Sunday, December 31, 2006

The Dream

I just got back from spending Christmas in Las Vegas. The highlight was definitely the Franco Dragone production of Le Reve. Le Reve is french for 'the dream' and I was very curious to know the interpretation this would take. How exactly does one intimate a dream?
Like a dream it made no sense and perfect sense, which of course is the ipitomy of dreaming. Monsters that lurk in our imaginations, loves realized and loves lost, inarticulate ambitions and fears that both grow and diminish when we close our eyes. A cast of characters, able to move in an effortless anti-gravity merging of air, water, wind and fire. It presented that rare inspiration that begs you to take stock of your dreams and wonder which is real, the waking or the sleeping.
In a few minutes the clock will be turning over a new year. I have many questions about this life. How it is that I came to live this exact path... I'm not certain if it is the culmination of right choices or wrong ones. At times it brings me joy but admittedly a sense of unresolve shadows my way. Is there a parallel being lived out and 'it' is the fulfilment and expression of my spiritual and physical self that just can't quite be freed in the here and now? Like a dream, it is clarity and ambiguity. Just as I find the door, I awake or fall into slumber. My resolve is to meld my nights into my days and live in an awakened dream. Vaguely aware of what goes bump in the night and bringing to center stage the beauty and power of imaginations realized and transformed.
"Le Reve is about us, about a world that's imperfect but beautiful in its imperfections." Franco Dragone

Saturday, December 23, 2006

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Do you have a favorite musician, band, etc?

Without a doubt mine is Blue Rodeo. Has been for years. I can guarantee that at any one time I have at least one of their cds in my car deck and usually 2. It seems virtually impossible for me to experience listening fatigue when it comes to these guys. Whenever I hear "5 Days in May" I make everyone stop talking and listen. I lovingly refer to it as my codependent music. Somehow it triggers that thing in me, that thing that lets you know that we are all fucked up in our own way, and despite this, there is still hope for us all, even when it doesn't work out how we imagined.

I can tell you that it started in 1987 in a rec hall fifteen minutes from where I grew up, at a weekend dance. His name was Robbie, he had the most beautiful olive complexion and hazel eyes that were slightly green around the outer edge of the iris. His hair was brown and he was wearing bleached Levi's and a yellow polo shirt. He was 17 and I was giddy at being asked to dance with this older boy. We slow danced to "Try" and when it was over he kissed me. For days afterward I found myself catching my breath and replaying the melody in my head.

Don't tell me I'm wrong
Cause I've been watching every move that you make.
Hearts you steal in your make-up and heels
trouble for the man that you take.
Every time you walk in the room
I could never be sure of a smile
You were never the same way twice.
I'm falling in love Oh night after night.....
and its CRAZZ-ya-zzy.
Even now, I think of him in the music and smile.
As I've aged, so has the band. Lyrically and melodically we fit. I am moved by their style and their words. It is a bit forlorn, sometimes dark, often conflicted and always brilliant.
They met in a hurricane
standing in the shelter out of the rain
She tucked a note into his hand
later on they took his car
drove down on where the beaches are
He wrote her name in the sand
Never even let go of her hand
Somehow they stayed that way
for those five days in may
made all the stars around them shine
funny how you can look in vain
living on nerves and such sweet pain
loneliness that cuts so fine
find the face you've seen a thousand times
sometimes the world begins
to set you up on your feet again
and i know it wipes the tears from your eyes
how will you ever know the way that circumstances go
it's gonna hit you by surprise
But i know my past and you were there
in everything i've done
you are the one...
~5 Days in May

Saturday, December 16, 2006

the money shot

tonight I've come undone. it feels deleriously and deliciously wonderful. i'm a little drunk and a little euphoric. and a little on fire for all the things i've yet to do but know that i will conquer.

we take ourselves too seriously. we think things are do or die. who are we kidding? we are specks of dust in a world of wonder and joyous anticipation. we are not our house or our car or our occupation! we are. we are. we are.

we are flesh and blood. we are spirits soaring and crashing. we are tears weeping and laughter echoing. we are this mind of firing synapses and this heart of pumping blood and lungs of oxygen pockets. inhaling our humanity that reaches out like floating particles in the air.

we are not where we come from. we are this moment. only this moment. in a universe measured by our trips around the sun. we are this creative force of genius, a chip off the divinity block. if only we would let ourselves be, if only we would get out of the way and stop this sabotage. we, you and me, meeting here in this cyber moment in space, destined to break free of this illusionary life.

don't over-think it. just be with it. sit with it. dance with. walk with it. talk with it. sing with it. move with it. the rhythm in your head, the ancient beat of a drum you can't forget but haven't yet heard.

feel it. move with it. live it.

this is who you are.
The first act of honoring the self is the assertion of consciousness: the choice to think, to be aware, to send the searchlight of consciousness outward toward the world and inward toward our own being.

To default on this effort is to default on the self at the most basic level.

To honor the self is to be willing to think independently, to live by our own mind, and to have the courage of our own perceptions and judgments.

(Brandon, 1983).

Thursday, December 14, 2006

It's Coming on Christmas

It's coming on Christmas
They're cutting down trees
They're putting up reindeer
And singing songs of joy and peace
Oh I wish I had a river I could skate away on
I wish I had a river so long
I would teach my feet to fly
Oh I wish I had a river I could skate away on
Joni Mitchell
I made cookies tonight. Two different kinds - chocolate macaroons, just like my mom would make when I was a kid, and espresso chip cookies. Tomorrow we are having a bake exchange at work, to help everyone get a headstart on that Christmas baking (so I was informed). Ordinarily I wouldn't bother with the baking or the exchange but truth be told, it felt really good to be productive and at the same time get lost in my own thoughts. I saw my Mom in me tonight and it pleased me.
Christmas is different this year, and not just because I'm away from home. I guess I am different and that affects Christmas. It no longer offers hope to me and I supose that is what I have always associated with the season.
But, if there is any consolation to be gained, it is in a new reverence for the healing power of love. Not in a trite way but in a deep connectivity. I'm not sure where love comes from. But it exists. And its gentleness can break us and built us in the same breath. Lately, I've been seeing too many children reaching out to be loved, desperate for it. Desperate to be heard and touched in the very sacredness of who they are and who they are becoming. It is here that my idealism meets my melancholy. Sometimes it restores my hope for the whole world. Sometimes it breaks me with cruel defeat.
I am finding joy in simplicity. Who knew baking cookies could be so meditative. Life is easy when I let it be. Every once in a while I like to come undone, let every seam unravel. Sometimes I sew it back together and sometimes I just live with it undone and marvel at how unnecessary it was in this so called art of living.
I do wish I had a river to skate away on and that my feet could fly. That indeed would be Christmas to me.

