Archive | March 2011

Photo Challenge – Edition 6

This is the last entry for the 30 Day Photo Challenge. Enjoy, Mari


A picture of yourself and a family member

This is **No Sé**. He has been a member of our family from the beginning and was named after **Julia’s** dog (see more about **Julia** below). His name means “I don’t know” in Spanish. Paul adopted him from Guatemala when he was studying there and he has had many adventures with us, including traveling around the world to Puerto Rico (where the above image was taken), South Africa, the Dominican Republic, India, Mexico, and across the United States.


A picture of something you’re afraid of

Loss…of sight, of mind, of people I love.


A picture that can always make you smile

I’m obsessed with animated gifs these days. And, I’m obsessed with **Paul** so it all works out.


A picture of someone you miss

**Julia** was like a grandmother to me. She met me before my adoptive parents did. This is us in Colombia before I was adopted. I am holding my sister Sarah’s school photo. The last time I was in Colombia I visited with her and then she passed away a year later.

To the Dreamers…

I made this video for the last Starting Artists Student Presentation Night. Paul and I recently purchased a new audio recorder – the Zoom H4N (so far it’s a great little toy) – and I re-recorded and re-mixed the audio track for this piece using the music editing software Reaper (also so far so good). Enjoy! Mari


80s Theme Songs

What was I doing in the 1980s? I was growing up and watching a lot of TV. Below I’ve listed some of my favorite 70s/80s TV theme songs. To see all of videos of opening credits, visit my YouTube Playlist. Mari

Welcome Back Kotter

Gilligan’s Island

Greatest American Hero

The Love Boat

The Brady Bunch

Laverne & Shirley


Family Ties

Growing Pains

Diff’rent Strokes


Silver Spoons

Gimme A Break


Who’s the Boss

Punky Brewster

Charles in Charge

Happy Days

Golden Girls

Knight Rider

Digrassi Junior High

Cosby Show (Season 3) and Cosby Show (Season 6-7)

Fresh Prince of Bel Air


Perfect Strangers (Original)

Perfect Strangers (Great Cover)

Mr. Belvedere (Original)

Mr. Belvedere (Great Cover)

Photo Challenge – Edition 5


A picture of your favorite book

Photo by David Figueroa @ Flickr

Paul and I share this favorite book.


A picture of something you wish you could change

Photo from NASA

I’ve always been ambitious!


A picture of your day

Just got home and said “Hi” to Tripod, our beloved turtle.


A picture of something that means a lot to you

Memories mean a lot to me. This is a photo of our memory wall in our current bedroom.

Photo Challenge – Edition 4


A picture of something that has made a huge impact on your life recently

Starting Artists, Inc. of course! Buy the Blurb book chronically SA’s 5 years of programs, events, and activities HERE.


A picture of your biggest insecurity

I wish I still had perfect eye sight. One of my biggest fears is going blind, even though I used to work at APERTURE and I always admired the visually impaired photographers.


A picture and a letter

We created the first SAlphabet at SA during a 2009 vacation arts intensive. Check out the fun video we made below!


A picture of somewhere you’d love to travel

Source: Tenney, Fred, and Kevin Hilbert. 2009. Large Letter Postcards: The Definitive Guide 1930s to 1950s. Atglen, Pennsylvania: Schiffer Publishing, Ltd. 176 p.


A picture of something you wish you could forget

My two knee surgeries (ACL reconstructions) not just because they were unbelievably painful and I missed participating in sports my senior year of high school but also because that is when I realized I was mortal. Plus, I’m convinced that the entire rest of my body hasn’t been the same since.


A picture of something you wish you were better at

Drawing! Even though I teach visual arts I’ve never put in the time and effort to really get my drawing skills to where I want them. The above image was taken during a Starting Artists class and the drawing was made by a student.

Blog-cast Pod-roll

As I mentioned in an earlier post – I listen to the radio and to podcasts every single day. Here’s a round-up of the blogs and podcasts I’ve been consuming lately. Yum! Enjoy, Mari


Peace Corps Related

Peace Corps Journals

The world’s largest and the most updated online archive of first-hand peace corps stories told by over 10000 volunteers.

Send Me On My Way

Follow Amanda, a Peace Corps volunteer in Paraguay.

Cara Piedras Guatemala

Municipal Development volunteer Cara documents her Peace Corps Guatemala experience.

Embo On the Go

Peace Corps El Salvador volunteer Emily “Embo” shares her adventures.

3 Peace Corps Panama Blogs:

Work in Progress

Pots and Panamas

Another Peace Corps Blog


Friends’ Tumblr Pages

Summer Salted Skin – **Lily**

Wheels Turning – **Carrie**

Tumblr.Zadi – **Zadi**


Friends’ Websites

Katherine Gressel

Enjoy the work of muralist, painter, arts administrator extraordinaire, **Katherine**!

