Sunday, July 4, 2021



"Stranger in a strange land"

Exodus 2:22

Here I am one year later after the lockdown of 2020 and I am not liberated from this same feeling. I am fully vaccinated and yet only half the country is willing to do so. A new variant is stronger than ever still citizens are not willing to vaccinate and keep each other safe.

The news has a mass shooting almost every week.

There is a weather disaster weekly in one part of the country as headline news. I was naive to think I would escape this as I lived in the NW and then a heatwave hit last week.

Shootings by police of black citizens keep occurring. nationwide and the BLM movement is getting stronger.

Laws restricting voting are being passed. Remember that whatever is in the Constitution or Bill of Rights is ONLY APPLIED WHEN ENFORCED by the current politicians. example; voting for blacks etc

Assaults on airlines between passagers and airline staff.

Mental  Health clinics have  high volume of clients dealing with symptoms from lockdown.

There have been more attacks on Jewish and Muslim places of worship. Asians are attacked in the streets as "virus" carriers. Racial assaults are up as our neighbors are becoming our enemies again.


I want to say I am willing on my 72nd 4th of July my eyes are open. I am grateful to be born in this country. I have freedoms here, not unlike other countries. I can speak my mind. I can be educated to and make my own conclusions unlike many women in other countries. I can worship my faith as I choose.

 And today I can acknowledge that my country after 246 years has yet to fulfill the hopes and dreams of the Constitution and The Declaration of Independence. 

The "American Dream" is not to have material things. a house. a car and lots of money. It is what they represent. It is to have equal access to work and equal pay, education, business loans, political representation, home loans.

We are still a nation of "becoming". who we are meant to be. We are now a country where a small percent have benefited from the dream and depend on the many to keep their dream alive.

My question to them is: it is amazing to see the poor and how grateful they are to be here with so little, especially the new immigrants, and to see many of the wealthy express so little gratefulness for the wealth they will never be able to spend in their lifetime?


I choose to remain a "stranger" in this country if I stand for the ideals of my faith and the best of the ideals of the founding fathers. Justice and equality for all is about love.  Love for one's neighbors.

Thank you to all Americans that believe and work and march for the dream that includes us all.

Thursday, April 1, 2021

A Memoire of Life Altering Events: Growing up female, white, poor, abused, overweight, talented and educated in America. {A response to BLM and MeToo! movements}

 UPDATE: Dereck Chauvin was found guilty of murder in the second, third-degree and manslaughter.

{ The trial of the killing of George Floyd began this week, I decided to post this blog that  I have been working on for several months. The 9min 29 secs it may take to read it, is my knee bent in reverence to acknowledge what has to stop in this country. To dismiss the life of another human being that is perceived and judged as beneath you, undeserving to breathe,  as his neck was restricted by this officer's knee.......)

[ A comment made by the prosecutor struck me as memorable and relates to my theme of love. He referred to the defense team implying Floyd's heart was diseased, too big, and affected his death.. and he felt if so then the officers was "too small".]

Out of a deep sleep..........

I awakened one morning to a nightmare, I was yelling for help and it startled me out of a deep sleep when I heard my own voice of helplessness. This was not a fantasy dream it was true. I am going to trust this memory has surfaced from my soul to heal itself and that I am courageous enough to do so at this time. This memory is linked to the current "Me Too" movement. Women who are finally speaking out about abuse at the hand of men in positions of power.  In this dream, I yelled, screamed out against the rapist and this was with courage I did not have 45 years ago.

The "Me too!" and "BLM" movements are both meaningful and healing for me and all who speak up, even for the first time. As a woman and living in this country, this post also shares my racial experiences, the only way I can get to an understanding that is remotely familiar to the "life of color" in our culture. I am white and therefore automatically privileged already. Yet as a woman I am still being held back and dismissed. Most recently by the traditional medical profession for my apparent weight issues, yet healthier than 10 years ago after not following medical advice and medicine prescribed.

[ Note: In 2000 I knew a man of color would be elected in this country to the Presidency before a woman. This was true in 2008. This makes Election 2020 historical for women AND women of color to be represented for the first time by this Democratic party nomination.]

