Wednesday, March 25, 2009

cold feet

That’s always how it happens. For me at least.
The weather warms and the socks are the first thing to go.
the way the ground has barely thawed and i'm out, walking to my car in bare legs and peep toes.

But first rewind to mid-winter – when I'm convinced by my knitting-guru-mother that I am more than ready and more than capable of knitting my first pair of socks.
She buys me the yarn, lends me an extra needle, because you need five, not four, I was quick to learn, and copies me the pattern and sends me on my way.
Alone and timid in this new world of heels and toes and ankles.

That was in December. Maybe even as early as November.
I was not ready, but jumped in with gusto… ready to sport my new striped numbers with pride…
Until I froze, realizing how much easier and less frustrating it was to purchase a pair of socks.
So I stopped – at the toe. THE TOE!

And now it’s spring, and I’m so close to being done with sock number one, it’s disturbing.
It would probably only take me one more night to finish; yet it sits there, under my desk in a tote – neglected,
Because the thought of starting sock number two is just too much.
This sock just might turn into the world’s cutest sock puppet when I’m done with it.
i wish i had more follow-through.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009



“that which flows first”

Primifluous, A Poem

My primifluous speech -
before look and touch and heartbeat mingle -
goes before like a bud,
a bloom,
a concierge,
making way for incongruous intersections,
of voice and speech and words
spoken in haste,
and longing,
and meaning lost in translation.

You pause
and I wait for you to acquiesce,
like a sprout in rain,
fold over,
bent on loss.
But on recovery rising,
you speak to me smoothly,
superfluous words
of unfolding and desire.


Save the Words

I stumbled across this site today via twitter and kind of fell in love a little bit.
My love of language and words has been no secret.
Down to each individual letter – a small heart palpitation for A through Z.
So it’s no surprise that this site is so engrossing to me.
Just scrolling over the words – it’s like a candy store of words. I could play in there all day.
Pure delight for a Tuesday morning.

Today my word is:
“that which flows first”

I have many ideas swirling around in my head right now –
Ways to incorporate this site with my own writing.
Daily inspirations if you will.


Thursday, March 19, 2009

simplicity + spring cleaning

One cannot collect all the beautiful shells on the beach.
One can collect only a few, and they are more beautiful if they are few.
Anne Morrow Lindbergh

On my mile long to-do list for the next month or so is to undertake my version of spring cleaning.
Although I have a pretty rigorous (to me) weekly cleaning schedule for myself…
This year my spring cleaning will be more about weeding out – getting rid of the superfluous – simplifying.

I am not good at this. I like to organize. But I like my stuff.
When we moved into our house, almost two years ago, we did a major overhaul of stuff we no longer needed.
We held a garage sale and walked away with a good chunk of change to show for our “junk”.

Then about six months or so ago – I did another overhaul of my “office” -
The spare room, where no real work gets done – but has become more of a walk in closet/ work station for my clothes, knitting, sewing machine and clutter. I got rid of about six garbage bags full of clothes, shoes and bags that time around.

And now, as the weather is taunting us with a warm day every few days, I am itching to spend a good chunk of hours in the weeks to come, organizing and purging and giving away and bagging up.

Spring is nearly here and I’m getting ready.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

labor of love

Today started off badly.

we woke up to a fight and I hurried off to work just to get out of the house…just to get away from the tension of words that came out hastily, in sleepiness and anger.

But as the hours passed – we’ve moved on and now I’m looking forward to getting home –
The home we share – and enjoying another sunny evening…grilling out, playing with the dog and doing some reading…

He’s off the next few days - and although I am jealous for sure, I’m glad that he is able to get some stuff done without me in his way -His biggest distraction.

Projects. He loves projects.
He wanted me to give him a list of projects for his days off…
a far cry from my rare days off alone, when all I want to do is lay around in my sweats, watch crap TV and take a nap.

Here’s what I came up with:
· Re-screen sun porch
· Hang shutters when they are delivered on Friday
· Clean as much of the house as you want to
· Finish local taxes
· Take me to lunch at least on one of your free days
· Love me

The last two are the most important to me by far…but he wanted stuff to do – so by golly, that’s what I gave him.
Now we’ll just have to see how much he can accomplish by next Monday.

