Friday, December 31, 2010

Sufficient – All that I need and much of what I want.

Pronunciation: \suh-fish-uh nt\
Function: adjective
Etymology: Latin sufficiens, supplying the needs of
Date: 1359
1. adequate for the purpose; enough:
2. Logic . (of a condition) such that its existence leads to the occurrence of a given event or the existence of a given thing.
3. Archaic . competent.

In reviewing the year, it is clear I was given what was sufficient to make it through each day. Some days that was a warm bed, pillows to drown the sobs and time to mourn. It was the patience and empathy of friends.

Other days it was work and all that encompasses. There were times of laughter, of discovery, of adventure, of personal inventory. Evenings and weekends filled with good company, good food, comforting and enlightening Al Anon meetings, books and music and crafts. There trips to Eugene and to Los Angeles. There were sunsets and snows and rain ~ barbecues and wine and playing with Marty the pug.

There were lessons about mindfulness, powerlessness, change by letting go, prayer, meditation, and meeting God in the moment. There were arguments with the committee in my head and arguments with committees in the school district. There was grief and celebration, brokenness and healing, falling and getting up (literally and spiritually). There was and is the gift of hope.

David’s sponsor used to say, when David was feeling particularly happy – “This too shall pass.” It still unsettles me, even though it is true. Today’s joy and serenity will be challenged in the year to come. Life on life’s terms means meeting the day, whatever it brings. However, I carry hope and faith with me, knowing that I will be given what is sufficient to meet each day.

Blessings to all of you of a peace that passes all understanding.

What Worked for Me Today
Doing my relaxation Yoga last night which translated into a great night’s sleep. Eating mindfully. Enjoying the sun and cold. Packing away Christmas!

Zombies – yep! Episode 5 of “Bite Me” was posted on You Tube last night!
Note: Not suitable for kids.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Gratitude Part II - Family: Healthy perspective on a year of growth, change, humor, grief and self discovery

Pronunciation: \fam-uh-lee \
Function: noun
Etymology: Latin familia a household, servants of the house
Date: 1400
(Abbreviated list of definitions from
1. a. a basic social unit consisting of parents and their children, considered as a group, whether dwelling together or not
b. a social unit consisting of one or more adults together with the children they care for
8. the staff, or body of assistants, of an official
9. a group of related things or people
10. a group of people who are generally not blood relations but who share common attitudes, interests, or goals and, frequently, live together

Part 2 – I Am Not Alone

Experience, Strength & Hope
In all 12 Step programs, members are encouraged to share their experience, strength and hope illustrated by how the program works in their lives. I have shared at a number of meetings, that Al-Anon has not made my life better, it has made me better at my life. I am grateful for my fellow travelers. I am grateful that no matter where I walk into a meeting, I am welcomed. I have been accepted with no judgement, no rush to change me, no advice. Hard to imagine - but it is a tenant of the program – we do not give advice. However, there is much to be learned by listening to another’s experience, strength and hope.

We Shall Do More With Less
Willamina School District
This family is dynamic and ever changing. I am grateful for those who have stepped beside me to help me professionally and personally. I am grateful for the students who face challenges and still join in, still show up, still find laughter. I am thankful that I can be a part of something that has value and meaning.

Call Your Mother
The people whom Kate and Jared and Jacob are… brings me joy. My life is immeasurably richer because of them. They are a blessing.

“Better is a neighbor who is near than a brother far away.“ Proverbs 27:10
The generosity and patience, kindness and laughter, comfort and solace I have been privileged to experience from my friends is humbling. I am grateful for these people, especially when my craziness has been met with shared vulnerability. I can’t imagine this past year without these people.

What Worked for Me Today
Reading “Women, Food and God” by Geneen Roth at the McMinnville Library. I also picked up a great garden book for $1.00 from the “Friends of the Library” sale rack. It is located next to the elevator in the Mac Library lobby. Hard backs are $1.00 and paperbacks are 50 cents.

Oregon Al Anon and Alateen

McMinnville Public Library

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Gratitude: Healthy perspective on a year of growth, change, humor, grief and self discovery

Pronunciation: \ græt ɪˌtud \
Function: adjective
Etymology: Medieval Latin: gratitudo "thankfulness,"
Date: 1400-50
the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful

An Al-Anon friend said to me recently, that his measure of growth was that his life today was marked with gratitude and service. I have much to be thankful for as I look back… and forward. Some things may seem trivial, but each in its own way contributed to this year.

Part I – Technological Distractions
The No Brainer List of Technology that I Used to “Unplug” My Brain.

Internet Based Distractions
You Tube
Yes, I am grateful for YouTube. From silly cat videos, to news, to sketch comedy to old music videos, YouTube has kept me current (in the pop culture venue) and provided hours of entertainment.

My favorites this year:
Comments on news irreverently served.
Zombies in LA – a YouTube mini series – what more is there to say.
Black Box TV – Think “Outer Limits” or “Twilight Zone.”
Simon’s Cat – If you are a cat person these illustrated stories are delightful.

Web Sties
Logic game with new age music.
News – gossip – columnists.

I was able to catch up on Dexter, The Tudors, United States of Tara, Nurse Jackie, True Blood, In Treatment, the last season of LOST, streaming Eureka and the 1960’s classic Dark Shadows.

Other Things
Coming home and turning on Keith Olberman and Rachel Maddow keeps me in my “liberal media” loop. AMC’s walking dead gave me another Zombie Fix

IPod Touch
I SO enjoy this device. I can check my email, log into my banking account, post to Facebook, buy books through Amazon Kindle, read or listen to FREE books through CCRLS (Chemeketa Cooperative Regional Library Service). Then there are the Aps. My favorites include Zombie Farm, Angry Birds, Soduko, Rag Doll Launcher, Doodle God,

What Worked for Me Today
Making a 30-60-90 day plan (Nod to sexephil Philip DeFranco for this idea and 12 step program “4th Step” inventory suggestions).

Lunch with a colleague and window shopping down 3rd Street in McMinnville.

See the above links.
Tomorrow – Being grateful for the people in my life.