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Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What Happens Naturally

I forget how my nerves kick in when I prepare to leave my natural way of doing things.  My routine of work, eating patterns, ballet class,  relaxation, I feel a sense of control even while knowing there is no such thing.  This time my nerves kicked in at least a week in advance of leaving on vacation.  Tonight everything is in order for my morning trip to the airport with my mantra  to relax, smile and let be.    A change of routine is natural.

"We read hoping to find we are not alone".  I think that was a line from the movie "Ordinary People".  When I came across one of my favorite authors Krishnamurti I felt a kindred spirit.
 He wanted his writings to be like two people sitting in the park on a lovely day talking about life and discussing whether if it is possible to live our daily life without a single problem?  Not to formulate an answer or form an opinion but to appreciate the question.   His narrative is about questioning everything.

My question is do all of life changes happen naturally or do we have a hand in it or do we just think we have?  Or both?  When I moved into this apartment I told myself it would only be a stop over on my way to someplace else.  I had no plan and no idea where I would be going. 
This is the unbelievable view from my living room when I took the apartment.  Yes it felt like I could reach out and touch Mt. Hood and I wanted to have this vision in my life for at least awhile on my journey.

Many years later I am still here.  It is a place that feels special made for me.  One block away from the Willamette River is a huge park that feels like my own private space on many days.  I love communing with the trees, eagles, herons, squirrels, goslings. and all of nature where I feel at home.  Change is all around me as well as within... some noticeable and some not.  One of the most evident is the landscape.  After all these years this is the view I have now.
I can no longer see Mt. Hood for the trees from my window but I know it is there.  This natural evolution reminds me each day when things  change I do not have to have an answer or an opinion about it and live in that space.

Monday, May 21, 2012

What To Wear When Ready To Fly

Ms Lauren asked me what I will be wearing when I come visit her in Arkansas in a few days.  I started with this knowing the shooties were not making this outfit but I need them to keep my feet warm on the plane and be easy to make my connections carrying my luggage.  
I do not like the look of this blouse as is and  so this is a NO.  This would be better with black jeggings and an orange scarf in my hair to add pazazz.
This feels better and easier to style
This jacket is not the most comfy but it may work
This jacket is roomier and feels more relaxed
I am not sure this is it but I ran out of batteries for my camera.  So Ms. Lauren you may be surprised.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

How To Be An Armchair Athlete

I do not understand why I am not a runner.  The most I can run is a block or two before my body rebels and I just cannot convince myself it is a healthy sport.  It looks and feels harsh on the body.  And I still am not sold on the idea that aerobics are beneficial.   Even if it is healthy for the heart what about the hips, knees and feet?  I cannot say I have studied it enough as a science I only go by my own experience with it and watching runners all around me everyday.  The walkers look overall healthier to me. 

Then why do I love reading about runners?   They seem so far out of my realm of reality.  The grueling ordeals they go through on the marathons and other Ultra-runner experiences such as throwing up, freezing to death, over heating to the point of exhaustion, and then there is the pain.  For me sitting in airports and on airplanes is difficult enough.  So I like to find books that carry me away.  I have found two.  The first one is called "Once A Runner" a novel by John L. Parker, Jr  and another called "What I Talk About When I Talk About Running" a memoir by Haruki Murakami.  
This book is inspiring me just from the Foreward.  Not to start running but to write a book myself.  This book is about his personal lessons he has learned through actually putting his own body in motion.  He discovered pain is inevitable and suffering is optional.  One does not have to be a runner to experience pain.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Here We Come Beach

Tonight is a mellow evening.  Next week on this day I will be in Ft. Smith, Arkansas visiting my daughter and grandchildren that I only get to see once a year now.  We are going to take a road trip to Dustin, Florida where we will play Frisbee on the beach, boogie board in the ocean and shop. 
Dreaming of the beach is easy when work is draining right now.  The project is difficult and feels every call is not connecting and a losing game.  Luckily my coworkers are fun and we keep each other entertained.  Watching the NBA games is making me tired too since my Kobe is struggling.  I don't care how tired I am tomorrow after work I am going for a long walk on the river to renew my senses before I tune into the game at 7:30pm.  My puny little troubles right now are nothing compared to what some of my friends are having to experience.  Don't you wish sometimes you could just jump in and save the day or at the very least be able to say something to make everything better? 

