Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Mixed Events

Tonight I am tapping keys, I have started at least three different blogs, so here I am being up front and very honest with ya'll. I am in a strange place, it has been an eventful day........on the way to work today, I came upon a horrible car accident, I was the second person there, the vehicle was in several pieces and when I offered the other person who was the victim assistance, he shook his head........the victim was not moving. I drove around the scattered debris in the road, said a prayer and went on to work. There was only the one vehicle, not sure what happened.

But then, I have also received three of the most incredible compliments today......the kind that makes you blush and stammer, and think that is not possible, they can't be talking about me.

I got good news about Ingrid, she is not as bad as feared, I won't have to take on a third job to pay for her repairs. Maybe I can get another 50,000 miles from her.

But at work, one of my fellow employees got upset with me, so not sure where that will lead. Let's just say, I don't back down when it comes to what's best for my students.......they come first, they get the best I can possibly offer.

Lastly, I am still having difficulty breathing. It doesn't do any good, but sometimes I get angry with my body and its shortcomings......then I have to remind myself it could be much worse.
I could have been the one on the side of the road today, not moving.

I will meditate in a few minutes and try to ground myself. Somedays when the energy is this scattered, it takes some extra work, and a good night's sleep. I am grateful for this day,
all things good and bad, lessons to be learned, moments to be cherished.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Ingrid is not doing so well.......for those of you who don't know by now, Ingrid is my car. She is a 1996 volvo with 244,000 miles, what can I say, if it is possible to love a car, I love Ingrid.
Don't laugh, because we live out in the country, I spend a lot of time in's twelve miles to the nearest bank or store. My friend Jackie and I have driven Ingrid to every yoga teacher training we have ever attended. Ingrid takes me to work, shopping, to music gigs.

Ingrid is like an old friend, she doesn't care if you sing really loud when your favorite song is playing or if you cry or swear......she has never left me stranded(and other vehicles have). Rick has been gently telling me for the past few months I need to think about another car. (I can't cheat on Ingrid) Today as we drove her to our trusted car doc, once again Rick began to talk about replacing her........I think I can spend few more months with her, at least I hope I can.

But sadly, I am beginning to think her time with me may be limited. For me, she is the perfect fit. She is big enough to carry all my yoga mats. She can carry two guitars, bags and all the other stuff that needs to go to a gig. She handles like a dream, she loves to climb hills and takes a curve like no other car I have ever driven. She's fast enough, and beautiful........deep forest green with British tan leather and a stereo system that rocks. She is like me, she loves the fall and winter, and gets kinda of sluggish when it is hot and humid.

I wrote about attachments last night......when the day comes( and I know it will) and I have to let Ingrid go......that will be a major letting go. She has been my therapist and friend, and sometimes truly a shelter from the storm. I know she is only metal and leather and rubber, just
a machine.....but in many ways she holds it seems, a life time of memories for me. Even tonight
as I write this, I just can't see me driving another vehicle.

I spoke with one of the guys at the car docs today, he told me about how great some of the automobiles were that they serviced and recommended a couple I should think about. Then he looked at my face and grinned...... he said he had seen that same look, that there were a lot of folks who fell in love with their Volvos......he shook his head, told me she would be all shiny and fresh when I came to pick her up.....and that there would be life after Ingrid.

So tonight, I have begun to tell myself that some where down the road, it will be time to let go of Ingrid......I am going to take some photos of her, so one day(when I have to) I will have memories and a photo of a great car. For now, fingers are crossed, holding my breath and patiently waiting for Ingrid to come home.

Monday, March 28, 2011


Attachments........ we form them, with no effort.......attachments to others, to our pets, our cars, our stuff! Most of us latch on, and refuse to let go! That is a lesson I am trying to teach myself......let go, don't attach.

It started back in the winter, I had some of my mom's clothing......nothing I would wear, just hanging on to it because it was hers. I finally pulled it out of my closet one day, folded everything neatly and place it in bags for charity. I began to realize, the stuff was not my connection to my mother, my memories are the connecting blocks. Last summer I did the same thing with books, went through my shelves and gave many of my books away.

As we continue to renovate the house, the barn and the creative space, I am still dealing with attachments. Letting go of stuff can be quite painful, whether it is physical or emotional. But I do have boxes that I am filling up, then I will let nieces and nephews get what they want, and once again give to charity.

In the back of my closet I found a dress my dad had bought me, it is not something I would wear now, but it is vintage and I will see if my twenty year old niece wants it. As I am trying so hard to let go, Rick and his family are sorting out his mom's belongings. It is tough, I know that feeling of wanting to hang on to everything because it was your mom's or dad's.
But there is this incredible freeing sensation to let go also..........the memories are there and the stuff you choose to keep should really be special.

I never thought of myself as a pack rat, but going through cupboards and closets, it is pretty
obvious I am......every day as I meditate, I tell myself to let's getting easier.
I think maybe there are many of us who are pack rats, who think, well I'll use that someday,
I might need that sometime, and the next thing we know, our closets are bursting at the seams.

A good friend who years ago, lost all her belongings in a fire, told me that at first it is devastating, but then it becomes quite freeing to be rid of stuff. I hope I never have to live through that extreme, but I do find myself more and more, looking at things around me, I really need that, do I really want that?

This will be a post that will have post scripts the rest of the summer, or at least until all the renovations are done......will let you know how the process continues.......I think there will be some painful withdrawals, and maybe a few celebrations, but it really is time to rethink my attachments.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Spring Musings

The dogwoods bloomed this weekend, everywhere I look there are large fluffy clouds of dogwood blossoms. The "magic tree" a dogwood that sits at the end of our driveway, is almost as large as our house. These blooms came from the "magic tree".

