Sunday, July 31, 2016

Posing for the Camera

As I stepped out on the back deck this morning to check on the flowers and plants, I saw something very tiny leaping from marigold leaf to leaf.  He was not afraid of me and it was almost as though he posed for the picture.  Isn't he beautiful?

Saturday, July 30, 2016


A long day.  Some days do seem longer than 24 hours, others seem much shorter.  I guess it all balances out somewhere down the road.

Rain for most of the day, monsoonal rains.  When we walked the dogs this morning the air felt tropical and like fall.  But that is how late summer feels in Alabama.  It is still hot and humid but there are moments where a breeze whispers across your face and you feel the promise of fall.
I felt the promise of fall, it may be awhile and there is still a lot of heat to come, but fall is out there, waiting.

Enjoy the rest of your weekend, find some peace, spread some joy.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, July 29, 2016

Alive With Purpose

I love harvest days here on our little farm.  This week we picked peppers and I made pepper sauce the way my mom taught me.  We also picked squash which I roasted with sweet onions and we ate the whole pan.  This morning there were more tomatoes to be picked.  And Rick surprised me with the first ripe figs.

I took the tomatoes we had picked a couple of days ago, sliced them and now they are in the dehydrator, tomorrow evening they will be dried and this winter we will use them in sauces and soups.  I think in another life, I must have been a chef.  I love to cook.

There is something scientific and magical about cooking.  It is a transformation in the most basic yet grand way.   Food brings people together, good food keeps them together.  The sharing of a meal  can be sacred, sexual and kind.  Cooking for someone is a supreme act of love.

Cooking gives me as much joy as playing music does.  Both make me feel alive with purpose.

Rick just made me a cup of hot red zinger tea.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, July 28, 2016


Two yoga classes and a meditation class today, I might be a wee bit drained.  But, those who came to any of the classes were there because they wanted to come and the energy in the room was amazing.
I had new students, which is an almost every day occurrence.  One student had attended many types of yoga class, the other had never been to a yoga class...I think they both found what they needed today.

A few students will leaving in the next couple of days.  You look in their eyes and you see both fear and excitement.  They leave their protective bubble at the center and go back to face their demons.
For some, their demons win.  For others, they begin to understand this journey of sobriety and they live their lives, one day at a time.

My  mind and body are tired tonight.  Time for a cup of hot tea.  May we all face our demons tomorrow and win.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Magic at the Shoals

Rick and I got up this morning and headed for Muscle Shoals.  It's less than two hours away and a pretty drive.  It was cloudy, muggy and a few showers falling, but the closer we got to the Shoals the more the sun began to shine.  I took it as a good omen.

We went to see some friends Christine Olhman, Kelvin Holly and Kim Stovall.  Christine and Kelvin are musicians ( Google them) and Kim is truly a musician's best friend and just an all around good person.  Christine and Kelvin did a small show at Counts Brothers Music Store there in Muscle Shoals.  Almost everyone there was a fellow musician ( that's when you know you are in a magical place when other musicians  fill the room to hear you.)

Christine and Kelvin did not disappoint, with their stories and their music.  She is one of the most emotional, incredible singers and songwriters that I have ever heard.  Kelvin's fingers dance on guitar strings and if he wasn't such a nice guy, you'd be green with envy.

About midway through the show Travis Wammack  joined Christine and they did a song he wrote called Greenwood Mississippi. Google Travis and the song.  I know I am asking you to Google a lot, but you have to read about these folks to understand how much talent was there.  Just think of it as Music Appreciation 101 tonight.   :)

So our hump day has been awesome, we both are still smiling.  And oh yeah, we had lunch at a wonderful coffee house,  Rivertown.  Great food and coffee.
Time for a goodnight's sleep.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

The Good Days

Seeing someone's face after they have successfully meditated for the first time is a gift.  Today I had a couple of students who decided to stay for meditation class after yoga.  They were nervous and unsure but willing to try.

As the two of them and one other student settled in for meditation I knew in my heart it was what they needed.

After the class was over, all three were almost on the verge of tears.  They felt the peace that I had been telling them about, they understood how special stillness was and what it meant to be mindful and aware.  The four of us knew that mediation would be a tool to help them in their recovery.

There are days when I think that my words, efforts and energies are in vain.  There are days like today when I think maybe this time I helped someone.  These are the good days.

Monday, July 25, 2016

Busy Monday

Yoga classes for sleep this afternoon and tonight.  When you hear people snoring in relaxation, you know they needed the class.

