Monday, December 31, 2012


December 31, 2012.......last few hours of the year.  I don't do resolutions......but many of you will recall, I do vision boards.  When the new one is done, I  will post a picture of it.

2012......for me has been a year of tests, of struggles, a year of life staring me in the face and daring me to practice what I teach.  It started with a call from my lung doc in December of 2011, it went into a
speeding slide with the introduction of a hematologist/oncologist in January 2012.......a diagnosis of an immune system that had failed miserably and the recommendation of  open-ended infusion treatments.   And all the doctor visits, and side-effects and meds in between.

But, I met some of the strongest, kindest people in the world in those big green chairs.....and sadly said goodbye to some of them.  I have truly learned that all we have is today.......
I have learned that you  can do "all the right things" and still have serious health issues.

I have said goodbye to three of my most precious furry friends who had been with me for years, and also said goodbye to several human friends.  I have learned that naps are one of my most valuable resources and that my husband Rick is strong and brave.

I have learned that music and art give me peace, that teaching yoga gives me more, than it gives my students.  Most of all, I have learned that I am loved......and that these four words "this too shall pass" are true.

I don't think much about the future anymore,  I just pray that every day .......we all receive our portion of grace......Happy New Year.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Sharing a Poem

This poem was shared with me from  another yoga teacher, it was so profound, so truthful, I had to share it with you all.  The words have haunted me all day......."the only life you could save."

The Journey

One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
kept shouting
their bad advice --
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
"Mend my life!"
each voice cried.
But you didn't stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
was terrible.
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognized as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do --
determined to save
the only life you could save. 
~ Mary Oliver ~
(Dream Work)

Saturday, December 29, 2012

A Day With Breeze

My great niece, Breeze spent the day with me, it was freezing cold and a few snow flurries.  I taught her how to tie her scarf, we baked brownies and just had a wonderful day!  We also did some shopping.....and yes, she got something new to wear!

Her little sister, Daisy came home from the hospital this evening and is doing well.  All is calm tonight, Buddy and Calliou are already snoring, I think it will be an early evening for me too.

Wishing you all a peaceful Saturday night.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Steven Johnson Syndrome

Here is our great-niece Daisy, who was at our house last week baking Christmas cookies.  I am showing you all her photo because tonight she is in Children's Hospital in Birmingham, Al. and we are lucky and blessed that she is with us.
About a two weeks ago, Daisy cut her foot, and it was a pretty serious cut, so her parents took her to Childrens' for was all pretty routine, and because she is five, the doc did a routine scrip for antibiotics, because we all know most five year olds do not want to wear shoes.

Last night, her parents James and Andrea rushed Daisy to the ER, she was crying with a burning sensation in her nose and throat, her skin was quickly becoming covered in red splotches, she had a temperature.
The young doctor in the ER pulled up her records on their computer, saw that she had been treated with Bactrim ( a sulfur drug) and quickly diagnosed her with Steven Johnson Syndrome,  he saved her life.  I am posting all of this tonight, to hopefully prevent or save another child's or adult's life, vision,
lungs, liver or kidneys.  There are several drugs that can cause this life threatening reaction, and some doctors also believe there might be some genetics involved.  You can Google Steven Johnson Syndrome to see how horrific it can be.

Our Daisy is going to be ok, thanks to the quick action of her parents and her ER doctor, the sooner treatment is started, the better your chances of survival and fewer side effects, such as blindness.
We are deeply grateful tonight, that our Daisy will be baking cookies at our house again soon.
Say a prayer for her speedy recovery, and blessings for her parents.....and oh yes, give all those you love, a great big can change in the blink of an eye.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Heart Ache

Totally out of sorts......that is not my usual way of describing my self, but today, that is how it it.
Good stuff......a beautiful full moon in a winter's sky.
No matter how joyous the Christmas season's just not the same after your parents are gone.
I have cried a great deal today,  our mixed bull-dog Taylor, who has had congested heart-failure
for some time, worsen.....and once again, our vet gave us the news you never want to hear.  Taylor joined Astro and the other dogs over the rainbow this afternoon.
So sorry that I am down and out tonight......I know that this too shall pass.
But for tonight, looking at that big full moon, my heart aches for all those humans and creatures who are no longer with me.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Free of Suffering

"In Buddhism compassion is defined as the wish that all beings be free of their suffering."  -  An Open Heart, The Dalai Lama

This morning as I was doing laundry, I had the tv on in the laundry room and noticed that the 80's movie, Resurrection was on.  I had forgotten how good this movie was with Sam Sheppard and Ellen Bursten .  Basically, she becomes a healer, and takes away physical suffering.  It is a complex story, and a great movie.

Friends often tell me that I have compassion, that is how they describe me......and I suppose looking at the Buddhist definition .......then yes I do have compassion.  It is very difficult for me to  see others suffer in any way......humans,all creatures great and small.

As I watched Resurrection this morning, I sat there and thought about how wonderful it would to be able to take away someone's suffering........and then I thought about how, maybe as humans we can't totally take away suffering, but we can comfort, we can love, we can lift each other up, we can bring joy,
there is much that we can do to help ease suffering.

Even though we as humans are often the cause of suffering in those around us, we can ease suffering.  We can simply smile at others,  we can love others, 
we can help those who need help, we can think before we speak, we can practice kindness.  I think one of the most important things we can do as humans.......treat others as we want to be treated, or  "do unto others as you would have them do unto you."  

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Peace and Merry Christmas

Merry Christmas!   It has rained, and rained and rained........but thank goodness, no tornadoes today.....well at least not where we are, but south of us had a few.
We are safe and sound, and waiting and hoping for snow......but right now, the rain continues to fall in sheets.

I am tired, as always, it has been a Christmas family, family, food, family, more food.  Tomorrow we lunch with friends.....more food.  I am thinking of doing a short fast later this week, I need raw fruits, veggies and lots of water.

Hoping that you and yours had a happy holiday, full of love and joy.......and food.
Blessings of joy, peace, and much love to all of you tonight.
Merry Christmas

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve 2012

Christmas Eve 2012........breakfast with my brother Ricky and his wonderful family.  Worked this afternoon, and enjoyed every minute of it........being in rehab is hard, being in rehab at Christmas......the worst.  My students were so glad to see me today, they needed a little extra love......

Rick and I will open our presents in a while, we are both a little on edge tonight.  Our local weather guys are saying we could have violent storms if you don't have anyone to say prayers for tonight, say a prayer of grace and  safety for all of us in the red zone.

Hoping that Santa brings you the perfect gift tonight.......the realization that you know you are loved.
Merry Christmas

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Rise Up

"Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall."  - Confucius

Some days I think about all the times I have fallen or failed, how difficult it has been to get back up.
Today, I have thought about friends and family members, many of them have fallen, stumbled and with great effort risen again.

I know there are times when you fall so often, you begin to think what's the use.......but it is the falling, the scarring, the bruising that defines us.....and each time we rise up, we're stronger because we know we can get back up.  It takes strength, courage, determination, faith and sometimes just plain old grit to get up after a fall.....but better to struggle and finally stand, than to lie down and wallow.

If it is one of those fallen times in your life, don't throw up your hands and give up.......take some time to reflect, to think it through. Ask for help if you need it, pray if you need to, cry if it helps......but remember that once you stand back up, you're wiser and stronger.  I think we all fear falling ( emotionally and physically) but watch a baby take its first steps......there are many falls, and tears.....but there is nothing but joy, once that child stands strong and walks.

Don't fret about the fall, just remember to rise up!

Saturday, December 22, 2012

The Best Gift

Another glorious day of visits with friends, conversations with friends, communications with friends.......This has been one of my best weeks in a very long time.  My friends will never know
how much their calls, e-mails, and visits mean to me.

I hope that through out this holiday season you all have been able to spend time (in what ever way you can) with friends.  I know that it is stressful, and sometimes it seems to become even more stressful if that is possible, the closer it gets to Christmas........PLEASE, take a few moments for yourself.....a short nap, a warm bath, soft music, a call to an old something for yourself.
Honestly, we never know when it will be our last holiday.......spend this time with joy in your heart.

