Healing in Hugs

I saved the last cookie for my daughter. She broke it in half, and brought half over to me. This is how we live our life.

We are sitting at the table together. She is doing school while I write. There is a difference between living together, and being present. When I stepped away from Social Media, I realized we didn’t hug each other as much as we once did. It was time for that to change. There is healing in hugs.

Some of my favorite daily activities now include, sitting at the counter of my favorite coffee shop, and being present for the person working behind the counter. To walk into one of the shops downtown, and hug the owner for no reason than they’re there another day. People in town wave when they see my truck. How many of those waves were missed?

I freely give my laugh, a listening ear, a smile, and hugs.

My daughter is finding her way through this life, and the only thing I have done different is to be present, and give hugs.

It was awkward at first for me to just walk up and hug her, so to lighten it up, I counted. I’d hug her and say, “There’s one.” In my mind there was a minimum of three a day.

She is almost as tall as me now, but it’s still a hug, and it heals. Somedays three is all we can remember to do, but there are those special days we lose count, and just hug.

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Everyday is Different

My daughter brought home a case of these yesterday.

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This is happiness. Butter and coffee. What is not to love?

Our dog was laying by her bedroom door today, while she was on the phone. She opened her door to step out, and he moved out of the way.  She asked, “Was Mochee laying by my door this whole time?” She was barefoot, and noticed the warmth of the hard wood floor where he had been laying. I love that she notices these small details of life.

Our landlord is burning brush in the field next to us, and all we can think about is wanting to roast marshmallows.

Now it is night, and I stepped out on the porch a few minutes ago. Living in the country, you always where shoes stepping out there at night. Every now and then you will find a Scorpion hanging out on the porch too. Our ginormous, white, barn cat is laying on the step. He will take down a Scorpion for the person who cares for him.

I feel more at ease with him laying there. We named this cat ‘Meh’. because he doesn’t fully meow, he just says, ‘Meh.’

Everyday is different, and I love that about our life.

At night before bed, my daughter and I talk about what we would like to accomplish the next day. It’s not set in stone. We stay flexible throughout the day, and let life flow. We make a plan, but also make adjustments where needed. If it’s that important, it will get done, but when it’s time.

I haven’t found anything more important than just spending time together, and making adjustments throughout the day for each other’s happiness.

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We Always Do

Today is one of those days you just go with the flow of the day itself. My daughter came home yesterday, and will leave tomorrow. She has a busy couple of weeks ahead, thanks to her father, but the last thing I told her lastnight was…

We will get through it. We always do.

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One of my faves taken 9/19/2015. 

Cherish the Moment

The weekend is here, and I hope you have moments.

I am blessed to enjoy moments everyday, but for some, that is not possible yet. To relax your body, and mind to the point of seeing what is happening right in front of you.

My fave moment this week by far, was with my daughter.

She came home Monday, and was mentally and physically exhausted from her weekend of travel. It was late afternoon, as I stretched out across my bed; gazing out the window to clear my mind, and relax. She came in my room wrapped in one of her favorite blankets. We call it ‘bonding’ time.

She curled up at the head of the bed, and laid against a mass of pillows. She started telling me everything about her weekend, as I laid at the foot of the bed and listened.

We laughed at things that happened, and were somber about others.

In moments, time is passing, but it feels very still.

I couldn’t hear her voice anymore, as I looked over to see her asleep. She had talked it all out, and now she could rest. I tiptoed out of the room, taking the moment with me.

Food For One (Toasted Pimento Cheese on Wasa)

My daughter and I prepare most everything we eat.

As I was making this tonight, I wondered how many other people prepare a meal for one. It’s easier to grab something at a restaurant, or fast food chain, but for me, that gets expensive, and I’m particular about what goes in my body.

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Toasted Pimento Cheese and Taheebo Tea

My tried and true cookbook is 100 Days of Real Food.

Have you ever gone by the recipe, and it didn’t make enough, or it made too much? I haven’t found that happening with these. I feel successful when I cook.

This recipes are designed for 2 adults and 2 children, (her family), and I made this in its entirety, to have some later. The recipes are easily cut in half, for when my daughter is not here, or make the whole thing, and freeze what’s left.

After leaving North Carolina, and moving to Texas, it was difficult to find good Pimento Cheese. The author of this cookbook is from Charlotte, NC, and she knows my heart.

Use Organic ingredients if you can:

2 cups shredded sharp cheddar cheese (I grate half smoked and half sharp cheddar. Tillamook brand)

1/2 cup cream cheese softened

3 Tablespoons diced, jarred pimento, with juice (I use olives instead)

1 clove garlic, minced

1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard

1/4 teaspoon Paprika

1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper

1 or 2 drops of hot sauce

Whole-grain crackers, for serving (such as Ak-Mak brand. I use Wasa)

Mix all ingredients, except crackers, with a wooden spoon.

The original recipe says to spread the crackers, lay them on a baking sheet, and bake at 350 degrees for 5 to 7 minutes.

Instead, I lightly broil them until melted. Along with my evening meal, or before bed, I drink a cup of Taheebo Tea to elevate my immune system. A couple of droppers full, in a cup of hot water with honey is very soothing. Enjoy!

