Thursday, November 26, 2009


good afternoon.
so, yah, thanksgiving. ok. here it comes. i'm getting ready to gear myself up for advent but you know ok, turkey. here's the thing. i can't eat the gravy. i have to try a rice flour gravy concoction instead. i mean i hope it tastes ok, but still. and while i am planning on risking approximately 2 small bites of stuffing i mourn the loss of it like a hole in my heart. and no, no other stuffing is the same as that box of mrs.cubbinsons with those spices and celery and onion. period. don't even try it people. i don't want to hear your buckuplittlecamperhave you tried this... nonwheat stuffing. no. i haven't. its not the same. sure i'm going to try pumpkin pie without the crust and yet... you know where i'm going here. its enough to make me think i made this allergy up so i could inconvenience myself and yet no. there it remains. and you can forget things laden with cream too. toppings for said pie, cheesecake is out, even a heavy helping of that famous stringbean casserole bcs of that whole can of cream of mushroom thing. i mean i'll try to cut corners here and there but still. anyway nevermind, i just had to complain. its still going to be delicious despite not being able to eat warm biscuits dripping with butter.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

dear m,

I have so much to say about Wal-Mart, it won’t even fit on Twitter.

First of all… what was I thinking, really. Those non-grocery items I mentioned were also non-Thanksgiving items. Meaning, they could have waited until the weekend to be purchased. At some other store. And I could have just gone to the nice, normal grocery store today. But no.

Second, the moment I realized that Wal-Mart didn’t even have said non-grocery, non-Thanksgiving items, would it not have been reasonable to just turn the cart around and exit speedily from the building? And then head to the nice, normal aforementioned grocery store?

But, no. The parking lot was more crowded than normal, because again, it’s the day before Thanksgiving. I parked about halfway between my house (about 3 miles away) and the store. It was sprinkling. Cold. There were puddles. K.Lo has a cold but doesn’t like to wear her jacket over her summer dresses. Whatever.

On entering the building, I noticed a girl exiting the building who happens to work at Costco. I guess there’s stuff you can’t buy at Costco…otherwise, why would I be there instead of the glorious Costco…but still. Something depressing there I can’t quite articulate.

Immediately, I encountered what would prove to be the most maddening issue of this shopping trip. What kills me about Wal-Mart. The aisles are reasonably wide, enough for two carts to pass each other without problem, and yet. People manage to stagger themselves so that there’s no way to pass. And they just stand there, either oblivious, or rude, or both? For ages. And ages. And AGES.

Cleanup on Aisle 67: my brain just exploded.

And God forbid you forget something on your list that was at the back of the store, which you don’t remember or realize until you’re at the front of the store, inches from the checkout. And freedom.

They didn’t have the size grapevine wreath, or any crafting wreath, really, that I needed for my Advent project. Forget about the candles, who knows where they hide those suckers. And did I really need replacement 40-watt light bulbs today? Nope. So here is the point I should have left, and yet soldiered on over to the groceries, encountering too many incidents of Maddening Aisle Oblivion to count. The children were getting squirrely. N.Lo spilling/smashing his juice cup all over the cart and onto K.Lo, who alternately whined about being smashed/splattered upon and being tired. Not to mention the hunger issue, as it was lunchtime. For future reference, a meager bowl of goldfish consumed in the car before and after yoga is not enough. For anyone.

The carts at Wal-Mart aren’t made so you can stow groceries underneath; most everything falls through the cracks. So I had to stack it all around K.Lo. She sat on the cheese 3 times at least. Squished the bread. Was mauled by a box of Pop-Tarts or some-such.

They didn’t sell candy corns, so the Thanksgiving turkey cupcakes are sadly (not so sadly? I’m sort of relieved) out.

And then, in a crazy moment of consumerist surrealism, the cross-eyed cashier I always avoid at Target was shopping at Wal-Mart and I nearly got in line behind her.


We managed to get through the checkout line, but barely, with N.Lo throwing fits over helping load items onto the conveyer belt and me attempting to organize my coupons/pay/load all paid-for items back into the cart around the sleeveless K.Lo and the melting-down N.Lo. Accosted by the bell-ringing man outside who was wearing, like, 3-D glasses? I don’t know? Couldn’t find the car… children jumping in puddles, running out into traffic, blood sugar dropping… We had to take a moment to devour some cheese sticks in a Mozza Moment of Zen before continuing on.

