Saturday, December 29, 2012

I wish we could all hold this thought in the front of our minds - especially in the middle of the night when the could have/should have demons rule!
Saturday, Dec. 29

Those who love you are not fooled by mistakes you have made or dark images you hold about yourself. They remember your beauty when you feel ugly; your wholeness when you are broken; your innocence when you feel guilty; and your purpose when you are confused.

African saying

Tuesday, December 25, 2012


Christmas is a day loaded with memories, emotion and hope.  I hope that with every person you meet, you find a friend.  I hope that with every gift you give you tuck inside some unconditional love.  I hope that with every present you receive, you receive the gift of community, understanding, and joy.

This is our world.  I hope we share well and fully in all the blessings and possibilities.  

Monday, December 24, 2012

Christmas Eve

Haven't been posting lately.  We've been pushed to the max with work and commitments.  One of my daughter's friends did a facebook post about presence vs presents.  I really wish I could work towards presence - it is a much greater gift.

Last year I did all kinds of activities with my granddaughter during the holiday season.  We made fudge, went ice skating, saw the Christmas lights.  This year there wasn't time for any of that.  Because of that, it doesn't seem like Christmas.  Give me time for presence with family and friends and I'd be rich beyond measure!

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Blue Skies

Beautiful blue skies today - so very bright!  Blustery and cold and bright.  The perfect weather for the day before the end - it was spirit lifting.  Change is afoot and tomorrow is supposed to be stormy.  I am so grateful for today - I needed the sunshine.  Thank you!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

It's Very Odd

Some days it feels like you just can't catch your breath.  This is the season of too much and too little time.  Lately, everything has piled on to make this year especially jam packed. My days aren't filled with Christmas merriment, rather just daily hum drum and odd awful occurrences that keep me running from 4 am to  6pm.  It's everything from family problems to a skunk spraying my front door.  From finding my truck gas needle on empty at the exact same time I left my purse with all credit cards, cash and AAA card in the desk back at the plant.  I only got my first Christmas lights up two days ago.  I went to try and buy a Christmas tree today and all the lots were gone - really - packed up and gone.

The only thing I can figure is that I'm being taught that people are what important.  It's not about the stuff.  It's not about the wrapping or the wrappers.  It's all about the family, friends, acquaintances and strangers.  Be nice.  Have hope.  Share joy.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Odd spirits

Yesterday I went to San Francisco to see a play, the Book of Mormon.  I really enjoyed the play, although it had some tough themes and poked fun at others sacred beliefs.  I felt a bit bad for enjoying it so much.  I consoled myself with the thought that the Mormons were broadminded enough about the play to put a whole series of advertisements in the playbill, so they mustn't be too upset about it.

Before the play we were walking around Union Square looking in the Christmas windows of the shops.  A man dressed as a Buddist monk came up to me.  He handed me a little prayer card and told he he was making prayers for peace and did I want to pray for peace.  I said yes, as I do believe in prayer and peace.  He then put a small bead bracelet on my wrist, and asked me to write my name and my prayer request in his book.  I put my name there and then he asked me for money.  I said I didn't have any money and he took back his prayer card, his bracelet and walked away.

I still want to pray.  I pray that we find common ground between all people.  I pray that we celebrate each other, and don't put down other's beliefs that are loving, joyful and peaceful.  I pray that we all help to create a peaceful, joyful, loving world with dignity for all.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

To see the best

When I was little, I thought I was in a competition to be the best.  I thought the top of the hill, the top of the heap was where I was supposed to want to be.  

I thought there was only one right way.  I thought it was in or out.  On or off.  Cool or un-cool.  Popular or unpopular.  And on and on.  This is such an exclusive way of thinking.  As the years have gone by, I've come to find the middle ground and find it good.  I've come to realize there is beauty in everyone and all.  

Those struggling the most are those who are most harmed by the early black and white separations.  We need to not separate, but to celebrate each other.  The whole is better with us all feeling good and coming together.  The true best is an ALL not a one.  

