Mississippi Moments

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Blessed Samhain to All!
Happy Halloween, too!

Monday, October 29, 2007

This is the Jericho sycamore tree. Supposedly....and
2 square happens!
And school recess now has a new fad as folks learn how to do backstop, uppsies, and call-out.
I relanguaged the names for the squares--I can't remember what the kids in Jonestown call them but they are moderately vile-we are using court terminology here-king, queen, knight, jester.
They are not ready for 4-square but tomorrow will be. I am also teaching pickle, horse, around the world, and run laps if you can't think of anything to do and you are annoying me with your whining.
It sucks to have no breaks. But it doesn't suck to have the wedgiites coming in after recess with grins on their faces saying-'Ms. R, that was FUN!" They also did community service today by writing a note to get our ball basket filled up again, they relabelled our ball basket and our lunch bucket AND they put on gloves and threw woodchips back into the enclosure-not to mention the three laps they ran at each recess for me just to get the juices flowing. All in all a turn around from wearing our undies up our crotch and calling it good.
Squishy will eat anything if it has homemade soup on it.
Dog shit is still dog shit and it's not so good when you step in it, can't find it, smell it, then lose track of what you were meaning to do, get on with your life and then find it when you come home from school before you are heading back out to go to a class you don't really want anyway.
But the rice is good. My sandwich is already made for tomorrow. My slumgullion tastes fine with ranch dressing mixed in and I had just enough merlot, mulling spices, and cider to make a lovely cup of something harvest-like to enjoy before I have to leave again.
I also managed to make a web on above our heads covering the majority of the room. The kids will enjoy that tomorrow. Boy, am I out of practice at web-building. Grandmother Spider would not be impressed-holes, lags, uneven spots. I asked for help. Managed to find a rhythm and tomorrow will hope the children will know what to do to make it work better. Also built a sycamore tree for our Zaccheus play tomorrow. Outfitted the cast today, too. Amazing how putting old tablecloths on people will change the afternoon into something special. I'm planning to wear a dishtowel on my bead starting at 4;30 am to see if that helps me transform. Love to all.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Heavens, it was quite a day yesterday.
And it's such a lovely morning today. And so were the 9+ hours of sleep.
Apparently, on our lovely Pleasant Valley asphalt meadow yesterday, we had an appearance of Wedgy-itis. And so all because of the lone tattler, we did the requisite problem-solving--with admin this time because in my book, this technically falls under inappropriate touching-and then it was time to contact parents. And I lost it on every call. I mean, they don't teach you this stuff at teacher school. And of course, every kid minus one went back into Denial. And it is so interesting when THE TEACHER calls because they won't come to the phone. And I hear what goes on with their folks(you can tell who's wagging the dog). And with me it's a simple, "we can talk now or we can talk at your recess on Monday morning, 3 seconds or I get to make the choice for you." Amazing how fast that brings some people to the phone. And how fast we come out of denial when I am reading the emails from the duty teacher and the vice-principal. Needless to say, thought we had it all squared away, when what to my wondering mind doth appear-the LAST STRAW! It turns out that the male contingency thought it was so funny to be wedgie-ized, that they were wedgy-ing THEMSELVES (no, not each other, themthelfs-to quote one with no front teeth).
Now, I ask you...how am I supposed to grade reading tests and give a rat's "nest" about completing comments on report cards when I have THIS dancing on my brain?!?!?!!
Oh try this one: So-and-so continues to adjust with consistency and confidence to the expectations and rhythms of first grade. We will work together to redirect the tendency to engage in wedgy-itis....and to boost accuracy in math facts. (sigh)
Time to bring out the big guns-pickle, 7-up on the wall, hopscotch, shadow tag, four square....wish I had my posse with me to show them how it's done-Mark, Bruce, Julie, Scott, Mary, Sara, COlleen, Brigie, cousins--where are you when the next generation needs you?!?
On another note: I'll write about Squish next time. I'm having too much fun right now. We took the stroller out on another dry run this morning. It's getting better. Him not me. I can't imagine this. But I better. I brought home a sweet little kid-sized rocking chair yesterday. Needs a new paint job.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Holiness is the air we breathe.
Squishy and the Fainting Couch
From One Depends Moment to the Next
and the Impact and Beauty of Champion Irish Dance Costumes with the traditional Irish zebra design and feathers
..things I look forward to writing about but will do later....a flat tire under the full moon calls. Actually, AAA is here.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Tea in hand. FIre a-goin'. Dog a-settlin'. In my jammies just home from work.
Still have work to do. Later.
This has been a most amazing day-starting with the youtube cockatiel over there in nyccolleen.blogspot.com land.
Oh my goodness. Wonder if he does disco?
Had inside bonfire on Friday and reconnection with an old friend. Seems many of my Dear Ones are looking closely at the warping and wefting of their lives and finding the pattern and rhythms not to their liking...and contemplating a change and a chat with the Co-Weaver.
Went to RV 101 school on Saturday. Got very lost and was late and it was one of the best parts of the day. It gave me more time with my Jean, to listen and talk, learn and lean. I come away from times like that feeling very foolish that I ever felt alone. We learned a lot about the systems and safety features on RVs. We took a couple of classes and met some great people who are willing to help with the lessons that are to come. I even called the RV place today where Peregrin is and had them install a LP detector. LP=liquid propane. I learned that this item is a MUST HAVE to be safe in your RV. There is more to come. I intend to camp this winter and to be warm doing it. Might even try cooking inside. Gives me the heebies thinking about that one. Need some confidence in this dept. I have this terrible fear of having a leak and dying inside the RV from poisoning. And my little dog, too.
Did some movie watching this weekend (Freedom Writers and Stomp the Yard). Neither are cute movies. But moving.
Danced some. The Sistahs are baaaccckkk. MAde an Italian bean soup, enough for a family of four for two weeks. Glad to have a freezer.
Had a cozy, impromptu gathering on Sunday night with Mary J., Little Feather, and WIll. Loverly.
Did not sleep any last night. Tonight will be better.
And LIttle Feather sent in mini-kiwis for the first graders for snack. They loved 'em.
It's a fine line between "coddle" and "buck-up/take care of yourself" in 6 year old land. Plus the drama. Minus the memory to wash your hands after you wipe your nose and please, don't touch my pencil or wipte that on the carpet under the bookshelves with the lapboards.... I can't go into more detail right now (I'm too tired) but this is the dance at the moment.
My heart was so full this morning--their prayers were straight from their Hearts for the wounded and lost, sad and lonely beings on the earth. One even prayed for Jesus just in case He had a cold because she knew what that felt like.
And, my little Biblical scholars wanted to know where in the Bible it mentioned exactly how short was Zacchaeus, because, Ms. R., short can be a lot of different things.!?!?!?!
So I gave that to them as a journal starter tomorrow when I am at the faculty meeting...just how short is short in Jericho, 31 CE?

