Thursday, December 31, 2009

My 99 Things

I was inspired by Sarah from "Stars in her Fingernails" (as you'll see in the blogs I read on the right hand column if you scroll down) to write this posting...So here goes: 99 Things I have done:

1. owned an art gallery
2. hiked up a mountain
3. owned a horse
4. had pet pigs as big as bears
5. went digging for fossils
6. studied geology on my own time
7. learned sign language
8. studied Druidry
9. know the books of the Bible
10. spent a summer by the sea
11. took all the color out of my hair - once -
12. grew my hair down the middle of my back
13. won a prestigious award for writing a book based on Special Education
14. have published a self-help book
15. have sold art around the world
16. have ridden a boat out in the sea
17. gave birth to my son
18. gave birth to my daughter
19. studied Buddhism
20. taught Japanese culture
21. tore a tendon in my ankle and STILL held a full days worth of parent/teacher conferences
22. pulled 20+ porcupine quills from a beloved dog's face
23. got an A in Advanced Essay Writing from the most infamous professor that ever lived
24. won a car on my wedding day (sold said car and bought a computer, a bed and a used vehicle instead)
25. attended the Largest Craft Show in the World
26. was on a tv show that featured me and my art
27. wrote and published two books of poetry
28. got myself a husband for Christmas (what was it...12 or so years ago?)
29. was baptized
30. watched my grandma dying
31. felt a ghost in my house
32. know things I probably shouldn't know for reasons I can't begin to guess
33. read Great Expectations in a week
34. have written a cease and desist letter more than once
35. have made a Croquembouche (for the first and last time)
36. was in an antique show for 3 summers in a row
37. ran a homeschool tutoring business
38. have designed over 10 websites since I began
39. taught classes on doll-making
40. taught crochet
41. have crocheted two afghans
42. made two locker hooked rugs
43. homeschooled my son for approximately 1 month of his Kindergarten year
44. collected antiques as a teenager
45. met my husband when I was only 17
46. cut my right hand, my right knee and my right foot all during the summer I was 11
47. I own chickens
48. I've sold chicken eggs
49. know how to drive a tractor
50. know how to drive a threshing machine
51. know how to bail hay
52. know how to rake a field and plow a field
53. know how to drive a combine
54. have changed countless lines of irrigation
55. have seen elk and antelope in the wild
56. would like to say I've seen a ghost
57. taken a trip to Crater Lake
58. have taken rides in small airplanes
59. I can sew clothes and do very fine embroidery
60. can make candles
61. can make wooden spoons and my own clothes pins
62. can make butter and homemade bread
63. have been lost
64. have been found
65. have ridden an ATV as fast as I possibly could
66. have danced in the rain with the man I love
67. sung in a University Choir
68. embarrassed myself in a University voice class...reaaaaalllly embarrassed myself
69. sung solos in A Capella choir
70. was told I had the "best legs" in high school (ahhhh, those were the days)
71. was a music leader in a University church group
72. saw Amy Grant in concert when I was a teenager
73. saw Amy Grant in concert in my own little town of Sisters as an adult
74. saw Nickel Creek at a small concert in Portland
75. have been in the newspaper for using and exciting teaching method
76. gave a straight "A" student a "B" once...and it made his life better
77. made someone laugh until they peed their pants
78. told an older woman once that I wouldn't help her because she wasn't thankful (what the H was I thinking?)
79. voted for Barack Obama (I'd do it again and again and again)
80. dislocated my collar bone
81. chipped my brother's tooth(it was MY turn to talk into the pipe, by the way)
82. cut my brother's foot (yikes...sorry brother)
83. use to have "future dreams"
84. got through 4 years of choir and 2 years of University choir without being able to read music
85. was Site-Council President for two years running in my school district
86. have found one intact sand dollar at an Oregon beach
87. flew a kite that lifted me off the ground
88. watched Fourth of July fireworks as they were shot off over the ocean
89. remember the day that Princess Diana died - I cried and cried for my childhood hero
90. remember 9/11 - I was teaching 6th graders and had to make my way through the rest of the day in shock and terror
91. watched "The Blair Witch Project" and thought it was real...had a nightlight on for two weeks after that
92. can drive a 5-speed
93. can name most native plants in my area
94. can decipher runes and read cards
95. have read 98% of the books in my house
96. have over 200 books in my house
97. had my front tooth knocked out by a baseball when I was 9
98. had my teeth fixed when I was 30
99. sat up this long writing this list