From now until fall, there will be fresh flowers in our house....all grown on our property. The peonies are budding, so is the rhododendron and azaleas. The iris and lilies are tall slender shoots of green. Wild fern and purple violets are peeking through the brown leaves of fall. All of the fruit trees have bloomed, the berries will be next.

This awakening, this springing forth of's pretty amazing stuff. Our springs are filled with great beauty and often much turbulence. Tornadoes ripped through our county last night, we drove home from a friend's house through downed power lines and trees. Tonight it is in the forties, but in a couple of days our forecast is another stormy one.

The checkered table cloth belonged to my grandmother Mamie, the blue clay bowl was created by a nephew, the pitcher was a gift from a friend and the green salt/pepper shakers were my mom's. Many memories in that small photo tonight. Simple every day things, yet to me there is great beauty and joy in that photograph.

Our friend Wes, spent the afternoon with us......just a really nice easy visit on a rainy Sunday.
We picked and grinned, laughed and talked, and solved most of the world's problems in a few short hours......if only we could get the rest of the world to listen. Ha ha! Isn't it great to spend time with friends?!

A cup of hot lemon ginger tea awaits me tonight........just the tonic when a cold rain falls.
Good night, Sweet dreams.
About the magic tree, I wrote a blog about it last spring, if you wish to go back and read it.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Joy List

Today was one of those days, when all plans were pretty much cast aside. I have inhaled the pollen all week, and yesterday I realized that walking from my car to the front door was causing shortness of breath. Today one of my best friends and I were going out to celebrate my birthday(a girl lunch) but I knew as I drank my first cup of coffee this morning, my body had other plans. So I called and rescheduled and I spent most of my day on the sofa reading a new book. The facility that I teach at is based on the Twelve Step Program, so I am always looking for books that I can recommend.

A few weeks ago, I wrote a about a book I was reading, Excuse Me, Your Life Is Waiting by Lynn is an incredible book. Well she had also gone through a 12 step program and had written another book, Beyond the Twelve Steps. Lynn had twenty something years sober, but she reached a point in her sobriety where there was still something missing.......thus began her journey beyond.
I read this book's a great book, and if any of you have been through any sort of Twelve Step Program, I highly recommend it......and even if you have not gone through twelve steps, it is a great book.

In Beyond the Twelve Steps, she talks about joy. She says one of the most profound statements about joy that I have ever read......"Joy is high energy that can exist only in the now, not yesterday, not tomorrow. Joy is knowing you're in the process of change."

Lynn suggests making a joy list. She talks about her first list, and how she realized there was little in her life that gave her joy. At first making a joy list, most of us list the know the trip around the world, a million dollars, that new sports car, the big house, the movie star lover........but if we continue and we are honest and true to ourselves, we find that real joy
comes from everyday things.......time to read, a hot shower or bath, looking at the stars, fresh coffee, flowers, a drink of cold water, a run with the dogs, hearing your favorite song, watching a great movie, playing a musical instrument, spending time with someone you love, a phone call to a friend, ..........most of us can complain about all the things that make us many of us have sat down and really thought about what makes us happy. Do you honestly know what makes you happy?

When we start to really look at what brings joy to us, we began to look for ways to achieve it.
When we have a joy list, it is there to remind us and we can choose to do something that day that will give us joy. When we recognize what truly gives us joy, we understand that we can have joy. It is not something we have to wait for, or work for, we can obtain joy every single day of our lives. Think about it, you can have joy in your life..........every day.

So, make a joy might be difficult at first.......maybe you think you don't deserve joy, or that you don't have time for joy, or that there is no joy. Start the list with the big stuff, you know the joy of your dreams.......and then begin to think about little things that give you joy.....a hug,
a juicy strawberry, an ice cream cone, a walk in the rain, a bouquet of flowers, sitting in the sun, a walk, a cup of tea, talking with your best friend or loved one, a drive, five minutes alone.......
Once you start to think about joy, and the small things you can do.......then how can you go a day without joy? Write your list, type it up, print it, look at it every day. Give yourself permission to have joy, to share joy.

I see people every day who have no joy......who think that there will never be joy in their lives again. Look around you, at the grocery store, at the mall, at work, so many faces, no joy.
Many seem to think if every thing was like it use to be, that's joy. Isn't is amazing that when many of us remember the past, we have totally forgotten all the bad we are here in the now, bemoaning the fact that we can't live in the past, because that's where all the joy was.
And chances are, back in the past, we were complaining too!

Make a joy list.......look at it......know that you deserve joy, it is your choice. Tomorrow, allow yourself joy, do the same the next day, and the won't be long, and you my friend....
will be living a joyful life.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Meditation, Practice

Meditation........seems simple, sit quietly, breathe........peace. I taught a meditation class was really interesting to hear the comments when I questioned my students about their experience. Some accused me of hypnosis, others said they couldn't stand to be still for five minutes, others said the more they tried to let go of their thoughts, the more thoughts they had. A couple said they itched, one got a cramp, it went on and on.....there were moments it seemed for a few that stillness was possible, and that is good.

Why is it so hard for us to experience stillness? to do nothing but sit and breathe. I admit, often meditation is difficult for me, there is a dancing, drunk monkey being stung by a scorpion in my head too. ( I heard that phrase in a teacher training years ago, I love it) There are times when I have meditated and true bliss was achieved.......then there were those times when something like
a song or phrase, for instance.....plop,plop, fizz,fizz became embedded in my brain and there was no escape.

But those moments, when awareness is truly on the breath, and the sticky thoughts are released, those moments are worth all the times when some silly commercial or some worrisome thought moves in for the duration.

For some meditation requires visual help, guidance if you will, for others, soft music and a mantra works, and then there are exquisite moments, when you sit in the early morning light,
listen to the birds, breathe slowly, and you are transported.......all worries, fears, it all fades into
oblivion......and the rest of the day is like sailing on a sea of glass.

