Mississippi Moments

Saturday, June 28, 2008

Soundtrack of my current Life: Dean Crouch Reel Medley--not the first one on the CD but the one closer to the end of the CD but not the fancy, mixed one. This one is peppy, upbeat, simple, and LOOONNNNNGGG! It fits what's going on around here.
I am packing up to go on a little camping adventure with Mary J. With a little sidetrip
to the Field first. Must get out of dodge. Paring down. What is needed vs. what is wanted.
Finished an excellent set of classes at the Leadership Institute at Seattle U all last week. Wow.
Taught my first real dance class since......
Cleaned in this home. Found the floor in three rooms. That's pretty good considering there are only five rooms in this cottage.
The little garden is coming along in the back. The prairie in the front is thriving, too, because the landscraper guy hasn't made it by yet. It will just have to be.
I crashed for 16 hours yesterday--plus a nap. Made it to Curves twice this week. Hurting by Friday so I just hauled water and scrubbed floors and did laundry instead. Lovely quiet walks in the morning with my little dog. And in the evenings sometimes.
He has been having fun at Auntie Lydia's as the photos will show you. Now he gets to spend lots of time with me, at home, doing what we do here.
Darren H. finished the front porch, de-critterization project! Guess what else he pulled out of there? A sharp ax and a crowbar. It actually fell on him. I asked him where the money was that he must have found....no luck.:) What other secrets does this little house hold? When I return from this adventure, he is going to put in French doors in the lavendar room which will not be lavendar for long because Brigie is going to help me take up the carpet, refinish the floor, prime, and paint. We might even knock out part of the wall by the closet and make the closet a walk-in space. I know how to take the doors off now (thank you Colleen:) and Fletcher bought the cottage a tricked-out tool set. I can fix the treadmill now.
Yesterday, I began to work with Kathleen and Michael's sweet boy,P.J. ! He is a dear sweet, funny, curious, eager to learn little man. And cute as a bug's ear. His brother came in with him and his mom. Deco--"Hi. Where are the toys? Don't you have any toys?" I LOVE THAT! We had fun "working"---most of yesterday was assessment to get a bigger picture of what he knows and where we need to go to support his success and fill in a couple of not even holes---just little indentations that we can strengthen for the overall picture. I am looking forward to this. We will also bring up the Toys from the basement and in from the garage!:) It's been a long time since there have been any human kids around here. Be careful what you ask for----you get kids in all forms unless you are specific---mice kids, rat kids, bee kids, wasp kids, dog kids, cat kids, raccoon kids, bird kids...finally human kids---but then I asked for that energy and reality in specific---and oh, look! Thank you, Good and Gracious Lord----
Got some more good news about a friend and colleague. Another of our faculty (former) was diagnosed with cancer and he had his surgery this week. It looks like they got it all and is likely a stage one tumor. Yay. Healing, prayers, and support for him and his family.
I am set for the next couple of months for the care/follow-up appointments that I need. Have a mammogram, Ct and bone scan set, also meetings with a radiologist and also with a general oncologist again. Will make the acupuncture appointments when I get back. The nutritional practice is just that----it is going to take the same kind of attention, intention, and trust, and do that all these other behavioral, mental, physical and emotional changes have taken. That's what it takes to integrate something into your life. Did you know that 90% of all heart patients (by-pass, transplant, whatever else) go back to their regular behaviors and being after surgery?? Don't you find that shocking? I don't. I still want all the things that I want ( talking about food here). So my first steps have been to buy, make, and eat spinach salads twice a week. Tons of good, clean, energized water. exercise some. and tend the garden of things that I will eventually eat. More later. My brain is full. Time to shower and head out the door.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

I couldn't help this...
3 things I love: morning, dirt, bugs---in the dirt. not in my hair.
or on my dog. or in my coffee. :)
I love my life.
And my sisters.
And my family.
And my friends.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

"Gratitude is Heaven."---Gunilla Norris

It has been a long day. Squishy and I were outside watering the garden and communing with Mother Earth (read: he was playing Cedar-ball and I was laughing at him while trying to balance on my feet and not pee my pants too much.)