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

To Kill an American or a Canadian

A nicely written piece... Written by an Australian Dentist...
To Kill an American or a Canadian - received by email Dec.12/06

You probably missed it in the rush of news last week, but there was actually a report that someone in Pakistan had published in a newspaper - an offer of a reward to anyone who killed an American or Canadian, ANYAmerican or ANYCanadian. So an Australian dentist wrote an editorial the following day to let everyone know what an American or Canadian is, so they would know when they found one.(Good one, mate!!!!)

An American or Canadian is English, or French, or Italian, Irish,German, Spanish, Polish, Russian or Greek. An American may also be Canadian, Mexican, African, Indian, Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Australian, Iranian, Asian, or Arab, or Pakistani or Afghan. An American or Canadian may also be a Comanche, Cherokee, Osage, Blackfoot, Navaho, Apache, Seminole or one of the many other tribes known as native Americans or Canadians.

An American or Canadian is Christian, or he could be Jewish, or Buddhist, or Muslim. In fact, there are more Muslims in America or Canada than in Afghanistan . The only difference is that in America they are free to worship as each of them chooses. An American or Canadian is also free to believe in no religion. For that he will answer only to God, not to the government, or to armed thugs claiming to speak for the government and for God.

An American or Canadian lives in the most prosperous land in the history of the world. The root of that prosperity can be found in the Declaration of Independence (or in Canada, the Bill of Rights), which recognizes the God given right of each person to the pursuit of happiness. An American or Canadian is generous. Americans or Canadians have helped out just about every other nation in the world in their time of need, never asking a thing in return. When Afghanistan was over-run by the Soviet army 20 years ago, Americans and Canadians came with arms and supplies to enable the people to win back their country!

As of the morning of September 11, Americans had given more than any other nation to the poor in Afghanistan. Americans and Canadians welcome the best of everything, the best products, the best books, the best music, the best food, the best services. But they also welcome the least. The national symbol of America, the Statue of Liberty, welcomes your tired and your poor, the wretched refuse of your teeming shores, the homeless, tempest tossed. These in fact are the people who built America Some of them were working in the Twin Towers the morning of September 11, 2001 earning a better life for their families. It's been told that the World Trade Center victims were from at least 30 different countries, cultures, and first languages, including those that aided and abetted the terrorists.

So you can try to kill an American or Canadian if you must. Hitler did. So did General Tojo, and Stalin, and Mao Tse-Tung, and other blood-thirsty tyrants in the world. But, in doing so you would just be killing yourself. Because Americans and Canadians are not a particular people from a particular place.

They are the embodiment of the human spirit of freedom. Everyone who holds to that spirit, everywhere, is an American or a Canadian

Please keep this going! Pass this around the World. Then pass it around again..... It says it all, for all of us.

Friday, December 08, 2006


I suppose in my own way I am a nature lover. I do enjoy the outdoors and gravitate toward items best described as organic or earthy. I prefer things as close to their natural state as possible. I grew up in a rural village, on a famous salmon fishing river, until now I have never really thought about how this has innately informed my natural likes.

But I do feel as though I must elaborate... or you might be left with the wrong impression.

1. Canoeing. Where I am from EVERYONE knows how to canoe. Everyone has a canoe. And every so often you find someone with a half ton truck to drag that canoe up the river (they actually drive it on the roadway) a ways and give you push so you don't get caught on the rocks. From here you just pretty much let the current take you and try to stay in the proper channel. A true outdoors man would consider this an assault on the art of canoeing.

2. Polar dipping. January 1, 2001 - have you ever drank a French 75? It is a combination of champagne, brandi and a splash of bitters. I dipped several times along with a couple of girlfriends. Apparently we had an audience. I woke up alone (in the buff) in the spare room of husband's boss' house. The boss chalked it up to a successful party. Husbands of dippees were unimpressed.

3. Tree surveying. I hated that day. I was lost in a 40 hectare clearcut among trees that had grown just above my head. It was impossible to see anything and necessary to shimmy your way through. Worst of all it was a spruce mixture so the needles were very sharp and kept poking me. Getting up on the stump was initially just to see where I was (the stump was about 6 feet tall). I couldn't bear the thought of spending the day in those horrid little trees, so I just stayed there and sang loudly to keep the bears aways.

4. Old Spruce Grove. This truly was amazing. I was unprepared for it. The west coast has a mystical quality - to be present in a forest like this has spiritual impact. I was there because of work, it had been a gruelling day. At one point we had followed a grizzly path as the bush around us was too thick. Had I not been forced into it (and dropped off by helicopter) that moment would never have happened.

5. I do love to laugh. Often at the most inopportune times.

So, now that you know the rest of the story...still think me a nature-lover?


This is Cathedral Grove on Vancouver Island located between the Island Hwy and Port Alberni. A very worthwhile visit if you are in the area (40 minutes north of Nanaimo).

Monday, December 04, 2006

5 Things

Rob has nominated me to tell you 5 things you might not know (or even care to) know about me. . .

1. In grade 9 my cousin Darron and I won a canoe race and were given tshirts for entering. 19 years later I am still wearing that shirt to bed - sexy. It shows its age.

2. I have polar dipped naked in the Pacific Ocean.

3. I was once hired to do tree growth surveys in a rainforest (nasty work). Instead, I found a tree stump, climbed up on it and stayed there for the rest of the day. Remarkably I was not asked to go back.