My very most favorite meditation......Dr.Wayne Dyer has a small book on meditation "Getting in the Gap". The book comes with a cd, and for me every time I do this meditation, I am transported. I can do it at night, and I sleep like a baby. If my day is stressful or I am just having difficulty staying centered, I pop the cd in, and twenty minutes is different.
"Getting in the Gap" you focus on the "gap" between your thoughts. That void or space, is where I have found bliss in ways that are unexplainable. In the book, Dr. Dyer talks about using the gap to help you manifest what you want in life.......I have used it for that also, and I can tell you it works.

So, if you have never tried meditation, or maybe you did and you gave up........first, it is like yoga....
it is a practice. Go to the library, there are books and cds a plenty, look on line, lots to choose from. If the first one doesn't seem to work, then try something different. For some, just gazing at a candle flame and breathing works, for others sitting comfortably and bringing all awareness to the breath, and sometimes it takes detailed guidance, music, candles, and lots of practice......
but I can assure you, the practice will change your day, it will change your life.

GO TO there are three meditations/relaxations that I recorded, download them for free!

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Yellow My World

It has become a sticky yellow world in Empire, Al. this week. Spring pollen has swept across the area and left behind a yellow haze on everything. Ingrid( my car) and the tin roof on our house are both dark green, well they were.......everything looks as though a crazed, bad Impressionist painter with a fondness for yellow played a joke on the world.

I looked out the kitchen window this afternoon thinking I saw smoke in the was just the pollen blowing in the wind. Everywhere you go, people are sneezing and coughing. Time for a rain dance! When there is this much pollen, do bees get high? Do they reach pollen euphoria, and then have withdrawals once it's gone?????? I know, I have worked at a rehab center way too long.

I sat on our deck this afternoon to feel the warm sun on my face, when I stood up, the front of my jeans was blue, the seat.......yep, you guessed it.......YELLOW. Sad to say, yellow has never really been one of my favorite colors, I think because I associate it with pollen, this coming from a woman who has had sinus issues since I was a child. But, a few years ago, I got a nettie pot....
my world changed! Now, for those of you who do not know what a nettie pot is......... very small looks like a tea pot, fill it with filtered water mixed with sea salt, then basically you pour it in one of your nostrils. What can I say, it gets the gunk out! Takes some getting use to,but for those who suffer with sinus problems it will change your world. Get thee a nettie pot and use it!

I know that some of you are still getting snow, we have frost warnings tonight......does that mean the frost will be yellow in the morning? Sorry, it is pretty obvious that pollen has hit my brain
and now I am beginning to see the world in shades of yellow! So, if I got rose colored glasses, my world would be orange????

It is truly time to say Thanks (one more time) for all the amazing birthday wishes. (I got more today, plus tonight my yoga students had a B'day cake for me) Thank you all from the bottom of my heart, for your thoughts and wishes, it really has been my best birthday ever. And thanks to my new followers, I appreciate you taking the time to stop by and visit.
Good night, Sweet dreams.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

The Best

How do I start???? NEVER have I received so many birthday wishes, calls, notes, cards!!!!!!
If you could drown in love, then I have drowned today. I have cried tears of joy, laughed, and truly been humbled by all your wishes.

Birthdays were never a big deal at our house......I had one birthday party when I was growing up.
In junior high school, my girlfriends gave me a surprise party at my friend Kaye's house. It was wonderful. My mom always said, birthdays were just another day. But that is so not true.
Birthdays should be celebrated, it is the day you/we entered this world......and we have all touched someone's life, shared in happiness and sorrow, our day should be remembered. We should celebrate our birth, and the life we have lived.

Birthdays are our "get out of jail free" card.....our chance to say I love you, I am glad you were born, you mean so much to me, life is better because of you. There is some sadness today,
my dad always called me EARLY on my birthday morning( like five a.m.) Even though he died twenty years ago, I still miss those calls and his rendition of Happy Birthday.

Thank you, thank you, thank you all, this has been my best birthday ever. The love that has been shown through out this day, takes my breath away. There is no way, I can ever express how grateful I am to all of you........I have heard from friends near and far and made some new ones today, thanks to Bouncin'Barb and her incredibly sweet blog post.

Tonight I send blessings and a prayer of gratitude for love, because it has wrapped itself around me as sweetly as a baby's hug. My heart overflows.......not enough words........

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Three Again

Tomorrow is my birthday, but today I digressed to the age of three.......Jordan(3 year old great nephew) spent the day with me. He LOVES to run(on his tip toes) so we ran all day. We also lay on a blanket in the grass and looked up at the sky. We ate Popsicles and fresh pineapple and drank lemonade. We had cookies and milk. We ran some more. I answered , maybe a million questions......and told him a million times that I loved him. We ran.........finally about thirty minutes before his grandmother picked him up, we were still running, and then I had to just walk.... he was so sad, he said" you can win the race, I won't run so fast". At that point it didn't matter how tired I was, I ran.......and of course, he beat me!

We built castles on our new deck, fed and watered the birds. It was fun being three. Believe me, there is so much to do, with all the construction, but I gave Jordan the day........he gave me a vacation. All that stuff that needs to be done, guess what it didn't go anywhere, it will still be here this weekend, I will do it then. I spent the day outside, in the was worth it.
No matter how hard it is to breathe tonight, it was great being three today.

I hope when he grows up, he remembers me.... and the time that we spend together. Thinking about my birthday tomorrow, how people remember me, that is important stuff to me these days.........I want to be a good memory, I want to be a smile on someone's face and kindness that touched their hearts, I want the people that I love, to know that I loved them.......that's my birthday wish.....and to be three again real soon.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Pity Party

I have yoga'd most of the day. On Mondays I teach four back to back could say I am a wee bit tired tonight. Most of the time, I am ok.......but the air is thick with pollen and it is very difficult for me to breathe......lie down, place a brick on your chest, ok that is what it feels like.

