Thursday, November 24, 2016

A Chicago platter of possibility


I realize we don't get to take 'stuff' with us when we go. 

But we do like stuff for what it means to us.  

This simple little platter was something I purchased on a whim 20 years ago (pre-Anthropologie, for reference) in the city of my first 'home' — Chicago. A charming little studio apartment at the time. 

And it's been in every home of mine since.

But tonight, this little platter held the turkey for the first Thanksgiving hosted here in my current 'home' — and first house. A day that completely filled me with joy. With the company of my dear friend and her mom over here today for the feasting. And my pup, looking intently to see who would drop some turkey. From the platter. 

All this to say, there's no way my 20yr-old self could have seen where things would wind up beyond that little studio apartment. New adventures. Moving to France. Florida. Now the DC area. And loved ones lost along the way. New kiddos, nieces, nephews, added to the family tree. New friends, neighbors, loves, and experiences. 

So sure, this is just a little platter. 

But I feel that beginning all those years ago, there was a fierce sentiment of bold hope in this little platter. For possibility, growth, and hope. 

And even (or especially) in the world we live in now, I still feel that. Even if the things we do today or this year, won't come to fruition for years yet to come — still, we must do them. Now. 

Trust. Believe in their possibility, growth, and hope. 

Believe. 



And for those of you keen on breadcrumbs, Perry Como's "There's No Place Like Home For The Holidays" is on the radio. He's right, for the holidays, you can't beat home, sweet home.



Tuesday, November 15, 2016

Monday, November 14, 2016

Action is needed




PBS — Remembering Gwen
“We can’t expect the world to get better by itself,” Gwen said. 
[about journalism] “We do it every day, go to sleep, and get up to do it again.”

[she always tried to remember] “Someone else may have a better point.”
[why she got into journalism] “I like to ask questions.”

OPRAH — The Great Moderator
[Gwen says] “I also look up periodically and think, “Who else can I pull along?” Because it's a failure if I'm up here by ”
[Oprah to Ifill] O: What do you know for sure?; Ifill: That I am a blessed woman. Even when I am the most stressed, the most frazzled, God always rescues me, pulls me along, calms me down. 

Rest in peace, friend. 


Last name calling

A man changed his last name from Drumpf to TRUMP.
Another man’s last name seemingly a derivative of pense, is PENCE.

The english translation of TRUMP is:  Eclipse or throw shade onto
The french for the other name is:  Thinking

So we have — excuse me, the electoral college has — elected a team to lead this country, whose meaning in essence appropriately, and frighteningly, translates to be:

Throw shade onto thinking.

I will not stop thinking, writing, observing, calling out. And am working to shift that into action as well. Until there is liberty and justice for the things oozing out in the name of — AND DIRECTLY FROM — the newly elected regime.

#WontStayQuiet




Sunday, November 13, 2016

The holy or the broken

Singing forces you to breathe. To speak melodically. And to exert it from a force inside of you.

Today I looked up the lyrics and just belted this song out.

This stunning and simple song — after his loss and the loss, last week, of my chosen candidate — was cathartic. And on another glorious fall afternoon, today, five days into this new path... life is shoving us along as though we are the words of a song being thrust forward.

There is a rhythm to life. Even amongst disasters in nature. But high and low tides continue even after a tsunami. Fall will soon give way to snow. And we are just adjusting to a transition.

Some this past week have felt holy. Some, broken. But soon we must get up. And stand up. Beyond just words, for our rights. For this country that we all love, democrats and republicans and everyone else.

My heart is getting situated into a better place today. Hallelujah.

I went to BOTH of our church services this morning. Apparently, I needed church twice today. But it is [getting] well with my soul. Hallelujah.

I hope that we keep our eyes wide open to welcome the good things ahead, and to hold to account any wrongs. We must. See the holy and the broken. Nurture. Love. Oppose. Welcome. Listen. Love eachother. And stay awake. WIDE awake. Hallelujah.

