Friday, April 29, 2011

Woo Hoo!

My friend Susan posted this on Facebook, saying it will make every woman proud. I'm still smiling.

love kj

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Lost and Found

I am christening my evolving new blog with an evolving old poem. :^)

She wakes this morning with one foot secure
And the other rumbling, tumbling
Concerned for something quite unknown.

It is spring today. There are fast moving finches
And curious beaks pecking the tall birdhouse
Between the patio and kitchen window.
(What happened that night it and the chirps inside
Fell to the ground, only a scattered feather or two
Telling a vague and troubled story? )

One foot secure, she is still in this moment—
The stillness of the kettle just before it steams--
Wondering how anything could be amiss on a promising day:
Curious how she could today
Feel unsettled, lost and found,
Either way with empty pockets and full up gratitude.

She looks at this grateful dog
And in her mind reviews
Every reason this is a good good day.
There will be time to plant the peas
And plan the garden.
There will be no work today, no chores to speak of.
No sickness, no broken promises, no unexpected loss.
No late payments, no betrayals,
Not even an empty gas tank.

Today is a good day.
She asks ever so slightly,
a moment before the commitment is made:
How she can be so wise, and so lucky,

So alive and so aware
And too, so paperthin?

She rises from the night,
Feeds the dog, makes the coffee,
Answers the phone, picks up the mail,
Calls the dentist, waters the plants,
Readies the peas:

Every act born of cautious hope
For a good good day.




Repair work is needed on my blog which as you may notice no longer looks like my blog. Great minds and capable hands are helping me sort out what I (accidentally) managed to do to reinvent myself here and not in a good way :^). At least I can post and upload pictures and comment to my heart's content. In the meantime, despite my almost total resistance to the point of whining, I am forced to learn a small something about html's and how logic would work if only I were more logical. It is spring and despite the rain it is not a time for complaints of any kind. So I will just say thank you for stopping by, your comments are as welcomed as Hersey's Kisses, and I'm sorry for the lack of color here. For now. Just for now. Love kj ♥

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Candy, Jellies, & Lollys by Emily Rabbit

Well! Here I am on almost Bunny Day, which kj said I shouldn’t call it that because she said Easter is about something very more serious than what I celebrate but I am sorry because all I can think about is:

1. Solid Chocolate eggs
2. Carrots dipped in chocolate
3. One giant chocolate rabbit wearing overalls and a pink hat with a flower
4. Mutilcolored Jellybeans
5. Marshmallow chickens
6. Grape lollipops

I hope if you celebrate Easter or passover too that you are thinking like I am and not ignoring even m & m’s and Cadbury cream eggs and Reece's peanut butter cups it you want to have some or give some to somebody who would smile if you gave them one. Or you could dig up a plant in someone’s yard and maybe put it in your own pot and keep it near your bed or maybe even give the plant to someone nice or someone you want to be nice.

See this picture? Do you think the rabbit in the picture is me? kj draws me flat like a pancake trying to look like a silly imp and lo drew me dancing and adorable and Sonja drew me zany and babs made me slinky cool and mim made me a cartoon, which could make me famous in which case I would have to give her at least 15% of all the money I made except that my business manager jos will probably need some money too.

So guess what? do you think this picture is me? Yes!This is exactly what I would look like if my ears flopped down instead of up and I weighed more and were older and I were sweet. Hahaha!

I really cannot concentrate on anything right now except candy and jellies and lollys. I hope you are smart enough to know what your priorities are like I do so you will not waste your time on worrying or working because if you do that you will miss your own candy and jellies and lollies, metaphorically speaking*

*kj added this 'metaphorically speaking part only because she knows and i know too that what are jellies and lollys for one person may be junk food for another, so everyone should find their own substitute that makes them as happy as candy makes me and then let that be the most important thing.

sincerely yours
emily rabbit
happy easter


My blog is bound to have a new appearance. But I wasn't counting on it tonight. If I knew how to change it back, or change it forward, I would. But for now please indulge me while I take a bit of time to figure how to get my sidebar back and my colors back and the layout to my satisfaction. Maybe I'll even hit the template upgrade button. I have very little idea what I'm doing and god bless all of you who try to help me. Just for the record, I may not have computer skills at a very high level but I like people and that gets me far. :^)



Friday, April 22, 2011

A MishMash Week

It's been a good week.

For one thing, I am finally able to visualize my second book. Its bones will be written this summer in Provincetown and I am feeling ready. I have 200 plus first draft pages written already, begun at a hard time, in the format of snippets--one or two paragraphs that tell a story on their own but are also part of a larger whole. I'm not sure that format will remain. But I do know this: whatever I write and however I write it will be driven by my own integrity.

I've had trouble uploading photos this week but I somehow knew the problem would fix itself and as of tonight, it has. So here is some of my week in pictures, not counting the garden that got raked today and the sunflower and zinnia seeds that got planted in little pots tonight.

I wanted you to see that the runners of the Boston Marathon were not all fancy atheletes. These folks had run 20 miles already when I took this photo. I could not have been more inspired.

She won't like this photo: I can hear her now. "Mom, what were you thinking? that is hideous!" But I don't see it that way. This is my Jessica, she is very beautiful, and I love her to the moon and back.

I love being in and around Boston...

And I love where I live in Western Massachusetts.

And I love my new kitchen:

It's not put back together...

But it's very darn sweet. I'll be happy in this space. That's no small thing to say outloud.

Best wishes for a fine weekend

Wednesday, April 20, 2011


We are driving together after an exhausting day and JB and I are not patient. At first we snip a comment or two, and then one of us adds a pinch of sarcasm. It didn't take long after that to begin arguing.

"Dammit JB," I say. "You drive me crazy!"

"So do you," she snaps back.

Then, from nowhere: Sillypants.

We have forgotten that Mr. Ryan age four is in the back seat.

I turn around.

"Ryan, what did you say?"

"Sillypants," he repeats.

And then he says, "That's what you say when people are fighting and then they stop."

"Ryan, who told you that?"

"No one."

"You made it up yourself?"


To recap: two adult woman start bickering and arguing with one another and it's headed nowhere good until a four year old little boy intervenes.


It was the best diffusion he could think of.

It worked so well I am recommending it without reservation.

It could save a person years of counseling.

Try it: Sillypants

See what I mean?


Monday, April 18, 2011


Have you ever seen a Marathon? It's a 26.2 mile race, including, in the case of the Boston Marathon, a grueling stretch called Heartbreak Hill at the 20 mile mark: this year, 27,000 runners competing with themselves to the finish line.

Watching the runners today was enough to restore my faith in humanity and in our collective ability to know what matters and to get it right. It is thrilling to watch the effort and grit required to run a marathon.

There were men and women of all ages, running alone, running in small groups, running by the hundreds, pushed forward by their own determination and the steady claps of a grateful crowd; wheelchair athletes, a few folks in their 70's, so many pretty regular people who had trained their bodies and minds for this race, for this time.

There was one special runner.

His name is Mike.

He is my son-in-law.

Mike never ran a marathon before. His number and ranking was 22,524 out of 27,000. He trained himself for months, wanting to finish in 3 hours and 50 minutes.

We his family and Janna who is also family had to be out of the house and on the road by 7:30 this morning so we could get to the other side of the route that would be closed to all but the runners.

We took ourselves out to breakfast, walked a bit to a spot midway up Heartbreak Hill, and we watched elite men with low numbers, 3, 12, 23 fly by as if they had wings on the soles of their shoes. We waited for how long? two? three hours? before we saw Mike.

We saw him coming fast and his four year old son--Mr. Ryan--saw him, and he looked unbelievably fantastic. He stopped to kiss Ryan and then Jessica, his wife/my daughter, and then he ran another 6 miles, finishing what he set out to do, 45 seconds above his goal.

