topiary cats

topiary cats

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

Pas de chat

I discovered Daya practicing in her pointe shoes while holding the cat.
So I told her she was doing pas de chat.  She got a "look" that clearly said "Um NO what the heck..." then her face changed when she got it.

Although Daya refused to laugh, she did admit I made a very good joke.

(Pas de chat is a ballet move that means cat-step. )

Tuesday, October 30, 2018


All my pictures are missing from my blog....?
Yesterday everything looked fine and nothing has changed.....

I hope this is a glitch that will resolve itself.

Tomorrow is Halloween. It will be the first year ever in her life that Daya isn't going trick-or-treating, which is sad.  For me, not her.

Happy Halloween from Mystery Lake.

I had trouble getting this picture to display.
This has to be an issue with Blogger.
Something is weird.

UPDATE: Uploading that picture seems to have.... fixed....something, everything mostly seems to be back.

So if your pictures disappeared from your blog, upload another picture and see if they come back.

Monday, October 29, 2018


Another day, another year.
I don't like my birthday.

Daya did something very funny though, she made me a DAYA'S MOM shirt.
It's silly and clever and funny.

Other than that I'm just at work today.
And I have to do laundry.

Friday, October 19, 2018

Pointe Shoes Again

And it's that time again, new pointe shoes.
Daya likes Blochs and said she needed another fitting, so we went there after work yesterday.

I don't know why she can't stick to the same shoe that worked last time- but she wanted to change something, I have no idea what.  Dancers are very weird about their feet and shoes.  That's why there are so many different kinds and variations of pointe shoes.

Daya must have tried all of them on!
The lovely men who helped her were so nice, helpful and patient.  It's good that dancers work in these shops, because they all speak some kind of dancer-language no one else knows.  But she finally found a pair.

I suppose I am like that with paint.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

Mouth Fence Removal

Daya got her braces off on Monday.

Her final meal was..... pizza!

Here she is in mouth-fence removal gear...

Of course she wanted to watch the proceedings.

And her teeth look great!

On Tuesday, Daya came to meet me after work... we had a high school open house (PPAS),and to celebrate her braces coming off, we went to Bubba Gump for some nice shrimp.
We watched Forrest Gump over the weekend, so Daya could appreciate the restaurant.  She loved it.

We were both completely unimpressed with PPAS... to the point where Daya doesn't even want to bother auditioning.  It's a dump.  The building is pretty terrible.  Some bits of it are literally crumbling.  It was probably a nice space once, maybe 60 years ago....The performers were ok, but nothing outstanding from any other high school.  The academics are not good.  The upside would be taking daily classes at Ailey. It is a tiny school.... 335 kids from 6-12.  I think a more "normal" high school environment would be better.

So for performing arts high schools, she will only audition for Laguardia and Sinatra.
If something falls through and she doesn't get into either school (which is unlikely) then she will not go to high school for performing arts.

Monday, October 15, 2018


I broke my fast Friday afternoon. Most of my energy came back immediately, and the rest was back by Saturday.

Friday night I made the most wonderful carrot soup in my crockpot.  It is SO GOOD.

The neighbors upstairs did... something..... I don't know what.... to muffle their music.  Last night I could tell they had their music on but it was coming through the ceiling very vaguely, and is acceptable.

I can only hope this continues and they continue to implement whatever they did.  I'm not sure if they were on full volume or not, I didn't go upstairs to check.  But I will, just because I am curious.

The good thing about this is that I'm..... slowly.... starting to release the anxiety around it.
The landlord must have really put the pressure on them, which I deeply appreciate.  He wasn't keen on my wanting to do soundproofing construction.  Especially since they lied about the last time they blasted.  They told the landlord they weren't--- but I had sent video proof of the noise coming from their apartment.  It is always good to listen to your intuition, even when it tells you to do some odd things. The landlord believed me.

What I truly want is peaceful and harmonious living with those around me.
And honestly I still hope they move but if this is how it will be going forward, and they don't blast my home, I'm fine with it.  Time will tell.

I'm still driving, and doing very well.
Driving in my neighborhood is totally different from rush hour Manhattan and the Bronx, and I'm pretty comfortable with it, actually.  I'm now driving with Mohammed, who has 5% vision in his left eye, so he gets it.  AND- it is totally completely fine!

