My First Blog in 2021

My First Blog in 2021

Happy New Year! May it be as lovely and beautiful as a flower. Cheers to my first blog of 2021.

I enjoy hard work, challenges, and love learning new skills, even flower growing.  My neighbor, Janet, gave me the most beautiful Amaryllis, here, that I watched grow from a seedling, and my older orchid bloomed the loveliest velvet flower, here. It’s fascinating to watch the plants grow. I have a new Christmas cactus, red, and it has thorns. I never had one of those with thorns, that I discovered picking it up. Ouch!!!

After five years I got my rights back for Indigo Sky from my publisher. The book belongs to me now.

Did you know when a publisher publishes your book, they own it. I’m not free to do anything. I had to ask permission for ads, for re-writes, for distribution, and so on.

Now I own the book and making a lot of changes that I knew I wanted to make. I’m re-writing Indigo Sky. And it’s lots of fun.

Some say to change the title, some say don’t bother to change the title. I had to change the cover though because the existing cover art belonged to the publisher. I have my new cover ready to go and will share it with you here soon. I’m more than halfway through the re-write. I’ll put out a request for updates on the reviews and in return, I’ll provide a free copy of the book.

I’m done writing my brother’s memoirs, he’s working on finishing, which gives me time to go back to writing mine.

I’m busy, so in order to get my memoirs written without distractions I signed up for a memoir workshop. Part of the requirements is to write at least fifteen pages every week for eight weeks, which will get me on a roll. I’m writing each chapter as an essay. I have a page full of subjects.

Over the last twenty years or so, my friends have encouraged me to write about my life, about how I found the Lord, and how I managed my careers–music, art and design, writing, and teaching.

I’m all ears to hear what you have to say.

Gail Ingis Claus is an author, artist/painter, and interior designer.

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My Big Brother Jay Gerber – Success Written in the Sky

My Big Brother Jay Gerber – Success Written in the Sky

From the army to the skies – Jay Gerber never backs down from a challenge.

My big brother, Jay Gerber, is my spokesman for his memoir. You guessed it, I’m writing his story with him.

Jay has accomplished more in his 87 years than most people could in two lifetimes. But he’s not done yet! He wants to get it all down in a book – all his adventures, and he asked me to write it.

It was the beginning of him becoming a mature teenager—oh, I know that’s an oxymoron–but the high school at Carson Long Military Institute taught Jay a thing or two. Then off to college, then into the army, then back to university and successful completion of medical school. He did a short stint as a podiatrist but was too busy making movies, flying, then sat in his own Piper Cherokee 180, and filming football for NFL Films. Not necessarily in that order. And somewhere in-between he married a gorgeous blue-eyed blond, My fabulous, amazing sister-in-law and friend, Barb.

His love for flying and football always took center stage, and his knowledge in technology and photography is embedded in his DNA.

Jay has earned many accolades over the years.

At seven-years-old, he built his own planes from balsa wood and tissue paper. It all began after a trip with Dad to the 1939 World’s Fair Aviation Exhibit. He built the planes while I watched as he glued the pieces together and smelled up our shared bedroom. No, we don’t remember getting a hit from the glue. Back then, the glue was handy to put things together. Then he added rubber bands and threw the planes up in the air till they ran out of the twisted rubber bands and crash-landed. He didn’t care if they got damaged—he fixed them and threw them back into the air again. I asked Jay to build one for me so we could fly them together.

 

 

This model planes grew in size, then he installed engines and even created a control shift like the stick shifter in Dad’s 1938 Plymouth. He landed the plane by doing something with that stick, remote control is what it’s called. The planes kept growing until he eventually bought a ready-made plane that he sat in and flew. Jay was fortunate to own a Piper Cherokee 180 and then a Cherokee SIX 260. He certainly earned his wings including the private instrument, commercial, and twin ratings.

He sold the Cherokee SIX to a ham radio retailer. As part of the sale, he received a ham radio station. This led to his extra class license as an N3AW and a ham radio contest station where he competed in many worldwide phones and CW [Morse Code] contests.

