Monday, November 05, 2007

In Loving Memory

Our sweet girl Aggie died today; I was with her when she breathed her last. She went at home, quietly, and I petted her gently the whole time. Her absence leaves a far larger hole than you might believe, considering she was a cat who really didn't cotton much to being touched, or given much attention at all - she spent a lot of time in the basement (hence her nickname "skulky"), or sleeping on our bed. But she was our family, and we loved her, and we miss her. Goodnight little Agammemnon, rest well.

Little Aggie   Big Aggie

Sunday, November 04, 2007

And Much Fun Was Had...

Well, it didn't rain, we didn't drop our pineapple, and we had a freakin' blast. Our team finished 123rd out of 251 4-person teams overall, and 25th out of 76 female 4-person teams. We all finished at just a sconce over 35minutes. and our combined finish time was 2:20:28.

We wore cute t-shirts decorated by kids in the Comet room (with sewn on comet trails of red and gold) and started the race with silly plastic caps (which sadly came off once the sweat started).

The obstacles were fun - tires to run through, a balance beam, a couple of walls to climb over and nets to climb under. My personal favorite was throwing the pineapple through a tire on top of a wall. I got it through on the first toss, and my teammate Elizabeth caught it expertly.

Thanks tons to everyone who donated (and it's not too late, in case you meant to but didn't get around to it... I can collect 'em through the end of November).

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

A Pineapple a Day...

So, this whole triathlon thing has led to me becoming slightly insane. It apparently wasn't enough to just do the thing and get it over with and return to my previous inactive life... no, for some strange reason, I've continued to train, and have this idea that I want to sign up for a 5K every month between now and next tri season to keep me moderately motivated to continue running through the winter.

Much thanks for this goes to my friend Shar who shows up at o'dark thirty a couple of mornings each week (if it isn't raining) to take me running at Green Lake, and who - when I say "are you SURE we should sign up?" peer pressures me past my resistance.

Which leads me to the reason for this post. On November 3rd, I am going to participate in a 5K race, along with 3 friends, on a team we're calling "Faster than a speeding Comet roomer" (all of our kids went to the same preschool where the 4-5 year-old room is called the Comet room). It's not your ordinary 5K... there are obstacles that have to be overcome, and we have to do it while carrying - I kid you not - a pineapple. It's called the Pineapple Classic, it's a fund-raiser for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society, and I am collecting donations on my very own donations page.

Come on - if the thought of me running (probably in the rain), climbing over things, and lugging a pineapple around doesn't motivate you to give some money, I'm not sure what would. I will even post a photo after the event, possibly even of me.

Friday, September 14, 2007

Food For Thought

Rumi - Guest House

This being human is a guest house
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meanness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain them all!
Even if they are a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whoever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Thursday, September 13, 2007

I'm Not Dead Yet!

Though sadly, this place has been for far too long. That's going to change, and soon... there's just too much that's happened in the last couple of months that I need to document, and more stuff coming down the line. And when you're talking to your mom on the phone and says "so are you ever going to write anything in your blog again?" I think it's a sure sign either of the apocalypse or that it is indeed time to update.

For today, a triumph. In my morning yoga class (a week-long intensive), I started out in prasarita padottanasana (note: the images are NOT me, but use your imagination, 'mkay?):

and using only my stomach muscles, floated my legs out sideways and up into a headstand:

FWOOP. Just like that. Okay, it was slower than "fwoop" seems to indicate, but still. I was so excited I almost fell over, but managed to keep my balance for 20 seconds or so before coming back down in a vaguely graceful manner.

So miracles do happen. Like effortless headstands. And me writing here again.

Tuesday, July 10, 2007


Car: Drive shaft failure. Covered by a the sweet 10/100000 VW Powertrain Warranty. Thank GOODNESS.

Movie: Ratatouille was AWESOME. Tomorrow we have tickets in hand for Harry Potter and the Half-Blood Prince.

Work: Last day today. A few possibilities on the horizon. Looking forward to a laid-back August.

Mercury Retrograde: O-ver.

Weather: Predicted to be FECKIN HOT. In the 90's! Hello.... Seattle?

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Life is What Happens When You're Busy Making Other Plans

It has been a day of punches, and of me doing my best to roll with them. I mostly succeeded.

It took Brother Bear 2 to completely undo me.