Started a grad class on Leadership at Seattle U today. First time I have been back on campus for several decades. Arrived early and explored a bit. Found an ethnobotanical garden dedicated to the Northwestern First Nations people who spoke that L-shoot language. This garden was near Lemieux Library. Found another serene garden complete with waterfall and setting stones near Campion. It was almost 30 years that I got my first college summer job working at that library in the periodicals sections. I remember sitting outside on the steps and eating my peanut butter sandwich everyday until I learned that I could go to the special collections section (ie. old, historical, reference, authentic items) and with clean hands, cotton gloves, could spend an hour every day getting lost in original Harper's Weekly magazines circa American Civil War years. That was some job! I hated working indoors and by myself most of the time. I loved the order that reshelving brought. I liked helping people find things for research and projects. I liked not having to go through official channels for my own research needs and I liked being confident that what I learned in that library I could transfer to any other library. It was a good thing. Sort of. You can hide from the real world in libraries, too.

The class is a good one. Learning some new things about 21st century constructivist collaborative learning community models of teaching and learning and the role that data plays in this. We are actually learning some good, hands-on, minds-on skills for gathering, reporting, and using data to inform our decisions. A couple of more days and some grad credits. Need to keep my credential up to date. Signed up for another class on critical thinking, healthy brain, and computational fluency for later this summer. Should be interesting. I need to revamp the way I teach math. These are good places to start. I also got to watch a flicker and some hummingbirds in action during the early afternoon. I hate being bored. I also hate sitting still. Sounds like some people I typically spend my days with.:P

I had a wonderful day yesterday. Started out cleaning out and loading up a bunch of stuff from my classroom. I plan to do more tomorrow afternoon. Got help unloading because I had no energy left. Then I spent a wonderful, relaxing afternoon with Julie and Connor Q. at the zoo. Oh, my is it fun to be around a 19 month old who can sign and communicate his ideas to his mom with sign. It is the most natural thing in the world and yet people were watching him in amazement and he was just talking to his mother. And she was talking back. With her hands, her words, and her heart. It was a beautiful thing to see over and over. And the gorillas and hippos and mountain goats and AMERICAN KESTREL (oh, so beautiful and layered in colors) and the Peregrine Falcon. And docent/handlers are responsive, quiet, centered, respectful, open to questions and careful. The respectful way the humans are with these beautiful animals--it was my favorite part of the day. I enjoyed the meanderings around the zoo, and I enjoyed our conversations about anything and everything. It was time to go when it was time to go. A lovely, spontaneous Gift. Thank you Julie and Connor. I love being Auntie Erin to this one, too. Don't know what will unfold around that but I hold it as an honor, a blessing, and a joy.

Mr. H started disassembling the raccoon motel today in the front porch. Get this! There was a 26 inch bees' nest in there. I will take a photo of this. You won't believe it. The wasps' nests get removed tomorrow. And it wasn't just raccoon central and not just this season--rat AND raccoon central for EONS. There is a ton of crap (literally) and other junk he removed from there. He will rebuild and whatver needs to happen later this week. Thankful we are for that, too.

Took some long walks with Squishy around the lower and upper trails that border the lake on which Fletcher lives. We were in the back section on a hillside when we accidentally disturbed a large bird. Turned out to be a young owl. He sat in the tree and just looked at us for the longest time. He was being watched closely by a couple of what looked like sapsuckers. He would vocalize every couple of moments. I tried to stay quiet with Cedar and just watch for a bit. We did not make him comfortable though. Then it was time to go. I love the smell of being under trees and the moss and the scent of sun on cranes' bill geraniums....

Friday, June 20, 2008

More Ordinary Miracles...and More Musings from "A Mystic Garden" washed down with an organic sauv blanc from New Zealand and a massage.....

"Your feet are not lost.
You are standing on the ground.
Earth supports you in life,
and you are held in it by death.
The elements of earth
are your very substance.
Where is the decline?"

So the next word in my healing journey is that I need to GROUND.
I am scattered. Literally. Energetically. Physically.
It would be to my best healing interest to cease ALL "energy work", looking and thinking and interacting with beings and ways of being that are not part of this ordinary reality. In other words, put "empath erin" to bed and get those feet, hands, heart, face, body into the dirt and guts and Love of Mother Earth. And on top of that, create, do, and become a ritual of integration of LOVING this Earthly Body of Mine.
And my new best friends are kale, mustard greens, green beans, spinach, broccoli, brussel sprouts, and other deep green plant beings. And I'm to consider eating meat--100% organic, vegetarian, free-range, locally raised chicken. At least once a week. And give up the processed soy products that I like so much. Replace those with things called--tempeh, miso, edamame (sp?). Okay then. And drink lots more clean water, keep up the working out (been back at Curves three times this week--YAHOO!, and spend time in my garden. And get my Vitamin D levels checked again and maintain. And flow-up with that mamogram, CT, and bone scan (already on the docket). And find time and friends and places to LAUGH AND LOVE!

So here is the Ordinary Miracle of the week that isn't so ordinary at all-------
I love how the Universe brings/sends/beeps to us the Teachers and Healers that we need and desire. So, I called my cousin who is the 2nd Grade teacher at a school that is near to this little cottage, thinking as I did so, that we would have a gentle, general, generous conversation about what secondgradeland looks like. Instead, the GIFT I came away with was much more than that----first of all, (I wonder if she will be reading this:P)--she is an amazing woman--strong, clear, passionate, creative, dynamic, curious, delightful, powerful--she has no idea of how beautiful she is on the inside or outside---or maybe she does--she shares her beauty and joy freely. Next, her knowledge, wisdom, art, experience, and enthusiasm were mine for the sharing...and BOY! DOES SHE KNOW HER STUFF! Not---knows ABOUT but SHE KNOWS IT< DOES IT< TRIES IT< CREATES IT< FINDS IT< CHANGES WHAT AIN"T WORKING IT.....I plugged in. I drowned in it. I left with my tank much more full than when I arrived. It's not full yet....but oh, it could be, may be, will be. They are lucky that she is on staff there. I am content to learn from her. Some of our time together was like looking in the mirror about 20 years ago. I hope we can connect our groups of learners this coming school year and do service learning projects at Golden Gardens or Discovery Park or the new educational outdoor center and grounds near Seward Park. We will see. And it was fun to catch up on family stuff and life stuff over lunch after. Miracle, folks....yup....be careful what you ask for. YOU GET IT!

The classroom is coming along but I tire very easily still. Been working hard all week to get it done. Will put the rest of it to bed tomorrrow and work from home for awhile. Curriculum development is fun and so is creating a curriculum map/themes for the year.

It is Solstice. Eat something yellow. (Or drink it.)Make your wish/prayer/intention in the Light of what Light you want in your Life. I thank the Lord of Life and Light for ALL of that in my Life.
More from Mystic Garden:
"Can you trust that
out of chaos comes the new?
Order and beauty have fooled many".

Bright, Bright Blessings, Dear Ones!!!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Rubber Chicken Kudos to the Graduates!
It is in classic Fair Isle Tradition that we continue with the Cosmic Happy Dance and the Rubber Chicken Kudos with Big Hugs and Sloppy Cedar Kisses for those Special Ones who have achieved this step on their Life Path! We are so proud of you and so happy for the Power of Choice that this opens for you...and Viva Italia...go have some espresso and dream of perfect little dresses in Monaco!:) Oh my...This Is A VERY GOOD THING!

