Dec 11 2010

things. {reverb10 – day 11}


What are 11 things your life doesn’t need in 2011?


i can pick at least eleven things
the whole world could do without:

war. poverty. hunger.

intolerance. abuse. disease.

hatred. cruelty. disaster.

violence. indifference.


after that,

all the things i don’t need,

well, they’re just



{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 10 2010

wisdom. {reverb10 – day 10}


What was the wisest decision you made this year, and how
did it play out?


I ran it out.

I flew.

I became twice my son’s age.

I was grateful.

I danced.

I got lost in the crowd.

I watched life through a smile and a curtain.

I hoped.

I celebrated.

I dug down deep and found a word.

I fell and got back up.

I watched shadows dance across the floor.

I wrestled my to-do list, and I won.

I stared out of windows late at night.

I stood in the dark and listened for sunrise.

I forgave.

I wore purple rain boots that made me happy.

I wrote.

I sat there and looked pretty.

I asked questions, the right ones, and the wrong ones.

I stood on the outside looking in.

I sat beneath a windmill and I cried.

I listened.

I enjoyed a breeze of silence.

I took one more step.

I made pickles.

I became a crazy cat lady.

I drew a heart using the moon as my pencil.

I loved.

I worried.

I began.

I let my hair blow wildly in the wind.

I ran six miles on a 90 degree day,
bought a dip top ice cream cone and
let it drip down my arms as I ate it.

I sat on the floor and I wept.

I pulled weeds.

I was a weed.

I ate chocolate.

I watched minutes tick away on the clock.

I saw a lifetime of fabulous views.

I wore rose colored glasses.

I stole hours of quiet and held them in
until they came back out as smiles.

I giggled.

I reached for the sky.

In other words,

I lived.


These are all ideas or excerpts taken from my posts this past year.

{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 9 2010

mediocrity, party of one…
{reverb10 – day 9}

Every morning, I have my own little tea party.

For me, tea is more than just a beverage, more than a daily dose of caffeine. It is a ritual that grounds me, a habit that comforts me, tea is part of who I am.

Tea requires patience. No instant gratification here, even if you use a tea bag. You have to wait if you want it to taste just right, you have to boil the water in a teapot on the stove, always. The best tea is made from loose leaves, in a pot. The best tea requires that you bide your time.

And you have to sit at your kitchen table for the first cup of the day and stare out the window at your little corner of the world, noting the changing seasons and the antics of the birds, and the way the sun glints off the freshly fallen snow.

In summer, you have to have your first cup in the garden as you listen to those same birds singing their hellos. If you are lucky, you will get there in time to watch the sun rise. If you are lucky, the tea will be the perfect complement to dawn’s new dress.

No matter how busy the rest of the day will be for me, there is always that first cup of tea.

That moment of meditation, the breathing in of day’s beginning,

the drinking in of endless possibility.

Now that’s my kind of party.

{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 8 2010

beautifully different.
{reverb10 – day 8}


Reflect on all the things that make you different –
you’ll find they’re what make you beautiful.


my path was


but i reached for

the same light

as you.



in the same pot,

we grew.


{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 7 2010

community. {reverb10 – day 7}


Where have you discovered community, online or otherwise, in 2010?


I hang out by myself a lot. I work at home, so the great majority of my time is spent here, alone, with all these cats.

I am a loner, but I am almost never lonely.

Since I started my blogs earlier this year, I have made many new friends, my community has expanded exponentially. I have always been the kind of person that has just a few close friends, I am not so good in groups or wide social circles. I’m not someone who always has a lot of social engagements, I am quite content to stay at home.

But something in me is changing.

It’s not just that I am meeting so many new people, some of whom have become true friends, it is that I am learning to love humanity.

Does that sound weird?

Well, it probably does, but what I mean is that I have learned to embrace other people in ways that I never used to. I have learned how to forgive, how to accept, how to not hold back out of fear or shyness or insecurity.

I’m not always perfect at it, but this is a big change for me.

In high school, I was a geek, a nerd, I was very successful academically, I graduated eighth in my class. But socially, well, as my husband would say, I was a donut.

That was a long time ago, and I had learned to navigate my way through the world well before this year.

But I hadn’t yet learned to walk right up and give it a hug.

And that might just be the most important thing I learned all year.

Or in my life.

Dec 6 2010

make. {reverb10 – day 6}


What was the last thing you made? What materials did you use? Is there something you want to make, but you need to clear some time for it?


I make things every day.

I am a graphic designer by trade, so it is my job to make something from nothing. To create. I love my job.

I am also a jewelry designer. (I talk about my jewelry mostly on my other blog, the blue muse, or if you are interested, my shop is here). I love this job, too, I think of it as adding beauty to the world.

I am a worker bee. I am a maker. Almost every year, I make many of my Christmas gifts.

I first learned to knit when I was a teenager. Then I stopped for a long time, but a few years ago, I took it up again. It is the most relaxing craft that I have ever found, just the right mix of concentration and repetitive thinking, almost like meditation.

I started the afghan in the photo above two winters ago. It is two-thirds of the way done, but last year, I hardly worked on it at all.  And it’s not that I can’t get it done, I once made my mom an entire afghan in three days because she was going into the hospital for an operation and I wanted her to have it with her.

