Thursday, October 19, 2017

Self Study

We studied the 4th Niyama today, Savadhayaya, self study.  Self study, very few spend the time to study our inner and outer selves.  Meditation is a way to study self.  So for class today we did walking meditations.   It was the perfect day for it, clear skies, 72 degrees, a hint of color in the trees.
None of the students had done a walking meditation.  Sometimes a walking meditation can be more difficult than sitting and breathing.

As we gathered outside near the edge of the woods where I work, I sat the parameters of where we would walk.  There is a large field between the parking lot and the woods, it was the perfect place.
I explained that we would do two different meditations.  For the first, we walk slowly, hands clasped, in a line,  ten steps forward and then turn around and retrace our steps to the starting point.  We would practice mindfulness by keeping our focus on our breath and steps.  No talking and no interaction with each other, the timer was set for five minutes.

For the next meditation,  we would practice awareness.  Once again no talking or interaction, but we could walk the field, gazing up, down around.  We would walk slowly, maybe stopping to observe a leaf or the sky.  We would be aware of the sky, any sounds, smells, the sensation of walking on grass and soil, any wildlife.  We would be aware of everything around us and by doing that, the stress of the day would leave, and our minds would no longer race.  This time the timer was set for ten minutes.  The students were awestruck by the time we went back to the room.  They all mentioned seeing and being aware of things they had never noticed on the grounds.  They were calm and peaceful.  They realized how important taking a walk can be.

Clasping the hands is important, it keeps you from swinging your arms, it helps you to walk slowly.
Remembering to breathe is just as important. If you have never done a walking meditation try it sometime.  It will take walking to a whole new level for you.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

New Moon

I saw the most breath-taking sunrise this morning.  I am not a morning person.  Getting up in the dark is drudgery for me.  The pay-off,  the sunrises that I see.  On my way to work this morning I topped one of the many rolling hills on my drive and as I crested one of the last before making my last turn, I gasped.  The horizon was the color of a blood orange, the trees were black, the sky was a shimmering
blue like the waters in the Bahamas. Just over the peak of red orange and midway of the blue there was a tiny sliver of silver.  It was the new moon making it's first appearance for this month.

I didn't bother taking a picture with my phone.  My phone could never capture the magic of that image and those colors.  So it was my personal gift from the universe.  Well mine and anyone else's who was looking at the sunrise.

I love my work schedule.  I see sunrises and sunsets.  They are all unique and beautiful.  As many of you know I am fascinated by the moon.  New moons for me signify beginnings, the chance to start all fresh and new.   Seeing that tiny sliver for whatever reason gave me hope this morning.

The new moon is a beauty in the night sky this evening.  If you get a chance, go out and moon gaze.
Maybe there are changes you need, some sort of new beginning in your life.  Maybe the new moon will give you hope just as it did for me this morning.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Fall Surprises

Unusual fall flowers, tiny delicate purple daisies of some variety, I think.  Fall wild flowers around here are normally yellows and oranges and reds and usually fairly bold.  These little things are so sweet and fragile.  A nice surprise for the morning walk.

Monday, October 16, 2017

Mossy Timber

The temps dropped last night after the storms came through.  This morning was windy and cool and the dogs loved every minute of their walk.  The sun came out when we were walking and the sunlight that dappled through the trees was dazzling.  This moss covered timber reminded me of our time in Ireland.  The green was rich and verdant.  It was a gift.

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Gentle Rain

A gentle rain has started to fall tonight.  Behind the rain, cooler air is on its way, finally fall has decided to show her face.  I am so grateful.

We have done quite a few chores this weekend.  It is a good kind of fatigue.  I laughed today and told Rick I would have to go to work tomorrow to get some rest.  He agreed.

October 15, the month is half gone.  Take a deep breath and don't close your eyes, 2018 is rushing to get here.

Start the week with kindness, even to someone who does not appear to deserve it.  Be grateful for answered prayers as well as those unanswered.  May we all know peace.

Saturday, October 14, 2017

Chores

There are certain chores that I put off as long as I possibly can...defrosting the freezer is at the top of the list.  I can clean closets and pantries all day, actually enjoy it, but that freezer, ugh.  Today was the day.  I did routine cleaning this morning and then this afternoon I took a deep breath and dove head first into the freezer.  A hair dryer, ice pick and shop vac sped things along and tonight I pat myself on the back.  That freezer chest is ready for holiday cooking and so am I.  Next weekend, the oven gets the attention.

There has been a video that has floated around FB for sometime by one of our military leaders, called Make Your Bed.  The gist, if you make your bed every day, no matter how good or bad your day is, you can go home at night to a fresh bed.  I have done that my entire life.  My mother could have taught the military a few things about  making your bed.  I can count on one hand the times growing up that I did not make my bed. Those three or four times involved the flu.

I do find completing chores and tasks satisfying.  I suppose that is why time management and a daily planner make such good sense to me. Rick is watching the Alabama football game tonight, I am about to take a hot bath, sip my hot tea and read.  Tomorrow is fun and rest.

Wishing all of us a day of peace tomorrow, may we all know kindness and love.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Prevention

Jordan is so much better.  Today, he and his mom came over and he is back to his old self.  What a relief.  I am so grateful that our friends helped us get him to doctor who took great care of him.
Anytime one of my loved ones is sick it is stressful, but when it is one of the kids my stress level goes through the roof.

Rick and I practiced a little preventative medicine today.  We both got flu shots.  I know that there are many who are skeptical of any type vaccination and that is a personal choice.  Working in a hospital setting, having primary immune issues, makes me a setting duck for things like the flu.  Yes, there have been a few times through the years that I have gotten the flu, even after the shot.  But I never know how well my immune system is functioning, so just walking around in a crowd can be a crap shoot for me.  Anything I can do to hedge my catching something, I do.  I eat healthy, wash my hands with soap and water often, take probiotics, rest as much as I can, exercise , get fresh air and sunshine and hope for the best.  I take vitamins and supplements too.

After our shots, we had a delightful lunch at one of our favorite restaurants, then did some errands.
This afternoon, chores filled the hours until dark.   Dinner was cooked on the grill and as always, I cook and Rick cleans the kitchen.  I love our system.

No gigs this weekend, several things on our to do list.  Here's hoping you all have a great weekend. Friends and family in the midwest watch for the storms.  May you all be safe. Sending every type of energy I can muster out to California, I hope the rains come soon.
Remember, be kind, send love, spread joy.

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Sharky the Fiddle Player

I got a treat in the mail today.  My cousin Carolyn had called a month or so ago and told me that she had some pictures she wanted to send me of my dad and mom, and us kids when we were small.
The pictures of momma and daddy were taken during the war when he was stationed in Florida before being shipped out to Germany and France.  There was one that brought tears to my eyes.
During my years of growing up at home, my dad played guitar and sang ( apple did not fall far from the tree).  His dad had been a banjo player.  But my dad also played fiddle.  I never knew until the pictures fell out of the envelope today.  There he was sitting on the steps playing the fiddle.
Wow, I have never missed him so much since he passed.  Tonight I share that photo with all of you.
My dad Sharky, the fiddle player.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Where's Fall

I worked a little more on our entryway today.  Jordan's dog Lady sat and watched me.  At one point she looked up the road as if to say, "where's fall, you sure it's coming?"

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Tuesday Thoughts

Jordan is still sick.  He spent most of the day with me before I left for work.  His grandfather, my brother Ricky picked him up after lunch.  He is showing some improvement but it has been a long couple of weeks.  It breaks my heart to see him dealing with lung/sinus issues.  Hopefully by Monday he will be back in school.  So glad fall break is this week.

My classes were packed again today.  I love teaching.  Teaching to a packed class is exhausting.
Watching everyone, making sure they are not doing anything that might hurt them, keeping all in alignment takes a great deal of energy and attention.  I have several students with physical issues so I have to be on my toes at all times, no matter how gentle the class.

Early morning class tomorrow, but it is hump day.  Plans are after class to do some major house cleaning.  How can two people trash a house like we do????

Hot tea awaits, so does my bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, October 9, 2017

Weather Rant

So hot and humid today, this can't be October!  It felt like July or August.  I hope there is relief soon from the heat.

We had a week of cooler temps and then they just went away.  Summer has to know it is time to leave.

