Friday, November 30, 2012

Edit Thine Own Words

How many times have you caught yourself being self-indulgent, whiny,  pathetic, dreary, tiresome, boring, or uninteresting and changed something you wrote?  Words.  There are so many.  Let's spend the day keeping the language positive, helpful, and uplifting.  Let me know if you catch yourself being all powerless.  You know better.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Summer time in December

This is just about the weather.  I'm in Carson City, NV.  For those of you who don't know where that is, go east from San Francisco, across California, bump into Lake Tahoe and drop yourself off just at the bottom of the Sierra Nevadas before you head into the no man's land that is most of Nevada.  It's nice here.  In the winter, much of the snow falls 'up there' [see me pointing toward the mountains that circle Lake Tahoe] and it can be very windy and cold 'down here' in Eagle Valley.  Carson Valley is south of us, Washoe Valley is north, and just past that is Pleasant Valley and the Truckee Meadows [in which one finds Reno].  It's beautiful here, and I encourage people to visit at any time of year.  Lots to do outdoors, and there's legal gambling in Nevada.  Today it's warm and a breezy, almost like September, but with all the leaves off the trees.  Freaky.  I enjoy the weather here, very much.  Except when it's snowing sideways in Washoe Valley... those days it's best to just stay home.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Blast from the Past

Sometimes the completely unexpected happens.  From out of nowhere, a picture arrives of you from 26 years ago.  You barely look like you do now, but something is familiar in that face/that body/that outfit!  You remember!  When this happens [and it will] take time to think about what it was like in your world at that time.  Who was there, what were you doing/learning?  Do those lessons still apply?  Is there something you were doing then that you would like to do now?  Are there people from that time with whom you'd like to get back in touch?  Thanks, Margaret, for sending the picture of the softball team.  How did you know I was just thinking about them?  Again, the universe has impeccable timing.  I so appreciate that.

Monday, November 26, 2012

Unexpected Mentor

I have one.  I hope you have one, too.  This is someone who appeared in my life when I wasn't expecting anything...and when I didn't think I needed it.  But, as the saying goes; "when the student is ready, the teacher appears."  I guess I was ready.  Let's just say that I have a deep appreciation for her and her presence in my life.  She is one of the best gifts I've ever been given.  I feel that she 'gets' me and there are no strings, hidden agenda, demands, etc. other than that I should bring the real Joan to the moment... and by some miracle, that's enough.  I feel free where she is.  This feeling is not isolated to those times when we are in the same place, or even when we're talking on the phone or in e-mail; it happens whenever I think of her and it bleeds into all the time.  

My wish for the world would be that everyone receive a gift such as she has been for me.  I can't think of anything better.  It can happen at any time.

Monday, November 19, 2012

The Peaceable Kingdom Questions

Community.  Communication.  Commitment.  Three important ingredients for peace.  Values based around these three ideas will determine the quality of our lives.  Do people in your life feel a sense of community with each other?  Is there something you can do to expand that feeling?  Do people in your life communicate with you and each other?  What is the nature of this communication?  Is it validating, accepting, encouraging?  Is it abusive, degrading or insulting?  Which do you prefer?  Is a shift needed?  What is the level of commitment that members of your community have to each other?  How much 'glue' is there... how apt are your people to stick with you through the good and the bad; to help you out by listening, or playing, or just being quiet with you?  Do you feel alone most of the time, or part of something larger?
How peaceable is your kingdom?
[The Peaceable Kingdom is a gift store in Ann Arbor.  In the 80's, they sponsored the softball team on which I played.  I loved wearing that shirt, being part of the team and playing with my friends on other teams.  This message is dedicated to Maggie and Lori and Cherie and Nancy and Joanne and Vanessa and Linda and Kathy and all my Ann Arbor peeps.  Thank you for making a safe place for me there when I needed it.  If you Google the Peaceable Kingdom, you will get other results, but this is the important one for me.]

Saturday, November 17, 2012

I am grateful!

For new technology and old friends.  For the opportunities I have and will continue to have.  For my sweet Tuck who keeps me company.  For my family adoptive and birth who keep me alive and growing, and in complete amazement and love.  A friend once said to me "Wherever Joan is, there is abundance."  That changed my life.  Thank you Lyn.... you are so right.

