Friday, September 21, 2018

Complete

Complete Is Not The Same as Finished

I am intentional about watching sunrises. I drive to a looking place just minutes from my home and I wait. Each minute something changes. The clouds affect the colors, the water catches reflections of light, the birds move and take flight suddenly, and the sound of the waves make a soothing rhythm. When the sun comes over the horizon the sunrise is not finished but it is complete.


That cycle is complete. And so it us for us a children of God. We are never finished but we are complete, whole, when His grace allows us another day. I imagine what our earth looks like as it rotates around the sun. Half the time in darkness and then that return to the exposure of the sun. In German that return is called Umkehr. I picked that word to walk with me through 2018. I am always comforted by the sunrise and the return of day.





Friday, September 14, 2018

Crowd

In quiet moments when you think about it, you recognize what is critically important in life and what isn't. Be wise and don't let good things crowd out those that are essential. 

Richard G. Scott

What is essential?


Loving freely those in front of me is essential. 

I worry about fixing past mistakes and somehow finding the magic words to make right all that has gone wrong. 
That is not my job.
I can do right in this moment, say kindness about today, listen with my whole heart.

The Savior of my soul can go back in time and fix the ruts in my road. He can console those I have hurt and bring joy to their lives. He can speak peace to their hearts and help me show up when it is time to ask their forgiveness. 

I just need to be sure that I hear Him calling so I don't let the good crowd out the essential.


Friday, September 7, 2018

Rain

                      The Earth Is Parched
   No matter how wealthy you are around here, watering your lawn is not kosher. In a climate of healthy rainfall when it is summer and the rains stop, we don't water. 


  Another season is coming and even little children are heard saying, "I wish it would rain." And it will. But because we are fickle human beings we will soon be saying, "It has rained continually for a week. When will it stop?"
   The children of Israel get a bad rap for being fickle. I'm sure after the 25th day of manna from heaven I might say that the meat we had in Egypt would sure be good today. I makes me sad to think that the bondage would be forgotten in a moment of wanting something new. Tomorrow the rain is forecast and I will be hanging out the window to smell the fresh earth drinking, to hear the drops rebounding off the dry earth, and to see the green push out of the brown.
   Remember, remember how it once was.


Friday, August 31, 2018

Rush

Sometimes You Are Forced To Go Slow

For one month I've been forced to go slow, very slow. Sitting on the couch and looking out the window is becoming very tedious. Rushing is impossible. I am physically limited for a time.



  I'm learning that the natural world is actually very slow. Slow but steady. The rising sun can take forever to come over a mountain. The intensity, once it is over the hill, can be blinding so the slow warm up makes an important contrast. It teaches me to see and feel the process and appreciate the moment of rising.
  Very soon I will be back into the rush. Initially I will love moving quicker and I'm sure I will feel empowered by getting back to normal. But, I hope I remember the long slow days. I had time to figure a few things out. 


Sunday, August 19, 2018

Chapter 3- The Gymnopédist

 




Chapter 3

I took to my room and let small things evolve slowly.
Erik Satie

Two important events changed Miguel’s life. One was meeting Alex, the Boys Club volunteer who taught gymnastics and the other was having Mrs. Hanson teach him piano. Alex taught him balance and grace and Mrs. Hanson provided a soundtrack for his new found freedom to move. Both of these events were incongruous to his life as a poor boy in Highland. Both activities were hidden from his family. His mother championed the piano lessons but she knew nothing about his gymnastics pursuits.


