sabrinamari: (tiny seedling)
Three unexpected days of presence with a true heart-friend start in about an hour. I'm going to spend this time being present, grateful and connected. I'm not going to waste it worrying about what happens next week, next month, or next year. That's the best thing I can give her, and give myself.
sabrinamari: (Peace)
http://www.freewillastrology.com/horoscopes/scorpio.html

Scorpio Horoscope for week of April 5, 2012

People in intimate relationships are hypersensitive to negative comments from their partners. Psychologists say it takes five compliments to outweigh the effects of a single dash of derogatory criticism. I'm sure the ratio is similar even for relationships that aren't as close as lovers and spouses. With this in mind, I urge you to be extra careful not to dispense barbs. They would be especially damaging during this phase of your astrological cycle -- both to you and to those at whom you direct them. Instead, Scorpio, why not dole out an abundance of compliments? They will build up a reservoir of goodwill you'll be able to draw on for a long time.

******

I will be careful.
sabrinamari: (Things can go pear-shaped...)
Right now I'm reading "Working-Class Heroes: Protecting Home, Community, and Nation in a Chicago Neighborhood," by Maria Kefalas.

I've never understood the worldview of ethnic White communities like the one she describes, nor the way in which people's houses serve as expressions of their core identities. For me, a home is a refuge, a place of renewal---a place to snuggle, laugh and feel good. But I've never really thought about a house as a powerful expression of my values or my identity, and certainly not as an expression of my character in the world. OK, my mom lost her mind if people came over and the place wasn't spotless, but I am trying not to live that way...trying, anyway...

But as a mixed-race kid from a middle-class, academic family, I've never really understood the values that drive the creation of an absolutely immaculate lawn. I've always understood that neatness was important, and I also understand the importance of a beautiful and harmonious environment in maintaining a peaceful, happy life. For me, the beauty of the environment within and without is all about promoting sweetness, delight and peace. Home is a place to feel fulfilled and cared for.
Read more... )
sabrinamari: (Default)
I am probably the only person I know who enjoys working on my annual taxes with my accountant.

This might also have something to do with the fact that he and his wife are avowed Anglophiles and BBC fans, and he has a little TARDIS computer thingy on his desk.

Anyway, he told us that Michael's business was progressing nicely and fell squarely into the normal range of growth for new businesses. He also took us in to consult with his wife, who is his small business partner. Their consensus: this is growing nicely and on target. Don't quit! Push harder!

This assessment has eased things in my mind a bit. I like it when experienced people give positive evaluations after looking at actual numbers.

A little strange for a qualitative researcher, but there you go.

The household income issue remains, of course, and I need to kick its ass and take its name, and that is exactly, precisely what I am going to do.

Doubters, please watch closely while I demonstrate how it is done.

In other news, we have instituted the Trent financial writing plan along with a new daily after-school routine, and I will be implementing an additional handwriting program with him in conjunction with his highly effective birth mom.

Lining 'em up and knocking 'em down over here.
sabrinamari: (Godhooks/Transformation)
There are days in which you realize that at some time in the next five, ten, or twenty years, you will look back and say, "This was where it all happened. This is when the decisions were made."

Today is that day.

Read more... )

I was made for transformative change.

I am very much at peace.
sabrinamari: (Default)
One of the reasons I think people come to love me is that most of the time, I feel good. Sometimes I think about this in good, healthy ways ("Look at me bringing joy to my friends. Yay!") Sometimes I think about this in a dysfunctional way ("When I am sad and depressed, people won't like me.")

I've pretty much grown out of that last thing, though. My friends are very staunch, and they stick by me (probably because I strongly select for people who will do so).

But I do see that during rough periods, periods when I'm not as joyful, this is hard on Michael. Lately, he has been especially patient and kind with me, even though it is clear that he needs his friendly, happy honey back. I've also been learning not to grasp at him when he needs to walk away and spend time with folks who *are* feeling cheery. That was hard. My first instinct was to hold on to him more tightly, but this almost always makes people feel more constrained. It actually pushes them away when you want/need them most. He experienced this, too.

So I had to re-learn how to sit quietly with myself when I don't feel so great instead of clinging to him in hopes that his presence would make me feel better. And it's just not fair to try and force someone to stay with you all the time when you feel bummed. You just have to learn to let go, open your hands, and step up to taking care of yourself sometimes.

Fortunately, this has been one of the many useful lessons of this period. I started out grasping at him, but having little joy to share, and I've ended up able to open up my hands and take responsibility for elevating my own mood. Now, I have a little more joy to give, and I am clinging to him a lot less.