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Solstice-ing

After my post this morning, I thought and I thought about missing the Solstice and I thought to myself, "Ahh, who gives a care if I do it on the RIGHT day??!" So, I'm celebrating it in my own way today...Spirit doesn't mind what day we celebrate...every day is a celebration.
So, I started off by eating some of the wonderful fudge my husband makes and said to myself, "Nothing better to kick it off."
Here is a poem by Ralph Waldo Emerson that I love for this day as well - poetry read aloud, just as it should be read!!!








And it reminds me to WATCH and LISTEN and NOTICE...and it also reminds me of how I'd love one BIG snow storm before the days begin to lengthen again. I love this whole idea (in whichever way you want to see it) of the meaning of Christmas/Solstice: physically the days are now beginning to lengthen...the days will Lengthen...the tiny Sun promises to illuminate the Earth and begin to warm it up...Spiritually, a Light is born unto the world that promises to illuminate our Hearts. It is that little glow in a dark world that promises to grow and enlighten our spirits. The Virgin Mary and Baby Jesus represent the tiny Light and the Pure and Majestic Mother who brought this Light into the world for us.

I am so thankful for light and warmth and truth and purity and majesty. I'm so thankful for the ultimate gift of a Son/Sun and the simple gift of the sparkle of a candle in my window. Whatever face you put on this time of year, allow our hearts to be Unified in simplicity of LIGHT and PROMISE and GIVING. I pray for peace and that joy that fills your heart up until you cry for happiness this Season.

Happy Solstice Dear Readers - love, Katie

Standing Outside

I've been having "hmmm" moments lately - moments of standing outside a sphere and feeling a little...what is the word...I think it is melancholy. I saw a beautiful silk and wool shawl and said to myself, "Ahhh! My two friends would love this and they could make these!" Lo and behold, as I looked at the tag, there were their names. I was so glad for them, but because I've been their business partners before, there was that feeling of standing outside and waving. I tried to quickly reel that energy of sadness in because I didn't want to mar the whole beauty of what they were beginning again.
Because I didn't get the message earlier, I went to pick up a friend to spend the day with her to find out that she'd already gotten a ride home and I hadn't gotten the message so I was left to pretend to be happy and excited for her and "no worries" and went and sat and had coffee and fresh baked banana bread by myself. It was again that feeling of standing outside.
What is even more interesting, is that just about a month ago I was kind of reeling from how many friends were vying for my attention...when can I do this, when can I do that...and now, melancholy.
So now that there has been this kind of positive silencing/grounding, I find that I've been silent/grounded a bit too much and now I need to spread my wings a bit more at times.
I'm very happy with my job...I don't have the say-so or the responsibility of a classroom teacher, but I am teaching and that makes me absolutley joyous. I'm lacking the spiritual lately. I even let Winter Solstice pass me by without even a how-do-you-do. Weird. I've celebrated the solstice just about religiously for the past 3 years. Hmmmm...I think I have found myself "standing outside" just a bit too long each day, and yet with no photos to show for it. As you can clearly see...this post is not of the usual variety...no photos, no uplift...just me being quietly stunned by my own lack in certain areas.
I am grateful that the areas in my life that needed attention are getting it (my BRAIN!), but my spirit has been so spoiled it is now throwing a bit of a fit at being so neglected...where are the walks in the wood - alone? where are the photos taken by your keen eye? Where are the books of deep thought? Where are the soul poems? A bit replaced by social studies curriculum and reading circles and copies of the latest agendas and meetings to attend in early mornings and parents to call and schedules to change...not gone, but my spirit is definitely standing outside knocking hard on my windows, calling loud for BALANCE.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Christmas Offerings

a snippet from the website

I do have a purpose on the internet...did you know? I write books and collections of poetry and I reach out to other people as far as I can...have you found it yet? http://www.intothewoode.com/ is my little place on the internet. I woke up early this morning and redesigned it...seriously...and I got to thinking about giving you all something: Right now, I am offering my books to all readers of my blog with FREE shipping to anyone in the continental U.S. and to everyone else, half price shipping!!! That can mean a lot of savings to my friends over-seas!!!
a snippet from the website

All you need to do is to email me at intothewoode (at) yahoo (dot) com and let me know you saw this offer on the blog for free (or half price) shipping. The books are here and here (did you know they are available on AMAZON? However, the deal doesn't apply there, only with me...besides, I'll personally sign your book for you!!!) I have a limited number of them on hand at the moment, so act quickly!!!



