color me healed

good friday crossToday the church cross is draped in black.  The podium, the alter all covered in black, the mood, very somber, intense and serious.  I am ready for Easter morning. I am ready to heal with color.  Maybe I have spent too many weeks feeling down and serious and gray.  Yes, today is a day of reflection and being on your knees grateful, but somehow a little voice is saying, wait just wait until Sunday morning.

I have this funny non medical thinking that color has a lot to do with healing.  I know for a fact that the mint green walls of a certain hospital room, make me so mad I feel like a caged lion.  I know for a fact that the “for the cure” pink, gets my blood to boilin’.  Why then wouldn’t the opposite be true?

I just wonder if my new red cowgirl boots saturated in a gorgeous color are helping me feel better.  Is it the teal of my bracelet that lifts my spirits?  By going into the guest room the purple quilts always calm me down and make me feel good.  Really good.

By using natural things………, turmeric, purple cabbage, carrots………..I dyed some eggs this morning.  While they are most certainly not the toxic colors from the Paas company, they are natural and have a sort of soft lovely color all their own.  I may turn some a bit happier with some polka dots.  natural dyed easter eggs

I wonder if by surrounding myself with deep rich colors, I am helping to raise my spirits every single day.  Maybe just a bit?  I love that I cooked a pan full of orange carrots for our dog’s dinner.  I love that my morning sunshine juice is healing orange.  I love that tonight we will enjoy bright green healing juice for dinner.  I have a friend who sends white healing light with every single email she sends.  I love the juxtaposition of my red drinking straw with the blue lid of my water cup.  I notice color all the time.  Heck, I even notice that I have a yellow rubber band around my cup.  I also have a blue one.  I aim for three or even four different colored rubber bands by the end of the day. That helps me remember how many glasses I have had.

Just came indoors from picking 14 jaunty yellow daffodils from the yard.  They make me smile and somehow feel better. I remember a quote from years ago, “Life is a great big canvas.  Throw all the paint you can on it.”  Revisiting that quote might do us all some good.

In today’s mail there was a box from Vermont.  It feels heavy, oh so heavy.  I will wait until Mr. Right comes home to open it.  I am secretly hoping and guessing it is pure maple syrup. I can just imagine the rich, pure golden color of the sweet treat.

A friend has suggested that together we take Fridays as “days to heal our minds”.  By golly, being sick can wear you out.  So if I already take Saturdays off from “being sick” and now I am going to heal my mind on Fridays………….well good gravy (rich, dark, luscious gravy) that means I will only be sick 5 days out of the week.  I am liking this.

My first Friday to “heal my mind” is going to be learning and gathering more information about “color, can it heal our spirits, our minds our bodies”?  I am loving it.  I am going to surround myself with even more color.  This coming from a gal, who secretly sewed pale pink lace ruffles on her rumba panties to wear with her shocking white tennis outfits in high school.   Very scandalous, and as you can well  imagine my mother was not amused,  at all, period.

I collected solid colored fabrics for a few years and cut them into triangles to make an Easter morning quilt.  I never took the time to quilt it.  Maybe, just maybe it is high time, I got that out of the closet and started to heal my body, mind and spirit by finishing a huge splash of color in the form of a quilt?

May the color of the season heal our hearts, soul, mind and spirit.  easter morning quilt

bride or nun or both

Before I begin, may I say a huge thank you to all of you who sent me private emails, text messages, phone calls and talked to me about my post yesterday.  No, not about the beautiful, breath-taking Kitchen Aid (which by using I am quite sure would solve the world peace issue pretty quick)……….about being nice.  I didn’t realize that my finger wagging and clearing my throat about good manners would start such a rhubarb amongst all of us.  Some thought it would hurt feelings or offend, others said about time.  Every single person, did indeed agree that we need to have more Grace for each other and treat each other with kindness because being nice matters.  At the very least, the conversation has started………….On to my Wednesdays musings…………………….