Jess and Janna took the subway to meet Mike at the finish line and Ryan's three grandmothers took themselves and him to Dairy Queen for ice cream.

Later he talked to his father in the car by cell phone.

"Daddy,how are you? did you finish, daddy?"

Ryan gasped, then smiled a mile wide.

"Oh Gram, BB, Mimi: Daddy finished!"

I will never forget the sound of that four year old little voice, beaming about his daddy.

He finished alright. Yes he did. Quite nicely.

Yay Mike.

(Mike, if I'm off on your actual or projected time, please forgive me. Writers do that sometimes: they come close but not always accurately. I tried to be a good listener....) xoxoxo

Wednesday, April 13, 2011


"Opinions just go around bothering people." The Buddha

My friend Marsha was uncharacteristically just about drunk and maybe that is why she saw peach instead of yellow.

"Marsha, our living room is yellow. So are the curtains."

"No, peach."

She is certain. I turn to her husband.

"Norm, yellow, right?"

"Somewhat," he says. Tentatively.

Two hours before, over chicken marsala, Marsha asks when she and Norm will come to Provincetown.

I hesitate."Of course, anytime," I say, and I mean it. "But remember the conflict we had there last summer? Let's straighten that part out beforehand."

"What conflict?" I don't remember any conflict," Marsha says.

"Remember how we disagreed over when to eat those pancakes and whether to eat lunch at home or out? And all that food you insisted we eat when we didn't want to?"

Marsha looks bewildered. "I don't remember any of that. Do you, Norm?"

"No," Norm says.

JB and I are astonished. Last summer we talked for days after about how hard the visit was, how bad we felt about it, what we should do to forgive and forget.

Who knew Marsha and Norm had no problem forgetting because what JB and I remembered, they didn't remember to begin with.

Which brings me to this morning.

Beginning last night.

The low budget kitchen makeover means that we did not replace all the cabinets, just a couple.

So the couple have to match the ones we left.

Not so easy.

We tried different varnishes.

Our nice carpenter tried wax.


Too dark.

Then JB, who hates paint, went to the paint store and came home with white stain.

She experimented on a two by four piece of unfinished wood. Vanish. Wax. One coat of stain. Two coats of stain. One coat of stain and one coat of varnish.

Last night around midnight we put our best solution on a larger piece of wood.

We matched it!

What joy.


I came home this afternoon to find not the matching color at all.

All the new wood was painted.


Does it match the other cabinets?



Too white.

This is feeling vaguely familiar.

What seems certain, what looks certain, what should be certain...


I don't know what will happen.

"Let it dry," our carpenter said. "Then we'll see what to do."

He's right.

Remember I said I don't want to worry in advance anymore?

And it's just kitchen cabinets.

It's not cancer. It's not Iran.

But still.

I've suspended my excitement.


I'm hoping for another strange phenomena I discovered some time ago.

Besides the fact that Marsha sees peach when I know damn well it's yellow:

Sometimes things fix themselves.

Sometimes they just do.

That would be nice.

Love kj

Monday, April 11, 2011

Quickie Quotes

If it weren't so late I might have looked up the history of quotations. Suffice to say here are some that have current meaning for me; perhaps some for you too.
love kj .

Sometimes the quickest way is the slowest way (my clinical supervisor Jennifer).
Forgiveness is the release of all hope for a better past (how could I write this down and not remember where I got it..apologies)
You will do foolish things, but do them with enthusiasm (Colette).
Love is about wanting to fly a thousand miles to watch someone do laundry. (my friend Melissa).
I appreciate your dilemma, but if nothing I say is useful, then you gotta do what you gotta do (a very wise Susan).
The past is never dead. It isn't even past. (William Faulkner).
Never give a sword to a man who can't dance. (Confucius).
A deed or flaw can be so despised that the whole person (self or other) gets punished or even sacrificed to get rid of it. (The Little Black Book of Tarot).
The test of a vocation is the love of the drudgery it involves (L.P. Smith).
It's kind of fun to do the impossible. (Walt Disney)
There is no remedy for love but to love more. (Henry David Thoreau)
The trick in juggling is determining which balls are made of rubber and which ones are made of glass. (Anonymous) (note from kj: work is a rubber ball. family and friends are not)

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Mash Mash Saturday

The day has been mine.