Remind yourself, when the stress level is ready to explode.......will this really matter five years from now?  Your time, your love, that is what your family and friends want......that is the gift that truly matters.

Sending blessings of peace to each of you tonight, and wishes for a good night's sleep and the sweetest  of dreams.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Christmas Cookies

Chaos, Joy and LOADS of sugar.......that was our house today!   Jordan, Anthony, Zoe, Stone, Breeze, Daisy and Joy all came over to bake Christmas cookies!  It was grand fun!
I can't remember the last time I was this tired......but it was so worth it.

From the top, Jordan and Anthony
Jordan and Zoe
Jordan and Daisy

The cookies were delicious!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

The Value of Friends

The storms moved through this morning, the winds are howling tonight, lows in the 20' feels like Christmas.  We met some of our oldest and dearest friends for GreenTop BBQ tonight.
Tom, Judy, Brenda and Danny......we had not seen them in since they don't live that far away.......our lives are like yours, busy and complicated.

It was so good to see them, to sit and laugh and know that no matter how many months go by, when we're together, it is as though we just saw each other yesterday.  Susie, who owns the Green Top was a friend of my parents.....she and my dad grew up together......she is 90, but she is younger than many
50 year olds that I know.  She has always been more like a favorite aunt, than a friend of the family's.
She asked me again tonight if I would sing at her funeral......I told her yes,
 but it had better  be a long time coming.

Rick and I sang at Brenda and Danny's wedding, that was held at Tom and Judy's house.......the threads that weave the tapestries of our lives are amazing aren't they?  As the years have gone by, I understand the importance even more of having good need them for the laughter as well as the tears.  That is one thing that my parents taught me.......the value of good friends, I am forever grateful for that.  I remember my parents friends  coming to visit, drinking coffee, eating cake, hearing their laughter.......and thinking, that is what I want when I grow up.......good friends spending time together, sharing meals.

I have had the good fortune of spending time with, and hearing from good friends today......and because of that, I feel better, I feel stronger tonight.......I feel loved.  I hope that during this holiday season that you all spend time with friends, that you share laughter and maybe a few tears.....but  most of all......I hope you feel loved.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Over The Rainbow

It has been an extremely long day.......this morning around 3:00, a noise awakened us, it was our
dog Astro, a black lab mix.  I thought he was having a seizure, Rick and I both were trying to figure out what to do, how to comfort him.....after a while he slept.

Around 6:00 we made coffee, and Astro came into the great room with us like he does every morning.
But , he was weak, as he walked he leaned to one side, and it seemed that he was walking in circles.
When our vet opened, Rick carried him down to her office.........really bad news......Astro had had a major stroke, and his vet, who had taken care of him for twelve years gently suggested we let him go.

Rick called me to break the news, I honestly thought when they left that Astro would be back home ready for our morning walk........instead, he joined Blackie Bear, and Charlie and all the rest of our beloved dogs over the rainbow.

Astro was like all our other dogs, a cast-off......but he was sweet and gentle and would stand for hours beside you, if you petted him.  He could never seem to get enough love.  Our niece Samantha brought him to her house, just as she did Blackie Bear, but with Sam at school every day, Bear and Astro liked our house better.

Rick had a book signing today, it was hard to sit there and smile and talk with people.......I just wanted to grieve for Astro.  When we walked into tonight, I looked for him.......the house seems so empty without him.  Tough year......Blackie Bear and Astro......somewhere over the rainbow.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012


I am becoming an artful dodger, no not a pickpocket, but trying to perfect the art of dodging  the flu.
The flu is all around me, at work, in my family.......and honestly, I am washing my hands so much, they are just about to crack.  Even my hematologist expressed her concern last week when I saw her.
She didn't have to remind me of the consequences I could face if I catch the flu.

I can't live in a bubble,  I am trying to avoid crowds, head in the other direction when I hear someone cough or sneeze.....but this is Christmas,  what to do, what to do?  I am drinking elderberry tea,  have upped my vitamin C, trying to rest as much as possible. Drinking lots of fluids.

I keep telling myself that I will not let my disease define who I am......but when flu season hit early, and our local school sent as many as 200 students home in a day, I admit I began to feel a little anxious.  Do you all have any suggestions.....yes, I got a flu shot and a pneumonia shot.

I am teaching chakra classes again at work, and today I taught a class built around #4, the heart.
We talked about love, compassion......not just for others, but for ourselves as well.  We talked about the physical heart as well as the emotional one, it was a wonderful healing class.  Tonight, I am reminding myself that I am loved, and that in itself boosts the immune system.

I have painted all my cards, mailed half of them, made cookies for Samantha to take to work tomorrow, made spiced cider for Rick's book signing, I am ready for for nog and fruitcake.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, December 17, 2012

Decorating the Tree

Here I am decorating the tree, this was just the beginning.   Many more ornaments later, it was done.
Wishing you all love and peace tonight......enjoy your holidays, don't let the stress rob you of the joy!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Peacemakers, Healers and Lovers

"The planet does not need more successful people.  The planet desperately needs more peacemakers,
healers, restorers, storytellers, and lovers of all kinds."  - Dalai Lama

I believe this truth......I want so much to believe that all those six and seven year olds did not die in vain......that somehow, some way, humanity will jump back from the cliff where we seem to be teetering.  I know in my heart  there is goodness in each of us.....what happens down our paths that changes......I don't know.   But, we all start out as children.....and for some of us, the transformation to monster takes place.  What creates the monster?  Who creates the monster?

I also know in my heart that we have to stop the fear.  We have to stop it with love, you cannot stop it with hate. Love really can change the world, we each have the capability to live remarkable lives and there is nothing magical about it.......just the simple act of love.  We are all healers, and peacemakers,
we can restore and love.......we just have to do it.  It is our responsibility to ourselves and each other.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Christmas Comes to the Watson House

Our Christmas tree is decorated......the cards are ready to paint......the big hemlock out front is covered in lights.....the stockings are is starting to look like Christmas at the Watson house.
I didn't break any decorations this year, a first.....but Rick fell off the ladder......he's fine, a little bruised, but fine.  I think he has watched Chevy Chase in Christmas Vacation one too many times.

We had a cup of eggnog and a slice of fruitcake tonight, and listened to one of my most favorite Christmas cds by Tori Amos.  If you are looking for a new Christmas cd, give her a listen.......the cd was recorded a few years ago, but it is well worth the search.

I kept thinking about last Christmas was about this time last year that I got a call from my pulmonary doctor recommending that I see a hematologist/oncologist. I didn't see the new doc until after Christmas, thoughts that it might be my last Christmas did enter my mind.  Thankfully I did not have cancer, but there were some serious issues and I have undergone treatments for the past eleven
months.  This week has been difficult, but I always tell myself it could be worse.  I am grateful for
a wonderful team of caring doctors, a trio of loving nurses, and a husband who has been there through it all, and friends and family who have given me their love and support.

I am exhausted tonight, but that's ok.......a hot bath, a cup of tea, and a good night's sleep will make it all better.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Friday, December 14, 2012

Peace and Love to All

My nephew James Phillips is editor of the Daily Mt. Eagle in Jasper, Al.  He has four children under the age of nine.  These are his words that he posted on FB today.........I am very proud of him.

Today is not a day to bash people over the head with religion and shove God in their face. 
Today is not a day to try to use a terrible tragedy to disprove the existence of God.
Today is not a day to get on political soapboxes, discussing gun control laws and mental health issues.
Today IS a day to mourn.
Today IS a day to grab your children and give them a hug and a kiss, because it could be your last chance.
Today IS a day to think about those who have suffered terrible loss.
Today IS a day to LOVE!

I think his words pretty much sum up my feelings about today.
Sending blessings of peace and love to each and every one.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Tree Farm

I rested this morning so that we could go to the tree farm today and get our Christmas tree.  It is sitting in our front yard tonight......and hopefully, my energy that is still sitting in the big green chair will come home tomorrow and decorate our tree!

