Tips, Quotes, Ideas

aleph1On this morning’s walk, I photographed some “alien alphabets” –marks on the street left by the utility company. The name needs to change. In Arizona, “alien” is not a little green humanoid from outer space, it’s a slur for people not born here. On the same walk, I added other alphabet figures  based on shapes–gates, grates, tree limbs. No new name yet, but a lot of exploration ahead.

You probably have a file of quotes someplace on your computer. Me, too. I got a aleph2gift of a bunch of quotes from Traci Paxton Johnson, and added to it. Today, I noticed I had 27 pages of quotes. Printing them out (back and front of the pag, of course) and storing them in the studio for future use (I have that alphabet to try out) made sense. So did sharing some of the quotes that slid by on the screen on the way to the printer:

“Vision without action is a daydream. Action without vision is a nightmare.” –Japanese proverb

“Fear is the natural reaction to moving closer to the truth.” —Pema Chodron

“If you think you are too small to have an impact, try going to sleep with a mosquito in the room.” —14th Dalai Lama

aleph3“In the end, we remember not the words of our enemies, but the silence of our friends.” —Martin Luther King

“Patience is not about how long you can wait, but how well you behav while you’re waiting.” —Buddhist Bootcamp

Tip: If you live in a hot climate and have sliding doors, don’t grease them with oil. The heat degrades it and makes it stickier. And it collects cat hair.  Instead, rub the runners with plain candle wax. Works wonders.

Tip: Tired of drinking water all day long? Gather up some stray tea bags, brew them and make a blended ice tea. Choose a mix of fruit flavors and green tea–rose hips, hibiscus, mango, blackberry, and green tea. A great refreshing drink. No calories, lots of flavor, lots of antioxidants.

Tip: Have blank pages at the end of your journal? Fill them with an index–using page numbers or dated pages, so you can flip to the back and know what’s in each journal. Or use the back pages to test colors of new inks, paints, or pencils.

–Quinn McDonald is switching to summer hours, not because she likes getting up at 4:30 a.m., but because the sun rises early and so do the cats.





18 thoughts on “Tips, Quotes, Ideas

  1. I see faces (or is it just eyes . . . and what does this say about me?) everywhere rather than text. There are so many in the driftwood on the beach where every knot hole is an eye and I say “you poor thing, where is the rest of your body?” Sometimes they’ll blink at me but never actually answer. And then there are those silly plastic bags playing in the road in the slip stream of the passing cars, and what about those trees waving as I go past and the rows of crops in the field without a fence because the farmer asked them not to stray, and have you noticed how often cows, or more particularly calves, are facing the same way? Honestly, sometimes I worried that I was alone in seeing more thatn what is just superficial but now I know I have fine company.

    A favourite quote of mine that was attributed to Dorothy Parker. ‘The cure for boredom is curiosity. There is no cure for curiosity.’ And all I can say is that goodness for that as I’d hate to be cured!

    • Cows do line up the same way when they are feeding. Sheep do not. Curiosity about life is a fine attribute. And I love being outside, seeing what nature is doing. I just wish I didn’t have to do it at 4:30 in the morning!

      • But Quinn, these are grass fed cows . . . there is huge resistance to factory farmed cattle here. As there is little light when I leave for wrok and arrive home again, I’m missing my outings during the week too.

        • Yep, I meant field cows. When I drive through New Hampshire (well, not any more, that’s 2,800 miles away) all the nice black and white milk cows, grazing on grass, all facing the same way. Except a few contrarians. We have several feed lots between here and Tucson and I avoid looking when I go by. It’s depressing.

  2. Quinn – I love that you saw alien alphabet on the street rather than just stray markings. You have the best creative mind!

    And by the way, I miss laughing with you!

  3. Yes, loved the orange glyph! Have often used a small herd of mixed stray teabags to make tea, and if I have neither time nor inclination to boil water, etc., I use the microwave to make a concentrated brew with the teabags in a 2 cup glass measuring cup of water and then I can pour it into a pitcher, add water / ice and it’s ready to drink in just a few minutes. ” One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats.” — Iris Murdoch

    “One of the secrets of a happy life is continuous small treats.” –Iris Murdoch

  4. I love the iced tea idea! My wife leaves tea bags to dry out with the idea that she “might” use them again, now we actually may. I can’t wait to share the Buddhist quote on patience! 😉

    A lovely post today. Thank you.

  5. I enjoyed the pictures. I especially liked the orange one. I wonder what they mean? An “alien” language just for the power and water and paver guys.
    I also liked the Buddhist Bootcamp quote about patience. I’m going to use that one this weekend. We will have a houseful of teens and these days teens want what they want instantly. That doesn’t work here. I can see “the writing on the wall”…..not a bad idea. I wonder if I have time to do that?
    Note: You can tell when Spock is amused. He lifts his eyebrow. Spock is right about humans. When will we learn to manifest what we do want? It’s a lot of work to remain positive.

    • Hahaha–what a great phrase to write on a kitchen or dining room wall! I love that idea. A lot of those diagrams show were other power lines are, or where to dig the new cable line. The orange one is new, but frequent, and seems to be used a lot at intersections. I’ll have to ask when I see the digging start, I think it means there is a group of cables in a bigger pipe, and therefore an access place, but I’m guessing from looking at the other information around it.

  6. Oh I am so glad I am not the only one who leaves blank pages at the end of ALL my sketchbooks. I recently went through all of them and extracted the empty pages. I have enough pages for at least two or maybe three new sketch books! Hurrah!

  7. The slightly deviant tendencies of Arizona have been noted, and Spock is not amused.

    Er, wait, Spock is never amused…

    “It is curious how often you humans manage to obtain that which you do not want.”

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