Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Bird Watch

Our bird feeders have become almost as busy as the Atlanta Airport......hummingbirds buzz the front door, the little blue buntings made their appearance this weekend.....this evening there were eight of those brilliant blue birds sitting in the Rose of Sharon waiting patiently for their place at the feeders.

We have three types of woodpeckers, ( they love the suet) and cardinals aplenty.......and our first blue jays visited a couple of weeks ago.  Rick says I'm feeding the doves so much bird seed that they are almost as big as our chickens.

For me, watching those birds feed, bathe and interact with each other is as soothing as meditation.
If I can spend a few minutes a day bird watching, life seems to go much smoother.  Their chatter and songs create beautiful music and I am astounded by their polite ways.  Even the bossy ones know their limit.

Our neighbors do have cats.....and the cats do tend to think our yard is a kitty McDonalds.....the good news, our Yorkie Taz will bark those cats up, anytime they come around the feeders.  Taz likes to bird
watch too.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Epsom Salt Soak

Thanks for all your kind comments about my anniversary last night.  This blogging world is quite an adventure.

One of my students thanked me over and over tonight for telling her about an epsom salt soak.
Anyone who has chronic pain ( check with your doctor) my student has RA and is an avid golfer and gardener but has suffered with our rainy cool spring.......I mentioned to her a couple of weeks ago, about how wonderful an epsom salt soak could be.  She told me tonight, she has been taking about three per week and it has helped her pain.  So here's the recipe......take a three pound bag of epsom salts, add a few drops of lavender oil or any other essential oil you like, mix in a large container with a lid......fill your bath tub with warm water, add two cups of the salts......soak for about 10 to 15 minutes.  Epsom salts is basically magnesium ( a natural muscle relaxer), I do a soak about three times a week and all I can tell you......it works.  I can be sore, stiff and in pain or so fatigued I can't sleep.....an epsom salts soak gives me a goodnight's rest and eases the pain and stiffness.  You can mix the lavender with eucalyptus, tea tree, jasmine.....any essential oil.  Lavender works well for relaxation, and eucalyptus is wonderful if you have a cold.  I have done these soaks at night and during the day.

Monday is almost over, I hope the rest of your week brings sunshine and good news.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams


Sunday, April 20, 2014

Four Years

Today is a milestone for me......four years ago on this date, I became a blogger.  Honestly, I didn't have a clue, Rick ( my hubby) pushed me into this.  I thought I would write a few months, maybe a year at the most and that would be it.  But something happened.......I found connections, I found a voice, and I found new friends.  I was so unsure of myself......yet I continued ........many times, I have thought about quitting.  But here I am, a blogger for four years.

I hope, I pray that my words or at least some of them have meaning.  I have tried to be open and honest, to share my thoughts and lift some spirits.  This has not been an easy path......especially after my treatments started.....that is when I really wanted to quit.  But this blogging in many ways became an extension of my teaching and that is when it began to click for me.  Not that it would become a yoga class, at least not one of postures......but that I could share how yoga has worked in my life and my students lives.  And then came the treatments......and I realized that how many people just in my world sat in those big green chairs......how those chairs changed my world and everyone else who has ever sat in them.  I understood that it was ok to share the world of green chairs, it was ok to talk about it.

So for the past four years, I have shared thoughts (good and bad), yoga, music, and my life in the big green chairs........and you all, my readers have shared my tears and fears through the tornadoes that devastated our state, the joy and sadness of my yoga classes, the ups and downs of our music,
life on a small Alabama farm, the world of big green chairs, and everything else in between.
I am grateful tonight, that you read my words, that you share your comments and you lift me up when I am very low, and share my joy when it fills my heart.  I pray blessings of good health, joy and peace for all of you tonight.  Thank you for a wonderful four years.

Saturday, April 19, 2014

A Peaceful Weekend

A good friend passed away today......and my heart breaks for his family.  In one month, his wife has buried her mom, his mom and a niece and now in a couple of days, her husband.....in one month, his sister has buried her mom, her daughter,  and now will soon bury her brother.  Life hits hard sometimes. You look for answers and there are none.....you just know that sometimes, the pain of living takes your breath away and leaves you gasping.  I'm sorry, seems so trite, yet anything else
sounds pretentious.

