23 May 2010


Friends have been incredibly generous since our house has been out of commission. Those moments when I reach my breaking point of trekking through dust, sleeping in the closet and general malaise, it seems someone senses it and invites us to a good time gathering.

Last week we found our way to a little town in Cache Valley at Steve and Doris' house. They were our "first friends" in Montana. They moved to Canada for a few years and then we lost track of them... for 12 years. At a get-together around eight years ago we were introduced to a young man who was moving here to complete a PhD, by one of Darren's professors. Steven turned around and said, "I already know Darren and DeAnn, they were my neighbors in Missoula." Cool!

We barb-b-qued, sat by a fire, watched a Swainston hawk through the spotting scope tear the living flesh off of a mole... no need to bbq for him. Watched the horses and goats graze the pasture of the spring fresh grass and met their daughters soccer coaches' family newly visiting from Brazil.

I didn't take my camera that night, but I did find the above gem, circa 1990, from an afternoon along the Bitterroot River. Chase was the only baby around in those days. Steven and Doris look the same. Thankfully I am taking the picture, Darren looks a bit younger. Oh and you are not seeing two of Doris. It is her twin.

13 May 2010

duck, duck.... duck

Yesterday, I saw one of my mom's good, best friends and her husband. A lucky bit of serendipity. And for a fleeting moment all was right with the world and how it used to be. And then I was sad because of all we're missing. This morning Khloee was barking at nothing again or so I reasoned. I went outside and there was a ducky duck duck strutting through the yard. Of course Khloee only chases other dogs and trucks and not fowl weather friends. She is a Lab for crying out loud and is scared of waterfowl and water. That makes me laugh. For a moment all was right with the world.

09 May 2010

time since... two years

Mother's day... I read my mother's obituary this day two lightening fast, agonizing current fighting years ago. Last year, lost and still in the thick of it, I fought with my husband and children. I, expecting the audacity of the impossible, them, to "fix" my aching heart.

We gathered for breakfast at the house. All my mother's sisters and sisters-in-law. They took the cooking duties away from my dad. Each one has a little flash of familiarity about them. The way they stand. Or hold their hands, or brush back their hair. They are all beautiful. We filled our bellies, and our hearts with good food and lightness. Smiling.

A visit to the cemetery. Spring flowers and birds and the warmth of the sun on exposed flesh. A connection from heaven. I am happy today.

Your great mistake is to act the drama
as if you were alone. As if life
were a progressive and cunning crime
with no witness to the tiny hidden
transgressions. To feel abandoned is to deny
the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely,
even you, at times, have felt the grand array;
the swelling presence, and the chorus, crowding
out your solo voice You must note
the way the soap dish enables you,
or the window latch grants you freedom.
Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity.
The stairs are your mentor of things
to come, the doors have always been there
to frighten you and invite you,
and the tiny speaker in the phone
is your dream-ladder to divinity.

Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into
the conversation. The kettle is singing
even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots
have left their arrogant aloofness and
seen the good in you at last. All the birds
and creatures of the world are unutterably
themselves. Everything is waiting for you.

-- David Whyte from Everything is Waiting for You ©2003 Many Rivers Press
Happy Mother's Day. And I blew her a kiss.

04 May 2010

living in a tree

The house repairs are overwhelming me. Dust dust dust surrounds me... our bed in the closet. Showering at the gym. I run a lot. Outside, the Bonneville Shoreline Trail, to the Nature Center, the Logan River Trail. I've watched the color luscious buds bursting. The act of creating a home I've found is a dichotomy for me. An act of treason against my ecological leanings. Tree House or House of Tree. The beauty of nature simply, contrasted with the beauty of the materials carefully selected for my home. Where to draw the line? I am contradictions... aren't we all? And this constant figuring it out is what feeds my anticipation in greeting the new day.

02 May 2010

laundry list

And so we must do the laundry at the Wash-N-Go. Darren helped load the washers, we walked over to Einsteins for a bagel and juice, and then stuffed the dryers. Then Darren left. My dryers were named Casey, Chad, and Dan. Retro rewind. As they tumbled round and round I read about culture, civilization, relationship disconnect, objectifying. My mind tumbled round and round thoughts using a laundromat as the metaphor. A sort of "third place" where I am "connecting" with the community. I smiled and said "hello" to my fellow launderers. But then I started noticing... mostly men do the washing at the "mat" or is that "Matt."  My smiles attracted a little too much community connection as a gentlemen sat right next to me on an empty bench. I could hear him breath and feel his arm next to mine. I couldn't speak, but I was determined to not move even though he had clearly invaded my "space bubble" Know the rules dude. Luckily the dryers slowed to a stop and I could jump up and begin folding. He did too. Right next to Casey... I think his was called Bill... hey, all the dryers have male names... what's up with that? I folded and folded, with my head down now... no more smiles, and loaded the car with fresh-scented linen (well, mostly cotton). So much for my social experiment. I'll try again next week.