Our words matter. And there is an impact to what we say. But it is our actions that will speak much louder. And there’s an impact to that — to what we do. Let’s do something. We must. Hallelujah?







Saturday, November 12, 2016

Catching my breath

Seeing nature’s firey beauty outside today.
On a planet that’s been here so much longer than us.
Is comforting.

AUTUMN LEAVES ON MY FAVORITE TRAIL






#ThisForThat

I don't know how hashtags get going, but I hope you can help me share this. 



. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

THIS
This morning I found myself upset having learned that someone from my church in here in Silver Spring, MD had been impacted by racist slurs — as a result of post-election bullying. Be aware, I'm not naive to think racism happened overnight on Tuesday. But this flavor and openness of it IS connected directly to the election season and outcome. And our President-Elect MUST reject and condone that behavior. 
NOW.
THAT
On my trail-walk today on a beautiful Saturday afternoon, I found myself walking up to greet a woman taking photos of these beautiful autumn leaves. We smiled. She is Iranian. I'm from Atlanta. We talked. Shared how cathartic the steadiness and rhythm of nature has been for each of us during this tough week of transition for the citizens of this beautiful country. She showed me some of her pics (I'll post here when she sends them). We both agreed — we DO believe we'll make it through. Somehow. Not even because of 'which' candidate won, or didn't win. But because it's inherent in the American spirit. Racism, etc. has been part of our nation's history. Let's leave it there. It has NO place in our spirit... if we truly are committed to CONTINUING TO BE a great America.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

So if you find you're in the midst of an injustice. Or witnessing one. Next door, out in the community... or in the White House in the coming months. Try to SAY something or DO something to stop it right then and there. But if you can't, then for each time you learn of one, or witness an IN-justice... go out and DO a JUSTICE or a KINDNESS for someone else. 


Then tag and share BOTH.

Maybe it can be even just a small step in neutralizing the hurtful hate and get us on a path to better future. Hatefulness does not represent us. And it WILL NOT represent us.
What's your #ThisForThat?
Can you help me share this? #ThisForThat

   

Be the courageous one

#LoveMeNow

Can this be our new national anthem? 
Beautiful. 
Just beautiful. 
My heart needed this. #LoveMeNow


Worth it

I finally watched it.
Man, what a woman.

See more

This week has been a roller coaster for our country.

My past week, with our nation’s new news, went a bit like this:

TU:  Utter disbelief. No sleep.
WE:  Reconciling the news.
TH:  Pissed — angry (about the overnight violence)
FR:  Sorting — shifting.
SA:  I rise — I'm ready.

And it has been notable to me, on social, that over this past week the sheer length of FB posts has increased dramatically. We are each offering our vantage point. Be it receiving pain or dishing it. Observing or reporting it. Finding solutions or protesting.

But I believe that it is in the digging-deep like this where we will find a way to rise. To shine bright again.



I’m wrestling with really not wanting to watch (news, coverage, social posts) vs. the critical an absolute NEED to know. 

You see, if we don't watch, we can't see. 
Then we can’t change. 
And it is most certainly going to require us mustering up strength we didn't know we had. 


Dan Rather, who has been a lifeguard for me by way of his observations in these very stormy waters we’re sorting through... posted this yesterday:
“Fostering healthy and respectful debate is one of the strengths of our system of government. But when we seek to undermine our political adversaries by attacking their right to participate in our national discourse we risk causing longterm harm to the rationale behind the nation we all claim to love.”
We are a big nation. We are a nation with lots of different views.

And we are — an ALREADY GREAT nation.

And now we are going to have to continue to dig deep for strength and reflection and a way forward. And we are going to NEED to see — to watch and to hold accountable the folks who have just taken the reigns of this great country. Yes, this ALREADY-great country. 
We are going to need to participate in this democracy. Now.