“Very few people build their planes anymore. Many of these ships come pre-built as carbon fiber fuselages and foam core covered wings…and are beautiful…we have to do a lot of work to install all the motors, radio equipment, and servos (surface control devices) which are very costly,” Jay said.

And at the ripe young age of 72, Jay learned to play the piano. Well, it’s about time he learned. I’ve been playing since the age of 7. I asked Jay was he jealous of me playing the piano? “Nope” because he played clarinet and sax, and had a band when he was in college.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Of course, what would retirement be without adding a few rounds of golf into the mix as well? Leave it to my brother — he’s an expert on the links too.

He’s been honored by the Academy of Model Aeronautics (AMA) for his brilliance in all the above. For most of his career, he worked for the NFL in their film and technical division.

Franco Harris, Steelers running back & President George Washington

 

Jay is also the guy who filmed the famous Immaculate Reception play during the Steelers and Raiders divisional playoff game on December 23, 1972, at Three Rivers Stadium in Pittsburgh. At the airport, there’s a statue of Franco Harris, who caught the football, next to one of George Washington. You all know who that is, right

The time Jay and I spend together is the best part of writing this book. All the memories of our childhood, teenage adventures, and the joyful and poignant changes that adulthood brings. Through it all Jay has always been my big brother. My first hero. And my dear friend.

 

Jay filming for NFL Films

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is us! 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gail (Gerber) Ingis is an artist, interior designer, and published author. Her historical romances Indigo Sky and The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin are both available on Amazon. Gail is currently writing a memoir with her brother Jay S. Gerber. He’s a man that rose from rags to riches, find out how in his memoirs, maybe by the end of this year.

My current books

 

 

 

 

 

 

Beautycounter mission: Clean skin care for everyone

Beautycounter mission: Clean skin care for everyone

Beautycounter story

Gregg Renfrew, Beautycounter Founder

Like many of you, I’m a wife and mom—and, like many of you, I didn’t know what I didn’t know. As I applied sunscreen, lotion, and any number of beauty products on myself and my kids, I never thought for a second they might not be safe: After all, I thought, we live in a country that regulates everything. So imagine my shock when I learned that when it comes to the personal care industry, that’s simply not the case. Companies are allowed to use harmful ingredients and make their own judgments about safety.

And so I started Beautycounter, a company devoted to progress. Here you’ll find a wealth of empowering information about ways we can all make the world healthier, along with safer products you can trust. Because we all deserve better. Our vision is bold; real answers are never timid. Help us put truth back in beauty.

My take

Beautycounter, a young innovative, think out of the box company, is always adding new products for the health of us all. I believe in their philosophy, safer formulas for Every Body Head-To-Toe Essentials. Your Essentials w/o Harsh Chemicals-Explore Safer, Effective Makeup. Your family deserves the best.

The latest from the Beautycounter company is their Counterman line. My hubby, Tom Claus, uses my products, night and day creams, intense rejuvenating creams, and more, but men’s skin is tougher than a woman’s, Counterman has arrived and is the answer to men’s healthy skin care.

Tom Claus

According to Beautycounter, when they cast their Counterman campaign, they sought guys who embodied their standards—men who stand for something, who approach life with intention, think outside of the box, like my hubby, Tom, a scientist, having worked in discovery for new drugs for diabetes. Tom has had dry, scaly skin and has been using creams for his face and scalp for years. He’s been using CeraVe, and didn’t realize that it has harsh chemicals like parabens, (methyl-isobutyl-propyl- and other). Even baby sunscreen has harsh chemicals. Imagine smearing creams all over your babies and kids, and washing their hair and yours with shampoo laden with harsh chemicals? Check out Beautycounter’s ample never list and look at the ingredients on the packaging of the products you use.

Having several men in my life, a husband, three sons, two sons-in-law, and seven grandsons, I’m excited for them to climb out of their box and look at the big picture. It’s never too soon to learn how to keep you, your family and your men handsome and healthy.