4. I have stood in an old growth Spruce grove in a remote coastal area of British Columbia, accessible only by helicopter. It felt like wonderland.

5. I really like to laugh.

And the new nominations go to...
Ms. Saltwater Princess, Ms.D, and Terri.

Hope you have fun with it girls. Its harder than you'd think.


Thanks for the fun Rob.
The dog has rediscovered the sofa.
The cold has made her grow elf feet (seriously).

Sunday, December 03, 2006


Even when I have to push just to see how far you'll go,
You wont stoop down to battle but you never turn to go.
Your love is just the antidote when nothing else will cure me.
There are times I cant decide when I cant tell up from down,
You make me feel less crazy when otherwise I'd drown.
But you pick me up and brush me off and tell me I'm OK.
Sometimes that's just what we need to get us through the day.
~Sarah McLaughlin, Push~
I feel like giving thanks. Not even sure why, other than it seems necessary. I'm experiencing a healthy bout of humility, both for things done right and a list of things that need redoing. I believe in making amends. Just the question is, how to make them? And is it so much a mending as it is a rebuilding? And is the structure that emerges mine to determine? I am certain that it is not.
There is something in my life right now that is challenging me. All of these things that I have been learning and discovering and believe about the Spirit that lives within each of us - is being drawn into a public forum and put to the test. The world on the other side of the looking glass needs to merge into this reality. What is currently reflecting is the physical me and all of those ego perceptions - and that is what I need to get beyond. It is tempting to revert back, to rest in the tried and illusionary true.
I do believe that we are spiritual beings having this extraordinary experience at playing the game of life. The rules have not been designed to bring us to a place of oneness - but rather instill the goals of material gathering and emotional numbness. Yet the thing we all desire is to be emotionally and spiritually feed - but we articulate this to our shame and are weak for the wanting.
Sometimes I get tired. Dis-courage-d. Afraid. I think that it can't be done. It will never change. I am power-less to even try. When this happens I know that I have dis-connected and need to find the source of strength - our oneness - that transcends and is patient and kind. A love that can redeem my hardened heart and restore balance, that picks me up and brushes me off so that I can make it through the day. Giving thanks that the challenge is mine.

Friday, December 01, 2006


Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of Spirit.
Romans 12:2, Amplified.


Thursday, November 30, 2006


I can't stop yawning and I can't seem to sleep. It has turned out to be one of those weeks where hiding from the world would be the preferred alternative, just that option hasn't been there.

Maybe it is the cold. Mind numbing cold like I have never experienced. I've been in lock down both at home and at work. My body is begging for fresh air and to be let out.

I feel alone and everything around me feels cruel. Harsh to the touch and devoid of emotion. I'd break down and cry, but honestly, the energy just isn't there.

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

I'm tired. My head has been aching steady for a week. In a very grouchy mood.

Experiment is over.

The bitch is back.

Fuck off.

that felt good.

Tuesday, November 28, 2006


If you know me... you know I can be a bit self-absorbed.

I'm conducting a social experiment. Not scientifically (I've never been a fan of the tediousness of scientific method). I'm just trying to gage as objectively as possible how my actions/reactions alter the situations in which I find myself.

I will update you on how this is going.

In the meantime... within 24 hours of reading this, please do something nice for someone needing to be shown kindness. If you are in need of kindness, give yourself the gift of a nice hot uninterrupted bath and count only your blessings.


Sunday, November 26, 2006

It is currently -35C, not accounting for windchill. It is reportedly going to drop to -39C overnight.

Can you comprehend how freaking cold that is?

Saturday, November 25, 2006

Paraphrased - The Message

Rejoice in the Lord always [delight, gladden yourselves in Spirit]; again I say, Rejoice!

Let all men know and perceive and recognize your unselfishness (your considerateness, your forbearing spirit).
Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.

And God's peace shall be yours,
so fearing nothing and being content with your earthly lot, of whatever sort that is, that peace which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds.

For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them].

Practice what you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, and model your way of living on it, and the Spirit of peace (of
untroubled, undisturbed well-being) will be with you.

I have learned how to be content (satisfied to the point where I am not disturbed or disquieted) in whatever state I am. I know how to be abased and live humbly in straitened circumstances, and I know also how to enjoy plenty and live in abundance.

I have learned in any and all circumstances the secret of facing every situation, whether well-fed or going hungry, having a sufficiency and enough to spare or going without and being in want.

I have strength for all things through the Spirit Who infuses inner strength into me. Phillipians 4:4-11

Let me think I've gone mad. The girl who waxes on in confusion with regard to her religious camp (or lack thereof altogether) is reciting scripture. Regardless, I must confess that this is one of my favorite passages from the NT. Little blurbs of it often manifest in my thoughts. I find it beautiful and encouraging.

I like the ideology of contentment. I do not believe that this implies lying in the bed we make, but rather finding a spiritual quality of joy in difficult or bounteous circumstances.

Three years ago my dad lost sight in one eye resulting in months of painful laser surgery - mostly botched surgery by an incompetent doctor. These laser episodes would leave my father sitting in the living room, shades pulled, hand on head, for days. It was a very trying and heart rendering time. I languished in loss and grieved the toll this change brought on my parents. My dad, dis-abled from his life. Suddenly incapable of roaming through the woods, unable to judge distance or navigate with compass, as depth perception was forever changed. My mom, thrown into care-giver and sole provider.

When recovery began, revaluing took place. Nothing could be taken for granted any longer. One day, while at home alone, I was overcome by thoughts of Paul and his learning to be content regardless of the circumstances he found himself. I thought about how exciting Paul's life was - roaming all over Europe and Asia, on fire for a cause he believed in so strongly that he gave his life to his work. Forgoing marriage and family and security and depending on the kindness of strangers and past acquaintances to see him through. In his own way, Paul knew the art of living - he embraced the now, no matter what that now represented. He was not defined by his want or his sufficiency. He remained receptive to the flow.

