Thursday, July 30, 2009


It's been a spell since I've had any weird Sequim, WA Police Blotter news...but yesterday's Gazette provided this nugget:

July 22, 10:47 a.m. - The caller reported someone was trying to sell him a bottle of "awesome"....

Did I mention we've been experiencing triple digit temps this week? Perhaps that would explain this odd incident. I keep thinking about what I would say to someone if they knocked on my door in an attempt to sell me bottled awesomeness but I can't think of a good response - except for shutting the door. And since I finally hung St. Benedict's "All are to be welcomed as Christ" plaque on my front porch it just wouldn't be right to close the door on all that potential awesomeness, now would it?

photo: I googled "bottle of awesome" and discovered a comic created by Andy Belanger (Andy B.) which is about an unpopular 9th grade boy who finds the bottle of awesome and upon drinking it becomes - AWESOME....

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

sacred illness

A sacred illness is one that educates us
and alters us from the inside out,
provides experiences and therefore knowledge
that we could not possibly achieve in any other way,
and aligns us with a life path that is, ultimately,
of benefit to ourselves and those around us.
-- Deena Metzger

The photo of a California desert can be a place of beauty, solace and peace.
But it can also fit the image of illness - dry, barren, rough, colorless, cruel -
and the pink bloom is that fragile hope - that possibility of new life -
that healing we so long for.

May all who suffer in mind, spirit, and body this day
experience a sense of respite through the gifts of God's beauty & grace.

you make a better window than a door

" I have become my own version of an Optimist.
If I can't make it through one door,
I'll go through another door - or I'll make a door.
Something terrific will come no matter how dark the present."
~ Rabindranath Tagore

(but watch that first step)
door from

Monday, July 27, 2009


"The central purpose
of each life
should be
to dilute
the misery
in the world."

- Karl Menninger

Well, well, well...that's a whole lot of things to be miserable about! Maybe we could lower it to an even 11, 000?

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Reader's Choice

I could not decide on a title for this drawing, depicting today's
Gospel reading from John 6, so I'm letting you choose:

1) Where's Waldo?
2) Jesus Feeds His Peeps
3) The Original Woodstock Festival
4) Which way to the Porta Potties?
5) make up your own

Saturday, July 25, 2009

dishing it out

"Whatever attitudes we habitually use toward ourselves, we will use on others, and whatever attitudes we habitually use toward others, we will use on ourselves. The situation is comparable to serving food to ourselves and to other people from the same bowl. Everyone ends up eating the same thing - we must examine carefully what we are dishing out."
- B. H. Gunaratana

photo courtesy of Ayo Ijidakinro

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

no more excuses

"You don't belong to your immediate family; you're a member of the human family.
You don't own your children, nor are you a possession of your parents.
You're not obliged to fulfill the wishes or a destiny dictated by kin.
It's important to consciously know that you're here to create your music,
and that you don't have to die with your music still in you.
Granted, this can trigger some family drama,
but then again, that might just be your excuse
for not following your own path.
It's been my experience that I earn far more respect than reproach
from my family whenever I encourage myself to live the life I want."

Wayne Dyer, "Excuses Begone!" p.39

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Just a Housewife?

This Sunday's reading from the Gospel according to John, chapter 6, tells the well-known story of Jesus feeding the 5000 from the meager offerings of a young boy in the crowd. Before reading the following piece, I had never considered the woman who must have baked those 5 simple loaves. I love a fresh perspective!

"Just a Housewife"
by Cordelia Baker-Pearce

I packed five cakes of bread and two small fishes,
Sent him off, my youngest lad,
To take his father's dinner to the field.
Came back alone he did, all goggle-eyed.
My fresh-baked bread that varmint gave away
To some young travelling preacher out of Galilee.
It fed five thousand people.What a tale!
It can't be true... but if it is,
What kind of dough did these hands knead
This morning?

