Monday, March 28, 2011

Mindful leads to Grateful

Many years ago during my first marriage, my now xh used to manage to sit on my feet when he was getting dressed in the mornings. No matter how we arranged the bedroom in the various homes we lived in, it seemed to me that he always found my feet to sit on as he put his shoes on or whatever. I was usually still in bed when he left early in the mornings and invariably I griped and tried to yank my feet out from under him. He used to say..."There'll come a day when you wish you had someone to sit on your feet!" Both of us were still so young we didn't imagine that I'd be a widow any time soon so it was a moot point in my mind. However, while I was divorced by my mid 40s, I still didn't long for someone to sit on my feet.

Years down the road, I am married to my current husband. Each time I dump the load of white clothes onto the bed for sorting, I sigh at the dailiness of it. I may sigh, but 1. I enjoy doing laundry - especially when it's just for two adults and 2. I do realize that there may very well come a day when I have only my own laundry to sort. The day I took this photo, I suddenly thought of that. It became more than my 365 photo of the dajavascript:void(0)y. It became the reminder to me that when I am mindful of what I am doing, no matter how mundane, I can be grateful for what is ...right at this moment. Chop wood, carry water, sort laundry - whatever. Lessons abound and it's all good.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Flashback Friday 11 03 25

A photo from the 80s from my son Iain. He was in high school in Paris and this is a ski trip they took. Not sure exactly where but I've always loved the gorgeous mountain view.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Flashback Friday 11 03 18

My Uncle Joe, killed as an Aviator in WWII in the mountains of India, and my Aunt Florence who developed early Alzheimers in her 50s. A couple with so much promise but two lives cut short. Today is precious. Make the most of it.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Salaam to Bahrain

The events in Bahrain are being overshadowed by the horrific events in Japan which is totally understandable. However I have only spent a couple of hours at Narita many years ago but I spent two years in Bahrain. I have friends and family who have friends and workmates who live their. My heart cannot really fathom the destruction and loss even with photos and videos from Japan. It's too much like so many disaster movies that we click off and forget. My head knows it's real but my heart is filled with other places in the world.

Mmy heart has strong memories of the road from the western shore of Bahrain leading across the island into Manama. The road the Saudis took into the island yesterday. I recognize places I've been, think of my house between two mosques, the roads across the desert where we visited. I don't want to think of invasions taking place there. I don't want to think of my children's school friends, many named Al Khalifa, in danger. Many of them are now married with homes and businesses and families.  This is the world upheaval that hits home with me. I wish them all peace and security and wish that damn causeway had never been built.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy Pi Day

From my son in law aka Dr. Rich, Ph.D. As a professor of math, he spends a lot of time with this kind of ∏ . 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Mary Ann Moss films Paris

Wouldn't you rather be exploring Paris right now???? Thank you Mary Ann for sharing your day with us.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Flashback Friday 11 03 11

Shortly after dh and I were married, we realized we needed to have some investments to minimize our taxes. We decided to invest in a piece of rental property in Baltimore as we had friends who were quite successful in renting her old place when they married.  We did a lot of looking and there were a lot of fixer-uppers, but we really didn't have that kind of free time or really that kind of energy.

We finally found this little gem of a 1920 bungalow. It had some issues, leaks on the slate roof, and some water in the basement, but we also looked at it as ...Could we conceive of living there if...if what we never determined. We were still weighing our options as to where we would live...stay in my house or move into a larger city. DC was too expensive which was hard for dh to believe but he hadn't kept up with the housing market. Baltimore was a whole new ballgame for him, tho I was pretty familiar with it from a former job, and my time commuting to Notre Dame. 

It wasn't easy to actually get the purchase made with very different methods and attitudes in the city. We certainly qualified but getting it done was - a challenge. Little did we know that we would look back and see that this really was the easy part. Getting things done only 20+ miles away turned out to be a real hassle. 

Having a friend find a tenants for us was a big mistake. We had disasters for tenants. All of them. The final family had promise but turned out to be professional 'issue' people. The wife knew tenants' rights backwards and forwards and really made an issue out of everything.  By this point, we only wanted out of the picture, but getting these tenants out became such a legal %#&#  I thought my dh would lose it big time.  In the end, they were gone and we easily sold the house just 4 years after owning it. We made a good profit but it seriously put us emotionally out of thinking about being landlords again.  I hope the buyer is happy in that house 5 years down the road. I occasionally feel wistful about a sweet little house but am so glad that it's history for us now.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

A Glimpse into the Past

Kaija in Finlad has her own beautiful blog where she shares some of her amazing hand bound books. I cannot fathom doing such detailed and lovely work but a woman I know who moved North says the long winters invite hand work. I understand in my head but our own winters are not like that and I'm often on trips in the winter. In any case, Kaija has another project now where she is sharing photos taken by Emil, the husband of her great great Aunt Saima.

The snowy scenes just tug at my heart. I see them as I imagine my Lithuanian grandfather might have seen them in places just down the Baltic from Finland. I hope Kaija will be able to stick to her thrice weekly schedule of posting photos and I hope you take a look.  Emil's

Monday, March 7, 2011

Oh the wonder

I am constantly amazed at the wonderful things out there on the web. Pinterest is beyond addicting. I spotted this one today, and thought of the Altered Book show I saw at the Baltimore Pratt.  Now I wonder if one of my artistic peeps could do this one. I bet they could. I know I couldn't.

