Wednesday, December 10, 2014

Winter Window Season

Winter window season is in full swing around these parts.  

Here are some of the Winter shenanigans going on in Somerville!



...over at Treeline:



And down at Petsi Pies:


And a quick Frosty at little Tayla's house!



Off to paint more windows now.  Contact me if you'd like one of your own!
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Tuesday, November 11, 2014

A Veterans Day Tribute for my Dad

When I Saw My Dad Cry

The first time I ever saw my Dad cry I was 9 and he brought our family to the Vietnam Memorial in Washington DC. He was then an active duty Marine and we were stationed in Quantico, VA while he went through some sort of training program to become an officer. Truth be told, I never really paid too much attention to what program or specialized training my Dad was doing when I was younger and I glazed over whenever he would talk about "the war". He was a weapons specialist and would talk about "going to the field" and come back with stories of blowing up mock buildings and how high the Hum-V blew in the air after they hit it with a rocket launcher. You know, dinner conversation. Growing up hearing about it made it seem commonplace, like it was something everyone's Dad did. Living on a military base made it all the more normal because all of our friends lived on base too and all of their Dads and Moms were shooting rocket launchers at Hum-V's too. It wasn't special or weird and it certainly wasn't something I gave any real thought to. 

Until we were at that wall. 

He was feverishly looking for the names of his friends; checking the list, looking back at the wall, "it should be right here! The map says it's right here!" He was getting more and more angry. I couldn't understand what was so important about finding some stupid name on a wall and I certainly didn't understand why he was getting so mad about it. 

And then he found the first name. And then another. And then more and more. And then, I saw my big tough 'sempri fi do or die' Dad rest his head on the wall we drove all this way to see and weep. 

And in that moment, I understood. He told my Sister and I stories about his friends while he made rubbings of their names on little white pieces of paper. Funny stories of 18-year old boys who answered the call and found themselves in Vietnam and heart wrenching stories about how each one of those young men died far before his time. 

I know now that we were in Quantico while my Dad was in Officer Candidate's School while he was working his way through the ranks to become an Officer. I know that he retired as a Chief Warrant Officer 3 with the respect and admiration of every man who ever served with him. I know that he wears glasses because he was hit with shrapnel under his right eye when the helicopter (he would never call it that, he would have said Loach) he and his friend were flying was hit and went down. I know that his friend didn't make it and there wasn't enough of him left to send home. I know that he carries around that memory and so many other tragic memories with him every single day. And I know that he sacrificed a lot more than 20/20 vision during his 24 years serving our country. 

I also know that my Dad, CWO3 Michael A. Martin, retired, is my hero and today I want to say thank you to him, thank you to all who serve and thank you to all who have served. 

Thank you Daddy. Happy Veterans Day!!


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Monday, November 03, 2014

Window Facelift for Halloween


Left side: September window.
Right side: September window updated for Halloween.  

Lazy sounds a little harsh, I prefer "crafty." 
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Friday, October 03, 2014

Halloween Window at Magpie Kids


Halloween window painting at Magpie Kids in Somerville, MA.


My little busy bee and her ladybug friend.

Buggy Bugs giving hugs in front of the photo backdrop I painted for the Halloween Party at Magpie Kids.
Photo cred: Allana of http://www.arsmagnastudio.com. 
HAPPY HALLOWEEN!!!
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Sunday, September 28, 2014

Mums the Word window painting




Fall window painting at my real job, BIDMC, Boston, MA.




*Photo bomb by Lauren.
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Saturday, September 20, 2014

Fall Window at Two Little Monkeys






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Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Bilingual Animal Painting for Escuela Montessori




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Monday, August 18, 2014

Union Square Vet's Summer Window






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Wednesday, August 13, 2014

Holy Rainbow Unicorn, Batman!


Clearly Tayla is going to have the best birthday everrrrrrr this year.
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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Toomey A Favor: Hand Painted Sign


My friend Danielle can't draw.  I tell you this because, while she can't physically draw anything herself, it doesn't stop her from needing things drawn constantly.  Get Well signs, Birthday cards, kitchen placards...you name it.  And most of the time, when she needs one of these graduation/bar mitzvah/baby shower signs made she comes to me and says, "hey Mandee, do me a favor?" and after hearing that phrase over and over ad naseaum, she earned herself the nickname "Toomey a favor".  (Her last name being, of course, Toomey...in case you didn't get that.)


Her most recent request to "Toomey a Favor" was one of my favorite projects of the Summer so far.  Her family has a little lake house with a dock that needed replacing and when the old dock was torn up, Danielle, never one to miss out on a project, saved some of the weathered chunks of it and brought them to me.   And they are awesome!
  


They are perfect and raw and full of stories never told.  I wanted to keep the integrity of the wood but make it more weather-resistant so I whitewashed the front planks and secured them together with some twine to add to the just-off-the-boat, nautical look of it.   Then I painted a gigantic anchor on it, symbolizing the Toomey family's anchoring down and establishing roots, their name & wedding date and I'm really happy with the results. 



Now I just need to figure out the perfect thing to paint on my section of the dock.  Maybe something in a giant serpent lady with wings and an American flag halter top?  You know, something classy.  Ideas welcomed.  



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