We are in the throes of construction, we don't need rain......I am praying for wash the air clean, so I can breathe like a normal person. Ingrid(the volvo) is normally a dark forest green, tonight she has been sprayed a soft yellow by the pollen. The house is looking wonderful, and soon if Rick and I and the carpenters don't kill each other, all the projects will be near completion.
Yes, there will be a celebration, a picking party with lots of food and music!

Last night I coughed most of the night, so I am hoping for sleep tonight. Sorry to whine so much,
the pity/bitching party is over, tomorrow is a new day!
Good night, Sweet dreams.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Where Is The Moon?

The phone rang a little while was Jordan, my great nephew. He kept saying, "where is the moon, I looked out back, I looked out front, I saw the stars, where is the moon?????"
He is three, and since he was maybe six months old, he has been fascinated by the moon. One of his first words.......moon. He would point and say moon over and over. Guess what his favorite book is.....Goodnight Moon. Each time he takes a bath here, as I wrap him in a towel, I sing the old Barney song, "I love you in the morning, and in the afternoon, I love you in the evening, underneath the moon".

I am glad he is mesmerized by that beautiful silver orb. I have been all my life too. What is it about that glowing silver pearl that shines over the earth that is so magical? I know there have been people through the ages that worship the sun, and yes I know the moon has no light of its own, only the reflection of the sun........but to me, the sun pales in comparison to the powers of the moon. Maybe it is the darkness of the sky, or the fact that the stars and the planets shine at night in a partnership with the moon. Maybe it is because I know as a woman, how beautiful we all look in moonlight.

I have written several blogs about the moon, and will continue to do so. Like the pagans of old who worshiped the sun, the stars, the moon and mother earth, there is a connection, a drawing if you will, a power that is primal and mystical that tugs at my heart and soul when I see the moon.
The fact that today is the equinox, the first day of spring and a full moon, can't you just feel the stirrings of all things ancient?

The moon just appeared over the tree tops, (yes, I called Jordan to let him know) it is pale gold,
surrounded by a soft hazy mist that circles like a crown. Looking out from our new deck, it is framed by fragile tree branches, it is beauty and peace, and all things good. How can anyone feel hate or anger when something so spiritual appears in the sky?

My cup of tea is ready, going out to sit on the deck and moon gaze........this same moon shines on all of you tonight, let it bathe you in the magic.

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Book of Dreams

"Dreams are illustrations....from the book your soul is writing about you" - Marsha Norman
The book my soul is writing about me must be huge!!!! I dream nightly, and it seems most of the night. Jung believed that participants in our dreams are aspects of ourselves. I must have at least twenty-five personalities.

Last night, I truly think my body was sending me a very deliberate message.......every dream I can remember dealt with illness and being in a hospital room. Because of a chronic disease that I deal with, I am on maintenance meds......occasionally I decide that I am doing so well, I don't have to take them anymore. I had not taken my monthly round for the past couple of months, in the past week I could tell they were needed......I started them today. I know, not smart!!!!

I love to dream, and dreams have been extremely prophetic in my life. They have been comforting and terrifying. Sometimes my dreams are an escape, and at times they seem to be an extension of the real world without the consequences. I have dreamed songs, paintings,
and stories. Many times my dreams are more real than some of my daily activities.

Often when I have problems or searching for answers, the solutions find me in my dreams.
One of the most wonderful dreams I ever friend John said goodbye to me in a dream.......he was dying with cancer, in 1993 in March, we had a blizzard and he was in the night I dreamed he came to me on a white horse, he was happy and healthy and he told me to get on the horse, he was taking me for the ride of my life........I climbed on the horse, held on to John and we rode through a starry sky, it was happiness beyond belief, the whole time John was laughing as we rode through the night sky......I found out the next day, John had died that night.

So dreams for me, somehow connect me to the places and people that are sometimes unreachable. Last night's dreams I think were truly a wake-up call, and I listened.
Tonight, I am ready for the next chapter.......I love that thought, that my soul is writing a book about will be a good book, exciting, sad, happy,good and bad, just like my life.

Good night, Sweet dreams. By the way, the photo is the full moon in blue sky before twilight.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Spring Dinner

My favorite spring dinner.......baked salmon with lemon caper sauce, fresh roasted asparagus, and new red potatoes, steamed.......was served at the Watson house tonight. I have hit the proverbial
brick wall. Maybe it is the pollen, or working seven days a week for the past seven or eight weeks, but my energy has fizzled to near nothing.

The weather is so beautiful, and my flower beds are calling out to me. I have to plant something tomorrow. At least a pot full of basil, and I think it may be time to move all the trees out of the house back into to the yard. Butterflies have buzzed me all day today, and bees!

We have a new deck, the carpenters will be here early in the morning......our house, the barn and the old farm house are coming right along. But you know, we are truly damn near crazy to be doing all three at the same time. It makes my head swim!

Time to say good night, sweet dreams. Hopefully a more profound post will appear tomorrow night.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Spring Promises

Spring in all its glory has first batch of violets in the yard. Tiny, yet strong, they push through the straw and dead leaves, determined to announce that winter is indeed over.

These are the deepest of the blue-violet color, there are others that are creamy with purple veins and golden throats. The flowers are tiny, the smell sweet yet very distinct. I love the way the leaves look like small green hearts.

It was eighty degrees today.....not only are the violets pushing their way to the sun, the peach trees are in full bloom too. I love the vivid clear colors of the summer, the heat tends to soften colors, and fall takes on an earthy richness.......but the colors of the spring are vibrant, clear and bright.

