July 29, 2013

Not Matryoshka, but mine!

My Russian dolls
   These are the little Russian dolls I told you about in a previous post. Unlike the Matryoshka  (nesting ) dolls, they're carved from a solid piece of wood. Check out the piece of watermelon the little guy on the left has. How cute is that?!
   The Matryoshka dolls that nest were first introduced at an exhibition in Paris in 1900, so they're not as old of an idea as one might think. I read somewhere that the original idea came from a Japanese toy. I've seen a wonderful version that depicts Russian leaders but my favorite has to be the set I saw based on Russian fairy tales.
   I rarely buy souvenirs of any kind when I travel. Not only are they expensive, but they're hard to carry around. Luckily, I can now order them over the Internet and they'll be delivered to my door. I do take a lot of photos though. My blogs (this one and my WordPress) have a lot of them.
   What does all this mean? Absolutely nothing! It's just that I'm used to talking to someone when I have my morning coffee but I've lost most of the talkative members of my family. What I've got left is family members who are waaay too busy to sit down and chat. That's okay. I've written a lot of my stories down so they can read them someday when they have time!

July 27, 2013

The Crossroads of Continents Exhibit and Russian dolls

   I found the above photo in my files recently. I took it at a Russian Expo that I think was in Seattle. It was so long ago, I'm not sure! Isn't she gorgeous? Sadly, the doll is the closest I ever got to the land of Dr. Zhivago. I had high hopes of going on an archaeological dig in eastern Russia once in the nineties while I was a docent at the Anchorage Museum of Art and History, but I didn't pass the physical and I think they thought I might be more trouble than I'd be worth, ha.
   Anyway, while I was at the Anchorage Museum of Art and History, I got to serve as a docent during the Crossroad of Continents Exhibit that was over ten years in the making. Moscow sent a wonderful curator from the Hermitage Museum (I think--I've lost my notes) to train the docents.  The Russian contribution to the collection was enormous. Stunning. Amazing.
   One of my fondest memories is leading a parade of women from my apartment building down the hill to the museum so I could practice on them before the exhibit opened. I could go on for hours about that exhibit. The catalog for it is huge; I spent my last few dollars on it and wouldn't let it go for anything. Maybe, I should insure it, like Betty Grable did her legs!
   I could never afford a doll like the one in the photo, but before I left Alaska, I purchased three little wooden Russian dolls in a local hotel gift shop for $7.95 each. I was so embarrassed because I was in a fancy hotel and I had to dig clear to the bottom of my purse to get enough money to pay for them. Afterwards, I didn't even have enough change left for a cup of plain coffee, but I was so thrilled! I'll take a photo and show them to you soon. They sit above my fireplace year around except at Christmas, when I hang them on my tree. One of them always makes me laugh: he's eating a slice of watermelon. Watermelon in Russia? Who knew? I grew up in Oklahoma, which is watermelon country in the United States. That doll is very dear to me.

July 16, 2013

A Seattle Romance With a Jamaican Twist!

A Seattle Romance With a Jamaican Twist!
This is the link to the book trailer for my new romance novel. I make all of my own trailers. What fun! This trailer is short...give it a look!
My Amazon Author Page:

July 08, 2013

Geronimo, Life on the Reservation

 This is one of my latest projects. It's a one-man show. Rudy Ramos read the first scene at the Memphis Film Festival in June of 2013. The whole show will be presented at the High Chaparral Reunion, 2014, in Arizona. 

Geronimo, Life on the Reservation
Written by Janelle Meraz Hooper  

A historical fantasy of Geronimo’s life on the reservation after his surrender that focuses on the resiliency and humor of the great Apache Indian leader.

Geronimo chats with his visitors using a stolen laptop to introduce humor and lighten the emotional load on his audience. Recalling a history of strife, betrayal, and battle, he says, “…I had to steal the laptop because the white men will never tell the whole story about the Apaches. They control everything that's said about us in newspapers and books. Even the maps are slanted toward the whites. Look and you'll see they're dotted with each place we fought the white soldiers. Look closely. You'll see that if the soldiers won, it was a battle. If we won, it was a massacre…”

In this presentation, Geronimo cleverly evolves from a surrendered Indian leader into a successful entrepreneur. He participates in wild west shows, the Chicago World Fair, and others. Keenly aware of how to work the political system, he joins the same church that Teddy Roosevelt belongs to and rides in his Inaugural Parade. Although he isn’t successful in getting everything he wants, he certainly succeeds in making the best of his situation.

Beaten? Geronimo was never beaten. He simply adapted to his present circumstances and learned to take advantage of the white man on a new battleground.

Amazon Author Page:


July 02, 2013

New Kindle children's book

Hello! I've had some technical problems with Google but am going to try it again because I'm no quitter! (:

There's a link above the painting that will take you to a book trailer for my children's book of short stories and poems, available on Amazon Kindle and others, $2.99 USD.
I've been very busy this year and will fill you in a little at a time, I've missed you all!