How does a thing feel? It feels amazing to finish a creative project … All I have to do is sew in the ends and one scarf and it is ready for Christmas … Having never actually worn one before, the verdict was, after much in house pondering, skepticism and light sarcastic amusement ending with ‘you’ll figure it out’, is that I do actually love this scarf. I am able to give it the design AND function stamp-of-approval that G always asks of me … It hugs your body well without encroaching on your neck, it gives your neck warmth and continues the warmth onto the front of your body … It’s light weight but not so light that you feel like you are wearing a feather for show, this feels like an actual piece of clothing … It’s so much about the colors and which colors - the most exciting part … Knitting is beautifully meditative, and this pattern is a perfect mix of needing to concentrate and count and being able to just go … I also knew that once I cracked this pattern the first time, the ones I knit next will be faster. Tracking time on the 2nd Earth colors scarf, now half way done, I’m on day 8, with a end goal of 14 days, cutting my total knitting time down from six weeks to two. :) And yes, I am enjoying the process … More than that really, totally loving it. xoox
Blue Wool, ridiculous excitement, these colors just arrived ... Just so happy to have knitting back into my life. I’ve missed it so much and life has felt off kilter without it. I think this is a living metaphor in my life … My new thing is for every one that I give away I am knitting one for me. The fog is rolling in at 6pm most days, which is another slice of heaven, and G somehow coming up with new skill, cooking. <3. His super power is in the way he seasons things …. Love love love love.
Some times it’s the tiniest of moments that are so totally pure in joy and maybe I’ll even add the word Awakeness, that they create the most amazing overall stillness and contentedness, it becomes for me an ongoing trust and love …. G and I walk by this house almost every day and today their bushes are in the shapes of hearts. No. Way. Have we missed them all along or is this a new creation? In any case, I’m loving the synchronicity that someone else loves hearts so much that this idea happened in their garden. Taking heart shapes to a whole new level. I have a new life goal, seriously … xoxo
And the lime tree, and the little rows of succulent plants, and the potted plants we always see which are STILL gorgeous, and the white stones, AND the amazing new green growth on the huge green mystery tree …. Just love and am grateful for THIS moment. xoox
The question for me always, is the spiritual angle, because everything has to do with soul. The spirit and soul of life, the meaningful stuff … What does a thing feel like? Intuition, yes, in the quiet moments of my days, and what does a thing feel like as it happens … Or the thing I know my parents taught me, too, to wait until something emerges, a truth emerges, not to decide right away … I love this because it ties in with my more recent learnings about how not to react … Observe first. Which is not the same as being distanced or un-engaged, it’s learning how to experience a thing and not let it devastate or derail or affect you … More of a boundary, or protective womb … an energy field … a kind of like a super power.
Recently the topic of Paris came up in conversation which made me think of my memories of Paris ::
It was a spontaneous trip to visit my youngest sister for less than a week while she lived and studied there for a year. My dream design job in Manhattan ended when the amazing company closed its doors suddenly for personal reasons, not bottom-line-financial. Being in between jobs is the best time for us Americans to travel, it’s usually our only chance to get as much vacation time as Germans do … so I immediately booked my flight to Paris when my sister said yes to the idea …
What does a thing feel like? As I learn with bigger awareness to build a life, this only one life, as I imagine a fulfilling one with connection and meaning - which is very different from designing and controlling it - I go back in time to this little (un paid) vacation with my youngest sister in Paris …
This trip to Paris to have one-on-one time with her was pretty much a honeymoon without the honeymoon component - marriage, husband, rite of passage (sex) … Visiting a country without speaking the language is not appealing to me - I like the feeling of having some language control in Germany - so having E be my personal French-speaking tour guide was the best thing ever. Visiting her during this massive challenge in a French university, and hearing about all her challenges and successes … And having her show off to me her whole world - grocery stores, bakeries, cobble stone streets, university, friends, neighborhoods, subways … She picked me up from the airport and we arrived to her adorable studio where her prepared homemade French onion soup and wine … Having my little sister to myself, all her intelligence, massive observation skills, sense of humor, persuasive conversations (for example talking me out of a nap after flying all night and arriving at 6am … Instead to walk it out, walk the city that first day … !) I remember we called our German Aunt G in Northern Germany who just flooded us with love and adoration that we were taking sister-time like this for each other … Ja. I LOVE that I still have this visual reminder of where we walked every day, her idea to draw on the maps with a visual Key … :) We walked and walked and walked to museums, I bought a ridiculous number of art postcards, took photos as always, we sat in cold cafes with views, and created the fabulous memory of how American were we, that a 3 hour French dinner meant not pleasure but running out of conversation and being fine with wanting to leave after an hour … An oh thank god, you too, moment between us … I loved her sarcastic observations about French banking customer service or lack of it, and and better yet French men, and even French boy babies:: “Future asshole French men”. Out of the mouths of babes, my kid sister, where DID she come up with this stuff? (Beam.)
