back with some random musings on life

I have been gone from the blogosphere for a full seven days, and I have felt the loss. Flat on my back for three days with chills, fever, and, sorry, mucus. Man, it has been rough.

On top of being physically out of it, I have been over-booked with other things, like homework, etc.

And then there was the big purchase that kind of fell through on the other end. Well, did fall through. Cryptic? Yup. But I have been nursing a little disappointment this week, which tasted good for awhile. Now I am ready to just get on with things, and it's all good.

So. Moving forward with faith is the theme for now. I am happy but raw. Have you ever been there? No deep complaints, but feelings of uneasiness? Tentativeness?

Life is good. My married son and his sweet wife are well and so adorable. My missionary is happy and healthy. My handsome teenage guys are awesome. They make me laugh. They do their best. And I realized as I was driving to BYU today that I have been married to my husband for exactly half my life. I love him. He looks at me with softness in his eyes. Sappy but true. He roots me on and supports me in my craziness.

I am headed back to your blogs this week, I hope. April 1 is the date I am aiming for, friends. Licensing done. Homework done. Breathe.

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not just doing everything, but doing everything so that the flow is good and the one thing complements the other.

not just cramming as much in as is humanly possible, but realizing time is finite when it comes to hours in a day.

not just saying yes to everything, but being disciplined enough to say no sometimes.

not feeling guilty for all you didn't do, but feeling good about all you did do.

this is integration.

*just an attempted visualization of the pieces of my life.

casting shadows

(photo taken on my walk today)

At the right time of day, even the smallest pebble casts a long shadow.

my life as an english professor's wife

We spent the evening with Geo's Mormon Lit class, in the home of Charlotte England, widow of Eugene England, who was a real intellectual mentor to my husband. There was food and art, and then G did a beautiful reading of an essay by Gene. Charlotte is lovely and gracious and I want to be just like her when I am older.

This is a good life(style).

my reconstruction

Interesting things, bricks.  Used for thousands of years to add strength to a structure and to give it order and foreverness.  Symbols of something civilized and planned.

I have had a few days where the bricks in my own bldg (read:world) seem to be crumbling.  A friend on facebook told me today that it is probably just the mortar.  I would like to think that is true.  Relaying those bricks and remortaring... sounds hard, but it can be done.

When the really important things in my life are in order, like support and love from a good husband, happy and healthy children, a roof over my head, etcetera, etcetera, I feel incredibly ungrateful in my ingratitude.  If that makes sense.

It's been a hard few days.  The weight sometimes comes down and cracks up these building blocks.  This is not a new topic here on my blog.  I feel a bit overburdened with my school work, my calling. And in the next 2 months I have to make placements for my students for next year.

I don't want to overplay it, but these little kiddos are entrusted to me.  I make decisions about where they go to class next year.  A regular kindergarten?  A self-contained unit?  I spend months earning the trust of parents, and often call on that trust when a hard thing needs to be said.  It can be terrific when there has been a load of progress made and the news is good.  And it can be devastating when the news is to the contrary.  I don't like the looks of disappointment.  Last Thursday at parent/teacher conferences I cried three times.  One time it was because I was relating something sweet I had observed in a little boy in my class.  Genuine love and service to a classmate.  The other two times I cried it was because parents approached me and said, "My child needs a special class next year doesn't he/she?" I had been prayerful about talking to these parents, and instead they talked to me.  It was a tender moment for me, as I recognized my concerns had been answered.

I have the desire to do well and to do right.  In all of these areas.  I need inspiration.  And sometimes I think the Lord may be getting really sick of my petitions.

But He keeps coming back with help and more mortar.  So, though my bricks crumble, I have hope of being built back up.  But the process can be sloppy and painful.

little comforts

We all have something that helps to get us through a rough patch. Sometimes it is a deep connection to someone, sometimes it is a song, and sometimes even food.

My husband was my helpmeet yesterday. It was a tough day for me. No details here, but I will just say I am trying to find my way in certain areas. I get defensive and frustrated and need someone to tell me I am alright. Without trying to sound too dramatic, Geo really saved me.

But on a normal, slower, more regular day, we need smaller, littler comforts. Here is one of his. See it there, with its front row, center seat on the couch?

What is one of your little comforts?

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it's time

image from

My friend turns 50, and right on her birthday she receives a phone call. 

It's time, said the caller. 
Time for what?
Come over, now.

So she grabs the keys and drives the few blocks to the caller's home, figuring out who it was by voice recognition alone.

She climbs the stairs up to the studio, where she is greeted by her bohemian, painter friend, who says, Come in.  You need art therapy.

Obediently, my friend sits down, open to the idea of being healed.  From what?  She doesn't know, but it seems like art therapy is a general cure-all, so she goes with it.  As I am sure I would too.

She gives her a big white board and a bowl full of paint tubes and then says, Have at it.

Wait.  No direction?  No anything?


In the next 20 minutes my friend reverts back to kindergarten, squirting paint onto the board and massaging it in.  No direction.  No anything.  I channeled Jackson Pollock, she said, as she told me this story last night.  And I still have it, along with other pieces I have done since.

I asked if she has gotten more formal lessons from her friend, and she says, No.  We just sit there and paint.  And she has never called them lessons.

And that sounds like some pretty fantastic therapy to me.


How do you see yourself? How close are you to the person your coworkers and fellow worshipers see you as?

I used to say to my husband, "Do you ever feel like we are living a lie? Like we work so hard to put our best foot forward, and that the real us is buried somewhere underneath?" I still feel that way sometimes.

My darker, more introverted half is not always patient with weakness. Especially my own. I am fine with failure when it seems to be accidental or out of my, or anyone's, hands. But if it is something that could have been helped. Well, then I relive it a few dozen times in my mind, thinking about what could have gone better.

