Monday, April 30, 2012


Poison is in everything, and no thing is without poison. The dosage makes it a poison or a remedy.


HoneyBoy is recovering well from his amputation. It's been less than a year and I think that an event so big takes a long time to heal. Just after the accident and surgery, I asked my naturopath what homeopathic remedies I might give HoneyBoy to help manage his pain. The vet prescribed pain killers, of course, and I wanted to do whatever I could to assist HoneyBoy's healing and comfort--especially once the vet deemed that narcotics were no longer in order.

With amputation, phantom limb pain is always a possibility. Of course, we don't know what he is feeling for sure, but there are times HoneyBoy just acts like he is in pain. He doesn't purr much. His nose turns white. He isolates. He just seems off. When he starts behaving in these ways, we know it is time to give him a dose of homeopathics.

If you've ever medicated a cat, you know that getting the medicine in his mouth can be a challenge. One person with two hands is sometimes not enough. However, when HoneyBoy sees one of us coming with the dropper, he gets excited. He opens his mouth and licks his lips in anticipation. Okay...he doesn't really open his mouth, but he does hold still and doesn't pull away. I can give him his dose by squirting the liquid in the corner of his mouth. Once he has swallowed it, he frequently wants to lick the dropper. And then, within minutes, his nose pinks up and he is ready to tear around the house--chasing his brother and generally acting like alpha cat again.

It's not the taste that makes him want the meds. Basically, it tastes like water. He knows relief is coming. That's the only explanation that makes sense.

Clearly, he feels better. Is placebo effect possible in a cat? First of all...I don't think so. And second...who cares? If it works. it works. I don't really care how.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

things i am doing (will do) to improve the world now

How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world.

Anne Frank

  • keep my mouth shut
  • speak up
  • tell the truth
  • do my share
  • continue to learn to love for no reason at all
  • be responsible
  • blame accurately
  • compost
  • recycle
  • suit up and show up


Saturday, April 28, 2012

Friday, April 27, 2012

don't it make you want to go home?

We are all visitors to this time, this place. We are just passing through. Our purpose here is to observe, to learn, to grow, to love... and then we return home.

Australian Aboriginal Proverb

Sometimes it feels like I have been here so long, I've forgotten what home is like.

Tell me. What do you remember?

Thursday, April 26, 2012

love thursday 04.26.12 ~ carry on

In everyone there is the capacity to wake up, to understand, and to love.

Thich Nhat Hanh

The stars and planets have been messing with me. Having so much water in my natal chart, I feel the forces shifting even when I don't know what is happening with my conscious mind.

Mars, the planet of "war," busies itself crossing everyone and everything in its path these days. Needless to say, I've been noticing the conflict cross my path moment by moment today.

I pray that I wake up more in Love and not in War.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

because we haven't had enough dolly lately

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


Wouldn't it be a kick to sit and have tea with her? How can one person come up with so many pithy statements?

Another one I read the other day from Dolly: "I will never be like Meryl Streep...but then she will never be like Dolly." Ain't that the truth?

Wonderful, beautiful, original women--both of them. And talented and...the list goes on.

Speaking of women...did you hear that Tennessee has voted in both the Senate (28-2) and House (80-18) to make miscarriage murder? I wonder how many women are in those legislative bodies. I would guess that not more than 2 senators and not more than 18 members of the house are women. As I understand it, this bill is not limited to situations like violent attacks causing miscarriage so that the attacker can then be charged with murder. It covers any act that might be deemed contributing to miscarriage. According to whom, I wonder?

I think Dolly should run for President and Meryl should be her VP. Maybe things would change for the better...for a change.

(Have you ever noticed how many questions I ask? Must be the Socratic method.)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

you know...she has a point

You own everything that happened to you. Tell your stories.just change their height and hair color. No one ever once has recognized him or herself in my fiction. If people wanted you to write warmly about them, they should've behaved better.

Anne Lamott

Monday, April 23, 2012

what i did this weekend

I rearranged under the kitchen sink, serviced the water filter, and installed an instant hot water dispenser. It will make life much easier to have it.

The black box is the instant hot. In order to get everything to fit, I removed a space consuming shelf from the back of the cupboard. That exposed a couple of pipes with big holes around them, so I filled the holes with foam insulation.

When I removed the shelf, the conduit--which was already in the way--was even more in the way. I moved the connection from the bottom of the switch box to the top and ran the conduit/wire from the top along the front of the cabinet to where it drops down to the garbage disposal.

I also acquired and learned to use a copper tubing cutter. I love tools. I especially love cool tools that are not very expensive that make a job infinitely more doable. So now I have the job done, a new tool, and a new skill.

When we rise in the morning and listen to the radio or read the newspaper, we are confronted with the same sad news: violence, crime, wars, and disasters. I cannot recall a single day without a report of something terrible happening somewhere. Even in these modern times it is clear that one's precious life is not safe. No former generation has had to experience so much bad news as we face today; this constant awareness of fear and tension should make any sensitive and compassionate person question seriously the progress of our modern world.