My dad is well now. His body has adapted and compensated. If you didn't know, you'd never know. He is once again able in just about all respects.

I am a lot like my dad. We understand each other's restless and relentless spirit. I told him the lesson I got from Paul was to not settle for mediocre, that is the easy way, it holds no challenge. These things that are thrown our way, that knock us off kilter or even knock us to the ground, should be the things for which we give the most thanks. They provide opportunity to experience the fullness of living, even when the enlarging is on the side of pain - our boundaries are expanded because of it.

For the time being, I am experiencing balance - and I could not be more content.

"Thank you for everything. I have no complaint."

Friday, November 24, 2006

Instead of posting today, I am redirecting. I stumbled upon this through the Everything Yoga site. I hope you enjoy and also have many reasons to give thanks.

A Silly Poor Gospel

Thursday, November 23, 2006

I could not deny Spirit. the way it moves in me and around me. making me conscious of the tiny qualities that differentiate us. how my lungs fill deep with breath and then deeper still just by willing them to. moving into space unbordered by time. finding quiet - to redress with undress, seeing you and me in the same light. casting shadows in life.

caught up. i forget. i lose sight. i close the door. i hang-up. i turn out the light.

and still, spirit moves. soothing my despair, lighting the hall, strength enough to make hot chocolate and sit in a darkened room. connection rekindling. thoughts of peace invisibly penetrate. thoughts of you light my eyes. a loved song finds its music rehearsed in my mind.

whatever we are. whoever we are. we need to be exactly this. to listen for the come-around. to find ourselves blessed by frothy hot chocolate, as though it were holy water itself.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

beauty finds me. traveling for hours, content to watch snow laden field after field pass by my window. back to this place i call home. finding this man, who has been mine since I was a girl. recognizing in him a spirit of oneness. a love more freeing than captive, but sometimes captive just the same.

for all those moments of letting go, there is always a greater measure of those for which I cling and refuse to unclasp my hand.

sometimes i dream, that other love comes to find me. the one that lives in my mind's eye. made up of fleeting flashes of a past i can't quite remember anymore. nor can I quite forget. kisses witnessed by a million stars and winter's night air. my breath in rapid succession. his touch imprinted on my skin. his thoughts, even now, finding mine. twisting fates.

and then the phone rings. you're bringing ice cream home. i come back to this moment, and you.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Andrea, this is for you. What a beautiful fall day in Jasper. Hard to believe that the night before we drove through a snow storm to get there. Just remember, nothing could top our trip to Banff, so many years ago! Love you.
I find myself challenged by an overwhelming desire to create.
I think I just might be interested in everything. This poses problems.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

We owe it to ourselves and those around us, to be excited about the lives we live. To dream bigger than we think we dare and inspire others to find their voice and way in the world. Let's be transformed by our limitless spirit.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

For Winifred

I am thinking about my maternal great grandmother tonight.

About 100 years ago she left London for a new life. She ventured across the pond with a soon to be professor to the University of New Brunswick and his wife, to be their nanny. She was 15 or 16 years old. I am told two of her first cousins were Lord's in the House of Lords. I really don't know what that means, other than it has to do with English government structure. Her father was a relatively wealthy man who owned a tavern. It is reported that his family was somehow involved in the slave trade between Africa and America.

Grandmother (as my mom refers to her) left of her own volition and refused to return despite her parents attempts. I believe it broke her mother's heart. Grandmother gave very little away about those days. Practically refusing to discuss them.

Not long after arriving in Canada she met my great grandfather. He was years her senior. He took her to live in his log cabin, far in the woods. He was often gone - hunting, fishing, trapping. They had children before he ever married her. She was an intelligent and articulate woman, an accomplished musician who in her youth, had played before the Queen. He was neither well spoken or well read. I'm sure the backwoods of New Brunswick was a far cry from the city streets of London. Being an unwed mother must have come with unbearable shame. Eventually they had 14 children which included two sets of twins. I once asked my mother how the two of them ever got together, I assumed it to be a loveless union. My mother suspected that she was in need of a place to live and he in need of a housekeeper.

When I was in eighth grade, I interviewed Grandmother for a socials project. I was learning about my family tree. I recall the walls in her house were all white and the sun seemed to come in from every direction. The ceilings seemed unnaturally high. She was old to me. My mother asked most of the questions, being much more interested in this particular piece of homework than I. Grandmother played the piano for us and sang. I thought it sounded dreadful but quite remarkable given she was the oldest person I'd ever met. For days afterward my mother recounted childhood memories and the special attention Grandmother had given to her over all the other grandchildren.

It would be so interesting to me to have this opportunity now. I would want my mom to be there and would plan it for days. I would ask her about having all those babies. How did it feel to be 30ish for her? Was there joy or did the days pass too quickly for such excess out of life? Was there any love or only duty? Did she make the right choice or just get so far into the wrong one that...

I have a theory that pain is passed down from one generation to another. That we can carry guilt and shame from a hundred years ago or even more. Chances are we don't recognize it as belonging to our ancestors. We pass it along regardless and throw in a few of our own secret sins just to ensure the gift keeps on giving. I see evidence of this in my own family. Thankfully, every once in a while, a generation refuses to indulge the sins of our fathers and our mothers and their fathers and their mothers. I'm certain that Grandmother's seeking out of a new life broke a cycle - but also created new grief to be passed on to her children and their children.

I honor her. I am told she was a brave and courageous woman. I'm sure she must have been.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Love that redeems the world

Seems to me that since the beginning of time, we've been interested in redemption. In need of a Saviour. Someone to take away our fear. Someone to make our world right. Someone to tell us we are good. Someone to show us the love we each carry inside.

Every culture has ingrained, a strong ideal about god(s). Some make claim to many, some to what they refer to as the one true God.