What is it about the pain of loss that can be so brutal?  I have known extremely faithful people lose all faith and hope when loss hits.  Losing those we love leaves empty spaces in our hearts.....and no matter how hard we try or what we do.....those spaces are always there.  For most of us, after a awhile, we pick up our bruised souls and hearts and begin to live again......but for some, the wound is too great, the pain too much.....they become the walking dead.  They go through the motions of living,
but when you look in their eyes......there is no life, no joy, no hope.

This is Easter weekend and for Christians, this is the weekend of hope, the weekend of life eternal.
I don't know my friend's family's beliefs, I have suffered loss, but not this much in such a short time.
So, I ask you tonight, say a prayer, send  good thoughts, send love to my friend, Robbie's family.
May the rest of your weekend bring Peace.

Friday, April 18, 2014

Easter Ducks

Rainy and cold, yet everything is so green and lovely.......I think I have thought about Ireland so much the past few months that I have somehow brought their weather to Alabama.  I have heard so many complain about our cool rainy spring, but this spring has been the calmest one we have had in years......we're talking calm tornado wise.  I will wear sweaters and jackets until June if that is what it takes to prevent the violent storms that we have had in years past.

As far back as I can remember the Easter season has always brought violent storms.....this year has been different and I am so grateful.

I am sure many of you are getting ready for egg rolls and egg hunts and family gatherings....Easter frocks and baskets and bonnets are waiting for their moment.  Easter has always been a mixed feeling holiday for me.......I liked the baskets, hated the ruffled dresses......I like to dye and decorate eggs, hated to hunt them....Easter was the first time I shaved my legs, there were many band-aids under my first pair of nylons.  I loved the little chicks and ducks that we use to get when were kids.....of course, I understand why that is no longer a custom, I probably single handedly caused that fiasco.  The one Easter that I got a duck was not a happy one.......I thought the duck was thirsty, I stuck his head in a bowl of water, well.......he drowned.

Safe travels to you who are on the road this weekend, enjoy your traditions......and remember, ducks just don't get that thirsty.
Happy Easter

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Why I Teach

My last class this afternoon was special........usually I have 15 or 20 students, but today there were only six.   It was interesting as they came into the room, you could feel the intent......you could feel their need.......they were seeking.  I tossed aside the plans I had made for that class, and taught straight from the heart......watching as they moved through the asanas, feeling the energy in the room change.
The last posture we did before relaxation was supported fish......their bodies seem to melt into the pose.  I watched stress leave their faces.

I played one of my favorite cds, something called Zen......and it is very Zen like.  As the sound of flutes and chimes and cello drifted through the room, they eagerly got ready for savasana.  As I began our guided meditation, breaths slowed, muscles relaxed and I watched as each one allowed their breath to take them where they needed to go.......a couple fell asleep, the rest were in that magic place between awake and sleep, deep relaxation.

When class was over, each student remarked about how much they needed the class today, and each one told me how the class gave them what they needed.  As a teacher, those are the moments you teach for.......to share the breath, the movement, the meditation and know that the students "got it".
A couple of them shared remarkable insights that had come to them the past few days in class......some days, I wonder why I teach.....today I knew why.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

No Agenda

No agenda....... last night I mentioned to Rick that we had nothing on the calendar for today, nothing on the day planner.  No agenda......such a rarity for all of us.  We had a late breakfast, walked the dogs, read the papers, late lunch, played guitars, I worked a little on our performance schedules.....we pretty much did whatever crossed our minds.  It was wonderful.

No agenda......it is a luxury.  But, I think it is luxurious necessity......it is really a mental health day. A day to do as you please, to allow your mind to slow down and follow your bliss.  We all need these days.......we need the rest, the quiet, the freedom.  It seems at times we are all slaves to something......the clock, the calendar, the schedule.  The freedom of one day, one twenty-four hour period to to do what you want, even if it's nothing at all......that is what our bodies and our minds crave.

No agenda......I know, most days none of us can afford it.......but every once in awhile, you have to splurge.  You have to do this for yourself.  Spend the day watching movies, reading a book, sleeping, walking, talking with friends......but don't plan it, fly by the seat of your pants.  No agenda.....it's decadent, and I admit....there was some guilt.  But this afternoon as Rick and I sat on the deck, enjoying the sunshine and blue skies, he looked at me and said, "what a great day this has been."

No agenda......take a day, a half day.....wow, I can dream about a week. Your body and your mind will thank you, those around you will thank you......and the stress levels will drop.  No agenda......who knows when the next one will be......but I can't wait.