Tuesday, November 25, 2008

haha silly ME

's been one of THOSE days - you know...feelin' like you're thinkin' wrong, acting wrong, making people mad without trying...the whole nine yards and here I was getting ready to do a SAD blog

but get this...once I sat down at THIS COMPUTER in my WARM HOUSE smellin' like woodsy homsey...lookin' at my sewing machine and listening to the dog barking I realized...

dang this life is good...


Saturday, November 22, 2008

white knuckles notwithstanding

white knuckles notwithstanding
turbulence shaken
and firm in belief
strength found unseen
sheepish chuckles
yes and no
oh so definite the thunderous
futile the grasping
at airy stability
rewards are many
and i am at home
Umitilla: Grain fields at sunset nr Pendleton Pictures, Images and Photos

The Euphorbia Family (Tricker Flowers)

tricker flowers in phoenix

Poinsettias are a part of the Euphorbia Family...the large red leaves that look like flowers? Aren't. I couldn't think what they were called when I saw these, I was showing them to my brother while in Phoenix so I called them "Tricker Flowers" because the red leaves (more fuschia than red by the way) are actually LEAVES and not flowers...the flower is the tiny white blooms you see in the center...

Why is this blogworthy? (Pause for chuckle - amused memory of that Seinfeld episode about being "spongeworthy") I pondered on the plane ride home (another blog altogether believe me!) about these flowers. How symbolic of our times.

Gaudy red leaves pretending to be flowers - luring busy bees and other pollen gatherers away from the delicate white center bloom - wisdom sings from these leaves. Beauty being the functional and not the fruitful? I'm both astounded and awed by the wisdom and creativity that went into the gentle forming of this genus. Imagine, the One who threw the lacy sky of stars in twinkling splendor took time to also form this wonder.

So I think to myself this must surely be in some joyous stickgame song or longhouse song or big drum song, it surely must have been told from the time of our grandmas and grandpas, not mine, but yours as well. If you listen closely you can hear it.

These are tumultous times - I am thankful for the pause of Tricker Flowers to remind me that this chaotic world and my search for the perfect Dolce and Gabbana bag are not all that important:-)

Thursday, October 30, 2008

modern prophetess...

in my culture when a person leaves this place and moves on we don't speak their name for a year...for a multitude of reasons.

i want to mention her though because upon remembrance, she was a large part of the lives of my family for a long, long time...

when pregnant with my first son, she was the one who came up to me with the first congratulatory hug...while in labor with this son, she faithfully came to the hospital to pray with me and kind of do crowd control (our church was very family oriented).

she and her husband adopted a young boy from south america...this boy became close friends with one of my sons and we were connected throughout the youths of these sons...

i moved away, she moved away but she often reconnected with me and sent me many encouraging and uplifting emails; when she could she spoke powerful truth into my life and forever her gentle yet firm grasp of honesty in the Spirit will stay with me...

i'm happy for her to have moved on, she's now in the place she always longed to be...i will miss her and am grateful to have had her in my life.

blessings and hugs to you my sister.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

stones singing

bottom line is this...if you keep your eyes and ears open you will see the most astounding beauty and hear the most profound stories!!!!! and here's one, on our way to celilo and on to the Big Place of Bright Lights and Beautiful Songs (PDX) there are so many stories...one such story starts like this:

long ago when the stones were light and walked around like we humans do today they dressed themselves in sunsets and rainbows, with spray from the dancing waterfalls along the columbia gorge; the stone women sang strong songs that wove from colors in the sunset huckleberries and fruit like you've never tasted before. at night they would hum gentle songs to the baby stones and from these lullabies came warm bread from pounded grass flour...
even the young stones had their chores and they would laugh joyously bounding from hilltop to hilltop gathering dew from the juniper trees to make tea for their grandmas and clover tea for their baby brothers and sisters.
the men would stride about with their important business and they roamed about from far south into the icy north gathering woods and animals and plants for the future world for as all stones know, change happens and time passes - they would not be singing forever...
mama stone sat singing along the columbia river...auntie columbia hummed happily along below her and they harmonized with such beautiful songs that many busy with projects stopped to listen...the young stones gathered around her and she sang more songs - joyful songs weaving together such trees as apples, juicy and colorful. pears grew with these two singing and also cornfields sprouted up...as the singing continued the valley began a dance and two large mountains squatted down to listen...Mount Hood remains still as she listens intently...you can see her, she proudly flaunts lacy snow shawls and holds her head high with her garland of fog...
mama stone had found her song and she gathered the children close so they'd learn...
as spoken by elders from long ago in the mist, the days of their freedom was passing...the stones felt themselves growing stiff with the cold and they smiled at each other with strength for all knew the time would soon come when the expression they wore would be the one seen for all time...auntie columbia continued the song for she was grateful forever to mama stone for singing...
the sun rose that day and all was silent for a moment...but when you drive down the freeway, pause to give respect - she sits on the side by the river, her children gathered around; if you listen you can hear echoes of her song and you will find wisdom in her stories...
but if you just keep driving of course you'll still get where you're going...

