Saturday, December 20, 2008

Decorations all hung (by the chimny) with care

See even more jingles...









It's a marshmallow world in the winter....


Lines from Christmas songs run through my head as I go through the pictures I've taken over the last couple of days. We had a winter 'storm' come through, though the flakes were not big, the main part of the 'storm' went around us. We had what I refer to as lake affect snow; which of course any lakes or water for that matter is a mile straight down it wasn't, it did have the same affect. Beauty.

This is where I work, at the GO building.

This is the road going away from the 'village' towards the Shrine of Ages, Market Plaza and such.
I know Susan is not missing this as it's been cold, but I wouldn't miss this show.

My heart is awed by the greatness in the beauty that surrounds me.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Sunday, November 30, 2008





Saturday, November 29, 2008

There and back again

Today I hiked with Jill and Jen to mile and a half house. Needless to say it's one and a half miles into the canyon. It was amazing to look up to the walls, smelling the crisp clean air. It takes me longer to walk down the trail as the slopes tweak my knees a bit; ace bandage or not, so they put me in the lead. Made it there in 1 hour and 15 minutes. But coming back up I was again in lead, and kept moving. It felt good to hear them huffing and puffing as much as I was...trust me I moved slow; though all of us were pleasantly surprised we made it up in and hour and a half. It was exhilarating. I was buzzing for over an hour.
Surprisingly just over 8 hours later, thanks to an 800 mg ibuprophen, even my knee doesn't hurt. Pictures to come later.

Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Well here it is the day after the big turkey. Normally I'd be decorating, but they won't have trees here until the 10th and I'm not about to attempt to go anywhere near a 'township' to get one. I'll wait until next weekend. In the mean while, the Christmas cards are out! (I addressed them while the turkey was cooking and we were cursing our oven).

Our lovely oven decided to go wierd on us; since we've moved in here it hasn't worked right but we thought we'd outsmart it by getting an oven thermometer and work with it. That worked until yesterday, when Mike put the turkey in and checked it 20 minutes later it was at 420, he turned it down, checked it, it went down to 200, and so on. The turkey was done in 3 hours when we planned on 6.

Everything still turned out great, had our 'family' of friends over; they brought the sides and we all had a good time. It snowed on and off throughout the day, then melted overnight.

I hope everyone enjoys the great open doorway to the Christmas season.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

HappyThanksgiving

It's still early here, nearly 6am. We have a light dusting of snow so far...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Shells

When I first came to St. Augustine and started playing on the vast beach there I picked up a lot of shells. I miss walking with T talking or just walking in companionable silence. She told me 'when you bend down to pick up a shell, don't leave it there, pick it up anyways; even if it's not something you thought it was'.

I thought of that statement yesterday when I was walking on a trail through the trees back to work; there was some pretty amazing rocks; some I picked up some I just walked past. But those I picked up my imagination saw some beauty. One is small and dark as an inky night sky; there's a few white dots resembling stars with one 'scratch' making it look like a falling star.

I am still amazed at the colors, fragments of fossils from life so long ago, and shapes of the rocks I walk on and by. I imagine the many lifetimes they've gone through, the pressures put upon them to create them as a whole. Yeah, I hear my siblings; 'only you can see things totally different', however the lesson I take to heart; I sense the 'pressure' comes and goes with the ebb and flow of the tide, they pass; we create the 'colors', the visions people see from us, and leave our mark in the only way we as individuals do.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Life in the Canyon

I know, I know, I hear the echo in almost every phone call I get from my family of friends. 'You haven't blogged.' Usually I get an email or two regarding that, but life has everyone a bit busy, and the economy has everyone just a bit worried. I had said I would use it for creative purposes, however, my creativity has been utilized in my environment as you'll soon read. We had our first snow on November 10th. It was beautiful, especially since we were snug in the apartment and I have been going through as MJ put, a 'nesting' stage. Purchasing new curtains (got a great deal), found a beginners acoustic guitar for a great price, it now hangs on my wall; and planning for the holidays. Mike's at home working, doing web programming, so he's been doing the cooking, he's pretty darned good, so I guess that leaves the environment for my homebodiness. (hey that's a new word that's not even in dictionary.com)



I'm looking forward to getting a tree and decorating it. So much that I've entered a 'contest' with a friend regarding our decorating our trees. Yes a picture will be put on the ole blogger. I have to laugh as I remember last Christmas here with Susan; we went to the dollar store, I bought a 12 inch metal tree with bells on it, brought it home, set it on the table and said "trees up!" This year I've already purchased some decor for home and tree, the rest is all around me in its natural state. I'm waiting on the general store to provide the tree. I have some music; Bette Midler, Manaheim Steamroller, but now feel the need to get more.

Now for baking. I've an idea I think will make a great dunk. Cookies! Well that's not original, I know, but maybe a tin with 3 different kind of chocolate chip cookies; the regular, my famous 'damed good chocolate chocolate chip with cinnamon', and peanut butter chcocolate chip. Not the kind with a kiss in it, but with chocolate chips in them. There are moments I like to think outside the proverbial canyon, just moments mind you. Of course I have to say 'canyon' instead of box, well, sometimes you just have to fit the sayings to your environment; 'as the crow flies' is now 'as the raven flies', etc.

I do enjoy my new job here. The people I work with are an absolute great bunch of people. It's exciting to show off what we offer to new people visiting the canyon, not to mention meeting such a variety of people. It's like HR only better. Oops, they better not read that part as I do miss the fun there; but I think I've found the right crevice to be in. Crevice, ha-ha, get it? One of my old boss' came through the office last month and took a double take and said "everytime I see you, you're in a different place." I take that as a compliment for both of the meanings; literally and figuratively.

So there you are my dears, the update. Happier now? Good.

Tweeners

"Another term to describe the demographic of kids ages 9-12, also known as "tweens" '

This is the general meaning to the term tweeners. I'm adding one more...'of those who find in general where it may apply in life's terms; either socially or personally, of falling in between the cracks.' I guess I'm in the perfect place for that...

The company I work for has decided to purchase a different health plan. It is EXPENSIVE, not only as a deduction from the check for the premium but the copay as well has doubled. Luckily I work in a part that pays better, if I had my old job, it would definately eat half of my paycheck.

I have no little children here to raise, I'm not in my child bearing years, where I am at has a clinic that can take care of most emergencies. Otherwise one would have to go to Flagstaff, one and a half hour from here - with or with out insurance that is a very expensive ride.

Rather then participating I'm debating the logic of putting what would be the premium into my savings as a direct deposit from my check. That way I would also keep the interest earned on my moneys.

Which brings me to another annoying topic. Banks. There are several people I know that can only get a checking account because of bad credit. Well after this year, I'm sure there'll be an abundance. What I find illogical is they cannot get a savings account. Maybe my logic is screwed, but wouldn't it be more prudent to have a savings account rather then a checking account? To me the message given is 'we want you to spend all of your money, if you go over then that's pure profit for us.' Which is, I'm sure, the reasoning; however, as the economy changes so must our 'message'.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Going Hiking?

I was asked as I left work already changed into 3 light layers for the top, one for pants, shoes, hiking pole, hat and backpack with items.

"No I think I'll go shopping." I replied shashaying around.

Then I met Carissa on the trail head and we started meandering down after visiting with Valerie for a little while. Went past the first tunnel, got half way to the second when I inclined for us to head back up. I was hesitant on going that far (which isn't far at all) because of the steep climb back; when Carissa showed me a tool that will be invaluable for the rest of my life. Pace. Slow as it was it was constant, almost to a stop at some point, but not. The body kept propelling upward, momentum forward, slow; but even.

I'm not dreading the next trip down; as I know how I'll handle the long, steep trail up; a slow continuous pace.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Lunch

Requiring spontaneity. Lighting that summoning cigarette as I wait for the bus. It comes, as these words flow through my head; my day. Cause and reason unwound by chaos. Seasons echo within the flowing moods as clouds roll in and by. I hope it doesn't rain till after I'm home; but stick around 5 minutes that'll change.

Why is it everything seems uphill?

I wish I had a small sketchbook instead of listening to a co worker argue with an intended mate at a table near by while I await my lunch. Wow! The baggage she carries. She had this very paniked look in her eyes as we were introduced as they started leaving. So much read in those looks and words unsaid.

