Thursday, December 4, 2014

Sotomayor, Awards and more


Some news....

A month ago, Sergio and I were honored to be the recipients of "Best Artists in the Washington DC metro area" in the category of visual arts! Thank you Washington DC! More thrilling: the third visual artist to receive the reward is our dear friend Gloria Valdes Tarasca; she is our Godmother of sorts, as she is responsible for our meeting in Queretaro, Mexico- ten years ago!



I was commissioned to paint a watercolor for Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor and I was thrilled to receive this note:


"Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor received your wonderful painting. 
She was very appreciative and grateful and said it will go in her office.
I too thank you for providing your wonderful art congratulating the Justice on her distinction to serve 
on our nation's highest court."
                                                      ~ Franklin Garcia -US Representative (shadow) Elect, DC.



As you all know, we are now printing some of our work on canvases here in the studio. All our reproductions are made to order by us *in house* to ensure archival quality and color matching like none other than the artist can attain! Please contact us if you are interested in any of our work!



This coming weekend, we will be hosting our 9th Annual Open Studio!
YOU are invited and we will be making a video as usual for those who are far away...

Here is a little peek:


Thursday, November 27, 2014

Gratitude is the meaning of Thanksgiving...

Happy Thanksgiving wherever you are.... whether in the USA or not, it is a wonderful day to *celebrate* as we are reminded to live life with gratitude in our hearts.

For me, Thanksgiving is the last door we walk through of the year as it begins to draw to a close...as we reach the threshold from one year of our lives, one chapter to the next... we begin to look back and see all the good, the bad and the ugly.
We begin to ponder the events of the year as we begin to think of things we need to release/let go.... so that we can move forward into the next chapter/year with lessons learned, goals renewed, clarity of purpose, faith over hope.... love over all.


Although it has been a tremendously difficult year, it is so clear that God/Spirit has held and supported me/us at every step- through the love of my wonderful partner in love, life and art: Sergio, through the love our our wonderful son and writer Julian; through the blessed and mirmagical meeting of Sy and also the gift of meeting my new sisters at WoW; through the love of so many of YOU who have supported me in person and via internet too.... love heals. It does.

My heart is full of gratitude, though my life has not been easy, God/Spirit gifted me *art* from the very beginning.....
I drew
I painted
I grew
I cried
I laughed
then painted some more...
I have grown.... I have painted my pain and my triumphs.

Gratitude for life lessons, those that bring us to the very edge... that turn us inside out, those that break us so that we can become stronger, wiser, love deeper....

I realize that just as I did when doing my psychology major to become a mental health counselor we had to go through counseling ourselves before we could serve our clients..... so it has been for the art program I offer of "healing through the heART"; now that I have gone through the experience of healing through art myself~ I will be a better facilitator to help women (and children) heal thought the heART and I can't wait to begin my offerings in the coming 2015...

and so my heart is full of gratitude for life lessons in my journey that make me better accomplish my mission to serve the world through my art.....

Our hearts are full of gratitude for your support as our collectors, students online and in person, for sharing our posts and art with your loved ones...

Supporting artists helps feed the soul of the world-
Your support makes a HUGE difference.
Thanks to YOU, we are able to follow our life's purpose and gift the world our images, our lessons, our loving care for a world community that continues to move forward towards love and away from fear
towards peace and away from war
towards understanding
towards peace and joy
towards Love which covers all.

We love you!

Claudia (& Sergio)

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Abstract Painting Process in Pictures

I have been working on abstracts for the past 6 months and the process is fascinating and challenging at the same time.


Each piece goes through so many transformations that almost always I find myself working over a piece and transforming it into something entirely different that what I envisioned. 


Often one tiny mistake leads me to start the whole thing over again, one over the other over the other.

I have sometimes realized that I bury a good painting with a bad one then another *almost there* replaced by another and then another.







Documenting the steps makes me feel a bit better about it, so here it is....

I kind of miss the pieces that are created only to be buried under more paint.... 
so here it is, one of several pieces I have documented these past few weeks. 