Thursday, September 4, 2008

sappiness for my children...

I wrote this in 2005 - don't know if I've ever shared it but it's still true...those kids are AWESOMENESS!

did you know
i’d give you my life?
would throw myself down
to end all your strife?
i wanted for you
all music and fun
it turns out you may
have gotten neither one

you must know i love you
with aching desire
i’d hold you forever
to keep you from fire
do you remember the time
when i used to bake bread?
you’d wake up to the smell
after you’d gone to bed

i’ve not always done
what you thought i should do
but i hope you know this,
i’ll always love you
i’m proud of your lives
and the choices you make
i don’t always like though,
the paths you take

remember my song
when you can’t see my face
that’s who i am
and that is my place
remember my song
on the river’s light breeze
i’ll bake you some bread
and brew you some tea...

2/2/05 smg

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

billboard hits...

My brother posted this video in my myspace comments - but truth is, me and Tiny Tim go a looooonnnnnngggg way back!!!!

You probably know I grew up back in the dark ages...my family didn't own and if they had, wouldn't watch television...my adopted mother's idea of "tv" was to bring us all down to my Auntie Una's house to watch when the astronauts landed on the moon...also from time to time I would sneak a glimpse whilst at either my Auntie Una or Aunt Susie's house...

One such time, I was at Aunt Susie's for my voice lessons (the coincidence is quite amusing if you will) when one of those variety shows came on (about 1968) and this is the first time I heard the dulcet tones of Tiny Tim...I was fascinated. Kind of a horrified fascination perhaps...

At any rate, I followed anything I heard about Tiny Tim from then on...for instance how many of you know that when he married his bride Victoria (a model of course), he wept ONE TEAR into an envelope...do I know why??? no, the mere fact of knowing made me happy...

So this is just one of those "hey guys I'm from the Plastoceian Era..." blogs.


Monday, August 18, 2008

alice's weekend...LAST weekend!

we went on a road trip this weekend after the high long distance adventure of Kyla Jade's emersion into the world as we know it...Friday was exciting...we'd waited for SO LONG! we loaded up Tony ('member? the red wagon's name was TONY) who although he willingly took on the stroller, our lawn chairs, various piles of blankets, Pookamoo's (Syreeta) travel bag, Alice's travel bag, Biko's clothes (tossed in, not in a bag), My travel bag (by the way please let me interject here that this was a SMALL PINK bag instead of my usual "just in case" large suitcase), Mr. Man's travel bag (and another small digression - his bag was packed with DIRTY clothes because he hadn't had time to do the mundane laundry chore:-)). Daisy aka Fairy watched us pack with kind of a doubtful expression on her face but didn't say much except to try and help us pack "hey, can I grab this and bring it for you? do you know how much I love water? hey hey HEY are you listening? here, let me help you, I'll jump up and put my paws in your biz and you can CUSS at me K????? yeah, that's funny! did I tell ya the one about the ant and the spider? HAHAHAHAHAHA it's FUNNY here I'll jump up on you again...." and that WAS the manner of her helpfulness so let me tell you the air whilst packing was peppered with many colorful euphemisms!

Ahhhhh on our way with Mr. Man, Biko, me, Pookamoo (aka Syreeta), Skinny (aka Wesley, our nephew) and Alice - the Important Baby of Wisdom and Many Songs...all loaded up on Tony the Regal Red Wagon.

Perhaps I should have prefaced this little novella with the opening phrase "it was HOT THAT DAY" because truly, it was hellatiously hot - and I say that with all the awe and reverence due the heat of the sun that day!