I just need to get on the freeway, then I should be good to go.  I feel so much better, truly.
Mohammed is supercool, a great guy, and this is just the last bit of instruction that I need.

He says yes, definitely, rent a zipcar and practice.

Charlie is a good teacher.  I do have to say that.
He did give me a good foundation, and a lot of experience in difficult situations.
This makes me more relaxed in a "normal" environment, because I have absolutely been through worse. And I'm so used to looking out for 5 million things, so when it is just 2 million it is a lot easier.

Daya gets her mouth-fence off today! (braces)
I will be done paying for it in December.
Sort-of, as I have incurred debt.

Friday, October 12, 2018

Day 7! yay

I have made mostly through day 7!
6 1/2 hours left, it will fly by.

As far as fasting goes, I know what I am doing.

This isn't my first fast. I did my very first fast over 20 years ago and have done several since.
I have done my research, I re-research for every fast and I know why I am doing this. I also know my limits.  For example, I have now lost a little over 10 lbs. That's great, and is still within my normal healthy weight range.  But I can't lose a lot more at all- not even 5lbs more without becoming underweight. So I will not do that.  I am also well aware of the body's signals to stop fasting. (They haven't happened)

Every single discomfort I have experienced is completely normal.

I tend not to tell people about it in general because of the negative reactions, which are based on lack of knowledge and understanding.  I have heard it all, it is oddly a lot of the same stuff I heard and got- literally- yelled at about- when I went vegetarian.  You're unhealthy, you are stupid, it's just a little meat, your diet lacks essential nutrients, see you in the hospital, you'll die... believe me I have for reals heard it all.

I'm super healthy and I'm not dead yet.

People have fasted for thousands of years; it is nothing new.
There are counter-indications, but none of them apply to me.


We live in a society of such abundance that doing something like this is unimaginable to most people.
We are constantly bombarded with messages of food-  constant consumption.  There is a strong message that if we are not constantly consuming, we will suffer dire consequences.

It's not true.

There is an intensely strong psychological component to food.  This is really exploited by all the advertising.  Food equals love.  Food equals safety.  Food equals pleasure.  Never feel uncomfortable. Drown your sorrows with food.  Reward yourself with food!  And it isn't just advertising- relatives do it, too.

Sometimes just because going through a process is uncomfortable doesn't mean it is a bad thing.

But our society pushes comfort and pleasure above all else, and if you are uncomfortable you must... eat something!  NO.

Fasting is incredibly cleansing.  It is extremely mental, and getting through it is a major accomplishment.  I'm really, really proud of myself for getting through it despite the discomfort.  Also, I have been sleeping SO WELL throughout this entire fast.  I'm a good sleeper in general, but I'm *really* sleeping well.

And FWIW this morning I feel pretty good, my energy is good, and I am really excited about my 2pm watermelon and pears.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Day 6

I'm ready for this fast to end.
The only issue I really have right now is extremely low physical energy. Otherwise I feel ok.
it's weird, in previous fasts I had good energy levels.

I went to yoga last night, but modified the poses to be restorative, and I also rested a lot.

I'm not used to being so physically weak- this is a new experience for me and I can't say I like it very much.

But it has given me a depth of empathy and understanding for people who are physically weak all the time, and how difficult that is.

Tomorrow I will break this fast right at 2pm.  I'm not going longer than that physically or mentally.

Although I did not weigh myself before starting the fast, I am estimating that as of last night I have lost close to 9lbs. I am at a weight I haven't been at maybe since high school or college, or I guess my early 20s. It is still a safe weight for me to be at.

I have read that the average person, depending on how much extra weight you have, could fast for 6-8 weeks.  But I'm not sure about that for an average normal-weight person. I could probably fast safely (at my pre-fast weight) for about 10 days, but after that I might cross the line at being underweight, and underweight people should never water fast. I guess it depends on your body.

I know I'm still ok because hunger has not returned. I know I can safely lose a few more pounds without becoming officially underweight.

When you really critically have to break a fast, the body switches on an intense hunger mode.  I have never experienced this.  Generally, fasts should end before this occurs,

7 days is a good time frame for my body, going by my pre-fast weight.

I have really cleaned out my body's pantry! And that is a great thing.  I feel so good about it, although weight loss was absolutely NOT my intention for water fasting.

