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Showing posts from September, 2017

Year Three, Day 141: Day Off From Blogging; Not from Hooping!

I am going to take the day off from blogging. A very long day teaching and rehearsing. I did not take the day off from hooping, however!

I will talk  you tomorrow. Most tired am I!

Happy Saturday!



Year Three, Day 140: Sticking to IT!

I am having a real live day off!

It's been so nice not to have a schedule. My last day of freedom. I am enjoying it.

Fall term starts Monday.  I have a full load of students in group and private. Plus a choir to accompany.  In addition to my part time church lady job. And my gig with Portland Chamber Music.  I am subbing for their regular pianist. I like subbing. It gives me a playing music with other people fix without me feeling trapped with a commitment.

We are playing a concert in St. John's in October.  The music is lovely. I am especially enjoying the Dvorak. We are doing his Piano Trio #2, First movement.  Funny thing is, every time I play Dvorak or listen to his music, I feel a stirring in my soul. Like a "knowing". Don't know how else to describe it. Could it be because Dvorak was Czech?  My grandmother was also Czech.  Is his musical soul in my DNA?

I don't know, but I am definitely moved.

So much so, that I think I will end my little November conce…

Year Three, Day 139: Speaking of Trust and Sacrifice

I have been restored! I spent several hours with my daughter, son-in-law, mother and the Baby Burrito yesterday!  
My daughter informed me I am going to have to think of another nickname, because she no longer likes being swaddled like a burrito! She kicks her legs and arms free. She much prefers soft, cuddly pajamas. Come to think of it, so do I! And she is happiest when she is reclining on her pillow on the lap of her grandma or great grandma on the rocking chair.
I love how she sleeps so contently, with her arms splayed out to the side. Such a sign of trust.
Speaking of trust, my son-in-law was in Portland yesterday, so he called and offered me a ride over to Vancouver.  We had a lovely discussion based on an article he sent me.

We ended up talking about the apostle Paul and his famous "thorn", which I have coincidentally referred to in this  blog. I told my son-in-law that I was squeamish about Christian "fellowship", which fit in with my generalized social an…

Year Three, Day 138: It is More Important to Be Kind, Then to Be Right!

Such a glorious day!

Fall is my favorite time of year. Especially this year! I have a new grandbaby! We survived a hot, smoky summer!  I am sticking with my daily hooping!  I have a roof over my head!  A family that loves me! And several jobs!

And music is flowing through my fingers again!

Today is especially wonderful because I am getting on the Max soon to go visit the Baby Burrito while her mom and dad lead the youth group at their church.  I will only be there a few hours, but it will be well worth it!

I hooped this morning and I practiced for a few minutes. I plan on practicing a bit before I head out on the Max.

I had a talk with my wonderful pastor boss for a few minutes this morning.  We were talking about mean people. And I was reminded of this saying, which used to be on the sign of a church in my old neighborhood. A church one of my dearest friends used to attend before she and her husband moved south.

I never think of this without thinking of her! I googled the quote, and …

Year Three, Day 137: It's Good to Back with My Old Friend

I practiced my piano this morning after my hoop session.
I must confess, I almost headed out to the corner gas station for a hot, bitter cup of coffee. It was a beautiful morning. Sun was shining. Not too hot, not too cold. Glimpses of fall in the changing colors.
But I would not have had time to hoop, walk to get coffee, come back and practice piano and then head to my part time church office job.
I chose piano practice. I have two gigs coming up.  And my system of doing a little bit each day works for me. 
After all, I am on day 101 of daily hooping! And I can definitely feel the difference!

I had a really good practice. I only had 30 minutes this morning, but I felt focused. My fingers nimble and strong. And my mind was clear. I was not worrying or thinking about anything. Just totally immersed in each note that I was playing.  It's times like this when making music is spiritual for me.
I headed to my office job feeling quite proud of self!
And I ran into two friends at work …

Year Three, Day 136: Day 100 Hooping! It Must Be the Hoop!

Sleep is the best medicine.

I am quite sore this morning. But I feel rested.

And I started the day on the right foot. In Joyce Meyer's book, The Mind Connection, she suggests starting your day saying positive things.  It is basically a positive thinking book with a strong biblical message. The reason I am reading it is that I have been on this path for sometime. I had a moment of clarity once in a counseling session. I wasn't fond of the counselor. But I remember telling him about some negative thoughts. He had his hand on his chin, looking ponderous. He asked me to tell him more. He seemed bored. Disconnected.

And then boom! Light bulb! I sat up straight in my chair and said,
"I just realized I do not have to follow my thoughts!"

He arched an eyebrow.  "Tell me about that..."

I do not recall the conversation after that. We did not bond.

But I do remember my light bulb moment.

So when I stumbled across a Joyce Meyer program on television one night, and …

Year Three, Day 135: My Hoop, Duct Taped

I have much to say, but barely enough energy to hold my head upright.

Had a busy, involved weekend with my daughter, granddaughter, mother, son-in-law, son and his girlfriend.  It is 10:30 p.m. I just got home and took off my shoes.

I leaned my duct taped hoop up against the wall. After I gave it a quick spin to make sure it still functions.

My hoop suffered a traumatic injury today. Just my hoop. Not me. I am fine.  Things can be replaced, people cannot!

But I will have to tell you about it tomorrow.

The duct tape is sparkly purple.  And as I work on monitoring my thoughts, I can't help see an analogy here. My emotions, just like my hoop are duct taped together.

I love my family so much.  So much it hurts.

And I am determined to stay positive and focused so I can serve them best.

I will have to continue these thoughts tomorrow.

Most tired am I!

But I did manage to do a short hoop workout (before the traumatic hoop injury). I was in stealth mode.  I had a very limited space.  B…

Year Three, Day 134: The Charmed Life of a Commuting Grandma

I just discovered that the Starbucks at Cascades Station stays open until 10:00 p.m. every night.

Just when I was wanting to pinch myself to make sure I wasn't dreaming. Being a commuting grandma really is not that difficult. Actually, my life pretty much rocks right now!

Today has been a very good day. And I had maybe 3 hours of solid sleep last night. The Burrito has decided she likes to sleep cuddled in the arms of her Great Grandma Blanche or Grandma Zita during the day. Or snuggled safe in her infant seat while her mom, grandma and great grandma go out to lunch, do laundry and go shopping.

I warned my daughter that the
Baby Burrito needed some awake time yesterday. Or else we would pay for it in the evening. But getting so much done with a snoozing baby in tow was so freeing. Especially since Baby Burrito's dad is elk hunting all weekend.

We finally roused her for a bath, diaper change and piano lesson early afternoon.

Baby Burrito had a fantastic first piano lesson. At…

Year Three, Day 133: It's the Small Things. Done With Much Love!

"In this life we cannot do great things. We can only do small things with great love."
Mother Teresa

10:00 a.m. I am so excited. First of all, I am on my way to spend the weekend with my daughter and the Baby Burrito!

11:00 a.m. I just got off the Max and am about to enjoy a maple pecan latte with almond milk at Starbucks. The highlight of my trip so far was discovering I can hang my hoop on the bike peg on the Max. It's the little things in life.

Oh my goodness. This latte! I ordered it with half the usual sugar. It was luscious! But I need to back off the sugar. I've let it creep back into my life. We will keep working on that.

I sat with my lovely latte for a bit. With my new books, just delivered yesterday.

Then I ordered a ride from Lyft. To Vancouver.

11:00 p.m.It is now evening. I had the most rewarding day. Rocking my granddaughter, lunch with my mother, daughter and granddaughter. Then laundry and dinner.

Such simple sounding activities, but done with such l…

Year Three, Day 132: A Hint of Purple and a Modern Granny!

I forgot to mention that I dyed my hair last weekend. It was supposed to come out purple. The shade pictured on the front of the box was a lovely violet. I was tired of seeing gray and thought, "I'm a grandma now. I can go purple!"

Alas, the first few days it came out Viking red, as usual. I guess I have the blood of a Viking woman.

But today, it is starting to show a hint of purple.

Here is my viking look a few days ago:

I like purple.

I woke up this morning at 3:00 a.m. After only 4 hours of sleep. As usual, I made the mistake of going online. I read about the devastation from the earthquake in Mexico, and Hurricane Maria in Puerto Rico. I prayed for the victims. And then I started to worry.  I knew better. I should have just prayed. Or maybe gotten up and done something productive. But I worried. I started thinking about the big earthquake that is supposed to hit the Pacific Northwest. That is in fact overdue. I keep telling myself I am going to get prepared. Get a g…

Year Three, Day 131: The Bluebird of Happiness, Part II or It IS My Problem!

I just had a lovely encounter. One of my favorite bus drivers. She is about 8 years older than me. A very sunny disposition. After spending most of the day alone in the church office, it was nice to be validated by another human. I smiled when I saw it was her.

"There's my friend!" I greeted her as I hopped on the bus.

As usual we talked a bit about the weather. And then, as usual she told me a story about her life. Which I find most interesting! Let me tell you, sometimes the impersonal, mind your own business in Portland contributes to one's loneliness and increases one's feelings of invisibility. These talks with friendly people- bus drivers, R from church who brings me flowers every week and sits down to visit for a few minutes, J the Sign Ninja, who said that putting up the sign is much more fun with someone there to help and talk to...

And all my students and their families. Our time together is more than learning piano. That is just the subject.

I guess wh…

Year Three, Day 130: The Bluebird of Happiness, Part I

I am back on steroids. Prednisone to be exact. My coughing and wheezing was wearing me out. I am guessing it was exacerbated by the smoky air.  Last week, I read in the news that Portland, Oregon had the worst air quality in the country. And while I usually wear my commuter and walker status proudly, like a medal, I probably did more harm than good to myself by walking outside and breathing the foul air. At least to my lungs.

But I slept really well last night. No coughing. In fact, I couldn't get out of bed. I was wide awake about 5:30 a.m., but my bed felt so cozy, and it was still dark and dreary outside. So I checked breaking news, and played a few rounds of "Words with Friends" which is a bit of an addiction for me. I justify it by telling myself I am exercising my brain. But at times, I make myself avoid it. So I can be in the present moment. And avoid being a cell phone zombie!

Anyway, I fell back asleep about 6:30 a.m. and couldn't rouse myself until 9:00! I …