I think my sister is known for her fierce intelligence and the professional success. As enormously proud of her as I am, what I love about her are all her ways of seeing and describing a thing - God, anything - when she can be absolutely real, which I think maybe is not a space she can often have … There is intelligence but there is more emotional intelligence. There is her version of polite society humor but better yet, there is her real humor. There are the ‘safer’ life decisions, but I know too that when things go wrong, like her time in the Peace Corps - when she writes, it comes from her heart and intelligence, we can only give her our full attention with complete awe and adoration and respect. And love.
My only regret with this trip is that I didn’t follow her around and record every single word, image, facial expression, nuance … Or that I didn’t journal my way through the trip (only 5 days!), and collect every morsel of delicious wit, love, humor, social political environmental emotional observation … I am actually a little jealous of her husband, because that was the disruption of our sistership. I’ll just name it. Only because I can’t have that time back, two single sisters, very bonded, in spite of our 12 year age difference … Life is not a straight line, of course … My gratitude is that I had a lot of time with her to myself, the peak of which was this beautiful, beautiful art and thought and food and wine and talking and walking time in Paris …
As usual, I don’t have answers to how these webs of life on different coasts and create one unified thing, but I do know how a thing feels. So I’m going back in time to get it, this feeling, to remind me, how a thing feels.
I’ve been told that vacations are special, that of course THIS was special precisely because it was a vacation. Ja, no. I’m not accepting that.
Living in Northern California has opened me up the idea that normal daily life can be as good as a vacation, every day. The elements of this vacation that I am absolutely Intent on bringing into my daily life is that level of meaning and connection … More of it, not because I’m a princess (I totally am) but because life is short.
Create the meaningful. Create the magical moments where you are just amazed you get to hang out with that person.
This was magical, my trip with my sister to Paris … xoox.
So the question for me is how, can I create … More … in spite of things that look like obstacles, but by now I’ve learned that obstacles are usually only things we create in our minds …. So, here’s to more of this kind of quality of life ….
And grateful for all, as always … even The Mess of a Thing.
A date actually … G and I were hard up to finding something that felt like a date this week, intentional time slow time together - so we went to Target to by tp and Dayquill - my announcement, “this is a date, stop rushing and enjoy the moment with me.”
When we left the store we got this … :) xo
I'm remembering 9/11 living in the lower East side, working at Macy's, and having just had a vacation in San Francisco, one of my many litmus tests to come back ... It was just another normal workday for me as a designer, but this time coming up and out of the subway in the morning people were still figuring out details, word was out that another small plane - like before - had hit the world trade towers ... Slowly news came through, it was so strange to have to try to be productive through this .... Someone on our floor knew which floor on Macy's had the view of the trade towers, so every half hour everyone popped up to what was happening. And so I never saw the towers fall, just that first there were two, then there was one and then there were none. Completely impossible to absorb the horror. To learn that all modes of transportation in and out of Manhattan were sealed, all tunnels, bridges, roads, everyone walked, including people walking home from Wall Street to Queens ... Amazingly one of our family friends in Iowa got through the phone lines to me in my office ... The stories are endless, but I especially remember the amazing number of acts of bravery, help and kindness that came through ... The people who went back in to get more people out ... I remember also that there were New Yorkers who because of 9/11 loved NYC more than ever, and then people who were spooked for life by the intensity ... I remember my friends were finally able to buy a condo because someone from Georgia reneged on his real estate signing, after 9/11 he wanted nothing to do with NYC ... That was my time to leave and live in the peaceful green that was Pennsylvania ...