I am having fall withdrawals.  I need the chilly mornings and cool days.  I want to wear my boots and jackets and sweaters!

Sorry, the weather rant is over.  All my classes were packed today.  I am a wee bit tired.
Time for hot tea and bed.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Golden

Thankfully Nate was just lots of rain and an occasional gust of wind.  We needed the rain.  I thought that with the storm our temps would drop, but it is just hot and muggy.  Nate brought the tropics north.  It still feels like August.  One week of fall and right back to summer, I hope it is not a replay of last year.  I miss cold air.  I do not enjoy tank tops and shorts all year long.  It is not in my DNA.

Today was rest and do the stuff to get ready for the coming week.  You know, laundry, grocery shopping, all the mundane yet necessary things.

I hope this Monday brings health, joy and peace to all of us.  Please be kind.  This Golden Rule came across my FB this morning. We all want kindness, don't we?

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Frogged Out

Can we say all frogged out?  Last night we played the Frog Level Festival in Fayette.  Today We spent the first half of the day at the Frog Festival in Sumiton ( Rick does their website).  Tonight the rains from Hurricane Nate started to drop on our roof.  The generator is ready incase we lose power.
But the sound of rain on our tin roof is making me so happy.  I think I will sleep well tonight.

May we have a peaceful Sunday and a week of kindness.

Friday, October 6, 2017

Frog Level Festival

Tonight we played the Frog Level Festival in Fayette, Al.  What an awesome festival and so much fun.  A great sound crew, and wonderful organizers as well.  It is always fun to play, but sometimes the stars line up and everything comes together, tonight under a full moon, it all came together.

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Non-stealing

The third Yama today, non-stealing.  We know what it means to take things that don't belong to us, but there are other ways we steal as well.  We steal someone's time when we are chronically late.
If someone does something kind for us and we don't return that kindness, we have stolen.
There are givers and takers in the world.  It goes without saying much that takers, who take your love, your spirit, your energy, your talents steal as well.

We steal when we are in yoga class and someone does postures better than we do and we fill ourselves with envy.  We steal our joy from our hearts when we are not grateful.  What about those energy robbers who drain you every time you are around them?  You know the ones, who leave you exhausted after each conversation or encounter.

It is a beautiful Harvest Moon tonight.  Please take time to go out and gaze upon its beauty.
Remember that same moon shines on all humanity, take a moment to send love and kindness to each and every one.  Wishing peace on earth tonight, goodwill toward man.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Official Forecast

I get a Farmers Almanac weekly newsletter.  It is always such fun, filled with interesting facts, folklore and weather information.  This morning I read about the persimmon seed winter forecast.
Jordan was spending the day with us and though he did not feel very well I knew this was a great science/folklore lesson.

We picked our persimmon, the biggest we could find.  Our wild persimmons here in Alabama are only about the size of a quarter, most are smaller.  We squished it open, and then Rick helped us split the seeds.  We had four seeds.  When you split the seed you will see either a fork, spoon or knife image( it is true).  A fork represents a mild winter, spoons represent heavy snow, and a knife represents windy and cold.    We had 3 spoons and 1 knife.  Jordan's official winter forecast for Empire, Alabama...a cold winter with 3 snow events.   I hope he is right.    Will keep you posted.

We have practiced for our gig this evening.  We are playing at the Frog Level Festival in Fayett, Al Friday evening.  Our first time there, it should be loads of fun.

Be kind tomorrow.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Truth

Truth, removing the veil of deception, that is what our class was about today.  The second of the Yamas, one of the five moral teachings of yoga.  When we think about how we deceive ourselves, it can be unsettling.  We settle for a job or lifestyle or relationship that does nothing to help our journey as a human.  We lie to ourselves and say it's ok or it's not hurting anyone or anything. We stop thinking for ourselves and let others tell us what and how to think, lies that degrade us and tear us down and take away our dignity.

We exaggerate our own version of the truth to make our selves feel better, to impress or belittle.
All religions discuss truth, but we humans tend to see truth as we want.  Sometimes the truth destroys and hurts, it might be better see that truth in a different light.

My momma always told me if I told the truth I would not have to remember the lies.  Her wisdom still haunts me.

As we moved through the asanas today, I reminded the students to be truthful to themselves in their yoga.  If a posture hurt, if their bodies could not do something, to be honest and know that with practice the pose would come to fruition.  Sometimes we go to yoga or take a walk and our minds are everywhere but where we are.  We wonder when our class or walk is over why it did not seem as satisfying as other times.  We have to be truthful and remember to be here, now.

Early class in the morning, I will see the sun rise and that is always a good thing.
Remember what the world needs, what we need tomorrow and every day is a little love and kindness.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Fall Wild Flowers

Not only are we beginning to see color in the trees, but we have beautiful fall wild flowers.
Sending love to all tonight, please don't lose hope, please be kind.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

October 1

October 1...a month of remembrance, today would have been my mom and dad's anniversary

October 1... my oldest brother Hubert would have celebrated his birthday this month, so would have my dad and Rick's dad

October 1...I have brothers who are twins, their birthday is this month

October 1....Leaves are starting to color and nights are cooler

October 1...fall festivals every weekend

October 1...apples, pumpkins, pears, sweet potatoes, turnips  I love fall foods

October 1...maybe it will be cool enough for boots in a few weeks

October 1...I love Halloween, but my favorite holiday is Thanksgiving

October 1....fall is my favorite season

October 1....bonfires if it rains

October 1...days are shorter, stars are brighter, sunsets take my breath

October 1...yummy candy corn

October 1...fall wildflowers are at their peak

October 1...fall, winter and spring are never long enough, summers here go on forever

October 1...have I said how much I love fall clothing? the richness of the colors thrills me.

October 1...2017 will be saying goodbye before we blink our eyes

Saturday, September 30, 2017

Joy

Today is the last day of September.  I am in shock that the year is going by so quickly.  Tomorrow would be my parents anniversary.  I believe it would have been their 73rd.  Not a day goes by that I don't miss them both.

Our great niece Joy celebrated her sixth birthday today.  We try to celebrate as many of our nieces and nephews birthdays as we can while they are young.  We found out quickly as they age, aunts and uncles are no longer cool.

It has been a busy day, full of chores, it seems we are always playing catch-up.  Jordan's doc is sending him to an allergy doctor.  I think there is probably some asthma lurking in his lungs and gunk in his sinus cavities.

Rick took the picture of Joy.  I thought it was such a sweet picture.  She had a very happy day.
Wishing everyone a Sunday of peace.  May we all know love and kindness.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Normal

Jordan is still under the weather.  He is going back to the doc tomorrow.  The doc keeps saying allergies, but his cough is not any better.  Asthma and lung issues are rampant in our family, I hope that gene has not been passed to him.

Rick and I got Jordan to read to us today, from one of our books, The Rural Life by Verlyn Klinkenborg.   Jordan is nine years old,  as he read to us I sat there amazed that he was reading a book that some adults would have a hard time reading.  And then he told us what he had read.
I know that today's kids are so much smarter than I was.

It has been a nice normal Friday.  You know you need those normal days.  Days when the routine runs like clockwork and life is calm.  This was the day I needed today.

My hot tea awaits.  I wish you all a good night.  May life treat you kind tomorrow.

Thursday, September 28, 2017

What Are They?

Each time I walk the dogs, I see something new.  Maybe it's just that I have trained myself to look, but I am never disappointed.  We always have some sort of mushroom fungal stuff cropping up, but these little ones fascinate me.  At first they looked like buttons, then they looked like tiny parasols.
I love their color and the way they crop up in a tiny community.  Does anyone know what they are?

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Go For A Drive

Early morning class, I love my staff students!  When your fellow employees come to your class, it makes your day.

Rick and I took most of the day off to spend some time with my sister.  Don't you love road trips, driving the back roads, seeing everyday beauty.  We visited a town south of Birmingham called Wetumpka, amazing old bridge, beautiful little town.

Sometimes just getting in the car and driving some place different for few hours gives the soul a good break.  Rick and I had both worked very hard the past few weeks.  We could have stayed home and worked around the farm, but we have done a great deal of that lately as well.  We needed different.
Some time to take a fresh look, to laugh, and not think about work for a few hours.
I highly recommend taking a drive when you feel the brain fog closing in.  Leaving your surroundings for just a little while helps, it changes your perspective.

