with Sis. The lecture was so cool. I felt like I was back on a college campus again, taking notes. 

I never took art history and though both of my parents were chemists and my Sis a research scientist, science is not my strength. I have been to fine and famous art museums, but don't know nearly enough about artists and their works.

I'm here to visit Sis--going back tomorrow midday, so don't want to spend too long blogging. We've had a chance to talk a lot about Don, who has left a big gap in the world as we know it. We have also walked with the dog by the cove and by the marina. It is a gift to be with my Sis and I am grateful that Dan is holding down the fort at home in Montclair.

But I did want to share some notes I scrawled in the dark:
  1. It's estimated that when you walk through an art museum, about 80 percent of what you see is the work of the artist and 20 percent is the work of the restorer, said Dr. Jennifer Mass, college professor and president, Scientific Analysis of Fine Art.
  2. Paintings can change over time due to the inherent quality of the materials used or the way the paintings are stored and handled.
  3. Dr. Mass showed us how the colors in Henri Matisse's 1905-06 Bonheur de Vivre [The Joy of Life] have faded from their original hues. The yellow in some parts is not what it was.The once vibrant lemons on the tree have gone brownish, due to light-induced oxidation.
  4. She showed us that some of the colors in The Scream by Edvard Munch--the brush strokes on the man's neck--faded from vibrant to white. The dr. and her team did molecular analysis as part of their investigation.
  5. I thought of past and present art students I know: My cousin Lin; my daughter Figgy; my friend Kim's father and daughter; Dan's brother Dave--who immersed themselves in the study of art for at least some time. I was grateful to get a little crash course tonight. I'm not proud of it, but I didn't know about Picasso's Blue Period until tonight. As a young woman and eager writer, I was passionate about punctuation and synonyms and words like Ida Tarbell [a muckraking journalist] leapt out at me from my history book at Saint Mary's. Picasso did not excite me. 
  6. Light and humidity must be carefully controlled [for oil paintings].
  7. Can the damage be reversed? Dr. Mass said it is more likely that the team would use digital reproduction--Photoshop a new version of the painting showing its original colors and display that next to the original, so you can see both.
  8. Sis is smart and she knew about hidden portraits already--it's hard to surprise her. But I didn't know about them, so I loved when Dr. Mass revealed the hidden portrait under Picasso's The Blue Room, done in 1901. The under portrait is of a man and Dr. M. called it "decadent," since he had rings on every finger. One in five to one in 10 paintings have another painting underneath, she said. Canvas was extremely expensive at the turn of the twentieth century. So artists recycled their canvases.
  9. She talked about pigment colors: Prussian Blue, Emerald Green. Such pretty names. She knew their chemical formulas and said the green, which was widely used through the Victorian era, contained arsenic. So there it went. 
All fascinating. I soaked it up. 

I want to go back to school--pull up a desk in Art History 101 and Chemistry 101. Do they still have desks in college classrooms? Figgy has told me about a lot of things on campus that seem different now.

Good night to you.

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Derailed but Back on Track Again

I couldn't bring myself to report my going off the rails last night. I went to something that was part class/part support group yesterday evening. I was upset about some observations, and some truths or probable truths. And I was angry at Dan. I had driven into the city in the pouring rain in the afternoon for a work task and it took forever to find a free parking space [on West 67th Street, finally]. The traffic was terrible and I got back late and delivered Punchy to gymnastics one half-hour late [her weekly Monday class goes from 4:45 to 6:15]. But now that I hopped back on the horse of healthy eating, and went to the doctor for a checkup, and my weight was down, I will write what I ate when I returned home close to 9 p.m. It showed me very clearly, once again, that I cannot control myself if left to my own devices with sweets/treats/sugar. And that one bite can lead to many gobbles.
  1. Two bouchees [smallish French cookies/pastry treats] I had brought back from the city for Punchy and Figgy. They had not eaten them in the four hours since I put them on the table. I did. They were from La Maison du Chocolat.
  2. 1 Pop-Tart [last one in box, or I would have eaten more]. I'm telling you, sugar craving took over.
  3. 1 smallish bowl of Honeycomb cereal with 2 percent milk.
  4. 1 Nutri Grain crumb cake square. 
  5. Worst of all, an entire  "share me" size bag of Life Savers Gummi Savers, which was 3 servings.
  6. 1 of Punchy's Hershey's pudding cups.
If there was any other treat not nailed down, I would have eaten that, too. But it ended there. I went to bed, grouchy, without washing my face or brushing my teeth. Today I was back to turkey, salad, veggies, fruit, cottage cheese. I feel good. I drove over to Sis's for an overnight visit and she took me to the Water Club! I savored gazpacho with lobster; a Cobb salad with crab and shrimp; fresh, sweet strawberries; and an excellent cup of cappuccino. I did have a couple spoonfuls of Sis's tiramisu and had a little excellent whipped cream on my berries. Good night.

Sunday, May 21, 2017

Sleep vs. Snack

I'm passing up my cup of plain Greek yogurt [not nonfat, very creamy and delicious] with fresh berries and 2 tamari seaweed brown rice cakes on the side because I'm tired [Punch was in our bed last nite] and tonight, sleep wins out over lovin' spoonfuls. Unless I wake up starving for a midnight snack, I will savor the food for my breakfast tomorrow. Good night.
  1. Hard-boiled eggs w S & P as part of breakfast.
  2. Served a lot of healthy foods at dinner: raw spinach and pepper, roasted eggplant, steamed asparagus and broiled salmon. What I like is that the whole family is eating more healthfully.
  3. I feel more energetic and far less sluggish on this food plan.

Saturday, May 20, 2017

STITCH Raffle Winner!!!!!

I was stealing a nap when the phone thrilled...won the $150 gift card that STITCH Boutique raffled off at Ladies Night Thursday. This store is new to our town but has the greatest edit of clothes in the freshest jewelry, accessories and--smartly--stylish shapewear undergarments to smooth a tiny roll [or muffin] or two. Good night, sweet dreams for sure.

  1. Walked to bank and back--50 minutes.
  2. Still sticking to healthy food plan. I think because you eat three meals, so many vegs, so few carbs and enough protein, you don't scramble frenetically for junk.
  3. Weeded thru some clutter.