Friday, March 31, 2006

BLANKETS AND DAFFODIL'S




A couple of weeks ago I sent

Mary to the reservation. She was the focal point of a Navaho Ceremony. The Medicine Man Gerald King asked for a picture and something that represented Mary-Elizabeth. After weeks of negoting, Mary-Elizabeth was able to have Mary make the trip.

There was a 3 hour ceremony with the Medicine Man and a small group of tribe members. They, sang and chanted and meditated. Belle reports that the songs were very beautiful and every now and then they would insert M-E's name. Mary was dusted with sacred corn pollen (Navaho holy water) and smoke was blown on her. (When she arrived back she smelled like beef jerky, Navaho incense)

Some money was given, a beautiful Chief Joseph Pendleton Blanket was given. A deeper understanding of the culture was received. Belle also nixed the three day ceremony. She determined that 72 hours on the floor of a hogan would kill us.

Belle did not have anything for the other participants. I wanted to send something that was special. Something that would make a statement. Wine, no it is a dry reservation. More blankets, we will need those for the longer ceremony the week-end of July 22. Salmon, no. Then I was buying some daffodil's for the office and I had an idea.

My late Uncle Jack used to send us boxes of daffodils from Puyallup. He sent them to my Grandmother and to us. I had a mission. I was able to get a hold of my cousins and they headed me in the right direction.

My great friend and florist at R. David Adams , Bud. I am not kidding, that is his name, was able to send a box of 25 bunches over night. It took two days. They went out on Monday and arrived on Wednesday.

Belle opened the box at the post office. Dan the post master always shares in the wealth that arrives for Belle. A few potatoes, a new video, a pair of socks, or a shiny rock. Belle passed out the daffodil's to everyone. The secretary, the Medicine man, the staff, all the people that participated, friends. Bits of yellow were scattered around the reservation.

The lack of understanding about cut flowers was mindboggling.We take flowers for granted. I never will again. One women asked if they should be put in the ground. Another asked if they should stay wrapped. One person put them in the window to make them bloom.

Everyone knew they were special, everyone recognized their value, Everyone knew they needed care. Everyone took them home and put them in a place of honor.

Mary brought daffodils to the reservation. I think she approves.

I am sending bulbs this fall.

Saturday, March 25, 2006

Barbie Cake Anxiety






Isabel turns 4 today. When asked what she wants, the answer if CAKE. Not just once, but each time. So we are making a Barbie cake. I had made one for M-E and still had the skirt shaped pan.
5:50 A.M.

I was up early because our ever viligent watch dog was also up. She mentioned several times last night that the raccoon was visiting.(Another Story). The cake is in the oven. The only apparent problem right now is having something long enough to check if it is done. I don't have a natural broom but I will punt. Next step is to ease it out of the pan. I have another mix if this fails.

7:03 A. M. We have the cake, out of the pan.................Yeah.

10:00 A.M. Leave for the "OH my God have you ever seen so much stuff to make cakes with store". It is the home of all known colors, cake pans and cake toppers. I did not check to see if they had any for the alternate life style weddings. Anyway. We purchased a color called Electric Pink. Is is truly shocking.

11:15 A. M. Dog dropped off, coffee and great pastry purchased, no Skipper. When did they quit making Skipper? There is a new Ken looking doll but I don't think this new one would look good in a Skirt especially one that is Electric pink ( Old Ken Maybe) Well we settled for Theresa, she is a brown haired Barbie. So Home. Well Guess what, Barbie is too big. Her legs won't tear off , can you imagine. And so Must Amputate. Did you know Barbie's legs are sold. They snap nicely when scored with a saw. So Doll in Cake, Decorating begins. Needless to say, there is sticky stuff all over the house. The results are just amazing. I am not sure if anyone can eat this much pink and purple and live to tell about it but we will let you know.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

The Venetian Affair

So it took me a while to stumble on this book. Finding books is sort of like working through a maze. You are always on the look out but sometimes the clues to good books or the direction sends you down another path. This book seems like an obvious candidate for my Pre-Venice reading but it is so so good. A great love story written by the lovers themselves from letters gathered from many parts the world. It is not really complete though because many of the letters of Andrea and Guistianna Wynn are still missing but there is hope they are in an attic somewhere.