There are many scientifically-;proven benefits to water fasting. From my research to get the deep cleaning/regenerative benefits, you have to go for more than three days.  It really starts after day 3.
Intermittent fasting is also extremely healthy, but it isn't a full system re-boot like what I am doing.

There are counter-indications to undertaking something like this, and you have to do your research and know how to do it safely and what to expect.  And it is extremely mental, it makes your mind so strong.

The only thing that I wish could have been different with this fast is being away from my normal environment, because my mind needs to take a break and it hasn't been able to. I desperately need a (child free) vacation.

And it seems I have survived the layoffs that happened this week.

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

Day 5

I'm 2 1/2 hours away from the start of day 6.
Mostly I feel ok, just very low physical energy.

My system must have a lot to do... but I'm not in discomfort anymore which is nice.
Just feeling physically weak, but I can go about my normal day in slow-motion.

Layoffs are happening at work... I think I'll survive another round, will know for sure at the end of the day today.

One very positive thing to be said about  the fast is my physical anxiety symptoms disappeared- and quickly. Thinking about specific stressors still bothers me, but I am not having any physical reaction and it is toned down to a vague bother.

Upstairs neighbors have been quiet thank goodness... maybe pressure from the landlord helped.
And I hope writing this doesn't jinx it or something.

Monday, October 08, 2018


This year I intended to do an extended water fast, and I had a vague concept it would be in October.

Then October ca,e and I still didn't know when I would start.

My body has been telling me to fast.  It has been a few years since I did a long fast, I think I did my 5 day fast in 2014. This has been a really hard year and my anxiety is bad.  It is hitting me physically on a level that is new.  I suspect it did some damage in my body.  Normally I pick a date to start in advance and mentally build to it, because fasting is so very, very mental.

I need to shut my system down for repairs and essentially do a full re-boot.
My goal is 7 days, but I might go longer if I feel like it.

But it hit me on Friday- do it NOW. 
Friday morning I had 2 cups of tea with milk and sugar, plus some peppermint tea so that's not a pure fast and I don't count it because I am an absolute purist with water fasts.

2pm Friday was my official start and that's where I am counting from.

Now I am in Day Three and to be honest this is the hardest fast I have ever done.  I mean it has really, really SUCKED.  I have been so weak and nauseous.  Saturday I had a massive headache that completely disappeared by Sunday. Saturday night was the worst with the nausea. I have fasted several times before and never had that reaction.  My body is getting rid of stuff.

Sunday was better.

This morning was better, and I am taking some pink salt with my water for electrolytes, which makes a huge immediate difference in feeling better. (it must be pink salt because of the minerals and magnesium)

I am almost through the hard part.  Almost there.

Day 4 starts at 2pm, and from there things get better.  That's when the good part starts. It's just getting there that is very difficult.

I had a driving lesson Saturday afternoon (before my headache set in). It went well, I was nervous and I have a few minor bad habits... but overall it was fine.  I'll have a few more lessons then I should be ok to go.

Friday, October 05, 2018


I got out of work early on Friday, so went painting after work.
I was up in Central Park next to Gothic Bridge-- which I ought to paint one day, it is very pretty.

6x8 oil, 2 hours-ish.

Thursday, October 04, 2018

September to Now, Consolidated

I need to catch up with September.
Overall I have been dealing with some pretty bad anxiety, but honestly I really think anyone in my situation would be, I think I am having normal reactions to highly stressful situations.

Labor Day:
Daya and I rented a boat in Flushing Meadows and had a lovely day.

I took Daya on the Roosevelt Island tram.
Now she has done all the NYC transportation options: car, boat, train, bus, walking, bike, tram.

Daya told me she lost the key to the lobby. This is a very odd thing to lose, so I asked her how it happened.
Apparently she thought that taking her keys off the keyring and letting them float around loose was a good idea.

She does not know why she thought this was a good idea.
I'm not going to let her live it down.  Ever.

Locked In
We got locked in the dance studio.
Here is a picture of Daya unsuccessfully trying to get out.
Ms Victoria was the only other person in the building and she had to come downstairs from the 4th floor to rescue us.

Rat Sitting
We had 5 house guests for most of the month... 5 lovely rats from an artist who went on an art residency in France.
They were really excellent rats.

