"Fog Valley Crush" Kickstarter campaign has funded! In large part, looking at the nifty numbers behind the scenes, from clicks through Southern Sonoma Country Life. From my heart, thank you, thank you, thank you!
Now, if you're a bit of a tortoise and wondering why you never got around to pre-ordering, I will be posting where you'll be able to buy a copy, locally, soon.
In the meantime, I woke up thinking of the sequel this morning!
My family, pets and backyard get a special hug too for being so patient these past few months!
A lot of wonderful fundraiser info pops into my inbox on a daily basis. It's great to be able to share the work of so many caring people in our community, each working in their own unique way to make this such a tremendous place to live.
Here's a new non-profit in Sonoma County that strikes an exceptional note:
Live Music Lantern(LML) is a Sonoma County nonprofit(501c3) that provides self care in the form of gifting tickets to hear live music to educators and social service providers as a way to strengthen the entire community.
Co-founders Elijah and Kaya Barntsen and music industry pro Ian Davis launched the non-profit in dedication to Elijah and Kaya's mother, former childcare worker Barbara Barntsen who suffers chronic Bipolar I Disorder and Schizophrenia.
During years and years of crisis after crisis trying to navigate a never ending maze that included their mothers' hospitalizations, arrests and homelessness, the siblings turned to key organizations such as National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI)and Buckelew for the necessary support and mental health education they so desperately needed.
"As years went on, we continued to face the challenge of helping our mother get stable. We realized this was not a sprint but a marathon, and decided to focus more on taking care of ourselves with different forms of therapy, exercise, social gatherings, and enjoying live music amidst the chaos. It was these forms of self-care, along with setting boundaries that allowed us to get our lives back on track," the siblings share on their website.
"In January of 2014, we decided it was time to take action to support the health of our entire community and Live Music Lantern was born. We chose to support educators and social service providers because they were there to guide us throughout our childhood and in later life crises with our Mother. Because live music is the greatest source of inspiration and healing for us, we are dedicated to sharing it. We wish to “shine a light” on the wonderful teachers and social service providers in our community by providing them with the means for self care through live music."
Free concert tickets have since been given to over 200 educators and social workers since June of 2014.
Current recipients of Live Music Lantern ticket donations are hardworking and dedicated staff at Buckelew Programs, Catholic Charities, Petaluma People Services Center, Nami, Victor Treatment Centers and Social Advocates for Youth.
The group's goal is to grow to a level where it is able to provide all teachers/social workers in Sonoma County with the opportunity to see a live show at least once a year.
What an astonishing month! When I decided to take the plunge and self publish Fog Valley Crush, I thought long and hard about how best to undertake its design, printing, sales and distribution. All big learning curves for a new author whose favorite part of building a book was actually writing it.
Well, I have to say, this past month has been pretty darn fun and exciting, nail biting at times, but ultimately, an extraordinary experience in bringing my thoughts on the way we live and eat in this unique little part of wine country to readers around the world.
I'd been advised by a few people in the publishing industry, initially, that this was a 'regional' book. Personally, I always felt it had broader appeal. That's why I wanted to make the book exactly as I had envisioned and by self publishing, have not had to relegate it to my own neighborhood alone. Not that I don't value my community — it is YOU who have supported the Kickstarter Campaign primarily. What has transpired, though, is so many people from all over the world pledging a pre-order to read about "Fog Valley". That's what I wanted. To share our stories. It's fantastic to think that many of these books will have wings to the other side of the country, the other side of the world.
This is where we're at as of 8am Wednesday. Twenty two hours to go and so close to covering most all of the initial actual costs of producing this book (excluding the 2 1/2 years of writing — no price on that!). I'd set the goal lower so as not to risk reaching too high. You blasted my expectations. I can't thank you enough.
Now, if you are a procrastinator (and most of us are) and you would like to pre-order, click here and do so today! Ordered one, but think you'd like more? Still time to adjust your pledge.
Aren't we all ready to stash the worn-out t-shirts and shorts of an endless summer and bring on fall's beautiful, textured, layered clothing? I know I am. I love the colors of an autumn wardrobe. At this rate we'll be romping around in sundresses and sandals until winter hits all of a sudden.
Thinking positively of rain and more foggy starts to our Sonoma Country days, we're not really pretending at playing the Autumnal card, so let's embrace the thought of rich, local fiber art for home and personal outfitting.
Two great excuses to get out from under the sun umbrella this October: Windrush Farm's Fall Fiver Fest on Sunday October 12th and Marta Shannon's latest handwoven wonders for sale during Art Trails, October 11th and 12th, 18th and 19th.
