Sunday, November 30, 2008

Molly's Carrier

I thought I would post another story about Molly. It is easy for me to share about her and I'm not sure why. She is such a great kitty. Well, all our animals are ... each one in their own special way. :)

I remember a story about her when I took both cats to the vet several years ago. I had a really hard time getting her in the carrier. Unfortunately, I got anxious and she sensed that. She growled and growled. Not happy at all. Finally sweet Calvin, Molly, and I drove out of the driveway and on to the vet.

Calvin easily made it through his checkup, but when it came time to get Molly out of her carrier, she would have none of it. The vet tech opened the little door and she hissed with that low growl and made it clearly known she was not coming out. I began wondering if I would have to reschedule the appointment.

Just then the vet tech (red-headed Marshall) started unscrewing the top half of the carrier from its base. When he removed the lid, Molly looked kinda shocked. I laughed a bit thinking Molly perhaps thought she got the better of them. Well, not that day. The vet completed the exam in the carrier. He didn't even try to pull her out. I was impressed.

I was struck by this whole experience. While eating lunch with my friend the next day, I shared about Molly's encounter with the Vet; his flexibility and the gentleness of his care. I thought about the times I am in such a tizzy and I just want to stay safe and captive in my cage. I realized how grateful I am that God is absolutely brilliant and will find an alternative way to meet and connect with me and will still listen to my wounded heart.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Autumn Leaves

The Autumn leaves in our neighborhood
are beautiful again this year.

This morning the Autumn smell
was amazing. I felt like I
need to start storing up for the winter.

(I have no idea what that means.
Maybe time to put on the flannel sheets?)

* * *

Autumn.
Beautiful, mysterious, always changing.

Friday, October 31, 2008

Kitties Love the Fall Sun




And so do I.

(Earlier in the day I moved the outer panel
out of the way for Calvin, but of course Molly
worked her way into the best spot.)


Saturday, September 06, 2008

Pepper Harvest

Earlier this week I picked a bunch of peppers from our garden. I was so excited to see the red cayennes and orange Tabasco peppers. B roasted the Anaheim peppers on the Big Green Egg and they are now tightly packed in freezer bags for use during the winter. Yippee!

(And yes, I moved the peppers around to get a good distribution of red, green, and orange in the photo. Good gracious! Who knew us amateur bloggers would someday stage photos of food products! Geesh!)

Friday, August 22, 2008

Aggravated Sciatic Nerve

We learned this week that B developed sciatica. He's been having lots of pain in his low butt (or buttocks as my yoga teacher says), back thigh, and knee. He just wasn't getting any better so he went to the Urgent Care Center Wednesday and they prescribed a muscle relaxer and an anti-inflammatory. It's good to know the cause and hopefully the pain will subside each day.

I decided to pull out my Anatomy Coloring Book to better understand all the inner workings of the sciatic nerve and muscle groups in that area. I bought the book several years ago when I started yoga. My teacher often talks about the various muscle groups we activate in the poses and I wanted a better visual understanding.

I first saw the book when I was in college. While studying on campus, at least once a semester I would see people coloring their books. I always thought it looked fun, well, except for having to memorize all those names. Glad I don't have to do that!!

Sunday, August 10, 2008

A Lesson from Molly

Last week my husband and I took care of a 5 month old kitten for a friend. This was his second extended stay with our animals (2 cats and 2 dogs). Several weeks ago he spent ten days in our house when this same friend cared for our animals while we were gone.

Molly, my sweet, sweet cat, really struggled with the new kitty. She growled and hissed when he came near, but thank goodness she was never aggressive. She just seemed snarky over the interloper who seemed to steal our affection and attention. (The kitty, Trypod, worked his way into our hearts quite easily I might add. He was hit by a car when he was very small and now has a bum foreleg. Our friend rescued him and nursed him back to health. He is amazingly agile and adorable on those 3 1/2 legs.)

At times when I tried to pet Molly she lashed out with her claws and, of course, I backed away. But after several days I decided to just sit and talk to her, but not pet her. After awhile I could see a visible calm and eventually, she let me pet her. I discovered she really did want us to spend time with her, but just not too close.


Well, the day before Trypod left Molly came to sit with me as I was writing in my journal. She lay right next to my thigh for a little bit and then snuggled very close. (I love this!!) I kept writing in my journal and would periodically pet her head.  After a bit I was thinking about how special Molly is to us and I bent over pressing my lips to her head as I often do and said these words:

Molly, don't you forget YOU are loved! 
Don't you ever forget that!!
We love you so very much.  

I had tears in my eyes because the truth is we really do love her even though we had this little kitty with us.