I packed away the winter sweaters, got out my white jeans, and I am ready for anything!
We will still have some cool weather, there is black berry winter to deal with, and maybe even another frost, and in years past, an occasional doesn't matter, once the flowers bloom, spring is here. I also saw two butterflies today, a beautiful large yellow one and a regal blue one. I suspect the hummingbirds will be buzzing our front door any day!

Spring promises, renewal, hope, that after the dark grays of winter, color and warmth.
People walk different in the spring, their eyes games, the smell of newly mowed grass, and the freshness of plowed earth, and every kid around knows school will end in a couple of months.

Today was also, St. Paddy's day, we are stuffed......full of cabbage, corned beef, potatoes and all things Irish. We have listened to Irish music, watched The Matchmaker, and joked about our Irish friends. Time for a cup of hot tea........good night, sweet dreams.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Goodbye Charlie

The photo you see is a fairly old one.....the dogs, Charlie (left) and Dawg were abandoned about twelve or fourteen years ago by neighbors.

I guess the neighbors fell on hard times, they moved away in the middle of the night. They had small children, one a little girl, loved Charlie and Dawg. You could hear her every day yelling Choarlielllllllll, Dawggggggg. I kept thinking that first day, they would come back to get the dogs.
Evening came, and the dogs were sitting in the driveway, waiting. The next morning, I thought surely today........that evening, nope. So, I carried some food and water to them. Every day for two weeks I carried food and water, no one came.

Finally, the dogs began to come into our yard, they were lovable and kind. But they had not been cared for, so they became friends with our Vet, adjusted to our other dogs and we became one big happy doggie world. They both had serious health issues, but soon, you'd never know it to look at them......our vet kept telling me Charlie was old. Dawg was like a big cuddly brown bear......with the softest fur you could ever imagine. Charlie was a rogue. He loved to amble around the neighborhood. He had the happiest personality, loved kids, opened every gate he could find, and if there was ever a female dog that got "popular"within a mile he had to go visit.....
not to do anything, just sit out at the edge of the yard and watch all the other dogs make fools of themselves.

Dawg passed away a couple of Christmases ago, Charlie grieved for over a year and it truly took the sparkle out of him. Every once in a while you'd see him walking through the yard, looking up the driveway.......wondering what happened to his best friend. This winter when it snowed, he didn't play like he once did, his amble was even slower and though his coat was still thick and shaggy, he was thin. We figure he was possibly fifteen or sixteen years old......maybe even twenty.

The past few weeks I could see his life slowing down, he would walk to the barn, and have to rest before he made it back to the house. The vet had told me last year, he wouldn't last much longer. He had kidney issues, chronic infections, but he always pulled through. Last night,he
lay down in the kitchen floor, ate a little of Buddy's Slim Jim and slept. This afternoon, he crossed over the rainbow to go see his best friend Dawg. I will never forget Charlie and Dawg, they brought so much joy and happiness into our lives, and all they ever wanted was a little food and love. As we buried Charlie this evening at sunset, I picked purple violets for his grave.....I hope he and Dawg had a great reunion. Goodbye Charlie.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

An Ordinary Day #2

I did the grocery shopping today.......after all Thursday is St Patrick's Day, bought the cabbage and the brisket, the potatoes, and the currants for the soda bread. St. Patrick's Day at our house, is a big deal....... I wear green, I have a lovely pot of shamrocks, we listen to Irish music, watch an Irish movie, maybe read an Irish book or two, and look at all the photographs we took in Ireland.

I keep hoping that Rick will surprise me with a trip to Ireland this year, we'll see. It would be so good to see our friends, play the pubs, and stand on the rocky coast and breathe that cold damp air. Through the years, I have known several friends and relatives who have visited the Emerald Isle, some loved it as much as me, others scoffed and couldn't believe they had spent their travel dollars there. Our trip was magical, but then, I expected it to be.

It has been a nice ordinary day, full of ordinary shopping, laundry, cleaning house. By the end of the week, the weather guys say sunshine and 80 degrees. Almost everything is blooming now, and I am so ready to plant our garden. In case you didn't know, we have had around eight inches of rain here in Empire in the past week or so, the ground is soggy.
So, we have to let the soil dry and then we can get the tractor out of the barn and plow.
There is something about getting dirt on your hands, planting a tiny seed, and then in a few weeks there is food on the table.

My sister has a goat farm, and she has birthed goats for the past few days. She has a nanny that had four babies! This weekend I am going down to take pictures, little goats are so sweet!
Because of the rain, all our building projects have been on hold, but the carpenter is coming back Thursday! Three different construction projects is rather un-nerving, but since Rick is retired he tends to jump in head first!

I saw violets for the first time today, they are my favorite spring flower, with lilacs running a close second. It's that purple fetish I have. I actually saw a patch of violets by a creek on the way home today, but after almost being ran over when I took the "world on fire" photo, I had second thoughts about the violets.......maybe tomorrow.

An ordinary was a very good day.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Thank You

I want to express my heartfelt thanks to all of you who left comments on my post last night.
In a few days I am going to send the blog with the comments to our friend.....your kindness and wisdom are overwhelming......I have tears in my eyes tonight as I read your words.
I came kicking and screaming into the electronic age/world. I still struggle with all that Rick tries to teach me about the computer world. But.......(I am eating crow) writing this blog has changed my life, and taught me the value of the PC. Without this blog, I would never have "met" any of you, and honestly, my blog friendships have become quite precious to me.

You have laughed with me, and now cried with me. This blog has allowed old friends to find me, and new ones to come along for the ride. I have read your stories, and laughed and cried with you.
Maybe this blog world will help our other world.......we share our thoughts, our differences, and our similarities.......though we may be miles/worlds apart......I think we all want the same have a roof over our heads, food to eat, shelter from the storm, to feel safe and to be loved, to have someone listen, to feel needed and appreciated, to be healthy, and our families
and friends to love us.

