Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Record breaking heat -

yet that didn't stop thousands of folks from going treasure hunting...

it's a fund raiser for the St Louis Symphony, so I'm glad it was successful. But I have to say, as I stood in line with the masses in record breaking heat, to spend money on other peoples junk, I couldn't help but chuckle at how absurd the whole situation is... there wasn't one of us in that line that needed anything; yet we were all hoping to score some treasure that, at least for the moment, we couldn't live without!

Since I've been keeping to a fairly strict observance of not allowing myself to bring anything into the house unless I'm willing to discard something comparable, I wasn't in an acquiring mood. But I did enjoy the sense of carnival and observing the scene... and there was plenty to see - from ways people were keeping cool to treasures being carried out -

 don't you love the paper bag hat?

GI Joe was pleased with his find of old comics - which will be a welcome distraction as he recovers from back surgery early in June.

OK... so I DID buy a few things - after all, what's Gypsy without getting a new tie-dyed shirt for gardening,
vintage linens or Kettle Korn?

We were shameless -
 sending yet another message to family members who couldn't be with us - 
or who chose not to be -
yup, we're those relatives!!

 It was great fun...

                        and we were all soaking up the joy of having family members around
                                                      that we don't get to see enough!!

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Long weekend, full agenda, out of town company...

and 96 degrees... it must be Memorial Day weekend!

Guest bedroom ready, house clean (well, relatively... no one will die from what's clinging stubbornly to the baseboards, will they?)

What's company coming without some bathroom drama and a toilet that decides to malfunction minutes before cars pull into the driveway?

Expertly and competently fixed by my sons, working in tandem, while all I did was look on.
Thank you, boys!

There are flowers in abundance, 

summer decorations ('state' glasses marking some of the places I'll go this summer)

small wire sculptures, reminiscent of carnivals and roller coasters!

and gorgeous vintage summer dresses!

There were hours of visiting and catching up, then sending them out the door to the ball game ... while I stayed home to dog-sit and, if truth be told, start on some of my new books - all in AC!

Missing those who aren't able to be with us - 

but profoundly grateful for those that came!

While it's wonderful keeping up on 'social media' and email

there's really nothing like face time is there!!

Hope your weekend is filled with all your favorite places and people!

Oh... and should you be thinking you're going to win the Powerball this weekend, hate to break it to you, but the winning ticket is right here!

Maybe I'll spend some time while the adult cousins are off having fun, thinking about how I'l spend my millions!

Luckily, Thor is settling in... curious about where he's been left, but coming to grips with being here -

and, none too soon - 110 lbs of anxious Chessie is a whole of anxious!

Trust me, we'll all be fine!

Hope the same goes for you and yours!

Friday, May 25, 2012

It's coming...

Did you know that there are guides these days for everything – including how to ‘make manifest’ your wishes for your life…

For those, like me, who need a Handbook, here it is:

How to Place an Order with the Universe: Try this super-simple approach to manifestation. 

Before I go into the details, I want to ask you to first put yourself into the mind-set of a person who wants something, knows where to go to get it, and knows exactly how to ask for it once they arrive.  

A restaurant is a great example. 
Believe it or not, the process is no different whether you are placing your order at a restaurant, or with the universe. 

Step 1 – Figuring Out What You Really Want 
One of the most common stumbling blocks in manifestation exercises is figuring out what you really want. 
When you first go into a restaurant to eat, the waiter gives you a menu to help you decide what you want. You look over the selections and make a decision. 
Choosing a meal from a menu is much simpler than making major life decisions, of course! 
But at least spend a few minutes considering it carefully. 

If you could have anything you wanted in your life right now, what would it be? 
Think about experiences, qualities, physical objects, or even relationships. 
Choose something you feel excited about, but that you don’t desperately need. 

Step 2 – Placing Your Order 
When you place an order in a restaurant, the waiter will usually ask a few questions to further clarify exactly what you want. "Do you want fries or mashed potatoes with that?" "What kind of salad dressing?" "What would you like to drink?" 
The universe won’t ask you those questions, however! That’s why it pays to be very, VERY specific. Once you’ve ironed out all the details, it’s time to place your order. 

There are many ways to tell the universe what you want. You can write it down, speak it aloud, visualize it, pray about it, sketch it, or cut out some magazine photos that represent it. Follow the procedure that feels most natural to you. 

Step 3 – Relax! 
Unfortunately, this is another common stumbling block. 

Most people, upon placing their order, think they either have to go out and force everything to happen on their own, or become very impatient when their desire isn’t granted immediately.
When you order food in a restaurant, do you agonize over whether it will be delivered to your table? Do you keep begging the waiter to hurry? Do you sneak into the kitchen to supervise the chef? Do you sit at the table and fume because your meal isn’t delivered in the first 5 minutes? 
No! What do you do? 
You sit calmly and chat with your dinner companion(s). You perhaps enjoy an appetizer, soup or salad. You gaze out the window, or around the inside of the restaurant. 
You are absolutely confident and certain that your meal WILL be delivered. 
You may not know when, but you know it will arrive. And in what seems like no time at all, here comes your meal.

In order to place your order and have it delivered by the universe, you need to be detached and calm. You need to enjoy where you are right NOW.  
Live in the moment. 
Keep busy with other things. 
The time will pass quickly and before you know it, that trusty cosmic waiter will come walking right up to your table with something delicious.

 Now this is a metaphor I understand!

 I’ve been thinking about what I want and what comes next for a very long time.

My mothers death and being free from the responsibility of her care added extra impetus to the process but identifying clearly what I want has been the focus of my minds wanderings for some time… and here’s where I place my order…

 I’m going to retire in 5 years.
 I’ll be 68, almost 69, and will have been working in the same hospital for 37 years; nearly 4 decades of accumulated stories of grief, horror, love and miracles.
I actually will have been in the work force, as a tax paying member of our society, for 54 years!
I think I’ll be ready to be done.

I’ve known since I was 10 that I’d be a social worker; known that the gifts and life experiences God had given me would lead me in that direction.
I’ve never doubted that choice and never looked back; it’s been a great fit.

But I also can’t quite imagine how those same gifts will be used in a different form - but I trust (again) that a way will be revealed.

While I wait, I’ve decided that, immediately upon retiring, I’m going to take 2 months off and walk the Camino de Santiago – a 500 mile walking pilgrimage across the north of Spain; from the foothills of the Pyrenees, in France, to the Spanish coast and what was believed to be ‘the end of the world’, stopping at the Shrine where the bones of St James are believed to be buried.

I know… looking at me now, you’d never believe that would be my choice, but it is and it’s going to happen.

In the meantime, I’m setting up an account so I’ll have the financial means to do it.

I’ll take Spanish classes again so that my four years of high school (and 2 years of college) Spanish can be reinvigorated from barely being able to order off the menu at Hacienda to being fluent once more.

I’ll get down to my goal weight (so I can carry 20 lbs in a backpack instead of 50 lbs in my backside) and I’ll take yoga classes so I can be limber and able to stretch out all the kinks of walking 12-15 miles a day – the Pyrenees would be tough to do with a walker!

There. I’ve put it out in the universe…consider my order placed –
I'll literally walk away, with gratitude, from the life I’ve known  - toward both the unknown and the next stage of my life, one with a new way of being and a new language – for whatever time I have left.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012


I don't know about you, but I never looked like this - for prom or anything else!!
My great niece, Nora
Proud older brother and parents
more great nieces, Arianna and Athena
                               No wonder the little girls kept saying "Nora's going to the ball!"

They must have been disappointed when a stretch limo pulled up and not a magic coach - although it sounds like Nora wasn't - and that's what counts, right??