Thursday, May 28, 2015

Funny Friday Photos: Traveling Polar Bears

Happy Friday!

News from the moving front--my house has more class than I do. The stagers came and made my house look like something out of HGTV. It's good that my children are with their grandmother, because I don't think I could keep it looking this nice with them here. It's hard enough with my four dogs. I am obsessively vacuuming every day.

News from the book front--I want to find a way to put a hang drum into Through the Fairy Ring. And some rock magic. I have some Earth magic already in the story, but I'd like to find a way to incorporate stones. And of course my mind goes directly to Ludo in Labyrinth. Not the effect I'm looking for, so I guess I'll be thinking on it. In the meantime, here's a YouTube video of a very cool hang drum performance.



Thanks so much, Lexa, David, Suzi and Veronica for commenting the last couple of posts. You are the awesomest!

Here are this week's photos, for your viewing pleasure.


The dog on the right looks just like my dog, Tumpa.


Look at those feet!


They're the perfect match. So nice Waldo and Carmen SanDiego found each other.





They need to make up their minds.




I found this funny because this past weekend I had some guy stare at me, more like the bottom picture. Most people, once you catch them looking at you, look away. Not him. And I totally didn't think he was staring because he thought I was pretty. I figure he was staring because I looked like a tired wreck!

Puns!

How'd they make those tiny mustaches?



I love the "In Turkey" pun. It was so unexpected it made me laugh out loud.


Which was your favorite? Do you have any fun plans for the weekend?

Sunday, May 24, 2015

Mindfulness Monday: Witches and Water Slides

Witches

I think I was a witch in a past life. Or, maybe, my ancestors were Italian witches, practitioners of Stregheria, and it's been passed on through the generations to me. Or maybe the witchcraft comes from the English/Scotch-Irish side of me. I've always known I feel a connection to the earth and nature, but today I realized the depth of that connection.

While I was mowing the lawn, I got very emotional about moving. I don't feel particularly connected to my house, but every tree, rose bush, buckthorn, tiger lily and iris all have meaning to me. The flowers, bushes and trees (the ones that actually continue to grow) are my family's history. When we moved out here, there was nothing but prairie and cactus. Now, there's the rosebush (among others -- I love roses) that was my first ever Mother's Day present; the tree that we had the sandbox under when the boys were toddlers; the tiger lily I planted as a seed, and then kept trying to pull out because I thought it was a weed. It stubbornly refused to go away and now is a beautiful plant; the irises that came from my mom's house just up the hill. You get the idea.

Plus, the parts of Wyoming I'm going to miss are going to be the outdoor parts--the call of meadowlarks, the swaying grasses of the prairie, the smell of pine trees blowing in from the west, hiking in the Rocky Mountains. Eastern Nebraska is very different. I'm going to try to focus on making new mindful memories of the world around me, once I'm moved, and find the beauty in a new place. I need to remind myself to not be judgmental, but to allow myself to experience the differences with openness and curiosity.

And move as many plants with me as I can!

Water Slides

Saturday we had a going a way party for the boys at the newly renovated municipal pool. (I am happy to report that people actually attended, and fun was had by all.)

A little backstory is necessary before I continue the story. I am constantly telling my kids that they need to not let their fears get to them. They need to try new things, and try to overcome the things that scare them.

Typical parent stuff, right?

Keeping that in mind, I must admit that I am claustrophobic, and it seems to be getting worse as I get older. When I wrote those claustrophobia scenes in Finding Meara, they were from personal experience. It doesn't help that I have dreams I'm buried alive or stuck in little boxes (ie. coffins.) Earlier this year I needed an MRI and had a minor freak out in the tube when I sensed the closest part of the tube pass over my face on the way through so they could MRI my lower back.

Well, part of the renovations were two new water slides. Our side of the pool was supposed to utilize the blue slide. It sounded like fun, and I talked my youngest into going down the slide with me (for some reason I didn't feel I could just go by myself.) We got to the top, and I looked into the mouth of the slide, and saw a very dark, very small, very long tube and went, "Nope."

I tried to talk myself into it, but the fear overcame me and, since all the kids went before me and I had no one to try to impress, I told the lifeguard I had claustrophobia to save face and went back down the stairs.

Once I was back in the pool, I started to feel more and more awful. What kind of a parent was I, if I let the slide (aka my fear) win? I'd totally lost all credibility I'd had about teaching my kids how to deal with their fears. I told my husband what I'd done, and that I felt like I really needed to go try again. He agreed with me, and said he'd go with me. (Awww, isn't he a sweetie. He also teased me all the way there...)

At the top, I nervously talked non-stop to my husband, detailing to him my plan for how to actually go down the slide this time and not chicken out. As I approached the tube the second time, I utilized mindful awareness to turn off my amygdala (the emotional center of our brains) and noticed how blue the slide was and listened to the rushing sound the water made at the mouth of the slide. Then, before I could get afraid again, I jumped in the tube, closed my eyes and pushed off.

I can only imagine how silly I looked at the bottom of the slide. Because my eyes were closed, I wasn't sure I'd reached the end, and so sat there for a moment to see if I'd move any more. When I opened my eyes, I saw that the same lifeguard who had been at the top the time I'd ditched out was now at the bottom of the slide. I gave him a big smile, raised my hands triumphantly in the air and said, "I did it!"

He was nice enough to cheer for me.

What makes you emotional, lately?
Have you ever conquered a fear? Do you have any advice?


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Funny Friday Photos: Cool Poodles



Oh, wait. Friday's here, already. Well, in some parts of the Earth, anyway. Technically, with me, it's still Thursday.

So, yeah. I missed last week's post entirely. My excuse is that I had a deadline to have my house ready for the stagers to come in and make it look fancy by Tuesday. I was killing myself (and my father, because my husband has been at his new job for the last two weeks) trying to meet the deadline, but then they switched it on me, anyway. That's how it goes around here, anymore. I keep telling myself that it will end eventually, I just have to make it through. Trying to keep a lot of positive self-talk going.

And have occasional, surprise melt-downs. Yesterday I went to ask a friend about a plumber and just started crying. I was like, "Wow." Usually I have some warning I'm going to lose it, but not yesterday!

My boys are done with school, and now all of my family will be in our new town, with the exception of me. Once my house is actually on the market, and I'm lonesome, I plan to finally get back to Through the Fairy Ring. One more chapter is all I have to write before I start the second pass. Don't give up on me!

Here's this week's photos!

Awww, However, if it was me, I wouldn't be hanging around taking pictures...

The fruit's in disguise...

Just a little creepy. Unless it's the first of an invasion...





So, the whole no makeup/no filter thing still annoys me.

You know what I thought of the instant I saw this picture?
Bradley Cooper playing Richie Dimaso in American Hustle.
Puns!

If you've seen the show, you  know you've thought this before.



My favorite is the Richie Dimaso poodle. The similarity between the two makes me chuckle.

Which is your favorite?

How has your last two weeks gone?

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