Tag Archives: blogging

Smells Like Childlike Spirit!

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Last night’s soup swap was a great success. I marveled at the way the same basic ingredients could be presented in such unique ways. Fall and winter vegetables teamed up with lentils and beans in many dishes, but each had its own flavor and texture. A “golden” ladle was given to the soup voted as overall favorite. The winner was a cherry dumpling soup! We tend to think of soup as an appetizer; a beginning to dining or a hearty stew-like main course for lunches. So this soup (along with the others – over a dozen in all) surprised and delighted everyone. We went away with recipes and new ways to combine basic pantry items that we get tired of, or use over and over in the same way. Grandma’s acorn squash and lentil soup tastes great, but we tire of the routine.

So let’s look at something that is also always there, and can get stale no matter how much we love it – our occupations. Do you remember when you were a child, dreaming of the careers you would have as an adult? As 5-year-olds, there were no boundaries – we planned futures as firemen, mommies and daddies, doctors and pilots. I decided to ask other writers this question: What would you be if you were not a writer?

At first my colleagues insisted that they would want to do nothing else except what they were doing at present. So I asked, if skill/talent/money/whatever was not in the way, what would they choose to be? Reality should play no part in their answer – there should be no logic attached. I wanted to hear what they would do if there were absolutely no boundaries –in this imaginary world, only their spirits were in charge!

The answers were amazing –given the chance to throw aside the hackles of reality, a few stated they would be farmers, dancers, artists and singers. Without the requirements of formal education, others said they would be veterinarians, paleontologists, and physicists. The answers were exciting and eclectic – pipe organ player, rabbi, metalsmith, kitten photographer, ranch owner (where children could ride horses for free), Radio City Rockette, Indiana Jones, and many more. In the imaginary world, it didn’t matter whether we had long legs, beautiful voices, had degrees or owned acres of land – not even the sky was the limit!

So, as adults, how can we unlock the doors that hold in these dreamy wishes, and make them a little part of our reality? If we gave our spirits control of our lives, instead of allowing logic and all the other things to handcuff us to a specific daily grind, how would it change us? Of course, I am not suggesting we all live completely in a dream world of our making – we all have to pay bills and taxes, raise children and do laundry. But if we did something to fulfill a part of that inner desire, wouldn’t it only serve to make our lives better?

Instead of planning a vacation, what if you spun the globe, closed your eyes and pointed to a destination – and took off on your own Indian Jones adventure? What if you bartered for lessons in something you had interest in doing – dancing, acting, baking, or religious instruction? What if there were no boxes to define you? Dig deep – and uncover your passions!

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Snow Mountains and Soup Swaps

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Snow has arrived in Central Vermont! I spent Sunday with my two friends, Otis and Ben, and we enjoyed the snow together. We tried out the hill at their country home – fabulous! Otis, who is 6 years old, discovered that if we all piled into the wood sled together, the trip down the hill was much faster! Later that afternoon, Otis, Ben (who is 4) and I went to Hubbard Park to do some more sledding, participate in a scavenger hunt, and have hot cocoa and cookies.

At home, the snow plows rumble into the parking lots behind my apartment and push the accumulation into miniature mountains of white and grey. Last night Fae and I played “Queen of the Hill” on the pile nearest the door. Fae loves snow – but like me, when her feet get cold, she’s done playing!

Each morning I discover that a kind spirit has shoveled my little walkway from the parking lot to the steps of my apartment, and cleared a path to the dumpsters as well! This person must come before dawn, as I am usually up early and have yet to find out who it is. So I am giving a shout out and a thank you to the Snow Fairy, whoever you are!

If you remember my blog of last winter, Glove is All You Need, I discovered the singles gathering of gloves in Montpelier. My goal this year is to collect those errant gloves and mittens and find a place to donate them. But this month, shoppers won’t have to expose their hands to put money in Montpelier’s meters. The city has covered all its meters with festive red baggies – everyone parks free. A good thing for shoppers and a good thing for the shops!

