Sunday, April 26, 2009

Made of Honor

As I said in a recent post not long ago....where did the time go?? Last night was Senior Prom night for my daughter. She's been planning for this night for a month or so now. She and a group of friends (about 35 in all) got all decked out for the big night. A limo was rented, dinner reservations made, an after-prom party set up and a billion calls made back and forth! Funny thing is though, my daughter didn't have a date for prom. No one asked her to go. Even funnier, that didn't bother her one bit! (Let me just interject here for a moment... I feel somewhat awkward when I go out for a meal by myself, let alone my SENIOR PROM??!!? I can honestly say I would never have had the nerve to go by myself...never!) She happily shopped for the perfect dress, shoes and jewelry. It all looked stunning on her! Yesterday, she and her girlfriends got their nails done - Miss M now has acrylic nails and is 'in love with them!!!' She visited a salon and had her hair done, too. (Miss M's wonderful 'fairy godmother', Ms. S, made sure of it that Miss M had what she might have needed for the finishing touches!) By the hour of 5 p.m., pictures were being taken at a beautiful location and everyone was hugging and admiring how nice they all looked!

Where did the time go, I wonder....?

Soon, Miss M will be graduating from high school and turning 18. She's extremely brilliant. I asked her recently what her g.p.a was, and her nonplus reply was "It's 4.60 or something like that..." ??????? She's received scholarships to the three in-state universities and has pretty much decided on one. She continues to work part-time at her job, take the trash out on Sunday nights and take Ross for a walk each day to the mail box.

Perfect she is not. She's my daughter, remember? There was the one little incident of clip-clopping down the sidewalk in the middle of the night after 'getting some air'. And the time the police were at my house wondering why my car was parked in an unfamiliar neighborhood and where my daughter was, while all the while, totally unaware, M and her friends were enjoying ice cream at the local Sonic. I refrain from going into her bathroom unless it's deemed an absolute necessity. I'll never figure out how she crams things in with no possibility of being cleaned properly loads the dishwasher and calls it ready to run! No, she's not perfect...and I wouldn't want her to be.
Miss M has carried herself with grace, dignity and a strong spirit these past several years. She's made deep friendships, has endeared herself to her teachers and taught her mother a thing or two about 'moving on'. She's kept her focus on achieving her dreams and working hard. She's been true to her heart and to her spirit. And, oh yes....she's done it all with honor.

That's why she is my Maid of Honor.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

My FlyBoy

My son, D, has always loved aviation - um...he comes by it naturally... ahem. He's been training to be a 'loadmaster' for a real B-17 bomber that is stationed at a local airport. This week the crew was taking people on flights from one city airport to another - I forget how much it was...I think several hundred dollars - but what a thrill to ride in a B-17!!! D and the crew have been flying since Friday back and forth. This morning they performed 'touch-and-go's' at a former airforce base before heading over to another airport to begin flying their passengers. D asked if I could pick him up after their last flight and drive him over to the other airport to retrieve his car. Are you kidding? Me? At an airport?!?! Ha! You don't have to ask me twice!! D gave me the call late this afternoon and I headed out to watch them land....a favorite pastime of mine! Scanning the skies....

There they are!!
Here they come!!!

My gawd it's awesome...and my boy's on it!! Come in safe....come in safe....
What a cool!
A-W-E-S-O-M-E !!!!!
Taxiing in ... man, I'd love to be on that thing!
This is soooooo cool!
There's my boy! All decked out in his flight suit!! Very nice job, you guys...very nice job, indeedy!
I'm proud of you, son.

Something To Be Said

There's something to be said about...

...painting the patio trim - a year after the job was done!!....

...hanging a new string of lights to replace the burned-out ones....