I am still working on a new series of Topiary cats. I have 5 paintings out of 7 going in various stages of completion.

I also built and launched my website and had some cards printed.  It was a LOT of work, and I was literally working like a crazy person for three days straight.  Then I kept tweaking and changing things over the next 2 weeks, including breaking stuff and having to fix it.  My site is an evolution, but it is good for now and I'm SO GLAD this has finally been accomplished.  I have been needing to do it for years...actually started a few years ago but never finished it.

Upstairs Noise:
I still have a dumb amount of anxiety about it.  They have been quiet for the past couple of weeks.
But there have been some issues, and I know my reaction is overblown especially when they are quiet.  When they blast I go into crazy-mode and it takes me a long time to calm down from it.

Apparently from talking to others and reading stuff, I'm pretty normal in my reaction to unwanted noise in my home.  It is severe as I have only had a reduction in the last few months... otherwise it has been consistent for the last year and a half and my nerves are completely shot.

Even when they are quiet I can't quite let go of the anticipation.

I'm over-stressed.
I can't seem to get my relaxation back down to 0 no matter how hard I try.
Everything is too much.
And there's stuff with Daya too that I just don't want to write about, but it is enormously stressful.

Time Travel:
We apparently went back to the year 2000.

I have done over 60 hours with Charlie in the car. A lot of it has been in scary rush hour Manhattan, including 4 lane unmarked construction roads which is freaking scary.

Because the days are getting shorter and I have a daylight only license, I have to stop my lessons.  I know I need to make that jump to going out alone, so I enrolled in Zipcar. I mentioned it to Charlie on our last lesson and he had a really weird reaction.  It was not encouraging at all.  He said I was skipping his process.

It was POURING rain during our lesson and he was really emphasizing all my mistakes and acting.... just really differently than he ever has.

My confidence plummeted to complete zero.

I spent a couple of days being very upset.

Then I contacted a driving school right in my neighborhood for an evaluation lesson, which as of the writing of this post I haven't done yet, but will do this weekend.

I still need to learn how to park, and I need freeway lessons as I have not done either of those things.  I also want a driving school to evaluate my driving overall and fill in any gaps.

In addition to zipcar, I got a GPS and a driver seat pillow for a few extra inches because I really am that short and can't see over the dashboard.

I'm still feeling really scared and need to build my confidence, but honestly I really should be ok for the most part especially in normal roads that are not Manhattan construction rush hour traffic.  Plus, the GPS will help me a lot too.  I just feel there is so much I still don't know.

I now work for a different company as of Tuesday because we got bought.
Nothing has changed, but there will be cuts and that starts next week.

The Cats:
They are fine.

Uncategorized Cool Picture:
From the dance team meeting.

Wednesday, September 05, 2018

8th Grade!

We made it to 8th grade!!!!!

Here are the traditional first day of school pictures, taken in the same place since the first day of preschool.

I have good hopes for this year.  There is a lot to do over the next several months- high school applications and auditions.  It will all be over by December.  Daya has done all the prep work.  She has done literally everything she could do, both\in grades and dance.  There is nothing we could have done differently, nothing we didn't do that we should have done.  She is in an excellent place to get excellent results.

So now we are in the home stretch, which is stressful, but in truth all the hard work is already finished.  

One more year in middle school, one more year at the studio where Daya has been dancing for the last 7 years.  She has done extremely well and I am very proud.

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Almost September

Oh, this month is dragging on as it always does.
We are in another heatwave which is unpleasant.

My rent went up more than I anticipated.  This is scary because I always wonder about future sustainability- costs keep going up more than income. Everything just keeps getting more and more expensive.  When expenses change I still can't catch up because other things increase.  This isn't unique to me, it is everyone.

Relatively speaking, though, I am still in a really good and fortunate housing situation and I need to remember that, even though the rent increases are super-scary, even in a rent-stabilized unit.

I have to get through the next 5 years.
I have to get Daya through high school.
I have to get her to her 18th birthday.

I can't even think about my own life and what I really want to do beyond the next 5 years.  I'm so focused on just getting through this and maintaining stability.  It's literally taking everything I have, internally and externally. I can't even think about where my own life is going. That has not been an option for me since Daya was born.  My whole life closed due to my circumstance, I literally saw all my doors slam shut.  I was married...before I got pregnant!  I did not sign up for this, yet I have been on my own since before day 1 of this road.

