Tuesday, March 30, 2010

My experience:
When something happens to someone you love (if there is even a mile between you, it feels too far and magnifies your helplessness), all the "differences" that manage to distract you into feeling un-connected quickly fall away. What's left is what you have in common, and Everything that We All Have In Common.

What a rich experience, this life on Earth.
Oh, how much it all boils down to love.

Deep and wide love from me to you.
photo: of a photo magneted to our fridge ~ mamas and baybays, BM09

Friday, March 26, 2010

Crafty: Boys in the Backyard

In order to have a garden, we quickly learned that the chickens needed some boundaries. Instead of the obvious easy solution ~ chicken wire around the beds, that sweet Sealion decided to take up a new hobby. He designed and is building, with Austin's help, a bamboo structure surrounding the raised garden beds and deck area of the backyard. If you know Sealion, this industriousness doesn't surprise you in the least. Adorable. And I love the fence! They are placing the "'boo," as he calls it, with three-inch spacing. So you can still see through it, but it creates a pleasing division of space and intimacy to that area that didn't exist before.

Since I wrote that first paragraph, the grandparents have come and gone. As usual, Sealion enlisted everyone's help in completing this project, that, as usual, turned out to be much more of a project than he originally expected (isn't that always the way with projects?! ). And now we can plant the garden! Bravo on the fine fence, fellahs! :-)


handy: synonym for sexy.
grandparents get in on the action.
Anjali and Austin model one of the two gates.


This time.
Here, right now. A place that can be occupied only by you and me. Intimate. The sunlight glows soft. The air just cool enough to encourage snuggling. Noises and activity of downstairs and street fade into the distance. We have been here so many times before, you and I. We tumble into place with ease. Familiar. You welcome sleep just as you gulp the milk. Confident in my presence, you trust in my warmth. I melt into our comfort. Exhale. We are. Here, right now.
So blessed.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Chicken Picker-Upper

Or, as Austin called it, "Pickin' up chickens and puttin' em in her pocket!"

I am astounded by this... Scared for the chickens, but: admittedly very impressed by my daughter. She has the technique ~ of encircling their wings ~ down. And she's done it with more than one chicken. As Miles would say, "she's not scared!"

What can I say...

I like her style.

I did it!

I ran the Shamrock'n Half-Marathon. I am pleased and intrigued that my time was very close ~ within minutes ~ to the first time I ran it three years ago, even though my aim has been simply to finish both times. It feels good to show myself that I can accomplish personal goals, and also be fit, after-baby. And it just feels good to be running again. It's a familiar, pleasant, positive space for me in my body and my mind/heart.
Here's a letter I wrote to Woo about the experience. I think it sums it up well.

Thanks for your note today! The race was fun. After a long warm-up, about 7 miles. And a poopoo break at mile 9! Ha! That helped a lot! After that I had a big burst of energy and was able to pick my pace up (for fun) and really enjoy what my body is capable of. Being in that crowd of people challenging themselves in such a demonstrable way got me teary-eyed yet again. I once again felt so blessed. 1) my physical strength stamina and well-being, and that I have the capacity to regain those after a time of convalescing (treating myself gently during and after pregnancy and healing post-surgery), and 2) that I have wonderful people in my life who love and support me. Arlene and Troy (and Anjali) woke up at 5 with me to get me there and send me off with smiles, and Brian and Austin joined them at the finish line. Josh sent me an encouraging email with a photo of him and Stella cheering. My blog friend Randi sent me a sweet word of encouragement. And you were with me through the whole process, as I couldn't help but think back on that marathon and realize what an accomplishment that was for me, how hard it was(!), and how supportive and cheering you were the whole way. You did not let me down-play it for a second! :-)
Thank you!
Arlene and Brian have let us stay with them in their just-moved-into-home. Their tub has jacuzzi jets, and I treated myself to a luxurious soak post-run. Ahhh!! Arlene is cooking dinner downstairs as I type, and she made homemade mint chocolate chip ice cream in honor of my run!!! What a treat!
Having some mommy-baby and booby time
pre-race as the sun rose.
energized and dancing to the music as we gather minutes before the gun fired.
minutes after crossing the finish line.
me: mommy, and runner (and more).
gratuitous shot of anjali holding the tulips
they picked out for me at the farmers' market as i ran.
(photos by arlene)

me and my body post-race at the Rock-n-Roll Marathon (26.2!)
(photo by woo lovely)

