27 October 2010


Last week was Fashion Remix. I got my fancy dress on, bought some sexy high heels and wore nude tights with a octopus 'tattoo' stenciled on them. Ksenia and I made the drive, along with a caravan of a whole lot of design students, to SLC. Upon entering the venue the gentleman at the door said after hearing that I had left my ID in the car, "It's obvious you're over 35 so go on in." Friends have suggested I wear more lycra next time. Utah State had a dress in the runway show under the direction of professor Darrin Brooks. You see, it goes down like this; each design company is paired with a manufacturer, such as tile, carpet, textiles, laminate etc. and they must creatively create a high fashion 'outfit' USU drew Humanscale, which produces office furnishings - chairs, lights, systems furniture. How do you make a dress out of a chair? Well, they did an amazing job. Lots of hard work, I've been up on campus seeing it take form. And guess what? They won the whole shebang!

 Here is the dress. Nekku modeled it perfectly, the stomacher is a chair back tied with electrical cords, the pannier is made from chair legs and LED desk lamps. The fabric is office chair "mesh" very stiff and difficult to work with. The leggings are chair fabric also tied again with cords from the lamps. Just Beautiful!

  Here is little Miss Spunky with the Presiding Bishop of the LDS church and Spencer Eccles at the opening of a new facility of Primary Children's Hospital. This was in the paper last spring while she was staying at the all too familiar hospital. 
 So I say she deserves the first piece of cake.

A great night. The proceeds were for Cystic Fibrosis. My niece has a daughter with CF. Let me tell you this little firecracker could rule the world. She loves fashion, and hair styles, and talking. She is a super spokesperson for this disease and when she is older I'm sure she'll be "rockin' the runway." So if you're able, donate to Cystic Fibrosis to find a cure. You don't even have to dress up.

19 October 2010


The EAGLE has LANDed

15 October 2010

soccer, as in life

Darren's soccer players make me happy. Some he has coached since they were 10 years old. They are men now approaching 18. I still chill "lucky jello" before each game. The majority of the team have family in Mexico. What a privilege to get to know their stories. Driving them to Salt Lake for a game a few weeks ago I asked them to tell me about the cities and towns they come from. What richness and excitement. Tales of the architecture and amazement that is Mexico City. An 18 meter raised highway and a giant flag were captured on their cell phones and shared with me. They include me. Have even offered that I could "tag along" to Mexico one day. One young man joined the army last week. A 3.7 grade point average, 5 AP classes passed, a full-time job. Another young man wants to be a pediatrician. Another is a completely different soul after being baptized into a Christian church. I was immersed in in his conversion story. Another lost his brother and sister and cousin in a car accident. He broke his back and cracked his skull, wide open. Do you not want to just go and hold his mother? They are all fairly sheltered, polite and upstanding. They bring their younger siblings to the games if they are babysitting. They ride their bikes. Staying at Darren's parents in SLC walking home from a Real Salt Lake game they were terrified of the neighborhood. I giggled. And so last night at a game I was so disappointed with some behavior. Parents from the opposing team taunted them from the sideline. "Whoa, we better call the cops, I bet they have switchblades." Are you kidding me? "At least we don't fall down like little Mexicans." The coach yelled out, "That's not racist it is just stating the obvious." Now, I can't pretend that I have never been racist. I grew up in Utah without much diversity. My mother grew up in a town that she said at the time had, "one Lutheran." I am awful at Aggie football games. I shouldn't be allowed to sit so close to the opposing team. I catch myself being rude in the "name of humor" more often than I should be.  I have learned over the years that it is usually ignorance and fear of difference. But, I have also learned that listening to the person's story is more powerful than a sledgehammer in breaking down barriers. I ran out to the refs after the game and stated, "You can't let intimidating words change the game like that. They are not simply "Mexicans" they are young men playing soccer." They tied the game. They handled themselves like men. They were joyous. Words are power - for good and for bad.

At the end of August Luma Mufleh, coach of the Fugees, spoke for convocation. I had read "Outcasts United" at the suggestion of a friend. The students gave her a standing ovation. I had chills. She spoke about feminism, racism, America, truly a land of opportunity. A Muslim woman finding a strong purpose, guiding and loving and coaching refugee children and families through this new life in America. She didn't sugarcoat or gloss over the struggles. I was inspired. I wish I put words into action more often in my life.

 the team playing Africa United, a refugee team from SLC
(they were not playing this team when the above described incident happened)

don't you wish you could run like that?

keeping an eye on the ball
 the look on all their faces is priceless.


Like I said, words are power... words into action... goooooaaaaaalllllllllllll.

12 October 2010

How do they do it?

"How many ADD skateboarders does it take to dig a hole?" Let's go skate"
A friend once wrote in her holiday card about her children, "They make me laugh, they make me cry and they do it over and over again." Amen. Teenagers induce my stomach to ache. Mine in particular. My teenager that is, oh, I guess my stomach too.
But sometimes, they take my breath away. And the Saturday before last was one of those moments. (I won't say they are rare, but come unexpectedly) Land decided upon returning home from being down and out and under that he would like to complete his Eagle Scout. (huhhhhhh?) Ok. And he decided that trees for shade for shady characters needed to be planted at the city skatepark. Ok. Nevermind that we have talked to the city for years about shade, and lights, and "facilities." No, not now, no money. But he must of hit them up on the right day, because they simply stated yes, go ahead. We will donate a few trees, but you need to raise the funds for the rest. And within a week he had enough to buy 22 trees! What? He made a flyer and a few phone calls. The skate shop put the word out on facebook and 50+ people showed up to dig the holes. Wellsville ward, Logan ward, friends young and old, skateboarders, random people wandering by. Overwhelming for sure. Gratitude. Certainly. The skateshop brought some product and held a mini-sesh. The kids rested in the shade afterwards. That Land.

 "Why did the chicken cross the road?" To help Land with his Eagle" thanks Camber