Thursday, May 31, 2007

The Fruit Tree

Some of you have been with me since I was sending email as I went across country. Some of you have been reading since I began this blog as I drove to Texas to my new home here. If so, you remember my uncertainty, my hopes, my adventures finding secondhand furniture. This week I learned something new about my home. There is a fruit tree in the back yard.

Now I can only assume it produces fruit every other year because it definitely did not do so last year. Nor do I know what kind of fruit tree it is though it looks as if it might be apricots or peaches.

I’ve always wanted a fruit tree in my back yard. Thought about planting one but the information said that two were required to actually produce fruit. So you can imagine my confusion when I saw the green fruit appearing on my one little tree. Then yesterday I noticed that there is a huge, extremely prolific (far more so than mine!) peach tree in a yard nearby. So maybe that’s where the cross pollination came from. If so, I’m grateful.

Discovering this week that I have a fruit tree in my back yard seemed one more indication that this is indeed the right house for me.

Here’s hoping that all of you are in the homes that are right for you.


Sunday, May 27, 2007

Memorial Day and Heroes

I’m a sucker for heroes, I always have been. I want to believe there are people who will right wrongs and protect those who can’t protect themselves. I want to believe in people who will fight for what’s right—even if it means putting their lives at stake.

This is Memorial Day weekend. A time to remember and honor people who have served in the military and perhaps even gave their lives for our country.

I wish we didn’t have wars. I wish every weapon on earth could be dismantled. My heart goes out to all whose lives are torn apart by war. And I wish that people could see beyond their own fears to talk and work things out another way. I even know there are flawed individuals who have done horrible deeds while wearing a uniform.

But that does not stop me from honoring those who serve hoping to help, wanting to protect, who may have to face their deepest fears each time they go out on duty, and who sacrifice so much for their country. These are the men and women I remember and salute on Memorial Day.

As I said, I’ve always been a sucker for heroes.


Thursday, May 24, 2007

My Friend is Cured!

Those of you reading my blog for a while now know that I have a friend who was diagnosed with very aggressive breast cancer last fall. Yesterday she was pronounced cured.

Oh, we know. She’ll need to be monitored closely for a while. And “cure” is a tricky word when it comes to cancer. Nonetheless, anyone who has ever battled cancer or had a loved one who did knows what a relief yesterday’s verdict was. And what a relief it is for my friend to be finishing up her treatment—radiation and chemotherapy. By the time I see her late in June she swears she’ll be her old self again—at least in terms of energy.

They say that attitude makes a huge difference with any illness. That’s something I deeply believe. And she’s a fighter. She fought Hepatitis C and won that battle, too. It’s been years since they could find any trace of it in her system. Now she’s won this battle as well.

I think part of it is that she’s got a lot to live for. She has good friends and children she loves and a husband who is loving and supportive. She wants to see what the future holds—for all of them and for herself.

And that’s the key for all of us, I think. To be fully engaged in life, to know how to laugh and find joy and care deeply about others around us. If we do these things then every moment matters and we are most likely to have the resilience we need to cope if something like cancer comes into our lives.

I know that I’ll be celebrating tonight and looking forward to seeing my friend and laughing with her again in a month or so. Thank you everyone who told me here or privately that they were praying for my friend. She has said more than once that she felt the power of all the prayers being said for her by so many wonderful people.


Saturday, May 19, 2007


I read something interesting yesterday. It was about a study that said it was better for a woman’s health to do housework than to work out at a gym.

Now my first reaction is to ask: What’s the gender AND the agenda of the person(s) doing the study?

I’m also somewhat skeptical. On the other hand, I can sort of see how it might be true. I’ve been making it a point to walk every day for some time now. And I thought I was doing pretty well in terms of keeping in shape. But then I climbed to the top of a hill with my daughter—and got way more winded than I liked. And I decided to start mowing my own lawn this year. (I’d hired a service last year because I didn’t think I could manage the heat.) Well, first time out I thought I’d about die. Took me an hour to mow the front and an hour to mow the back. Now it takes me half an hour for each. I still mow half one day and the other half a different day because otherwise I get too hot but....I can tell the difference and it’s in me not my lawn!

So I can sort of see that all the different actions one does with housework might be really good exercise—if one does enough of it! And that’s the kicker. The study cited 17 hours of housework a week. It does not say that women who went to the gym were spending 17 hours at the gym!

At any rate, it means there is one more option for staying fit.


Wednesday, May 09, 2007

Mothers Day

Mothers Day is coming up—with all the attendant commercialism and praising of mothers. For those of us who have lost our mothers and/or whose mothers weren't the world’s best this can be a difficult holiday. It’s difficult also for mothers who have lost children (in any sense of the word).

For writers, the word mother is rich with possibility. We see all the ways mothers impact their children—and vice versa. We understand that without knowing the mother we cannot fully understand the child—and vice versa.

In writing as in life, this connection is one of the most powerful we will ever know. In life as in writing, there is power in learning to honor the good while blessing and releasing what is/was less than perfect—and in knowing that all relationships have the potential to change and grow—even that between mother and child.


Wednesday, May 02, 2007

My Haunted Toilet

My Haunted Toilet

Okay, so I’m pretty handy around the house. I can fix a lot of things. I understand how to spot problems and deal with them. But now I’ve got this demon/haunted toilet....

It worked fine. Until it broke in the middle of a writing workshop I was giving at my house. Several days, some new tools and parts and it was fixed. I thought. Until yesterday. I had a friend over. She mentioned that it kept gurgling. (Did I mention this was my guest bathroom?) I kept removing the tank top and fiddling with things trying to spot the problem. Everything LOOKS fine but it isn’t. Suddenly, a tube pops free and starts spraying all over the bathroom AND ME. AND sprayed all over some things my friend had set on the counter top next to the toilet!

I managed to slap the tube back into place, fiddle with it so the toilet stopped running, but my friend and I decided that she would just use mine if she needed to until she left.

I swear the blasted thing is haunted! And I STILL don’t know what’s wrong with it. But I’m going to figure it out—I swear I will. Even if I have to conduct an exorcism over it!

April (warily eyeing the thing and wondering if I should put on a plastic raincoat before I tackle the darned thing again....)