Sunday, December 13, 2009

Silencing

I've been finding it a bit hard to come to terms with myself these days and nights
There is sincere thankfulness in my heart that I have had these years to have completely blown out of myself and been able to fill myself back up with what was true and right.
I am SO completely and down in bones grateful for these learning years.
The days grab onto me from the moment my eyes are opened and my simple tasks are set before me like a menu: walk up here and teach this, walk down there and look after them, walk back up here and help them complete it, siddle over there and teach this, back down to teach that and lastly help these kids keep it together...now go home.
There has been a shutting down of sorts going on inside of me.
I've been so open, skin tingling with the everything new soaking in and the old scrubbed off. I've been able to sit face down in the grass and let it permeate to my bones. I've been able to dance at the witching hour under a full moon.
Now I am in a kind of silencing.
This mode of life has caused me to pull in and stand up...to be constantly grounded. I wanted to write that it isn't good for me to be constantly grounded, but I am finally beginning to learn that I don't know that everything I once thought is actually true. Perhaps it is good for me to have taken what I've learned in my spirit and begin to apply it to my daily life.
You can only learn so much until it begins to saturate and muddle...
at some point we all must just stop ruminating and begin to actually fly.
My heart is a carefully, naturally carved chamber wherein I always find my true self.
She has filled volumes in this room at a tiny, perfectly sturdy little secretary desk. She has barely been able to soak in all that she has written, and now it is time to sit in a cozy brown chair and begin to read these volumes to me. I imagine that she reads them to me and I am able to go and DO now. We can put into practice what we've learned. Yes... a kind of silencing...how appropriate when my world is covered in snow and the flames leap from the wood my husband has provided. How appropriate when I am wrapping gifts and cuddling kids.
Happy Winter to all my friends...I wish "silencing" for you, as well.





Thursday, December 03, 2009

Relief

I admire passion.
I seek people out who have it.
I really love to be with people who are passionate about the same core ideas as me.
But I can admire (at least fundamentally) those who don't have the same core ideas, but who are equally passionate over their lives. I stand in awe of those who immediately say, "No! that isn't right...it can't be right...change it now." In equal measure, I can be horrified by it.
By saying it all so rashly, there wasn't time for reflection and decision...only reaction.
I do not applaud reactionaries...I myself struggle with it.
I see a lesson before me again that is a chance to squish my lifelong nemesis: reactive behavior.
The bossy teacher in me likes to say, "no" or "not now" or "never" at the first hint of deviation from the norm...but I've tempered it so much. My own little children have taught me to ask questions first before I judge and hand down the ruling.
"Wait a minute. Explain to me why you have to leave the classroom."
I have found that 8 times out of 10, kids have valid/justifiable reasons for what they do.
The problem, truly, is with adults.
Adults think they are "soooo grown-up." Nope, just different. for instance, you can't tell an administrator, "That's lunch detention, missy. I'll see you then and we'll have a chat about it." By which we really mean, "I'll straighten you out at lunch."
Too bad adults can't get detentions.
So, back to my nemesis...yes, I have found myself suspending judgement. Giving a new plan time before I've truly stepped on one side or the other, but KNOWING where I stand in the end. Knowing what I want the solution to feel like is key...
what a RELIEF to find myself giving time to REFLECTION.




Sunday, November 29, 2009

Happiness of Place



This is one of those magical miracles, honestly. I intended for a job and everyday I said a prayer, straight from my bones, very specific about what I wanted and then I added "or better" every single time...I got the "or better."

I have found myself with a job that starts after the kids are in school and ends just when they need picked up. It is important soul-work that I am proud of. It changes daily within small parameters...it will fill me up during the day...it gives me purpose and is something I am passionate about. I start tomorrow...what a wonder is the power of bone-deep prayer.