Very interesting to read from such private letters during a time we think of as stuffy. Guistianna becomes a writer and this passage from one of her books was interesting. I thought as I read it that I am glad we live now. It must have been awful to think your life was done at 23.




Laugh heartily, charming and innocent youth! The age of smiling will soon be upon you. That will be followed in turn by the years of the expertly contrived smile: an air of peace and serenity will often hide the truly agitated state of your soul. And in your old age, when the book of passions is over, it will be too late even to smile. Your face will have lost all of that soft elasticity that allowed your expressions to change with so much ease. The Scissor of Time will have deepened those furrows drawn by the passions of your life: they will have become wrinkles that will never be erased. So what purpose could an awkward smile possibly have? It would only suggest ridiculous claims. An air of thoughtfulness and kindness will be all you really need. That is the natural order of things in the revolution that takes place on the face of a woman.
Guistiana Wynn 1786

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Trying to Figure Out Life


Someone came to me with a big problem. Lots of bad decisions leading to a bad result. It is so hard not being able to always be able to help others. I take on too much sometimes and then I feel defeated by life. I have to let it go. Mom always says that certain things have to be our of our WORRY ZONE. I wish I had a better grasp on where the
WORRY ZONE
was located.


I think to make matters worse, there seems to be changing and moving lines to the ZONE. I believe the ZONE is not a place but rather a rapidly moving amoebae. Not only does it have not healthy and well defined boundaries but it also the ability to cut part of itself off and stay behind and then rejoin the main body. Sort of like the organic, cold pressed, first run, virgin, free range, no BST olive oil in the pasta pot. Little blobs head off on their own and come back at will.

Having a child with Lhokemia creates lots of little side blobs. Sometimes you notice them, other times you don't. They are there and attract attention when least expected.

Is she tired because she is watching to many episodes of Friends or is it her Liver? Are her little bruises really from Volley Ball or are they a sign of relapse? Why are so many kids at St. Joe's coughing? Did influenza A really mutate into another form that she can catch? Will her numbers be good enough to really go to Venice? Who keeps messing up my house? When will NCIS come out on DVD? Where are my good hand clippers? Who will win the NCAA Pool? .....................

Monday, March 20, 2006

AnnaBelle Handbags.

Here are the new ones. My great orange one is on it's way back to have it's handles repaired.
Don't you just love local businesses that make good......

Miss Marion is 25% of the way to her Goal

Thanks to everyone that sent money to Ms. Marion. She asks Mary-Elizabeth if she knows Vickie, Mime, Clair........ It makes M-E smile.

The Volleyball team won both times this week-end. M-E played and has a dynamite serve. Two games this week-end. Volleyball was a good way to get M-E headed back to normal.

Something New Every Day


We have a park around the corner that the whole neighborhood came together and built. It took a few years but it is now finished. It is a nice neighborhood spot. M-E was able to be involved in several aspects of the project. She was so sick when they did the tiles that she does not remember which one is hers but knows it is there. We have some money left over and Carol (the person that probably did the most work) wants a peace pole.

She sent out the site and it is the link of the moment. I think it is something anyone could do and is a wonderful idea. We may have to make one for our yard. These might be a great thing for lots of people.

The summer is coming together. M-E is going to camp with the girls ( we hope Laura can come). She and Whitney are going to Camp Good Times in Post Falls Idaho, I am taking the girls to Walla Walla for the Bar Convention. I am sure they will have a good time with the other kids. And I have to set the date for the Beauty Way ceremony. As soon as it is set, I will let everyone know. I like that ceremony has been translated to Beauty.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Dinner and a Movie


A little Italian a cheezie movie with funny moments (Failure to Launch) some great conversation with Maggie and Dr. Tracy. I even slept in this morning. That was a great feeling.

Here are some spring moments. We must grab them when we can.

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Mary Has Been to Chinle


About a week ago I boxed up Mary and sent her to the Medicine Man in Chinle. She was part of a three hours Protection Way ( Ceremony) Her various notes were examined and read. Her amulets examined and she was blessed with special smoke and dusted with sacred Pollen. Chants and Songs were conducted and the Medicine Man will do a Blessing Way ( Three day) ceremony this summer. M-E's picture has been attached and Mary is on her way home.

Friday, March 17, 2006

Merchant of Venice

I mentioned a couple of weeks ago that I had seen the Merchant of Venice. I am watching all movies made in Venice, about Venice, all books about Venice, written by Venitians, you get the picture. I am Venice, but back to my point.