We got a few miles from town...oh, maybe 60...Mr. Man and I had our fingers crossed already because we KNEW that Tony was a tired boy...Tony decided we'd pushed him just about far enough and right before an off-ramp to an underpass with YAY shade, he pooped out. We sat under the shade for a bit then tried the ramp back on to the freeway...nope...back down the hill - waited awhile longer and tried again...NOPE back down the hill - Skinny was wondering just what Uncle Mr Man was up to driving the car halfway up the hill and then backing down again but he didn't quite want to bring it up just yet.

Finally he just went and took the bull by the horns "uncle, are we still going to Portland? why are we doing THIS?" and everyone laughed.

We tried taking Tony in small increments and even babied him until finally we gave up on Tony and the machinations therein occurred (LAUGHING OUT LOUD - machinations therein means we called for HELP!!!!) Help arrived and took Biko, Pookamoo and Alice back home to go get Biko's car during which we all kind of tried to amuse ourselves and not be too antsy. Saw a really nice sunset though. Finally got Biko's car and off we went again on our happy trip to Portland although it has to be told that Mr. Man was a tiny bit cranky by now.
The Big City of Bright Lights finally showed itself in the distance - YAY! Jollifications for Mr. Man & Missy Ma'am - which turned out to be quite the occasion:-)

Saturday and its BBQ day for the whole tribe...preparations began and even though it was hot because certain people wanted to have MEATLOAF this was made - and frybread because really...what kind of Indian gathering is it without frybread? People began to gather and there was much laughter and lots of hugs! It's at this point that Alice decided to adopt a new Daddy...John - you'll see him pictured with her quite often and as the story is told, Alice adopted him but when she saw her mama - Pookamoo - being "butt hurt" about it, she took her mama back...although she kept the title of "Daddy John" to use at a later date.

finally after all the laughter and hugging and EATING was done several of us migrated to Lee's house where we all FINALLY MET KYLA JADE GAVIN!!!! YAY!!!!! She was adorable of course...she graciously invited us to have some water because she knew it was hot outside...she asked me, her grandma to please look at the AC unit her dad had installed because it didn't seem to be putting out cold air. Upon inspection it was decided that Lee must have made a mistake - which he tried to deny but couldn't:-) he had it on fan and not cool...

Friday, August 15, 2008

stickgamez at home

okay, i've uploaded the picture you see about six times and i can't for the life of me figure out why the color issue but hey...we're OBVIOUSLY having fun there, Mr Man and I...
Stickgame is so amazing...we were asked by Trish to play stickgame for the Community Picnic and of course we said yes, my brother has played since he was quite young and he knows songs from the old OLD days as well as stories that the songs came from...one of my favorite songs is one he talks about learning from Atway Nellie that was brought by the prairie dogs...as the song goes you can just see the little dogs with their cute little paws hiding the bones...there's another song we picked up from a coastal tribe and as you sing it you can almost smell the salty sea air and feel the roll of waves beneath you...
on this day I sang a song we call "Jilly's song" because my daughter Jilly sings it when we get down to very few sticks and it looks kinda bleak - to my surprise and joy our friend Myrna, one of the tribal grandmas joined in with me and her voice was strong and amazing - we got a few sticks from that one!
it's fun to play stickgame and see people walking by - people never fail to smile because our songs are playful and joyous...
okay well, I could talk about stickgame all day so I won't - hope you all have a really fun weekend!

Kyla Jade Gavin

When I told my friend that grand daughter 3 had arrived she replied back by email..."it doesn't seem right that Baby Lee (the dad) is old enough to have a baby! and here you are grandma 3 times...where did the years go?"

The years went HERE and how amazing is THAT?

Monday, August 11, 2008

huckleberry feast

to preface this blog i'd like to share with you an anecdote...i've been home now since july 4, 2004. since coming home life has been so multi-faceted there's just really no words to describe...but before i go on:

while working at an unnamed Indian organization in portland, oregon, i was once at a staff party in which the game "Indian Pictionary" was being played. it was fun and the words and pictures were amusing...it got to be my turn and the word was "Culture" Now today, if you gave me that word there are a plethora of pictures i might draw for you but that day? i drew a picture of a yogurt cup...even had the words "nancy's" on the front...that's what "Culture" was to me, acidopholus culture:-)

i now scoff at such naivete and yet in the daily living of this "home" life i find that if one finds the necessity of describing our lifestyle and the word "culture" comes up it's usually by someone who doesn't really have a clue:-) but enough said on THAT issue.