Thunder in the distance is driving the dogs crazy tonight.  I think Calliou has to have one of those vests, he seems to be getting worse.

The heat is still brutal, we all wait for September and hope for the best.  My flowers are starting to wilt no matter how much I water them.

A busy Monday and I am tired.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Sunday, July 24, 2016

What I Needed

My friend Bo Sebastian sent me a message a few weeks ago and told me had a new book coming out.
I soon went to and in a few days Bo's latest book, "Your New Story, Your New Life" ( The Metaphysical Mind) was at my door.  I know there is Kindle, but I love the feel of paper in my hands and I knew this would be a book I wanted on my bookshelf.

I met Bo many years ago in Nashville.  He was my vocal coach and soon became a good friend.
He is an author and yoga teacher and life coach as well.  Bo's book came to me with a message that I needed.  One paragraph spoke to me strongly I cried.  " Everyone gets a certain amount of energy  each day. You can spend all your energy on the needs of others and forget about your own dreams or you can define time each day to channel good energy to your own new ideas and desires."

I had identified myself as a care giver years ago, and though I taught others to take care of themselves and follow their dreams, mine often fell by the wayside.  Usually because I was too busy helping someone else.

It is interesting to read this passage in Bo's book, because for the past couple of months Rick and I both had acknowledged that if we wanted to achieve some of our dreams we had to let go of some things and work on what we wanted.  Bo's words just reinforced what we had discussed.

Bo's book is insightful and thought provoking.  I know not everyone is interested in metaphysics but it is a subject that I love.

Hoping that your weekend has been what you needed.  Ours was has been one of rest and taking care of things around the house.  Just what we needed.

Wishing you a Monday that brings you the transformations you need, don't forget to laugh out loud.

Saturday, July 23, 2016


A quote from a favorite author tonight...wishing you all a peaceful Sunday.

"We are all broken, that's how the light gets in."  - Ernest Hemingway

Friday, July 22, 2016

More Encouragement

In 2012 as my very first IVIG treatment began to flow though my veins it sounded as though wind was rushing through my right ear. Within a couple of days after that treatment, a sensation of instability hit so bad I could not walk, horrible nausea came with it, headache, light sensitivity and it came with no warning.  After some treatments the symptoms would last for a couple of days, sometimes for a couple of weeks.  I also developed other issues, and my quality of life went into a tailspin.  And, I noticed that my hearing in the right ear was coming and going.

For almost two years no one in the medical field that I saw had answers.  There were tests, MRIs, x-rays, blood work, questions and no answers.  I found a support group for my disease on line, and was given the name of  a doctor who mostly did research but saw a few patients.  He agreed to see me, and he finally told me that 10% of those who did IVIG treatment had side effects like mine.  Aseptic meningitis was the diagnosis.

Through those three years that I did treatments, the brand was changed, the infusion time slowed, fluids were added and there would be relief for  maybe one month and then it would all come back.
After three years, against the immune doctor's advice I stopped treatments.  The side effects continued for about 7 months and then there was the wasp incidence. I was stung 15 times by red wasps and for about 6 months the episodes stopped.

In February of this year I had the flu, and in April all those horrific symptoms began to come back.
Not as frequently, but they were there.    A few weeks ago we were having Sunday dinner with my sister Pat and her family and my niece Becky and her husband Jeff were talking to me about my health.  As we talked Jeff looked at me and said I know nothing about the aseptic meningitis but I have meniere's disease and many of the issues you are having I have had too.  He encouraged me to call his doctor and on Monday morning I did.

This week I saw Jeff's doctor and was diagnosed with menieres and migraines.  ( I had already read that if you had previous issues with migraines that the IVIG could cause them to worsen or reappear.)  The doctor was kind, informative and supportive and told me that no one really knows why or how sudden deafness happens and he was not sure if any of my hearing loss would come back, but he explained in detail about menieres and migraines.  And there were some simple meds we could try and maybe at some point a couple of procedures.

I have said all of this tonight to tell you that I started the meds Wednesday and for the first time since 2012 the wind in my ear is subsiding and I can actually hear better.  Who knows what the future will bring or what path this journey will take me, but tonight I am hopeful...hopeful that I have found answers, hopeful that at least a little of my hearing will be restored.

