Welcome to Small Reflections

"Nothing is ever achieved without enthusiasm."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Duck photo source: Lisa's Chaos
I hope you enjoy your visit. If you're looking for something specific, check out the links to posts by category in my sidebar and down a ways. They'll assist with tracking down different types of posts found on each of my three blogs. You might also enjoy checking out the other sites: Sacred Ruminations, Blog Rolls, Bling & Blurbs, and Happily Retired Gal.

I hope you'll look around & leave comments
then visit me at my new blog ...

Giraffe Journal

and/or website ... Labyrinth Journal
both self-hosted at WordPress
where I publish as myself
rather than under a

I've not had much time for posting or blog visits, but if you're interested I hope you'll find time to check out my new blog, Giraffe Journal or my Labyrinth Journal website ... both self hosted at WordPress.

Thanks for your visit and have a delightful day ;--)
Hugs and blessings,

Thursday, January 31, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #10 - Quotes to Consider

Thirteen Quotes to Consider
from my Sidebar at Small Reflections

1. "it takes courage to become who you really are." e e cummings

2. "The real voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes but in having new eyes." Marcel Proust

3. "How you handle the situation IS the situation." Stephen Covey

4. "When you are content to be simply yourself and don't compare or compete, everybody will respect you." Lao-Tzu

5. "The art of being wise is the art of knowing what to overlook." William James

6. "At mid-life more than any other time, we have renewed opportunity to create health by expressing our creativity fully." Dr. Christiane Northrup

7. "It is never too late to be who you might have been." George Eliot

8. "Things are only impossible until they're not." Jean-Luc Picard in Star Trek: The Next Generation

9. "Go forth into the busy world and love it. Interest yourself in its life, mingle kindly with its joys and sorrows." Ralph Waldo Emerson

10. "I've been absolutely terrified every moment of my life and I've never let it keep me from doing a single thing that I wanted to do." Georgia O'Keefe

11. "You are never given a wish without also being given the power to make it true." Richard Bach

12. "Telling stories causes others to remember what they have always known." Anonymous

13. "Character is the bridge between our beliefs and our behavior. Character is the glue of personality, the connective tissue that makes a person whole, integrated, a person of integrity." Joan Konner, journalist

Thanks for visiting Small Reflections. If you're a regular reader of T-13, a 1st time visitor, or a "lurker" you're invited to pick up a You Make MY Day award here (or from my sidebar) to take back to your own blog to display and pass along to 10 bloggers who make YOUR day. If you choose to do so, I hope you'll link back here and introduce me to your friends as I've done here, here, here, and here. I hope you have a delightful day!

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Get the Thursday Thirteeen code here!

For easy access, I’ve listed more T-13 links along with the Thursday Thirteen Blogroll to the bottom of my sidebar.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Under-the-Weather Wednesday ...Sigh!

Alas, I didn't finish my list of 101 Things About Me after all (therefore I still have about 85 items thus far that will take you more than a while to read as is anyway) ... nor did I keep my appointment for a perm today (it's rescheduled for next Tuesday afternoon so I have to live with my hair like this for another week ... Aarrrgh)! I didn't visit any blogs to let them know I'd left awards here (or at Sacred Ruminations) as I'd intended, nor did I meander the Blogosphere at all because I'm sick with a cold and a flu bug of some kind ... sigh!

Actually, I spent most of the afternoon sleeping, but this morning I did finish amending yesterday's "Awards" post and I caught up on comments from the last 4-5 days as planned ... leaving responses to each one as I normally do. This evening I've tried to upload pictures for a Wordless Wednesday post on each blog, but Blogger isn't cooperating and I'm out of patience for now; therefore I offer this instead (together with another at Sacred Ruminations) and hope to come up with an interesting idea for tomorrow's Thursday Thirteen overnight. So ... are you willing to indulge me a play along or not?

You Are a Strawberry

You are friendly, outgoing, and well liked by many people.
You are popular, but there's nothing you ordinary or average about you.

You a very interesting person, and you have many facets to your personality.
Sometimes you feel very conflicted. Your different sides of your personality pull at you.

You are a very sensual and passionate person. You are fiery... you can't help it.
In general, you keep your passionate side under wraps. You are only wild in private.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Treasure, Thanks, Award and 101 Things Update

Thank you Sandy

I'm grateful for this lovely Blog Treasure Award passed along to me recently by Sandy at Momisodes, and now it's my pleasure to pass it along to Blogs that I find filled with rare gems and treasure.

Joy at Joy of Six offers both humorous and spectacular pictorial series along with a variety of reflective writing and funny stories.

Lucy of Diamonds in the Sky With Lucy shares photos, poetry, and personal reflective pieces and is exploring a variety of creative media and processes at Lucy Creates.

Yolanda at Perfectly Imperfect shares lovely photos, poetry, blessings, and thought-provoking pieces.

Shawn at Letters to my Daughters is a Mom with 2 year old twin toddlers. Recently she shared tips on living frugally in The Art of Coupons. I've written of her previously describing how she encouraged other bloggers to participate in a Writing Project on the topic of 10 Rules to Live By (link will introduced you to some amazing bloggers who responded).

Bev and Evonne at Asperger Square 8 write about Autism, embracing differences in one another, and have wonderful posters in the sidebar along with links to a variety of resources.

MPJ is a stay at home mother of two who blogs under a pseudonym at A Room of Mama's Own about parenting, autism, raising a child with special needs, marriage, race, sex addiction and recovery. Recently she's started writing Haiku on Fridays.

Bella at Beyond the Map shares beautiful, thought-provoking pieces about the realities of life written from her heart and soul.

Karen is a Zen Buddhist priest and the author of "MOMMA ZEN:Walking the Crooked Path of Motherhood" who shares at Cheerio Road, a blog filled with a bit of everything for everyone. I find what she labels "writing life" of special interest to me, and her Zen in Ten (The Rules of Life) on "total life fulfillment in 10 seconds or less" is what caused me to become a regular reader even though I don't comment often.