yesterday was huckleberry feast...(now the DAY before yesterday)

i was ready to declare huckleberry feast as my favorite feast of the year but i just can't...that' sa different blog altogether...
So friday was picking day - i wasn't able to go out this year due to having been out of the office already a LOT so i offered to help cook for the gatherers which is a necessary part of the gathering. i met over at the longhouse kitchen with tut and dee and we cooked with all our good feelings and laughter for the gatherers. they got back and it's time to sing in the berries - this IS one of my favorite parts - we all stand in the longhouse on our sides and as the gatherers bring the berries in there is the bell ringing - it's amazing really, and to us, the huckleberries are our Big Sister. the gatherers stand in the wash beside the berries and we sing one song over them - it's a particular song but that's all i will say about that - each gatherer is given a chance to say a few words and some of them do yet another part of the deep richness of this feast. the berries are taken out with the ringing of the bell and then its time to eat - we gather in the annex for this, eating and talking and laughing and singing...where moments ago was awe and majesty you'll find the humorous going from bawdy to simple at our table. we are family.
a few chores are done and then everyone goes home...saturday preparations continue and sometimes a service in the evening then SUNDAY comes around and everyone shows up wearing their best longhouse gear; first the service while we ladies cook the dinner - by now the smells are beyond expression - rich buffalo broth intermingled with sweet cakes and pies; watery rivery (yes those ARE words!) salmon and pungent roots and chokecherries are all laid out - a colorful array of delicous adoration - we sing over the food as it's served, giving thanks to Creator for the salmon and deer and buffalo, the men serve these foods, then the women serve the roots and chokecherries and THEN it's time to serve the huckleberries! i couldn't help it, my knees were hurting, i was tired and hot but i HAD to do a little happy dance when i picked up my bowls to go serve...i do love the huckleberries!

dinner is served and on with huckleberry feast - one more song and we all have a "taste" of each of our Indian foods...i'm called on at my table to show the visitors how to take their taste and i turn to my sister Pam who started going to the longhouse at about the same time as i did in 2004..."look at us...we didn't used to know ANY of these things, had to be told how to do everything, now we know the words to the songs and how to show the taste!"
happy sigh....

Friday, August 8, 2008

maybe you don't know this?

We look at our world as inorganic, you know, the objects utilized so frivolously, our car, our computer, the dwellings we inhabit? Often the smallest detail escapes us and that's the whispered jokes at our expense - the car smirks at us from the driveway "I know what you did last night" and we blithely slam the door without a second thought...

This is not so in our universe, our car has a name, he told us himself, that his name is Tony - sometimes I call him Anthony when he's acting a little fractious, but for the most part his name is Tony. Our last car's name was Gracie Lou Freebush, yes, she DID win Miss Congeniality...before that a plethora of autombilians...Daria, Selma, Jess's truck Kenneth, Skye, Marianne, Bob...all of these faithfully carried us about in our whirlwind lives and don't tell anyone but they really DO know what we did last night:-)

I share this with you because today when my brother and I went to lunch we pulled into the parking lot and there he was: Tony's cousin...just as grouchy and dinged up as Tony and tapping his wheels waiting because they'd actually made this appointment long ago!

Here's a picture of the two of them and if you look closely, you'll see they're chuckling:

summer storm

yesterday was one of those hellatiously hot days - oh really - not hellatiously hot like in iraq for instance where it's like 120 by 10 am, or even hellatiously hot like in vegas where it was 110 by 8 am - nope, this was eastern oregon hellatiously hot and the thing is, it smelled so good: heat, wheat, rain, clouds (yes, it's true you CAN smell clouds) and the pure hope of storm relief...

this storm built and the wind was awesome blowing dramatically through the prairie...kicking tumbleweeds around and even ferociously pulling at tall thistles until THEY went flying...a cloud of dust enveloped our dancers the hills and lightning struck with infinite precision...was it a tornado like the Dorothy and Toto adventures? No, but oh the sheer power of these winds were awesome.

What I LOVE about summer storms is this: it gets hellatiously hot and heavy - muggy and miserable - the clouds gather in dramatic force and then the storm happens - wind, lightning, rain, more wind, dust, a plethora of hot miserable moments and WHAM

The sun comes out and it's just beautiful and CLEAR and the air has been cleansed...