Thanks for all your hard work – a true labor of love.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

things don't change, we change

Things don’t change, we change.
Henry David Thoreau

This is a hard lesson to learn some days…
But again, a good one…like most are.

Kierkegaard said, "Prayer does not change God, it changes Him who prays."
And in the movie Shadowlands, Anthony Hopkins who portrays C.S. Lewis says, “It (prayer) doesn't change God, it changes me."

I believe that…and so I go forth in prayer, believing that I am the one in need of the changing.

deep calls to deep

Every end is a beginning, and under every deep a lower deep opens.
Ralph Waldo Emerson

As deep calls to deep
in the roar of your waterfalls;
all your waves and breakers
have swept over me.
Psalm 42:7


I have been meditating on this idea of the depths, lately.
This idea that the depths are a good thing.
A hard thing, but a good thing nonetheless.


In the depth of winter I finally learned that there within me lay an invincible summer.
Albert Camus

Depth must be hidden. Where? On the surface.
Hugo von Hofmannsthal

Plunge it in the depths; it comes up fairer.

Friday, March 13, 2009

on my way...

Today I read this quote:

I'm an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way.
Carl Sandburg

And I just nodded to myself: yes, yes.

Yes I am.

what is a picture worth?

1000 words

I stumbled across this unobtrusive sight sometime in February.
And didn’t remember it when it showed up in my google reader this morning.

I urge you to find five minutes to stumble into this writer’s fictional world made up of a thousand words.
Exactly 1000 words.

February 1k is good,
But march 1k is great.

His writing is clear, concise but not trite.
There is a freshness to his language that I only strive for.

I wish I would have thought of this…

Maybe I’ll do 1001.

Thursday, March 12, 2009


That is happiness; to be dissolved into something completely great.
Willa Cather

Happiness is not real unless it is shared.
Chris McAndless

But what is happiness except the simple harmony between a man and the life he leads?
Albert Camus

We all live with the objective of being happy; our lives are all different and yet the same.
Anne Frank

That man is richest whose pleasures are cheapest.
Henry David Thoreau

I am feeling very introspective today.
It’s that kind of feeling where I wish I was sitting on the floor of my office,
with all my favorite books on the floor surrounding me –
Pages turned to rabbit-eared, well-worn passages,
Underlined in pencil and pen and tears at times…
While I soak in all the words, the sentences that I have long forgot I loved.
tozer, l’engle, piper, plath, eliot, cather…
I could go on and on…listing names that conjur memories of where I was when I read the,
when it was that they hooked me -
caught me like a hook in the mouth of a fish
and hasn’t let me go since…

I love books –
Love might even be an understatement.
I love the smell, the feel the fonts…

This week, my husband told me that the iphone has a free kindle app – all you have to do is buy the books -
My response was blunt. Why would I ever want to give up books, the library, borders, ½ price books for a gadget.
And although I know people that will no doubt love the kindle, that is just not me.
I’m an old-school kind of girl that loves nothing more than to pack 8 books for a two-hour car trip.

I’m a “mood-reader” – meaning I read based on what kind of mood I’m in.
At any given time I’m reading one novel, and then a myriad of other books all at once…
Spiritual, reference, writing, poetry…
And I’ve been in the process of trying to read through the bible start to finish for months now…
I’m in psalms now…(is that halfway?)

When I was living in Africa my friend kate gave me one of the best gifts I’ve ever received…
I was there for what was thought to be a year, turned into only seven months but still.
I packed a ton of stuff; brought Rubbermaid tubs of stuff – and included in them, lining the bottom of each – to spread the weight - were as many books as I could fit – but it still wasn’t enough…
So what she did was amazing…
Every month or two, she would go to ½ price books and fill a small cardboard box with about a dozen $1 novels from the sale section of the bookstore.
And she would ship it to me…
And I would read them, back to back and hope they lasted until the next box came.
That was a hard year, and I’d like to think that apart from God, those books got me through the silence, and the lonliness and the isolation.
They transported me to other worlds, and kept my mind off of myself for hours a day.

The family I lived with had tons of books, which I read as well,
But they said something during the beginning of my time there, maybe before, that I will never forget.
something that seemed so sad to me - sad and close-minded.
They said, life is too short to read novels…
And so their library was filled with good books, great books actually – by men of faith, and Christian books aplenty, but nothing resembling a story…except the bible of course.
they were missing out, and apart from not understanding my love of novels, they were uninterested -

So kate stepped in – my fellow lover of the story- and came to my rescue.
And I will be forever grateful.