I am preparing beef barley soup to take to a soup swap hosted by the REACH exchange in Montpelier. This swap is a bit different than the one I wrote about last year in Soup for You. We all partake of the soup of others instead of going home with freezer-ready portions. I am considering hosting a soup swap of my own in the late winter months – it would be a fun way to spend a cold evening!

Lend me your ears!

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Today is National Day of Listening. What an interesting concept! Do we all listen in the same way – or even interpret this unique and obscure holiday in a similar fashion?

For the past year I have experienced a ringing in my ears – a probable side effect from treatments. The ringing is called tinnitus – and after a year I still haven’t figured out how to pronounce it. If I say TIN-it-tus, it sounds like a Latin philosopher, spouting profound comments while wearing a toga and peeling grapes. If I say tin-I-tus, I conjure up visions of an aging hobo, playing harmonica and stewing rabbits in coffee cans. Neither fits what I am hearing. The sound is like a tuning fork without the initial clang; just the constant, smooth vibration of sound afterward. And it kind of plays into the old “if a tree falls in the woods” question, because the sound is something that no one else can hear.

So on this Day of Listening, I am going to tell you about the other sounds I hear that allow me to embrace this particular one and accept it as part of my senses. I hear the sounds of Main St. just steps from my porch; police and ambulance sirens; the almost clownish squawks and squeaks of car security systems; and the chatter of people as they go back and forth to work or to do day to day tasks. Tuesday is garbage pickup day, and my 7:00 alarm. These aren’t obnoxious sounds to me, but reminders of the energy around me. The sounds of honking are minimal here – in Vermont, the general thought is to be patient and allow others a bit of courtesy while driving. Instead, I hear conversations sprinkled with laughter, and many wishes of “good morning” when passing strangers on the street.

At night my dog howls out every now and then – for moments in her dreams she is decidedly a sleek wolf calling out to Dog Star in the light of a full moon. I hear the ring of my cell phone; the voices of friends and the gifts of their deep or funny or informative, but always loving conversations. Even the sudden beep of the breadmaker is a happy sound, sending soft puffs of yeast breath into the kitchen.

So you see, hearing the philosopher hobo in my head is a small trade for all of that, and there is so much more I haven’t listed. But I am going to hand it over to you. What happiness do you hear?

Excuse Me, Sir – Your Blog is Running

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Some of you may remember back in May, I had a buddy fill in for me here at TrusttheUniverse. Predictably, Sir Buffalo Sushi has grown tired of guest-hosting the blogs of others (including his mom’s great blog, Polka Dot Suitcase ) and has struck out on his own. Not STRUCK out like in a ball game – struck out like starting on a great adventure. And I am sure he has. Sir Buffalo Sushi is making his blog’s mission a good one – to protect animals. I went to his site today and viewed some of the videos he has uploaded. And I have to admit, I have no idea what a Ripstick is, but it sounds like fun. Check out his place!

Finding the Silly in the Serious

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My buddy, Michelle Rafter, has issued a Blogathon challenge. Participants are challenged to post a blog a day during the month of May. Michelle, I officially accept your challenge. Should I throw a blog glove down as I say that?

So get your eyes ready for some good reading, folks. On May 1st, I will post participating bloggers’ links for your viewing pleasure. Oh, and since most blogs have a theme, here’s mine : find the silly in the serious.

May is going to have its serious side for me, and I will share that when we turn the calender page. So, I am making my own personal challenge : to learn something new (and perhaps a little silly) every day.

You learn something new every day. We have all heard this phrase. We usually mutter it after we have read something we hadn’t thought of before, or when someone shows us a surprising way to accomplish a task. Next month, I will attempt to learn something small-but-new-to-me every day. Ahhh, now you are curious, eh?

Stay tuned. I might post pictures. Britain’s Got Talent hasn’t seen anything like it.