On the way home, I was getting a little weak and shaky, and Rick asked if an ice cream cone would make me feel better......of course it would!  So, to celebrate the season I had 
a red velvet ice cream was rather tasty.

The meteor showers are tonight, around midnight and later......since it was cloudy and we missed the ones in the summer, hoping we get a chance to see these.  We'll have to set the clock and  climb out of bed, but I know it will be worth it.
I thought about Christmases past today, how crazy and stressed out I use to get........I think most of the time now, I really have learned to live in the moment.......I try to encourage my nieces and nephews to not get caught up in the craziness.   I do understand that the blending of families and different traditions is fuel to the sad that it takes years to work it all out.

All that fresh air, and the hard work of choosing a tree has worn me out, my nice warm bed is calling.
Wishing that we all take time out to look at the stars, blessings of peace to one and all. 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Treatment #11

So here I sit in the mighty green chair, drip attached for five long's ok, I had nice warm blankets, and those three blue angels hovering  around me.

Not many in the infusion room today, I take that as a good was rather quiet, we all seemed subdued.  For one young woman it was her first time in the big green chairs, but her mom and best friend were with her, and when she left she was smiling......she knew she was loved.

I am very tired tonight, the drip has been slowed even more, since last time.......hopefully it will help with the nausea and other side effects.  Sitting in those green chairs is not for wussies......and the folks that come with you, well they are not wussies either. Those green chairs show you the stuff you're made of.....or not.
As Rick and I topped one of the hills coming home tonight, we saw one of the most brilliant sunsets.
He kept asking what color is that, the only color I could name..... was magical.
Maybe this whole 12-12-12 thing was a day of magic.

So how many more treatments, still is what it is.....and this too shall pass.
But I saw a magical sunset today, I saw a young woman understand that she was truly loved,
and once again, I got to tell those blue angels thank you.

Goodnight Sweet dreams

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Mrs. Santa Claus

Leaving work in the dark tonight, I was thinking that  I  seemed to  be missing  quite a few sunsets......but then I started to take notice.  There are beautiful Christmas lights everywhere on this winding country road.  Some are thoughtful, well planned, color and theme driven.......others are
lights spread with wild abandon, like a Georgia O'Keeffe painting......brilliant in color, but you have to look to see the subject.

Even on the dead-end road where we live, Christmas lights have sprung up like mushrooms the past few days.  Just like on the drive home, some are well-planned and others seem to be tossed into trees and bushes with joy and enthusiasm.

We will do a tree and a little outside illumination toward the end of the week.  We always get a "living tree" to plant after the can walk around our yard and visit all our Christmas trees.
This past  weekend I did hang the wreath on the door, and the Christmas flag.  This weekend I will paint Christmas cards, yes each one individually many?   some years as many as 100, most of the time around 50.  I know some get crazy with decorations, I get crazy painting cards.

I made a fruitcake this weekend ( and I actually let Rick help, usually I try to keep him out of the
kitchen, but there was so much fruit and nuts) I had to have help!  It feels like Christmas tonight, cold and cloudy.  Oh yes, there will some meteor showers tomorrow night and Thursday, hoping for clear skies.  Isn't that rather magical, to think about a sky full of shooting stars at Christmas time?

Tomorrow is treatment day, I am wearing a red sweater, so that sitting in that big green chair I will look like Mrs. Santa Claus!
Good night, Sweet dreams!

Monday, December 10, 2012

Growing Old

"Nobody grows old by merely living a number of years.  People grow old by deserting their ideals. You are as young as your faith, as old as your doubt; as young as your self-confidence, as old as your fear; as young as your hope, as old as your despair."  - Douglas MacArthur

I have known young eighty year olds, and old fifty year is true age is just a number.
When my mom was eighty-five she announced one day, that she felt twenty-five and the only way she knew she was old......when she looked in the mirror.  Honestly, there are few days when I think about my age anymore.

Here's to forgetting about numbers, and just living our lives to their fullest.  Hang on to your ideals,
and laugh out loud daily.   Sing loudly, walk in the sun and never miss a chance to eat ice cream.
Spend time with dogs and children, read a good book, and tell someone every day you love them.
That is my personal advice for staying young.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams.

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Sunday Musings

Our songwriter's group got together this afternoon.  Each time I am around them, I am left breathless by their talents.  I looked around the room today, and thought how can I be this lucky?  One of the most unique attributes of this group is their lack of me, with artistic talented musicians...that is not always the norm.

We have several projects that we are working on, including more concerts, a book, and a weekend writing get-away.  I need this much as I love my job as a yoga therapist......I too, need yin and yang......balance.  The music is personal, it is me expression of who I am, all facets.

It is still so warm here, near 70.  No Christmas tree yet, very hard to get in the spirit of things, when I am walking around barefoot.  I hear change is coming but only for a few days........but at least if it gets cold again, I'll go get a tree!  Cold cider is not nearly as Christmasey as hot, spiced!

This week is treatment week, there have been bouts of nausea this weekend, but not nearly as bad as last month.....keeping my fingers crossed.

Wishing you all a magical week, full of celebrations, joy and peace!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

A Charlie Brown Tree

Jordan and his mom have had the flu this was his first day without fever, so to celebrate we did his
Charlie Brown Christmas Tree.  It is a tradition that I did with his mom, Samantha when she was his age.

We walked through the woods behind the barn, he could not decide on a tree.  They were so much bigger than him.....finally, we saw this one and he liked it.
We had made the ornaments in early fall, out of playdough.
The string of lights wrapped around the little sapling several times........we think it is the perfect Charlie Brown tree.  He was so excited about his ornaments......I have to admit I thought they were beautiful too.

We mixed all colors of play dough, rolled it out, cut it with Christmas cookie cutters......stars, trees, bells......all tied with gold and silver ribbons.  Even though it has been in the 70's today, the Christmas spirit visited.
There is nothing like a Charlie Brown Christmas Tree and a four year old boy!  What a great day!

Friday, December 7, 2012

Don't Let Them Forget

A friend of mine who teaches at a nearby college posted something so sad on FB this morning......he had cancelled classes for today and had casually mentioned to his students to remember how important this day was.......December 7.  He had students that had no idea why this day was special.

I cannot imagine any college student in this country not knowing the importance of December 7, the day Pearl Harbor was attacked.  It is a date that changed this country, that changed the world.
And now I'm wondering do they even teach history anymore?.......maybe if they had the students at least watch Tora, Tora, Tora?

My dad was a medic during WWII .......he refused to talk to any of us about the war.  We never even knew that he had been awarded medals until several years after his death......I had gone to the VA office to talk about possible benefits for my mom when she was ill.  The woman told me the battles,
and the awards he had been given.  No one in the family knows what happened to them.  The war changed my dad, it changed everyone involved in every way.......thousands died......and to think that there are college students that do not know what this day is just not acceptable.

For those of you reading this tonight, teach your children, your grandchildren......remind them of the incredible sacrifices that were made all over the world, don't let them forget.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

The Atlas Complex

Drop the idea that you are Atlas carrying the world on your shoulders. The world would go on even without you. Don't take yourself so seriously."  - Norman Vincent Peale

This quote spoke to me tonight, loud and clear.  Rick constantly has to remind me that I can't fix everything for everyone.  I have been a caregiver since I was a child. I watched over my younger brother, and as a 'tween and before I could drive, if family members were sick and needed help, my mom would send me.  I look back now and realize how ludicrous that was to send basically a child
to care for an adult.  But thinking back, as a child and even as a teenager, I was old.

I have come a long way, but I still have my moments......when I assume that yes, I can fix it.
Yoga has helped me so much,  that and the study of Eastern philosophy.  I talk about "letting go" in yoga, and usually it is for my benefit as much as anyone else's.  Studying the balance, the yin and the yang has changed me makes so much more sense now.  Probably a great deal of it is my age, and understanding how little I really do know.  I talked with my classes today about the importance of being responsible for yourself, but not for everyone else.

