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Rough Mix CD Cover by Bob Ryan and Terry Hann

You may have heard that my husband is a musician. He’s been playing music all his life and loving it.

He was in a band when he was younger that made an album and now we get to announce the release of a long awaited 2nd recording!

Bob Ryan does all the song writing and Terry adds instruments to the arrangements.  They’ve played at local venues as well as at the Tucson Folk Festival and Sunnyslope Art Walk.  They’re anxious to share their love of music with everyone.

Hope you’ll love it as much as we do!

http://www.cdbaby.com/cd/bobryanterryhann

Pass it along to your friends!

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It’s been a busy and somewhat non-traditional month for us.  As you’ll see from these photos, there’s been a good amount of time spent with those we love, but somehow things were busy in other ways too.

Christmas NativityWe also went to the Musical Instrument Museum (the MIM) for our 34th wedding anniversary on Dec 9th, celebrated the holidays with a few of the non-profit groups that I work with and had a lovely evening with some other dear friends.  All of those activities don’t have pics posted yet, but hopefully I’ll get to it.

I’m not quite sure how the month got away from me, but we didn’t decorate inside the house until December 19th which is VERY LATE for me!  Originally we weren’t expecting to have any gatherings at our house this year, so I guess that gave me the freedom to put it off.  Then we found out that we were hosting our family gathering, so I got busy and did a few things.

We still have at least one more celebration to come with our son, Kevin when he returns from being overseas in early January.  That will be a special time to have him back home and in the U.S. hopefully for a very long time.

Here are links to a few photos that I’ve posted on Facebook over the last month.  I hope you enjoy them!  (Note: I was told that some of these links didn’t work for those that aren’t on Facebook, so I’ve updated them.)

Randy Thompson’s Christmas Concert where Terry played in early December

Christmas with our Home Group (they’re like Family)

Christmas with my side of the family

Christmas with our Los Angeles area family and our precious friends, the Thompsons

Christmas cookies

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Walt Disney Concert Hall
Walt Disney Concert Hall

I’m interrupting my stories about Scotland to celebrate my 600th post by doing a little catch up on what’s going on in my life at this moment.

Today I’m in downtown L.A. I’m here to attend BlogWorld Social Media Business Summit & New Media Expo (#BWELA)!  I’m really excited about the avalanche of workshops that I will encounter over the next 3 days and can’t wait to get started sorting out which ones I’ll attend in person and which I’ll listen to after the conference.

BUT, before I dive into the conference I wanted to share a little of what inspired me today.  You see, not so very long ago I lived in a suburb of L.A.  In fact I lived just about 40 miles north of here for 18 years.  And while we didn’t come into the “city” frequently, we did have a chance to enjoy the benefits occasionally.  I’m not really a city girl,  I’m fairly certain that I wouldn’t want to live here, but I love visiting.  Something about the soaring skyline and bustling traffic energizes me.  I get the feeling that important things are happening here.  Deals are being brokered, historic decisions are being made and ideas emerge here that are changing the world.

These are just a few of the things that inspire me about L.A.:

  1. Driving past the iconic Capitol Records building
  2. Passing billboards about new TV shows and movies (do you see that in your town?)
  3. Enjoying dinner outdoors in November
  4. Landing on radio stations in 7 or 8 different languages
  5. The city skyline – it’s breathtaking
  6. Exit signs for Little Armenia, and Historic Filipinotown
  7. Realizing that the Pacific Ocean is just minutes away.
  8. Appreciating all the sculptures and great architecture in downtown
  9. Remembering that they have an “all news-all the time” radio station (AM1070). I miss that.
  10. Celebrating the fact that the L.A. Philharmonic plays regularly at two awesome venues – The Walt Disney Concert Hall (see below) and the Hollywood Bowl (one of my absolute favorites). I miss that too.

So here’s how my day went in this inspiring city…

I drove from the Burbank airport this morning and met my daughter and son-in-law for breakfast (which I don’t get to do nearly as often as I’d like).  Amy and Andrew are a couple of inspiring people too, but that story will have to wait for another time.  I enjoyed a few hours with them, then headed down to the hotel where I’ll be staying for the duration of the conference.