As we pulled away, K.Lo remarked, “That was so much fun!”

I need a nap. And a drink. Luckily, I didn’t forget to buy the wine.


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

dear m,

It occurs to me that I haven’t weighed myself in months—not because I’m all liberated from the concept of weight, but because at some point I had reencountered a number I hadn’t seen in a long while, and decided I couldn’t bear to see the number rise away again? So even though I know full well I’m least five pounds more now, in my mind I’m still that pseudo-goal weight. Ignorance really can be bliss. Or ignorance. Whichever.

I’ve been to yoga 3x in 7 days and provided all goes according to plan tomorrow, I’ll go again. Sweetness. It is an hour in which I’m allowed to dump/cast aside/quiet all the noise in my mind. I have varying degrees of success on that, but the effort always yields some positive vibes.

I have a lot of side work this week, and so the children unfortunately must be parked in front of the television, especially in the afternoons, and then I feel guilty for that, but what can you do. At least it’s cloudy and damp outside, as I imagine the guilt would be even heavier if it were sunny. Although thinking about the long-term, I’m doubting they’ll be scarred by these moments of intermittent neglect for the sake of some pocket cash. Not too badly, anyway.

In the meantime, I’m fairly certain that I’ll forget something big in regards to hosting Thanksgiving, but plan to enjoy it anyway. The furniture invariably will be dusty, but enough food will be available to all, and really I can’t think of anything better at the moment than lazing around in a post-parade-and-turkey coma.

Sadly, I must brave Wal-Mart tomorrow post yoga, as I have another of those long and random shopping lists that demand economy of both time and funds. Everything from canned cranberry sauce to cupcake frosting to advent wreath materials for church on Sunday. What can you do. Wish me luck.


Dear Penelope,

Hello you.
Thanks for your commiseration about the chin hair issue. As it turns out there were no nut-thins to eat the other night. That was sad. It was a specific cheddary crunchyness I was craving. I think i compromised by having a stale rice cake. I did eventually straighten the books on the top shelves, 3 stacks of them reaching and wedged to the ceiling. And I threw another 7" of paper away. They were old bound copies of books, articles, notes, short stories, analysis- from film theory, an ethos and eros course, someones thesis, history of the presidency, art history... classes I really liked or some just provoking. There was something I attached to all that xeroxed paper. Time, expense, an accumulation of thoughts, a certain gesture of the professor to communicate a truth, an idea, or some joy about words, all of it compiled nicely, gathered together. It was hard to part with then. Easier now. I stared at the articles blankly. Kept one collection of short plays from a korean author. Your thesis. A book on world religions. Parts of life are an accumulation and simultaneously a distillation. We shake and filter and sort and add. An endless meditation on what makes up memory and sentiment and aesthetic taste.

The vial of sand from the volcano caught in the wires along with that same small vial of wisdom teeth removed. The flask labeled 'schu' and a dried out orange from some birthday. The etruscan miniature horse from the getty, teal and lovely. The costume jewelry from that dumpster, the candleholder from spain, the ceramic angel and the wooden shoe ornament. The lego man I found buried in the dirt along with an old glass bottle top. My match collection and that vermont teddy bear... for now. My 3 baby blankets and my pound puppy and all those boxes I have in the attic. Nevermind about those.

Yesterday I went to the opera. Which for all its lovilness is essentially tedious. An exercise in patience and excavation like reading Proust or going through all your keepsakes. Your mind wanders, things catch, and if you are very lucky you have gone away somewhere and come back with something to hold.

Now I'm going to go back to watching xfiles and thinking about writing those personal essays for talbot. I did apply to that job I didn't want yesterday. So that was good. Next up temp agencies? Or more job sites? The acupuncturist? Yoga? Swimming? Maybe episodes of 24.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Dear Penelope,

I was looking at all my mutant chin hair and I must have scratched a spot and unleashed a hidden 1 1/2" strand of darkness. Nature is cruel. I held it up for inspection. Mom seemed surprised it was black. I was not. But I do have fabulous eybrows. And awesome hair and yet still. There's something insulting about hair growing that long on my face. All of the tweezing, brooding and pore inspecting btw episodes of xfiles and house. What does it lead to but noting plaque build up and grey hairs and yet I find it a meditation btw watching alien conspiracy theories and diagnostic medicine, the truth being out there and all the silly stories that life and imagination compels. Its better than wandering into the moonlight and beseeching God to bring me a husband.