The problem is that god(s) is/are part of tradition. Traditions change. One does not have to look back in history but a few hundred years and see how Christianity has been molded and shaped to suit European/American culture. Dark day of burning women at the stake for sorcery over failed crops and less than satisfactory weather conditions are well documented and were carried out by great men of God. In modern day, Christianity has become a voice of programs and marketing ploys to bring the world to the feet of Jesus. I'm sure Jesus is mightily thankful for all the help. Also, still among us, we find the just plain crazies who interpret "gospel" to the letter and create their own cult rules from twisted out of context metal. Lets not forget these rules more often than not submit women to their husbands and take away their freewill to choose. Embroiled in guilt and shame, there is no way out, unless of course one can survive not being redeemed.

Yesterday I was scanning the radio and came across a Christian broadcast. "All to Jesus I surrender, all to him I freely give, will you ever love and trust him, in his presence daily live." These are words to a well known hymn, they were not being sung but rather spoken, pleading for the listner to sign a contract with these words. "Can you in good faith, put your name to this, can you give it all to Jesus, can you surrender to him your life and all that you have." ...

My dad is a brilliant theologian. His sermons are deep and meditatively thought out, so simple you wonder why you never thought about it before. Whenever I have opportunity to listen, I'm awed and humbled and tears fall from my eyes. Not because he pleaded, not because he said you would burn in hell, not because he asked you to change a single thing in your life - he's never done any of that. But he found a nugget of gold, of ancient wisdom, that touched your heart, that made you feel all of your humanity, that opened your mind and gave you new eyes to see the world.

Believe it or not, my parents do not attend church, they haven't since my dad left ministry when I was twelve. He's called upon to fill in when regular ministers are away. I've never known him to give the same message twice. There seems to be no end to the sermons he has inside. He and my mom often have deep philosophical discussions about scriptures. They have no ego, no agenda, no position in the hierarchy.

I used to have difficulty reconciling my own lack of belief to their fortress of faith.

I know the lingo, the arguments, the call. For awhile I had guilt. Fear that not believing was a mistake. What if I burn in hell? It can't be possible that so many people are wrong about this redemption?

Now I see the entire thing differently. More like an exercise in psychology. They get you when you're young, they scare the crap out of you, they feed you to the gills with this stuff, isolate you, manipulate you - I mean religion in general here. (My parents never did any of this to me. They never took me to church past the age of 12.) And why do they do it? Because we all need a Saviour, we all need to be redeemed. They are doing the work of God, the most important work they know to do.

But here is the thing. You need saving because you think you need saving. Do you know what are you being saved from, anyway? The shadow that goes bump in the night? Is it all motivated by eternal damnation?

We ask god(s) for things in our lives. We turn our burdens over to him to bear. We negotiate our future to his service if only he will give us this one thing. I suspect he doesn't give a god damn. If he does exists - the universe is big and I am dust in the wind.

This, however, is not to say that the exercise of letting go doesn't make a difference. Perhaps it allows some to live in the present more fully without carrying the weight of this or that. Perhaps it helps some people to be good, knowing that they will be judged. I feel strongly that if god(s) meets your needs in any of these ways, then perhaps in you, the ideal of god has been fulfilled. You can call it God, even if it isn't, especially if that helps.

I'm close to labeling myself an a-theist. I have some disdain for organized religion. I have no bitterness. So many are just living the unconscious motions, certain their reward is in heaven. For them, I almost hope that they are right and I am wrong... but I don't think so.

I notice that a lot of atheist (at least those with weblogs) seem to be out for blood (oh the irony). There was a time in my life that I thought I knew God. I trusted he would keep me as the apple of his eye. It is all psychology. I can not disprove God, nor do I want to. If your belief helps you to live at peace in the world, then it is indeed a great gift. For my parents, I am certain that it is just that! Their lives often impart this gift to me, indirectly showering me with blessing of goodness and wisdom that see beyond a text to an esoteric plane.

My goal is consciousness. My experience in church is only now about enlightenment, as I can see it for what it is and was and where it has brought me. My intellect will not allow my rolling over and surrendering all to Jesus. My guess is that the enlightened Jesus would not want to be God to me but would rather me find the spirit within that is able to discern and choose wisely in the world.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

I miss my books.

I guess I like looking at them on the shelf, running my finger down their spine, thinking about where I bought them, why I bought them. A few I haven't even read. Most I've read a couple of times.

I've bought some new ones, in the interm you know. They'll add nicely to the mix.

Soon. They'll be back on the shelf and scattered about.

Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Naked Tree

I took this photo a couple of springs ago. It is just down the 'south' road from where I grew up. To the left, the beautiful Miramichi river flows, you can't see it but I know it is there. It is here that the south road ends. My first love was a boy from the south road. On occasion, I drive down there for sentimental reasons. Part of me always hopes that he will be there and once again kiss me the way he did when I was sixteen. He never is, he never does. I think it is for the best.

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Coffee and a Blog

Sunday mornings are my favorite. The house is quiet, the street is quiet, the world around me seems to be taking a collective breath.

I am thinking about the upcoming year. I believe that 2007 will be about making a life. (Every year seems to have a theme, 06 was change, 05 was self accepting.) We are very close to finishing the house. It is beautiful and I feel so blessed to be soon living there. I am ready to possess it fully - hang pictures on the walls, curtains on the windows, gather friends around the table.

In ways, I've been living disconnected. Lots of time to myself, not working, very little stress. That is going to change soon. Shortly I will be returning to work and all the waiting I have been doing will come to an end.

Sometimes good things must end so that better things can have life.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Yesterday I went skating. As a kid my entire winter recreational life pretty much revolved around skating and the arena. If I wasn't skating I was waiting to go skating or watching hockey at the rink. In mid winter we would spend our spare time clearing off the bogan (back channel of the river) so we could play pond hockey, mostly I just twirled and my brother and his friends would play.

Skating is very freeing. To skate well you have to let yourself go, feel the uncertainty of metal against ice and find a new center of gravity. Skating is about feeling not thinking.

When I was a kid, skating made me very content. I didn't even know how content until yesterday.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

I have hesitated to write too much about the whole house building experience, even though it has dominated my life for the past few months. It is getting to crunch time and we are behind sched. I am trying to take it in stride.

