Category Archives: Just Living

Breathe Through the Storm

Spring has sprung and the fireflies have arrived.  It feels early.  It’s only been days since the last freeze. . .

I watched one alight on the garden bed beam, and as I peered closer, it flashed wings at me with agitated antennae.  I took the hint and retreated back – and it was gone in that moment.  Absent.

We are in the midst of this storm of no precedence.  The unknown.  Varied in strength and strike and form.

The storm activity has been one of ‘take shelter’ here.  In tornado country we know how to be prepared for a short and harsh duration that may cause a term of duress… but this. . .

Prepare for taking care of family – too many in the scary category to comprehend.

Prepare to be home for extended periods…  write lists, revise lists, check lists.

The theme has been prepare.

Work was deemed essential.  Many hours were spent by the team to set up and roll out that particular preparation.  I and my office mates are nearly full remote now – a jerky transition wrought with change and chaos and frustration – then sprinkled with joy and anticipation from my perspective.  What I have oft longed for is now short term reality.

And so, after so many means of preparing in and around my own realm – I recognize, once I’ve slowed down, that I’ve gone bouncing and careening along this whole storm prep while moving over and through several stages of grief.

My emotions must also have been setting up buttresses of potential realities and … well … here we are.  I imagine you or someone you know has been staging through grief steps as well.

Fireflies have been spotted.  So have asparagus beetles.  I’m awaiting a particular wasp to cart in luggage and set up home base.

It’s been a while since I’ve been ‘present’ here.  I’m surprised to recognize that.  If you’ve been along for the telling, we moved a few years back, leaving established garden spaces behind.  But we’ve been busy here, building new spaces and options… and I had opportunity to .. inhale it ..  breathe it in.  Absorb it.

It’s good – we’re a good building team.

Greens are growing.  Life is abounding here.  Breathing space exists and just in time.

I hope this finds you well.  Recovering, or surviving, or staging the grief steps – no matter where you are, I hope you find well ..  are well, .. will be well.

Peace out.

Disconnected Hebrew

I am trying to reconcile life.  It’s going to get a bit messy in here, I’ll warn you now.

My last post (mere minutes ago) was about those considered essential workers for essential businesses in the good ol’ us of the a.

Feeling betrayed, seething with an underlying resentment.  I now understand why my recovering sorta alcoholic has resumed a pretty high daily dose of his favorite drinky-drink.  Why discussions are less comfortable and so we retreat to our spaces as his buzz wears off, hoping that I’m not falling asleep before we can have a comfortable discussion.

It’s not terrible.  Honestly.  We’re loners, both of us, so we do retreats well in our house.  Then we share space and chat, working through the daily grind, and sharing perspectives, sometimes debating, often agreeing… Good stuff overall.

Back to the point, back to where I was heading with this – divisions.  Resentments.  Differences.

Today, I am looking back.  Reading Exodus (Shemot) and thinking about the history, the story of the Hebrews being released, rescued from bondage by their Almighty, YHVH.

Much to think about there.  Instructions.  Inclusion or exclusion.  Divisions.  Consequences.  Definitions.  Schedules.  New normals.

And I mesh the news that I read this morning, the catch up information I received last night, the things I’ve seen and felt and overheard over the past week.

Churchgoers in my state are pressing against the gathering confines to be able to assemble in large groups on their holy day, my guess is that they are thinking themselves exempt from what may befall them should there be a shared germ amongst them.

I live in a state that is predominantly catastrophe denounced.  Most of the population that I have experienced are treating the current situation as an overblown attempt to control them, and so will not give space to those who are trying to be safe.  Their leader taught them well and they are holding fast to the early sermons from that pulpit.

And so my initial thought is – fine, let them assemble.  Germ in, germ out, populations decreased, so be it.  Because I am a witness to hearing a child two fences over  – who in the midst of playtime with other kids announced “I wanna be Hitler!!!!”

But that was a fleeting thought.  Because who am I to judge, truly?  And the child may grow up and realize the truth of the past and be truly remorseful for childhood play actions.

Who knows?

Here’s the serious part of my ramblings though – if you’re still here to read, and haven’t denounced me as a hate-filled anti-christ.

Quick truth – the same as I am not anti-social, but rather reclusive (assemble, I don’t mind – just don’t expect me to be there).  I am not anti-christ, rather I believe that the worshipped beings are false gods, of no worth or purpose and that only the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob is the True God, Almighty.  One.  But I don’t have any problem with others worshipping their version of god.

So.  Again, the serious part.

Economy is only kept alive by the standard of debt.  An economy will only survive if peoples, companies, entities, feed the debt burden.  That’s economy in a nutshell.

So why is economy so important.  Consider that.

Why is safety not as important as economy.  Consider that.

Why keep the masses in debt and call it the health of the nation?

Barter.  Learn to garden, learn to barter.  Self sustenance.  Back to simpler lives, simpler times.

An extreme period of duress, for certain.  Hard changes, hard truths.  Hard struggles.

Hasn’t it already been hard amidst all the fineries?

Peace out, again.

 

Fringe Benefits: Fall Splendor

Although I have the pleasure of working for a business with a full nursery and garden center, I rarely take the time to get what my coworkers call “my horticultural therapy”.

Yesterday, I took some time just to see the fall colors.  Here’s what I found:

And here is my artistic representation of some of those found shots:

Discontent

Within our Torah community, discontent is something we often discuss.  It’s pervasive in this day and age, and likely always has been.

We see it played out in the exodus story – the people complaining about their meal delivery plan not being as diverse as what they had available to them in bondage.  Rather than continuing to celebrate their freedom from bondage, rather than being thankful for the daily food they were delivered, rather than being in awe of the historic event they participated in, they instead obsessed upon that discontent of temporary gastrointestinal displeasure.

Always looking for something to make us feel better, why are we not satisfied with ‘enough’.  When is it ‘enough’?

Why do I feel like the dining set I’ve had for 20 years needs to be replaced?  It’s sturdy, it expands to seat extra people, it’s scratches and worn finish could easily be covered over.  What creates that desire to have more, to replace what already exists?  It seems so easy to justify whatever we perceive as our desires – and that self-justification and subsequent acquisition only temporarily lulls that lusty appetite for more.

I could dive into the psychological manipulations of the marketing gurus from decades past, or the social manipulations being currently driven by mass data mining and artificial intelligence.  But it goes back much farther than that.

The desire to have what is perceived to be better than our current holdings, our current space, our current position, this drive to have what was not ours, it’s making us miserable.  And it seems our species is entrenched with it as part of our genetic make-up.  It seems we’ve always been looking for more.

This discontent has upset the entire global structure and clouds our perception of how life should truly operate.  We think we can improve upon every natural thing, but instead corruption and destruction lies in our wake.   Our self-importance and striving to improve our lots are threatening to wipe out important species, and draining our natural resources.

Where does it stop?  How do we turn this gluttonous belly of society into a functional form?

What is your discontent?  How can you accept your place, your space, your allotment in life and embrace contentment?

Are you out of line?  Am I?

Family Vacation Day Trip



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We celebrated a milestone wedding anniversary, my husband and I.  As a treat to ourselves, we invited our adult sons and their families to a family vacation.  These shots are from a day trip to Ha Ha Tonka State Park, Missouri.  If you’ve never been, it’s worth the trip.