Friday, November 29, 2013

Happy!

Let it pour

IM THANKFUL I HAVE SO MUCH TO BE THANKFUL FOR (me!) Sandra, tvgp

I wouldn't be exaggerating to tell you I can sometimes spend an hour with my eyes closed going over in great detail all the people and things I'm grateful for... God, and friends and family.. My children, healthy, happy, doing well in life, good friends, handling challenges, obstacles along the way.. Getting to witness the transitions, her into a beautiful young woman, him into a handsome young man..I'm grateful to my ex-husband for all he provides for them.. So grateful they are being raised in such a nice neighborhood, good schools, -cool hometown.. And I'm grateful my dad and family are back in California.. Chris, emily, isaiah, -Nate in PB.. Always a pleasure to be around, visit...A prayer answered! And I'm grateful for all the times my mom, and her husband have come out to Pleasanton for visits, but.. so grateful I can go to San leandro now, a city i was avoiding for some time, visit with my mom and her husband, without experiencing any depression or needing time to recover upon return. What healing! And my mom really knows what she's doing in the kitchen.. Such a good cook! A wonderful thanksgiving meal and visit.. And I'm grateful for my sister, niece and nephew.. Anytime we get to hang out together.. And my brother.. I'm really grateful that he has love in his life now.. A family he can enjoy the holidays with! -that they are doing well.. I'm so grateful for my handsome prince! And his daughters.. And his family. To be in love, to have someone I'm so attracted to and compatible with.. Who.. WHO! uh oh... SIDETRACK: "WHO GOT US TICKETS TO SEE DR MAYA ANGELOU! AND! ROBIN WILLIAMS! -who helped me see and get a picture with MY CHARLIE ROSE!... Oh! And I've been doing so good.. But every once in a while my thoughts get taken over with my practicing what I might say if I get the chance to shake hands with... -forget it. I either start rambling, or freeze. Anyway.. GOD is already there! -one of my favorite prayers! GOD IS ALREADY THERE... And I'm so grateful for carol, Stacy, friendship/shelter, the room I'm renting in the most beautiful neighborhood! I'm extra extra grateful for my job at ricks picks.. My favorite job I've ever had. -ever. And maybe the money is not so great, but! I love the place, the people, the products.. And it utilizes at least a dozen skill sets I have that have not been put to use by any other employer. May I pause to share here.. I got a text from Rick himself with THREE "really's" in it.. As in, " I really, really, really like what you did in home decor..". -as I had spent some 5 plus hours re-doing almost the entire home decor section in the Danville store /and it felt like 30 minutes! And I feel so incompetent in the kitchen and in other places/situations... But! Let me loose to organize, decorate, arrange this spectacular variety of eclectic home decor in some creative, aesthetically pleasing way and I get to feel like A. I know what I'm doing, and B. I'm good at it! -what a blessing! plus.. I'm having so much fun with Ricky & picky ..taking pictures!.. And I'm very grateful to Charlotte Severin, Julie, Andrea.. My position as poet laureate.. Feel myself being challenged, stretched -growing. Deeply grateful to faith ALPHER! For the opportunity to honor, celebrate Dr MAYA Angelou in this special way.. Will I get a chance to tell her?! And how lucky am I?! I mean, one of the things that makes me feel the luckiest of all! Is getting to read and respond to Leonard's blogs 5 days a week! .. Way up there in the saving and enhancing quality of life area! -the blogosphere itself, my new fancy phone.. That allows me to take and upload pictures direct to my blog! .. My health!.. All my healing! My church! Joyce Meyer! Joel Osteen! Hour of power! Energy! Verve! ...getting to declutter at my own pace, revisit so many memories, decide of my own free will, what to keep, throw away, donate, sell... For the great books I get to read, for every one of my awesome, beautiful friends.. This list goes on.. But! Time's up...

Thursday, November 28, 2013

"happy thanksgiving!". ..my girl. (Taryn!)

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

MUST OF BEEN THE HUMBLE PIE by (me!) writeousmom

oRIGINAL POST 07/14/2010: re-post inspired by Leonard's blog today re: mall & bathrooms.... Pull. Trigger. Shoot! we were sitting in a patch of shade at the park, near the basketball hoops

and my son asks me, "so, what has been one of your most embarrassing moments?"

unfortunately, it's very fresh in my mind:

***

"i was at macy's, you see -or rather i was at the mall, when my body sent one of those signals that suggested i might want to consider where the nearest restroom is

and then i was at macys. -quick as i could get there.

the bathroom, or restroom, or ladies lounge, whatever the hell they call it, well

it's wasn't on the floor i was on -of course. the word emergency was not invented by someone who found the bathroom nearby & vacant, write

the word emergency was probably invented by someone in my precarious situation

someone whose body was screamin' 10 seconds, when the delivery location was 10 minutes away, know what i mean

-so-

i look across this country they call the first floor, and spy, some three islands away; stairs


that's when my body sent one of those signals that kindly, but firmly suggested faster route to the drop off point

and thanks be to God here, because just to my left was the elevator

so i pressed the button twelve times and exhausted 8 of my 10 seconds praying myself to the next floor


Jesus! Jesus! come in please, Jesus.. do you read me? pLEEZE don't this happen, k

and quite similar to the way you've seen race horses leave the gate -the instant that elevator door opened i bolted toward the promise land

half way there i began to break my one second left count down into smaller, more hopeful intervals with decimals in them -like they do for the olympics

sweat was literally dripping from my forehead

and at the risk of being arrested for indecent exposure, i thought it best to unbutton my pants in route for efficiencies sake

do you know the way the american flag might appear to holocaust survivors? well, it was quite like that for me when my eyes finally landed on -not a sign pointing toward

but the actual bathroom.