Now the corner is unbostructed from bodies sitting as my waiter walks by; still with no soup. Movement only stirs between the bus girl clearing and my pen in our little corner of the restaurant. A cloud grows outside of the window facing the Canyon; the ruffled edgeds colored in blue.

Ahh, alas the soup. French Onion. "Where are the onions?" I ask my spoon as it stirs the bottom of very nearly broth; searching. Shaking my head I release all words but one; eat.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Conditioning

Yesterday Sarah and I walked down the Bright Angel Trail. The origional goal was the mile and a half house until my knee let me know it didn't want to go that far so we went to the second tunnel.



Can you see the face etched in the rock? It is a hell-uv-a downward slope but goes fast...on the way down. Coming back up on the other hand is quite another story.



Which whether standing next to or within the canyon I feel about as big as this guy sunning on a rock.

Today we took the rim path to an unmaintained trail that leads to a cave overlooking the canyon. Looking down at the path I hesitated considerably, but with the urging of Sarah I went and was glad I did.

Contemplation cave



Contemplations cave
Destinys journey
Of fear and freedom




** note to CrypticFragments, looked at your profile, I remember you! You were here when my sis and I first came. Wow, small world. The cave is just off the rim trail about 1/4 mile from Hopi house. Small trail one barely discerns it's there; but I was told about it. Now the secret is out.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Decisions

The seeds are starting in the depth of my mind as new pathways open; new opportunities, reinventing yet again...existance in exquisiteness. I'm entering a new profession; no, enhancing the known into expansion. Slowly creativity flows. I will write more creatively on this site as I start to expand my horizons, both personally and professionally. Humbly I packed my backpack with necessary items for a small trek down into the canyon tomorrow night as a small group of us will start preparing for our journey (I hope, it hasn't been approved at work yet) down to Phantom Ranch in December for 2 nights. As the sage says...a journey begins with a single step.

On the way home

Ahh, the silence refreshed

After the gaggle of girls disembark before me

Lending an opening for the crickets to sing

Their night song

In the bright moonlight

Shimmering blue

Lighting my path…home.

Saturday, September 06, 2008

September

On the 1st was the Family Fun Day at the Grand Canyon Rec Center. It was great. No pics, because this is a public blog and I don't have permission from those in it. I still wonder where all the kids hide...

Mike is back, living and working in Tusuyan. We're talking and building and learning.

I got a promotion. Next Thursday on 9/11 I start in sales. Auspicious? We shall see.

Not much planned for this month, reading The Portrait of Dorian Grey. Pretty interesting. Read the Handmaid's Tale, was depressed for several hours after; but recognized the timelessness in it.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

Enjoy the dance of life

Here it is Mada's day of renewal 5 years ago, into what is unknown to us and what would've been her 20th year. I smile as I feel the waves, and the tears fall, my hands shake as my center rotates yet another round; then it passes. Like all things.

I still make plans with those I have come to be close to here in the canyon: hiking to phantom ranch for Thanksgiving, watching the sunrise from the porch of the El Tovar with a cup of their really good hot chocolate on Christmas morning as there is a holy sanctuary outside 'my back door'.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Is it just my pride?

Gone are the 'hopes', as they are in the same category as 'try'. Rather then 'try', I will do, rather then 'hope', I will plan.

Dreams are not illusions based upon hope, they are becoming goals. As the structure falls a new foundation is bourne into the reality of what I am and am about to become...

Sunday, August 17, 2008

Moments before...

Moments before I wake up
I still feel you touch me
As you had not so very long ago
My body remembers
As it aches to confirm you
As it had what seemed just moments before.

Once my eyes open
Reality surrounds me
Your absence so stark and sure
Conciousness defends me
As I step through the pieces
Of the broken glass shattered on the floor

What were you thinking
As your anger drove you beyond me
When you walked out slaming the door
Does your body remember
How it once touched me
In what seems like only moments before

Being there

The phone started ringing Saturday morning; even though I slept in till 8. Wow, but then again I was up till 2, much like I am tonight. Had an absolutely georgous storm here last night. (There was a tornado warning in a little town called Park). Went to Sarah's and had dinner, listened to music and had a good time with those that came over.

My dear friend Glen came over and asked me if I wanted to go to Flag with him. I really didn't expect to leave the canyon for a while, so I jumped at the chance since the planned get away went away... Did some shopping and then went to see a movie. It's the first movie theatre I've been in since I left Florida (I don't count the IMAX since it's a film of the canyon and there's no choice). He pacified me by taking me to see Mama Mia. We laughed so hard. To me it felt like watching MJ, Terry and I together; hey we do tend to get people dancing when we're together. It certainly gave me a TOTALLY new appreciation of Abba. We both want to see it again, but it is a long drive back to the canyon.

It rained the whole day; making it rather chilly tonight; but I'm ever so thankful for the friends I have both in Florida and here. They are a tremendous support system; hugging me when I tear up, cursing with me when I get angry, encouraging me...and being there.

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Picking up...pieces

I'm still surprised when some people come up to me and ask "So, where's Mike? Haven't seen him." They question my answer: "gone" and look at me for answers only he can tell. Shock and denial are the first reaction, that was mine too. Eventually 'this too shall pass', as will the anger, betrayal, and hurt. Went to dinner at the BA bar last night with Sharon and smiled with reminiscence as I remembered the winter time I worked at the front desk and the good memories we did share. More will come and go I know and I'll love them the way I did then; just with a wisp of sentiment.

It's nice to be able to smile again.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Mantle of mourning

Weighed heavy through to this afternoon. I've missed a lot of things we shared intimately and not, even the way his breathing evened out when he slept. So I embrace it and ignore the haunting questions that only hurt myself more; knowing deep down I will be something so much more beyond this.

Learning from this the mantra question I am allowing myself is: 'how do I let the betrayal go without it closing me off from the rich encounters of humanity, including the many faces of love?' With this as the devine internal question I open my eyes and self.

Sometimes the grief feels mixed as my mind slips over to my daugther, it is there I find the real truth and reality of knowing and not all at once. For as much as he had changed my life, she changed my world and existance and that is where the new creation begins.

Monday, August 11, 2008

The Journey

August 8th: Been in a funk, but the light rain felt good as is the comfort of the fresh smells of the forests.

Tonight I thought of a dream I had when the possiblity appeared of us moving to Colorado. In it I approached Mike in the sidewalk, carrying something in my hands, but feeling torn inside. I was crushed emotionally in the way he swaggered up to me - his arm around a very young blonde girl. I remember seeing him in a long rain coat even thought the sun was shining. He said something sarcastic and turned away with his arm still around her and all I could think of was 'he's going to the wrong side of town, it's much nicer over here.' Silly as some dreams go but the thought of it lit another thought or question; was that the beginning of the end? More then likely.

After he left I was okay, I could see the magnitude for which it was; no big deal. I was still whole and had my faith in convictions. Until I found out the monies in his work bank were taken. It was a kick in the gut; stunned I questioned myself as to why I didn't feel this way about the monies I had given him to put into savings for 'us', or the car. It was realized after much gainful conversations with MJ, in regards to my faith of him having a shred of integrity; it had become the very last straw of betrayal.

I am ever so grateful I did not have a chain to put on my finger to bind me in a chokehold.

Should the dream, ever in it's own inkling, come true; I would not approach him with a gift of my tears; but a truth to show his lack of existance in which he has become.

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Nancy will be back..

Her internet should be back by the weekend. She is doing good. The same ups and downs we all have when someone we love betrays us. Call her when you can.. and I bet she would even enjoy some snailmail! (posting by proxy..MJ)

Sunday, August 03, 2008

What Mari-jane has to say..