My mind believes that events like this happen rarely and never near me, but this one was close. I'm also so grateful I am here.
I got this one right. My life long love for opera, even the desire as a teenager to become a professional opera singer ... O the emotions and expressiveness! The countless stories of my parents loving opera, the operas box sets, the operas they went to in Germany as a young couple, I think even NYC on their honeymoon .... (Fidelio?) ... Loving opera was one of the three things I had on my dating profile, and I remember feeling pretty hopeless about this, even wondering if I just DATE a professional opera singer to cover that one. Years later, now, this is my 3rd time going to the SF Opera in Golden Gate Park and the experience just makes me feel whole. I chose this, I chose to be here with this, I created this space in my life, I followed the signs to this ... No more faking it at some baseball game or maybe even going to Church to get my people-fill ... The magical part is that G, my heavy-metal-loving-boyfriend, comes with me, and, is content ... All the years I had these rules of how my love life should go, how the guy should "match" me, and all or most of my tastes, play Barbie and Ken ... And what an odd rule that is. When the fit of people is much more mysterious and magical to explain academically or with my thinking brain ...
I love how he and I are learning how to carve out meaning and inspiration together, connected to our individuality ... This day was filled with amazing pieces - the music, the park, the weather, walking, picnic food and wine, people-watching and seeing how other people are playful with clothing and picnicking, the affectionate moments, and the silence of everyone in the park listening to this music, sort of a sacred stillness to me, also because we are experiencing something bigger than ourselves ... Sitting outdoors being sung to ... It was just a perfect sweet and savory introvert day ... xo
In an innie and outie sort of way .... xoxo
See, this is why I want certain people to just visit me. The weather was even perfect in normally more foggy Daly City today, and as we drove up to San Francisco, it's road side view like this that inspire me to my core, and it was just one thing To See, of so much beauty to take in. In fact, I think it's just that I want all my beloved loved ones to move here to the Bay Area ... My dreams are in a non-pushy, surrendering, lovely sort of way of course ... They are a tiny bit selfish - I miss you all - but mostly they are about unity and knowing how much you would be inspired too ...
Damnit. I knew I forgot something. I forgot to state in my Intentions that part of my dream design job will include enough money to have a wool and knitting budget. The universe (me, I know) was CLEARLY confused and now I am pulling out that journal to LITERALLY put another bullet in my (seven heart shaped) pages says "This job will also provide me with a wool and knitting budget!" Just like I had to clarify with the universe, which is me, being REALLY clear about things that are important to me, down to the details, that I wanted to meet the love of my life by 2017, not whenever... :) Remember that I rolled my eyes at my Spiritual Guide when she teased me about forgetting to be specific about the year, and it didn't happen until I was clear. You think I'm stoned, but I'm not. This is the thing about doing exercises like this, it's not a crazy thing randomly coming to you, it's that you have to be really clear about what is important to you. So you also have to be aware about yourself. It's not selfish, it's treating your time on earth like it's sacred. This is what feeds me, and then it pours over with love ... Speaking of which ::
I am completely in love with this Drachenfels scarf - the original Drachenfels is a stone formation high up along the Rhine near Bad Godesberg - thank you Dad, and I am grateful that I got to hike this two times in my life ... The scarf was created by German woman Melanie Berg, with her lovely design interpretation which she describes as paying homage to the dragon of the legend of Drachenfels, imitating in her design the the scales of the dragon ... Soaring joy, I tell you, when I look up what other people are using for colors. The perfect thing to make as gifts and tailer each one to the color favorites of that person. The problem is that I want to make one of each of these as a gift AND for me ... I can see why I would want a wall of shelving at home and a collection of wool just for the art of it ... Arranged by hues ... Sigh.
