Sunday, May 31, 2009

Signs of Summer

Summer is visiting Kingston. I can tell by all the old friends I have seen this week. The ducks are visiting regularly and becoming so bold as to walk through the rose garden in search for bugs. Even Duffy has no effect on their parade. I sit on the porch early in the morning having coffee and reading, without a coat and scarf. The noise of the birds is constant all day long but the frogs have mostly gone quiet at night. This morning I spied a bright yellow goldfinch on the front wire and the other day a busy hummingbird. The wood pecker is looking for treats everywhere, the electrical box and eucalyptus tree but not yet the house. And the weeds are growing faster than I can possibly keep up but I haven't yet given up- that comes in another month.

On an early morning walk I surprised a mother rose-rat (read here DEER) quietly browsing the side grass of a neighbors road. It is a good thing he didn't meet the coyote that surprised us both when he leaped over a berm of blackberries onto the road. His backward movement was almost a cartoon when he saw me standing in front of him. I suspect I was the more scared! I hear the coyotes calling one another occasionally but haven't seen one WALKING before.

It may last only for a week but the excitement of summer has definitely arrived. I am reminded of the excitement the arrives with Christmas and suddenly realize the similarities. Both seasons hold emotional memories of magic and play, set in our childhoods when play was the only focus of life and the structure of magic and fun was set by our parents. This often leads us to disappointment when the summers and Christmases of our adult life do not meet our childhood expectations.

But we can return to those seasons of magical fun again when we take on the responsibility of building a magical structure for ourselves and for others around us. The energy of building and planning does not take away from the loose, fancy free idea of summer. Rather it returns the commitment to play and to making time for fun in our days. Make this summer memorable by constantly giving effort to play. Take small moments to have ice cream with friends and larger moments for kite flying or a walk through the park. Lay in the sun with a glass of iced tea and read (it only takes a few moments if that is all you have). The summer is yours for the making. Enjoy it!

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Lilacs Everywhere

With the beautiful weather this weekend gave the Northwest, the fragrance of lilacs filled Tulin Road. There is nothing that says Springtime more than the smell lilacs. They are everywhere in the house now- bedroom, living room and kitchen in big bunches. Even with the cold gray rain today, I stay happy with the reminder that warm weather and sunshine do return from time to time.

This leads me to my thought for today . My ferry ride to Seattle gave me time to finish a book by John Straley. I recommend this author. He has a nice poetic voice in his story telling and IS the poet lauriet of Sarah Palen's state, you know! His little story of the 1930's in Seattle and Alaska reminded me that all life is movement forward , backward, then forward again. Sometimes the backwards times seem to be all we feel - they go on and on. All we can do is keep swimming against the current to keep ourselves from sinking. Sometimes the current of life seems to help us along a little but then we are tossed back into the storm to struggle beyond what we believe is our limit. Eventually we learn to follow the current, hoping it will carry us to our destination or at least keep us wishing. Then one day we notice that the sun is out and we are happy. We have a life that holds our dreams when we didn't even realize it was happening.
In the midst of uncertainty and change, breath deep and try to float a little. Let the current of life do some of the hard work and know that you will get to the place you long to be. If you enjoy the trip then it is even better so splash around a little.

Happy Springtime to you!

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Happy BIrthday to Erin

Today is Erin's birthday. I am thinking about this day, 28 years ago. It was very early in the morning the day before Mother's Day when we left Kyrsa and Colin with Cheryl Narod before heading to Bremerton. After Erin was born the hospital let me rest an extra day because Kyrsa and Colin were waiting anxiously and energetically at home in Hansville. When we came home from the hospital, we went to Papa Joe's for cinnamon rolls and the ladies gave me a corsage left over from Mother's Day. Anita was there with us the first week and had fun bathing Erin in the kitchen sink at the Hansville cabin.

Unbelievably, that was 28 years ago. So many memories and adventures have happened since. There is nothing in my life that is as wonderful as being a mother to 3 wonderful children. They are people I enjoy and I am proud to have them in my life. Each part of their growing and my growing has been filled with exciting changes and challenges. I wouldn't have guessed the adventures and joy that was ahead of me at the start but I thank God for the gift.

Today is the beginning of another year of adventures and challenges for Erin. I know there will be joys and laughter as well. I thank all of my children for sharing their adventures and their growing with me, even now. It makes my heart smile as I imagine your smiles.