It's been an odd four days. That mysterious illness brought on by an unholy and toxic mix of an el torito sample platter, tequila, wine and salami, reesepieces mnms. Finding myself on a beach for an hour with scallop shells and a barking seal i couldn't see, that was this morning. Tomorrow is the opera Tamerlano. I have no idea what it's about. I had that poetry meeting with glass breaking, shit exclaimed and pablo neruda and anne sexton- favorite phrases: 'i was stamped out like a plymouth fender' and from david ray 'as not too heavy a tug of those albatrosses i sadly placed on their tender necks', the visit to MOCA, the broken glass on the floor, the room of rothkos and thorne reaching up to Giacametti's tall composed women, like she'd identified the origin of man, then there was the thai food and the houses for sale and the friends moving and giving birth and going to school. But I've said all of that before.

So I'm going to go eat some nut-thins and think about straightening the books on the very top shelves.

ROWING, anne sexton
A story, a story!
(Let it go. Let it come.)
I was stamped out like a Plymouth fender
into this world.
First came the crib
with its glacial bars.
Then dolls
and the devotion to their plastic mouths.
Then there was school,
the little straight rows of chairs,
blotting my name over and over,
but undersea all the time,
a stranger whose elbows wouldn't work.
Then there was life
with its cruel houses
and people who seldom touched-
though touch is all-
but I grew,
like a pig in a trenchcoat I grew,
and then there were many strange apparitions,
the nagging rain, the sun turning into poison
and all of that, saws working through my heart,
but I grew, I grew,
and God was there like an island I had not rowed to,
still ignorant of Him, my arms, and my legs worked,
and I grew, I grew,
I wore rubies and bought tomatoes
and now, in my middle age,
about nineteen in the head I'd say,
I am rowing, I am rowing
though the oarlocks stick and are rusty
and the sea blinks and rolls
like a worried eyeball,
but I am rowing, I am rowing,
though the wind pushes me back
and I know that that island will not be perfect,
it will have the flaws of life,
the absurdities of the dinner table,
but there will be a door
and I will open it
and I will get rid of the rat insdie me,
the gnawing pestilential rat.
God will take it with his two hands
and embrace it.

As the African says:
This is my tale which I have told,
if it be sweet, if it be not sweet,
take somewhere else and let some return to me.
This story ends with me still rowing.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


You promised me an entire day at the beach. I wanted to remind you. So if you do drive me straight there please do bring a small cooler of food/snacks/drinks and a blanket and prepare to bring a book or i don't know, whatever makes this situation bearable for you. A hat, tons of SPF, etc. Think of it as a ritual now that you'll be 32. I can maybe give you a list of tasks or feats to perform if that helps also. And I'll have been using Jan-March as my base tanning months so I'll be preapred. And do remember pouring down rain visits don't count, nor do driveby, walkbys or crane your neck from the car and get a glimpse, like the last time. So. Sad. Wah.Wah.

I'm excited to see you. I have fond memories of MarioKart Wii. I do remember talk of painting the last time i was there and it is possible but if i had to chose- visit shooting range with j.lo or paint i might chose a gun just because. ;) Though painting doesn't take too long so I guess I can do both. We do have 6 days. All of these lists things sound totally feasible. And it is your birthday. That word will work wonders in getting most of what what you want except the aforementioned.

Today I'm going to yoga and i'm seeing some movie called 'new york, i love you'. I don't love NY. I know every city deserves two visits so I'm holding out final judgement but still. It's at the $2 theatre. A-- is ditching work and I'm going with her after maybe a stop at a tasty food place. Also did you know, I'm officially 33 1/2. My half birthday was on Friday. I hadn't until just now thought of myself as being 34. And yet there it is, looming, not 6 months away. 34, what on earth does it mean and what will it bring. Otherwise I'm more than 1/2 way done with Red Tent. I read most of it yesterday. And besides the awesomeness of moon rituals, somewhat over idealized, I totally dig it. Because women should be able to do nothing and hang out in a tent for 3 days. Why not. Why is there no time in life to acknowledge mystery and sacrifice.