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Sad times

When horrible news happens, like the school shootings in Connecticut, I wonder why random events happen to nice people.  It just feels so wrong that little children are victims of random badness.  

I also feel sad for the shooter.  What led him to a place where he did this? 

I don't like guns and wish they weren't so available.  I don't see any reason anyone needs one. 

The only solution I see for preventing such violent harm is to create a society that loves and cares for all.  I pray that we find our way to a world of goodness and love.  Dear God, show us how to love one another.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Lost in the darkening days of the year

My head is breaking.  So much seems to be going wrong.  The days are getting shorter.  I need more sun.  I'm  bothering total strangers with my musings, and I don't know why or how I'm doing that.  This is supposed to be more an exercise for myself to live up to a commitment to do a daily writing.

I know that lately I've been on a dark path.  I feel like crying, running away, or just never getting out of bed.  I was so valiantly trying to see the bright side.  I was trying to make the best of confusion.  It's not working.  Time to wallow I guess. And then it's time to just let go and let God.  His will, not mine.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


When you have children, expectations start.  It just happens.  We call them hopes and dreams, but really they are what we expect for our children.  As the years pass, expectations grow. 

Are they wrong?  Are they handcuffs that keep our children from being who they want to be?  Are they guidelines that let children develop into kind caring members of society?  

When expectations are shattered, we are shattered.  They are a two way street.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Crummy days

Sometimes the world just doesn't spin in my direction and I fall down - a lot.  Today was one of those days.  I thought it was going to be a good one, and I was wrong.  Everything was out of kilter and wrong.  These are they days that remind me - I'm not in control.  I am just here for the ride and sometimes it's a ride where I have to close my eyes and hold on - who knows where it will end up.  

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Real Power

My mom's older sister is my Aunt Mary.  Mary was always in my life.  She took me on trips to Texas in the summer.  She let me stay with her in her various apartments in San Francisco.  I remember Mary getting her degree and masters from UC Berkeley.  Mary had been a journalist during WWII.  I'm not clear on all the details, but I remember her telling about being "stationed" in Panama for part of the war.  She also lived and worked in Texas.  During that period, she was engaged to a military test pilot.  Sadly, he died.  Note to self - find out more!! 

My summer trips to Texas with Mary were to visit my great-aunt Mazy in Houston, visit her financee's family down on the gulf, and to visit friends in the Dallas/Ft. Worth area that Mary worked with at SMU.  At the time I had no curiosity about the people or places we went.  I was more interested in the great open fields of Texas.  The smothering humidity of Houston and the Gulf Coast, the way Mary drove REALLY fast through the gully washer deserts of the southwest.  Now I wish I had asked more questions and learned more about Mary.  I loved her, but I didn't really know her.  

I do know that she was the only person I knew that could stand up to my Mom and Dad and get away with it.  THAT was power.  

Saturday, December 8, 2012

People first

Today there was a story on the front page of the Sacramento Bee about a local man who had died recently and how much he was missed by the students, teachers and others of the school he worked at.  This man chose to work at the school as a janitor and became an important part of the daily life of all who came to school.  He had a master's degree in history, but chose to be a janitor, live more simply, but fully.  His story is a great reminder to me that it isn't the stuff in life, but the people in our lives that really matter.   I'm so glad the Bee had the insight to put his story on page 1.  

His name is Roy McKnight.  He is a true hero.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Drip, drip, drip . . .

For the past couple of weeks, we've had more grey, drippy weather than nice sunny days.  I really miss the sun.  I think that lack of sun is the cause of blah - the sun peeked out this afternoon and I sat outside in the cold and damp soaking in the rays and felt better.  The sun is already gone behind clouds, but for a brief hour it was here.  I like rain.  I like wind.  I like wild weather, but sun makes me happy!

Medicine for the soul.

