Wednesday, October 31, 2012

all you need is love. but...

"All you need is love.  But a little chocolate now and then doesn't hurt."

Charles M. Schulz

Monday, October 29, 2012

widening our circle of compassion

"Our task must be to free ourselves... by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty."

Albert Einstein

Saturday, October 27, 2012

All things are connected

"If all the beasts were gone, men would die from a great loneliness of spirit, for whatever happens to the beasts also happens to the man. All things are connected."

Chief Seattle

the power of hugging

Friday, October 26, 2012

for all the mamas

Last weekend, my family traveled to attend my oldest niece's Sweet Sixteen party. My brother and sister-in-law planned this party for many months and intended it to be a big surprise, and it included a photo booth for the guests.
I showed up to the party a bit late and, as usual, slightly askew from trying to dress myself and all my little people for such a special night out. I'm still carrying a fair amount of baby weight and wearing a nursing bra, and I don't fit into my cute clothes. I felt awkward and tired and rumpled.
I was leaning my aching back against the bar, my now 5-month-old baby sleeping in a carrier on my chest (despite the pounding bass and dulcet tones of LMFAO blasting through the room) when my 5-year-old son ran up to me.
"Come take pictures with me, Mommy," he yelled over the music, "in the photo booth!"
I hesitated. I avoid photographic evidence of my existence these days. To be honest, I avoid even mirrors. When I see myself in pictures, it makes me wince. I know I am far from alone; I know that many of my friends also avoid the camera.
It seems logical. We're sporting mama bodies and we're not as young as we used to be. We don't always have time to blow dry our hair, apply make-up, perhaps even bathe (ducking). The kids are so much cuter than we are; better to just take their pictures, we think.
But we really need to make an effort to get in the picture. Our sons need to see how young and beautiful and human their mamas were. Our daughters need to see us vulnerable and open and just being ourselves -- women, mamas, people living lives. Avoiding the camera because we don't like to see our own pictures? How can that be okay?
Too much of a mama's life goes undocumented and unseen. People, including my children, don't see the way I make sure my kids' favorite stuffed animals are on their beds at night. They don't know how I walk the grocery store aisles looking for treats that will thrill them for a special day. They don't know that I saved their side-snap, paper-thin baby shirts from the hospital where they were born or their little hospital bracelets in keepsake boxes high on the top shelves of their closets. They don't see me tossing and turning in bed wondering if I am doing an okay job as a mother, if they are okay in their schools, where we should take them for a vacation, what we should do for their birthdays. I'm up long past the news on Christmas Eve wrapping presents and eating cookies and milk, and I spend hours hunting the Internet and the local Targets for specially-requested Halloween costumes and birthday presents. They don't see any of that.
Someday, I want them to see me, documented, sitting right there beside them: me, the woman who gave birth to them, whom they can thank for their ample thighs and their pretty hair; me, the woman who nursed them all for the first years of their lives, enduring porn star-sized boobs and leaking through her shirts for months on end; me, who ran around gathering snacks to be the week's parent reader or planning the class Valentine's Day party; me, who cried when I dropped them off at preschool, breathed in the smell of their post-bath hair when I read them bedtime stories, and defied speeding laws when I had to rush them to the pediatric ER in the middle of the night for fill-in-the-blank (ear infections, croup, rotavirus).
I'm everywhere in their young lives, and yet I have very few pictures of me with them. Someday I won't be here -- and I don't know if that someday is tomorrow or thirty or forty or fifty years from now -- but I want them to have pictures of me. I want them to see the way I looked at them, see how much I loved them. I am not perfect to look at and I am not perfect to love, but I am perfectly their mother.
When I look at pictures of my own mother, I don't look at cellulite or hair debacles. I just see her -- her kind eyes, her open-mouthed, joyful smile, her familiar clothes. That's the mother I remember. My mother's body is the vessel that carries all the memories of my childhood. I always loved that her stomach was soft, her skin freckled, her fingers long. I didn't care that she didn't look like a model. She was my mama.
So when all is said and done, if I can't do it for myself, I want to do it for my kids. I want to be in the picture, to give them that visual memory of me. I want them to see how much I am here, how my body looks wrapped around them in a hug, how loved they are.
I will save the little printed page with four squares of pictures on it and the words "Morgan's Sweet Sixteen" scrawled across the top with the date. There I am, hair not quite coiffed, make-up minimal, face fuller than I would like -- one hand holding a sleeping baby's head, and the other wrapped around my sweet littlest guy, who could not care less what I look like.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

great love

"We can do no great things, only small things with great love."