Sending out not only words, but energy and power and wish and magic. Bubbling it all together in a cauldron of change...of hope and ultimately of what is TRUE...what is TRUEST about me at the moment...what I need has become what I want, and I am SO thankful for this :)


I think that when I quit Sparrow's Cottage (how funny, there isn't even a link anymore to show you what I mean), some thought I quit because I couldn't "hack it." Yes, for sure, there were problems with being an artist...the ego is one of the reasons, I'm sure...the naughty design stealers are another...but those were teensy tiny little items in the column marked "reasons to quit" The biggest reason was because I don't just enjoy teaching. I'm not just good at it. I am passionate about it. I ride the fence happily on most other issues, but when it comes to teaching and what I believe, I sit firmly on one side or another on each issue. I love the work. I love the people. I love the kids, whose minds are entrusted to me for most of the day. I love the hours. I love the plan books. I love the chalkboards/whiteboards/SmartBoards/bulletin boards. I love it, truly. It makes my lip curl up in a smile. It makes me lift my head a little higher. It makes me walk with purpose. It makes my brain move and churl with ideas...nothing else makes me feel the same in life. I have a responsibility to use the abilities I was given.
What makes you feel the same way? Have you found it yet? Have you sounded the depths of who you are and found your place? Do you see where your feet are standing? When you find where you belong you can let out a loud long bellow with your arms outstretched, because it is truly wonderful...and you deserve a loud long bellow, don't you think?

Thursday, November 26, 2009

a small post of thanks

very simply...
i am thankful for love that shows itself in the inbetween times...the little touch of fingertips in passing, the small smiles, the quick squeeze...i am thankful for those who would walk by me as I lay sleeping on the couch and cover my feet, or tread lighter...i am thankful for those who sit down with me to talk, who look in my eyes and try to SEE what i am saying...
i am thankful for quiet voices and twinkles in eyes
i am thankful for laughing until i want to pee my pants
i am thankful for the hard hug as my brother gathers his family up to leave
i am thankful for tiny hands and a capable mommy
very simple thanks

Monday, November 23, 2009

A sweet few days

clear, windy skies
cozy cuddles and warm places to lay

and clean gentle surroundings
nothing soothes my busy mind more

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

I am Motivated to Tell



Oh yes, I talk and I talk and I talk a plenty...a funny thing is that during my day at school I get all talked out...funny thing...though my heart has been full, the words haven't come as easily as I've wanted. I've wanted to put down what it is I've been thinking lately... so here it goes:


I am AMAZED by the amount of courage and where-with-all I have when a job is at hand. This woman who has doubted and fussed and wandered and wondered at her self - called herself all sorts of bad names, and then one day, literally, wakes up without the anger and says, "What will I do without that?"



What HAVE I done without that nasty imp hanging around my ears, tugging at the small curling hair behind my ear, without it scratching its name in my skin?



I'll tell you, reader, I have been walking tall. I have been trusting the words that have come out of my mouth. I have been making serious, responsible decisions. I have been soothing the beast in troubled children, lifting up trodden women, carrying myself across divides...I HAVE BEEN DOING THIS.



I have been hugged by the child who does not like to be touched. I have been shyly smiled at by a child who slings curses in her every other word. I have covered them in love without even touching them.



My corner of the world is not small...I have been doing this.



I have been offering myself and finding it is not only enough, but it is amazing and healthy and needed and sought after. I have found that I can be a safe harbor in some human being's otherwise stormy life.



What a wonder...what a wonder that I have been doing this.



I hope that I shall never cease to be amazed at what beautiful, courageous, wonderful things we human being are capable of.



I hope that I shall never cease to see the potential in another torn human heart.



I hope that I shall never believe that there is a kindess too small to give.



I hope that I shall never cease to smile and feel a lump in my throat when my efforts are praised, needed, rewarded. I thank the Divine of My Heart with a quiet mouth, with closed eyes and with my head held up high.



My heart is full with purpose and life...



and I am happy.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

helpful advice

Does anyone know why I cannot seem to see my Friends list? Just one day it decided to go blank, and now I cannot seem to figure out the problem - any ideas? Thank you so much :)

Sunday, November 08, 2009

Being That Bridge


Where have I been, what have I been doing?
I've been whispering to yelling mouths.
I've been holding back running legs.
I've been awakening quieted minds.
I've been soothing some child's savage beast...
whose warm beating heart is encrusted like a stone..
all as a blind woman whose only light is love.
What in the world do I know? I ask myself when nothing works.
What in the world am I doing here? I ask myself when too much is happening at once.