Liz at Los Angelista's Guide to the Pursuit of Happiness has just changed to look of her blog and shares today in "It Was Time For A New Look" about how change can be scary but is necessary. Perhaps I'm drawn to her blog because she writes of a city with which I am totally familiar and not. Her perspective broadens my own, and I look forward to my visits there.

Karyn at Vexed in the City writes intelligent slice of life pieces that both entertain and make me think.

Heart in San Francisco at Guilty With An Explanation hasn't been posting as much lately, but there are riches to be mined at her blog. You might begin with her Case Study on the Dysfunctional Duck Family or There But For the Grace of God.

Anglophile Football Fanatic just moved from Blogger to Wordpress because she's tired of the "Blogger@NoReply" email address and wants the option to be able to respond to folks who leave comments. Her blog is definitely worth a visit. I found her through Haiku Friday initially, discovered I enjoyed her other posts also, and have begun to visit bloggers SHE reads as well.

I've shared additional awards at Sacred Ruminations, so I hope you'll check out those blogs too when time permits. So many blogs, so little time!

Because of Yolanda's generosity, I'm able to offer this You Make My Day Award to more of my fellow bloggers. Following her example, I'd like to give this award to all who read here regularly and to those who are new. I appreciate you all greatly and enjoy reading whatever comments you choose to leave.

In addition, those who visit weekly on Thursdays for T-13 and Fridays for Haiku (and even those who lurk although I hope this might encourage you to leave comments now and again) are cordially invited to take this award back to your blogs and share it with others who make your day. I ask only that if you do so, you leave a link back here so that I might be introduced to your blogging buddies as well.

101st Post Update:
I've added another 25 or so items to my 101 Things About Me and hope to finish it tomorrow.

I appreciate all the comments you've left that are waiting for my response on various posts and apologize for not getting to them yet. I'm hoping to have time to get to them in the next few days, but if not ... I promise to catch up over the weekend.

Thought for Today
"Be a lamp, or a lifeboat, or a ladder.
Help someone's soul heal.
Walk out of your house like a shepherd."

Monday, January 28, 2008

Monday's Momentum - A Quick Update

My 101 Things About Me Post is up to 60-something items today, so at this rate I should be finished by Wednesday. I suspect it contains more information than anyone will want to read ... (at least all at once) ... but since I have no specific guidelines ... I'm just using Natalie Goldberg's Writing Rules (as presented in Writing Down the Bones) and letting my fingers type whatever comes to mind in no particular order.
After updating my list, I chatted on my cell phone with my sister to catch up on their travel adventures then met a friend for a long leisurely lunch. We shared a salad and yummy dessert as we talked then exchanged Christmas gifts belatedly since we didn't connect during the holidays. On the way home I shopped for groceries at Trader Joe's after running a few errands. This evening I'm tired and having trouble focusing on the computer ... so this will be short because I'm ready to cuddle with Molly a while before heading upstairs for the night.
Thought for Today
"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. Security does not exist in nature, nor do the children of men as a whole experience it. Avoiding danger is no safer in the long run than exposure." Helen Keller (1880 - 1968)

Sunday, January 27, 2008

Simply Sunday

I've made more than twenty additions to my list of 101 Things About Me on my 101st Post this morning and shared a list of Blessings at Sacred Ruminations this evening, so I'm tempted to
let this brief announcement BE my post for today. However I've decided to share the following Blogthing I found at Eve's a few days ago because I'm curious what others answers might exist because she's blue like I am.

Your Brain is Blue

Of all the brain types, yours is the most mellow.
You tend to be in a meditative state most of the time. You don't try to think away your troubles.
Your thoughts are realistic, fresh, and honest. You truly see things as how they are.

You tend to spend a lot of time thinking about your friends, your surroundings, and your life.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

101 Posts ... 101 Things About Me

From the comment Anglophile Football Fanatic left yesterday on my "Milestone" 100th Post Haiku, I gathered something specific was expected. I checked her blog a few minutes ago and discovered a list of 100 things about her on HER 100th post. It's 6:36 in the evening as I start this list, so I don't expect to complete it tonight. I figure it will be a "work in progress" until I finish, and that will have to be good enough. I suspect it's already more than anyone care to know, but what the hay? It's a Meme and I'm obsessive!