This first photo is how it looked after one long day of working on it. I love pink and black together; I also love sap/olive green and pink- but Sergio hated the combination as much as he disliked the white splatters I made over the center, so... since I disagreed with him on both of those points, yet also was unhappy with the piece, I let it rest for the evening.




The next day, I added white all around to soften and break the space a bit.
Then more white:


At which point I encapsulated everything in one area inside the white splatters...
I liked the effects of the soft white and back and forth play of the original colors peeking through, but I was unhappy with the shape/composition
so I covered it in a glaze of burnt sienna




I liked it more now, but also wanted to add some white for balance towards the bottom.....



At this point I liked it. And it is here where it gets complicated when you second guess yourself AND you are married to a fellow painter whose critiques you respect but ..... 
so this, I liked. 
A lot.

But then I did this:




and I like that too... though at the time, I didn't realize it, so I went on...



And then the palette knife into some squarish forms...

At this point, the squares began to remind me of my "Cities at Night" Series, 
so I began to create the 
watery reflections below


And the one that follows became another piece that I liked.


I should have shown it to our son because he loved it when he saw this photo below,
but alas... I was still unsure and Sergios critiques were still the same

So I got rid of the watery effects
And regretted it right away


alas, there was nothing to do but continue
So I turned the canvas on the side and add a glop of white oil paint to it and picked up 
the palette knife again




I then decided to add more black to the central image
at which point everything changed for me
I became quite involved in the process and did not document further....
A few hours later, I had finished.

Admittedly, this is something I am very, very happy with.
The process was long, and full of surprises, a few challenges and lots of fun, a labor of love.
 I think it is a lot like life, we live, love, make mistakes, grow, stretch this way then the other, try this then that, we learn from others as well as from own revelations and ultimately, 
the process is indeed, half the fun!

The image below is not very good 
(lots of reflection as you can see)
 I will replace it with the scanned image once the piece dries.



Not only do I love my finish piece.... Sergio took one look at it and his eyes opened wide as he said:
"it's so damned good, I wish I had painted it myself"

Here is a close up of the piece:


Let me know what you think and if you would like for me to share my process with you more often!

Love & Light,
Claudia

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Calendars, limited edition

Offering a very limited edition /test run of 2015 Wall Calendars.
 These beautiful, spiral bound wall Calendars each have 12 different  images.
Please contact me if you are interested in purchasing one (or more)
via email olivosartstudio {at} gmail 

Thanks for loving my art!


You can see each page of both the Goddess calendar and the Joy of Children calendars here:






"The joy of children"
One image per calendar month
 8.5 x 11  inches
$15.- plus shipping









"Celebrating your inner Goddess"
One image per calendar month
11" x 9" 

$15.- plus shipping




















♥Makes a great gift!♥
♥ Has a hole at the top for easy hanging
♥ Plenty of room in boxes to write notes and circle important dates
♥ Professionally press printed on high quality paper
♥ A sweet new image for each month


¨¨¨°º©©º°¨¨¨¨¨¨°º©©º°¨¨¨¨¨¨°º©©º°¨¨¨¨¨¨°º©©º°¨¨¨
CUSTOMIZE YOUR very own CALENDAR
Would you like to create your very own unique calendar using your favorite images from my collection? 
If so, just let me knowwhich images you would like (and what month you'd like them on).
Or, you can Contact Me at the link below to specify the images you'd like and I can design it for you!

Love & Light,
Claudia




Monday, November 10, 2014

A circle of Love, Seymour Gresser


Alav Ha-sholom, may you rest in peace, dearest Sy.
Great man, poet and sculptor...
Seymour Gresser “Sy” May 9, 1926 -- November 1, 2014

We love you and you will remain in our hearts and lives forever.
Thank you for your love and wisdom:...

"... that's why we do our art! To express our divinity" ~Sy Gresser


Sy came into my life only 9 months ago, but in our hearts we knew immediately we had a soul connection and had known each other already... we knew it was all "magic and serendipity" as he said... I say: *mirmagical* a blessing... 