As I said these words to my Molly I recognized a deep gnawing pain inside my guts. I can't help but wonder if I'm not a little bit like Molly. Sometimes I forget I am deeply loved. I forget this and then I lash out and pull back, but the truth is I really just want to be connected and accepted. When I remember I am deeply loved the fear subsides. I'm more open to give and receive. The pieces in my life seem to fit better.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Farmers Market and Good Eats

B and I went to the Farmers Market early this morning. We've been talking about going for awhile, but kept forgetting. It was fun!! (though a little overwhelming at first). We ran into a few friends which was really cool, though we didn't get to see Okie Okasan and her bonnets as she's traveling.

We bought some lettuce, berries, green beans, and some lamb. B is making lamb vindaloo tonight for dinner. Yum! Yum! and I'm making a blueberry pie. This month's issue of Cooks Illustrated had an article on blueberry pie that piqued my interest. I've not made a pie in many months, so this seemed like perfect timing.

While visiting my sister and her family last summer, she and I went to her Farmers Market one day and it was so much fun. I'm sure being with her was the best part, but it was neat to be out in the community and to see all the wonderful displays of vegetable, fruits, flowers, breads, jellies, etc.

I'm not sure we'll make it every Saturday, but you never know.

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Poison Ivy

After doing yard-work in our "back 40" several weeks ago, I noticed bumps on my forearm that itched like a [rhyming expletive deleted]. The culprit...Poison Ivy!!!

After doing some Google research I was pretty sure I knew the source, but guess who confirmed it? Our 7 year old next door neighbor who is the same one who gave me a bouquet of front yard flowers last year.

Last night before dinner he came over for a short visit with his little sister (after getting permission from his parents which is in itself a blog worthy post.) We walked out to the pond and then he wandered out to the suspect area. I told him to be very careful because I thought we had some Poison Ivy. Before I even pointed it out he said, "Oh, there it is. It's there, there and there." I was impressed.

I asked where he learned how to spot the plant and he said, "My mom taught me ~ three leaves, let it be." So for the next 10 minutes he was on guard to spot the stuff. Turns out, though, his identification needs a little refining. Pretty soon he identified 3 other potential culprits but I'm pretty sure they are false positives. Or at least I'm hoping so. :)

P.S. One of our tasks this afternoon...use Mike McGrath's technique from You Bet Your Garden to remove the stuff. I'm not looking forward to this.

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Unexpected Memories

Something sweet, but totally unexpected happened on our trip to Taos. While gallery gazing and shopping with the ladies we decided to stop by the Henningsen gallery for a tour of the house and gardens.

The home was beautiful in a Frank Lloyd Wright way (from my novice understanding); the living space very open with exquisite use of light and space. The house was originally designed as a "live-in" gallery. (You can see pictures of the exterior and the living room on the web by scrolling to the right using the bar at the bottom.)

After walking around the living room, I walked into a spacious kitchen. It too was illuminated with lots of natural light. As I turned to my right to see the eating area I was stunned by what I saw before me. It could have been my grandparent's house. I was instantly transported back into their home.

My grandfather was an architect and strongly influenced by Frank Lloyd Wright. He, too, used light and space beautifully in his designs which was evident in the home he designed for his family. He included a large indoor planter in their dining room with full length floor to ceiling windows to make full use of the sun. It fit perfectly with their house, just like in the Henningsen house.

I choked up immediately and stood in awe at the beauty, but mostly I was sweetly stunned by the unexpected memories and feelings that came back to mind. It was one of those very precious moments.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Home!

I love coming home after a trip away. We were in Taos for a few days of skiing, gallery browsing, and good Eats. We met up with several families who've made this spring break trip for a number of years. This is B's 4th and my 2nd. We had a delightful time.

Anyway, when we opened the front door we were excitedly greeted by four furry smiling faces. Abbie was jumping like crazy and so excited we were home. This is the first time we've left her since adopting her last summer.

The thing I like most about coming home is sleeping in my own bed!!

'tis truly good to be home

Saturday, January 19, 2008

TIP: How to get through to Customer Service

Yesterday I called our mortgage company with a non-standard question.  I dialed the Customer Service number and you guessed it I went through 29 menus (slight exaggeration) none of which dealt with my issue.  No shock there, but I thought eventually I'd get far enough down the menu that soon it would say "Press 0 to speak with a Customer Service Representative." But no, that would be much too convenient.

I was SO fed up and ready to smack the phone on the counter. Smack! Smack! Smack! Instead I pressed every bottom in a row and in a fit of exasperation I pushed as many buttons as possible all at the same time. Get the picture?? I put the phone up to my ear and guess what "brrrriiinnnggg".

"Hello, this is Kelly with Customer Service. Your loan number please?"

"Oh...Oh...just second. Oh, shoot! Where did it go!! I had it just a second ago," I say, fumbling through my stack of papers. "I'm so sorry. It was here just a second ago. I didn't expect to actually talk to a human."

CSR Kelly chuckles.  She'd really chuckle if she knew how I got through.  Ha!!