Tuesday, March 31, 2009

New Project

I am so delighted - I have been appointed to serve as the Interim Executive Director of a Native American organization in St. Paul. The organization operates a battered women's shelter (the offices and shelter are in the same building) and an outreach and advocacy program. Yesterday was my first day at the organization and the staff was gracious and welcoming. Inspiring work.

Of course that means my dance card will be really full for the next little bit. I will keep visiting your blogs and try to update my site as often as I can. More to come....

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Rest in Peace

My dear, dear Aunt Rosemary died this morning. She was my only Aunt and one of those people who make an indelible impression on your entire life. She was a women of her generation. She married my Uncle at age 15 just before he shipped out in the Navy for duty in WWII. There are photos of the two of them looking so young - he in his uniform, she in a gathered skirt and white blouse - arms around one another. She adored him and spent her life serving him. A woman of her time.

Auntie had four daughters and worked so hard - she never complained and so many, many people took her for granted. She was the patient rock of the family. She was the constant - the North Star. It wasn't until she began to decline into what was thought to be dementia that her husband began to pay much attention.

I feel so fortunate. The first time I went to Seattle for a visit - V took me to visit my Auntie and we had time to bask in one another, to sit together and laugh and hug and love. I brought tons of food and we shared a meal. Her dear voice and smile rests in my heart and soul.

Recently, it was discovered that Auntie did not have dementia but rather had been having mini-strokes that were robbing her of her capacity. She has been in skilled nursing care for the past month and finally just let go. The last time I spoke to her about a month ago - she said many times how much she loves me and how she always believed in me and how she will always love me. I feel the same. Auntie, I send my love and gratitude across eternity.

Monday, March 23, 2009

Tea and Tissues

Yuck! I am home in bed with a gross sore throat and headache. I awoke Sunday morning with a temperature and a raw throat. I have been in bed sleeping, reading and sipping tea. I felt so cruddy today that I actually took Nyquil, which is an over the counter liquid to which I rarely resort - it did help me to feel better though. I hope to be healed and back on my feet tomorrow or the next day. Hope you are all well...........

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Newest Addition to my Home

My new pellet stove was installed yesterday! I am very excited - not only have I reduced my carbon footprint, I have increased my self-sufficiency by being able to heat my home in any type of power loss emergency. The next purchase is a battery backup to ensure continued use if I am without power for a more extended period of time.

On top of it all - I have wanted a fireplace in my house for as long I have lived here. The cozy ambience - snowy day outside, a pot of soup on the stove and a nice fire in the stove. Heaven!!

As you can see, I continue to work on making my life more sustainable, resilient and self-reliant. More to come.............

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Spring May Be on Its Way

Today it is nearly 60 degrees outside! We Minnesotans are delirious. People are out in shorts - a little early for me but good for them. It has been a very long and dark winter. It got cold really early and it stayed cold. The snow came early and it has remained on the ground since November. Very unusual.

Couple the cold, the ice, the snow and the dark with the level of anxiety and fear flying around in the world - it is has been a tough time for most everyone. I know I have had my share of feeling down and depressed this winter; enough so that I started taking St. John's Wort for a little boost.

The sun is warm, the snow is gone from my deck. Thoughts of springtime planting and sandals fill my reveries. We made it through another winter in the northland. Content today to just be alive.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Snow, Snow, Snow

That's right - we are having rain, ice, snow, rain, ice and now just big clumps of snow falling. March in Minnesota - who can ever tell what will happen next.

Oh wait, wait ----- what happens next is Spring! Hooray. Spring eventually will arrive and when it does - us Minnesotans become giddy with delight. One of the joys of four- season living is the deep appreciation for each of them in their turn.

My friend V and I had a wonderful time. Just plain ordinary stuff - the best. Smiles, hugs, great food, a little shopping, a little home repair, movies, reading, and watching part of the first season of West Wing on VD!

V is a wonderful man and an important person in my life.

PS We also watched Australia - don't bother - although it gave us plenty of laughs in reflection - really terrible, hackneyed, over-acted, and on and on.

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Taking a Little Break

My friend V arrived from Seattle yesterday for a visit. He will be here until Monday afternoon. We had such fun last night - talked, laughed, drank wine, ate great food (cooked by moi) and stayed up way past our bedtimes.

Today it is warm and foggy in St. Paul - do you think V brought some Seattle weather this way? This morning we went shopping - V bought boots suitable for the snow. We just had a late lunch and now we are going to hang out and relax for the rest of the day.

I will be dropping in periodically over the next few days but I will also be busy being social and enjoying my company.

Monday, March 02, 2009

I Hate It When

I am running around in my home office this morning having phone meetings and getting ready to leave for a round of other meetings.

Running in the background is the "Today Show." As I walked into the kitchen, I noticed they were running a segment on a woman who had been in a coma and just as her husband was about to remove the life support (with all of the children there for a last visit) she awoke.

I am happy for this family = they are a young family with lots of children. Life is precious.

Forever there will be times, when those of us who made the decision to remove life supports from our loved one, will question that action. It is the question that eternally returns to haunt one. I know that Tom's brain damage was immense - the MRI showed a massive void from below his right ear to the top of his skull - the very top slice of the MRI had an infarct. It was objective data that I looked at least a dozen times before making that hardest of all decisions.

Even though I had that objective data, I cannot help but wonder for a second this morning - "did I do the right thing?" It is a stab in the heart, an ache in my gut, a little fissure in my soul.

Sunday, March 01, 2009

Pining for Spring this Weekend

It is unseasonably cold here this weekend.

Yesterday morning it was below zero with tons of snow on the ground. When I bundled up to go to 7:30 am Pilates the birds were chirping - it was like they were saying, "what the heck is going on?"

After exercise I took myself out to a great breakfast then drove to the garden store just to walk around in the greenhouse and be in a growing environment. One of the things I saw was a "Euro-Basket" - it was REALLY expensive - certainly out of my budget. Instead I purchased a lovely new house plant and left it there while I went to Half Price Books. While I was running errands, it occurred to me that I have tons of baskets and green plants were on sale at the nursery.

The photo above is my own "Euro-Basket" that I put together last night. I am in heaven. It is beautiful, it cost a fraction of the pre-made basket and makes me happy every time I look at it. The little spoons on the stand sitting in front of the basket are charming pewter measuring spoons engraved with dragonflies. V gave those to me for my Hannukah gift this year. I love them as well - some of you may remember that dragonflies are an important totem to me.

I have had a really enjoyable weekend. I had my personal training session, did errands, got new books at the used bookstore, gave the house a REALLY good cleaning, made my basket, moved my plants around and now I am cooking a lovely supper. I hope your weekend was lovely - enjoy this Sunday evening. Talk to you soon........