Thursday, June 24, 2010

Glory Night.

This is the view from my porch tonight. The Eiger at Sunset.
I am blessed.

I'm tired and yet not sleepy, the irony of jetlag.
I hear the family upstairs awake and feel bad sweet Owen and sweet Sidney are not going down for the night.
There is something very, very honest about children adjusting to travel and jetlag.
Adults, we're forced to handle it and be tough about it--do the things the day demands of us.
But, kids? They want to sleep and they need to sleep, so they do.
Except at night.

It's chilly here.
The highs are in the low-60s and the lows are in the mid-40s. My feet are cold.
(It's also 2230 and it IS cold...of course I'd be chilly! :)

I checked the Arizona Board of Nursing website today and noticed my application for license has been received but my citizenship documation hasn't. Which doesn't make sense, as I sent my birth certificate with my application. I feel a little powerless--that I can't do anything about it RIGHT NOW so that feels yucky.

But, I did send an email and hopefully it is fixable, and I'll still be able to be an RN.

Also, there is a British Inn Keeper here in Murren named Denise that asked Troy to let me know if I'd be interested in any extra work she'd hire me for about three hours a week to do some cleaning! How great would that be?? I'm hoping to chat with her tomorrow about her needs and want to make sure it works with the family and all involved but the pay is awesome and it would be a huge relief (*sigh!*) to actually come home with more money than I would if this weren't an opportunity! We'll see what happens!!

The food is great. JJ does an awesome job in the kitchen and we eat phenomenally. Tonight we had a vegetable saute (onion, garlic, eggplant, potato, zucchini, chickpeas & [normal]peas) with this Tandoori Curry sauce mixed with a bit of coconut milk. All served atop brown rice. YUM. A chocolate square (or two) for dessert with some Chamomile with Lavendar tea. So wonderful.

I'm about to do some cruches, actually.

I hope you all are doing well, and enjoying the Summer as it unfolds.
I am so blessed, and hope Blessings surround you as well, too.

Oh, here's today's Reminder from God:

"Soon you will truly be able to do all things through Me and My Strength."

What an awesome reminder as I'm sitting here possibly very near stressing out about my license application and knowing the amazing mountains are right outside. God will provide. I can do all things through God and with God's strength.


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Monday, June 21, 2010

Fear & Faith.

Hello from Houston!

I've begun my adventure yesterday with a (very, very) early alarm wake-up, last minute detail packing, a heartfelt, sweet goodbye to Noriko, a smooch to my darling Sonja, and a drive to Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport.  Nate was in town for a few days to help see me off and he drove me down to the airport on his way home to San Diego.  I'm so grateful for his last minute help---I learned a few years ago that with anxiety it helped a great deal to have someone put his hands on my back.  Just calmly place his hands on my back.  I've never told Nate this, and in the middle of packing, he came up to me, and placed his left hand over my heart and his right hand over my back and just stood there, holding me.  The anxiety I was feeling immediately calmed, and I finished my packing and was in bed by the time I hoped.  I'm grateful for his presence in my life.

My flight to Houston was quick!  I even got some NCLEX studying in!!  (I'm super proud of myself for this, as I haven't cracked a study text for six weeks. YIKES!)  I landed at 1130a Texas time and was picked up by JJ & Sidney.  I immediately felt the thick, humid Houston air. (I come from a dry heat, y'all.)

Houston is a neat city!  JJ's from West University City, not far from Montrose (where we had sushi tonight).  We drove by the Rothko Chapel and I look forward to coming back and seeing the inside of this awesome place--we missed the hours by twenty minutes!  I've noticed that the sky isn't as big as my Prescott sky.  I feel scrunched and smooshed without the hills and views.  The trees limit what I can see and it's a weird feeling.  I feel quite small in this Houston city.

Today's Summer Solstice.  The longest day of the year!!  I love this day.  I love what it symbolizes--we've made it half way through winter, the cold and the dark nights.  Now, we're on the down swing and days will get shorter, but it's officially Summer now.  It's hot.  And, oh this Arizona girl loves the hot!  Even the thick humidity of the Houston heat isn't so bad. (I mean, it's awfully hot, but it's Summer!  It's suppose to be!)  I'm excited for the longer nights of Switzerland.  Troy reminded me it doesn't get dark until 2200!! WOW!

We leave tomorrow at 1620.  We leave from George Bush Intercontinental Airport and head to Heathrow in London--we'll land at 0730 on Wednesday June 23, just in time for some delicious coffee. Oh, coffee, how I love you so.  From London, we fly to Zurich and will land in Switzerland at 1230p Wednesday.  From Zurich, we rent a VAN. (Three adults and two kids plus luggage for the Summer requires a VAN. :)  The Van will take us to Stechelberg, where we'll survey how everyone's doing and either head up to the village, Murren, and get our Summer digs ready, or we'll stay at the Alpenhof for the night.  We have a busy day of travel ahead, and truth be told, I'm tired.