Aside from that I deduced I dont think i have any other allergies except a build up of yeast in my system. Thats my new investigation-- caused by too much healthy cultures, sugar, all that tea i drink, wheat, dairy, and cheese... awesome good times. Muriel said as much the last time but doesn't the absence of wheat and milk nix it for me? Apparently not. Whatever. I mean I mostly cut down on the tea consumption. But I'm holding fast to cheese, fruit and chocolate. For obvious reasons right! Anyway.

So yah, I feel better and have restabilized from the morose thoughts of 2 days ago. I like your fixing thoughts. I encourage you to continue. I myself obviously, go right to fix mode on so many things and I don't get exasperated by such advice, just encouraged. Because I don't necessairly like to sit in problems. I like to route them, delegate them and get them off my plate. No need to dwell here. Move along move along. Until it crops up again and then you and parker can give me the goods and the tea girls can do what they do and i'll be right back to it. Thats what friends are for.


Monday, November 16, 2009


While walking The Loop last time, we were literally one block from the ocean. So this time, perhaps I’ll drive you straight there. Just to be a little obnoxious. :)

Otherwise, your next sojourn to here will have to include:

  • Ghost walk. The good, creepy one.
  • The Loop.
  • Painting? Want to help me paint the master bedroom?
  • MarioKart Wii!
  • YOGA. Wonder if I can get you a guest pass to gym?
  • Church.
  • Photos.
  • Little Dipper Ladies Night.
  • 32nd B-day celebration!
  • And some other great adventure(s), TBD.

Have I mentioned I can’t wait???


Sunday, November 15, 2009

dear m,

If only your day had ended on the tea, rather than the horse-jumping. Although then I suppose the ladies’ work would feel more like damage control, rather than pure support and uplifting of spirit, which I love them for. I’m automatically venomous on your behalf in response to B. But I might practically, or diplomatically, or even optimistically conclude that perhaps it is not one or the other, Should You or Shouldn’t You. Maybe the truth lies somewhere in the middle. Regardless of the Should or Should Not, it seems like this idea of of a spiritual formation and soul care path is very much who you are and the path you are destined to follow. And maybe that means choosing something concrete to go alongside the more nebulous outcome of the degree. Making the choice of, I am interested in X job (specific position or field), and that will be my goal. Teaching, missionary, advisor? And in what context. Who do you wish to work with, to reach. And/or even for now, making that choice to act. Is there something you can get before this program that would propel you forth on this path? Or maybe it is time to try on the different hats and see how they feel. Can you volunteer or even seek out a paying position for the sake of exploration? With your church or elsewhere? I certainly don’t think it is the time to give up, and yes, let B’s words and attitude stoke the fire. Your being is spiritual and abstract and floating; yang beseeches yin to move toward the middle. Do. Reflect, yes, but then Do. I feel like it will ground you, guide you, keep your footing more sure. And while none of us will ever find the nonexistent Perfection in life, occupations included, knowledge or fear of this fact must not keep a person from seeking something close. Think of the light you might bring to people and who they might be, rather than letting the dark swallow that light and its potential.

