Life is like a box of chocolates, ya never know wut yer gonna get

Life is like a box of chocolates, ya never know wut yer gonna get

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

A time to remember fathers everywhere.  Good ones, bad ones, whatever - just send em a card, eh?  or call and say 'howdy do?'  or simply remember your Dad.  for what he was and what he is now.

i don't think i like to be told when to think of somebody though.  father's day and mother's day and valentine's day - really are about spending money, aren' they?  and that is disgusting.

i think of my parents everyday.  sometimes to appreciate. sometimes to remember, sometimes to blame (i said that just the way daddy does!), sometimes to be sentimental, sometimes to wonder.  i dont' send cards very well.  i am terrible at phone calls.  i do email and posts, but alot of people think that is too cold.  technology has made it so we can be closer to people, while really being at a safe distance.  we can control things better, we don't hafta listen - we can simply delete...but that's another story.

i truly appreciate fathers and fatherhood.  raising a child without a father is more than difficult, it is bad for the child.  there is so much a child learns from each parent - even how to argue is an important lesson.  for me - having a father is a good thing, having a grandfather was a good thing and having a father for my children (my hubby) is a good thing.  they have all influenced my children, they have influenced me.  sometimes good, sometimes not so much.  but even the not so much times can, and often do, result in good life lessons.

my father deeply loved his father...his love for my grandpa grew stronger as they got older.  from all the stories i've heard, their younger years were difficult because my father was much like my son, full of piss and vinegar.  the odds are pretty good that grandpa was that same way when he was a kid.  i know in grandpa's later years, that same chemical mixture was seen and heard at many of our visits.

being a father is a difficult job.  since kids did not come with instruction books, we all learned how to raise and react to children kinda on our own...with our own childhood as the base.  and kids are each so different!  can be confusing to say the least. 

dad's job=
  1. earn money for the family (being out of the house for about ten hours per day)
  2. come home after work and be expected to resolve conflicts, offer love, answer questions, play, etc. - even though you are tired.
  3. be interested in your child's life - school, sports, friends, problems
  4. be the discipliner; aligned with mom's decisions from the daytime when you were absent
  5. help mom change diapers, feed babies, shop, house stuff, even though you are tired.
  6. be a daddy for the rest of your life
  7. be a grandpa - i would think that would be more fun than being a dad  :)
  8. be a great grandpa 
  9. attend weddings, graduations, life altering occasions
  10. wonder and worry and take pride in your children for the rest of your life.
  11. feel underappreciated and sometimes forgotten
  12. probably more stuff i can't think of right now
I wish my father a lovely father's day - everyday, not just the third sunday in june.  thank you for being has been an interesting journey getting to know and understand you.  you are like a bottle of very good wine.  as you age the different textures become more apparent - and more lovely.  bold yet subtle, more tannin than fruit, yet the fruit still holds it's own in an almost stubborn way, a very subtle cherry - like your old pipe smoke. 

Saturday, June 19, 2010

elephant and ego

i have always liked elephants.  one of my favorite photos is of a child and an elephant sitting on a bench and the child has it's arm around the elephant's back.  good friends.  when i was young ( about 4 years old i think)  i had fantasies of being the elephant tamer in a circus.  i was the small beautiful girl in a sparkly outfit telling the behemoth pachyderm what to do - and it obeyed me.  it would lift me up with it's trunk and i would ride high above as it did its tricks at my urging.  i would lie on the floor and it would pretend to step on me or lie ontop of me - stopping short, so the audience gasped but no harm was done, because the elephant loved and obeyed me.  i dreamed about this scenario the other night.  i had not thought of it in years.  te beginning of the dream was fluffy and pretty and fun.  and then it changed. the elephant in my dream went mad and the sparkly girl tried and tried to tame her elephant, but the elephant would have none of it.  the elephant understood that the routines the girl was using were no longer effective, no longer useful, no longer amusing, no longer safe -  they actually did more harm than good.  The elephant was tired of being hurt and abused by the small self absorbed sparkly child who only loved and protected herself.  The elephant wanted more.  The elephant wanted to love and be loved.  she was finally willing to break away from the tyranny of the child and find a more harmonious life.
I told patti about this dream and my history of he elephant and the sparkly child.  she was excited by it and truly happy for me.  this is an amazing thing she told me.

the sparkly child is my ego and the elephant is me.

Saturday, June 5, 2010

One of my vices

I like to watch the Ghost hunter type shows.  I know, right?  I like seeing the different old buildings and learning their stories...the stories of the people who lived in them so many many years ago.  I like watching the grown men and women walk about in the dark talking to the darkness.  The night vision makes everything look eerie and there are always many bumps, creaks, and whispered voices.  Sometimes there are floating orbs of light, unexplained mists and fogs, shadows and apparitions, sometimes you can hear the voices played back on a recorder, sometimes it sounds like just noise- sometimes you can hear words.  Sometimes the investigators get hit or scratched.  Oh - and did I mention the temperature changes and the electronic magnetism field?  That goes up and down too.  The ghosts also drain the cameras of their power...they use that energy so they can use it to make themselves known to the investigators.