Rewind to this morning, when I was on the receiving end of one of those talks. You know, the ones that start with your manager saying "There's no easy way to say this..." and ends with you beginning to disentangle yourself physically and emotionally from an office that you thought might be one in which you could happily stay for awhile. Into the bag go the lego Harry, Ron, Hermione and Snape, followed by the stuffed peep and Dory ("just keep swimming" indeed!), Kim Possible, and Elastigirl. The family photos and kid artwork will stay up 'til next week, just so it's not COMPLETELY depressing to go in a few more times as I try to be productive and leave some useful words behind.

But, even as a few minor waves of panic rolled through at the thought of having to continue the scratch and troll of the freelance life I thought I was leaving behind, behind it was some calm and relief. This one wasn't the right fit. The people were good people, but not necessarily my people, the work was not what had I thought it would be. It wasn't done with malice, but even so the result is the same: back to the search.

Still (roll), by the time I arrived home, I had reached some equilibrium and felt emotionally lighter... like summer vacation was truly just around the corner. We had promised the kids we'd go see Ratatouille so after dinner off we went, driving across town to the Majestic Bay Theatre... a bit farther than necessary, but worth it (says my movie theater snob husband) for the better experience.

Accelerating from the stop sign we heard and felt the "clunk" and experienced the inability to shift into ANY gear. Traffic was light, we were lucky and got it pulled over and parked on the side of the road without incident... but there was no driving it. It sits, even now, with a note on the dashboard and will sit there until after the holiday passes before we can discover how deeply we'll need to dig to pay for what can't be anything but costly repairs.

And still again (roll)... it was a beautiful evening, sunny and breezy. Despite the disappointment, we all took in stride and enjoyed the walk through a nice neighbourhood to the bus stop. The busses arived in good time and we came home to watch the Netflixed selection that just arrived today: Brother Bear 2.

Before we settled in, I did a final check on baseball scores. The Mariners had managed to have one of their worst games of the season, losing 17-3 to Kansas City (of all teams!). And my Tigers... a 5-4 extra innings loss to Cleveland. It's a game - I know - but it means a lot to me, and I can't help but add these outcomes to the tally of crap. I voted a few more times to help get Jeremy Bonderman on the All-Star team and triend to remember that the season is a marathon, not a sprint (roll).

We started the movie. I was weepy within the first 10 minutes. This isn't actually anything unexpected; it's a rare movie I watch that doesn't, at some point, evoke a welling up of emotion, accompanied by good-natured teasing by my other family members. But by the movie's end, even I had to acknowledge that there was more going on than a reaction to McGrizzly (aka Kenai, voiced this time around by Patrick Dempsey) almost dying but then being reunited with the girl he'd loved since childhood when she decides to become a bear too.

Letting out the frustrations and fears of the day? You bet. Some catharsis? Most definitely. Not Where The Red Fern Grows-level complete-body sobbing catharsis, but enough for now.

And speaking of now it's time for a good night's slep so I can recharge and get ready for whatever tomorrow brings. It's bound to be better, right? I'm hoping that it will necessitate a LOT less rolling.

Monday, June 18, 2007

Morning Giggle



This is what I get for leaving my blog post window open and going to bed before my silly spouse... a reference, of course, to this (for you Sopranos fans):

Friday, June 15, 2007

Rites of Passage

This is something that my boy may be embarrassed about me sharing publicly sometime in the future, but hey - I figure I'm setting him up for therapy in myriad ways, so this will be just a drop in the bucket.

After a great baseball season, he's now playing for a few more weeks on the all-star team. As the tournaments they're competing in play with hard balls rather than the softcore ones he's used up until now, the coaches recommend that the boys wear "protection" in their nether regions to deflect balls that might take unfortunate bounces.

So yesterday, Stephen took boy to the sporting goods store and got him his first ever cup, or as Nathan calls it "the weenie shield." Good times!

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

I Am Lame

Why? Because life ain't so very bad and here I am not writing about it! In fact, life is really pretty good today, as Justin Verlander threw a no-no (the 1st Tiger no-hitter since Jack Morris in 1984). It was a thing of beauty; Sophie and I were home watching the last two innings and I got all verklempt and shaky after the final out was recorded.

Other things are good too, like sleep. It's late and I'm tired. But I'll be back.