An other worldly connection-- a connection with one another, with art, my papa.
Sy and I emailed for a few months before meeting in person, and it was not until then that we both  realized he had been my papa's friend.
Not only that, but it was my papa who mentored Sy years ago in regards to his art and fellowship from the OAS to create his art in Mexico. Everyone who has known Sy is keenly aware of the fact that the trip to Mexico had an enormous impact in Sy's life, indeed-- it is what took him into the depth of his lifelong career as a sculptor. The OAS fellowship is mentioned in everyone of his artist statements... and it was a trip that came about for him when he was going through a particularly difficult time in his life... so the circle comes around- and so we met when I was going through a particularly difficult time in my life.... a circle of Love. 



Sy and I emailed daily. We tried to visit him every Sunday, and I planned to do that for many years.... it was a sweet time of talking about Mexico and China and our art and culture; he told me stories about my papa that brought so much comfort.... he was/is family. An extension of my dear papa here on earth... a gift.

Sy was my parent, my mentor my friend for these nine months which have been so tough... he came into my life exactly one week after I came out of the denial of the abuse.
He has been my anchor, my comfort, my hope.
I will never be the same-he will always be with me.
My heart is full of sadness and gratitude too....


Nine months... I can find great symbolism in the time frame... nine months of gestation-- and here I am, MUCH better than I was back in February when I met him and I was experiencing such a painful time in my life,  here I am, nine months later-having been soothed and loved and nurtured by Sy.... by proxy,  Sy and my papa Luis. 


I love Sy


My heart is full of gratitude to my papa and to God/Spirit for bringing us together, even if for a short period of time....

 Sy and I connected through my papa, trough something so intangible that only he and I understand.... we have shared daily for the past 9 months.... it has been love and sweetness and a connection that surpasses time and I know our souls will meet again...
But there is sadness too, when we loose someone.....
and my heart goes out to his wife and children....

 A few days before he passed away, my sweet soulsister, Ana Medina offered to play her healing bowls for him and he was delighted and comforted by the healing sounds of the bowls.
(Ana took these photos and sent me the message below).

It was such a blessing to see him and his wife receive and bathe in the holy sounds...
My heart is filled with love and sadness and gratitude.

There was an informal gathering in his studio one week after he passed, and his wife lovingly refered to me as "Sy's adopted daughter" ... and indeed, this is how I feel. A deep paternal link to this beautiful human. One of Sy's family members said a truth that is a good lesson for us all:

"Sy made everyone feel loved, because there was no judgement"
I love that... it is something that I aspire to on a daily basis:

 it is unconditional love.



 I will miss him terribly and my heart hurts to think of him not being *here* any longer...
but as I told him: because of my abuelita and my papa, I know dear Sy too, will always be near.



 Seymour Gresser “Sy” was born 9 May 1926, in Baltimore, Md., the son of Simon Solomon and Sara (Williams) Gresser. Educated at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, Washington, D.C. (1949-1950), George Washington University (1950-1953), and University of Maryland (B.S., 1949, M.A., 1972). Gresser served in the U.S. Merchant Marines as a radio operator (1944-1946). He has received an Organization of American States fellowship for 1960-1961. Gresser has been a sculptor and writer and employed in various positions, including doing research on American Indians, technical writing and editing, and teaching art. He has been an Instructor in sculpture, Sculptor's Studio (evenings, 1958-63), and Paint Branch Unitarian Church, sculptor-in-residence at Yale University (1969). His work has been exhibited in one-man shows and group exhibitions in U.S., Europe, and Mexico since 1951, including Smithsonian Exhibition, 1952; Washington Irving Gallery, New York, N.Y., 1956, San Angel Exhibition, Mexico, 1960, Capricorn Gallery, New York, N.Y., 1967, Harvard University, 1971, Fordham University, Berkeley Center at Yale University, and Athena Gallery, New Haven, CT.