And guess what? He wants to be around me more. ¬°Que sorpresa!

And bonus: I feel stronger and better able to take care of myself now.

All around, it is a win-win.
sabrinamari: (Boy of Yumminess)
This is a quick reminder to buy more music by Natasha Bedingfield. Tonight Trent and I are spending time together and he asked if we could watch videos by the woman who wrote "Unwritten." He loves the song almost as much as I do..."I think you'll really like them!" he said.

We've snuggled and watched, and it's as though each song could have come right out of my head. This beautiful 11-year old boy knows exactly who I am. "Of course I do," he says, peering over my shoulder. "I live with you a lot."
sabrinamari: (Surviving HIV/AIDS)
Read more... )

My beautiful man helped me make a jpeg and a pdf of this article, and then he gleefully pointed out that one of the other articles had gotten SIX PAGES of filler out of describing one doctor's day at the office, and that the magazine was clearly desperate to fill its pages. In a completely unselfconscious and innocent way, he crowed with delight at the ridiculousness of the whole magazine, blithely crushing my excitement in one fell swoop.

Fortunately, I know him to be a truly a suaaave and deboner guy, just the kind of sweet man who is likely to chat you up by telling you that you are "...the most beautiful girl on the whole street (depending on the street), or at least in the top three...".

Still, I was left so stunned and speechless by this completely unmalicious, unconscious blow to the gut that I began to laugh uncontrollably and eventually weep. Then I couldn't breathe, and it was difficult to choke out an explanation of exactly how awful it was to realize that my triumphant interview was basically a classic example of desperation filler. This was followed by Michael's own growing horror and remorse as he realized how he had unintentionally obliterated the best part of my day.

Poor honey. He tried to fix it all by saying that I could have probably gotten at least four pages if I had shown some cleavage. Then he stopped and said, "Wow, that was the worst thing I could possibly have said. I will be quiet now."

By this time I was laughing so hard I was choking for lack of air, shaking uncontrollably and I think my whole body had turned red.

I really needed it.

"I will always make you laugh," he said, when we had finally both calmed down and caught our breath, "...as long as you have a good sense of self."

Two-page interview in a glossy magazine: Pretty sweet.

Laughing so hard with your honey that you almost pee yourself: Priceless.
sabrinamari: (Default)
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Today I learned that Buddhism prepares you for love with no expectations. Michael said this during a conversation we had a few minutes ago, and I realized he was right. I sort of knew this, but hadn't articulated it to myself so clearly.

Someone else once told me that you can't learn something until you almost already know it. This second observation helps me put my new knowledge into a good context.

Today I feel strong and good, happy and whole. And boy, I am SO APPRECIATIVE of it!

It's especially valuable to me because the giant invisible hand has struck again, and someone I dearly love is in tremendous pain. Fortunately, I am in a great place to offer support, kindness, my full attention, and a lot of love without any expectations.

And that is exactly what's needed.

Even better, Michael, my best ally and greatest teacher, is right beside me. Even before we spoke to each other, we'd devised the same plan to offer up our love and support. When he gets home and I've finished my work day, we'll brainstorm together about how we can best put this plan into effect and offer our help.

Damn, I am grateful for the overflowing good in my life!
sabrinamari: (Flowering Sabrina)
Good morning, good day yesterday, and fingers crossed for a good rest of the day today!

Grinning.

Aaaand Chinese New Year is tomorrow, friends! Time to run the sweeper and clean house to welcome in the new goodness.

Unexpected

Jan. 6th, 2012 11:56 am
sabrinamari: (Angel Temperance)
This morning, walking fast on a treadmill, I opened up the chakra on the top of my head. I let the energy flow all the way down my body, awakening each energy center as it ran. And when the connection was made, I felt a pair of giant, energetic wings sweep out from either side of my spine and spread wide and true out from the core of my back.

Wow.

You just never know what's going to unfold.
sabrinamari: (Life of Joy)
For everything that is true, solid, staunch, good, loving, and beautiful, I give thanks.

EDIT: I still give thanks. But nothing is solid---not the way I meant it here. Impermanence is the rule, and nothing can change that. But I don't believe that this makes things worse. It just makes it more important to recognize how precious everything is, because you don't know when it will shift, transform or disappear.
sabrinamari: (Default)
May we all be blessed, fortunate and well this season! I send my love and good wishes to all of you.
sabrinamari: (Boy of Yumminess)
Trent: "Can you break open a chicken bone for me? I've always wanted to try marrow."

