Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Maybe Not~

Well, I am laughing my head off over here at my own hilarious impatience, at my enthusiasm for spring to come. Would you believe, it snowed on the night of my last blog entry, the one about spring being just round the bend. The one about little green shoots and sunshine.

Here I was, on the sunny sunday just past with my seed catalogues out planning my garden. I was signing up for bee keeping courses, thinking about what flowers to grow and which varieties of squash to put in this year. I was heading down to the garden in a day or so to mix some more compost in, that was, until the ground froze solid. There I was bent down in the dirt considering a good place to plant Jerusalem artichokes, whilst the heavens were preparing to snow. I was convinced by my own willfulness, that spring was not only coming, but that indeed,  it was here.  And then,  just like that,  the elements changed their minds and it snowed on my little green shoots. It snowed on everything, including my plans.

Last Years Veg Plot

Yes, I was attached to it being spring.  Ready for it in both body and mind. I was over winter. I was moving on to the next season.  I was putting my woolly hats away, thinking about bare feet and wearing cotton skirts without long underwear. I was imagining the taste of fresh salads and sweet raspberries off the bush.

Last years raspberries

And then, boom, I go to bed one night, and wake up the next day, to a land of snowy white.

Clearly, it is still winter, I think to myself as I walk across the cold wooden floor to put the kettle on.  I look over at the seeds in their basket, and say, "it's gonna be a while yet little ones, I think I was jumping the gun."  And I swear that's when I heard  them laughing, saying something to the effect of "oh those poor humans, they're such an impatient lot, what's the hurry..."

And when you've got a basket of seeds sitting on your kitchen table having a laugh at you, you have to join them.  This is the kind of thing that can only be taken with a sense of humour. One must be able to laugh at one's self when the circumstances change in a way that one least expects. It might be our only hope.  The number of times in my life that I have been ready for "this" to happen, and then suddenly out of nowhere, "that" happens, and the numbers of times I have been so frustrated by a turn of events.   

And so, I am going to heed this new learning with a hearty laugh. I am going to put my wool socks back on and make a cup of hot chocolate.  Then I am going to crack some kind of fat delicious novel and put my feet up while I still can, before the sun really starts shining, and the garden really starts growing,  and I get so damn busy I won't have time to read. eh eh eh  

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Signs of Spring~

Image by Helena Nelson Reed

This morning, in my garden, I noticed that the green world is once again beginning to stir and winter is beginning to retreat. The first spring bulbs have pushed their little green heads an inch above the soil and even though it will be some time before the first blooms, this little bit of new-green rising out of the frozen ground is enough to color the world.  Enough to trust that good things are coming.

Today, the sun came out and warmed our faces as we walked through the woods sipping chai tea, while the dog ran wild.  Later, the mountains glowed and the cat rolled her soft body on the brick path to soak up the tender rays of early spring.  I had a nap, knowing that all is well.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Wise Words~

"If you are on the journey, you are at the goal,"  said Carl Jung.

And isn't that just one of the best things you've ever heard! I mean don't you find it to be such a relief!

I know I certainly do, find it a relief that is, those words are like a breath of fresh mountain air to me.  I wrote them out in purple pencil crayon and stuck them to my kitchen wall, in case I forget, which I often do.  And when I am in the middle of 100 things that need doing, when everything is asking for my attention, when the laundry is flowing over it's wicker basket and the dishes are piling up in a dirty heap on the counter, I turn to the these words.  When the lists are lengthening by the minute and the dog is needing feeding, I turn to these words.  When the urge to feel "not good enough" rises up like a tidal wave from the psychic depths and an internal voice says "do more for this good earth, be a better person,  get your book published, be a better friend,  become a more thoughtful wife, a more accountable sister, a sweeter daughter, a more compassionate teacher... it is in these moments that I look over at those purple words taped to my yellow wall, and I give thanks for the wisdom of wise Mr. Jung.