Reggie walked over to the uniformed officer holding back the crowd behind the police tape. He turned his back on the people and spoke quietly to the officer. 
“So, what is your take on what went down here?”
The young man shifted uneasily in place. He glanced over at Bart Mullins. 
“I really can’t say, sir”
“I won’t repeat any information you give me. Do you think this is gang related?”
”I’d like to believe it was a horrible accident. But, I saw the wire the investigative team brought down from the tower. It was frayed but the break looked like a saw went through it.”
He glanced over at Bart Mullins again.
“It looks like they are taking the Gonzales kid into custody.”
 Reggie saw that Stevie was not right behind him. A circle of Highland police were walking the teenage boy over to a squad car and Stevie was in the middle of the huddle. He saw Detective Mullins pull her aside and they were having a serious conversation. It started with Stevie just listening and then she stood more erect and challenged him with her own opinion. Whatever she had said, he grunted assent and turned his back on her and proceeded to the car. He watched as Stevie stood to see the car move away from the crime scene. She looked more intense than he had ever seen her. Her body was stiff, hands clenched, and her eyes almost memorizing the view of the boy being taken away. She turned and walked over to Reggie as if in slow motion. He watched the breeze lift her heavy auburn hair. Their eyes locked and he saw a new look of determination.
“Thank you for your help, officer.” Reggie smiled. He met Stevie and together they walked away from the crowd. The air was torrid and a shimmer of perspiration gathered between his shoulder blades.
He waited for her to speak. 
“I volunteered to go to the Cervantes house and inform them of the death of their son, Miquel.”
“What?” Reggie cocked his head to the side, unsure of what she had said.
“I told you. I know his mother, Rosa. I want this tragic news to come from someone she knows.” Stevie’s eyebrows separated, arching down in sadness.
“It didn’t look like Detective Mullins liked that idea.” Reggie moved the weight from his right side to his left. The day ahead looked to be intense.
“He agreed only because this is a job no one wants to do.” Stevie met his eyes with a challenge. He knew she was not going to ask whether he agreed.
“Do you have the address?” 
“Yes, lets go then.” 
Stevie lifted the yellow police tape and waited while Reggie ducked under. They walked in silence to the car.

Rosa thought she was going to miss her bus. She looked around to find her purse. Today was an easier day. She had only two houses to clean this afternoon. Mrs. Hanson’s house first and then down the street she would clean the Rutherford’s house. She slipped on her working shoes with their thick soles. 
“Pablo? I’m leaving. Tell Miguel I’ll be home by 5:00 o’clock.” She turned to walk out of the front door but a loud knocking interrupted her movement. When she opened the door she found Miss Stephanie. A stranger stood by her side. 
“What are you doing here?” Miss Stephanie had never come to her house before. Two worlds were colliding in front of Rosa and it meant something was very wrong.
“Rosa, can we come in?”
Rosa stepped aside woodenly. She watched as they sat together on the couch with the crocheted Afghan covering. I need to wash that. It looks tired and dirty, she thought. She perched on the arm of an over stuffed easy chair and studied Miss Stephanie’s face. Thoughts hurtled in her mind. This woman was a police officer. Why is she in my house? Maybe her mother had died. A pang of sorrow came up into her esophagus and turned bitter in her mouth. She loved Mrs. Hanson. Not only did she pay her generously but she was giving Miguel free piano lessons. A different thought came into her mind suddenly. What if this was about……..? No, she was not going to let that thought invade. 
“Miss Stephanie, is your mother alright?” Rosa’s voice was thin. 
“We aren’t here about my mother.” A sudden sob choked off the next sentence. “Oh Rosa, I’m so very, very sorry to bring this news. Miguel fell from a high wire this morning and he is dead.” 
Rosa watched as Miss Stephanie knelt in front of her and felt her take her hands. She pushed her away and moved towards the door to the kitchen.
“Pablo! Come here please.” Her hands came up to her mouth to keep the emotion from screaming through her mouth. “He will tell you where Miguel is and he is not…… dead.”
Pablo, his head almost touching the doorway, stepped into the living room. Rosa up looked at her older son to see if there was any understanding in his face. 
“Where is Miguel? These people here are telling me that he is dead.” The look on Pablo’s face was distrust but not denial. He came to stand next to her and put his arm around her shoulders. “Miguel has been gone since early this morning. He didn’t tell me where he was going. He is probably with Jorge.” 
Rosa looked into Pablo’s eyes and noticed the hardness when he mentioned Jorge. 
“What were they doing together today?” Her eyes stayed on Pablo’s, looking for information. 
“Their Boys Club activities have been getting more and more risky.” 
“You knew about this and didn’t tell me?” Rosa felt the hurt squeeze her heart. She was going to lose consciousness if she didn’t sit. Pablo led her back to the chair and Stevie moved over to the couch next to her partner. She looked down at her hands and felt a moment of panic. She missed her bus! She would be late to work.
Pablo pulled a chair over to her side. “I am not Miguel’s keeper, Mama.”
He addressed Miss Stephanie. “Can you tell us what happened?”
“Miguel and a friend set up a wire between the bell towers in downtown Highland this morning at about 5:00 am.” 
Rosa heard the male policeman begin the story and she wrapped her arms around her chest. His voice continued but it was fading as Rosa struggled to understand.
“He was almost in the middle of the walk when the wire came down.”
“Where is he now?” Rosa looked the man in the face. He seemed kind but how could he tell her this awful news and still be kind?
“He was taken to Seattle where the medical examiner will investigate how he died.”
“What do you mean, how he died?” Pablo interrupted.
“We are doing a routine investigation.”
“I want to see him!” Rosa turned to Miss Stephanie. “Please, I want to see him.”
“I will help you with that. We will find out when that can happen. I’m so very sorry, Rosa.”
“I’m late to your house. I should be there by now.” Rosa stood to go to her purse.
“Not to worry. I’ll let my mother know what has happened. Pablo, will you stay with your mother today?” 
 “Of course! We don’t need police around helping us through this.” 
“Pablo! Her mother is my friend. She is here to help us.” Rosa looked at her son with reproach. He stood to walk into the kitchen. 
“You are her housekeeper, Mama, don’t forget that.” Pablo disappeared into the other room.
“I apologize for my son’s bad behavior, Miss Stephanie.”
“Here is my card with my private cell phone number. Call if you have any questions.” Rosa felt Miss Stephanie’s arms go around her but she couldn’t return the affection. She was going numb.
“Thank you for coming. We will call you.” As Rosa shut the door she slowly bent her knees and slumped to the floor. The room was moving and she willingly gave into the darkness. 