It was interesting to note that the investigators tell us that if a place has a high emf  (eltro magnetic field) - that certain individuals are sensitive to it and will become nauseous, paranoid and feel a heaviness on their bodies.  That can explain some people thinking a place is haunted.  I think that is interesting because when we lived in Big Creek and I walked past the power plant I always felt weird...I always thought that if their was an electrical storm I would be the one hit by lighterning.  The hair on my arms would stand up too.

I realize that all this stuff can be an illusion for dramatic appeal.  I agree that often these people look and sound kinda foolish...and they do foolish things.  I understand all this - and yet, still, I watch.  Boyd sometimes sits with me as i watch.  It is really hard for him to sit quietly though.  His remarks are mostly snarky jabs, as you can imagine coming from my rational hubby.

I know - it is a silly embarassing habit. 

Thursday, June 3, 2010

The Chickens

The chicks are spending their first night out in the chicken pen.  Till now they have been in a small pen on the patio - near the house.  Much of their time has been under a heat lamp.  Now they all have feathers and they are large enough to be farther away.  Boyd built a nice sturdy pen - similar to what I built for our last go-round with poultry.  It is next to Magnet's pen.  We transported them down to their new home in a large cardboard box.  Getting them into the box was very noisy and very stinky.  Feathers and poop dust everywhere - with all those feathers flapping.  They have led a very sheltered life so far.  They did not like the changes being made - getting captured, put in a box and then dumped in a new place.  It only took a few minutes for them to adjust to the larger, cleaner, more organized space.  They were thrilled to find bugs to eat!  At dusk I went down to check on them and they were all huddled against an outside corner.  Silly chickens.  They will get too cold there, so I transported them yet again - two by two - to the interior of the pen.  I put a dozen of them on roosts - all but four of them jumped or fell down to the floor.  when Boyd finally checked on them they were inside and doing fine.

Several improvements have been made with their housing this time.  The floor is covered in old cement tiles and sand.  All of the cracks, holes or other openings have been sealed so that other birds and rodents can be kept out.  A rat, racoon, possum, skunk - can cause as much damage as a coyote or a hawk.  As soon as we put them down there this afternoon the hawk circled low to get a look at his new potential dinner.  Hopefully the chicken wire will hold tight for a long time.  Also, the nesting boxes are new.  We had an old wooden shoe rack that was in Laura's room when she lived at home.  The cubby sizes could be adjusted - so now there are 12 nesting boxes bolted to the wall.  There is a ladder to the top level.  There are 4 different roosting poles in there too. 

One of the roosters is crowing now.  Has been for about a week.  It sounds like three high voices straining in a desperate yell.  We don't know which rooster it is yet.  But there is one that seems to be the dominant alpha male.  When we opened the transport box in their new home all the chickens were pasted against the back wall of the box and he was facing them with his backside and wings as large as he could make them.  He was trying to protect or hide his flock.  Good man.

Boyd's favorite chickens are the rhode island reds.  Two seem especially smart.  He has named them Meg and Jack...but Jack might be a Jackie.  Not sure yet.  Meg is the smallest chicken - and really fast to catch bugs.  First one to the food and she pays attention to Boyd.  He named them that because of the white stripes and spots on their red necks...but the white is changing as they grow.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

some people seek adventure and thrills to feel alive.  they love the adrenaline rush from free falling, and/or the risk of.  falling is something i've never enjoyed.  boyd called skiing 'contolled slipping'.  he is so good at trying to trick my psyche.  :)  love that man.  but, my core still knew it was not in control during the many falls i took on the slopes of the sierra nevada mountains.  the most memorable fall was at sierra summit ski resort in lakeshore near huntington lake.  i body slammed a middle aged man at probably 30 miles per hour or so -  we both flew many yards eastward till the final stop, just short of the giant pylons of the ski lift.  he said he was okay and walked away, but you know how injuries are - usually you feel worse the day after.  very thankful that the snow was soft that day.  very thankful to have missed the steel lift base.  very thankful to have had a man slow me down.

i had been trying to snow plow - to stop - for many yards.  the physical dynamic did not lend itself to the proper end, which would have been to stop.  in other words - i didn't do it right.  either the hill was too steep, my weight too great, my snow plow not constructed properly...  not really sure.  but probably - it was my lack of confidence.  i always somehow knew that confidence was the most important requirement, yet i was not able to get past my fears.    i took alot of snow up my backside in all the falls of those mountain years.  if i thought i was getting out of control i would sit down and try to slow down with my arms.  kind of like snow plowing with the outspread wings of the snow angel.  i considered walking down the hills, but that seemed nearly impossible, the way the slopes were constructed.  the ride up the hill in the chair lift was amazingly beautiful and it  hard to resist going up the mountain.  i used to want to just ride the lift up and down.  dang operators wouldn't let me do it.

i enjoyed the 5 year olds that were in my ski class on the bunny hill.  they were sweet and fun to watch.  the instructor would not let them use poles.  they got so good at manuevering the hills it was fantastic to see.  my kids skiied with no poles too.  laura used finesse, coming down gracefully, and andrew was a speedster- straight down as fast as he could.

that mountain was an amazing opportunity for residents.  we were able to get lessons and rental and ski passes very very discounted.  it was offered through big creek school district.  everyone learned to ski.  it was kind of like swimming - a required class.