My tea awaits.  Jordan will stay with me until I go to work tomorrow.  Allergies are really getting him down.  We need rain and cooler temps, but nothing in sight.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, September 26, 2017

Tired Teacher

I did the final nurse's seminar today.  The director of nursing gave me a glowing review.  She said the nurses had loved my class and that it was one of their favorite parts of the all day seminar.  I admit I was nervous.  It is always tough to teach your peers, you want them to understand what you do and appreciate it.  I am drained tonight.

Early class tomorrow.  As I looked out this evening I saw the new moon shinning so bright in the dusky sky.  Our days have been so beautiful, just wishing the heat would subside and the temps would be more seasonal.  It was so hot when I walked the dogs today they wanted back in the house after ten minutes.  I was ready to go back myself.

We finished up the chakra classes this afternoon.  We will spend Thursday's classes on breath work and then start the yamas and niyamas next week.   Today's class was about communication, wisdom and spirituality.   I know it seems as if I teach so much about yoga, but honestly  what I teach in a 12 week period is a drop in the bucket.

My hot tea is waiting.  Early morning class tomorrow, my bed is waiting.
Make Wednesday your day to be extra kind.

Monday, September 25, 2017

Handiwork

Getting ready to walk the dogs this morning this beautiful piece of work met me at the gate.
I am creeped out by the surprise of a spider web in my face or hair when I am walking, but I love seeing them first and admiring their handiwork.

Sunday, September 24, 2017

Sunday Thoughts

The heat goes on.  I know that many of you are experiencing un-fall like temperatures.  I think our bodies are so confused.  The days are getting shorter, our bodies expect the temps to fall and they are struggling with the mixed message that  mother nature is sending.  We are going into one of driest (October) periods of the year, so we have the heat, ragweed and dust to deal with.  Not the best of times to be here in Alabama.

The weird thing, I am craving fall foods.  I cooked sweet potatoes, beets and Brussels sprouts today and an apple tart.  Go figure.  Not exactly 90 degree weather food.

This will be a busy week again.  I teach another nurse's seminar on Tuesday.  We are rehearsing daily getting ready for the Fayette Frog Level Festival in October.  It's our first time playing we want to be good.

This is the last week in September.  Continue to spread kindness and joy.  It is important that we as humans reach out to each other.  Whether we think we need each other or not, we do.  Our connection is vital for the human race to survive.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Saturday, September 23, 2017

A Day to Ponder

This is the last week of September.  This year is moving so fast it makes my head spin.  This morning as we drank our coffee on the screen porch I experienced some moments of melancholy.  Not that I am ungrateful, because I have so much to be grateful but scared that life is moving so fast I won't accomplish some of my dreams.  I work very hard at keeping some sort of balance in my life.
But I do realize that in my job my role is giver.  So I have to figure out ways to give back to myself so that I am not depleted.  ( have been there and it is not a good place, you lose health, hope and joy)

Music gives to me.  Sharing our music gives me incredible joy and personal satisfaction.  It just gets harder and harder and to find places where we can play.  I am not sure if our imagine is  right, if our songs are not good, if our voices are weak.  I am at a place where I find myself questioning.
The zen teacher in me tells me that all things come in due time.  The human part of me knows how fast time is zooming by.  I know this too shall pass, but it is making for some difficult days.  Aging brings good things like more wisdom, deeper love and peace but it also stirs up the ashes of regret on some levels.  Sorry, I think the loss of two good friends this summer and family members has made me a bit sad.

It has been a beautiful day.  But it is hot.  Like mid-July hot with high humidity.  But I hear rumors of the jet stream changing by October 1 and more fall like temps arriving.  We already have more fall color than we did all last fall.  Last year's heat and drought left us with nothing but brown dried leaves dropping from the trees.  We do have hard woods here so our late fall can be very pretty.

My favorite Britt shows come on Public TV tonight, so excited.
We do have a festival to play the first Friday in October so we are about to practice.
Good night, Sweet dreams
Give someone a hug tomorrow.


Friday, September 22, 2017

Emotional Day

I did the seminar for the nurse's group at work today.  They were so receptive.  They are caregivers in every sense of the word and work so hard to keep our patients healthy.  To be able to share with them encouragement and ways that they could care for themselves meant so much to me.  I know how stressed and tired I am when I leave the facility and they work way more hours than I do.  Most of them work the detox area so they see our patients when they are at their worst physically.  I don't envy them their jobs.

Tonight I went back to work and Rick went with me.  We had a celebration of life for one of our counselors who died a few weeks ago.  Rick and I did one of our songs to open the ceremony, it's called Family.  It suited my friend and our workplace well.  To work at an addiction center is a special calling, it truly is not for everyone.  But I can say this with no hesitation about Deb,  I feel so bad for the women who come through our facility now who never had the chance to have her for a counselor.
 We have many wonderful counselors, but none of them are like Deb.  She walked the walk and talked the talk, life had not been kind to her but her hardships shaped her as a counselor and gave her the ability to help so many in recovery.  She could see through the BS and knew what it took to survive and recover.  Her life has touched so many.  I miss her every day.

A long day filled with many emotions.  I need my hot tea and cozy bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, September 21, 2017

Hope

Full classes today, learning about ego and spirit and transformations.  Mostly new faces and lots of emotions, but that's ok.  When you have spent years numbing your feelings with alcohol and drugs, emotions in yoga are a good thing.  There was some recognition today in eyes and faces that a peaceful heart was possible.  I love seeing hope.

Tomorrow I have been asked to do a seminar on relaxation, meditation and breath work for our nursing staff.  I am doing one tomorrow and another one on Tuesday.  I feel honored to be asked.  I know how hard our nurses work and it is a joy to give back to them.

Our weather has gone back to summer.  The past week temps have been near 90 degrees with humidity and rag weed pollen.  I am so ready for fall.

Wishing you a Friday that brings a weekend of good times, let's spread a double dose of kindness this weekend.  I dare you!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Grasshopper's Lunch

As I so often say, we have to look for the beauty around us.  There are gifts everywhere, but most of the time they are so subtle we miss them.   After a morning of errands and lunch with Rick, I stepped out the back door to enjoy nature.  I glanced down at probably the last blooms on many of my plants and low and behold, there was Grasshopper.  He was having lunch on a lovely pink blossom.  He even posed for me as I took his picture.

Enjoy the rest of your week.  Look for the beauty around you and spread some kindness.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Bromelain

A better day.  No migraine, and very little vertigo today, so very grateful.  One of my blog followers suggested I might look at a natural approach for relief.  Everything I read about migraines and meniere's mentioned inflammation.  I remembered I had a bottle of bromelain capsules and  took a couple right after breakfast, within an hour I felt better.  Not sure if the flare was going away or if the bromelain did the trick but I took another capsule this afternoon, so far so good.  Will keep you all posted.

In case you don't know what bromelain is, it is a natural anti- inflammatory made from pineapple.
I had used it for sinus issues but had not thought to try it in other ways.  It makes sense to me if there is inflammation anywhere in the body it should work.  We will see.  I am staying positive and keeping my fingers crossed.

Classes today were about givers and takers, setting boundaries and learning to live like water.
It felt wonderful to be able to teach with energy.  I am so grateful for your good thoughts.
I have an early morning class, so about to drink my hot tea.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, September 18, 2017

It Continues

Short post tonight, still dealing with vertigo and migraine.  I taught my classes today and tonight, not easy, but a cup of hot tea awaits me and my nice cozy bed.

I hope your Monday was a good one.  Be kind.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, September 17, 2017

What To Do?

It was near ninety degrees here yesterday with a high humidity.  We walked the dogs later than normal and then spent much of the afternoon at the festival.  Needless to say I got too hot.  You might ask how does that happen?  Well since the IVIG treatments that I did for 3 years, I stopped sweating.
Honestly,  I don't feel the heat until it's too late.  Then I get migraines, vertigo and nausea.  That happened when we got home last night.

I walked early this morning, but I cooked this afternoon.  Once again it was near ninety today, and once again the heat got me.  I am not sure what to do.  Once the symptoms start I take meds and if I act fast,  they work.  I know most who live in the south love the heat, but  summers are getting more and more difficult for me.  What to do, what to do?

