Tuesday, December 3, 2013


I admire people who genuinely speak of their faith without batting an eye. I mean people whose foundation was strong in their faith and that faith carried them through the hardest of times. I admire that they can say with every fiber of their being that life exists after death and that there is an almighty creator. I am not sure about my faith.

I was raised Catholic and the tenants of Christianity are the strongest fibers of my foundation but it was in this foundation that my most painful memories come from. My mother used God as a weapon in an unloving way and when she did that it crushed my spirit and rattled my faith. Other somebodies tried in loving ways to help me but the injuries were grievous.  I am not mad at my mother because I know without certainty that she was mentally ill. I know that she prayed everyday of her life and tried to make sense of her own faith. She was one of the faithful but she was also sick. Her faith was a stone of judgment. I know that she loved me but I spent my life in constant fear of what illogical thing she would do or declare next. I had no touchstone for faith save hers but hers was scary and emotional and lacked orderly continuity. Its hard to move past that. Crazy was the normal and crazy just doesn't work for me and the God I need to believe in.

I started to think about what God I do accept and it really comes down to no ones. At least no one immortal's definition. I accept the God that I know exists every time I see a small child do something kind. Every time I see someone do something selfless and loving for another being human or otherwise. It comes down to the goodness that happens when someone is hurting and their burden is lessened by the loving replies. It comes down to love. Its the whisper in my ear and the humming in my heart when I am most peaceful.

It is love that I have faith in. It is love that carries me through my burdens as I have faced and continue to face. It is the love of my friends, my family and the people who I beg God I will see again, those that have traveled before me and those that will come after me. That is my faith and for now that is all I can do. I know that I am a Christian and I know that this is the right thing for me. So I put crazy a way for a while and I just try on something a little bit lighter with a little less judgment. In the end its all about love any way, isn't it?

Monday, December 2, 2013

Last Night

It truly hit me that I am in hospice. I realized that my only goal now is to make it through winter. I've told everyone about my status and I am not keeping anything a secret. I cried for myself because I needed to. Some days it feels surreal. When I see people I wonder now if it is the last time I will see them, especially if they are from out of town.

What happens when you die? Is there life after death? Does heaven exist? Does hell exist? I don't have the answers to any of this. 

Monday, September 30, 2013

Time before the Rest

Sunset Over The Ocean: 
Photo by Photographer Madalina Iordache-Levay

Magpie Tale 188

Return into the foam 
Want a nip?

fetal cold blue beds
shallow shallow recovery

sleep until the sleep is icy with 
your last respiration

Tear less for
Humanities Swan Song iteration

Gibran said it best,
"There are no graves here. 
These mountains and plains are a cradle and a stepping-stone.


Monday, July 29, 2013


Magpie Tales

When I broke down he offered me his balloons
Later he offered me his heart
When our time was finished I left in style 
But more importantly I left with a smile.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Fight Watch

This is a little technique that Steve and I use. Steve thought it up one day when we both were fighting with each other over the stupidest stuff. We were both sick and tired of fighting and together we perfected this little technique! I am not saying that it will work for you because both people have to be willing to set the rules and then follow those rules, no matter how angry you are. If you can do that, this should work for you and “your other” as well as it works for me and my other.

Okay first a little compare, if you will. Have you ever compared a fight to a storm? If you live in the mid-west you are all too familiar with the weather man using terms like, “conditions are right for…” or “storm warning” or “storm watch” etc.  Well fights like storms are capable of escalating to monster levels with devastating results. Whole cities can be taken out just as whole marriages and families ripped apart. Lives can be permanently altered by a storm or a fight.

Okay now another thought imagine just one or two of the happiest days of your life does it involve calm weather? Well you probably can’t remember that part or if you can it was just the backdrop – somewhere in there did it include your most significant other? Somewhere in there does it involve the feeling of love? Capture that feeling for just a few minutes. Take as long as you need to feel that feeling and really feel it for “your other.” Don’t let that feeling of love be invaded by something else like, something they did or said or did not do to make you feel angry with them right now, just focus on the love for them in this moment.
Now when you are ready, here are the steps we use when things are starting to spin out of control.

Fight watch – this means that conditions are brewing, someone is feeling down, tired and aggravated not necessarily by their other but for any reason at all. At this point the person feeling this way should clearly state that there is a fight watch in effect.  Just like when the weather man says there is a tornado watch in effect. It doesn’t mean that the tornado has hit earth it just means that the conditions are right to produce a tornado.

