That Time Your Child Spontaneously Gives a Speech at a Political Forum

Wednesday, March 21st 2018

So I take my kids to the library to screen this documentary about the Women’s March:


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…what it means to stand up for your values in today’s America.


I didn’t even ask if they WANTED to.  Especially in light of the fact that Gavin recently expressed regret to me for missing out on some of the political events I’ve invited him to, like the rally with Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren and I don’t remember what else.  Besides it was because of HIM that we went all the way to D.C. for the March in the first place; this film is about US.

The documentary is great, showcasing the historical outpouring of people rallying in support of women’s rights and human rights and social justice around the GLOBE, including our very own Boston, Oakland and D.C., (not to mention EVERY continent around the world).

The discussion afterwards is a little dry so when the kids get restless I hand them paper, and writing implements.  ClaraJane colors rainbows, birds and love notes while my son starts writing what I take to be a journal entry or something, but lo!  It’s a “SPEECH.”  And when it’s time for public comment he raises his hand, waits with painstaking patience and even cues up behind a blowhard mansplainer until the moderator can no longer overlook the child waiting to SPEAK.  Here he go:

2018-03-21 GAVIN’S POLITICAL SPEECH AT 9 Y/O [1:31]: 


I always tell him that when a child SPEAKS it is more powerful than all the adults in the room.  I did now know he was going to test the theory this night!

In related news, I also discover the ONE THING apparently powerful enough to keep me from speaking MY piece, and that is the maternal duty of staying the hell OUT th’ way of your determined child.   I’m proud to say that besides the pencil and paper to absorb his fidgeting, and helping him wait his turn, I did nothing to influence what he said or did.


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“Everyone Matters.”  What a concept.


pussy cat pussy hat emoji


#HowBoutThat  #EveryoneMatters  #ThisIsWhatAFeministLooksLike  #ThisIsWhatDemocracyLooksLike #PussyPower   #TheChildrenAreTheFuture  #FuckTrump  #FuckTrumpsAgenda  #RacistsNazisAndFascistsCanGoPleaseFuckOffAndDieNOW  #SaveTheEarth  #AltRightChristianHypocrisy   #ComplicityInFlorida   #YourSilenceIsDEAFENING

Posted in activism, childhood, education, faith, fight, history, learning, love, mental health, parenthood, patience, politics, social justice, The Progressive Movement | Tagged | Leave a comment

Hospital Clowning: From Crying to Curious

Friday, March 16th 2018


It’s my first time partnering with Dr. Joekulele (the next newest member of the team), and we are not bad!  I enjoy his games with kids where he continually fails to guess their name, and also when he reflects on how old he was when he was their age.  lol.  OMG he has a mini dry-erase board in his pocket onto which he can draw some “X’s” that magically disappear, reappear and flit around.  It is my favorite magic I’ve seen in a long time and I have no idea how he does it.   And check him out on harmonica!  

2018-03-16 Laughter League Joekulele Harmonica [17 seconds]:

(I am trying to back him up with the tambourine in my hair. )



Emoji, emoticon - cryingIn a room a baby is crying.  We drop some melody on him in a pitch high intended to reach around his cries.  He perks up in curiosity and quietly soaks up our rendition of Knick-Knack Pattywhack.  Then as always it is time for us to float on out of there.  At least he doesn’t start crying again just yet.



owl professorIn the lobby a boy teaches me two knock knock jokes which I mix in with one of the very next patients we visit; a four year old girl stoically building a playdough strawberry (with only one hand).  She wouldn’t give up a smile or speak for any of our efforts until we finally hit upon knock knock jokes.  Turns out both her smile AND voice are adorable.


4) KNOCK KNOCK 1-2-3:owls

  1. Knock knock.  Who’s there.  “Who.”  Who who?        What are you and owl or something?
  2. Knock knock.  Who’s there.  “Boo.”  Boo who?              Aw it’s okay, don’t cry!
  3. Knock knock.  Who’s there.  “Tide.”  Tide who?          Tide of knock knock jokes yet?



