Mississippi Moments

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Costume Party AND Divine Chaos.

One more thing. Well, maybe two.
Sometimes you just need to play dress-up.
And when I sit still, I smell like my dog.
And to me, that's DIVINE.
Costume Party or Divine Chaos?

Cedar and I have been walking in the snow and wind this early morning. It is lightly coating things and the wind is slicing sideways. I love the quiet on Sunday mornings and I love to walk pre-dawn into the waking up of the world. The mountains are cloaked today, snuggled under quilt-clouds. Layers of them. You wouldn't know we even have mountains to rouse.

I went with the Star-Sisters on Friday night to listen to Caroline Myss speak. She is one of the Extraordinary Speakers series taking place at the Center for Spiritual Living. Big place that. Anyhoo, the band played. The introducers introduced. And Caroline spoke. Chatted rather. Directly and at length. And then we prayed. In a manner of heartscape. And I have been living with all of this since. While doing report card comments (which took 6 hours longer than they usually do because I couldn't write a word that wasn't in support of the spirit of each child nor could I write something that wasn't positive and mean every blinking word fully. No couching. No negativity. None.) That was the first Life result of that chat. Actually, it would have happened that way anyway.

Caroline spoke about how caught up "we" are in the wounds, the "hell" of our lives, the "distress", the "oh-it-was-bad-for-me". Then she said "Get over it". "Get over yourself". The time has changed. Be here. Be here. Time to be humble. Time to be grateful. Time to BE WITH GOD. And if you cannot find God, let God find you. How? Shut up. Listen. Be still. (Sound familiar? "Be still and know that I am...")Then she started talking about the mystics.....Caroline is a medical intuitive. She also is a "fallen away Catholic" educated though all the levels at various Catholic institutions including the Jesuits. She was speaking my language. I don't know how many folks in the crowd got it, but I did and so did the Sisters with me. In truth, they really got it because Caroline has been one of their close "teachers' for years now. What they "got" is their story to keep or share as they wish. Bottom line, she said nothing new. I was and wasn't disappointed. I have learned to listen, believe, trust, and act on my own Wisdom. I have long found and breathed God in everything. I call God by lots of different Names--mostly Greening. Mostly Love. Mostly Why? Mostly Spirit. Mostly Abba/Mama. Mostly Mine. Ours. And when I can't find God, I shut up. In my head. In my body. In my restlessness. Caroline reminded people to pray. I guess folks in the "ordinary world" don't get to everyday like I do. All day. With people that intuitively know how to pray already. Our lives and learning ARE PRAYER. This is something the mystics from every age,stage, and tradition have known. It is not an easy way to be. It is actually the only way to be FOR HEALING. And that is what her talk was about. She has been working (quite literally) with Teresa of Avila (talk about the big guns who are nuns) and has co-written a book with Saint T. From Interior Castles to Enter the Castle. I intend to read both over the next few weeks of winter. Love how stuff comes to me. We then did a "prayer-scape"--something I share every day with the children in secondgradeland and sometimes just with myself at night on the backsteps of Fair Isle in the rain or looking at the stars. Caroline reminded everyone to get out of their heads and into their hearts/behind their hearts and to be still. Be grateful. Be humble. Give it back to God. She spoke about the trimmings and the costume party of religions. And then about the Divine and Divine Chaos--God's way is not our way. (Sound familiar--"Your ways are not my ways"....) N.B. I am soo thankful for my training and studies in Biblical scripture. And I am thankful that I am given the opportunity to learn the same thoughts in other scriptural traditions (Rumi, Hafiz, Vedic scriptures, Buddhist pillars, Black Elk, Celtic Book of the Dead-which is in my lap as I write --don't know why, and that's another thing she spoke about--trusting your intuition.) I do now. And this book wants to speak to me today about STORY. Okay then.And what is coming up is something called "Harbour"---foundation, establishment. At the end of every voyage, it is necessary to take stock and determine the future of your freight. And then to ask---What gift or opportunity does your present position give you?" So I will chew on that today while I am working, baking, cleaning, resting, and preparing for the week.

IT is still snowing lightly. It is time for breakfast for Cedar. And me, I am happy for the gift of more coffee. Thanks, Caroline, for some food for thought.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Still having a life.
Still working on report cards.
Taking a break is nice and then you come right back to what wasn't finished.
It is a "what is".
No deep meaning. Not even to sure what the day is.
Time for bed.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Treadmill R Us!
Cedar and I had our first session together on the treadmill this morning! ABout 15 minutes plus a 20 minute walk. I've been watching too many Dog Whisperer episodes and I watched Cesar doing this with high-energy dogs. So I followed his steps and they worked1 Now, we need to do it so I can look up when we are walking on the t-mill. We both were in the "zone" before school. Right on!
I won't go into detail about why we had to come home from our walk early...suffice it to say that sometimes we get "tailed" by someone in a car that isn't "right".........so we cam ehome and turned that situation into a "plus".....

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Um...my sister can really sing.....and so can her friends.
It was quite a night.
I have some stars to gae luke a' now...in a long night sky.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

"And could you keep your heart in wonder at the daily miracles of life, your pain would not seem less wondrous than your joy."--Kahlil Gibran

Some things on my "plate':
Made tea on the stove (during Coli's radio interview) and made tots in the stove for dinner later in the week. It's all working.

The adoption is back on the plate. Conversations are happening with the original adoption agency folks. We shall see. So are conversations with other professionals concerning getting this family started. I finally had someone on the other end acknowledge that this process has been more than a rollercoaster. She used the word "nightmare". I let it be. I'm not calling it anything now because that gives it power away.

Mary J. reminded me of a forgotten technical term for what is happening at school right now--"January blahs"--ahh. yes. makes sense. we're still at what we are at. And having some fun. The L-word is back. Right in the classroom in which I teach. as of last Friday. Shared via the community center. And nothing is happening around it. no checks. nothing. I put the word out informally through the kids. Yeeeuch.

Enough folks have their holiday lights still up that it is making the morning walks more of a pleasure. Cesar Whisperer-Man is right. It's not just the dogs who get into the "zone" after 30-40+ minutes, it's the humans. Monkey-mind, morning crabbies, malaise, energy-suckage----get walking, keep walking, let it go, look at things or not, just keep moving. With cute silly companion and coffee. Then it clicks.

My cancer care team wants an MRI this next time. Ok then. Little nervous about that.
Can I have some tunes in there? I read about a lady who was forgotten in the tube once over night. maybe it was over a weekend. i have another appointment later in the day so that probably wouldn't happen to me. i just don't like elevators much and definitely not tunnels or caves or mines. but i have been in all.

i am not going ot use any ore capitals until later today. we are going to sea/air school today to learn about international gateway stuff.

i learned the french words for belly button and turtleneck this week. i also learned the correct phrasing for "my laces are too tight". next i will learn : "My shoes are too loosey". important for a girl to know.

looking forward to
the concert this weekend.
walking some land.
splitting some more wood
getting report cards nearly completed.
walking my dog.
some phone conversations about life and friendship and everything
continuing to read about 3 Cups of Tea.

i'm learning a whole lot about drama right now and how it does not serve me. and it is a hard one to break. awareness is the key. paying attention to my body helps. it gives me these signals--directly, consistently, firmly. and when i listen, i can make gentle responses instead of the reacting and over-reacting shit. it's happening a lot. energetically too. i'm thankful for the opportunities to re-language this. the habit doesn't serve me, my peace, all peace.

Peace be with us this day.

Monday, January 12, 2009

Quiet Morning.
Taking a break from lesson planning.
Cozy fire in the woodstove. Magical Strings fills the room.
Dog sacked out on couch.
Me, proud of completing all the drafting documents for a unit on explanatory writing. Now it's time to plan a puppet making component to the writing project. The students should like that. I know, I will.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

The power of creative emergence
involves groping.

Emergence requires destruction of your present order.

--Dr. Brian Swimme, Cosmologist
Sometimes I just love the rain. And the quiet of the mornings. And the cold. And the warmth of the coffee in the cup you are holding in the mist and the rain. And the reflection of lights on other dark windows. And candles in the windows. And the natural soundtrack that unfolds in my mind as I walk. And understanding my dog. And understanding myself. There's a lot of love in all of this.

While at the same time, I don't love the pain, disharmony, violence, and cosmic crap that is going down in Gaza and Somalia and...fill in the blank.

My friend, Will, is practicing how to be IN THE MOMENT. Without judgement. Just Being.
That messes with how I have learned to Love and notice what and whom I love. And he smiles at me and looks at me with these eyes and says, "You are Being Love."

So that's what this feels like, looks like, tastes like, smells like, sounds like, resonates like......