I am posting in place of Nancy today. She has been forced into internet hiatus by the money stealing, modem stealing, heart stealing SOB, MIke.. who she was engaged to both in status and soul. Regardless of his reasons.. which Nancy has tried to deduce on her own since he left her no clue.. he was a cowardly, spineless, Pussy.. do not pardon my french, when he packed up and left in less than a day,while she was at work.. He left with the car,(in his name, but paid for by her $450), their $1200 in savings.. $800 contributed by her. He took the computer modem which leaves her with no phone & no internet. He left the computer which she paid $1000 of and he paid $500. He took the cell phone which was in her name, along with the bill, but hopefully he didn't charge much before I had her deactivate it.
You see Mike, I don't care what you say or think about me. You have no value in my life. Nancy does.. you dispespected her and used your dishonesty to hurt her.. 2 things I don't tolerate. So Karma may bite my ass.. but it will chow down on you first!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Happy(?) August

It is the first of the 8th month in the year. Not a celebrated month; but we'll do the best we can. On Wiki I found this:

In Celtic mythology, the Lughnasadh festival is said to have been begun by the god Lugh, as a funeral feast and games commemorating his foster-mother, Tailtiu, who died of exhaustion after clearing the plains of Ireland for agriculture

So even in mythology the legend starts the month off with grief and reform. Much like we do in today's environment. Of course, since this is the month of Mada's long jouney away; I think of her in snippits of memories. I've found I've been thinking of her the past several weeks. Is this a milestone to pass? The re-emergance of grief feels and tastes different. Is it being in a different environment giving it that quality? Or is it because it's been 5 years (already), that it's a different quality of healing?

Time will tell.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

That's what weekends are for....

I took off yesterday, just because ...I can. Even though it was 'without' pay, it was nice. Mike and I went to the morning classes by Canon. You know the guys that made my 'hobby' camera? Well, they had toys. Rather then get drool all over the 40D, I used the wide angle lens, to learn more of my own. It's one I've been wanting to get. Of course everyone else was using the drool over models with the longer lenses to get close up shots. I'm not impressed with the wide angle, and am glad I have not put out the money to get one. Mike used the new point and shoot G9, it's really nice and a really good point and shoot. He got some good shots, but when going to it's full telephoto limit the picture tends to pixilate and they aren't that good. One can get good pictures with the telephoto, but don't take it to it's limit; you couldn't make a poster out of it. Still learned a bit that is helpful. Tomorrow we plan on going and I'm going to use an image stabilizer lens.

While there we saw a couple of century plants. They are spiky cactus' that go about just above the knee, and once every 100 years send a shoot out of the center that grows taller then a person and blooms. That is why they're called century plants. One was in the middle of a rocky outpost at Mather Point, the other was in the woods several yards off the paved path. The one in the woods amazed me; it was HUGE. Tomorrow I plan on picturing both. Who knows maybe that lavander dragon fly will be back there too.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Musings

The hazy distance
In the high desert
Mountains in shadows


In the hazy distance
Shadows talk
Whispers
Heard in the breeze
Overheard
By the clouds
Passing by

On the unmarked trail
The pathway littered
Opportunities

More Olympic Pictures

Thank you Sunny for the pics.




Sunday, July 13, 2008

Olympics...company style

Today we had the Olympics at the rec center. Turned out to be a lot more fun then I ever expected. (All other 'corporate' team building events, have been, lets say, tense).

Of course Mike and I were on different teams; he was on the transportation team, and I was on the hr team. Both of us reluctantly signed up for one event, he ended up doing 3.



That is him in the blue t-shirt. I like his new SueDoo. (She works in hr and cuts hair really well).



While Mike won 3 silver medals, (that matches his hair), I won one bronze (which matches mine). His team overall won the silver, ours won the bronze. It was pretty amazing how well maintenance did, they took away a lot and won the gold. Accounting got the turkey award. Funny.



What a sport?!!

More Arizona Exposure

Look who walked by our house for dinner last weekend? The 'boys'.




Pretty big aren't they?



A couple ate off the doorstep, about 5 feet away.



Gotta....reach...that....itch....ahhh.

Singing the theme song from Northern Exposure yet?

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Happy Birthday Michael



I came to the Canyon to start a new life; looks like you found me.

Love ya

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

Happy July

It's hot here, up in the 90's during the day. No there will not be fireworks over the canyon. As pretty as that would be it would also spell disaster as it is WAY too easy to spark a fire.

We were thinking about going out of town since we both have a three day weekend, however, just the thought of traffic outside the park (much less inside) pretty much nixed that idea. So we'll stay at home and enjoy ourselves here.

In the meanwhile a lot is in bloom. There has been so much green I'm really surprised. But here is a taste of what you're missing:



Sunday, June 29, 2008

It's a dry heat...

Yeah, well it's still hot! Here it is 7:30, the sun is setting and we have relief. We're at the point of having 40-50 degree differences between night and day and boy do we look forward to it. So between yesterday and today, Mike and I haven't done much; at least until we felt like stirring in the later afternoon/evening.

I did take advantage of the long lull in the wait for the breath of fresh air this afternoon and completed a drawing! Whoo hoo, another step. So here it is folks, 'Fancy Dancer':

Friday, June 27, 2008

Ahhh the weekend

Friday night, the crazy work week, which went smoothly, is at an end. It's summertime and the movement of events are so slow it's easy to miss any evolution though it happens even if we don't see it.

Music, the sounds that soothe the savage beaste within are reflecting upon the walls as Ramone (a co-worker friend) came over for dinner after jamming with Mike at the rec center.

It's now Saturday morning, breakfast is done, the dishes are waiting. It was nice to have a person over for dinner and music. Though I look forward to our visit with our psuedo daughter Sarah. She just got back from Lousiana visiting her family. I look forward to catching up.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Summertime...

Summer Solstice came by yesterday, showing off her glittery warmth in the yellow heat of the sun. It's been in the 90's here during the day; very hot but almost no humidity. It's kinda wierd having static electricity during the summer. Some of the cactai are blooming beautiful yellow flowers up by the rim and around the park. Took some pictures on my way home from work I'll have to post later when I download them. Though I don't care for the heat I love how cool it gets at night; in the 50's or 60's.

Mike and I went to Granview Point the other night, with a little 'bucket' of chicken from Yavapai and Mad Housewife wine to watch the full moon rise. Big and orange, the craters resembling a face. It was nice. While waiting for the moon to rise I was caught unawares in the moment of a breeze the feeling of "wow" as I took pictures of the sunset through leaves. It was so quick I even wondered if I even felt it. I could hear music in my head as I took the pictures of the leaves. So maybe I'll make a video of my photos with music of my own. Prayers and thoughts of healing known and unknown were sent with each breath as this week held many of both (prayers and thoughts).

It was with much relief and happiness to have Sue come back to work. Boy we sure did miss her. The team at hr is great, helping each other out with each task that needs to be completed. I joke to Deb about her beautiful little red haired blue eyed girl Mercy as our mascot. She's so cute. And it's funny how we become like 'mama hens' to the kids that come in.

Mike and I went to the AZ room for dinner last night and he was so sweet when a couple of girls started asking 'hr' questions. It was funny cause I just interviewed and tested for the next step up into a new position yesterday afternoon. Oh yea, the food was good. Though we'll still recommend the BA and ET restaurants over the AZ room.

Tomorrow Mike's dad and his girlfriend are coming to the canyon to visit. Looking forward to seeing them again. We're taking a train ride, as they now have 90 minute rides to Coconino Canyon and back on the old fashioned train.

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Happy Papa Day

For all of us; both mothers and fathers who are and have been both.

In 1966, President Lyndon Johnson made Father's Day a holiday to be celebrated on the third Sunday of June. The holiday was not officially recognized until 1972, during the presidency of Richard Nixon.

It's been celebrated since 1908. But like mother's day it's a time to celebrate a parent or both as there are times whether together or seperate we have to be both.

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Rhetoric

Saw this article on Drudgereport, and in the first paragraph I had to post this. Take your pick on what Mr. Bush's rhetoric means. After all there were millions who willingly 'bought' into the war on Iraq, I applaud those who stood up to oppose it; however it wasn't a 'vote' for the public only our 'representatives' to choose. Frankly his rhetoric worked very well, and I personally wouldn't trust his way to leave "his successor a legacy of international diplomacy for tackling Iran."


http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/us_and_americas/article4107327.ece
Audio Help (rět'ər-ĭk) Pronunciation Key n.
The art or study of using language effectively and persuasively.
A treatise or book discussing this art.
A style of speaking or writing, especially the language of a particular subject: fiery political rhetoric.
Language that is elaborate, pretentious, insincere, or intellectually vacuous: His offers of compromise were mere rhetoric.
Skill in using language effectively and persuasively.
A style of speaking or writing, especially the language of a particular subject: fiery political rhetoric.
Language that is elaborate, pretentious, insincere, or intellectually vacuous: His offers of compromise were mere rhetoric.
Verbal communication; discourse.