I'm beginning to miss teaching yoga classes.  It will happen in its own time.  One of the yoga blogs wrote about as a teacher he cannot find a class he enjoys taking because of all the annoying yoga teachers.  How funny because I thought there was something wrong with me for feeling that way.  I know the psychology of student/teacher relationships and how easy to blame the teacher when you yourself as a student is the one that is the problem but what is annoying about yoga teachers can also be applied to dance teachers.  The complaint that stands out the most is the teacher that sits on her/his mat and repeats "Good" after every pose.   Yeah right!! 

For me the whole idea of taking a yoga class is to be aware of the "judge" inside of me and to be able to let it be.  Not accept it or deny it.  The poses are secondary.  But it sure feels good to hold the pose of the Dancer.  Until I keep falling over which is really annoying!!!!. 


Tuesday, May 15, 2012

What Photography Is Teaching Me

First time out with my camera a few days ago I can see how much fun it could be if I had the time for it.  I really have to make some choices in my life about what activities I can keep in and what I need to put on the back burner.  I know now that lighting is what makes a photo interesting and why the importance of going out at certain times of day.  Also one important piece of info that I found to be true is to "stop moving".  I found myself missing shots because I was trying to get some exercise in while carrying my camera and this is not conducive to taking the best photos.  It takes focus in more ways that one so to fit it in my lifestyle right now is not going to work.

Google photo Gelsey Kirkland performer
Google photo Gelsey now
Google photo Farrell performer
My love of ballet classes is dominating my free time right now.   I am grateful to be able to take five  classes a week and I would gladly do more if I could.  No other exercise even comes close to the joy of dance for me.  I cannot even imagine what it is like for Suzanne Farrell and Gelsey Kirkland who were professionals and then had to retire.  I know Suzanne said she still takes class every morning because it is like brushing her teeth.  She cannot continue her day without it.

Google photo Suzanne Farrell now

When I signed up for my first ballet class the teacher told me if I took only one class a week I would not see any improvement.  In order to experience any progression one needs to take at least two classes or more a week.  Photography is like a relationship as well and needs time to devote to it.  

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Where I Live

Living inside myself at home 
One block away is the Willamette River in all its glory.  This morning at 9am I see yachts, sail boats, Dragon Boat racers, fishing boats, speed boats, and cruise ships.  Downtown Portland skyline in the background.
Here is one of my favorite weeping willow friends.
An early morning couple holding hands.  Both had snow white hair.  So sweet.
This is the path I walk.... with nature teaching me the little things in life are really the big things.

Friday, May 11, 2012

A Great Day In The Neighborhood

HOORAY!!!!!!!!!!!  Lauren made the dance team today and screamed for joy!!!!   Only three were chosen from her grade.  She practiced every chance she had and she was well coached.  No family or friends are allowed to watch the competition.  They are judged by performance only by a Dance professional they do not know.   When asked if she was nervous she said, "No".   How wonderful to have that kind of confidence at such a young age. Good job Mom!!

Happy Happy Lauren is 4th from the left in the back row in the white tee
Came home from work today for a late afternoon walk on the river and so many geese protecting all their new baby goslings.   They rule the sidewalk when not in the water and the Moms come right up to you with a loud hissing sound that scares me every time.  I love to see how they interact and communicate with each other with their loud honks and how they alert each other whenever there is a loose dog on the run.  They look like they are full of confidence in the way they take care of themselves. 

True to form for me I have been gathering all kinds of great information for FREE  on how to take photos from this great sight I found called "Digital Photography School".  Now it is time to execute.  Physically take my camera down to the river to see if there is a "photographer" inside of me.  For my first time out I will need to manufacture some confidence.

Hopefully this weekend I will be able to post some photos of what makes it a great day in my neighborhood every day.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Plans To Push My Edge

Many years ago I came across a favorite poem by Oriah Mountain Dreamer called "The Invitation" Then several years ago she came to visit Portland to promote her book The Dance" and I went to see her.  I remember her being very happy, a childhood sweetheart had come back into her life, she was a writer, a workshop presenter, and to me radiated a life that I wanted.  Everything she was doing made sense.  Everything seemed to fit.  Her life was creative and flowing along beautifully in my perspective.  Like a dance.

A few days ago I decided to Google her name.  Her blog appeared called "The Green Bough".  The title of her most recent post to my surprise "Divorce Day Revelations".  The post title that really intrigued me though was "Pushing My Edge".  She has signed on for a workshop in September 2012 called "Tango As A Door To Presence".  She goes on to outline all the reasons this will be a major "push" for her. 

Inspiration comes from many places.  When I return from vacation networking and collaboration is my plan realizing plans are easy..... the "push" is in the execution.

Google Photo Oriah Mountain Dreamer

Monday, May 7, 2012

I Want To Be Me

Coming up is my fun trip to be with my daughter and grandchildren in Arkansas.  This time we will spend some time vacationing on the beaches of Dustin, Florida.  We will have workout sessions each day and all  outdoor activities in temperatures 90 degrees and above.

My wardrobe will be tees, shorts, sandals and some workout gear.  I am fine being overdressed for any and all occasions but I always bring way too many items in order to look more interesting than the natives.  Since I  have to carry my own bags through the airports this year I will be paring down and skipping anything superfluous

In America "the land of the free" means it is impossible to go anywhere and be under dressed.  Except maybe if you are barefoot.  Anything else gets you through the door without anyone saying a word.  The uniform at the beach no matter where you go day or evening is flip flops, tank top, and shorts.  This will not be my style but I will do something similar.

The place where I like to be more stylish is the airport.  I have to be warm on the plane which means slip on shooties instead of sandals, white jeans instead of shorts, and what would be considered a stylish top instead of a tee shirt.  I was going to wear a denim jacket that fits into the country atmosphere I'm heading to but I don't feel like myself  when I wear it.

  I found this light weight cotton coat and though I do not like that it is black I like the romantic style and with white jeans and polka dot top I will feel more like an expression of myself even if it is just hanging out in airports waiting for my flight.

A very poor photo of my romantic coat


Thursday, May 3, 2012

What Makes You Cheer

I have no idea what I was doing or thinking at the age of three.  My recall does not go beyond the age of about age six when my sister was born.  Before that my life is not on my radar.  I do remember being extremely shy in grade school and high school.  Basically the only thing I remember about grade school is being  a snowflake in a Snowball dance performance and wanting to be Gretal in Hansel and Gretal.   Instead I  was assigned to be one of the witches  riding a broom and was so mortified I did not want to go out on stage and prayed no one would know it was me.  In high school I do not remember participating in any activities.

My desire was only to "be free" and on my own.  To do what I had no idea.  Then along came marriage and children and my desire to dance did not show up until very late in life.  My daughter knew in eighth grade she wanted to pursue basketball.  She went on to earn a full basketball scholarship to Howard University in Texas and went on to be a basketball and volleyball coach that she loves.

Lauren age three
Along comes my granddaughter who grew up in a gym.  As soon as she saw the cheerleaders she had to join in.   Now she is twelve and will be trying out for the Junior High Lady
 Bulldogs Cheer Squad next Friday.   Forty girls try out and only 15 accepted.  If she is selected she wants to go on to be part of the Senior High Competitive Cheer Squad.  Go Lauren.....Go Lauren.....
Lauren age twelve

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Reality From My Bay Window

The view from my window

Looking out my window is my "reality"  of choice.  I get to watch the world go by in silence.  The joggers, the dog walkers, the cars, the chipmunks, the love birds, the geese, all with a sense and sensibility.  So why do I turn on the TV where the so called "reality"  TV shows are an assault to my humanity?   Most every scene is set up to be a  fake fight scene with pigeon talk spiced up with vocabulary  that has been approved by the FCC because censorship is a dirty word.   How did we get from Jane Austen Sense and Sensibility.....

Google photo image this kind of mess called the Reality Housewives of Atlanta, New Jersey, O.C., New York, L. A. and maybe in your town too???
Photo from Google images
This is the truth.  I do not want to admit I watch some of this and worse than that I have no idea why.  Is it an addiction to entertainment, some kind of conditioning, a need for diversions, I have no idea.  I watch TV a few hours in the evening after ballet class so why bother?  Why not just try leaving it off and read or continue looking out my window?  This is my 64,000 dollar question.