But my extroverted half, the one that loves going to dinner with friends and laughing til it hurts, loves to let everything go. I can play and put things off until the last minute if the immediate payoff is good enough.

I am dark. I am light. I am half-lit.

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lipstick and curls

Today I sat behind a little three-year old beauty queen at church. She was wearing bright red lipstick and a few swipes of black mascara around each of her bright blue eyes. And her blond hair had big loose curls that were held out of her face by a little bobby pin over her ear.

I watched her jingle her bracelet that was made from rubber bands and safety pins as she waved to every other preschool girl in the room. She was working it, I tell you what.

Then when my boy #4 came down the aisle holding a tray full of little cups of water, she pinched one up and slurped louder than any beauty queen has a right to.

And I thought to myself, "I would like to be her. To be unashamed and proud of my feminine wiles. To wave to all my friends with my sparkly jewelry, and then to slurp up the living water."

Thanks for the reminder, Scarlett.

me and my homies

I am kind of a stickler about all food staying in the kitchen and dining room. But, you know, sometimes you just need to stay in the black velour lounger in the den and let everyone get their own food, and even join you in the den. As you lounge. I can be flexible.

Then for family night we got the other son to join us, again, so I didn't have to get up. We read scriptures and told stories from the New Testament, and generally just enjoyed each other. It was a good night.
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oh bossy, bossy me

I was told last night that I sometimes instill fear in my house. That I am kind of crabby, and yes, even bossy. "Only sometimes" was thrown in to soften the blow. I have thought about that a lot today as I have attended to all of my responsibilities.

I am a stake Young Women president (having a meeting here in half an hour).
I am a teacher over 20 students and 2 full-time technicians.
I am a mother.
I am a student at BYU (3 more months until I finish my licensure for Special Ed).

I do think I get into let's-move-it-soldier mode more often than I plan to. It seems like my commission right now is to make sure things are getting done. Everywhere I go. Quickly. Throw in a little regular buzz of hunger that lies underneath and you have the makings for a dictator extraordinaire.

The vindictive side of me wants to call in sick to every single obligation and see how things pan out. Horrible, huh?

Then the better side of me thinks it over and decides to make some real attempts to lighten up.

I am a real conundrum.

I am a big baby in so many ways. Huge tears soaked my dress in church on Sunday when a boy with Down Syndrome blessed the sacrament. I get hurt feelings. I choke up over emotional things. I cry pretty regularly and easily.

I am tough in other ways. I can make important decisions. I can say no better than I used to be able to. I can be blunt when called for. I can hold my own.

The balance. The balance.

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january music, installment numero uno

Click on the song title below to hear a little Spanish tragic love song I recorded tonight.  What can I say?  These rip-your heart-out ones are always more beautiful to the ear.  I will include the English lyrics too, for those of you that are not bilingual.  Tomorrow look for another musical post.

Kazzy's voice has been silenced by the Digital Millennium Copyright Act(see the details here). Sorry you can't listen to her sing directly. But send her a message and she'll try to work something out.

Si Volvieras A Mi

Como sobrevivir como calmar mi sed
Como seguir sin ti como saltar sin ver
Con ese adiós tan salvaje y cruel
Me deshojaste la piel
La eternidad en final se quedo
Y un desierto... es mi corazón...

Ay si volvieras a mi
Encendería el sol mil primaveras
Si regresaras por mi
Seria un milagro cada beso que me dieras
Pero hoy te vas
Y no hay vuelta atrás

que abra después de ti
Mas que estas lagrimas
Si hasta la lluvia en el jardín
Toca música sin fin...
Sombría y trágica...
Hoy de rodillas le pido a dios
Que por el bien de los dos
Algo en tu pecho se quiebre al oír
A este loco que se muere de amor...

Ay si volvieras a mi
Encendería el sol mil primaveras
Si regresaras por mi
Seria un milagro cada beso que me dieras
Pero hoy te vas
Y no hay vuelta atrás

Y desataste un huracán
Fuego y furia de un volcán
Que no se apagar...
Como olvido que fui
Esclavo de ti... ya no puedo más...

Ay si volvieras a mi vida, si volvieras
Si regresaras por mi
Seria feliz otra vez
Pero hoy te vas
Y no hay vuelta atrás

How to survive
How to calm my thirst
How can I continue without you
How can I jump without a net [to catch me]
With that farewell so savage and cruel
You took away all I had
Time came to a halt
And my heart is now a desert

Oh if you came back to me

The sun would raise 1000 spring times
If you but came back to me
Every kiss you gave me would be miraculous
But today you’re gone
And there is no turning back

What is there after you?

More than these tears
Like the rain in a garden
Playing endless music,
Cold and tragic.
Now on bended knee I plead to God
That for the good of us both
Something might break inside you when you listen
To this idiot dying of love

Oh if you came back to me

The sun would raise 1000 spring times
If you but came back to me
Every sight of me would be miraculous.
But today you are gone
And there is no return for us

You let loose a hurricane,

The fire and fury of a volcano
That I don't know how to stem
Being the fool that I was
A slave to you
I just can't do that anymore.

Oh if you would just come back to my life,

if you come back
If you returned me,
I would be happy once again
But today you are gone
And there is no turning back.


I had the fun job (no sarcasm here) of chaperoning a regional dance in our city last night for NYE. These kids are so terrific. They danced, they ate, they guzzled the water. They had a blast.

Geo loves to dance (sorry to all my friends who have to beg their husbands to dance), so we split our time between the kitchen, where we were the chief refreshment police, and the dance floor, where we were the only people over 17 that were actually moving.

I did not put up a reflective post about the past year or goals for this new one. But I will leave you with a few things that symbolized 2010.

Stake YW
Weight loss

It was good. It can even be better.


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