American Psychological Association (APA):
rhetoric. (n.d.). The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition. Retrieved June 10, 2008, from Dictionary.com website:
http://dictionary.reference.com/browse/rhetoric

In the end it's all rhetoric

Wondering

On my walk home tonight the breeze blew a thought into my head. As frustrated as I am with the antiquated systems in place where I work (at all places I've worked at since I got here), I wonder. If I worked in a place that had modern systems; I don't just mean machines but ways of doing things too, would I be up to par? As I ponder, I ask would they then turn into 'it's just the way it's always been done' kind of management system? Am I that way, or would I become that way?

Change is constant and necessary; not just for growth personally but otherwise as well. Maybe it's the retro Mercury; as that tends to focus on communications, and all that involves (that's a very big picture). This has been building for some time, though once again I wonder, should I just compromise and accept the status quo? It seems to work for thousands of people why doesn't it work for me?

Just wondering.

Sunday, June 08, 2008

Time passes by...

The days tend to slide from one moment to another as we continue throughout the week. It's been a VERY busy week this last week with a lot of kids checking in; most are from Ecuador, others are from Bulgaria and a few scattering from China. Nice kids. One from Singapore came back and when I pronounced his name he told me I was the first person here who pronounced it correctly and thanked me. That made my day. I'm learning how the different countries have unique pronunciations of our vowels and consenants, it's intriguing. The Ecuadorian's speak a Spanish that is very close to Italian; I know, I know they have a base structure of Latin. The one guy from France I felt sorry for. Considering the state of the dollar it must be like working for a 3rd world country; and then coming to such a remote place sometimes (not always) it feels like we're back in the 50's. Oh that's right we've upgraded to the 70's; at least part of the village.


They've started a bus to Tusayan, a small hamlet just outside the park. Great place, well the only place, to get a decent pizza along with a few other things. Then the train is starting a new tour twice a day to a different canyon (the name will be updated soon), at 5pm and at 7pm. It helps to have Mike at the trans desk to learn of these things (among other things but those are too private to mention here - tee hee). We plan on taking the trip.

Learned there's a new Canon point and shoot that's 12mp. It has great capabilities, and magazines and such only take pictures that are shot with a 10 or more megapixels. So all those wonderful shots I have are just 'hobby' pictures. Disappointing, but I'll keep taking pictures. Speaking of pictures, the pen and ink picture has been sent to the Paints America contest; it's below. Personally I don't think it'll be in the final pick of 100, however, entering it is the step necessary at this point. Time to get some (much) larger pieces of watercolor paper to start on next years entry; and yes I have an idea in mind. It's intimidating, but I've got lots of 'hobby' pictures to use as a base.


The sad news this week: Mike's grandmother passed away Monday evening. He got home Monday night, it was a very long 4 days without him; sleeping was difficult. But I am very glad he got to go see her and his grandfather and the extended family. His grandparents were about to celebrate their 74th wedding anniversary. How bout that??!! He kept teasing me with visuals; like there was so much moisture in the air his skin became a sponge, there was lush green and flowers around and didn't dare go into a 'real' grocery store for fear of wanting to send A LOT of stuff home. Then my brother called to let me know Williemae (his girlfriend) has about a week to live. The cancer is spreading horribly fast; he's been with her for a couple of years and my heart breaks for him. He's provided her with a lot of things she didn't have and loved her tenderly. The doctors say the cancer isn't painfull so she'll just go to sleep one day and not wake up; there is a blessing in that as we all know it's difficult to see a loved one in pain at anytime.

Well that's the week in review. May next week be filling with loving memory making moments that will bring a smile to your face.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Happy June

Summer solstice arrives within a handfull of weeks; calling to celebrate the apex of a new season. Ancient or new celebrations of the sun happen daily. From wandering outside absorbing the heat from the rays; worshiping with our bodies as some lie prone exposing skin to the suns mercy. Of course there are those who like me look like something came out of an easy bake oven half done as my arms and face are red while the legs still pale. I'm beginning to think they reflect rather then absorb light.

Yesterday I enjoyed the afternoon with Sara and Paula taking hundreds of photos of the Hopi dancers. Mostly for drawing purposes I did play with a few. Here's what I came out with.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

It's the middle of the camel's back day...

Monday I had off, Mike didn't. So while he was earning the pay to keep us the way we've become accustomed (we're working on earning the way we'd LIKE to be accustomed), I enjoyed the laziness of the day. It involved a little grocery shopping, having tea with a co-worker, putting groceries away, meeting Mike for lunch, taking a nap, drawing a picture and making dinner.


David, a former co-worker (I don't work with anymore) asked me to draw a picture for him. I think it turned out well. Here it is:


Pen and ink rendering on watercolor paper. He had a photograph I worked with. Hmm I think I'm getting better at rocks, but then again I'm saturated in them here. Looking forward to a large challenge; getting a 16 X 20 sketch book and do some of the Grand Canyon itself. I've got lots of pictures to go by, so it's a start. Who knows, maybe next year I'll graduate to colors...

Saturday, May 24, 2008

bisphenol A

http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?id=plastic-not-fantastic-with-bisphenol-a

http://www.jsonline.com/story/index.aspx?id=692145

Two very interesting articles. The second one was featured on Bill Moyer's last night. It captured my attention when they talked about how they investigated the piece, then the conclusions from a very attentive investigation. It was lengthy, but very very informative. The major concern of the byproduct is the cancer; however I thought it pointed directly to several other MAJOR concerns that plague us tremendously. Diabetes, obesity, and hyper activeness. These concern me more as they are constantly being utilized for advertising, different drugs, and a large first step in the nations health problems.

Heading off this issue could make a huge difference in the continually growing costs of medicine in many various forms. Not to mention the side effects those conciously and unconciously affect.

One other thing concerned me was when the Safe Drinking Water Act was signed by Bill Clinton in 1996 the EPA was required to test chemicals. The article featured on Bill Moyer exposed they have not started their testing until 2007. So what did 80 million dollars pay for?

Friday, May 23, 2008

Friday......

Though it's been a good week, the brain isn't boiling over half as much and I can see my progress at work. After almost 60 check in's over 2 days (the rest of the week is catching up the paperwork!), I'm glad it's Friday. Memorial day, the doorway to summer (???). It's in the 40's outside, spitting and drooling hail. Funny back East the hail is a sure indicator of a tornado near, but not here, no, we have lightening and thunder during a snowstorm; the wind whips in circles going around and through every crevice and corner (when it's up). Luckily it's not.

Mike made a wonderful steak dinner, better then I used to make on my indoor grill; he uses the broiler. Music is playing on the computer , the beer is cold and all is quiet in our little village, at least here. I'm sure the front desks are having a doozy of a time as there are no room at the inns; glad I'm not there. Right this minute is peace.

May everyone find their moments of peace and hear their soul breath "ahhhh".

After the facts...

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/exbush-adviser-rove-must-testify-in-case-that-could-shame-white-house-832859.html

Hind sight is 20/20 as Rove is brought before a committee regarding the prosecution of Dan Siegleman and the ousting of 9 US attorney's in 2006. So does this mean in 2010 we'll finally investigate the trillions of dollars being miss spent by the contractors in Iraq? Not to mention the vast waste of taxpayers monies by our government today. While we're on the year 2006, lets investigate a little bit further into Hurrican Katrina. Not just Mr. Brown, but the lack of preparedness when it was known to be headed into Louisiana. Why wasn't emergency efforts put on alert and ready to go in as it hit? How much was it down played beforehand at the highest level?

Unfortunately we cannot turn back the hands on the clock to 'do over'. What we can do is look a lot closer at what is going on now, question the reasoning and/or justifications and decide is it really worth it?

Monday, May 19, 2008

Flutterings


Memories of Mada have been fluttering in and out of my mind over the past several days; touching me now and again with the profound loss, in moments. Is the squeeze a hug on my heart by her?

