Fortunately ours......

Fortunately ours......

Sunday, January 31, 2010

our Saint in heaven....

today is the anniversary of the death of our beloved grandson, Daniel Fortune.

With incredible courage, he faced his illness of astrocytoma without complaint.
Danny is an example for us all.

The Fortune Family has created a memorial scholarship in his honor.
As an avid student of San Jose State University,
funds will be awarded to a deserving SJSU student.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

remembering Danny....

Dad and I took flowers to Little Danny's grave was a beautiful day, everything green, blue skies and fluffy white clouds. Tommorrow is the anniversary of his death.

I remember when I had this picture taken in 1985 of Danny and Victoria. It wss soon after they first met and they were both staying with us for some reason. When they first met it was instant "bonding" !!! Victoria took one look at him and tackled him and they wrestled on the floor, laughing and giggling. What a sight!!!

Friday, January 29, 2010

our wonderful daughters...

brought us a beautiful bouquet of flowers...
brought lunch and made our bed
and folded clothes is good!!!!

sunset at the cabin...

there is nothing prettier...
Bob, Dan and Austin are there for the weekend...
it is probably raining right now.
the yearly club meeting is on Sunday.
Dad was supposed to go with them but he took a tumble
and is pretty sore!!!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Fred's beer/tea pavillion

he built this almost entirely out of recycled materail....all windows...all styles...stained glass
their garden is beautiful....magazine quality.
here are more pictures on his facebook...

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

dancing....out of the past!!!

this is what it would look like at a big hoedown
everything we wore matched....those were the fun days!!!!!
at Sparks annual square dancing convention 1976

square dancing, round dancing, hoe downs, lessons 4 and 5 days a week, dancing every week end, traveling all over California going to dances, camping with the Hillbillies, Thanksgiving weekend at Sparks, Nevada, where we danced all day and night for 3 days!!!
We still agree that we have never had so much fun in our life!!!!

Monday, January 25, 2010

a square dance....2010

I heard the kids had a good time at their first lesson in square dancing last night. Anxious to hear what Robbie, Maria and Marie have to say....Robbie took some photos on his cell phone which I will add later....

Sunday, January 24, 2010

just as pretty....

as Christmas day when you gave me this cyclamen and planter Bob...thanks.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Friday, January 22, 2010

good books....

Two autobiographies by Adeline Yen Mah
"Falling Leaves"
The memoir of an unwanted Chinese daughter
and a version for children called
"Chinese Cinderella"
(the book cover is purposely distorted..that isn't my photography!!!)

and always my favorite Country magazines

Thursday, January 21, 2010

new blooms....

our gardener pruned the camellia bush back
but left enough beautiful blossoms

the azalea is stll blooming since before Christmas....

and the last stand of the pointsetta's....
still beautiful

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

rain rain go away.....

not really!!!


then 15 minutes later....

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

today in the garden....

it had been raining all day and as soon as the sun came out
we took our walk in the yard ....
with Mary's baby dog Q tip running around like crazy.
The daffodils are beginning to peep out...
the pyracantha berries don't give up......

the campanula peeking out among the rocks.
I wish I had a better camera for shots like these....
but all in all the sony point and shoot that Mary gave me
has worked out pretty good since my other camera bit the dust

Saturday, January 16, 2010

thanks Cyndy...

a simple thing.....Cyndy bought us a door stop that fits on the bottom of the door....
going out in the rest of our house from our bedroom hall.
We close this door at night to cut down on our heating bills.

When we had the carpets removed and the hardwood floors
refinished, it left such a hug gap under the door.

What a wonderful neighbor we have!!!!
And what delicious candy she makes for all of us..
at Christmas time....
plus that mouth watering gingerbread cake!!!
Thanks Cyndy!! xo

Friday, January 15, 2010

More of Mary in Mexico...

Hi All -

Happy New Year!!!! I know 2010 is a fantastic year and a time for joy, love and happiness, health and many, many good times with lots of laughter!!!

I'm sharing my recent Power Journey and Women's retreat experience to San Miguel de Allende and the great pyramids at Teotihuacan in Mexico. I left at midnight two days after Christmas - flying Mexicana Airways on a red eye to Leon. I thought it was a direct flight arriving the same day at 7am but they shuffled us off the plane at 3am in a little town just north of Mexico City for Immigration. It was an experience to say the least - I am sooooo greatfull that I speak enough Spanish to get around. We finally landed in Leon and I took a taxi to San Miguel de Allende. Of course I argued about the price for awhile but gave in - it was the most expensive taxi ride I've ever taken ($90 American dollars which is stronger than Mexican pesos).

I safely arrived in San Miguel de Allende, which is a cross between Carmel, San Francisco with Tijuana and Mazatlan thrown together (see attached) The streets are cobblestone and you have to pay super close attention when walking or you'll stumble or twist an ankle. It is a bit magical and spiritual with churches on almost ever corner - much like Starbucks. Oh by the way, there was a Starbucks kitty-corner to the main Basilica/Center Square. Go figure. Of course I enjoyed my favorite drink of soy Chai tea (ask for the bags - cheaper) and conversation with my classmates. Our hotel was also right across the street from the main church/square so every morning I woke to the bells tolling at 6:30am.

We began classes right away with a break Tuesday afternoon - I dashed off to the "mall" to buy clothes - I miss calculated and mostly brought resort-wear (Rhea, it was FREEZING, much like New York). I took this wild cab-ride alone up the hill, did some shopping, ate frozen yogurt (which is AWESOME) and walked back to town. Again, thank goodness I speak a little Spanish.