And another story. Two years ago, I started this scarf pattern 7 times and ripped it out, started over. Every single attempt something other than a triangle was happening. I'm all for mistakes, but there's a limit. In the span of ONE year I started this scarf 7 times. Reading patterns is new to me and just because I made a crazy knitted farm blanket 4 times, I still found this pattern a challenge. I started it in January and put it down completely in December and thought, wow, I'm done with knitting. After the years of knitting, designing multicolored sweaters without a pattern the German way, gifting them to my loved ones as gifts, I'm done. This year I reached out for help - my knitting wiz friend C who successful finished this pattern, and my Mom, who declared that she also loved this pattern and would try to help me.
Somehow ... four weeks ago, I started this pattern and it just came. Yes I had to ask a few questions, yes, I had to look up what KFBF means, and find it the continental way of knitting, but there really was no effort. The satisfaction was deep ...
It occurred to me that the year that I was strangling this pattern alive, I was also in the midst of doing the hardest spiritual work of my life which was dismantling my ego. Oh, it sounds so complicated, but ego is when we get our way in life every fucking time and we just think we are amazing. But of course we do it with humility so that at the end of the day we still have friends. So I didn't get my way. I didn't sail into San Francisco and land the $90,000 design job even though I had recruiter leads tell me they didn't get it. That's a way to dismantle my ego. I did this thing and had a LOT of people watching me do it. My brilliant plan to my perfect life which was about to get more perfect didn't work according to my design.
And then I learned to love my Wad of a life anyway. Sure I had the good fortune of meeting my Spiritual Guide here and had already loved working with a Spiritual Director and a therapist, but I had to pick one and the one I ended up working with in a focused way was the woman who suggested so many things, but one crucial idea was that I wanted .... Me.
The reason I believe that I met her is that it's only in our vulnerability that we connect with other people ... Perfect people are annoying.
I remember our family friend Phyllis, now no longer living, telling me two years ago, that when she first met my beautiful mother in the early 1970's, that the only reason my mother wasn't completely annoying with her beauty and perfection was that my mother has a beautiful heart. My mother also is perfect: she is beautiful, the kind of beauty where you don't have to wear make up, she is charming, she is skinny, she has beautiful taste in clothing, she decorates her house beautifully, she is a chef, she is a baker, knitter, learned English late in life with a small base in school, she is a contractor, a hiker, she can make butter, she can spin wool, garden gardens, compost ... she can do anything if she puts her mind to it. Okay so maybe one of the things she doesn't do so well is figure out where that cement hump is in a parking space and often drives over them, but otherwise, may I just add that even her two sisters have had a little envy and it's been interesting watching that sister competition. The point is, perfection kills connection.
In my vulnerability and general falling apartness I made the most amazing friends. The people who stayed with me, the people I found, the people who didn't judge me, the people who saw my Wad and decided to love me ... It's the only thing that matters to me. Of course it's how I found G. For years I dated and showed up as perfect woman, and for all my love of finding Realness, I lived in a totally superficial level without knowing it. You don't know things until you start living on a heart real level and you can't do that until your ego gets the shit kicked out of it. You may think you are an open person, I did, but that openness and complete love can't happen with perfect-living. It just can't.
Do I want to live that kind of pain again? Um, not really, but I do know that it's ALWAYS an invitation.
I know today that the years of pushing myself into a design job failed because this was WAY more important. This, my life, my heart, my soul, my sense of self being happy because of the Wad that I created. When I can look at my path and love it. The difference now is that I have Intentions and I have things that are important to me. Wool, for example. But my life is not about controlling the thing anymore. Even on my shitty days I have an inherent sense of trust in EVERYTHING. It's not a huge sense like when you graduate or get married or have a baby - or get a huge job! - when the whole world comes to you and loves your success. It's a tiny sense of trust that I can every day come back to this tiny moment, my sacred spaces. In a flower, a garden grown veggie, a written word, a tiny walk, a stone with a pattern on it, the feel of wool while it's cold out, the fact that I didn't kill G's asparagus plant, work with what I have. Because someday I may have cancer and then I'll have to find different things. I don't know, maybe running around naked more at home ... There's gonna be more pain and I don't what it's going to be, but I'm going to have to do more idea-flipping.