I see students come to class often, so stressed that their shoulders are up to their ears........they are Atlas, believing that everything will crash and burn without them.  Life teaches hard earned lessons,
when I first started my current job seven years ago, I became so enmeshed with my students that I thought I couldn't even take sick days.......I thought they needed me that much.........well my body rebelled and I became so sick, I missed many days.  I learned I was not Atlas, and that everyone and everything would go on without me.

Tonight, if you, like me......forget your identity sometimes and think that you are really Atlas.
Look in the mirror, no one's shoulders are that big........laugh out loud at the absurdness of you thinking you can fix it all......... and remember, even when you and I are no longer on this earth......the problems, the pain, and all the mess will still be here for someone else to try and fix.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

More Than A Toy

First, let me say thank you for the kind and encouraging comments that you all left on my post last night. I still can't believe I have written that many posts!

Rick and I watched White Christmas tonight, there are so many things that I love about that movie.....
Bing Crosby's and Rosemary Clooney's  voices, the costumes, the Vermont Inn, the firepit at the Inn,
the dancing, the friendships.  As we watched tonight, I told Rick that one of my most favorite Christmas gifts I ever got as a child.......a Rosemary Clooney doll.  I had seen her in the window of Gilberts, a little family store  in our small town.....I was maybe 5 or 6.  I immediately told my parents that I wanted her for Christmas.  My dad shook his head and told me Santa could not afford her.  Even at that age, I understood money was tight.
I had six siblings, each of us got one gift.  Our stocking held fruit, nuts and candy.
We learned from the beginning that Christmas was not about how many presents you got.

I went to bed on Christmas Eve knowing that Santa would bring something, but not Rosemary.
On Christmas morning, I got up and ran to the Christmas tree, momma handed me my present.
It was a big box, almost as tall as me, and when I opened it, yep.......I got Rosemary in all her splendor.  She wore a pink lace gown, silver shoes and jewelry.  I loved her!   I had a Betsy Wetsy, but Rosemary was not a baby doll, she looked the way I wanted to look when I grew up.....and I wanted to be a singer too.

Rosemary was mine, until I was ten.  We moved to Chicago, where my mom's brother lived......there were good jobs there, and money to be made.  We lived in a small apartment, so Rosemary was left behind, in the basement of our house.  While we were gone, my sister and her family lived in our house, and they got a new pet.  A rowdy little dog.......he chewed Rosemary, along with the rest of my toys to pieces.  Rosemary is just a memory, but she was more than a toy, she was an inspiration.
Maybe I should look for a pink lace dress to wear this Christmas!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Post 1000

This blog tonight is a milestone, one that I never thought I would reach.......this blog is number
1,000.   It is hard to believe that I have posted one thousand, I can't believe I thought of that much to say!  Ha!

I started writing this blog as a way to share my thoughts, honestly as a way to let people know that someone cared about them.  I wanted to share love and kindness, I wanted to teach breath work, to encourage a yoga practice, and meditation.   I wanted to let you know, that I believed there was balance and goodness in the world.  I wanted to shine light in the darkness of hate and judgement.

I have never worried about how many followers I had, or how many comments.  In my heart I knew that if one blog post helped one person, my time in front of the computer was well spent.
This blog has allowed me to share my personal journey of illness the past couple of years.
I have shared moments of grief, as well as joy, because that is the balance of life......good and bad, wellness and illness, birth and death.

The title, Transformation Information just came to me.......I knew that most of you were like me, there were times in your lives when you needed a little "transformation information" and I hope I have provided you with some.  We take many paths during our lives,  writing this blog was a path I never would have chosen, but my husband Rick convinced me to write.  I am glad I finally listened to him, sat down in front of this computer and allowed my fingers to speak my thoughts.

I appreciate your comments, I appreciate the time that each of you take to read my words.
It is a cold rainy night here in rural Alabama, I have written this blog in hot sweltering heat,
snow and ice, tornadoes, beautiful springs, and breath-taking falls.  During the course of these blogs,
two of my beloved dogs, Charlie and Blackie Bear passed over the rainbow.
I will continue to write these posts, until my heart tells me it is time to let go.

Thank you all so much, though I may never meet many of you, I think our souls have known each other for centuries.  For those friends who have been with me since post # 1, my heart is full of love and gratitude for your friendship and loyalty.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Monday, December 3, 2012

December Sunset

A December sunset, clear and cold.......a beautiful backdrop for the trees.
All is calm.......don't let the stress of shopping, of cooking, of parties, and gifts, of missing those who are no longer here.......don't let that holiday stress rob you of the beauty around you.   Stop, look around you......and remember to breathe and be grateful.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Family Holiday

Today was Christmas lunch with my siblings.  After our mom passed, we realized that old traditions would be extremely difficult to continue, and things would never be the we came up with new ones.  Since my siblings all have children, grandchildren, and some of them great-grandchildren and everyone is scattered, we decided on a siblings only lunch the first Sunday in December.

One brother didn't make it today,  but  both sisters, two brothers, and our sister-in-law,  the wife of our oldest brother who passed away right after our  mom  were there.  We had a great time, just sitting around talking, laughing, enjoying each other's company.  We don't do gifts.......the gift is......time with each other.
Today was so special,  I looked at them all, and thought about how each of them had helped to shape my life.  I looked at them and realized that each of them had been there for me, when ever I needed them.  I looked at them and realized how very lucky I am.

Sadly I know there are families who are estranged, where members don't speak to each other, and there is constant drama.  I am so grateful that we have survived as a family without resorting to all of that craziness.

Age is creeping up on all of us, and each of has some health issues that we deal with,  but my sister's living room was filled with laughter and love today......there was a loving family there.......and tonight,
life is good.  It was a wonderful family holiday.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

December 1

December 1..........lunch with old friends and new today

December 1.......Alabama wins SEC Championship

December's 70 degrees, what happen to fall?

December 1.......treatment number ll this month

December Christmases without my mom, twenty-one without my dad

December 1......chaos, making Christmas cookies with great-nieces and nephews

December 1.......time to paint Christmas cards, and mail them

December 1.......the last month of 2012, I blinked my eyes and it was gone

December would have been Rick's mom's birthday, the sixth would have been my mom's.

December 1......I hope it snows

Friday, November 30, 2012


New hair cut today, new hair stylist.......very happy.  Old stylist semi-retired, our schedules were getting more and more difficult to match.  So happy with new cut, got my new passport photo today.
And even with new cut, the picture is pretty frightful!

I am bound and determined, whether my numbers are up or not, this coming year.......I am going somewhere.  I will take my chances.  My wanderlust  has reach a state of frenzy.

I can't help myself, I have always loved to travel.......road trips, planes, an hour away, a day away, it doesn't people, places, food.......I LOVE it.  Packing a suitcase makes me a happy camper! and I am a great packer!  Did I tell you I recently bought new luggage?

Now, we have to think about where, list is long.....poor Rick.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

In the Past

The moon shines through the lace curtains that cover the window in front of my desk.  Sometimes life seems surreal, and this is one of those sit in front of a computer writing this blog, looking up at the moon through heavy cotton lace.  I hear the neighbor's dog barking, the whistle of the tea kettle and  I am transported back to Ireland, getting ready to go sing at the pub.

Being in the present is good, but sometimes a journey back in the past is good for the soul.  I need to feel that aliveness again, the joy of playing music for such an enthusiastic crowd, the fun and fellowship of a pub in a small village or town.

It has been damp and chilly this week,  and the smell of a fire in our neighbors fireplaces triggered fond memories.....of playing at Characters ( a pub in Tullamore) in front of a giant fireplace, the fire roaring.....our friend Dominic pulled a charred piece of wood from the embers and promised he would make me something.   A year later, a bowl with a hole was delivered, it sits in our living room on our coffee table, a place of honor, to be looked at daily with great fondness.

My blueberry tea is ready, and I am ready for its warmth and comfort.
Goodnight, Sweetdreams

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

November Moon

A full moon tonight, Jordan called to remind me.......that is a connection that I hope we always share, the love of a full moon.  Even before he could speak, he was fascinated by the moon.  I think my fascination goes back that far too, my first memories of a full moon........maybe I was two or three years old.