(As of Nov 6, 2020 elected to be next Vice President of the USA)


          The following events have formed and continue to influence my understanding of these struggles.

" Time to head to the kitchen."

MY grade school teachers would announce a half-hour before lunch hour. As a poor student being raised by a single mother, eligible for the free lunch program, it required me to go to the kitchen, put on an apron, and get ready to serve the meal to my fellow students, even from my homeroom. The stigma of being "poor" and becoming a servant to my peers was humiliating. We would eat after the other students and miss our playtime outside with the others.


"Not her!"

I was usually chosen last to be on a sports team in elementary school because of my weight, until 6th grade and I would reveal how skilled I was. After proving myself, I was always wanted as a teammate on the winning team after that.


"Why does he pick her every time, look at her!"

Fellow popular female students would whisper, loud enough for me to hear them. A basketball star on the middle school team, Tom, would choose me on Friday to be his partner in dance class. This continued for two years. I was clearly a poor student living with a divorced parent..Quite a stigma in the 50s-60s.


"You were 10 years old at the time and I was so ashamed of my brothers."

My aunt Adele, the only sister of my father, Carl Anderson, revealed how she was denied permission to invite Marion Anderson to join us for Christmas Eve dinner [1959] on behalf of the Portland Oregon Opera Association. My aunt had been a light to me about how to navigate this world of dark inequality since I was a young child. She shared this event with me as a 30-year-old niece, while living and working with her [1980].  My aunt a former opera singer, Madame Butterfly, the lead performer, in Oslo Norway, was a member of the Opera Association since retirement. When I watched Marion Anderson's performance for the inauguration [ 1961] of John F Kennedy, I did not know I was denied the opportunity of meeting and possibly hearing her sing a duet with my aunt during our family's holiday celebration.


"Did you see your father raise a knife to your mother?"

The judges question to me in court at the second divorce trial of my parents. I was 9 years old in 1957. Divorce then was granted if one partner was proven a 'bad' person. Her child support never came through. She could only put my dad in jail for non-payment. He could not work then!? So we went without financial help until my mother remarried.


"What's happening?"

I asked my freshman dorm roommate Suzanne.  A group of male students surrounded both of us as we exited the cafeteria and pushed us into the elevator leading to the men's 6th floor of the dormitory. Suzanne was held and released after I was forced to walk down 5 flights of stairs with shaming comments by the men all the way down. Soon after she attempted suicide. She never told me what happened to her that afternoon in the elevator. 1967


"Take a look at the quad!"

As a class was in session my classmates were heading to the windows. We could hear a commotion outside. A group of black athletes was gathering in the middle of the quad, at the crossroads. And it was for the students involved. They had petitioned the college officials to establish a Black Student Union and to create scholarships for black women to attend the university. They were being harassed for dating the white female students on campus. All were denied, so every black athlete walked off campus together. Leaving behind their educations and future prospects for sports careers. I did follow-up research to find Benton county where the Corvallis college is located was one of two northern US counties to have strongholds of the KKK. The other in the Chicago area.  To this day OSU has not been a serious contender in the college league for sports competitions. The legacy of one day in the spring of 1970


When I was awakened from a drunken sleep with his knees on my arms and his hand on my mouth about to be raped by my cousin's friend from Germany. We gave him a welcoming party the evening prior at my cousin's university apartment to celebrate his engagement. It was 1970. I did not tell anyone except for my cousin after he awoke and found me locked in the bathroom. His response was "Are you sure?"


" It is done, never again,"

A call in 1970 to meet on the quad at the University of Oregon to surrender the symbols of our imprisoned views of our culture. and our roles in it...Our bras! My commitment was to open my eyes to new ways of viewing both women and men in our society. Fifty years later I  have kept this group pact.


"Why are you leaving the department now? You are doing so well."

The OSU Architecture department head comments as I informed him I was not returning the next year. I went from a C grade the first term to an A grade the third term in his theory class while being ignored as his only female student the previous 9 months. 1970.


" Your signature is required to continue receiving your quarterly grant for college. The contract reads, if any government property is damaged while you are protesting, you will lose your grant."

Intimidation by the financial department head of the University of Oregon to stop protesting "the war" or I as a low-income female student would have to leave school. I signed the form and kept on protesting. I was willing to take this to court and challenge govt funding practices of denying financial assistance versus my right to free speech and peaceful protest. 1970-72.