I hope your Sunday has been a good one.  I hope you took a moment to see the beauty around you and to spread some kindness.   Get your week off to a good start tomorrow, may life treat you kind, may you treat those around you kind.

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Foothills Festival

The Foothills Festival in Jasper, featured one of our favorite musicians this afternoon, John Paul White.
If you don't know who he is, do the Google and listen to a couple of his songs.
We saw so many friends, had such a good time.  Hope your Saturday has been a good one.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Hook Finds More Yellow Jackets

Hook found another yellow jacket nest today.  It wasn't as bad as before, only two or three stings, but it brought back the memory of a couple of weeks ago.  There for about thirty minutes he was in flight or fight mode, but finally the benedryl kicked in and he was calm.

We spent time rehearsing for our gig coming up the first weekend in October.  This will be our first performance at the event and we really want to shine.  It is in Fayette which happens to be one of the cities where Rick has an office through the community college.  We play on a Friday night and we are excited.

There is a lot going on in cities near us this weekend.  Tonight, one of our dear friends Max played in Muscle Shoals and tomorrow night, there is a music festival in Jasper.  We had planned on going to hear Max tonight, but the lung infection that I have had for a few weeks  reared its ugly head today. I am back on antibiotics so I should be much better tomorrow. Hoping we can make the festival tomorrow at least for one or two shows.

After such chilly weather for the past week or so, summer has come back to visit.  Upper eighties today and for the next several days.  Ready for her to pack her bags and move on, so ready for fall.

Enjoy your Saturday.  Remember to be kind.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

All Things Yoga

All about boundaries, being grounded and understanding how you can have a big ego and still have low self-esteem, that was class today.  Who knew how much yoga could teach you?  Next week, compassion, wisdom and spirituality come into play.

I saw the meniere's doc today.  I always hope things will have changed, but nothing has.  The migraines, vertigo, hearing loss, and all the rest just won't go away.  Like the energizer bunny I just keep on going.

Tomorrow starts the weekend.  Plan something fun, do something kind.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Stillness

A classroom full of new faces today.  Several struggled with the breath work and relaxation.  Savasana or relaxation can be the most difficult part of a yoga class for many.  We westerners are not wired for stillness and breath work.  Well we are, our bodies and our spirits crave it, but our lifestyles have falsely convinced us that we don't need it.  The need to be busy, to always be doing something cheats us from real rest and relaxation.

The new students will eventually get it or they won't.  Some are ready for the change in lifestyle, the journey to go inward, others will never be.

I am so ready for my cup of hot tea and my moments of stillness before bed tonight.  Another busy day tomorrow, seeing the meinere's doctor and then work the afternoon.  Keep spreading that kindness,  it makes a difference.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Tough Tuesday

Back to work today.  Tuesdays students leave trauma or grief counseling and come to see me.  Rough days.  I make sure that Tuesday classes are nurturing and gentle.  Sometimes students become very emotional because of things that they have faced in trauma or grief.  They are also exhausted by the time they get to yoga class.  Relaxation was almost thirty minutes today.

Tuesdays drain me too.  It has been cold and rainy today, the forecast is the same for tomorrow.  Sunshine comes back on Thursday.  That will be a good thing.   Tomorrow is a busy day.
Early morning class, haircut and  then back to work tomorrow afternoon.  Making up for yesterday.

My cup of hot tea calls my name.  Bedtime is early tonight.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Be kind too all you meet tomorrow, be kind to yourself too.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Irma Craft

Because the forecast for Irma was so uncertain, I cancelled my class for tonight and did not go to work today.  Thankfully, we have only had wind and rain and I must say it is chilly.  Temps have been in the 50's all day.  It is pouring rain and the wind is blowing, but so far all is well.

Usually if I am home I am doing all sorts of house stuff and often working on class material.  Today I chose to have a craft day.  I have not done crafts since early summer with Jordan.
I decided our door needed a new autumn wreath.   I had so much fun and only burned myself once with the glue gun.

For our friends in Florida I hope the floods subside soon and the power is restored as well.

Spread the love and kindness this week.  We all need a double dose.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Tomorrow

So it's wait and see with Irma and how she treats Alabama.  Our schools are closed for Monday and Tuesday.  The prediction is 2-4 inches of rain, winds 20-35 miles per hour and up to 45 miles per hour gusts.  If we keep power and no trees down we will be very lucky.   I watched as incredible blue skies began to be swept with white wispy clouds late afternoon.  By sunset lots of clouds and the wind that has blown all day has died down.  We will see what tomorrow brings.

I spent most of the day yesterday and today cleaning out my closet.  Samantha loves when I do that, it means she gets new clothes.  Swim meets for Jordan are starting back up.  He has practice 3 days a week and usually on Saturdays as well.  He keeps telling me he will teach me how to swim.  I dog paddle, I think he is in over his head if he thinks teaching me to swim will be easy.

I can feel the atmospheric pressure changing.  My joints hurt and my ear hums.  If it is like it has been in the past, by tomorrow it will be hard for me to breathe.  Out bodies are pretty amazing as they respond to nature.

Wishing you all a good evening.  Start the week with kindness and always spread some joy.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Busy Saturday

So now Irma is looking westward, the Gulf of Mexico is warm as bath water and who knows for sure where Irma will land.  So far we have rain and wind forecast for us.  We live in a unique place, we have tornadoes, hurricanes and also snow and ice and occasionally small earthquakes.  But, the past few days have been picture perfect early fall moments to be treasured.

I took a picture today of my favorite tree root.  It is a root of one our 100 year old oaks.  It is gnarly, covered in moss and has the most interesting holes.  Probably  strange to say this, but I could sit and contemplate that root for hours.  The textures and holes fascinate me.  Where do the holes go, what lives there, so many questions.

I hope your Saturday has been a good one. We have made sure the generator is working, all the yard equipment is covered and lawn furniture is stored.  We are ready for Irma too.
Sending thoughts to all in Irma's path, may you be safe.  May everyone have a peaceful Sunday.
Remember to be kind.

Friday, September 8, 2017

Acorns and Pine Cones

Maybe an acorn the size of a quarter is no big deal to you, but after our heat/drought last year left us with no acorns, this one is wonderful.  Knowing that our wildlife will have food this winter is important.  My heart was full of joy as we walked today and noticed that for the first time in two years there are plenty of acorns.  Yes, I am grateful for the lowly acorn, and the multitude of pine cones we are have now.  It is the little things.

So now the cone of Irma is coming into our neck of the woods.  Lots of rain and probably some wind and who knows Irma may change her mind and go someplace else.  But I think not.  Everybody prepare, and let's hope for the best.

Tonight, I am grateful for acorns and pinecones.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

A Gift

Walking the dogs this morning in our 48 degrees felt wonderful.  The dogs love these cool mornings.
I let the big dogs take off for the woods when I open the gate, but Taz stays on a leash.  As Taz and I walked the path she too wanted to venture into the woods, so we did for a bit.  I am so glad we left the path.  The yellow flowers, hidden in the forest were a gift from the universe.  Sharing that gift with you tonight.

Keeping a watchful eye on Irma.  So many friends and family live in harm's way right now.
Spread some love and kindness tomorrow.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

Interesting Day

FYI don't ever call the oral surgeon with a problem and think that you are going to see him for a looksie.  There had been an issue with the surgery site, I called yesterday and of course the doctor's office said come tomorrow, he will want to see you.

Rick was going to a campus about an hour north west of us, the surgeon's office is about an hour north east of us.  No problems I said, just going in to check it out.  Wrong.   I sat down in his chair, he looked at the assistant who was asking if I needed to be moved to one of the surgery areas, panic was in my eyes.  Dr. Clark ( who is awesome, by the way) assured me and the assistant that the problem could be taken care of without going to the surgery area.

There were shots, cuts, snips and a big wad of gauze in my mouth and in a little while I was out the door.  The people who saw me on my drive home must have had their doubts.  There I am, a wad of gauze the size of an egg sticking out of my mouth.  Tissues are in my hand as I am driving because of the numbness, and the drooling won't stop.  Interesting day.

But the moon is full and the sky has been blue and the temps tonight are in the 50's, life is ok.
Sending thoughts of safety and protection to our friends in the path of Irma.  The Farmer's Almanac had predicted an active  hurricane season, I am buying my 2018 issue soon.  Those guys are the weather gurus.