Friday, October 19, 2007

Well of Remembrance and Someday My Prince Will Come
Squish and I are just home. With the Ballard Bridge and all being up and causing mayhem for most of the afternoon and early eve, I stayed at work and he stayed at daycare.
1st grade learned the word "squall" today and we had an informal introduction to cycles of weather. The most fun was when I dimmed the lights during math so we could role play what thunder sounded like and pretend like we were learners from an old-fashioned time without lights and power. It turned into something even better. When Thunder began to growl and call, 1st grade joined in and then growled and called a response-with joy-instead of the usual screams we hear next door and down the hall. I've only seen one other thing like it when I took a group of second graders to a place with a pack of red wolves and the red wolves began to talk to the children and my "pack" began to listen and talk back---wolf-style. Oh, these cairn moments in our life-adventures!
SO, we are here now, safe, warm, drying off. The cider is on, the fire is lit and growing in light and dance, the candles are warming the space and leading any who choose to come and tell stories, burn that which does not bring beauty, truth, or goodness into this life, and sit in quiet gladness. We have popcorn, too. The big burn will wait for a crisper night. And we have plenty of those to look forward to.
Last night was another one of those most beautiful nights of my this-life. I learned about Acornology, Unitive Consciousness, and pumpkin pie. I ate my first piece. I've made several but never "et one". Now, I know what I was missing-mmmmmm. I looked into the happy, wise eyes of an old golden friend. I looked into the hearts and hopes, thoughts and thrums of my Star- Sisters and community, family continues to be reborn and formed. I touched hands with sisters of origin this week. I held the touch of duff beneath my feet in old forest and the wet kisses of a happy, goofy puppy who is almost one year young next week. He is out for the count on the couch right now.

