Saturday, April 30, 2011

NaBloPoMo 30: Free Falling

Feet, what do I need you for when I have wings to fly?
~Frida Kahlo

Being in love with "stuff" in your life, is only a temporary high, and can cause you to become obsessive, intense...and plain, old cranky. Being obsessed with material things is not healthy for the soul. I have observed some friends that seem to feel like they have a void in their life, so they simply fill it with things....they buy "things". The scary part is that their "things" become more and more expensive, bigger, and shinier. I ask -- does this stuff fill their life with more meaning?

Only they can answer that question for themseves, but I see them buy stuff when they are depressed, buy stuff to show others their love, giving it without words, and they seem emotionally disconnected. I think it may be a way to not deal with emotions, kind of like blocking that connection, to "buy", rather than to talk, share, or connect.

Life is certainly a mystery, I can tell you that. As we get older in life, we learn that we know more about what we "didn't know" when we were young. We learn to pick ourselves up after tragedy, or hardship, and we learn to have goals. For those of us that have a shorter shelf life, I can honestly say that lusting after material things, yearning for better, shinier things, will leave you empty in the end. I can say this because I have struggled financially all of my life. From a devastating marriage to the hardship of divorce, to the perils of single parenting...I have not fell into the trap of material lusting...I had more important things to keep me busy! I have fought the fight to keep a roof over our heads, to put food on the table, to play, sing and act be parent, friend, counselor, laundress, chef, and comedian. There was never any money for great shiny things....nor the time to sit around and worry about what I didn't have. We simply survived with laughter!

I am happy. I am in love with life. I am sharing my love of life with my kids, so that they have that happiness inside matter what the future brings. When we watched the Royal wedding, we didn't see the dress, the hair, the celebrities...we saw William's subtle flushed face, Kate's infectious smile....his whisper to her that "she looked beautiful....beautiful". The wedding was not pomp and circumstance for was hope. It was a magic moment that I was glad me and the kids were able to see together.

So, my last thought for this LAST NaBloPoMo post is simply to share a quote from a favorite poet:

"To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else. "
~Emily Dickinson

Friday, April 29, 2011

NaBloPoMo 29: Things That Make Me Smile

National Blog Posting Month: To join--go HERE

Things that make me smile are:

My kids...

My cat...

The beach...

A cold cherry cola...

And ---- Pirates...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

NaBloPoMo 28: Just Dance

Thursday, April 28, 2011

Talk about the best wedding you ever attended.

The best wedding I ever attended was my cousin Cathy's. She was married down in Texas, and though it was hot, humid and had a sticky west Texas wind....there was also cold cerveza, vino, and a Mariachi band. It was hot---but my gosh---there was DANCING !!!

I danced the night away with my Uncle Max, and gave much comical laughter to all Cathy's new family. They thought we were crazy! But, I think we did the jitterbug much justice. LOL

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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

NaBloPoMo 27: Play Time

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Which piece of playground equipment would you go to first as a child -- the slides or the swings?

Though our little elementary school in NW Arkansas certainly had a playground equipped with swings, monkey bars, see-saws and one big, shiny was where I went when at home that I loved the best! At the end of Ray Lane was a sweet, elderly woman, Mrs. Ogilvie, that my Momma would go visit. She had the best backyard! I remember it was filled with berry bushes, honeysuckle and an old tree with a tire swing. While my Momma sat inside visiting, I would go outside and swing--swing---swing!!! I miss those times, when life was simple, and good neighbors were your best friends.

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Tuesday, April 26, 2011

NaBloPoMo 26: UnWinding

Tuesday, April 26, 2011
How do you unwind after a hard day?

"Reality is the leading cause of stress among those in touch with it."
~Lily Tomlin

I like to grab a cup of hot tea, my afghan throw, and turn on an old black & white classic movie. For that 90 minutes or so, I am transported out of my own reality and into a curious and light-hearted fantasy.

How do you unwind at the end of the day?

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Monday, April 25, 2011

NaBloPoMo 25: Waiting in Line

Monday, April 25, 2011

What do you do while waiting in line?

I think about Alan Rickman....what do you do?