Last Friday, my world was very small and tight and wound like a spring.
I was whisked away with my little bundles of warmth and love and light and openness.
We stood atop red clay and took deep breaths of fresh air and looked at the near-nothing-ness of what surrounded us. Thank God for quiet-looking places like this.
After being unwound by restful sleep and sun that wanted to get into every picture I took, and clay that stuck to our shoes and made us each an inch taller than we really were, and swimming in a warm spring, I realized that I DO KNOW what I'm doing.
I know love and love knows me.

Because I have walked this bridge with loved ones and found that the bridge was itself made of love - that immovable, unfathomable kind that I cannot quite feel the edges of -
I walked into the caring and acceptance and understanding, and QUIET,
I DO belong here now. I have something to give them.
me.

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Loving the Unknown

in awe and thanks, with eyes closed and teary, I breathe so deeply
of myself
of who I am...all my foibles and naughtiness even...
I am a full and warm and capable woman who gives every task its due consideration
and then some
I am grateful for the lesson, which seemed to be more of a mirror of what I am capable...
I've been doubting it for seven years. It is so easy to be "away" from one's work for a few years, and then, upon wanting to return, the Doubt and Misgivings and the Cowering shows up at the door. I opened the door to it, had tea with them all (Cowering was rather strangely dressed), then when I was tired of them all, I pushed them out the door and asked them to stay away for quite awhile...apparently they did.

I took the hand of my higher self, as I mentioned last week, and walked into that classroom and I fell absolutely in love with each of these troubled kids. I've given them all my absolute best. I've given them my strength, my understanding, my love and now I must leave them.
I was only supposed to be a long-term sub.
I was only supposed to help out for a couple of weeks.
I wasn't suppose to be invested, or love them.
But I did, and I do.
It will be hard for me to leave on Friday, but I learned so much about myself, and what I'm capable of. I am proud of me. I'm proud of the OAK in me (thanks mama!), and the WILLOW.


Monday, October 26, 2009

Stepping Into the Unknown

My highest self is excited about the challenge. She says, "I bring it in to myself with expectancy and a smile." She isn't afraid; she stares it in the face and laughs with excitement. She watches the sunrising through the misty trees and waits...she breathes the crisp new air deep into the depths of her lungs...
She weaves her webs and lovingly allows the dew to collect, standing to the side watching it drip and drop...content with standing aside. My higher self allows & smiles & lets it fill her to the top.

Standing without her petals. Naked to the world. This is the way. This is what has come.
This is my higher self.

The woman who writes this in front of her tv tonight is unashamedly afraid.
She does not want to walk into the room and not know the plan.
She is desperately wishing she had not said yes.
She is saying frick and frack and crap and what the H...
she doesn't want to crawl out of the house before dawn to step into the unknown...
but off she goes, holding the hand of her Higher Self...




Sunday, October 18, 2009

Pumpkin-Gettin'

I don't have much to say (hard to believe) - but I wanted to share a tradition with you - my family loves to pick out our pumpkins from a local pumpkin patch that is basically like someone's working farm, complete with rusty wires and sharp objects laying around, because it feels so homey. It was so beautiful this time, I had to share these photos with you.

You can't take a bad picture of a pig.