I'm glad we're flying at night.  The kiddos will be ready for sleep and so will I--I hope sleep will be comfortable.  The flight itself will be a long one--a little over nine hours.  Ha.  I can do that in my sleep! (Let's hope.)

I started this awesome new book  Sought Through Prayer and Meditation.  It's a Hazelden book with a weekly focus on the Eleventh Step (We sought through prayer and meditation to improve our conscious contact with God, as we understood Him, praying only for knowledge of his will for us and the power to carry that out.)  The book is a weekly focus with stories and information, followed by a prayer and a meditation.

So far, it's awesome!  I wanted to share the prayer and meditation with you for this week.
Dear God, as I begin this journey each day to seek a closer conscious contact with you, my Higher Power, let me not rely on any changes that have already taken place in me, any reconstruction that you have done in my life until now. For by choosing my will over yours, all of that can be gone in a single breath. Therefore, please give me the grace to rely only on you, your will for me, your love and caring. May I continue seeking knowledge of your will and the power to carry that out, one day at a time.
The power of God grows within me as I continue to seek God’s will.
I love having a spiritual focus while I'm away.  Last year, my spiritual life in Switzerland grew immensely.  I came home focused and at peace.  I also knew with a lot of certainty and assurance what I was coming home to.  This year, it's entirely different.  A lot of my fear is due to what life will be like in August when I get home.  I have no idea!!  The idea of having an assignment to improve my conscious contact with my Higher Power and to truly seek my Higher Power's will for my life is exciting.  It helps alleviate the fear I'm having and helps me be in the moment.

There is one thing certain about this adventure ahead:  I will only be of service, of utmost and beneficial service, when I'm present and in the moment.  It's in the moment that my life is meant to be lived.  I have fear about what the future holds but really?? I'M NOT IN THE FUTURE.  I'm here.  Now.  In this moment.

Today's Daily Reflections summed up my feelings so well.
The achievement of freedom from fear is a lifetime undertaking, one that can never be wholly completed. When under heavy attack, acute illness, or in other condition of insecurity, we shall all react to this emotion – well or badly, as the case may be. Only the self-deceived will claim perfect freedom from fear. AS BILL SEES IT, p. 263
Fear has caused suffering when I could have had more faith. There are times when fear suddenly tears me apart, just when I’m experiencing feelings of joy, happiness and a lightness of heart. Faith–and a feeling of self-worth toward a Higher Power -helps me endure tragedy and ecstasy. When I choose to give all of my fears over to my Higher Power, I will be free.
I love what this reading reminds me about having Faith.  Faith is defined as "a feeling of self-worth toward a Higher Power."  Merriam-Webster defines Faith as "complete trust."  I love the idea that Faith in my Higher Power is feeling WORTH and COMPLETE TRUST in my Higher Power.  In my humanity, all I can do is try to completely trust my Higher Power.  I believe it's possible--to the best of my ability.

And as Feist reminds me in Mushaboom:
 And we'll collect the moments one by one/ 
I guess that's how the future's done 
I'm headed to bed now on this warm Summer Solstice night.  Happy Summer, everyone.  When I write next I'll be in the Alpine air of Switzerland with yet another strengthened, and hopefully fresh, perspective.


Friday, June 18, 2010

Sweet Arizona Love.

Happy Birthday, Becky.
What a Treat.

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Wednesday, June 16, 2010

we're little love balls connecting with each other.

I leave in a few minutes for a much anticipated hang out sesh hike with the Birthday Friend, Becky.  I'm very excited for some serious outside time today and a chance to have one-on-one time with my Darling.  I am going through some stuff and noticing about myself that I'm keeping 'the stuff' at a distance.  I'm putting off looking at it all and feeling it all because I just don't want to. Mad Men is much more entertaining (I just finished Season Two--WATCH THIS SHOW!)

I have putting my relationship with God off.  I've been neglecting the Spiritual Connectedness that fuels me.
I'm aware of it.

I read this today and it helped me feel excited to get on my knees to connect again.  It really is the little things:
Today's Daily Reflections:

We have found that God does not make too hard terms with those who seek Him. To us, the realm of spirit is broad, roomy, all inclusive, never exclusive or forbidding to those who earnestly seek. It is open, we believe, to all men. AS BILL SEES IT, p. 7
Open-mindedness to concepts of a Higher Power can open doors to the spirit. Often I find the human spirit in various dogmas and faiths. I can be spiritual in the sharing of myself. The sharing of self joins me to the human race and brings me closer to God, as I understand Him.

