Monday, September 30, 2013

just so happy

i passed the state massage and bodywork
licensing exam this afternoon.
i did better than i ever imagined i could do.
i'm so relieved.
i worked so hard.
i've given it my all.

another finals week approaching
and graduation day on the eighteenth.

i'm on my way.

Friday, September 27, 2013


it's another football game tonight.
that means eliza and i get to have a date.
(we're grateful for football games,
we decided.)

jane suggested in her letter from taiwan
that we eat chinese
and watch inn of the sixth happiness together.
(it's my life, mom, she says.)

so we just got back.
tums filled with lettuce wraps, kung pao tofu, 
and crispy green beans.

but when the fortune cookies came,
hers saying:
"stop searching forever. happiness is just next to you"
and mine: 
"everything will come your way",
we both looked at each other,
our eyes filling with wows and wonder and tears.

oh, how i needed this tonight.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

just me

Thanks to my client Doug and his talented wife Rochelle with Pointe Digital for such nice photos.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

saturday evening post

i'm all alone in this house.
everyone else headed off to the big game.
(in state rivalry. it's like a big deal.)
they asked if i wanted to come,
but after these eyes popping open
at quarter to five this morning, 
and then doing five one-hour massages in a row today, 
and then a trip to costco, etc.
it kind of does a person in, big time.
my feet are aching, too,
(specifically this pesky bone spur on my left heel)
and curling up in my bed with a movie on sounds a lot
more enticing, if you know what i mean.

besides costco, i stopped by the thrift store this evening
and scored some really good finds.
(i'm not picky.)
my wardrobe needs a little rounding out and updating,
especially with this fall weather that's upon us.
thinking about wanting to wear
bolder, richer, more dynamic colors
that somehow seem to make me pop.

and talk about pop.
these last few days, i've not only been wearing these types of colors, but even donned some lipstick 
that's a little darker shade than is my typical.
so when i picked up sam and eliza after school yesterday,
they both paused upon entering, took a second look at me sitting 
there in the car, and said, 
wow, mom,
you look really nice.

i guess when you feel beautiful,
it shows.

i got a smartphone today.
i think it will mean i'll be more likely to remember to take 
a cell phone with me. and actually use it.
(my family will be so glad.)
if you can believe it, today was the first time i ever texted.

me can txt. :)
to sam.

haha. oh gosh.
was his reply.

and incoming from eliza: 
so do you feel pretty cool now? :)

i ate brownies and pineapple for dinner.
and danced around in the kitchen
with my music turned up loud.
i do that sometimes
(actually a lot of times)
and it may surprise you that i can really get my groove on 
when the moment (and the music's) right. 

wish it was light enough after everyone left 
to head up to the canyon and do some leaf peeping
with my camera in hand.
(that's always a joy.)
i'm longing to, but with studying my guts out these days,
there doesn't seem to be a chance.

i did take a little drive up by the silos 
a little while ago.
a few nice shots to end the day.

welcome autumn.
i think it's official now.

Sunday, September 15, 2013


it's all the way you look at things, i guess.

there's always more blossoms than prickles
to be found in this life. 
if only i open my eyes wide enough.

Friday, September 13, 2013

putting it out there, putting it in here

I want...

to feel joy.
to feel peace.
to feel calm.
to feel contentment.
to feel cared for, nurtured, understood, 
appreciated, and valued.
to feel safe and protected.
to feel loved, adored, admired, cherished, and nurtured.
to feel wanted, accepted, and needed.
to feel connection to and understanding of God. 
to find truth, meaning, and purpose 
and how it all relates to my life's mission.
to receive answers to my spiritual questions and hungers.
to know that I'm good enough.
to feel and have hope.
to have nurturing and loving family relationships with my husband, each of my children, and my extended family.
to have each of my children know and feel that they are unconditionally loved by me.
to have each of my children develop, grow, understand, and fulfill the measure of their creation.
to be a friend, a guide, a strength, and a teacher
to my children. 
to feel peace and harmony in my home.
to feel contentment about my home and my yard.
to have a home that is warm, welcoming, and inviting to all who walk through the door.
to be a comfort to my parents.
to be a true friend. 
to find mutually satisfying connection and relationship with like-minded, kindred souls.
to gain and develop wisdom, compassion, and understanding, even if this comes through suffering.
to radiate light, calm, energy, and spirit 
through my countenance.
to have a lean, healthy, strong body.
to have a sharp, active, and keen mind.
to feel beautiful and attractive to others and to myself.
to have others feel love, comfort, acceptance, kindness, and understanding while in my presence and through my actions.
to willingly share my time, talents, and gifts with others. 
to help and make a positive contribution for a better world.
to be an instrument in other's healing journeys.
to pass the MBLEx.
to graduate from UCMT.
to always be a life-long learner.
to be content with what is. 
to live in gratitude with what is given.
to be financially secure. to have enough for not only our needs, but to live comfortably and with enough 
to share and give generously.
to see, create, and share beauty through my photography. to find joy in this.
to create understanding and expression through my writing. to find joy in this.
to feel desire, motivation, and inspiration to share my life's story through my blog.
to travel and explore this wonderful , diverse world.
to create fun times, experiences, and memories.
to live in vitality, vigor, and vim in my older years.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Saturday, September 7, 2013

good things

yoga stillness in the mornings

making a blueberry-peach cobbler
for an after dinner treat.

and eating our fill of those  peaches from mama's tree.

september milkweeds blowing in a breeze.

eating our burgers alfresco-style.
our labor day celebration.

oh, yeah...
and going out later for ice cream was nice, too.

a total surprise package all the way from finland.
just because he loves us so.

impromptu "stop the car" moments.

let's put raspberries on top of the pancakes, mom.

her loveliness.

