Curiosity — Carrara Marble

Our first day! On a hot day in June, 1989, our carving group, comprised of five students all from the US, stood poised before the hunks of stone we’d selected, waiting for us on our sturdy, well-worn, waist-high carving tables.

They had been set up for us in a well-shaded summer courtyard outside of a painting studio at the Scuola del Arte in the beautiful historic city of Lucca. On two sides of the courtyard were small rooms for more students and their work.


The bottom half of Hula Kahiko (Ancient Hula) — California Steatite, 24″ h.— carved after I left Italy

Just by looking at people’s feet, I could always pretty much dependably tell who was American and who was European (or other nationality) before I even met them.

Whereas we bumpkin Yanks almost always wore some brand of tennis shoes, flip-flops, or sneakers, Europeans mostly wore fine leather shoes or leather sandals (with socks!).

But one of the most distinguishing traits of Americans is how loud they are in public (notice how I’m disdainfully distancing myself…). Well, actually, they can easily be heard when in their rooms, too. And in restaurants. Continue reading



Upon buying my tickets to go carve marble in Italy, I also bought a language system called Sybervision so I could study Italian. It was the easiest language system I’ve ever used.

By the time I landed in Rome, I could ask where’s the city center, what street is my hotel on, where to eat, how to find the train or bus, what things cost, and more.

Sadly, I didn’t have to time to get the more advanced versions of the system, for more complex vocabulary and a deeper understanding of philosophical ideas – or even the simple difference between plain espresso and the local morning favorite, espresso-con-grappa.

It was good enough, though, to get me on the train going on up past Pisa to Lucca, and to my reserved hotel room. Which, oh we’re so sorry, had been given to someone else. Continue reading


The Maestros’ Carving Studio

I loved hanging out with the master carvers. They were there from before-god-gets-up early until 5pm, when they promptly took off their newspaper hats and scuttled home. They were incredibly skilled, and so fast! They spent most of their time carving replicas of famous works, like the David, and on enormous commissioned pieces and public works.

Our classes were held in the yard of an art school in Lucca, with field trips to a quarry and a couple other studios in Pietra Santa.

The first time we day-tripped up to see studios in Pietra Santa, I got to meet Mario Tomasi, one of the top carvers in Pietra Santa, which is like the marble carving capital of Italy. Continue reading


The Quarry

Prof. Roberto Bertola, holding my sculpture

In 1989, I was thrilled to be invited to go carve marble in a weeks-long workshop in Lucca, Italy, under the instruction of a bona fide marble-carving maestro, Professore Roberto Bertola.

I was excited because up until that point, I had only carved the softer stones like soapstone and softer varieties of alabaster.

Marble is in a higher class of hardness on the Moh scale, requiring completely different tools and procedures.

It would be a challenge for me to change horses mid-stream — going from soft to very hard, dense stone, different chisels and rasps, air tools, heavier stone…

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I’m a self-taught stone carver.

I had been a studio potter for 15 years when, in late 1981, my car was struck right behind my driver seat by a guy running a red light through an intersection as I attempted to cross. My car did a 180 into a parked car, which slammed into my passenger side.

I felt OK when I finally got home from the police-hospital-check ordeal, but awoke the next day unable to move my legs.

I was told I’d never walk again. A single mom with 7 and 9 year old boys — right! Never walk again? Seriously? Who’d take care of them?!? ‘Never’ was no option.

I was referred to 3 different osteo docs by the hospital. All they could do was sigh heavily, wring their hands, and look self-important as they strutted across the exam room, each one hanging a long face Continue reading



Since my parents took me sailing almost before I could walk, being able to sail is like being able to breathe. It’s more than second nature — maybe more like a second set of senses.

I can tell right away if someone is a sailor — there’s just something about them — the way they walk, the look in their eyes, the trace of wind on their skin, the strength in their backs. And how they watch the water, if we’re near a harbor or ocean.

You can shrug and say, “Eh! No big deal — it’s just a skill!”

But sailing is more than ‘just a skill.’ It’s a life-and-death Continue reading


I was stunned when the first lockdown was announced. Like most, my first thought was, “I can’t go OUT?” But then I realized – I hardly go out anyway!

I’m an old fart, so I don’t walk well, and I’m deaf as a post with failing hearing aids, so interactions are difficult to start with. Pair that with people wearing masks so I couldn’t lip read made it so I found myself begging people to step back and pull the mask down so I could get what they were saying, or seeing them be really uncomfortable shouting way louder than they wanted, just so I could hear.

I gave up trying to socialize after only a couple of weeks. I felt like I was in my own isolated prison.

Then one morning I realized – Continue reading


Love Yourself First

You’re writing a book! That’s great! You’re going to help people, entertain them, introduce them to something new and/or innovative, or even change the world with your ideas.

