Sunday, February 27, 2011

the peace of wild things

when despair for the world grows in me
and i wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
i go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
i come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief.  i come into the presence of still water.
and i feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light.  for a time
i rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
~wendell berry

Saturday, February 26, 2011

i am obsessed

with vintage patchwork rugs

i.  must.  have.  one.  soon.

for daily swooning and the occasional magic carpet ride.

{and for a bit of kismet, this is my horoscope today.}

Friday, February 25, 2011


i hope you are adored.

Monday, February 21, 2011

the story of my heart

if you've done bikram yoga before, you'll recognize the line 'like a flower petal blooming' from the dialogue spoken in half-moon posture.  it's a bit of encouragement to unfold and open the shoulders and chest.  i have to repeat it to myself in all postures that require me to open and expose my heart:  half-moon, standing bow, camel.

a few years back i was on vacation and chatting up a woman in a little shop.  she was looking at me funny and asked if she could make an observation.  she said that i confused her because my eyes and face and smile and voice were so vibrant and yet i kept my arms folded over my chest and my shoulders folded in.  she told me i looked like i was protecting a wounded child in my arms but acting as if i didn't want anyone to know.  her statement stopped me cold.

several weeks after this, i made my own observation in a yoga class that every time i went into any kind of backbend, i felt nauseous and had to fold forward immediately.  i asked my teacher about this and she said simply, "your heart is defended."

shortly after that, in the woods of new hampshire, i sat by the fire in one of jen lee's story workshops, surrounded by loving and trustworthy souls, and was amazed at the power of my defended heart.  i had so many words held captive inside, it was literally impossible to speak them.  they stayed where they were, safe and unspoken, hidden behind my smile.

it was after that when i made the commitment to be more brave with love and trust.  it has been a slow journey, risky baby steps all the way.  i still hear a voice that tells me to stop and shield, but many times i push through that with trust.

bikram yoga has presented new challenges to me with regards to opening my heart.  each time i try to get into camel, i feel that old nausea and dizziness set in.  this is my body's cue to stop and protect.  each time i push a little further and find a little more courage to open and expose, risking the release of those things held tight for so many years.  i can be a warrior, a hero, a flower petal blooming.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

one hundred things i love {31-40}

31.  bokeh
32.  stacks of new magazines to pour over
33.  bikram yoga
34.  farm markets
35.  this morning my house smells like coffee and jasmine (she finally bloomed!)
36.  that first warm day that ususally falls in february
37.  pablo neruda
38.  walking through a hushed forest, the birds and my footsteps the only sounds
39.  campfires
40.  uncontained, tear-inducing laughter

(see 1-30 here.)

Friday, February 18, 2011


i feel all warm inside when i see our coffee cups sitting next to each other on the kitchen counter.  how dorky am i?

Thursday, February 17, 2011

love not spoken

how sad is the valentine's day clearance aisle?  sweet expressions of love at 75% off.  this strikes me as even more tragic given that a lot of people use this commercial holiday as their one and only opportunity to say i love you.

or could it be that we are all beginning to share our love freely and authentically over each and every day so that a shiny mylar floating heart tends to lessen the whole experience?

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

love the one you're with

if you've visited before, you've read about my longing to quit my job in child protection work and do something creative with color, images and words.  over the last few years, i've set serious intention, taken steps and even wrote a resignation letter.

and yet, i'm still here.  and then i go and take an additional teaching job dealing with the same exact grim subject. 

but here's something the teaching job does for me:  it takes me out of the daily, often hopeless, mess of the job and reminds me of its purpose and value.  and it reminds me of the reason i chose this job in the first place and why i should be proud to call it my profession.  i am a peaceful warrior for whom love and beauty and safety are within relatively easy access and i work to give little wounded souls a chance in this life.

what's not to love?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Monday, February 14, 2011

mosaic monday

the love week edition:  please love on the artists here.

Sunday, February 13, 2011


a beautiful message from an old faraway friend this morning started me thinking about all the people and events that shape us and reshape us into who we really are.  and that who we "really are" is forever evolving.  i'm also thinking about all the people i have loved and who have loved me because, you's love week* after all.

we've always heard that you have to love yourself first before you can truly love others.  some of us are born into love and its light fills us from our very first breath.  some of us struggle a bit more to feel safe and connected in the world.  i fall into the latter group.  but as the years go by and i pay attention to all the teachers in my life (i am a very very good student), the wall around my defended heart gets chinked away at bit by bit.   the light that seeps through is warm and illuminating and pure and healing.

i accept that my journey is my journey, but i so wish that the teachers of my past...those who came into my life holding mirrors, spotlights, stories, hammers and faith...could experience the fruits of their labor.  i think of the friend who sent the message and how she deserves to be loved by the kind of friend i am now.  i think of my daughter and i wonder what differences would exist if the me i have become was the constant in her young childhood.  and so many more lovely souls who veered onto my path and walked with me for a leg of the journey need to know that i was listening and learning and becoming, even if it didn't seem so at the time.

thank you.  thank you.  thank you.

love after love

the time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other's welcome,

and say, sit here. eat.
you will love again the stranger who was your self.
give wine. give bread. give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you

all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
sit. feast on your life.

-derek walcott

{*join me in celebrating a week of love:  post each day this week about any aspect of love and what it means to you.}

Saturday, February 12, 2011

Friday, February 11, 2011


for the bloom.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011


  1. on second thought, maybe fault-finding is a superhero power too...there are a lot of people doing harm in the world that need to be called out.
  2. i miss my camera.
  3. i want to go to india.  with my camera.
  4. a student was cutting out pink paper hearts and writing valentines notes at her desk in class last night while i was lecturing.  no shame whatsoever.
  5. while i love what bikram yoga is doing to my body, it does not compare to what it is doing for my husband's body {wink}.
  6. he can come to india too.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

i can see

all obstacles in my way.

well, i can see some obstacles in my way.  i'm sure there are more to discover.  but still, here are some things that keep me from being fully and truly me:
  • my extraordinary talent of finding fault, in myself and others
  • mistakes and regrets that i carry around like they are the whole story of me when they are merely early significant chapters, necessary to set the scene of the unfolding
  • the lust for things like $1000 wallpaper and pearly leather pea-green boots
  • questioning my superhero power:  razor-sharp intuitive perception
  • the constant temptation to give in and be a big fish in a little pond
what's one thing that's standing in the way of you?

Saturday, February 5, 2011

splurge worthy

this wallpaper by artist ximena escobar is calling my name.

Thursday, February 3, 2011

the corgi

did not see his shadow!