Today on my break I saw a huge yellow and black Western Tiger Swallowtail and a thought entered my mind as quickly as it was fluttering by. "That is what she would choose" the words echoed with laughter, hers, because she loved yellow, and butterflies. As my heart squeezed in her hug, I smiled.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Idealism

What a dream. As I look at the news report of China, and Myammar my heart goes out to the many people struggling with the trauma of surviving or worse, surviving alone. A friend told me about her sister's ordeal when Katrina hit Lousiana. We the public didn't see half the problems of course; remember the large number of survivors standing on the bridge? The news crew had them move to a different section so they wouldn't get the pile of bodies in the picture. Sad.


With what is actually shown in the news, it makes me wonder how worse it actually is. There are many kind hearted people wanting to help, but the bureaucracy causes hesitance when it is known those in need will only see a smithering of what is actually sent.

It is an idealistic thought that the military with all it's strategic ways could learn to use their knowledge to help; not just in the cleaning up but the people aspect rather then forcing a way of life onto another. Yes I know it goes both ways; there is no easy answer but the first step is putting down the gun and use both hands to reach out, teach and learn.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Another lesson

A friend once told me that when we pray for patience, we are literally asking for the lesson. Boy did that ring a bell within.

Yesterday morning I came accross another quotation that struck yet another cord:

We've all heard that we have to learn from our mistakes, but I think it's more important to learn from successes. If you learn only from your mistakes, you are inclined to learn only errors."
Norman Vincent Peale

Time and time again I have taken those mistakes to heart to learn from them, only to achieve the same, usually in a different or more heartbreaking way. There have been times I have taken the success and learned from it as well, though it's not easy to do. This is becoming another step in the process of growing.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Put the FREAKING snowglobe down!!

Said in the best 'go to your room voice'. Didn't help. We woke up to more of the white stuff, hard to believe after taking a short hike on Saturday and getting some sun. I bet Susan is glad she's not here! Boy do I feel for the kids in the cabins.

Mantra; 'wait for the weekend when it's supposed to be near 80'

Sunday, May 11, 2008

lepidopterology

It's the scientific study of butterflies and moths; well not quite, I'm only at the amateur stage; identifying. Taking pictures helps to answer that first field question: What kind is that? It's a childlike wonder as I watch a butterfly fluttering or be very quiet as I sneak up to watch it. Some have seen the yellow butterfly pictured in Oak Canyon, and few have seen the white butterfly pictured here in the Grand Canyon at Shoshone Point.

Here's what I learned:








This is a Western Tiger Swallowtail. Not much else, but the name, and that right now is all I wanted to know. This one was taken at Oak Creek Canyon, we stopped there on our way home from Phoenix



This is a Pontia sisymbrii; aka, Spring White. Pretty is what I call it.





Now to identify the catepillar and different looking bee I saw....

Friday, May 09, 2008

Vortex

I was talking with Brenda yesterday; she told me about several vortex's in the area where they either absorb energies or give energies.

I've heard they're good places to give your problems to, I've done it myself. What energies we give produces consequences, even if we give them to Earth. Earth is a living breathing ancient entity as we are, it communicates differently, is that why we dismiss it? That's for another time. But the energies have to go full circle, when releasing them it's absorbed and produces another type of reaction.

Seasons and cycles are for renewing, re-energizing, rebirth. There are many types of seasons despite the immediate ones presented weather type, the ice ages themselves are a season of their own. As we do, aging, going through experiences, etc.

A sudden thought occured as we were in the middle of that conversation; what if we - one or more - gave positive affirmations of peace and harmony? What kind of outcome could that create?

Yeah, I'm sounding more and more like a 'hippy', but I've learned to follow my instincts as we are all connected. We are made from the dust of Earth, stars, the universe, and will go back to being dust of the Earth. 'From dust to dust' has distinct meaning, in between the dust particles I will create the beauty I can.

Sunday, May 04, 2008

A taste...

Mike and I took a Sunday drive. On the way to Cameron we stopped at Shoshone Point. It's where they hold weddings here in the canyon. After parking we walked up a road, pretty rocky, a mile there and a mile back. It was a nice walk through the forest, peace filled and quiet. Getting up to the point we saw pretty little flowers, and took pictures. After that we stopped at one of the roadside stands; there's quite a few with native jewelry, and hiked another half mile out to a point taking more pictures of more flowers. Cameron is on the way to the painted desert; it's beautiful yet so very desolate. It's an oasis with trees (we watched a humming bird working a honeysuckle vine), a good restaurant, a huge store with lots of exquisite artwork, and not as good but pretty stuff. There's even antiquities from the late 1800's there; and yes they are for sale. The building is made of the rocks from the landscape, fossils, of course, are everywhere, the mortar is made with the pink sand of the desert. Beautiful.

I've never had much interest in the desert, when they showed the nature movies in school I would often wonder why people sought it out. Still do sometimes, especially when driving by old trailers and such. However passing several hogans (native homes build in a traditional way), brought the connection of the land and people home. Modernized with wood rather then, stone, dirt and branches, it gave it's story of respect to a way of life almost wiped out by territorialist that started way back in the 1600's. The air is different, cooler for the most part, dryer and more arid. The rocks, plants, animals evolved to suit the environment creating distinctive coloring, shapes and energies.

Looking out the window watching the changes in the landscape I thought to myself of all the places I've planted, I go into the desert to bloom.

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Looking back

Looking back in my blog I remember with clarity how the humidity felt as I sat on my balcony listening to the cicadas, swating mosquitos, eating dinner and drinking wine. It was around this time I had accepted the offer to live, work, play and breathe in the Grand Canyon. I remember the scary excitement of myself being drawn into a new and different environment and sensed the magical opportunity it would behold; daring to keep my imagination at bay so as I wouldn't set up expectations.

I look back at all the wonder, the audacity of it, and wrap myself in the giggle of finding adventure. In that adventure I find more truth as I look inside at the changes wrought from stepping away in faith and finding so much more then I ever expected about myself and the interactions with others. I've realized the differences I've experienced have changed me that my attitude and actions have reflected over time affected my unique environment. Opening up to let someone share life with adds more to the terrain of changes in my landscape creating more.

Synopsis of the week

The first full week in human resources is done. It's a great team of people, full of fun, laughter and support as we help each other to get things done. It's a great way to meet new people, I love seeing the various faces that come in and remember how excited I was to get here. It's also nice to see the faces of those I work with, whom I've known and continue with a friendship. Sharing with Mike the antics of my co-workers and some of the funny stuff said is a nice change from eating elephants. Every Friday is a theme day, this week was stuffed animal day. I was loaned one, because my moose is in storage, but we all shuffled outside to get a picture. Housing was in on it too. It turned out really good, everyone was smiling, and no eyes were closed.

Working in HR also gives me a chance to learn about different cultures. We have a Tai girl in the office until the end of next month. I've learned their names have different meanings, hers means 'Golden Flower'. She explained to me how as little children they have to learn the many languages of their own language and some of the words are Sanscrit which she said is very difficult. It's also very ancient.

It is nice to be in an outgoing, supportive fun atmosphere. Sure it's a step down, and I lose some perks, but one needs to be happy in their job. I've also found we tend to spend what we earn, no matter how much we make, it is the value in the choices. I am blessed to have someone to share this with who supports me with understanding and love.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Happy May

Mayday, the doorway to summer. More flowers shoot through the earth, as does grass and other beautious things. The trees look a bit greener as though they grew leaves over night as we anticipate the new season with a sanguine disposition creating an unconstrained atmosphere.

Though we still go to our day with the daily routines; work, errands, cleaning, etc. Taking a moment to lift our faces to the subtle breeze, soak in the warmth of the sun, or admire the spectrum of colors in a flower giving tribute to Earth and the wonders given as gifts. Take that special kiss from a loved one, feel it trickle into a special pocket in the heart; where it blooms.

Enjoy this first day of May, when your breath is caught by the beauty of a moment; feel the connection with all.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Growing beyond....