Wednesday, May 09, 2007


... has been a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

Now, off to yoga to hopefully breathe and let some of it go.


Monday, April 02, 2007

Opening Day

For, lo, the winter is past,
The rain is over and gone;
The flowers appear on the earth;
The time of the singing of birds is come,
And the voice of the turtle is heard in our land.

Ah, I love this day. So much hope, all possibilities open. I'm listening to the Tigers pre-game show right now and am trying not to bounce out of my seat with the excitement of it all. Okay, so part of that might be the caffeine high, as I've only had coffee and dark yummy chocolate this morning thus far. I feel a little like Persephone, coming up from the underworld after a long 6 months and finally getting to see the sun and eat something other than pomegranate seeds.

This afternoon, we'll get the kids out of school early and make our way to Safeco to see the Mariners play, and hopefully put the Oakland curse of last year behind them.

Play ball, y'all!

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

A Quick But Very Important Note

Dearest K -

I have some good news and some bad news.

First, as is the convention, the good news: you're not going to be doing the breast stroke anymore at the pool. I know how you dislike it... it feels slow and awkward, and the amount of snot you end up blowing out of your nose is unattractive to say the least. I know you felt that you needed to practice it, since you've heard from others that when you do the swimming leg of the Danskin tri it's difficult to do the crawl in the initial crowded field. Adding in one length per each four you swam was a good plan, it really was. You made a good effort. But that's done now.

Because... well, now it's time for the bad news: you hurt me. Shhh Shhh... it's okay. I know you didn't mean to - it's just that the breast stroke kick torques me in a way that causes me pain... I'm still aching, many hours later. In just two sessions, you've done what we managed to avoid the last two ski seasons. No, no - thankfully not as badly as before. But enough so that I have to put our mutual foot down and insist that you go back to the good ole flutter kick.

Thanks so much for the attention, and keep up the good work!

With Love and Flexibility,
Your Right Knee

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

I Hate Hillary (in case you were wondering)

I know, I know. You've been dying to know who I'm throwing my considerable political clout (*coff*) behind in race for Democratic Presidential nominee. I have indeed been thinking about it quite a lot lately, and here's what I've come up with so far.

The old-timers here know that the genesis of this blog coincided with the full bloom of my love affair with Howard Dean. And as much as I still love him in ways both holy and un-, and still think he would make an amazing President, I want him to stay exactly where he is right now - kicking butt and taking names in the Democratic party, leading us to victories in all 50 states, helping us take back Congress... oh, wait, he's already done that part. SUCK ON THAT, Terry McAuliffe.

So then my next choice is Al Gore, the last man actually elected President. Sadly, he continues to thwart me by not actually... oh, you know... running. Selfish bastard. I guess he'll continue to do good educating people about the whole global warming thing. Go Al!

Bill... well, he can't. Stupid 22nd Amendment.

When it comes down to the candidates who are actually running, I can't say that anyone makes my socks roll up and down the way Dean did. But I can tell you one person who I do NOT want to get the nomination. Hillary Freakin' Clinton. In my opinion, she is this election cycle's John Kerry (oh gods, please don't let that be an accurate prediction).

At first I didn't like her because of her vote to authorize this horrible, horrible war - and that's still a very good reason, no doubt about it. But now that she's been running for a bit, there is so much MORE to dislike about her. For example, who is the president of her campaign? Why, it's that sleazy toerag Terry McAuliffe, that's who. The man who so fucked over the Democratic nomination process last time around that we ended up with his cherry-picked "electable" candidate John Kerry. Oh, THAT worked out well, didn't it?

And then, today I read that Hillary ducked the question on whether she believes homosexuality is immoral. Apparently, she believes... it's for "others to conclude." You know what, Senator Clinton? You're courting the gay vote. You're asking for gay money. Fuck you and the horse you rode in on if you can't stand up and simply say "No, I do not. Next question."

I'm not saying I wouldn't vote for her if she (god forbid, spit three times) got the nomination, but I would throw up in my mouth while doing it.

So right now, that leaves me looking to Edwards and Obama. I like them. I don't LIKE them like them, but I like them well enough for now. My boyfriend, George Clooney, is backing Obama so that definitely gives him a bit of an edge because George, ruthless liberal that he is, and I traditionally see eye to eye on all things politic. But... oh, I don't know. I'd actually be more excited if George himself were running. Imagine having a George in the White House who wasn't an international embarrassment and danger to the Constitution.