A coupoe of days ago we discovered a problem with the floor that runs the length of the living/dining room. This is going to hold us up a couple of days from getting the hardwood layed. I know it doesn't sound like a big deal (and truth is it probably isn't) other than Jeremy is the one doing the floors and he has been trying to work around his own work schedule. Because of next years budget, upcoming meetings, a trip to Kelowns and general delays to the project... finding the time is getting more and more difficult. I've checked my ego for the time being (it keeps creeping back) and am focusing on what we can get done now.

Today I am changing the paint in the kitchen.

Thursday, October 12, 2006


I have learned over the last several years to be cognizant of my energy. I pay close attention to my moods - highs, lows, tired, hyper, calm, frantic, social, antisocial. When I was a child I needed much less sleep than my siblings. My brother would sleep on command and I, even as a toddler would remain awake in my crib until well after midnight. In my preschool and early school years I would often wake with crusted eyelids, as though my eyes wept through the night and then dried, causing them to be crusted shut.

As a teenager, I was an underachiever. I did practically nothing in high school and yet graduated with honors. In university, I continued my underachieving until the end of second year when I flunked calculus (highly likely given that I rarely attended class, had a shit teacher and didn't do assignments). I almost quit university at that point, for reasons beyond failing calc. Thankfully my mother went apeshit on my ass (quite literally) and I reconsidered under duress. Sometimes duress is good! My gpa went through the roof.

I now feel as though I have been a true adult for 10+ years. I've been married for far too long and waffle between complete happiness (I do love my husband) and questioning whether or not I am just afraid to make it on my own. We do not intend to have children and sometime we just wonder if this is what we want for the rest of our lives. Is 15 good years enough? Will it ever be enough?

At least half of me is a 60's child reincarnated. Social injustice hurts me deep inside and I long to change what is so obviously wrong with the world. I dream of teaching in dangerous third world countries. I am well identified with he hippy and draft-dodger. Part of me is afraid, part does not want to give up this mediocre middle class life.

Some people believe that you never truly change, that who you are is who you are. I am not one of those people. I am not who I was, not even close. Ten years ago I was in wonder with the world, identified with god and creation, faithfilled that all things work together for good. I have lost some of that wonder and all of that faith. I was happier when I believed, this is not to say that I am unhappy now. In ways I am freed. Perhaps I am who I have always been, it just took me a while to strip away that which I never truly was.

I have often wondered if perhaps I suffer from mental-illness and just happen to be smart enough to hide it. Then I wonder if the world is mentally ill for not seeing what I see and feeling what I feel. My mother accuses me of controlling my world. I have lived without control and trust me, it is not the path to inner peace for me. What I mean, goes back to monitoring my moods. I have learned with great unpleasantness that the line in the sand should not be crossed. Too much excitability is a very bad thing for me. My mother's energy is for the duration, mine is not and I must pick and choose where I spend it if I am to cross the finish. In our own way, I'm certain we're all insane or in denial.

My dad and I have always been close. We are very much alike. When we talk there is always more than just words. He somehow carries me with an understanding. It has been there since I was young, before I could articulate (even poorly) that it existed. It is as an adult that I realize the gift it is, it is not given freely between all fathers and daughters. Even for my sister it has been a process of development, not something that always was. I remember as a child once having this overwhelming need to cry, there was no reason other than I was overcome with deep sadness. I told my mom and she told me to go see my father. He was in his office with the door closed. I knocked and went in, and went directly to him in his chair, climbed on his lap and cried until I had no more tears.

When I sat down, it was not my intention to share all of that.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Color my world

Our house is progressing. Not so quickly however, so that we will actually be moving in on our possession date! We are about 2 weeks behind. And on top of this I am horrified (yes completely revolted) by my own color scheme for the house. I keep questioning how this happened - I consider myself very good at coordinating an interior. If my last house was any indication, it is obvious that I had a flair once upon a time!!!

Our house in Halifax was a soothing mix of tone on tone shades of creamed coffee with a couple of punches of red. This house, I decided, needed to be different, more color, more drama, more punch.

Last night I went to inspect the paint job.

The main color throughout is called coffee body scrub, which is a very soothing creamy color with just a drop of green. It has a lovely spa quality to it. This color wraps the entry way, and is continuous down the hall, into the office, second bedroom and both baths. It looks great against the maple floors as well as the tile going into the bathrooms. So what's the problem you ask?...

Let's start with the living/dining room. I chose (what I thought was) a very earthy purple. Quite honestly, not that bad. Granted it is a bit Barneyfied, but not awful. Push comes to shove I can make it work with the coffee body scrub. Actually no I can't, unless I buy new everything, given that my current decor is not purple friendly.

Add in the kitchen. In the last house I had great success with red. But reds are finicky. You have to have just the right red, in just the right light or it doesn't work. Turns out, cajun shrimp is an angry red and doing a great job of pissing off the other colors. It especially dislikes where it seams up against Barney. The cabinets are yet to be installed. Initially I thought the red would look fab against the stained wood, but now I fear the two will just fight against each other and make the kitchen too dark. Too much intensity amongst all the materials - the cabinets are stained, the appliances are stainless, the island countertop is also stainless and the floors are hardwood. Already a lot of drama even before I started cooking up cajun shrimp!

No, the paint doesn't stop here. Our bedroom. Because the summer days are so long here I decided on a brown called cocoa glow. Wow, now that is a saturated color. They also painted the inside of the closet this color (I forgot to tell them otherwise), which means I will not know what the heck is in there - no reflective quality to this paint.

So the drama I was hoping to get in my house has created a great deal of tension in both me and hubby. Fuck. I just wanted it to work out the first time and be fabulous.

Looks like I will be painting after all. Time is too tight and the painter has no time to come back and redo my faux pas. So next week while hubby is installing hardwood floors I will be priming and painting kitchen, living and master - you know, only half the house.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Up against

I had an interview last night. More than likely directly related to my vulnerable exposee last evening. I will admit it, I DO NOT LIKE to be INTERVIEWED! I'm not sure why, but for some reason I become a shell of myself, I'm nervous and fidgitity and then I get into a vicious circle of self-hate for being nerveous and fidgity. It doesn't help that I've had less interviews than I can count on one hand, so practice has been limited.