See more of his work here at Flickr.

Friday, March 4, 2011

I am where I am

A very short time ago, my dh saw $39. fares to and from Boston. He suggested I go on up for a few days and so I did. Now it certainly wasn't warm in Maryland but temperatures in the teens or 20s are usually reserved for night times. They don't really count cause I'm sleeping. Somehow I had missed the brutal winter MA has had. A man at the airport told me, as we waited over an hour for our Jet Blue flight, that it had snowed a foot, then it snowed another foot etc etc and unlike most winters the snow never melted between storms.  He said there would still be piles of un-melted  snow and to watch out for icy streets. He was right. Thus far I have managed to stay upright, walked a lot in the cold and wind and had a great time.

Have a look.

It was going on sunset by the time we arrived.

The new-to-me shuttle to the T and the T into Boston worked like a charm. I love public transportation and I love my Charlie Card.

Cold nights just cry out for hot pasta, and this $4.95 special was just a block or two away from  my hotel.

No, not gelato, but really good Butter Cashew ice cream. The small serving was a lot of ice cream!

The T station at Harvard Square. Mid day so not very crowded.

Annapolis needs a Wagamama. I love the noodle bowls and Oodles of Noodles just doesn't cut it.

Books, books, books.

This lot doesn't mind that the ground is still covered with a layer of snow.

It's this kind of thing that is treacherous at night when it's less visible than in the daytime.

I've seen this Falafel shop most every trip I've made to Boston, and today I stopped in.

Well, that's a short look from my three days. Tomorrow I fly home, but hope to get to the Haymarket food market in the morning and over to the North End for at least one of these. Sfogliatelle. You try saying it. I can't but I can sure eat them!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

OLW Bloghop - March Edition

Here we start the third month of our One Little Word class/project/adventure with Ali Edwards. My word is LEARN and it's still nudging about in my life. Kind of like a cat who you know is in the house but only comes out on occasion, and really isn't ready to jump up on you lap and nestle in. I know there are so many ways to learn, so many ways I can learn. I've tried my best to see what life brings as lessons, but so often when I'm in the midst of a lesson, I can't always see the point. It often takes getting through the lesson, the experience for me to get that aha! moment. I try to stay open to not killing the messenger as they say, but paying attention to the message. May or June may be the time it takes me to see the learning experience in January or February!

This month Ali asked us to come up with images, both literal and figurative about what our word means to us. Literal was easy. Figurative is much harder for my literal mind to grasp. This is what I had - On the top line the photos are
  1. me learning how to spatchcock a turkey. Cooking is one my lifelong loves, and I always like to find a new way to cook something or a new recipe. These days I like to make it simpler and healthier. 
  2. The bridge over the Patuxent River down near Solomons. I love the calm of the water and the idea of anything being a bridge to a new place - in my head, in my heart, or just on land.
  3. The third is my initial, my name, who I am. Who I am learning to be as a butterfly learns to be more than a chrysalis.
  4. 2nd row, the daily newspapers. One of the ways I learn about the world, but too often it's only learning about the negative part of life. There IS so much more and it's not likely I'll get in in those newspapers.
  5. Joko Beck, Zen teacher, and one of my life guides in learning that we can't avoid, we can learn to live with...
  6. The afternoon sun on a bookcase. Learning to see the light.
  7. Bottom row - that butterfly again and words. Learning about the power of words, my words, my silences
  8. My husband, a man with a heart burning with love
  9. Me, both sides of me, taking time to think, to be quiet and listen for the lesson.

So there you have me and where I've been during February. I said Bloghop, didn't I. Here are the others in the class who have chosen to be a part of the blog hop. The first person, Margie, is the woman who set this all up and did all the work involved. Kudos to you Margie and thanks for your willingness and dedication to this.

All posts in the bloghop are scheduled to be posted at 08:00 PST March 1st. Take time to go through this list and read and see what other people did, learned, felt during the 2nd month of One Little Word. Lives change, sometimes quickly, sometimes slowly, sometimes reluctantly but if there's life, there's change.

The next person after me on the March BlogHop is Kristi over at She's #25, so head on over when you can.                              

1.    Margie                
2.    Monica Bradford    
3.    Jill C            
4.    Miranda       
5.    Donna                
6.    Lynn                                        
7.    Stacey              
8.    Lisa                          
9.    Cassie              
10. Abbey                          
11. Nicky                          
12. Holly                          
13. Karen T                        
14. Claudia              
15. Rebekah              
16. Kimberly              
17. Kat                          
18. Kristina              
19. Jan                          
20. Nikki                           
21. Amanda              
22. Lisa                          
23. Sam                          
24. Maureen                       You're here! This is me.
25. Kristi                            
26. Tere                          
27. Karen                          
28. Katrina                
29. Monica Bergler  
30. Mandy              
31. Lisa                          
32. Chrissy              
33. Lee                           

34. Jen                          
35. Sylvia                          
36. Christianne              
37. Cheri                          
38.  Joy                          
39.  Beth                          
40.  Jennifer L              
41.  Kathryn              
42.  Heather              
43.  Cindy                          
44.  Cynthiau              

Now if this has whetted your appetite to try this out yourself, it isn't too late to sign up for this class. Go over to One Little Word at Big Picture Classes and join us. We'd love to have you!

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