When my sisters and I were little girls we love to play pretend.  Sure we played “next door neighbor” especially in the winter months when we had to be indoors.  side note question:  How many times in your adult life have you gone next door to borrow a cup of sugar?  If you need any acting advise, I am well versed on that topic.  haha.  When we could run and play outdoors (in proper play clothes of course) we LOVED to play Bride and Flying Nun.  As you can imagine, being the oldest & always the tallest, I was always, always the bridal coordinator and the minister, so that was not my all time favorite pretend game.  However, just say “Flying Nun” and I am all in.  We each could be a flying nun, no one had to be the leader.  It was pure fun and pure goodness.

Now, you can probably guess that my mother kept a very neat and proper linen closet.  Pillowcases neatly starched, ironed and folded in magazine worthy stacks.  The pastel colors were grouped by twos in one stack.  The hand embroidered and crocheted edges were grouped by twos in another pile.  Then in behind the nice, good and company worthy cases was a stack of plain white starched cases.  She sometimes used them on the pillow before you put the “nice” embroidered one over top of that.  She didn’t want the stripes of the pillow ticking to show through.

white pillow casesThe plain jane white ones were the ones we were allowed to play with.  Oh boy, she would have a very stern look on her face and crook her finger at you to come back into the house if we had “accidentally” grabbed one from the good pile.  yikes.

Okay, even three girls each with long riot of curls, two blond and one brunette………..wanted longer hair.  We would sometimes use bobby pins to pin the pillow cases on our heads and then we would have long, flowing, beautiful hair.  We would toss it over our shoulders or swing on the swing set with our locks hanging behind us, gently swinging in the breeze.  Sometimes, we would use the pillow cases & pin to our shirts near the neck and toss over our shoulders flowing down our backs.  We would walk down the “run way” to my mother’s clothes line like fancy fashion models.  Enough, enough…………..on to the nun part, the good part.  Sometimes we would bend coat hangers from the dry cleaners and work them into the pillow cases.  Presto instant NUN.  Then we would run and jump and climb up our playhouse and slide down the pole or the slide.  With our “wings” habit  helping us.  I am not sure it looked exactly like Sally Field, however we thought it was perfect.

When I had my knee replacement a friend made for me a watermelon pillow case to use at the hospital.  Look at me now!  It somehow helped me heal and I am biking 5 miles a day, walking 2 miles and using my knees to crawl into the playhouse to play with the world’s cutest grandgirlies.  ha…………….

The same friend, stopped by last night.  After we enjoyed a really wonderful meal prepared by Mr. Right (can you say fresh grilled King Salmon, grilled pineapple and double stuffed potatoes plus dessert?)  She gave me a package to open.  With my surgery day looming ahead of me, OOPS she did it again!  This time I got two.  Both made me smile equally.  One had happy frogs or toads and swirls of green and the other had polka dots that went on and on.  Why is it that polka dots make me happy.  The riot of orange and red was a dashing combination.  On each she had sewn a secret little heart.  How lucky am I to have someone do something so thoughtful?  Oh hold onto your big girl panties……………..yes, the cute ones………………she made me a little snap bag.  Not a big deal to many, to me, it was HUGE.  I sew those for tons and tons of people.  I have never found the “time” to make one for myself.  Ha, now I have a polka dot one just for me.  What was tucked inside you ask?  Nail polish that you can make, well Polka Dot of course!!!  How silly of you to ask, geesh. DSC08175

So, I sort of don’t want to play pretend nun, and I know for a fact I do not want to plan another wedding and pretend to be a bride…………………so with my new pillowcases…………I am going to take them with me to the hospital and pretend that I am well and just visiting a spa for my good health.

Today, just like the last 30+ years I am over the moon grateful that I have someone like her to make me a better person.  I want to do better, give more and be more creative.  She helps me be a better friend.  She has taught me more than any teacher I have ever known.  Not only is she a snappy dresser, she is kind, thoughtful, charming, always sharing grace and this close to Easter I will say it, one good egg. She doesn’t think I am goofy for finding the magic of health in a polka dot or frog pillow case.  She knows it’s real because, why, she put the magic of healing in it when she was sitting at her sewing machine.  DSC08174She knows for a fact I am not pretending, I believe it to be a real thing.  Those pillow cases will help me get well.   Should I say it?  Yes, yes, I believe I will.  She is NICE.