Let’s say you’re a therapist or health or emotions specialist, and you want to help a person get past unwanted memories of trauma.

You’ve gone to school, gotten degrees, certificates, masters certs. You’ve done years and years of internship, clinical and practical trainings, and more years experience in your own practice.

You know the ins and outs of this person’s problems, why she is struggling, the logical reasoning and the emotional structures under and behind it all.

What’s your biggest problem, right off? Continue reading


Practicing Peace

Many years ago in the mid-80s when I lived in Honolulu, I had a psychic reading with a gal named Alice Anne, who was well-known and very popular.

At the time, I had a fairly large house with a living room that had enough space to seat 20 or so people. I hosted classes and workshops for her and others who were channels, psychics and healers.

I’d been struggling to make a living as a sculptor. I had two fast-growing teen boys who ate the entire house down to the foundations every day, and I was hard-put to meet expenses. I asked for this reading to see if there was any input that would help.

I signed up for a reading with AA because she seemed to be the least influenced by her rational mind during her readings. Continue reading


When T and I moved into the little one-BR house on Maui near the beach, no one thought to mention it had been built over an ancient Hawaiian burial ground. It had been covered up in the late 1800s to make room for a white-man’s housing development, rows of little plantation houses for the cane-field workers.

I suppose that knowledge was long gone from the minds of the people who had subsequently built up the place, but it certainly wasn’t long-gone from the locals’ minds.

On a casual stroll around the neighborhood soon after moving in, a little old local man came up to us and told us we should ‘skit’ as soon as we could. That because of the nature of the land, it was dangerous in that house, and Bad Things would happen to use if we stayed there. Continue reading


The Dock

We finally got to Huntington Beach, and stayed with T’s mom for a couple weeks. After our snowy misery back east, the good weather seemed just this side of paradise. T got to bliss out surfing every day, while I filled drawing pads and played in the sand. But soon it was obvious we were outstaying our welcome.

We bought an old car and headed north, back to Santa Cruz. By the time we reached Capitola, a quaint little touristy town just south of SC, we were too tired to go another foot. We found a funky old motel down by the water and got a room.

We liked the place – it was cheap, cozy, and near everything we needed, so we booked for a week, to see if we wanted to just stay there. I liked that idea, since we’d be farther away from T’s old crowd.

My perceived sense of safety from them wasn’t to last. Continue reading


The Corner

The rest of our visit with my folks was blah-normal. At last it was time to go back to California.

After about a nano-second of deliberation, T and I decided that finding a hire-car to deliver to the west coast for someone was a much preferable idea over hitching back. We had had enough of risking our lives with nutty drivers and crazy truckers.

I’m sure the percentage of ‘nice’ or ‘good’ truckers far outweighs the ones who are stoned out of their minds on speed or just plain crazy, but we were’t taking any chances.

Now, remember I keep saying how un-street-smart I was? Continue reading


In the air around us, a huge, heavy burden lifted.

Our drive from Des Moines to Long Island was flawless. I was almost shocked at how easy and fun it was, after our two almost-fatal encounters with truckers. Our ride, Harley, was a delightful man who, instead of leaving us off in Des Moines as we had planned, invited us to stick with him all the way to the end of his route. So we did, ending up in a town only a few miles from where we wanted to go.

He told us all about his enormous family, pointing out each person in the tiny photos on his dashboard, each one coming alive as he recanted their unique personalities and hilarious antics.

Since my folks lived on a narrow country lane, it would have been impossible for Harley to squeeze his giant truck through all the tree-lined roads to get there. So, sadly now, we parted ways at the Huntington train station. Continue reading


Terror in the Truck As Billy Slept On…

We left the thrift store wearing every single thing we’d bought. They may have been new-old clothes, but it was beyond description how heavenly it was to be warm again.

Now we were seriously hungry. Good fortune was ours — there was a diner close by, so we trudged over, lugging our heavy back packs and the little bag holding our clothes from Hawaii.

We sat at the counter, wondering whether to stay the night in Las Vegas or not — we couldn’t afford a motel, so we’d have to find a park or somewhere we’d be safe from being robbed, beaten or arrested..

We got to talking with a guy sitting next to us, named Billy, who eventually said, “You guys need a ride outta town, right? I’m driving through to St. Louis, want to join me? I could use the company.”

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Beary-Bear’s First Snow

T and I came back to California in the middle of January. Being used to the weather in Hawaii, I forgot all about how wet and cold San Francisco was, and was wearing short-shorts, t-shirt and flip-flops.

By the time I got off the plane and over to the baggage claim area, I felt as if I had walked into a deep-freeze unit in a cryo facility.