In my humble opinion-


Saturday, November 14, 2009


I had an interesting slings and arrows sort of day. I went to the very last salon tea. I came close to overdoing the cream and sugar in the tea but persevered along with my quarter sized bite of scone. The frittata was so good though that next time I demand more or 2nds... Aut is close to 2ndbabyville and J is close to NY, new job, selling house self. Both on the brink of monumental change. They include us, danica and i, in the change of changes- and I think certainly D with her kiddo and her already in progress MA is plugging along in the change category, and her possibly new houseowner self speaks of ramping up into something else entirely. I don't feel quite a part of it. I feel in fact, way outside in stationaryville. Sure there's the 'rents moving out, (a year from now?) and me staying, but its not me owning or me with a job. It seems a false step. But then I end up thinking there's something about what I'm doing I don't quite see. A perspective that where I'm going must signal something more than what I see it as. They're excited about it. The ladies as usual, thought i was too quiet, that when I had gotten up to go to the bathroom they'd had a question or two already to go to ask me about my spiritual landscape. . . and were alternately so extremely supportive of my new career as mystic or at the very least degree holder of MA in SF&SC that it seemed a sure thing. A set up to my whole future self. I couldn't, while in their presence, articulate any sort of panic about it not happening, about it not going anywhere... I only managed to say, God willing and I hope so. And i'm proceeding as if its happening, that a job will come and that the end result is me doing this new thing and helping people. I walked out only with a thin thread of a question mark but the rest seemed good and sure and lovely and bolstered up and ready. I couldn't even argue it. Of course I'll get in. Of course I'll get a job so I can pay for it. The fact that bacon fat splattered all over my silk teal dress didn't phase me (much). There was a solution waiting for me at home.

Then I went to have chinese food for dinner and it didn't really satisfy. Not hearty, not quite right. And onward to M's house where I met her and B to see the grandprix of horse jumping? That was fairly cool actually. Though it was just close to my memories of the circus and feeling horribly sorry for the performing bears. But some of the horses were beautiful and spirited and looked like gazelles leaping over the bars. And others I just hoped wouldn't one day end up slaughtered glue. I wanted to see them free in some field munching on grass. I couldn't hear a word B and M said so I was mostly absorbed in hearing the pounding of the hoofs or the telltale hit of a bar signaling a point against the rider, the various ooh!, ooo, of the crowd. I had wine. If i were an instrument my strings would have showed myself taut and hitting a lower chord. Twang.Twang.Twang. All the while we sat there, the flip between having tea with the girls and having a brief conversation with B about "career" paths... and "vision" left me floundering on a hook and gasping. And all it took were two or three sentences to undo the determined work the women of tea did. B showed signs of hating her job, but still encouraging me to apply to that other job (volunteer/event coordinator) at her place, but then asking me what i did for work- when you know me, what can i answer but anything? everything? nothing at all? or what does it matter? And the way she asked it made me feel I'd already failed, and that she wasn't going to really "help me" get it, and then on the way there she said, I don't mean to discourage you but there's no jobs out there for spirtual direction- (she's a chaplain and actively looking)- and part of me already had that illuminating discovery at the schools meet and greet. It was the first chink in the armor- apprehension, "purpose", all of this for nothing? Wasn't this thing of all things suppose to lead to SOMETHING? Nothing ever has before this so why start now, I countered, I could volunteer my time to my church. What did it matter? And yet still the fabric of my courage began to tear. Pointlessness. The flaming arrow hit its intended target with accuracy. And she herself, who probably didn't "mean" to discourage me delivered the blow in such a way and in such a tone, that she meant to do exactly that. Speak death right into my hope and into my life. I am discouraging you quite deliberately she meant to say. The result of all your work will be, nothing at all.

And there I went, down,down,down, to where I had been seeing just below the fabric of friendly motivation and insight. The truth of it- I don't want to come out of this and go back to the same pointless existence as before- the same meandering job searches, the positively unmotivated days of what to do- i really did want direction. And all of it came seeping in- then why bother? But then I think- what else do I have? All I have is that to go toward. There's not even a job to encourage me to stay the course. It's just a feeling. It's just the tea girls and Lauralee. With their thumbs up saying, stay the course. And most everyone saying, that's perfect for you!

It is isn't it? And then back to B and the poison she injected right into my heart, because she's depressed and struggling and now i'm right down there with her. But then I think if God really does want me to do this it doesn't matter, if at the end of it there's still nothing, does it? It feels like all i have. What can I lose?

And for a few moments in between all this I felt complete contempt or disdain for B. Bordering hate. And maybe thats a good thing. Shows me that its important. Shows me I really want it, and that maybe I won't let anything get in my way? I don't know. I guess I'll go to bed now. Try to undo the damage up on the mountain of joy, far far up in the snow, wrapped in longfurred wraps against the cold, so warm that the snow is just a beautiful effect and the angels in synch with the snow, how they tell me to be still and quiet and rest. But to just look out into the vast white glory with the wind and all the future not quite mattering as much as what i'm doing just at the moment of being where i'm suppose to be.