 Ana wrote:
This is a long story. It was not my story until today. My soul sister Claudia Olivos has a very special friend, Sy, a fabulous sculptor who is soon closing a chapter in his soul's path on this earth. She has a deep connection to Sy, and I have a deep connection with her, so I by extension have a connection with Sy. My spirit called me to offer a sound healing to Sy, and he was not only receptive but excited. His wife said he had been talking about it for days. This morning as I was thinking how best to honor Sy's beautiful path on this planet, I was guided to wear white and purple. I was not surprised Claudia was also wearing purple today. On my way out the door, I knew I had to bring him rose quartz. Not just any piece of rose quartz, the rounded polished one I use for healing. Sy held it, admired it and enjoyed it's energy. I am honored, humbled and in awe of the beauty we can share at the end of someone's life. Sy touched my heart today, and his beautiful spirit will live way longer than his frail body. What a great reminder today that life is truly eternal, and the bodies are a temporary vehicle. Let's wake up....wake up the rest of our senses so we can be with all the love that is and drop the fear of the costume change we call death. Love is WAY larger than we can ever imagine.....

Sy's sculpture in front of our Washington DC area studio.


We made a trade of our art for his... and he told us to choose two pieces...
 this is one of the ones we chose, and we did so without knowing what it was....
Serendipity again, as Sy later told me it was a Mandala!

The word Mandala  means "circle". 
 A Mandala represents wholeness, a cosmic diagram reminding us of our relation to infinity, extending beyond and within our bodies and minds.
The mandala appears to us in all aspects of life, the Earth, the Sun, the Moon and more obviously the circles of life encompassing friends, family and communities.  
Mandalas are circular designs symbolizing the notion that life is never ending.



LOVE. PEACE. JOY to you and yours

Monday, September 22, 2014

ARTnapped and learning to relax into the moment

I was "ARTnapped" today  

It was my third time visiting a local assisted living condominium to host art classes.
It has had a slow start over the summer, so I was not surprised to only see one gentleman waiting at the table.

He was a Chinese man whom I had heard the residents speak very highly of because of his masterful traditional Chinese watercolors.

I sat down and upon seeing he had an ipad with him (way to make me feel *outdated!*- we have no i-phone nor i-pad!) I asked him to show me his paintings.

He spoke no English other than a few words here and there, but he laughed delightfully when I ''oohed and ahhed" over his pieces.

He also showed me his Jade jewelry, large bracelets and a huge jade medallion of a dragon he wears inside his shirt for "health and vitality".... he speaks very little English... but this 84 year old had a twinkle in his eye when he said "vitality"   ;)

His paintings done in the traditional Chinese style of vertical handmade papers with a watery ink.

His pieces were glorious and he was happily scrolling through his collection when a Chinese woman joined us at the table with a big smile; and seeing that I was looking at his work, she exclaimed with lots of hand motions: "wait here I get mine"
And off she disappeared into the building.

As we sat there looking at his pieces, one of the staff there told me that the man and woman are a couple, that it had been "love at first sight" for them and they are both painters.
*sweet*
Sergio and I too, had a "love at first sight 'thing'....

The woman came back and excitedly showed me several paintings in frames she had painted and also some cut out figures of painted cardboard, they reminded me of old fashioned 'paper dolls."

Suddenly, they began to speak in Chinese... and within minutes, they were scooping up my art supplies as they invited me upstairs to her apartment.

The three of us rode up the elevator as they spoke in Chinese to each other.

Stepping out of the elevator into the hall, I saw that most of the doors had some type of decoration. We walked up to a door which had  Christmas decorations and Jade hangings.

Inside, all the walls were covered with their art. Art of all sizes, mostly Chinese vertical landscapes and tigers too (I found out later that tigers are his favorite theme).

They gave me a tour of her little place and told me he too, had hundreds of pieces made by both of them.

We sat down at the small table in the living room and she offered us Lychee and watermelon cubes and they turned to me and pointing at the canvases I had brought, they said "you, teach"...