"Help me make the coffee for the men."

My manager directed me, a woman, while on a college work-study job assignment as an engineering assistant for a local highway construction company. She dressed in heels as men wore relaxed clothing. I was amazed how far she had come in her profession,  yet was held to a service position amongst the men and she wanted me to understand this, "my place" at work. Later, I was called into the office and pushed up against the wall, chest to chest, by a male supervisor for refusing to wear a dress. I climbed all over a Kelsh plotter machine [ 6lx6wx8h feet} used for cartography mapping of areas to be under road construction. I kept my job for two years with off-and-on harassment. It was the highest-paying job I could find to finance my college education. I kept wearing slacks! 1970-73

Kelsh plotter

"This is very fine work. Where are you from?"

A critique after transferring from OSU to UofO in 1970 and taking my first oil painting class taught by the Art department head. As my advisor, he admitted after my second year in the Art department was completed, he seldom invested in his female students because they are " only there to find a husband".


" Your studio space for BFA graduate work will be in the corner of the painting classroom".

The Art department head informed me after I committed my own money to receive a BFA degree by working three jobs with no scholarship funding. The other male students in this program were given private studio space to paint and prepare for the final "Art Show". After a requested grievance hearing, I was assigned a private studio space to work and completed my "One-woman Show" in the spring of 1973. Note: my teacher was in attendance at my 1973 fall wedding as a friend, mentor, and personal photographer of the event.


"She stole the doughnuts from the receptionist desk. I saw her carrying them out of the office."

 The accusation of a fellow male employee during our weekly staff meeting. I was seen taking them to the bus and NOT seen providing them for my newly formed "Movies in the Afternoon" activity in a nearby low-income housing apartment building. I was the only one in our group establishing the goal of our agency to facilitate community relationships with the lonely and isolated disabled seniors in this city project. 1974.


" I realized after reading your resume, that we must hire you. Can you start working this weekend as a busser and start as a cook in two weeks?"

The call I received after returning home that day from my interview and was told they were not hiring for a position at a newly opened lunch restaurant in Anchorage. After bussing tables the next weekend, I went on to become the manager/cook after 6 months and developed it into a dinner place on weekends. When I went to most job interviews I was easily dismissed by my appearance alone. It was assumed I had little energy for the position or skill. 1980


" You closed the men's bathroom!  You locked it up, open it now!"

The comment made to me by the construction camp manager alongside the military commander of the naval base, Adak Island Ak. One of the 4 restrooms was trashed daily out of disrespect for the all-woman housekeeping crew I managed. Sexual graffiti on mirrors and nonuse of trash cans.  I warned them of "closing it down"  in the future. I knew if one was closed they would have to use the other three and crowd them. 200 men in the camp. It was so important to keep my word. I was asked and immediately opened the restroom doors. It established respect that was not challenged for the remainder of the year. I was the only woman living in the camp and the head of the kitchen and housekeeping crew. Even at 1000.00 a week, I was the lowest-paid employee in the camp


" I don't know why you are here? Wasting time?."

The comment by my Abbot at the Zen monastery. Other comments include references to my weight not being ok with him. These abusive comments over a 6 year period were not singled out for me. Other women revealed a similar relationship with shaming comments from the current primary male teacher available to us. I asked for a meeting with his top student assistant also to be present. She chose a public setting where any or all fellow practitioners could see his reaction to my withdrawing my honor and respect for him as my Abbot. No longer would I ring bells, chant or play drums for his lectures. I considered him a fellow practitioner, no more than that. He answered loudly so anyone near could hear his voice and perceive I was the cause of his outburst. " What do you want from me?" Out of my own awareness, I moved to a less naive yet equal place of practice and not because of his conscious awareness of a practice issue to benefit me. 1989


" You are just drug-seeking!"