Jeff had also received infusion treatments  ( different than mine) and his symptoms started afterwards, no one knows or will say if our issues were caused by the treatments we both received, maybe it is just a strange coincidence.  But I write this tonight to encourage those of you who might be struggling with health issues, who feel that you have fallen through the cracks or that no one cares...don't give up.  You have to be your own advocate, you have to take a part in your wellness and health, and you have to do what you feel in your gut is right for you.

Thursday, July 21, 2016


Meditation classes today.  I saw a study recently that said  one of the top five things Americans were afraid of....silence.  Wow, no wonder meditation is so difficult for most of us.  Sitting and breathing, who knew it could be so scary?

The heat and humidity are past oppressive, it is quite difficult to breathe tonight.  It is all about one breath at a time.

Tomorrow is Friday, blessings for a peaceful weekend for everyone.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, July 20, 2016


There are times in all of our lives that we need encouragement and often not a great deal of it, just a little will do.  Rick and I both had been our of sorts the past few days, concern for the dogs, anxious about my doctor's visit, the oppressive heat, and the seemingly never ending thread of bad news that bombards media.

But an amazing thing took place in the past twenty-four hours, we found encouragement.
We found it through the kindness and concern of so many about those sweet little dogs.  We found it in honesty and kindness of a good doctor.  We found it as we looked around us in our neighbors and friends and family.

What changed?  We looked for it, the good...we refused to think that all kindness and caring had disappeared.  It never really went anywhere, we just lose sight of it sometimes.  We let the hate and fear creep in, but thankfully, we stood our ground, we knew in our hearts we would find the encouragement we needed and we did.

Don't give up, refuse to be beaten.  I am here tonight to encourage you.  There is still beauty, there is still goodness, there is still kindness and love.  You can't close your eyes, you look for it and it is there.  Spread the word, encourage others, your friends and neighbors, family and strangers.
Our common thread, our bond is our humanity.  We are not the masses in the streets or on the news.
We are the ones who care, who help each other, who lend a hand, who are there when needed.

Encouragement is free, spread it where ever you go. It is something we all need.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Good and Bad

Meditation today with an awesome group of students, just as we finished class we heard the rumblings of thunder.  By the time I was half way home, monsoonal rains hit and within ten minutes the roads were starting to be covered in water.  So glad to get home.

I like the new doctor.  There was good news and not so good, I do have meniere's disease and probably migraine headaches as well.  Hearing loss is bad in my right ear, but great in my left.
I am on meds for the next six weeks, then I go back and take it from there.  Seems there is not much that can be done  for the hearing loss.  It could be so much worse.  There are some cases where the meds help, keeping my fingers crossed.

The pups have started their new lives, and Hook, Calliou and Taz are adjusting to each other.
It has been a long day.  Ready for a cup of tea and bed.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Good News

Great news!  We found a foster home for the spotted pups!  We are keeping the older deaf dog, but are so excited to have found an organization that places unwanted dogs in good homes.  They will stay with their foster mom until someone adopts them.  A world of stress has been lifted from our shoulders, thank you all for your thoughts and efforts.

Now next on our agenda, I see a new doc tomorrow, am nervous, but I have hopes.  Will keep you all posted.

Rick has a cup of hot tea waiting for me, good night, sweet dreams.

Sunday, July 17, 2016


Even though we eat healthy and are active, ( 10,000 steps a day, plus teaching 7 yoga classes a week) since I stopped treatments I have gained 10 pounds.  Today, Rick and I both made a decision to
drop a few pounds, so we are greatly increasing our awareness of what we are putting in our mouths.

He is already getting snarky, oh my, we will be in trouble if I catch the snarkies too.  This will be interesting.

It has been a hectic weekend, but a fun one.  I am starting to get a little anxious about my visit with a new doctor this week.  I have to keep reminding myself, I am here, now...and not project expectations.  That's a hard one for me, letting go of expectations.

We still have the three deserted dogs.  Seems no one wants them, so we have to make decisions this week.  Stressed!!!

A full moon week, so energies will be off the charts, but full moons are a great time  to let go and make changes.

Blessings of peace and joy to all of you, may the full moon bring good change.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Great Day

We have had a wonderful day.  Our friend Edie Hand had invited us to play a song we had written about she and her brothers in a documentary that is being produced about her.  Edie is an author, actress, cancer survivor and loving human being.  The band that played for us was incredible, some of the best musicians around the Muscle Shoals area.  They  made us sound so good.

Back home tonight, tired and ready for a good night's sleep.  Hope your day has been as good as ours.
Blessings of peace, joy and hope to you all.