So yeah. After all that, the big answer is... I don't know, though I'm leaning towards either the guy Clooney likes or the first candidate with enough guts to say "War is immoral, election theft is immoral, letting people go hungry and homeless and without health insurance is immoral, but two dudes kissing I have no problem with."

Hm. I may have just described Dennis Kucinich. Damn it.

Friday, March 02, 2007

Psssst... Earworm, Pass It On!

I woke up singing this.

I sang it while swimming.

It's going through my head right now.

You're welcome.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Is It Not To Melt?

Originally uploaded by DigiGirl.
I love Seattle. I adore my wonderful family and the amazing friends I have here. I love my routine, my house, my bed, my coffee pot. As I flew home yesterday, and the plane dropped below the clouds, I sighed with happiness as I saw evergreens instead of palm trees swaying in the breeze. And today, even though that breeze now has knives in it that cut through layers with a reminder that winter isn't quite over yet, I love this town and this life I've made here.

And yet, after four days spent becoming totally smitten with this amazing munchkin and her equally wonderful parents (and feet!), I am bereft, longing for the easy connection and everyday interaction that comes from living in close proximity to the people you love most. We're both blessed and cursed by our mobility and the technology that allows, and sometimes requires, us to pull up roots and sink them where they can't intertwine with their kin.

So since I am rooted in the north, and she is a girl of the south (though thank goodness we're both west!), I'll have to settle for what I can get. If I can't snuggle and smell and sing to her every day, at least I can plan more visits (and soon!) watch her on the video cam and see photos taken just this afternoon of her silly face and curly clean hair and her amazingly funny feet.

But oh, still the ache.

Monday, February 12, 2007

Giggle of the Day

After blowing her very stuffy nose...

Sophie: How do you make a tissue dance?

Me: Um... play a it a jig?

Sophie: No! Put a little boogie in it!

Monday, February 05, 2007

Monday Morning Reminder

It would do me well to read this every day, as I attempt to surrender and trust that the Universe will continue to provide as she always has...

by Thomas R. Smith

It's like so many other things in life
to which you must say no or yes.
So you take your car to the new mechanic.
Sometimes the best thing to do is trust.

The package left with the disreputable-looking
clerk, the check gulped by the night deposit,
the envelope passed by dozens of strangers
all show up at their intended destinations.

The theft that could have happened doesn't.
Wind finally gets where it was going
through the snowy trees, and the river, even
when frozen, arrives at the right place.

And sometimes you sense how faithfully your life
is delivered, even though you can't read the address.

Friday, February 02, 2007

This Is My Message To You-ou-ou

One might think, reading my blog over time, that I'm quite possibly mildly bi-polar. While that's one way to view it, I prefer my friend Bonnie's description - I have big feelings. Big lows (ah, Molly) and big highs. Today, we're on a definite upswing.

First off, Happy Happy Imbolc! My most favourite of the pagan holidays, and this one has dawned beautifully crisp and sunny. I had a fabulous swim - someone actually complimented me on my kickboarding, go figure. "Three Little Birds" is playing right now and the kids and I are dancing... how can that not lift one's spirits? And since Phil didn't see his shadow for the first time since 1999 spring is officially JUST around the corner.

Then there's the big news... JK Rowling has finished the last Harry Potter book - Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows - and announced that it will be released on July 21st! This kicks planning into high gear in our household, as we promised the kids that we'd go to London for its release. We're all so feckin' excited we hardly know what to do with ourselves. And somehow, by luck or kismet, the date doesn't conflict with any other summer plans. So two weeks in the UK this summer will be spent Harry Pottering, visiting friends, seeing castles... OH! THE EXCITEMENT! If you have any suggestions for things we must see and do with a 7 and 9 year old, please send them on.

Wednesday, January 31, 2007

R.I.P. Molly (1944-2007)

RIP Molly (1944-2007)

One of my heroes died today and my heart broke wide open. When I heard that Molly Ivins had lost her fight with breast cancer, I was in the car on the way to the grocery store, and I immediately started crying. The tears haven't stopped fully since, simmering below the surface, the lump in my throat making it hard to type even now.

