Tuesday, November 30, 2010

A Time to Read

It's funny sometimes how I will buy a book and then put it on a shelf without looking closely. Then something happens and I remember I have that book and that now would be a good time to read it. That happened today. I saw this author's name, Iyanla Vanzant, in a magazine and remembered I had her book and now was the time. I am still reading the introduction, but I know I like it already.

I love to read and often will read a book 2 or 3 or more times. Sometimes consecutively. On my second read I usually begin to high light the words that catch me. By the 3rd or 4th time I am still finding new things and usually promise myself one more read. And then there are books that lay on my shelf for months or years and then all of a sudden it's like they are begging to be read - and I know it's time.

So I'm going to quit writing here, snuggle in my favorite chair, and take the time to read the book that is calling me now.

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, November 29, 2010

Standing in the Wind

I walked this morning against a strong southwest wind. At times it seemed like the leaves blowing down the street were racing me. Clouds moved quickly across the sky, but I caught glimpses of the moon, stars and Venus.

Tucker, Rollin and Fynneus came over this morning and we headed straight to the ball field by our house for a little baseball. The wind was still blowing hard as we each took turns catching, hitting and pitching. Rollin showed me how he likes to stand in the wind and I did the same. As dark clouds rolled in we walked home just in time to miss the afternoon downpour.

The rest of the afternoon and evening was spent inside so I am grateful, at the end of the day, that I did not pass up the opportunities to be outside. I am glad I stood in the wind with Rollin.

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Diamond Day!

After all the excitement yesterday, I still slept like a baby last night. Thankfully the day sped by so that now I am sitting here with my new diamond - my beautiful wedding ring set.

And I am thankful for the ride of my life!.........I love you Jim!

Here's to the Ride!

Saturday, November 27, 2010

Stone Blessings

After weeks and weeks of searching for my lost diamond, I finally chose a diamond from the jewelry store tonight. They are setting the diamond in my wedding set and we can pick it up tomorrow evening.

And so I add this wonderful little stone to the things in my life that I am grateful for. I know that the diamond is not love, but it represents so many years that Jim and I have been together. It represents our life to me and I am grateful for the replacement stone.

In about 4 weeks, it will be exactly 37 years ago that Jim gave me my engagement ring. It was my birthday and only 4 months before our wedding date. He brought me a dozen red roses, which absolutely thrilled me and then surprised me at dinner with this beautiful ring. I was so excited I kept pinching myself to be sure I was wide awake. I remember getting up a dozen times in the night to turn on the light and look at my beautiful sparkling diamond. I had never owned anything so beautiful!

Now, all these years later, I am hoping I can sleep tonight as I wait for my new diamond. I am hoping that I can speed through the day tomorrow so that I can at last feel my ring on my hand - and see the sparkling again.

I am grateful for this beautiful life - blessed with this little stone!

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, November 26, 2010

Thanksgiving Day Number 2

Today we celebrated Thanksgiving with a wonderful feast. There is so much in my life that I am grateful for, and dinner today was just icing on the cake. Liz, Thad, Tucker, Rollin and Fynn joined Jim and I for dinner and I am so appreciative of all of our time together.

Today as I thought of the blessings in my life, I realized the thing that I am the most grateful for is my relationship with Jim. Our love for one another has culminated in this day! Everything in my life has been built on this love for each other and I stand in awe of our Journey.

The dreams and goals that we shared together. Our daughters and the family traditions we created to mark our time together. And new traditions continue as our family grows and changes which makes this Journey even more meaningful.

I am blessed beyond words, but I am most grateful for this beautiful love in my life. My husband, my lover, my best friend. I love you Jim!

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving Breakfast

We began a new tradition today: Thanksgiving Breakfast. That is what I love about the holidays and time with family. We can do it however we want to. I think it is important to make the holiday celebrations fit our lives and that is what we are doing now. Thad works this afternoon but is home tomorrow afternoon, so our Thanksgiving dinner will be on Friday - and this means two days of thoughtful thankfulness.

We will have wonderful food together - and we have two days of expressing our thankfulness. Life is Good.

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Music to live by

Today I hooked up Jim's reel to reel tape deck and stereo that he bought while in the Service in Okinawa. The music recorded on these tapes were recorded between 1970 and 1972. I met Jim in 1973 and he had all this wonderful music that he and his buddies had shared while serving in the military.

Tape Number 12 is worn thin because I think I listened to it almost every day for the first 10 years after I met him. The music includes Bread, Three Dog Night, John Lennon, Neil Diamond, Tammy Wynette, Blood Sweat & Tears, The Carpenters, The Beatles, The Bee Gees, Michael Jackson, Carly Simon, Diana Ross and so so so much more.