So here I am. Knitting a scarf with ease and love, when it was once the bane of my existence. Let this be the working metaphor to rest of my life ....
This writing and title is version 2:
Wow. All I can say is thank you Ashton Applewhite for braving this topic of ageism, thank you for TED Talks for bringing it to your stage, and thank you to my local AIGA SF organization, of which I am a member, for supporting the topic within the design community. Link here.
People who have the courage to talk about things that general society doesn't have the courage to talk about are always my role models and inspiration. I am posting this precisely because of Ashton's courage. Wow.
It has absolutely been my experience, much to my shock. The AIGA's first sentence of introduction is even more stunning to me because it explains my shock living in this (lovely) liberal culture: ".... (ageism) is considered to be acceptable even by many who are against other forms of prejudice & discrimination in the workplace." Yes. How can people be so unaware? This 12 minute talk is packed with right-on facts, perspectives, positivity, humor, the politics of ageism (how capitalism feeds into it) and the best concept of all, "ageism is prejudice against our own future selves."
What I wish for is what the AIGA SF asks of this workshop, "Participants should leave with the beginnings of a personalized action plan." Mine is to be more transparent with my own voice, here and now. In my own way, raise awareness and make it public. And to highlight and remember another one of Ashton's sentences, "Culture is fluid" ... Only if we voice it. We can't fight the "isms" without being out there to raise universal awareness. What Ashton advocates is real, true, wiser AND smarter and just better for everyone.
A day later I come back to this post after G and I had a conversation about it and the Ted Talk ... I am so deeply grateful for having this partner who can help me focus my brain cells ... Someone who can really See ... Remember that our decisions can be minuscule, and that influences happen all the time, and how we react is everything. His main question to me is, "Is this idea empowering me, is this idea helpful?" I see what he is getting at, the push towards ditching it completely if it's bringing me down, which it was. And so my answer is this. The empowering part - which is also my favorite thing about feminism - is that my experience was vocalized by someone other than me. I didn't have to carry it alone. Another thing feminism does for me is raise awareness of behaviors, so that is what I love love love about this TED talk and Ashton's presence, the AIGA SF's workshop. Raising awareness, changing behaviors, language, and creating connection.
Identifying with ageism is out. Thank you G for being specific: 'ageism is a nominalization. A word to describe an idea, but it doesn't exist as a thing that everyone has, it is very non-specific.' There is no ageism, but there are ageists. There are always unaware people and aware people.
Just like anything in my day - if I focus on this negative, it WILL bring out the negative. We always have to chose who and what we let in. The freedom, my freedom, is with my choice, my mental choice. For me I choose not to focus on ageism, but continuing to find true people, people who line up with me. Freedom is a very small intimate space, but if I learn how to carry it around with me everywhere, then it's infinity ...
I thought I was kind of Superwoman a little with getting so much into one day, both physically and mentally and then my body told me otherwise. Two days now of flu where even sitting up is exhausting is my Achilles heel. I'll take it, because it is my body telling to me to listen and slow down, it is that spiritual reminder that the most amazing things that will come out of me will only happen if I take care of myself in every way. Our bodies are so great at speaking to us through illness as a red flag, if we are determined not to take care of ourselves. Or when we say good enough is good enough. If we are determined not to be spiritual or creative, our bodies wake us up with so many creative signs / illnesses. I know it's a little bit daring saying this, but I'll try it ... It's our bodies forcing us to reset. So ... I'll take it. I'm re-setting. Being sick forces me into patience when naturally I do not have so much. I think maybe there used to be a time not to long ago when I thought that being sick was a complete waste of time, instead of understanding that it's our bodies talking to us, God, lady, you are SO stubborn, I'm taking you down.
I had this perfect walking day with G. It was somehow also the marker of the end of two years of working with my Spiritual guide, my midlife midwife, my friend, my life coach, S. Of course it's not the end, but our working together is having a pause for several reasons which we both love, and so I am feeling my new wing situation. I have them now. I didn't know about them two years ago. First flight is to take my True Love with me to the SF MoMA to take advantage of my membership gift and the whole day, just slather us up with the city we love (or, me more than him, but still) ... I feel floaty and gloaty that my little intuition figured this out years ago when the bullies took over my job and I thought to myself, make that bee line to the Bay Area. This is the time to do it, not later. I took care of my Heart then and have the rewards of it now. That was the biggest gift of that horrific time in my life, to once and for all, learn how to listen to my heart ... (heart = body, body = heart)...