Spread love, kindness and joy to everyone you meet tomorrow.  According to our star gazing friends, this full moon brings an end to eclipse energy and ushers in powerful celestial energy shifts.
Hoping for good for everyone.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Full Moon Coming

Full moon tomorrow night.  Of course we did moon salutations in class today!  The temps are dropping here tonight, but all eyes and ears are on Irma.  Hoping for the best, but encouraging our coastal friends to prepare for the worst.

Early morning class then a visit to the oral surgeon for a check-up tomorrow.  My speech is still wonky because of the flipper I am wearing.  It's a fake tooth to get me by until the implant in January.
This has not been my most fun thing ever.

I am spent this evening.  My body is still fighting the lung infection so my energy is low.
Hump day tomorrow, be kind, spread joy, show some love.  If the skies permit, be sure and moon gaze tomorrow night, it should be a beauty.

Monday, September 4, 2017

Monday Musings

New students today.  For most of them, it was their very first yoga class.    It is interesting to watch their faces as class starts and then look at them when class is over.  Today everyone of them said they couldn't wait to come back.

The students were so appreciative that I came into work today.  Today was a holiday at the school where Rick works and I thought about taking the day off as well.  But, I knew there would be several new people that had entered the program during the past few days and yoga class is a great way to release the stress .  I take the big holidays off like Christmas and 4th of July and Thanksgiving, but even though as a blue collar worker's daughter this was an important holiday, I felt the need to work.

There is a full moon this week.  It should displace all the weird energy from the eclipse.  Lots of changes taking place in the sky this month.  Those wacky planets are on the move.

Time for a cup of hot tea and I am so ready for it.  Rain is moving in tomorrow and it did not take a weather man to tell me that news.  My aching joints shouted it loud and clear.
Make this a week of kindness.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Sunday, September 3, 2017

It's All Good

When the beauty berries turn purple, fall is beginning here.  They are my favorite shade of purple.
Our mornings have been perfect porch weather.  Drinking coffee on the porch does a body good.
My brother and his wife, Sam and Jordan and my sister Pat and her daughter Jayna ate dinner with us this evening.  Just laughing, talking and sharing a meal.  That also does a body good.

For many tomorrow is a holiday.  I will be working, but that's ok.  I have had a good weekend.
Enjoy your Monday, laugh, be kind, and hug one another.

Saturday, September 2, 2017

Morning Surprise

Monsoonal rains and morning walks bring surprises.   Walking down by the barn this morning, this artful creation appeared on our path.  I love the shapes and colors.  Wishing all a peaceful Sunday.


Friday, September 1, 2017

September 1

September 1...just a couple  more weeks of summer

September 1...Labor Day weekend, summer's last hurrah

September 1... hurricane season in full blast

September 1...College Football games

September 1...cooler nights

September 1...back to school

September 1...colors start to change

September 1...nothing like fresh California grapes

September 1...crispy apples

September 1...sweet potatoes

September 1...my boots are waiting in the closet to make their first appearance

September 1...sunsets become  more vivid

September 1...2017 is quickly slipping away

Thursday, August 31, 2017

A Promise of Change

I walked the dogs this morning before the rains moved in.  The sky was angry and the air was hot and muggy.  As we walked a small patch of color caught my eye, a promise of things to come.
It is the last day of August.  Labor Day weekend is upon us, football games have started.  It is that time when summer and fall walk hand in hand.  Mornings are cool, days can be down right hot.

Enjoy your Friday.  Please don't forget to be kind.

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Wednesday Thoughts

Good thing I saw lung doc today for my 6 month check, seems I probably have walking pneumonia.
Not surprised, there have been some students at work with it.  I knew my cough was not its normal self, and fatigue had been bad, but my mind set just said push through it, it's ragweed.  As Rick so fondly loves to remind me, I do not have a medical degree.  A Zpack for a week and all should be fine.  I am glad this weekend is a nice slow one.

The rains from Harvey started today, times of downpours but so far nothing bad.  The weather guys say tomorrow will be our day for nasty stuff.  South Alabama seems to be getting their share this evening.

I am a wee bit brain drained today.  Thoughts are going nowhere.  I think I should end this about now.
Sending all the good thoughts I can muster for Texas.  Spread some kindness tomorrow, we all need some.


Tuesday, August 29, 2017

Somatics

On Tuesdays most of my students have trauma or grief counseling.  It's a tough day, so I try to always make the class especially soothing and relaxing.  Many of them also deal with chronic pain as well.
Today was a Somatic Class.   If you suffer from chronic pain I recommend you read Thomas Hanna's book, Somatics ( reawakening the mind's control of  movement, flexibility and health)  I think it will be life changing for you.  The class is slow moving, no forced movements, not painful.  I tell my students even if you don't have chronic pain you will feel amazing after these classes.

Rain from Harvey is moving our way tonight.  We do run a slight risk of severe weather the next couple of days but nothing like the folks in Texas have experienced.  The upside, our temps will be in the 70's for the next few days.

Hump day is tomorrow.  I have my early class and then a pulmonary doc appointment.  Our abundance of ragweed and mold the past few weeks  has played havoc on my breathing.
September is almost here.  Take the last day of August and relish all that summer offers.  Walk barefoot, eat some watermelon, drink some lemonade, sit in the sun and look at the flowers.
Don't forget to be kind.  Share the joy, feel the gratitude.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Nocturnal Taz

Taz is not her normal self at night.  For the past couple of weeks she has stopped sleeping at the foot of our bed and she roams around the house most of the night.  She is also barking a good deal in the middle of the night, but when we get up to check on things, there is nothing there.  The other two dogs are fine, no issues at all.   She is due for a check up at the vet so we are going to talk about her nocturnal changes.  I am a little worried.

It has been a busy Monday and a rather long one.  I am not sleeping well because of Taz's activities.
How can a little 7 pound dog cause this much disruption?

My tea awaits and hopefully a good night's sleep.  I hope our friends in the Houston area are ok.
Prayers that the rains stop soon.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Bring Light

I love it when there are energy shifts.  The past couple of months had been a little rough. Losing a friend and a family member, the heat, the rain, things had seemed oppressive at times. Even the few days before the eclipse I felt really out of sorts.  Other friends had said the same thing.

Since the eclipse there has been a change.  Lightness has returned, an uplifting if you will.  Last night's pickin' party helped a great deal as well.  Seeing friends, hearing good music, sharing a meal, there is magic in all of that.

This is the last week of August.  Labor Day is a week from tomorrow.  Kids are back in school or are going back. Something about summer moving into fall always makes me feel hopeful.  I know most feel that way about winter to spring, but summer to fall gives me energy and hope.
This last week of August up your kindness quota.  Share more smiles, spread more joy.  We can do this.  One person at a time, we can bring light to the darkness and fear.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Just What We Needed

We invited a group of our musician friends over tonight to share their new songs and a meal.
We laughed, almost cried, voice frustration about the music biz and had a great time.
Even the dogs had a good time.  And when it was time to say goodnight, we all decided it was just what we needed.  We played our songs for each other with no judgement, just appreciation for talent and creativity.

Wishing a peaceful Sunday for each and everyone.  And if you are feeling down, listen to your favorite music.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Good Friday

Our weather pattern is changing.  The past couple of mornings have been down right cool, low 60's and the afternoon temps have been in the upper 80's .  It is a nice respite and according to the Almanac we are in for more "normal" fall and winter weather this year.  We can only hope.

Looking around outside today, you can see the subtle changes taking place around us.  The garden is playing out.  The trees that were verdant and rich a few weeks ago seem to becoming tinged with gold. The sunsets are more vivid and the days are getting shorter.  Summer is holding on, but fall is waiting in the wings.

It has been a good Friday.  I have thought of Louis many times today.  I miss my friend.
May the weekend bring each of you joy and may each of you spread some kindness.  Sending good thoughts and prayers to our Texas friends.  May you all be safe.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Masters/Slaves

Sharing the quote I used on my board today.


