30 July 2010

if they were me

if they were me, and i was you, and i was you... would you want a present too?
happy birthday happy birthday ! [name that band?]

happy birthday papa

my papa [grandpa] would have been 94 today. it's kind of ironic that my husband's birthday and his birthday are a mere 2 days apart. they have many similar characteristics.... one of my favorite being their sharp wit.

above is a little line drawing i did of him from a photo... it sits in my studio above my desk. pinned to a beautiful board made for me by sally shim .

anyway - when shanna asked me to write a memory about my grandparents a bunch of them came to mind. so i thought i'd share a bit more about papa on this his birthday.

so... he was big into safety [there were always signs in the car - fasten your seat belt!] and big big into teaching me things. he would always present me with some kind of puzzle or challenge to figure out. he was also always trying to get me to learn something in a fun way. as we used to drive around los angeles he would sing and have me spell out the names of street. P-I-C-O that spells pico! he'd mispronounce names to be funny [but still have me learn to spell them correctly] sep-pull-veeda for Sepulveda - al-U-min-eeum for aluminum.

he was a big whistler too. you could almost always hear him coming before you saw him. i don't remember him actually whistling too many tunes that you recognized, but it was just this constant sound. it was usually an upbeat rif... with some good gaps for wetting the lips and filling the lungs....

there was one song he created, that has stuck with me [with my whole family]. it's so simple, but it was so much fun to sing with him in the car. and i can't wait to sing it to the little in the car. i wish i could sing it to you here so you could hear the tune, but here are the words. it's all about stop lights:

when it's red on top it means STOP STOP STOP
when it's green below it means GO GO GO
when it's yellow in the middle means WAIT A LITTLE
and that's how the stoplights go.

happy birthday papa. i miss you.....

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29 july

the month of anyone being a guest on habit is almost up. i'm going to try to keep it up as i have been.

above is a shot from the studio yesterday. i looked down sort of shocked as normally there is so much color in my work. and here was all this black and white.... the drawings of tonka are for a show that's all about aesop fables - curated by the working proof - it will be at rare device in november. i'm trying to figure how big to make him, and if i want to embroider all or some of him... but i had to find the right pose first.... the other stuff is de-forestation based imagery [i think i hinted about this in another post awhile back?]. more on this soon.

enjoy your week everyone!

9 comments:

blair said...

Altered States. Its on Emma's Ipod.

: D

An embroidered Tonka would be so amazing! Can you and I ever trade artwork for quilt. I covet your work and Peter and I only want original pieces from our friends. If you ever have time (I know that's precious these days) think about it. I'd love it! xo

Katrina said...

i LOVE that stop light song. and i love that you'll have work at rare device this fall, because then i get to see it in person! happy nearly weekend to you. xo, k.

melissa s. said...

but you COULD sing the stoplight song for us, right? you really could with technology being what it is and all ;-)

it is delightful, as are you. hugs to you & (belated) HB to D!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing more about your Papa. The song is great! You are blessed to have had him play such a positive part in your life! I hope I can do likewise with my grandchild in the years ahead. I certainly aim to try.

Denise | Chez Danisse said...

Your papa seems like such a beautiful person. Such wonderful memories. You have me missing my grandpa.

stephanie levy said...

I really enjoyed catching up with you here today Lisa :) Yes, I feel exactly as you do doing double duty as a mom and an artist - it is wonderful, but sometimes overwhelming, and there are weeks when I get nothing done and feel crabby too... and don't even talk to me about paperwork. In my former life, before children, I was actually an organized person - or at least I remember myself as one...

I also can't believe that summer is over - I think the time flies faster with little ones in the house too :)

Have a good week!!

julie said...

i like the story of your papa and how he always tried to teach you things.

and i like the black and white work..

hope your weekend is calm. xx

Esti said...

that is a beautiful and fun song to sing to your baby, and a beautiful memory of your grandpa.

Looking forward to seeing the final embroidered piece, always exciting.

I hope summer doesn't end to you too soon!

louise said...

Hi Lisa, Both your new works look like they are going to be terrific. Loved your stories about your grandpa, so lovely. xo lj