I haven't had the freedom to even consider thinking about my own life goals and what I want for myself has simply been unavailable. I have been completely locked down.  And I'm getting older which is also scary.  But in 5 years I won't have the same constraints.

I'm still driving.
I have to get proficient in that, too... and I'm not ready yet.
Charlie says he sees the light at the end of the tunnel, he says I'm doing really well and he sees progress.  I see progress too but it's not enough yet, I'm not ready to drive on my own.  There is so much I don't know and things I'm scared of.  And when I'm not taking lessons anymore, and I don't know something, who do I ask for help?  What do I do if I get into a situation and don't know what to do?  I'm up against time with it because I can only drive in daylight.  When the days get shorter I can't do my after-work lessons anymore.  So I stress about that and being ready.

I am not an assertive driver (Charlie says yet) and I still make some bad decisions, and judging distance on the right is hard, and merging lanes is really scary... and looking everywhere while going straight is scary, and sometimes I still misread the road, and I can't read small details like street signs until I'm closer than someone with better eyes.  I will be very GPS-reliant, I think....

But he has me driving on what he says are the hardest streets in the city.  (And believe me they are hard.)  He says it doesn't get any more difficult than what I am doing.

I'm still incredibly agitated and resentful of my upstairs neighbors, and I don't like feeling like this.
I spoke to the landlord and he said he would offer them another apartment if they are willing to move.  I haven't heard back yet.  In the meantime I dread the next time they will blast their music into my apartment.  They signed a 2 year lease which means they were not planning on moving this Spring. If they don't move I will ask the landlord again if I can soundproof...well, sound-reduce.  I really can't do full soundproofing. It will cost a lot of money I don't have, thousands, but that's how much I don't want to move.

And I have very specific reasons for not wanting to move.
*I have been in my apartment for 12 years and I love it and it is my home
*We have no one under us which means Daya can practice dance without worrying about the noise.  This has been a tremendous blessing and I can't take that away from her.
*Julie is next door (we love Julie) and is available if Daya needs help when she is home alone.
*Moving would still cost me a lot of money
*My apartment is a big one bedroom.  Another apartment would likely be smaller, even in the same building. The other 1 bedrooms I have been in (same building) are smaller.
*Daya has gym equipment installed into the wall and I have my awesome bathroom sink, both of which would need to be disassembled, moved, and reinstalled... I would have to pay for that. (not giving up my bathroom sink!!!)
*I would probably have a rent increase.
*I might still get crappy neighbors.
*Moving sucks.

I need a break.

Thursday, August 23, 2018

Manhattan Mission

Daya needed to get out so I sent her on a Manhattan Mission... go to Little Italy and bring back cannolis.

She brought back three kinds- originals, chocolate peanut butter, and mint!
We ate the mint ones before I remembered to take a picture.

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Just Some Things

Did you know that you can get actual for reals PTSD from really stupid things?
I shouldn't be judging myself like that, but it really does seem silly on the surface, until it gets Serious and isn't silly anymore.

I have actual for-real professionally-diagnosed PTSD from the neighbors' music upstairs.

Yeah, I thought it was stupid too.
Eva said it isn't stupid, it can happen from all kinds of things.

So I have these neighbors upstairs- for a year and a half- who are LOUD and they BLAST music and I'm still trying to get a resolution.  But the pounding drums and bass have really affected my mental health- badly- I can't have that in my home.  I have been in this apartment for 12 years- many people moved in and out upstairs- and nothing has ever been a problem like this.

I have spoken with the neighbors several times- and the last time I spoke with them I told them how it was affecting me, and it did seem to get better for a while.  But this past weekend they started up again and I went into a Bad Place with it.  Bad enough that I had flashbacks of when I was in high school and my mother used to intentionally blast music at full volume in the car with the sole intent of making me suffer. 
I had forgotten all about it.

So that's when the PTSD stops being stupid and becomes a Serious Thing.