Look who moved in up the street at the voc-tech school. I don't know if they're ponies or horses, but they are sticking close to one another; I hope they aren't scared.

Okay, I love seeing my kitchen transformed but I'm ready to be done now. Shot of my downtown. and my yard

and this is my favorite part of my day so far. From this:

to this.
I didn't rush today.

I didn't wish I were somewhere else.

I talked to friends.

I told my Mom I loved her.

She told me too.

I spread out new soil and planted pansies.

I took a walk with Stella.

I'm having sushi for dinner (enough said) :)

My friend in Australia is having a ball.

I am thankful times ten. .



Thursday, April 07, 2011


I wrapped up a long day of work and spent tonight with a sisterhood.

JB and I and 49 other women were invited to a local restaurant called the Apollo Grill for an specially planned evening of meeting and relaxing with one another. Our friend Lori invited us and it was wonderful: talented, interesting, women ready to enjoy a good meal, clink drinks, and sing-a-long together. I sat beside a woman named Evelyn Harris who was the guest performer and a singer in Sweet Honey and the Rock for 18 years. I don't know how or why she ended up here in the Pioneer Valley but her music was sweet and when she sang she rocked the house.

JB and I sat with a woman who paints wall size canvasses of amazingly realistic apples and pears; a professor of photography at a local college, a naturalist who raises standard poodles, a private practice psychiatric nurse, the owner and CEO of a disability consulting firm (our friend Lori), and Evelyn Harris, who shook her bones and sang so deeply from so deep within that she had all fifty of us on our feet rocking and clapping and belting out "This Little Light of Mine" and another that assured that Everything's Gonna Be Okay.

I want to tell you that it was just awesome to be in the company of women like this sharing the theme of the evening, which was about Friendship and Balance. And it was.

But I have to say I looked around and saw a collective weariness too; an uncertainty and an inability to just relax, coast, let go...a desire to hold on to the slippery slope of balance.

Why is balance so elusive? Hell, I only work part-time and almost every day I am juggling and wondering how I will carve out my time, how I will get the chores and demands done so I can play and gallivant and prioritize and practice.

I wonder if my own Mother felt this kind of low grade uncertainty and exhaustion? I don't think so, I really don't. Her world was less complicated, with fewer choices and stronger roots. Perhaps the state of her world was no less secure, but she was and her family was. She did not worry about violence, bankruptcies, natural disasters in the same way. They may have happened but she didn't expect them to.

The women I sat with tonight, and I include myself, worry more and play less. I could see it on too many faces.

Now why is that?

And beyond the why, WHAT allows the change from worry to contentment? I have a suspicion the "what" may be smaller than we dare imagine.



Monday, April 04, 2011


Down the Street

These days? Boring?


kitchen corian counters installed this morning (thrilling) (orgasmic)

wrote 13 client session notes, 2 treatment plans, 2 insurance summaries

got and agreed to an insurance quote for my Mother's house

called an attorney to help plan for my Mother's needs

ordered something special for someone special

went downtown for a sushi lunch with JB (california rolls, shrimp tempura rolls, sweet potato rolls: nothing raw)

sent an email to our tenant in Ptown confirming she'll be moving out and we'll be arriving on May 19th (ooh-la-la!)

visited several of my favorite blogs and (finally) left overdue comments without rushing

looked at pictures from not-so-baby Drew's 2nd birthday party

failed to figure out WHY the line spacing on my posts is totally messed up

smiled that the crocuses refuse to open in the rain

arranged for the delivery of the stainless steel stove hood for our orgasmically evolving kitchen

stumbled across another verbal arrow directed at me on the blogs but thankfully spent less time brooding about it (progress)