"SWEET FREEDOM! LADY LIBERTY!"

only

there was a line. -of course.

a line so long the door was being repeatedly propped open by the rotating feet of all these women waiting anxiously for their turn

i waved a white kleenex and prepared for surrender.

"Jesus" i said to myself , "is this your way of keeping me humble. of keeping it real?"

and i briefly imagined my time being up; ...two... one... blastoff -write there in line, pants half undone, all the tri valley public there to witness "my most embarrassing moment"


"oh! that lady with the tattoo on her face... i know her! she shit all over herself in the bathroom at macy's!"


but before my imagination got to the fifth town gossip, i was amazingly at the front of the line. next in line!

"Jesus.. you wouldn't bring me this far just to... [my turn! and i ran into the empty stall]

"of course you wouldn't! Thank you Jesus!"



and if, like me, you thought i escaped my most embarrassing moment by making it to the stall in time, then

just, like me,

you learn here the best was yet to come

how can i describe without losing my audience

my friends, my family

the speed and volume at which unidentified flying objects exploded out of my otherwise quaint and quiet derriere

perhaps by sharing the chorus of vaudevillian comments that came from the tribe of women still waiting in line

"oh my! are you okay in there?" followed by "eeewwww" and then some general clapping.

and even though i did make it to the restroom in time

i did not EVER want to come out!

maybe, i thought to myself, if i spend enough time in here cleaning up

there will be a new set of women waiting in line... ones that didn't see me go in

and more importantly

-ones that didn't hear what came out

and so i busied myself with the tasks at hand, and then..

reluctantly, but as an unconditionally beloved child of the most high God

i pulled up my pants. i buttoned my buttons. i put my purse strap on my shoulder. and walked boldly out toward the sink to double wash my hands

there were still several women in line. several women. anxious women. and even though it looked like, from the expressions on their faces

and the way they folded at the knees

that the next woman in line would run to the stall i just made vacant

these women just stood there. stood there in terrified silence. -possessed suddenly with a peculiar sense of generosity and benevolence

"would you like to go in front of me? go write ahead,. i don't have to go so bad anymore"

"oh no, that's okay.. you go on ahead of me. you were here first.. "

and i have to tell you that not even the most desperate woman in that line dared enter the vacant stall i so thoroughly just cleaned

so i apologized but without making eye contact.

and not wanting to be identified

left my writeousmom~mobile in the parking lot that day and hailed a taxi for the long ride home.

****


my son says

"that's cool how it was your most embarassing moment and now it just makes you laugh"

and then i asked him his most embarassing moment, and got to enjoy his recent journey from mortified to funnified

and the thing about most embarrassing moments is they are best shared by the embarrass~ee

so when i can talk him into it

i'll have another great guest post to add to my blog.

Not sure who is having more fun, them, or (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Adventures with ricky & picky..by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Create. Detach. Merchandising by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

TWO TO MAkE IT WORK; ONE TO MAKE IT FAIL by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

That's not my quote, I don't know who first said it.. But nothing that has ever been said about romantic relationships is more true or perfectly, consistently accurate. My handsome prince goes, "I don't want you to think the wrong thing.." then goes on to tell me about a thank you gift he is getting for a female friend of his.. I did not get upset. I've got Jesus. And here's what I've learned along the way: when, my dear handsome prince, you get and give a gift to said female.. You have either a pure, or un-pure internal motive. It is either a genuine thank you, nothing more, or you, in fact hope it leads to something more.. You plant a seed, you are trying to grow the relationship... Check your heart. Only you (and God) know your true motive. Now.. I like to think we have a relationship worth protecting, so on the occasions, I've checked my own heart.. And felt a tug in the wrong direction.. I pray and redirect.. But unless both of us are working towards protecting and not threatening our relationship; well, that's why it is my favorite quote, because it is just dead on true: two to make it work; one to make it fail. Every decision, action, thought.. It is either supporting.. Or weakening. -write.

Two words that describe ( me?! ) Self-entertaining...

The heart seen... On my pizza

Friday, November 22, 2013

"Mag time frames... Dot. Com!"

More treasures from operation ultimate declutter...