I had no idea what I would teach these two accomplished watercolor artists.... I had canvases and pencils, so I handed them the supplies and as soon as they had them, they began to draw.

I have to confess that instead of *being in the moment* ... I was totally obsessing over the fact that I was not teaching them anything (!)

St. Catherine, Patron Saint of Artists
Available here
That's what I was there for: I was getting paid for an hour of teaching.... but they were doing their own thing.

And as I watched, I realized that there was not much I could do... just as I, an oil painter- handle acrylics like oils, they handle acrylics like watercolor.

Drips everywhere.
Lots of water.

I told myself to relax.
Let it go.
It was good enough that I was there and my presence was inspiring them to paint, they were obviously enjoying it, so I decided to join in!
I grabbed a canvas and began to paint too.

As soon as I stopped worrying about the fact that I was not teaching them anything, I began to worry about the silence.
Nobody said anything.
Nada.
For a Latina... that was tough.
There was no music, no conversation... not even between them.

It took a whole hour before I was able to convince myself that it was "ok" that I was not 'teaching' and I was not 'entertaining'.... I reminded myself that the ancient practice of meditation is very much a Chinese tradition.

So I sat in silence with them.
And it was beautiful.

Before I knew it, I had not been there for only the hour I am paid for.... I had been there for close to four hours, mostly in silence, all three of us painting together.

wow.

Sergio called me as he was worried about me "missing" ... so I got up and told them I had to go home and cook dinner-- and oh my, they wanted and wanted and wanted for me to stay for dinner.

Such an incredible experience.
No language barrier.... just art and sharing.

As we said our goodbyes I hugged them "Latina style" and they bowed and gave me their blessing.
We exchanged business cards, and I then found out that not only is he a gifted artist, he used to be an attorney at Law and a Law professor in Shanghai-- which means it was under Mao (!) .... the stories he must have!

When I left, she walked me to the elevators and as we said good bye, she told me how beautiful I am and insisted I return soon, this time: "you stay for food".
I wanted to cry.
As I mourn the abandonment from my mother and siblings... All that Is/God is sending lovely people into my life to remind me that I am loved.

Some may call it *reaching* .... but I do believe that this afternoon was another gift from All that Is and my papa too... such a balm to my heart when my heart is still healing.

I am grateful, oh so grateful!

There is no surprise more magical than the surprise of being loved: 
It is God's finger on man's shoulder.
~Charles Morgan



St. Catherine, patron Saint of Artists. Available here as reproduction on canvas & Paper.




Monday, September 8, 2014

Meditation and Prayer



Prayer is when you talk to God; meditation is when you listen to God.
-Diana Robinson

God in the Bible says: 
   "Be still... and Know that I am God."

The Bhagavad Gita says


"Still your mind in me, still yourself in me, and without a doubt you shall be united with me, Lord of Love, dwelling in your heart"

Meditation/Prayer is so important to our everyday life, though it can prove difficult to find the time to "be still" in our too busy lives.

However, spending time with the Divine is essential for our emotional well being; indeed, studies have shown that when we spend time meditating/praying- our brains get stimulated and positive emotions became increasingly active.


When we are in a state of prayer/meditation, we are able to "go inside" and find answers for questions we may be seeking, hearing what our subconscious may have been trying to tell us.

When we take the time to "be still" (via meditation/prayer) we are enabled to "hear" the voice of God leading us to truth as the intuitive process that we all inherently possess becomes more active under an attitude of "stillness."

For example, a problem may all of a sudden transform in our minds and we see a solution, or we may have a different perspective about an event or individual in our lives.

Prayer/meditation leads us to 'see' the world around us a bit more clearly... this in turn, leads us to better understanding and to a place where we can "simply be" in freedom and with love. Accepting ourselves wholly and joyfully.

It is not an egotistical activity that one strives for- but one that will lead us to better love the world around us -as the old saying goes "you can not love others, until you love yourself".