  1. I'm an avid reader of all kinds of books and my house resembles a library with large bookshelves in every room. The margins of most contain notes and questions written in pencil as I read them.
  2. I live a block and a half from the Pacific Ocean. I love to fall asleep and wake up to the sound of the surf.
  3. My front yard is small, but I have lots of flowers and two prolific citrus trees ... a Meyer lemon and a Bartender lime. I spent several months "reclaiming" it in 2005 and shared the process in 4 parts ... here, here, here, and here.
  4. I awaken early every day and watch the sun rise from the comfort of my living room as I write in my journal and spend time in meditation.
  5. I enjoy the large fireplace in that room all winter.
  6. Molly is my 3 year-old Labrador Retriever pup. She's a bundle of energy, cute as can be, keeps me active, and is great company most of the time. I've written a Haiku about her and posted photos throughout my blogs. You can click on Molly in the 'About Me (Two & Four) category lists in my sidebar, "labels" (under individual posts) or here & here to find them.
  7. Ms. Kitty is the feral cat who adopted me more than a decade ago. She was the subject of a Haiku also and her pictures can be found in the same manner as described in #6.
  8. I'm an avid tennis fan, especially of the 4 yearly Grand Slam Championship and the Olympics when it comes around.
  9. My older brother taught me to play when I was 12 so that he'd have someone to practice with when no one else was around. In addition, he taught me to water-ski about the same time so that he & his friends would always have an "observer" when they wanted to ski.
  10. I played the game competitively in college and for fun through most of my life, but don't play any longer.
  11. After 34 years in the classroom, I took advantage of a "golden handshake" in 2001 and have been "happily retired" ever since. ... enjoying my leisurely life immensely.
  12. I was the youngest of 3 children, raised in a conservative Dutch family.
  13. My brother was 9 and my sister 4 when I arrived on the scene, much to everyone's surprise! Let's hear it for unplanned babies!!!
  14. A precocious child, I did everything early and never quite realized I wasn't as old as my siblings or my classmates. I started kindergarten at the age of 4 and graduated High School just as I turned 16.
  15. I was an English major with a History minor in college and earned a teaching credential with a 5th year of study, so I was teaching at the age of 21.
  16. Because I thrive on challenge and don't like to do the same thing repeatedly, I changed grade levels frequently throughout my career.
  17. Approximately 20 years were spent in grades 2 through 6, another 4 years teaching adults who were working with children (teachers, administrators, classroom aides, and parent volunteers), and the rest teaching 6th and 8th grade History and Language arts in a Middle School setting. In addition I spent 5 years teaching Graduate students in the evenings who were seeking teaching credentials.
  18. I participated in the South Basin Writing Project's Invitational Program at CSULB.
  19. The 4 years I worked as a Staff Developer brought many challenges and wonderful opportunities to meet & collaborate with educational "gurus" like Larry Lowrey, David Perkins, Art Costa, and many others on the cutting edge of change in the 1980s and '90s.
  20. I conducted workshops on a wide range of topics including but not limited to: Teaching for Thinking, Teacher Expectation and Student Achievement, Writing as a Process, Teaching for Creativity, Using Collaborative Groups in the Classroom, Motivational Theory, Effective Teaching Strategies, Classroom Management, Personality Types, Brain Hemisphericity, Active Engagement Strategies, and a variety of ways to use Technology in the Classroom.
  21. I "trained" a number of student teachers to follow in my footsteps ... some more successfully than others.
  22. After retiring, I was invited to do a number of "teaching related" jobs ... conducting workshops, supervising student teachers, writing curriculum, mentoring teachers, etc. ... but I felt finished with that part of my life and still do.
  23. I gave away all the teaching materials I had accumulated so that others could use them with their students.
  24. I never thought I'd leave the profession so young, but feel blessed at the way my life has turned out even though much didn't go as planned.
  25. When I was 12 I met the guy I eventually married (11 years later when I was 23) at an Methodist Youth Fellowship Valentine's Day party. We were paired for a "scavenger hunt" with heart-shaped name tags and his half matched mine.
  26. We dated off and on through Junior High & High School, didn't see much of one another throughout College, but reconnected once we were both adults in the work force and started singing in a folk group with about 7 other friends.
  27. He was drafted and sent to Vietnam at the age of 25 where he spent 13 months near Ben Hoa.
  28. We married in Hawaii on his R & R ... spending just 5 days together before he returned to Vietnam for 5 months.
  29. He returned home on Christmas Day in 1968, and we spent the next 21 years together living a wonderful life until he decided he wanted his freedom and left unexpectedly.
  30. My father died of cancer when I was 30.
  31. Never really "fat" but always "chunky" or "pleasingly plump" ... I joined Gloria Marshall's and went from a size 16 to an 8 within a year ... staying that way for almost a decade ... loving the "look" but hating the high protein, low carbohydrate "diet" it took to keep me that size.
  32. At 40 I joined Weight Watchers, learned to eat healthily, and maintained a healthier weight at a size 12 for 15 years.
  33. My mom died of an aneurysm when I was 44, shortly before my "ex" left.
  34. The next few years brought an unbelievable "mix" of experiences I didn't see coming but that set the stage for my current life.
  35. After listening to a good friend (a single mom with 3 daughters) talk for months (on our morning walks at the beach before work 3 days weekly) about wanting to return to school for a degree, I invited the 4 of them to move into the large home I was struggling financially to hold on to in the divorce.
  36. The girls were 10, 11, and 13 when they moved in, and since that time I've often thought about how prayer gets answered ... for after my "ex" left (in my devastated sorrow at finding myself alone) I prayed often for answers. God does work in mysterious ways. She didn't save my marriage as I'd hoped, but the last 19 years have been rich indeed with unlooked for blessings.
  37. L and the girls stayed for several years before moving on. I managed to hold on to the house (that was filled with life, love, and laughter as I healed) and she got her education. We remain good friends still.
  38. I grew up in a family of asthmatics, but was incredibly healthy myself ... in fact I missed no school from Kindergarten through 12th grade and received an award for perfect attendance at graduation.
  39. My excellent health continued until the early '90s when I experienced an unusual string of illnesses. As soon as one would pass, another would appear.
  40. Eventually after about a year of treatment and endless blood tests, I was diagnosed with Epstein-Barr and missed the last 3 months of the semester ... spending those months and the 3 months of summer that followed in bed.
  41. Told by doctors I probably wouldn't be able to return to teaching, I did what I had always done ... set about to do the "impossible" through sheer determination. With a lot of support from friends, I learned to do things differently ... and was able to teach for many additional years.