My worst day today is a picnic! By (me!) Sandra, tvgp

My handsome prince is not the first or only person to say to me.. /with some combination of irritability and curiosity.."you're happy all the time..". -and how can this be when I'm broke? When there's so much to worry about.. So many potential threats.. I said the same thing to him that I did my other friend.. "..because the 1st part of my life was soooo hellish.. That my worst day today is a picnic by comparison.". And just this morning I watched Joyce Meyer talking with a founder/president of one of the mercy programs.. A place where girls, 13 to 28 years old, I think it was, who have been sexually abused, have eating or cutting disorders, addictions, etc. Can go for help. -walk in the door completely broken.. And with the unconditional love of God at the center.. Come out restored.. Or at the very least, headed in that direction. I've been that broken girl! I never got into cutting, but I had every other disorder, phobia and addiction... I understand how damaged/traumatized humans will do very self-destructive things to avoid... Emotional pain. The distinction, internal experience distinction between physical and emotional pain is -grand. But naturally our goal with either or both.. -is to; "make it go away!". -can someone, anyone.. Can something, any thing.. ANY THING! -make the pain go away. I've written enough about this in prior blogs, so I'm not going to revisit in length. I just want to point out.. How timely it is (it always is) that the book I'm devouring is the true life story of a man who got in a car accident at age 17.. Coma,.. All kinds of physical/mental damage.. Had to "re-learn" everything. Start from scratch.. And I've always used that as an analogy.. In the aftermath of the rape(s).. My physical body could still function.. But I had to "re-learn" everything! About how to function in day to day life.. We had a lot of the same issues.. Brain damage, stuttering, memory problems, ..anyway.. It's a great read! Highly recommend it.. David seymon, reflections of gratitude.. Great poetry! Perfectly woven into the larger story.. Sweet, precious, moments -set backs/victories.. He is a wonderful inspiration.. And I'm going to close with a testimony of a different kind.. It is a short cut I learned in regard to dealing with and healing from emotional pain. I'm not the first to experience or share the truth of this deceivingly simplistic technique.. But it goes like this: when you have been emotionally wounded.. All of our instincts want to -avoid, dodge, go -around, over, under... Anything but -through. It gets internalized, and turns into a self destructive thing... Or externalized, and shape shifts into anger taken out on someone else.. Or it gets buried and exists as a land mine... it seems to me, the heart and mind will team up and do just about anything to avoid it. Preoccupy itself by any manner.. Which is why addictions of one kind or another are so popular.. Addictions are pre-occupying/all consuming... Leave room for little else. Now.. If you are in physical pain.. Make it go away! -write. You don't volunteer to live with it... You deal directly with it. Emotional pain is no different.. You must deal directly with it. So, deceivingly simple but true.. When I've been hurt -emotionally- and I write away acknowledge it.. And say, "this hurts, this hurts, this hurts! It hurts so bad!" and I pray.. Somehow this makes it so that I don't need to pre-occupy myself with any addictions, or numbing behaviors ..it doesn't shape shift into anger, or hide like a land mine.. It still happens now and then.. I get my feelings hurt.. What a challenge to describe! What a challenge to geographically point to.. You can't see where to put the band aid.. But you sure know when it's happened, even if you can't say where.. "you hurt my -feelings!". -sound s a little like being back in kindergarten, doesn't it... But, there's certainly some truth to the famous book title by robert fulghum: All I really need to know I learned in....

I NEVER MENTIONED THAT? (Me!) -writeousmom

Two thumbs typing on fancy phone with flat glass keyboard *** what a beautiful, romantic proposal story was shared by the youth pastor at my church...  It came up in conversation when I was driving my son and nephew to school.  I go,  "you boys pay attention.  He really did it write.  That's a story they'll be sharing over and over..  He gave her such a nice story to repeat...".   Quiet in the car.   I'm not sure whether or not I'm just talking to myself.. If either one of them cares or is paying me any attention.  Then I go, "you know...  I dont think I can remember the way either one of my ex-husbands proposed to me?  ".   And suddenly my son is like, "you were married before...dad?".   -honestly...  Had I never mentioned it?  I know my daughter knew...  Sometimes because she's older, she's heard more..  And these days I'm really not sure what I have and haven't shared with which child...  "Yep.  I was married the first time when I was just 18 years old.".  -and with his signature sarcasm, he goes, "how long did that last? Two years?".  I made eye contact with him in the passenger side back seat through the rear view mirror,  "nope. Three!".  

Thursday, November 21, 2013

"THANK YOU! JIM" from (me!) sandra, tvgp

so, i was at the mailbox, and this other gentleman was at the mailbox, and he goes, something like, "how are you doin' writeousmom?" -caught me off guard. i glanced real quick at the back window of my car.. blank. -there was a time, when i had a big sign, "WriteousMom.com" -but it has been removed for some time now. i go, "how do you know that?" and he said, "ive been reading your blog for years." -that caught me off guard to. i go, "are you a blogger? do you write?" and he goes, "no. i just appreciate good writing." -insta-friend!- i said, "thank you!" of course.. and we talked a bit about our neighborhood.. it is the nicest neighborhood i've ever lived in.. so peaceful, beautiful.. he mentioned a recent car accident, and i know there are a fair amount. i do the sign of the cross at every sound of teenagers racing/squeeling.. we are near a high school. we are near, the very same road, where many years ago, 4 teenagers were instantly killed (no alcohol or drugs involved; just youth, speed and night..). i know because i served 9 weeks on a jury involving the case... anyway.. back to the beauty of the neighborhood.. i captured some of it, in a blog titled, the nature of my walks. -and, i haven't really ever met anyone (outside my family/friends) who reads my blog.. i've said it often though.. the writing on my part is mandatory; but the reading.. that's voluntariy. thank you jim for voluntarily reading my blog! i appreciate that. SAME AND DIFFERENT SUBJECT.. now, very recently, my son became ill-ish, after watching a video in school that shows -in graphic detail- the consequences of drunk driving. my daughter fainted after seeing the same video a few years back.. i know the schools teach a lot about the consequences of drunk driving.. and just last night, the author of the book, -his life changing accident was the result of drunk driving.. and i know the schools, they do, -every 15 minutes.. and, of course, every parent warns.. and every parent fears.. but.. this is true too: there was a 4th grader killed around the corner from my former home. he was not drunk. the driver that hit him, had not been drinking. it was an accident. there are text driving accidents, there are sleepy driver accidents, there are wrong place at the wrong time accidents.. there is the accident mentioned above, no alcohol involved, 4 deaths. you can learn to drive, drive safely, never drink and drive, and then die of cancer. in my own life.. A doesn't always equal B. in my life, what seems to be true, always comes in four quadrants: if i use drunk driving as the variable it looks like this: drunk driver = accident. drunk driver = no accident. sober driver = accident. sober driver = no accident. and statistically, you can increase or decrease your odds.. and not in a million years, ever, would i tell my kids its okay.. it's just that.. people die at any variety of ages, for any variety of causes.. while you're here -do your best, and help others.