Starting Stories

A project by **Carrie** and **Moudy** documenting innovators and entrepreneurs.

Tricia Wang

I’ll miss **Tricia** while she embarks upon her Fulbright year in China but I know I can follow along here.

Zadi Diaz

Follow the work of digital storyteller, media darling, and genuine sweetheart **Zadi**.



Arts & Culture

99% Invisible

A meditation on the forces that shape the design of our world. Paul and I have recently started listening to this podcast. I appreciate exploring how design is a part of our daily lives.

Studio 360

Kurt Anderson hosts this WNYC radio program covering creativity, pop culture, and the arts. I love Kurt’s interviews the most and was once lucky enough to see him live at The Times Center.



One of my absolute favorite programs ever! Hosted by Jad Abumrad and Robert Krulwich, Radiolab is a radio show and podcast “weaving stories and science into sound and music-rich documentaries.” We just saw them record a live show at NYU’s Skirball Center and it was amazing!

TED Talks

Another outstanding series. In addition to TED conferences, events, and the TED Prize, this organization is dedicated to sharing “ideas worth spreading” through TED Talks in video and podcast formats. Enjoy on the website or on your digital music player. One day I hope to do something incredible enough to describe in a TED Talk.

This American Life

I’ve been listening to TAL since I was in high school and have been an avid fan from the beginning. Ira Glass hosts this incredible compendium of stories. From the TAL website: “There’s a theme to each episode, and a variety of stories on that theme. It’s mostly true stories of everyday people, though not always. There’s lots more to the show, but it’s sort of hard to describe.” Paul and I have both enjoyed their live shows across NYC and I even convinced my mom to come with me to one – she loved it.


Best of the Left

I enjoy this compilation of, “Only the Best of the Truly Liberal Media” and appreciate a news outlet with a truly liberal bias!

Fresh Air

Terry Gross hosts this daily mix of interviews and stories on one of NPR’s most popular shows. I am always impressed by Terry Gross’s interviewing prowess. She can interview ANYone about ANYthing from the creators of South Park to politicians with the same grace, good humor, and intelligence.

On the Media

Bob Garfield hosts this behind-the-news show that is, of course, edited by Brooke Gladstone. From their website: “On the Media explores how the media ‘sausage’ is made, casts an incisive eye on fluctuations in the marketplace of ideas, and examines threats to the freedom of information and expression in America and abroad.” This show is great because you can not only learn what is going on in current events but at the same time you can explore how these events are being covered by the media.

Wait Wait Don’t Tell Me

Peter Sagal hosts and Carl Kasell judges this news quiz from NPR. Is there anything better than listening to Wait Wait on the weekend with a cup of tea in a comfy chair? Listen to some of Carl Kasell’s answering machine messages for prize-winners HERE.


The Memory Palace

This quirky podcast by radio reporter Nate DiMeo, covers (and uncovers) interesting and often historical stories.

The Moth

People telling true stories live without notes. Amazing. Listen either on NPR or through their podcast. If you’re lucky enough (or early enough) you can catch them in a live Story Slam in a city near you but be prepared. Paul and I once attempted to go to one of the live events but we were daunted by the line that spanned (literally) two full city blocks. New York City blocks. Seriously.

Old Time Radio Network

Mentioned in an earlier post, OTR is an incredible treasure trove of the early days of radio (and some TV) with 12,000 shows listed. I love to listen to old radio dramas, thrillers, and detective stories in particular but they have shows of all types.


Another storytelling series but this one features live and recorded stories by comedians, actors, and aspiring comedians & actors telling “true tales they never thought they’d dare to share.” Created and hosted by Kevin Allison of The State fame, RISK! is a mixed bag and told with notes. Paul and I had fun seeing this live at the 92Y Tribeca earlier in the year. What was even more fun was listening to the podcast of a story that was taped at our show and hearing our unique laughs in the background!

Selected Shorts

Another story series taped in NYC at Symphony Space. The short stories are usually published and often by well-known authors both contemporary and classic. The best part is hearing famous actors give dramatic readings focused on the show’s particular theme. Attending a taping is still on our “Things to do in NYC before we leave” list.


From their site: “Since 2003, StoryCorps has collected and archived more than 30,000 interviews from more than 60,000 participants. Each conversation is recorded on a free CD to share, and is preserved at the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress. StoryCorps is one of the largest oral history projects of its kind, and millions listen to our broadcasts on public radio and the web.” I’ve been a  fan of StoryCorps since a friend in grad school interned there. I’ve seen but never been inside of the StoryCorps booths around NYC. Maybe we should add this to the list!

The Writer’s Block

This weekly reading series from KQED in San Francisco highlights the work of published authors both known and un-known. The short pieces are terrific but so are the excerpts from books. It’s a great way to sample an author before purchasing their book and better yet, you get to hear the author read their own words and in their own voice.

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