  42. I have no kids of my own because my "ex" believed he'd already raised a family and I didn't choose to "parent" alone. He was 14 when his parents divorced and was responsible for looking after his two younger brothers while his Mom supported the family as a waitress working long hours once they moved to California from Minnesota.
  43. I rationalized this throughout life by telling myself I had anywhere from 30 to 90 kids each year ... the students with whom I worked ... and my life seemed rich and full.
  44. In retrospect, I have mixed feelings ... but I am relieved I wasn't a single parent of teenagers (having watched L struggle in the way she did to balance everything).
  45. I have 2 nieces & 2 nephews on my "ex's" side of the family but I don't see much of them because their parents each divorced when the kids were young and they don't live nearby.
  46. I have 4 nephews on my side of the family ... 2 born to my brother and his wife and 2 adopted by my sister and her husband.
  47. Each of my brother's sons is married and has children ... so I'm a Great Aunt to 5 kids ... 3 girls and 2 boys.
  48. My brother's kids are in their 40s and that's hard to fathom ... seriously!!! I don't know where the years have gone.
  49. I'm always surprised at family gatherings to realize that I am "the older generation" ... and my sister & I laugh about this because we both feel so young within. It makes me wonder how my Aunts and Uncles felt when they were my age.
  50. In my mid-40s while coping with the lost of my mom and marriage, I often felt 17 ... not quite legal. I have stories I could tell about those days ... but not here & now. LOL
  51. These days I feel somewhere between 45 and 50 even though I'll be 63 on my next birthday in February. I understand Einstein's Theory of Relativity so much better now.
  52. When I look at beginning teachers (and doctors) today they seem like adolescents and I wonder if I looked like that too?
  53. When I was born, my dad was ill and out of work but didn't want my mom to get a job so we didn't have much. We got by with help from family, friends, and the church ... but at the time I didn't realize how poor we were.
  54. As a little tyke, I loved having my daddy around to play with. Although there aren't many pictures of me when I was little, I do have a couple of photographs of him teaching me to turn a sommersault when I was about 2 or 3 and he was in his mid-40s. He encouraged my imaginative play and even made me a "horse" to ride around our yard. After reminding me to "hold on tight" he'd push me as high as I wanted to go in the huge swing he built in our back yard ... worrying my mom every time.
  55. Dad was the 2nd youngest in a family of 13 kids and mom the youngest in a family of 5 kids so my extended family was large. My cousins had kids my age and older. As I type this, I seem to remember writing of this elsewhere, but I'm not sure where. Perhaps I'll search for the link and add it later. (see #60 below)
  56. About the time I went to school, dad got a job as a "maintenance electrician" in a rubber plant that produced things like battery cases. It was dangerous, dirty work ... and he often arrived home covered in coal dust from his head to his toes. I remember him looking like Al Jolson in black face (wearing overalls rather than a suit), changing clothes and washing up at the huge sink on the inside "back porch" before Mom would let him inside. He often got called back to work in the middle of the night when one of the "Banbury" (I have no idea what those are or how it's spelled but I hated them) machines broke down.
  57. He played catch most evenings in the backyard with my brother, sister and I after dinner ... wiped down the car until it shone on Sunday mornings before we left for church as a family ... and stood outside the side door after services shaking the hand of all who passed by, exchanging a kind word, thanking them for coming and wishing them well in the coming week.
  58. He was a numismatist (coin collector for those of you unfamiliar with the term) and an avid baseball fan. I enjoyed both activities with him throughout his life. We would spend hours looking through mounds of change for the coins to complete his rather extensive and well-organized collection while listening to baseball games on the radio .. often two at a time since he followed the Dodgers and the Angels.
  59. Dad was 10 years older than mom ... aged 42 when I was born. His father lived to be 105 and his siblings well into their late 90s. It was a shock to everyone when he died at 73 just a couple of years after he retired and my folks moved from Southern California to Tempe, AZ to be near my brother and his family. There's no doubt in my mind that his early demise was due to the work he did to support his family. Did I mention I loved my dad ... and grieved mightily when he died?
  60. I've written memories of my mom here in Monday Musings and of my extended family in Over the River and Through the Woods.
  61. My brother (an asthmatic) wanted to be a pilot. He talked my parents into allowing him to enlist in the Air Force at 17 and entered Basic Training in the Bay Area during the winter when the climate was cold and damp.
  62. He wound up in the hospital with pneumonia and bronchitis multiple times over a period of almost a year and received a medical discharge before his 18th birthday. My parents were instructed to come get him and told he wasn't expected to live.
  63. D was even more determined than me. Although he was ill much of his adult years and underwent multiple lung surgeries, he enjoyed a full life ... participating in bowling leagues and water-sking with friends in his 20s through 40s, supporting himself as a messenger and then a draftsman as he went to College nights, became an Electrical and Civil Engineer ... working on many significant development projects throughout his life in California and Arizona (including the Fashion Island/Newport Center complex in Orange County), was City Engineer in a variety of communities during his career, and of course married and raised a family ... all before he died 15 days before his 65th birthday.
  64. He is survived by his widow, two sons (both married with families), 5 grandchildren all born after his death, my sister and myself.
  65. My sister and I became good friends once we were adults and no longer shared a bedroom.
  66. We took two extended vacations together once we were both teachers ... spending 13 weeks during the summer of 1966 driving around the U.S.A. in her Plymouth Barracuda and 12 weeks touring 10 European countries together in 1967.
  67. Our plans to spend the summer of 1968 visiting either Asia or South American got "tabled" when we each married that summer instead ... her in June and me in July.
  68. B spent most of her career teaching Kindergarten and 1st grade, but opted to stay home from 1980-1990 to raise their two adopted boys.
  69. After her husband was laid off, she returned to teaching and he stayed home with the kids ... volunteering in their classrooms and eventually was hired part time by a local school district to do computer training. Finally that turned into a full-time position.
  70. Their oldest son was an academic "whiz kid" who graduated from Harvey-Mudd University with a BA in Computer Science and earned his Masters Degree at UC Berkeley. He lives and works in the Bay Area currently.