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Sunday, April 24, 2011

NaBloPoMo 24: Happy Easter

To encounter Jesus is existentially difficult. It can make one feel uncomfortable, and it can even be considered scary. Today's society has continued to build a strong pressure to reinterpret the resurrection, to explain it in scientific terms, or the choice has sadly become to not deal with it at all.
My father taught me to look to the truth in all religious organizations. "What lies in a man's heart is what is closest to God." I have held an open heart since that time that we sat in the old kitchen back in Arkansas. My mother taught me to believe in God and all of the mystery, even if I did not understand it. This, I have faith.
For this Easter day post, I celebrate the wisdom that comes from those I hold in high regard:

"There is no need for temples, no need for complicated philosophies. My brain and my heart are my temples." ~Dalai Lama

"In heaven, all is peace and gladness. But, alas, all is not so on earth!" ~Pope Benedict XVI

No one can live very long without love. We need to give love to others, and we need to receive it ourselves. God hardwired that yearning into our nature. It's His signature on our soul.~Archbishop Chaput (First Native American Archbishop in the United States)

“Some of the greatest battles will be fought within the silent chambers of your own soul.” ~Ezra Taft Benson (13th President of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)

Saturday, April 23, 2011

NaBloPoMo 23: Like Baklava

I am a writer of poetry. I gather my thoughts, layered with rich memories. Pain and sorrow baked into the reflections of a decade. Connections fragmented like pieces of nut, embracing those spices of each cherished moment. Life announces itself to me and shows me what is most important as it drips its sweetness like honey on each day. Like baklava, life has become my guilty pleasure, to live.

Friday, April 22, 2011

NaBloPoMo 22: Qualities

Friday, April 22, 2011

What qualities do you look for in a role model?

"Someone who can speak their truth".
What I mean by this is a person that knows who they are and celebrates their dfferences with others. Each of us carries intrinsic value, we are defined by character, experiences and the life story that has shaped us. It is important to know that we communicate from that place that our life story was built, and to know that others communicate from theirs. Differences should not divide us, but teach us.

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Thursday, April 21, 2011

NaBloPoMo 21: Music To My Ears

A song that resinates with me is:
Elton John - I Want Love

A song that puts a smile on my face is:
Savage Garden - I Want You

A song that uplifts me is:
Yolanda Adams - Victory

A song of reflection for me is:
Pura Fe - Let Heaven Show

A song to close your eyes to is:
Apocalyptica - Fade to Black

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

NaBloPoMo 20: Magic

Tell about a time that made you believe that magic was real.

When you first fall in love there is this unspoken sense of superpower. The feeling reminds me of an invisible surge of inner energy. You are suddenly weightless in the world. You have a heightened sense of awareness, your thoughts become selfless as the other person fills your mind. Moments of connection through shared thoughts and dreams, laughter and nostalgia bring about a feeling like none other. Have you ever experienced sparks when you touch hands? It makes you believe that there is real magic happening. I have felt this once is my life. I was not standing on carpet...there was not static in my hair. I can tell you that it was phenomenal!

We all want to fall in love. Why?
Because that experience makes us feel completely alive,
where every sense is heightened,
and every emotion is magnified.
Our everyday reality is shattered
and we are flying into the heavens.
It may only last a moment, an hour, or an afternoon,
but that doesn't diminish its value,
because we are left with memories
that we treasure for the rest of our lives.
~From the movie The Mirror Has Two Faces

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Monday, April 18, 2011

NaBloPoMo 19: Dreading

Tuesday, April 19, 2011
What are you dreading?

I dread the day I can no longer walk.

NaBloPoMo 18: Trees

Monday, April 18, 2011

If you could have a tree in your yard that would sprout anything, what type of tree would you have?

For today's question I asked my kids what type of tree they would want...
My son instantly said, "Mom! I want a money tree". I asked why, and he said so that his Mom wouldn't have to work.
My daughter quickly said, "Momma, I want a maple tree". I again asked why, to which she stated...Momma, so we could have waffles in the morning!

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Saturday, April 16, 2011

NaBloPoMo 16: "No Bridle Required"

Photo above belongs to photographer, Art Wolfe.

As a little girl, I was long fascinated by the mystery of the horse. Our next door neighbor had a horse that I fed apples and carrots to in the late afternoons. It had these huge glistening brown eyes that seemed to look through me, and sometimes out past me. I could tell her my secrets, my fears, and all the while her loud chomping would strangely make music to my ears. I loved reading books about horses, spent time sitting up in the old crabapple tree drawing sketches of horses. My most heralded horse was the wild mustang. To me, I felt all horses should be free. The picture painted in my mind was of small herds running wildly across the fields of wildflowers, slowing down only slightly to run through a winding river. So, I share this exhibit, from one of my favorite photographers, with you. I think Art defines their mystique just right, my favorite photo is the one above because of his use of angle and light. Hope you enjoy!

