All posts tagged: Laurie Early

Mumble Jumble (April Fluff Post)

I have been doing a bunch of random things lately and every day seems to slip away very quickly. I never feel like I have accomplished anything or completed everything I wanted to complete. So, since I was not able to decide on one activity or experience to write about, I decided to share a list of things–in no particular order–to briefly describe some of what’s going on in my life. The funny thing is, after I wrote the list, I can see I actually have gotten some things done and I am generally moving forward. This is very satisfying (insert smile emoji here, lol) CURRENTLY. . . WORKING – a full time job with a multinational company. EATING – a new omelette combo, eggs with diced red onion and chopped dill. I learned about it from Kathryn Grody, wife of Mandy Patinkin, in one of the entertaining YouTube videos her son Gideon posts about his parents. DRINKING – lots of water and Prince of Peace brand organic white tea. WEARING – my comfy pjs …

A Gradual Loss and a Gradual Recovery

The pandemic knocked me for a loop—that’s a given. Since June of 2020, I have not be able to summon up enough energy to write a single blog post. In addition to being house-bound, I was coming to grips with multiple losses—friends dying (not just from the virus), family health crises, and particularly the loss of my mentor and friend, Barry Harris. It was a gradual loss at first; I was last in his presence at his NYC class on March 10, 2020, just as Covid was about to lock us all inside. Terribly afraid of accidentally being a carrier (because at that time nobody knew if you could be asymptomatic and still spread the virus) I did not attempt to visit him at his home. Instead I sent cards and letters, and we had phone calls back and forth, but it was a very sad time as I missed hanging out with him, playing word games, making him my chicken soup and other things we enjoyed. I struggled with anticipatory grief of more losses …

No Words

“After silence, that which comes nearest to expressing the inexpressible is music.” –Aldous Huxley There is so much going on now that I am at a loss for words for this month’s post here. I am turning to music to help me keep my center. I hope all of you also have music in your life. My dearest wish is that my friends and family are all safe and surrounding themselves with things that make them feel comforted as imbalances around them are corrected. Please know that even if I have not spoken to you, I DO care for you, I DO think of you, and I am sending you the energy from deep within my heart. Stay well, stay strong. -Laurie

Ebb and Flow

Hibernation Mode

Most people do not know that I enjoy soft-block carving and printing. Years ago I carved stamps of different sizes of this 7-petaled, “CREATIVITY”, Adinkra symbol. I used my stamps this month to finish up a sketchbook I titled Ebb and Flow. It needed to be mailed by February 15th to the project organizers and I was very happy to have the pressure of this hard deadline to motivate me to do something creative as I have not been feeling well for several weeks. I will spare you all the details, but I caught a horrible cold on top of a recurring nerve pain in my lower back. These and other issues have kept me home bound (aka “hibernation mode”) for most of this winter, however I am proud to say I have been using my alone-time constructively. In addition to working on the Sketchbook Project (which I will briefly outline further down this page) I have spent an inordinate amount of time decluttering and sorting through all of my art supplies. For example, every sheet of …

My 2020 Notebooks

Preparing for 2020 (Keeping Notebooks II)

FLOW is my chosen theme word for 2020 and I have been focusing on staying in a calm, creative mindset  as life swirls all about me. I am exploring all my art supplies, organizing all my music projects, and gathering and sorting all kinds of multi-media materials–my inspirational triggers, all in an effort to keep me in a creative frame of mind for the year ahead. Today, when I decided to write about this theme here, as luck would have it, my first issue of Flow Magazine arrived in the mail from the Netherlands–a holiday gift subscription from my mother. I took it as a confirmation from the Universe that I am truly in the groove! Part of my personal process, as one year ends and another begins, is to prepare a daily journal to reflect on my theme and to note the things in my life that make one day different from the previous ones. I find that if I do not keep this practice, one day can blend into the next and into …

Today’s the Day!

Happy 90th Birthday to Dr. Barry Harris! Many of his loved ones, friends, and students are gathering tonight in New York City to celebrate this wonderful occasion. I want to take this opportunity to post my crazy little birthday song in the hopes that I can sing it to him at some point. Happy birthday, Barry! And happy birthday to anyone who hears this song on the day chosen for them to be born here on planet Earth (big smile). Today’s the Day! Listen to “Today’s the Day!” by clicking here. Today’s the Day An original “Happy Birthday” song by Laurie Early. Today’s the day today’s the day today’s the day that you were born and the world’s not been the same not since you learned your name on this wonderful day when you were born. Today’s the day today’s the day today’s the day that you were born and the world’s not since we heard your name so here’s a HOORAY! that you were born on this wonderful, marvelous, glorious, fabulous, (can’t say enough ‘cause …

Authenticity (Happy Birthday Billie Holiday)

“Everyone’s got to be different. You can’t copy anybody and end up with anything. If you copy, it means you’re working without any real feeling. And without feeling, whatever you do amounts to nothing.” -Billie Holiday This quote is so powerful. I had not heard it before this morning and it has pulled up some deep thoughts for me. I think there is a BIG DIFFERENCE between being INSPIRED by someone’s performance, and/or striving to capture a spirit that another artist has managed to achieve with a tune — through their choices of tempo, rhythm, depth of harmonic understanding, etc. (combined with the feelings evoked from within their heart based on their life experiences) — and COPYING. I also believe it is a valuable exercise to STUDY the work of other artists and to ANALYZE why something they do well is unique and brilliant, … but, yes…it is QUITE ANOTHER THING to memorize and/or copy someone else’s performance and pass it off as your own work. Unfortunately, it seems to me that some people who do …

Carousels – Not For Me

This weekend I will be avoiding the luggage carousel by traveling light. I will also attempt to avoid any feeling of traveling in circles as just the *thought* of this makes me physically tired. I long to move forward. Perhaps I am feeling an anticipatory exhaustion because it has been so cold lately, and so very dark in the little room where I work by myself. Perhaps I am mourning the loss of the extra days that are cut off at the end of February, (I feel like I have skipped something important. Is it March already?) Or, perhaps I am just tired of the same-ness of each day so far this year. They seem to circle ’round and ’round on themselves like a merry-go-round where I am the only rider, and a calliope tune droning on in the background is never-changing. This is not a complaint, just a fanciful observation of what I am experiencing. Tonight I am struggling to gather the physical energy to pack the bare essentials, to plan my journey, and …

NYC – A Day in the Moment

Certain things grabbed my attention recently as I traveled from commitment to commitment. Manhattan is full of activity, but I consciously tried to stay in the moment and keep my mind as quiet as possible. Because of this intention to be especially observant, a few small things remained in my mind long after I saw them. I noted them for further reflection, and this blog post is the result. Navy blue confetti, Wow! One piece has survived, folded and battered, yet still intact. It is stuck to the curb on the street where I live, near the United Nations—far from Times Square where the confetti was ceremoniously released in celebration on New Year’s Eve, more than three weeks ago. How it managed to stay dry, and full of color for this long, through the cold and rain, is a mystery. Blue can be a color of hopefulness, and in this case maybe even resilience. Each New Year’s Day I take a stroll outside looking for any confetti that was carried by wind as far as my block. I am always surprised that these little shards of tissue paper can travel …