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Year Four, Day 244: Here I Am!

Greetings!

I have missed talking to you, my dear reader, more than you can imagine! The last few week have been a whirlwind.

Intense, illuminating, stressful, rewarding, and often comical.

Take Sunday for example. My daughter woke up just as I was leaving our apartment. She turned on the tea kettle. Then she asked me my plans for the day.

Oh, just going to play the piano at church, visit Andrew in jail, go teach a piano student and then go to the gym. You know - church, jail, piano, gym. The usual.

What a life!

In addition, we have moved!  Thankfully it was in the same apartment complex. But a bigger unit. I am in the basement, which I am actually quite enjoying.  I am still unpacking boxes and trying to make the best of my space. But I sleep like a log!

I also quit my church job.

I told you it's been a whirlwind! And speaking of whirlwind, I am feeling the winds of change!

I am practicing Hesychasm. 

"Hesychasm (from the Greek for "stillness, rest, quietsilence") …

Year Four, Day 243: Death

My nerves are still raw from yesterday.  I shed many tears, as I am sure many others did too. All over the world. Shortly after I heard about Kobe's death, I was on Facebook and noticed a Facebook friend of mine in Greece, a classical guitar teacher had expressed his shock and sorrow when he learned of Kobe's passing. We shared our sorrow together. At that point, he was not sure the news was true and had not yet heard about Kobe's daughter Gianna had also died.

It is so difficult to make sense of tragedies such as these.  People are born and people die daily. But a man like Kobe, who was successful, healthy, wealthy, attractive and loved by many, having his life cut short is unfathomable.  Combine that with losing his precious 13 year-old daughter, who obviously adored and idolized her father, and was following in his footsteps.

Big heartache. And there were others on the helicopter, we are coming to learn about.  There were nine people who perished: John Altobelli and his…

Year Four, Day 242: Rest in Peace Kobe and Gigi

I have been greatly amiss in my blogging.  Life has been busy. But the world stopped for a bit this morning with the breaking news of Kobe Bryant's death.

So heartbreaking. He was only 41 years-old. I just read a report that Kobe's 13 year-old daughter, GiGi also died in the crash.

https://www.tmz.com/2020/01/26/kobe-bryant-killed-dead-helicopter-crash-in-calabasas/

This hurts deep. I remember so many family gatherings, sitting on the floor with my brother watching NBA. Kobe was a favorite.

I am praying for him and his family.

And counting my blessings.  I don't think I can talk about myself today.

REST IN PEACE KOBE! REST IN PEACE GIGI AND THE OTHER VICTIMS!

Love,

Zita

Year Four, Day 241: Lyfted and Self Love

I often have conversations with Lyft drivers that feel divinely inspired.  I recently talked to a Lyft driver who met a young man who works in food service who dreams of music career. The driver told the young man to follow his dream. He told him a story about two nuns that he had heard at a positive thinking seminar. Two nuns see a need for an orphanage in their city to house all the poor orphans. But they are also poor.  They had the property, but no money to build on it. So they started clearing the land on their own, with rakes and hoes.  A rich gentleman drove by and saw them working. He asked them what they were doing. He was so inspired by their hard work and faith, that he wrote a check right then and there to cover all the costs.

Moral of the story, is not to just sit and wish. Dreams don't come true on their own. They are part persiration and inspiration!

The same day I had this conversation, I saw on the internet a post from my dear friend. I reposted with my own messag…

Year Four, Day 240: My Birthday

Today is my birthday. Normally I don't get excited about birthdays. I always recognize other people's birthdays, because I know it makes them feel special. And I certainly love the Happy Birthday calls and wishes on Facebook. But I honestly feel uncomfortable when people ask if I have big plans. To me, it's just another day.

I would like every day on this planet to be special. When I am balanced, and my heart is open, every moment can be glorious.

This morning was such a morning.  I woke up with great expectation. Snow had been predicted. We are often teased with predictions of snow in the Pacific Northwest. Often with hilarious outcomes.  Whole cities will shut down when there is a light dusting of powder on the road.

New Yorkers laugh at us.  But I love snow. It makes everything pure and beautiful. And there is a heavenly silence that accompanies a new snowfall.

Plus, it sometimes give me a day off. I was feeling the need for a day off today.  It is my day in Portland - …

Year Four, Day 243:" Roman Holiday": Classic Movie Therapy

I watched another one of my father's videos last night: "Roman Holiday" with Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck. Omgoodness! How could I have not seennthus movie!?!

Frankly, I need to watch more films from this era. A time of innocence, integrity and just plain goodness. I was carried away by the plot, the setting (filmed entirely in Rome, Italy), and mesmerized by the sheer beauty of both Audrey Hepburn and Gregory Peck!

I slept much better than usual. I woke up feeling rested and calm. I think I will continue with this classic movie therapy!

Year Four, Day 242: True Lies and Viking Red

Sunday evening:

I am looking at a plastic bin full of VHS tapes. 70 video tapes, neatly stacked and alphabetized and cataloged in a lined notebook. They belonged to my father. There are many many more at my parents house.



To be honest, there are only 69 in the bin. One us playing in my VCR. "True Lies" with Arnold Schwarzenegger. I told myself I'd test all the videos before selling them. But I like this movie so much, in watching the whole thing.