Saturday, March 13, 2010


Crawling in bed here in Sacramento for a solid night's sleep before
the Shamrock'n half marathon tomorrow morning. I have had quite a bit
of anxiety about it. As I did my last email reading for the night I
came upon a Daily Groove by Scott Noelle (of Enjoy Parenting, at
right). It said to envision a special something that opens your heart,
and practice envisioning it to become very familiar with what your
heart feels like when it is open - so that you can do it "on
command.". What I immediately thought of was Michael Franti's song,
Love Invincible. On many days when I have woken feeling blah and
desiring an uplift, I have cranked up this song and I just can't help
but dance. So tomorrow as I'm running, I intend for this to be my
soundtrack. If you think of me tomorrow, sing this song. If you don't
know it, just hum along. ; ). It's so peppy, you'll just have to give
in to dancing.

Touch me with the morning sun!
When I feel impossible, show me what is possible.
Teach me love invincible!

(come on now! come on now! show me that ya feel it! show me that you
feel it!)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Happy Birthday, Sealion!!

I am honored to share this journey of life as your partner.

Friday, March 05, 2010

gratitude for here, now

Today I'm grateful for time alone.
One of the two main assignments of The Artist's Way is to go on a weekly "date" with yourself. It must be frivolously fun - like, not an errand or item on a to-do list, or a standard workout, etc., and even better if it's an activity that feels adventurous.  Just for a couple hours a week, intentionally designated self-time to delight the inner child.

This week for my artist date I took myself to see a matinee of Alice in Wonderland ( - in 3D!!)!  As much as I love the fantastic, and of course the fantastical-er the costume and makeup the better always, this was a perfect date.  I stopped in at Guerilla Cafe beforehand and treated myself to a spicy hot chocolate in my to-go mug (and snuck it in to the theater!).  Just right.
Riding my bike there and back with my scarf flowing behind me, I felt so light and free with only myself to attend to.

Photo: upon entering the theater, you may now don the magic goggles.
A nice little less-than-2-hour journey that had me seeing the world in a slightly different way when I emerged.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

gratitude for here, now

lightplay on leaves in morning sun.
And my mom ~ it's her birthday today!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

gratitude for here, now

I know what I'm grateful for today! Austin's back! He was gone for six weeks - to Australia and New Zealand. I didn't mention his absence here, but I did have a fun time on my food blog writing him a series of letters called, What We Ate (while you were gone). Austin is my partner in kitchen crime. He was an inspiring muse for rhapsodizing about food.
Happy to be sharing the stove and the shopping basket with him once again.

Dear friend, welcome back home! :-)

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

gratitude for here, now

in my favorite cup: espresso shines in the morning sunlight.

My theme this week is gratitude. Finding gratitude always helps me return to center. Looking around at the everyday details of life, there is always room for gratitude. Always.
This morning as I looked around my immediate vicinity in search of a subject about which to express gratitude, all I could think about was how much I looked forward to having a little bit of espresso. So I decided to go ahead and be thankful that I have the means to procure something so deeply satisfying for me, just a couple blocks up the street. I have a love-hate relationship with espresso (and have had with coffee for most of my adulthood). The little angel on one shoulder reminds me that my extensive nutritional education reiterates the benefits of abstaining from caffeine. She also reminds me that, a mostly-local diet being so important to me, coffee beans are a luxury soaked in diesel fuel even if I do buy organic and fair trade. But the little devil on the other shoulder retorts that I really don't drink that much ~ it takes me days to go through a couple shots of espresso. And it is a great excuse to drink (organic) cream ~ which is encouraged in my dietary principles. And the most important thing: it helps my tortoise-ish behind get buzzing into activity in such a merry way. Oh, and it's so damned tasty. Nothing substitutes for good espresso.
So with the back and forth of living intentionally, there is gratitude in the gray area in between. And a bit of espresso with cream.

Monday, March 01, 2010

gratitude for here, now

Aha ~ there's the gratitude I was trying to share! I found it ~ in the backyard.
I'm so grateful for our lovely backyard haven, and for the creatures who reside there.
They give us joy and contentment on a daily basis.

In the first ~ Anjali feeds the chickens and they peck enthusiastically.
In the second ~ Ana emerges from the henhouse and proclaims her creation: an egg!