Saturday, October 17, 2009

Releasing

In this moment in the deepest portion of the dark, when I am alone and all I hear are night noises, my sense comes alive (how funny that I didn't say "my senses come alive"). I am able to release the idea that I must have rhyme and reason, and I begin to allow myself to step into Faith.
When I randomly put up 5 photos to share with you tonight, I decided not to think too hard nor too long, and I had no new photos to share, but I have still been itching to share this poppy with you (and it isn't the last you'll see of it, I am sure)
...this proud poppy, with one fragile pink-crepe petal left moves me...
it moves me in the same way a beloved doll with an arm dangling by one thread, would.
It moves me in the same way that an unhatched egg that is pushed from the nest, would.
It moves in the same way that a spider leaves one skin behind,
emerging shiny and fresh and fragile, would.
The mostly round pebbles for this picture were carefully put together as a prayer of thanks for my little family on a day when I was so full of love for my son's interest in all-things-under-rocks. When I was so full of love for my daughter's delight in the warm wind through her golden hair. When I was so full of love for my husband's unabashed excitement to be running on a shoreline with his pants rolled up and his white feet in the warm water, instead of driving down a hot and dusty road to God-Knows-Where.
I created it from little pebbles that had been released from the tide of a well-traveled river on the shore in a well-played park...I honored LETTING GO by using things that had been LET GO.
I admire the leaves of the oak that DO NOT LET GO...the wind may shake and pull and tear at them, shouting, "It...is...FALL...for...Pete's...sake...LET...GO!!!"
and they do not budge
they do not drop...or they try not to drop, and that is Stick-to-it-ness, isn't that.
I admire that trait in myself and others that stays with something until the very end, that voice that says, "Hell no, we won't go!" I love that about myself...I have to pry my own hands off of a project to make myself quit. I am an Oak in this way, though I am also more of a willow who has the ability to release, release, release, release
and never break...
I can bend and bend and bend and when the wind is done with me, I will spring right back, as though nothing untoward was attempted.
I am a Willow in this way.



I am this fragile leaf that is the veil that covers the Otherworld. I am the one who stands before it, waiting to Let Go. I am the one passing through it, and I am the one behind it, who has Let Go. I have let myself go from the tree in a Primitive Response...it is what I was made to do...I do it willingly, with little suspense or wonder. It was time to go. It was time to stop hanging on.
I must let go so that I might become something else on this new adventure...when I fall to the ground, what will become of me? Will I decay and provide food for that which released me in the beginning, without anyone noticing or wondering over me? Or will I float merrily down into the palm of some mystic woman's hand wherein she will touch me carefully, and sigh and place another warm hand over me and bring all of this to her chest and feel so thankful, so grateful for this old leaf? All things end. All things must let go.

And what OF letting go? What of it?
When we let go, we create space for others...when we let go of the expectations others have on us that no longer fit, we make room for our OWN expectations. When we let go of the burden that weighed us down, we make room for the the sun-rays to create wings on our backs instead. When we let go of that which does not work for us anymore, we make way for that which does.
When we retire old dreams, we create rooms (windows thrown wide, mind you) for our new dreams to be sewn together in.
We must release one in order to get the other...

I find myself at this moment of release, and I've known it for weeks (and perhaps months now). It is time for me to let go of the Sparrow that I've held onto for so long. This Sparrow that I've protected and guided and chided and cajoled and ran after and lost and found and broke and mended and put on public television and sold and bought and cried over and rejoiced over and held to my chest when too many people wanted to pick at her...(sigh)...I'm tired of having her out in public...she wants to come home now.
She no longer wants to be shared. This Sparrow has flown and flown until her wings are tired, and she is sore of the vultures pecking at her tender flesh. This Sparrow is old, and no longer wants to be tough-enough. She flies back to her warm little nest In The Woode where she belongs. It was time...a long time ago...
I don't expect a lot of whining or fanfare...she will go quietly, just as she came in...but I still mourn it, in my own way.
I stood outside this week when the rain was coming down as if it were spontaneously forming at every open space in the air around my body and not falling from a little cloud that floated above me. It collected in tiny droplets on the hairs on my arm and I was fascinated by it, and for some reason, it was then that I knew I had to let my Sparrow go. She wasn't out there in the rain with me anymore. She wasn't bursting forth from my chest with inspiration in that moment, she was back inside, old and needing warmth...I realized it was time to release her to make way for the new dream, and so I do...
You can read more about this here.





Friday, October 16, 2009

Twisting in one Direction (or the Definition of Becoming)