Getting To It

Get to those things you need to take care of.  DO them.  By dealing with the stuff you've got hanging over your head now, you can open the door to other things.  Procrastination is just another word for fear.  What would happen if that laundry was done or that counter cleaned off?  Would you feel better?  Would you have a clean place to prepare your meals?  Would you have clean underwear?  Those things are beneficial for your general health and safety, and when we are healthy and safe fun stuff happens.  You know I'm right.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Another Woman's Words

"We could learn to stop when the sun goes down and when the sun comes up. We could learn to listen to the wind; we could learn to notice that it’s raining or snowing or hailing or calm. We could reconnect with the weather that is ourselves, and we could realize that it’s sad. The sadder it is, and the vaster it is, the more our heart opens. We can stop thinking that good practice is when it’s smooth and calm, and bad practice is when it’s rough and dark. If we can hold it all in our hearts, then we can make a proper cup of tea."
(Wisdom of No Escape) Pema Chodron.

This showed up on Facebook for me yesterday.  Not a tea drinker, I will apply this to doing the dishes.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


It's good to have a word for it.  Things coming together.  People having the same conversations in every little nook and cranny of my life.  Wow.  We are headed somewhere interesting, that's for sure, and it seems kind of odd to me that for the first time in my life, I have the makings of a plan about what I want to do for the next 10 years.  That is some kind of weird.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


I just checked the statistics on my blog traffic.  I have had 4 page views from Sweden, and one each from Canada and Germany.  Hmmm.  Wow.  Oh my god.  I am very happy that anyone is reading this, and I do have blog naggers who get on me now and then to write more.  That is something for which I am very grateful.  I wouldn't say that I have fans outside my close circle of friends, but getting 'hits' from other countries points out something that I've always known at some level.  Whatever you say has a larger audience than you might expect, and you will never know how much your words may help or hurt another person.  I can only hope that whatever it was is serving the reader well.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Pea Soup

First snowy day this year.  It's winter.  It's November.  I am reminded of Kathy's Amazing Vegetarian Split Pea Soup and nor'easters.  Comfort food on a cold day.  I am so fortunate to have this life.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

If you want to sing out, sing out

Cat Stevens, Yusef... love his music and the messages of peace, love and freedom.  Make your choices.  Check the words to "If you want to sing out, sing out".... all on your own.  Or get out your ancient copy of "Harold and Maude", watch it and figure out where you are.  Harold was floundering.  Maude showed him what life is about.... what's important, and it's not money and position... it's not related to greed or hoarding or keeping anything close, no matter how big or small.  It's about appreciating, and cherishing and knowing that everything is temporary by design.  This is the lesson in all transitions.
You can make it undo, you see.  You only need to know.....


So, one of the benefits of blogging every day is that I don't have to log back in each time.  That's a treat, because it seems like I'm logging in to things all the time.  Each thing I log in to has a different password, that password expires after 90 days or 120 days, or not at all if I'm lucky.  Even Yahoo, with whom I had the same password for over 15 years made me change it... make it longer and more complex.  Yikes!  AND everyone recommends that the password be unique for that application, site, program, etc.  Unique my butt. If I had to come up with and remember unique passwords for everything, I'd need a secure database that I'd need a password to get in to.  So, against all recommendations and reprimands, I keep a list on a device that has no password.  I won't even recommend this to others as I know we live in a world that may be unsafe for you at any moment.  The big question is not where Joan's passwords are, but why she needs them in the first place.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Doing the right thing is generally good policy

Bob Schiefer said that last night while talking about how the president handled the Sandy situation.  Working with the Republican governor of New Jersey to get aid to those most affected by the storm.  This should be how things operate all the time.  Our leadership at all levels have a responsibility to work together to benefit all those whom they represent.  I now "all" is a big word, but maybe, just maybe those issues that don't affect everyone aren't issues that should be dealt with by the government.  Maybe we should stick to the big things there... basic food, clothing and shelter for everyone, health care, local and national safety and relationships with other countries on the planet.  Maybe doing the right thing is staying out of people's personal lives, like staying out of religion [we KIND of do that], staying out of marriage customs, not criminalizing drug use... Maybe I'm simplifying, but it should at least be considered.  In each of our own lives, doing the right thing is generally good policy.

Monday, November 5, 2012


There is nothing wrong with leftovers... unless they are too old to be any good any more.  Do the 'sniff' test if the thing still looks OK.  Lift up the edge, just in case.  Maybe if you can scrape off the top, the stuff underneath will still be edible.  Apply this to the relationships in your life.  Are they still edible, or are do they just need to go?

Thursday, November 1, 2012


Sometimes the thing we need to do is wait.  It's irritating, frustrating, full of lessons.  There is really nothing we need to do while we wait.  It is a time when we can meditate or problem-solve.  It is a time when we can look at lives and wonder.
Waiting is OK.  Sometimes the wait tells us that we really do want the thing we're waiting for.  Sometimes we find that we don't really care any more.
Sit and wait.  Just that.  See what appears.