I highly recommend folding this one into your beautiful life somehow. I don't think you'll  be disappointed.

Images: Beatrix Potter

Sunday, January 18, 2009

A New Day~

There is something absolutely perfect about morning walks, about sunlight coming through trees, about snow melting, about good company and sundays.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Smacked by a Blessing~

Don't you just love how a good blessing comes and smacks you in the side of the head when you are least expecting it.  I mean the ones that are not apparent at all and then BOOM, out of nowhere, one takes you out, and isn't that just the best thing when that happens!  I am talking about a kind of "Blessing Epiphany," the one that comes in the form of a recognition that you are indeed luckier than you thought, that things are actually very good, and that gratitude is an ocean just waiting to be sailed across. 

Well, I was belted in the side of the head by a blessing  of this sort just a few days ago, yes, I was belted by a blessing, on a bus.  

There I was, heading home from a long hard day at the Healing Center.  Standing on a bus, holding on for dear life, as the driver sped down the dark slick road at rush hour, slamming on his breaks at every light.   There I was, irritable and tired after running around for 9 hours from task to task, pouring lots of tea for very tired people and listening to their honest and difficult stories. Working with those in chronic pain is not always easy. It is a challenge not to take others frustrations personally, even after reading Joseph Campbell and Carl Jung, even after " trying to own your own shadow,"so to speak.  I felt exhausted, like nothing I could do would ever be enough for these disheartened folks.  Wondering how to be a more generous, more loving, more caring, more nurturing human being, and feeling like a complete and utter hopeless failure. 

It was after all this,  ( back to my story) that I found myself on bus, on my way home to my little green house. It was raining hard. I was hungry. The bus was steamy and cramped, and everything seemed to challenge to me, the weight of the grocery bags I was carrying, the smell of too many people in too small a space, the lack of air, and it goes on.  

It was during this tedious moment that I over heard a conversation that two young men in their early 20's were having.  One was a store clerk and the other worked in construction.  Two very different men, from two very different worlds, sharing the ups and downs of their days.  They were having a heart to heart of sorts, they were talking at length about working for somebody else, about challenging bosses and long hours.  They told stories of endurance and patted each other on the back. They laughed a lot, and said "I know what you mean man," over and over again.  And after a long while, they came to the conclusion that they were lucky to have jobs at all, considering the economy at the moment, considering the high rates of unemployment sweeping this nation.  They laughed heartily about the hardships they were having, before deciding that it was all perfectly acceptable, par for the course even.  After 20 minutes the only thing that these two men could come up with that really brought them down, was being on a job, and being cold and wet. 

It was at this point in their conversation that I looked over to the one fellow working in construction, there he was in his steal toed boots and plastic raincoat, and I saw that he was soaked to the bone, drenched from the icy rain that had poured down on him all day.   There he was smiling with a radiant face, feeling grateful that he was now on a warm bus, heading home to a warm house, to have a hot bath after a full days work.

And that's when the blessing hit me.   That's when I realized what a blessed person I am, working three days a week for the most wonderful people, at a beautiful healing center,  where I pour tea for tired people and help recommend holistic remedies to support them in their lives.  I am never cold or wet, although I remember what that's like. I get to create dance classes for good hearted women and write my inspired thoughts into a book that I will soon put out to the world, I get to walk with my dog, and have tea with friends,  I get to dig in my glorious garden with this strong healthy body and grow exotic flowers....and the list is endless, a Big Bountiful list of Beautiful Blessings.

Whoever those two men are,  wherever they might be today, I hope the sun is shining down on them, what a gift their conversation was to me.  How lucky I was to get on that cramped bus, and stand where I stood, hearing what I heard.  I gotta tell you, I am eating humble pie over here and enjoying every bite! Ungrateful little tart that I am.  Ha Ha.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Something to consider...