ON WAITING WELL by (me!) sandra, tvgp

it is in the top ten list of spiritual lessons required for a peaceful, happy, productive life. we have to, we must learn; to wait well. we certainly do lots of it! wait in line, wait for the next pay day, wait for the next movie, book, special occasion, holiday, vacation; wait to feel better, wait for the call, wait for the punchline, wait until.. just you wait. on and on, etc. etc. wait weight, weight wait. like write now, i'm waiting very patiently for december 4th to hurry up and get here! i think. i'm trying not to count down the days, or be all pre-occupied by it.. or day dream so much, or lose sleep... but can you imagine!? k, -sometimes, when i want to come up with something to write, or comment on leonard's blog.. and i want it to be both funny and poignant, i put my hands in the air, close my eyes, and i say out loud in a soft whisper, "maya, maya, maya. robin, robin, robin.." sometimes i add in other names too, but i always default to those two.. or if i only say two names, those are the two i say. maya, of course, for Dr Maya Angelou. and robin, for Robin Williams. it is my effort to ask them, to invite their spirit to join with mine, and help me out.. sometimes i say that too.. "help me.. maya, maya, maya, robin, robin, robin.. come help" -and next thing i know, my fingers have found something to say. "thank you!" -they come through for me (to me?) like, almost every time. what category does this fall in? superstition? metaphysics? spiritual? telepathy? delusion? i don't know. i only know it seems to work, and the magical part, or miraculous part, depending on which way you bend -is that they don't even know me! i don't for one second, imagine that either one of them, is somewhere in the world, and is suddenly interrupted, like, "wait.. i think i here someone calling my spirit..." it all happens behind the seens. some combination of imagination, and.. verve, maybe. it is a different experience than the spiritual, unseen, connections i experience with loved ones in my family that i've known my entire life...and know and love me back. in any case, -knowing this.. can you imagine the reaction of my heart when my handsome prince told me he heard on 102.9 that Dr Maya Angelou was going to be in oakland in december?! now.. i am literally in the process, write now, (including TODAY!) of writing Kissin' the Chocolate Blues, which is a performance valentine TO: Dr Maya Angelou, from me.. scheduled for the firehouse art center, february 11th, 2014.. and keep in mind, i've written her several letters (never heard back), and have seen her lecture 3 (4?) times, but never -never- for one reason or another, got the chance to -see- her, get a book autographed, get a picture.. shake her hand. hug her and never let her go... /it's a wonder.. and i do have her autograph in books, and framed... yes. but i had to mail off for them. and that's better than nothing, of course.. but it is not the same as having her sign it, in front of you.. and get a picture. so.. thank you to my handsome prince.. here comes my 4th chance; maybe. to be honest.. i'm just glad to see her again, and am perfectly prepared for it to be just like the other times.. close, but not that close. anyway.. can you imagine my heart again, when i started looking up the event.. a celebration of the co-founders of glide memorial.. 50 years.. serving the community.. and this long list of celebrities.. which included -guess who else?!? Robin Williams!! -now- if that ain't Jesus at work, i don't know what is.. maya, maya, maya, robin, robin, robin... IN THE SAME ROOM! i pray to Jesus.. i pray.. please can i meet them.. like, shake their hand meet them... like, get a picture with them, meet them, ... but, please Jesus, if you let me meet them.. can i not make an entire idiot of myself.. and you know what fascinates me.. how utterly perfectly i can pull up their faces in my imagination.. how do we do that? i'm going to close with this: on one of the autographed papers i mailed away for, and have framed.. it reads, in part, "strength! to your writing hand, joy!" -she has a great signature! big, bold, beautiful writing.. just gorgeous. anyway.. i kept going, like, strength.. strength?.. strength to my writing hand? why didn't she say, energy? or success? -why strength? what does she mean by that? joy i get. but strength..? and then -one day, a friend of mine was telling me that her, and her husband had fallen on hard times.. he was being laid off, and their security was at risk.. and having seen a variety of marriages collapse under even less pressure/testing.. i found myself praying for them. one of the things i said was, -strength to their marriage during this time of stress.. i pray they make it through with their marriage still intact.. and then! i understood.