Wednesday we took a three hour drive to Teotihuacan - we walked over 8.5 miles that day and amazingly, I climbed ALL of the pyramids - Sun, Moon, etc. They were amazing and the day turned out to be a very moving and uplifting experience!!! Also, I later found out that my parents were there in 1968 - see attached photos. btw. My mom did it in heels and pantyhose - what a trooper!!!! The circle of life 41 years apart!

New Years day we had classes and then went to El Jardin for a Moon Ceremony, very cool. Afterwards, we had this amazing rooftop dinner with all the New Year's festivities - it was one of the best ever! I dashed off to the main church just before midnight and ran out when the fireworks were exploding - incredible. The center square was packed with all kinds of people from ALL around the world. I am telling you this town partied outside till 5am in the morning!

Friday we had a free day so I walked down to the marketplace and did some shopping - later I had a great massage and ate dinner at my favorite restaurante (two tostadas sin queso y creme y agua con gas).

On Saturday, we wrapped up our classes and had more free time since everyone was leaving Sunday - except those of us who stayed for the ladies retreat. That evening we all went to "Tacos de Felix" which was this upscale restaurant on the outskirts of this town. Felix took his house and turned it into a restaurant - it was really cool and clever. It was also interesting since the entire restaurant was filled with Americans/ex-Patriots....hmmmm. Again, I felt like I was in Carmel.

The ladies intensive Retreat began Sunday and we met in Starbucks two mornings in a row - yeah. This was one of my more favorite activities - it was cool to talk about feminine power, spirit, flow, Self....all those things that we forget or fail to recognize, honor and just allow - particularly our bodies and how we feel as women. It definitely gave me another perspective - I really enjoyed myself. We did a walking tour and went down to the marketplace and ate paletas with la maestra Kalyn. The following day we went to the El Jardin for some more workshops and of course had a fabulous dinner afterwards. Unfortunately on the final day I missed the afternoon sessions because I needed to return to school - which worked out OK. This time I flew back on American with a three hour layover in Dallas. I was soooo excited to return to see favorite little furry friend. Smiling.

I was truly blessed with a wonderful experience and strongly encourage you to consider doing something/going somewhere on your own - take an adventure, try something new, relax and change your mind. Work out, love, eat great food and celebrate.
When was the last time you had a really good belly-laugh? When was the last time you truly did something for you...just for you. Reconnect with family, friends, heal old wounds. I think the time is NOW. Do it because that's all there is.

Much love and light,


ps. I attached a photo that I took of an old woman begging in the main square - she was singing and playing the guitar, badly, but bless her heart.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

go fly a kite.....

Now I'm ready for the beach in August with my 2 new kites....
Christmas gifts from Fred, Cathleen & Victoria

This tiny, tiny kite I can practice flying
out on the dam by John's place
or out in the street cul de sac!!! maybe....

Also thanks for the jogging suit though it was too small....aaakkk
started counting with WW again!!!

Thanks to everyone for all the wonderful Christmas gifts for Dad and I

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

a favorite artist...

Daniel Gerhartz

Born in 1965 in Kewaskum, Wisconsin, where he now lives with his wife Jennifer, and their young children, Dan's interest in art emerged as a teenager. Studies at the American Academy of Art in Chicago, Illinois and his voracious appetite for museums and the modern masters such as John Singer Sargent, Alphonse Mucha, Nicolai Fechin, Joaquin Sorolla, Carl von Marr as well as a host of other French and American impressionists have inspired him.

Dan has a particular interest and appreciation for modern Russian art and the sumptuous canvases of the painters Nicolai Fechin, Isaac Levitan and Ilya Repin. As Dan says, their paintings are "completely loose yet deliberate and faithful, not at all flashy."

Indeed, the powerful and evocative beauty of Gerhartz's paintings are also due in large measure to looseness, honesty and faithfulness of his style. Dan's paintings embrace a range of subjects, most prominently the female figure in either a pastoral setting or an intimate interior. He is at his best with subjects from everyday life, genre subjects, sacred-idyllic landscapes or figures in quiet repose, meditation or contemplative isolation.

His mastery of the female figure, the clothed figure especially, is brilliant. He has drawn inspiration from the very old tradition of romanticism and symbolism. His absolutely lavish surfaces, color and lighting are in harmony with his expressionistic brushstroke, application and modeling of light and shade.

His paintings are sensitive yet evocative creations, which dramatize his bold and ambitious technique. He is at his very best when he allows himself to explore the surface in a free and painterly manner, while retaining his sense of other worldliness.

His subjects evoke a timelessness and idealism, yet for the most part Dan has drawn upon his home and community in Wisconsin, including family and friends. His sense of intimacy and honesty with regard to his subjests are a direct result of his closeness and proximity to them. A projection of tranquillity, repose and rich introspection result from his knowledge of the content of his art.

In Gerhartz's pictures the ordinary or commonplace is transformed into a higher reality and consequently a sense of greater importance. Emotions are a vital part of his express design, while his mastery of anatomy, the human form and complex surfaces combine to make his canvases very powerful visual experiences.

About his work Dan has said, "My desire as an artist is that the images I paint would point to the Creator, and not to me, the conveyor. J.S. Bach said it well as he signed his work, 'Soli Deo Gloria,' To God alone be the glory."

my other blog entry about this artist.

Monday, January 11, 2010

gifts from Bobby and Greg....

cyclamen in a lovely planterBobby also gave me a very large, very sharp kitchen knife...just what I needed!!!!!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Saturday, January 9, 2010

orchids from Danny at Christmas...

I think the Fortuna sign came from Annette

Friday, January 8, 2010

Mexico Teotihuacan pyramids 1968...2009

Mary in Mexico.... 2009

The picture below was taken by Mom and Dad in 1968
Mary 2009

Mom and Dad in 1968