Friday, July 15, 2016

Sad and Angry

It has been a little stressful at our house the past few days.  On Wednesday a bulldog mix showed up at our front door, it was obvious he was not healthy...smelly, skinny and it turns out deaf.  We sat down with him, did some observations, gave him meds, taking him to see our vet next week, we decided we could keep him.

Yesterday morning, two bulldog mix not quite pups, not quite adult males were in our yard.  They appear to be healthy and had been fed.  We have posted on FB all day, no one has responded either to claim ownership or to adopt.  It breaks our hearts.  We just can't afford two more dogs.
And they are such sweet dogs.

We are hoping for a small miracle that over the weekend someone will want them...but if not, we will take them to our local shelter on Monday with heavy hearts.  I am sad and angry.  Sad that the dogs appear to have been someone's pets, angry that it appears  someone is throwing them away.
Sad and angry that the dog's fates have been dumped on us.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Dogs and Storms

Storms are training tonight, one right after the other. The dogs are beside themselves with fear.
So right now, Calliiou is trying to climb into my lap or Rick's  and Taz is clinging to our feet.

Hoping after this round things will settle down and we can all get a good night's sleep.
Nothing severe, just lots of thunder and lightening and some wind.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Busy Day

Jordan spent the day and now I am spent.  We made clay beads to use for jewelry making later, we made cookies, we proofed Rick's column for this week and we just hung out.  Did I say how much fun we had?  We had loads of fun.

I also taught my early morning class...and did a ton of paper work to carry to a new doc I am seeing next week.  It has been a busy day.

These dog days of summer are starting to get to me and the dogs.  Heat and humidity has always been difficult for me, even when I was a kid.  Now, by noon every day I am wilted and summer is just getting cranked here in Alabama.  Ok, no more whines or complaints.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Somewhere in the Middle

Thunderstorms, lightening strikes, wind and rain appeared today after I got to work.  I walked in the door of the building and the sun was shinning, by the time class started the storm raged.
By the time I left the building a few raindrops were still falling but all was calm.  In the span of two hours blue skies and sunshine changed to angry black clouds.

Yoga during a thunderstorm is interesting.  Awareness of the energy in the air is palatable, and when the raindrops hit the windows there is a shift from the day's stresses to a sensation of relief.  I think the heat and humidity just added to the stress of the students today and as the storm released it's energy they released their stress.

Tomorrow is hump day.  Mid-week, almost  mid-month, and middle of the year and somewhere in the middle lies the truth of everything.  I hope you find your peace, your joy and your truth.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, July 11, 2016


Monday classes, mindfulness based on Peaceful Warrior by Dan Millman.
Just to get you thinking tonight...

What time is it?   Now
Where are you?   Here

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Look, Spread and Be

I stepped out on the deck this afternoon looking at the tree tops and realized that our crepe myrtle was blooming.  It is almost as tall as the water oak my dad planted on the property over thirty years ago.
The watermelon color crepe myrtle was given to me by mom and it has grown into a towering tree.

As I looked up in a sea of verdant leaves I saw the splashes of fuchsia.  It pays to look up, down and all around.  There is beauty everywhere if you look.   Wishing all of you a week of beauty, a week of love and peace.  Look for the beauty, spread the love and be the peace.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Shady Respite

It's dog days, hot and humid but there is always comfort in the shade.  This evening storms passed through, the rain is still dancing on the tin roof.  As the sun sets, everything feels clean and fresh.
Sharing a picture of the path that we walk every day.  We are so lucky to be surrounded by beauty and to have our shady respite.

Wishing you all a restful Saturday night
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, July 8, 2016

Watermelon Card

Our great nephew Jordan spent some time with us today.  He brought some icy cold watermelon slices with him.  As he gulped down the juicy flesh he told me our neighbor had brought the melon to him yesterday.  He said that Mr. Harold knew he loved watermelon, knew that he always took some with him to swim meets so he has bringing Jordan fresh melon every week.

Jordan told me that he and his mom and grandparents had talked about getting Mr. Harold a thank you card, but then Jordan told me he had an idea.  Since I could draw he would like for me to draw a watermelon on a card, let him paint it and then he could write a thank-you note to the neighbor.