You see, my job experience has been that people who know me think of me for certain jobs and have just outright asked if I would be interested. Obviously in a new environ people don't just magically know you, so one must be rely on the interview. Ugggg.

Well despite the above, they called this morning and offered me the job. Said they were impressed. At this point I held the phone away from my head and eyed it suspiciously. I wonder if perhaps I just feel twitchy inside and somehow manage to jedi mind trick my audience. Bizarre.

So now the question is... do I take the job? The position is for a home/school child advocate. I am told it is demanding and difficult and requires home visits. Does this mean that it could be dangerous? There is certainly a lot of known abuse, both physical and substance, among the families I would be working with. Am I ready to see this face of the world? Can I live with how it might change me?

I have the next 24 hours to reflect.

To love is to recognize yourself in another. The longing for love that is in every child is the longing to be recognized, not on the level of form, but on the level of Being. E. Tolle

Monday, September 25, 2006

do you ever wonder what it is that the world wants of you? is it ambiguous only to me? do you have answers to the questions that keep me up til the witching hour?

i'm feeling vulnerable, i guess that much is obvious. i would tell you why, if only i knew. thankfully these moments are fleeting and temporary. tomorrow i will be strong again. but for now i plan to just be with this moment, in all of its desolate beauty.

Human alone is never enough, no matter how hard you try or what you achieve. Then there is Being. It is found in the still, alert presence of Consciouness itself, the Consciousness that you are. Human is form. Being is formless. Human and Being are not separate but interwoven. E.Tolle

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Okay, so I am here. I have lots to share but my computer is not yet hooked up.

The trip went well. Will leave it at that for now.


Saturday, July 29, 2006

I have a confession. Air Supply. I can't help myself.

Tomorrow I'm off. Will post next week and let you know how it all went. Pictures to follow.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

I closed the house down and said good-bye today. I didn't find it all that difficult. My memories will remain. My expectations are that the next segment of life will be very different, new challenges, new issues, new resolves.

As I pulled out of the drive I was somewhat overcome by good thoughts regarding my neighbors. The women in particular. Joanne is 44, ten years my senior. Sharon is 58, twenty-four years older than me. Both are so very different. Joanne is a workhorse. There is absolutely nothing that woman cannot do - her baking rivals Martha's, she has her own set of power tools (and is in NO way afraid to use them) and just recently drywalled the entire basement. Sharon is a kept woman married to a very successful business-man. Their whole family has their shit together in an awe-inspiring way. Sharon is the hostess with the most-est. You are always welcome and the house is spotlessly clean. We have laughed often together and shared many glasses of wine.

Yesterday they both dropped by my house at almost the same time. Joanne came in through the basement door where she helped me move scrap pieces of wood and sweep the floor in the workshop. She was in her typical garb, t-shirt, skirt and birks. Sharon came in through the patio door, dressed of course in matching capris and blouse, coordinating mani & pedi, hair done, makeup applied.

We talked for a long time, about everything and nothing. Joanne asked me what I would miss (we just finished a full blown reno of the entire house). I said "Nothing" and then I immediately said "No, that is not true, I will miss my neighbors very much."

In that same moment I realized how much I have learned from these two women about becoming a woman. They are both thoroughly themselves. I could never be either one of them - yet their example of owning their individuality has helped me to gain comfort in my own skin. They are both confident and beautiful and paint an inspired scape of growing better and wiser with the years.

I find friendships and connections manifest in surprising ways. More and more I crave the company of intelligent and compassionate women who are unafraid to experience life in all of the colors afforded us, albeit the many shades of grey. I believe in the principle of reaping and sowing. I want to plant within myself courage and joy and intuition. I want to nurture and harvest these same qualities in the people I love and who share my circle of life.

Friday, July 21, 2006


Feeling inspired and I believe it shows!

I'm home - as in my hometown home, sleeping in the 'bedroom I grew up in' home. Life is changing. The house is sold and the packers come on Monday. I'm feeling so many things. Lots of joy, a bit of sadness, reflective evaluation.

Being home makes me remember things I thought I'd forgotten. School girl dreams of becoming a writer. The first boy I was sure I loved. How one summer I forgot to eat because I just couldn't be thin enough. That I never wanted to grow up and leave this place.

And then life gets in the way. And you meet yourself - or at least you arrive at a space inside your head where you're open to meeting this person and start to get a glimpse of who you just might be destined to become.

Mine is not a large life, but it is also not small. 18 years ago I could not have envisioned anything as big as what I have now. Perspective changes everything. I feel deeply appreciative for the webs of people and circumstances that have opened me up to living and choosing and just learning to be.

I spent this evening with my grandfather. He is 86. We played crib and he won every game. He has my points counted before I even have my hand layed on the table. We ate a mincemeat pie and donuts, both he made from scratch. We drank tea. And a long time from now I will remember this night.

And you see, this is the very reason I feel so blessed, so inspired. My heart is filled with nights like this. Different faces and various relations but the essence is the same. Time. Time that meant something. Time that connected me in spirit to people I love and places I have been. It might not have changed the world, but it all changed me.

Monday, July 10, 2006

Clay and Water

These days are passing over me
At the speed of light
And standing here in their shadows
I'm silenced at the sight

Like water on the wind I sense the change to come
All that I've held in like teardrops run

I am clay and I am water

Falling forward in this order
While the world spins 'round so fast
Slowly I'm becoming who I am

Nothing ever stays the same
The wheel will always turn
I feel the fire in the change
But somehow it doesn't burn

Like a beggar blessed I stumble into grace
Reaching out my hand for what awaits

I am clay and I am water

Falling forward in this order
While the world spins 'round so fast
Slowly I'm becoming who I am

~Margaret Becker

Thursday, July 06, 2006

What I recall (and shall never forget) from English Lit 1001

This Be The Verse

They fuck you up, your mum and dad.
They may not mean to, but they do.
They fill you with the faults they had
And add some extra, just for you.
But they were fucked up in their turn
By fools in old-style hats and coats,
Who half the time were soppy-stern
And half at one another's throats.
Man hands on misery to man.
It deepens like a coastal shelf.
Get out as early as you can,
And don't have any kids yourself.
Philip Larkin, 1971

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

scattered thoughts

I just pulled my favorite red hoody out of the dryer, it feels so toasty. And I am back to feeling good, melancholy good, but that is okay - it is my preference. I've some how managed to let go of the craziness of the past weeks and have started living, once again, as a present participant in my own life's story.

