Thursday, June 30, 2011

Celebrating Freedom

Just a note of thanks to everyone who fights to keep us safe.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Summer Project

I wanted to make a headboard and thought of the tufting idea, watched all kinds of home improvement shows not sure if I wanted it to extend it to the ceiling or keep it on a smaller scale and I finally figured it out when I found my new quilt. I pulled the colors from the quilt, painted some canvases and then did a little circle pattern in silver as the bed frame is stainless steel. I may paint butterflies or birds on them later but I love the simplicity, so I am not sure.

New Garden Photos

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Little Blessings

If you haven't had a little animal sleep in your house, it's time to take a trip to your local animal shelter and donate some food, cat litter, blankets, and dog and cat toys. If you ask, they will allow you to take a pregnant dog or cat home and let them deliver in your home where there aren't cages and where they can get better love and attention. Fostering animals, taking care of them while they are ill or in crisis can be quite rewarding and I am always about loving over the little animals of the world. I am still about feeding the bunnies in the yard. The babies are precious and if you go a step further and offer to find them a home you will take quite a burden off the system.

There are many ways to share who you are with the world and make others happier. You can volunteer a week or a month of time. Years ago Best Friend wandered into the Chicago Public Library and when looking for a book realized how many books were shelved because they didn't have a staff big enough to put them where they belong. She volunteered her time a few days a week shelving books and was just happy to be at the library. You can volunteer time reading to kids in the summer, teach an art class, find your way to a retirement home and offer to play chess with someone who would otherwise have a lonely summer day. Giving of yourself is the greatest reward really, it's something selfish, it's about sharing your heart and talents with people who are just waiting for that to happen.

Here's a CNN article about volunteering your time:

If you have summertime hours to kill maybe it's time to teach at Vacation Bible School or run a kid's carnival. I was at the party store the other day and they had home versions of all those great carnivals games really inexpensive. I can remember playing that silly duck game at the school's carnival every year and my brother and I loved it. I wish they had these when my son was little. He had a little plastic McDonald's center like a little kitchen, but all about the golden arches. I would go and purchase a bag full of hamburgers and watch him play with the neighborhood kids for hours and hours.

Monday, June 27, 2011


(The photo is from my garden)

I don't want to explain why I need his hands on me
My song is waiting for his honey bee goodness
and I just a simple filament waiting wanting
when he is close I will whisper "How do you know what I need?"
and he will respond as he does
"because I love you. I have loved you since God made flowers."
and the hovering is of such excitement
the electricity rivals that of the lightning strikes
the comfort almost like sleep
drifting away being pulled under and over
feeling the water fill your lungs
knowing he's never done anything he hasn't done well
this force of nature
wanting me dancing in the garden
where lovers dance
while rain fills the garden pots
Is that thunder or are the Gods playing Mozart
when we glide this way and that
and being one with him was just a matter of time
because his smile caught my eye
my laugh drew him near
then lost in the lovely way he speaks to me
I've waited my whole life for him to speak me
to hear that laugh like thunder
to get lost in the clicking of his tongue
while he's thinking
my heart sinking because he shares those thoughts with me
and how it opens the door of my cage
how it sets me free

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Loving a Mangod

Loving A Mangod

"You are with me in every step I take."
There is a beauty you see in the contrast between
how he speaks to me in those dulcet low tones
and what I want him to do with my body
with the way he feeds my soul
and yet leaves me wanting

when it is just the two of us whispering
our prayer of thanks more sacred than church
I could hear a dripping drop dripping
almost like the ticking of a clock
marking time, a reminder that we are mortal
a tiny leak in a ceiling and the immediate solution
was a big red bucket nothing fancy or wonderful
just this red red beating heart of water meeting
an object that wouldn't be moved
an underneath the thunder we were alive
every point of nature being more of wonder
because you are of the organic and yet a mangod
who would leave his footprint here
long after this moment passed
after even we stopped breathing
when we were different people our souls looking for one another
and when found like this time around
lost in the magic of the randomness of love
striking like lightning
slaying the monsters we create
because in the commonality of spirit
of his spirit I am found
like the muse or a talisman
found by a treasure map

Love's language is universal and it's power
so overwhelming
that even when you are falling
it feels like flying
when his mere absence leaves the space next to me empty
a little lost
the earth's wobbling movement not quite right
knowing peace is found when his thigh
is pushed up against mine
and victory found when I can hear him let go
praying in that moment he knows that peace is found
when I let go
and the lingering question sitting on the end of your tongue
when did you become part of my soul?
when did want's history become need?
Can Love be the sustenance of forever?
and even though "Yes, of course I know"
I still wait for you to ask

The photo above is a Morning Glory Pool. The pool is a hot spring in the Upper Geyser Basin of Yellowstone National Park in the United States. The pool was named by Mrs. E. N. McGowan, wife of Assistant Park Superintendent, Charles McGowan in 1883. She called it Convolutus, the Latin name for the morning glory flower of which the springs resemble. By 1889, the name Morning Glory Pool had become common usage in the park[1]. Many early guidebooks called this feature Morning Glory Spring. The distinct color of the pool is due to bacteria which inhabit the water. On a few rare occasions the Morning Glory Pool has erupted as a geyser, usually following an earthquake or other nearby seismic activity.

