Monday, April 30, 2007

3 Thoughts

The smell of fresh cut grass and gasoline reminds me of my mom! Sorry, mom...actually I don't mean that as anything but a compliment and a sweet memory! I pulled into my place this afternoon and the just mowed lawn and scent of a lawnmower close by took me back to my bright yellow (I mean bright, like almost florescent!) bedroom. Those sleepy summer days waking up to mom mowing at 10am in the morning, too early for a teenager to be waking up in the summer ;) and trust me closing the window was useless! Ahh, but dear mother it is a good memory of climbing out of bed, calling friends to see who was headed out to the orchard for our daily afternoons of swimming in the river and jumping off "the rock!"

My fish died while I was in Puerto Rico. I had a fish, did I mention that on here yet, and called it Nicoya. The fish didn't eat a whole lot, never when I was watching and sprinkled its food on the water's surface. I wondered how it was surviving. I took the lack of interest in food as a sign that Nicoya was either in shock of a new environment (my wonderful home) or I had chosen an anorexic fish. :) I thought just maybe it would survive while I was gone, but when I walked in the door, the fish was, well, floating on the surface. Sorry Fish...good thing I didn't go for a dog yet! Really I believe I could take care of a dog, but I'm too selfish right now and like the freedom of roaming around the state, country, world. I think I'll try another fish first!

Music, I'm listening to some new piano music I just downloaded, George Winston-Forest. I've been waiting all week for a cd mom was sending in the mail. Nik, you did an incredible job creating a beautiful compilation of our memories with gramp. And Uncle Rog, you've always been good at finding the music that inspires, I love the songs Nik chose...I'm particularly drawn to vanilla...just the piano, so simple, pure. It is a language my soul loves to listen to. It's a curious thing why I was so pained by it growing up...I despised sitting there and practicing and unfortunately won that battle and found myself consumed in other things. I've got one of those lists (yeah, I know you're all surprised by that) of things to do before I die. I'm doing ok on the travel part :)...anyway, learning the piano is on that list so maybe one day I will play.

I'm including a few more pics from P.R.

Playa Flamenco, outside of Dewey, Culebra Island, Puerto Rico...

This was taken from our window. Sure, at first glance this "Hotel Opportunity" looks like a great find. Quaint, lots of character, probably some original floors with old staircases etc. HOWEVER, that little place off to the right...yeah well we discovered through the night that they play really loud reggaeton the entire night...CAVEAT EMPTOR, let the buyer beware!

Monday, April 23, 2007

Culebra Bike Rentals

Yeah, we rented bikes the full day we had on the island. And it was hot and humid! Can't you tell by my face, I'm sweating...or maybe you can't. Anyway, we went to the bike shop in the morning. Actually, this is the morning I talked with mom really early and learned about Gramp. Leah left me alone for a while and headed out to get breakfast...I joined her shortly and we just sat and watched the Iguanas as I sipped on my coffee and poured out some feelings. "This one is called grateful and I'm so thankful I went to visit in February." After we downed some more cups of coffee we walked across an old bridge that appeared as though it used to rise and fall for the boats, but had since retired. The owner at the bike shop quickly suited us for our bikes (grab one here and yep looks good, there you go) and we quickly headed out after obtaining a few bungees to hold our bags on the rack. Just one quick, necessary stop at the grocery store for some cold remedies and we made the not quite gruesome ride toward the beach. It was a fairly uneventful ride out and once we crested the pass to the other side of the island, it was an easy coast down hill. You know, I'm always glad to have working brakes and in this case the front was all I had. No problem, esta bien! It is good, especially with a beautiful beach waiting at the end. I was surprised once we pulled into the park to see all the food stands and park rangers. I didn't expect it, but it was nice to have cold water and rice and beans there for a later lunch. The ranger whistled his whistle at us and pointed at the bike rack for our parking pleasure. Once we finally found our way past the signs and other distractions, we planted ourselves on towels and Leah headed straight for the water. My phone rang and Nik was calling on me to see how I was doing. Both her and Uncle John made it clear, "Grandpa loved to celebrate and he would have wanted you to stay and enjoy the rest of your time." (Though I agreed wholeheartedly, it was such a relief and release to finally get home and just give and receive some stabilizing hugs.) I hung up with Nik and laid there in the warm sun and soft sand trying to take in and understand and wrap my head around emotions and being away and what I was feeling. I was at one of the most beautiful beaches and as I sat in the clear blue-turquoise-green water and looked all around, I couldn't take in all the beauty. I didn't want to leave the water for fear of not capturing all that I could or should. As I type this I realize this as a pattern in my life. Sometimes, I have a hard time leaving places and people because I never want to cut short all that is for embracing. When gram and gramp used to come up to the house for dinner or a holiday, we would walk them out and turn the lights out as they drove off. I remember so often watching them drive up the road and I would wait. I'd wait until I couldn't see their lights anymore. I know they were just going over the road and down to their house, but something in me didn't want to miss a moment. I'm not like this in all things, but I have weird tendencies to be sentimental and hold on...not so much to actual tangible objects, but to places and people. If I'm not holding on with my presence, I've most likely dropped a piece of myself in that place and it becomes hard for me to leave. You've heard it said before, "Your greatest strength will be your greatest weakness." Investing in people and places is easy for me, but it rips me up that much more when I leave or move or make any changes. Having realized that, I seem to have jumped in here in Orlando in many ways, but scared that I'm going to rip another piece of my heart so I don't FULLY invest. What am I saying...I don't even know...I'm just typing and this is what you get to read. Again, I'm just processing and letting you peek through the window!:)

Well, that's good for now...I'll share some more pics soon. I'm thinking about buying the business below based solely on "island cart philosophy." Any silent partners interested?