A Great Pilgrimage
Kabir (c.1440-1518)

I felt in need of a great pilgrimage
so I sat still for three

and God came
to me.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Hobbit House~

After the dishes were all done the other night, and everything was put away, I paused there in the warm glow, tea towel in hand.  There were some candles burning on the kitchen alter, and the dog was sleeping on the wooden floor. I looked out the front window, past the wisteria covered gate, into the snowy white darkness, to see my neighbors burgundy house lit up like a storybook cottage.  

And it was a strange moment, because there I was in a warm and wonderful place, but I wasn't aware of it at all.  No, I was longing for something other than what was, overcome with a kind of poetic desire for a whimsical life far far away from this ordinary kitchen.  

And then, for some reason, when I opened my mouth to speak,  I said the funniest thing, I said, to my man, who was sitting peacefully at the kitchen counter with a glass of wine, I said, "oh how I wish I lived in a hobbit house just like Bilbo Baggins," at which point my man looked up at me and said, "why do you wish that? You do." 

And just like that the spell was broken, the dog stirred, the candle light flickered, and everything was beautiful.  I mean my house may not be built into a mound of green, in a magikal meadow, on the edge of a wood, but it is certainly a warm and cozy place, filled to the brim with magikal things, enchanted books, delicious foods, flowers and friends... 

Don't you just love when that happens? When suddenly you can see just how very blessed you are, because somebody who knows you well enough, says the very thing you need to hear, at the perfect time you need to hear it.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Miracles for Breakfast?

Recently I stumbled upon these words, in a book entitled Dreams Of Isis, by Normandi Ellis:

"My quest for the miraculous has become a daily quest.  I try to remember in every moment that I am a creature of Light, shot through with radiance, energy, transformative power.  I am an ordinary miracle, an ape transformed, a child become woman, water and dust walking.  I am divine thought moving through matter in a world filled with splendor."

And I thought to myself, why not wake each morning and greet the new day with words, or songs, or ideas, or prayers, that echo this wise and ancient Egyptian way. What have any of us got to loose in believing in the magnificent potential of it all.

I really can't think of anything that could stop me from pouring my heart into believing that this life, is a truly miraculous experience, and that I, am blessed in infinite and unknowable ways, as we all are, each and every one of us.

Thursday, January 1, 2009


Let us greet this new year with the kind of joyful enthusiasm that a dog has for his human companion's arrival back home.  Let nothing stand in our way of believing that we are blessed to be alive on this incredible planet, having an authentic human experience.  Let us trust that somehow, there is a place beyond the drama and the suffering of daily life, where all is truly well and unfolding exactly as it should be.  A dear friend of mine recently pointed out to me, how much we humans could learn from the way our dogs greet us, the way they love us, the way they delight in celebrating each moment, the way they give themselves freely to the world.

And I must tell you that I have thought about this for sometime. I began to take note of my canine friend's constant joy to see me after we had been apart for a day, or a sleep, or an hour even, or 3 minutes while I went outside to gather the post.  And I decided, as I have done on many occasion, that my friend is a very wise and beautiful person, for there is great wisdom to be found in a greeting made up total loving acceptance.  There is a reason the word dog, is God spelled backwards.  

The loving greeting of a dog needs no interpretation, it cannot be confused with anything other than genuine heart, and genuine heart, it is a precious and beautiful thing.  And if you watch a dog run through an open field, he will greet the new day with a similar kind of loving, a similar open affection for the wind in his hair and the soft earth beneath his feet.  And he will greet the liver treat and the morning in the same way, with sheer unaltered delight, and he will glow with happiness to see his master upon waking, with the same honest expression of gratitude and love, day after day, year after year.

Yes, indeed, tis something to marvel at, this canine wisdom.  Something to apply to our living in all the various departments.  I,  for one, have decided to greet the new year, like Gus greets me everyday, with total love, gratitude, and acceptance for all that is.

To 2009 then!~  Welcome New Year, Welcome~