I am envious of friends this week who are traveling in foreign lands, they are seeing the moon over some exotic places.  But I have to admit, this November moon that shines over Alabama tonight is not so shabby.  Some students and I were talking about full moons a couple of weeks ago, we decided it just makes sense, if the moon has power over the ocean's tides and since we are 70% wonder the full moon pulls at us, mystifies us, and enamors us.

Our night sky is deep and dark, full of mystery tonight......the full moon is holding court over the darkness, shimmering in the cold air, beckoning for adoration.  Mother Earth, the sun, the moon and stars.......perfect balance, perfect beauty.  I understand the worship, the love and reverence that those before us had for those orbs.  The earth is our home, the sun warms us, and the moon and stars light up the night sky.

A full moon, where ever you are tonight......take a few moments and gaze at it's beauty, be grateful for its light......and be honored that it shines on you.  

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Yin and Yang, Perfect Balance

"We are buried beneath the weight of information which is being confused with knowledge;
quantity is being confused with abundance, and wealth with happiness.  We are monkeys with money and guns."  - Tom Waits

I love Tom Waits' music, his voice gravely and deep, his phrasing like no one else's.  I saw this quote tonight, it is quite a dark  summary of we humans.  I don't think we have reached the monkey stage yet, at least I hope not, or maybe some of us have.  I think the weight of information has numbed us, and I believe it is quite easy to confuse quantity with abundance......and sadly many do think wealth equals happiness.

But, I also know in my heart that goodness still lives in our hearts,  that kindness permeates our existence, and that when our fellow man is in trouble we want to help.  The rawness of the human spirit understands  our connection to every living thing, but technology takes place so fast, our minds are boggled with its vastness.  My glass will always be half-full and I will always believe the sun will shine tomorrow........I expect the best in everyone, everywhere I go.......I settle for nothing less.

Though many voice that they see only the bad, and nothing good to come......I choose to believe they are wrong.  There is yin and yang, it is the perfect balance of the universe, I believe in the circle of life.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Monday, November 26, 2012

Common Sense Rules

Thanks to my friend Roberta for sharing these thoughts from Whisper of the Heart.
Just common sense, nothing complicated.
I gave out copies of this to my students today, thought you all might enjoy it.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

S'mores Adventure

Lows down in the 20's this morning, it was a great afternoon for a fire in the firepit.......and Jordan thought a great afternoon for s'mores.  Things got a little sticky, soon there were
marshmallows and chocolate from his head to his toes.

He was amazed by the, I wouldn't let him use a fork......but he did get a bath, later.

It has been a wonderful, stress-free day.....walks with the dogs,
the Sunday comics, and the s'mores adventure.
I hope your Sunday was just as wonderful.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

A Long Busy Week

A very long, busy week.......I taught classes on Monday and Tuesday, painted the cover for a children's book on Wednesday, cooked for two different meals on Thursday, spent all day Friday helping Rick with his book event, and sang at a funeral today......I am exhausted.

I hope tomorrow is a very uneventful day.  My body is yelling loud at me tonight, I should probably listen.  Wishing you all a beautiful peaceful Sunday.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, November 23, 2012

A Favor

Our neighbor passed away yesterday morning, he and his wife had been married seventy years.
Carolyn ( his wife) called me last night, her voice shaky and cracking and she needed a favor.......I knew in my heart what she was going to ask, she wanted me to sing at the memorial service in the morning.  This is not the first time a friend has asked me to do is not easy.
But in my heart, I know it is an honor, it is the last thing I can do for the deceased......a gift to the family.....and hopefully some comfort.

Tonight, say a prayer for  a family .......who lost a dad, a grandfather, a wonderful member of the community.  And say a prayer for Rick and I, that somehow, someway, our music will comfort.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Guests and Visitors

This being human is a guest house.
Every morning a new arrival.
A joy, a depression, a meaness,
some momentary awareness comes
as an unexpected visitor.
Welcome and entertain all!
Even if they're a crowd of sorrows,
who violently sweep your house
empty of its furniture,
still, treat each guest honorably.
He may be clearing you out
for some new delight.
The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
meet them at the door laughing,
and invite them in.
Be grateful for whomever comes,
because each has been sent
as a guide from beyond.

Jalal ad-Din Rumi

This from Rumi, sums up this day.......thanksgiving, gratitude is not only for the good in our lives but for everything.  Today, I hope that every guest who visited your home brought joy.
Happy Thanksgiving to all of you.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Live By Our Words

As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them. 
John F. Kennedy 

Thanksgiving Eve, 2012......this quote seems to fit this evening's blog.  Living by our words, expressing our gratitude.....Thanksgiving is so much more than a good meal, a football game and looking at the sale papers for black Friday.  Thanksgiving should serve as  a reminder for gratitude for all things in our lives......the good, the bad and everything in between.  We are all that we have experienced, we are the choices that we have made, the thoughts that we have thanks, expressing gratitude is way to turn all of that into joy, to remind us of the treasures we hold in our hearts.
Let us remember, tomorrow and every day, to live by our words.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Be Conscious of Our Treasures

"We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures."
- Thornton  Wilder

Continuing with our week of Thanksgiving thoughts on gratitude, this quote by Wilder really says so much.  How often do we go through our days, and never think of our "treasures"?  We take our health for granted, we take our friends and family for granted, our talents, our jobs, our wonder there are so many of us just going through the motion of living.

To be alive, to feel the emotions of love and joy and even sadness, we have to be grateful ( or conscious) of all that we have and have had.  If we have one person in our life that loves us, we are wealthy.....if we have our health, we have treasures beyond measure.

Take a moment tonight, promise yourself to take a moment every day, and think of the treasures in your heart.....allow yourself to feel alive......allow yourself to feel gratitude.  You are richer than you ever dreamed possible, you just have to look within, be conscious of all that you  have.

Monday, November 19, 2012

One Whole Day

A challenge to my students today, during this week of Thanksgiving one whole day this week and speak only uplifting, positive heard me, one whole day.....speak only positive, uplifting things.  No whining, no complaining, no saying unkind things about anyone.

They all had that deer in the headlight look on their faces, as a I talked about this exercise in gratitude.
And it is an exercise in gratitude, when you find and speak the positive in everything.........your heart will be full of gratitude.

So if today has been a difficult day, if you can't think of anything to be grateful for, place your right hand on your chest......take a deep breath, close your eyes........think of those you love, think of you friends and family, breathe deeper......and then think of those you love, with gratitude......breathe another deep breath and allow yourself to feel the emotion of, think about living one whole day without saying anything negative, living one whole day speaking only positive, uplifting things.  One whole day, yes, it will be hard......really hard, but just try.
Blessings of love and joy, I am grateful for all of you.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

Love Comes Naturally

“No one is born hating another person because of the color of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.”

― Nelson Mandela

Here in America, it is the week of Thanksgiving........a holiday that seems to be losing its place and importance because the retail world hasn't figured out how to turn a day of Thanksgiving into a cash cow.  For the past couple of nights I have posted quotes about love, I will continue doing so this whole week.........for love and thankfulness are partners.

My friends Kaye and Jamie just got back from a holiday in Africa.  Their pictures and stories were amazing.  Their trip was life changing, it was obvious as they shared their thoughts and feelings with us over dinner last night........with tears, and voices that was apparent, that theirs was not an ordinary vacation.

I love this quote by Nelson Mandela, because I believe it is true......I believe our hearts were meant to be vessels that were to be filled with love........maybe that is why heart disease is the number #1 killer here in America, the hate that grows here in our hearts is destroying them..... physically and emotionally.

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Love in the Doing

" It is not how much you do, but how much love you put into the doing that matters." - Mother Teresa

I read some wonderful news today, a survey that shows new college grads are gravitating toward nonprofit and public sector jobs that feed their souls more than their bank accounts and that volunteerism is at an all time high.  I already had a really good feeling about most of the twenty-somethings that I knew......they are smart, unselfish, willing to help their fellow-man, wanting to live
not only purpose driven lives, but passion driven lives.