Thursday, August 7, 2008

:-) all things new? yes!

one thing that's new about me: i love dolly parton - if you had asked me ten or even TWO years ago I'd have said "Dolly who?"

:-) all things new? yes!

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

did i miss the BUS??????

it's funny really, when I was young my biggest fantasy was that the "martian" bus had forgotten me and would one day pull up and off I'd go to my real home: Mars.
We forget our dreams, you and I, in the midst of our grown up struggles to survive in this jungle of adulthood. I think we should remember our dreams, our fantasies, our sheer delight in the intricacies of a dandelion (yes, please DO go look right now!) the miniscule puff of yellow joy that a dandelion will emit when you giggle at his bright yellow audacity!
life is rough. you and I both know that. We have our daily struggles, those moments we have to stop and cry in the restroom because we just can't take one more moment of this intensity, the pain we watch our loved ones endure and often the magnitude of issues our own bodies carry...this is why we had those dreams, something to look back on and smile in the midst of our daily grind because otherwise life is just that...a daily grind and we both KNOW that's not what was intended!
so take a moment, pause and just look around you. in some crack in the sidewalk you'll see a stalwart dandelion struggling to bring joyous green to the hot cement; in some unknown face you'll see the sparkle of smile that is there just for YOU to enjoy; you might take joy in the smell of that fresh pot of coffee made for the last employee working late - breathe in that strong nutty fragrance mingled with hazelnut creamer (YUMMY); giggle to yourself at the inanity of your long lost dream of one day becoming Royal Anne (yes, I did) or perhaps you thought you might one day wake up and KNOW the reason for the ocean waves OR perhaps you might have dreamt of being that ONE person who might discover human flight? and maybe if you look just right you'll be seeing the moon at the same second as I am tonight!
we'll have joy TOGETHER for just one moment!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

dance of the new day...

Dance of the New Day
.you might think it quiet at first light. outside i hear a pheasant calling for Biko (they seem to have connected, and this pheasant actually thinks himself to be in charge of Biko). I hear the last yips of the coyotes as they head to bed after a rough night carousing and drinking the very best hay ale. The Coyotes tried to lure Daisy into their bawdy snare but Daisy asked Mr. Man what they were talking about and he told her "that way lies madness" and Daisy's just young enough to believe him still:-)
I can smell crabby ol' Stinkbug making his way across the meadow out there, don't know who made him mad but SOMEONE must have woke him up on the wrong side of the bed this morning! The angle of his BUTT will tell you the depth of his MAD
If you listen closely the dulcet tones of crystalline purity are beginning to sound as the rays of light begin making their way over the horizon. AHHHHH
the morning song!!!!!! I hear that one bird begin to sing in Mr. Sun and as she has started the song they all chime in. So tiny, yet absolutely confident in their rule of the world!
Daisy begins trying to school the mice "now if you'll just stay out HERE, I'll only EAT you, if you go in THERE, you'll be met with all manner of tortures and the Missy Ma'am will SCREAM when she sees you" Daisy also tries to reason with the Pheasant family, "if you'll just keep quiet TODAY, I'll let you be as obnoxious as EVER tomorrow!!!!!" The swallows just sit smugly in their mud hatches....they know above all that when they choose to dive-bomb, NO ONE is safe:-)
Mr. Sun has greeted the morning, he has shaken hands with Lady Dew and together they begin the dance of the new day.....
You've seen it. Out of this dance springs hope


Monday, July 28, 2008

friday...saturday...sunday - SO much more than a weekend!!!