She baked holy bread for holy people

Lonely Hearts Club

"Don't let someone
become a priority
in your life,
when you are just
an option in their life...
Relationships work best
when they are balanced."
~ Unknown

In an attempt to keep this post "balanced", i looked for, but could not find, the female equivalent of this heart :(

Monday, July 20, 2009

your true identity

do you realize that you are all of these?

image of God
born of God's breath
vessel of divine Love
after his likeness
dwelling of God
capacity for the infinite
eternally known
chosen of God
home of the Infinite Majesty
abiding in the Son
called from eternity
life in the Lord
temple of the Holy Spirit
branch of Christ
receptacle of the Most High
wellspring of Living Water
heir of the kingdom
the glory of God
abode of the Trinity.
God sings this litany
eternally in his Word.
This is who you are.

a litany of the person - anonymous trappist monk

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Life is
a great big canvas,
and you should
all the paint
on it you can.

- Danny Kaye

The amazing Jackson Pollock at work
(aka Jack the Dripper!)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

"and that's the way it is"

I was watching the news last night and they broke in with the announcement that Walter Cronkite had died. He was 92 and had lived an amazingly full life. The network then launched into non-stop Cronkite cpverage with archival footage of newscasts, interviews and rarely seen photos of Mr. Cronkite. I'm assuming that news centers keep obituary files ready in the wings for occasions such as this. God forbid we'd have to wait longer than a commercial break after someone famous dies to retrace the steps & contribution of their lives.

There is something disorienting about instant access to someone's life story without any time to process their death. I guess the news business has to keep our attention - after all, some other famous person might die tomorrow and we'll have to be ready to watch their life story flash before us. But what effect does this have on our ability to grieve for others and for ourselves?

(the photo is of Walter Cronkite announcing the death of JFK- a vivid memory for someone from my generation)

"and that's the way it is" is how he signed off every night

Friday, July 17, 2009

shake the damn tree!

"What is more mortifying
than to feel that you have
missed the plum
for want of courage
to shake the tree?"

- Logan Pearsall Smith

Can you let go
of just one
false belief,
or excuse today?

plum picture from here

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Look closely

"There is nothing in the Holy
that is not being revealed
100 percent of the time."

- Gerald Hair

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Feeling Folded?

"I want to unfold.
I do not want to remain folded up anywhere,
because wherever I am still folded,
I am untrue."

excerpt from a poem by R. Rilke

artist: Polly Verity, found here

Monday, July 13, 2009

coffee break

This photo looked perfect for a Monday morning....

What do you think
the dancer sitting on the floor,
enjoying her coffee is saying
to her partner up on the wall?

"Perhaps your next cup should be decaf?"

"Fun During Coffee Break" 1932
by Martin Munkacsi,
(American, born Hungary, 1896–1963)

photo from this exhibition

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Needing to upgrade?

"Fear is
the cheapest room
in the house.
I would like
to see you living
in better conditions."

Khwajeh Shams al-Din Muhammad Hafez-e Shirazi

This gem arrived in my mailbox this morning from It's one of those quotes that pumps new air into well-worn and almost deflated concepts by giving us vivid word pictures to play with. I for one am not interested in staying in the dormitory. I gotta have that air conditioning!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Benedict's welcome

A Prayer of St Benedict
O gracious and Holy Father,
give us wisdom to perceive you,
intelligence to seek you,
patience to wait for you,
vision to behold you,
a heart to meditate upon you,
and a life to proclaim you,
through the power of the Spirit
of Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

It's the feast day of St. Benedict, who is widely known as the founder of Western Monasticism. Just last week I purchased a door plaque with a quote by Benedict, "All are to be welcomed as Christ".

I haven't hung it up yet because I'm just not sure I can really live up to the concept. I like the idea of welcoming everyone as Christ but can I actually do it? What if spending time with God actually means spending time with those who annoy the hell out of me? What if seeking God is directly connected to loving my neighbor as myself?

These are questions I wrestle with. If all are to be welcomed as Christ then I have to treat all as I would Christ. And that can only happen with God's help. Putting the plaque up will be a spiritual discipline and a step into the unknown. I'm not particularly a fan of the unknown. I'll let you know how it goes.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


My sister Roma and her children have been visiting since Wednesday. Highlights of our time together included shopping in Port Townsend, and walking on the Labyrinth at St. Paul's. Today we picked strawberries and raspberries and the kids went fishing with their uncle. But the ultimate highlight for Nicolette, who is 14, was the first afternoon we spent in Forks, doing the whole "Twilight" thing, returning to Port Angeles in the evening to eat at Bella Italia, where Edward and Bella had their first date. I was amazed at the number of people in both Forks and Port Angeles who were doing the exact same thing that we were!

We visited the high school, the sheriff's department, the hospital to see Dr. Cullen's parking space and the house where Bella Swan lived. I heard that Forks averages about 90 Twilight Tourists per day but i think i counted that many just in the Dazzled by Twilight store. This is the best thing to happen to Forks in years.

What is it about this series of books that is bringing people here from around the world?

I love this photo that Nicolette took from the car window as we left Forks. It looks very Twilighty to me...

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

"The seeker understands
And, most of all,
realizes that it is
precisely at the point of
personal need
that God comes
to fill up
the emptiness
that is us."
- Joan Chittister, OSB

I came across this delightful artist - Joyce Geleynse...visit her blog. Her artwork is for sale here in cards/posters, etc.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

a cow and a pig...

If you put your own belief system into the following tale - who would you not want to spend the night with in the barn?

"While traveling separately through the countryside late one afternoon, a Hindu, a Rabbi, and a Critic were caught in the same area by a terrific thunderstorm. They sought shelter at a nearby farmhouse.
"That storm will be raging for hours," the farmer told them. "You'd better stay here for the night. The problem is, there's only room enough for two of you. One of you'll have to sleep in the barn."
"I'll be the one," said the Hindu. "A little hardship is nothing to me." He went out to the barn.
A few minutes later, there was a knock at the door. It was the Hindu. "I'm sorry," he told the others, "but there is a cow in the barn. According to my religion, cows are sacred and one must not intrude into their space."
"Don't worry, said the Rabbi, "Make yourself comfortable here. I'll go to sleep in the barn." He went out to the barn.
A few minutes later, there was a knock at the door. It was the Rabbi.
"I hate to be a bother," he said, "but there is a pig in the barn. In my religion, pigs are considered unclean. I would not feel comfortable sharing my sleeping quarters with a pig."
"Oh, all right," said the Critic, "I'll go sleep in the barn." He went out to the barn.
A few minutes later, there was a knock at the door. It was the cow and the pig."

From The Tao of Piglet by Benjamin Hoff, Penguin Books
photo from

Saturday, July 4, 2009

4th of July

"You have to love a nation
that celebrates its independence every July 4,
not with a parade of guns, tanks, and soldiers
who file by the White House
in a show of strength and muscle,
but with family picnics
where kids throw Frisbees,
the potato salad gets iffy,
and the flies die from happiness.
You may think you have overeaten,
but it is patriotism."

~Erma Bombeck
(i so miss her wit)

Friday, July 3, 2009

For Jill

Please pray for my friend Jill, who received a cancer diagnosis today.
I cannot imagine what she is feeling tonight. Maybe it's best described
by a photo like this one - in which one's chair has been suddenly
and unexpectedly moved away from the rest.

Lord, we feel limited and inadequate in the face of suffering.
We ask that you would shelter your daughter Jill under the shadow of Your wings
and create within her this night a sacred space -
a place where she would know how much she is loved by You
and all who lift her up in the saying of this prayer. Amen
photo from here

to read J. O'Donohue's magnificent poem "For a Friend on the Arrival of Illness" click here - make sure you scroll to the bottom of the page to find it.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

go with - not against

"Whatever the present moment contains
accept it as if you had chosen it.
Always work with it--not against it."

~Eckhart Tolle

photo by Jane Manzer -
Mt. Angeles in the morning