Saturday, August 30, 2014

#hashtags

yesterday i drove by a church reader board that said, "what is the hashtag for your life?" and i said to myself in the car, "well, let's see now...starting with the fact that i don't know what a hashtag is, i'd have to say the jury's still out on that one..." fortunately, i was on my way to breakfast where my young hip college-age friend not only informed me about hashtags and the use thereof, but showed me examples on her computer. (#hashtags) and just in time, too, so that i can be a hip-but-without-trying-too-hard middle school teacher come tuesday.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

it's not over!

summer, my friends, is not over yet. there are--note!--25 more days of summer as we know it left to enjoy. take heart, comrades...and don't put away that outdoor gear just yet. lest we shortchange the season, summer lasts until the eve of september 22. get out and make the most of them!

Monday, August 18, 2014

enough

enough i have decided busy will not be in my economy of language. occupied, maybe. (notice the difference?) dreams and dendrites of queen anne's lace against the sky have filled me to satiety, as have fresh eggs, coffee in the same speckled mug and the river's familiar, carved bank. more is not needed. i feel rich enough carrying today's still-warm loaf against my plaid work shirt and collecting a tumble of tomatoes, plenty to share. yes, i am full here upstream from need and free enough of want's snag where time flows in our favor because it is not already taken and space lives happily at my kitchen sink where we will peel stories washed down with wine and find our status in communion. ls 8.17.14

Sunday, August 17, 2014

happy country photo essay

the benefits of breathing in beach air and surfing

so it seems, via the new york times, that science is backing up my water craving! i have tried to describe it as "if too much time goes by without a visit to the ocean, i feel thirsty for it" or "i just have to be around water" and "a bathtub is a must in any home i live in"...so i smiled at the title of the article and the caption, "burning question: does the sea air have curative powers?" in the 18th and 19th centuries, ocean air was considered a cure-all. (pick up any novel authored during that time and some hero or heroine is being instructed by their physician to 'go to the seaside'). some data does exist to conclude that inhaling salty air can clear the lungs. one expert, thomas w. ferkel, says, "i'm not sure how much of the improvement is spiritual, metaphysical or physiological, but i suspect it's all...the sounds of the breeze and repetitive waves can relax you, which may result in better sleep..." he is quoted as saying he would love to be able to write a prescription for his patients to go to the beach. sick? go surfing! i like it...

the map of enough

here's to squeezing in one more book before in-service: "the map of enough: one woman's search for place" by molly caro may. i love the title and it's inspiring a poem in me (stay tuned) because so much of our culture is the search for more. lately i love it when i'm eating and i'm full...or i look around my home and there's nothing that i want or need. i get more than a small thrill out of making a meal out of things gathered from the yard (see also today's happy country photo essay). i spend a whole day playing-shopping-eating in the city and out of everything advertised i come home with just one pair of wool socks that will last with me another 15 years. i spend time with people i love. i am satisfied. contentment: it is enough. more than enough.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

heartroot

eric and mindy comprise "heartroot" interchanging banjo, mandolin, violin and guitars; telling family stories while they tune. real, grounded, soulful, they represent the things they sing about and draw you naturally together as a community around their music. check them out at heartrootmusic.com/listen/ especially the song "you are not alone" which they, fittingly, invited us to sing along to...

Monday, August 11, 2014

all the light we cannot see

i've read a myriad of wonderful novels this month ("the house at tynneford" by natasha solomons,"bread alone" by judith hendricks, "goodnight june" by sarah jio) but none quite so riveting as anthony doerr's "all the light we cannot see". (the non-fiction book he wrote while on sabbatical to research this one is also great writing, see also "four seasons in rome" very funny and touching). set largely in france's walled citadel of saint-malo by the sea (now a popular tourist destination) "all the light we cannot see", a decade in the writing, is set in differing time periods in the 1930's and 40's, going forth and back in time until two main characters converge. i was so mesmerized by this book that i looked for excuses to read every single one of doerr's 530 pages. the perfect excuse came today when the august temperature soared, melting blackberries on the vine and everything else in it's summer rays. "gee, darn", i thought to myself, "i might just have to stay in where it's cool by the air conditioning and finish this book...wouldn't want to get heat stroke after all..." at some points i literally forgot to breathe, abandoning my bookmark and some meals, staying up too late at other times...falling asleep with it in my lap only to wake up in the morning and read, sometimes even before making coffee (that's a big deal, folks, i'm a person who makes coffee before she goes out to coffee, so that's saying something). no big surprise that it's wanted back at the library where a queue of people wait for me to return it...having no idea just what a thrilling ride they're in for!

Thursday, August 7, 2014

confessions of a word and water-lover

you think you know words fairly well until you happen to be strolling through a creamery sampling cheese and various sauces and you walk by a cookbook with a pretty cover and it happens to catch your eye because has a savory photo with what looks like basil or maybe mint on it and the title says, "cooking with cannibis" and you say in complete sincerity to the friend that you're with, "what's cannibis?" and they look at you and say, "you're kidding, right? you don't know what cannibis is?" and you say again in complete sincerity, "well, uh, no, is it a new herb i should know about for the kitchen or something?" and they laugh so loud you wonder what you missed and they say, "cannibis, my friend, is another name for marijuana." "ohhhhhh." you say and pause, "so...wait. i mean i know about the medical debates, but cooking? i'm confused." yes, my comrades in language, it's true. i didn't know what cannibis was. so here you go, it's a genus of flowering plants in latin cannibus visativa, cannibus indica, and cannibis ruderalis. these three taxa are indigenous to central and south asia. so now we know. and, just for the record, i won't be cooking or doing anything with it at all except maybe to throw out the word in casual conversation and see if, in fact, it's true that the general population knows it and i didn't. i also learned the word this summer for what i am: hydrophile. i am a water-lover. i guess people have divided hydrophilics into three categories: those who like to be submerged, wet, one with the ocean; those who like to be on or near water but not in it; and those who cover both categories. i am the latter--in it, on it, the more the better, i say! and i've just gotta say, throwing around my new-found phraseology, summer will transition well and more safely into fall if people keep the cannibis away from hydrophilics...

bridge the gap

today's entry, the first one for august, is brought to you by the title 9 women's clothing catalog. not only do they sport the most comfortable and chic active wear but they encourage moxie. i love what the founder wrote inside the front cover: "bridge the gap. whether in the classroom, on the playing field or in a conference room, i see it over and over: girls and women who hesitate to act on their expertise, because they aren't 100% sure they have the right answer, the perfect plan, the exact skill set. it amounts to what has been called a massive confidence gap. the gap between what women know and what we are willing to act on. it's that gap that inhibits us from making our voices heard. it's that gap that makes us turn away from risk. it's that gap that prohibits us from turning thought into action. and it's that confidence gap that keeps us from learning all the valuable lessons that can be gained from acting and failing and acting again. let's commit to filling that gap right now. let's fill it with encouragement for our daughters to act even as they waver. let's fill it with our strong voices as we quash our instinct to stay silent. let's fill it with action, even in the face of doubt and doubters. our daughters and our sons are watching. we owe it to them. we owe it to ourselves."--missy park