Friday, June 24, 2011

Summer Happiness

Every season has it's joys, summer though is so full of joy that it's hard to not to get lost in the long warm June afternoons. I think I love the season of warmth more because of the garden and mine is overgrown as usual. I always plant too much, I try to show restraint but I love the little flowers and this year I planted seeds among the plants so that I could cherish the joy of discovering what new flowers will pop up between the herbs and the few tomato plants I planted this year. I didn't mark the seeds so I would be surprised what new leaf pattern and color combination would make it's summer appearance and I recognize the sweet peas twirling it's sweet tendrils up the side of the trellis and I can't wait for the pinks to appear.

One of my favorite ways to spend summer is to find something to cook that will define the summer. My unusual find this year via the amazing Ina Garten is the most amazing chicken stock one could imagine finding. She just throws this little recipe out there now and then and because the summer garden is so full of herbs I thought I'd try it. Her trick? She roasts the chicken or pieces of chicken first in the oven and I think that's the miracle part of it because it removes any extra chicken fat and all you really get after is this amazing golden broth that only a jewish mother could make. And how does this relate to summer meals? Well it's the lightness of it, making it thai by adding a little fish sauce and some egg noodles, chopped up peanuts and lots and lots of fresh cilantro. Cilantro grows like a weed and will make anything taste like a summer evening. You make this Italian by adding basil and maybe a half a can of chopped tomatoes. It's wonderful with loads of vegetables and it's comfort food of the highest order. It's easy too, just roast the chicken parts or the whole chicken, put it in a large stock pot and start to layer the flavors, carrots, celery, parsnips, two large spanish onions, and the best part? You don't even have to peel, cut the skins off anything, almost no prep work involved here, just cutting it up with a few heads of garlic, just cut the whole things in half, no need to remove the skin here either, a big batch of dill, some parsley a little sprig or two of rosemary and let it boil then turn it down to a summer for a few hours, and strain, take out the chicken and shred it and you can keep it all separated until you are ready to have dinner and throw all the rest away. It freezes for a quick meal and it's pure summer joy.

Bravo will make summer fun as Jeff Lewis is back and just the promos are fun. The summer fun movie? Hangover2 which is not quite as funny as the first, but hilarious all the same and I've seen the first about 300 times and it still makes me laugh.

Summer is the time to find a new OPI color and paint your toe nails, wear sandals and spend at least 20 minutes a day worshiping the sun. That is what I miss most in the winter, not being able just to sit outside without a coat or shoes. I am painting a series of canvases to make a new headboard and found some wood butterflies to make a mobile for the kitchen. If the sun makes an appearance today I will wander to the garden and take some photos to post. The Summer book this year? Little Bee by Chris Cleave about a girl who escapes Nigeria. You can find it on amazon used for about $4 and it's a true page turner as I am on my second reading and admit I missed a few things the first time around because it was so compelling. When I am done I will find his first novel and anything else he's written and put it in my head. If books make up who we are, I am glad to find this one. The compassion he writes of here between people who are almost strangers is lovely.

The stores here stopped selling my favorite Black currant tea so I am looking for a new brand. I just purchased a few different brands online and when i find the new perfect cup of brewed wondrous goodness I will let you know. I went to a few international markets near Chicago and found a few boxes written in Polish. Both were too purple, too bitter and not the black currant flavor I love. I did buy a bottle of black currant syrup that I have been adding to plain iced tea and although it does add a little too much sweetness, its lovely.

Last summer my favorite flower was the cosmos. I know why Alice Walker would find a field of those purple beauties to be worth writing an entire book around, but this year I think I am taken with the lilies. I owe someone a Lily poem and I am working that through my head. The come back every year and they are so beautiful, each like it's own painting, each worthy of a moment's pause on a June afternoon, and in colors so rich, it's hard to pick a favorite.

My novel is almost finished, the story finding it's way home. I am making jewelry again and while not consuming my life it does make me happy. There are a few lingering health issues but I am feel as though I am healing, love does that I think, finds a way to heal us. I am fostering some baby kittens from a local animal shelter and the mother and babies are a comfortable addition to the house. I like their little mewing. I will post some photos of them as well, their eyes just opened today. I took them out on the deck with me for awhile so their little faces could feel the warm sun, the momma just climbed the tree and sat in a branch looking down at me until I put them away. Life is good.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

I am the master of my fate

When I am unsure, when I am doubting anything, when I feel as though the world is a little too big and I am fighting a losing battle, I hold this poem in my head awhile because I have to move it around as it always lives near my heart.

"Invictus" by William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me,

Black as the Pit from pole to pole,

I thank whatever gods may be

For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance

I have not winced nor cried aloud.

Under the bludgeonings of chance

My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears

Looms but the Horror of the shade,

And yet the menace of the years

Finds, and shall find me, unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,

How charged with punishments the scroll,

I am the master of my fate;

I am the captain of my soul.