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

dear m,

P1040486I finally seized the day and crafted a bit for Thanksgiving. Not much, as I found selection at the craft store woefully lacking, but still there are some things. My favorite is the vase full of fall grasses. I did go through a fleeting not so long ago in which I shunned all fabricated flowers and greenery, but it occurs to me lately that they contain their own beauty. If they are not tacky, that is. I don’t feel like these are tacky, and in fact, I love the way they spill over, an exuberant mix of deep purples, oranges, browns and greens, and they way they move under the kitchen fan breeze.

We will host Thanksgiving this year, and in the meantime, it occurred to me yesterday evening that I have fewer than 3 weeks to complete several magazine articles. We are all behind. Hmm. So I hope to find this situation inspiring, rather than grim.

But I’m fighting off something… currently, head is fuzzy, muscles ache, perhaps a bit of a cough and sore throat. Possibly pad thai for dinner, made by someone other than me?

When will your next harvest be ready, and did you see this past/final challenge on ProRun? Drawing inspiration from none other than the Getty museum. I thought of you and your mom.

love, penolin

Sunday, November 8, 2009


Enclosed, please find a carbon copy of a tale i told to my friend wendy:

once upon a time there was a girl whose eyes shone bright and wide at all that was beautiful in the world. and in those eyes you could see all the wonder and magic that was in that world. and the girl who had such eyes of insight wished more than anything to keep filling her eyes, because it made her eyes happy. And her eyes would not let her rest. They kept her awake at night, filling her mind with dreams of silk ribbons, and soft cable sweaters and delicious treats and strange things like dragon fruit and more mysterious things like kumquats and cinnamon.... and her eyes were contagious to her hands and her ears and her mind- and soon they were touching curious things like silkfloss trees and meditating on words like supercilious, sonorous and spendthrift and saying things like frippery and windwhistle and whirlygig and whowizzle.

and soon her whole being wanted to get up and go to keep seeing, touching, tasting and saying everything, and keep thinking the things with the longtrains of thought or the ones that you blinked and were gone. sometimes those tasted the best...because the world was better when these things were done and they were good and sweet and possibly rose flavored when said aloud. and yet the eyes urged her to look upward and outward, further and further and she knew her journey lay up beyond the mountains, to strange places, to unfamiliar things, where the girl with the wry smile and mischievious glance would see what it would it be like to be alone amidst all these things. and she knew she wanted more than anything to go alone. but there were many things to do before she was with her bicylce, bonnet and basket- sailing past tulips, dark shaded forests, and melancholy falls with her loaf of bread, butter and jam and possibly tea, a journal and her many colored pencils.

so many things to be done that the girl with the eyes of insight lay stuck for a while as the stars shone and the inconstant moon shrunk and sighed back to life again... over and over. when would the time come asked the mind to the more impatient eyes? and all the friends of the girl wished gifts upon her to soar, to roam, to build some ship in which to stay afloat, but to keep journeying upward and outward far over the mountains, into the sky, across the continent. they loved the girl so much that even people who did not know the girl came to love her anyway and call her friend, and they too began to wish the girl goodness and blessings and etsy accounts. because they saw those blazing insightful eyes and the truth of all the need and want those eyes seemed to speak- words like jelly, joy and juju and more serious words like god, transcendent and zeitgiest. they wanted the best for her. and her eyes did too. and the girl stood ready to claim them, but the waiting was hard and sometimes her eyes closed and darkness came, and sometimes the girl was very sad, and very lonely and yet still the mind and the hands and the mouth all rallied when the eyes got tired. they came to the rescue with an aching that made the girl look up into the sky and dream dreams and sing songs. waiting for her eyes to open again and begin to crave and wonder and search all over again.