I think many of the young men and women that I have spoken to lately are sincerely concerned with the welfare of those less fortunate, with healthcare for all, and with taking care of the environment.
Hopefully this up and coming generation will not be "addicted to the dollar."  Instead of spending all their days climbing the corporate ladder, they want quality time with their friends and family too.
They want to make a difference in their communities and  the world they live in.
I think Mother Teresa would be extremely proud of these young people who are working hard at what they love,  and giving back!

Friday, November 16, 2012

Love and Kindness

The whole of planet Earth is a sacred site. All people are the chosen people, and the purpose of our lives is a spiritual one.

May we care for each other, and for the earth, for everything relates to everything else.

Feeling this oneness, may we radiate the light of love and kindness that all may live in unity and peace.

Radha Sahar
The Sacred Site

This just sums up my thoughts for tonight.........sending you all love and kindness.

Thursday, November 15, 2012


My energy has been the level of a limp noodle today, so I have rested......drank lots of water.....eaten a little.....walked down to the barn.......and rested.  I have to remind myself these are not wasted days, these are  the days when the battery has to recharge.  These are the  days when I am reminded that the body is not indestructible, and that it is ok to sit in the sun, feel the breeze, and just be happy.

I realized around five this afternoon  that I had not even looked at my e-mail since early morning.....I had actually made a list in my day planner, but I never look at it again today, I have learned the hard way, my body will get what it needs or I will be very sick.

I use to wonder why every Christmas Eve I came down with strep throat, once I left the retail world and the stresses of buy,buy, buy, sell, sell, sell.......the strep never came back.  I know that we're told that cold and flu and season hit because we are inside in the heat, etc.....but I also  think come the holidays we let our stress levels hit the roof and we get sick.

So, with the holiday season approaching, take care of yourselves.  Get some extra sleep, drink lots of water, wash you hands often, eat fresh fruit and vegetables, and every once in awhile, look around take a breath and ask yourself......what would I be doing if this was my last holiday season with my family......that will help keep it all in perspective.

Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Treatment # 10

Treatment # 10......walked into the room this morning and I did not see a familiar face.......a little bit of panic.  None of my chair buddies were there, the television was blaring, my veins were rolling......I breathed.  A new mix of meds today.......bone stuff included,  hopefully we have nixed the thinning process.

I kept breathing, the room was full, lots of activity,but began to talk with the woman beside me.
She was just what I needed, funny and kind. A jolt of pain as the needle finally found a spot in the hand that didn't duck and run for cover.  The nurses were in overdrive......because of the holiday next week, ( and no one wants an infusion on Thanksgiving) it seemed the chairs were booked back to back.

I keep breathing, the kind funny woman is done, the television seems to get louder and louder......the patient who has the remote keeps channel surfing........suddenly an answer to a of my buddies appears......and he looks GREAT!  and he is doing great, eating, no more radiation, and there is hope in his eyes as well as his wife's.  We both express worry and concern for those who are not there today.......we try to stay positive......which is hard to do, with a blaring television.

The big green chair feels as if it is going to swallow me today.....I am freezing and even the warm blankets are not helping. My friends and I try to talk above the incessant blather of the television.
I breathe.........Rick comes in to visit, the hospital book stores have bought some of his books to sell, he is happy.  The room begins to quiet down, patients leave, the remote control is back with the nurses, I finally ask them if we can turn off the tv if it is ok with the other patients......the patients who are left cheer......even the nurses seemed relieved to turn that ridiculous box off.
Why do they have a television in a place of healing?  I know the standard answer to that question.......because it takes your mind off your troubles.........I think that is BS.....I think music, I think caring people around you, I think hearing laughter and voices of those who are walking a path much like the one you are,  I think connecting, or  sitting there reading a book or meditating......sorry, you all know how I feel about that damn tv.
It is late, I am tired.....the green chair wore me to a frazzle today.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


I am not sure how the moon and stars are lined up, but chaos seems to be the ruling planet in my
universe today.  Maybe it is because today was my first real meal since Saturday, and tomorrow is Treatment #10, or maybe it is the fact that life is messy and we all end up knee deep in it sometime.
And did I mention that tomorrow is treatment day?

One of my students asked today if I get nervous before treatments........the truth, yes......I'm not sure why......well, I do know why.  I will spend most of my day tomorrow in an infusion room, where most of the patients have cancer and are receiving what they hope and pray are life saving chemicals.
Going there for me, is like gearing up for battle, for myself, and my friends that I have made in that room.  No matter how I feel, I know when I walk in that room, that my week has probably been a cakewalk compared to what many of my "chair buddies" have had.   

I feel that it is somehow my duty, my destiny if you will, to bring one tiny glimmer of hope with me each time I walk through that door. Yes, I am receiving  life saving chemicals too, but I don't have cancer......I still have my hair.  Yes, I have lost a lot of weight, and yes, the bones are thinning.....but I don't have cancer.  Each time I look around that room, each time I think about that room......there is a tugging at my heartstrings........I know there is always the risk that I lose another "chair buddy."

Spending days in that room has changed me forever.  Honestly, ( and no, I am not wishing bad healthy on anyone) but I think every person I know would benefit from time spent in that room.
So I walk into that room tomorrow, with a smile on my face and a heart full of love and pray  for that one short day, I am able to share love and a little joy and maybe a tiny ray of hope to someone sitting next to me.  Sending blessings to all of you, asking for prayers for all of us.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Warm Cozy Night

Please accept my apologies for not posting yesterday.......since my treatments started in February, I have had really bad bouts of nausea, what can I say it's like being in a horror movie, but my head doesn't spin.

Saturday evening, sitting with our friends it hit, the rest of my night was spent pretty much on the bathroom floor, trying to keep ice chips down.  (sorry for the graphics) Sunday I was out of it, I finally had solid food about an hour ago.  This too shall pass.

Pouring rain this morning, freezing temps tonight, I think we can safely say, fall is here to stay.
As the rain poured down this morning, I watched leaves swirling down to earth, it was a great meditation.  The flannel sheets are on the bed, it will be a cozy night.

My nephew James brought his wife and four children to yoga class tonight.  The children, ages 1 to 10 seemed to love it.  When I gave them warm blankets for relaxation, they almost went to sleep!
Their son, Stone told his parents as they left he wanted me to teach yoga to his basketball team.
Teaching yoga to a roomful of 10 year old boys could be interesting.  :)

Wishing you all a warm cozy night, my cup of ginger tea is waiting.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Thank You

This rather early in the day for my blog writing, but it has been such an emotional day I wanted to try and capture all that I could.  My hometown celebrated Veteran's Day's a small town, maybe 4,000 to 5,000 people, if you drove through, you'd never take a second glance.

I have spent most of my life in or near this town, my parents grew up in communities nearby.
Rick and I have been involved with our Veteran's Board for the past few years, I have never regretted any time that I have given them.  Our memorial is beautiful, it recognizes every branch of military service and our POW's and MIA's.  Today, I had several people tell me that even in much larger towns, they had not seen  a memorial as beautiful as ours.

Rick and I were asked to sing today, and honestly, it's hard to sing when you're crying.  We had invited our friend Wes to sing also.  As I looked at the Veterans who were there today, and the active service men and women as well, I was overcome with emotion.  There were three local Veterans who were recognized for their service to country as well as community.  One, an 82 year old Navy Seal, who even though has battled cancer for three years, stood as erect and tall as a 20 year old. A 90 year old, who was one of my dad's best friends and an 80something, Merchant Marine.

Many of my parents friends were there today, and I was flooded with thoughts of my mom and dad.....and drowned in the sadness of missing them.  Later at lunch, at the local BBQ Joint, I saw another one of my dad's dearest seems I have cried most of this day.

I have thought about my brothers, my dad, his brother, and so many of my cousins and friends who have sacrificed so very much for our country.  I will never be able to repay them for all that they have done.