There was a monologue by Shylock ( The money lender). He is asked why he wants a pound of flesh if Antonio does not make good on his loan. I was not as much amazed by the speech but more about the writer. To think that this was written in the 16th century is pretty remarkable. We have struggled for centuries with the ever present issues of prejudice and intolerance. Maybe we need to give ourselves a break when instant progress is not made and try harders. Maybe I should not be so critical of George Bush.......NOT. So addressing the issue of intolerance:


Salerio: Why, I am sure if he forfeit thou wilt not take his flesh. What's that good for?

Shylock:

To bait fish withal. If it will feed nothing else, it will feed my revenge.

He hath disgraced me and hind'red me half a million,

laughted at my losses, mocked at my gains, scorned my nation,

thwarted my bargains, cooled my friends, heated mine enemies- and

what's his reason.

I AM A JEW.

Hath not a Jew eyes? Hath not a Jew hands, organs, dimensions, senses, affections, passions? --fed with same food, hurt with the same weapons, subject to the same disease, healed by the same means, warmed and cooled by the same winter and summer as a Christian is?

If you prick us, do we not bleed?
If you tickle us, do we not laugh?
If you poison us, do we not die?

And if you wrong us, shall we not revenge? If we are like you in the rest, we will resembled you in that.

If a Jew wrong a Christian, what is his humility? Revenge. If a Christian wrong of Jew, what should his sufferance be but by a Christian example?

Why revenge! The villainy you teach me I will execute, and it shall go hard but I will better than my instruction.

The world is truly coming to an end.

Jessica Simpson is in Washington D.C. and is lobbying for a charity and this is News.

My NCAA bracket is still number one after day One. ( Could it be that my dad filled it out?)

Belle has been made Chief of Psychiatry in Chinle.

Archbishops all over America have had to give out dispensation so the Irish can eat meat.

I am thinking about doing all my Laundry this week-end.

Prenisone is making both M-E and me crazy. ( That is not earth shattering).



Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Beware the Ides of March

I was on the computer last night and M-E picked up Julius Cesar and started to read it. She found the language to be a bit difficult at first but then it began to flow a bit better. She did not get very far but I think these kids could benefit from some Shakespeare.

Each month has an "Ides". It is the 15th. I guess our mantra is "Beware the 13th of August". We all have such days. They are the days that certain life changing events occurred. As our "Ides" slips by each month I say an extra prayer. I don't ever want to ignore that date. I don't want to be silly enough to assume that there will not be more of them in the future. Days where the news alters reality forever. I don't want to slip back into the complacency that gives us all an unending future.

It is always a struggle to know that we must plan and prepare for the future but then know that there might not be a future but then need to prepare for the future. Hummmmm maybe that is a problem I can not solve.

Sunday, March 12, 2006

I found a Venetian Mirror

It was only 4900.00. I have decided that it should not be in my Venetian Room. I have been looking at the sort of things we might find in Venice. I guess it goes without saying that the irony that all of the very fine things in
Venice are fragile and beautiful and elusive. I think that says it all about M-E's current state of remission. It is a thing of beauty but one bad throw by a luggage handler and it is shattered. It has to be protected and wrapped carefully and placed on a special shelf. The problem is that if it does not see the light of day and have some sunshine hit its surfaces, the world never sees the beauty that it holds.

I guess it is better to enjoy while we can and not lock it up.

Monday, March 06, 2006

Thoughts and worries


"Daylight will peep through a very small hole."

I found that saying today and I should have tatooed it on my forearm in preparation for a test. Each time I think we are out of the fog and heading to clear skys and warm days, a hook comes a pulls me back around to the world of confusion and concern and worry.

I guess the day started with Dana Reves dying. What is that poor 13 year old boy going to do, both parents dead in less than a year? Then I trot down, (trot might be a bit overstating it) to the Make-A-Wish office. Great place. Happy people, lots of fun things to look at on the walls, lots of new toys to give to the children. I dropped off a quilt for their auction this week-end. If they raise a bit of money I won't worry about the cost of M-E's wish. I saw the pictures and realized that I knew some of the kids and some had since died.

See, in my tiny little mind if we made it to the "Wish" we would be home free. We would be able to sail on past any other scary or tricky stuff with great aplomb. My worries would be over. I am so silly some times. It just yanked me into dispair so fast. She looks great, there are not many bumps in the road but the big
R

is alive an living over my head.