There was a lot of Love in the collection of "objets d'art" at the SAM yesterday. "The Gift" from the Coast Salish people. And I confess that I went in there with my "other eyes" as well. That place was ALIVE with energy and story and relationship and connection and POWER. Ohhhh..... And learning. And challenge....It is not possible to interact with such as that and not be changed. To have read Emily Carr's story also helped to give it context. To have spent so many weeks up on the Quinault River and on the Humptulips and down at North River and at Ozette and out near Ruby Beach and walking about these forests and mountains and rivers and ocean of our Home and add to that the trip to the Yukon and up through to Alaska...I "got" It. And there it was in downtown Seattle for all of us. We are so removed (only if we choose to be).

The rest of this weekend I have spent sleeping. And doing the Annie LaMott thing-"What do you WANT to eat?" Popcorn. Ramen. Coffee. Okay then.

I get a new stove today. Smaller. One that works. And will fit in the kitchen better. The old one just died. It was a good stove.

Winter. It's here.
And I am not removed. Just sleepy.

Friday, January 09, 2009

Coming into full moon on the 11th.
Water, water everywhere and Beloveds stuck or surrounded by waters.
A bad case of want to only eat mac and cheese and anything in the bread dept. with butter.
Exercising, walking, moving, and moving some more. doing its magic.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Feast of the Cosmic 2x4 Moment...or Blessed Feast of the Epiphany
"Pick an epiphany, any epiphany..."
Have you ever tried to 'splain "epiphany" to a bunch of 7/8 year olds? We did the traditional look-it-up-in-the-dictionary thing. No lights on there. nope. Tried again-using THE STORY--Magi, their Epiphany-Our epiphany--finding a Truth about the Bigger than Ourselves in something simple, ordinary, natural like a baby, with his mom in a stinky stable. Still, no light. nope. Then I tried somethings from their experience--like when you learned to really READ or when you realized you COULD snowboard without plowing with your face everytime or....and Praise the Almighty!
When it was time to summarize for the record, everybody wrote "gotcha moment"
Today we will add....."about God and You and Your Life":)

Me, I am just happy to have done the Curves thing this morning. Happy to know that I think too much and try too hard. Happy that I sleep the sleep of the dead at this time of winter and only wake up for about 15 minutes throughout the day to use the bathroom and blow my nose. Driving-hah. That's a joke. Teaching anything--autopilot. Happily, but autopilot. Don't let me fool you or me. :) I guess it's not going to the Po' Folks/Royal Fork style buffet of epiphanies...or maybe it is. Choose yourself a "gotcha moment", an epiphany. Me, I think they pick you.I found mine in the compost I was digging yesterday and the doghair in my coffee. And lemon soap. And tears. And friends. Or calls and emails from friends. And good Thai food with zero stars. And living life with no fear.And prayer. And clean underwear and socks. I guess it's up to you if you pick up the plate or not. Set down the gold, frankincense and myrrh please. You will need both hands and your heart.

p.s. Two other teachers came down the hall yesterday to ask me where they could get Colleen's CD and how come I haven't put up a poster about her concert coming up (Do we have any? Can I make one?) Word is getting out. I need more CD's. I'm on that. And I want to hear Turi sing again--sooner rather than later. I wonder when she will make her CD?I bet she will wear one HOT handknit sweater on her cover with rad boots that fit her calves just right. Photo shoot from Paris.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

I just took a break from lesson planning to walk my dog in the snow once again!
This IS GREAT! Who knows what will come tomorrow, but this winter wonderland thing and let it snow, let it snow, let it snow thing are doing wondrous things for my spirit and sense of frolic in the "wintry now".

It is quiet. And clean smelling (except when you walk by the folks who are making textury Greek or Mediterranean delicacies for dinner this eve--and then it's just amazing-"makes-me-want-to-watch-a-cooking-channel" smelling). Back to the cozy woodfire, cup of tea and figuring out interesting ways to teach silent letters to a bunch of people who have been playing in the snow, sleeping in until mid-morning and being entertained by every electronic whatsit that isn't in the Heartsong catalogue. Which is exactly why I have the Ancient Writing Travel Kit from the Burke Museum in my living room at this precise moment. I'll hook'em, I will.

Made another big load to Goodwill today. Whew. A bit hard.
Did some pruning of a dead-looking akebia, too, until I couldn't feel my fingers anymore. And watched Beauty and the Beast Enchanted Christmas (thanks, Val). My kind of holiday story today. Last night's book group movie selection was definitely not Disney. Or was it? Hard to tell.