  71. Their younger son is a gifted performer in musical theater. He graduated from a local School of the Performing Arts, worked abroad for a year afterwards, earned roles in a number of community theater projects locally and in Sacramento, and opened on Broadway in the revival of Flower Drum Song before he was 21 after which he toured the nation with the cast of Thoroughly Modern Millie. When he's not performing he supplements his income as a Barista at Starbucks and/or as a waiter in variety of restaurants.
  72. After I retired, I volunteered in my sister's Kindergarten class twice a week and enjoyed it thoroughly. I did all of her one-on-one testing and taught writing as a process to small groups.
  73. When she and her husband retired a few years back, they bought a truck and 5th wheel RV, intending to spend 2-3 years "on the road" seeing the U.S.A. They're currently spending the winter in Floria with no plans to return any time soon. A highlight of their travels was the 31 days they spent with a "caravan RV tour" in Alaska the summer of 2006, but they've covered lots of territory in the past few years.
  74. I've done my share of traveling over the years and have taken two cruises ... one to Alaska and the other to the Caribbean.
  75. In the late summer of 2001 I attended the Maui Writer's Conference intending to pursue a 2nd career. I made "connections" with editors and publishers who were interested in my writing and returned home with appointments scheduled for September and October.
  76. The tragedy of 9-11 in 2001 interrupted those plans and for about two years afterwards I found myself unable to write without becoming depressed and anxious, so I didn't try to reschedule the canceled appointments. Instead I pursued a variety of other interests.
  77. Let's see ... with 23 items left I need to pause and think about what's worth sharing (or go back and delete some of the earlier information). I belonged to two book clubs for a few years and enjoyed the mental stimulation, but when the time devoted to discussion shifted to "social interaction" I opted out of both because it was irritating to invest time reading books I wouldn't necessarily choose myself with minimal interaction afterwards.
  78. I taught myself to research & "trade stocks" and did that "full time" for a few years. These days I do more investing and less trading ... probably because I spend so much time blogging.
  79. I'm a "recovering pack-rat" doing my best each day to "simplify my life" ... hoping to get rid of "stuph" I've accumulated over the years.
  80. I have an extensive collection of silver and white gold jewelry and prefer it to anything made of yellow gold.
  81. I go for "comfort" over style ... especially when it comes to shoes. My favorite brands currently are Keen, Think, Merrill, Mephisto, and UGG (boots and sandals). When I worked I wore mostly SAS and Naturalizer shoes.
  82. My wardrobe is primarily from Chicos and Soma, but since have more than enough of just about everything ... I don't shop for anything other than groceries these days.
  83. I'm a member of the Red Hat Society and enjoy dressing up in a variety of purple clothes and donning one of the many outrageous red hats in my collection when it's time to get together with other "hatters." We always have fun wherever we go.
  84. My experiences this past summer in Taos, New Mexico at the Writer's Spa Retreat paved the way for me to enter the Blogosphere. I've written of it here, here, and in the sidebar of my blogs..
  85. I feel blessed to have supportive family members and friends in my life who may not understand the writer in me, but recognize and value who she is (and might become) ... mirroring that part of me so I can see her potential also. I wouldn't be blogging currently without their encouragement.
  86. Kara got me started even as she's decided to take an extended break from blogging herself after two years in this virtual world, Karen visits often and keeps me going, and Jan (my writer's buddy) calls weekly on Sunday mornings from Minnesota. We use that time to "check in" ... discuss process ... and set new goals for the week ahead.
  87. I've written in journals daily for decades to gain personal clarity. I write with both hands and have shared a bit of this process, including examples from those journals here, here, here, and here (among other places).
  88. In addition to writing in journals, I create "visual" pieces of writing and have posted a sampling on each of my blogs. I've framed many of these and given them away as gifts over the years ... once thought I might sell them at craft fairs, but now think they might make an interesting book or two at some point.
  89. I became a student of A COURSE IN MIRACLES in the late 1980s and am grateful for the changes it brought to my perception and the deepening of my Spiritual life. I've written about this in greater detail here.
  90. The writings of Don Miguel Ruiz expanded my understanding in a simplified form and I heartily recommend the entire series starting with THE FOUR AGREEMENTS. I've written about this in greater detail previously here.
  91. Some additional writers whose work informs my life include (but are not limited to) Gary Zukav, Marianne Williamson, Julia Cameron, Natalie Goldberg, Ram Dass, Jack Kornfield, Thich Nhat Hanh, Stephen Covey, Anne Wilson Schaef, Joan Borysenko, Christianne Northrup, Sarah Ban Breathnach, Barbara Sher, among others.
  92. I do my best to live mindfully each day and write of gratitude often. A couple of examples that reveal a bit more about who I am include Living in Gratitude (especially when problems arise) and So Many Blessings -- Counting One by One.
  93. I participated in NaBloPoMo and Holidailies on both of my blogs, but decided to do Blog 365 here at Small Reflections leaving me free to post only when I choose to do so at Sacred Ruminations. This past week is the 1st time I've let a few days pass without posting there.
  94. Although I may appear to be somewhat addicted to Blogthings, I tend to use them when I run out of energy, inspiration, or time as a means to maintain my Blog 365 commitment.
  95. I enjoy writing and reading Haiku on Fridays and T-13s on Thursdays because it's a wonderful way to meet other bloggers.
  96. I appreciate all visitors who take the time to comment, and I try to respond to everyone in a timely manner here in addition to visiting their blogs as time and energy permit.
  97. After 100 posts at Sacred Ruminations (in lieu of THIS meme), I created list things I'm proud of and forgive myself for (as a blogger) here.
  98. I've been tagged for at least 3 more memes recently (and sincerely hope I don't get tagged again for a long time), but intend to wait a while before sharing anything more about myself because I sense there's more in this list already than anyone cares to read about me. However, if the previous 97 things (with various links) aren't adequate to satisfy your curiosity, I offer a few more links below.
  99. I've participated in several memes previously (including, but not limited to) 7 Random Things about Me ... 12 Christmasy Things About Me ... Playful P's and Varied V's with Verse.
  100. I've shared a series of Five Really Good Things here, here, and here.
  101. I did a few "Review" posts/memes (including, but not limited to) my Monday's Blog Review for 2007 ... Small is Beautiful Top 7 in '07 ... and two Hybrid Haiku Memes here and here.
Whew! It's 12:16 PM on Sunday, February 3rd, but I'm finished ... finally! It seems the last 15 (#84-99) proved to be the most challenging, possibly because I lost momentum when I caught this flu/cold bug last Wednesday. Thanks to everyone who offered encouragement along the way. I might have given up and dumped the post entirely, but it didn't seem right to dump your comments with it ... so I waited until inspiration hit again and pushed through to the end today.