Nature is most lavish in her gifts and in order to appreciate them we should listen to her voice and study well her teachings. ~J. Clark
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
I don't know how I happened upon that quote one day when I created this blog, but I did...happen upon it, that is. And at that moment, "Into the Woode" meant to me something mysterious and unknown, rather like walking in a darkened wood with nothing whatsoever on the agenda except to follow a rustling breeze, or the musky scent of a toadstool. To gather what you may, while you may, and even after you may (o gasp), was the impetus that drove me to write down my thoughts here.
Into the Woode was a bit nebulous and sticky, like the stringy-fingers of the cat-face spider's web. It was even a bit grabbing like a bramble at your skirts.
Through the summer, however, I found that the Woode became lighter, brighter, even diffused into tiny fairy specks suddenly gathering and just as suddenly dispersing like dust motes in shafts of light. My Woode is the sound of rain dripping from my eaves, and the snap of a juniper log on the fire. My Woode is the groan-grackle of the chickens in the purple-black of dawn. My Woode tastes like bacon pop-cracking in the cast iron skillet and the richness of the deep amber of my coffee in a rustic pottery mug on a bright, cold Sunday morning.
My Woode is a dew drop.
My Woode is one pretty fragile petal left.
My Woode is a tangled grassy path through the bottom of a lake bed.
My Woode is the Autumn sun poking at me through the leaves of my favorite little
Choke Cherries.
My Woode changes as I twist and tumble through the labrynthine maze of the seasons, through the wheel of the year, as I Become in every moment, at the breaking of each day and the second my eyes are closed...
My Woode is My Becoming.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The First Snow

This picture looks like something from the cover of a scary story...but I assure you there was nothing scary about the First Snow...only cozy...see the red glow from the chicken coop?
Later, when the sun came up, I went out and took a little video, and you can hear the chickens telling me "Good morning...good morning...where's our grub?!"


video

Monday, October 12, 2009

This is what I do...


There I was today, in the middle of some kind of anomaly...over 70 7th and 8th grade kids all in one gym together after lunch because it was too cold outside, and only ME to watch them...it was like being in a black hole. I was in disbelief for the first 5 minutes as I watched the basketball hoops come slowly down and looking, frantic, for WHO was doing it?! Too much yelling and chaos to figure it out, but it was happening...and did I just see the outside door click shut? Who went out there? Why are these kids throwing basketballs as hard as they can at each other's heads?!
It was like trying to get up a hill of molasses, at dusk, on a tricycle...

Then I stood for 5 full seconds with my eyes closed, went inward and pulled it out...I pulled up the courage and said, "What in the world, they are just kids." And then I also pulled out my new whistle (thanks, sweetie!!), and I'm not afraid to use it, let me tell you. I KNOW how to blow a whistle, and I have a LOUD voice...so quickly, I rounded up the hooligans who went out the wrong door, stopped the hoop-remote hijackers, sat the four kids on the sidelines who were throwing the basketballs so hard and generally took control of things...
*did you know that buttercups can grow in little spots of gravel that seem to have no water, and that, though you step on them and they seem to wrinkle, they do not lay down...they stand up straight and keep on going...that was me, today*

Align Center
I thought about my wish to have my own classroom (what joy I'd have to teach Language Arts to 7th and 8th graders!! or Social Studies...ooh, I LOVE Social Studies!!) and I thought to myself how much I love these CRAZY kids, and the lovely crazy teachers who stick with them through these awkward years, and LOVE it, and it made me feel as though I were a part of some underground society: "We Who Step into the Bubble of Tweendom, and Relish it"
What is it about them? Even the hardened (foot taller than me) boys who look me straight in the eye and say, "No!" and I calmly smile and say, "You look like a really old lady when you sqwinch up your eyes like that and say, 'noooooo!' I expect you'll do it anyway, or I'll have you scrub out every single one of these garbage cans in here before you go home today. Okay? Cool."
I LOVE that...I love that the boy smiles (trying to change it into a smirk) and says, "Geeeeeeeez!! Fine." and then does what I asked. Score one for me.
This is the challenge I take on. This is what I love...I love to watch some kid trying to form this "don't touch me, I'm too cool" bubble around themselves, and then I love to step right into it bursting it open and watch them smile. I LOVE it. I love to help these kids come back to themselves...

This is who I am...
irreverent, saucy, dishin' it out, listening to woes, straightening it out, and
caring absolutely...
I am with them because I'm called.
No better reason then that.




Sunday, October 11, 2009

Cold Springs in the Fall


there were bowers of glittering jewel-tones
and pale papery roughness of birch bark
it filled up my senses, made me close my eyes and breathe deeply of the crisp air

it caused me to lay on logs and look closely at textures

looking for bright bits of shocking purples here and there,
the last of this sort of color for the season

it made me look low and find this perfect acorn-shaped wasp's nest
in a very strange little place among the reeds only one step from the water's edge...
The little details from my favorite place at my favorite time of year wraps me in it's healing energy for days afterward.