On other news:
I have been down sick and up sick for the past two days with some flu-crud that was going around firstgradeland. Could have been some stress in there, too. At least the headache part has been pushed to the peripheries. I know how to cocoon now. And there is no way to fight it. It knocks you down, out, and flat. Even therapy helped find the core but didn't take away the physical stuff. Lots of change---again. Another death related to former faculty, some leavings, and that. I have had to be very conscious about Breathing all the way to my toes and into my cranium. Over and over. And water when it would stay down. And bare feet and lying down outside on Mother Earth. In the quiet damp. Light is too much.
It has been hard-going putting the classroom to bed. It has been hard putting me "to bed" after an intense year at school and out of it. None of it seems relevant anymore. Nothing "fits" anymore--clothes, thoughts, behaviors, habits, stuff, even Dreams--what does fit is happening in the moment. The Power of Now. The Power of Being. The Power of the Succulent, Juicy RIGHT HERE!
I am enjoying learning to gather and assimilate data. I like this aspect--the science of teaching and learning...I will enjoy gutting and reorganizing the classroom in this new state. Simplifying. I keep hearing this over and over "K.I.S.S."--Keep it simple, students. Or Keep it simple, Super-Darling-Teacher-Person. Nothing fits anymore- not former lazy ways of getting by, not resorting to yelling at kids (I got called on that one in my yearly review--okay....after I was done (in about 3 seconds) of being defensive, I was GRATEFUL for this on my plate to change, ameliorate, eliminate-- I can BE THE TEACHER OF MY DREAMS--no excuses, no more waiting,no need to take any classes to make this happen for me...It's that stuff from the Secret (Thank you Freeway Diva--oh my! It comes--attention, intention, trust, action) My therapist put it in a perfect way for me to understand---with all that has been going on these past months, I have no understanding of how to be 'normal" anymore. What is my "new normal"? She said it's like the classic putting new wine into old wineskins....it don't work. It ain't right.
So in order to find out, I need to be still and listen.....this I can do. This I can Be. And pass the wine...:)
Some things fit--therapy, Fletcher, Cedar, coffee, walks, playing harp AGAIN--it has been two years-literally since Fiona passed to her New Life this June 15th(We honored and remembered Sadie's passing on June 12th), French Circle time, time with Friends, baths, time with Family of Origin and Family of Choice, books and bookgroup,fires in the woodstove and Bonfires--- NEXT ONE IS JUNE 20TH AT GOLDEN GARDENS-COME AND JOIN US FOR SOLSTICE!--
A couple of other remarkable things happened this week:
I DANCED FOR REAL---down the hall at school after the children left and it was real and strong and without pain! YAY!
Last night when I was able to finally take Cedar and me and a cup of coffee for a walk around 8:45 pm, we went by one of our favorite little gardens on the corner of 8th and 62nd. The "gardener" was there, enjoying a smoke and a cup of tea. We had a lovely chat about the layering, energy, and beauty of his garden and work with Mother Earth. He calls his garden The Treasure Garden. I just knew it!:) That is what I have felt for seasons as we passed by. He invited me to come in anytime. His name is Matthew. He gave me a beautiful clematis blossom. He also recognized Sheltie energy--why? He'd had a sweet Sheltie rescue named Lady. She was a tri and she was his Love Shadow. He still holds her close in Love and Energy. I did not get the rest of that story but I have a sense that there will be a connection between the Fair Isle Fairy Garden and The Treasure Garden. Yes, the Fair Isle Fairy Garden is emerging from the Prairie. We have already spent an hour this morning in the back working on the comfrey, coinplant, bamboo, ivy off the fence, golden chain and the akebia. The deal back there is if I hit my head on anything it gets a trim and if Cedar doesn't have clear ball access, then it gets a trim. We also set up a couple of jumps for us and brought some veggie-dog bits to get us back in the mood for training. It was fun. This dog has so much bounce. The Airedale behaviors are cracking me up--he has this way of coming at you with his mouth wide open, teeth showing on the sides and then side-whacking you. We are working on stopping thebody-slamming thing. I believe he can put the brakes on.
One other Ordinary Miracle happened, too. The hummingbirds are in the back garden, zipping and setting in the bamboo. Their soft wing-whirr and flight-energy (it is a lovely colorful energy) paint the garden with the flow of watercolors in the air. Add to that the snarking, garuffing, side-leaping splatter-energy of Airedale-Wannabee-Boy and the palette of Not-Normal Mom ...and All is Well.

I will leave off with this thought from A Mystic Garden by Gunilla Norris:

It won't be long
before a storm will prune
what is ready to let go.
It will be swift and clean.

Be your own storm.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Gettin' excited about the dress-finding support coming in. Will take you all uo on it in small bits when school is over....and if we ever get some freaking warmer weather. 'Till then, it's the long undies, layered sweater look, and fleece socks. And scarf, and boots, and gloves. Hah, I never took my Christmas lights down so we are "in"! Hey, if you have lost some faith in humanity and what we are capable of, check out the article in the Seattle TImes about the boy who is graduating from Federal Way and his grandma. That puts it into perspective....time to go to school Love to all. And Squishy grunt-google-snarl things which mean the same thing.

