Saturday, July 31, 2010

random thoughts saturday

Yesterday I saw this quote from Anne Rice:

For those who care, and I understand if you don't: Today I quit being a Christian. I'm out. I remain committed to Christ as always but not to being 'Christian' or to being part of Christianity. It's simply impossible for me to 'belong' to this quarrelsome, hostile, disputatious, and deservedly infamous group. For ten ...years, I've tried. I've failed. I'm an outsider. My conscience will allow nothing else.

In the name of Christ, I refuse to be anti-gay. I refuse to be anti-feminist. I refuse to be anti-artificial birth control. I refuse to be anti-Democrat. I refuse to be anti-secular humanism. I refuse to be anti-science. I refuse to be anti-life. In the name of ...Christ, I quit Christianity and being Christian. Amen.

~ Anne Rice ~
as announced on her
Facebook page

I resonate with these words.

Then today I saw this. I admit, I didn't read the article...just the headline. If the headline is true, I don't need to read the article. If someone wants to inform me that the headline is not true, I am willing to listen to the facts.

If the headline is true, then I really agree with Anne.

God help us all.

Friday, July 30, 2010

home depot redux

Made my trip to Home Depot. I still have stuff to return and I still am not done with the project. Closer. I am getting closer. By the end of the weekend--I hope--it will be done.

Some of you know that I buy hope when I buy lottery tickets. And you may also know that I buy a little more hope when I send in my Publisher's Clearing House Sweepstakes. I do my part just in case the gods want me to win.

Well, the other day when I was sitting in the yard in the mud hole working on the irrigation project, a little black van pulled into the driveway across the street. For you not in the know, Dave Sayer from PCH arrives in a little black van.

Shit! They won!

Yes, I would be full of envy given that I faithfully send in my entries.

It was a dry cleaner's van. So sorry for my neighbors...and for me.

I mean...what would you do if your neighbor won? Really.

Thursday, July 29, 2010

love thursday 07.29.10 ~ short list

"Love is something sent from HEAVEN to worry the HELL out of you!" :) - Dolly

(posted by Dolly Parton to Facebook...just like that)

I love...


Home Depot

and finishing projects.

Today just might be the day. I made my one trip to Home Depot yesterday--alas, not to return unneeded parts. I bought more. I think I figured out the problem--one the builder made in the original installation that I inadvertently repeated. (He, as a builder, should have known better.)

Trust me. I will keep you posted...whether you want to know or not.

Happy Love Thursday!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

home depot

My home away from home...

1 trip Sunday

3 on Monday

1 on Tuesday

and hopefully one today--to return all the parts I don't need.

I replaced the sprinkler valves for three zones in the irrigation system. It works. I couldn't find any leaks. You would not believe the amount of water coming out of the system now! Hopefully, our water bill will go down and the sink hole that has been developing in the middle of the yard will stop.

From my lips to God's ears....

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


Made three trips to Home Depot yesterday. I will make one--and expect to make two, at least--today.

More later....

Monday, July 26, 2010


Sometimes harsh words or physical intervention may be called for. Patience safeguards our inner composure: we are in a stronger position to judge an appropriately non-violent response than if we are overwhelmed by negative thoughts and emotions. It is the opposite of cowardice, which arises when confidence is lost as a result of fear. Being patient means we remain firm even if we are afraid.

~ HH Dalai Lama ~

Does this also apply to the plumbing job I'm about to begin?

Sunday, July 25, 2010


I object to violence because when it appears to do good, the good is only temporary--the evil it does is permanent.

~ Mahatma Gandhi ~

Saturday, July 24, 2010


Just as we should cultivate more gentle and peaceful relations with our fellow human beings, we should also extend that same kind of attitude towards the natural environment. Morally speaking, we should be concerned for our whole environment.

~ HH Dalai Lama ~

We are all connected...human, animal, plant, mineral. Planets, asteroids, galaxies.

We must think and plan beyond today. Seven generations beyond now is not too forward in our thinking.

When I hear of the short-sighted decisions based on greed, I feel so sad. I am developing a passion for businesses that do good and right.