and her friends with all their eyes could see and dream dreams and wonder with the girl about all that was good and about all that was bad and the girl gave them a wink and a nod and a sometimes smile and the friends began to notice things too-- snowflakes, and fava beans and cider donuts, and they began to say words like, cellar, sensuous, and wonderment, and meditate on words like, delight, melody and holindaese. and the girl with the eyes of insight stood sometimes sleepy, sometimes wide awake. they were all waiting. the eyes, the ears, the mouth and the hands and the mind especially and all the girl had in her heart, to soar upward and outward and she knew because they told her, that her friends would be there when she got back, they would be there waiting for gifts and cheesy souviners and postcards... waiting for the girl to come back and tell them all the places she'd been and all the thoughts she thought and the strange and the curious and the novel and especially how alive the girl was and to see how those eyes shone gratified and content.

and the girl knew she was more than the waiting. more than the cut on her finger and the dust on her feet. more than just the stains on her sweater, or the insulting lack of good tv- she was this radiant spirit and how brilliant she sparkled against the light of the evening sun. and she rested there a while and felt for a moment- infinite- and with all of those things to go forward and know she was not just for a moment, infinite, but forever.

Friday, November 6, 2009


I struggle with God in everyone too- its more that God's image and likeness is in everyone, since you know no one is walking around connected to Him like they should be. Theologically more is needed than even that understanding, because I think it leads us to be harder on ourselves than we ought to be. And maybe it goes to purpose- to see the likeness of God, or people as God's children, doesn't remove elements of truth or judgement from them, or the 'rightness and wrongness' of their actions but instead gives us compassion to their brokenness, and their struggles, and their non-godness and their --'they need jesus today' and so do i? Lends us mercy and patience? Big words. Sometimes so abstracted. But then I also think in dealing with these sorts of things I think, without God's supernatural interference in my life I would be acting selfishly and according to my own purpose and not his anyway. There must be some help he's lending. Sometimes I really do have a tangible feeling that God is giving me something I lack- like patience- kids must test the limit of even divine help, knees to the ground, hands clenched kind of deliver me from my own emotive storm. You have a tough job. You must sometimes lose yourself from the actual amazingness of it- what do you do to step outside of it and laugh and have mercy on these willful infuriating individuals who inflict you with all that is in a man- going about fully minded on being who they are with no assistance, or no knowledge of the balance of freewill and obedience? I don't know how you disarm those finally tuned button-pushing mechanisms that are being formed in your parenthood but by supernatural assistance. And then maybe seeing the parts of them that reflect what it is to be happy, to laugh, to be silly, to find beauty, that must be like taking a walk through the world and finding Gods reflection there too. Totally necessary. It must work in both ways, compassion, acceptance, joy despite the imperfection of it all. Both correction and reproof entwined with mercy.

Anyway, in other news my dad brought home a giant bowl of salsa. I could've used it when I had my chicken quesadilla today (on brownriceflourtortillas)... needed the spice or bite of onions and whatever else is in salsa or guacamole, i wouldve taken that too. But as it is, I guess its here for next time, whenever that will be.

Already I've had too many popsicles and am thinking about what sort of 'greens' i'm going to have for dinner. Due to a lack of greens allday, and most of yesterday. Amber is coming over and we're going to watch '24'- I finished my book too and wonder what i should read next- it may be between: brideshed revisited, red tent, memoirs of Geisha, eat/pray/whatever, or maybe a mystery or a historical novel. I can't decide. I already have a balance of non-fiction i'm reading or too many as the case may be. Perhaps I've entered into a time of reading and all the projects will have to wait. I keep thinking i'm going to run out of netflix but xfiles is going to keep me a bit longer. Well anyway Amber just Im'd me to tell me the mail hasn't arrived yet so she hasn't left yet. I guess I'll go wander outside and sip my sparkling water, think about snacks or something or chocolate icecream.

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

dear m,

I’ve started so many letters to you in my mind on paper (so to speak), including a potentially fabulous little thing about life lessons learned in yoga. But before I can finish, the bubble of inspiration bursts and no longer is my idea there. You can’t stare at those things too long, much less try to handle them.

I’m putting in my request to the Universe for less emotionality, or at least the freedom or will to choose when and where I overflow. Like frustrations with the petulant, stubborn 2-year-old. It’s not my favorite age, but still, why can’t I be wise enough in a combative moment to realize it’s just a phase and I don’t actually need to mirror said behavior. Why can’t I naturally accept that the item he wishes to handle himself will in fact be squished, spilled or broken, and that ultimately it’s okay. Why can’t I just love him, and shut up about it.

