Flying above this beautiful country, I look down at the earth. The great mother, still there, still mothering us all, despite our reckless obliviousness.
I pledge allegiance to her. It is to her that we owe our gratitude and our respect. Without the gifts of air and water, sunshine and soil, bird and bee, we would all be nothing. And I’m not speaking figuratively here.
No matter our politics, our race, our gender, how much or how little money we have - we are all utterly reliant on the earth. This is not a one-sided relationship. It demands reciprocity. If we do not take care of her, she will not be able to continue to take care of us.
I’m with Her, and always will be.
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A beautiful morning in Berkeley, April 2016
I'm loving the time management/prioritization concept of "3 big rocks," which I discovered via writing coach Jenna Avery, and she credits to Stephen Covey.
If you're not familiar with the concept, Jenna explains it nicely in this blog post, so I won't recap it here.
This has got me thinking: what are my three big rocks, overall, in my life right now?
Two are easy: Boys. Book.
But what's the third? I'm torn between two possibilities.
It could be Wellness, which would include my near-daily attempts ... more
It's not that the kids refused to try Judo, but they were hesitant. Elan was anxious ahead of time. We were in the car, and I found myself saying to him, "Listen up. I'm going to tell you the secret to life." Once that came out of my mouth, it seemed necessary to pull over. I parked under a tree and turned around to face them, my two beautiful boys, their perfect skin, their eyes - brown and blue - pools reflecting liquid light.
"The secret to life," I said, ... more
I turned 40 on January 5. When your birthday coincides with a new year, you get to think of your own evolution and the year's in the same breath. I'm not a big fan of New Year's Resolutions, but I do like to use the turning point of a new year to take a step back and think about where I'm going, and how I'm getting there.
We were in San Diego, as we luckily often are for the holidays. Mikhail and I took our customary walk on the beach. ... more
End of summer, San Diego, August 2015
There's a poem in my head and I don't know how to write it.
Riding my bike home, I hear the bing-bing of two metal things hitting. I decide to not stop. The sound is rather pleasant.
A man is installing a rain gutter in hopes of El Niño. A woman in white pants trims something in her garden, as I pass a large van with a bumper sticker on the back window that reads WITCH.
Two old cars rot under a plexiglass carport. Across the ... more
Kauai, February 2015
When a day gets sloggy, or I've got too much to do, or I'm stressed, my kids are used to me saying, "I want to go to Hawaii."
It's also my go-to line whenever the whining gets a little much.
Them: "I wanna have some [INSERT NAME OF SUGARY TREAT HERE]. I really really really want it!"
Me: "I want to go to Hawaii."
Them: "I want to watch [INSERT NAME OF FAVORITE SHOW-OF-THE-MOMENT HERE]. I HAVE TO HAVE TO HAVE TO watch it!"
Me: "I want to go to Hawaii."
And ... more
One of my favorite spots in New Jersey, July 2015
In many things, I am a perfectionist. I try to tell myself “good enough is good enough,” but it’s often hard for me to believe it. However, there is one place in my life where striving for mediocrity is just right for me, and that is meditation.
There has only been one period of my life when I meditated regularly, and I always did it badly. In fact, I remember only two sessions of meditation that felt anywhere close to transcendent. ... more
This one's from the vault. June 2005, backpacking in the highlands outside Chinchero, Peru. I've been looking at pictures to remind myself of the geography, which often leads me down memory lane to major distraction, but amazingly hasn't much this weekend.
Ironically, I am not feeling distracted at the moment. I am feeling focused and intentional, in the flow of ideas, big and little. Don't you love that state?
I'm on another of my solo writing retreats (I'm such a lucky girl). This weekend I'm a lady with a vision on a ... more
Every six months or so, I look around my house and have a sharp, sudden desire to get rid of 75% of the items in it. The random plastic toy floating underfoot, the outgrown shoes I haven't had a chance to deal with yet, the tangled cords that surface here and there, the paper, oh the paper, that multiplies every time I turn my back.
There are people in the world who are naturally very good at decluttering. People like my sister and my friend Meghan, who have no sentimental attachments to old ... more
Emry, October 2014
This is what the living do. We want and want and want some more, and then we are suddenly satiated, and this is grace.
Riding my bike through the autumn morning, the piles of leaves damp from a little nighttime rain, or maybe it was heavy dew, the sky a brightening blue with strewn white cloud over it. A sky like that has promise. The way the light slants past the street signs, hitting the tops of the trees and letting them show off their yellows, their ... more
Half Moon Bay, September 2014
I'm sure there are psychologist and personal growth experts who have written treatises about the phenomena of what happens when you set your mind to try to make something happen. I am not a psychologist or personal growth expert. But I can tell you that the choice of the word “intention” as one of Mikhail and my three words for the year has been a powerful one.
I think I chose the word because I was already seeing that at work in ... more