My friend Walt, who had published my Lucy In the Sky with Diamonds poster, picked us up, and kindly gave us a couple of extra jackets he had on hand. After spending the night at Walt’s, he drove us to the nearest freeway on ramp so we could hitch across the US – we were going to go visit my folks, who lived in New York. Continue reading


The Miracle of Birth…

“Nurse! Hand me the scalpel, please, it’s 9:00 and my dinner is waiting!”

Nurse hands scalpel to doctor, and my first live birth, my first son, Aaron, comes screaming out into the ice-cold delivery room air.

“Nothing wrong with the lungs on that one!” the doc declares, as he rises from his chair, gloved hands dripping blood, a streak on his cheek marring his perfect-doctor look. He says nothing more, just leaves. Continue reading


…partner with AI, welcome its limitless stores of information, deep resources, and surprising turns of idea…

Recently, we have suddenly been inundated with the ‘introduction’ of new avenues of access to various types of AI, Artificial Intelligence, software.

I say ‘introduction’ because ironically, we have actually been using it for years, without it being called “AI” outright.

Do you use spellcheck? Alexa or Siri? Siri’s voice recognition and is powered by artificial intelligence AI.

Do you use TikTok, with its AI-driven algorithmic personalization? Do you use FB? Facebook (now Meta) is heavily into AI. Do you use YouTube? Instagram? Zoom? All use AI.

Zoom virtual meeting enhancements — virtual background images and background noise detection — rely on AI. Continue reading


She wouldn’t be who she is without her garden…

I didn’t want to write this. I’ve been back and forth, afraid to post it. But I have this feeling I Have To. Know what I mean? Not for me, but for Someone Out There. I hope it somehow brings you peace, whoever you are.

So to preface the story:
It’s been a hair less than half my life now, since my ma has been gone. For the first five years, I was so pissed at her for dying that I couldn’t — wouldn’t — grieve. Never shed a single tear. Never said a word.

Yes, I have written about her before, but nothing like what happened today. I guess my new habit of getting up early and writing in the raw early hours every day has allowed me to reach depths I wasn’t able to get to before.

Because suddenly today, 38 years later, the wee-est hole in my stubborn, selfish brain cracked open, and it was so obvious — she had never chosen to die! She was too strong, too wayward, to determined, to want to leave. Something had to have creeped in and sabotaged her cosmic ship for her to give it up. Continue reading


…the jasmine scented air; the mangoes, papayas, guavas and pineapples…

Seven hours, crammed in with T’s squiggling, wiggling 2 and 4 year old boys in a narrow, silver tube, flying across the 3000 miles stretch of treacherous open ocean with nowhere to go to escape. I thought I’d go mad.

Finally, Honolulu Airport. I was so ready to dash out the door and board the plane sitting nearby for the other flight — the one going back. But no, that would be a disaster.

It’s September 19, 1967. At the time, Honolulu Airport only had one small terminal. No busy crowds, no lines and lines of security checks, no expensive airport shops.

No passenger loading tubes — we had to climb, stiff-legged, down the outside stair and drag our exhausted bodies over to the smaller plane for Maui. Continue reading


Faces Watching…

Hurrying, stumbling, trying to get our packs and jackets out of the car as fast as we could, we knew our Ride would drive off without even waiting for us to close his precious bright turquoise 1957 Chevrolet Bel Air’s thick, heavy doors.

And he did, the doors swinging shut with a clomph as his momentum drew them closed.

Shaking, still watching him slowly merge with traffic, we unbent, stood up, sighed together in relief, and looked around to see where the heck we were. We had demanded our Ride “stop! Stop NOW,” and he had. We shook with relief.

We thought we were in Ventura, but weren’t sure. We’d both been trembling with unrelieved nerves ever since San Luis Obispo, and could hardly put one thought after the other, now that we were free. Continue reading


I met my second hubby in Big Sur.

I had been working at Dancer, Fitzgerald and Sample in San Francisco as a junior art director. My very conservative boss, Sam, had a firm hold on the department. Despite the restraints, my co-workers and I spent our days rocking out to the Beatles, the Stones, Van Morrison, and other rock n roll eventual greats as we dreamed up ads for Skippy, Foremost Dairies and other big name brands. Continue reading


1966. I was living in a flop house with ten other hippies in Santa Cruz, California, with my brand new boyfriend, T, who would eventually father my children.

I woke up when the morning paper slammed to the porch. I went outside, picked it up, and read: ALIENS TO GET GREEN CARDS

The article went on at length about the controversy…

But I was halted in my tracks by the headline. Aliens? Get green cards? Wow! Amazing! For years, the gov doesn’t even tell us there ARE aliens, and now they’re issuing them green cards? Continue reading


This was a hard lesson for me. I grew up in a family that loved to sit around after dinner and make fun of, criticize and totally shred politicians, celebrities and other people in the news. It became second nature to be arrogant. You can imagine how many friends I lost, one by one.

