A few years ago, a five year old named Harrison showed up on my doorstep with a framed picture of himself. He told his mom I was his girlfriend. I’ve had to share him with quite a few women since but he keeps coming back around. Two weeks ago I was planting some flowers and he walked by and stopped. I asked if he would like to help me put in my vegetable garden when it was time. He gave me an emphatic YES!
Today was the day. I consulted the Farmer’s Almanac and it said plant today- not this weekend. I went and rounded up some veggie and herb plants and got the soil ready in my box gardens. It was the last day of school for the kids in my neighborhood. They go to a country school and get out early. I live in a very community oriented place so there was a big party going on from noon till dark. Harrison made his way down from the party and was ready to go. Another curious soul rode by on a big wheel sort of vehicle and stopped. He asked if he could help. I thought- why not? His name was Caleb.
(Purple gloves- Harrison. Pink gloves- Caleb.)
I asked them if they would like to wear gloves. They did. One got pink and one got purple. I explained we first had to spread cow poop all over the soil and mix it in. They thought that was great and worked hard at moving dirt. They got so excited about planting I could barely keep up with teaching, hole digging, and positioning plants! They were awesome!
They were even eager to help clean up and together they rolled the big garbage can out of my garage, down the alley and into my yard. We had a whole chorus of little girls watching and asking questions from the sidelines. It was a memorable evening for me.
( I had the boys taste the spearmint already growing in my garden. Harrison made all the other kids taste it too.)
(The kids got to take home transplants from my spearmint patch. They thought it was awesome!)
(Our finished project.)
I had a wonderful request today to do pictures for a world-class pianist and two fabulous dancers. I’m looking forward to this project and being a part of the publicity for their performance and his new album. I’m also making plans to visit my photog mentor and his family in Salt Lake City. He’s been working on a project for Disney the past several months and I’m really geeked out to see his media company and learn more stuff!
Oh look at that- my bedtime is coming and going. I better move my butt. I have a branding tomorrow and this time I get to help hold the cows down beyond just taking pictures!
(The pics in this post have nothing to do with the content. I just thought I should throw a few in..)
My side/backyard sits adjacent to a sidewalk busy with kids in the afternoons. I don’t have a fence up but for some reason, most of the kids never see me sitting on my patio under my umbrella. It makes me privy to many sweet and often funny exchanges. Today a little guy of 7 or 8 was walking home from the bus when his teeny sister came running towards him. He was excited to see her and kept asking how her graduation went. She squealed a whole bunch and then breathlessly told him she had been in a concert and “my mom came to school today- for real!” She was so excited and he was so excited for her! I was really touched that a boy that age would be so tender to his younger sister. I’ve been smiling about it ever since.
I met up with my life coach this morning. We have been afforded some rich and leisurely sessions where we both discuss our ideas and dreams. Our time concluded with the idea that if we put a lot of energy and attention into the basic details of life ie: the food we eat, time with loved ones, care of our bodies, care of our homes; less money and time would be spent on stuff to fill up the empty spaces. You know what I mean? Work on meeting your most basic needs in the best of ways and there isn’t much of a want to lay in front of the TV, eat out all of the time, buy more whatever to fill your house and life up with. It makes incredible sense to me.
Today I began Talent is Overrated: What Really Separates World-Class Performers from Everybody Else by Geoff Colvin. My aunt sent it to me to add to my quest of knowledge and book-devouring! My uncle gives it to many of the graduate students he works with. I am 47 pages in and intrigued. Colvin dissects Mozart’s and Tiger Wood’s childhoods. They were both born to highly motivated and educated fathers who loved to teach. Mozart’s dad was a composer and started his son playing and writing music at age three. Tiger’s dad was obsessed with golf and put his son in a baby swing in the garage so he could watch his dad practice his swing over and over. The music and the golf were like breathing to these two kids. This was their norm. They both wanted to please their fathers. They had focused practice every day of their lives. And so, they excelled. The author was trying to show the reader their success was much less about any talent but dedicated work.
What bothers me about these stories is that two men lived out their dreams through their children in a very intense way. Was this what they were really meant for? Sure they created excellence in their respective fields but were they happy? Fulfilled? Certain kinds of success do not equal happiness.
I have a dress rehearsal of a play I need to get ready for. I’m reviewing it for Venture Theater’s last performance as Venture Theater. It is a complex piece and I will tell you all about it tomorrow.
(Tiny mountain butterfly.)
I stole away to the mountains this afternoon. That geography gives me the clearest mind. The crowds of Memorial Day campers, hikers, and whatevers had yet to descend upon the area. The Beartooths were mine. It was also nippier than expected but having been taught in the Girl Scouts to “always be prepared”, I had a change of clothes. If you happened by the Greenough campground area this afternoon, you would have seen a brown-haired girl in striped underpants leisurely changing her clothes because she was fixated on everything around her.