Of course, businesses need to make a profit. Profit is possible at the same time we take care of others.

Greed is the issue. More is not always better. Greed is not sustainable. What's good and right is.

Friday, July 23, 2010

wouldn't it be wonderful if...

...we all did what is right...

...and we had a more common understanding of what "right" is?

Thursday, July 22, 2010

love thursday 07.22.10 ~ interview with elizabeth warren (reprinted from sojourners)

(hope springs eternal)

This may be a tad long for some but I think it is well worth the read.

I have been saying that one of the biggest problems we have is greed. Greed then causes corporations (and individuals) to choose unethical behaviors and the snowball grows out of control.

Elizabeth Warren articulates that point clearly in the context of the banking industry:

Leveling the Playing Field: An interview with Elizabeth Warren

by Jim Wallis and Jeannie Choi

Elizabeth Warren is more than just the head of Congress' panel reviewing the bank bailout (officially, the Troubled Asset Relief Program). Along with being a Harvard Law professor, she's also a plain-spoken and passionate advocate for everyday people who is deeply motivated by her Oklahoma Methodist upbringing, as she described in an interview with Sojourners editor-in-chief Jim Wallis and assistant editor Jeannie Choi in February 2010.

Wallis: Particularly for people of faith and conscience, what's at stake in the battle over financial regulation that we're in now?

Warren: Our future is at stake, and the future of our children. The story works this way: We had a boom-and-bust economy from 1794 until 1930. Our young nation would lurch from moments of great prosperity to moments of economic panic. Coming out of the 1930s, our leaders crafted a set of basic rules that put fairness into the marketplace: FDIC insurance that made it safe to put money in banks; Glass-Steagall, that said banks that take deposits cannot go out and speculate with your money; some honesty rules for Wall Street through the SEC. Those rules brought us 50 years of economic security and prosperity.

By the 1980s, some of those were outmoded - but instead of trying to think through what kind of rules we need to create a fair marketplace, we just began to throw the rules out. The credit marketplace became a lawless arena.

Credit cards had been access to modest amounts of credit on fair terms; that model was tossed out. Instead, Wall Street developed a model of tricking people - pretending that a credit card was 2.9 percent financing and then making all the money on the tricks and traps buried in the fine print. A credit card agreement in 1980 was one page; by the early 2000s, it was more than 30 pages and unreadable - that's the point.

The mortgage industry introduced teaser-rate mortgages, "liar's loans" - mortgages that they knew, when they issued them, that the family after two years would either have to find a way to refinance, with very high fees for the company, or would lose the home.

In this lawless environment, Wall Street companies figured out how to trick their way into billions of dollars annually from hard-working middle-class families. That drove up profits and bonuses in the industry - and risk for families and the entire economy.

Wallis: When we were afraid of the meltdown, we extended grace to the bankers, and then they extend no grace to homeowners. They're modifying so few loans; I read that a quarter of the money spent on bonuses at the big banks last year would be enough to prevent or postpone projected foreclosures through 2012.

Warren: What we do about this is a measure of ourselves. If this is how we define ourselves - that the powerful feast off the rest of us - then that's what we've become. We could have a lawless world in which the fast and the slick can take whatever they can get their hands on. Some of us will do all right with that. But millions of families will get caught - if it's not credit cards, it's mortgages, or overdraft on checking accounts, or payday loans.

What's at stake here is how we want to live in markets. If we get this right, we'll have it right for another 50 years - we'll have it right for our children and grandchildren. ...

Wallis: I remember the day we both were at the White House, and President Obama spoke about meeting with several ordinary Americans who had been victims of these predatory and abusive practices. It's the stories of ordinary people that ought to change us. You're a veteran Sunday school teacher; you've been using the language of David and Goliath.

Warren: It is a David and Goliath story. I remember one woman at that event - we spoke afterward. She spoke about how deeply humiliated she felt. She didn't just lose money and her house: She lost her sense of self-worth. She had the sense that she was stupid, that she was not up to the task of surviving in this world.