On the way there, I passed the AMAZING, Frank Gehry designed, Walt Disney Concert Hall just a few blocks from the hotel.  After checking in, it was such a gorgeous day that I decided to walk there.  If you’ve never seen it in person, you really should make a point to go.  I would love to take a tour and would especially love to attend a performance there.  I understand that the acoustics in the auditorium are nearly perfect.  Another fun tidbit is that there’s a small theater and gallery space in one corner of the Hall, called REDCAT (Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater).  I used to work at CalArts (California Institute of the Arts) when REDCAT was being built and the staff and student body were anxiously awaiting it’s completion, so I have a bit of a vested interest in the place.

Anyway, here are a few photos of this awe inspiring complex.

REDCAT

Roy and Edna Disney CalArts Theater

The amazing thing is not so much imagining the building, but actually making it come to life with all those curves and waves.  It’s spectacular!

While there I stopped in the gift shop because these places are just dripping with culture and creativity.  I saw this great T-shirt and a bunch of other inspirational items, but it wasn’t really a shopping day for me, and I can’t really afford a $120 scarf no matter how beautiful it is, so I had to pass on all but a couple of little things that I picked up for Christmas gifts.

Music Tshirt

L.A. Philharmonic Tshirt

After dinner, I had a chance to go out and play a little with my camera and here’s a fun shot.

Los Angeles Downtown

Los Angeles Downtown

So now, it’s off to bed to rest up for 3 days of inspiration and information to come.

Have you ever been to Los Angeles?  If not, what do you find inspiring about your own town?

Hope to see you soon!

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O.k., so its clear that you’re probably not getting much inspiration from me lately, but I do have a recommendation for you to check out someone who is a prolific blogger.  And this week, she’s running an online Blogging Workshop on “Lemon and Raspberry” called Better Blog Content 2.0.  You can find all the details here.

Full disclosure: she happens to be my daughter, but that doesn’t mean that she doesn’t have great stuff to share and to help you in the blogging world.  In fact this might just inspire me to start posting again.  See, this post is proof that it’s working already. 🙂  I love this picture of her from some recent “outtakes” at her  home photo shoot.  Note the raspberry lemonade in the photo for her “Lemon and Raspberry” blog.  Clever huh?

But, it’s getting more and more difficult for me to choose what to blog about.  We just added a few more events to the list.  Last week I helped my dear friend, Linda on a photo shoot with her daughter-in-law and granddaughters, which was a blast!  I’ll post more on that.

Then I went with my husband and the Ryans to Tucson to hear my husband and Bob perform at the Tucson Folk Festival.  I promise, soon I’ll post about that trip, as well as an awesome Mexican restaurant that we visited there.  It’s a place that you won’t want to miss if you’re in the Tucson area and are hungry for Mexican food.  Stay tuned for all that and more to come.

Thanks for hanging in there with me during this busy time of life.

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O.k., so you’re probably thinking that I can’t count or I fell off the face of the earth for the last 8 days because I just skipped from List # 3 to List # 11 on the “30 Days of Lists“.  Well, of course, its none of the above.  I’ve just been busy and decided to skip a few of the lists for now.

I’ve pretty much determined that I can’t realistically do any number of consecutive days of quality blog posting or crafts or scrapbooking or whatever because I just have too many other things tugging on my time.  In fact, I’m not quite sure how anyone with a full time job (or close to it ) can pull it off.

So, here’s my idea for those who might be listening/reading.  I think we should do a blogging or scrapping/art journaling challenge that’s only 1 to 3 times a week.  I think that’s much more do-able for the average Joe or Josephine (like me anyway).  I think that’s something that I could commit to over several months or even a year.  I’ll have to think about starting one of those of my own.  Let me know your ideas on what you would enjoy doing.

With that said, here’s the next list I chose, just because it sounded like fun!  Some of these are unique to Arizona, but many can be adapted to your local area as well.

Inexpensive Date Ideas:

  • Picnic and a movie in your own living room
  • Coffee and browsing at a bookstore
  • Happy Hour at a local restaurant – food and drinks are usually quite reasonable
  • Head out to a local coffee shop and enjoy the free music that’s offered.
  • Browsing the local arts, crafts and music festivals.  Many are free or very low cost.  Here’s a list of Free Events in AZ in March 2011.
  • This year my husband will be performing with his friend, Bob at the Tucson Folk Festival, which offers two full days of free music at outdoor venues in Old Town Tucson in the first weekend in May.
  • Head out to your local farmer’s market – buy some great food, go home and enjoy the process of cooking and dining together.
  • Ride public transportation downtown and take in the sights and sounds of the city.
  • Picnic in the park
  • A good old fashioned bike ride
  • Steaming hot clam chowder and a walk on the beach at sunset.

