Thursday, March 31, 2016

Ideas are All Around .....

I am having trouble concentrating on my writing .....


We are rejoicing in a week of warm, stunning weather here in the Pacific Northwest!  After a wet and rainy past few months, this tantalizing spring-time beauty and longed-for warmth has come exactly when I took myself on a three day writing a spot where the beauty and the warmth is especially stunning.  I am in a full-out fist fight with myself to stay indoors writing lit for kids when this weather screams at my window to come out and play.

 I want to walk the beach ..... poke in the nearby village ....  sip pinot gris on the deck .... and chat with my writing buddies.
And..... I want fresh, fun ideas and creative inspiration to abound in my brain.

This morning when the third-in-a-row bright sunny day dawned, promising to be warmer still than its two predecessors, I thought of this wonderful new kid lit book I bought last week.  Titled Ideas are All Around,  it is by the enormously talented Philip C Stead (think A Sick Day for Amos McGee) and his wife, Erin E Stead.  Philip Stead needs to be spending the day writing but hasn't any ideas and his dog, Wednesday, wants to take a walk.  So off they go ..... into the sunshine, the neighborhood, the neighbors,  the turtles at the pond,  the spilled blue paint that looks like a horse, and find that IDEAS are all around  ---- you just have to find them.

So I went for a walk .....      

     I returned thinking about WallyDing, a bell-ringing Orca whale.

Thank you, Philip and Erin Stead.

Sunday, March 13, 2016

She Wonders Why she's still here.....

My Mother is days away from celebrating her 101st birthday.   Macular degeneration has taken much of her sight; very little hearing remains in either ear.  Her world has become  small and narrow.

She wonders almost daily why she is still here with us.

I understand.  I've even wondered this too at times .....

But after walking alongside her for the past six months, now I think I know why she is still here.

To teach me about affirmations and the power they hold to lift a person up .

To teach me about appreciation and how even when you can't see well, or hear well, or understand much of the why, and you hurt a-plenty .... you can still say a warm and sincere thank you for a kindness done.

To teach me the importance of allowing people in - to care for you and love you ---- that vulnerability  brings closeness.

To teach the young ones in our family about giving love.... about stretching to accommodate the needs of those you love .... like speaking slower and louder so she can hear.

To tell her stories again so the children can hear them and we can all keep them alive when she is gone.

To remind me about appreciating - every single day - those that I live with and love .... and to tell them that I do ....

....and so so so much more that I either can't articulate or don't know yet that I have learned.

She has been teaching me things all my life.  But somehow she is doing the underlining.... adding the Caps and the bold font right now .....

I am no longer wondering why she is still here.
I know why.
I will stay alert for the rich lessons.