THE STUPIDEST QUESTION I EVER ASKED (me!) sandra, tvgp

we all have one. -mine.. it was during a conversation with a tri valley haven volunteer friend, several years ago now. but, embarrassing/stupid questions.. stay with you forever. she's the only person i ever knew -knew, knew- that had been homeless. literally; no home. no money. no food. it had nothing to do with lack of ambition, drugs, alcohol, etc. she had a ph.d., she was smart, hard working,.. but there were layoffs, she was in another country (china?) -could not find work, had no family/friend circle to take her in, help her through. no way to get back home. ran out of what money she did have.. and before you know it, -much like the people we see here in the tri valley, on occasion, she needed a cardboard box, to write on.. a sign to hold, that would request from total strangers: food. i think i remember her describing how she hung out in a cafeteria somewhere.. she wouldn't steal, but had to wait and ask, and eventually, someone would kick her an apple. yeah. and i go, "how did that make you feel?" -wish i could have captured the expression on her face on film. how else would or could a starving person feel if someone handed them some food, write."very happy." small portions of food, given by kind strangers, over what period of time? i don't remember. what i do remember, is that.. no one person took her in. no one person came and gave her a job. no one person provided breakfast, lunch and dinner. -but, an unknown number of strangers, added together, well, each contributed something.. an apple here, some bread there, a little spare change from this one, until, eventually, she re-found work.. re-earned money.. and ultimately made her way back home. I REMEMBERED THIS when i was at safeway recently.. now before i go on, let me share this: i own nothing. i am renting a room, and behind on that rent. i live off cash advances.. i aspire to live paycheck to paycheck.. that would be like being rich to me, write about now.. but i make it day to day, i'm not starving. i have help here and there.., etc. but it gets very confusing and challenging, when/who/what/how much to give.. when i do go to the grocery store and i'm met at the register with that question, "do you want to donate (variable $ amount) to (variable charity). like.. come on people! i'm struggling to pay for this salame and candy bar! sometimes i say yes, sometimes no. but it never doesn't feel awkward and i really wish i didn't have to come face to face with the question. -sometimes, when i click "no", an imaginary conversation will start in my head.. here you are walking out the door with beer and peanuts and yet you couldn't let go of one more dollar for breast cancer? ... and then everyone i know (and by the way i know a fair number of people who either are direct survivors, or have lost family members, or who have family members currently battling this cancer). -and then i argue back a little.. like, -excuse me, i've been raped three times.. where is the money for rape survivors? ending violence against women? -and there are people in my family/friend circle who have died of skin cancer, mental illness, alcoholism, suicide, heart failure... like how do we all pick and choose when/who/how much to give, under what circumstance? i don't know. i know i give at church, and that combines to help people.. and i have 3 or 4 people i sponsor annually, no matter my financial circumstances.. and i give tips here and there.. and i sometimes get girl scout cookies, and gift wrap for school fundraisers..and it's all kind of random actually.. but when i say or click "no." it always, consistently, feels awkward. now, i don't like awkward, so.. i remind myself, and i'm reminding you write now. -every store you go to. -with every product of any kind that you buy. you are already helping people! even if you don't give extra.. you are already helping enormously. none of the businesses would be in business at all without paying customers.. and every business, that is in business, is employing people, who generally employee other people, on and on. let's take a jar of peanut butter. we've got the manufacturing, packaging, marketing, distribution, transportation, merchandising.. each product, is like a mini-economy, which when macro'd out.. ='s employment for a lot of people.. spending any money at all at the grocery store is contributing. -and it's my guess, that the grocery store is in a much better position to give than most of its individual customers. -but i'm going to skip the obvious story that leads to.. i just want to say, that i can sometimes click no at the register. but i can't say no to a family standing outside of the grocery store with signs asking for food. so, even on my limited budget.. i saw them; husband, wife, children. i brought them out some bread, peanut butter, lunch meat, utensils.. i wished in my heart i could do more; i always wish i could do more.. it's tempting sometimes to do nothing, if you don't feel you can do enough, but i always remember my tri valley haven volunteer friend.. and i can't give them a job, can't feed them breakfast, lunch and dinner.. but i could provide something. and if someone else provides a little something.. an unknown amount of strangers each contributing in some way.. this can help them so that ultimately, they can get back home. and the look of gratitude from this child.. deep genuine gratitude. THAT'S A TRUE STORY.. and so is this: a number of years ago, a knock at the door.. a young woman in need of help, shelter, food.. i provided information regarding the tri valley haven; a temporary, but great source for help.. i made, and gave her a sandwich, apple, beverage.. the phone number. -she came back, and knocked and knocked.. it didn't feel safe to me.. like i was putting my own children/family in jeapordy. i was not in a postion to take her in.. i had to call the police, and i never did see her again. THAT'S A TRUE STORY, and so is this: many, many, many years back.. a man in a wheel chair.. in need of money/food; he had his chair parked outside of a restaurant.. wounded vet, i believe he claimed. -i gave him some money, and when i looked back at him later.. he got write up out of that wheelchair and could walk perfectly fine. it is so hard to distinguish, between who is legit and who is not. who is using money for food, and who is using money for alcohol or drugs.. which charities are actually helping others, which ones are helping themselves... i've been approached in parking lots, but what i believe are drug addicts, with amazing stories.. and ive seen a sandwich eaten, like it was the first food that person had seen in days.. but mostly i see that there is no shortage of people in need and every time we shop anywhere, for anything, we are helping someone.. keep their business open; keep a job.. etc. and sometimes, meeting that need, needs to be enough.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Reflections of gratitude by, (david seymon!)

Newest addition to my literary scrapbook...

From the 8th grade archives.. By (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

My pleasure

Because its fun.. By (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Monday, November 18, 2013

The heart seen! At the interfaith service reception...

Please Tell Him I Said "Thank You!" a poem, by (me!) sandra, tvgp

THIS FRICKIN' PROGRAM WILL NOT HONOR MY SPACING... tough on a poet. spacing is everything. **** was he really a good person? my heart wants to know was he really a good person... not just for show? because i have met some bad people, evil people, phony people too good on the outside... til their true colors leaked through... i've met some ugly, mean and nasty people; rude... in this broken, lost world... sad story, but true was he really a good person? my heart wants to know 'cuz if he was really, truly a good person... the whole world should know! i recognized her confusion, i saw several layers of pain and i was shocked, that she was shocked; by what to me, is just rain. how do you make it to 80... and not understand death skips nobody... no woman, no man. good or evil, unfaithful or true honest or kind, or ... deceitful and was he really a good person, like you say? did he care for others, not treat them like prey? did he hold his breath and count to ten... instead of blowing up again and again? did he hug, and kiss, and laugh and play forgive mistakes, make someone's day did he tame his ego, master his moods manifest any fruits of the spirit... humanities food did he take time to listen... to an opinion... other than his own... call his loved ones on the phone... remember birthdays, holidays, anniversaries, -things like that? or was he too important? too busy... too big to chat? "i love you. i miss you. i need you." -could he say things like that? "thank you. i'm sorry. please forgive me. i forgive you." -and mean it. did he accept his weaknesses? appreciate his gifts? see his blessings as a way to lift someone else a little highter too. -or did he peel people off the bottom of his shoe? did he offer hope to others in times of need did he stand for justice, could he turn his cheek see that evil for evil is evil and weak. did he walk in love? did he try and leave this world a little better than he found it? because every kind gesture, kind word, kind act is the best kind of weapon, the greatest attack! against the darkness, and the devil, and the ugly people of this world who lie and destroy -who hate, who kill i've just met you. write now. i may never see you again. but i see you now, i hear you now. we are evergreen friends. "he was such a good person!" my whole heart believes for every good person... relief. if he was really a good person... and not just for show i want this whole wide dark broken lost world to know! if he was really a good person... with a good person's heart please tell him, i said, "Thank You!" **** i am very, deeply, grateful for all the good people of this world. in Jesus name, amen. *** from my reading at the interfaith service at asbury united methodist church, livermore, ca 11/17/13.