There was a song playing on pandora.com when I brought in the first load of wood. It was "Someday My Prince Will Come. It was a nice song--I'm into a George Winston kind of mood these days when the Christmas music isn't on----and it dawned on me as I was making the fire with love and intention-"MY PRINCE HAS COME....AND SHE'S ME!" I had a hearty laugh and joyful moment with that one. Oh how much more can I give thanks for?
Everything God has touched in my life, and I mean, EVERYTHING, has come to be blessing, healing, breaking and remaking for GOOD, for Love, for LIFE. I am a child of God, and by gum, I'm royalty now according to Disney!:)

I don't know if I have posted this before, and I am going to post it again. It fits. It speaks. It is, after all, that time of year.

The Well of Remembrance by Carol Lee Boyd, 2002
Come to the Well of Remembrance.
Here have women sacrificed the memories that overflow
In both mourning and joy
In all times and places.
Now it is your turn to pour into it your libations--
A grandmother's feathery hair
A daughter's pink-painted toenails
Fierce years of labor wasted and
Angry seconds of agony pain.
The Well is constructed of millennia of
Hands held around sacred groves, quilting bees,
birthing stools, and teal Formica kitchen tables.
It can hold all you have to offer it.
Now it is your turn to take from it what you need---
All the water that has flowed from women's
Eyes, mouths, wombs
Has saturated to the Earth's bones,
Has seethed next to our Planet's molten core,
Has evaporated and risen then fallen again into
Your cupped hands as cool rain.
Taste one tear from each of your ancestresses.
It is their wish that you drink deeply and
be as mighty as all their memories
distilled into one swallow.

I'll drink to that, says the Prince. Got my cider right here.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

It was a 13 hour day and Squishy and I are home, safe and warm. Cup of tea, candles lit, Christmas music, and a little heat. All good. The darkness is hitting me, surrounding me, not scaring me, but reminding me that we are entering the Womb-time. Time is flying by these days...and nights. Ok. I have a new obsession/hobby--Katharine Hepburn movies. Last night was "Desk Set" with guess whom? That Spencer guy.:)
My best thoughts for writing are in the morning, but I've been sleeping in still-until 6am and then it's really time to rock and roll. Then in the evenings, I am mush, toast, kaput. Ok then. So be it. Squishy was in doggy detention today when I picked him up. Apparently, the Squishter and the Davester "forgot" to be good citizens and knocked the Scottish tutu right off of everloving Lydia in pursuit of a toy and with the walking pneumonia she has, she was not amused. Needless to day, when they ran outside in the face of her ire, that made it worse. So they were both in lock-up. Queen Alice got all the scritches when I came to the door.
Windstorm tomorrow night. Wonder if that is just the media getting out and brushing off all of their Storm 2007" paraphenalia. We shall see. Don't know if we are ready. Think so.
The colors are lovely when I notice. Woodsmoke scents the dark. Clean laundry, friends and family to call and to write, veggie hotdogs, good work, and knowing when to tone it down and when I don't, forgiving myself and looking forward to the chance to try again...I am glad I am forgiven. I'm glad I am learning how. And doing it.
Bonfire this Friday at Shilshole. Will load up the old Subaru with at least half of what is clogging up the garage. Whoo-hoooo!
Wonder what will unfold this year? Last year, it was the stars Cygnet and Lyra and a high electrician with a very lovely, drunk, and shy Ukranian wife. I'm bringing my drum and some hot cider unless it rains, and then it's just the cider.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Life is pretty amazing when your dog gets to go on field trips to the Sammamish plateau and you get home about the same time. We had quite a "Field" trip this past weekend.
Off to Will and Little Feather's for nothing less than paradise. The cats didn't exactly think so, but they were over it as of 5:30 this morning.
It started with the seamless drive down. Mary J picked Cedar up from dogcare and met me where I was finished with giving a workshop on Sacred Time and Sacred Space. It was fairly well received. So I think. Some people just are never open to what SPirit is bringing to them and to their Hearts.
Good sleeps. Quiet talk. Long walks. Dancing to Afro-Celt and Rumi-esque music. Making pies with fruit fresh from the orchard. Eating pies. And all manner of other simple and beautifully prepared with love foods. More wine. Less than a teacup full all weekend but that was all that was needed. Mushrooming in the second growth woods under hemlock and cedar and doug fir. Finding bones and skeleton bones of a deer under the deep duff near a tree. Carried parts to bring home including most of a mandible complete with teeth, but it indicated it didn't want to come yet. Long, long sleeps. Good talks with good coffee. Prayer. Dreams. Laughter. Some tears. A seamless drive home. Some work in the yard. Hauling firewood for warm house this week. It's working right now.
Early bed. Early up. To work. Long day. Time for more bed.