We all have defense mechanisms that we’ve developed over time, often without being aware of it. In times of trouble, the behaviors that have worked to get us past challenges with the least amount of pain are the ones that we repeat; even when part of us knows they no longer work. Such behavior is a natural response from our mental and physical aspects. But because we are spiritual beings as well, we have the ability to rise above habits and patterns to see the truth that lay beyond. And from that moment on, we can make choices that allow us to work directly from that place of truth within us.
Most of our defense mechanisms were developed in childhood; from the moment that we realized crying would get us the attention we craved. Passive aggressive ways of communicating may have allowed us to get what we needed without being scolded, punished or laughed at, so we learned to avoid being direct and honest. Some of us may have taken refuge in the lives of others, discovering ways to direct attention away from ourselves entirely. Throwing ourselves into projects or rescuing others from themselves can be effective ways to avoid dealing with our own issues. And when people are truly helped by our actions, we get the added bonus of feeling heroic. But while defenses can keep away the things we fear, they can also work to keep our good from us.
When we can be honest with ourselves about what we truly desire, then we can connect our desires to the creative power of the spirit within us. Knowing that we are one with the energy of the universe allows us release any need for defense. Trusting that power, we know that we are exactly where we are meant to be, and that challenges bring gifts of growth and experience. When we can put down arms raised in defense, then we are free to use our hands, minds, hearts and spirits to mold and shape our abundant energy to create and live our lives.


I got this in my email today and found it rather insightful.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Garage sale...Grand Canyon Style

"Who da thunk it?" Paula laughed.

Picked up a few things, some clothes. Paula got to the cooler before I did, darn. But that's okay she and I usually go grocery shopping together and we'll both use it. Got a little bit of my 'shopping fix' in as Mike calls it. Just eased the beast for a little while.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

The beauty of Mother Nature


A cardinal landing in the waterfall for some water. Pretty bird, stayed a while for several great shots.




The yellow butterfly in Oak Canyon. Fluttered so prettily, got more shots, one better then this that I intend to play with.

The red earth of Sedona. Mike told me the red indicates a large amount of oxygen in the layers of rock. The base of the colors create a beautiful photo as they compliment each other.

Pinball







Here are the pics of the car. It held up pretty well, thanks to Mike's driving.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Friday

Here it is Friday...again. Though this was a 'short' 'work' week it feels long because I got a lot done.

On Monday and Tuesday I had off, so it was a nice long weekend. Ended up running more, and doing more things it was almost a relief to get back to work. Which was a new job. Started in hr on Wednesday. A lot of filing since the person who I'm replacing is still there, she starts her work on Monday, but it's a good way to get aquainted with the staff that is there. It's nice to meet the newbies; and the staff I already know half of them and the other half is nice. So it'll be a good atmosphere to work in.

Today is a special Friday for one of the staff members, Sue, she and her guy get married up on the rim. So for their present I'm taking pictures, I've also got a beautiful frame for them to pick one to print. Still on my list for the weekend is to go to the Kolb studio to see the new show and the Hopi dancers.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Sunday blues...

Sunday, the day to play the blues. On the internet radio that is. Good stuff after a great Sunday morning breakfast. Sunday morning breakfasts and dinner is when we sit down together, eat and talk. Well, Mike and I talk to each other all the time, but over food is a time we go over more extensive ideas, dreams, and goals.


We're both looking forward to less windy days to get into the canyon but this gives us opportunity to add our ever growing supply of great photography to a site to order gifts from. One of Mike's was voted one of the best of the day. Which gets us pretty excited. Who knows where this will go, but for my best cheering section, 'it's out there!'

Friday, April 18, 2008

New stripes? They sure look like the old ones...

Sometimes people put on a facade of new clothes, life, job, home or a piece of furniture to distinquish the changes in their 'stripes'. At least until the same 'issues' that were supposed to leave with the chucking of the old come back around and waltz back into ones life challenging us to either handle it the way we always have or create a new outcome. Sometimes it's not easy to see the 'old' issues clearly as they're cleaverly disguised under layers of pretenses the 'new' was covering. Layering it as it is gives it a different face, but it knaws until the old face of familarity is back. Then it'll kick back and relax, because habit keeps it comfortable. deep inside arguing with will power 'why fight what you can't control?' 'I'm baaaack!' Justify the need, it whispers to the soul and the soul does turning it back into the habit it once was. Those outside get affected one way or another, some by shock, some by a tsk and a shake of the head, then those close to the eye of the storm can either get angry or realize the anger is in themselves for believeing the layers. Once the anger is gone a realization of choice is given, accept it for what it was and move on or boil in anger. Moving on doesn't mean staying open for that type of behavior to continue, but to learn from it and either cut it from the environment or not to let it continue to affect one by removing it from your life (usually through disassociation). Harm to another is not an accepted choice.

Before anyone reads anything into this no this is not about Mike and me, we're fine. Just a personal observation.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The day after...

Yesterday started out really good. On the employee shuttle I heard "I Got You Babe" by Sonny and Cher; smiled as I wiped a tear. In the afternoonI got a call from the HR manager I had interviewed with last week and was offered the position. I was thrilled. She's going on vacation but wants to start training me on the 28th, so I had the opportunity of taking the week off (without pay), or coming in to do filing. After talking it over with Mike, who was encouraging me by pointing out what I can do with my free time - all of it leisure, I decided to take Monday and Tuesday off. So I get a nice long weekend.


But by the time I got home, finished a load of laundry and we ate dinner I was done. Tired, sore and frustrated with myself because I had been forgetting things, mostly words in the middle of a sentence. This has been going on all week and I had to move some boxes at work that weighed a bit which sent my muscles into spasm's but the therapist said today it seemed to help work out the tension and then gave me a wonderful massage and told me to be patient with myself and get rest.

Monday, April 14, 2008

And the desert bloomed...

It was a great trip to Phoenix. Really nice to ride in a car that was ours (even if only for the weekend). On the way down I looked out the window and saw so much desert, I commented on how I could almost see Clint Eastwood and Shirley McClain riding by on a horse and a mule. (From Two Mules for Sister Sarah). Mike laughed. It was the tail end of the blooming, so there was an abundance of yellow flowers, which made me think of Mada. The song "Horse with no Name", tuned on in my head and I smiled as I made peace with the desert.

Met my sweet, kind, future father-in-law and his very sweet generous girlfriend. I laughed as I noticed little things that Mike does, his father does also. It was cute.

We went into Scottsdale. Nice town, kind of similar to St. Augustine with the many many galleries, restaurants, and tourist traps. My windows would go well in a couple of the galleries. Actually wished for a moment to have the supplies and stuff, but that part is done, time to move forward. We relaxed a lot at their home, I sat outside most of the time soaking in the hot weather and enjoyed it. What a first. Got a little sun, not too much. Mike and I shared my camera to take pictures of the various birds that came into the back yard. It's sits on the edge of a wash, they have bird feeders and a nicely constructed waterfall which draws the animals.

On our way home yesterday we stopped in Sedona. Pretty place. Way too crowded and it's not even 'season'. I'd love to get some of the beautiful dirt to make some pottery or paint. Found a great little restaurant overlooking the creek, sat outside and were able to smoke after we ate. Not very available here (or in Florida). Then stopped at Oak Creek Canyon to look at the overview. The twists and turns bothered me a bit as we climbed the mountain. Its the first time since I've been here my fear of heights really bothered me. The canyon there is so different, full of pines and dark rock, make me think of the Misty Mountains in the Hobbit. Caught some pictures of a pretty yellow butterfly (not an easy thing).

It was a really nice birthday weekend, a very memorable way to mark the 45th. It is nice to get 'home', though it's back to work today. Will download pics soon, though it's getting harder to tell which is Mike's or mine. He's been using the camera pretty much since the accident for several reasons, the main one is it makes my back pack way too heavy to carry with my shoulder. I tried it last week and sadly shook my head when I felt the twinges. Soon I will be able to again.

Friday, April 11, 2008

Getting away

Though my shoulder is tweaking a bit due to the deep tissue massage the physical therapist gave me yesterday, it's not keeping me down. Just a few more things to pack and we're on our way to Phoenix for the weekend.

I admit I'm just a little nervous meeing Mike's father and girlfriend, but the calling of exploration of a new place is more important. I hear the cactus is in bloom. Though my introduction of Phoenix wasn't great one can't judge a city by just the airport and bus station. And for the record I am looking forward to getting into the 85 degree weather. Write that down, it's a first. We both wonder if we'll want to come back, but I don't think that'll be a problem since we want to drive through Sedona on the way back. That's the place I probably won't want to leave, but this will be a good way to get our feet wet so to say.

It's the first time we'll be driving ourselves (getting a rental in Flag), since the accident. I know that's been a tickle in the back of my mind; getting back on the horse per se, but we'll do it and be better for it. So more will be written after the weekend, in the meanwhile, I'll take notes.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Spring??