Art Wolfe's gallery exhibit "UNBRIDLED" is currently showing at the Art Wolfe Gallery in Seattle's SODO district. The exhibit features seventeen new pieces—the largest being nearly 10 feet in length.

"From the classic royalty of the Lusitano to the casual confidence of the American quarterhorse to the spirited herds of the Camargue, the horse has long captivated me as a symbol of power, grace and form." ~Art Wolfe

PhotoHunt: "Road"

The theme this week is road.

If you travel out of Portland, Oregon on I-84 E, you will have this view.

Want to join the hunt? Visit TNChick here.

Friday, April 15, 2011

Friday, April 15, 2011

What is something you always have with you?

I have had this little silver cross for years. I keep it close.

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Thursday, April 14, 2011

NaBloPoMo #14: Scariest !

Thursday, April 14, 2011

What is the scariest thing you've ever done?

The scariest thing I ever did was in college. I did a photo project of a KKK rally. In February, 1988, a KKK rally was coordinated at the federal courthouse in Fort Smith, Arkansas. At this event was a large number of Skinheads used as the muscle and "bouncers" of the demonstration. I remember feeling like I was in a sea of hate and anger. I was surrounded by tall, pale, bald men. I think at one point, I held my breath, as the leader of the group turned his head and stared at me and the camera in my hand. I didn't budge from my angle, took some quick shots, then stepped back into the crowd and tried to blend. I got some great shots, and my teacher was happy --- I, on the other hand, was scared for days.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

NaBloPoMo #13: Missed

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Who do you miss?

Last night I had a dream about my home town. I dreamed I was at the old house I grew up in and it was dark, empty and dusty. I then walked down Ray Lane around the corner to my Mom's best friend's house. The Ogilvie house still stood, and I could tell someone was inside. As I reached up to knock on the door, Sharon answered. She was older, but had the same warm smile. She ushered me in and began to tell stories about herself and Mom. She pulled out a photo album and shared pictures. In my dream I instantly felt that pain in my heart of loss. I missed her. I missed my Mom. Sharon told me not to worry, I was supposed to see her soon. I woke up and felt that same pain...loss...memories flooding my mind, for a few moments...then I felt at peace. I miss Momma.

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Monday, April 11, 2011

NaBloPoMo #12: Dr. Who

Bowties. Are. Cool.

NaBloPoMo #11: Perceptions

Monday, April 11, 2011

What three words do you hope other people use to describe you?

Perception is a funny, quirky thing. I perceive myself different than what friends tell me. Let's just say that I auditioned myself for the great play of life....and I didn't get the part! In answering the question above... what 3 words do I hope people describe me? I would hope these three: Spirit--Compassion--Artist. Perceptions of "self " reflect what work we still have left to do. I have a project--that project is to believe in myself, to know I am of worth, that I am loved. The lab work of the project is to devise the method of throwing out the baggage that I have collected along the train ride of my life. I am ready to throw open that train window and toss those heavy, ugly bags out!

How do you see yourself? What 3 words do you hope for?

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Sunday, April 10, 2011

NaBloPoMo #10: Beautiful Life

Cultivate beauty in your life... This is something I strive for. What I want to leave behind is a legacy-- not of beauty, but of love. I try to value the everyday things, seeing importance in being "present" in the moment.
We can't put a pause button on life, though I would love to, especially when things seem to go wrong. It would be great to press pause...take a time out, and avoid the bads things. Instead, get mad at those bad things, find inspiration instead. Find something to get excited about. Find joy in simple everyday, ordinary things. Eat ice cream on a park bench in winter and sing Christmas songs in July. Laugh. Laugh alot. Inspire others. Put something out there in the world. Cultivate happiness around you and grow a beautiful life.

"For my part I know nothing with any certainty, but the sight of the stars makes me dream.” ~Vincent van Gogh

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Saturday, April 9, 2011

NaBloPoMo #9

"This is love: to fly toward a secret sky, to cause a hundred veils to fall each moment. First to let go of life. Finally, to take a step without feet."