Thank you from the bottom of my heart, your posts were incredible.....caring, sensitive and filled with love.

Sunday, March 13, 2011


We attended the funeral of one of our best friends' son today......he was twenty-six. There are no answers when a parent loses a child, no words of comfort.....there are hugs, tears and somewhere in the mix a smile or gentle memory. All you can hope for, somewhere down the road, that the hurt will ease. Over and over I heard people talk about the unfairness of death when the natural order is changed and a child dies before the parent.

It seems in my life, I have seen quite a bit of this "un-natural" order of death. I think the profound sadness of it all.......when death claims the young, is missed chances. They don't get to live the lives their parents had envisioned for them, everything is cut short, too abrupt, and everyone left........ feels cheated.

I think there is a great deal of anger when the young die. Anger because whatever potential they had, was never reached......anger, because they did not get to experience and taste all life has to offer. Death claims the young in many ways, just as it does the rest of us. Through illness, accidents, poor choices.....death waits and when the opportunity arises, swoops down like a greedy vulture to claim its prize.

I had seen our friend's son grow from a little baby to a handsome, gentle young man. He and his brother had visited our home often when they were small. With our group of friends, those who had kids brought them to every function any of us ever had. We all stood there today, broken hearted, grieving and struggling to help our friend. I think we all felt pretty useless.
Here in the south, you always hear certain phrases at, "God's will", or "everything happens for a reason". For myself, .......sometimes, I think bad things happen to good people.

Saturday, March 12, 2011


Warning.........HUNGRY female writing this blog tonight! Just got home from our gig, no food since about three this afternoon......there is about to be a rather unpretty scene in my kitchen!
The gig was great, and much fun was had by all who were there(honestly, no matter how much fun the audience has, I have more).

I do have a rather quirky habit, can't eat before the show, so by the time the gig is over, I am
famished! As much as I love sharing my thoughts with ya'll........the primal side of me is screaming
FEED me!
Good night Sweet dreams, a plate of nachos awaits me.

Friday, March 11, 2011

Gratitude Ceremony

Several years ago I began to practice, what I called Gratitude Ceremonies. It seemed I never took enough time to be grateful, for the small things as well as the big ones. I light a candle, maybe buy some flowers and set aside a few dollars to give to someone in need. Often, Rick and I place the money in pockets of clothing that we were donating to shelters, as a surprise happy for the person who got the jacket or pants. As the candle burns, we offer a simple prayer of gratitude.

I taught my self to be grateful, even when it seems there is nothing to be grateful for. Actually when it appears there is nothing to be grateful for, is when we especially need to feel gratitude.
Tonight, after this blog is written and before we pick up the guitars, we will do a ceremony.
It seems ever since I got up this morning, all around the world is turning upside down.
The earthquake, unrest, and a tragedy for one of our friends. Everyone I have talked with today wanted to discuss how horrible the world is. I refuse to give in to the darkness......I think it is our only way to survive.

This place we live, it is good and bad, happy and sad, healthy and sick, suffering and is what we call life.......and if we live long enough we will experience it all. So tonight, I am grateful for those who did not die in the earthquake, I am grateful for those who are fighting for their freedom, I am grateful that though my friend lost his son, he had a son and there was love between the two of them. I am grateful that for one more day, I could breathe.

I am grateful that spring is coming. The signs are everywhere, flowers are blooming, trees are beginning to show their leaves, the days are getting longer and the sun shone brightly today.
Life has its moments, and we have to grab them when we can. There is joy to be found if you look for it, there is beauty even in the midst of destruction. Ecclesiastes speaks of a time, a season if you will for everything, it is easy to forget that truth of seasons......that circle of life.
I close this blog tonight with gratitude for all who read it, I ask that each of you before you go to bed tonight, think of one thing to be grateful for.

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Without Effort

"Life seems to go on without effort, when I am filled with music." - George Eliot
The past few days my life had encountered, well maybe that is not the right word, my life had been filled with effort.....out of sorts if you will. I kept thinking as I drove home from class yesterday, "what is wrong, what is going on".......I didn't have any gigs lined up for the next couple of weeks, and life seemed rather empty and a little burdensome.

I spent a great deal of time today, looking at my vision board, putting things into perspective.
This afternoon, all began to change. I got a little note from someone who rocks my world and then our friend, who owns Berkeley Bob's Coffee House sent out a distress signal.....his act for Saturday night had cancelled and he needed someone to play. So there you are, a gig, a note from someone I admire greatly and the flow of energy is back as it should be. Put it out there, and there it is!

What can I say, when music is in my life, things do go much smoother. It truly is not for the money, but for the joy that flows from my heart and soul when I sing. Maybe it is not music that
allows your life to flow without might be photography, writing, painting, crafting, cooking, .......whatever puts the flow in your life.......make sure you make time for it.

The other thing, sending makes my day, and I bet it makes yours too. I try at least once a week to read some of your blogs, and send notes.......I send cards or e-mails to friends or just call and leave messages. I think when we know someone is thinking of us, that we let people know their value to us, it makes life a little bit sweeter, a little easier.

I hope tomorrow that your lives are filled with "music" and that the day is effortless.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Your Story

Every one has a story. Some are reluctant to tell theirs, others never stop telling theirs. Sadly many are lost forever, never told, never heard. I wish my parents had told me theirs. My mother always just blew me off, my dad sank into silence. I have heard different variations from several family members, but the stories are only what they remember, not what my parents lived.My dad's mom and dad did share a few stories with me, but I was young and though I remember what they told, I wish I had heard more, asked more questions and written everything down.