So back to work. And back to watching the snow fall.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Use your best Mike Meyers accent here---"TRRREEE DOWWWNN!"
Yup, put away. And ALL decorations, lights, accoutrements, accents, collectibles, and other cool stuff from my mother, grandmother, great grandmother and school students over the decades consolidated into ONE TUB. With room to spare. Same with all the wrapping junk...AND #5 has a pointed challenge--How about getting creative and going the no wrap route to save resources, money, time, and landfill space. I'm liking that.

Also made spicy, curry-esque split pea, wild rice soup. And cleaned out some old rats' nests in the basement. One section at a time. And hung some angels outside. And two more inside for good measure.

Watched Cesar Milan teach a border collie how to use a treadmill. I'm on a mission here.

Also, I am in need/want of some travel posters of Scotland, Peru, Tuscany, Italy general, the Lake District, New Mexico.....wanna put them up when I am on the treadmill to fuel my dreams...

Heard from 3 school parents today that their children are READY TO COME BACK TO SCHOOL. I wonder who is more ready.

Now I am off to take down all the words of inspiration on the kitchen wall and put them in a Grace Journal. Maybe I will get to painting in there before new words and ideas present themselves for Inspiration, Soul Nourishment, and In the Moment Universe-ity.:)

Friday, January 02, 2009

That's my theme for 2009. Don't hold much by the arbitrary change in year to year...AND this year, it's different. Once again. Like so many other things.

Marin, the swimmer with a dream, who had brain cancer, died today. She went HOME. My love and prayers go with her and her beloveds. Her story and spirit impacted my story and my spirit.

My friend, Will, follows the Course in Miracles. He had a suggestion for me this winter--how about not venerating, not honoring the past as I pick up to go down the next path. In practice, thought, and action, just let the past Be, let it all just be.
I had a gut reaction to that. First off--Fiona and Sadie. Then all the healing and all the love and all the lessons learned. But his idea is quite simple, really. Let it be. It isn't anymore. I'm thinking on that one...not too much. Quite simply, it changes immediately how I perceive certain situations. It frees things. The energy, too.

I've had several rest-filled days of walks, explorations in the woods, games in the snow with my dog, cups of tea, explorations at Fort Worden, quiet times with Family and Fletcher.

I don't "do resolutions". There is no try, Luke, there is only DO...DO your Life. Be your Life.
So Iyam.

I will buy no books for myself this year. Libraries are us. Exchanges with friends and colleagues. Got this idea from one of the Book Group Wisdom Women.

I am thinking on another one--a lady in the news chose no refined/processed sugar in her nutritional plan for all of last year. Thinking on that one. Ok then. Sounds like a natural and powerful thing to do to clean up the inner body situation.

My latest medical tests came back top-notch...again. Gotta love that. I evenl ost some more weight and I was betting that I had put on a few pounds during this lovely sit around and watch the snow session of winter. I don't have the results back yet about where or wherenot I am in pre- or menopause. I am proud of myself because my blood pressure was way normal and I wasn't even psyched up about going into the doc and I had my blood drawn with an ordinary needle--no pre-stuff that numbs my arm, no passing out, no hyperbreathing---it makes life so much more gentle when there isn't the reactive drama. I also thanked my health care provider for her attention to detail and the care with which she does her work. I have a long list I am in process of sharing my gratitude with of these folks. What I also forgot was that I also took a ton of really long walks in the snow with my beastie and then more walks following deer trails and elk prints and hawk flights. Never done that before. Bushwhacked like that.
With no fear. With no FEAR. With Joy in my Heart. We just went. With ourselves. Cedar and Me. Wow.

I discovered the music of Michael Tomlinson on I-tunes. And I did get rid of old tapes. I just don't want to chuck stuff that I love and not have digital replacements.

My brother is engaged. I am happy for him and for his partner. They have a big new to them house where they are creating "home". I keep asking myself "What are you waiting for?" The answer is absolutely nothing. And no one else is making the rules either. No hoops. We are making our own choices. So is my brother and his lady.

Please take your walks. Bring your Breath. Bring your Prayers. Bring your Heart. Let your walk shift your mind and spirit. It will. Be patient. Or not. Whatever works for you. This morning was a trip---monkeymind going over and over and over and when I reminded myself to breathe, then I noticed the stars. In a clear sky. Free and beautiful and doing what they do---being stars.