Saturday, February 21


It's trail time. I'm leaving the city behind.
The sky is forever
The contrast of shadow and light
Alternating cool and hot-white
Play on fractured rocks as old as time.Too fast for my camera:
Ground squirrels and song birdsAnd bold little hummingbirdsUnknown things that rustle the undergrowth
as we pass by.The beautiful day
is the early Sonoran Spring
too soon for wildflowersbut bursting with life
and beauty
too subtle for some to appreciate.
They look at the open landscape
and say,
"It's just desert..."
It is. It really is.
And we'll be back.

Wednesday, February 18

Is There an Artiste in the House?

Feast your eyes on this little gem:

Is it an impressively expensive, custom piece
from some posh little boutique in Santa Fe or La Jolla?


Is it, you say ~ a charming treasure snatched up from an elite Palm Springs dead movie star estate sale?

No, it is not.

Is it a long, lost item from Frida Kahlo's forgotten seaside vacation home?

Que lástima.

Is it a trendy cabinet by an up-and-coming contemporary ethnic artist offered at a high-society silent auction?


But it is a deliciously sensational find by a Phoenix registered nurse who, in a moment of genius pressured the antique shop to meet her price with a smile, and then gloriously hand-painted by the same with common craft acrylics in a little longer moment of more genius. While it is true the design is not original, her execution of it far surpasses the grossly over-priced version she spied at the shop which first inspired her fit of marvelous creativity. I know, because I saw it. The swirly knobs are to die-for.

(I'd like to see what she does when suturing a cut or wrapping a sprain). Well done, my friend Cathy Mitchell, R. N. extraordinaire!

Thursday, February 5

The Mouth is the Window to the Soul

Sign me up for Wife Swap so I can slap that creeper around! Did you see that?! How do they find this segment of society? Are there more of them? Is it catching? Can we immunize?  

This week's episode featured (probably the first time ever) a perfectly normal American family vs some psycho-licious weirdos who live on a pseudo "farm" and worship the "natural" life as they see it. Upper-most on their list of ritualized devotions is the practice of eating raw meat. Not smoked, not pickled, not sushi ~ just do-it-yerrownself-home-butchered-quivering raw meat. Even chicken. 
For special occasions they bring out jars of putrid, expired raw meat and gobble it up with lip-smacking satisfaction. They don't believe in bathing daily or brushing their teeth. Their house was certifiably and utterly filthy. The four of them had emotions about as stable as sweaty bottles of nitroglycerine. 

The visiting wife took them to a restaurant for dinner so they could experience normal food. Within hours the 2 weenie teenage kids were moaning about how the strange food had made them sick. The camera focuses on the dad virtually collapsing into a fetal position in the bathroom, sobbing uncontrollably because his children were suffering. He accused the stunned guest wife of trying to poison them all.

On the opposing home front, dead-raw-meat-raw-egg-sucking-green-juice-drinking-swapping wife assaulted the host family non-stop. She was scary; long, ratty hair, baggy sweats and wrinkled super-sized t-shirts and a stream of outrageously aggressive demands that her lifestyle was the best thing since soap (er - not that) since carpet-dusting your house with manure. This was all fun and frivolity until we were treated to a close-up glimpse of her mouth. Just a peek. I came out of my seat. 

(Remember Princess Buttercup, presented to the common folk - berated by the old hag? "Boo! Filth! Queen of Putrescence! Rubbish! Filth! Slime! Muck...!")
Can you say "Gingivitis"? "Trench Mouth"? "Anug?" Acute Necrotic Ulcerating Gingivitis? 

What an idiot. Some of these people are so crazy, and their behavior so offensive to common sense, you wonder if they are just making it all up for the momentary notoriety. Here was proof  of at least one fact: they really do abhor first world hygiene.

Now - if I had been the wife, I would avoid the pit-falls of previous contestants; the futile, constant clash to usurp the host family's cherished ways in favor of your own righteousness. In this particular instance, my path would have been clear. Handing the kids a mirror, I would have chosen the power of illustration over argument. 

First, I would use a toothpick to scrape off a bit of the active, seething plaque colony on their teeth as exhibit number 1. Second, I would ask them to drink some punch (or organic Kool-aid) - and then have them look in the mirror again at the expansive wasteland of brightly stained and aglutinative bacteria. There needn't be many words at a time like that. Just a little thoughtful observation. Next (apologizing sweetly for the hanky I am obliged to hold demurely over my nose and mouth), I might ask them which they prefer; chewing their tetched meat with healthy, organic teeth? Or blending it up in a blender?

Will Shatner move over. I am a negotiating genius.

Sunday, February 1

Hide and Seek

Sometimes Life feels a little like Hide 'n Seek ~ you never know what might be around the corner, but we have Faith it will be worth the count-down.

We prepare for the day with an awareness of what's out there.

We keep our eyes open for daily lessons learned, and surprises enjoyed.

We are shod with the power of our personal convictions, which guide us & protect us in our walk through life.
Taking time out for reflection is always nurturing . . . and it keeps us humble.

The view of the world at times can be a little scary; but we try not to let our fear over-come our desire to grow.
Conflicts require our focus and resolve. We eventually learn a key to survival: patience.

And when it's just too much, a good cry can be cleansing.

can prop us up.

Joy is kin to Hope. It lifts us, and reminds us of our better nature. For some, it is a natural response. For others, it comes as a gentle, latent assurance of what we had in us somewhere - after all.

Love is an outward expression of that inward Joy.

Love is a life force we often take for granted.

We should seek it as if we were gasping for air. We should hold onto it as if it meant everything in the world.

It seems a simple thing to perform life's necessary rituals.

But we sometimes forget how truly simple they are, and consider them just the opposite.

Our obligations to ritual and the mundane are just so many drops in the bucket. Even they are required to fill the bucket eventually, which then is the means by which we wash ourselves and immerse ourselves in the reality of Life. Nothing worthwhile was ever accomplished while ignoring the little things.

We don't want to forget the thrill of a peanut-butter sandwich. It needn't be ordinary. It can be so much more. Sharing with a friend, dressing for the occasion, and just making a picnic of our simple things is probably a wise policy.

We dream.

It shouldn't be startling in the least that some of our dreams are silly or awkward or utterly meaningless.

What matters is that we can.

Dreams are only undefined until we grasp them, and create a means by which to open them up. This is hard work.

And it is not always successful.

But the more we are willing to work on our dreams, the more open we are to seeing possibilities that were just around the corner; only, we didn't know it yet.

We are often drawn to beautiful things.

Our instinct to look forward has everything to do with our success in Life, and as a person.Our best sympathies, our best moments of generosity and caring for others ~
show what we are made of.

Stepping out into Life with a confidence Heaven saw in us since the very Beginning is a gift we all have as children; and some how lose later as we begin to doubt ourselves.

I can think of only one place one might walk with satin shoes. Sacred places are a full-circle of what we once were, and where we are going.