...staking up a mutant tomato plant that has gone nuts with growth...and only one tomato!
...a quilt drying on the clothesline while the dog snoozes underneath....
...weeding the garden and cleaning it up...
...all while a friend squeeks and skeeters at the world below...
...discovering little tiny pansy seeds! I've never seen this before!!
...sticking your nose deep inside one of your irises that hasn't bloomed for the last serveral years and this morning made its appearance... and drinking in its heady fragrance... remembering childhood days....
...while someone else, namely Gambit, sticks his nose into the rosemary...
...finding the perfect spot for my mom's in my garden...
...Bella, who insists on helping in the garden...and munching on a leaf of a newly sprouted catnip plant!
...sipping a tall iced cafe mocha after a job well done....
...and sinking your tootsies into the soft grass of spring.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Soaking Up The Weather

Oh...last Saturday was one of those treasured days...a rainy day...

It was cold, wet, fresh and just beautiful in my book! I wish we had these kind of days every week, but alas, I am a desert rat. That's why I treasure days like these - they are so few and far between. And, it will probably the last one we have until the monsoon season kicks up - and that's not until July!

The next day, Easter Sunday, was absolutely glorious! Sunny, fresh, light breeze, low 70's.... ...perfect for sitting out in the fresh air and reading a bit. As you can see, I had company. Oh! By the way....we had A BEE at the lavendar that afternoon!! She buzzed a bit, but was not happy when I pulled my chair up, so off she flew and I have not seen her since. Do come back, sweet bee!

School was busy this week with our end-of-the-year field trip to my favorite museum!
The kiddos had a blast and everything went perfectly!!! The animated dinosaurs and the monsoon storm/water fall are a big hit! The next day was 'Field Day'... 13 stations of fun and games! It's one of my kiddos' favorite days!!Today I was ready for some R & R.... but it was just as busy. My yard got mowed and looked so nice afterwards. At the same time, my refrigerator was being repaired...oh joy! I had cleaned house last night, so today was laundry and other such Saturday duties!

A good friend had a birthday yesterday...and I FORGOT IT! I felt awful! So I quickly threw a garden party together for us to celebrate! Crackers and brie cheese, olive oil with rosemary and thyme with bread for dipping, a big garden salad with artichoke hearts and cranberries and seared tuna. We sat outside with lights and candles and it was just a beautiful evening. We soak weather like this up, for soon, the hot days are just around the corner.
Wait a minute! Why is the birthday girl bringing ME a present?!? An antique creamer bottle with beautiful flowers from her garden! How beautiful! How sweet!
Tomorrow promises to be just a wonderful! What's on your agenda for the day???

Friday, April 10, 2009

It HAS Been A Good Friday!

A day off is always a treat...and mine began in my garden with a camera and a cup of creamy coffee. Sweet peas were having a parade this morning - love this color! It was a very pretty morning with a slight cool breeze, whispy cirrus clouds and thoughts of getting a pedicure tossed around.

I thought about a gift I bought myself several days ago.... a box of cards, but not just any cards. These are by Louise Hay, a wonderful woman who teaches of empowerment, positivity and the joy of life.

Inside, a deck of the most inspiring cards await...with beautiful illustrations...

one side has an affirmation....
and the other side has an extenstion of that thought...
It really is like a 'treasure box' of sorts!
**If you're interested in these, check out - **
they have them at a smokin' price - 33% off! And they qualify
for free shipping! Oh, and check out the ones by Dr. Wayne Dyer
- 'Inner Peace' - they're my fav, too!
After reading through some of them, I skipped off for the much thought of pedicure - pink tootsies, please! A few shopping errands were next, which included a teeny bottle of green glitter fingernail polish... for some reason I got this notion that I needed to paint my fingernails green! Actually, they look more like clear polish with little flecks of green glitter - springy, kicky and fun! I love the teensy bottle, too!
A quick shower and change, and the door bell rang - my chicas and I were jumping into the 'margarita taxi' to head out for 'ahora de feliz'!! We met up with our great friends and had a wonderful time enjoying the weather, the laughs, and, of course, the nectar of the gods!
Such a good Friday it has been!