HH Dalai Lama

Just thought I would share some good news.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

the future

Pacifist soldiers:

I will not carry a gun, Frank. When I got thrown into this war I had a clear understanding with the Pentagon: no guns. I'll carry your books, I'll carry a torch, I'll carry a tune, I'll carry on, carry over, carry forward, Cary Grant, cash and carry, carry me back to Old Virginia, I'll even 'hari-kari' if you show me how, but I will not carry a gun!



Friday, April 20, 2012

i have an idea... #2

Instead of charging 6th graders $100 to participate in school sports, how about professional teams (you know, the ones that make millions and pay the players large sums of money) fund school sports across the board. After all...aren't they the feeder programs?

Thursday, April 19, 2012

love thursday 04.19.12 ~ it could be you

Do not oppress the widow, the orphan, the alien, or the poor; and do not devise evil in your hearts against one another.

Zechariah 7:10
You never know when the other shoe is going to drop. You never know when you will be the one in pain--in need. You never know when you will be the one required to rely on the kindness of strangers.

Even if you have everything you need and a big fat offshore bank account to boot, you never know when you might become one of the least of these. Some of us are not very far from that at the moment ourselves.

You never know.

Listen to your nice.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

note to self: open wide your heart

There is no need to go searching for a remedy for the evils of the time. The remedy already exists – it is the gift of one’s self to those who have fallen so low that even hope fails them. Open wide your heart.

Rene Bazin

Love for no reason at all has escaped me lately. Today drivers, servers, pedestrians--everyone was a bit spacey.

When I took the right away (and it was mine) other drivers honked at me. Really? Yeah. Really.

I have to go back to opening my heart...for all reasons and none at all.

Yeah. I do.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

and god said...

"If there is among you anyone in need, a member of your community in any of your towns within the land that the Lord your God is giving you, do not be hard-hearted or tight-fisted toward your needy neighbor. You should rather open your hand, willingly lending enough to meet the need, whatever it may be."

Deuteronomy 15:7-8

And that seems to be something that was said in a variety of ways in both the OLD and NEW testaments. Lest there be any confusion.

Monday, April 16, 2012

how am i affecting the world today?

(someone turn off the light...)
We are all affecting the world every moment, whether we mean to or not. Our actions and states of mind matter, because we are so deeply interconnected with one another. Working on our own consciousness is the most important thing that we are doing at any moment, and being Love is the supreme creative act.

Ram Dass

Even my kitties are affecting the world every moment. In a good way...a very good way.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

good to know i'm getting it right

Doing nothing is better than being busy doing nothing.

Lao Tzu

Saturday, April 14, 2012

live everything now

(strawberries liked the greenhouse, too)

Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are written in a very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will find them gradually, without noticing it, and live along some distant day into the answer.

Rainer Maria Rilke

Friday, April 13, 2012

we have met the enemy and he is us

(first shoots of the season)
That immigrant culture that has renewed us … has been at the core of our strength. I don’t know when immigrants became the enemy.

Condoleezza Rice

former Secretary of State

speaking at Duke University

I've wondered about this for some time. Unless one is Native American, we are all immigrants or from immigrant stock. Some of our ancestors came willingly. Some did not. It is likely that Condoleezza's did not.

Some came legally. Some did not.

Perhaps I would feel different if I lived nearer a border. Perhaps not.

What's true is that we need reform--of laws, procedures, and most of all...attitudes. The attitude adjustment is needed across the board, no doubt...on both sides of the border.

Thursday, April 12, 2012

love thursday 04.12.12 ~ love is just common sense

(see how much banana has grown?)

Love, compassion and concern for others are real sources of happiness. If you have these in abundance, you will not be disturbed even by the most uncomfortable circumstances. If you nurse hatred, however, you will not be happy even in the lap of luxury. Thus, if we really want happiness, we must widen the sphere of love. This is both religious thinking and basic common sense.

Dalai Lama

I'd like to sit down and have a beer with HHDL...and John Lennon...and Jesus. They got it. I'd like to be with people who get it for a while.

Happy Love Thursday. You all get it, too.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

how may i serve?

Helping, fixing, and serving represent three different ways of seeing life. When you help, you see life as weak. When you fix, you see life as broken. When you serve, you see life as whole. Fixing and helping may be the work of the ego, and service the work of the soul.

Rachel Naomi Remen

A Time for Listening and Caring

I love to help--especially if it is something I am good at or it involves learning something new.

Fixing gives me great satisfaction. You will have noticed that in all the reports I make on this blog. And being a homeowner, I always have something I can fix.

I believe she is right about service. It comes from a different place. My inner experience is very different from either of the other two. Service expands us both--the server and the served--and lifts the experience to sacred.

How may I serve? How may I serve you?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

another truth quote

Sometimes we tell the truth because we just can't help ourselves. Sometimes we tell the truth because the truth is all we have to give. And sometimes, we tell the truth because we owe the other person at least that much.