When my time in Uganda came to a close I had two choices. I could leave all these novels behind, to a family I knew would never read them, or I could pack them up, one-by-one and ship them across the seas back to my bookshelves, where I would squeeze them in and welcome them like long-lost children (ok, maybe that’s a bit extreme…but you know…)

So I packed them up. and brought them home, where I continued my love of books
of words strung together in ways that I could only dream of.
And I do dream…
Oneday, oneday.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

It was one of those March days
when the sun shines hot and the wind blows cold:
when it is summer in the light,
and winter in the shade."

-Charles Dickens
from "Great Expectations”

Thursday, March 5, 2009

i wave my white flag

I wave my white flag
and call for peace
amidst a disorderly crowd
of war,
and riot,
and talk of retribution.

I beg for a truce,
a treaty,
a union of souls.

love in a war torn town
with an address of null
upon its doorstep.

my hands are in the air,
weapons dropped,
knees to the ground

and offer my apologies
with blindfold on
avoiding the splinter
in light of my log.

I wave my white flag
my pillowcase,
my nightgown,
my skin.

Come to bed
and take my white flag
my peace offering.

week in rewind

Lately I feel like I’ve been quite the heavy in my blogging.
Yet, when it comes to reading other people’s blogs – I love reading the ones that catch me up on my friend’s days – or weeks – or months, as could be the case for me.
We’ve had a lot going on lately, so I wont try to summarize…
But I will tell you about my week, but first I must go back ---

It all started when we bought our house almost two years ago (has it been that long already?!)
It was a foreclosed-on-fixer-upper to say the least.
That first summer was the longest summer of my life.
Still living in our 2nd floor rental, we spent every spare moment at the house. Gutting it, then building it back up.
Sanding floors, painting walls, scrubbing, packing, tiling…it was both a nightmare and a pleasure.

We moved in not long after, with a shower yet to be finished and a kitchen half done.
We’d come home from work and grill out in the backyard, eat on paper plates and drive to my parents to shower before bed.
It wasn’t ideal, it wasn’t really fun, and many evenings were spent stressing over money…
But it was our life – the life we chose and we were anxiously awaiting the day where we could come home from work and relax.
Not paint or unpack or fix things…

Eventually we burnt ourselves out and took a few months off. Guiltily we spent nights doing nothing – watching t.v., out with friends we’d abandoned for our house – and winter turned to summer and we started up again…Curtis on the daunting task that was scraping and painting the outside of our house – and me, inside the hot house, painting trim.

Long story short – Curtis worked long and hard and on top of a rigorous school schedule, we decided for sake of time and sanity, we’d hire a professional for the final coat…

Then summer turned to fall and fall turned to winter - which brings us to this weekend – just a mere two weeks before spring returns.
The appraiser called to schedule our appointment. We’ve been wanting to reappraise our house, to see how all the hard work we’ve put into our house has payed off and because finance rates are dropping so low – it just seems like the right time. So, he called on Saturday at 3 saying he could come as early as Sunday at 3.

We make the appointment. We hang up the phone. We freak out.
There are a million little things that we have yet to do.
Fix a socket, fill holes from old blinds, paint trims, deal with the entryhall, get rid of clutter, and clean.

So we spiral into two simultaneous tornados and work and sweat and work some more. Exhausted we drop into bed on Saturday night at 1 am.
Sunday there’s more work to be done and then the time comes…and I leave with the dog so that this man has nothing to distract or annoy him.

We leave and he shows up. Then leaves. Then nothing.
We don’t know anything, still don’t. the stone faced man may be sitting, calculating our little house at this very moment.
Dimensions, upgrades and surely the coat of greige paint I threw up on the entray hall walls mere hours before he was to arrive.

So now we wait. And wait and wait. Hoping to hear something by the end of the week.

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

on my way...

"I'm an idealist. I don't know where I'm going, but I'm on my way."
Carl Sandburg

*Seems so fitting this week…as doors are propped open with hope throughout the rooms of our small, meager lives.
We paint trim and sweep under the bed, while praying that hard work will pay off and we’ll be on our way…

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