Monday, October 08, 2007

The house is lit by candleight only. It is so peaceful. And it's starting to smell like home again. I don't know why it didn't--ait, yes, I do--when you don't do dishes for three days, things can begin to reek. Well, dishes are done. And so is my first retake class of catechetical year 2. And it was a pleasure. Mostly. I like to learn about things like that. And it makes for interesting conversation with the Committee in my head, the part of me that is reading Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd and the smart alec who would rather be at home. The irreverance is quite entertaining but distracting when I am trying to actually finish the paperwork this time. And I did. Well. Thoughtfully. Enough to jump through a hoop. Not sure why I care though. But I'm signed up for the next one. It's close and it's on a free night.

Cedar is snoozing on the couch. He wasn't too sure about all this candelight stuff. I told him to get used to it. it's how we spend most of the winter. My favorite is baking bread and other deliciosities by candlelight.
I worked out this morning. Didn't fall off anything. Still having trouble with the sparkly light thingies just off the periphery until the drugs kick in. Need real caffeine. I've got some stuff from the interior garden on my plate and I'm not dealing. So my dear body is saying, Deal or we will deal with it for you. From your bed. Flat on your back or with some sessions on the bathroom floor. Okay. Okay.
I was going to keep things light and airy, but I;ve decided to keep them real instead. I'm not complaining. Or living in my head.
I am grieving Fiona and Sadie something fierce.
And to some extent my former life that wasn't really real.
I am face to face with my financial situation and the water for that garden. We are on course and it is scary.
I am afraid that one or some of those dear to me will get sick, very sick. Sounds kind of infantile to even mention it.
i am afraid that if I quit my job I won't find what I want (even though I have this knack for asking and then getting womped with the abundance of the gift of the Universe)
It's all this fear just dancing around saying stuff that isn't real. It is annoying, distracting, disabling, non nourishing, crappy, lonely....thing.
And that's all it is.
I need to get some home repair projects going around here. That will make a huge difference. Maybe I'll start with one in my head. Someone please hand me the hammer....

Saturday, October 06, 2007

There is something to be said for waking up WITHOUT a rock hard neck and the dizzies that go with it.
Whew. FInally. It's still sore but it is flexible and I can move it without feeling like I'm in one of those upside down-all around machines at the Puyallup Fair. Thanks for Cheryl, the wunder-massage therapist. And to Mother Time. And several night of 11 hours of sleep. Made for very interesting starts to the day in FIrst-Grade land right up till about, oh say, 11 am, when I would really wake up.
It has been a week of hard work, cozy evenings by the fire, a few walks out in the rain and dark with Mr. Fraidy Cat. Last night, he discovered that there is a puzzle painting above the couch with two Sheltie puppies on it. It's been there his whole life, most of mine in this cabin. The growling, jumping sideways, the posturing, the "Mom-what-is it-come-and-get-it-or-make-it-right-cause-it's weirding-me-out-dance about had me peeing my pj's. Same dance and stance with the pieces of wood I moved in the backyard, the pile of dirt left by the landscapers, the recycling cart not put exactly back in the same spot and order and even, me, wearing a different bathrobe when I get out of the shower! It's a phase, I'm reassured, but it makes for interesting walks and life around here. I wonder what he will do today when he finds out I have given him a new waterbowl while I clean the other one.
Here are some pieces of writing I gleaned from Forest Lover by SUe Vreeland. If you haven't read this, it is luscious, meaningful, connective writing about a woman-painter who really lived, Emily Carr from British Columbia at the turn of the 20th century. This book has really spoken to me, twice. Even more so now after having been to Iona. I am planning a trip back to the Skeena Valley and maybe to the Queen Charlotte Islands. It is now a UNESCO site.