Update on my baiting of the bees...
I have not seen any bees at my lavendar yet, although they are enjoying a purple flowering bush in my garden about 8 feet away. I keep hoping that one of them will wander over to my lavendar and discover a
whole new feast to be had!

In the meantime, my lavendar is soooooo happy and thriving!!

You Did What?!!?

My last post made reference to my 'smudging' my house the other day...two weeks ago, to be exact. I've been asked about that comment a lot, and asked what it means. Let me give you a brief background....

A good friend of mine moved to Seattle several years ago. She has been renting her house here and usually has had good renters. However, last summer, she had a young woman renting that turned into a horrendous nightmare. This renter was back on her rent, evasive, and the saddest part, left 4 dogs in the sweltering house for 5 days without electricity (read that as no air conditioning) food or water in the middle of July!! Folks, down here in July, it can, and does!, get to 110+ degrees!! My friend flew down and spent almost two weeks dealing with the police, animal control, and the woman's relatives as she (MY FRIEND) packed up this renter's belongings (including pots and pans and undies!), repainted the house, had to have it recarpeted and other damage repaired before it could even be shown again to new prospective renters. It was a horrible time for my friend and I felt so badly for her. We talked constantly and at one point, I mentioned that she needed to clean her house out of the 'bad spirit' that was in there after the horrible things that the renter had done in it.

Now, before you roll your eyes and head over to for the latest in celebrity news, bear with me. You see, I do believe that energy is all around us...and if you think about it, you know it as well. The energy you feel when you walk into an office, a friend's house, the store... we've all sensed that feeling of 'this is comfortable, this is icky-feeling, this is homey, this is going to be a 'score' shopping trip', etc. A home has the same type of energy, too.

So, back to my story.

As my friend and I talked about this, we became more serious about it. I did some research on the internet and found that one could perform a type of cleansing ceremony to remove negativity from a home. The tool of the trade was something called a 'smudge stick'. I called a local market and, sure enough, they had them. So I got one for my friend, found a 'smudging ceremony' on the internet - a prayer of cleansing to be said while walking through each room with the smudge stick burning - and once the house had been fixed and repaired, my friend performed this ceremony in her home. By doing this, she removed the negativity and ugliness that the home had 'seen', so to speak - cleansing it anew. I'm happy to report that she soon found new renters who have proven to be good ones and all is happy in her humble little abode!

Now to the present.... a few weeks ago I was talking with my friend and made that comment that maybe I should do the same thing in my home....and I said this jokingly! But as we sort of laughed about it, I began to think seriously about this. You see, I love my home. But my home saw much sadness and ugliness for several years. I've spent 3 1/2 years working to bring peace and comfort back into my home, my life and that of my daughter's. It's been a long journey, and as much as I have done in terms of doing the typical steps towards healing, I will confess, that it has been difficult feeling at peace in my home. I have two rooms which I keep the doors closed to all the time; rooms I never use because of memories. There are times I've been haunted by memories of events, things done and said. I've often felt like a stranger living in another person's home.

As I tossed our converstaion around in my mind, I realized it wasn't a joke. I realized that I had nothing to lose and a lot to gain by 'smuding' my home. I needed to get rid of the negativity and bad ju-ju that had settled in! I called my friend to have her remind me of what we had done last summer, and I was soon on my way to the same market. I purchased a smudge stick made of white sage and cedar that offered 'space clearing, strength and new beginnings'. Perfect!

I had cleaned house the day before and later that night, daughter headed out for a while. I wanted to do this alone and without distraction. I found a ceremonial prayer online that filled the bill for what I was looking for and was comfortable with and I began. I lit my smudge stick and proceeded in a certain order throughout the rooms. It took almost an hour to smudge my house - I repeated the prayer in every room, every closet, the garage, my car, my front yard and my back yard. It was a quiet, meditative time and truly, I feel like the energy within was cleansed. Afterwards, I set the smudge stick in an empty bird bath in my back yard to let it slowly burn itself out.