I need not fear God and I need only rely on God.  My humanity gets in the way of such simplicity.  Being with a friend who shares similar spiritual connectivity and a big, wide Arizona sky will help me process the 'stuff' I have swirling about in my head.  I'm grateful God doesn't give up on me.

Saturday, June 12, 2010


I am tearful today.  I'm tearful at the thought of leaving my lovely town for the Summer.  I loveloveLove Prescott in the Summer.  We have a Courthouse Square that is the city's center point.  It's filled with these huge Cottonwoods and Pines.  It's a grassy area I love to run and play with the kiddos I tend.  I've often referred to it as my own personal backyard.
This was taken a few weeks ago on a play date I had with Owen.  We picnicked here on the Square.
A most gorgeous day.  
Today, I met my friend Beth for a walk and I sat for a while on the steps of the Courthouse while waiting for her.  There was a Craft Fair on the Square today with lots of vendors and artisans set up to sell their trinkets & treasures.  It's a frequent in Prescott in the Summer to have fairs each weekend.  The smells of the cinnamon toasted almonds and funnel cakes is alluring!

While sitting on the steps, there was a Kingston Trio-like band strumming and singing away.  The sky is a bit overcast today and it's chilly.  The trees are so green!  They were swaying and moving in the breeze, and my heart was filled with love my little town.

I've read once that Prescott is a place where not a lot of people are 'from.'  But, people come here and "grow-up" here.  I feel that way with Prescott.  I Summered here when I was little at Friendly Pines Camp, each summer spending at least four weeks at sleep-away camp here in Prescott from the time I was nine to 14.  I knew I would work at Friendly Pines when I was in College and I did the Summers I was 18 & 19.  It was Summer 2001 I moved here to make this place my home.  I've spent a lot of Summertime in Prescott over my 30 years.  In the last nine that I've lived here, I really feel like I've grown into my own.

I've 'grown-up' here.  I love my home.  I love my community.  At the Dinner Bell, the local breakfast place, I sit down, am served coffee, and the server comes to me and says, "Are you having the usual?"  I'm on a first name basis with the servers and bartenders at Raven Cafe.  When I walk downtown, I feel safe and at home. I've created this home for myself; I've been willing to become part of a community and to make friends.  I've been willing to grow here, and I'm so grateful for this place and these experiences.

My tears come as I realize I'm going to miss the Bluegrass Festival on the Square.  I'm going to miss the beginning of the Summer Monsoons.
I'm going to miss the sound and hopeful sight of the Cicadas.  The chorus and song these creatures create is one of my favorite of Prescott Summertime.  I forget the sound every year and then, all of sudden, it's here.  This lyrical hard-to-describe music that comes from the trees.  It is always a treat to see these alien-like insects, and each Summer I strive to find just one making his music in the trees.  Seeing one doesn't happen every year.

I know my adventure takes me to a gorgeous and amazing part of the world.  I am not without gratitude for what lies ahead for me.  I leave for Switzerland June 22 and will stay in Murren, Switzerland.  This place can be described as Heaven and I have pictures of such gorgeousness. (See below. :) I've been here before.  I'm returning to a place of Simple living--it will be a Summer without my cell phone or regular interneting. It will be a Summer of frequent activity.  A Summer without a car on a daily basis.  A Summer full of chocolate. (Oh, the chocolate!)

Here are images from last Summer that capture the joy in which I'm about to embark:

Owen's Joy Face. 

The coolest, longest, slowest slide ever at Allmendhubel.  The Alps in the background are the Eiger, the Monch & the Jungfrau.  

Owen, JJ & Sidney. Horseback riding in the Alps. 

Sidney conquers the Swing. 

The view from my window. 

Sidney takes an airplane ride through the Bernese-Oberland Region of Switzerland. 

The Black Monch at Sunset. 

The local wildlife. 

Sidney & I pose after our very awesome slide ride. 

Sidney & I trampolining. 

An afternoon at the Hostel in Gimmelwald. 

The very awesome Luge Slide. 

Sid & I after a very lovely picnic at the Alpinhof in Stechelberg. 

Layla at Sunset. 

The view while walking in the Lauterbrunnen Valley
A lot of pictures from last Summer.  I am soooo glad I posted these.  It got me so excited about the upcoming adventure I'm having, and the thrill of a place so amazing and a family so fabulous.  I'll be in Switzerland for six weeks!  I really am so excited, even if tearful, too.

