Friday, April 30, 2010

Some Decisions Are Slow With Many Facets---

I tend to be a slow & steady turtle of a being, when it comes to making important decisions, as when I do so it is with no regrets. Just a balanced way, but not without the pains & aches along life's road. Time waits for no one, & that includes me, but in each & every way, as I allow my heart to heal, I know I'll get there, & be just fine.
Last night when I was doing my usual stationary bike/treadmill workout, alternating back & forth; fifteen minutes on one, twelve minutes on the other, with a repeat to follow. I usually watch TV when I'm exercising as it's a substantial amount of time that I commit to, & watching TV helps me stay on target, this time I was tuned into PBS's Scientific America. The program topic I was viewing addressed the effects of stress on animals & humans. It was pointed out that in monkeys & humans alike: {dominance=aggression=stress}. From that formula is a high incidence of cardiac illness & other diseases. One would think, the cardiac researcher would say, it is the "Type A Personality" person, but not all so. The other personality types too, the ones that fell into an extended period of being exposed to the dominant one[s], they were even at greater risk, for the stress was at work doing it's destruction in the inner part of the body, such as the arteries that are intended to sustain the heart, due to the invisible emotional havoc that was going on.

All this is certainly something we already know, but what I saw & how it was explained from the scientists point of view, all backed up with very clear cut experiments. The results were quite amazing for all to see.

"By George I think I've got it!"
& yet another way, of which a friend may chuckle if I were to say: "Eureka, there's gold in these here hills!"

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Late Night, Early AM Thoughts That Keep Me Up--

I realized tonight, that unless I resolve some very important issues, this sensation of treading water will only make me more & more tired. True thoughts can change moment to moment. One can be driving in their car changing the station on a radio band, going from song to song, searching for just the right tune, the right lyrics, that perfect mode to accompany a ride, lost in one's own mind, the landscape & the sky, & then there it is, that perfect civilized pause, all the cars gently stop, a limo with an escort so late in the morning, and then it hits me. A funeral procession, no hearse mind you, just cars, all traveling together, twenty or more. My eyes become moist, alone in my car, feeling so very sad & connected to these mourners in those brief minutes. What is wrong with me I wonder, why do I get this way? Why do I care? Yet I know at that very moment why I do. That procession is all of us, respectfully, marking time, in remembrance.

There has never been that purely perfect time in my life to take a chance, to make a change, yet I feel very certain that this is what I am intended to do. A time to be decisive regarding what direction to go, as treading water will keep one alive & afloat only for so long. Nights such as these are good for thought, but not very restful, yet useful.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Spacious Skies In Thought & Deed

First view of the day, & the sky's the limit--
Coming home from an inspiring walk..... & being reminded that it all takes balance, like a rock.

Here it is Saturday, & if I were to celebrate it according to the tradition I was raised in I would observe the Sabbath Day, & in my own way I do---

I've just weathered interesting situations that could not be avoided, but after the storm, if one is safe, well, & intact, the thoughts can be sweet, & mine are as well.

Dolly's response to her new training program is coming along, as her pulling on the leash has lessened, & with that my shoulders have received a benefit too! Last night during her mini walk before coming in, we were greeted by the scent of my lilacs out front, on our slope. The magnolias are about to pass, which is always rather sad, but there are always new flowering productions on the horizon at the Peace Garden, which I'll be sure to share as the season evolves.

Unless we live in a bubble, there is no escape from the big or mini problems, personal world or world at large. It is never all good, but it is never all bad, either, it is what it is, though some of it we can prevent, or make better. Coal will always be a dangerous rock to mine, diseases that are borne from the industry, & lives that are lost in it's harvesting, all mind boggling, with a recent tragic reminder of so may lives lost. Oil rigs, both of sea & land, are positioned on the fine line of disastrous possibilities too. Also with jobs that provide limited opportunity for it's workers, as these industries are equivalent to brutal attacks on the Earth, of which outcomes human beings can not always predict or control. Sadly, just the other day in the Gulf of Mexico, a horrid fire, human & marine life lost, with possible contamination to come upon the shore. These are "man made disasters". We also have the naturally occurring ones, for one would think, isn't that enough, why contribute to the mix? Just think of the volcano in Iceland, which is occurring now & has put a total "no go" for human air transportation across Europe. Why should the Earth stop doing, "it's thing", & being who it is, just because we humans say "It's Earth Day!", who do we think we are? The Native Americans, & the other Indigenous Peoples of the World, certainly "got it" way before Western Civilization & it's values came on the scene. I truly wonder, & you probably do too, are human beings, ever going to "get it"?
I know, maybe the Academy Award film maker/Nobel Prize winner, Al Gore living in our collective "pop culture" will pop the popcorn, & make another film too. "Oh Mr. Vice President, Al Gore, are you free?"