The nurse commented after technicians cleared me of brain trauma at the Harborview Trauma Center, Seattle. I had fallen in the bathroom resulting in a head injury from my collapsed left knee. The Director of the shelter insisted I go for tests. When paramedics loaded me into the ambulance at the local homeless shelter, my home at the time was noted on my chart. I was treated as a second-class citizen. There was no regard for my need to be covered by a blanket on that cold rainy day. The trip was very painful and no urgency was given to travel time to the hospital. After all, tests were completed,  no trauma miraculously was found. The nurse left me to dress while my face swelled and went black from the bruises. My back was in spasms, I could not even get off the gurney without further pain. 2012


I have seen even more of this basic attitude of dismissal by men of authority and women also and my peers. It is well communicated to me "you don't matter!"  Has my life been threatened on a regular basis? No. I  have been singled out and profiled as to my abilities and basic human rights. So these are some of my experiences that fully support both movements to speak out about their lives. THEY MATTER. And for myself to stand up in my own life for others deserving of love and compassion.


Thank you to all that speak out in a nonviolent way. I am just beginning to express myself and my life as it was. God's Grace ensures "we are all enough".

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Valentines Day 2021



My favorite design for a card for this day of celebrating LOVE

I have sent this card many times to many dear friends and lovers over the years. As an artist, I have not found a better comment on the people I have loved and adored. They have not all felt the same way about me.  I have also felt many different ways to love another and be drawn to them. With age comes the awareness to see and have some wisdom about "what has love got to do with it?" From my first girl crush for my 5th-grade teacher to my correspondence letters sent to a Vietnam soldier, to my college infatuation with my husband to be, and on it goes.......


My favorite song for Valentines Day

I remember the evening spent in a local bar on Haight Street San Fran playing this melody on the jukebox with my best friend. It was Valentines' Day and we both were not in relationships. The bar had a Middle Eastern atmosphere, dark and sultry, and felt exotic to us both.. 1970's for sure. The melancholy jazzy melody is a reminder of how much sadness or "Blues" can come from some relationships. The lyrics are optimistic, that love accepts all. It is not about perfection


My favorite Valentines' candy Dark Chocolate in any form!

Now that we know the truth that cocoa is good for us in its purest form and dark as possible, there is no more guilt when eating it. As Woody Allen predicted in his movie "Sleeper"1973, the story is about, after being frozen following his death, he was to find out, as a previous health food store owner, chocolate would be "healthy!". So in 2073 when he is brought back to life, he discovers new food realities. Thank goodness I did not have to wait till 2073.


My favorite rose this year is white and purple

As I found this rose online, it was one of many purple rose colors. I was drawn to the contrast of white against purple. It would not be readily available to purchase for me. Not going to make it easy to buy me these roses am I.? As you can see,  the curser on the PC image lavender/purple is my favorite color....a combination of red and blue.


LOVE can be about attraction, dreams, and feelings for another and myself.
These can all be fleeting and disappear overnight.
There is only one "soulmate".
It is when the soul can realize true love is the one God our creator gives us each day...that helps me know this Valentines without a partner, I am never alone. 

Reach out to everyone that brings you some "JOY" and send a love letter, love text, love email to them.

Sunday, January 17, 2021

January 6 2021; Inagguration 2021 Update

Update  Inaguration 2021: A Young Bright Woman of Light  The Future of America


                                                                        1 John 2:15

"Do not love the world or anything in the world. Love for the Father is not in them."


I am writing to all my friends. The politics of this world has divided us. I am a friend that can no longer be blind to the choices made by some to follow conspiracies that are not about love for others our neighbors. You have chosen to " be in this world"  instead of "of this world". A world full of conspiracies only provides the "glasses" that see conspiracies everywhere in our elections, our congress, our opposition leaders, fake news reporting,  and ignorance of our Constitution.


Romans 12:2

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is. His good, pleasing and perfect will."


Our country was founded by people wanting democracy to be tempered by spiritual values of justice , equality and liberty for all. 

A mob of rioters, intent on harm and destruction came to the Capital to express only their extreme minority views of 


They believe not in our democratic process with verified and audited elections or the Constitution. They are filled with anger, and only a love for a country THEY want, that THEY no longer SEE in the faces of many citizens of America. The mob was clearly predominantly WHITE. [Whites will be in the minority by 2050.]