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Friday, April 8, 2011

NaBloPoMo #8

Friday, April 8, 2011
What is one thing you are looking forward to this weekend?

Corn Chowder !!

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Wednesday, April 6, 2011

NaBloPoMo #7: "Lucky"

The next lucky move...

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NaBloPoMo 6: Halfway There

We made it. It's Wednesday now...marking the middle of the work week. We are halfway to Friday night, for those that kick-it-up dancing & dining....halfway to Saturday morning, for those that yearn for a morning to sleep in and lay around with indulgence and no guilt. I really am glad for this day, it puts a positive spin on the day. I find myself already thinking of the things I want to do on the weekend...what baking I will do, what movies I'll watch...or places I'll go. It is here --- finally---Monday is but a memory... Now some Earth, Wind & Fire....get your groove's Hump Day!
Want to blog this month--every day? Go to NaBloPoMo to join April's blogroll.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

NaBloPoMo 5

What are you waiting for at this very moment?

I am waiting on summer! Right now in Oregon, we were tricked by Mother Nature into thinking that is was spring. We have trees blossoming, flowers starting to bloom, and a few days with actual sunshine. This entire week our forecast includes cooler temperatures, overcast skies and rain. It feels like January again. I am anticipating the summer sun, green grass and balmy air. Here are some pictures of last summer, here in the Willamette valley.

Want to blog this month--every day? Go to NaBloPoMo to join April's blogroll.

Monday, April 4, 2011

NaBloPoMo 4: Blue Monday

"Blue oblivion, largely lit, smiled and smiled at me." ~William R. Benet

Want to blog this month--every day? Go to NaBloPoMo to join April's blogroll.

Question for today:How do you usually feel at the beginning of a journey?

Sunday, April 3, 2011

NaBloPoMo 3: The Run

Where did you run today? Now there's a question you don't often hear.

~Joe Henderson

Step lightly, run fast. This has been my mantra. Life can throw you some insanely harsh curve balls, and if you are not looking, they can take you down. Even is you are lucky enough for life to pass you by on adversity, it is not fun to walk heavily each day, taking note of your list of "to dos", worrying about the things that may go wrong. I like the words of this Chinese poem, to “drift like clouds and flow like water.” I am, and have been struggling with a disease. I can freely talk about it now, as I have shared it with my supervisor at work. It is not easy to say to people, I'm sick. Mostly, I hate the responses of ... "Oh, but you look fine". And I calmly reply.."Yes, I am not in a wheechair, I can still converse, speak and even tell jokes. I am still standing." The most important point is that I am learning to live life, step lightly, and run fast. I have been diagnosed with motor neuron disease, which I refer to as... "the big Lou". It is not a pleasant disease to have, but I will tell you I would rather have Parkinson's disease a hundred times over, like they first diagnosed me with, than this thing. I have accepted that my doctors believe this about me, BUT, most importantly, I also believe that doctors don't know everything. So, back to the above quote's question... "Where did you run to today?" I ran to my future, no matter what length, to step lightly, and drift like a cloud, finding happiness in each moment.

Where did you run?

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Friday, April 1, 2011

NaBloPoMo 2

Little Earth Stars

To some the dandelion is a weed; but not to me, unless it takes more than its share of space, for I always miss these little earth stars when they are absent. They intensify the sunshine shimmering on the lawn, making one smile involuntarily when seeing them. Moreover, they awaken pleasant memories, for a childhood in which dandelions had no part is a defective experience.

Source: "The Home Acre," by E. P. Roe

NaBloPoMo 1

Today's Writing prompt: "What are you ready to let go of?"

"I like to give my inhibitions a bath now and then." ~Oliver Reed

I am ready to let go of my inhibitions. That negative part of myself that self criticizes, feels uncertain, and doubts. A close friend of mine laughs at how I manage to sabatoge myself. We have had long talks about childhood, personal relationships, and most importantly the fact that men are not from Mars afterall... they are just down the street, and around the corner... we just didn't know it.

It sounds easy to be able to just live freely without any self doubt. Look closely...yep... there it is, that little varmit, self esteem. It is elusive at times. I can't seem to grab hold of it all the time, as it seems to float away. Since April's NaBloPoMo theme is "Sprout", I thought it rather good to start off with my first post with a goal of mine for this month: To sprout wings of self esteem and fly. Destination... open heart.

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