Writing is is my passion, but I have to say, I really enjoyed narrating a passage from my book, Fog Valley Crush in a recording for this lovely new video made for me by my son Rocco, with the help of camera man Gilles and sound engineer, Damon. I want to keep on reading .....
If you have in mind to pre-order your copy or copies of Fog Valley Crush, Kickstarter is super easy to navigate, though through October 9th only.Click here to pre-order today!
Syrah is one of the last grape varietals to hang in cool climate Petaluma Gap terroir. This year, with the drought and Indian Summer heat peaks, harvest on Rivetti Mountain was a few weeks earlier than it has been in recent years. The fruit, as you can see, was perfect. If we'd waited any longer, yellow jackets would have sucked 'em dry, so it was now or never for a super quick pick and crush this past weekend.
Winemaking amici Mike and Timo take five to contemplate the sugars and quality of their crop.
Fog Valley Crush editor and fellow Southern Sonoma country adventurer, Elaine spent the morning sorting stems and soaking up some quality time with one another!
Forza Italia. Two Italians intent on their vintning!
Rosie the pup's first harvest. She ate a lot of grapes. Good thing they weren't fermented yet.
A bin full of crushed Syrah sits in our garage beginning its alchemic process in today (Sunday's) still soaring heat.
If you've never attended any of the previous years' Latin American-culture-infused El Dia De Los Muertos month-long events in Petaluma, 2014 is the year to immerse yourself in this stunning celebration of all who have gone before us.
I stopped in at the Arts Center on Friday evening for a couple of hours for lively and colorful opening festivities of this years Day of the Dead series of events around town. It was the warmest weekend evening of the year, or at least it felt that way as we enjoyed an al fresco treat of a fabulous Cuban-style band outdoors and without the usual fog blanket to scuttle us all inside!
Do make a point to pop into the Arts Center soon to see the colorful selection of inspiring altars to loved ones. What a glorious way to commemorate those most dear who aren't with us anymore. Good to see this warming trend of remembrance become more commonplace in our North American culture.
The beauty of building an altar to a loved one is that you may choose to create one in the privacy of your own home for the month of October and through All Souls Day on November 1st.
The Batacha Quintet is set to play music from Cuba, Puerto Rico and Latin America at Petaluma Arts Center this Friday evening. Wine (no host bar) is being donated by the Mexican-American Wine Alliance and beer is donated by Petaluma's own HenHouse. Enjoy the warm evening outdoors on the patio and inside for fascinating and moving art and altars in celebration of the launch of month-long Day of the Dead festivities.
EL DIA DE LOS MUERTOS 2014 ~ MELODIAS DE LA VIDA ~ MELODIES OF LIFE
EXHIBITION AT PETALUMA ARTS CENTER
October 3 ~ November 2 Opening Night Reception: Friday October 3 at Petaluma Arts Center,
Traditional and non-traditional altars, collectible posters from Mission Gráfica and fine art curated by Anthony Torres of the Richmond Arts Center. Mini-tienda from The FolkArt Gallery of San Rafael.
Health Fair and Opening Event: Sunday October 5, 1:00-4:00pm, St. Vincent de Paul Plaza, 35 Liberty Street.
Description: Make altar boxes as necklaces to be worn around your neck for the El Dia de los Muertos procession, and later on they can be hung in your home as a lovely and meaningful art piece. Come and create a beautiful, small (5″ x 6″) altar box to honor your loved one. Bring photos and any other mementos you wish to include. Boxes and other materials will be supplied.
Date: Mondays, Oct 6, 13 and 27 (no class on Oct 20)
Price: $70 Materials: $15
Description: Learn how to construct the candelabra form of the traditional Mexican tree of life, an indigenous symbol of the cycles of life: life, death and rebirth. Students will construct a tree out of clay with pressed molds and hand sculpted adornments. Finished works will be fired and painted.
Description: Revival of a Lost Art: Pottery Techniques from Mata Ortiz with Master Potter, Jerardo Tena
Join Master Potter Jerardo Tena Sandoval to learn the pottery techniques of Juan Mata Ortiz, Mexico. Internationally recognized for their pottery, the potters of Mata Ortiz have revived the ancient art of the Paquime people, a civilization that flourished in the area 600-800 years ago. As if guided by the spirit of the Paquime Indians, a struggling pueblo has become a community of fine ceramic artists renowned the world over. You will learn handbuilding techniques to create your own Mata Ortiz pot using their “tortilla/chorizo” method. Jerardo will also teach you the burnishing, painting and firing techniques used in Mata Ortiz to create his “ollas” or pots. Time permitting, you will even create your very own paint brush made from human hair. Don’t miss out on this very special class and an opportunity to learn from one of the leaders of Mata Ortiz phenomenon.