So I say: Look, this is about a set of rules. We used to have a good set of basic rules that governed credit. They were largely usury-based rules, biblical in origin, which had been part of America's laws since colonial times. They were very quietly tossed out in the 1980s. That's what provoked this race to the bottom. My push right now is - we can change this. We are the ones who determine what the rules are!

Wallis: There are issues of personal responsibility to look at, but you've also spoken against scapegoating consumers. How do you strike the balance?

Warren: So long as credit card agreements are unreadable, and car loans come with hidden kickbacks, and mortgages carry the seeds of their own foreclosures from the day they're issued, then we need a change in the rules, period. When those are changed, people have to look hard at their own values and spending habits. But our failure to do that is not an excuse for someone else to cheat us. For me, that's the heart of it. ...

Choi: How does your faith inform the work you are doing today?

Warren: I grew up in Oklahoma in what we used to refer to as a mixed marriage - my mother was Baptist and my father was Methodist! I grew up in a world of Christian service, and the whole notion that some people of faith embrace greed is so deeply troubling to me.
My Methodist roots - a tradition that worship is doing what is right - show in every bit of work I do. It is about helping others. That guides my life every day.

Listen to the Sojourners audio interview with Elizabeth Warren.

What does this have to do with Love Thursday? Absolutely everything.

(Can I get an "amen"?)

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

ready, set, go

My proofs arrived today. I looked them over, made my paper choice, and set the store up to sell the book.

Ready, set, go....

I hope you enjoy the preview.

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

another dolly moment

(see how excited they are? they can hardly contain themselves)

When I'm inspired, I get excited because I can't wait to see what I'll come up with next!

~ Dolly Parton ~

I would love to have a cuppa coffee (or something) with Dolly. I want some of that to rub off on me. What an incredible woman!

On another note, don't let Mijo and HoneyBoy fool you in this picture. Mijo caught a shrew this morning. Brought it in the house to show me. I put them both outside. He brought it in again. I put them out again. He brought it in again...and ate it. So glad he is getting that part. If he is going to catch them, I want him to make good use of them--besides as a toy.

And on still another note...


Monday, July 19, 2010

another monday

Top 10 things I loved about the weekend:

10. Got my replacement Jawbone bluetooth in the mail. (Lost the first one. Damn.)

9. Sun...sun...and more sun.

8. The walks SO and I are taking are getting longer and longer.

7. Mijo, HoneyBoy, and Misi all let me brush/comb them.

6. Spent time with my mom.

5. My sister called me to tell me she wants multiple copies of the book.

4. I washed some windows.

3. SO and I played a board game (Life Stories) that created conversation and we learned things we didn't know about each other...even after all these years.

2. I replaced the batteries in the remotes to my car. Saved myself $200 dollars.

1. For moments...I felt like I did in my 30s. Truly.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

nelson mandela

June 2010, Nelson Mandela returns to his cell

There is nothing like returning to a place that remains unchanged to find the ways in which you yourself have altered.

Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world. For to be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others.

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.
If you want to make peace with your enemy, you have to work with your enemy. Then he becomes your partner.

It is better to lead from behind and to put others in front, especially when you celebrate victory when nice things occur. You take the front line when there is danger. Then people will appreciate your leadership.

Let freedom reign. The sun never set on so glorious a human achievement. Only free men can negotiate; prisoners cannot enter into contracts.

There is no passion to be found playing small – in settling for a life that is less than the one you are capable of living.

Your freedom and mine cannot be separated. There is no such thing as part freedom

When the water starts boiling it is foolish to turn off the heat.

Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, born 18 July 1918, served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999, and was the first South African president to be elected in a fully representative democratic election.

Reprinted from Paulo Coehlo's blog
17 July 2010

Saturday, July 17, 2010


I put new strings on my guitar and cleaned it up for the photos for the book. Haven't tuned it yet. Maybe I'll do that this weekend. The callouses are gone from my fingers. Not sure I can play any more.

Friday, July 16, 2010

simple things: happy birthday, christina

The lovely Christina at Soul Aperture is having a birthday today. We are having a surprise party for her, so stop in and leave her a birthday greeting. I know she'll be glad you did.