Just last week the new grass peeked up creating a little magic for those who noticed it. It's brief and only happens once, that surge, the captured attention of the sunlight on the new grass with the birds singing in the trees. Yes I hear the instrumental music used on Bugs Bunny. haha.

But today, spring is quiet. There were snow flurries outside this morning. Just a dusting. Maybe, just maybe it'll create more green and color as little tiny flowers are starting to peek out of crevices.

Sunday, April 06, 2008

New Picture

I just posted a picture for my profile on the blog. It was fun playing with the Adobe Elements using different lighting, textures and changing the saturation, hue and brightness. I saved a couple of them, for the difference, but used the one because if one looks close enough you can see Mike's reflection on taking the picture in my sunglasses.


This one is straight out of the camera. Mid day lighting (too harsh)



This one is changed to black and white with a few filter plays.





This final one, I removed the color, and added 'old photo' to give it graininess or character as I like to refer to it.

I'm looking forward to seeing what other fun stuff to do.

Saturday, April 05, 2008

Patterns

I was talking with a friend yesterday about patterns that reoccur in our lives. Most times we only observe the negative ones expressing 'not again!'. This person's experience has taught that those patterns reoccur as I have not succeeded in learning the lesson. I have found that when I step back, look at the big picture, and ask myself 'what is my lesson in this?' I am faced with the truth. Sometimes it hurts to see how I've manifested, through action and words this part of my own environment; othertimes it shows me a part of the past that is needed to move on. This affects those in my environment from those close to me and those that I have become acquainted with. I know I can only change what is in me personally, not anyone else.
With that knowledge I have access to the tools to change my environment one step at a time. That is where I tend to find myself in what I like to think of as a 'new room' in my home. It's free of clutter and open for opportunities for me to 'fill' it with my memories, actions and words. This continues throughout my life constantly, though I've found it's become a habit most of the time. Accepting the lesson can be hard but cleansing, and there are times I've had to tell myself 'there is something so much better on the otherside', because once the task is completed there is something better on the otherside of it and I am part of that something better and it's the beginning of something new.

Wednesday, April 02, 2008

Martini's

Mike's results came in, finally. He's the olive. Olive? Yes, in the martini shaker. Just take it easy, live as 'normal' as possible and heal. He's doing well, me I have a cold. Ahhh, my words come back to haunt me 'this too shall pass'.

Sunday, March 30, 2008

New Discoveries

Yesterday Mike needed to go to Flag for a CAT scan. A very nice co-worker friend took us. As we started out early we found a store she had wanted to see, Mike and I enjoyed it's presence as well. Since we had some time to kill we drove around and found a little open aired 'mall'. I use that word sparingly as it's still in the building process but I was thrilled to see some of my favorite stores there, especially Marshall's. There was a new one called World Market we decided to wander into and were overjoyed at the colors, scents and prices. When we took Mike to the hospital Paula and I wandered back to Marshall's. After picking him up and having lunch we went to Home Depot (in the same 'mall') after getting what Paula needed Mike and I both gravitated to the garden department. I had to smell the fresh basil multiple times, each time burying my nose in the fragrant leaves and inhaling deeply. Seeing that I have no political ambitions, YES I INHALED!!. Oh that was something else, nevermind.

I thought of MJ often, especially in World Market. Going down the aisles of unique food items reminded me of her, our trip to London, and how she inspires anyone she is near to try new things. Such the adventurous spirit she is. So Mike picked up a few things, I did too and found some chocolate thins made with Belgium chocolate...OMG they are HEAVEN. Another memory of London when MJ re-introduced me to chocolate, european chocolate in London; reinventing the love I thought I had lost and mourned. (blasphamy) Mike liked the shop so much we've declared it a danger zone; together. Paula concurred.

Leaving there we did the usual stop at WallyWorld. Walking in I smiled as I remembered the first time Susan and I got out of the canyon and ventured into the unfamilar territory. I was shaken leaving my quiet sanctuary to venture into what felt like a crowd. This time it was rejuvinating, though with a pang of regret as this was our last stop before going back home to the canyon. I realized how much I miss the 'civilized' world, I miss being able to go at my own whim (in my own car), do and see what I want. I wonder about the differences and consider for a moment if my move to the Canyon was a way to realign my spirit onto the axis it had fallen so far off. I had a beautiful place in a beautiful town with beautiful people, but was missing something so much more it was unidentifiable; though those close to me know the many different reasons, it was a necessary step. Does the step have to be so drastic? Sometimes, as I know there have been those who have honestly spoke to me about being jealous they couldn't do the same thing; I could hear the ache in their soul as they uttered their words. Mankind has always been a bit nomadic, some more then others. Many times my siblings and I would quip, or groan and moan about our 'gypsy blood' or our 'gyspy feet' aching to move on.

The trip to town got my imagination going to dream of a place to plant for a while. Literally and figuratively. That seems such a vague dream right now, but where ever I move onto I look forward. The best part is the richness added with Michael at my side and I by his, as we both contemplate and toss around ideas of the next steps to get where we want to set roots. Into the soil of our future together.

Friday, March 28, 2008

Building blocks

Gosh has it been a week already?? Taking the time off from last Thursday to Monday was necessary. Unfortunately it wasn't enough for Michael as he's experiencing more headaches and such whereas mine are more minor discomforts; ie; stiffness, a twinge here and there. But we are taking it one step at a time for healing and life.
Learning to balance is and always seems to be the most difficult. He told me this morning he misses me working on my photos and drawings, where I miss his music. I know personally we both have time to chose to do those things we love; it's a matter of stopping the 'time suckers'. You know, computer playing, television, so in my head that whiny voice that says 'I don't have time', is false. Recognizing that for me personally is important, it doesn't apply to anyone but me.
Last night the movie 'Field of Dreams' was on. I've never seen it completely, only in bits, but I finally got to watch most of it. Along with that have been what I call 'signs', whether it'd be quips of conversations, images or just plain dreams there's been a connection. That may end up being a blog or a personal journal entry later but it is part of the building blocks.
Mike and I are officially engaged, however the date remains elusive as there are choices we consider important for our wedding. Many things run through my mind from the material things (rings, clothing, etc), to the non material items, (time, place, wording, etc).
I mention the wedding as it's one of our building blocks in our future together; and how it will affect not only ourselves but those that are in our lives as we take our steps together blending our worlds. Part of our building blocks.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Healing...

Both of us went to the clinic Thursday. Despite the pressures from jobs, mostly mine, we're off through the weekend. Mike has a concussion, me I have spasiming muscles. Frankly I don't feel them spasm all that much - occassionally, but they stay pretty much tight. I start physical therapy on the 28th, if I still feel as tight as I am I'll insist on xrays before hand. Personally I think a 4 day weekend at a spa would be perfect. It should also be deductable, because of the medicinal benefits it would entail. I know a great massage, a hot tub, a pool and just all out relaxing would induce a healthier way of healing rather then drugs (I wish we could be closer to Terri's house), but alas that just isn't happening. So I take the drug with reluctance and in my mind we're at Terri's Health Spa getting well.
Susan left this morning, heading back to St. Pete to help her grandson. I hope she does well with changing his complete environment. I know she's happy to be going back, she will be missed, but it is with anticipation she find her joy in life.

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Some of the best decisions are made over morning coffee


This morning as Mike and I were pausing from our computers, he sat next to me and asked me to marry him. I said yes. Now where is that paper bag to breathe into??? So world, here is Mike. He's so cute.
I have been asked if it was the accident that prompted the question. Yes and no. He had been thinking about it for a while, and the accident proved how short life can be.
It will be somewhere here in the Canyon, but all other details will be decided upon soon.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Life's changing moments

Life changing events often cause a ripple of events that affect us for the rest of our lives. Whether it be through birth, death, accident, or what ever it reaches to those who are near, far and unknown. Life happens, even if it's in that flash of a last second before one is caught up in a cataclysmic moment. Sometimes it takes years to come out of the darkness, but when one can open their eyes and smile from their soul the world is beauty; in the kindness of a strangers words, the embrace of a loved one, the voice of your best friend, even in the ache of a sore muscle. One feels the connection in their soul to life in its purest form.
Taking Mike's hand as he helped me from the mangled formation that was formerly a vehicle, became a nexus . When we stepped away still holding onto each other it became a transformed world for us. Calamitous at first, until we saw and felt more stirrings of life. There are those that are less fortunate for them I grieve and hope they find their way through the darkness to smile yet again as they turn their face to the sun.