It is our responsibility to pursue the truth and make choices that reflect LOVE not hate for others in any form or venue. We do not have the right to create the truth we want or prefer and then choose the ones we want to believe. It is AMERICAN to love the ideals of "Justice and liberty for all" and to be able to "pursue happiness." These are the spectacles I wear when in the world of politics.
I can understand the 2021 election disappointment when the 2016 election results did not reflect my values or even my candidate. Many friends were so disillusioned they curled up into a ball and withdrew from participation in life. They did not look to others for a conspiricie or riot before the Capital. Even when the antiquated electoral college did not reflect the popular vote win by the opposing candidate.. Approval by the electoral college winner Trump did bring to mind how I remember his outrage of Obamas win  in 2012 with the electoral college , and said it was in need of reform.
"The electoral college is a disaster for democracy... a total sham and a travesty..Donald Trump 2012
I would rather see ..simple votes....Trump "60 minutes 'November 2016

1+1=2, not 3, we don't get to choose 2 or 3, what we believe has no bearing on the truth, it just is.
Our responsibility is to search and pursue the truth regardless of what I or others want to believe.

" The receptivity of the masses is very limited, their intelligence is small, but their power of forgetting is enormous. In consequence of these facts, all effective propaganda must be limited to a very few points and must harp on these in slogans until the last member of the public understands what you want him/her to understand by your slogan. .........The great masses of people will more easily fall victim to a big lie than to a small one." [ Qanon is an example of a "Big Lie", " how could it not be true? It is so evil that pedophile democrats [ not republicans?] rule our country and harm children. Who wants to NOT be for the protection of children.]

Mein Kamph by Hitler

"WE won by a landslide....THEY stole the election.....We must fight....I will walk with you.....I love you, you are special.....


I would like everyone to note there were no riots prior to the January 2017 inauguration of Trump. Obama was cordial during the transition. We who lost accepted our democratic election results. Even though the popular vote elected Clinton and previously Gore in 2000. I as an 'independent" have voted for the person, not the party. [ Independents are a third of registered voters and growing in numbers each election. Independents make up to 50% of the tallied Democratic and Republican voters. This results in half or more not being Republican or Democrats...We are 50,000 plus strong and not included in many surveys]


This cartoon is an homage to the American Revolution that created this flag.  I saw how it can speak for us all in this political climate by adding the capital building being embraced by the snake. It stands for the building itself, the democracy it represents, and also the rioters that feel their America is slipping away. Including the first and second amendments being threatened and a "way of life" being lost. Their vision is in the right, as evidenced and confirmed by the phrase "Make America Great Again" America of white Christian faces, unenforced constitutional equality, vigilante just-us, to carry guns for killing openly, and ......? WE have the right to vote and elect representatives and protest peacefully if not being heard., yet clearly our nation is moving ahead of our past filled with bias, discrimination and only the dreams of the wealthy.

The America I can support is one that People the world over responded to after Jan 6.  The top democratic nations were broken-hearted by the actions of a few to commit crimes in the name of "Democracy". There were three non-democratic countries that responded with jokes and celebration in the events unfolding from Jan 6. Iran, China, and Russia. This should say very clearly about the TRUTH of these events...Where do you stand about this event?.. Democracy is inclusive of all equally ......I am for the freedom of speech I have to speak my mind and heart as I do today. My dearest friend, a 10 year immigrant from Russia, has been disheartened by these events. She has lived under authoritarian leaders most of her life and can see all too familiar behaviors by some in this country...She did not have a voice to speak up for human rights as we do here. The first amendment does not include incitement to attack the democracy that gives us the freedom to express ourselves politically or spiritually.

My slogan is to "Make America the Best It Can Be" To be a country of inclusion, tolerance, equality, justice for every color of our country's' citizens. 

What has love got to do with this event?
It was a selfish love and mislead passion that has been fueled by untruths, fears, hatreds, loss of a lifestyle. and more.



A country dedicated to evolving in a changing world, where we include all who live on this land. Where WE pursue a greater purpose, a higher intention to have opportunities for every citizen, every child of God to be safe, secure, and proud to be involved in making this happen....this is when America and my faith come together.



by my art student
JoEllen Shannon


More timeline of Jan 6 2021

President Biden Speech at Inaguration 2021


Jennifer Lopez This Land

Garth Brooks amazing Grace

Lady GaGa American Anthem