I was in my 30s by the time I really ‘got’ the harm I was doing by acting so superior. Not only was I not superior, I didn’t really feel that way, and I hated myself every time a hurtful thing slipped out of my lips.

It was at a self-improvement workshop around that time that I decided that things absolutely had to change, in a very, very big way. By that time, I had friends, but I had been holding them at arm’s length – both because I didn’t want to hurt them with my nasty tongue, and because on some level, that Arrogant Superior Bitch was still quite alive and very willing to use the blade on just about anyone. And she did NOT want to die. Continue reading


I have this weird thing that happens if I’m looking straight ahead, and there is a shiny thing on either side of me – the shiny thing makes light rays that go out and catch me – kind of like strings that pull my attention.

Hard to put into a drawing – this is as best as I can do. The light is sharp and bright, in long, tiny lines.

Like right now I have a vest on that has a shiny zipper fastening – it catches my eye and makes those lines. Weird, eh? I hope it isn’t precursor to some strange medical thing. I’d be devastated to lose my eyesight!

text & image © Angela Treat Lyon 2022


When I first moved to Hawaii in 1966, I was introduced to a local oriental dish called Saimin. It was a rich chickeny or maybe fishy broth, with thin slices of roast pork, chopped green onions, long, skinny, squiggly, tangled rice noodles, and seasonings rich with ginger and other spices I didn’t know of at that time.

Nowadays, it’s been adopted into every day culture here on the mainland, and we call it Ramen. It comes in many flavors and variations.

So of course since it was one of my favorite dishes in Hawaii, I buy it here a lot. And what’s better to have after yoga than saimin, with green tea and a ginger cookie?

text and image © Angela Treat Lyon 2022 – prints and originals


Recently I’ve been creating a 1-2-3 systems webinar for teaching authors how to make their own audio books. Why audio books, you ask? Because although it’s easy to publish kindle books on amazon, you can get your audio books onto 47 other platforms! Imagine you have one book, and you put it for sale on all those venues – think you might get more sales? Uh-huh. Yup!

Did you know the average total sales of books for most authors is 250 or fewer books? For someone who has spent possibly years writing their book, that’s a devastatingly low number. Might as well have never taken the time, energy, blood, sweat or tears to do it!

I just published my own first audio book. I’m going to continue to learn where I can place my books – it’s an important read for anyone suffering from anxiety – I want it to go out to as many people as I can get it to!

If you’d like to check out the audio book, click the link to go to my Turn Your Anxiety into Creativity AUDIO book!

What’s that all got to do with Crunchy yoga? Nothing! Hahahahahahahaha!

text and image © Angela Treat Lyon – prints and originals


I loved Downward Dawg that I designed yesterday, that I figured I should-oughta make Upward Dawg, too. This one’s one of my favorite poses – I have a funky congenital glitch at the base of my spine that makes this position really difficult – so of course I enjoy it, right? Snort! When I come out of it, the pain I usually feel in my hip is reduced significantly. What a relief!

I believe that if yoga was introduced to kids at an early age – along with the meditative practices it assists – what a different world we’d have!

I think we all need to stop moaning and groaning about how bad things are. That just perpetuates the ‘bad’ energy.

Instead, let’s dream up cool stuff, go about DOing cool stuff, saying I love you, singing sweet songs – how can our world not change for the better if we all did that?

Fido, Felix, Birdies and I are here to help!

text and image © Angela Treat Lyon – prints and originals


I remember the very first time I ever saw anyone doing yoga. I was 21. My then-hubby bought a huge how-to book that had big in-your-face photos of the yoga guru posing in all these wild contortions.

I was aghast! I’m supposed to twist my body into that shape? Nope. Won’t. I did do the most basics, and still do, 56 years later. But boy, those feet-behind-the-ears ones, and the stand-on-your-one-hand while elevating your entire body with crossed legs over your head? Nope nope nope.

Maybe you can spot what happens to me when I do this pose…

My yoga mat is in the middle, with crystal sounding bowls and sticks, and my buddies the chirpy birdies, sweet doggie and climby cat – who could ask for more!

text and image © Angela Treat Lyon – prints and originals


I birthed my younger son at home. Labor had started at 10 pm, but I went to bed anyway, exhausted from canning tomatoes all day.

I awoke with a bang at 3 am, though, and somehow, as daddy went to get the midwife, I clambered clumsily and carefully down our loft ladder and crawled over – in between intense, doubled-over contractions – my huge belly in the way all the way – to the bedding we had set up by the wood stove. I climbed onto the mattress, got ready, and waited for daddy and doula.

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