Sunday, December 8, 2019

Painted Sky

Clouds have rolled across the sky today and continued this evening.  Rain is on its way, it seems for the next few days and then a blast of colder air.  It's ok, it's December, I am ready for the cold.

One batch of cards ready to be mailed and then one more batch to paint.  I love painting them, but it is especially hard when I have to steal moments and don't have hours to paint.   I would love at some point to paint this photo I took of the December sky.  Maybe soon.

A busy week ahead, probably so for most everyone.  Be kind.  Spread joy and at least once a day, laugh out loud.

Saturday, December 7, 2019

A Surprise

I have painted Christmas cards for most of the day.  About noon I walked down to the mailbox and as I was looking through the stack of mail, found a small package addressed to me.  I had bought some of the kids books for Christmas so I just thought one them came through the mail.  I was wrong.

The book was for me.  But there was no name or indication of who had sent it.  The title of the book, Women Rowing North.  I took a few minutes to read the introduction, it is an amazing book.
It is written by a therapist on aging as a woman in our society.   This book came at the perfect time.

My path is changing.  Cutting back on my classes at work is going to allow me to do some things I have wanted to do for a long time.  Even though on paper, my work hours are not that much, I spend an enormous amount of time working on class notes, handouts, meditation cds, and taking continuing education classes so that I am the best teacher I can be.  Teaching only one day a week at the addiction center, I believe will free up more time and energy for me.

I have spent many years giving freely of  myself to those in pain and need.  I am not burned out, but I am depleted.  It is time to refill my well.

After checking in with a couple of friends privately to see if they had sent the book, I posted a Thank You on FB.  A long time friend admitted she had sent it.  She will never know how much this kind gift meant.

Rick and I are tired.  Time for hot tea and bed.
Good night, sweet dreams

Friday, December 6, 2019

Happy Birthday Momma

Today was my mom's birthday, she was born in 1917.    She was beautiful and tough.  She made it through the Depression, a first marriage to an abusive spouse, birthed 5 kids before she was 20.  And then she married my dad and they had my sister, me and my younger brother.

She barely made it through 6th grade, but she was smart.  Reading was required in our house, if you said you were bored, you got a book and read or went outside. She taught me to draw, to cook, to garden and to dress well on a shoe string budget.  I shopped thrift stores way before they were cool, learned to sew and make my clothes.

She had olive skin, rich brown eyes and dark hair.  I was her polar opposite, blonde, blue eyed and fair skin.  When I was small, I watched  her put on red lipstick and Evening in Paris perfume.  She wore high heels until she was in her mid-eighties. When she died, she still looked so young that even the undertaker asked me if her birth certificate was correct.

We could fight each other like demons, but I loved her with all my heart.
I miss her every day.

Thursday, December 5, 2019

I Wish



No, we don't have snow today.  It is my Christmas flag, but this was from last year.  I am just wishing for snow, even just a dusting like this makes everything seem more Christmasy.

There are rumors again, of the next blast of cold bringing some flurries.  That would be wonderful.  In the meantime, I go through all my snow pictures from the past and dream.

Tomorrow we will do a bit of Christmas shopping and I will see the acupuncturist.  This weekend there will be cards to paint and decorations to display and Rick's office party.

Next week we will work on our Christmas tree.  I suppose you know by now, I am not an early decorator.  It's ok.  I leave everything decorated until New Year's Day and then I am so sad to pack it all away.

Enjoy your Friday.  Be kind.

Wednesday, December 4, 2019

"Oh No"

I painted Christmas cards for most of the morning before I went to work.  Tomorrow will be a full work day, so no painting.  This is about the time I feel the creeping panic of "Oh no" swell in my throat, but I have been here before.  Those cards always get painted, so tonight I am just taking a deep breath.

I am a bit drained tonight, so it's hot tea and bed very soon.
Be kind, laugh out loud and give a hug.
Goodnight Sweet dreams.

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

Balance

I met with my director at work today.  For the past several months I had been doing serious soul searching about my work.  I have spent the past fourteen years working at an addiction program for drugs and alcohol.  It has been at times demanding, draining, exhausting yet rewarding exhilarating work.  Giving 100 percent of yourself is tough in any situation, but that is what I have tried my best to do these 14 years.

During the past couple of weeks I came up with an exit plan of sorts.  I presented it to my boss today.
For the next few weeks I will be training in house yoga teachers for our program.  Hopefully then if all goes as planned in a couple of months I will only be teaching the Pain Management group and the First Responder/Military group one day a week.  And when the time comes, I will bow out gracefully from that one day eventually.

I have one amazing teacher already trained and will start another one next week.   Teaching/working in an addiction center is a calling I believe.  To be effective and successful there, you have to have empathy and let go of judgements and be willing to listen.  My students through these past 14 years have given me so very much and I am so grateful to have met each of them.

This is not retirement.  This is about bringing balance into my life, giving myself and Rick the gift of time to pursue some of the things we love.  I have struggled with living a balanced life the past few years, but this past year as 2019 began I made a commitment to myself to work towards balance.
I made a giant leap forward toward balance today.

Monday, December 2, 2019

Christmas Lights

It's cold in Alabama tonight.  Right now the temp is 29 degrees, but as always it will warm up a bit tomorrow. 

There is something about cold winter air that makes Christmas lights sparkle.  Driving home from work this evening on the sparsely populated road from work to home the lights twinkled.
It seems almost every house had Christmas decorations .  Some were simple, some elaborate, some were strewn about with abandonment and yet others were arranged with an eye for beauty and design.
But in the cold air, in the darkness, the lights were at their brightest and all had beauty.

My community  yoga class chattered and laughed tonight about their Christmas decorations.  Some like me, have not even started, yet others are ready for the season.  I figure this weekend Jordan will come over and we will decorate, he's a great motivator.

I hope your week brings cheer.  I hope you spread kindness.  I hope someone hugs you tomorrow.

Sunday, December 1, 2019

December 1

December 1...the last month of 2019

December 1...today was Rick's mom's birthday, the 6th is my mom's, his sister's is the 12th, our nephew Haven's is the 21, our niece Jayna's is the 23 and Haven's wife, Alesha's is the 27th...wow.

December 1.. Christmas greenery on the graves of Rick's parents and mine today

December 1...this is the whirlwind month

December 1... Christmas cookies, music, cards and trees, a few of my favorite things

December 1...the calendar is filling up fast

December 1...I've been at my job 14 years this month

December 1...shopping, wrapping, cooking

December 1... painting cards, my favorite Christmas tradition

December 1...what are your favorite memories of the holidays

December 1..Advent cabin door is open

December 1..I still believe in Santa and Christmas wishes