Friday, December 30, 2011
A tree, would be enough
Or even a rock, a small creek,
A bark shred in a pool.
Hill beyond hill,
Tough trees crammed
In thin stone fractures
A huge moon on it all,
The mind wanders.
A million Summers,
night air still and the rocks
All the junk that goes with being human
Even the heavy present seems to fail
This bubble of a heart.
Words and books
Like a small creek off a high ledge
Gone in the dry air.
A clear, attentive mind
Has no meaning but that
Which sees is truly seen.
No one loves rock, yet we are here.
Slips into Juniper shadow:
Back there unseen
Cold proud eyes
Of Cougar or Coyote
Watch me rise and go."
Thursday, December 29, 2011
I think it is timely now, in looking towards a new year to think about how each of us can pay it forward. I'll try to incorporate some of these ideas into my new years resolutions.
The idea of paying it forward never ceases to amaze me. Whether you spend $5 on someone else, or you simply smile to lift the spirit of others- committing a random act of kindness is truly a way to serve from the depth of your heart. I've always appreciated the smallest of actions from others and try to pass on that feeling of gratitude to someone else when possible. Last night I started a list of small, quiet things my family and I can do for others that could possibly change the direction of their day. Since it is time for resolutions to be made, mine is to act upon this list as much as possible in the upcoming year.
My 'Pay It Forward' List:
Hand write a note to a friend or relative and put in the mail.
Bring a meal to a neighbor or friend when they are sick.
Spend an hour playing games with the residents of your local convalescent hospital.
Pay for the person behind you in a fast food line.
Mow your neighbor's lawn or pull weeds out of their planters.
Bring a pile of old magazines to a doctors office or hospital for their waiting room.
Take unwanted clothing items to a shelter or goodwill.
Tape the exact change for a soda or snack to a vending machine.
Leave a couple pieces of candy on a coworkers desk with a note.
Pay for the person behind you at a toll booth.
Call a family member or friend on the day of a test or other important event and tell them you're thinking of them. (No text messages, IM's, Facebook comments, etc! An actual call so they can hear your voice)
Offer to babysit for friends or family so they can enjoy a night out.
Draw colorful pictures and bring them to a local hospital for patients' windows.
Leave behind your finished magazine or book on a plane or bus.
Make an extra sandwich and snack bag for a homeless person.
Start off by telling a customer service agent "I know this problem is not your fault." We so often blame them, which is unfair and must be very stressful.
Return a shopping cart to the front of the store.
Write a note with an encouraging thought to someone special and put it in their lunch bag or coat pocket for them to find.
And finally, when all else fails, simply open the door for someone behind you and leave them with a smile.
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
I have really enjoyed this adventure and I thank my daughter Aria for helping me to set up this blog. It's really become a part of my life, sort of like writing in a journal...a daily exercise.
Monday, December 26, 2011
Sunday, December 25, 2011
Saturday, December 24, 2011
Christmas 2010 Barb, Aria, Mike, Daniele
My husband, Mike usually creates a menu based on the fish each family member has requested that year. In the past we have had an assortment which included: shrimp, oysters (raw, deep fried, in a stew), calamari (deep fried, stuffed), steamed crab, lobster, baccala which is a salted cod and a variety of other seafoods in sauces, fried, and stuffed, cocktailed...you name it. It's all wonderful. Here are a few photos from past years.
The Feast of the Seven Fishes is an ancient Southern Italian Christmas Eve tradition and can actually feature anywhere from seven to 13 fishes. The feast sprang up as a response to the Roman Catholic Church's decree against eating meat and meat products on certain holy days. The whole season of advent leading up to Christmas was this type of fasting time. So, resourceful Italians turned this fast into feast of fish and seafood — traditionally cooked in oil.
But why the Feast of the SEVEN Fishes? That's not exactly clear: for the seven sacraments, seven virtues — there are all kinds of theories. But whatever the reason, the feast endured, and when Southern Italians began to immigrate to the U.S., the feast came along and became an Italian-American tradition as well.