Today, after not hearing this music for more than 20 years, I played Number 12 again. Joy! Joy! Joy! I still sang along to every song. I couldn't help dancing to some of them. I use to always clean my house to this music, and I had a strong desire to clean today. This music is so beautiful, and it appears to be timeless too. Beautiful music makes this ride so very Joyful!

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, November 22, 2010

The thing I liked the best about today was........

Rollin spent the day with me and we practiced singing Rudolph and Frosty. We enjoyed a hot chocolate at Starbucks. Played Thomas Train at Barnes & Noble and walked around Carriage Crossing counting green reindeer. We checked out a Teddy Bear and a Cookie store. We saw the Christmas train up close and we made funny things with silly putty.

We rode bikes. We chatted with the neighbor kids when they got home from school. We watched funny videos on TV. We made the best hot dog ever and we squirted whip creme on our peaches. But most importantly, we laughed out loud many times during the day. That is what I liked the best - laughing with my grandson.

Rollin liked walking and counting green reindeer the best! He told me so!

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Time of Thankfulness

It is Sunday and Thanksgiving is only a few days away. I love this time of year, and the reminder of all that I appreciate in this life. Today was absolutely gorgeous, and it is so easy to be appreciative on a day like this - a week like this.

But my goal, on this Journey of mine, is to be appreciative every day. Appreciation and love are identical vibrations. When I appreciate, I love. When I love, I appreciate. Therefore, I want to bask in appreciation of all that is past and all that is future. But I especially want to be in full appreciation of each precious present moment.

As I wrap up my day, I am eagerly looking forward to tomorrow and the many moments of appreciation that will fill my day.

Here's to the Ride!

Saturday, November 20, 2010

A Perfect Walk

Jim and I just returned from an evening walk. The moon is full, the sky is clear and the air is brisk. A perfect time for a walk, and a perfect time to share our stories of the day. This is Joy! This is living life in the moment.

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Friends in Tennessee

An evening with friends - dinner, wine, laughter, conversation. It's all good.

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Beginning a Beautiful Day!

I was surprised to find that it had rained last night when I stepped outside this morning at 4. The stars were blocked from my sight by expansive grey clouds, but still I looked. I was rewarded as I completed my walk and headed up my driveway, a break in the clouds showed one lone star. I paused to look at this one star and to feel appreciation for the beautiful day ahead.

I love that early morning feeling of a wonderful day coming. I love to be in the stillness listening to my breath, knowing that this moment is so very good. I love the cool crisp air that makes my skin tingle, and my heart sing. This time, this quiet, this moment - so, so good!

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Remembering the Ride

I have spent some time this week organizing my closets and unpacking my Christmas "things". I love the holidays and I am looking forward to putting up the tree, taking my christmas dishes to the kitchen, and sending out Christmas cards.

As I walk through the local stores and hear Christmas music, I smile. When I walk into the cold brisk air, I am thankful to be here, to enjoy the seasons of Tennessee. There is something about cold weather at Christmas time that just seems to fit. Today I was looking at sleds at Target, and a store associate asked me if I needed assistance, I told him No, I am just waiting for snow.

As I looked at the sleds, I remembered sledding with our daughters in Indiana and Michigan. I remembered tubing in Valparaiso and flying down that hill with Jenn clutched in my arms. We did it again at Muskegon State Park, in full view of Lake Michigan, Jenn and Liz, older now, flying by themselves.

I remember cold winters and blizzards. I remember snow ice cream and hot chocolate. I remember picnics by the fireplace and I remember this wonderful ride with great Joy.

Life is Good!

Here's to the Ride!

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

A Day at the Park

Saturday turned out to be a gorgeous day so we packed a picnic of fried chicken, potato salad, ice tea and chocolate cake and headed for the Smokey Mountains. And what a treat for both of us. We drove through mountains and valleys, watched deer in the woods, hiked along a mountain stream and sat by the woods to enjoy lunch. The beauty of the outdoors is so amazing. I took time to sit by the stream and meditate. Jim took time to do a little fly fishing while I sat beside a mountain reading a book. Does it get any better than this??!!

On the way home we stopped at an antique store and I bought a pair of perfect crystal candle holders. Last night as we ate dinner, I lit candles in the new holders and remembered the anniversary weekend. I love the reminder that burning candles in these holders will bring to us. There is always Joy in remembering this fabulous ride that we are on together.

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, November 15, 2010

A Little History

Jim and I spent the weekend at the Maple Grove Inn Bed & Breakfast in Knoxville. The original part of this home was built in 1799 with additions made over the years. It was a single residence until the early 90's when the current owners turned it into a B&B. It is beautifully tucked down the long driveway, part of which is shown above, and sits on 15 acres of rolling hills.