"We are masters of the unsaid words, but slaves of those we let slip."
- Winston Churchill

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Celebrating Louis

A celebration of our friend Louis' life was held today, which by the way was his 89th birthday.
There was music, pictures, videos, laughter and tears.  Honestly, I hope it is the way I will be remembered.  No long pious sermon, just an encouraging prayer, the 23 Psalm and story after story of people loving Louis.

An opening song of Amazing Grace, closing with Frank Sinatra singing My Way, Louis would have loved it.  We met so many of his friends and family.  Now we have faces to go with the names he so often talked about.

I woke up this morning thinking of him, wishing that we could have celebrated this birthday together.
It was just not meant to be.  His body was worn out.  Our nurse Lynn from the infusion room came, his friends from Home Health Care.  I could just see him sitting over in the corner, laughing and holding court, glad that we were all together.

I miss him.  I know that I will always miss him.  He was a gift that I will never forget.  I am so grateful for his friendship and the friendships that we made with his friends and family.
His favorite thing to say each time any of us told him we loved him, " I love you more."
Tonight, I love you more Louis.  I miss you so very much.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Palatable Fear

Transformations are painful, whether they are good or bad.  We humans don't like change, don't want change.  Change is going to happen, whether we embrace it or fight it, change will happen in our lives.

I listened to students' stories in class today.  I am always astounded at how strong  they can be.
My students are fighters.  No matter their lifestyle, their profession, their past, by the time most make it to rehab they know something has to give.

Today was a day of tears, anger and frustration, but by the end of class there was a flicker of light in faces.  These students are new and they are walking a tightrope with no net.  For many of them this time at our facility will make or break their life.  Fear is palatable.

In a few weeks, their eyes will begin to sparkle, laughter will slowly come back into their lives.  Hope will blossom and the understanding of how to rebuild their life makes sense.
I am drained, but that is ok.  A cup of hot tea and my cozy bed will make it all better.

Early class tomorrow, early bedtime tonight.
Remember to be kind to every one, even those who don't seem to deserve kindness. They need it the most.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Monday Energy Shift

To celebrate the eclipse today, our class tonight did both sun salutations and moon salutations.
I did not want either to feel slighted.

You could feel the energy shift as the eclipse took place this afternoon.  For me personally, I went from a place of out of sorts to arriving at peace as the light overpowered the shadow.  For days now I have not slept well, had weird dreams and just felt strange. When the eclipse was over today, I began to feel like my old self.

Jordan and my brother Ricky had lunch with us and then stayed for the eclipse.  Jordan was delightful watching the change of light, seeing how the birds and chickens and dogs were reacting to mother nature showing off her stuff.

If you missed today's eclipse there will another one in seven years.  Jordan will be driving then.  Wow.

Spread good will, joy and kindness where ever you go tomorrow.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

My Kind of Sunday

 The kind of Sunday I love.  Morning papers, walk the dogs, brunch, a few chores.  No place to go, nothing that has to be done, a day  to recharge and relax.

We all need these kind of days.  A day to spend at your own pace, enjoying normal little things.
Sunday gives me the  time to get ready to face the week.  My yoga clothes are washed, my yoga bag is packed, I am ready.  Rick will tell you if my Sunday is jammed with things to do, I get grumpy. And I face the week a little out of sorts.

These past few weeks our weekends have been packed with things to do, places to go. To get out of bed this morning, knowing that the day was ours, was delightful.  We did have a little power outage this evening ( heat index 103) but Alabama Power came to the rescue.  No storms, no wind, who knows why or how, but we do have outages often.  Winter is not so bad, but summers are brutal with no fans or AC.  We do love our creature comforts.

Tomorrow is the eclipse.  I will be glad when this shift of energy is past and maybe things will settle down.  Jordan is excited because he gets out of school early and will spend the afternoon with us.
Spread some kindness tomorrow, share some joy.   Time cannot be taken back, spend it wisely.

Saturday, August 19, 2017

Waiting

one of things that is not so much fun in playing music is the hurry up and wait that takes place before a gig of any kind.  Rick caught me patiently waiting at the wedding this evening.  We were the music before the wedding started.  It was a beautiful wedding and the room was full of happiness.

Friday, August 18, 2017

The View

We are celebrating a wedding this weekend.  Our friends Wes and Deidra's daughter Laken is getting married tomorrow night.  ( their younger daughter Leigh got married in May, yep you heard that right, two daughters, two weddings in 3 months).  We have watched both girls grow up.  They are family.

Laken had asked Rick and I to play guitars for her wedding.  We did the rehearsal tonight and then went to the rehearsal dinner.  It was held at The Club in Birmingham.  If you ever have the opportunity to visit The Club, go.  The food is excellent and the view will take your breath.  Seeing the sun set over the city and watching the lights appear as the darkness moved in is something you don't want to miss.  Looking forward to the wedding tomorrow.

Thursday, August 17, 2017

No Money

An interesting quote came across my FB page today.  I thought I would share it with all of you.  It made me think.



"If there was no money and everything depended on your moral standards and the way you treated people, how would you be doing in life?"   - Tupac Shakur

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Mossy Path

A day that I needed.  Hanging out at home, doing chores, taught my morning class and playing guitar.
A good day.  Hook's stings are nasty.  He has about 12 stings from his face to his tail, but he is getting better.  He did not want to walk with me today.

Our path that we walk changes daily, with the weather.  Since we have had so much rain, the moss that I love is everywhere.  Part of our walking path is now covered in moss, so of course I took a picture.

I saw the butterfly again today.  I was sitting on the back steps and there she was, just flitting around my feet.  I have never seen a butterfly like her.  Her colors are incredible.  She is not shy or afraid.
I keep thinking she is some sort of omen, a good one.

Tomorrow is Thursday.  Remember to be kind.  It's more important than ever to spread kindness and love.  Be the change you want to see.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Hook's Adventure

Walking the dogs became quite an experience this morning.  It was so warm and muggy that Taz stepped outside the fence and refused make another step.  She went back to the house.  Calliou walked one of our usual rounds and he decided to call it quits.  Lady ( Jordan's dog) and Hook took me up on a second lap.  Hook as usual ran ahead to scare up all the rabbits and squirrels.  Just a few yards from the barn he left the path and within seconds ran across the path in front of me, began rolling and yelping.   He took off for the house.

Hook made it to the gate in record time and just about knocked me down to get inside the fence.
He barreled through the doggie door and by the time I made it inside he had hidden in Rick's closet.
I feared the worst, snake bite ,but suspected yellow jacket stings.     It was yellow jacket stings.  Big angry red welts were popping up on his nose and back.  He would not come out of Rick's closet.
I gave him a dose of Benadryl.   I sat in the floor and petted him, assuring him no wasps were in the house.  After about an hour he finally ventured out of the closet.  He slept for most of the afternoon.

There was a good moment on our walk this morning.  Down by the barn, there is a patch of tiny gravel and pebbles, a most beautiful beautiful  butterfly flew around me there and then flew down on the pebbles and posed while I snapped a picture.  Sadly I have not been able to convince Hook that anything good happened on our walk today.

Monday, August 14, 2017

Forecast

The Farmer's Almanac came out with their fall/winter forecast today.  For our area, the southeastern United States they are predicting below normal temps and above average rainfall.   I know it might sound crazy, but I hope they nailed it.  I love fall and winter.  I love boots and sweaters and coats.

I love walking the dogs in the cold.  Hot tea and coco in front of the fireplace is my cozy special place.  Snowfall is so rare here in Alabama that even if we just get flurries I am thrilled.
I admit, I did a happy dance when I read the forecast this morning.  I know there are many who would love to spend their winter in tee shirts and shorts, but not me.

I like the changing of the seasons.  Fall and winter are my favorites.  As a wannabe farmer, I know the importance of cold weather on crops.  The past two winters have been extremely mild.  As a result of the drought and mild winters our fruit crops have been almost nothing.  The bug infestation this summer has been awful.  So bring on those cooler temps, I am ready.


Sunday, August 13, 2017

One of the 36

My friend, Barbara Dollar shared this post with me this evening.  I think it is a very insightful and profound way to look at life today.  So I am sharing it with all of you tonight.   May we spread love and kindness on our path tomorrow, may we be one of the 36.



