Thursday, June 20, 2013

a little James and Joni and Indigo Girls

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Last week my kids found an old mix cd that I put together shortly after college. James Taylor, Joni Mitchell, and the Indigo Girls. They put it in the cd player in their play room and I belted out Galileo while we played Uno, the kids eyes wide. Then we danced to Get out the Map and Jelly Man Kelly and swayed to Both Sides. 

And so I was cleaning and chopping strawberries this afternoon when they put on the cd again. And James transported me to days of singing little babies to sleep... "you can close your eyes, it's alright..." ... and a softness grew in me until there was no other place to put it but around the arms of my nearly five year old. She was sneaking strawberries and my eyes softened and I handed her the whole bowl and planted a kiss on her head and sat and listened to her tell me about the colors of sea glass she found at the beach this morning. 

When you get the right sound track to your life, at the right moment, your world can change. Your view can change and open. The right music enters, and the soul smiles. 

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

summer mornings

This morning is perfect. It's not yet hit 70 degrees, there are a few clouds in the sky, and the breeze is playing with the towels that were left outside through last nights rainstorm on the porch. Gently swinging them back and forth, airing them out and making them fresh.

The kids are in the next room over watching Martha Speaks.  I'm waiting for their show to end so my yoga video can begin. My tea sits next to me, cold pizza is on the table for breakfast. Strawberry picking is on the agenda later this morning.

I can sense the summer shift happening. The kids are finding longer stretches of time for just being. For a while we were sinking a bit, in this vast open sea of summer. Without lessons or math problems or a planner filled with ideas. I'm taking the summer off. Hardly any craft projects are being planned by me. I spent the entire school year doing the things that I see on pinterest on the "keep your kids busy this summer" boards where activities are planned, orchestrated, played out with the mama's hand.

But for this summer, I am done.

I will play countless games of Uno. I will watch train tracks be built and I will perhaps go on rides. I will read and listen to countless stories. Checkers will be mastered. There will be playing with dolls. We will paint. We will draw. We will snuggle and hike and swim and lounge and picnic and simply be.

And maybe, just maybe, bits of this will carry on to the school year. We will have less scheduled and we will do more. Simplicity is calling all of our names, and instead of saying that we must outdo simplicity, I'm thinking it's time to welcome her into our home with open arms.

Friday, June 14, 2013

pruning

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My  mom was visiting the past few days. We spent the days trying to sneak in some outdoor adventures between the rain drops. And she trimmed my hair. One of those cutting off a few inches to let the rest grow in nicer things. Pruning, if you will. 

It's funny when you realize you are in need of pruning. 

Want to know a secret? 

I started a novel. But that's not the real secret. The real secret is... I hate writing fiction. Don't get me wrong, I adore fiction. There is nothing I love more than reading a beautifully crafted novel. And I always thought I would write one, because... well... I like to write, and I love novels, so... why not write one? So I've been sitting on this idea that my work will one day be writing fiction. But now I realize that I need to prune that idea a bit. Writing is one thing. Writing fiction... not my thing. Which is okay. 

I'm so thankful for folks who put their hearts into fiction, who live in that other world you need to be in to write a story. But for me, I found that writing fiction takes me away from here. And I have a hard enough time being here, living my story, that if I'm going to write anything at all... it's going to be from my point of view, helping me to figure out the in and outs of my life and my world. Some can do that through fiction, and I applaud that. But I think I need to keep life as simple as possible for myself. Which means creative non-fiction. And I'm cool with that. 

Pruning. 

In the shower this morning my hands ached for the extra three inches, not knowing what to do with those extra seconds, the shorter length. I've done a few double takes in the mirror. It's still me. Just simplified. Finding bits that were hard to find with the clutter of dry and split ends. There's a bit of awe in the eyes that I see staring back at me through the mirror. Awe in the power of simplifying and clearing the clutter of both a head of hair and a soul. 

Monday, June 10, 2013

Slow and steady

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This morning started in a slow, steady way 
With kids waking up too early 
{please, birds, please... give us one morning where you sing your lovely songs a wee bit later than 5am...} and then intentionally putting on a yoga dvd before pbs kids 
Sipping tea instead of coffee on the porch with a journal
Watching the steam billow off with the gentle, chilly breeze of morning
 Listening to my body instead of my routine 

Sometimes routines need to change to accommodate life

Friday, June 7, 2013

Uncharted territory

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 Did you see what I did with those last two posts? Put out in the world that we've had a rough week, then gloss over with a cute picture and a few words about motherhood and reminiscing and time? I realized it last night.