Friday, August 3, 2018

Anniversary


     It is fortunate that I only have two knees.



This month of August I celebrate the anniversary of my first knee replacement. How do I celebrate? By doing it all again. Last year I kept a journal which I'm following with rapt attention. At 5 days I went to the Physical Therapist, at two weeks I went to the Athletic Club for the first time to ride the recumbent bicycle for two minutes, at 2 1/2 weeks I walked around the corner with trekking poles, unattended, each milestone I seek to repeat. My recovery last year was positive. I should have a similar experience this year. Why not? 



It is a tradition that my husband gives me a blessing before I enter the hospital. This year I noted that he admonished me to look for blessings coming from unexpected sources. I have seen them and I am humbled.




These granddaughters came to stay for an overnight visit the week before the knee replacement. The overnight was a big deal because we all went swimming, attended a parade, and gave each other manicures. They are ages 7-12 and they are the little unexpected angels which have come to my aid. Two visted me in the hospital and gave extra special care. Another has arrived three days in a row to help me with my PT exercises and get a meal for me. They have all sent texts and I am just amazed that their natural ability to serve. I feel so fortunate to know them and have time with them. 

  Another granddaughter has come. She is older and works, so time is tighter for her. We are reading our books to each other. It is something we share, this need to write. I get to hear her fantasy tale of a library gone mad as the characters escape into an unsuspecting world and she hears my tale of a piano teacher found dead by her student.
  I hope to remember this year, as well as last year, as the years of the granddaughters. May we stay connected and find service and solace in each other.



******************************************************************************


There is still time to read my novel about a pianist and teacher who finds a Liszt autograph manuscript and ends up dead. Who killed her to get the treasure? The mysterious student who comes from out of town to study with her? The colleague from Hungary who wants the manuscript more than anything? 


My novel Rubato

A story of a woman's longing for beauty and her struggle to keep the beautiful even when it didn't belong to her.







Friday, July 20, 2018

Way

         "I am the way, the truth, and the life."


There are really just two ways. What, I cry? Really? According to scripture there is God's way and there is Satan's way. I certainly don't want to think I follow Satan's way. I am too aware to be caught in that trap. But I also don't feel I can claim that I always follow God's way. That would lack humility. Right? 



So, I think there might be a third way. My way. Whoops, that sounds pretentious. But, pretentious or not that is a mind set I often adopt. Is it a lie? Hmmm......I think it is. But, think of that famous song "I Did It My Way". Or the poem that says, "I am the master of my fate, the captain of my soul". The soundtrack for these sentiments are so compelling.

 Really isn't my way just another branch of Satan's way?
   Well, this was a sobering 'think' this morning. I hope I didn't set you off. Have a happy weekend!



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I've started writing a sequel to my novel Rubato I invite you to take a look. 


A Musical Murder Mystery

A young teenage boy enraptured with the music of Erik Satie and transfixed with the idea of walking on wire.