Make time in your day to return to your essence and understand and 
accept who you really are by being 'still' in meditation/prayer and listening to 
your own subconscious and the voice of the Divine.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Blessings from beyond.....

In February, I began my road to healing from the emotional abuse that has clouded my life ever since I can remember...

It is a long and difficult road, especially as emotional abuse, what I call "the invisible wound" is something that leaves us scarred for life in a manner that nobody can *see* nor understand unless they too, have suffered similar circumstances.

One of the things I have been grieving in all this, is the fact that now I realize how much my mother actively manipulated my relationship with my father (they divorced when I was 5 years old). 
She hated the fact that I had his photo in my studio, and one in our home. I was told to not let anyone know I had *another dad* and ever since I was a little girl, I was forced to call my step-father "dad" and was forbidden to let my step-siblings know that I had a different father.
Of course, she told me it was "not to confuse them"... but when he died 
when I was 17 years old... and my siblings found out- she found a new reason for me to keep my papa a secret: she did not want anyone to know she had been married before.
This has continued, only two years ago she announced she would not come back in my studio or my home if I had his photo there. Mi papa.
I made excuses for her- I tried to understand: "she is hurt because he left her" I told myself; still.... he is my daddy. He is ever present in my life and my love for him will never wane. 


In February, as I gradually *finally* began to understand the abuse, I suffered panic attacks, heart palpitations (bad enough that they landed me in the ER with doctors thinking I was having a heart attack), and finally a deep depression that lasted about three months.  

During the darkest times, when I would sit on the floor for hours weeping and rocking back and forth... I pleaded with God/All that IS, my grandmother and my Papa to send me a sign that they are with me. 
I needed comfort so very badly....

But none came.

I needed a BIG sign from the Universe....


I got laid off. 
And I chose to not worry about it; 
I decided to gift myself time to paint and heal.

I began by re-painting some pieces I was unhappy with... and I began with this one, my Butterfly Angel. It is a piece I made inspired by Gabriel Garica Marquez's famous novel:
"One Hundred Years of Solitude.

(I have worked with this same image before, but this is one happened to be finished on the same day that the wonderful author passed away (!)

A few days later, I was invited to exhibit it in a local art show where the piece sold during the opening.
I was told it was purchased by a gifted sculptor and days later, we were introduced via email.

His name is Sy Gresser and indeed he is not only an absolute wonderful sculptor and poet, he is an absolute wonderful human being! We began communicating via email almost daily... it was balm to my soul during those months where I did not leave home and studio steeped in sadness and grief.


We made plans to meet in person, but the depression prevented me from doing anything social for several months. Until yesterday.

Yesterday, Sergio and I traveled to visit Sy. 

He lives only 30 minutes away... I was nervous. Sy and I have shared intimate things about our lives for the past three months and I was hoping we could share the same richness in person and I would not be a disappointment to him 
~"this is all your low self esteem via all the negative stuff you were told about yourself all your life" said Sergio
~"I know"
 I said, "but I can't help it" 

C'est moi: *an Eeyore who wants to reclaim her inner Tigger*

We arrived in a section of Maryland that is largely Mexican immigrants.
Driving up to Sy's house, we could see stone sculptures in front of his duplex and dishes with cat food and water laid out for visitors.

Sy opened the door and welcomed us in to the home he shares with his Chinese wife and son and began to prepare traditional Chinese tea for me.
As he came out of the kitchen he asked:
"is Olivos your last name or i it Sergio's?" 

"mine" I said, "Sergio took it as his artistic name" I added
Sy looked at me and asked:
"did you know a Luis?
"A Luis Olivos?"

and oHmygoodnesss!


My eyes opened wide and I blurted out anxiously 
"yes, yes...whyyyy?" I stammered.... 
he looked at me and he hardly got the words out 
"was he your father?"  
.... I was on him... indeed, like a Tigger.... pounced into his arms, hanging from his neck- sobbing
my body shaking and trembling and long heaving, weeping sobs ...
I cried
I shook
I snorted 
I held on to this man whom I had never met before... my head nuzzled against his neck... sobbing.
I left two long dark stains of mascara on his shoulder

In time, he gently pushed me away and shared with me.