...thing is when you lose something or someone, if you watch carefully, someone or something steps right up to replace that...'member we lost our beloved dog Sonny about a year ago. First we had Lihbi who if you don't know, decided one day to move out (it was on Adam's Day, he walked a boy down the road to town and just decided to hang out there). We then got a little beaver at the store in the Capitol building in Salem, OR. You'd think he was stuffed but apparently he's quite talkative and likes to keep apprised of the situation!..
Next we got Daisy, who as it turns out has two names. You can call her Daisy or Fairy she answers to both. ..
One day I burst into song (yes, this has happened from time to time) and out of the deepest recesses of my mind came "Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do, I'm half crazy all for the love of YOUUUUUUUUUUUUUUuu, it won't be a stylish marriage, I can't afford a carriage, but you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two. As it turns out this was amusing to Biko (Daisy calls him "the Big One" and Mr. Man (Daisy actually believes Mr. Man to possess special powers) who guffawed quite loudly. Daisy later told me that she actually only heard me to sing "daisy daisy daisy daisy daisy....)" ..
ANYWAY, that's only part of the story.Friday came along
, a most anticipated day for TODAY we were loading up and headed to Joseph for an amazing 3 days of OMG!!!! SO EXCITED...I did my usual preparations, and we waited while Biko went to work and came home, then off!
We got to Joseph after a couple minor mishaps (Tony - the latest "go" also known as a car, but simply called a "go" by most dogs and even the stupid mice that live around our home - but I digress. Tony had a tummy ache and just insisted on stopping from time to time.) and Brother (aka Mr. Man) and I put up our tent although we'd brought his tipi with us. A comment here and there and we kind of felt like "uhhh, perhaps we shouldn't have put the tent right here in the center..." but we had so there it is. Well as fortune has it, there were poles available and we DID get to put up our tipi which precipitated yet another adventure. My brother went to register said tipi with the grounds manager who promptly asked my brother to ride a horse in the parade the next day...
See how this goes? It's a cause and effect thing:-) Take down a tent, put up a tipi and you get what? TO RIDE A HORSE!!!! Such excitement!
Got things set up, washed our faces and then what? OH YEAHHHHH time for jollifications!!!!!! That's another story in and of itself, suffice it to say, fun was had, new friends made and Koolaid lost his cookies in the most undignified manner!!!
Saturday morning we woke up and it's time to get ready for the parade for it had been determined that we would all dress in our best and hop on SOMETHING to ride in the parade...my brother had the honor of using some really amazing beadwork, cornhusk woven bags, loop necklace and he looked pretty amazing - and I'm not just saying that cuz I'm his sister!!!!! He got on his "hodie" (horses took this name long long ago when the oldest manchild couldn't pronounce "horses" right). I was sitting on the float and he brought his hodie over to meet me. "What's your hodie's name?" His hodie immediately answered me "Hellloooo, my name's BLAZER and I'm NOT a hodie!!!!" My mistake, I apologized to Blazer and we made up immediately. From then on it was perfectly okay with Blazer if I kissed on his silky soft nose any time I felt like it!
The rest of the afternoon was amazing I ran into a good friend I haven't seen in a long time (Rebecca) and my Auntie Sylvia and just a lot of other people. My son Biko said "it's just like a big family here" to which Brother responded "it IS a big family"...so much people watching you can't even imagine, so many songs and dances heard it was the BEST...evening came along and Brother again dressed in his finest and oldest and off to find Blazer because they were to go out in the arena at the rodeo together!
Bottom line is, these fun things happened because we took our tent down and put up our tipi! NO LIE! The three men riding in the rodeo went through to the majestic strain of "Dances with Wolves" playing in the background...the announcer gave a herioic try at pronouncing their Indian names right but ended up calling Brother "Blue Hawk" which was a chuckly moment:-)
Saturday night and out for pizza then further jollifications...I participated less this time, one night was pretty much going to do it for me:-) More new friends, some of the ones from the previous night and SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO much fun!!!!!

Sunday arrives and it's time to go home! First we went to the TOPPERMOST PART OF THE WORLD - and rode the GONDOLA THERE!!!!
it was SUCH an amazing experience...fed the squirrels, and chipmunks and the no tailed squirrels (my favorite) and pretty much bonded with the sky while up there!!!
back to the lake to relax before driving home and even the road home was amazing...
adventures and fun have to end sometimes and here we are at home now...Fairy missed us so I made her some special dinner last night and this morning she had mush and toast with me and Mr. Man...
SIGH...life is GOOD

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

OFF with her head!!!!

It's funny really, but I am STILL surprised when blindsided by political arrows. I try, but am not yet adept at playing the game, feigning disinterest while listening avidly, looking concerned while sticking you with my poisonous needle...these are not gifts I've cultivated...nay, I am one who revels in just having learned to say what I mean and mean what I say...I am still excited that when disgruntled I can say "that bothers me" rather than serve your dinner on the pink melmac plate which, by the way, when you eat a baked potato on it, will turn a nasty shade of grayish ick. Oh don't get me wrong, I do enjoy serving a hot spicy cup of hemlock whilst smiling amiably and commenting on the weather...oh from time to time I will take aim and let fly a dainty dart of rhetorical agony stinging and biting until you run away crying...these things don't make me proud...but OH how I long for the utter selfishness, the pure narcissism, the sheer joy of self-love that the Red Queen practices when marching about the garden pointing hither and thither (oh YEAH, used it AGAIN) shouting "off with her head! OFF WITH HER HEAD!!!!!"