Beautycounter mission: To get safer products into the hands of everyone.

Decades of studies indicate that serious health issues (including but not limited to asthma, cancer, and infertility) are on the rise and are due in some part to our ongoing exposure to toxic chemicals—whether it’s in the shower, on our commute, while we eat lunch at a local restaurant, or when we clean our kitchens at home.

There are more than 80,000 chemicals on the market today. Many don’t have any safety data. This is particularly true of those used in the skin care and beauty industry.

What’s worse is that the Food and Drug Administration (the agency that regulates cosmetics in the United States) does not have the authority to remove harmful ingredients from the products we put on our bodies and on our kids’ bodies every single day, day after day.

https://www.beautycounter.com/gailingis

https://www.beautycounter.com/products/counterman

Beating Heart of the City

Beating Heart of the City

New York City Hall, a beauty in classicism with its touch of Palladio! I studied interior design and architecture many moons ago, but my passion has not wained. New York City Hall is featured prominently in my upcoming book The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin. The cornerstone of City Hall was laid in 1803. Construction was delayed after the City Council objected that the design was too extravagant. In response, architects, McComb and Mangin reduced the size of the building and used brownstone at the rear of the building to lower costs. Labor disputes and an outbreak of yellow fever further slowed construction. The building was not dedicated until 1811 and opened officially in 1812. The original skin of the building, Massachusetts marble facade, quarried from Alford, Massachusetts, deteriorated and was replaced with Alabama limestone in 1954 to 1956.

City Hall, Park Row and City Hall Park, 1911. The structure on the right is the Manhattan station for the cable cars which ran across the Brooklyn Bridge

Steps of City Hall

The steps of City Hall frequently provide a backdrop for political demonstrations and press conferences concerning city politics. The heroine in my book meets the hero on the grounds of those steps while attending a women’s suffrage rally in 1886.

Rotunda

On the inside, the rotunda is a soaring space with a grand marble stairway rising up to the second floor, where ten fluted Corinthian columns support the coffered dome, which was added in a 1912 restoration by Grosvenor Atterbury. The rotunda has been the site of municipal as well as national events. Abraham Lincoln and Ulysses S. Grant lay in state there in 1865, attracting enormous crowds to pay their respects. City Hall is a designated New York City landmark. It is listed on the New York State and National Registers of Historic Places.

The area around City Hall is commonly referred to as the Civic Center. Most of the neighborhood consists of government offices (city, state and federal), as well as an increasing number of upscale residential dwellings being converted from older commercial structures. Architectural landmarks such as St. Paul’s Chapel, St. Peters Church, the Woolworth Building, Tweed Courthouse, the Manhattan Municipal Building, the Park Row Building, One Police Plaza, and the Brooklyn Bridge surround City Hall. If you’ve ever watched an episode of Law and Order, you’ll know what I’m talking about. Until next time, Gail.

Thank you, Wikipedia for the facts and links.

City Hall Park

Gail Ingis Claus is an author, artist/painter and interior designer. Her upcoming romance The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin will be released when she’s done revising, I’ll keep you in the know. Her current historical romance, Indigo Sky can be purchased on Amazon.

http://amzn.to/2j0LXLE

 

 

 

Reverse Shopping

Reverse Shopping

Sometimes “Reverse Shopping” can lead you down a rabbit hole.

So I do this thing sometimes where I buy something and then I realize I don’t need it or it doesn’t fit my life/home/style and so I return it. I just returned a bunch of paint canvases at my local art supply store and got a $400 dollar store credit. It was past the date of the receipt so no cash back, unfortunately, but hey, I’ll have no problem using that credit paint supplies. Painting is just one of my passions – the other ones include writing and ballroom dancing and cooking and of course my husband, Tom.

Reverse shopping is fun, but it’s not just about the excitement of getting your money back or a credit. It also gives you that all-important chance at a “do-over”. The ability to make a shift and start fresh. And sometimes that can lead you down a new path. Returning those canvases meant creating more physical space in my painting studio as well as emotional and creative space in my mind.