Christina is the host of Simple Things. This post is in her honor...

Sunny days

In the summer or anytime

Make me glad for

Plenty of reasons.

Loving the warmth and brightness,

Especially for...

Topless drives

Having shave ice for dessert

Instigating conversations with neighbors and passersby

New bamboo shoots

Green things growing in our garden

Simply hanging out and turning brown

Happy Birthday, Christina! May you have many more....


Contest update: I got an honorable mention and a gift certificate for $10! (The squirrels will be very happy.)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

love thursday 07.15.10 ~ labor of love

The book is done. 80 pages.

This is the tribute I wrote for my father who was a logger.

I uploaded the book tonight and ordered my first copies. They should be here soon. I will keep you posted.

Yes, you can order yours now, too. If you want to wait until I look it over first...that'd be okay.

I'll figure out a way to get you an autographed copy if you would like one.

Happy Love Thursday!

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

kitty hammock

(what better place to be on a hot summer day)

(dude loves my car)

(look how hard he is sleeping)

(upside down even)


(...and smiling)

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

expanding faith

I have found that those who can tolerate ambiguity and hold darkness are those who rise to great faith. Faith gets purified every time you go through the cycle of doubt and failure. On this wheel of fortune just about everything is purified: our self-image, our God-image, our worldview. A full life could be described as these three worlds—ever expanding.

~ Richard Rohr ~

Ambiguity? Check.

Darkness? Check.

Doubt? Check.

Failure? Check.

I know I am becoming a person of great faith through this particular time of my life. I am grateful for the faith. The process? I would much rather choose a different way. Truly.

Monday, July 12, 2010

some days i want to BE dolly

It's a good thing I was born a girl, otherwise I'd be a drag queen.

~ Dolly Parton ~

Sunday, July 11, 2010

my garden

I love this red banana--as you well know, by now. True, it is not a native plant. I do have plenty of natives...the daisies, the hydrangeas, and the strawberries (you can't see them here, but they are below the daisies...all volunteers).

At the end of winter, the banana was at or below the bottom of the window. I love how it grows so much in one season! Every time I see it, it makes my heart sing.

What is making your heart sing today?

Saturday, July 10, 2010


(clematis...not mosquito)

Went for a couple mile hike today. Got eaten by mosquitoes.

Does anyone know what mosquitoes go for that would make them love me so much? I am their foie gras...their molten lava cake...their soup to nuts.

I went to the Audubon Society and hiked the trails. Everywhere there are signs about protecting the wildlife. I wondered about that as I was squishing mosquitoes. One of them was full of blood--my blood. I didn't feel too bad for that one.

What do you think? Was I supposed to protect them, too?

Friday, July 09, 2010


Liberty is not built on the doctrine that a few nobles have the right to inherit the earth. No. NO! It stands on this principle: that the meanest, and the lowest of people are, by the unalterable and indefeasible laws of god and nature as well entitled to the benefit of the air to breath, light to see, food to eat, and clothes to wear as the nobles or the king! THAT is LIBERTY. And Liberty will reign in America!

~ John Adams ~

Did you happen to see the John Adams miniseries? It was great. Love that Abigail. Where would we be now if not for her?

(I'm just sayin'....)

Thursday, July 08, 2010

love thursday 07.08.10 ~ friendship

Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art ... it has no survival value; rather is one of those things that give value to survival.

~ C.S. Lewis ~

Happy Love Thursday!

Thank you for being my friend...bloggy or otherwise.

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

happy birthday, brother

(banana leaf, over exposed)
If we develop concern for other people's welfare, share other people's suffering, and help them, ultimately we will benefit. If we think only of ourselves and forget about others, ultimately we will lose. The more we care for the happiness of others, the greater our own sense of well-being becomes.

~ HH Dalai Lama ~

For the Dalai Lama's birthday, Se'lah hosted A Random Act of Kindness Day. "Do a random kindness for someone. It can be small."

Today was garbage day. I planned to bring the neighbors' cans in from the street for them. One of my neighbors got there first and brought mine in for me.