My daughter came home about an hour later.

'What's that smell???' she asked, with typical teenager distain.

'I smudged the house!', I replied - all happy and full of positive energy! hehe... "I got rid of the negativity and bad ju-ju!"

Daughter walks up the stairs and into her bedroom. Three seconds later I hear 'great.....', again, with some distain in her voice, as she takes in the smell of smoky cedar and sage that lingers in her bedroom.

Yes, my home may have smelled like pot for a while,

but the bad ju-ju is gone!!

Home Sweet Home!

Saturday, April 04, 2009


Know what these are? I bet you do if you're from the midwest or east side of the country....they're pussywillow branches! A true sign of spring in many hearts and one of the most unique 'blossoms' ever! A dear angel at work brought these to me....we sort of have a 'pussywillow' history. Years ago, at one of her baby showers, she received a gift of a bunny rabbit figure, covered completely in pussywillows! I was so struck by it since you hardly see pussywillows in any form out here in the desert. I think she was so struck by my reaction, and since then, she will frequently gift me with some pussywillow branches picked up at the local market.... I treasure them and, as corny as it sounds, I do take a trip down memory lane when I receive them.

Growing up in Ohio my backyard was my playland. I played among the pussywillows, the forsythia bushes loaded with their delicate yellow blossoms, the 7-foot tall purple lilac bushes amassed in their splendor (I would frequently make a bouquet of them and put them in a little vase in my bedroom), the camellias in their pinks and reds, and oh my gawd... the irises...THE IRISES!! I would sit beside them in the grass, studying them and inhaling their fragrance! I played among elm trees with their 'helicopter' seed pods as toys, the pine favorite being the Colorado Blue Spruces. The pansies and snapdragons were often breakfast for the secret bunnies which hid among my neighborhood. In the fall, our maple and sugar maple trees rendered their splendor - with me ironing flaming leaves between pieces of wax paper to stick on my bedroom window glass. There was a 20-foot mulberry tree that my friends and I would climb with a bucket - loading up as many as we could pick, climbing down, rinsing them in my mom's aluminum colander, then sitting on my patio as the sun set, eating our tummies full, with purpley-black juice running down our arms.

Nature was my earthly salvation.

And still is.

But I digress....back to the pussywillows....

In a box out in my garage I have a sampler that I began designing almost 20 years ago. It was to tell the legend of the pussywillow. What? You've never heard of it? Oh, let me tell it to you....

Once, a farmer happened upon a new litter of kittens on his property. He was angry at this, gathered them up in a burlap bag and tossed the kittens into the cold waters of the river which ran by his farm. The mother kitten paced back and forth along the banks of the river...meowing for her kittens and in great distress. As she cried out for her babies, the willow trees heard her cries and took pity on her. They bended over, dipping their long branches into the cold, swirling waters of the river. The kittens clung onto the willow branches for dear life as the trees lifted them out of the river and placed them safely down on the ground by their mother.

So the little furry, gray buds of the pussywillow that you see are the baby kittens being rescued...

A present greeted me this first rose on a new bush I planted about a month ago. Oh, to be honest, I'd had the bush for about 4 months sitting in my yard in its container....but, unfortunately, I soon hurt my knee after buying it and was not able to plant it in my garden. That changed a month ago and this little gem was stretching up in the morning sunlight today! It's small and surely could have used a shot of fertilizer a while ago, but it's sweet, fragrant as it is beautiful and just brightens up my little garden out there! Good things DO come in small packages!

I did my taxes last night after getting home from work. My house is clean (oh boy, IS it clean....I 'smudged' my house last Sunday...I'll have to tell you about that in another post!), daughter is off to do a list of activities and I am giving gratitude for my health, my family, my job, my wealth of friends and grace from above. I am keeping many in prayer as the times upon us are difficult and bring tough challenges to many whom are my friends.

Blessings to you this day.