According to Jewish legend, there are in each generation 36 righteous humans who prevent the rest of us from being destroyed. Through their extraordinary good deeds and their love of the divine spark, they save the world over and over again. They're not famous saints, though. They go about their business anonymously, and no one knows how crucial they are to our well-being.
Might you be one of the 36? As a temporary experiment, act as if you are. ~Rob Brezsny

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Saturday Update

A busy Saturday.  We went shopping this morning and Rick got his first new suit in many many years.  Sometimes, you just have to wear a suit even if you are a jeans  and khakis kind of guy.

This evening we celebrated our niece Alesha's graduation from the UAB master's program.  She graduated with a 4.0 while being a mom, working as a nurse full time and dealing with MS.  We are proud of her.

For the first time in a couple of weeks the night sky is clear, hoping we can see some meteor showers tonight.  Then of course we have our glasses ready for the eclipse this week.

Ready to watch Doc Martin, sip a cup of tea and have some sweet dreams.
May we all know peace, joy and love.

Friday, August 11, 2017

Tough Friday

I had a 46 year old cousin die this week.  His funeral was today.  A couple of years ago, he had pneumonia  which was viral, which went directly to his heart.  He developed congestive heart failure.
Diabetes followed, do did a foot infection, death came this week.  Tony left a mom, three sisters and two children, remember them in your prayers.   Right now in our area, pneumonia is rampant, scary stuff guys.

Jordan spent another day with us.  His school starts Monday.  He loves his teachers, he is excited.  But he is also looking at the calendar for fall break and Christmas vacation.  We had a great time with him.  Did I say he is has become a bottomless pit?  I swear, he ate most of the food in our fridge before he left for home today.  Swimming burns endless calories.

A better day for me.  Sometimes at work, my heart breaks.  Sometimes life breaks my heart.  Anger is not the answer for any of it.  This too shall pass.  My reaction is all that I can control.

Saturday is tomorrow.  Summer is zipping by. Get those grills going, enjoy the last few weeks, Labor Day is waiting and then fall zooms in.

Don't forget to be kind. Take the time to love and spread joy.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

Flow

Some days are difficult.  Today was one of those days.  I have not been angry in a very long time.
I understand the anger, I know where it's coming from and I also know that the only thing I can change is how I react.   This too shall pass.

Anger and stress are exhausting.  I am exhausted tonight.  Lots of deep breaths and talking to myself  has helped.  Life throws curves.  They are frequently unexpected.  Once again it comes down to realizing that it is all about your reaction.

Class today was on the second chakra.  One of the key phrases for working with this chakra is to live like water.  Go with the flow.  Life is change and survival and growth cannot take place without it.
Perfect class for me, the teacher today.  Live like water, face the ups and downs, go with the flow.

Tomorrow is Friday.  May we all have peace, joy and kindness in our lives.  Go with the flow.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Hump Day

Hump day, more rain and clouds.  Mold, mildew and mushrooms are everywhere.  A walk through the woods in the morning is like moving through some dank, dark medieval world.  We are now past jungle and into the fungus domain.

Jordan told me yesterday he just wanted to play in the sun.  He loves fresh air and sunshine as much as I do.  I keep telling him, the weather will change, fingers crossed and full of hope.  At least our ground water level is back to normal, no more drought.

I have thought of my friend Louis so much today.  We usually saw each other on Wednesday or Friday...I miss him.

Spread a little kindness tomorrow, throw in a smile and make someone's day.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, August 8, 2017

The Root

Working on the root chakra today in yoga class.  With students who have PTSD, the root chakra always needs lots of work and love.  PTSD from being in combat puts the student in constant fight or flight mode.  The adrenals are in over drive and fear an usually guilt are constant companions.  By the time our asanas were done and students had experienced a 25 minute yoga nidra and temple massage (with cedarwood oil) there was a sense of peace and calm as they left the room.  The teacher received many hugs.

PTSD from any cause is devastating.  Most of its victims do not sleep, or if they do they experience night terrors.  Any sense of security they might have had in their past is usually gone.  Fear most often drives their days and nights.  Our group was mixed today, military and non-military.  Thankfully it was a small group.  The room became a safe place, a respite from the thoughts and memories that flood the mind.

As a teacher, I walk into my classroom, give all I have, use every ounce of wisdom and knowledge that is in me and keep judgement and competition out of the room and hope for the best.
Tonight I am drained, but that's ok, tomorrow is a brand new day.

Monday, August 7, 2017

Pink Zinnias

Please don't tell me you are tired of seeing photos of my zinnias, they are so beautiful this year.

These pink ones make me smile every time I see them.

It has been a rainy Monday.  Looks like rain for the next week or so.  That's ok, the flowers are thriving.

My students were happy to see me today.  It was good to be back in the classroom.   After a week without yoga, my body felt some transformation today.  Felt so good to breathe and stretch.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, August 6, 2017

Welcome Zuzu

I met my great niece Zulu for the first time today.  Like all her siblings before her, she is perfect.
I can't wait until she is at my kitchen table baking Christmas cookies and gathering flowers in my garden.

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Harvest Continues

A beautiful day in the neighborhood.  The butterflies are still swarming the flowers and the hummers are drinking their food about as fast as we can fill the feeders.

Walking the dogs this afternoon ( it was so beautiful, we walked them twice) I smelled figs.
I walked over to the large bush and yes, there were ripe figs!  Not a large harvest, but enough to make us happy.  The jalapeƱos are large enough to grill.  That should happen happen tomorrow.

I hope your Saturday has been a good one.  My mouth pain and tenderness has finally left.  About to binge watch Doc Martin.  I love the show.

Blessings of peace to all of you tomorrow.

Friday, August 4, 2017

Healthy Journey

This week away from work has seemed more like one day and  not a week.  I have done a great deal of sleeping, I suppose my body needed it.  What can I say, I have been a slug.

Today was a whole day of real food, not soft stuff.  Rick and I went to our local produce stand and bought tons of fruits and veggies.  My body is rejoicing.  I have been reading about a Dr. Wahls.
Basically her story, she was a successful doctor, was diagnosed with relapsing-remitting MS and became wheel chair bound.  Since her particular MS did not respond well to meds, she was told any function lost as the disease progressed would never return.

She began to research why her body was failing and what she could do about it.  She took her health into her own hands.  After successes and failures, she figured out the nutrients the body had to have to function properly.  She was able to return to walking after being wheelchair bound.  It was not an easy journey. But her story is amazing.

I have been reading a great deal about energy healing/medicine.  I believe with all my heart we are what we consume, food, water, positive/negative energy, books we read, thoughts we think, people we spend time with.  Everything around us has an impact on us.  I believe our earth has everything we need to keep us healthy.  Native Americans taught that all the medicines we needed were supplied by nature.  My father and his mother believed that as well.

It's Friday, the first weekend of August.  The year is half over.  Let this next half be one of kindness, a journey toward health and joy.  Eat your fruits and veggies, drink some fresh water, get some sunshine and gentle exercise, breathe and be grateful for one thing every day.  

Thursday, August 3, 2017

Madame Butterfly

Jordan spent the morning with me.  We watched a couple of PBS shows, took the dogs for a walk and just hung out.  We had a great time.  I ate real food today, very small bites, but real food.


After Jordan went home, I spent some time gathering fresh flowers for all the vases in the house.
The zinnias were covered in butterflies and bees.  They were fearless, none of them ever flew away as I cut flower after flower.  I talked to them as they danced flower to flower, you could feel the tiny breeze as they fluttered by.  This one, a beautiful yellow one, followed me, flower to flower.  I called her madame butterfly.

Tomorrow I get my hair done.  Nothing like getting your hair done to make yourself feel great.
My mouth still hurts, there is still soreness, but it is way better today.
This week has flown by.  Tomorrow is Friday.  Summer is slipping away.  Enjoy it while you can.
Spread some kindness.

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Normal

Starting to feel normal again.  What is it about general anesthesia that just kicks your butt?  Well, stitches in the gum and roof of the mouth don't exactly make you feel pretty either.  But, much better day today.  Can begin to eat regular food again, just very small bites.

Our nephew James texted me this evening.  His wife's water broke, so they are now at the hospital with baby number five on her way.  Zuzu Phillips should be arriving around midnight tonight.

This week is Hook's first anniversary with us.  A year ago, his ribs were showing, he was sick with all sorts of infections and heart worms.  Today he weighs about 80 or 90 pounds, all muscle and happy as can be.  Who knew we would have a collie, a yorkie and a bulldog?