Thursday, June 26, 2008

...fear itself

we try in these short lifetimes of ours to gain somewhat of a foothold on reality...oh goodness the machinations we go through - running hither and thither (oh wow, can't even beLIEVE I got to work that into a sentence!) frantically searching for that elusive pinnacle of togetherness known as "happy." for oh, about forty five years, my time was spent in finding and preserving many many pairs of rose colored glasses, all shades of rose, all sizes and shapes...what this is, of course, is fear...
somehow in the whole scheme of "it's time to go home" my fear kind of fell away and look, i'm not even afraid of a camera any more...

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Bunny Tree Memorial

I remembered the Bunny Tree today - I tried to find a picture to depict the pure Bunniness of this tree which heralded each season proudly, shared winter dreams and held on to night time secrets told in the rushing winds of wheat scented summer air but alas, there were no such pictures to be found.
Bunny Tree could be seen from our little house ON THE PRAIRIE...we could stand at our door and there he'd be out standing in his field (LOL) shaped much like the chocolate bunnies eagerly awaited on Easter mornings...it's true he heralded in the seasons...
First, Spring, he would yawn and stretch and scratch his nose (don't quite understand the mechanics of this but I KNOW he did!) and slowly, gracefully he'd grow his leaves and being a tree he'd smile in delight as each one grew to its greenest leafiest beauty...he'd take on the Spring Rains like a long awaited and so refreshing shower, tapping his feet as though to a long missed song along with the rhythm of the rain.
Summer would come and the hot Eastern Oregon breezes would waft across his leaves with wheat scented power and stories of cool streams down below. Bunny Tree wasn't envious, his roots grew deep into the earth and he'd wiggle his toes in the cool undercurrent of the spring he grew in...he would smile a secret smile and wonder at my hot misery (oh how I hate to be too hot!).
Fall arrives and Bunny Tree would sing a happy stickgame song as he one by one released his leaves to a golden flurry of changing colors. He peeked a few last peeks at the azure sky and sleepily blinked as we zipped by him on Very Important Biz. He smiled a little for he believes us to be younger than his fledgling twigs flung below in joyous abandon. He wonders why we zip about so quickly when all the growing in the world kept him solidly and placidly in one spot.
Cold arrives and Bunny is fast asleep...he dreams of crackling fires and laughter amid even MORe stickgame song and he smiles in his sleep. From time to time he yawns and stretches for in the early winter there are still a few warm days...
Bunny Tree left in a wind storm earlier this year. He didn't say goodbye because to him he wasn't leaving US, he was just GOING to a new place...the birds who faithfully sang with him through his time here kind of perched on his broken branches with questions and songs to send him on his way...
This is his memorial.


this blog is a letter I wrote to a total stranger (http://www.pastaqueen.com/halfofme/index.html) upon reading her blog...when I first came across her blog it was "by accident" but her story was amazing and inspired me to write to her:

Oh wow…

I found your blog on accident if you will…in the daily grind of pursuing interests other than the overdue database in which query is macroed “run the world” I accidentally FOUND you. Oh I won’t bore you with empty platitudes of gratuitous flattery, surely you know the depth of the fat pit you’ve plumbed to become the half of you that you are and surely you’re aware there are millions wishing to do the same out here in the “still fat” world. I laughed AND cried while reading only a FEW of your words.

