Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Gratitude

A few years ago, I started a gratitude journal. Amid all of the painful crazy that was my mom's last few years, I needed a way to reconnect, to ground myself, to not lose sight of those things that are my reason for being, my saving grace. A couple of friends of mine had started similar journals, and I thought it would be a good thing for me. In the quiet of the season, as the leaves make their way to the ground, and the harvest fruits ripen, I'm taking a moment to remind myself of those things that matter most.

A kick-ass husband, who is my rock when times are rough, my best friend to celebrate with when times are joyful. He is a compassionate, warm human being who always does his best for others.

My amazing, curious, affectionate son. He has made me infinitely more patient, more wise, more mama bear than I ever could have envisioned for myself.

My family. We've walked many miles together and I have never been more grateful for the fact that I was born into this family, especially since I've seen that not all families operate with so much unconditional love, compassion, and support. I can't articulate what they mean to me. I come from a long line of strong Latin women, and the fact that we can express ourselves without fear, cry without shame, and reach out to one another with open hearts is a testament to our heritage.

My
comadres. Very similar to the English word comrade, but different. These are my soul sisters, women that are not my birth sisters, but are just as close to my heart. They've cried with me in times of grief, protected me in times of weakness, laughed with me until our faces hurt. I love our seasonal parties, our ladies' teas, our B-movie nights, our night's out in SF. You're probably the only ones who read this blog, so here's to you!

My kitties. Warm by night and spunky by day, they're old souls.

Life in general. Leisurely 7am breakfasts with my son, volunteering to help catalog the new library at St. B, the Women's Retreat a few weekends ago and the healing that took place there, weekly walks and trips to the Farmer's Market, and cultivating some great relationships in my life--what more can I say? I'm grateful.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

The Shifting of the Light

After a long, torturous summer of glaring light and searing heat, this morning I awoke to soft gray skies and a cool ocean breeze. My first waking thought was 'Ahhhhhh.....'
Not many people suffer from Summer S.A.D., and it seems that most of the world is made up of Summer People. You know the ones--they thrive in the heat like lizards, fantasize about the summer all year long, and every vacation involves a beach. I wish I could join the club, but my idea of hell is being stuck in the unrelenting sun all year long. I still can't believe that I was born and raised in California. For me, the sun is like a radio right next to my ear, loudest during the summer months, and annoying as hell. I just.want.someone.to.turn.it.OFF.
So it is finally, blessedly, September, and although it is not yet technically Autumn, I sense a change in the atmosphere. The air has finally cooled, and the angle of the sun is a tad less aggressive. I can finally breathe, and concentrate, and lift my head to the sky and not fear being blinded. The summer doldrums are finally lifting, and my thoughts turn to apple cider, pumpkin patches, and winter crafts.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

May 18 1946 - September 5 2006

Participated yesterday in the Susan B. Komen Walk for the Cure to cheer on Sarah, who is walking the entire 3 days for my mom. It happened to fall on the two year anniversary of my mom's passing, and needless to say, it was a very emotional day for me. I think I went through all seven steps of grief and back again in one day, and came home and slept for twelve hours, only waking up to hold my son.

My mom was not the type of person to put herself out there and talk about her experience, so I'm doing it for her. She would never say so, but she was the most selfless, warm, unconditionally loving person that I've ever known. Her heart went out to everyone, she trusted that the world was a good place, and she prayed constantly for others, even when she should have been praying for herself. She suffered through chemo, lost her sense of smell and taste, was poked and prodded every week for five years and never complained. She never reprimanded anyone, even when they deserved it.
For the woman at my graduation ceremony who gave my bald mom dirty looks as she got sick on the grass--F___ you. For the doctors who 'forgot' to call back with her recurrent diagnosis--F____ you TWICE. For the mean woman who told my mom that she probably wouldn't be sick had she just meditated more (!?!)--F___ you THREE TIMES. My mom would never dream of saying these things, so her firebrand daughter will do it for her.

I guess I'm not quite past the anger stage.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

Advice? I'm the queen of advice!

I recently discovered the beauty of eHow. I write articles, I get points, I join a community of other writers. Interesting. I've been so beat down by this mind-numbing heat that I need something--anything--that will keep me up and at 'em. So there is my little contribution to the world of e-articles. My own little journalistic endeavor, thrown against the death rays of the sun. And I'm actually getting paid for it!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Crafting it Up

I'm creating this blog to track my progress as I stitch my way through the summer. My new etsy shop is finally open after months of stitching up stock. I've been stitching kits for years and every time I went to Joann or Michaels I'd come home bitching about the current state of the needlepoint aisle. I mean, I don't mind the occasional 'Oriental Vase,' but Wolves in the Snow? Egads!
So... I'm finally posting my own creations a la Subversive Cross-Stitch (http://www.subversivecrossstitch.com), one of my all-time favorite designers. But it won't be all snarky stitching, I've got some Spanish tiles that I designed after a visit to New Mexico in March, and some Art Nouveau stuff, since I'm really into the Arts and Crafts movement. Here's to crafting it up!

Saturday, May 24, 2008

DIY or Die...

I find myself fraternizing (sororizing?) with some crafty ladies these days, and discovering with proud amazement how creative my friends really are. I find myself re-energized when I watch as one of them sews up a summer dress or posts pictures of her fabric stash. It amazes me that so many of these crafters (many of them, like myself, moms of toddlers) find the time and energy to craft it up like that. These ladies are my heroes!
I've also discovered a soul sister in Kathy Cano Murillo--check out her webite: http://www.craftychica.com/welcome.html. A creative, crafty, whipsmart Latina? My kinda girl!
In the meantime, I dream of handmade cafe curtains and felted hobo bags.

The only thing missing is the wine...

I've miraculously found the time to start a blog. The baby and daddy are out for the evening, the house is finally clean, the sun is going down and I'm slowly exhaling. I haven't journaled in over a year and I miss it. I spent my entire childhood and young adulthood journaling and only just stopped, sometime after my mom passed away. I'm hoping to start on a clean slate, rave about my favorite sites, rant about my least favorite, and maybe even get some feedback. I just wish I had a glass of chilled white wine right now...