Tuesday, January 31, 2012

{Virtual Coffee}

Hello Tuesday. Good-bye January. It's time for Virtual Coffee! If we were meeting for coffee today you would be taking your chances because Riley is home with a stomach bug and we are just sitting on the sofa, watching some tv, reading some books and generally taking it easy. That's an oatmeal chocolate chip cookie which was my breakfast because I'm 51 years old and can eat what I want.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you I have been feeling like I've been chewed up and spit out by life. I'm finding it hard to just go through the motions and I'm really needing more rest than usual. I wonder if the January blahs have caught up with me or if there is something else looming and gloaming. I am reminded of the old adage, "it's always darkest just before it gets pitch black". Whereas I'm usually the one telling others that this, too, shall pass, I have been having to repeat those words like a mantra as I slip and slide through these days and weeks. I would share with you a story which serves to remind me that things do, in fact, pass. It involves my friend's dog, Rosie, and Riley's red plastic lego ball.

It did pass and my friend was brave enough to, um, retrieve it, clean it up and return it.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you the Queen of Arts came for a visit last night and got a taste of how scrambled my life is. She came bearing wine

and chocolate

two things that soothe many a savage beast. When she left for home, Riley and I dressed up

and went out looking for some snow because it has been kind of hard to come by this winter.

Rain and freezing rain has been on the heels of each bit of snow and not even the lake has frozen close to shore

but the grass is like an skating rink and the trees and bushes are encased in ice.

Even these guys are having an easy time of it.

In honour of the Queen's visit we left behind some rocks

and then I locked him back up in his cage.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would tell you we found two old bath bombs in the back of the linen closet and I would show you a bathematical equation. This

plus this

plus this

equals this

which looked an awful lot like the tea I was also drinking.

I guess it was because it was old, the bomb didn't bomb as much as slowly fizzle.

If we were meeting for coffee today I would want to share a few quotes that I have been meditating on, the first from Katrina Kenison which is, "Cast your lot with 'being' instead of 'doing'. The second from Goddess Leonie, "The person who is happiest wins". And then suggest we go over to Amy's Lucky Number 13 to see if she will rustle us up some of her Hillbilly Lattes.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Virtual Vermut

Hello Friday, hello vermut. Make mine a double. No, a triple. If we were meeting for vermut today I would tell you what a roller coaster ride this week has been. I would ask you if you know what hatred looks like because I stared it in the face this week. And while details have to remain a little bit sketchy for the moment, until it all gets sorted out, I would admit it involves a child and a pair of very sad adults. Unfortunately it is my child and a pair of adults in his life who wield a certain amount of power in his day-to-day life and it is going to bring change in a big way to our house and hopefully, in the long run, in a good way. I have shed many, many tears this week in anger and frustration and pain for my son experiencing his own pain and one of the things that I have come out on the other side of this with is that I am so grateful I am not capable of that kind of hatred. It has also shown me how much my village cares and that there really are kind strangers out there and I now have some of the resources available to make life better for him.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would say I kissed good-bye this face this morning

as Riley went off on a day of adventure on the train. As much as I have loved this time to myself to do some groundwork for the upcoming change and fiddle around in iMovie, I have missed him.

If we were meeting for vermut today we would, of course, talk about the weather because it has been so flippin' cold. Nose biting, eye liquid freezing, car battery seizing cold. I would tell you that since winter came so late this year, I had almost forgotten how much life gets interrupted during and after a blizzard. Of course the kids still go to school and the adults still go to work - what gets interrupted is everything else like meals and "me" time. And as a weekly check-in for how I am doing with my Year of Me, I would tell you that I am learning that saying "yes" to "me" often enough in the smaller things makes it easier having to say "no" to "me when the bigger things come along because there isn't such an accumulation in my body and mind of "no" to "me". And as a second observation I would say that I am learning I have to push "me" forward and yet remain available to be a cradle where I can land.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would show you this Hello Kitty balloon that blew its way into our backyard

and tell you we had great fun telling the dog to go and get the cat out there while we watched her race around the yard looking for her nemesis. And to try to forget about the cold we picked up pizza at our favourite place last night.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would show you a box of goodies that arrived from Anna from Blossom Blessings. The packaging was beautiful inside and out

that's a brown paper bag from Trader Joe's I discovered when I cut off the outer wrapping

but what was inside, nestled in flower petals was more beautiful. Anna makes magical products and here are a few I ordered from her new Etsy shop. The smudge spray

face elixir

and chakra oils

My chakras are about to get some work done on them in such a gentle but effective way.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would tell you to look outside at the night sky

because it is an amazing mix of greens and blues that you really only see when it's this kind of crazy cold out. Then I would suggest we head over to Kate's at The Catalan Way because it's much, much warmer where she lives and I believe she is expecting us.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Channelling Egon Schiele

Some non-dominant hand portraits, again from Carla Sonheim's Drawing Lab and in honour of Week 1 of Lisa's Wild Elephant Project.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Virtual Vermut

Oh my, if we were meeting for vermut this afternoon, I would have to say that yes, there is an animal on my head.

With all the snow we've had the last 24 hours (and it's still falling) I had to bring out the heavy Canadian artillery - my beaver hat - The Thing to wear when shovelling. I would admit that I often forget that I am wearing it and only remember when people walk by and smile at me. I would tell you it started off looking like this yesterday afternoon

and by evening I figured it was time to shovel when I saw this.

Of course, everyone gets in on the fun because there's nothing like a romp in the snow after dark.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would show you my new Buff. With a name like that I had to buy it (and play with photo apps).

But when I take it off, it makes my hair look like this.

Which may, in fact, be an overall improvement.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would tell you I finally threw out my favourite pair of cheaters

All the kings horses and all the kings men couldn't put these back together again. And I would tell you about a scary moment I had cleaning out the fridge. I wasn't sure if this was really, really old mashed potatoes or some kind of stinky cheese

and since I don't "do" stinky cheese I had to ask the stinky cheese lover in the house. It wasn't stinky cheese. But on that subject, most people I know are happy that I've switched over to eating un-sulphured apricots.

If we were meeting for vermut I would proudly say that I have kept my promise to put myself higher on my to-do list this year and show you an ink dropper drawing I made

from instructions in Carla Sonheim's fun book, Drawing Lab. It's a wonderful resource for inspiration and stretching creatively. I have been gifting myself studio time regularly, showing up at my page and it feels good. Oh yes, and I have been taking the word "no" out and exercising it quite a bit and you know what? Nobody around me has starved or gone naked, and - I still have a job.

I would tell you that the people I live with have gotten creative about what to do with the empty toilet paper rolls.

At least they are changing the empty ones now but it would be nice if they would get creative a little closer to the recycle bin. A girl can dream, can't she? And I am wondering what they are going to do with them now that the plunger handle is full.

If we were meeting for vermut today I would show you this heavenly pot of Creosote balm that came in the mail all the way from The Herb Mother.

It came highly recommended and I can't wait to try it. The creosote bush has many healing properties including treating all kinds of wounds, parasites and unwanted growths (is there any other kind?). And let me tell you, if the jar was bigger, I would consider lathering up a few people I know with it. Buying more handmade products is something else I am putting as a priority this year. And then I would say let's go over to The Catalan Way and wake up Kate because I think she fell asleep on the train home from Barcelona again.