Wrote a mostly firm and just a tiny kind letter to our financial advisor who made a sorry sad huge mistake in our retirement outlook

What I didn't do

Another day without looking at my 10 page state application to bill privately as a psychotherapist

Not a peek or thought about income tax filing due in 10 days (won't happen: another extension)

Didn't write a word

Didn't call the Arts Council about Renee's grant application

Haven't called two friends still hope to)

Didn't visit my Mom (She sang two songs on Sunday and we could not stop smiling) (she never sings)

Still have to mail bills

No shower and it's 6:30 pm

Tomorrow's another day.

love kj

P.S. Blogger is creating all kinds of weird spacing. I keep correcting it on draft mode but not so when I publish the post. AAAAAGH. if you have advice, thank you and please advise.

Sunday, April 03, 2011

The First Day

Here in the northeast it's been the longest winter. There has been snow on the ground for months now, constant frigid temperatures, black skies by 4:30-5:00 each night. . But not today! Today my part of the world welcomed spring. The sun was bright & the sky was brilliant. It was a perfect first day to get reacquainted with my yard.

There is not much I like better. I pulled out my rake and in a tiny area in the front yard I picked up leaves that had accumulated from last fall. There is rich soil where I live: my yard was once part of a large farm. It was so good to see that black soil again. Tomorrow morning I will walk out my kitchen door and delight that one small patch of land is now clean and ready for plantings.


Here's some of what made me happy today:
JB's Magic Cottage: once a shed, now a studio

It's really not this bad. The kitchen is getting its low budget remodel and the garage is storing our sink, stove top, two by four pieces of wood. Tomorrow new Corian counters will be installed. I am over the moon with anticipation. It doesn't take much to excite me which, personally, I think is a good thing.

If there is any rationale for four seasons, a huge one is early spring when the ground literally cracks itself open. This is rhubarb breaking through. In time these buds will have one and two foot leaves.
Is this a message? Hieroglyphics?

There are a variety of plastic lizards in my yard. JB likes lizards. I try to ignore them...

Hello Spring!

I got this trough for my birthday last year. It is very old, from China, where it was used for chickens. Soon I will fill it with water and float my first flower in it. As long as I have a small container of water somewhere outside, and maybe a splurge of one lily pad, I'm happy.


I will have a small vegetable and flower garden and JB and I will landscape some. We will work, break for lunch, sit on the front steps and then in the backyard chairs, and we will walk around the yard on the lookout for whatever peeks out. I love this time of year, and I'm grateful for it.


Happy New Season, where ever you are.



Friday, April 01, 2011

Mini Mish Mash


It's a quiet night after a busy week. Sunday morning I'll get to read the Sunday paper and maybe rake a few leaves. Spring is trying to arrive and the sky knows. .

Here are a few current thoughts: .

"The past is never dead. It isn't even past." william faulkner


"When I'm alone I practice my oscar speech and I never forget to thank you." . .


How old would you be if you didn't know how old you are?
When is a door not a door? when it's ajar .

And finally, I have no idea when I wrote this poem.
It's titled FLU.

First my head ... Makes me stay in bed ... Then my lungs...My teeth and tongue...Sore and tight... It’s just not right...My arms and legs... Weigh two kegs.,,,I deserve... To be better served... Than this sorest throat... That can’t emote... Even my toes... And both elbows... Not to mention... No attention... To my many chores... And open doors...On my sleepy pillow... I’m a weeping willow.. . I rest my head... And pretend I’m dead... I feel like lead... What’s worse instead?... Damn! Damn!... I’ve been slammed! ...There’s nothing here... to misconstrue..... I have the fricking flicking flu. . . .

Wishing you a fine day,

love kj ♥