This beautiful (and we're told haunted) home was the perfect place to celebrate our lives in Tennessee. To be in a home with these deep roots and to marvel at the beauty and simplicity of the architecture of so long ago. To climb the stairs that many have climbed for the past 200 plus years, feeling the wood banister firm and strong beneath our hands. To look from the second floor windows at the beauty of the trees and grass and hills. To savor the bounty of a gourmet breakfast in a dinning room that must be over flowing with memories of family, laughter and wonderful food.

This weekend Jim and I joined the history of this home with our stay there, just as we have joined the history of Tennessee with our living here. Our own personal history is altered as well and we remember with Joy the Ride that brought us here!

Here's to the Ride!

Friday, November 12, 2010

A time of celebration

Jim and I are celebrating our one year anniversary this weekend of living in Tennessee. This has been a swell ride!

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Big hearts - big sky!

Today my grandsons and I looked at a beautiful blue sky speckled with wisps of white clouds and we all agreed it is so wonderful to look at the sky. We talked about the kinds of clouds we like. We talked about why the sky is so blue, and we talked about how we all would love to float up and touch the clouds.

And I am grateful that I have grandsons with such big hearts that they will stop with me to see the beauty of our Tennessee sky.

Here's to the Ride!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Listening to laughter

Today as our grandsons played and laughed, I marveled how the sound fills our big house. No matter what room they are in, what floor they are on, or if they are outside playing, their laughter echos over and over. Their squeals of discovery, their joy in the moment, their delight in each other. I am the first to hear and I find my self smiling as I listen to the laughter of these beautiful boys.

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Finding time - spending time.

This morning after Jim left for work I settled into my meditation chair for some alignment time before beginning the day with our 3 darling grandsons. But it was not to be. Tucker came looking for me about 5:30 and I took him to my bed and tucked him in on Poppa's side. Then I snuggled down on my side of the bed and said a silent thank you for the 5 minutes I had alone this morning. But as the day began with all 3 boys vying for my attention, I said thank you again for this wonderful life that is full of laughter, full of love, and filled with activity.

Joy is finding time for quiet in the early morning - Joy is spending time as fast as possible.

Here's to the Ride!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

A New Time

I did not set my clocks back last night before we went to sleep, so I woke this morning to the old time, yet realizing that the new time had gone into effect. But I patiently waited for my clock to read 4:00 am and I climbed out of bed for my morning walk. I do not walk on Sundays because that is what we call our "lazy day". But this morning I felt like the stars were calling me and I could not bear to stay in bed and miss the beauty of the starry sky. So I walked and I hummed, and I smiled, and at exactly 4:00 am the new time, I was back home climbing back into a warm and cozy bed.

As I drifted back to sleep this time, I was grateful for the beauty. And I was grateful that I did not miss that hour we gained in the night. Instead, I spent that wonderful hour gazing at stars and basking in the cold morning air. Joy is not missing a minute of this wonderful ride!

Here's to the ride!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Savoring Time

I came home from Liz's house today to find Jim grilling potatoes and steaks and building a fire in our new fire pit. I threw a fresh loaf of artisan bread in the oven, opened a bottle of Marietta Old Vine, and the rest is history.

A wonderful dinner. Me and Jim snuggled by the fireside. Lazed on the sofa watching a movie together. A stroll around the neighborhood - by Jim's invitation. Gazing at the stars! Wrapping up the first half of the weekend. Paying attention.

There is much Joy in the little things in our lives. There is Joy in time spent, Joy in attention paid, Joy in history made together.

Here's to the Ride!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Telling our stories

Jim came home late last night and couldn't stop talking about his wonderful fishing/hunting/fishing trip. And it was good to see his vacation through his eyes and hear his words. But this morning as we returned to our normal schedule, he off to work, and I on my jaunt around the neighborhood, it suddenly seems like it hardly happened. So we tell our stories, fish tales and hunting dogs, interviews and movies, hotels and country restaurants, reading and diamond searches, and we remember the days spent. Life is good with stories to tell and this ride is remembered with each story told

Here's to the Ride!

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Only the sound of my breath

For those of you wondering about my "Total quiet", Jim went on a 3 day hunting/fishing trip. He will return later tonight, but in the meantime I have enjoyed this time alone. However, most of my Joy comes from the fact that he loves me so very much, and that he will return soon. Under that peaceful umbrella of Love, I have enjoyed this alone time.

I love being alone and walking through our house, especially in the evening. With beautiful lamps lighting each room. With a glow of candles and the smell of incense, I walk peacefully from room to room, blessing our home, blessing our lives, blessing our loves.

I love sitting quietly to read - no TV, no music - just the sound of my breath and the sound of our beautiful home as it also sighs with pleasure. And I feel so loved. I feel enveloped with Joy.

So I have enjoyed these days and nights, but now I long for Jim to come home. I am ready for him to take me in his arms and we will enjoy the sound of our breath together.

Here's to the Ride!

Monday, November 1, 2010