I took a walk to the Oakland rose garden to gather my thoughts for the coming year and to set my intentions. At first I was going to set goals but intentions are so much more inspirational and less business-speak. From all our rain the plants are in bloom and I found a lovely clover as my inspiration. Have you ever noticed that clover leaves are hearts? I picked one and used it as my inspiration framing. Then I sketched it on a 3x5 card and in each heart I wrote a core value - love, learn and create. I then wrote out my intentions. Along the walk back to my house I picked up beautiful leaves and was greeted my favorite cat Lowkei when I arrived at my street. He kissed all the leaves for me. Once home, I arranged the leaves, my clover and my Year of Balance values and intentions under the glass of my new coffee table. So many lovely touchstones.
December 31, 2010
December 30, 2010
December 29, 2010
Skype Video Family
Spirit of the Holidays
December 28, 2010
Saturday on Tuesday
December 27, 2010
December 26, 2010
Shopping cart christmas tree
Blackberry is going wonky when I type capital letters, so that's why lowercase in the post title.
Blackberry Trying to Live
December 25, 2010
All Washed Up
In the rain ordeal my blackberry got drenched and some of the keys aren't working. I can see I have a text message, probably the most important message of my life, if that is possible, but I can't log-in to my blackberry because C keeps typing as an H and it is asking me to type in blackberry to get into the phone. The irony.
December 22, 2010
Michael and Jason
This is No Picknick!
December 21, 2010
December 20, 2010
Tomorrow is reflexology and a massage. Heavenly
Doing the Happy Dance
Stay-cation Has Begun!
December 19, 2010
Julia Morgan's Berkeley City Club
Amy Drive, Oakland
View Larger Map
December 18, 2010
Jim Kweskin on Stage
Namaste Old Alameda Yoga Station
The Final Run
I realized that yesterday I only spoke out loud twice but had numerous conversations - all by email. Calgon take me away! I am so ready for a three week holiday and being able to breath easily, literally.
December 15, 2010
Killing My Lobster Captures Oakland
Bravo KLM for using YouTube to showcase your work.
December 14, 2010
World's Biggest Box of Chocolate
December 11, 2010
Sam Being a Kweskin
December 10, 2010
Snow in Falls Church
December 9, 2010
The Intimate Patdown
The woman who performed my patdown explained it all in advance and as she was touching me, in very intimate places. But frankly, it was like being at yoga. I didn't mind. It was even a bit like having a massage. Heck, if I have a choice I'm going for intimate human contact - for free. Didn't even cost me to get felt up, down and around. I feel like I made a new friend.
No Appointment, No Disappointment
On the other hand, if you just appreciate the interactions you have with people, and do not build a load of expectations around that relationship, you can actually enjoy the reality of what that person has to offer and be present with your interactions.
I was chatting with a colleague today about this idea, in regards to student performance, and he said he once studied under a guru whose mantra was, "no appointment, no disappointment." Of course we have standards and goals that we help students strive to meet, but we take what they give us and coach them to reach their fullest potential. If we expected only A's then we would only be disconnected from the learning process which is all about learning from mistakes. My only disappointment with students is when they give up.
As I thought about this idea of disappointment as it relates to my personal relationships, I realized that sometimes I compromise who I really am because I don't want to be disappointed by "scaring people away." This makes me unhappy because I am disappointing myself as I compromise to live out some unspoken scenario I hope the other person has received via ESP. Stories get built on stories and then I'm living in this shattered fantasy world because I was not being true to myself.
When am I most myself? When I'm dancing and expressing myself freely. I am myself when I go on adventures with friends and explore new places, openly interact with people to understand their inspirations and often end up buying their artwork. I am least myself when I sit quietly, with my arms and legs pulled in, trying to make myself smaller so that I can ensure that my imagined relationship scenario will not be derailed.
This week I broke out of this hide-away habit. With a variety of people I expressed who I really am. I spoke up, stated my interests and needs, danced, and ultimately felt happy, relaxed and alive. In fact, so much disappointment has disappeared because I have less expectations of others. Whatever they have to give me, I'll experience it, respond to it, go with it and question it - instead of hiding behind a shadow of who I am.
Frankly, I have no expectations of the people who are my closest family and friends. We flow in and out of each other's lives. Sometimes a month can go by and we do not make contact. But, I know they love me and are there for me. The expectation I do have is that they have open hearts, make time for me when I need them and that I do the exact same for them, on both counts.
We don't need an appointment.
December 8, 2010
Fashionistas of the Future
December 7, 2010
December 6, 2010
Balance is a Practice
I still feel like I'm finding balance in and for myself. "Ruin is the road to transformation" and I feel like I'm still on that road. With that, I am learning, that I must love and forgive myself and that "the only way to heal is to trust."
Every day is challenging and sometimes lonely. I hide away and keep to myself, but I am healing and I am learning to trust and to love who I am. Yes, I am in finding balance. Gosh, its been a long time.
Balance is a practice.
December 5, 2010
Eileen, Diana's housemate, created a CD of Chanukah music for part of her grab bag gift. It was a fantastic mix of modern songs, many of which were quite danceable. We created our own little dance club in the living room and got jiggy with Chanukah cheer. The best song was about making latkes and I spontaneously created a dance that involved all the steps in making latkes, applesauce, serving and clearing the dishes and washing the plates. While I was dancing everyone sat down on the couches that surrounded the dance space and began egging me on. Being a true extrovert, I eventually had a groove going with scooping the latke mixture into the frying pan, shaking the plan, flipping it to make the latkes over in the air (I can do that in real life), removing each latke with a spatella onto a plate and then placing the plate in the oven to stay warm, closing the oven door with a swoosh of my hip. All of this while my feet were dancing, hips and shoulders swaying to the music. It must have been quite a show because everyone asked me to do it all again as we replayed the song.
What I liked best was that I felt free to express myself with movement. Dancing and cooking and smiling felt so good. When I think about the times I have feel the most happy, it is when I am dancing and cooking - in a groove, surrounded by great friends.