I had the pleasure of seeing her once, when she did an appearance with Al Franken here in Seattle in September 2003. She was warm and funny, and mad as hell about what was happening in this country. And she was a fellow supporter of Howard Dean's presidential bid, which made me love her all the more.

She was one-of-a-kind, an amazing, inspirational writer, unabashedly, ruthlessly liberal, and she mercilessly gave the Republicans and the Bush administration in particular exactly the kind of hell they deserved. I'm pretty sure Shrub and Rove and that evil fuck Cheney are raising a glass tonight in thanks that she's gone.

I'm just so sad and angry. If you ever needed proof that life isn't remotely fair, just ponder that we lost Molly's bright light to fucking cancer while the waste of skin in the White House still walks blindly and pathetically among us, doing more damage to our country every day. How utterly ridiculous that she, of all people, will never get to celebrate the end of our long national nightmare when it finally, finally comes (719 days, by my count).

In her final column (god, how it hurts to type that), Molly implores us to get get the hell up and take some action to stop this horrific futile war... to refuse to allow Bush to send more of our men and women to die in his Iraq debacle:
"We are the people who run this country. We are the deciders. And every single day, every single one of us needs to step outside and take some action to help stop this war. Raise hell. Think of something to make the ridiculous look ridiculous. Make our troops know we're for them and trying to get them out of there. Hit the streets to protest Bush's proposed surge. If you can, go to the peace march in Washington on Jan. 27. We need people in the streets, banging pots and pans and demanding, "Stop it, now!"

I've felt so defeated and helpless since November 2004, it's been hard to get my heart back into the process. Even taking back Congress, as much as it pleased me, didn't move me to action. I think back to 2003, how alive and hopeful I felt as Dean's campaign caught fire, as I imagined the possibilities and threw myself utterly and completely behind his candidacy... and I compare it the lukewarm emptiness I feel now when I look at the pool of Democratic candidates.

But in your memory Molly, I will try. I'll try to find some way to act, to make my voice heard as the chorus of NO MORE! grows. I'll try to find some way to re-ignite the spark and the hope. I'll keep my eyes open for the candidate with some Elvis in him, because as you oh-so-preciently predicted last time around, "You can't win without Elvis," and I'll throw my lot in and write and call and caucus and VOTE, speak truth to power, and do what I can to fix what's been so badly broken.

Good-bye, Molly Ivins, hellraiser extraordinaire. We miss you already.

Today's Moment of Duh

The lead headline on my news portal this morning made me shake my head in wonder:

U.S. May Have Botched Training of Iraqis

WASHINGTON (AP) - Training the police is as important to stabilizing Iraq as building an effective army there, but the United States has botched the job by assigning the wrong agencies to the task, two members of the Iraq Study Group said Wednesday.

"The police training system has not gone well," said former Rep. Lee Hamilton, who co-chaired the bipartisan commission.

You think?

I'm just waiting for tomorrow's headline, Scientists Confirm: World Definitely Round.

Sunday, January 28, 2007

WASL meets Pikachu, blood all over

In April, the boy will be taking the reading and math sections of the WASL (Washington Assessment of Student Learning) for the first time. Starting last week, as a way of helping the students know what kinds of questions to expect, his teacher started sending home practice questions as part of their weekly homework.

And now, apparently, I am having test anxiety on his behalf.

I find this strange because I was one of those freaky kids who enjoyed taking the state standardized tests. I've always tested well, and I loved the shuffling around of the routine during testing week. And as for the kid, he did fine on the practice sheet, and doesn't seem to be at all uptight about the test - what's to worry?

Tell that to my subconscious which treated me to a strange little dream in which Nathan, Sophie and I had to take the test, all together in the same room. But it wasn't your traditional reading and math test, oh no. The questions were these very complex story problems, and the very first one was not only testing math skills, but Pokemon knowledge (oh yes, boy is very much back into Pokemon these days and it's apparently bleeding into my life as well). There were 65 cards in the problem, and I had to figure out which one was the most powerful, based on hit points.

Of course, being in the same room as the kids was distracting me from the task at hand, so in addition to being flummoxed by the subject matter, I was also having a really hard time even understanding what I was being asked to do.

And the time limit was fast approaching...


Really. Aren't there other things my dreaming mind could better spend its time on?

Friday, January 19, 2007

Meme Time

Nabbed from Lil' Miss Sunshine because it's such a cool one. No tags, but if you want to, grab it and go; let me know and I'll link back to you.