Do not be offended when someone calls a fight watch, rather; be respectful and understanding that they are not at the top of their game and give them time and space to recover. Try listening to what they have to say. Don’t try to solve their problem or explain their feelings to them. Just listen with a caring ear. Sometimes that is all they need. However, if this individual is always in fight watch mode then there may be a bigger more serious problem that may require professional help. Don’t overlook that either.

Fight warning – someone has pushed the button and ignored the “fight watch.” The fight has escalated. Both parties must get away from one another immediately and find a safe place. Like a tornado warning the storm has landed on the ground near you. You don’t just stand there and cuss the storm out. You get to a safe place. The person needs to find their safe place until a reasonable level of conversation can occur.

Time out – physical separation must occur or there will be devastation. If a structure or a person keeps getting hit with a storm or a fight eventually it will weaken and loss can become permanent. Life is hard enough why not try something to help make things a little easier. I know that I am happier with “my other” in my life than without him.

Try this and see if it works for you. It sure works for us. Rarely do we get beyond a watch now and our communication has improved tremendously. Peace and happiness be with you!

Friday, July 12, 2013

All I ever wanted to be

Everything this picture is 
is all I ever wanted to be

Storm clouds roll in 
the conditions are right

I am tempered
but provoked.

It may not happen this time around 
but I've been good
not too good

am I worthy to be
all I ever wanted to be.
I think so.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

Snow Day

My least favorite season is winter. However, I love nothing more than a nice snow day. Here is how my perfect snow day goes.

  • Drink a nice cup of blueberry tea
  • Watch the snow fall from my studio window
  • Make a little art - I made this little fox today using watercolor pencil
  • Listen to a book 2 of the Outlander series Dragonfly in Amber
What do you do on your snow days?

As promised to my Facebook friends here is the apple muffin recipe. Warning you may find it hard not to eat the whole pan. I sure did!

These muffins don't rise very high. They are dense, moist and very cake like. They would make a great dessert with a la mode. This recipe yields 12 scrumptious muffins.

2/3 cup vegetable oil
1 cup sugar
2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 granny smith apples, peeled and chopped small
1/2 c copped black walnuts  or chopped pecans (optional)

Bake at 325 degrees for 30 minutes then periodically check may take up to 40 minutes to bake.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Zen Writer

One of my new favorite free apps is zenwriter. I have it loaded on my computer and use it as a private diary.
Here are the reasons I really like it:

Pretty background to write on

Sounds like a typewrite when I am typing

and it plays soothing music that is not distracting

All in all, I actually find that I have an easier time writing my thoughts and feelings when I am using the program then without. Yet nothing is perfect so in order to be fair here are a few of the draw backs.

I have not figured out how to easily move my documents into word documents. I have to use the ctrl-c and ctrl-v to copy and paste. I have to mess with the formatting. However, it does save everything automatically and I can make a new document for each page. Since I am using this like a diary, it is working out pretty well. 

Perhaps you are already using zenwriter and have something you would like to share with me. I am not the greatest at using all these apps to their fullest potential, so I truly welcome your comments. I am always up for learning new things or perhaps you just want to say hi, feel free to do that too!

Monday, January 28, 2013

challenges - 2013

Following all the way through is my biggest challenge. I always start out like gang busters but get to a certain point and want to do something else instead. I seem to change my focus a little too quickly. Part of this is the ADD world I live in and frequent interruptions with time suckers like Facebook, Pinterest and gaming, part is a lack of organization and part is being held accountable. Here is what I am doing to attempt to solve two of the three problems I have with follow through.

January and now all of February, my book group is taking on Orlando by Virginia Woolf. We are reading a chapter a week. This is just perfect for me. Each week we post our thoughts or questions about that chapter on Friday. This little deadline helps me to get my reading in and I actually do it. Anyone is welcome to join and we post all our discussions through Moments of Reading; A Virginia Woolf Reading Group.

Another challenge that I set for myself for 2013 is reading 26 books in the next twelve months. So far keeping track is easy with Goodreads. If you are a reader and have not used this app, I highly recommend it. It is kind of like Facebook for readers but tailored to keep track of what you are reading. It is a great place to find a recommendation for your next book, keep track of what you would like to read in the future and network with other readers. Those are just a few of the neat things that app provides.

What are your challenges and what do you do to see them through? I would love to hear from you.