Rick is lucky, he interviews folks almost weekly for the several newspapers that he writes for.....he hears great stories......and gets to share them. I hear stories almost daily, but will never be able to share them, my hope is that the ones who have lived these stories will share them some day.
When I walk around the grocery store or Walmart or just down the
sidewalk, at the airport, or the mall, I look at people as they walk by and wonder about their story.

Strangers often share their story with me.......some are very sad, others are happy and exciting.
I am truly fascinated by each person's story. Maybe that is why it is so easy for others to tell their story to me, they know I want to hear it.

I love a good fiction story, but honestly, it is rare that one surprises me. It drives Rick crazy that I figure out the endings to movies so quickly. Maybe at this point, I have heard so many stories,
there are few surprises......still it does happen, when it does I love it!

So as you read my blog tonight, think about your do have one, and it deserves to be told. Write it in a journal or a letter, record it, tell it with photographs......just share it. There are people who love and care about you, who want to know your story, in your words. Tell your story before it is too late.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Shifting Gears

Shifting gears..... I think the first time I drove a straight shift, it was a major boost for my self-esteem, interesting enough, I think anytime we shift gears, it is good for our self-esteem. That is one of the things that a vision board does, it causes a subtle shifting (at first) in our gears. I did my board back in January, but the more I look at it and think about it, I think I may do another one for my birthday.

Shifting gears......Rick and I had only been married a couple of years and I needed a car.
At the time money was very scarce in the Watson house, so we shopped around and figured I could buy a Honda Civic.....the most basic one made. That meant no air-conditioning, no automatic
transmission. It looked like a little red converse tennis shoe. The day we signed the loan,
Rick had to hurry back to work. Here I stand, with the car salesman and as he hands me the keys I say, "ok, let me get this straight, first drive really really slow, second gear.....
you speed up, third gear, you're doing maybe thirty miles per hour and fourth gear, that's the fastest? oh yeah, and you use the clutch every time you shift gears, right?" He looked at me with horror in his eyes........"you don't know how to drive a stick shift?" I answered, " that's right, but no big deal, I can do this". He kept insisting that someone from the car lot drive me home. Finally, I just told him I had to learn sometime, it might as well be today. I drove myself home. After that, every car I ever owned until I got Ingrid was a stick. I miss that shifting, I am really good at it.

Shifting gears......that subtle, sometimes not so subtle shift in energy that you feel when change is in the air. There are many reasons to feel the shift, spring is in the air, I have a birthday coming up, and I am ready for change. These past few days have in some ways felt stale, February was such an exciting month, the momentum seems to have shifted, and I am trying to figure out how to get it back. I wish there was a stick shift for life, that it was that easy and that quick, just pop the clutch, shift and go.

Monday, March 7, 2011


Have you ever felt invisible? I think at one time or another we have all experienced that feeling.
It's a strange feel that no one acknowledges you......that no one sees your worth.
It is an ego thing, but also very human to want recognition. I allowed my self to feel that way a couple of times today. Shame on me, for bringing so much I to the table of life......part of it, fatigue, still very tired from the weekend and the rest was my ego. Just when you think you have this spiritual thing all worked out, the big ME wants to take over.

So, I took a lot of breaths, reminded myself to think of good feelings and I am back where I should be. But I thought about that is a horrible feeling to think that no one sees you.
I know that people walk around every day feeling that way, trapped in a loop of that wretched
thought! It snowballs you know, when you feel that way if you don't make yourself stop.
Then it turns into a pity orgy, a mud hole of worthlessness and self doubt. It really is one of those times in life, when you have to put your big girl/boy underwear on and kick some butt.....even if it is your own.

Once I got my breath in order, and my thoughts under control, wonderful things took place,
it was my choice today, I could have drown but I dog paddled my way to solid ground.
Love and hugs to you all tonight, may life treat you kind.

Sunday, March 6, 2011


I co-wrote a song called Life 101.......part of the chorus: every day is a school day, no matter how old you are, some times the test comes before the lesson, welcome to life 101
So, I have been in yoga eight hours was all review, but it served as a gentle reminder
you can always learn more......even the basics. Yes, I do have some sore muscles and a few aches, but I am reminded of how much I love yoga and how much I love to teach......and how much yoga has changed my life.

Because of yoga, I have helped others change their lives......I have met incredible people, and had extremely spiritual moments. Because of yoga, I learned how dangerous and life threatening anger can be, and how much joy a simple practice can bring to your life.
Because of yoga, I have learned that a chronic disease doesn't have to take over your life, and that joy and peace can be had in the darkest of times. Because of yoga, I have friends all over the country, and there is a bond that cannot be broken. Because of yoga, I can go inward without fear and can face myself without judgement. Because of yoga, I can see life without competition and love others who appear to be unloveable. Because of yoga, I can find stillness when all around there are storms raging.

I know that yoga is not for everyone.......not everyone is ready for yoga. But for me, it took all the parts and created a sum that was so much better. So, as I am sinking into my chair tonight, and Blackie Bear is looking at me, as if to say.......time for bed yoga lady! I wish you all peace,
I wish you all love, I wish you a path to follow that will bring you joy.

Saturday, March 5, 2011


I have been in a yoga teacher training all day.......eight am this morning until six tonight, drove home in the pouring rain. So glad my partner in crime Jackie went with me today.....the two of us do tend to cause a ruckus in these trainings. We both have very distinct teaching styles and we are not bashful about sharing our knowledge. This was one of two retrains we have to do for our

It was nice to be a student......I got to experience savasana! My yoga students love my savasanas,
(deep relaxations) but I don't get to experience them, today I got to relax! In 2004 I did my first teacher certification, it has been a wonderful journey......I love teaching and sharing the yoga experience. I have studied many types of yoga, with incredible teachers. I have met students who changed my life......all I want as a teacher, is to make a difference in someone's life. I believe I have.