So I drew and Jordan painted, and then he wrote our neighbor a personal thank-you note.  My heart swelled with pride that this eight year-old thought of doing this for Mr. Harold.  Mr Harold, lost his wife back in the spring and often is sad and lonely.  I hope that Jordan's card brightens his day.
Just the idea brightened mine.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, July 7, 2016

The Flow of a Good Day

This morning was one of those that started rocky, but I just continue to tell myself this too shall pass...and soon it did.  A friend sent me one of the most inspirational videos that I have ever seen and that just increased the good energy.

When I started my classes today, the good energy continued to flow.  Students were optimistic and cheerful today and that is rare where I work.  Their energy continued to rise and by the time class was over there was laughter.

The song that we had worked so hard on yesterday, flowed this evening.  Sometimes we stand in our way, if we learn to just step back and let things flow life is so much better.   We truly can rid ourselves of bad moods, it just takes a little effort.

I walked the dogs early this morning, but it was already so hot and humid Taz and Calliou were panting after a few short minutes.  I brought both of them back to the house quickly where there was plenty of cool water.

I did manage to capture a dazzling sunflower photo.  Looking at the bright yellow cheery flower contributed to the building of good energy and the flow of a good day.
I hope it brings you some cheer tonight.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Brain Drain

Early class, sun salutations.  We worked on recording a song that might be used in a documentary.
I made blueberry banana walnut bread.

It has been a hurry up and wait kind of day and for some reason Rick and I are both exhausted today.
My brain is drained.  Better and more to come tomorrow.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, July 5, 2016


When I got up this morning, I heard a clap of thunder, ran to the front door and saw raindrops as big as nickels falling from the sky.  I smelled that glorious smell of rain on dry earth and whispered a prayer of thanks.

We had walked in the garden yesterday, and Rick and I both knew if rain did not fall soon we would lose the garden, and the fruit hanging on the apple, pear and fig trees.   Today after almost an hour of rain, our world looked very different.

Our lives don't depend on what we grow, we supplement our table and our families tables with our crops.  We stress about the small garden and orchard, their well being and their bounty or lack of bounty.  I think of my mom and dad's families during the depression, of no food because of drought or other weather conditions, and no money to buy food. I can remember my mom talking about so many meals of only bread and water.  We are all so spoiled.

I am grateful that my parents taught me life how to grow food, how to cook, how to do laundry, to clean...I wasn't wild about those lessons when they were being taught, but I am grateful for them now.

With the holiday this week, my days seem rather backward.  All day I thought I was running behind, all day, I thought it was Monday.  Wow, tomorrow is hump day.

Time for a cup of hot tea.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, July 4, 2016

Fourth of July

Happy Fourth of July!  Enjoy your evening, be grateful for our freedom.  

Sunday, July 3, 2016

Life, Lemons and Flowers

I can't help myself, our flowers are so beautiful this year...please forgive me for all my posts of flowers.  It has been a weekend of rest, friends and family, in other words, a good weekend.
For our American friends, tomorrow is Independence Day.  Be grateful, for even with all our issues and problems and disagreements it is a wonderful place that we call home.

I think my photo tonight is a great summary of life, there are lemons and beautiful flowers...that's life.

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Tiger Lily

Every time I see my tiger lilies blooming, the song "Eye of the Tiger" pops in my head and becomes an ear worm that lasts for hours.  But when you think of the song, it is energizing and inspirational so it's not a bad one to dwell on.

This summer has been one of the best ones in years as far as our flowers go, every morning we walk out and something else has bloomed.  It has been one surprise right after another.

Hoping your Saturday has been the one you needed...somedays we need peace and quiet, others we need fun and energy and some times we just  don't get what we want or happens.
We are in the throes of a heat wave, if you are experiencing the same, don't forget to hydrate and taken frequent breaks, stay out of the mid-day sun if possible.  This too shall pass and it will be fall before we know it.

Friday, July 1, 2016

July 1

July 1...American flag is waving from our arbor today

July weather has arrived with humidity by its side

July 1....4th of July, always celebrated

July 1...watermelon is at its sweetest now, so is fresh corn

July 1....ripe tomatoes

July 1...the official start of the last half of the year, don't blink 2017 will be here in a flash

July 1... flowers are in overdrive, there is such a profusion of color and smell in our yard

July 1...tis the season for cotton clothing, worn as loosely as you dare

July 1...lemonade and hotdogs, yummy....with mustard of course

July favorite 4th of July ever?  Telluride, Colorado...fireworks and snowflakes

July 1...the heart of summer and I am having thoughts of fall ( shame on me)

July 1...not my favorite time at the beach

July 1...the night sky is amazing