Friday, June 06, 2008

Sitting here. In my long underwear, woolen sweater, fleece socks and a turtle neck.
It's JUNE!!!
Cannot believe this. I turned on the furnace this morning. Too groggy to start a fire safely.
I am exhausted. Literally coming home from school and going to bed. For hours. Waking up around 9 or 10, having a cup of tea, reading a little, and back to bed until morning. Took a break to get mouse traps and have a short French lesson this week. Haven't trapped any mice yet--heard them in the kitchen this morning--but I was too cozy to get up and just watch them run---so was the "ratter-wannabee" in bed with me. We both just looked at the door and went back to doze.
French group/lesson was wonderful. My brain kicked in. Mostly. There is something very special about being around a table with two Marine Scientists (we're talking top NOAA scientist and a top faculty member at the UW) and have them argue in French about the phylum, species,family,etc. etc. of gooey-ducks, shrimp deliniations and fresh water crawdads...and then to discuss behavioral differences between ours here in the PacNW and those in Australia. How lucky can a girl get?!?! And to see my Dear Friend, Madame Tak and see her love, joy, and pride radiating in her eyes. Her beautiful, strong daughter graduated this year. Amy will make her mark on the world. Madame Prof Liana runs a tight ship and makes the loveliest tea, often from what is growing in her "jardin". It is a good thing....all of it.
It is hitting hard that I am not going to Jonestown this year. I am not looking forward to making more appointments after this week. But I will. Tests and follow-up care continue. I am grateful and reluctant.
The RV finally moved on. Peregrina--beautiful, old, memory-making camping fortress. Now there is room for something lighter, smaller, and which will stay in the garage. More on that later.
I am taking suggestions for dress ideas. I haven't bought one in 12 years. I went to Nordies at Bellevue Square the Wed. after I moved back to Seattle from Virginia and I bought a blue dress there. That was in 1996. It's time. Send me links, ideas, places you go.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Sunday morning walks before 7 am, even better before 6. We had another luverly one this grey morning. With coffee. And mittens. I'm still cold all the time. Cedar and I were followed for almost a block by a fluffy, golden-striped cat with "princess paws"--slightly turned out, meticulously set just so as he moved, light, balanced, but powerful--
the way he was walking. He meant business, what sort, I don't know but he meant for us to know that we were being tracked and that it was his sidewalk. If you could have seen this cat's energy, every couple of seconds, it would come and give Cedar a poke or a kick in his hind end ("Furjets, I call'em), It was hilarious. SO I stopped after 3/4 of a block and turned around and we sat and waited for Sir Cat. At that point, he switched trajectories and went a curved route around some very mutilated juniper shrubs. While we did not see his face and saunter after that, we knew he was there.
I've been working all weekend on assessments and report card stuff. Makes your head spin. Had a little time to play last evening and then it was back to the grind. I don't mind this grind.

This week has been the Week of Passings. Another Beautiful Spirit passed over this week and my Brother and Family Grieve. We look to the West for Healing, the North for Our Strength, the East for Missouri-Love and Roots, and South for the Creative Energy to Flow back into our Tired Hearts and Hands. I'll bet that the Rainbow Bridge was shaking and swaying when that Beautiful Boy-Horse moved across with Purpose, Wisdom, Power, and Presence. Our Teachers NEVER leave us.......

Today is the Tara Academy Recital. Having been out of the teaching part of this for weeks at a whack, I "feel" out of it. It will be fine. I have my "job" there to do as as well and I love that grind, too. And I am glad that dancing is not over for the summer. It is already, in my mind, one of those things that is going to help with the Healing. I can't dance and move like that quite yet, but I can feel it will happen in a matter of weeks, not months. And I am SO THANKFUL for that. I wake up these nights in different panics---last night was that I forgot to feed Cedar dinner. Usually it is that I have forgotten or "lost" some children that were given into my care. Yikes. That's the worst. Other times, it's that I don't know the language around me--and then I remember to speak from my Heart and it's going to be okay. Another one was that I was trapped again in a dark place. The Difference now is that I am waking up and after a couple of breaths and quiet, I can collect my panic and know that All is Well. That I haven't Lost anyone, forgotten to care and love for my dog, that I am not trapped or unsafe or alone, that I DO have a Voice and a Heart Language no matter where I am or with whom. I also had another Dream about my ex-. This time, he acted as if everything was hunky-dory and he invaded my space on the bench without asking or anything--like firstgraders when they forget about personal body space "bubbles"..the bottom line is that I created space immediately with my own Power and told him that he couldn't just expect to sidle up into my body/heart/mind space like that. He wasn't welcomed to that. Then he followed me around for awhile while I was trying to set up a new home for Cedar and me. We were successful and when N-saw that he wasn't a part of that, he got back into his car (with his new partner and 4 young children that were his--) and started t drive away. I reminded him that he owed me tax money from before and he acknowledged it with a big smile as he drove off and then he asked what he could give me instead since he didn't have the money----I yelled back-"Two of your kids to Love"...adn he was going to ...and then I woke up....need to give that one some thought. Or not. And I need to get it through my THICK HEART that he owes me nothing, that forgiveness is what has given us Freedom from this energetic tangle and that we are on separate paths.
This whole cancer-thing has opened me up to worlds you can't imagine. It's all here to stay....the new worlds, not the cancer.
Enjoy this day, Beloveds. I have Social Studies to assess and a silly dog to feed.