It feels lovely to be bathed (in this instance, cover in a sassy pillowcase) in the Grace of Friendship.  May you all have such a kind friend in your life.

because NICE matters

When did we become so mean?  You read that right.  After picking myself up one more time, and dusting myself off, I was reading Jen Hatmaker’s blog and some thoughts from Dr. Ben Kim and they both helped me put some words to what I have been feeling. flying pig airborne

WWJD?  News Flash! He would be NICE!  Yeah, you have seen the bumper sticker, the colorful rubber bracelet and surely you have heard the song.  WWJD? Yep, no question about it.  He would not laugh at someone for being scared about some medical procedure.  He would not gently suggest that you eat a steak and have a glass of whole milk and your medical condition would be cured.  He certainly would not under any circumstances, tell you or anyone, you are not that sick and you are wasting the doctors’ time.   He most certainly would not say, you need to pray harder then & only then, I will grant your “wish”.  Yes, I am well aware that many people want to spit out scripture verses.  They want to hide behind the idea that you should rely on the power of prayer.  I am hear to tell you no matter what denomination you adhere to or what pile of scripture verses you have memorized and pass out like free samples of chocolates in front of a chocolate shop…………..people are forgetting to be nice. Take that Bible thumpers, yes you!  Yep, somewhere in those pages, maybe even between the lines, there is a message.  BE NICE.  period.  We can debate the “meaning” until the cows come home.  We can debate if this is what was meant by this or that.  We can continue to judge others and their actions or we can stop being ninnies and use our brains.  It is pretty much tied up with a gorgeous orange bow and placed in front of us.  Wait for it……here it is…………….. BE NICE. When you choose to be nasty and ugly it is down right mean and it HURTS others feelings.  Yep, some people have become so mean, they take pride and feel uplifted in making other people cry and sob buckets of tears.  They are stomping on the momentarily weak and they are taking delight in it.  That or their mother’s didn’t raise them with good morals, values and certainly they missed the boat on good manners.flying pig two

I can 100% guarantee that if you called up either of our boys right this minute, told them how ugly someone was behaving…..they would say, oh, hope my mother doesn’t know them, because she will make you scrub her kitchen floor until it gleams and then write an apology letter to the person and hand it to them personally.  You will never make that mistake twice.  ever.  Being a human means having Grace.  Shouting; have Grace, have some Grace at two little boys probably was not going to get the job done.  Scrubbing a kitchen floor, sweeping my driveway or raking leaves gives everyone some time to breathe and think about behavior.

Now, when the boys were younger, I said if you have enough time and energy to be mean, then you have enough time and energy to scrub my kitchen floor.  It also gave me time to think of how to correct their behavior.  There were a couple of years in a row that my floor was spotless.  The message was received loud and crystal clear.  My kitchen floor scrubbers up and flew the nest.  Anyone want to come scrub my floor today?  Looks like I could use a “volunteer”.  I actually have a few people in mind that would benefit from some good old fashion work and crafting an apology letter.

Here is a poster that I read.  I liked it.  I have not stopped thinking about it for about two weeks now.  It is hard to really, really believe it and act upon it.  I am still working it over in my brain.  “Treat everyone with politeness, even those who are rude to you – not because they are nice but because you are.”

Have we lost all semblance of kindness?  Is criticism and ugly behavior the plague of our generation?

Recently on a cooking show, I saw a run down looking tavern, two old guys run it.  They have a full house almost every single night.  There is a sign on the door.  BE NICE OR LEAVE.  Pretty much sums it up.