I contacted my friend T because I needed immediate help and I knew she would understand, also she is just as weird as I am so that helps. And she did help.  She gave me a person to contact who has helped her. After meditating Sunday night my whole body went into a crazy detox- I felt flushed all over and I could not stop shaking.  I contacted T's person, and she talked to me and did a clearing. (no charge)

She told me I would still have the physical reactions for a little over an hour after, and she was right.

Apparently I had a ton of stuff that just needed to be cleaned out.
I can honestly say I feel so much clearer and better after the cleansing.
I don't feel 100% good, but I do notice a big difference.

The music upstairs is still a huge issue- and is still affecting me badly- but I have more hope of a good outcome now.  I am feeling more connected in general.  T's person said I had been in a weird energy vortex...she didn't know exactly what but she said it was weird and it was time to go.  I think I do know what it was at least partially, nothing bad, but yes, time to go.  She also said I have a ton of guides around me. Standing room only, I was told.... I haven't felt anything for a while so that was just nice to hear. Even if I can't feel it.

I have not been keeping up with my usual basic spiritual hygiene to be honest. Not for a while.
So I need to deal with this noise situation with the landlord,  do triple grids, clearing, meditate, and just recover in general.

I really, really, really need a break from stress.

If you have any  good vibes to spare,  whoever, wherever and whenever you are, please send a few my way,


Saturday, August 18, 2018

GW Bridge Plein Air

Today was a good painting day minus the mugginess.
This painting took about an hour and a half.

Jackie and I had a nice time at the Cloisters afterwards.
I have pictures but they are on my camera and I have to get them off and that is too much effort right now.

6x8 oil and gnats

Thursday, August 16, 2018

Blue Squared

I haven't painted a still life for a while.  The oils forum project is a blue and painted from life theme,
so I thought I'd find some blue things and paint them.

This was done alla prima. The thee blues I used were pthalo, ultramarine, and prussian.

The darkest blues in the center are a mix of ultramarine and prussian.
I also used asphaltum.

I did come across some limitations with alla prima painting as far as the glass and very high chroma glowing color highlights...which are not in the painting... there are certain effects that have to be glazed for glass I think, but I don't want to spend more time on this painting and it was never intended to be a layered painting.

Or maybe my alla prima skills just aren't up to it.
Thinking back, since the panel wasn't toned I guess I could have done it last by removing paint down to the support and glazing... but I think some effects are better in layered paintings if you want to go super-realistic. The problem was transparency plus very high chroma and that bottle is already mostly paint straight from the tube.

8x10 oil

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

Connecticut Plein Air

Daya and I went to Connecticut for a few days to visit Cathy and get out of the city.  We had a really nice time.

Every single day we were there it rained and there were thunderstorms, but I still got one painting done.
6x8 oil on panel, hour and a half

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

A Lovely Dream

I had a dream last night, a really nice dream.....

In my dream I was....

..... drawing with vine charcoal.


I do love vine charcoal.

Sunday, August 05, 2018


Tuesday: 15 hour day
Wednesday: 15 hour day
Thursday: 15 hour day
Friday: Competition all day
Saturday: Competition day even longer than Friday

The girls did great.
We had to go to New Jersey.

The stage pictures came out great, but I don't have them yet.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018


Some traditions are worth keeping, like Pigeon Risk Time.

So here we go again.

I was lamenting to Carey that I haven't figured out how to time-travel through to September.  Yet.

It's hot, long, work is busy, Daya is home, the cats are home, I will work and drive and maybe paint.

I have to say that I'm REALLY ready for school to start, but that doesn't happen until Sept 5.

We can get through this, right?

And it's going to be good and boring and nothing bad will happen.  Right?

Oh, also, it's going to go fast.... right?  Or is that too much to ask for?

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Last Week of Ailey

Daya's Alvin Ailey intensive is over.
She did 4 performances over Wednesday and Thursday.

It was just wonderful-- extremely professional.  The highest age in the Junior Division is 16, but every single person there danced like a professional.  The skill level and choreography were superb.

Here is Daya after her Wednesday evening performance:

The last day, Friday, was class observation day.
I don't really get to see Daya's classes anymore.  I haven't seen one of her ballet classes for a long time.

The stuff they were doing.... was intense.  Very focused, very controlled, extremely difficult.
I think dancers at this level all have to be crazy as a prerequisite.

Ballet group picture:

Horton (modern) group picture:

Some cool Daya pictures: