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i am thankful for so many things. food, family, friends, letters, music, guitars, texting, wifi, sisters, gravy, best friends, lovers, star trek, books, halfprice books, rice, turkey, beef, cows, fruit, gum, cameras, christmas lights, spongebob, toothbrushes, tongues, couches, cold weather, gingersnaps, slippers, thrifting, macbooks, tortellini, cooking, pencils, socks, boys, (boys? what is this doing on this list?) boys, redbox, cars, paint, aunts, ukeleles, birthdays, apples, gala apples, shoes, taylor university, pennyloafers, stamps, porcupines, sand, journals, & tea.

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Dancing to the beatles. The life around me has been so bitter sweet lately, and I want to share it with you.  I started work at the pool early mornings again, and while I am getting paid again, and getting tanner (is that possible?) it is draining and upon returning home every day my voice is almost gone. I have a couple funny stories to tell however. I asked one of my kids (that I teach, not that I gave birth to) how old they thought I was. He answered after some consideration that he thought I was 37. After laughing some and saying he was a little off he guessed 35. I’m pretty sure I do not look that old…

I went to a scrumptious place called Yogurtland with my friend Tina.  If you come visit me we are going there. There is nothing bitter about that sweet friend.

I am trying to go and visit my best friend, Em, who lives in Austin sometime in August. I haven’t seen her in a year and a half, and I miss her painfully. But we stay in contact. Blessed emails, phonecalls, texts.

There was a graduation of some sort where some really unique people that have touched me (though they may not know it) finished up the year they were in Texas and went back to their homes. I know that though they are not here physically and may never come back, they will always be here in their hearts. One of those students are staying two weeks after their year was over; and they are staying in my bedroom. It is a good interesting. :)

I went to the mall, bought a dress, saw a movie, talked with my friend Elsie. I need to find a different word to describe good. Agreeable, pleasant, memorable, genuine.

Today, I went to church wearing my new dress. Had a wonderful baked chicken lunch. (be jealous of my mom’s cooking!) Best of all, was told that I was beautiful, smart, and wonderfully weird by a special person.

Off to the library!

P.S. I want to let you know that you are making me break one the ten commandments, I COVET your comments.

I can’t express myself sometimes in words, and I often borrow the words of others; others that have had so much more experience then I have; others who I look up to. Here is some excerpts from the book, A Circle of Quiet, which is by Madeleine L’Engle. She is my favorite author. Please, sit back and bask in these words.

I like hanging sheets on lines strung under the apple trees—the birds like it, too. I enjoy going out to the incinerator after dark and watching the flames; my bad feelings burn away with the trash. But the house is still visible, and I can hear the sounds from within; often I need to get away completely, if only for a few minutes. My special place is a small brook in a green glade, a circle of quiet from which there is no visible sign of human beings. There’s a natural stone bridge over the brook, and I sit there, dangling my legs and looking through the foliage at the sky reflected in the water, and things slowly come back into perspective. If the insects are biting me—and they usually are; no place is quiet perfect—I use the pliable branch of a shadblow tree as a fan. The brook wanders through a tunnel of foliage, and the birds sing more sweetly there than anywhere else; or perhaps it is just what when I am at the brook I have time to be aware of them, and I move slowly into a kind of peace that is marvelous, “annihilating all that’s made to a green thought in a green shade.” If I sit for a while, them my impatience, crossness, frustration, are indeed annihilated, and my sense of humor returns.

I suppose the perfect isness of anything would be frightening without the hope of God. An oak tree is, and it doesn’t matter to it—at least Sartre thinks it doesn’t; it is not a thinking oak. Man is; and it matters to him, this is terrifying unless it matters to God, too, because we are sufficient unto ourselves—I am not: my husband, my family, my friends give me my meaning and, in a sense, my being, so that I know that I, like the burning bush, or the oak tree, am ontological: essential: real.

When we are self-conscious, we cannot be wholly aware; we must throw ourselves out first. This throwing ourselves away is the act of creativity. So, when we wholly concentrate, like a child in play, or an artist at work, then we share in the act of creating. We not only escape time, we also escape out self-conscious selves. The Greeks had a word for ultimate self-consciousness which I find illuminating: hubris: pride: pride in the sense of oneself in the center of the universe. The strange and terrible thing is that this kind of total self-consciousness invariably ends in self-annihilation. The great tragedians always understood this, from Sophocles to Shakespeare.

The kind of unself-consciousness I’m thinking about becomes clearer to me when I turn to a different discipline: for instance, that of playing a Bach fugue at the piano, precisely because I will never be good enough pianist to play a Bach fugue as it should be played. But when I am actually sitting at the piano, all there is for me is the music. I am wholly in it, unless I fumble so badly that I perforce to become self-conscious. Mostly, no matter how inadequate my playing, the music is all that matters: I am outside time, outside self, in play, in joy. When we can play with the unself-consciousness concentration of a child, this is: art: prayer: love.

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Out of my hand the pieces of your letter blew
Out into the dusk
I never read it
That how the song always goes
And it seems useless

The post it flew between us
The letters grew to thirteen pages long
The post faltered and faded away
The emails, the emails!
The talks full of happiness
The shine soon faded

But we knew we had something, back in the 2005’s
And the ink grew dimmer everyday
The ink, I hope stays bright!
I never know, but I kind of want to fight
For those letters in the post
The letters in the post

Now I think of you with fondness
Your name associated with the old days
Now I remember
How we used to joke about the guts spilled on the page
Why does it end like this all the time
Why does it end?
Why does it end

But we knew we had something back then
And the ink still grows dim
The ink probably won’t stay bright
I know the memories stay mine
Oh, those letters in the post

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i will always remember the retreat and the lovely memories i have from it…

thanks, friends. i love you more than ever.

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all of the pictures are blurry on purpose, to make my point.

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