My Rock

rock 1

Today I’m sharing one of my favorite early works that is especially meaningful to me. This ‘rock’ I’ve now been married to for 33 years. How time does flow like a river over the good and the bad, forming one cohesive end result, whether good or bad.

 “Skies were blue, time was new

A fresh young life was born

By years passed through

The child was torn

Through ups and downs

She struggled to grow

Parents and child – around and around

It seemed because they loved her so

Her mind grew old – her life grew cold

The woman child – must be free

She sank new roots

Wherever she could

For a time she flew

Free and bold

‘Til reality showed her

New roots can mold

Grow quickly old and let you die

Now on her own

Cold again and all alone

A child once more

Reaching for life

Until one day

She found a rock

A place to grow – a hand to hold

Her home is safe and warm and alive

The rock she found – the man she loves”

A Poetry Handbook

Grounded: How Leaders Stay Rooted in an Uncertain World

101 Famous Poems

Time Is a River

The mind….a terrible thing to waste…

education

Success at academics has always come easily to me. I credit this largely to genetics rather than any amazing feat of my own. Although my parents’ formal education was limited, and their own upbringing may be described as having been on the humble side, their intelligence has never been in question. My father always provided comfortably for his family of eight and my mother home-schooled all of her children for a number of years. My oldest brother and three older sisters graduated from high school under her sole tutelage. I, and my younger brother, moved outside the home into public education in the elementary and middle school years and beyond. This was a serious and impactful culture change for me and I’m sure had much to do with the determination of who I have become as an adult. The stories of my experiences through this change and my move on into a professional environment are many and varied and could make up an entire series of books, but I may write more of these experiences in this blog in the future. For today, I’m simply noting that education, from my roots, has been my singly most motivating force and carnal love. Nothing is more satisfying to my soul than a good read, a new nugget of information driven home, a new way of looking at things, rising above the daily grind to truly feel a sense of one-ness with the universe and God – all of these feed into an educated mindset, an elevated sense of awareness, becoming a truly happy and well-adjusted human being….my life goal.

Man’s Search for Meaning

Echoes of Silence: Letters to a Drug Addicted Mother from the Woman Who Took Her Place

Stop Whining, Start Living

I Can Do It Myself

basket roses 1

Independence has always been important to me as an adult. In retrospect, its importance may have stemmed from my growing up in an environment that seemed to always be changing.  It became important that I be able to stand in confidence on my own, never sure when or where my friends or acquaintances would no longer be a part of my daily life as we moved on to the next phase of our lives as a family.  In my parents’ never-ending quest for their life’s true meaning, we became members of numerous different religious groups and church congregations over time.  My father was a pastor for a number of years and even after leaving the calling, religion and the search for God’s true intent never failed to be the single most important part of his and my mother’s lives.  The first significant separation I recall in my young life was from my cousin, my closest and dearest friend.  Marilyn and I were inseparable in my memory, playing with each other as children, she was my heart.  When my family moved away, leaving Marilyn and her family behind, she gave me, as a parting gift, a small white plastic webbed basket holding pink flowers so that I would never forget her.  I still have that small basket of flowers today and I have to say it is one of my most precious mementos, bringing such heartfelt emotions to the fore.  Thank you, Marilyn, for those early memories of your sweet friendship and love.  I miss you in my continuing battle to push down the need to maintain independence against all odds in order to avoid re-visiting the emotion I felt as we left you behind that day.

Pink Flowers in Basket Faberge Styled Trinket Box

Pink Flowered Basket Pill Box

Renaissance Faberge Style Enameled Trinket Box

The Country

earth 1

My parents raised their family of six children in country homes. Even though we had a large family and everyone shared many things, I never recall the house seeming too small.  There was always room outside.  The out-of-doors was my refuge and happy place.  As the youngest of four sisters, the older girls often prepared family meals under my mother’s watchful eye, leaving little room in the kitchen for me.  My chores were more outside where I found solace and peace with the animals and the earth.  The chickens needed food, the goats were waiting to be milked, the garden always needed a good weeding, and the yard always needed to be raked.  Some of my fondest memories of growing up were those of fall evenings spent raking a large lawn into the hours of dusk and nightfall.  Alongside my mother and brothers and sisters, weeding our acres of garden, or snapping peas for hours on end, I grew solid roots that have served me well as a base for my life as an adult.  Even though my career over the past 36 years has been in the corporate world where I have met and shared childhood stories with many people of more elegant upbringing than my own, my ‘choice of heart’ has always been to come home to the country where my well-being is restored.  I am and will always be a child of the earth.

Fairy Garden Cottage

Countryside Garden Basket

Potting Bench

 

House to Home

home heart 1

Houses are one of my many loves. My kitchen theme, for many years, has been ‘home is where the heart is’ which led me to decorating with any and all forms of houses (yes, as extreme as even the historic Noah’s Ark of biblical times), alongside an eclectic collection of heart-shaped items. Heart-shaped cookie cutters, heart-shaped placemats, heart-shaped wall plaques, heart-shaped wreaths, heart-shaped wine bottle stoppers.  Little could be closer to the heart than the house, the welcoming structure that provides shelter from life’s storms.  The house provides comfort through the housing and protection of one’s very soul represented by the collections of ‘things’ that have made their way into the heart over the course of a full and happy life.  It is as a result of the comfort and protection given by the house that it makes its way into the heart and becomes a true ‘home.’  I have walked, many times, through the door after a long day in my corporate office, as it’s been pouring down rain outside.  My heart swells with gratitude for the protection and warmth I still feel as I know I have been so blessed to have had a house to call home.

House-Shaped Cookie Jar

Heart-Shaped Wreath

Noah’s Ark Birdhouse