Yes, April has been an interesting "Earth Month", as "Everyday is Earth Day, Everyday", "So help us God.", *Please, we love our Mother Earth, & we do the best we can. It's sad to learn that even when it is our best, it's not good enough, as governments, & businesses have been know to present obstacles, that to this day are sweepingly powerful, with just the nod of the head, the shake of the hand, & the stoke of the pen.


& Just An Hour Later:
After returning from a walk to check out these wonderful spring blooms, a thought occurred, both for myself & the other much greater issues of the day. "No more band aid solutions." It was our rallying slogan to keep our quaint country road maintained years ago, & it is basically the cry of "the world" today.

I just replaced a band aid on my lower leg this morning, to protect a minor scrape. Is that what we want to keep doing, using bandaids? Sure we wash it, apply antiseptic & even modern day steristrips or sutures, at times, but some situations require more.

Thoughts too are like the sea,
They will recede
In thought & deed.


Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Dog School, Lesson 2 Tonight

Dog Obedience Training, a labor of patience & love. We're off in just a few hours. This adventure is definitely not for the delicate. I got Dolly a new ID tag, it's positive message is where we're at.

11:21 pm Post Script; I got home at around 9pm, our class consists of one energetic black lab, one energetic mutt, 2 dogie moms & one teacher. I'm pooped, but no sir re, not Dolly she's our "Energizer Bunny..."

Well practice, practice, practice, us dogie moms-- "To infinity & beyond!"

Monday, April 19, 2010

Springtime The Season Of Great Transition, Our Earth Days--

One never steps in the same river twice, & that includes the beautiful & interesting walks in our Audubon Sanctuary. Henry David Thoreau certainly knew his Walden, as we are better learning about our local pond too.
The full, greening of the green is almost upon us & just for fun, tonight on most PBS stations, the Documentary Film, "Earth Days", will be aired. Our baby boom, post atomic war generation, who gave to the world-- "Earth Day" will be celebrating the 40th Anniversary of it's inception. Let's hear it for the Environmental-Conservation movement, as we keep on keeping on, as that is our only, true solution.

10:52pm, we just got done viewing "Earth Days", a true "must see". Why do you think it has taken 40 years to travel a few inches on the path to true environmental practicality? I think we know the answers to those, multifaceted questions. May we never give up.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Peace, Love & Understanding....

I do learn something new every day. Even in the very worst of situations, once I have some distance from it, my thinking does shift & a new perspective arrives--

Violence will always beget violence & I was reminded of how, I too am a student of this teaching, as the reminder was, face to face, just the other day, for the truth will continue to set us free. The young people of our country who have been abandoned by their parents, & are forced to live in the war zones of our cities, take these unbelievable behaviors with them, until they too, someday, make a shift in their thinking, & turn their swords into plow shares.

Forgiveness is a most powerful remedy, I am learning first hand. I will not necessarily turn the other cheek, but will remain thankful of the lesson that was given. The person involved in engaging in this behavior, has potential, & opportunities on her horizon & as she goes forward in her life, she too will have the ability & perhaps the opportunity to help another youth someday to change a behavior.

Yes hurt & anger are true human emotions, it's difficult, but as mortals we work very hard to overcome & heal, yes I too can be my own Dali Lama, but it does take practice. I forgive this person, as I continue to forgive myself for my own imperfections, our so very human flaws & I thank this person for an eye opening opportunity, to further learn & grow.

A prayer for peace.


{*Post Script; As my brother told me just this evening-- The bullies of the world will always be with us, & I say, with each & every bully, a line in the sand is drawn, from which to step forward, as we face what it is, that is reflected back, our fear, of our own, deepest, fear.} *Amen*

*Next day thought of: 4/19/10, in relationship to this topic: It is a known fact that when an important lesson presents it's self to us, & if we don't take heed, & learn it properly the first time, it will repeat it's self, over & over again.... Practice will make "better", & once we have a better sense of it, that in it's self is a truth, eventually if we choose, we do master what it is that we are intended to learn, which is "our own truth", which does set us free. "Freedom!" , the cry of many an individual & a nation, even now.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Dog School Is No Barking Matter---

Dog Obedience School, yes we've begun. Dolly the cute individual that she is, is also very strong, physically & in her personality. We all know it's that Terrier in her that reigns supreme, along with her Aussie Sheep Herding temperament, we can add a little Beagle, as that is definitely evident too. Truly she has more energy than I have & because of this I need to step it up a few notches. It is a known fact in animal behavior that the daily routine a dog lives, must be a good match for their personal energy level. True a more laid back dog would have been so much easier, but we chose one another & I'm going to try even harder to make it work.

