Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Every Exit Is

#1 - On Sunday I was thinking through my week and how it was probably going to be a challenge to get as much exercise as I like, and it is especially needed when I'll be taking long car rides and big meals. Today I went to an early morning yoga class and then got an email from someone looking for soccer subs tonight. Score! I wouldn't have gone to yoga if I knew I was playing soccer tonight, but since I didn't know, I'm doing both.

#2 - National Public Radio led me to I.C. Will, an assistant principal at a KIPP Washington Heights Middle School, and a rapper on the side. He kept the two separate at first, but now here is the video with kids from his school.

#3 - Along the "Exit" sign in the school it states,

"Every EXIT is an entrance somewhere else."

#4 - An argument between my brother and niece.  She was talking to me on speaker phone and we were discussing letters.  What starts with 'T'?  What starts with 'W'?  When we got to 'P' - Princess came out.

"I'm the princess," my brother said.

"No, I'm the princess," adamantly stated my niece.

"I'm the princess," my brother.

"You are not the princess.  I'm the princess," my niece.

"I'm the princess," my brother....

Eventually -

"We are both princesses," my niece.

#5 - Last month I really enjoyed a blog post by a woman Roxanne Sadovsky (whom I have taken writing classes with). She wrote "...writing is a lonely business and even though it's a deeply satisfying, beautifully puzzling, sometime life-changing, magical process of discovery, on the other side of the shore, when you set the pen down, it IS comforting to know that someone is out there reading, resonating, etc."

But sometimes it doesn't seem that way so then what is the point? She wrote through this internal struggle, is anyone reading this, does it matter, there is already so much to read.  In the end she landed on, "I'm reading my own damn blog."  Amen Roxanne. I have the same struggle at times and I am reading my own damn blog (and journal and poems...)

(Here is her post in case anyone is interested.)

And at the same time, it's still nice to receive an unexpected something like this -

"You're a fantastic writer. I very much appreciate your heart warming and spiritual perspectives. If you were to ramble on too long about your story it would be my pleasure."

These photos were taken last month on the one precious Minneapolis residential street without cars.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Headband, Hat and My Hood

I was feeling a bit sad late afternoon.  I googled Jason Mraz’s Sunshine song and listened twice.  A little later I put in his new CD and when Long Drive came on, I realized it would be even better to play along so I printed the tab and joined in.  I knew I needed to eat dinner and get ready to go, but I needed a little Mraz medicine first.

We’ve added a second monthly library poetry group.  For this one we pick a specific poet to focus on.  So far we’ve done Mary Oliver, Langston Hughes and today was Christina Rossetti.  I was curious if spending a while with her would change my opinion, but none of us were very enthusiastic.    One of her poems did teach me something though that thus far I’ve failed to memorize.  If you think of the moon as horns -  when the horns are facing East it is to increase (waxing) and when they are facing West, it will soon Rest (waning).  Also like the setting sun – resting in the West.  I hope to carry that with me when I look at the night sky.

The bus schedule does not line up well for the ending of poetry group – so in colder months I either need to leave early or walk/wait afterwards.   Today I walked a half hour towards home and then waited for the bus there.  I was perfectly content while walking,  dressed warm and there was no wind, but standing in place it is hard to maintain that. 

 I decided to play a game based off something I occasionally did in bed as a child in wintertime.  I’d remove all my covers and pillows.  Then I’d lay there for a bit, imagining having to sleep that way.  Then I’d pretend I’d been given a sheet.  I’d feel grateful for that sheet.  After a while, I’d pretend I’d been given a blanket, and I’d absorb how lucky I was to have that blanket.  I’d continue with each blanket separately in this manner and at some point when I felt relatively warm, add the pillow. 

Today, instead of blankets I decided to focus on my warm clothes.  This is what I came up with (it’s just audio).

This will not appear on a resume, nor impress anyone who asks what I “do”, which I find continually tiresome.  But it reminds me at least, for a moment, that I am doing something right.

Sunday, November 9, 2014

Dinah on the old Banjo

#1 - I was waiting in a park where I was to meet my brother and sister-in-law to take my niece for the afternoon.  After an hour they still weren't there.  What was I doing?  I was strolling around singing, "Someone's in the kitchen with Dinah...Strummin on the old banjo."

#2 - Because my life has been pretty unscathed by major trajedy I don't go immediately into worryland in a such a situation.  Yeah they could have been in a car accident, but there were a million other things that also could have happened.  This was the case, they were getting their tire patched and there was a really long line.

#3 - Of course if I had a cell phone I could have found that out immediately, or been staring at a screen and checking my email at the park.  Instead I ate lunch, I strolled, I climbed the stairs over the railroad tracks, I I noticed the robins and tried to give them a stern look, "You'd better be moving southward, unless you know something I don't know."

#4 - We had a really fun soccer game today with a close score of 3 to 2.  We were passing really well and had the perfect amount of players.  I started a new team last week (on a different day) and it really helped/reminded me how much I appreciate my Sunday team.  It is a lot more fun playing with people you know (assuming you enjoy them of course, and I do.)

#5- I have some simple apple pie that I made for dinner last night packed with me to eat for dinner.  I could have had it for lunch, but I ate my pear instead so I saved it.  :)

Saturday, November 1, 2014


#1 - I thoroughly enjoyed a long walk today which would not have happened if not for certain limitations in my life. 

 The studio where I take yoga offers a yoga “nap” class a few Saturdays a year.  It is an hour and a half of complete relaxation.  I really enjoy the class; however I do NOT like biking to it.  The idea of climbing up a long gradual hill after becoming fully relaxed is totally unappealing to me.  I would dread going home.  So the first limitation that led to this walk is that I do not own a car.  I am certain that if I did, I would have simply driven.  The second limitation is the approaching winter.  I find changes in weather to be motivational as this is likely one of the last opportunities I’ll have to want to take a long walk.  In addition, I do not enjoy relaxation nearly as much if I have not exercised.  Add that to the fact that last night after trying to fall asleep for an hour, I ended up reading at least an hour more until I finally could.  I usually sleep really well, but occasionally such things happen.  I started wondering yesterday how much that has to do with exercise.  As in – I didn’t exercise yesterday, I couldn’t fall asleep.  

So as I finished my walk home today plenty warm in the sun and my layers in the cool weather, I was grateful for the limitations that led me to put one foot in front of another.

#2 – My mind is still pretty active in YogaNap, meandering here and there, flitting through inconsequential things.  However my body gets it by now.  It just dives right in, let’s go, open.  After class I spoke to the instructor a bit and mentioned I’d walked there.  “Do you want a ride home?”  If she’d asked me that a couple days ago I would have said, “Yes, great,” but at this point I was not only mentally prepared for the walk but would have felt disappointed if I didn’t do it.

#3 – I walked by a house where a football was at the end of the driveway at the curb.  It was behind their mini-van so could have easily been driven over.  I picked it up and tossed it toward the house, and because of the funky way footballs are shaped it bounced funny and almost hit the guy’s motorcycle.  I cringed and then the guy came around the corner and laughed and said “I thought one of the girls threw it.  Thank you.”

#4 – The book that I began reading last night, and continued with this morning, is Paulo Coelho’s latest Adulterio.  It’s been quite a while since I’ve read a book in Spanish, so I’m happy to be doing it and understanding what is happening for the most part.

#5 – I really appreciated an honest email written by a friend declining an invitation I sent to her.  I imagine it was difficult to write.  And I'm grateful she is being true to herself instead of trying to please me or other people.