Mother Teresa

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

keep love in your heart

"Keep love in your heart. A life without it is like a sunless garden when the flowers are dead."

Oscar Wilde 

Monday, October 22, 2012

Sunday, October 21, 2012

I Open And Fill With Love

""Everything Is Soul And Flowering.
I Open And Fill With Love
And What Is Not Love Evaporates."


Wednesday, October 17, 2012


" Can miles truly separate you from friends... If you want to be with someone you love, aren't you already there?"

Richard Bach

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Big Sugar

Big Sugar explores the dark history and modern power of the world's reigning sugar cartels. Using dramatic reenactments, it reveals how sugar was at the heart of slavery in the West Indies in the 18th century, while showing how present-day consumers are slaves to a sugar-based diet. Going undercover, Big Sugar witnesses the appalling working conditions on plantations in the Dominican Republic, where Haitian cane cutters live like slaves. Workers who live on Central Romano, a Fanjul-owned plantation, go hungry while working 12-hour days to earn $2 (US). part 1 part 2

Fruit Basket

Fruit Basket 
Giuseppe Arcimboldo

mashed potato time :: Dee Dee Sharp


Giuseppe Arcimboldo

green onions :: Booker T & the MG's

the quiona song

Giuseppe Arcimboldo

how to cook your life

A Zen priest in San Francisco and cookbook author use Zen Buddhism and cooking to relate to everyday life.

beautiful ~ a must see for anyone with a love of food, cooking, and inner peace.  it can help bring a whole new mindfulness to your plate & life.  enjoy!

pulling mussels :: Squeeze


Giuseppe Arcimboldo

the vegetable orchestra

The True Cost of Food:
A campaign to promote sustainable food choices.
from the Sierra Club National Sustainable Consumption Committee.
We, the consumers, through our food choices, can stop the practices that harm our health, our planet, and our quality of life.

thank you, farmers

Giuseppe Arcimboldo

red beans & rice :: Spearhead

The Weight of the World

This fascinating documentary looks at obesity. Stockholm’s Dr. Stephan Rossner, an obesity specialist, proves beyond doubt that obesity is a man-made epidemic. Super-sized fast foods and a $12 billion ad industry are proving to be lethal when mixed with a car-dominated culture, urban sprawl and labour-saving technologies.

The Weight of the World by Glynis Whiting, National Film Board of Canada

watermelon man :: Herbie Hancock

Giuseppe Arcimboldo

world food day 2012

Monday, October 15, 2012

door of your own heart

"Why are you knocking at every other door?
Go, knock at the door of your own heart."


Saturday, October 13, 2012

the most beautiful things in the world

"The most beautiful things in the world
cannot be seen or even touched,
they must be felt with the heart."

Helen Keller

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Monday, October 8, 2012

happy thanksgiving

"Every breath is a sacrament, an 
affirmation of our connection with
all other living things, a renewal
of our link with ancestors
and a contribution to generations
yet to come."

David Suzuki

take as much as you need

Salsbury & Graveley
East Van
September 2012

Sunday, October 7, 2012

generosity of love

“Since Love has made ruins of my heart the sun must come and illumine them. Such generosity has broken me with shame.”


Saturday, October 6, 2012

everything in between

“Sometimes love does not have the most honorable beginnings, and the endings, the endings will break you in half. It’s everything in between we live for.”

Ann Patchett

Wednesday, October 3, 2012

Monday, October 1, 2012

one day we will realize

"One day we will realize that big hearts will bring us more peace than big weapons."

Anthony Douglas Williams
Inside the Divine Pattern