If you've reached your 100th post at your blog and haven't created your list yet ... consider yourself tagged (or not)! LOL

Friday, January 25, 2008

Haiku Friday - A Blogging Milestone for Me

Sitting down to write
realizing this will be
my one hundreth post.

Stormy weather out
and within the Federer
match with Djokovic

calls ... I want to watch,
but I sit here torn between
passions ... Tennis wins!

Possibly I'll add
more once I know who moves on,
but for now I'm done.

I've finished watching tennis and
Haiku Friday - Federer's Finesse Flounders
is now posted at
Sacred Ruminations.

For a Mr. Linky to other Haiku Fridays
go to A Mommy Story.

To see my previous Haikus,
click on the Haiku Friday label below this post.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #9 - Federer's Wins

Roger Federer's Grand Slam Singles Wins

1. 2003 Wimbledon against Mark Philippoussis 7-6, 6-2, 7-6

2. 2004 Australian Open against Marat Safin 7-6, 6-4, 6-2

3. 2004 Wimbledon against Andy Roddick 4-6, 7-5, 7-6, 6-4

4. 2004 U. S. Open against Lleyton Hewitt 6-0, 7-6, 6-0

5. 2005 Wimbledon against Andy Roddick 6-2, 7-6, 6-4

6. 2005 U. S. Open against Andre Agassi 6-3, 2-6, 7-6, 6-1

7. 2006 Australian Open against Marcos Baghdatis 5-7, 7-5, 6-0, 6-2

8. 2006 Wimbledon against Rafael Nadal 6-0, 7-6, 6-7, 6-3

9. 2006 U. S. Open against Andy Roddick 6-2, 4-6, 7-5, 6-1

10. 2007 Australian Open against Fernando Gonzalez 7-6, 6-4, 6-4

11. 2007 Wimbledon against Rafael Nadal 7-6, 4-6, 7-6, 2-6, 6-2

12. 2007 U. S. Open against Novak Djokovic 7-6, 7-6, 6-4

13. 2008 Australian Open -- Will he win this Championship again this year? We'll know soon. Addendum added 1-25-08: Federer lost the Semi-Final Match to Djokovic 5-7, 3-6, 6-7 so he'll need to wait awhile longer for his 13th Grand Slam Title.

In addition to these wins, Federer played (and lost to) Rafael Nadal in the last two French Open Championships.

Bonus Tennis Info
Most Grand Slam Men's Singles Titles
1. Pete Sampras 14
2. Roy Emerson 12
3. Roger Federer 12
4. Rod Laver 11
5. Bjorn Borg 11

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Get the Thursday Thirteeen code here!

For easy access, I’ve listed more T-13 links along with the Thursday Thirteen Blogroll to the bottom of my sidebar.

Thought for Today
“Let the beauty of what you love be what you do.” Rumi

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Windy Wet Wednesday

It's been a WINDY day in Southern California, and this evening the rains have arrived. Apparently this is going to be a significant storm. Waterspouts have been spotted just off the coast nearby.

The pictures in the follow-up piece about the flower quiz in yesterday's post here at Small Reflections that I've been working on this afternoon have vanished into thin air, so I've scrapped it (at least for today) ... hence this abbreviated post. I don't have the energy or time to pull it (or anything else) together tonight. I'm going to fix dinner and watch tennis ... again.

As for TENNIS at the Australian Open

James Blake played an excellent match, but (alas) Federer did what he does so well ... raising the level of HIS game on the BIG points and won the match. He'll play Djokovic in the next round, and if Novak plays like he did against Ferrer today ... that should be an entertaining and suspenseful match. Tsonga and Nadal will also play for a spot in the final Championship Match.

On the women's side, tonight Maria Sharapova plays Jelena Janokvic and Ana Ivanovic plays Daniela Hantuchova for a spot in the Championship Match on the weekend. It's possible (though not likely) that it could be an all Serbian final. I suspect Sharapova will be playing Ivanovic in that last match ... but this has been a tournament of "upsets" on the women's side, so anything's possible.

Click for additional tennis results and information.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Tuesday's Temptation

Last November I took a blog quiz

and learned I was a Daisy ...

"You are just a sweet person. When a friend needs a shoulder to cry on, you are happy to offer yours with a box of tissues as well. Once in awhile, you wish you could be a little more dramatic but then sensibility sets back in and you know that you are perfect the way you are."

I added these results to my sidebar at
Sacred Ruminations,
but yesterday

when visiting Sonya's blog,
I tried it again and got THIS result.

"Mischief is your middle name, but your first is friend. You are quite the prankster that loves to make other people laugh."

I'm a Snapdragon now.
How can that be?

I think I'd rather be a Daffodil
or a Rose!

If you want to find out what kind of flower YOU are,
click here.

If you do
(since I'm curious)
I'm hoping you'll share your results
either in comments below
or on your blog,
linking back here so I'll know.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Annie Made My Day and I'm Passing This Along

Annie blessed me with this You Make My Day Award last weekend. I am most grateful. As I wrote in a comment to her about this unexpected surprise, this is an award I would have given HER early on in my blogging days if I'd had it to give. Without her support, encouragement and assistance, I'd be struggling mightily to figure things out on my own.

I'm honored to receive it and appreciate Annie thinking of me in this manner, especially since I've not been visiting quite as often for oh so many reasons (not the least of which recently is TENNIS) ... trying to attain some "balance" in my own life.

Apparently the rules say to give the award to up to 10 people whose blogs bring you happiness and inspiration, making you feel so happy about the Blogosphere. It comes with a warning that you may get this award several times. It is my sincere hope that you do, for I'm certain you make the day for others as well.

I've decided to pass this award on to the following 5 people here at Small Reflections and to 5 others at Sacred Ruminations.

Joy was the first blogger to discover me on my very 1st post, leaving a comment with encouraging words and a promise to return ... that kept ME typing. She continues to offer words of support and encouragement consistently here and writes wonderful pieces on her own blog, The Joy of Six. I enjoy her sense of humor and clever resourcefulness. Her numerous photo series are awesomely wonderful and often hilarious.

Karen, a friend from the Taos Writer's Spa, has been my most regular visitor to both of my blogs from the start ... and leaves caring and supportive comments always, even when she's overly busy with family responsibilities! Her posts at Journey to Authenticity are a thoughtful balance of words & photos, and her blog is a joy to visit.