So, HHDL, in honor of your birthday, I just tried to be kind. Period.

I hope you had a good birthday and if you are out there listening, please send some birthday blessings to my brother. Today is his birthday...and Mom and I are taking him to lunch.

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

note to my 20 year old self

Be happy.
Contentment leads us closer to Allah.
There aren't any shortcuts to tomorrow.
We have to find our way.
To know where we're going is only part of it.
Remembering where we've been is important too.
If you ever get lost, don't worry.
The people who love you will find you. Count on it.
Allah's love is most merciful!
Life isn't days and years;
It's what you do with time and with all Allah's blessings and grace that is inside of you.
Make life Beautiful.

author unknown

Learn everything you can about computers--you won't regret it.

People will falsely accuse you of doing things that they themselves are doing. Don't fall for it. Trust yourself. You know the truth.

The same one who will falsely accuse you will take advantage of you in other ways, too. You deserve better.

Love won't heal if the one you love doesn't want to be healed.

Read more Shakespeare--and pay attention.

Vanity never trumps pain.

Some day you will long for the body you have now. Enjoy it. It is beautiful.

Religion isn't the answer. Your relationship with the Divine is.

Your health and well-being are more important than any commitments you have made.

Wear comfortable shoes.

Watch out for those who redefine reality. RUN!

All those messages about being "not _____ enough" or "too _____" are hogwash.

You can do anything--but follow your passion.

Someone will come along who sees you and loves you. You will be surprised at who it is, but be open to it anyway. Your whole life will change...for the better.

You deserve to be loved and cherished.

Monday, July 05, 2010


Provision for others is a fundamental responsibility of human life.

~ Woodrow Wilson ~

When will we ever learn?

Oh, when we will we ever learn?

Sunday, July 04, 2010

sunday list

Grateful for...

sleeping with my head elevated
(even though I still wake up looking like someone else)

two orange boys in my life
(who are now over one year old)

good health / dental care
(even though it is expensive)

wonderful blogger friends
(who light candles, pray, and do naked healing dances for me)

(which feels a lot like saturday this week)

a little old kitty girl
(who has finally forgiven me for bringing home two orange boys)

pain meds


(making progress on my book...)

(Happy Fourth of July!)

By the way, I kept waking up in the night and didn't want to get up and take more pain meds because I was feeling a bit nauseated. So, in my head, I sang How Great Thou Art. Made the pain dissipate enough that I was able to go back to sleep.

I wonder what tonight's song will be?

Saturday, July 03, 2010

reconciliation personified

I got this link from Chookooloonks, who said, "This is the kind of Christian I want to be."

Right on!

Friday, July 02, 2010

oral tradition

I know that defeat is a great master. But I don't want to learn anything today.

(from Paulo Coelho)

Did I say "tradition"? I meant surgery. Today.

Light your candles. Do the naked healing dance. Think of me at 10:00.

On one hand, I am sure everything will be fine. On the other...I am really not looking forward to this experience.

I'll keep you posted.

UPDATE: I am home. Just took some big whoppin' pain meds and I hope they kick in before the local wears off. Other than the fact that I am minus some teeth and a lot of money and that my eyelid is numb, all is well. Thanks for all your good wishes.

Love you. Mean it.

Thursday, July 01, 2010

love thursday 07.01.10 ~ "why have you not been to see me?"

(mary in the churchyard at painted church in hawaii)

A man said to a Dervish: “Why do I not see you more often?” The Dervish replied, “Because the words ‘Why have you not been to see me?’ are sweeter to my ear than the words ‘Why have you come again?”’

~ Sufi tradition ~

Yesterday I attended another continuing education seminar. The best part of it was seeing someone I haven't seen in a very long time--someone who has been very important to me. We shared a couple hugs. We caught up (as much as you can during the breaks of a seminar).

I feel blessed. A place deep inside me feels comforted.

Is there someone you have been missing? Wondering about? Wishing you could talk to?

Perhaps it is time to reach out. Call. Write. Email. Ask the universe for a serendipitous meeting.

"Beloved...why have you not been to see me?"