The gift type things keep coming ... Easy gifts are these::
The Yerba Buena Center and their live orange sign outside the Moma with a rotating political / cultural messages (love!), this time to honor Aretha Franklin (love) ... Our garden with happy cherry tomatoes plants. Orange ones. (Love.) Blue pod flowers everywhere, from which later I can make bouquets of dry round pods as art work (Love) (thank you Mom for the source idea) (Smooch.). A little girl wearing pants at the Moma with a heart design (Love!). Details of flowers and vases on the Cafe tables, art art art, a small graphic design exhibit resonating with me and my abilities (remember that, Me :) ... A map illustrator and illustration in the museum that made me just want to move IN. Seeing & hearing the Magritte exhibit a 2nd time to let G have his fill of inspiration ... Just when a wave of exhaustion hit us we exited the Castro MUNI to find LIGHTS .... (God. Love.) Gardening pots, magical green filled sidewalks, the old Philadelphia revamped trolly lines, random abstract art sculptures, electric bus lines everywhere ... A mural in the Castro of two men with the words "Marry me?", which makes me wonder if that was a LIVE proposal once upon a time, which quite frankly, could not be more beautiful a moment .... Residential gate designs, a fabulous knitting store, and gardening wrapped into so many spaces ... Stair cases, and purple buildings and sunlight and spectacular weather. Love love love love.
Back home and days later, hit with the flu, I know that the easy gift is always to have fun. Isn't that what life teaches us, yes? Sure, walking around the city holding hands and being affectionate with G is a dream come true, and isn't it shockingly easy for me to forget all the times when I was yearning for this (!) ... (Good job, Me with some seriously amazing manifestation skills ...) Yes I need the visual inspiration and the walking and to give my introvert something else to do ... This is Playing, remember, and it's so easy for me not to play.
The flu has made me hurt and be still long enough to know that having fun isn't the thing that fulfills me, oh thank God I'm an introvert. And that there are harder gifts to be had. With the recent umbilical cord cut, and with much less handholding and much more stillness, I'm honing into a much deeper me-space ... This is my time to Be everything I've learned.
I love that this Bay Area place is my perch.
I love that I found my left brained male mate for life, who has his own wings ... now that I think about it ...
I love the new wings. I'm not super woman but I do have special powers. And now I get to much more selective about which direction I take flight. The old good-enough spaces won't do, and ignoring my body isn't an option anymore. Ignoring the sensation of flight isn't an option anymore. This isn't about the heights, it's about the lightness.
The biggest challenge, however, out of all this playing, is just about to begin. And I'm so ready. It's the biggest gift.
I'm entering the part of my true-love relationship where we get to take each other for granted. Thank God, quite frankly. It helps to think that December 1 will only be one year of living together, which explains how much ground we have covered in a short time. Our stunned ness we had early months of having found each other is less intense ... I still have occasional lifelike nightmares of "being left alone", which isn't really something I fear because I can take pain, but God, in the dreams, I fear it, and I feel it. Waking up into my life, is my reminder now that I am deeper into this amazing relationship and to be awake, and that learning how to NOT take pain, and that my heart did something right, my heart beckoned me to this. He and I choose words, todo lists and moments intentionally and carefully. I still wish there were a way to capture G's impromptu singing, scenes, personas, mini-scripts, character impersonations. If anything, he is now and will always be my Muse, the one the universe sent me that I didn't write down on my intentions lists. He's magic.
The other day I came home and noticed this heart with a green ball on it, on the wooden counter where my gorgeous blue-Bunzlau-Polish-bowl-purchased-in-Manhattan-lives. Right next to a precious life giving water color painting (K!) ... The heart was tossed there like other random pieces of clutter, and so I asked .... And as it turns out it was a little gift for me, to cook eggs. Love.