Friday, November 15, 2013

The heart seen by (the lafferty's!) At lake powell, utah

The lafferty's are my centerpointe church friends, who gifted me with the camera I've been using the past couple years... /til I got this here phone w/camera and immediate upload.  Their original picture is breathtaking .. But again.. I can't figure out how to upload a picture -sent- to me via text.. Only the ones I take myself that default to my gallery.. So this is a picture of the picture... But a spectacular addition to the collection! "Thank & God Bless You!"

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

The heart seen by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Parking lot outside the golden apple

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Hypocrisy report card

God loves to reveal to me... Usually within a 24 hour period, ways in which I am a blatant hypocrite.  There are many. Its hard to escape. But, like, just this morning I was talking about how my sister, has, for as long back as I can remember, gotten over invested in TV dramas.  The people who write the dramas dream of her as their audience...it becomes so real.  And then here I  am on the eve of that very conversation, and guess what.. I can't go to sleep until I learn whether henry sees keiko in the cafeteria at the harmony camp! in this book I'm reading...   I'm not sure exactly when, what page,  it took over in my mind and heart as non fiction.. But this is no novel..  Henry is real!  All the characters... 
Dont be fooled

WILL YOU TELL HIM I SAID THANK YOU poem in progress by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

I have been invited to read a poem at a local church this coming up sunday.. On the topic of gratitude. And before our conversation even got started the words, and memories, and title were coming to me.. I knew immediately what I would write about. I change some details to protect privacy.. But the birth of this poem in progress is based on a one time encounter with a woman I spoke to after noticing the deep pain and confusion in her eyes. Briefly.. She looked to be somewhere in her 80's let's say.. And she had just been to see her brother, who was dying. There was a tone in her voice of shock.. Shock that he was dying, and then shock again, because 'but, he was such a good person'. -she said it in such a way that it sounded to me like she didn't already know that good people die. And so I was shocked, that she was shocked. How do you make it to 80 years old and still seem so genuinely caught off guard by death? It's one of humanities great common denominators. But it was what she said about her brother that my heart clung to: "..he was such a good person!". And I said, during a much longer conversation.. I'm very glad to learn he was a good person during his life here.. Will you please tell him I said thank you." -and thanking the good people in this world (not of this world) is the inspiration for my poem. I am very -very- grateful for good people. Lord knows I've encountered enough of the other type...

UNTIL DAVE MEYER! By (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Squidmann's blog today reminded me why and how it is that I connected with him immediately.. He is like family. He is my dad; my brother; my male cousins, uncles, etc. His sense of humor was immediately familiar, because it is write on par with my dad and brother.. And the way he writes about females.. Write on par with my dad and brother. Just last night my dad talked about visiting his -wife- in Santa Monica.. How he would spend his time staring at the women on the beach.. I said, "well that's the dad I know and love". I don't think in the past several decades we've ever had a conversation which didn't include at least one comment.. About "pretty girls" or "naked girls" -it comes as naturally to him as preaching the gospel does to Joyce Meyer. One of his most prized possessions in his man cave is the "hooters" plaque, autographed by the waitresses. His wife can be watching tv with him, and he very openly will comment, lustfully, about the women he is seeing. I have not once in my life, in the company of my brother or dad, ever had to guess whether they found a woman attractive. They vocalize everything. That's why.. It plays in my mind, over and over... When Joyce Meyer said, after a conversation with a woman friend.. She said to her husband Dave, "isn't she pretty." -or something like that.. And she said, Dave said, "I don't notice other women. You're my girl.". And.. The world stopped on its tilted axis. I played it back, and back, and back again.."that man is straight from heaven!". .. Is it possible... Dear Jesus... Is it possible?! That, that, there is more than just one Dave Meyer in the world? Dear Jesus... Jesus! Please! Surround me with the Dave Meyers of this world! I need some more exposure to this type of man... To even know they exist! Men who respect women, who respect their wives, who respect their daughters, who respect their female co-workers.. And now, obviously I've learned to accept my dad and brother and SQUIDMANN and several other male creatures for who they are.. And they have accepted me, with my series of shortcomings and whatnot.. But ever since that day.. I made a personal vow to not settle for less than a Dave Meyer type man. HP knows this... And I've written it before and will write it again.. Do I believe Dave Meyer really doesn't notice other women? What I believe is this: Dave Meyer respects God, and respects his wife! He loves God, and loves his wife! And out of that love and respect, he has disciplined himself to also be, in word, and action, and thought.. A respectful and loving husband. Sometimes I change the lyrics to John Lennons song, -imagine... To at least imagine.. More Dave Meyers in the world. My dad, my brother, SQUIDMANN.. They like to imagine more naked women.. We all have our dreams.