Friday, September 6, 2013

a little glimpse into my life as a massage therapy student

Most of you who have been reading my blog this past year know that I'm a student of massage therapy and body work. It's become a big part of my life since I enrolled  last October in part-time evening classes. I have shared some things here about my experience, and other things I haven't. Part of this is because of the overwhelming amount of information I've been immersed in, and part of it-- the growing parts-- are very personal and precious to me and I haven't found the ability to share all that has been in my heart during this time.

 This journey is coming to a close very soon, as my last day of school is on October 10th and our graduation ceremony will be the following week on the 18th. Right now, my focus and energies are being put into preparing for my licensing exam. As well as thinking and planning for the obvious period of transition I will be going through of not having the demands of student life, setting up my private practice, and easing back into more time with my family and outside pursuits.

There is so much I am feeling and have felt all along this path. I don't think there are words that can express this life-changing opportunity I've been given. I will tell you that I have been stretched. My capacities and confidence has grown. I have learned so much. More than I expected or thought possible.

My understanding and appreciation of the absolute grandeur of the human body has been enlightened and I stand in humble awe at what a perfect miracle of creation and beauty it is.  

I thought I knew what compassion was before this experience. I felt like I was compassionate person. (That could, should, and will be a topic in and of itself one of these days.) I will say that my understanding has widened to such a broader vision, and the precious opportunities to see, assist, and provide service and loving care with my heart and my hands to those I've been able to work with have forever blessed my life.

The students in my class have become a second family in my life. I'm so grateful for the closeness and friendship I feel for these people. We have learned so much from each other. We love each other. 

I wanted to share a little of what I did today with two of my friends from school. We were given an assignment as part of a Professional Development class to present the benefits of massage therapy to a group of individuals and provide them an opportunity to experience first hand how wonderful and beneficial it can be to body, mind, and emotional well-being.

For two hours today, Jenny and I provided  15 minute seated chair massages to some kind and very grateful employees of a local engineering firm. Keri used her amazing Shiatsu (a energetic Japanese modality) skills on a mat on the floor to a group of intrigued, curious, and very eager individuals. (My own mat, sitting in a corner of my bedroom-- all bundled up and bulky-- I've nicknamed my "Sushi Roll".)

All of our clients left notably relaxed, and couldn't stop expressing how much they not only appreciated this break in their long and stressful work day, but also how they didn't know how tense and tight they were as the work was being performed. 

"It just feels so good." 
"If only we could have you come every Thursday!" 
"I needed that." 

We heard these words expressed over and over.

It was not only rewarding work today, but fun to be with my friends. Doing what we love to do. And together, too.

After leaving the office, I sat on a table at Costco doing some focused and intentional people watching . Observing bodies. Looking at structures. Noting alignment. The way people hold and carry their bodies. The weaknesses, strengths, ease, constriction, grace, and movement in the way these shoppers moved and walked. There was no room or place for judgement, here (as I've learned all along in this work and calling), just quiet observation. I felt a little sneaky, though, almost like a spy (but not a stalker!), trying to be inconspicuous (eating bites of sushi in between jotting down my notes.
It was an interesting experience. As a body worker, it becomes almost a constant habit to view people, their structures, in this way. And I've learned through first-hand experience that it is very rare thing indeed to find a perfect, balanced, aligned, and "whole" body. We are all flawed in one way or another.

I've found myself continually learning to release this idea of perfection in my own perceived body image. Especially  through a class I'm taking this term (where today's other assignment originated from) called Structural Bodywork and Movement. Twice a week, I, along with the other students in my class, dress in what are called "viewing clothes"-- women donning a two piece swimming suit and men in underwear or a Speedo-- and we each have a turn standing in front of a partner or the whole class to have our "structures", our bodies, the way we walk, our posture, all of it analyzed to the minutest details.

 I have let go (and am still learning to let go) of this vulnerability about this body of mine. The idea of even being seen by others eyes in a two piece swimming suit.(So, so out of my comfort zone). Letting go of this bagging, sagging skin, the "chub", my cellulite, these sloping shoulders. Letting it all go, as the rest of my fellow classmates have allowed themselves to let everything go.
Releasing it instead to compassion. To understanding. To professionalism. To respect.
And I'm okay with it all. 
These flaws. This individuality. This magnificence.
Learning that I, we, all of us--  just the way we are right now-- are beautiful women and men.
Oh, so beautiful.