Sunday, November 30, 2014

Home School Just For Fun

Were you home schooled? I bet most of you would say you weren’t but after you read this list you might say well yes maybe I was …

My mother taught me to appreciate a job well done.
“If you’re going to kill each other, do it outside. I just finished cleaning.”

My mother taught me religion.
“You better pray that will come out of the carpet.”

My father taught me about time travel.
“If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you to next week!”

My father taught me logic.
“Because I said so, that’s why.”

My mother taught me foresight.
“Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident.”

My father taught me irony.
“Keep crying and I’ll give you something to cry about.”

My mother taught me about the science of osmosis.
“Shut your mouth and eat your supper.”

My mother taught me about contortionism.
“Just look at the dirt on the back of your neck!”

My mother taught me about stamina.
“You’re going to sit there until all that spinach is gone.”

My mother taught me about weather.
“This room of yours looks as if it was hit by a tornado.”

My mother taught me about hypocrisy.
“If I told you once, I’ve told you a thousand times. Don’t exaggerate!”

My father taught me the circle of life.
“I brought you into this world and I can take you out.”

My mother taught me about behavior modification.
“Stop acting like your father!”

My mother taught me about envy.
“There are millions of less fortunate children who don’t have wonderful parents like you do.”

My mother taught me about receiving.
“You’re really going to get it when we get home!”

My mother taught me medical science.
“If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, they are going to stay that way.”

My mother taught me ESP.
“Put your sweater on. I can tell when you are cold!”

My mother taught me how to become an adult.
“If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up.”

My mother taught me genetics.
“You’re just like your father.”

My mother taught me about my roots.
“Shut that door behind you. Were you were born in a barn?”

My mother taught me wisdom.
“When you get to be my age, you’ll understand.”

My father taught me about justice.
“One day you’ll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!”

Friday, November 28, 2014

Thank Full

A little list of things that make me glad that I have been given the gift of life. Stream of consciousness. Not in order of importance or maybe it is. (I wish I could write it horizontally. The problem with physical space.) Not even the tip of the iceberg for which I am thank full each and every day.

My life out here
My wonderful daughter Ari
My amazing partner Marty
My beautiful friends and family which are many and greatly appreciated
God’s grace which he bestows upon me every day

Sunday, November 16, 2014

A Herb Caen Moment

We just got our first significant rain of the season. Three-quarters of an inch. We’re very happy. I’m peering over the edge of our rain catchment system into the tank to see what bounty I’ve collected. Can’t wait until it’s flowing over the top.

What am I missing? People having to call 911 to get out of a corn maze? This news story was going around at Halloween time. This is what I say: Walk through the corn dodo-head! Corn is planted in rows! Follow the row! Some people on the internet are saying such hogwash like “Have you ever tried to walk through corn?” Like this is some kind of excuse. Yes, I have walked through corn. Sorry, folks. Spent many a summer de-tasseling corn back in Ioway. We born and bred Iowan who say stuff like “born in the corn” know better. It’s just a plant! Not a solid brick wall. OK, maybe the panicked ones are thinking of Stephen King’s Children of the Corn and there’s no way they’re going to venture off into the weird unknown. Or they’re thinking “must stay in the lines!” like some kind of zombie. But we Iowans (or Nebraskans or Illini) are laughing our heads off in amazement.

I was inspired to make fermented rye bread by this wonderful Danish writer who I recently discovered. Read her at I almost had a Lucy moment when the sourdough starter overflowed the banks of the crockery jar I had put it in. Darn! It was such a cute crockery jar and seemed made for sourdough. It was just too small. Will adjust the recipe accordingly next time. Meanwhile the ripening sourdough lives in a big crockery bowl for five days and then when she’s nice and sour we’re getting her out to make lots of fermented rye bread with fennel seed, sesame seed, poppy seed, sunflower seed, cracked wheat and rye. I’m going to try the Danish way with cheese and carrot marmalade. More pictures and commentary on that next week.

Watch out Charlie you're getting too close!

Our dog is a ground squirrel dog. We have thousands of ground squirrels here. It’s too bad they are not really edible. Hewitt would eat them. I bet. Great writer by the way. Check him out. If we wanted to act like hunter gatherers we would have an endless supply of bite size meat. As it is they are somewhat of a nuisance. They attract rattlesnakes. We killed 6 rattlesnakes this past summer. Rattlesnakes are beautiful, not endangered and so poisonous. You never know if you’re meeting an inexperienced baby rattlesnake who will not know enough to leave you alone. We would leave them alone but maybe they would not leave us alone and we don’t want to take a chance to find out. The squirrel dog was bitten this past summer and almost didn’t make it. So the ground squirrels have to go as much as we can make them go. The dog is helping. In the past two weeks he cornered and killed 3 squirrels. 3 down 5,000 to go. And just so ya know his kill is quick and ferocious so the ground squirrel does not suffer. I was relieved to see that. Although I'm not partial to ground squirrels I'm also not partial to any critter suffering. We're all nations caught on this planet. Everything has its place and is worthy of respect.