After my post on Wednesday the love I received was beautiful. Friends checking in to see what is happening, or if there's anything they can do to help. The support was, and is, such a blessing. So with all that, last night I was left wondering why I felt uneasy about saying that something is wrong.

And what it comes down to, I think, is that in this day and age of being able to so easily share what is going on in our lives, sharing can sometimes hurt those we are closest to. Because if someone close to us is hurting, and we don't know about it, then find out via the internet... feelings can get hurt.

But here's the thing: I also believe that the ease of sharing can be a beautiful thing, where we can be alerted to someone going through a difficult time and then dig deeper offline. Like those emails and texts I've gotten in the past few days. Digging deeper. Bringing connection.

If I were someone who was on the phone all the time with all of my friends, I think my sharing here and people finding out tidbits that I haven't spoken out loud would be a bigger issue. If I was not filling people in when I had conversations with them. But in my case, I talk to literally two or three people on the phone regularly (one being my mother) and I'm not about to send out a mass email updating all the people I know about what is going on in my life. So in comes this space, this space where I want to be able to put my energy into talking about whatever I need to talk about.

And for whatever reason, I want to write this blog publicly.

I truly believe in sharing our stories and writing out our truths and being open with them so that we, and anyone reading or listening, can not feel so alone. I do my sharing via writing because I've always written better than I speak.

True story.

So in writing this blog, I fulfill a need to be heard. A need to be seen and also to see others. I want to live openly and honestly and this blog affords that reality to an introvert who gets tongue tied easily.

My point is that I hope to never hurt anyone with my writing. This place is deeply personal for me, and I want to share it with you. Because our personal inner workings are beautiful. Mine are. (that's something I'm still learning to trust) So bare with me. There are so many lines to walk, and navigating them is proving to be a tiresome act. I'm trying to erase the lines that have been drawn in different times, and paint my own new ones. Lines that grow thick and thin with the pressure of a brush stroke, and meander into conversations and open spaces... erasing those spaces with the big caution signs and tape that we previously couldn't go into. Why can't we?

Perhaps here is where I should write proceed with caution... and love and kindness. These are uncharted territories, and I'm planning on exploring.

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Forever pink and blue crocs...

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I was looking back through photos on Flickr this morning... the one above is three years old. I can look at the photo and think to myself that it was a while ago. But when I type that - three years - it feels like an eternity. And now I look at my babies and she is all legs and movement and curly wild hair, and he is toothless and tall and almost lanky in ways. She still snuggles with us most nights, and he still wants to be oh so close all the time (except when he doesn't, and she doesn't...) I love that I can still see their babyhood in their faces even though they are full into childhood. Their cheeks are still round, their hands still fit in mine. They still wear Crocs (pink for her, blue for him, always). 

I love that through them I can see time, it's changes and sameness.


Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Sinking in

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Since Monday, we've been dealt a few tough cards. It has been a bit of a slap in the face after such a beautiful weekend away with the family. I'm learning to be okay with not being okay.

Recently I read an Eckhardt Tolle quote in which he says "Whatever the present moment contains, embrace it as if you had chosen it." 

I like that. Practicing that, and practicing letting go, are the two main things I'm focusing on this week. As well as breathing. Breath, Corinne. And on that note, I'm so thankful that I have friends who remind me to breathe. Thank you...

{editing to add that while I'm not going to talk about said tough cards at this moment, this isn't a cry for help, it's just me putting out there and sharing that it's okay to not be okay. I'm just showing up in my own way in this space as I feel called to do so. It's all part of the journey!}

Monday, June 3, 2013

From the mountains...

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My heart did flip flops this weekend. We spent three days up in the White Mountains for an end of the school year celebration at Story Land. And while the kids had an absolute blast at the park - rides and ice cream and splash pads and face painting and gift shops galore - it was the mountains that thrilled me. There was a moment of realization. It might have been Saturday nigh at a scenic overlook, where the light and shadows and rain clouds illuminated the countless mountains. It might have been the two hours spent at Echo Lake on Sunday morning, where the water was clear and kids fished for tadpoles and we only needed to speak in a whisper to be heard. Or it might have been on the ride home, counting off the things that would be oh-so-nice about living in the mountains with access to clear lakes for swimming, kayaking, canoeing. And all that fresh air... 

Whenever it was, I realized that this ocean girl might have a bit of mountain love in her. 

And that has shocked me. Stirred something in me. The result is yet to be seen. But for the first time in a while, I feel utterly awake and in love with a place I had long forgotten.