Monday, November 11, 2013

PROPERLY TRAINED as seen by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

He told me about taking the girls shopping.. One 15 year old, two 16 year olds.. They tried on the high heel shoes.. 6" or better.. Practiced walking in them. Then headed over to Victorias secret... I said, "well, they've been properly trained by our culture haven't they..". Our daughters get the same message about 1000 times a week.. In a variety of different mediums.. From tv, to commercials, to lyrics in music, to comments made by dads, brothers, uncles, -each other. Popular culture. Meanwhile.. Our boys, our sons.. Minds are being dominated by video games.. Graphic, violent, ugly to the point of prostitutes being kidnapped at gun point; and this is "entertainment" I keep fighting the good fight... Lose some battles, break even sometimes...occasionally make a break through. But overall.. Culturally speaking.. It's a sad story unfolding at a rapid pace. I don't judge the teenagers for taking the bait they are clearly drowning in...the odds are so stacked against them! So stacked against decent parents... But when HP asked if I wanted to see the new Vegas movie.. And tried to convince me the story "was good.." -because an old guy who is going to marry a young woman actually ends up with someone closer to his age.. I know the text plot = yet another silver screen showing of dancing sex pots.. And if I went the entire rest of my adult life without having that shoved in my face... Heaven on earth. "you can go see that one with my dad" I told him. I wanted, given the choice.. To see, cloudy with a chance of meatballs II. I loved the first one! But it was not showing anytime soon so we left altogether. I have been a victim of.. Participant in.. And rebel against my culture. It rotates to this day. But overall.. At my current age.. I see culture as a cocoon.. We are wrapped up in it.. Like it or not.. We grow inside it... But the ultimate goal.. Is to break free from it. And fly away. Amen.

The heart seen.. By (taryn!) At pleasanton ridge

Now.. She took the picture during our hike and sent it to my phone via text. I could not for the life of me figure out how to add a picture sent via text to my photo gallery,  but of course, blog only let's me select pictures from my gallery. So! Took a picture of the picture with my camera.. Then, took a picture of that picture with my phone camera.. So it was now in my gallery and... There you have it.. Where there's a will...

Unexplainable access to inaccessible things by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Inspired by conversations with my daughter yesterday. And now I'm back on the iPad, because I can't type well on the phone; but can upload pictures directly, while with the iPad, I can type, but can't upload pictures. -anyway.. My hummingbird experience, posted below is one of the most bizarre and compelling.. I will never forget how odd the experience was.. Having these words come out of my mouth.. But not -from- me.. -through me- and just how strange the words were.. "I wonder what it's like when a hummingbird dies?". Like, who even has such a thought? Let alone verbalizes it? -and how I just kind of paid brief attention, and then let it go.. Brushed it off as strange yes.. But then went on with what life demands.. Had never had anything like that happen before; have not had a similar thing happen again.. Not saying something out loud that didn't feel like it came from me.. And then watch it unfold in real life. But that is exactly what happened with the hummingbird experience. One day, out loud.. As if the words escaped -through- me, I heard myself say, "I wonder what it's like when a hummingbird dies?" and then one or more days later, a hummingbird comes write to us.. Slow, hovers, then goes to the bricks of a nearby house and -dies. Just like that. What would you make of that? I tripped off that for days! Tried every different angle for processing what it meant.. What I was supposed to know or learn or understand from it.. Where I ended up landing is here: the future is knowable. -but how far into the future? Seeing into the near future... I had a similar and yet entirely different experience with the limitless mind book. Now, -I have no recollection as to how I ended up with this book.. Did someone gift it to me? Did I buy it? Can't remember.. What I really, distinctly remember is one night, when I closed my eyes -on wherever that screen is, the back of our eye lids? Where you can enjoy little bizarre mini movies, or dreams, or visions, etc. I was captivated by this ...what was it? Asian.. Erotic-ish.. Especially the male head was pronounced and the shape of what he was sitting on.. And so, I remember thinking, -that's beautiful.. And making a conscious effort to hold it in my mind, on the screen.. Next thing I know.. It is rotating around, as if on a lazy Susan.. Allowing me to see it from every angle. Surrounded in black, empty space.. It was very pronounced; center stage, if you will.. And then disappeared. I remember thinking.. That was really cool.. And then, -like the hummingbird experience.. I just let it go and went on about everyday life. But! Within the next couple days I am compelled to pick up and start reading, limitless mind, and -there it is! A match! Of what I saw when I closed my eyes.. Wild! Wild! Wild! How? How did I see it, before I saw it? And then of course I thought it was also worth noting.. I opened the book on august 4th.. And write there in the beginning there is a reference to august 4th of a different year... I'll be re-reading this book soon.. But I can add those experiences to several others over my lifetime.. No two exactly alike, but all providing clues, hints, evidence that our day to day reality is not all there is.. Life is not as linear, chronological as it might appear.. And it is my understanding that time travel is possible; in both directions.. But write now we can only travel with our minds.. The title of Russell targ's book, seems accurate to me: our minds are limitless. It is our physical bodies that are restricted.. And I think, we are .. Well, I would not rule out teleporting.. Our physical as well as our mental beings. It seems at least we are exploring and headed in that direction. That far out quantam direction...in the futures past. Lastly.. When I just re-read briefly, in the foreword: rusell targ gives us insight into why we sometimes -RECEIVE- information -about a place, an object, a person - that is neither available through normal, local, sensory mechanisms nor explained by classical space-time theories.. I'm like, THAT'S WHAT I'VE BEEN TRYING TO EXPLAIN FOR YEARS.. But not very articulately. I know! At least I am very certain! 100% convinced, that we RECEIVE information.. Not in the obvious way.. Listening to people, or reading.. But when you're all alone.. In quiet stillness.. Listening and open... Available.. You can hear from God. You can RECEIVE information.. It is not coming from you.. Not generated from your own thoughts or mind.. It is entering you; being received by you. There is an internal experiential distinction.. I don't believe the secular world has an explanation.. But spiritual people, for as far back as you can read, and for as far forward; they all share this common experience. I am very grateful for it! praise God!