Happy, happy, happy! I'm Bona-fide!

I found a pile of rusty nails out in the middle of the horse pasture this week. No fences or buildings for miles. Why are they there? I’m astounded we have not had more limping horses with nails in their hooves. We have had one incident. That's all. Lucky! For all the rusty nails I find you'd think there would be more. Thank you for tetanus shots. We get them for the horses and ourselves. Maybe I’ll figure out how to make found art sculpture with all the rusty metal things I find.

In preparing the garden beds for winter I found some yummy chicken treats. Cutworms or grubs whatever generic term you wish to use is fine. Of course, the chickens had to eyeball them first. Really? Food that moves? Then they tucked in. It was a feeding frenzy and I was so happy watching them feast. The hens and rooster are looking quite robust and ready for the cold weather. This protein is all good.

Natural chicken protein food and a flattened preying mantis for garnish.

I ran across this picture from the “olden days” when we were what I called “woods hippies”. Back in the day we went back to the land. We had a good old time sleeping by the glowing woodstove on cold winter nights in the old farm house and some days I wish I could take what I’ve learned and go back. I had a good time and now I would have an even better time. The things I worried about then like having a boyfriend and what people think of me I don’t worry about anymore. Now I'm too old and sick and couldn't live like that. It's rather an extreme life.

Dan, Will, Hound Dog, Baseball aka John, Lynn, Chris and Gary

And because I can’t leave you without some food for thought here’s an excerpt from a poem by Charles Bukowski called The Genius of the Crowd. I think the title might be tongue in cheek. I got it from a website called This Eumaeus is a pretty insightful and thought provoking guy. I recommend that you check him out.

and the best at murder are those who preach against it
and the best at hate are those who preach love
and the best at war finally are those who preach peace
those who preach god, need god
those who preach peace do not have peace
those who preach peace do not have love
beware the preachers
beware the knowers
beware those who are always reading books
beware those who either detest poverty
or are proud of it
beware those quick to praise
for they need praise in return

Monday, November 3, 2014

Young Lions

I’ve been following the exploits of some of my friends on Facebook. Some of my old friends are posting pictures of themselves when they were in their 20’s. It just dawned on me what amazing people we were.

I thought: We were Young Lions!

Baker Beach and I - a swath of fabric for a kerchief
Some of us were soldiers and some of us were activists. Some of us followed a spiritual teacher. Some of us volunteered for the Peace Corps. Some of us went back to the land. Some of us tried to work within the system to change it. We were a loud generation. Our music was loud and in your face.

Paul and I
Some of us went to Vietnam. Some of us went to Canada. We weren’t complacent. And we tried to see inside our motivations and do better. We followed the Maharishi, Ram Dass, Jim Morrison, The Beatles, and Zen Buddhism.We ate organic and raised our own food.

The Maharishi and I - The dress (made by me)
Just like all young people we were beautiful. We were strong and lithe and we enjoyed ourselves like young people do. We danced uninhibitedly. We weren’t afraid to try new things. We thought that love was something to be freely shared. It didn’t always work but we kept an Open Mind.

Sandy and I - still had The Dress Top
Now we’re old. Some of us caved in and were swallowed up by The System. But some of us are still feisty and if we’re not living in direct confrontation to the establishment we are working quietly behind the scenes bending the rules. Most of us have kept an Open Mind. Many of us still look inside to find Truth. We’re still Lions but we’re long in the tooth. We are beautiful but the beauty isn’t of the flesh but of the mind, of thought.

Street Fair Golden Gate Park - another Paul and I
This poem reminds me of those days. It means “souvenir” or “remember”.

By Edna St. Vincent Millay

We were very tired, we were very merry—
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry.
It was bare and bright, and smelled like a stable—
But we looked into a fire, we leaned across a table,
We lay on a hill-top underneath the moon;
And the whistles kept blowing, and the dawn came soon.

We were very tired, we were very merry—
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry;
And you ate an apple, and I ate a pear,
From a dozen of each we had bought somewhere;
And the sky went wan, and the wind came cold,
And the sun rose dripping, a bucketful of gold.

We were very tired, we were very merry,
We had gone back and forth all night on the ferry.
We hailed, “Good morrow, mother!” to a shawl-covered head,
And bought a morning paper, which neither of us read;
And she wept, “God bless you!” for the apples and pears,
And we gave her all our money but our subway fares.