Friday, December 23, 2011
Thursday, December 22, 2011
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
|Photo slideshow generated with Smilebox|
Monday, December 19, 2011
Sunday, December 18, 2011
Saturday, December 17, 2011
Friday, December 16, 2011
Thursday, December 15, 2011
that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance.
It may weave a spell of nostalgia.
Christmas may be a day of feasting,
or of prayer,
but always it will be a day of remembrance--
a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved."- Augusta E. Rundell
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Monday, December 12, 2011
Sunday, December 11, 2011
Saturday, December 10, 2011
Friday, December 9, 2011
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
Tuesday, December 6, 2011
Filling the coastline's longing
With such brief harvest
Of elegant, vanishing waves
Is like the mind of time
Opening us shapes of days.
As this year draws to its end,
We give thanks for the gifts it brought
And how they became inlaid within
Where neither time nor tide can touch them.
The days when the veil lifted
And the soul could see delight;
When a quiver caressed the heart
In the sheer exuberance of being here.
Surprises that came awake
In forgotten corners of old fields
Where expectation seemed to have quenched.
The slow, brooding times
When all was awkward
And the wave in the mind
Pierced every sore with salt.
The darkened days that stopped
The confidence of the dawn.
Days when beloved faces shone brighter
With light from beyond themselves;
And from the granite of some secret sorrow
A stream of buried tears loosened.
We bless this year for all we learned,
For all we loved and lost
And for the quiet way it brought us
Nearer to our invisible destination.
Monday, December 5, 2011
Sunday, December 4, 2011
But one night last month, as Diaz stepped off the No. 6 train and onto a nearly empty platform, his evening took an unexpected turn.
He was walking toward the stairs when a teenage boy approached and pulled out a knife.
"He wants my money, so I just gave him my wallet and told him, 'Here you go,'" Diaz says.
As the teen began to walk away, Diaz told him, "Hey, wait a minute. You forgot something. If you're going to be robbing people for the rest of the night, you might as well take my coat to keep you warm."
The would-be robber looked at his would-be victim, "like what's going on here?" Diaz says. "He asked me, 'Why are you doing this?'"
Diaz replied: "If you're willing to risk your freedom for a few dollars, then I guess you must really need the money. I mean, all I wanted to do was get dinner and if you really want to join me ... hey, you're more than welcome.
"You know, I just felt maybe he really needs help," Diaz says.
Diaz says he and the teen went into the diner and sat in a booth.
"The manager comes by, the dishwashers come by, the waiters come by to say hi," Diaz says. "The kid was like, 'You know everybody here. Do you own this place?'"
"No, I just eat here a lot," Diaz says he told the teen. "He says, 'But you're even nice to the dishwasher.'"
Diaz replied, "Well, haven't you been taught you should be nice to everybody?"
"Yea, but I didn't think people actually behaved that way," the teen said.
Diaz asked him what he wanted out of life. "He just had almost a sad face," Diaz says.
The teen couldn't answer Diaz — or he didn't want to.
When the bill arrived, Diaz told the teen, "Look, I guess you're going to have to pay for this bill 'cause you have my money and I can't pay for this. So if you give me my wallet back, I'll gladly treat you."
The teen "didn't even think about it" and returned the wallet, Diaz says. "I gave him $20 ... I figure maybe it'll help him. I don't know."
Diaz says he asked for something in return — the teen's knife — "and he gave it to me."
Afterward, when Diaz told his mother what happened, she said, "You're the type of kid that if someone asked you for the time, you gave them your watch."
"I figure, you know, if you treat people right, you can only hope that they treat you right. It's as simple as it gets in this complicated world."
Produced for Morning Edition by Michael Garofalo.
Saturday, December 3, 2011
Friday, December 2, 2011
Thursday, December 1, 2011
Honestly though I hope you are not put into a mad frenzy this holiday season. I hope that you can enjoy all the wonderful things that come with the season: family, friends, good cheer and the feeling of love for one another.
"Christmas gift suggestions:
To your enemy, forgiveness.
To an opponent, tolerance.
To a friend, your heart.
To a customer, service.
To all, charity.
To every child, a good example.
To yourself, respect." - Oren Arnold, authoI
Wishing everyone a merry month ahead!