I encountered Sandy of Momisodes and Eve of Adamswife's Weblog just as NaBloPoMo ended. Initially they visited here at Small Reflections, but like Karen ... they've become regular readers of both of my blogs ... offering encouragement and support on a daily basis (even when sick)! Sandy is witty and clever with a flair for photography. Eve is venturing out into new territory of photography and poetry on her blog.

Mary, of Mary's Writing Nook, not only visits often (when she's not traveling with her family) ... but is thoughtful and generous with her time and talents. I am most grateful for her friendship in this virtual world and enjoy her consistently well-written & illustrated posts.

With much gratitude, I offer my usual hugs and blessings to all who pass this way. If you haven't met these bloggers already, I hope you'll visit them in the near future.

Sunday, January 20, 2008

Survival Down Under

Three Americans are left in the main singles draw.

James Blake will play Marin Cilic tonight and that should be an exciting match if they both play well.

Serena looked good against Vaidisova yesterday.

She's serving very well and seems more "fit" than last year!

Venus plays Marta Domachowska later tonight.

The Williams sisters are doing great playing doubles, and Lindsay Davenport is still alive in doubles with Daniela Hantuchova.

If Andy Roddick watched Kohlshreiber play against Nieminen, he's probably as mystified as the rest of us wondering what happened to the German's game.

How fun to watch the young Aussie gal, Casey Dellacqua, play Jelena Jankovic! She didn't win, but she put up a good fight and I suspect we'll see more of her. Her Mom and Grandmother in the stands were equally entertaining as they watched the match.

Click for additional results and information.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

With more than 30 hours of non-stop ...

tennis coverage on ESPN2 ... I'm B L E A R Y - E Y E D and a bit dazed ... but I'm still watching the match between Hewitt and Baghdatis and there's no end in sight. Hewitt just took the 3rd set so it's 2-1 in his favor and he serves 1st in the 4th set. The amazing thing is that it RAINED in Australia yesterday, so not many matches were played; however most of the ones that WERE played on the men's side of the draw were 5 sets each ... exciting to the very end! I confess that I was holding my breath during Blake's match with Grosjean and Federer's match with Tipsarevic. Unless things turn around quickly for Baghdatis, Hewitt may take this one in 4 (or not ... remembering the Baghdatis-Safin match of a couple of days ago).

So ... since TODAY'S matches begin shortly (and since Molly needs a walk first), I'm following up on Whimsical Wednesday's Blogthing so that Karen (and anyone else who wished to be purple) gets a 2nd chance. Of course,
if you missed my Haiku Friday posts on Ms. Kitty and/or Tennis, you could read one or both now ... and/or continue with the silliness that follows.

You Are Grape

You are bold and a true individual. You are very different and very okay with that.
People know you as a straight shooter. You're very honest, even when the truth hurts.
You are also very grounded and practical. No one is going to sneak anything by you.
People enjoy your fresh approach to life. And it's this honesty that makes you a very innovative person.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Haiku Friday - Volume 5

Outside looking in
watchfully she waits for me
piercing yellow eyes.

Feral cat who prowls
through the night, but as dawn comes
on the fence she sits.

Watching every move
as I put the coffee on ...
letting out the dog.

Moving to the front
by the French doors looking in.
She knows I'll be there

soon to fill her dish
with some tantalizing treat.
She no longer hunts ...

yet Ms. Kitty does
watch the birds that come and go.
Does she miss the thrill?

Lying in the sun
black coat glistens brownish red.
Persian Carol says.

She adopted me
long ago although I have
allergies galore.

Living a good life
independently, we've learned
how to co-exist.

My Volume 6
about Tennis and the Australian Open
is at Sacred Ruminations.

For a Mr. Linky to other Haiku Fridays
go to A Mommy Story.

To see my previous Haikus,
click on the Haiku Friday label below this post.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Thursday Thirteen #8 - Books for Kids of All Ages by Bill Peet

Thirteen of My Favorite Books by Bill Peet
(with links to information about each one
complete with illustrations)

Bill Peet was hired as an animator by Walt Disney himself. During his tenure there, he became the top writer-illustrator for Disney Studios. Always with a second career in the back of his mind, Peet left Disney after 27 years to begin a new creative adventure. He wrote and illustrated more than 35 picture books (many in rhyme) that never failed to instruct, stimulate, and amaze children (and the adults in their lives). I loved to read these books aloud to students of all ages who, in turn, loved to read them on their own once they acquired 4th grade reading skills. They're funny, imaginative, and often contain upstanding, underlying messages about life and living. If you like Dr. Seuss ... you'll love Bill Peet!

1. Chester the Worldly Pig

2. The Wingdingdilly

3. Wump World

4. Buford the Little Bighorn

5. How Droofus the Dragon Lost His Head

6. Huge Harold

7. Kermit the Hermit

8. The Pinkish Purplish Bluish Egg

9. The Spooky Tail of Prewitt Peacock

10. Big Bad Bruce

11. The Caboose Who Got Loose

12. The Ant and the Elephant

13. Hubert's Hair-Raising Adventure

If you'd like to know more,
go to Bill Peet's Story for a short autobiography
along with more about his inspiration and drawings.

Links to other Thursday Thirteens!

The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged! If you participate, leave the link to your Thirteen in others comments. It’s easy, and fun! Trackbacks, pings, comment links accepted!

View More Thursday Thirteen Participants

Get the Thursday Thirteeen code here!

For easy access, I’ve listed more T-13 links along with the Thursday Thirteen Blogroll to the bottom of my sidebar.

Thought for Today

"The liberally educated person is one who is able to resist the easy and preferred answers not because he is obstinate but because he knows others worthy of consideration." Allan Bloom

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Whimsical Wednesday

Grandy posted this Blogthing today at
Functional Shmunctional
She's a RED crayon, but I'm PURPLE
(and I LOVE to wear red hats
with purple clothes!!!)

You Are a Purple Crayon

Your world is colored in dreamy, divine, and classy colors.
You hold yourself to a sky high standard, and you are always graceful.
People envy, idolize, and copy you without realizing it. You are an icon for those who know you.
And while it is hard to be a perfectionist, rest assured it's paying off!