It is because it is only for me. There is no deadline, or holiday, or reason that I have to finish it. So there it sits, still in my knitting bag, waiting for me to come back to it.

Even with my jewelry, it is rare that I keep a piece for myself. But every once in a while, I fall so in love with a piece that I have to. This necklace is the only thing I kept for myself this year. It reminds me of van Gogh’s cherry blossoms. I wear it every day.

But mostly, I make things for other people. For my job, for my business, for my family, for friends.

I make things every day.

That’s who I am. That’s what I do.

This winter, I think it’s time to finish that afghan.

For me.

{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 5 2010

let go. {reverb10 – day 5}


What (or whom) did you let go of this year? Why?


Mostly, I let go of fear.

Fear that I’m not good enough.

Fear that I am good enough.

Fear that this is all there is. That there might be something more.
That life will be pass me by and when I reach the end of the road
I will still be saying, someday.

Fear that when I look in the mirror I won’t recognize
the eyes staring back at me.
Or the wrinkles.

Fear that I can’t handle loss, fear of what I might find.

Fear that I am who I am.
And that everyone else is who they are.

Fear that so much of the time, it is too late.

I opened my hand and my heart
and let all the fear fly out,
like starlings.

They’re all up in the sky now, those fears.

Swooping and soaring

in a symphony

of not afraid.

{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 4 2010

wonder. {reverb10 – day 4}


How did you cultivate a sense of wonder in your life this year?


every morning,

i opened my eyes.


{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 3 2010

moment {reverb10 – day 3}


Pick one moment during which you felt most alive this year.


Okay, so maybe this is cheating, but when I read this question, the moment the immediately came to mind was the one I’d already written about in a post called hawk eye, and I knew that to write about it again would just be silly, so I am reposting it here today.

If you’ve already read it, my apologies. But without a doubt, it was the moment in which I felt most alive, most in the moment, this year.
So here it is, again. Recycling is good, right?

:: ::

hawk eye

Timing is everything.

On Wednesday I went running. It was a hot day, not humid, not a cloud in the sky. Perfect. The trail was fairly empty, still lush and green and mostly covered in dappled shade. As I approached my second mile, I noticed a man on a bicycle coming towards me, still quite a distance away. At the same time, I saw a flash just in front of him, a bird’s wing as it cut across the path. At first I thought it was a robin, and then, no, too big. A crow?

Only it didn’t cut across, it turned, away from him, towards me. And in an instant. as it passed through a patch of sunlight, I saw that it was actually a hawk. My bird. And it was moving straight down the path, waist high, painting flight with broad strokes of its wings. It did not waiver, or veer, or act like it was lost. It kept on, headed right in my direction, glinting gold as it passed through patches of sunshine.

I kept running, although I was mesmerized. And it kept coming, straight for me. And then, when it was about fifteen feet away, it rose up over my head and continued on down the path. I couldn’t quite have reached out and touched it, but if my arms were five feet longer, I think I could have.

And here’s the thing: I had planned to go running much earlier that day, hours earlier, in fact. But things came up, I pushed my run back, minutes went by, then hours. And in the end, it all came down to seconds. Three seconds later, and I would have missed a sight that I will never forget.

A sight that is imprinted in my mind like the memory I have of my last dog, running towards me around the corner of our house, cantering like a horse, shiny black in tall green grass. He was happy in that moment, a big doggie smile on his face. His joy was evident. Two days later he was gone, suddenly and unexpectedly, and I have always wondered if I sensed what was to come, because I almost felt my mind snap a picture, recording that moment, him, just then, just there, in that spot. Forever.

And then there is the encounter I had with a bear while camping once, she on one side of the campfire, me on the other, the three men I was with, city boys, in the water. (Yes, I told them, as they ran for it, that bears will go in the water.) But they stayed where they were, and I stayed where we had all been just seconds before, by the fire. She looked at me, trying to focus through the smoke and the flames, wagging her big head back and forth. Our eyes met and she held my gaze for one brief second, and then turned and walked away.
I can see it still, in my mind.

And now, this giant, graceful hawk, flying straight down a path towards me. Golden wings glinting on and off through sun, then shade, and sun again. The white spotted belly that I followed as he vaulted up over my head.

I’m pretty sure he plucked a feather from my soul just at that moment, when I looked up and saw him silhouetted in the sun.

Because after that, for the rest of my run,

I flew.

{reverb10} check it out here

Dec 2 2010

writing {reverb10 – day 2}


What do you do each day that doesn’t contribute to your writing
— and can you eliminate it?


I lack focus.

And time.

I am working on the the focus part, and really, I am getting better at it. Even on the craziest of days, most of the time I manage to zoom into my writing brain. Not always. But mostly.

As for the lack of time, that is more difficult, most of the things I do that take up my time are things involving making a living.
Not easy as a self-employed artist, no 9-5 schedule, no delegating
to someone else, no putting it off until tomorrow.

I am learning as I go along. About writing, about time, about life.

Three things that are all intangible, unmanageable,
beyond my control.

But when I let go of all three and let them just be what they are,

that’s when the magic happens.