My life is in transition.  I am embarking on change and it can be so uncomfortable and a bit unpleasing, too.  I am reminded:
I wanted to change the world. But I have found that the only thing one can be sure of changing is oneself. Aldous Huxley 
And, yes.  I'll miss a lot of what Prescott has to offer in the Summer.  Knowing this, I trust God will provide a lot of growing up opportunities for me this Summer....even if it's not in the high desert of Arizona.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

impatiently intolerant.

I canceled a much anticipated hang out sesh with a dear friend last night because I was overcome with an angry, awful, horrible, no-good, very bad mood.  I hung up the phone initially horribly guilty to have canceled with  my sweet friend, and then, I realized, I'm totally taking care of myself....It's hard to admit my vulnerability.  So hard to admit....

Last night, instead of hanging out with Beth, I came home, took off my bra, got into comfy's and watched a disc of Mad Men while drinking glass after glass of ice cold water.  I turned OFF my phone.  I didn't contact with anyone except my sweet Sonja girl, whom I am convinced KNOWS I'm leaving for two months and she's soaking up all my sweet pets to her as much as possible.  I feel horribly guilty for leaving my cat.  (I believe that will be another post entirely.)

So, Today's Daily Reflections says about all I could ever say.  I am so grateful for the daily readers and how well they pinpoint EXACTLY what I'm going through.

We reacted more strongly to frustrations than normal people. AS BILL SEES IT, p. 111
Impatience with other people is one of my principal failings. Following a slow car in a no-passing lane, or waiting in a restaurant for the check, drives me to distraction. Before I give God a chance to slow me down, I explode, and that’s what I call being quicker than God. That repeated experience gave me an idea. I thought if I could look down on these events from God’s point of view, I might better control my feelings and behavior. I tried it and when I encountered the next slow driver, I levitated and looked down on the other car and upon myself. I saw an elderly couple driving along, happily chatting about their grandchildren. They were followed by me–bug eyed and red of face–who had no time schedule to meet anyway. I looked so silly that I dropped back into reality and slowed down. Seeing things from God’s angle of vision can be very relaxing.

Now, I'm off to say my prayers, make some coffee, have a shower, and then off to hang out with some sweet little girls ready to have fun in the Summer sun.  
I really am blessed, even if my mood doesn't cooperate.  

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


I have a lot to do and only eleven days to do it.
Thankfully, my schedule is really open and free to get things done.
On the flip side, an open schedule means I'm not earning money and that makes me fearful.

This is Today's God Calling
Courage. Courage. Courage.
Fear nothing. Rejoice even in the darkest place. 
So, I'm reminded today to have Courage.
To Fear Nothing.
That even in my darkest place I will Rejoice.

In this moment, that calms me a bit.  Not a lot, but enough to get dressed for the day and be present for the girls that are scheduled with me today.  I am so blessed to do something I love so intensely and something I'm good at.

I have loads of fear that leaving for two months will cause me to disappear.  I'll just disappear, people!  I'm terrified I'll come back not knowing anything, I'll miss the Arizona Monsoons which I love so dearly, and I'll be broke and homeless.

On that note, I dreamed last night I traveled to Dominican Republic and got lost, but found my way.  I was with a friend I'm not friends with anymore and we were having a great time.  I wasn't afraid of being in a strange place, not knowing the language or what highway leads where.  I was just having a joyful time.

My dreams are on track!  I can be uncertain and in a new, unfamiliar place.  I can tempt my heart with fear, but really??  I know how to act courageously.  And, in the acting, the courage comes.

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Summer Time Thoughts....

Hello Summer!
It's not technically Summer--that beautiful, long, sun-filled Solstice day has not reached us yet, but man, it feeeeeeels like Summer.  

I got home yesterday from San Diego where I spent a few days with my sweet at the beach, ruling at Bocce ball, learning Backgammon, losing at Monopoly and getting ready for my big Summer getaway.  

I'm officially going to capitalize Summer every time I write it.  It feels appropriate.  

So, I leave in 12 days for Houston.  I spend two days there, then we all get packed up and ready for the trip to Switzerland.  I am so excited and nervous and a little anxious, too.  I feel like my life is in this huge transition space and I'm overwhelmed a little bit and uncertain a lot and reminded today (Thanks, Mom!) that I need to take a deep breath, be grateful for this moment and do what's in front of me to do.  

Right now, it's enjoy my air conditioned apartment, eat some amazing Trader Joe's animal crackers (aren't they really cookies, anyway?) and begin my relationship with blogging. 

I've been away---life has been busy and I want to catch up my blog with life.  I will do that soon.  Not now. Now, I'm going to have a rest before I'm due to be spot on for a sweet little guy at 5p.  

Happy Summer, All.