Saturday, July 31, 2010

Taos vacation


Just wanted to share some photos from our vacation to Taos...


The photo of our granddaughter near the patio is close to where I fell and sprained my ankle! It's still 'ouching'!

The house was fabulous and had a lovely yard, including the little bridge on which K is standing...












The small photo is of the house we rented--the living room. The house was expensive, so we could only stay 3 nights, but Wow, we all really loved it. 1800 s.f. and about five levels, which were wonderful until I fell!

The vacation was wonderful, but alas, too short. I tripped and fell on Wednesday morning, and we started the long drive back home on Thursday morning. We spent the night in Amarillo and on Friday morning, Deb woke up with the flu (or something like it). So by the time we actually got home, only David and Katie were left standing!

It was such a delight to have little Morgan with us...she brings sparkle wherever she is.

Friday, July 23, 2010

The LIFE WE ARE

I've been listening to Eckhart Tolle again -- a podcast. He's talking about the "inner space," the "spaciousness" inside us where we are conscious of being conscious. No longer dominated by the mind which is processing sense data, memories, future plans, etc., --this inner space is the gap between all that and the LIFE we really are.

He said LIFE has no opposite because it has no end. And we are manifestations of LIFE in human bodies that will one day turn to dust, but the LIFE WE ARE will continue because it is eternal. We are part of All That Is.

And it's awareness of this LIFE WE ARE that is the "inner space," the "spaciousness," the consciousness and deep spiritual awarness (as Cynthia Bourgealt calls it).

That makes so much sense to me. It's beautiful, isn't it? And to live with this sort of deep awareness, where there is no fear, is where Jesus lived, I think. He lived in the gap between ordinary mind (sense perception, memory, the 'normal' way minds work) and behind the mind. Yes, behind the mind is the LIFE WE ARE, the true and authentic self.

So mystical. Hidden. And yet I know this. I know what he's talking about.

At one point he asked us to move into stillness, close the eyes, take some deep breaths, and then feel the aliveness, the LIFE WE ARE by feeling the energy in our hands. Wow; that was, and is, even now, so powerful.

Absolutely beautiful.

Monday, July 19, 2010

And Now What?

I'm in one of those I-want-to-look-at-my-life moods. Know what I mean? They come at the end of a big job, when I can breathe and broaden my focus again.

What's next?

1. One thing I know I need to do is find some way to focus on grieving Andy's death. Yesterday I came across his name on something and I found myself nearly bent over in pain; for a few moments I could barely breathe. Of course, I came across his name on things constantly in the last month when I was preparing for and teaching my class, but that was different--I was using what he'd taught me. Now I don't have that psychic "protection." The tears threaten to spill over even now.

2. I have to make-up the time I missed from work in preparing the class, so I'll be working on Thursdays this Fall. I've been in a discernment process regarding whether to enroll in Hearthpaths training for the Ignatian Exercises--it would mean every Friday morning from September through May, plus a lot of hours throughout the week. I need that discipline, but I also find myself thinking/feeling that I might 'need' that Friday morning for myself...just me here at home...since my Thursdays will now be 'taken.' Hmmm, I guess I'm wanting to guard my free time.

3. Free time...to read. I want to read "Wolf Totem"--David was ga-ga over this book; it sounds fabulous. Katie gave me a couple of books to read that I haven't had time to even look at. "How God Changes Your Brain"--I recommended this book to my friend C, and she's finished it, while I haven't really begun! The list is endless. "Eat, Pray, Love" -- I noticed the movie opens soon and I've wanted to read the book for ages.

4. Free time...to garden. My back won't allow me to really garden, but I want to investigate this Tabletop Gardening as an alternative. Maybe this Fall.

5. Learning to eat mindfully. I've started this, but the last couple of weeks I really let it drop. My meals were whatever was convenient.

6. Free time...to write. Weavings invited me to submit some articles this year, but my time was spent in teaching. I'd love to designate Fridays just to writing, and especially for Weavings.

7. Can one learn to like exercising? "Joyful Movement" is the key, isn't it? I do like to walk with my friend Pam--at the mall, of course. It's too damnhot otherwise until October. What else might be "Joyful Movement" for me? Hmmm, dance lessons. Riding my bike (when it gets cooler). I wonder if I'd use a Wii -- they look kinda fun. InterPlay, for sure; I need to find a group.

8. Prioritizing Centering Prayer in my life. I'm meeting with a group of wonderful friends each Wednesday, but I'd like to have a group meet at my church as well on another day of the week. Since reading Centering Prayer and the Inner Life, I find myself really drawn to this spiritual discipline.

Well, we shall see...

Friday, July 16, 2010

What's happening

The 2-week intensive class is finished.  Whew!  This was definitely the best class I've taught--everything about it for me felt authentic.  I'm still a neophyte professor and can see where I need to improve on some technicalities in teaching, but the main thing is that I felt the class learned some important things and that the students were really engaged.  I'm grateful for that!  I told them today as the class ended that I felt hopeful for the future of the church, knowing that they were going to be part of that.  They really did seem committed and thoughtful, and that was so good to see....Anyway, I'm breathing easier tonight -- no more getting up at 4:30 a.m.!  woo-hoo!  Tomorrow I am sleeping in!

David and I went out to dinner tonight--he's good at helping me celebrate things!

Tomorrow I start grading papers and that's going to take a very l-o-n-g time.  Still, I'm looking forward to returning to church on Sunday; eager to get busy there again.

Things are happening on the homefront, too. We're getting a new roof, and we're refinancing for 4.25%, down from 6.75%, so we're pretty excited about that.

David's riding again tomorrow morning -- just a 40 mile ride, which is easy for him.  College girl is coming for a visit--she wants to ride bicycles with her dad later in the day.
And week-after-next is vacation!  Yippee!


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