Gritty Grandma


GOOD-BYE FOX

He was lying under a tree, licking up the shade.

Hello again, Fox, I said.

And hello to you too, said Fox, looking up and not bounding away.

You're not running away? I said.

Well, I've heard of your conversation about us.  News
travels even among foxes, as you might know or not know.  

What conversation do you mean?

Some lady said to you, "the hunt is good for the fox." 
And you said, "Which fox?"

Yes, I remember.  She as huffed.

So you're okay in my book.

Your book! That was in my book, that's the difference
between us.

Yes, I agree.  You fuss over life with your clever
words, mulling and chewing on its meaning, while
we just live it.

Oh!

Could anyone figure it out, to a finality?  So
why spend so much time trying.  You fuss, we live.

And he stood, slowly, for he was old now, and
ambled away.

~Mary Oliver~

++++++++++++

Grams arrived home from Hawaii yesterday.  As my mom pointed out, who goes to Alaska and Hawaii in a year? Well, she does. When I called to say hello she was very ill.  It appears she caught a nasty case of bronchitis three days into the trip.  It was no surprise as she suffers from respiratory issues on a regular basis.  She went to the doctor when she returned home, fearing it was pneumonia and had to have a breathing treatment to increase her oxygen levels.  She was prescribed a heavy dose of antibiotics and sent to home for bed rest.

I worry about her health.  Hearing her tell me she walked through the airports carrying her luggage because there wasn't a wheelchair available, and saying she just had to "suck it up" because she needed to make it home made me frustrated.  She has always had this attitude.  I wonder to myself if she pushed herself to far and I worry. Perhaps she should have stayed home.

And then she scolded me.  I wouldn't let her ride the zip line in Alaska and since I wasn't babysitting her in Hawaii she went for it...and had the time of her life.  She was a fox.  She signed no to every medical condition on the waiver and shimmied her way to the platform.  She was the guinea pig for the 60 year olds that weren't sure they could do it.  She laughed herself into a coughing fit just telling me about it.

And then I scolded myself.  How foolish am I?  She is 81 years old, relatively healthy, lives alone, and volunteers on a weekly basis.  Would I not rather she go to Hawaii and ride the zip line with the risk of getting pneumonia than see her sitting at home alone?  There is a life lesson here.

Maybe she is a coyote and not a fox, but either way, I can only hope for half as much gumption as she has when I see 81.  Risk = Reward

++++++++++++

Just a reminder, the giveaway for the fantastic {eye} wonder workshop is still open until Friday.

2013 Resolutions


Last January I posted 12 goals for the year and as I wrapped up 2012 I was amazed to see how well I did with them. Accountability has a lot to do with it.  Posting them in such a public place put pressure on me to follow through.  So I've decided to do the same for 2013, adding one more goal to the year.

My list and this year, my reasons.

1.  REDUCE EXCESS
This means no shopping.  No purchasing of unnecessary clothing, housewares, etc.  We live in a very disposable society.  Everywhere you turn there is a new product lurking with a message trying to convince you why you need it or need to replace what you already have.  My world has become quantity over quality.   
My closet is full of clothes I hardly wear.  My cupboards are stuffed with items I haven't used in a year.  So, unless there is an item I truly need (i.e. running shoes because I will not damage my body with bad shoes) I will not purchase anything I do not need.  In addition, I will be sorting through every inch of my home and donating the excess.
2. CREATE A DAILY RITUAL
A daily practice, particularly in the morning, is creative and inspiring, and all around healthy.  My goal is start each day with sun salutations, meditative walks with Annie, and loads of affirmations.  I want to start the day with the right frame of mind. 

3.  UNPLUG
When cell phones became the newest technology I was not convinced it would make my life better.  It took me a long time to finally get one, and then when I did, I rarely carried it around or used it.  My friend BR can attest to this.  Now I use it all the time.  Also, when I'm cooking or cleaning around the house, I sometimes turn on the t.v. to news or trashy shows just to have background noise.   
Well, if we are what we eat, we are what we watch and listen to as well.  I will focus on listening to music more and no longer tune into the t.v. for noise.  And, I will no longer have my cell phone within reach when I'm out and about.  I would rather engage with the checkout gal then filter through my twitter feed.  

4.  FIND A NATUROPATHIC DOCTOR
I'm really over conventional medicine.  Last year I had some crazy allergy thing that knocked me out.  cc didn't want to get sick so I went to the doctor to figure out what was going on.  In less than five minutes, without getting all the information on my symptoms, I was prescribed a z-pack.   
I want a doctor that gets to the heart of the problem and doesn't just treat the symptoms.  Also, I am interested in determining whether there is a path I can take to eliminate my thyroid medication.  A naturopath doctor has a med degree but will try natural remedies before turning to conventional medicine.

5.  FIND A MENTOR
This one is big because I rarely ask for help.  Between feeling insecure in my abilities and not wanting to air those or knowing I can do it myself, I just don't ask.  This is obviously horrible thinking so I will be searching for guidance this year.

6.  BUILD FRIENDSHIPS
I struggle with relationships because I don't put myself out there very well.  It is easier to do in this space because I can't see your face, but real time is a different story.  My goal is to work on that this year.

7.  START A SIDE BUSINESS
I have really wanted to do this for a while.  I love to teach and I love being creative.  I have many ideas in mind and I am looking forward to this goal the most. 

8.  MOVE EVERYDAY
Yoga, run, walk with Annie, hike.  Whatever it looks like, for 30 minutes a day I need to move. 

9.  BE PRESENT
I am searching for a quiet spirit.  I'm always thinking ahead, planning my next move and I want to focus on just sitting in the moment and not worry about yesterday or tomorrow.  

10.  INTENTIONAL COMMUNICATION
Another biggie this year.  I curse.  I use poor grammar, and I can be a debbie downer.  I have gotten comfortable, maybe even a little lazy in how I speak and I realized I don't want that to be a piece of my legacy.  Silence is golden. 

11.  BE CONFIDENT
I believe there is wisdom in carrying an air of confidence.  Not egotistically, but rather, comfortable in my own skin.  

12.  HONE A NEW SKILL
I am a life long learner and I am happiest when I am learning something new.  This year I would like to focus on skill set that I can add to my tool box. 

13.  DO ONE THING THAT SCARES ME
This was #12 on last year's list.  To be honest, I put it on the list because I didn't have anything else, but it is the one goal that stuck with me the most.  I enjoyed it immensely, and so I am adding it again for 2013.   

Cheers to a new year and a fresh start.  Any resolutions for you this year?

12 in 12 Reverb

graffiti in Houston

At the beginning of 2012 I create a list of 12 goals I wanted to knock off before the year was over.  And then I put the list away and didn't think much about it after that.  Why is it we are so good at making resolutions but lack on follow through.

What I've discovered, however, is if even if you put your intentions out there and don't pay attention to the list, most, if not all, will manifest in full or some version of it.  Here is how I did on my list...

1| Attend brand camp with Hey, Sweet Pea
This did not happen because they did not actually host a brand camp so it wasn't even possible.  I did find other avenues and resources to start building a brand.

2| Squam in the Fall
After my first trip I wasn't sure if I would return.  This year it got scheduled, but when the time came it didn't feel right.  That is until I arrived and realized it was perfect timing.  The trip was exactly what I needed.

3| Take a homesteading class
The homesteading class is at the Ploughshare Institute near Waco and I attended the spring session.  I had a fun filled three days of wandering around a working homestead.  My favorite was the mill.  They grind their own flour, corn mill and other grains.

4| Take a trip to Lincoln for a non-agenda weekend with my sister
I actually took several trips to Lincoln this year to see my sister, and all of them were unplanned most of the time.  We worked on her salon, but we still had a lot of fun.

5| Return to yoga
This goal may stay on my list for 2013.  My point was to attend regularly.  I'm amazing at how much it clears the fuzz out of my brain and produces clarity.  This goal came and went without consistency this year, but I didn't give it up.

6| Write 5 lines of gratitude daily
As with yoga, this didn't happen on a regular basis, but it happened more so than I thought.  When I looked back through my journal and planner and added up all the gratitude lists, in addition to the gratitude party, and my gratitude notebook, I'd say I did pretty good.  I'm feeling blessed this year.  I find beauty in the really small things, because some days that is all that matters.

7| Get my garden going at the new house
It was built, it was planted, and then a hot summer hit and it flopped.  I traveled quite a bit and wasn't around to really take care of it.  If nothing else, the foundation is there.

8| Make a date with the specialist I've been putting off
This goal was really a priority.  I had been in pain for over a year and finally knew I needed to get it taken care of.  I knocked this out in the early part of the year and found it wasn't a big deal.  I could actually fix it with my diet, which was a huge blessing.  Lesson learned; do not put off your health.

9| Run the Tour de Fleurs 10K in the Fall
Road races usually try to get on the list to motivate me to keep running.  I like running.  When you are in a routine and pattern it just feels good.  There really is a runners high.  I did not run this race because it happened to fall the same weekend as Squam and I was not going to miss it.  I actually stopped running altogether this year.  For a while I felt really guilty about it.  But something about the long miles just turned me off.  I'm beginning to think that my body needed rest and healing and I'm looking forward to picking up running again in 2013.

10| Go on vacation
With all my trips I wasn't sure I was going to go on vacation this year.  You could consider Squam or Alaska a vacation, but my intention here was a vacation with cc.  She doesn't always get to pick up and leave because of our business.  Over Thanksgiving we went to Galveston and stayed in a beach house for the long weekend and enjoyed a very relaxing vacation.  

11| Work on my personal style
Always a work in progress, but I decided to stop trying so hard. I received personal styling service at Wholly Tara and I desperately wish they had a shop closer.  But, at the end of the day my favorite thing to wear will always be jeans, T-shirts, and sweaters.

12| Do one thing this year that scares me
This goal is scary.  I have to say it out loud, but it is about a process for me.  It is not about jumping out of an airplane, or any one-time event that is usually on bucket lists.  It is about shifting my thinking to believe in something better or new. I'll list two big things without going into detail.
             Attended an adoption seminar - considering adopting a child
             Working on the leg work to open an on-line paper goods shop.


WORD OF THE YEAR

My 2012 WOY is ACTION.  I chose this word because I came to the realization that I am very much a dreamer and planner, but a terrible doer.  I freeze in fear most of the time.  I don't want to fail or I don't want to disappoint anyone, or the unknowns are just to big for me.  I wanted to stop that behavior so I chose a big verb.

I have to say that I followed through fairly well.  The monthly chronicle lists, the ones you see and the ones listed in my journal, scream action.  I am slowly becoming a doer and learning how to push through the fear.  Each time a decision came to sit back or go for it action would pop into my head and I was able to move forward.  Living to the fullest is manifesting.

I have been thinking about my 2013 word for a while.  I have a few ideas and I hope to build off my action from this year.  Interesting things lurk around the corner.

Tell me about your goals?  Did you meet them or some version of them?  Any revelations?

Update || Gratitude Tree


Last week I created a gratitude tree in our front yard and asked neighbors and friends to stop by and hang a note of thanks from my tree.  Many came and left sweet notes of thanksgiving.

I am THANKFUL for living in a place that still values community.


I loved seeing all the notes fluttering in the wind with the leaves still hanging on.  Too bad we have to take them all down.