I saw this -before i saw this! (Me!) Sandra, tvgp

PREMINOTIONS by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

We enjoyed a short hike together, my daughter and I, yesterday. Subject of dreams and premonitions and telepathy, etc came up. I know, she... Actually, both of my children are sensitive this way.. Visions/feelings/senses.. Unexplainable access to otherwise inaccessible knowledge. And since I've been going through boxes of books.. And I now have a phone which allows me to take and upload pictures direct to this blog.. That's what I'm about to do. Switch away from this iPad to my phone... Be write back.

THE HUMMINGBIRD STORY (again!) by (me!) sandra, tvgp

ORIGINAL POST: 01/11/2009
must see movie recommendations:

seven pounds (and the less you know going in, the more pleasurable/fascinating the unfolding)

the curious case of benjamin button. -remarkable/extraordinary-

and which has retriggered my hummingbird story, because, not giving anything away really to share there are two scenes in which a hummingbird is incorporated into the narrative

and i can kind of hear my kids in the back of my mind write now, -not the hummingbird story again-

but i can't resist. goes like this: and it's a true story from september 2005:

i was sitting in the backyard (of my former home) meditating, dreaming, enjoying nature and in the distance i believe i saw a hummingbird visiting the flowers

what was REALLY STRANGE.. is that out of my mouth, the words came, "i wonder what it's like when a hummingbird dies"

and the reason it was SO STRANGE is because the words did not come from me, but through me.

and i remember sitting there a bit, thinking -what on earth would make me say or think such a thing? how odd

and life went on in typical fashion and i didn't think much about it again UNTIL..


until.. the next day, or very close anyway.. we are walking the kids to school and near one of the corners along the way.. here comes, you don't have to guess what:

a hummingbird. a hummingbird flying very low and slow.. hovering all around us.. and john cupped his hands and it looked as if the hummingbird might land and rest there, but it didn't

after its hover visit, it flew slowly over toward the brick chimney of a house and died.

and as you can imagine i stood there in shock for a bit.. trying to tell everyone the words that had come out of my mouth -through me- not from me, in the backyard just recently

WILD! and i tripped off that for a long time -as you can tell, i still do.

i've visited the possibilities from many angles.. a premonition? coincidence? connection? visit? knowing spirit within? selective attention? -and thought lots about time. past/present/future. whether things really happen in a linear fashion vs. all at once vs...
til my brain hurts.

and after seeing the curious case of benjamin button -and the hummingbird scene

i wondered the significance.. who wrote it? what message these scenes are meant to convey

and in talking to my friend and neighbor about it.. about hummingbirds, one of the things i said was -hummingbirds are the only birds that can fly backwards-

i think that's true anyway.

so then it all made perfect sense.

Sunday, November 10, 2013

ZINGER! By (taryn!)

K, this is only funny if you read my most recent independent bible study post. -city of Santa Monica comes up. I'm in the living room with just my daughter.. "Santa Monica." I say with a smile, "that's where I ran away to.." my daughter goes, "you ran away?". -and that's write about when I'm not sure whether I was suppose to bring this up or heed the parent editor warning signs.. Not sure, to be honest, whether I already told her too many times, or not at all; I have openly shared a variety of my youthful adventures.. But finding the appropriate time and place.. Making sure she is the appropriate age; tricky business. -but this alley cat was already out of the ripped bag, So I gave a very -very- abbreviated version. "yes. I was IN LOVE! You must know... LOVE! Michael Jackson.." /she already knows this name/some of the stories. It was his real name, not to be confused with the king of pop.."I was 15.. He was 23.. And he moved to Santa Monica.. My dad had already forbid.. But, please. So, yep. I poured a whole bunch of change (technically, stole..) out of my dads 3 gallon water bottle he used for collecting quarters, dimes, nickels, pennies.. Got myself enough for a one way greyhound bus ticket to Santa Monica.. And some soda, and cigarettes, I'm sure.. Carried a pocket knife for protection.. And it seems to me I also carried his robe.. Which carried his scent.. Anyway.. Seems like sue-sue drove me to the bus station.. And off I went.. (no cell phones.. No Internet, no gps..) -had left my dad a note, which I'm sure explained that I was in love, and doing what I had to do..and which he still expresses through a smile and clenched teeth, ended with "have a nice day". Long post short.. My dad wanted Michael arrested. My mom wanted me arrested.. But they explained to my mom, that if I were arrested, I would be strip searched.. And the whole thing might be too traumatic, considering my actual crime.. Being in love and young and stupid and all..so, instead my brother and a couple friends drove all the way to Santa Monica and found me and got me back home safely, somehow.". There's more to the story, but.. Without looking directly at me.. And slightly, but not completely under her breath, my daughter goes.. " -follow your heart." And what could I do but laugh? I've written this story before in more detail but not sure if I unpublished it.. But most all my childhood/teenage memories end the same: not with 'lived happily ever after' but rather, " I sure wouldn't have wanted to raise me!". - my poor parents... God Bless 'Em....

Friday, November 08, 2013

ITz ITz the BIG game by (me!) Sandra, tvgp

Thursday, November 07, 2013

The heart seen... In the Christmas wrap box by (me!) Sandra,tvgp

Wednesday, November 06, 2013

The heart seen.. Outside luckys grocery store by (me!) Sandra, tvgp