Thursday, February 3, 2011

Scarf Ace: First Day Back on the Scarf Team

Scarf Ace: First Day Back on the Scarf Team

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Our Cold Pearl

Imagine the solar system as an oyster in the black ocean of the universe. And imagine our earth as a pearl inside the oyster, slowly being coated in a hard, shiny nacreous material. Imagine that! That's what's going on outside. 
Only instead of opalescence, it's ice. 

The Boomer generation was used to a certain stability of climate, but it seems that the generations following will be incorporating climate change into their culture. These increasingly violent fluctuations that are so disruptive to older generations are going to be the norm for the younger generations. As a Boomer, I'm reminded of Bob Dylan's disturbing song,"The Times, They Are A'Changin'." 

Where I live in Ohio, there is a Level 3 Emergency in force, meaning that only necessary vehicles are allowed on the roads, and anyone else can be ticketed. I guess that means police cruisers, ambulances, and pizza delivery kids. Over 70,000 people in our area are reportedly without power due to heavy ice glazing tree branches and power lines, causing them to fracture and break. Predictions of power outages lasting several days have been issued. 

Your life will never seem the same to you after this is over.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Will I Be Mummified This Year?

This is kind of personal, but I hope to hear from people willing to share their thoughts.

Perimenopause is the time when a woman's body begins to wind down the production of female hormones. Those of you that haven't had the pleasure, imagine weeks and months of PMS! Night sweats, insomnia, itchy skin, vaginal dryness, tearfulness, and volcanic rages at nothing and everything. My doctor prescribed hormone replacement therapy to ease the transition.

Once the transition was over, I tried to go off the hormones, natural plant bioequivalents, but each time the symptoms returned. I decided to stay on the hormones because every woman I'd known who used them kept a kind of dewy glow. I wanted to keep mine.

The only problem is that studies indicate that continued use of the hormones predisposes one to certain cancers and other medical problems. With all the different cancers in my family plus my own personal risks, I'm scared anyway. So, when I ended up being without the pills for a whole week due to lack of funds to pay for the refill and icy weather preventing transportation to pick up the refill, I asked my doctor about staying off.

It's been almost two weeks now without the pills. No strange conditions have arisen that weren't already there. Definitely not the dreaded rages. Will my back hump over? Will my hair grow scraggly? Will my neck wrinkle into crepe paper? Will my voice turn squawky? Will my vagina dry like autumn leaves?

I'm going to stay the course and see what happens. See if there are other ways to keep a dewy glow.

End Of January Thoughts

In most American states, January is regarded as a "bad" month because of the post-holiday season let-down and the mid-winter cold. Days are short, the light is bleak, we find ourselves encased in ice. Because our lives are likewise short, I'm really, really, really trying to reroute my thinking to appreciate every reality. Such as January. While puttering in the kitchen recently, I glanced at the window and ended up taking pictures of my struggling houseplants leaning toward the whiteness outside.

Because I just discovered a delightful blog here called "Julie Tries ... " in which Julie wrote about "Lavender in Winter," posting a couple of photos of her lavender plants that not only have survived but have bloomed, I'm going to copy her and present you with those photos I took a few weeks ago of my little plants. To ease your winter blues, I also invite you to visit her blog.

Below is the same photo, tweaked a little bit to make the scene more gentle. 
If only we could tweak winter. 

In case you didn't notice, the green leaves are beyond the screen while the pink plants are inside. My mother gave me a silk ficus that I keep outside the window. 

And below is a magnification of a bit of the same picture. To go English-class on you, allow me to point out that the screen symbolizes our sense of being trapped by the cold of winter, and the green leaf tips symbolize our yearning to grow and thrive, to seek light wherever we can find it. 

The final photo is a different shot altogether, but the hot pink against the snow will make you feel happy and warm and springtimy! Hence, not only is today's post meant to be the end-of-January thoughts, today being the 30th, but it also resolves to be the End of January-thoughts. 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

Spring Leaves With The Winter This Year ...

What does that title mean, you wonder. Well. It means that I just realized a few days ago that I need to stop wishing for spring so fervently because I will turn 60 in May. The three inches of snow and ice outside, the single-digit crystallized air, I need to cherish those because I'm still in my 50s right now. 

Numbers are human creations and they shouldn't matter, but 60. Jeez. Oh, well. 


I need more income to survive, but the thing is that I don't want to work any more than I already am. At least not for anybody else. Does this sounds familiar to you? So, what better motivation to research the perfect part-time job? I want something I can do at home when I choose. Also something fun that doesn't electrocute my brain or drain my blood. Remember that John Mellencamp song, "I need a lover that won't drive me crazy!"? Like that. It also has to be something realistic in the present economy. Nobody has any money.

Kids always want to know why they have to study certain things in school, demanding to know what's the use of it. Here is the use of it: studying history tells us what people want regardless of poverty or riches, war or peace, youth or age. Studying Facebook fine-tunes the answer. The final filter is what I am able and willing to deliver. The answer was partially described by the Roman poet Juvenal as PANEM ET CIRCENSES -- "bread and circuses." Food and fun. In a word, comfort.

To spare you further Venutian circumlocution (a John Gray reference to female verbosity), I will simply announce that I'm going to make chocolate-scented candles. They smell like a delicious comfort food, look pretty, make good gifts, enhance romance, satisfy the primal attraction to fire, and therefore fulfill the PANEM ET CIRCENSES criteria. And they don't cost much and they're environmentally friendly.

I'm using this blog to track my progress. Part of it is for you: if any of you can benefit from my mistakes and successes, I'll be happy. Part of it is for myself: by publishing my commitment to you, I'll boot myself in the ass. If anyone has suggestions, please share them!

One of Anthony Robbins' books urges you to work daily on your goal, even if only in tiny little steps. At the end of the day you can see yourself closer to your goal than you were when you first woke up.

As of this moment, early Saturday afternoon, I've researched the cost and availability of supplies. I dug out an old Walmart candle-making kit, still unopened, from my arts-and-crafts room. The box is open, the directions reviewed, the permanent work station established. Without training, I made some candles a few years ago for fun, but now I know better how to make good quality candles worthy of being in your homes.

I plan to use soy wax made from local soy beans. Available scents I plan to test include milk chocolate, chocolate chip cookies, chocolate fudge, mint chocolate, mocha, and more. A couple of members of my family have graciously offered to work as my scent testers.

This is going to be so fun! It's fun already! I will keep you posted.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

A Good Year Or A Bad Year?

So, how has 2011 been for you so far? Good or bad? How do you expect it to continue?

Whatever it is, it's all in your head. There is no such thing as 2011 in the universe. The calendar is artificial, a creation of homo sapiens. 

Humans seem to have the genetic need to categorize and label everything, including time. Although humans have been around for hundreds of thousands of years, they have been known to measure time for only a few millennia, using calendars to structure their past and guide their behavior. Several different calendars of different ages are being used concurrently all over the world. 

Your expectation for success in life should not depend upon the earth's rotations around the sun, measured in a number of units of length incomprehensible to the human brain. 

Your success depends upon your decisions, especially when changes occur. You make choices every minute, each choice nudging you along the path of your destiny. Bad or good? Yes or no? Act or wait? Metaphorically speaking, you have the power to choose your response to a pothole impeding your path, whether you stop to analyze it, leap over it, step through it, walk around it, fill it, or ignore its existence. The calendar does not govern you.

So. 2011 is neither a good year nor a bad year. You are free to make your life what you want it to be.