Walking by the Ultrasound waiting room we are behind schedule but there is a pow!patient with his parents in there.  I stop to play my music box against the window (now “Pink Panther” instead of “If I Only Had a Brain“).  They love it and mom wants to take a photo.  We pose through the window and of course Joe bangs his head on the window trying to get his hat back on.  I can hear their laughter as we head down the hall and it feels very satisfying to get such a great hit in under a minute.


elevator-clipart-1Waiting for one of the many elevator rides we take throughout the day, the door opens upon a family with a girl holding her own IV pole.  “Going up?” her dad asks.  “Nope sorry we’re going down,” we say.  The elevator door starts to close as the girl gasps and says, “Oh!  Come up to my room!”  The door shuts and regrettably aren’t able to follow her but that is exactly the kind of sentiment we aim to foster around here.  Forget illness, let’s PLAY!


In the morning we receive a call from one of the Child Life Specialists letting us know that a patient who loves us has made and displayed a portrait of a clown out of pom-poms, proudly displayed it on his door and would love for us to come pay a visit and see.   After lunch we manage a special trip and have a wonderful visit.  The kid speaks little English but his dad translates and we do his bidding, rewarded by fabulous laughter.  “Thank you so much!” his mom says, “You are part of my son’s wellness.

I even make it out of there before any tears leak out at all.

I am simply so honored and humbled by the privilege of  this work.

Posted in art, childhood, comedy, education, faith, family, fight, health, Hospital Clowning, Laughter League, learning, love, making art, mental health, parenthood, patience, Performing Life, ukeoke, ukulele, work | Tagged | 1 Comment

Have You Seen My Son?

March 12, 2018



Posted in art, childhood, comedy, face painting, health, making art, mental health, parenthood, spirituality | Tagged , | 2 Comments

Face Painting: Special FX with Lady Z

March 9th 2018 – East Coast Face Painting Convention

This Unicorn Zombie right here:

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The Incomparable Z Leach


She say; “Don’t even bother trying to say my name.  Just call me ‘Z!'”


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L-R:  Zombie, Bullet Brain, Staple Head  
Burnt, Foaming at the Mouth and Pretty Messed Up, respectively.  

I literally gagged when she started foaming at the mouth.
How I love her though!

Posted in art, comedy, education, face painting, learning, making art, work | Leave a comment

Face Painting: Convention Oh My!

Friday, March 9th 2018

More from the 2018 East Coast Face Painting Convention: at The Zoo:

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Bear:  Brown, Polar & Teddy

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Owl,  Monkey,  Parrot













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Princess Crown,  Fairy

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Dragon, Mermaid


One Stroke Class with Kellie Burris:

Resistance is futile:

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I finally buy my first arty cakes. 


Feline Faces by Mark Reid:

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Mis-matched these sketches, #oops

















In other related inspiration:

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Posted in animals, art, education, learning, love, making art, money, patience, Performing Life, work | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Face Painting: Prosthetic Horn Making

Thursday, March 8th 2018

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Unicorn Horns


How surreal to face several canceled buses, a snowstorm and several not-canceled buses only to land in horn-making class at the East Coast Face Painting Convention.

I am pumped to try this!   The instructor also throws in some quick bling-making instruction for good measure, while our horns are baking of course.

Here’s some finished product:


In the works; horns for monsters, dinosaurs and dragons oh my!

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Instructor:  Darci McHenry


And this is just the beginning.


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Meeting Manmeat

Tuesday, March 6th 2018

Stealing into town for a secret afternoon rendezvous with my Hubsand, I find him like this:

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ManMeat Maintaining


Eating of course!  Nonchalantly enjoying a little maintenance meal and casually holding up a building.

When you love someone even more for just being theirself.

#Musky Marinated Magnificent Monosyllabic Minnesota ManMeat Monster Maintenance Meal of Mine…


Posted in comedy, faith, family, food, Friendship, health, love, marriage, patience, work-life balance | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment