Sunday, February 19, 2012

Count your toes...

I know it might sound crazy asking
do all new mothers 
count their new born babies toes
I know I did

after unwrapping them for the fiftieth time
and counting them yet again
(as if while the baby was sleeping some how a toe would disappear)
I would sigh relief
and breath a prayer of gratitude 
that my baby 
was whole
its the little things we take for granted in daily life
isn't it
So my ten toes of gratitude for today are...
I will get to see the grand kids today
I now have a clean and organized closet
I had a good nights sleep
there is plenty of food in the fridge
full tank of gas
I got to meet my brother for dinner last night (I haven't seen him in two years)
I have lost 12 lbs
I have made some new friends through blogging
I have a great book on tape to listen to on my drive
(Black Swan Green)
It's a three day weekend...I don't have to go to work tomorrow
These little things tickle me, curve my lips into a smile, 
and make the hard things bearable
can you see me doing my little happy dance
What ten toes do you have to be grateful for today? 

Saturday, February 18, 2012


Sometimes I forget
the BIG picture
I forget to think
long term
about the consequences of my actions
or more accurately

I get so down in the weeds
so focused on the details
you know...the little things

I completely lose perspective that there is a 
larger world our there
with real problems that need real solutions
a world 
that require sacrifice, clear thinking, and a commitment
to something more than
my shallow desire for 
My little world to be 

Because while I complain about not being able to buy 
my own house
along the pristine and beautiful California Coast
Little Sophie
is waiting for her first house
one made of the five hundred and eighty six mud bricks
that her mother is making 
to protect the family from the harsh and savage African environment
no running water
no heat but for a small fire
no bed but for a mat
no bathroom
Sometimes I just want to slap the shit out of 
my self absorbed and privileged 
how does one justify excess, waste, and arrogant privilege?
How does one qualify need vs desire?
What can you live without?
What can you live WITH?
Because I am having a hard time living with myself
knowing that
on a global continuum
I am part of the 1% I am bitching about in my country's tax structure
and that just doesn't seem right
Because now I have to take responsibility for being part of the problem

Friday, February 17, 2012


someone is going to tell her
she is not enough
they will tell her she can be 
if only she

would change her hair color
hide her freckles
shape her eyebrows
lose weight

they will be told to dress more 
that cute is not enough
and that 
sexy is better

 I'm wondering
how someone would think
this is not perfection

the ability to stare into a camera

The collective she
is trusting us to teach her about 
is beautiful

because right now it is her belief that
beauty is in 
movement, laughter, and uncomplicated expression
not in
dress size, popularity or fashion labels

My question is
Are we going to let her down?

Thursday, February 16, 2012

If I had courage....

This is where I would go and what I would do. Thank God for those who are brave, strong, committed, and unwavering.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


It's Valentine's Day
and as much as I'd like to buy into the whole sappy 
Happy Ever After stuff
(You know what I am talking about)
the couples holiday thing
nice dinner out 
the holiday that is geared for the "other" 1%
I just can't help wondering...
Can we love those we do not know...

Can we reach out with what we have 
and provide small comfort with just a touch

Can we assume that even vicious species
have moments of profound connection

and that all species love to linger in the arms of a warm embrace

Can I assume that love requires the bigger, older and stronger to 
bend down to the level of the
smaller, younger and weaker to be able to have a complete 

Is it safe to say
love is more about holding hands on the 'average' days
rather than
than the annual flowers, cards and expectations of the holiday

Isn't love about those seemingly random moments 
without planning or fanfare
we completely expose our inner child
and immerse ourselves in unique expressions of joy

I'm just wondering
because love doesn't have to be 
so hard, or expensive, or fraught with expectation

It just has to be practiced

Monday, February 13, 2012


"When I speak of writing, the image that comes first to my mind is not a novel, a poem, or a literary tradition; it is the person who shuts himself up in a room, sits down at a table, and alone, turns inward. Amid his shadows, he builds a new world with words."    -- Orhan Pamuk
The Porches
Today is the first day of and eight week writers journey
you see
during my 'off' hours
I facilitate writing group's
and I have a new group starting
I am hoping you will stop by my new writing blog  here
see what we are up to!

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Plans Change...

You know how
despite best of intentions
plans change
I certainly know that
shit happens
I would like to think after this many years on the planet
I would be able to deal with the disappointment
But not yesterday
No sir
I was pissed off, frustrated and hurt
I stomped my feet like a little girl
I slammed around the house
talking to myself having long conversations of what I would 
LIKE to say
I know you have done this too
don't try and tell me you haven't because if you are a woman
it is encoded in your DNA
I tried to ignore the problem
but nothing worked
I had gotten myself in that awful 
self defeating loop of righteous indignation when one is convinced
they have been wronged
I have to say most of the day
Not because of what 'happened'
but because
made myself miserable rehashing it over and over again
while I was thrashing around in my misery
I made these

 Collage boxes to ship my little Valentine's treats 

From these shoe boxes

I know
its not anything AMAZING
It worked wonders to 
tear to shreds some old magazines I had laying around
and then force myself to do something 
rather than destructive with my energy
then I called a friend and went to the movie
The Vow
that was based on a true love story
and since it was based on a true story 
rather than the usual Hollywood fantasy
I walked out believing a little more in faith and fate and 
I froze the tamale dinner in little lunch size packages
so I don't have to worry about meals for awhile
went to bed reflecting on what really matters
rather than some unrealistic expectations some make believe Disney film
planted in my head when I was a kid

Friday, February 10, 2012


It's Friday!!!

I am counting down the hours until 
it's the weekend
After work
I have a massage scheduled
that's right a two hour massage with 
the best massage therapist
She is worth her weight in gold...SERIOUSLY

Maria is dropping off two dozen of her AMAZING home made 
authentic Mexican tamales
which are to DIE for
and tonight I make from scratch some refried beans 
an amazing slaw with cabbage and chillies
for a family meal tomorrow

I will be pulling together the last details for 
an eight week writing workshop and am so looking forward to being back in
the writing circles again
Nothing like exploring through words the 
inner workings of the soul
life is good
Can you see me doing a little happy dance?
What are you doing for the weekend?

Thursday, February 9, 2012

The Happiest Place on Earth?

When you open this
I will be stuck in LA traffic 
on my way to
what has been touted as
"The Happiest Place on Earth"
This photo reflects how I feel about the whole place

Once a year I go with the grand kids
to Disneyland
But it is not my first choice 
in how I spend time with them
nor my second or third
or ninty ninth...

Back in the olden days
It was a magical place
It sparked the imagination
and was innovative
Now, at least for me
it is just another crowded, expensive theme park
did I say
But I do want to spend some more time
with the boys
and it will be just the four of us
not the usual big family crowd with everyone trying to coordinate rides, schedules and needs

then imagine
It's a small world playing in my head for DAYS afterwards
with little dolls dancing the cancan!
So much for solitude and simplicity!

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

It's a good morning...

I sneak out at dawn
to watch the world awake
Only to find

others have beat me to it
birds are busy having breakfast
dogs are having their morning jog
everyone and everything seems happy
peaceful, content with what the day has to offer

No one is harried, hassled or in a rush
they're not stressing about the stock market, politics, or the economy
They are fully engaged with the day's beginning
The sun rising and burning the mist
the cool quiet of the sand 
as the sea yawns
 the sky rubs sleep from its eyes

waiting for the sun
to strike a match
ignite the day

The rhythms of nature
soothe me and wrap me in the warmth of knowing
there is more to life
than work

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Black or White

How do you look at the world
is everything black or white
do you delight in the subtle and abstractions diversity presents

I'm just wondering
it seems to me a black or white world
although obvious in its contrast

 is fraught with illusions
unless you are willing to be a part of a black or white herd

life will present challenges that demand you 
 from the herd
and think for yourself using not the imposed filters of popular culture
but rather to act
from your own inner voice
The voice that was smacked across the knuckles by good intentioned nuns
the frazzled parent who just wanted to have a well behaved child
the teachers who found it more important to follow the rules of grammar 
rather than encourage 
Live on the WILD SIDE
Think outside the stripe! 

Monday, February 6, 2012


The boys were visiting this weekend
it was super low tide with the full moon and all
So we went exploring down at Loon Point tide pool
and we were not disappointed
I know this looks like a rock
but it is a rock covered in 'aggregating anemonies'
it was totally covered
when you touched it
it would contract
like the rock was breathing
Where's Waldo
These crabs blended in with the rock we almost missed them
can you see three
not to mention all the other sea life on and around the rock
sponge weed, surf grass, sand castle worms, Keyhole, File AND Volcano Limpets
and Volcano Barnacles

    And this Stripped Shore Crab was
and had such a personality
I could have watched him all morning!

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Eye Candy...

It's Saturday morning
and I'm waiting for 
the farmers market to open...

I love farmers markets
they are a delight to the senses
they have it all
color, texture, smell, 

There is just something 'right' about 
knowing where your food is being grown
from my friend Gale
who grows and sells the best tomatoes around

She tends them like they were her children
Or to know someone gathered fresh flowers 
just yesterday rather than them being shipped from
hundreds of miles away and was gown by some huge agra farmer

Cupcakes that are gluten free 
and decorated with eatable flower

Fresh baked tarts
just sing of my grandmother's kitchen
my mouth is watering just thinking about it

I could eat salad every day if the greens looked like this
and yes
they were $18.00 
they were HUGE bowls with the lettuce still planted

These little hats
are made from the wool 
that the maker raises on her farm
she makes and dyes the yarn herself
and then knits the hats 
Now THAT is love
and simplicity

Don't these look winter wonderful
and delicious

Mixed with theses

I wouldn't mind taking one of these home too
certified organic : )

And a couple of these with some fresh tomatoes
would make some tasty bruschetta

and how about a riot 
of color
for that empty space on your dresser

Do yourself a favor
live simply, buy locally, and support