The More I Learn, the Less I Know.

I’ve read more books this year, than three years combined.

I’m reading Melodie Beattie’s, Finding Your Way Home, for the second time. It made me desire for more people to have this level of self-awareness, and self-love. When I began this Blog, it was to show people that a beautiful life is attainable. That was my goal, so now that it’s achieved, what’s next?

I really don’t know, but I’m willing to be patient, and find out.

This year, I detached from Social Media. It was very difficult to do, but it’s done. Three times last week, I left the house without my phone. I didn’t turn the truck around to go get it, and had a beautiful time in town connecting with people.

I’ve become a part of the AA community again. Online is not the same as in person. You get to laugh, and hear others laugh, and that hug at the end of a meeting is irreplaceable.

Technology is helpful in the world, but it can’t replace the human touch.

I found it to be easier to post an encouraging Meme everyday, than to spend time sitting with an actual person.

Memes are not moments.

Every new beginning, starts with an ending. Are people willing to draw a line in the sand, and end the life they have to begin again? I don’t know. It takes grit and grace to do so.

The list is long of what I don’t know, but time reveals all. If you asked me, “How long does it take to attain a beautiful life?”, my initial answer would be, “Five years.” Thinking about it more in-depth, it took my whole life up to this point.

Letting Go of One Connection, for Another

Some days require a do-over. The dogs were up way too early. I hadn’t had enough coffee to deal with their playfulness. I let them get some of their energy out, and in their houses they went. It was that easy to find some peace.

I drove down to the corner store to grab a cup of coffee. Walking in, I notice a table full of people. They are usually there in the mornings, and this brought a smile to my face. We said our, “Good mornings”, as I took a look at their table.

There were no cell phones in sight. The newspaper was opened to the crossword puzzle, like it was a team effort to fill it in. They were laughing, talking, and enjoying time together.

As I was walking toward the door to exit, an elderly man walked in and said, “Good Morning Ms. Barbara.” I gave him a hug, and he grunted like I squeezed him too hard.

Getting into my truck, I spot two women on horses. They are prancing through the grass in front of the Post Office. I wished I had my phone to take a picture, but it was at home.

Once I returned home, I drank my coffee, and called a friend. We spent an hour talking, and making a game plan for the week. We are meeting tomorrow to implement some small changes in her life to regain her independence.

I let the dogs outside, and stood on the porch. It was almost time to drench the Boston Ferns. They are ginormous! Denver, one of our dogs, acted like he was listening intently to something. I could barely hear a woman’s voice, and then I heard two women talking. It was the women on horses!

They came to a halt, and turned the horses around, bringing them up to stand by my front yard gate. What a beautiful sight. They said, “Good Morning! We love your ferns. They are huge!” I smiled and thanked them for their kindness. They asked if I rode, and I told them, “Yes. I used to.” They said, “We have one more horse that needs a rider if you’re interested.” I laughed, thanked them, and will ponder it.

Life is happening right in front of us, and I am connected.

 

Feel the Music (Plumb)

Prayer doesn’t need to be complicated.

My two favorite are, “Thank you God”, and “God help me.”

It’s been a quiet year, and I have made it even more quiet. Life gets quiet, like God is giving us a break before He shows us what’s next. I’ve never been good at ‘staying’.

This song comes on the radio every time I hop in my truck.

My prayer today is, “God. Help me to do whatever you would ask of me, and help me to stay.”

 

Me…Not Worried

I love the way God prepares me for what is next.

Everything you step out and do in life is practice.

It may not be a part of your plan, but by being willing to go forth, and just do, it will lead you onto the next thing.

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I was reminded this week, I cannot help people unless they are ready for change. It’s healthy for me today to set that boundary, and step away. I cannot save souls by posting on Social Media. It may make them feel better for a moment, but that is just a band-aid for something that runs deeper.

God gave me an idea on Monday, so this is day 3 of praying, pondering, and asking questions. I’m gonna move forward with it and see what happens. It is something I’ve done before, and it’s normally successful, but even if it’s not hugely successful, it helps others, and causes me to become better.

The biggest thing God has prepared me for recently is, not having Internet since Saturday. A short time ago, I would have come unglued. Slowly becoming disenchanted with technology, and letting go of all that a phone can do, has brought me to this peaceful space. The Internet will be back, but it’s nice to know, I’ve been able to enjoy life without it.

Enjoy the Day

My daughter and I don’t own a television, by choice.

Nothing good was added to our life from the noise.

You can hear the natural flow of the day when there is no additional noise. The air conditioning is blowing steadily through the air vent above my head. Sitting in the middle of my bed while typing, the cool air is landing on the back of my neck, arms, and shoulders. There is a ceiling fan in the room, but I cannot hear it spinning over the air conditioning.

There several reasons I let go of my phone, but the noise was a big one. Even turning it to silent, it would light up with quiet noise. I tested myself this week, and left my phone at home while out with my daughter. The only part I missed was the ability to take a picture of our moments together.

I’ve never carried a camera, but maybe that is what’s next.

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