Thing is, in all our back and forth emails he has shared about how Mexico has been his biggest influence on his art... the place, the poetry. He has written to me about my art and that of Sergio's poetically, appreciating the characteristics that undoubtedly permeate our art-Latino influences, Mexican influences.....

He had told me about the year long residency he had done there, in Oaxaca. 
I knew how much Mexico and the residency there had meant to him.... so you can imagine my surprise when, as I wiped my tears -- 
he looked at me and said:
"Luis was my friend. It was he that got me the residency in Mexico. He was the one who helped me write the proposal and when I came back, he helped me write the report."

omgoodness... more weeping. 


My daddy, mi papi, mi papa....

More tears. A bit of tea held with shaky hands; and I asked him to share more.... after all, I have been *starving* to meet someone who can tell me more about my father, who he was as a human being. 
A man. An artist and a friend. 
Luis & Claudia Olivos
I wanted to know what he was like beyond the man I knew as a girl.

My Papa had gone to Europe to study art after studying law and sociology in Chile, and at some point he moved to the USA and began working at the OAS. The residency that Sy procured with the help of my Papa was through a program in the OAS.

When I was holding unto Sy for dear life... I felt as though I was reaching through an invisible veil and holding my Papa.

It was amazing. 

Sy shared more about my papa... he knew him before I was born, and lost touch with him after he returned from Mexico which would be about the time he married my mother.

I tried to focus on Sy's art and life... to hide the tears that kept escaping from my eyes. 

After three hours there, it was time for us to leave as Sy was obviously worn out from the emotional visit. I made this little video before we left....

As we slowly drove home... both Sergio and I marveled at the events of the day.
We both talked non stop about how absolutely amazing the whole thing is ...
beginning with the fact that I felt a very deep connection with Sy when corresponding with him.. .this deep connection that I felt that can not really be explained...until now!
It really is amazing.

Every week that passed where we did not drive up to meet him made me sad.
Sergio joked once: "should I be jealous? ...."
Such was my desire to meet Sy in person....
Who would have known it was my Papa pushing, pushing me.... giving me his sign .... to go and meet him through his friend, fellow artist and poet. wow.

Through all this heartache... this lonely feeling and utter sadness, this loss....
I had begged my Papa to show me a sign.... and WOW he gifted me himself as *real* as he could... flesh and bones for me to embrace and to embrace me.
*mirmagical*
Gracias Papa. Te amo.


Luis Olivos Ruiz de Gamboa. Mi papa. 



There are many books, videos and websites that you can peruse for understanding, if you too have suffered emotional abuse via an NPD parent, I would recommend that you read my blogpost here where I explain my own experience and this site too where you can read more about it (I especially appreciated the section entitled: What NPD Parents Are Really Like, as I could relate it to my own experience with the abuse I have endured via my mother and step-father).

Sunday, July 13, 2014

One morning

I was waxing poetic this morning, so I wrote this:


One Morning (the scapegoat) 

One morning she realized she was growing wings where before there had only been stumps
she had not known how strongly the oppression had affected her
constricted her and bound her 
yet, it was present in everything she did
every relationship, every decision, every response.....
the pain of the marginalization
the weight of always wondering 'why?'
the hard edges
the pain of rejection 

the grief of abandonment....

Leo Tolstoy wrote: 

“It's too easy to criticize a man when he's out of favour, 
and to make him shoulder the blame for everybody else's mistakes.” 


but life can be a novel with new chapters .....

now caterpillar to butterfly
she is the swan
the sand that turns into pearl
the diamond in the rough
the survivor

Watch her soar


~C.Olivos

Run my dear,
From anything
That may not strengthen
Your precious budding wings.” 
~Randa Hafez**

oil on canvas
12 x 12 inches
original piece: $315.- (plus shipping)
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original or reproduction












Tuesday, June 17, 2014

of birds and surviving the tough winters of life....