It is high action, suspense and funny. Tom Arnold and Arnold Schwarzenegger have incredible chemistry. I wondered if Arnold Schwarzenegger did his own stunts. So I googled it:

"Arnold Schwarzenegger's biggest challenge for the movie was not doing all the physical stunts, but dancing a tango. He had to take dancing lessons to realistically perform the dance. He rehearsed the scene for about six months, as he wanted to make sure he was as good at the tango as Al Pacino was in Scent of a Woman (1992)."

https://www.imdb.…

Year Four, Day 239: Relax, Mildred!

“People tend to burden themselves with so many choices. But, in the end, you can throw it all away and just make one basic, underlying decision: Do you want to be happy, or do you not want to be happy? It’s really that simple. Once you make that choice, your path through life becomes totally clear.”
― Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself


They are predicting snow tonight and for the next 3 days.  It will be interesting to see if it actually transpires.

Here in Portland and Vancouver, we simultaneously dread and celebrate snow.  Which usually turns out to be a few big, fat, wet flakes.

Speaking of flakes, I regret that I have not been blogging daily.  I've been immersed in my spiritual work.

I finished The Untethered Soul by Michael Singer last night. I underlined about 1/3 of the book and intend to keep it with me wherever I go.

It is that good!

I am focusing on choosing happiness this week. It is not as easy as it sounds. I have to be aware of my thou…

Year Four, Day 238: Free Birthday Lunch and Focusing on Quiet

“The key is to be quiet. It’s not that your mind has to be quiet. You be quiet. You, the one inside watching the neurotic mind, just relax.”
― Michael A. Singer, The Untethered Soul: The Journey Beyond Yourself

I had an early birthday lunch today.  Me, myself and I. At Sweet Tomatoes.  Free! I do love birthdays for all the free birthday goodies!  Tomorrow I will be partaking of Veggie Grill. I'm not sure if Starbucks still does free Birthday coffee, but you can bet I'll be watching for it on my app!

At Sweet Tomatoes, I loaded up on a big salad, Hungarian Mushroom soup and French bread.  I finished with a brownie a la mode.  I did not feel guilty because it was withing my eating window.  But the sugar did mess with me. I felt like I was going to pass out after the brownie a la mode!  So, after lunch I went to the gym and did 25 minutes on the stationary bike to burn off some calories while attempting to catch up on the world news.

There is a lot to digest. Good thing I had a subs…

Year Four, Day 237: Her Name is Mildred

I am buried in work. Spiritual work. Soul work.

I love it!

Now that things are coming together in my being, I was a tad worried that I would get sidetracked with the normal things in life. Like working for a living and stuff. 

But winter term has begun, and I feel that I have more than enough energy for it all!

When I feel myself slipping, and the negative voice returning, I just face whatever it is that is making me uncomfortable.

O.K. Truth be told, I have named "the voice".

Her name is Mildred.

She is a judgmental, mean spirited voice. And she pops up in my head at the most awkward times.  But I have her in check! If someone bumps into me on the bus, and Mildred says something mean, like, "Watch where you're going as*hole", I just chuckle and say (this is all inside my head, mind you), "Oh Mildred. Go back to your cave".

I know how this sounds.  Absolutely bonkers. But realizing that the negative voice is just my brain (Mildred), blathering on, and …

Year Four, Day 235 & 236: Mandalas, Spinach Balls and Offeratories: My Need to Create

I am struggling a bit with my intermittent fasting.

 Today is Friday, 1/3/2020. My eating window goal is to end by 4:00 p.m. Most days I will not eat before 10 a.m., except for breakfast with Mom days. We usually eat about 6:30 a.m.

Today was a breakfast with Mom day. We had a lovely time. We went to put favorite breakfast joint in Vancouver - Paul's Restaurant. I am still attempting to be more plant focussed, less meat. So I had one egg, basted, sour dough toast, home fries and Earl Grey tea.

Later, at home, I made steel cut oats with raisins, brown sugar and walnuts for the rest of my brood, who for health reasons are also going mire plant based.

I made a batch of gluten free spinach balls and cilantro mint chutney for lunch.

Good news: I hooped AND went to the gym today!



I am combining Day 235 and 236 today.  Today is now Saturday, January 4th. I had such a wonderful morning so far. My mother and I spent some time cleaning and organizing her kitchen. My father was sitting enthr…

Year Four, Day 234: 2020: A Mandala and A Prayer

Today is January 3, 2020.  I began writing this post on New Year's Day, but got sidetracked.

Happy New Year! The year 2020 - it sounds most science fiction!
I am sitting at Arby's recovering from New Years Eve overnight with a 2 year-old  I will be going to the gym soon to work off this here beef n' cheddar.

Honestly, this New Year's Eve was probably the most enjoyable and memorable of my life.  We danced, we played "Nay" (Gracie's word for horse), we ordered McDonald's from Uber Eats.  I felt I needed a Diet Coke to make it through the evening. Grace got her first Happy Meal. She immediate took the bun off of her burger and peeled off the cheese before she ate it.  I ordered bottled water and apple slices for her so she didn't get too much junk in her system.

I was supposed to put her in bed at 9:30 p.m. But we were having so much fun!

And she told me "Zma, I'm not tired!"  I didn't want our special evening to dissolve in tears…