 

Single, Double or Triple Dates:

Day trips out of town – you’ll find lots of pics and stories on my blog about our weekend travels with and without other couples.

  • In Arizona we love destinations like Sedona, Jerome, Flagstaff, Prescott, etc.
  • The whole day can just be about a scenic drive.  The adventure is half the fun!
  • Look for interesting places to browse the art galleries, small shops, and quaint restaurants.
  • We also love getting out into nature and going on a hikes wherever we can find beautiful weather and gorgeous surroundings.
  • Places like: Oak Creek Canyon, Apache Trail, Tonto Natural Bridge, or any number of state parks, national parks and monuments in Arizona

Parent-Child Dates:

  • Story time at the Library
  • Playground fun!
  • Rainy day game tournaments – stay in your PJs and play together all day!  (board games, cards, video games, etc)
  • Draw, sew or do art projects together
  • Volunteer to help at a charity, church or community organization – it builds relationship skills, builds character and provides a lesson in thinking about others before ourselves

 

Chihuly Glass at the Desert Botanical Gardens

 

 

Fun For Anyone Dates:

  • Movies in the parks – lots of local shopping centers and parks host free outdoor movies when the weather is nice.  Take a picnic blanket or folding chair, your favorite beverage and a picnic of great snacks and enjoy the gorgeous evening watching a favorite classic movie. Here’s one going on now at the Biltmore Fashion Park in Phoenix.
  • Check out the Library Culture Pass Program – Library card holders can check out free passes through many Phoenix metro area libraries for free admission to selected area attractions like the Phoenix Zoo, AZ Desert Botanical Gardens, and many museums.
  • An awesome concert or an exciting basketball game are perfect for a night on the town.
  • A day trip to the snow for sledding or making snowmen.

 

 

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This time they’re not going as far as Bosnia, but The Catfish Hunters are scheduled to perform at the 26th Anniversary Tucson Folk Festival.  The Festival is a FREE two-day event offering over 20 hours of music, dance, and entertainment.  Spread the word!  We’d love to see you all there.

Terry and Bob will be playing at 1:30 PM on Sunday, May 1st on the Museum Stage at the Tucson Museum of Art.  If you’re looking for a fun day trip or even a weekend getaway, come on down and see them and dozens of other artists perform.  Be sure to arrive early so you can get to the stage in plenty of time to find a seat.

The center of Festival activity, including the TKMA Kitchen Store (where performer CDs and T-shirts are sold) food & craft vendors, is in El Presidio Park in old town Tucson.

Here are a few pics of the Festival last year when Terry had the privilege of accompanying his friend, Dave Argentati who was one of 10 finalists in the songwriters contest.

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I don’t have time to caption all of my photos right now, but if you’re interested in seeing an overview, check out this slideshow below from my Picasa page.

2010.05 Bosnia Trip

Our trip has gone smoothly as far as logistics.  Bob’s head cold has been the biggest hurdle for their performances.  Most people can’t tell that he’s having issues, but for those of us who know what the songs should sound like, we can tell that he’s struggling at times.

Please be praying for him especially the next few days.  We leave today for Sarajevo and the guys will be performing either at churches or another venue on Thursday, Friday and Saturday nights.  He will need a strong voice to make it through those times.

Terry’s harmonica and mandolin have been a big hit with everyone.

Funny note! Not that I want to perpetuate this stereotype, but I think it’s hilarious that several Bosnians have also recognized the similarity between Bob and Terry and Statler and Waldorf from the Muppets
This seems to reveal itself most often in their dry sense of humor when they’re performing.  The Bosnians weren’t going to tell us, but it kind of slipped out at lunch the other day.  Apparently they were laughing about it when the guys were performing at the Coffee Bar the other night. I love it!

Sorry I don’t have time to share more, but we’re heading out to Sarajevo in a few minutes.  Hopefully I’ll have time to fill in some of the blanks when we’re there.

Thanks for all your prayers1

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