Recently a person gently suggested that I revisit what it means to be a friend.  Okay, I have really tried to come up with some good thoughts on the matter.  flying pig

 If you’re not sure about someone, remember that how they consistently behave is far more important than what they say.  
Your time on planet earth is your greatest gift.  Don’t waste any more of it with people who don’t cherish you with their behaviour.
People don’t generally change deep within.  If they don’t adore you right now, don’t wait and hope for them to adore you later.
More grace.This just might heal the world, mend relationships, sooth our inner turmoil. It could grease the machine of humanity and keep it running rather than grinding to a halt, stalled out for lack of mercy. It reminds us we are brothers and sisters, not demigods over one another. It is the way Jesus came, and it is precisely what saved our souls.
I have to wonder, each time I am knocked down and didn’t think for a minute that I could feel this low……….I have to think I must be healing.  “Nothing ever goes away until it teaches us what we need to know.”  I am learning new lessons every day.  I must be making some headway?

opi plus thanks equals better mood

If you have ever thought of writing a blog, here is another reason to jump in with both feet.  You end up meeting really kind people. They leave you messages and send you notes of encouragement.  You meet people you might not otherwise had the pleasure of meeting.  Some are out of your state, your common hobbies and for me, out of my bubble.  Good people who are just so dog gone kind and thoughtful and willing to share pure goodness.

“J” is one of my followers.  Seems to have a good sense of humor, uplifting, kind, non judgmental and really positive.  Boy after the nasty weekend I had, Monday morning rolled around and I was desperately searching for something, anything positive.

For some reason or another I remembered “J” had shared the idea that by wearing great color drenched toenail polish you would lift any mood, color any day brighter.  Okay, I am game.  I put it on my Monday “to do” list. OPI-Bogota-Blackberry bottle

I chose a new (to me) color Bogota Blackberry by OPI.  Okay, I thought it was more of a purplish color in the bottle.  Turns out not quite.  It really ended up being a knock your socks off, gorgeous, deep, satruated berry color.  Really lovely, deep, rich and somehow bold color.

In a very real and tangible way, a reader that checks in from time to time, helped me crawl out of an ugly mood.  By gently reminding me that there are really kind “good eggs” out there willing to share an idea or two.  This goes out to “J”…..  a sincere and heartfelt thanks for helping me make a turn around.  My toes are tickled Blackberry and my mood ………Mr. Right will thank you for my new and improved mood.

So the Monday lesson is: gorgeous, freshly, painted toenails plus giving thanks, equals a much nicer person.  the end.

opi blackberry

brolly creates an oasis

twirling umbrellasIn our home, we have always used the word brolly.  Our kids learned to say it at a very young age.  I have some kind of weird fascination with all the gorgeous colors and stripes and polka dots.  When I was a little girl, I used a clear bubble one, that I could see through.  It fogged up, but I sort of loved the bubble I was in.  Um, maybe I still love living in a bubble sometimes?

Mr. Right grew up calling it a parapluie.  Yep, the boys use that word as well.  Living in Washington state you would think that we would all make use of an umbrella.  I think most of us have several rolled up in the coat closet or stored in the trunks of our cars.  Most of the time,  we forget to carry one.  Apparently, because we have many a days with drizzle, rain or downright downpour, sometimes  a jaunty raincoat or some sassy aquaduck shoes will work.  Most of the time, a magazine, a newspaper held over our heads works fine.  Then we make a dash for the door.

I lost a vibrant yellow one in Germany.  I have left them in restaurants, left them at people’s homes and businesses.  I love to borrow Mr. Right’s HUGE golf umbrella when I walk our dog.  We both stay somewhat dry.patio umbrella

I spied a real beauty today on-line.  Pier 1 to be exact.  I loved it instantly.  We already have a gazebo on our deck so, no real need.   With its splash of color and goodness, I fell head over heels in lust with that brolly.  Then inspiration hit.

Mr. Right said he could do it.  He is going to drill a hole in my sewing table.  We will purchase the brolly and a stand.  Hide the stand under the table and open the beauty up.  I will string twinkle lights.  It will be my own little oasis of creativity. I will turn up the heat and turn on some Jimmy Buffett music.   I will sit under my own parapluie and sew and quilt and create for hours and hours.    I do love coming up with lovely little nuggets of goodness.  This one’s a beauty.  Just love the idea.  Now to find a Pier 1 coupon.  That my friend, will make me even more happy with this oasis idea.   Covered in Grace, simply a lovely idea. twinkle lights hanging

odds & ends and probably way too much sharing

healing soupAs I type, I can smell a batch of “Seriously Healing Garlic-Thyme Chicken Soup” minus the chicken.   It smells really, really good.  Today, I am guessing my calcium is having a huge Mardi Gras parade inside me, as every single bone and joint is screaming.  I am putting my faith into having a few cups of healing soup later.

Update on my lemon plum:  ripening nicely, looks like another couple of days and I will be ready to cut into that sweet darling and give it a go.

It is pouring down rain harder than I have ever seen here in Washington state this morning.  Yikes, thoughts of building an ark, or at least making sure “dog” towels are neatly stacked by the back door ready for action.

Good news on the blog posting for next Tuesday……………the dessert I tried out yesterday was a-m-a-z-i-n-g and tasted like candy.  I am really happy with the results and looking forward to sharing all the goodness next week.

The coffee was very good this morning.  I use coconut cream and a teaspoon of agave nectar to “doctor it up” and I must say, it is aheart coffee delightful treat.  Side note:  I LOVE a mug or cup with a good lip.  A nice curve that gently rolls out from the base of the cup.  It is a pleasure to find the “perfect” cup and use it for years and years and years.  I had one mug (given to me by a sassy horse girl who is stunning both inside and out, more about her on another blog) and I used that mug with the hummingbird on it for about 16 years!  Yes, I do get attached to certain pieces of pottery.

Doing good deeds and not telling a soul……………………….sometimes is super hard for me to be quiet about someone.  Yesterday, Mr. Right pulled off three GREAT KARMA, GOOD DEEDS and boy you could tell he was a happy camper.  Made me giddy with happiness to watch him work his magic.

I have a strange and mixed up fascination with a family on television that just happen to have 19 kids.  In NO way do I want, need, or think for one minute I could handle, raise, teach good manners to, keep track of that many youngin’s, ever.  I just sort of like watching how they make it all work.  However, I was a bit miffed at their trip to Asia.  Yes, I would say it to their faces, no shame here………………………….while traveling through Europe for three years, we made it our business NOT to be the ugly Americans.  period.  For each country we learned some language (at least please, thank you, hello, bathrooms?, nice to meet you  etc….) , we had to keep a “cheat sheet” and zip lock baggies for all the different money.  It was before the Euro, hence learning the exchange for each country was a home school trick for all of us.  Mr. Right has a special whistle that we all recognize.  It has been said that I happen to be able to clear my throat in such a way that it makes our own children (as well as other family members) stand up straighter and look at me to discover what the “issue” is that I have noticed.  No, we did cause a ruckus with our children.  They were told ahead of time what was expected and how they were to behave.  I never once had to remind them to remove their ball caps in a cathedral nor did I ever have to once remind them to be polite to any of our hosts.  One of the lovely (the guys would not like me using that word) things about our grown son’s is that they have a great deal of respect for others.  They live their lives as such on a daily basis.  They do not act as though everyone should speak English (yes, they both speak other languages) or do things as we do.  They are both very proud to be Americans and are equally as proud of their Canadian heritage.  It is just when we were in other countries they behaved as GUESTS.  Now there is no mistaking that little tiny 1/2″ by 1/4″ red tag that is sewn on the back of their name brand American jeans, the baseball hats, the brand named sneakers………….all dead give aways.  However, you would be proud of our family’s  behavior (yes, we are all judged as to how the “ugly” American behaves while traveling).    enough of a rant… for now.

I am looking for happiness.  I continue to list things I am grateful for:  hot bubble baths, a call from the cowboy store…new red boots are in, biking 4.5 miles today, All-Clad cookware, gorgeous bouquet of fresh daffodils, friends who are helping me, books with stunning pictures, putting stickers on a put together present for a certain one year old’s birthday, ordering library books, having a box full of lovely cards and postage at the ready, a massage table in our home,massage tablea new bracelet, a cell phone,  receiving snail mail, day dreaming about Cozumel, grateful for the dog sleeping at my feet, that our grandgirlies are being taught very good manners, finding a new Sushi restaurant, using a good coupon at the toy store yesterday, chilled & cut orange wedges for after dinner, stumbling upon a new website that I love…..

Being Grateful equals Healing