Author Unknown

Monday, April 09, 2012

full menu

I am not interested in picking up crumbs of compassion thrown from the table of someone who considers himself my master. I want the full menu of rights.

Bishop Desmond Tutu

Sunday, April 08, 2012

happy easter

(my new boots after the 1st mow of the year)

Nothing is ever lost by courtesy. It is the cheapest of pleasures, costs nothing, and conveys much.

Erastus Wiman

A good religion for any of us.

Saturday, April 07, 2012

caution: more than one swear word in this post i call "good friday confession" (and i'm not even catholic)...true story

(remember i said the fire and water
in my chart make steam? well....)

Friday afternoon at Office Max, I stood in line at the cashier. He attended to the customer ahead of me, but there was a lull after he called for help from someone on the floor. The printer cartridges in my basket qualified me for free batteries and I didn't know where to find them. I took advantage of the lull in their transaction to ask. He told me where to look--literally 5 steps from where I was standing.

I set my basket by the register and walked to the battery display. While I was procuring the batteries, two more people joined the line to pay--an older man and then a woman. The man who came after me scooted up so close to the register that I had to squeeze by him, excusing myself as I went, to return to my basket.

Since four people now stood in line, the existing cashier called for another to come check. When cashier number two arrived, he said, "I can help the next person in line." The first cashier said, "And that would be her," pointing at me. So I raised my basket and turned to go around to the other counter where the two cashiers now stood back to back.

As I did so, the male customer bumped into me, pushing past to be next. Did I mention he was behind me? I wasn't looking at him as I moved. The man growled something at me, implying that I was out of line (pun intended). My limbic brain kicked. Fight popped up--not flight. "He told me to go!" My voice probably registered as yelling to some observers in the area. Again the man grumbled.

"Be a cranky old man! I don't give a shit!" Oh, yes. I said that.

"Nice talk. What are you? A nun?" cranky man asked. Apparently, it is worse for a woman to say "shit" to a man's face than it is for a man to body-block a woman to get ahead of her in line.

"As a matter of fact, I am!" I retorted, putting my ink and batteries on the counter--ahead of him.

"It figures." He stood there for a second then dropped his would-be purchases on the counter at the next empty check stand, stomped out of the store, and drove off in his white sedan.

"What an asshole..." in not quite a stage whisper and still mad, I had my last word. Oh, yes. I did.

At the completion of my transaction, the first cashier turned to me and said, "He was cranky. He almost ran me over in the parking lot."

I apologized for my behavior. Cashier number two said, "No. You're good. You didn't hit anybody. It's okay." (That's true. I didn't...this time...but that's another story.)

Even before I left the store, I started wondering what was going on for that man. He could have been in grief or pain. He could have been in a hurry for myriad reasons. He could have just been a personality disordered asshole. I don't know. It doesn't matter. The interaction happened. I swore in his direction. I got angry--and yes, he behaved badly. At that moment, I didn't love him for no reason at all. So, I prayed for him and sent him blessings.

If you watched Brené's TED talk that I posted a few days ago, you will note that her Texas family's motto is "Lock and Load." It's probably a good thing I don't own a gun. I want to be a pacifist. I am not.

But I can continue on my quest for love--with or without reason.

Friday, April 06, 2012

time for a new story

Everywhere I go — from villages outside Kandy, Sri Lanka, to community centers in Amman, Jordan, to offices at the State Department in Washington, D.C. — I find people with a similar story. When thousands of people discover that their story is also someone else's story, they have the chance to write a new story together.

Eboo Patel

Thursday, April 05, 2012

love thursday 04.05.12 ~ i love spa day with mary

Love is creative. It does not flow along the easy paths, spending itself in the attractive. It cuts new channels, goes where it is needed.

Evelyn Underhill

Wednesday, April 04, 2012


So let us go forward quietly, each on his own path, forever making for the light.

Vincent Van Gogh

I've always loved Vincent Van Gogh's story and his work. Yes, he was a tortured soul, but what a spirit.

And I had the opportunity to see his work at the Art Institute in Chicago during my one visit there. Breathtaking. It's alive. Prints do NOT do it justice.

Tuesday, April 03, 2012

post birthday

Just remember, there's a right way and a wrong way to do everything and the wrong way is to keep trying to make everybody else do it the right way.

M*A*S*H, Colonel Potter

For my birthday, I was well celebrated. It was the first nice day of spring and I actually got to go topless on my way home from work. (Doesn't that just burn your eyes?)

I think I will just keep celebrating as long as someone is willing to celebrate with me. I think I am lined up through the weekend.

Monday, April 02, 2012

time for everything

(the pillow was there. it was in his way. so he sat while he ate.)

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven... a time to throw away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing; a time to seek, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to throw away; a time to tear, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak; a time to love, and a time to hate; a time for war, and a time for peace.

Ecclesiastes 3:1, 5-8

This is one of my favorite passages. It covers the middle way. It's not about always being in the middle but finding the middle through the averages.

Wisdom arrives when we know which is which.

Every time I read this passage, I hear this song (which I also love):

And now, I have an ear worm.