Why am I contacting you? I don’t know really. I am a fifty year old woman who has just come home after 48 years of wandering around. In coming home I dropped from 348 to a svelte 297 and here I’ve stayed…my knees are buckling under the crushing mass of my happiness and yet I have persevered in my obesity. My first weight loss spurt happened after going to a bone doctor – oh yes, I know they have a name but please, remember the age? Sometimes memory failsJ no JOKE! – he squinted at my X-rays with serious demeanor and looked at me over his glasses “you’d be a prime candidate for liposuction surgery” I kind of basked in this for some reason…”ahhhh, morbid obesity will have its easy side!” or some such insanity! When I got home I realized the weight (pun intended) of his comment and went to my room in a puddle of tears. My husband (still married but SEPARATED) said “you don’t worry about what he says! I love you JUST THE WAY YOU ARE” (later I may blog about the utter control mechanism in this statement!) but in my heart of hearts I knew that this was serious business. Determined not to be necessitated of the surgery I began a conscious effort known as “portion control” and in less than six months dropped down to 270. This was so exciting. I weighed in at 277 when pregnant with my first son and remember being SO appalled at the time, now 270 actually felt like dainty! Perhaps I should have prefaced this with the further notion that weight loss is an underlying obsession with me apparently. During my second pregnancy I discovered the wonderful control factor of vomiting, this lead to an eleven year relationship with binging and purging, that was in 1984-1995 and I still bear the brunt of THAT fun addiction.

Fast forward: recently I visited a doctor who told me after my recitation of history “don’t diet, don’t even think about the weight…here, I’ll write this prescription and you can take your pain meds as needed, don’t worry about the dependency…but just know that eventually we’ll work these things out…” I went home and IMMEDIATELY started Pilates. My brother bought me a bike and although my knees won’t bend deep enough to peddle both sides, I stubbornly ride this bike to the end of my driveway and back. I went and bought some expensive Nikes, New Balance and Propet shoes because I plan on walking…I cut calories and began the portion control again and why? I don’t know really…something about the tone of his voice (maybe he’s Jedi?) “don’t even think about the weight” and off I went…

Are you even remotely interested in this? Probably not but somehow reading your blog spurred on the writing bug (I too have a blog) and the notion that perhaps you may find time to read such dialogue interesting to read as you sip green tea? Maybe. I just know that I chuckled as I read the “contact me” page and here I am.

Thank youJ I feel so AWAKE!


recently my childhood parent passed away - the dad who was THERE and who nurtured what he saw in me when very little else seemed to work...

it's astounding really, the plethora of feelings that arise, no, not sadness so much for really, he WAS 94...almost envy I think because look at him: he's done his work, he's paid his bills, he's walked his dog and now what: he get's to move on and go REALLY explore! in that aspect I'm excited for him because his was a mind that never stopped. We (the rest of the family) would all be comfortably esconced in our evening activities...my mother in the dining room sitting at the table reading a mystery novel, my sister Blanche practicing her saxophone in the living room by her piano, my sister Genni upstairs probably reading and me, sitting next to my dad who was on the couch going through the latest Time magazine or National Geographic..."Hm!" he'd exclaim and look up to see which of us would notice "can you believe it? that "Tremembé" tribe has only 300 people and their main food staple is acai berries!" Of course I do remember the tribe's name but I made the berries up because they sound exotic...suffice it to say my dad and his sparkling "I want to know MORE" eyes are a deep and precious memory to me. It's because of his thirst for knowledge that I learned Latin phrases in sixth grade...read the dictionary from cover to cover...you know, "smart" things? and it's because of his memory that I refused to allow children in MY home (whatever!) to watch such nonsense as the Si**sons or you know fun stuff:-) which by the way I thoroughly enjoy now...

When he came home he smelled like the mill...a salt-of-the-earth fir/pine scent that still makes me feel safe and warm.

I'll miss knowing he's here but will SO look for him as soon as I get there!!!

Monday, June 23, 2008


Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do
I'm half crazy all for the love of you
It won't be a stylish marriage
I can't afford a carriage
But you'll look sweet upon the seat
Of a bicycle built for two

It’s actually ONE phrase in a much longer song but that’s the part I like…

The rest is a silly stoopy song written by an English Composer Harry Dacre, who when he immigrated to the US was charged duty for his bicycle. The officer who was letting him in said “well you’re lucky it wasn’t a bicycle built for two that would have cost you double.” Harry had never seen one and he was so taken by the phrase that he wrote an entire song themed in that phrase. This song was later featured in the movie 2001: A Space Odyssey by the computer HAL 9000…

Of course there’s more history to this but I’m just tell you the part I know best:-) hahahahaha I should BLOG this so people know just how MUCH minutiae is captured in the small back cupboards of this mind...and so I am:-)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

oldest son...

the oldest son has come home...first for a dental visit and decided to stay. he decided to jump into a language class and made the drum below in one day then gave it to my brother, his uncle...first drum. it's a big thing, REALLY