City green thumb meets country….

He that has a good harvest must be content with a few thistles

I have a green thumb (most times). The rhythm of weeding, dead-heading, pruning and planting, quiets my mind (usually).  And when my mind is quiet, I can hear my soul speak. Not this time. Let me back up. I was not in some small garden plucking away at few spent flowers and pulling wayward weeds. Nope. I was in my parents’ vegetable garden in the country. One that to a city-dweller (which I am), is bigger than most community garden projects that are shared by multiple families. Now normally I do not weigh in on their rather zealous veggie gardening plans. By the […] Read more »

Giving my Oscar the Grouch the boot…

It is just a bad day, not a bad life.

I am having one of those days where I am tempted to crawl back under the covers and start over. After cleaning oatmeal off the kitchen floor – and off the kitten who thought chasing his sister through my legs was a good idea  – I am having a heard time getting myself going. Not ready to hit the home office, I decide to knock Carrot Soup off my To Do List (otherwise known as the “Things To Do-to-avoid-writing-without-feeling-too-guilty List”). Last weekend, I had dug up my carrot patch. Months of feeding, watering and weeding had produced two paltry freezer bags filled […] Read more »

Scars, scratches and letting go…

Today's moments are tomorrow's memories

We all have moments from our childhood that stick with us. Some are remembered because of the scars they left behind. Others for the warm tingle of feeling safe, happy, loved, free… Yet what about the moments that are more like scratches? We can remember something that happened, but we dismiss it because it seems small or inconsequential. This couldn’t have impacted me, it was so minor. In a recent creative non-fiction writing class, we were asked to write a short piece about a childhood memory. I chose one that was vivid but was not high up on the emotion-meter. Yet when I went through the process of capturing the story on […] Read more »

And the winner is…

"Being a good writer is 3% talent, 97% not being distracted by the internet" (or by kittens)

Please allow me another short break from my usual post. I have decided to share a short creative non-fiction piece that came out of a “Try It” exercise in the book Tell It Slant: Creating, Refining, and Publishing Creative Nonfiction, by Brenda Miller and Suzanne Paola. The prompt was: Take a writing session to observe everything you do around writing. What is your routine? How does it serve or sabotage you? What keeps you from writing? What helps you? What happens when you change your routine? And the winner is… Bum in chair is the hardest. No. That is not […] Read more »

Being with our emotions…

Let us not look back in anger or forward in fear, but around in awareness.

What does it mean to be present to our feelings? Does being present-focused allow us to be more aware of our feelings and give us more choices? Or can it be used to distract and mask emotions? When something happens in our environment (internal or external) the initial emotions that come up are our body’s way of alerting us, giving us information, and getting us ready to act in some way. Sometimes our feelings are easily identifiable. Other times, they have multiple layers and can become convoluted. Why? Because our thoughts can jump in and we may interpret, judge or react to the […] Read more »