Thursday, July 19, 2018

Chapter Two- The Gymnopédist




Chapter Two

Before I compose a piece, I walk around it several times, accompanied by myself.
Erik Satie

Today was a glorious summer day. The weather could not be more perfect. Miguel looked around to make sure the town was empty of people. He glanced up at the south tower, the one he preferred as a starting point. Adjusting his backpack, he took out the wire cutters and cut through the chain across the entrance of the stairway. He was trespassing on city property. Hopefully that was the only law he would break today. He straightened his pole and started the climb up the shallow stairway. The pole had to go up first, it was flexible but it had to be taken up on the outside of the stairway. It was a tight squeeze.
Once he was on the platform he sat and looked around at the view. For more than a year he had wanted to do this walk. These two bell towers were part of the landscape of his life. Highland was a place for the poor and the middle class, but from above, all the stores and houses looked magical. The rubbish and dirt on the street and barricaded store fronts were invisible from the top.


The town of Highland, south of Seattle, was cordoned off from vehicles and pedestrians coming onto Main Street. People were lined along the yellow police tape trying to see what was happening.  Stevie Dangerfield, a Seattle Homicide Detective, had to park a block away even though Reggie Watts, her partner, was sure there was a way around the congestion. The crowd was quiet with solemn looks passing from person to person. Stevie noticed the two bell towers above the heads of the onlookers. Made of orange-brown stonework she judged that they looked about 40 feet high.Wooden frame work circled the towers creating a platform where the bells must have been housed. There was a policeman standing on the platform of one of the towers. He was looking down at a swinging cable. 
“Excuse us.” Stevie said. “Police coming through!” An older woman reached for Stevie and looked into her eyes. 
“It was horrible. First the excitement then…..” A tear rolled down the deeply creased face. She patted the stranger’s arm and walked forward. When they arrived at the barrier, Reggie held up the tape while Stevie stepped underneath. He flashed his shield at an officer and together they walked up the street until they were under the towers. A beige tarp covered what looked to be a body.
“What happened here?” Reggie asked.
“It appeared to be an accident at first but the medical examiner is unsure of the cause of death. I believe you are here to investigate?.” The officer looked gravely at the outline of the body on the street.
“Can you tell us who the victim is?” Stevie asked as she approached the body, gingerly lifting the plastic away.
“Sixteen year old male, by the name of Miguel Cervantes. His friend is over there. He witnessed the whole thing. Even has a video.”
“What whole thing?” Stevie asked.
“The kid was trying to walk a wire cable from one tower to the other. Can you believe it?”
Stevie noticed the officer was shaking a little bit.
“Who is in charge here?” Reggie asked. He was looking around at the investigative team.
“Detective Mullins is over there with the medical examiner.” He pointed with his left hand while his right hand seemed to be clutching his gun. 
“May I go over and talk to the victim’s friend?” Stevie asked.
“I think that is fine. He is really scared.”
  While Reggie approached the other men, Stevie walked to the tower. She saw an opening in the bottom of the tower with a stairway going up to the top. There on the bottom step, huddled in a blanket, sat another teenage boy. 
 “I’m Detective Dangerfield. Can I ask you a few questions?” Stevie crouched down so that she was eye level with the boy.
 He nodded but did not look up. 
“What is your name?” Stevie asked.
“Jorge Gonzales.”
“Are you alright, Jorge? Did they treat you for shock?”
“I don’t know. That doctor over there checked me out.” 
Stevie stood and sat down next to Jorge on the stairway.
“What do you have in your hands?” She asked.
“Hand warmers.” He opened his hands to reveal a mesh packet. “They are helping me stop shaking.” 
“You have probably told this story many times this morning but could you tell me again what happened to your friend?”
  He looked at Stevie with one eye squinting as if he was looking into a bright light. As he started talking his gaze fell back to his hands.
 “Miguel and I are into gymnastics and lately we have been walking wires. He had this thing about walking between these two bell towers. It was something he wanted to do for a long time. We practiced and everything was ready. This shouldn’t have happened.”
  He fell silent and Stevie waited, seeing a tear drop from his chin.
  “I was looking at my camera settings on my phone when I felt a tug on the wire wrapped around the hook next to me. In that second Miguel just disappeared from view.”
 A soft keening came from the boy’s belly and Stevie reached to touch his shoulder.


Reggie Watts approached Detective Mullins. The detective looked up at him with resentful eyes.
“Why are you here trespassing on my investigation?” 
Reggie slumped down ever so slightly to make the difference in height less obvious.
 “I was told your police chief requested two Seattle detectives to assist. I’m Reggie Watts and my partner over there, Stevie Dangerfield, is talking to your witness. We are not here to make trouble.”
“Look!” Mullins glared up into his face. “This is an easy case. We are dealing with a gang retaliation and that kid over there is my main suspect. Stay out of our way. You don’t know our city and you have no idea about the issues we face.”
Reggie felt the hairs on his neck rise. This detective was over reacting and he naturally felt the desire to push back.
“Take it up with your police chief. We are here on assignment.”
  “Get out of my way!” Mullins pushed him aside and walked towards the make-shift desk made of plywood centered on a sawhorse.
   Reggie looked over at Stevie and motioned for her with a slight movement of his head.
  She stood, said something to the boy, and came over.
  “What’s the story?” Reggie asked glancing over at Mullins who was glaring at both of them.
  “The boy is devastated. He saw his friend fall to his death. I didn’t get too much detail.” 
  “Look, Stevie, the detective over there watching us is furious that we got called in to investigate. We are going to have to walk on ice shards to do our job.”
  Stevie followed his gaze and Reggie noticed her eyes narrow as she made an assessment of Detective Mullins. 
   “He is convinced that this is gang related. I am assuming he thinks this is a murder. I overheard his partner say the Ramirez and Cervantes names with a derogatory slur.”
  “Cervantes? That rings a bell. But,…I don’t know why?” Stevie stared into the crowd with a glazed look. 
   “That mean something to you?” Reggie asked watching her face for signs of recognition.
   “The victim is Miguel Cervantes, so, he is a gang member? Wait!” Stevie looked at Reggie with a concentrated focus and he could tell she was processing a new connection to this supposed accident. “Cervantes is the last name of our housekeeper, Rosa. She has been working for us for ten years. I know her son Miguel would be about sixteen now. Is this her son?” She asked with a note of concern.
“Stevie, before you react you need to know that we are not wanted here. Detective Mullins is angry that his chief brought us in. We need to maintain a low profile for a little while.” He looked at her eyes to see if she was comprehending his warning. When Stevie felt emotionally involved she acted faster than her usual measured methodical process.
“What does that mean?” She looked over at Mullins again.
“Let’s ask questions of that officer who is standing in front of the crowd over there.”

Bart Mullins stood with legs apart, his hands pushed deeply into his lightweight jacket. His throat tightened and he felt sick looking over at the Seattle detectives. Chief Johnson was out to get him, that’s all there was to it. Bringing in Seattle homicide detectives was another ploy to force him out. He wanted nothing more than to arrest that Gonzales kid and get the public out of here. The medical examiner was still taking pictures, the forensics team was measuring and gathering evidence, and the crowd lined up behind the police tape was not thinning out. It was actually growing. It was going to be a hot day and the stores along Main Street would be opening soon. He looked down at is feet and absentmindedly drew a circle in the dirt with his right toe. Everything hovered around the Gonzales gang. Every time he got closer to arresting one of them they slipped through his fingers. They were to blame for the drugs coming in to the Northwest. He knew they had ties to a Mexican cartel and he knew a little about their distribution system but he couldn’t find enough evidence to nail their butts to the wall. He glanced over to the Gonzales kid. He was still cowering in the opening to the stairway. If his older brothers convinced him to let the boy fall to his death it would be a stern message to the members of the Cervantes gang to move out of their territory. 
“Find anything unusual in that equipment?” He shouted over to the forensics team. A tall team member with very stooped shoulders came over and stood close by, whispering.
“Sir, it looks like the wire was cut, but not cleanly, more like it was frayed and weakened in it’s wrapping.”
“And the compromised wire was on which side of the bell towers?” 
“It was on the south side where the Cervantes kid stepped out onto the wire.”
“Thank you. Taylor?” He turned to look for his second in command. “Take the kid into custody and let’s get this place cleaned up.”




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This is a work in progress. It may change and evolve as I write more. If you are interested in the story please leave a comment. 



Monday, July 16, 2018

A Visual Of The Cycle Of Change

Our change may not be linear, but a cycle, that we can loop around and begin again.

Much is written about making change and starting good habits. I picked up on a classic theory on motivation by Prochaska and Declemente who describe change as a cycle.
This was a new theory in the late seventies and is now very much excepted.

"They thought it all starts with pre-contemplation, where we aren't even thinking about making a change, then progresses through contemplation - where we become aware of something being problematic but don't do anything differently, to preparation for a change, then finally taking action, and then maybe hardest of all trying to maintain that change. It's really hard to stick to a change in behaviour so often we relapse back into our old way of being, but we might cycle through those initial stages much quicker the next time round."





"I like the way they describe this as a cycle, which means we don’t have to beat ourselves up if we do fall off the wagon, but instead just climb back on. I also like the way they include a phase where we might not even be consciously aware of the need to change. Sometimes looking back at decisions I’ve made to change something I can think of a reason why, but it’s not always totally clear at the time."