Your color wheel opposite is yellow. While yellow people may be wise, they lack the manners and class needed to impress you.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Top 7 in '07 -- Small is Beautiful Review

Top 7 in '07

Yes ... I know today is Tuesday,
but this post is created
Small is Beautiful Saturday
and if I don't post it today,
I'll miss Wordless Wednesday,
Thursday Thirteen,
and/or Haiku Friday
because I need to send a link
to Rachelle.

Rachelle (Magpie Girl) asked members of Small is Beautiful to search our Archives for "jewels" to share with others, highlighting favorite bits of writing for 2007. Her intention is to share link-love on Saturdays indefinitely so that we can all get better acquainted.

I started TWO blogs in late October last year. Small Reflections cam
e first and bears the "Passionate Blog" logo.

The Small Is Beautiful Manifesto

1. Beginnings - October 22, 2007 is my 1st post ever and illustrates just how little I knew 3 months ago when I started this adventure.

2. My final post of the year, published 12-31-07 reviews my 1st ten weeks in this "virtual world" and thanks my "blogging buddies" ... providing links to accomplishments along the way.

The Small Is Beautiful Manifesto

My 2nd website (with the "Small is Beautiful " logo it its sidebar) is called Sacred Ruminations. There I embraced Carla's My Sacred Life journey for 31 days (ending on Thanksgiving Day) exploring the "sacred" traditions in my own life ... something I now do weekly there on Sundays.

3. Embracing a Larger Vision (My Sacred Life - Day 5) considers unlimited possibilities.

4. In Allowing Myself to Receive (My Sacred Life - Day 17), I write of a challenging experience and valuable lessons I learned from friends.

5. Day 23 of My Sacred Life on 11-14-08, I shared a piece of Visual Poetry that I created in 1994 with the story of how it came to be.

6. Challenged by a fellow blogger, I created this Vastly Varied Version in Verse alliterative list of 10 things about myself (with an accompanying poem about the process) ... though it was anything but simple.

7. In The Gift of Gratitude in a Simple Thank You (12-28-07), I share two memories from my life as a public school teacher and the touching video-clip that inspired them.

As a "newbie" ... I have no archives from previous years; however, I've taken up the Creative Every Day 2008 Challenge and have started sharing more reflective pieces like this Haiku Friday, Volume 3 - January 11, 2008 at Small Reflections. I've shared other kinds of personal writing at Sacred Ruminations like Monday Musings (1-7-08) and Remembering Taos (1-6-08).

Thought for Today
"If we value independence, if we are disturbed by the growing conformity of knowledge, then we may wish to set up conditions of learning which make for uniqueness." Carl Rogers

My Haiku Friday - Directory

  1. Sandy's Chain Email Meme in Poetry
  2. Storyteller Revealed - Coming Out of Hiding
  3. Morning Routines - Introducing Molly
  4. Tag - A 2nd Hybrid Meme (7 Weird Things About Me)
  5. Morning Routines - Introducing Ms. Kitty
  6. Tennis - The Australian Open (Part 1)
  7. A Blogging Milestone for Me
  8. Tennis - The Australian Open (Part 2)
  9. Obsession Interrupted by Illness
  10. 1st Belated Haiku Friday - Weather Changes & Recovery
  11. MSN Email Woes
  12. A 2nd Belated Friday Haiku - On Change
  13. An Unexpected Surprise
  14. Windy Weather Effects
  15. Celebrating Life
  16. Best Laid Plans
  17. Thanks for Visiting
  18. Message in a Bottle
  19. Morning Ruminations & and a Friendly Invitation
  20. Spontaneity
  21. Catching Up is Hard to Do
  22. Shifting Priorities
  23. Tennis on my Mind - Pacific Life Open in Indian Wells, CA
  24. Tennis Time Again - more Pacific Life Open matches
  25. Hai-kudn't
  26. Moms and Babies
  27. Men's Update -Sony Ericcson's Miami Tennis Tournament
  28. Women's Update - Sony Ericcon's Miami Tennis Tournament
  29. Of Oddities & Change
  30. Joyful Burst of Color & Pensieve's Poetic License #1
  31. A Little Link-Love
  32. Musings of my Mind (and more linky-love)
  33. Baby Beagle Update
  34. I up and did it yesterday!
  35. One Man's Trash ...
  36. Combination HF with Pensieve's 40PC#1
  37. Focus on Thinking
  38. Poetic Trio in a Single Post
  39. Simple Photo Manipulation (with Photoshop 6)
  40. Photoshop Lessons Learned
  41. General So Cal Update & More
  42. Haiku Book Review: The Red Tent & One Single Impression Week 12
  43. Tennis Anyone? (and more ... OSI & 40PC ... multi-tasking in Haiku)
  44. Haiku 'Reflection' and OSI: Week 13
  45. Photoshop Collages & Women's Semi-Finals Tennis Update (French Open)
  46. Corn on the Cob at the Beach (multi-tasking with Pensieve's 40PC)
  47. Anticipation
  48. Running Late but Feeling Grateful & Sharing a big of Love Today
  49. Changes: I've been 'productively' busy this morning ...(and this afternoon too)
  50. A Medley of Happy Things ' Stuph
  51. Ups & Downs ... and Ups
  52. Giraffes and Photoshop Lessons
  53. Williams sisters at Wimbledon
  54. Beginning My Day ... with journaling (and Sky Watch too)
  55. Mental Musings of the Morning ... and more
  56. Sky Watching ...
  57. Cool Clips & Catching Up ... (or trying to)
  58. Sunsets
  59. Still trying to catch up ...
  60. Remembering ...
  61. An apology, correction, and more ...
  62. Sunrise ... on a cloudy day
  63. Some days are harder than others ...
  64. Cloudy Collages
  65. Admittedly Olympic Obsessed
Remembering to update this list is becoming more challenging all the time, I've decided to add the following clickable links here and forgo future updates ... just because.

Thought for Today
"It's okay to make mistakes. Mistakes are a part of learning." John Bradshaw
Related Posts with Thumbnails