Life is sometimes that easy. Life and flow and love and creating bigger things, just starting this small. Bliss I tell you. Art and design and function all in the shape of a kitchen gadget that is the shape of a heart. Grateful ...
Other gratitudes include:
9-1/2, almost 10 tiger orchid blossoms opening now, after I almost killed the plant entirely,
G's impromptu guitar playing while I knit on the living room floor,
Knitting again! After years of thinking I'm over it ...
Strawberries with sugar as a familiar family dessert memory,
A G-made brown-box to make my night clock functional and visible. Coming home to this happy-gift could really be an entire post (You did what? I made a box. You made a box. Yay?) ... How many times does he need to teach me what "delight" and "delightful" is?
My attempt at delightful, I dared to hang my white embroidered stuffed hearts from IKEA on almost every door handle in our house. Remember, this is heavy metal and black loving G. Falling in love with white-embroidered-stuffed-hearts-from-IKEA. Christmas (which he dislikes) decorations meant for Christmas which have now found their possibly permanent home on our home doorhandles. And he's good with it. One of his lines is, "Now I know you are a girl."
Mint ice-chocolate ice cream making sessions continue. We believe that we are the only people who actually make ice cream in the bathroom ... :) (Put the noise in the bathroom, close the door.)
And the latest, my and our absolute favorite, is reading to each other in bed, before sleep.
Now, off to read more of this book - a life changer - Celebrate Your Self by Dorothy Corkille Briggs, from 1976. Says my spiritual guide, "Wisdom is old". It's not like we are stumbling upon this stuff for the first time now ... We are just LUCKY enough to stumble upon this stuff now.
But before reading on, finishing rest of Elizabeth Gilbert's absolutely mind blowing book, Big Magic. This book surprises me. It will have to be another post, I don't know what I was expecting, but I am blissed out delighted by her way of telling her stories ... And that G loves it too.
Creating life, is a series of small precious details. I'm so grateful for these.
The hiking day together was planned to be one of my Birthday Month gifts, and we fine tuned it to be a day of City hiking ... It got postponed because of a death of a father ... It's a kind of stillness and small tears a friendship holds over a loss of a parent, for me I still push that eventual reality far far away. The reflection of our mortality makes me so so so grateful for this day with my beloved friend Tina who is nothing short of majestic. The natural organic wisdom and love that comes out of this woman, with uncanny intuition, seeing, truth, adaptability. I believe there were once Matriarchal cultures where Tina would have been a High Priestess or Spiritual Leader or otherwise Leader. To know that her presence in the SF tech world is appreciated and utilized for her employers is a relief. It was a spectacular birthday gift and more so because going forward we decided to ditch the sewing day ritual for rainy days only, and instead monthly do a Bay Area walking day like this. Explore something new every time and some times include city streets. A monthly ritual with a friend who has seen me from almost the beginning of this 2nd Bay Area journey, the support and friendship of such a woman is an amazing gift. It took my mother, who visited me last year, exactly five minutes to See how special Tina is. Voice and ethics, truth and gentleness, intelligence and intuition, compassion and unconditional love. Humor and knowing how to hold the information before she reacts. She can take the most complicated of human situations and solve and sooth. And always, always, stand on the side of truth, even when truth doesn't win. Sometimes truth does need time ...
The day started at the Ferry building, the amazing bread store there, stopping at the Exploratorium Museum store, she: "I love museum stores!", which is after my own heart ... Ducking into a residential neighborhood towards Fort Mason to point out Greens restaurant ... Swimmers in the bay (!), and kind of accidentally running into the Palace of the Fine Arts along the way (!) and spontaneously agreeing to ditch the golden gate bridge as a destination and join the tourists at the pink Palace. Heaven. Heaven, all of it, the parks, murals, the PresidiGO bus and the design on it, to connect us back to downtown and then spontaneously walking the gardens above the Embarcadero Malls ... New for her, not for me ... The day was also my first experiment of how to spend one day apart from G (heart pang, still!) that is not work to do something he is not into and find that need of mine fulfilled with a friend instead ... So relationship growth, creative solutions ... Love.