We can apply that to anything in life. Sometimes you have to stop, take stock, let go, and shift directions. I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about that lately – the direction I should be heading in terms of my creative-business pursuits. Painting will always be a driving force in my life so that’s a no-brainer. I’m going to be doing another show later this year and hopefully painting a few more landscapes.

Other times “Reverse Shopping” can lead you to a new (out)look.

But best of all, “Reverse Shopping” can lead you in a new creative direction.

My writing is a newer passion, but certainly not a lesser one. I’m currently working on my WIP, The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin. I had to apply my “reverse shopping” technique to my book. I stopped writing for a bit as I took stock of the book and I’m currently working out some new additions and possible directions. The “credit” I got back is some time to do a bit of extra reading in the craft of writing. Just a few refreshers to inspire me. And boy am I inspired. I can’t wait to finish the book and share it with everyone.

So keep that in mind the next time you buy something that doesn’t quite fit. Stop. Take stock. Reverse shop. Free your mind.

Love, Gail.

Gail Ingis Claus is an author, artist/painter and interior designer. Her upcoming romance The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin will be released in the spring 2018. Her current historical romance, Indigo Sky can be purchased on amazon.

http://amzn.to/2j0LXLE

Spring Has Sprung

Spring Has Sprung

It’s that time of year – Spring Cleaning. Tom and I have been busy re-organizing our home. Our focus this year is my library, a room that I adore. We have about 2,002 books (2 are tom’s) in my professional library. WOW is right. This year we made the decision to scale it back.

So far we’ve packed up 5 boxes of books (about 100 books in total) and donated them to a local charity, Silvermine School of Art. These are all art books – of course. Even though it’s hard getting rid of things we love, it’s important for our peace of mind. Why? Because we need “white space” in our lives. That extra space where we can reflect and relax. Clutter can lead to anxiety and after the heaviness of winter, it’s time to let go.

So if you’re pondering the clutter in your own home, think about how liberating it will be when you let go, and give yourself the gift of “space”.

Love, Gail.

Gail Ingis Claus is an author, artist/painter and interior designer. Her upcoming romance The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin will be released in spring 2018. Her current historical romance, Indigo Sky can be purchased on amazon.

A work of art

 

 

Rose-Colored Glasses

Rose-Colored Glasses

I just got a new pair of glasses and I love them. They have a rose tint in the frame. It’s nice to see the world through rose-colored glasses. Putting on a new pair of glasses changes your perspective a bit. It takes time to “see” properly.  Life changes are like that too. Sometimes we get a real curveball whether it’s a health issue or a family issue and we have to figure out how to catch it or get out of the way. At the age of 82, I’ve caught quite a few doozies.

I’ve struggled with my weight for most of my life. Fifteen years ago I lost 35 pounds and I’ve maintained my weight loss. So you could say, that you’re never too old to gain (or lose) a new perspective. Of course, the benefits are vast; feeling sound in body and mind is the coup de gras. But don’t think for a minute that I gave up pizza. I still enjoy it in moderation of course. I don’t eat the crust, I just get the grease, and leave the carbs behind.

Roses and Glasses

Another new perspective is my writing. I’ve added “published author” to my list of accomplishments, a list that included graduating from design school with a BFA and cum laude, working as an interior designer for more than 50 years, founding a school of interior design, Architecture school, master’s studies in architecture and design criticism, Not to mention photography and painting. I am just about finished writing my second book The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin, a romance set in the Gilded Age of New York City. Allie Baldwin is quite a gal, lives across from Central Park and is a journalist for her father’s syndicated newspapers. And she’s a suffragette. I love spending time with her.

So if you think you need a “new perspective”, it’s okay. Try on a new pair of glasses and I’m sure you’ll see the world in a whole new way.

Gail Ingis Claus is an author, artist/painter and interior designer. Her upcoming romance The Unforgettable Miss Baldwin will be released in the spring 2018. Her current historical romance, Indigo Sky can be purchased on amazon.

A work of art

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