I need to find some happy pills. It will be alright in the morning. I always wakeup on the positive side of the bed but sometimes the other side is so so scary.


Progress

M-E is registered at Holy Names. Big steps. Some decisions. I have become an over protective parent. Proud of my daughter's accomplishments but cognizant of the issues she still has to deal with, one being pressure. They had her ready to go to both Honors English and Honor Algerbra. I would have been tickled pink about that two years ago. She has worked so hard and done so well but she has another calendar year left of treatment if we are lucky. As much as it feels like it is over, it is not, yet.

We are adding some things back in slowly bit by bit. I said no to the Honors English for this next year at least and yes to the Algerbra. Once she gets settled in school she can take on more challenges.

She will be taking Spanish for real for the first time and all the other, World Cultures, Biology etc. It will be a full and busy year. She is already worried about the home work.

I reminded her that she should take care of today. Maybe it seemed like too much when she had to think about some major projects due for this month in 8th grade. She agreed.

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Cook Books

I love them. I buy them. I read them. I pack them up. I never use them. I have discovered they can be useful. I will be needing them these next 40 days.

I gave up take-out and fast food for Lent. I am going to cook. I am going to take that next step back to real life. I know how, I kind of excel in fact. I guess I have to just do it. It did occur to me that I don't need to make up a new recipe every time I cook dinner. I could follow one for once. What a concept.

I find that the hardest part of the cooking thing is deciding what to have. So I have decided. Tonight we are having Pecan Crusted Chicken, asparagus and baked Sweet Potatoes or Garnet Yams. I think I can pull dinner together without going to the store. I just love that.

I might actually look in the cook books and do some planning. What a novel idea! Maybe I could bring some order to my kitchen. Oh, maybe I need to go find a new cookbook and buy a new stove and maybe go to
Whole Foods for new spices and find one of those terracotta cookers with a cone and a hole in the top. I need my knives shapened and a new apron and perhaps a blender............... See maybe giving up take-out and fast food was not such a grand idea.

Friday, March 03, 2006

Leukemia, Leukemia, Leukemia


Yes I do know how to spell it. I have been working on the blog. Boy, can I tell when I did not have a spell checker.

I had a bit of a scare today with the L word. M-E showed me her fore arms and they were covered with little bruises. Peticii (SP) like. Those are very very bad juju in the Lookemia world. You never ever, ever, never,ever want to see those. While I was waiting to talk with the nurse, I printed a months worth of early blogs. I am going to finish editing the hundreds of pages ( double spaced and 14 point type) and see if anyone but those near and dear to me want to read it.

I began to spell check on month and it picked up lots of mistakes and other anomalies but each and every time, no matter how I spelled Luekemia. It picked it up and spelled it correctly. Now this is a spell checker that had to taught the word BLOG. Go figure.

Back to the Blog..... I am so glad that I wrote when I did. I don't remember half of the words on those pages. It is like once I put it on paper, it was released.

Well time to walk the dog and try and help M-E up the stairs. She had her first Volley Ball practice and her quads are not happy with her.

Thursday, March 02, 2006

Projects Come to Completion











Here is the project the kids did. It is coming to a bus shelter near you. Each child is holding the project they worked on.

Hope is The Thing with Feathers

Ms Willett has been working on Poetry with the 8th graders. I remember those painful painful classes as a teacher. I had learned to love poetry from such a teacher and but getting past that resistance is a challenge. I always find it ironic that children who raised with lots and lots of nusery rhymes, rhyming music/jinggles and play ground chants are so afraid of poetry when they face it on the written paper. It scares them for some reason. I have no fear that Ms. Willett is up for the challenge.

I loved that when M-E was working on the poetry, she was reading it outloud. It so needs to have voice and not remain in someone's mind. She was looking at some Emily Dickinson poems and I was helping her find some from the books we have at home and found one that I thought had a special message for me.

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul,
And sing the tune without the words,
And never stops at all,

And sweetest in the gale is heard;
And sore must be the storm
That could abash the little bird
That kept so many warm.

I've heard it in the chillest land,
And on the strangest sea;
Yet, never, in extremity,
It asked a crumb of me.

As we travel through Lent and as Mary-Elizabeth continues to remain in remission, I am so greatful for the presence of hope.