"When she'd been troubled as a girl, she'd taken her hurt outside, had lain with her face pressed down to earth's cool green cheek, smelled her fresh perfumes, and tried to feel earth's buried heart-throb. If only that would be enough for her now."--Emily.

"The interior. It's so deep and quiet and still. It could heal a person, body and soul. I get a sense of some presence breathing there. God's too big to be squeezed into a stuffy church, but I feel Him in the spaces between the trees."--Emily

"Dede loved her tea. She called it her cup of you-and-me..."

"Soul is energy."--Emily

"Hailat, they murmured. Hailat. What's that mean? she asked Henry. He held up his hands and wiggled his chubby fingers. "Person with spirit power in the hands."---one of the First Nations people's description of Emily and what she does with her painting of the totem poles, carvings, canoes, spirit boxes, and native villages

And there are more. I like having books to read like this one. Just started Dance of the Dissident Daughter by Sue Monk Kidd. Not too far into it yet. WIll spend most of the day on yardwork, housework, and schoolwork, and Squishy play-time. Then book-group tonight.

And I'm in a little bit of heaven I had forgotten about. Someone gave me some apricot toothpaste to try and Mom gave me some of her mustard pickle. My whoo-hoo dance wasn't so different from Mr. Fraidy when I popped that open as soon as I got home into the kitchen.:) Except I wasn't growling. My mouth was full!

Thursday, October 04, 2007

i don't have the energy to edit today so just deal. :)
Don't laugh. I was so out of it and tired last night that I went to bed with my apron on and woke up with it on!
I am making a cozy thermos of coffee, Erin-style, to take to work today.
I still have this cold/aches/rock-stiff neck/energy-sapper crud. I have chosen not to work out for almost a week (first time in oh, say, over a year and a half). It is what it is.
It's not been a bad or hard week. The work has been good. The kids a little off the wall.
I understand that on a day when I was missing my mother, she was actually across the parking lot from me with Mary J. waving their arms trying to get my attention and what was I doing--why, trying to understand why 6 year old girls want certain boys to get "sexy" with them and then said six-year old boys, run and try to catch said girls. Brings me right back to some dude named Adam and his girl. These boys don't have a clue or a chance. When they are 6 or 36. So I did what the wisest of us do, pulled out Ramona and read the chapter about her trying to catch dear little Davey because he was just so lovable and then pulled out the Steps to Respect and we went over how we show affection at school in okay ways. Still isn't working. Then we go to Sister Patricia Maureen land--you will write this simple statement until it goes through the pencil into your brain and if that doesn't work, we make the sentence longer so, oh I'm sorry, Your recess, it's over that took so long. Then we finish with Dr. Phil-How did that work for you?
I have had three argument appointments this week (I only argue at 12:15 and 3:15)-same kid. Mostly, he just doesn't like school. It's too long,.it cuts into his Youtube time at home. And building Star Wars stuff with Legos. Could I say use my powers (his words not mine) to getus out at 2pm on Mondays and Thursdays (when he doesn't have to share the computer with his big brother) and could I cut the homework down. (He has about 8 minutes a night). I said I woultd take a look at the HW thing and I couldn't do anything about the other one. I asked him about the note he was choosing to write and he got this aghast look on his face-"I thought YOU were going to write the note?!" I said no, it's your problem. The we had a conversation about how he thinks he can't write. I said that wasn't true. ANd he actually agreed. Would I help him with the big words. I said yes. I wish you could see these moments of Heaven right here. This stuff matters so much I can't remember to put on my pj's before I go to bed.
I agree. School cuts into my Sheltie ball time. Actually, I love school. It's what keeps me sane. It also gives me other things--like the crud.
Enjoy this wet, cool, October day.