I posted this on our FB page  but wanted to share it here too:

May 27, I wrote:

OMG~sweat and tears!! I was out trimming trees and branches and suddenly this branch fell with a bit of a thump 
I looked and burst into tears when I saw what I had brought down..... !

One of the tiny birds had his beak open and I realized a tiny branch was propping it open and he/she could not close it... so absolutely shaking at what I inadvertently have done...
I helped close the beak...poor little tiny things!
~ the branch is back on the tree, and I have been sitting about 30 feet away (inside our home, behind the glass front door) with tears streaming down my face *praying* the mama finds them! 

They are on the same tree- but on the opposite side as I wanted a sturdy branch to prop them up on... she keep flying around the tree, but can not seem to find them. They make inaudible noises (to human ears), so I know she will find them, I know she will!

Poor babies... they must be so scared and are definitely hungry!



I spoke to a local wildlife specialists who said I did what they would have done and to call them back if no bird action in the next 2 hrs... but that seems so long, these little ones must be so afraid, hungry and thirsty!


Three hours later I posted:








MAMA found her babies just now!
 *whew* now I can get my smelly self in the shower... my *vigil* is over!!!


Here is the mama bird standing on our mailbox in front of the tree where I put her little nest w/babies ...


The nest is just to the right of the tree.... hard to find, but not for her!  :)


                           *Mama Love*




Five days later, June 2 , I posted:


baby birdies I saved last week (after cutting the branch that held their nest... so not sure I can call it "saving" lol!) 
are doing great... oh my how fast they grow!! 
Their mama is constantly watching out for them, guarding the nest... but I quickly stole this photo to show you how well they are doing- it has only been 5 days and LOOK how they have grown!!!




June 8, I posted: 


I have been at *church* ... i.e: weeding and talking to "All that Is/God".....
No frilly dress, 
shorts and a tank top instead
no high heels, 
barefoot: sweat dripping down my back, finger nails black with dirt... 
it works for me
this Sanctuary where my mind gets clear and my thoughts go to prayer and ants, weeds, earthworms.... 

I found the empty nest of the my little bird family friends
they left behind the little blue egg I had seen there on the day I found them
it has a tiny pinhole so I left it next to a tiny cactus that I found half dead on the street this Fall ...

I planted the cactus, it was shriveled up and becoming black, it was tiny, the size of my thumb- and I just made a tiny hole with my hands in one of the pots outside our front door and stuck it in there.....


I don't know why I didn't plant it inside....it is as though I did not have faith in its potential- or perhaps I did not want to be reminded of its frailty...

* wholdhathought* that it would survive this unusually frigid, snowy winter?


But it did.

And I heard "All that Is/God" tell me.... 


                     so shall you, survive.. the frigid struggle of years of NPD abuse....


It has been so difficult, all these years.... and like the cactus, my mom and step-dad have been made me feel tiny, shriveled up, unworthy... and within all the abuse, they have told me time after time that I am "too sensitive" ... 
but I have always believed that:

“Sensitivity is a sign of life. Better hurt than hardened. I bow to those who keep their hearts open when it is most difficult, those who refuse to keep their armor on any longer than they have to, those who recognize the courage at the heart of vulnerability. 
After all the malevolent warriors end each other, the open-hearted will inherit the earth.” 
~Jeff Brown

Courage... the courage to survive, and be healthy against all odds.... 

to remain vulnerable and openhearted... 
to still reach for the warmth of the sun, even after one has been so often met with coldness and hardship....

A few weeks ago, when the weather became warm, 

I saw it there
the little cactus- still tiny no bigger than my thumb, but it was green and very much alive

I took it out, and planted it in a different pot, this time with sand and much loving care ... and *woo hoo* ... 

look at it now! 
In only three weeks.... it is looking like this: amazing! 




And so, I too will thrive, even after the cold.... I too will thrive!