Today as the service closed with the Honor Guard playing Taps, 21 white doves were released.........a symbol of what I pray for every day..........Peace.
To all of you, who have served, are currently serving, prayers for protection, prayers for peace........
hugs and love to you all..........and a great big Thank You.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Expose and Undo

"Meditation is not a matter of trying to achieve ecstasy, spiritual bliss or tranquility; nor is it attempting to become a better person.  It is simply the creation of a space in which we are able to  expose and undo our neurotic games, our self-deceptions, our hidden hopes and fear. "
- Chogyam Trungpa

I read this quote today, and realized I have so far to go, so much to will take much longer than this life time to achieve what I am hoping for.  I reach a point where I think my soul is bare, that all about me is known, that nothing is hidden........I then realize that the surface has only been scratched.  The complexity of being human can be overwhelming.........thank goodness for meditation.

Blessings of peace to all of you tonight

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Picking Up the Pieces

"Sometimes being a friend means mastering the art of timing.  There is a time for silence.  A time to let go and allow people to hurl themselves into their own destiny.  And a time to prepare to pick up the pieces when it's all over. " - Gloria Naylor

Picking up the pieces is a nasty job, but a good friend will be there to help.  That time of silence can be quite difficult too, these words also pertain to relatives as well as friends.

Long day, the lure of a soft pillow and warm bed can no longer be ignored.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

The House We Live In

"The words you speak become the house you live in."  - Hafiz

My good friend Sara posted this quote today,  it is such a wise statement.  If we speak ridicule, and hate, if we belittle and begrudge.......those really do become the "house"  or world that we live in.
If we talk of understanding, of caring, of kindness and love......that becomes our home or our world.

I hope that since the elections are over,  the words that we speak reflect the house we want to live in.
I think that living where I do,  I hear way more hate and bitterness than in other places......I also know that the hate and bitterness stems from fear.  My niece talked with me tonight about all the horrible things that she had heard people say today, but she is smart and loving and kind, and she knows that it is all fear and ignorance.

We live in an area where there are probably more churches per square mile than any other place in the world.......we live in an area where the hate and fear are palatable.  How do you light up the darkness?

My good friend Mary Grace suggested today that red, white and blue combine to make purple, a sacred color, a color of unity.......I reminded her that my front door has been purple for years.  :)
So my prayer for my community, my state, my country tonight.........that our words are chosen wisely, and that our "house" becomes united.......that respect, and human kindness becomes our foundation, and that love, caring, and compassion and a willingness to get along becomes our walls, and the understanding of our differences builds our roof.  This is the house I want to live in.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Recurring Dream

This is the second blog that I have written tonight, the first would not post.......maybe the blog world did not like its here is the second one, totally different subject.....lets see where this one goes.

I have had a recurring dream about my parents the past few weeks, it is a great dream but rather unsettling.  In the dream, they have just bought this big old rambling ranch house.  It sits in the middle of beautiful acreage, with a creek that flows  near the house.  They show me their new house, room by room......we go outside and admire the serenity of the creek, the lushness of the surroundings.
I see another house by the creek, it is a small cottage and they are beside themselves with joy when I ask about it.  They tell me it is mine, all I have to do is move in.......and then I wake up.

I have had recurring dreams throughout my life, but they usually take place when I am very stressed.
These days, other than health issues, my stress levels are not very high.  So, if any of you can interpret dreams, fill me in.  About to drink my blueberry tea and call it a day.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Monday, November 5, 2012

We Should Remember

Election eve, a cold rain seems quite fitting.  Election years sadden me, they seem to bring out the very worst in our citizens.  This is my prayer tonight, my hope, my wish.........that we as a country would remember these things........
1. we should remember,  no matter our color, black, white, red, yellow, brown or any shade in between .....we are all Americans.

2. we should remember,   no matter our beliefs.......Christian, Jew, Hindu, Buddhist, Pagan, Atheist, whatever,  we are all Americans

3.  we should remember that  we as humans, should hope, want and pray that we all have health care, that everyone receives an education, that we all have a roof over our heads and food to eat

4.  we should remember that fear breeds hate, and that once words are spoken, you can't take them back

5.  we should remember, that once upon a time......all of our ancestors were immigrants (unless, you are Native American, and then I apologize profusely for the way my ancestors treated yours)

6. we should remember that spin doctors lie, use fear and hate and buzz words and then laugh at how they have manipulated the voters

7.  we should remember that we are all members of the human race and that each and everyone of us holds as much value as the next, money does not increase a human's value

8. we should remember that this is a country, not a business

9.  we should remember, you cannot mandate morality

10. we should remember, to do unto others as we would have them do unto us.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Musical Yanks

I have told two friends about Ireland today........both are thinking of trips that would be special.....Ireland will always be special to me.  I have a pot of shamrocks that are probably 15 years old, as I watered them today, I promised myself a trip back to Ireland.

It is time to go see our friends, to play, to renew.  To feel the rain and wind in my face,
to look around every corner and see someone that looks like my dad and grandfather.
To eat a real Irish breakfast, drink a cup of hot tea and have so many pints lined across the stage as we play, that it looked as if we were doing a Guinness  commercial.......

I think come 2013, a couple of musical yanks will be making their way home.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


I opened up my grandmother's trunk today...... it is where I store my quilts.  I have quilts that my grandmother made, my great grandmother made and those that my mom made.  I am a lucky woman.
I pulled a couple out to put in rotation, I looked at the tiny stitches, the intricate pieces of antique fabrics, and I thought about all the hours that it took to make each quilt.

I remember my mom sitting for hours, stitching her beloved quilts.  Each stitch was an awareness of being in the now......if your thoughts wandered, so did the stitches.  I have the last quilt top that she made for me, she never had the chance to quilt it......beautiful purple tulips, trimmed in tiny green checks.  I keep thinking that one day, when I retire, I will quilt it.

I also have some tatting that my grandmother did, as well as some crochet and embroidery that she did.  My mother also loved to embroider and she taught me.......I was a big hit with my friends in the late 60's and early 70's because I could embroider their jeans!

I think about my nieces and nephews, and their children......will they want my handcrafted treasures when I am gone?  My mom made each of her  grandchildren a quilt, who knows if they all still have them.
I wish there was a way to teach them, how incredibly special those treasures are, how rare they are, and how much love as well as  time went into their making.

Looking through my treasures in that old trunk gave me great joy today, as well as a little sadness.......missing those women so much who created those treasures.
Time for a cup of hot tea, and a snuggle in one of those warm cozy quilts.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Friday, November 2, 2012

Be Fearless

"Be daring, be fearless and don't be afraid that somebody is going to criticize you or laugh at you.  If your ego is not involved, no one can hurt you."  - Mahala Punateer

Each of us has a wish deep down inside, a dream that maybe we have held to for a long time......
we can take it with us to our grave, or we can take a breath and be daring and fearless, spread our wings and go for it.  The choice is ours.........laughter or criticism should be the least of our worries.

The minutes go by, then the days, the weeks, the months, the years...........what are you waiting for?
Be fearless!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

November 1

November 1.......two months left in 2012.....cold and clear today, the wind blew many of the leaves off the trees, but there is still color......our first frost this week.

November 1......a month of extremes......a presidential election and Thanksgiving......I am grateful for the privilege of voting.......I have voted in every election since I turned eighteen, way too many years ago

November 1.......thankful that I no longer have to see Halloween and Christmas decorations side by side

November sweaters are washed in baby shampoo, soft and fluffy and ready to wear

November 1.......the full moon is starting to wan, but it is still an incredible shimmery orb in the night sky

November 1.......treatment # 10  takes place this month

November 1.......trying to savor every precious moment

November 1........the acorns are huge this year and plentiful, no shiny red apples left on our tree

November 1.......where does the time go?

Wednesday, October 31, 2012


I love fables, one of my most favorite books ever is The Alchemist.  For some reason, I ran across a book this past week that had slipped by my was published in the 90's, some of you may have read it, The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari.  If you haven't read it, and you love fables, please take some time and read it.

