Thursday, January 24, 2013


I've been reading Yoga Journal Magazine and a new-to-me one, "Spirituality & Health," and trying to get back into that space where I feel calm, centered, and in charge, because right now I don't feel like I'm in charge at all. I'm struggling, and feel like I'm searching for something that is out of my reach, and I can't quite focus on what it is.

I've been writing down affirmations and goals, and journaling, and things felt better for a couple of weeks, but I'm down again. I probably need to have my meds adjusted. :)

The current issue of Spirituality & Health contains an interview with Anne Lamott, who I adore.

I don't buy a lot of magazines anymore, but I do have several subscriptions (Yoga Journal, Spirituality & Health, Whole Living, and More) through the Zinio iPad app, plus a few single issues of knitting magazines. I also have a subscription to Asimov's Science Fiction Magazine through Amazon. I have stopped all of my paper magazine subscriptions, and I don't think I've bought one actual (paper) book since I started reading on the Kindle (which I have since sold to my sister) or the iPadi/Phone.

I was reading on my iPad in bed last night, and Bob came in and asked me, "what mystery are you reading?" I guess he thinks I always read mysteries, and that probably is my genre of choice, although lately it's more urban fantasy than anything else. I said it was about vampires, and he said, "oh, that's a great thing to be reading about when you're getting ready to go to sleep." I said, no, it wasn't that kind of vampires.

I'm reading Bad to the Bone, the second in Jeri Smith-Ready's "WVMP" series. It's about a radio station (Bob: "Vampire DJ's?" Me: "Yes.") where the vampires work; this this world vampires are basically stuck in the decade where they lived/died, i.e., there is one from th3 40's, one from the 50's, etc., up to an indie/grunge DJ who died in the 90's and plays a lot of Kurt Cobain.

I was thinking this morning that although I read all the time, Bob and I don't really talk about it. I remember a few days ago, something came up about time travel. I don't remember what we were talking about, but I brought up the Company books by Kage Baker, where you can go back in time, but not forward. So the time travelers are cyborgs that are sent back in time, sometimes as far back as caveman days, and then "live forward."

Other time travel books I like are by Connie Willis, one of my favorite authors. She writes about a group of university historians in England who travel back to study various historical events such as the Black Plague (Doomsday Book) or the Second World War (Black Out and All Clear). I don't read much (any) historical fiction, but I like hers. Right now I'm listening to the audio book version of Shadow of Night, the second in the All Souls trilogy by Deborah Harkness (the first one was A Discovery of Witches. Frankly, I'm struggling through it a little bit, and the only reason I'm listening to it, really, is that I listened to the first one and hated to just give up on it. Each of the books' audio is 24 hours long, and it seemed to take months to listen to the first one. I think I'm about a third of the way through the second one, and have paused for a little while.

I'm currently listening to Moon Over Soho by Ben Aaronovitch, also the second in a series ("Peter Grant"), this one about a London constable who discovers that he has some latent talents and is recruited to join a secret arm of Scotland Yard that deals with magical crimes. These books aren't exactly "light," but I love the narrator (Kobna Holdbrook-Smith) and already read the ebook versions. I like listening to the audio of books that I have read because I pick up a lot of details that I missed when I read them. I don't like to listen too soon after I've read them, but a few months gives me enough space that I'm still a little bit surprised.

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Back to my roots

Collection of charms:
4-way Catholic religious medal (Sacred Heart, Saint Joseph, Mary, Saint Christopher)
St. Christopher medal
Chinese kanji "Happiness"
Walt Disney World 20th Anniversary medal
"Love" circlet
Small silver heart
Sea Turtle
Epcot charm
Mickey Mouse Epcot charm

I don't remember where they all came from, but most of them are from Florida. I tried to buy a new charm every time we went there. The Epcot, Mickey Mouse and Disney World charms came from Disney World (of course). The seashell and (I think) the sea turtle are from a silver shop in Sarasota, Florida, which didn't exist anymore the last time we were there. I think the Chinese "Happiness" charm was from the China pavilion at Disney World. Today I added a fairly large rutilated quartz crystal (clear quartz with needle-like rutile, a reddish titanium dioxide, embedded in it). The rest of them are just things that I found either at jewelry supply stores or ordered online. But things (words and thoughts) that are meaningful to me.

This year I am making a conscious effort to try to keep the things I love around me, to do those things that bring me happiness and contentment. I'm reading more about feng shui and world religions, writing affirmations, working on my vision boards, and writing in a journal. I'm bookmarking blogs that I want to keep up with, and saving quotations that are meaningful to me. One of the things that I used to do, but haven't done lately, is wear my crystals and charms. I got them all out last weekend and put together a collection that I've been wearing the last few days.

Other things I love that I want to do more of, have more of, be more conscious of:
  • Writing by hand in journals
  • Trying different kinds of teas
  • Spending contemplative time knitting
  • Writing affirmations
  • Looking for iPad and iPhone apps that contribute to my renewed focus
  • Look for and visit shops that stock the kinds of things I love
  • Work more with the tarot
  • Spend some time every day reading
  • Try out a iPhone alarm clock app that wakes me up with windchimes or singing bowls instead of a distressing alarm
  • Re-start a yoga practice (I bought a Groupon for yoga classes near my home, but haven't signed up yet)
  • Re-subscribe to Yoga Journal (I did this)
  • Work in the yard this spring and summer, and plant herbs and flowers

It feels kind of like going back to my "roots," concentrating on things that are more my core interests, and trying to sustain that focus. I guess I'm trying to define my life's purpose. Kind of late, but it feels important to me.

Wednesday, January 02, 2013

Happy New Year!

We had a nice, quiet New Year's Eve, like we've had for the last several years. We used to go to a friend's house, but I like that we stay home now. We had our little ritual feast--fondue, olives and pickles, spinach dip. I would have gotten shrimp, too, but we had had quite a bit at Christmas and we didn't really need it. Bob got the atomic clock that my folks gave him for Christmas a few years ago, and we toasted the new year with Martini & Rossi Asti Spumante, which we like better than champagne, at midnight.

Bob had to work on New Year's Day. Normally we stay home and don't even leave the house that day, but I decided to go out and get a few groceries--bread and potato chips and milk. I also decided to go to 888 International Market, the Oriental grocery store. I had never been there before, but I know someone who goes there quite a bit to buy fresh seafood, and I had been wanting to try it.

I wanted to get some red envelopes as part of this class I'm taking. I thought they would probably have them there, and they did. I put three Chinese coins into one of the red envelopes and put it in my wallet to attract abundance. I also put three coins, tied with red ribbon, under the front doormat to symbolize money entering our house.

I wandered all over the store yesterday and only bought the red envelopes, but that was all I really needed. They also had a lot of Maneki Neko good luck statues, and I would have liked to buy some, but I have several already and don't really need any more. But they were really cute.


I have a few that I bought at Disney World at the Japanese store. This first one above is on my desk at work. I also several several at home. I bought them at first because of Doña, but now I just like them. I like this one better than the ones that I saw yesterday, because the coloring is a little more subtle. Although maybe that's because it's a few years old. I like the ones with their eyes shut best.

The "what I'm reading" page has been updated.