Sabrina, grossed out but determined to remain anthropological: "Why don't you wait for your dad to come home? He can help you do it." [Totally calm, here.]

Later...

Trent: "I really want to try marrow. Why don't we cut it open? My fork made a dent in it."

Sabrina, considering this: "No. I am not certified to deal with child wounding emergencies. That's a separate training."

Trent, (thinking about Boy Scouts?): "Well, I am. If I cut something off, we just stop the bleeding and rush me to the emergency room."

Sabrina: "Why don't we just eat some Halloween candy instead?"

Trent: "OK."

****

Alternate bait-and-switch ideas for later:

1. Explain atlatls. Suggest that he look for one. Redirect to internet.

2. Mention that some people teach themselves to flintnap. Point out that it is very important to start with high quality chunks of obsidian, and he should start by researching the best, most accessible sources. Redirect to internet.

3. Begin conversation about using cut marks on bone to identify butchering styles and study stone tools. Channel discussion to flintnapping. See number 2 above.

4. Encourage Trent to harvest marrow in the truly authentic manner: after he has butchered his own kill with a hand axe.
sabrinamari: (Venus)
Blissful. Massaged. Happy. Loved.
sabrinamari: (enblankenate)
Many, many good things today: kind people who shared loving thoughts, pie, funny, tender texts, the chance to see Trent do well at a track meet, unexpected requests for my company and a yummy neck rub.

It's early, but I'm sleepy, happy and curled up under a blankie. Time to rest.
sabrinamari: (Boy of Yumminess)
I've spent lots of time this weekend with Trent, and it's been both good and important for me. Yesterday, we spent hours at a Barnes and Noble, reading and snuggling in comfy chairs, chatting about the books and magazines we were looking at and having a yummy lunch. On the walk home I taught him about the four suits of the Minor Arcana and explained The Tower and The Star. They seem like an excellent place to start, and he's been very curious about The Tower for weeks now. Later that evening he spontaneously put down his book and announced, "I'm ready to be quizzed now," and answered some questions about what he might say to a querant if he laid down the upright Tower and and upright Star, or the reversed Tower and upright Star.
Read more... )
Also, any other suggestions about what to offer him and how to do it are welcome, now and always.

****

Additional good options for later:

Empire of the Sun
Life is Beautiful
Billy Elliot
sabrinamari: (Boy of Yumminess)
This year I'm determined to provide more support to Trent as he enters the sixth grade. He is an amazing human: compassionate, kind, affectionate, silly, incredibly smart---just what I like. When he is focused, he excels: he loves to read and he reads at a speed that echoes mine. He loves to move and he is quite graceful, so he's brilliant at both karate and poi. He loves science and math, and he excels there, too.

He does not love writing, organization or pre-planning.

Here, I think I can help him. But I've held back for the last few years, both because I have little previous experience with kids and I had a really difficult encounter with his stepdad that discouraged me from even trying to contribute. Now, I think I've processed that old baggage and further, if I'm challenged again, I have the confidence not to step back.

I just ran a book over to his mom's and sat down to tell her that I wanted to be more involved. She was welcoming and kind. We get along really well most of the time, which isn't a surprise: she's a sharp woman and I get along extremely well with smart women. I'm not as confident that things will go well with Trent's stepdad, since it's usually much more difficult for me to connect with guys, even when they aren't angry and aggressive. Still, this is a good start.

After talking with his mom, I have a sense of what I need to do next: get a four-month erasable wall calendar, fill in his daily class rotation (there's a six-day schedule), and note when he's going to be gone on Boy Scout weekend campouts. He has three language arts classes: a French class that he loves (thank gods), a writing class and a general reading/language arts class. These days need to be highlighted so I know I'll be working with him during those evenings.

It's a start, anyway. This year, I think I can make a real difference in his life. I'm going to try.
sabrinamari: (...what is brain?)
Forty-five minutes into getting ready to go out. I am still not ready.


Michael: I will be bathed and ready in twenty minutes.

Sabrina: Yeah, you have that boy thing.

Michael (glancing into his pants): I do, but my penis has nothing to do with it.

Sabrina: Yes, it does.

Michael (impatiently): No, it doesn't! It's the testosterone, not the penis!
sabrinamari: (Fool)
Michael just discovered the reason that most adults tell children not to jump on the bed. Breaking beds are really loud. The somersault was pretty impressive, though. I liked it.

Hello, IKEA.

No one can accuse us of not being silly or having insufficient fun.

******

He successfully rebuilt it! "We can make it better...we have the technology.."

Cool.

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