Ready for a cup of hot tea and bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

August 1

August 1....oral surgery is not for wussies

August 1...summer is half over

August 1...here in the south east, there is talk of football

August 1...local teachers and support staff have already gone back to school

August 1...today was picture perfect

August 1...tomatoes and watermelons are at their best

August 1...I really hope we have winter weather this year(ask any farmer why we need the cold)

August 1...can't wait to see the eclipse

August 1...days are shorter

August 1...always strange to see swimsuits and sweaters at the same time

August 1...I have missed work this week

August 1...what I miss most about back to school?  new clothes

Monday, July 31, 2017

Oral Surgery Day

Today was oral surgery.  I closed my eyes and the next thing I knew Rick was in the recovery room and I was getting a wheel chair.   The pain hit on the way home.  Now I know why they tell you to pick up your prescriptions on the way home.

Soft foods and liquids for a week.  I am so glad I have a Vitamix.  I can make smoothies all day long.
Between the pain meds/anesthesia  my thought process is very slow.  I think I should call it a day.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, July 30, 2017

Our Path

I think the path to our house is an inviting one.  Stones, and timbers and moss, edged with ferns and impatiens and the trickle of a little fountain by the steps guide you in.  Many times I walk that path and find joy in its earthy beauty.  I come home from a long day and I look down at those stones and know I am home.  Some days as I walk those stones they tug at my heart and I don't want to leave.

Those stones have felt the tiny feet of our nieces and nephews, great nieces and nephews and even great great nieces and and nephews.  They have felt the love of our siblings and our parents as they walked to our front door.  Friends have brought joy to our house stepping on those stones.  Those stones have felt the burden of grief that we have carried coming home from the funerals of loved ones.

Through the years we have talked about upgrading our walk, making it look more updated and newer, but now I see that walk as an old friend.  Some day when I no longer walk it, maybe someone else will see it as old and broken and build their own.  For me, I want it to lead to our purple door forever.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

Last One Standing

We opened a bottle of champagne tonight and toasted the memory of our friend Louis.  We both expressed our gratitude that the universe brought him into our lives.  We toasted his friendship and our love for him.  We are so lucky to have had him in our lives, even for a a few short years.

Life gives us gifts.  Sometimes we accept them, other times we don't.  Sitting in those big green chairs while the chemicals ran through our bodies, it would have been easy to have ignored all of those around us.  I could have withdrawn, thought about my troubles, become obsessed with my illness.
I am so thankful that our little group chose to reach out to each other.  We chose to face what was going on in our lives and acknowledge those around us.  We made friendships, knowing that they would not be long ones.

Louis and his smile, his faith and love for his fellow man brought us together.  Our bond was a gift.
Tonight, I am the last one standing.  I won't let my friends down.

Friday, July 28, 2017

No Thoughts

Monsoon rains again today.  The weather guys swear we are going to get a break this weekend from the heat and humidity, we shall see.

Tonight my thoughts are nowhere to be found.  I think I should just drink some tea and go to bed.
Rambling accomplishes nothing.

Sweet dreams, good night

Thursday, July 27, 2017

Schedule Change

Some days are going to drain you no matter what you do.  I have been so stressed that my shoulders are aching.  This too shall pass.  Nothing major, just little stuff that appeared out of nowhere and demanded my attention at that instant.

Storms moving in tonight.  We shall see how Calliou does with his new crate.  Fingers are crossed.
I had to tell my students today, no yoga next week.  That was a toughie.  I am having oral surgery on Monday to fix the dental issue that cropped up a few weeks ago.  When the oral surgeon found out I taught yoga , he nixed my schedule for next week.   Seems a bone graft can shift if not allowed to set and if it does then it has to be redone.  I will be home reading a few good books next week if anyone is interested.

My hot tea awaits.  Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Moments

After my early morning class, it has been a day of rest for me.  It has had its moments.  For the past couple of months we usually went to visit Louis on either Wednesday or Friday.  I woke up this morning thinking I should call Bert or Steve and check on Louis.  Then it hit me, Louis does not require me to check on him any more.  Not an easy moment.

Jordan and his mom are on their way to Auburn for state swim competition.  Louis was proud of him.
He was always telling me to tell Jordan the only person he had to beat was himself.  I called Jordan today and told him how much I loved him, how proud I was of his hard work and then I reminded him of what Louis always said.

Grief is exhausting.  But I have had enough in my life to know it won't kill me.

My cup of hot tea awaits.
Goodnight Sweet dreams

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

Moderation

Class today was about moderation.  I know you are thinking well of course, you teach at an addiction rehab center.  But actually it was based on the 4th Yama, Brahmacharya.  Brahmachary is often translated as celibacy, its real meaning is to stop wasting one's energies.  Over indulgence in anything can be destructive, too much work, play, exercise, food, drink, sex, the list can go on and on.

To understand moderation or balance you have to practice awareness of being in the moment.  We remind ourselves, the past is over, the future is yet to come, all we have is this moment.

When we think about the energy we waste daily, all the worry, the stress of trying to achieve perfection, the pursuit of material goods, trying to be thinner, younger, worrying about what others think of us.  That list could go on and on as well.

I reminded the class of the two questions I ask them daily; what time is it?  now
where are you?  here.     If you can ask those two questions through out the day it will be easier to stay in the moment, to practice balance of the inner and outer lives, to calm the mind. Our energy is precious, it is our life force, our chi,  don't waste it, it is not without end.

Monday, July 24, 2017

Tough Day

It has been a tough day.  I appreciate all your love and good thoughts and prayers.  I miss my friend very much.

The sunset coming home tonight took my breath.  The colors had not been that vibrant in a long time.
I couldn't get to a spot where I could take a picture.  The sun and horizon were shades of red, orange, and everything in between, while the clouds were indigo and purple and gray and a tiny bit of bright blue.  When I saw it, I told Rick "Louis is saying goodbye."

My tea awaits.  I am ready for it and bed.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, July 23, 2017

I Love You More

When I left my friend Louis yesterday my heart ached, I knew he was beginning his  transition.
This morning his friend James sent Rick a text, Louis had died.  I felt it in my heart when I awoke today, I knew that yesterday was the last time I would see him in this life.

It is hard to explain grief because it is different with each loss.  In many ways our friendship with Louis was so different than with other friends.  We met just a few short years ago under tough circumstances, both undergoing treatments in an infusion room.  He had beat cancer several times in his life.  He was a survivor in every sense of the word.

When we met, it was as though we had known each other our entire lives.  We bonded sitting in those big green chairs while chemicals filled our veins.  There was a camaraderie in that room.  Several of us sat and became friends, encouraging each other, praying for each other and grieving as our friends passed.

Louis and I were the last of the group.  We spoke to each other almost daily.  He and his nephew Steve and friend Bert came to our house, shared meals with us and our families.  This past Thanksgiving as Louis and Bert left the house that evening I had a sinking feeling it might be the last holiday we spent together.  Louis was getting frail.

Christmas came, we celebrated with a conversation on the phone.  After the first of the year, hospital visits became a common occurrence for Louis.  We would drop by the hospital,  talk on the phone, we both knew in our hearts time was short.  A few weeks ago, he was moved to a hospice care center.
We would visit and hope for the best.  Some days he was unresponsive, others  weak, yet so happy to see us.

A couple of weeks ago, we dropped by and he was sitting up in the bed.  Eating a meal, laughing, visiting with family and friends, it was a day I will never forget.  As we got ready to leave, he told me he was going home next week.  His nephew Steve walked us to the door and out into the hall, Steve, Rick and I knew that by some grace we had been given a gift.

The the past two visits it was obvious that day had been a gift.  Louis was losing weight, becoming so weak and then yesterday, I knew what was next.  No matter how much you prepare yourself for someone's death, there is no preparation.  That loss hits hard and heavy.  Loss is loss, losing those you love is a transformation that is the most difficult.  I hear his voice in my head, I miss his hugs, his calls, his laughter and his kindness.  We ended each call and visit with me saying I love you, and then he would always say, "I love you more."

The picture tonight is one at his house.  He was a great cook.  He loved having friends over for lunch and dinner.  Tonight, I would love to have one more meal together, to hear him say one more time, "I Love You More."