Tomorrow will be another long day, if you have any extra love and energy to spare......send me a little. Not only do I wish that I could sing to all of you, I wish I could be your yoga teacher too.
So for now, I share my thoughts, and wish you all.......good night, sweet dreams.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Open Heart

I had a couple of difficult days this week.....and I struggled with keeping my energy from dropping.
I almost let myself get depressed. But, I hung in there and I continued to practice what I read in
"Excuse M, Your Life Is Waiting" wasn't easy to "feel good", actually, it was much easier to allow myself to "feel bad". Finally, I sat down, closed my eyes and begin to see myself as pure loving light......just a glowing column of the most beautiful light I could imagine, pure love.

It worked, slowly the funk began to lift.....the resentment and anger and hurt that I had allowed myself to wallow in.....was totally overshadowed by the image of pure loving light. That experience reminded me of the Sanskrit word, Anahata which means is the name given to the heart chakra, a swirling vortex of life force energy in the heart.

When the heart chakra opens, unconditional love pours forth and you have that sense of being unstruck, you know, that sensation of love.....even though the memories are still there the bad feelings leave. The love just flows through you, the heart opens.

That image of pure loving light has stayed with me this week.......I have felt a sort of healing flow through my body and spirit. It has not been the energy high of last week, but rather a peace, like a warm blanket has wrapped itself around me.

This concept of changing your feelings is not easy, to concentrate on letting go of negative feelings, to really concentrate on the good, takes quite a bit of thought. I think most of the time,
I have just flat lined, you know, not really bad, but not really good either. When I saw that glowing column of shimmering silvery pure love, I felt it in every pore in my body. It was as though my actual physical body changed.

I teach a chakra class in yoga, and the heart is one of my favorites.......this week I truly felt that subtle energy shift as my heart energy came into balance. It feels good......this open heart.

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Lunch with the Girls

I had lunch today with three of my was a really good day. A couple of them had not seen each other grade school. There was lots of catching up......lots of laughter and a few tears.
These women are beautiful, smart and tough.....all three are widows. How can that be?
Women in their fifties already widowed.....but all three are survivors. You would want these witty charming women on your team, I promise.

As we sat there having lunch, I watched my friends, I listened to them.....and all I can say over and over, I am proud to have them as friends. Two have their own business, one is a nurse and medical educator.
Tonight, I think of them and many of the other women who are my friends, I am blessed.

Through the years, I have met women who proudly told me they didn't like other women, or had very few female friends. Now, I would be the first to sing the praises of men, and how dull and uninteresting the world would be without them.......I have lots of male friends. But, I cannot for the life of me, imagine life without my girlfriends. My husband, Rick loves to tell the story about my entrenching tool I carry in the back of Ingrid, my Volvo. He says it has always scared him silly that I am never without that shovel, and he knows for a fact that any one and all of my girlfriends would help me.......well you know, bury him if he screws up. ha ha!

So today, as I ate my crab cakes and fried green tomatoes, I thought, "how lucky I am." Lunch ended way too quick, but with the hugs and goodbyes, we promised........we'll do this again soon.
I can't wait!

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

World On Fire

It was truly one of the most amazing sunsets I have ever seen today.....I stopped on the side of the road twice(almost got my fool self hit) but I was mesmerized by the fire in the sky.
I have seen sunsets at the beach and in the mountains, but this one took my breath away. I kept thinking "I wish I was in Sedona, I bet those red rocks were flaming".

There were shades of vermilion, deep coral, rosy red and brilliant golds. I shot the picture with my phone, so I couldn't get the rest of the sky.......but above the lavender grey, there was another incredible streak of coral.
It really looked as though the world was on fire.

I needed that beauty has been a tough week at work.......well not tough, but a little harder than usual.
Normally our most beautiful sunsets occur in the fall and mid
winter, not this late in the season. But, mother nature got out her paintbox and did herself proud today. The color was so intense, it looked like a photograph that had been enhanced. Even now, after the stars have come out, I am still awestruck by the colors that were splashed across the sky this evening.

This evening was a gift, there were others around me, who sped by(or almost ran me down) and I am sure they thought I was crazy to be on the side of the road shooting pictures with my phone. But that kind of could I pass it by? Honestly, I felt as though I witnessed a miracle, that somehow seeing such beauty was my special blessing today. As I stood and looked at the color spread across the sky, there was no past, no future.......only the now and I was in it!

I hope where ever you are tonight, that sometime in the near future, you too, see a sunset as beautiful as the one I witnessed sure to take a picture!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Spring Ramblings

Ok, I promise.....last post about playing this weekend. Just wanted to share a photo with you. Our friend, Wes took the picture at Just Folks Coffee House in Elba, Al. Friday night. Can you tell we were having fun?
Such a cool coffee house, reminded me of The Bitter End........well at least photos that I had seen.
So, it is kinda of a letdown, well that is not exactly the right word.......let's say the juices have slowed a bit and I am now back in the real world.

Spring has truly come early to Alabama.....daffodils, forsythia, quince, and camellias are blooming all over the place... fruit trees are starting to can see tiny shades of greens on many of the trees on our won't be long. And yes, there will be a birthday coming to visit me this month also. I am a spring baby, but lord knows I love the fall and winter!

I am meeting several friends this week for lunch.......I love that! Nothing like a group of my wild and wacky friends taking over a place of business. This weekend, I do a retrain for yoga certification, Level 1 here I come! and yes I am taking one of my wild and wacky friends with me. Bootcamp yoga will never be the same!

My friend Deidra, in the photo with the daffodils......we stayed with she and her husband Wes this weekend. I wanted to post the photo to show off the beautiful spring flowers, but also
let you all see the lovely Deidra.

Thanks for letting me ramble tonight. Just could not get my thoughts together.
If spring has not sprung in your neighborhood, I hope it does soon.