The iPod (because really, what else is there?) Shuffle

The Rules:
1. Put your music player on shuffle.
2. Press forward for each question.
3. Use the song title as the answer to the question

What does next year have in store for me?
Do You Hear What I Hear? - Northwest Boychoir
(Eh? What was that?)

What's my love life like?
Let Him Fly - Patty Griffin
(Considering I have no interest in single parenthood, this isn't likely. He can fly right into the kitchen and make me some pie!)

What do I say when life gets hard?
Goodbye - Mark Erelli
(Bwahahahahah! This is so NOT me! Or is it? EEEK!)

What do you think of on waking up?
Be-In - Hair
(Hare Krishna, indeed.)

What song will I dance to at my wedding?
Everyone's Gone To The Moon - Sara Hickman
(Ah - nice slow dreamy song to dance to. But I honestly don't plan to get married again... see # 2)

What do you want as a career?
There's No Crying In Baseball - Tom Hanks
(Okay, this isn't exactly a song, more a quick sound clip. Yet it came up and it's completely accurate. My dream career would involve baseball. So I'm leavin' it.)

Your favourite saying?
The Other Man - Sonia
(I don't think that this is a saying. These days I prefer "Godspeed, little doodle!")

Favourite place?
Big Noise - Eddie From Ohio
(Only if the big noise is from the hot water filling my bath tub.)

What do you think of your parents?
Dreaming of the Queen - Pet Shop Boys
(My mom, the Queen? She'd like that, I'm sure. *grin*)

What's your Pornstar name?
Hold Me Tonight - Red Grammer
(Oh baby!)

Where would you go on a first date?
Shower The People - James Taylor
(Do I know how to have fun or *what*? I'm not sure how the people would feel though. Probably depends on what I'm showering them with.)

Drug of choice?
Younger Than Spring - Dave Matheson
(Yes, it would likely make me feel this way.)

Describe yourself
A Time For Love - Megon McDonough
(I can go with this. I put a pretty big emphasis on the love thing... family, friends, mankind... most everyone except dubya.)

What is the thing i like doing most?
The Letter - Year With Frog and Toad
(Another good one. I spent a lot of time this week sending catch up e-mails to friends, new and old.)

What is my state of mind like at the moment?
I Never Thought I'd Live To Be A Hundred - The Moody Blues
(Eerie. I have been thinking about aging, and how much time has passed in my life... and how much I might have left... and what the hell I want to do with it. And I've even been moodily blue today.)

How will I die?
Ballad of the Dime Store Greaser and the Blonde Mona Lisa - Blue Rodeo
(Greasy, blonde, and smiling enigmatically.)

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Take the Weather with You

It is 5 am. I get up this early a couple of days/week to do the early morning lap swim, but today I sit here, writing, instead. Why?

SNOW. Again. Coming down pretty steadily right now, and Seattle public has already cancelled classes for the day. This is day #6 the kids have missed due to weather, one of them due to the Windpocalypse when millions had no electricity, but the rest because of snowy and icy streets. They'll need to make most, if not all, of them up so they'll be in school until at least June 27th. They are, as you can imagine, NOT amused.

Now, the forecast calls for warming today, so all of this is predicted to turn into rain and wet later. And then... wait for it... REFREEZE overnight. So the chances that I'll be sitting here bitching again tomorrow morning are not insignificant.

I am comletely done with this. I want my drizzle back. I want to see some COLOR again - the green of the grass and evergreens and rosemary bushes. I want the snow to be something that I drive to, and enjoy, rather than something I have to deal with on a daily basis. I am just DONE.

Sunday, January 07, 2007



One last bow at 11 a.m., a roomful of clapping yogis and yoginis, chocolate treats (dark and bitter) for everyone but me, and my weeklong yoga intensive came to an end.

Though I've been a yoga student for 9 years, this was my first experience with such a focused regular practice. My normal routine is one class per week with very occasional home work when the mood hits and I have some time, or when I want to get the kids doing something physical that doesn't involve them chasing each other or jumping on the furniture.

So committing to coming to the mat for an hour and a half every day for a week was a big thing for me. And I have to say that it was - no exaggeration - transformative. I think of myself differently today than I did a week ago. I'm stronger, more limber, more centered and comfortable in my body. I pushed through the soreness and fatigue and reached some brief moments of both physical and mental clarity, where the alignment was there and I had no thought in my head other than now, and no sounds other than the in-and-out of my breath.

