Monday, November 27

Calendar for December

Dear blog readers:
this month I am ahead by a couple of days, with my calendar. Please feel free to download and print this calendar -- I publish these downloadable calendars monthly as a gift of appreciation to you for sharing your lives with me through your writings and photos and comments on my blogs. (you can see my other blog, Land of Little Rain, here)

To download, click anywhere on the calendar and you should get a new window with the image. Click on the photo again in that new window to go to the large version of the calendar. Right-click to download the calendar. It should print out 8.5" x 11". If you have a printer that requires a margin, please print this slightly reduced to fit on a standard letter-size paper.

I hope you enjoy the monthly calendars, and please let me know if you have any problems downloading I can send them to you by email attachment.


Thursday, November 23

For Thanksgiving a prose poem of gratitude

giving thanks
for my life for my health that my legs work, that my heart and lungs and mind and hands and eyes are whole that all my parts of me work as they are supposed to, for my body, that i can dance and ride my bike, and get down on my knees or lie on the floor of the forest, that i can walk to the top of a mountain to offer my prayers for my spiritual path, that i feel such love for our Mother, the Earth, for all of Creation, for every living thing i am giving thanks that i am alive another year that i have what i need that i am a whole being that i am part of something much larger than just one woman

giving thanks
for another chance at love for true friendship, for my husband for the deep soul-love we share for his understanding his touch his unconditional loving his knowledge and kindness his companionship on our path his courage his perseverance his eyes that see me and know who i am and mostly for the way he says my name

Collector's Edition Stamps: The Family Collection
giving thanks
for our children, for their beauty inside and out, for the young men my sons have become for their kindness their intelligence and spirit and enthusiasm for their lives for their health and goodness i give thanks, that they have taught me that they have stretched my heart and made me grow into more than i was before they were born for the beauty and love i know they bring to the table

giving thanks
for my family my parents and grandparents for brothers sisters and all who share my eyes and heart and lips and name for love for acceptance for honesty for connection memory and a hand given without thought of return
Climbing a steep dune
for my mother's courage and growth for the look in her eyes for the wisdom of her years and her experience for her folding and enfolding arms that she has never given up

Grace took this one
giving thanks
for my friends, who know the core of me who know my darkness and still point to the light in me for lifetime friends and new friends for inspiration and tears and laughter and knowledge ... for the mirror they are to me for their faith and understanding

Waiting to go to the River
giving thanks
for our four-legged companions for their teachings their animal-wisdom gentle ways especially Sam who has saved my life more than once in his old-soul way

giving thanks
for our home Earth for this planet this jewel that is ours only to care for and the winged ones and swimming ones for insects and worms lions meadowlarks eagles and deer for the growing green things flower root leaf grain fruit tree fern for everything green

Ask me. What the river says, that is what I say
giving thanks
for clean water for rivers and rain mist for lightning for darkness and moonlight for snow and snowmelt glaciers ponds marsh ocean and bay for dancing aurora borealis for clouds for stars to remind us how small and how precious each of us -- each living being -- is ....

Monday, November 13

Garages of North America

Tim and I live in a pretty small house, by North American standards. For us, it's just right. Well ... we could use one additional room I guess. That would be excellent. Still, we're pretty happy with its size. It's easy to heat and doesn't take much to keep it clean.* Conversations in our house are easy to have, no matter whether you're all in the same room or not. Might as well be in the same room. We're basically on top of each other most of the time. (ahem!)

* disclaimer: the garage photos are not representative of the state of our actual house, thank you very much.

Anyway, here's our garage. Since the house is so tiny, most of our "stuff" is out here. Opening the garage door (on the alley) feels a little like flashing a stranger in public. Leaving the garage door open for any length of time is like undressing slowly in front of the picture window in our bedroom! I have a bit of an exhibitionist streak in me, but not that bad. Why would I want to let the whole neighborhood have a peek into this garage? Would you want to if it were your garage? I don't think so ....

"Well," you might ask, "Why are you putting these embarassing photos on the internet for the whole world to see (never mind the neighborhood)?"

I guess it's a family thing. Uncle Edward started it. Sent a couple of photos of his way-too-tidy garage to his email list. As a family, we tend to chomp on bait like that: Lunge, bite, chomp. Must be genetic. After about the 5th batch of garage photos, I decided to get serious and blog about it on our family blog. Then I decided my regular blog readers might get a kick out of it. So here it is: our garage.

If you've read this far, I am astonished and I commend you for your suffering through my mundane blitherings. If you're a glutton for punishment, read on:

See the

My sister, Moira wrote, "Maureen, how can you find anything in that garage?" My answer: "We don't." The question mark on that apple box (above) represents, ironically, the status of most of our stuff out there. "Questionable contents"


Big sigh...

I wrote this to my family to accompany our Montana-garage pix:

Hi everyone, I might as well fess up. Here is our garage, of which I am not proud.

I think ours is the worst! We should win the prize for the most crammed garage. Also the prize for most disorganized, and last but not least, the prize for the garage that barely has room to walk around in, much less park a car!

Now before you hit the Reply All button and fire off a scathing email telling me we have too much stuff or that you are disowning us and from now on we are not part of the family, or that all I have to do is throw away 99% of that stuff and I'd be able to fit my car in the garage, please read this list of flimsy rationalizations:

  • Our garage is probably smaller than most of yours. It measures 12 x 18
  • We have stuff from all five of our kids in there
  • Tim's stuff from his "former" life (before he moved to Montana) is mostly still out there. We barely let him bring his tv into the house [grin]
  • I have my entire papermaking studio crammed into one end of the garage. Someday I will have my studio again!
  • Three years ago I moved from a spacious office to a home office in Gabe's former bedroom which is 1/10th the size -- so most of the stuff from my business is piled in the center of the garage.
  • I know -- I know... there is that "rule of thumb" that if you haven't used it in a year you don't need it -- I keep thinking "what would happen if a former client wanted me to do something else on their project and I had just tossed their files? Or what if Mickey's comic book or pez collection is really worth millions? Or what if .... ?"
Montana Garage - trying to get through is something else This is the aisle for getting around. It's about 24
Tim and I take turns when we have to go out there to find something we "need" ... neither of us ever wants to face that task! Can you see why?

Go ahead. Tell me I'm messy. I already know it, though. ;-D

Friday, November 10

November Calendar

Hi friends and family, I haven't posted calendars for the last couple of months, but I'll try to be more regular about it starting right now. So here, again, is my (almost) monthly offering to readers of my blog, this calendar which you are welcome to download, print, use however you want to.

Click on the photo for a larger version. It looks best printed out at 8"x10" size on heavy weight matte photo paper, but any paper will do.

I'm always curious if anyone is actually using these calendars, so if you do, please leave me a comment. (that's optional as always, though). And for sure ... enjoy it!

Tuesday, November 7

Tim and Baggins Watching Election Returns

Baggins is a politically astute feline. He is perhaps more interested in watching the Dems win tonight than even Sam, our 17 year old dog, is .... as long as Tim lets Baggins stay on the inside of his work shirt, Baggins is happy to root for the Democrats across this great country.