This theory supports my One Little Word this year. Umkekr means to cycle around and do it better.



"She went back to all that was comfortable and familiar while keeping her gaze looking ahead- to all that would be and could."



Colleen Attara

Click here to see a table of contents of how this word has become a focus in my life this year.



 

Friday, July 13, 2018

Done


There's the joy of starting and the satisfaction of being done.

For most of my life I have been a self starter. I thrive on dreaming up projects. When I turned fifty-ish I turned a corner and looked more to the idea of getting things done. 




I still love starting new things but I've adapted to the discipline of getting finished. And frankly, I am amazed that I can do that without harsh talking to myself.



Knowing I will finish has given me confidence to go back to work I liked but often abandoned. Sewing, for example, was one of those pursuits which started out full of excitement and ended with a bag of fabric undone. 



One other thing that shifted inside of me was the tolerance for slow and repetitive work. What used to drive me crazy is now more meditative labor with a meaningful outcome.

"She can be taught!"



Monday, July 9, 2018

Playing With My Word To Make It Visual

Creativity brings an abstract concept into focus and provides a sensory memory of playing with meaning.

This month I am looking around my home and observing all the ways I've used my One Little Word for 2018 in a visual way. 
At the beginning of the year I like to do a painting with the word attached. This year I choose I scene with a cat, looking out over the water. The cat is me thinking back at what has happened in my life and how to be I can be a little better, kinder, more aware. 

UMKEHR 





Have you ever been lost on a road and realized that you are not where you intended to be? That is when the desire to Umkehr comes on strong. Start again, from the beginning and this time choose a different path.



Each time I take the little plastic word and place it in a different setting I take time to reflect on why I love this word and this principle. It is a principle because it requires action, not just a static concept.




"She went back to all that was comfortable and familiar while keeping her gaze looking ahead- to all that would be and could."



Colleen Attara

Click here to see a table of contents of how this word has become a focus in my life this year.



 

Friday, July 6, 2018

Vacation

How does one vacate one's normal, everyday life?

The weeks that I take a vacation from my normal life of being a piano teacher, I do things a bit differently.

  • I cook and have dinner at a reasonable time
  • I go out around town during the hours of 3:00pm and 6:30pm
  • My husband can sit down in the living room during the afternoon
  • I don't look for inexpensive rewards at dollar stores
  • I stop vacuuming the living room everyday
  • The piano gets dusty
  • The stacks of music get put away on the piano



By the time my vacation weeks are up I long for the routines I have during the year. I long to greet little faces at my door and I long to hear their music.


  To vacate our routines is healthy and creates a longing for the life of normal, the life of everyday.




Friday, June 29, 2018

If This Then What?

I decided that if I could paint that flower in a huge scale, you could not ignore its beauty. Georgia O'Keeffe

If nature creates the bright colors, the sweet smell, the soft sounds to entice us to pay attention then what else can it do to make us mindful of all that God created?
I find I can't ignore beauty without losing myself to the next new gadget, the next horrifying news story, or the best sale price.



The most beautiful things in life are free and without social status. Get out more. Wander mindfully through your neighborhood. Breathe deeply without restraint. If you do that then you might be able to endure the next horrifying news story and bypass the next big sale. Just thinking.......


Monday, June 25, 2018

Kein Umkehr- No Re-Entry

Failure is the only opportunity to begin again, only this time more wisely.
Henry Ford

I was struck by the symbol on the airport sign indicating that you cannot pass this way again if you turn around and leave.
There are pathways you can not re-enter once you leave but there are many that allow for a turn around.
My One Little Word for 2018 is Umkehr and it is a word that allows for great hope.



    Six months into 2017 I was worried that I would get tired of the word 'nurture'. I don't have those same concerns this year simple because I don't need to invent new goals or come up with a new plan, I need only to return to those goals that have worked before. 

What am I most excited about as I go into the next six months?
  *Return to my writing everyday
  *Return to healing mode as I do surgery on the second knee.
  *Return to planning group lessons for piano students in the Fall
  *Return to my weight loss program after surgery
  *Return to the art room and create something new
  *Return to visiting grandkids with my new car. Yay! I don't have to worry about the car dying on me.




"She went back to all that was comfortable and familiar while keeping her gaze looking ahead- to all that would be and could."
Colleen Attara

Click here to see a table of contents of how this word has become a focus in my life this year.