Love you guys! And by the way, thanks for all of your hugs...I miss those embraces.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Rain Rain Go Away

Oh, you are probably giggling to yourself because here I sit in Florida, in less than 24 hours will be sitting in the San Juan airport awaiting Leah's arrival, and we've been blessed with rain! It's my own special birthday gift from Oregon. Someone needs to fess and come clean...who wished this Oregon birthday surprise for me. Come on!!! I'm living in Florida and this is what I get for my birthday? And my 30th at that!!! I called Leah 2 hours ago (as I was running around scattered trying to tie up all the loose ends) and asked her if she'd checked P.R. weather. Can you imagine her response...she started laughing under her breath, "Yeah." I knew what the next words would be out of her mouth, "It's supposed to rain, BUT it will be 88 degrees." :) I have started to believe, based on experiences throughout my life, rain makes for better memories. If it rains, I will remember this trip that much more. When we were growing up, the camping trips I remember are the ones we got soaked! I even ruined my new pink velcro shoes because they got wet and I put them too close to the fire...they melted. Do you remember that mom? The track practices where it poured and we got soaked...those were the times you'd find us on the football field ruining any pair of white socks on our feet. The mud puddles were too enticing not to go slip-n-sliding!

I noticed in the last few blogs I've alluded to some "writings" that I've done over the past few months and that I may post soon. I realize at times I tend to be more vulnerable than others and most often I'm worried about how you will interpret what my heart says through my fingers. So, I let my mind filter that and share bits and pieces. I guess I'm being protective, of you? of me? I'm not entirely sure. But I do know that I don't want mom and Nik calling me up worried! (I love you both) and thinking they need to buy a ticket to get me home! LOL So, with that in mind, I have filtered! I really value authenticity and know that you know me better through, I promise to be authetic with a hint of filter. :)

My pastor here, Ken, is an extremely compassionate, intuitive person and for the last 7 or more months he has continually checked in on me knowing that the move and then the move and then the other move were a weary time for me. He will walk over to my cubby in the office every so often and say, "How's your heart?" or "Your eyes don't look too full today...?" I guess I share that to let you know that I have been cared for so overwhelmingly. So when I say I'm writing thoughts my heart needs to express, but that I'm not sharing...I've got some good folks seeing my heart on my sleeve and making sure I'm still standing if not sometimes leaning on one of them or one of you. (Did you know you can lean long distance and you might not even know I'm leaning on you.) ;)

Ok and one for some laughter... I've wanted to apologize to my brother and my mom and dad. You know that endlessly circulating email that says something like if I knew then what I know now etc etc I'd __________ (fill in the blank) sit and listen longer, play with my kids more etc . You know the email. Well, the one that always makes me laugh is the "I'd ride with the windows down and not care about my hair!" It always makes me laugh. Eric, Mom, Dad-I'm sorry I always determined that the windows should be rolled up so my hair wouldn't move! :) I've learned to enjoy the wind in my hair over the past 10 or so years and I promise (if it isn't freezing out) we can ride with the windows down! I love you guys and turning 30 and realizing the stupid stuff of early life makes me love you that much more for putting up with ME!

There are so many people, and if you're reading this you are automatically included, that are so precious to me...I considered writing 30 cards to those who have been so dear, but then realized I can't stop at 30 so how do I begin. (Don't laugh, this was one of those thoughts I have when I am seconds from sleep.) Nor do I have the right words to say thanks, but I'll thank God and ask Him to bless you on my birthday because you have been a gift in my life.
Love you all!

So now, I'm off! Next post will be packed with Puerto Rico!

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

to all you powers people

Heard this on the radio this's one for you!
John Mellencamp
(Only I think some of you have something against a big town!;) )
Well I was born in a small town
And I live in a small town
Probly die in a small town
Oh, those small communities

All my friends are so small town
My parents live in the same small town
My job is so small town
Provides little opportunity

Educated in a small town
Taught the fear of jesus in a small town
Used to daydream in that small town
Another boring romantic thats me

But Ive seen it all in a small town
Had myself a ball in a small town
Married an l.a. doll and brought her to this small town
Now shes small town just like me

No I cannot forget where it is that I come from
I cannot forget the people who love me
Yeah, I can be myself here in this small town
And people let me be just what I want to be

Got nothing against a big town
Still hayseed enough to say
Look whos in the big town
But my bed is in a small town
Oh, and thats good enough for me

Well I was born in a small town
And I can breathe in a small town
Gonna die in this small town
And thats probly where theyll bury me

Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Be Mindful

I'm not sure where I was the following quote, but it has been taped (and hidden for several weeks) on my computer screen...

"Be mindful of the things that nag, for these are the things of destiny."

Maybe it's from one of my recent reads, Let Your Life Speak, not sure. Anyway, I'm leaving it up on my screen just a little longer to allow it to mold my thoughts. Wow, we could go really deep here and start talking about destiny and what that word means and how we interpret it in our individual lives...I'm gonna let you go there alone. I'm not feeling real philosophical this day!:)

I've been making reservations for my trip to Puerto Rico and have found some really great little guesthouses. Let me know if you ever make your own Puerto Rico plans and I'll give you the scoop. I will definitely have some new pictures to post so check back after April 16th!!!