And today I was wrongly cited for a parking ticket—WTF? Penelope does not like to be accused of something she did not do. Particularly when money is involved, even if it is only $10. So the fury was unleashed upon this old lady who wrote up the ticket—tears and swearing may have been involved. But seriously? I literally could not have been in that parking deck when she tagged my tire. The machine does in fact lie. I yelled at her until she said she would tear up the ticket, and later I do feel a little bad about it. But at least I stood up for myself? I don’t know. I do feel I could have been more reasonable and measured in my argument, if not polite. Schmolite.

Oh and the Q-tips in the ears, there’s another thing I could have been less emotional about. They say not to clean out your ears (or should you? why is that subject so murky), and so I didn’t for a long time, but then I did, because I couldn’t stand it any more, and it quickly became a problem. Wednesday night I couldn’t hear out of my right ear, and I made the problem worse by attempting to flush the ear. And then I figured that while I’m irrigating, I might as well try to clean the left one as well, so by Friday morning, I could not hear an effing thing out of either ear. For reals, I believe my hearing was cut by about 50%. Was about to lose it. Perhaps did, a few times, when either mocked or challenged to hear all the little things I normally take for granted. I went to MEDAC to resolve, where they did a proper ear-igation (HA HA HA, get it?) and, as they said, I can now unfortunately (their words, not mine) hear better than I have in a long, long time. A Christmas miracle! I didn’t not enjoy the MEDAC, where I had never been before, but it is currently free through our insurance. Good place to go in a pinch.

Meanwhile (and this isn’t as big a leap as it seems, I swear), I mull the concept of seeing God in every person, and maybe I’m trying too hard, because like a bubble that you can’t stare at or handle too long, it ultimately bursts and is no more.

love, pen

Monday, November 2, 2009

Dear Penelope,

Hellllloooo stranger! Whats up?
I'm still allergic to something- would you believe? Shocking I know. I don't know what it is yet but there have been a couple hot redface and itchy moments that lead me to believe wheat (intolerance/allergy) and dairy (intolerance?) aren't the only things coming up rummy. Whatever, lame, blah blah, detective work, collapse head on desk and drop into a coma. Bor-ing. Cuz you know its like the body on a cellular? level remakes itself completely every 7 years and my body just clicked into a "whole new you" and it was done with whatever it had been putting up with in the years previous... And you and the wax issue? What? I love q-tips in the ears but maybe my canals are initially wide enough to circumvent the issue? Or am I just standing belligerently on the precipice of ignorance and blissfully issue free.

I also got a little sick-ish and coped out of a party on Saturday and most everything else Sunday. I spent today laying on the picnic table reading a book about unearthly powers- primal cultures, western civilization and stared intermittently at finches and warblers hopping around the plants and butterflies and squabbling sparrows. Still, I don't feel particularly motivated to start any of my to-do's. Except puzzling over my back and if its aligned or not...Which brings me to my next absolute ponderance of the holidays.

I didn't even carve a pumpkin. I love carving pumpkins. Sarah even reminded me and my mind really couldn't grasp what was happening. I did end up watching 'The Orphan' that night, and yet still woosh! there it went. I was going to say something more about Thanksgiving and Christmas but I got bored just thinking about it and various dramatic developments and my moms sudden antipathy, but she's a trooper. She held out for some 35 years. Such is my moms patience for people. And apparently one of my aunts asking "what about all that education she received, what is she doing? What has it led to... and ... we never see her? is she "done" with us?"... My mom responded that she was remiss to put words in other peoples mouths regarding their feelings. Mwah. ha. Also, Cathy reminds me I can't climb volcanos every year for Christmas and yet still- I need some contemplation to occur on either how to check out completely or make this 2 months meaningful- fulltime employment aside? Because people are going to ask me and other people are going to behave that this time has some sort of meaning so I feel I should be prepared.

Otherwise I'm going to call it a day and finish watching xfiles s3, think about niacin allergies, and guidebooks to spiritual warfare- hoping I have the wherewithall to make it to yoga tomorrow- I can't venture to say if anything else might await me, but thats the fun unknown part.