I was off today, and I have spent a great deal of time on the sofa reading this delightful little book.
It has been a nourishing day for my body and my mind.  I have rested, spent time with Rick and the dogs, sat by the firepit, and marveled at the incredible blue skies that covered my neck of the woods today.

We only had one little goblin tonight, Jordan came over and got his treats.  That is one of the downsides living way out in the country on a dead-end road,  the goblins we get are the wild and furry kind.

It is getting late, and I plan to read a little more before going to bed, don't forget, if you haven't read it......The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari ( a fable about fulfilling your dreams and reaching your destiny)
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Tuesday, October 30, 2012


I see more demons being fought daily than I ever dreamed possible.  To watch someone struggle with those demons in their hearts is gut-wrenching.  Some days I have to remind myself that the sky is still blue, and the sun will rise again.  Personal demons destroy relationships, careers and lives.
Quite often, you think you have beat them, only for their ugly heads to rear again when you least expect it.

Recognizing the destruction and debris from inner personal battles with private demons is un-nerving.
Watching the struggle of those wars is every bit as frightening as seeing film footage of war torn nations.  The walking wounded are everywhere, most of their scars are invisible and sadly those who survive are not rewarded or recognized.

I guess you can tell, today was one of those sad days on the job, when hearts were heavy, spirits crushed, and not much sparkle in anyone's eyes.  These are  the days I feel as though I might be in a Mash Unit, just putting on band-aids and hoping for the best.  I give it my all, but truthfully,  on these days, my all is just not good enough.  

Hoping tonight, that whatever demons you might be fighting in your heart are defeated......and tomorrow, blue skies will be waiting for everyone and the sun will shine brightly........and we will all be victorious.

Monday, October 29, 2012


Full moon tonight, a big harvest moon and probably our first frost of the here in Alabama, we are so use to violent weather it is hard to believe what is taking place on the East Coast tonight.   Sadly, until you live through the storms you don't know what to expect.......but you never forget them.   Prayers for all of you in the chaos tonight.

Since it was a full  moon, all of my classes did moon salutations today and this evening.  A great way to great the moon, and relax and stretch the body.  My little cold has matured into a full size one today.   And now, Rick has a cold too!  There is a lot of sneezing, coughing and complaining at the Watson house tonight.  Nothing quite like a scratchy throat and achy body.....times two!

Thanks to those of you who listened to our radio show last glad you enjoyed our songs.
Blessings of peace to all tonight, and prayers for safety as well.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Radio Show

So much fun tonight listening to ourselves on the radio!  There is a show here called "Music From Home" featuring Alabama musicians, hosted by Dale Short.  Dale did a special Halloween show tonight and he played our two newest songs, Tattooed Soul and Cry Baby Hollow.
Always a treat to listen to his show, but really special when we are on it!  Rick also read one of his columns.   If any of you would like to listen to the show, it's about an's the link.
Music From Home Halloween

Sitting here sipping on Blueberry tea that my sister brought me from Maine last week.  It is wonderful.......especially since I picked up a cold somewhere this weekend.  Still very tired from the Scary Fish Fry yesterday, so I think this is it for me tonight.
Good night, Sweet dreams

Saturday, October 27, 2012

A New Tradition

I think we have started a new family tradition....... a Scary Fish Fry!   My nephew Haven, fisherman extraordinaire, and fish fryer
extraordinaire was the driving force behind this
wild and wacky afternoon.

He fried the fish, my niece Jayna and I did hushpuppies and fries, and cole-slaw, and my sister and her friend, Asa did deserts.  You would not believe how much food we cooked!

The  kids wore their costumes, ran and played with the dogs, gathered wood for the firepit, and cried when it was all over.  None of them wanted to go home.  I loved every minute of it, though I am very very tired!  Haven is already planning his fishing trips for next spring, so we can do this again, next year for Halloween!  I love this new tradition!  Haven's wife Alesha was brave enough to gather the kids for the photo, and sit with them to maintain stillness for one minute!  I'd bet  most of those kids are sound asleep by now.......or maybe not, I gave them treat bags filled with chocolates to take home (my trick on the parents)

Friday, October 26, 2012

Ingrid's Home

She's home!!!!!  Finally, Ingrid made it home from the near fatal blow of Mr. Deer!  My friends at the body shop not only fixed her up good as new, they gave her a hand job and made her look show room fresh!

I know, it's so silly to have an attachment to a car, but she and I have been down the road many miles together, we are both.......tough old broads!

Driving her, is like spending time with an old friend.......she has seen my tears, heard my laughter, and listened to my dreams.  I missed the old girl, so glad she's home.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Vision Boards and Folders

When I got home from work this evening, Rick and the dogs were sitting around the fire pit.
Spending the day, working in the yard yesterday paid off.......we both sat for awhile, enjoying the warmth of the fire, and the setting sun.  It was a great way to wind down before dinner.

I talked with a student today, he told me that my class had helped him to discover some things about himself.  He asked if that was common in yoga.  I told him yes,  because yoga takes you on an inward
journey.  Through the stillness and breathwork and meditation, it can be a wonderful self-discovery tool.  I also encouraged him to create a vision board.  Vision boards can help you discover many things about yourself......and can be a useful tool in obtaining the life you seek.   Basically you look through magazines, newspapers for words, phrases, and pictures of the life that appeals to you, of goals you want to reach, work, creative endeavors......make a collage, place it somewhere so that you can see it every day.  It is pretty amazing what that board  can do in a year.  Nothing fancy, you look at it every day, you are reminded of those things, the life you want, the work that is important to you, and if you are not working toward those images, there is conflict in the brain,  and you subconsciously strive to obtain them.

Today was that student's birthday, I mentioned to him that I usually did my board on my birthday or New Year's.  I have mentioned these boards before, if you have never tried one, don't scoff, try it, see what happens.  Our arbor that leads to our front door, and the firepit were both on previous
vision boards, my best friend had clipped a picture of a very expensive sofa years ago that she wanted........about six months ago, she found the sofa at a consignment store, in great condition, at a fragment of the original price.  Her words and pictures are in a folder that she looks at weekly.  Nothing is too great, or too insignificant for your board or folder.  My 200 RYT was on one of my boards, so was a trip to the Rockies......both obtained.

In the words of Wayne Dyer, "you get what you think about, whether you want it or not."  Might as well look at that board or folder, and get what you want.
Goodnight, Sweet dreams

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

That's A Good Day

The energy gods must be smiling on me today........more energy than I have had in a long time.
I spent the day outside, washing yoga mats, and planting pansies and getting a couple of pumpkins to
carve.  It was warm and sunny, and did I tell you how good it felt to have the energy to do something?

Astro and Buddy have moved into Blackie Bear's place by my desk.......they are both snoring.  I think they miss him almost as much as I do.  They too are tired, they spent their day outdoors watching me, the chipmunks, and the squirrels.  Apparently, I was as entertaining as the wildlife.

Ingrid is still with the car doc, I miss her.  Mr. Deer almost took her out of commission permanently.
We think she may come home tomorrow.  Keeping my fingers crossed that the old broad comes home.

This day has been reaffirming for me, there have been times when I thought that my energy levels would never come heart is full of gratitude for  what I experienced today.  Just a simple day, as days go, but I had the energy to live it the way I wanted to.  That's a good day.

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Fire Drill

A beautiful blue sky today, it made the colors of the leaves even more brilliant.  The drive home was a meditative one, with an ever watchful eye for Mr. Deer.  I taught a yoga class on how to use yoga to deal with anxiety today.  I hear that word, anxiety and also anxious many times each week.

LOTS of breath work, very gentle stretches and many hugs.......that was the first class.  The second class came in, once again we were off to great start with breath work and then.........the piercing shrillness of the fire alarm!  Of all days, we had a fire drill!  UGH!  I owe my second class big, and I promised I would make it up to them on Thursday.   A fire drill!.......working on anxiety and we have a fire drill.  Tonight, I am laughing about the absurdity of it all, but today it was not funny.

What can I say, you just never know what the day will the midst of a soothing class for anxiety relief..........a fire drill!  Gotta smile and love it.