NOT on my list of things to do....

Life is great, and I am so thankful Mike and I are alive. Yesterday, 3/16/08 around 1230pm there was a MASSIVE pileup on interstate 40 in Flagstaff and we were in the middle of it. Borrowed a friends Geo and went to Flag to do some shopping. On the way back Mike was driving 30mph, because of white out conditions and ice on the road. It took us 1/2 mile to come to a stop, but we did and thought whew were safe, until he heard the honking of a semi out of control 1/2 mile behind us. Mike got us rolling forward (law of physics), and we were slammed by the jackknifing trailer, pushed like a pinball between a panel truck, another semi and a couple of suvs. As soon as the trailer hit us our seats flipped back and with the impact on myside, the glass from my door flew in, and part of the windshield. I think it was the seats releasing themselves that saved us. Once we came to a stop, (it spinned us completely around) Mike had me wait a moment - incase there was going to be more coming at us, and we then quickly exited the car through the drivers side as our full gas tank was now empty on the road. His door was working, mine was crushed in. I have superficial lacerations on my face (really light ones), my neck, right thigh, and back is achy from tense muscles, Mike's the same way without the cuts, but we WALKED away from it. We walked around for 3 hours calling people and insurance companies, while the rescue teams took care of triage, then asked about getting checked out and had to walk down hill about a half a mile, cross over to the East bound lane (which had the same problem - 70 cars on West bound where we were, 50 on East bound), then we climbed into an ambulance and was taken to a sub clinic of the local hospital. They were innundated, but did a fantastic job. Once we got released we got a got a taxi, hotel room, took a shower and ate dinner and relaxed as much as we could. The interstate finally opened at 430 this morning so we called Flagstaff Express and got home. Everyone has been really nice, from us being out of work to the guy who's car we borrowed. I got email addresses from several people who took pictures of our car, and once they found out which car we were in most shook our hands and said 'happy your alive', So are we.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Canyon time...

A step out of 'reality'. I've met a lot of people and know them by name; it's important, we all like to hear our names being called out in recognition, and all refer to living outside of the canyon as 'being in the outside world.' After all where else does one's electric bill reflect the most on the first bill (under $50) and the subsequent bills be half that! It certainly doesn't happen in 'the outside world'. There's also a store where eggs are not $3.69 a dozen, movie theatres to go to, different dining options that offer 'real' food. Not to mention the most important part, those who's lives are connected to yours, but teaching beauty and truth to the following generations with love and integrity. I admire them and miss them.
We're getting a host of international people in. Mostly young people in their early 20's. Met a few of them on the shuttle a couple of days ago. Beautiful, sweet and full of life. Yesterday at lunch I was listening to conversations all around me, in various different languages. As I looked I saw out of the corner of my eye the shadow of the faces of our girls. Like the dancing butterfly and dragonfly the image flittered beyond. I smiled sadly as my heart ached a bit and listened a little more. Out side perched in a tree was a child raven. It looked more like the crows I've seen in Florida, but it was exercising it's vocal cords beautifully. I laughed outloud when it sounded like a dolphin playing, excited at the connecting sounds of spirit.
Was it just escapism coming here? I imagine and wonder how my sister-friends would flourish were they in the same shoes, knowing their strengths and stamina how deeply rich they would set out to adventure.
No feathers found, but the wind in the trees embrace the chill as winter grasps with apprehension to release the world to spring.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Mundane

Time and people are restless. A break from the mundane is building. When we all capitulate events will then eruct as volcanos creating new land mass to build on. Maybe it's the changes in the weather that stir our pots of energies; as our minds feed on the many seeds of inspiration daring us to nurture one or more to create those changes we ache for in our lives. As adults we've learned, sometimes the hard way, that our actions create ripples of effects well into our futures...and past. How we react, employ, or utilize the changes is the basis of the change and constitues the memories in the journey we face and how we perceive them from the past.

I know for myself the same seed gets planted every year and like a very slow growing tree the roots grow a little deeper and the leaves stretch towards the sun opening every pore to abosorb the nurturing energy. It is of course art. It is when the 'mundane' of physical survival questions the nature that the nature quietly moves to the sidelines and interjects at auspicious moments. For others it is something else entirely. But deep inside we have those desires, wishes, dreams or any other euphamism you use; waiting patiently for those moments to stretch each pore in the sun absorbing the nurturing energy to flower.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Traffic Jams

I was taking a break yesterday, enjoying the sun when I looked down the road and saw a line of cars with break lights on. Here in the canyon we have different terms for traffic jams. Elk jams. Squirrel jams. Deer jams. Toe jams. What it all constitutes is still yet another line to wait in while someone takes a picture. (Of toes? Well I suppose some people can't help but get their feet in the picture.)
Since they're 'jams' how about we just call them a party? Picture the elk band with sunglasses playing instruments...Is this what happens in space as the flying spacecraft slowly drifts by as they ooo and ahhh out their viewing portals watching 'primitive beings' in their natural habitat?
Another part of the snowglobe effect.

Friday, March 07, 2008

Counting...rocks

This week is the week of inventory. Counting each and every little item that is sold in all of the retail shops here in the Canyon. No we don't count the little rocks, just the big ones. lol. As my boss pointed out it's a good way to see what you may want to get in July when we have our 'Christmas in July' special discount for employees. Frankly what I'd like to see is my artwork in the stores. Research ongoing, so who knows.

Most of the snow is gone, what remains are little bits here and there and the tourist are coming in. It's a bit of a relief after a slow season; though I know soon I won't even want to venture near the rim as it will be too crowded.

The artwork is still hung at the rec center for the community art show we had a couple of weeks ago. A few people sold their items. I received a lot of comments on mine but does it count when it doesn't sell? Counting, seems to be the theme of the week; so count your blessings and revel in the joy they give.

Friday, February 29, 2008

Spring

A taste of Spring as it reaches to 67 degrees today. I know those in Florida would be putting jackets on. This morning when I walked out my door it was in the 20's. I wore my jean jacket and gloves, it felt good. Saw a herd of deer as I walked to Mike's work to meet him for breakfast. More then 10 does and 2 bucks. More of a harem if you ask me, but they were pretty just the same. If we get up early enough (we usually do) we might see other types - hopefully big horn sheep by the El Tovar. To be continued...

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Even more winter

Yes, more winter. Friday we had more snow, even lightning and thunder. What a wild combination. I am really looking forward to spring, but in the meantime (that wonderful word)...Mike and I went out for a walk on Saturday. The sun came out and it starting melting quickly. It was funny, almost like Nature was having a snowball fight, just daring us to stand under a tree to plop a load of snow on our heads. Susan came close as we ran into her after our photo outing.

Some of the trees looked cartoonish like the one on the left. Reminded me of Dr. Seuss.

We started out on the road near out house, walked to the rec center; despite how snowy it is it wasn't that cold. I didn't realize until we were leaving the rec center I had it on black and white, but that's okay. They came out pretty good. I've taken some pretty good pictures if I do say so myself, getting better. I find if I zoom it in 3 or 4 to 1 and I can see the details it's a good picture.


Going through these Mike commented on how some of them would make an interesting puzzle. Hmm, life is like that; sometimes a big confusing puzzle until you see the big beautiful picture.


Can you see the blue sky in one of these? It's like Waldo, some where in there. This is a good time to review the textures in the trunks, observe te differences between the juniper and pines. They both smell devine in a fireplace however I've observed when Juniper wood is burned peoples allergies are kicked into high gear.(including mine) My theory is the pollen is still whole and 'ingrained' in the wood, when it is burned it is released into the area.








Despite all the winter, I still feel the stirring of spring. Starting to see different birds come up from the warmth of the canyon; there was even a Javalina running down the road by the Bright Angel last week. That's a rare sight up here on the rim. Those behind the desk didn't realize it, even when they got comment cards regarding the pig outside their room. Some thought it was metaphorical. Well at least the pig wasn't in the room, or in some cases was; but symbols come in many forms...
Most of this melted off the trees by Sunday evening, natures way of showing how quickly change can occur whether we notice or not.