Thursday, December 6, 2012


Blah days - I guess everyone has them.  You're going along, everything is fine, but there's no spark.  Why is that?  This is the kind of day you want to climb back into your bed, pull up the covers, find a good book and lay there warm and cosy and sip big mugs of tea.  Maybe tomorrow will have zip - or I'll really get a chance to stay in bed.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Voice Come Back

When I was in elementary school I was in the school choir.  I loved singing and had no hesitation about the tone, pitch or quality of my voice.  As I entered middle school and high school, I lost confidence in my voice and stopped singing anywhere others gathered.  The car, booming down the road with the radio cranked up, became my venue of choice.  The less confident I became, the worse my voice got.  I never was a Barbra or a Bette, but I had joy in the experience.  That left.

Last night I went to a Christmas Carol singing class.  It is a four part class that ends with public caroling.  I was awful, but they were accepting.  The director is so wonderful and kind.  I just might have a chance at finding a voice again.  I definitely will find joy.

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Big City, Small Town

San Francisco has always been the number one city in my life.  I was born in Oakland, but my early memories are all of San Francisco.  We lived in Bernal Heights, a place that many San Franciscan's don't even know exists.  All I have to do is say, the hill with the telephone stuff on top and they know exactly where I mean.

Bernal Heights, like the rest of San Francisco, is a small town in a large city.  My neighborhood was Courtland Avenue.  Similarly, as a newly minted adult, I lived on Telegraph Hill and my neighborhood was North Beach or upper Grant Avenue.  Later, as a growing family, we moved to the Marina District and our neighborhood was Union Street.

When you live in a neighborhood you come to know everyone around you.  You know your neighbors, the little corner grocer, the newspaper seller on the corner, the banker and even the homeless person who walks endlessly up and down the streets.  This is your community.  You know and are known.  You feel like you have a place in this world.

Now I live in a suburb of Sacramento.  I have less community here, in this smaller town, than I did in the big city.  I think it is cars - they cut us off from meeting our neighbors.  Feet are good!

Monday, December 3, 2012

So Full, So Forceful

It seems that in the past two days, my cup has filled with possibility.  I've discovered great new insights and liberation into writing.  I read some stories about hunger in a Sunday news magazine Parade that have given me directions I'd like to explore for meaningful work.  I stumbled on a website that celebrates constructive change and it echoed many of the whisperings of my voice.

The circle is turning and the liberation and radicalism of the 60's and 70's seems to be coming back into my life. 

My Aunt Mary was a force in my life.  A "spinster" she was a second strong woman in my life who modeled independence.  We went on a peace march together in 1971 in San Francisco.  I have saved the button from that day all these years wrapped in tissue in my jewelry box.  This is the button:
SMC is Student Mobilization Committee - Mary was a teacher.  I was a student.  We walked together with 300,000 others through San Francisco on a quest for peace.  Our world is still on that quest  - it is time to bring back our loud voices in honor of those who have gone before and in honor of us.  We are still a force.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

A Day Away

Yesterday I spent a lot of time on the road in my truck delivering.  It is the beginning edge of crab feed season mixed with early holiday season.  This is prime work time for us.  I actually enjoy my stretches on the roads driving.  I have discovered a variety of interesting talks available by CD and podcast.  With my CD player and my iPhone hooked to my radio, I have so much to listen to, I often don't want the trip to end.

Yesterday I listened to an entire program called:  First Thought Best Thought it was talks by four great writers about writing.  All different approaches, but all the same in that they view their art as play and exploration.  Such great insights!  

I stumbled on this CD at a website called Sounds True where they have all kinds of spiritual and other programs.  I am a discount junkie and so I tend to purchase when things are on clearance.  Fortunately for me, they send me discounts - so I can gift myself these great synchronistic presents.  I didn't write here yesterday, but I did have a great writing lesson.

I am so grateful for the time and the teachers that appeared.  I am blessed.