I treasure this day because life is short and there are certain things I want to create with it ... Certain kinds and qualities of connection ... And Tina has never changed her level of expansiveness, not with me when I first met her, not during any of the changes we have experienced together ... She has, astoundingly stayed with me through all my inner and outer shifts ... Everything I tried and failed, or just did, and did, and did, experience after experience after experience. Not to mention our monthly Ikea nights and all those Swedish meatballs and Green Princess Cakes. The best part, I WILL admit, maybe because I feel an inherent sense of guilt I have for someone galavanting with me through life, are the times I made her giggle to her core. I feel the same way about G, actually ... Every now and then I really make him : just giggle ... It's a kind of proof of friendship.
Which is also how I feel about the Bay Area. Here, sharing it all ...
Too beautiful perfect magical a film, I adore this cast, especially the subtlety of Penelope Wilton ... A call to the act of writing and following of hearts, true hearts, intuitive ones, and tribes, true tribes ... And brava to the 3 screen writers, with the adaptation of a novel, for having the lead female as him to marry her ... This moment in the script completely worked and gelled. It was deeply intuitive, a little risky, a little unsure and sure at the same time, and okay if predictable the outcome, it's always such fun watching people do their wrong path ... Following the rich shiny man first, especially after having lived through a devastating war, experience hunger ... the courage it took to marry for love and inspiration ... And above all, marrying for Voice ... the book club this group of people formed ... and how she came into it via one hand written letter. The power of words and what words set into motion ... XO
Delicious. I love that my pandora film station found the 3 minute theme that is the main part of the soundtrack to Mansfield Park ... it's just delicious. (Thank you James Shearman and Nick Ingman.) And it is very much repeated in the just-as-delicious-film, a fabulous adaptation of the Jane Austen novel ... Not only is this music perfect in its way of conveying the heroine's intelligence humor and playfulness, but it's never boring as a leitmotif throughout the film. Brilliant deliciousness is the direction of the film interweaving the script into this music and just blatantly putting the music on PAUSE in a dead silence while the she delivers her lines, the best most delicious lines, and the characters freeze for a moment ... Just totally fabulous. It makes me think of something my sister has brought to my life, the use of the word "porn" in conjunction to PBS, not really a likely combination but when the series Poldark first came out she called it "PBS porn". Right, Yes. It's been one of the advantages of living in this century, with the adaptations bringing in more sensuality and sex, more openness and joy.
Hmmm, maybe tonight this is the film I need to watch again for the 387th time ...
Our household is a lovely merging left brained and right brained activity, and together we have produced two offices with peg boards containing all our ideas, to do lists, some of them - not mine - even color coated, with each color having a meaning. It never occurred to me to do this for my personal life nor did it resonate when G described from a book the idea to keep our minds as empty as possible and carry all lists in a place other than our heads. My desk was becoming too stacked up and so I love this version of lists with tiny sewing pins that live per piece on my new peg boards ... I can still follow my inner nudges of what I feel like creating - art, blog, inspiration, cook - but I take ONE item off the board and focus on just that one. All cutely visible and physically reachable from my desk ... There is something freeing about having a clean desk, organized ideas ... like having laundry dry outside in the sun and air ... :)
I don't usually stop to notice the names of the writers of TV shows, at least not until I fall in love with a show. Julian Fellowes for Downton Abbey, Nora Ephron's Julie & Julia + others, Richard Curtis for as long as I can remember ... Tonight I caught the end of Season 2 for Anne with an E and didn't blow off the opening names this time because I've been writing posts about this Season 2 of the show ... Written by Moira Walley-Beckett. How fabulous and interesting - these writers are REAL. Just have such huge respect for her writing-voice ... Here she is with Amybeth McNulty ... AND the artwork is incredibly inspiring ... The meaningfulness of the artwork could be a whole other post, this deep connection to Anne's inner core and intuition with nature ... How nature grounds us ... Pulls us into our expanded minds ... AND I sent Moira a note saying "THANK youuuuu for writing this show, it's amAZING, the world needs it" ... When I told G I took out the part saying "will you be my friend" he said "you never knowwwwwwwww..... "