Jeremy called tonight and sounded like himself. I am trusting that he is finally relaxing into this new life we have chosen (even though I have yet to share in it). There was sparkle back in his voice, an eagerness and accepting. I knew it would come, despite my fear of how long it might take. I miss him and that pleases me.

My eating habits have improved over the last 7 days. I love not medicating my body with self-destructive reconstituted crap. Perhaps a massage is even in order. While in NYC last week I treated myself to two Chinese foot rubs. Just in case you happen to be going there any time soon the shop is located over a Thai restaurant on 50th between 8th and 9th Ave. Let's just say it warranted trip #2! it was that good.

Yoga calls.

Tuesday, July 04, 2006

I am hungry to write but finding it difficult. It is not so much a loss for words but too many thoughts. Flying at me fast, furious and erratic. I am back home and yet can't settle down and focus. Perhaps I need sleep.

The house is looking great. The neighbors want to cut down two trees that separate our properties. I'm a bit saddened but will agree to it later on this afternoon. They will be replace by fence panels for privacy.

I can let them go. I'm not staying to watch them grow.

Friday, June 23, 2006

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Sometimes I get a bit high-strung. As part of growing up I've learned to cope with this better, but even still, there are times it creeps in full force. I take a breath. A deep one. I focus on the whole forest and relax.

Tomorrow is moving day for Mister. The house has yet to sell (what the heck happened to the market?). We have been busy. Understatement.

I will follow but not sure when. Waiting can be difficult, I push that to the back of my head. After tomorrow I am going to watch my chest rise and fall and release these stresses into the wind - they do not benefit me. It will all work out. It always does. It is much easier to sway and bend when the standard to straightness is removed.

Parables are pictures that emerge from the jigsaw events of life, however irregular or disconnected they may first appear. "All happenings, great and small, are parables whereby God speaks," said Malcolm Muggeridge, "the art of living is to get the message." To see all that is offered us at the windows of the sould and to reach out and receive what is offered, this is the art of living. Ken Gire, Windows of the soul.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006


I can't seem to recall a time in my life when the days so melded into one another. The pace has been intense, but so far so good, as they say. I have missed blogging and anticipate the day it once again becomes a priority.

Blogging has been therapy. It has moved me through many phases of myself, working out scenarios in my head, even when they were not always shared. I have also found a renewed interest in journaling, letting my thoughts just be on paper, uninterrupted by another's comment.

2005 was a year to be a bit easier on myself and my loves. To find joy and affection where in the past I may have been prone to criticism and perfectionism. This year is about change. And oh how I am ready for it. The house goes on the market today. The last four years of our lives, spit and polished, awaiting new caretakers to labor (I hope) in love. Is it odd to want a house to be loved? Cared for in a personal way, because your own story is written into the color of the walls in hidden yet indelible ink?

For so long I thought here was a mistake. For a while I began to believe there were no things unseen, dark days in total disbelief. Perhaps it is all random. Or, perhaps, things do work together for good to those who are called according to a purpose. I fall between the crack, once again. Here, I now realize, has been a part of my schooling. I arrived as a silly girl filled up with unexpectations. I now celebrate myself as a woman, a mother and life companion. The times they are a changing.

So I am moving forward, to a path just off that road less traveled. It will not be perfect. It will be life and it will be my life. There will be new lessons and new joys, and all of this will be a dream I remember while awake.

I question if there is design to any of this. I feel a bit heavy in my legs and arms, as though I have had one too many drinks and am succumbing to the sweet letting go that comes with drunkenness, yet I have not a drop to induce such euphoria. - My journal, May 24/06

Thursday, May 25, 2006

I've been travelling since 7am on Sunday morning. The days have been busy and long and interspersed with laughter and the joy of great friends. There are decisions to be made (who am I kidding, decision was made by Tuesday) and much to be done in the readying.

I've always been happiest when following roads less travelled.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

I like it when I find touch with old friends, regardless of how far away they might be. I wish it were easier to know each other in the context of our now worlds. I guess it is the price you pay for growing up and finding your own path.
I just decided that I am going to be content. Decided this morning actually.

Already I feel so much lighter.

Friday, May 19, 2006

The Secret of Life

"There are things you do
because they feel right &
they make no sense
& they may make no money
& it may be the real reason we are here:
to love each other &
to eat each other's cooking &
say it was good."
Brian Andreas
While yogaing tonight I had a beautiful experience. Posing in front of a wall of mirrors I experienced a complete acceptance of my imperfections. I wonder if we aren't time beings more than human beings. Life is good.

Monday, May 01, 2006

It happened sometime on Friday in the afternoon. He went down into the cellar to make on a fire just to take the chill off the old house, spring days can feel damp and cold in the Maritimes.

He got it all ready. Just like he had done thousands of times before. Showing the same care and patience, I am sure. Crumpling the paper, spliting the kindling, picking out a few choice pieces of well dried maple - the same maple he himself had cut and split and ranked in long straight rows just the spring before.

Just before lighting, he took a rest. At 92 he sat his bones down on a round end and leaned against the woodpile. He has not ceased to rest.

He was one of the greats.
You too would have been richer had you known him.

I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately,
to front only the essential facts of life,
and see if I could not learn what it had to teach,
and not, when I came to die,
discover that I have not lived.
Henry David Thoreau

Wednesday, April 26, 2006

Life sparkles when viewed as a grand adventure.