As I walked around and let my mind quiet, truths rose up and out. I recognized a pattern of doing things out of desperation. It only leads to more desperation. Okay. So, no more of that. Just flow. I could see more of the picture of living from a place of value instead of fear.
I read some Jean Houston while parked in front of a stream. She further affirmed that the truth is indeed inside of us. If we really want to know, we just need to bushwhack a path.
I wrapped up in my great-grandmother’s quilt and made a vow to take my new information with me and leave the old stuff I didn’t need to float down the river and disappear.
On my way home, I listened to an audiobook by Jillian Michaels (you’d be surprised just how damn good it is). She said we attract what we feel- not what we wish or ask for. If the internal dialogue is one of despair, lack, and whoa is me- that is what will come towards us. Focus on hope and the belief circumstances can and will change, that your dreams can materialize- and they will. Put some hard work behind those positive thoughts and opportunity and success will be yours.
My mind went whirring after hearing this. I’ve been reading variations on the theme in all of the books I’ve read recently. Something about “what you feel” got me. And then Proverbs 23:7 made more sense that it ever has: “As a man thinks in his heart, so is he.” Yep.
I stopped in at a photo gallery on my way home. I was awfully inspired. After my mind was primed with all that good info, I began seeing my photography in a very different way. I am ready to reinvent the photo chik. She is probably going away and something interesting will be taking her place.
(“Steeping” right along with the growler sun tea.)
- Am grateful my Oklahoma City family is safe and sound.
- Thought positive stuff about myself which led to:
-being whistled at on my morning run/walk
-finding a job I’m actually interested in applying for
-just flat out enjoying my entire day
- Ran into my fly fishing guru and secured future fishing dates with he and fishing guru #2. I don’t know how my stars aligned so perfectly with these two. No need for them to act like they are the shit because they ARE the shit. Inexpensive equipment, self-taught fishermen and rowers, and damn they caught 70 fish between them one afternoon a few weeks ago on a smaller creek within an hour from home. I can’t wait to get out with them in a few weeks. We have to wait for the rivers to not be so blown out. We could fish the Horn (the Bighorn River) but that will be even more of a floating carnival at this time of year than it usually is. No thanks. I’ll just practice my cast and hike while I wait.
- I’m proud of my cousin who is a part of Oklahoma City Sheriff’s department. He must be past exhausted by now and I hate to think of what all he has seen and done in the last 24 hours or so.
- And now for some r&r.
Pretty patterns emerged from this window shot with a BB gun. It got me thinking in the metaphorical sense.
Many of the windows of my perception have been shot out. They needed it. I’ve been stuck in self-defeating patterns most of my life that were created in my formative years as a way to survive. The intuitive authors I’ve been reading of late helped me pick up that BB gun and smash some of my bad ideas, survival modes and all-around negative grey cell garbage. This moved me from surviving to living and on to thriving- believing I can make things happen instead of can’t. A lot more right answers appear when you stop road-blocking yourself.
And here is the fascinating thing: There are gorgeous new patterns left behind to follow when you smash your outmoded windows of perception.
A fun, full day.
Attended a yoga class- part of Perfect Balance Yoga and Massage’s yoga conference celebrating their ten year anniversary! Got to be with lots of old friends.
(I’m in the back row, dark pants- legs up and feet tipping back towards the wall. )
Went to Miss Nolee’s graduation party. Ran into more old friends.
(Nolee at her concert last night. She tap dances and raps.)
(Nolee is an eclectic, original girl after my own heart. So, I gave her a gift that reminded me of her.)
(Wills at Noles party. Taught him years ago in kid’s yoga. Now that he’s an older kid- he wants to model in NYC.)
(There were lots of people at this party but I managed to make it look like only one lonely soul playing pinball..)
(The lovely party house.)
Stopped in to wish Robert Wood well at his “I got a theater job in New York” party.
I spent the entire day with many good people. I am blessed.
Tonight I caught one of Maxie Ford’s last performances. They were playing for free for a Bike Net fundraiser- a local organization that builds trails and maintains them around town.
This all-chick band formed when some of the girls were messing around after school and figured out one of them (my friend Nolee) could use her tap dancing skills to be the percussion section. They’ve played lots of gigs since they their birth last year and their star has risen in the local firmament. They are damn good. They all also just graduated and will be heading in different directions soon. Their last performance will be at Magic City Blues this summer, opening for Allen Stone and the Robert Cray Band! Nice work girls!
(My friend Nolee.)
(They keep losing whatever it is they hit the cowbell with- tonight it was Nolee’s tap shoe.)
(A band dad jumps on stage with his harmonica.)
(My pal Tony and I used to teach these two in kids yoga class years ago..)
I walked out of the theater and the sky was my favorite color- that inky blue/black after it rains and the sun has nearly set. Just gorgeous.
(This awesome dude rode by suddenly and I quickly whipped out my camera!)
There are so many good things in my days. I am grateful.