And I want more of it. I want it every day, maybe not for a full hour and a half, but at least for the space of a half-dozen sun salutations, for the minute or two of a perfectly balanced headstand.

Last spring I participated in a weekend workshop led by Anusara founder John Friend (and I will do so again in just a few weeks) and the feeling at the end of that weekend was similar, though the practice itself was not as deeply ingrained after only 3 days. It's a feeling I've had just a few times in my life, as if I'm hearing an audible click when I encounter someone that I'm meant to meet or something that I'm meant to do.

This practice is part of my path. I knew it already, but now I know it.

So beginning tomorrow I renew my commitment to give some part of every day to the mat. I'll temper it with enough generosity to myself to be forgiving on those days I'm just not able to make it happen. And I'll see where it leads.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Project 365

Inspired by this article, I've decided to try taking and posting a photo every day this year. You'll see them show up in the right column - click on the image to go to the full-sized version on flickr with a description of what you're seeing.

I think it's going to be a cool way to document the year. I know I won't be able to blog every day, but hopefully I'll be able to at least take a quick snapshot. Stay tuned, and if you feel so inspired, give it a try yourself and give a shout out in the comments.

Monday, January 01, 2007

In With the New

I'm an Irish woman
I love weddings and funerals
beginnings and endings
the front and the back...

As I started to write this "Welcome to 2007" post, these lines from Eddie From Ohio's "Baltimore" ran through my head, and I realized how very true it is. I'm a sucker for the thrill and excitement of the new, the blank slate, the fresh start. And I relish the satisfaction of the last lap, the submitted article, the final to-do item crossed off the list. It's just that messy and difficult in-between stuff, the... uh... "work" or "living" I guess you might call it, that I sometimes have trouble with.

Which brings me to my intentions for this brand-spankin' new year, designed to help guide me when I get lost in the inevitable muddle of the 364 days ahead until the next chance to wipe the slate clean. In no particular order, I intend to:

1. Cultivate generosity. I don't necessarily mean this to be in a financial sense, although that can certainly be part of it. But more than that, a generosity of spirit - kindness in thought and action, less blaming, less judging. More reaching out and offering whatever it is I have to offer, whatever it is that others need - whether friends, family, or strangers.

2. Get in better shape. A perennial favourite, certainly, but with a little more urgency as another milestone - the 20th anniversary of my high school graduation - approaches. Yes, it's silly. I don't even know if I'd go to a reunion, to be honest. But hey - I'll take any excuse to kick my butt into gear. I'm doing pretty well on this, actually, as I'll continue with my 2x/week swimming, regular yoga, and at least for the next couple of months quite a bit of skiing.

3. Write what I want to write. Not just more frequent blogging, although yes that too, but planning some essays and working on them and maybe even trying to get them published. I'm finding that since I'm actually making most of my income... um, all of my income... by writing now, I'm losing the enthusiasm for doing work that I won't necessarily get paid for. It makes sense when you think about it, but it doesn't mean I want it to be that way. So I will try to rediscover writing just for the hell of it, because it pleases me.

4. Separate worktime and playtime. I have gotten VERY bad about this one, and as I've been reflecting on what I want to change in the coming year, I keep coming back to the fact that I feel like I'm always on the clock, at least emotionally. Since I've moved to mostly telecommuting, I tend to dawdle during the day and make up for that dawdling by working in the evening. I want to stop this, at least for the most part. It will mean being more disciplined, setting daily mini-goals, and sticking to them. But I know that if I can do it, it opens up some ease and true relaxation time.

5. Make progress on at least one of the following: playing on a softball team, joining a chorus, taking a beading class, organizing our block, volunteering with Seattle 826.

6. Make our home more beautiful. In both big and little ways, I want to work on our space. Among the projects that I'd like to accomplish this year (with Stephen's help, of course): basement remodel, caulk and paint the baseboards and all trim, finishing touches on kids space upstairs, new curtains in living and dining rooms, a sideboard for the dining room, print and frame some more recent photos, paint the front steps and stoop, landscaping back and front, new backyard fence, comfortable and functional patio furniture.

Whew. Lots there, all good. May it be so.