Things have felt dark, this week. Hell, this whole election season. But with each person’s attempt to understand and offer insight and solutions, it is through each of those little lights — lanterns — where will begin to shine a path. To a way forward.


Can we see? By the dawn's early light... through this perilous fight?

Continue to see.... more. 

I rise



Thank you, Ms. Angelou.

Your sassiness does not upset me. It inspires me. Most especially... now. Thank you for your words. And I pray that others now, in this transitional time in our country, are equally inspired to share their gifts to express, explain, and explore their perspectives, in their own unique ways. Badass hombres and nasty women alike. Thank you.  



Friday, November 11, 2016

11.11 Flower count: Bless my homeland forever



206

I've been doing an “Annual Flower Count” on 11/11 of flower sketches I've received over the years. And today’s flower going is 206. With a request out to President Obama a week or so before the election.

I believe his audacity of hope, and my love of flowers have something in common. A perseverance and inherent belief in “tomorrow.” No gardener could plant a flower seed without the expectation that with encouragement, nourishment and putting it the right setting that it will, in time bloom.

I love this Mexican proverb:
They thought they had buried us, 
They did not know we were seeds. 

And THAT is precisely what is coursing through my blood right now. Hope. A willingness to persevere. A NEED to. And a determination to live — intentionally. This past week has stirred something in EVERY PERSON IN THIS COUNTRY. No matter who you pulled for you have a feeling. A sentiment. You have been awakened in one way or another. This is not a complacent week in our country. Eyes are open. And that part is a good thing.

But the thing to remember is this. This country is ALL of our homes. Our 'garden' if you will. Be it oak trees or palm trees,  roses or tulips. There is room for all of us. To be better. Yes... we can.

The way America — our garden — will STAY and continue to BE great... is if we UNITE. And stay stronger together. America is not an ‘either–or.’ All or nothing. We are, still, striving to be a more perfect union.

But if the rose punches the tulip. Or if the tulip spits on the rose. Or the palm tree tags the oak. Then we are stagnant. Or killing our country. And we then move nowhere.

Nature progresses forward. So must we.

It is how life is meant to be lived. In motion. And forward.

We don't — I don't— want a garden full of only roses. Or a country of only cacti. There IS room for all of us and we're a more beautiful garden — and country if we continue to grow that way.


Have you sent me your flower sketch? I'm still collecting.
And you are welcomed in my garden.
May we all continue to bloom and grow.

Bless my homeland forever.





Holding on

Holding on. Holding together. 

“With his election, it’s easy to trace a line between Trump’s win and Trump supporters being more emboldened to act out on these campaign cornerstones.” And it is NOT okay.

Be it in peaceful protest. Writing your representative. Painting, singing, writing. We have to rise to the occasion — we are obliged to as American citizens — to protect one another, our liberties, our freedoms, and our right to not be full of fear in our own home country. Especially from a government which is [supposed to be] by the people and 
for the people. In a week where ‘the people’s choice’ for President isn’t actually going to be our President.

God... please bless America. I love this land, guide and stand beside us. It's our home sweet home.

But right now, it’s broken. We’re broken. Help.


All the good

Humans + hope

Hindsight

Define that word?

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

The fire in our bellies



Let this burning empower us to rise up into our true power — through love and oneness. 

#StayAwake #StayWoke  We're awake now.

Love louder



Today we're just gonna have to love louder.

#StayAwake #StayWoke? We're awake now.


A hope for us all

My very first blog post ever, was posted two years and two days ago today. Inspired by a newly-elected President.



The logo was an image, an idea, bigger than the man himself. The sun, rising on a horizon. “A hope for us all. To be better. Yes we can.” And those words are more true today, right now, than even then.

We have to. Have hope. With action.
And we have to hold the new regime accountable for this as well.

#StayAwake #StayWoke. Yes we can.

The blessing of pain



#StayAwake #StayWoke? We're awake now.
The inspiration for this.

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