For starters this morning I've begun our new routine. I had put aside her leash for a bit, as I got tired of the pulling, & then of course the rash was aggravated by the harness. We're on page one again as far as sticking to using a leash, the rash now is gone. On days I'm off from work I will walk her twice on the leash, & on my work days, it will have to be once a day, but my work schedule is usually [not always] two days a week, so as I spend more time & attention doing this, I think she will acclimate, & stop being so head strong with all the pulling, which was the main reason I stopped taking her out on a leash. What I did in place of a more controlled walk was letting her run free in the woods, but that is a mistake, for as much as it's fun for her, it became her routine, by default, & not an earned privilege, so that will only be allowed if she had been walked on the leash first.

Oh the trials & tribulations of parenthood, even in the dog world, this animal kingdom all of us live in, with our body language cues, & dealing with the more dominant personalities, yet truly trying to make it all work out. As Melvina Reynolds sang-- "We love our pets yes we do we do....", but dogs are not people too, though in some ways a lot smarter than our own species, none of us are perfect & nature can appear seemingly cruel. Animals when allowed, can live a life of purity & freedom, as they did not create the nuclear threat. Nuclear Disarmament, a topic of hope for a future, which includes dogs too.

Monday, April 12, 2010


Last night we saw an excellent, yet heart wrenching performance based on "The Diary of Ann Frank". Ann as we all remember was in hiding from the Nazis with her family, & friends in the attic of a factory building in Amsterdam during WWII . We all know the outcome of their tragic story, why then did I still feel compelled to see it retold. For me it's because her family, is not very different from mine growing up, or families today. The ordinary becomes the extra ordinary, living a life, & in Ann's case doing so, so artfully well, under the most dire of human circumstances.

The history of WWII so affected my parents, they were young adults, both born in the U.S., when it broke out, & married several years after the war, of which my father served. Due to the effects of the war, my own father evolved to become a rather overly protective parent, & my mother quite the opposite, nonetheless the tone in the 50's still permeated with an attitude & sense of antisemitism, felt in different strata's, depending upon which part of the country you were living. I'm certain my siblings & I were affected by it, for at times the tone was so thick, & would color various an episode, never to be ignored.

I knew that watching the PBS Masterpiece Theatre's version of Ann Frank, would bring me back in some degree to that place, it would be upsetting, but I chose to watch it nonetheless. For me Ann Frank & her family represents my family & every Jewish family, that could have been in that place, at the wrong time in "herstory/history". Why, I ask, they were oh so close to being free. "Why?"

Ann Frank, your sister, your parents, friends, & the other six million souls, you will never be forgotten, as you live on in the hearts & minds of each & every one of us. "So help me/us God."


Saturday, April 10, 2010

Life In Our Backyard

The thing about spring is this, when it arrives, it arrives, & when it is here, there is cheer. Pure cheer, as these blossoms doth sing.

Spring is always the newborn on the calendar of life, full of potential, hope & renewed energy. What's not to love!

For many of us there's the busy work-a-day week, full of commitments, time restraints, & just too much to do, in such a short span. Nature too has it's time frames, for springtime in New England is often experienced in it's purest, most spiritual & mystical of ways. Perhaps it's the soft colors of the season that enhances her promise & beauty, all very fleeting, going, going.... , yet hopefully with us for a time more, & not to be, too damaged by those powerful April showers which are always on the wing.

*Regarding Our Landscape-- We are fortunate to have numerous stonewalls that grace & ramble throughout our property, some ancient & some contemporary. The one shown in the photo with the daffodils was built by my husband, almost three decades ago, & really does complement the antique walls most appropriately, a fitting addition to our rambling landscape.
*Post Script; of which I forgot to mention-- Dolly's rash seems improved. The removal of the hay from her area, & the medicated cream, all that, with some dry sunny weather, there has been some good relief. Now it's all a matter of time, to see if we can sustain it. It's springtime of course, so I'll continue to check it, & remain hopeful, & keep you posted.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

A Nobel & Hardy Flower That Welcomes Spring*

Such a favorite, especially in this color, happy gardening one & all ! Today is my father's birthday, in heaven. He was the best, as best can be.