Tuesday, April 30, 2013

April 30

...and then there was that time when Rachel Held Evans came over for dinner and wine.

It was one of those days that goes down in a girl's history as one that can only be described as first-class. It was beautiful out, work was going well, and Rachel-OH-MY-GOSH-Held-Evans was speaking at chapel. Of course her talk was heart warming, funny, wise, and empowering and my feminist little heart was crooning happy things. We met her shortly thereafter, all atwitter, breathlessly telling her how wonderful she was and could-you-please-take-a-picture-with-us-and-sign-this-book, and oh yes, would you like to come over tonight?

AND SHE SAID YES!! So after we all died minor deaths, whipped the house in order, and Olivia made soup, we spent an evening with Rachel, talking, laughing, asking questions, and telling stories - and truly, she is a woman of valor and so inspiring.

Eshet Chayil!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

April 27

Nothing like a morning walk and coffee with the ladies to start a weekend off right. I finally got to try Milstead's city-famous blend - and YES it's worth the hype...oofda, it was delicious.

Thursday, April 25, 2013

April 25


This is my very lovely, and very talented friend Olivia. Remember when we went out and did a photoshoot? These are some of my favorites! She designed and sewed all of the clothes she's wearing in these pictures as well as the dress I wore and many, many more. This of course, she does in her spare time, in between getting her PhD in the sciences, rock climbing, baking, playing football, being a budding videographer, biking, and being a wonderful house mate. Check out her stuff on her blog and also her etsy store!

Monday, April 22, 2013

April 22

* * *
To Autumn
    Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness,
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.
Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep,
Drows’d with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cyder-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.
Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The red-breast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

* * *
The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.
Genesis 2:15

Sunday, April 21, 2013

April 21

The original plan was Guemes Island (for to spend some time with the lovely Nelly)...but then,of course, it bucketed. It was gray and oh-so-wet when we woke up...and I cannot deny that it was a little bit pleasant to lay in my bed for ten minutes and listen to the rain beating against the windows. Is Lynden rain different? 
So we stayed in our pijamas and had coffee and scones with the family. As soon as those little mini scones came out of the oven I felt very affirmed in my choice.
Being that the North West is the way it is, it cleared up and got beautiful. So after a wonderful lunch of Russian Dumplings in Bellingham, we had a chilly walk by the water, before packing back to our Emerald City.
(Picture from Peter's blog!)
* * *
To walk is by a thought to go;
To move in spirit to and fro;
To mind the good we see;
To taste the sweet;
Observing all the things we meet
How choice and rich they be.

To note the beauty of the day,
And golden fields of corn survey;
Admire each pretty flow’r
With its sweet smell;
To praise their Maker, and to tell
The marks of his great pow’r.

To fly abroad like active bees,
Among the hedges and the trees,
To cull the dew that lies
On ev’ry blade,
From ev’ry blossom; till we lade
Our minds, as they their thighs.

Observe those rich and glorious things,
The rivers, meadows, woods, and springs,
The fructifying sun;
To note from far
The rising of each twinkling star
For us his race to run.

A little child these well perceives,
Who, tumbling in green grass and leaves,
May rich as kings be thought,
But there’s a sight
Which perfect manhood may delight,
To which we shall be brought.

While in those pleasant paths we talk,
’Tis that tow’rds which at last we walk;
For we may by degrees
Wisely proceed
Pleasures of love and praise to heed,
From viewing herbs and trees.
- Thomas Traherne
*Click the title to read the rest.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

April 20

Happy Birthday Ada! This girl turns 4 on Monday, and in celebration of that fact, Jenny threw her a pink ballerina party - and it was a pink ballerina party worthy of acclaim, truly a testament to Jenny's party planning finesse. There were crepes and chandeliers and tutus and Angelina Ballerina and a three tiered cake with little peanut butter slippers on it.
Ada is a firecracker. I can't wait to see her change the world one day - she's already making bold strides towards that accomplishment.
Markus and I headed up from Seattle this morning to join in the festivities - Ada is his first and much beloved niece after all - and besides playing with the littles and eating deliciousness in pancake form, much good time was had spending time with his family, catching up, and taking in the Lynden air.
And this is Ruby, she is precious no?

Friday, April 19, 2013

April 19

Finally finally finally the rain is gone. Spring is here full force and it's beautiful. Everything smells fresh and earthy, a little muddy, a little floral. Whenever I think cherry blossom season is done, another tree errupts with color. And now the bluebells are out.

We are off on an adventure tomorrow.

* * *
[in Just-]
in Just-
spring when the world is mud-
luscious the little
lame balloonman

whistles far and wee

and eddieandbill come
running from marbles and
piracies and it's

when the world is puddle-wonderful

the queer
old balloonman whistles
far and wee
and bettyandisbel come dancing

from hop-scotch and jump-rope and




balloonMan whistles
- E. E. Cummings

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

April 17

This is my house mate Olivia. I got to hang out with this lovely lady yesterday and take some pictures of her in her stylish new hand made clothes. We adventured through UW's beautiful campus and froze a little between scampering through cherry blossoms and exploring little groves...truly, nothing hot coffee couldn't put to rights. Livs is our scientist, artist, cyclist, fashion designer, rock climber, seamstress, chef, ultimate frisbee-er, engineer, and student extraodinair - how she does it, we don't know, but she does. She is also a delight to photograph, being elegant, easily amused, and oh so photogenic. Check out her stuff here and here and also her etsy store here.

* * *

Bustle and caw. Recall the green heat
rising from the new minted earth, granite

and basalt, proto-continents shuffling
and stacking the deck, first shadows flung

from the ultraviolet haze. A fern
uncurls from the swamp, the microscopic furnace

of replication warms the world, one
becoming two, two four: exponential blossom.

Lush with collision, the teacup balance
of x and y, cells like balloons

escaping into the sky—then the dumbstruck
hour, unmoored by a river,

a first fish creeps to the land to marvel
at the monstrous buds of its toes. And stars

grow feet and walk across the years, into these dozing,
ordinary days, climbing the spine’s winding

stair, where crickets yawn and history spins.
- Joanie Mackowski

Tuesday, April 16, 2013

April 16

I never did post a picture of the girls. Here they are, on the first night of V-Day. What an honor to work with them, talk with them, act with them, learn with them, grow with them, fight with them, and be voices together.

Monday, April 15, 2013

April 15

Well here we are, Ballard. Thanks for being great and giving us good bars and my gym and pretty buildings.

* * *

An Ode to a Beautiful City
Crafty hands and loving hearts
extract beauty of stones
and earth. The magic of
human ingenuity competes
with the Divine Prowess
to create.
No, no. Isn’t it the
Best Compliment for the
Divine Hand. A micro organism
in this limitless cosmic space
can even feign the Divine.
O’ We the homosapiens are a mean
lot, of all the mess we make
a few things we do get right.
No mean feat.
- Sadhguru

Sunday, April 14, 2013

April 14

Today was the last day of V-day, and what a beautiful success it was.
Thank you to all who performed, directed, set up, encouraged, supported, persued, took part, came, and engaged.
Thank you for being part of a movement that is so worthy and so important.
* * *

Written in Kerala for the women of India who lead the way
This could have been anywhere
And was
Nighttime men
like wolves
for prey
that single dimly painted door
paying nothing
a couple of dollars
or euros
or pesos
to have her
Enter her
Eat her
Devour her
and throw away her bones.
This could have been anywhere
And was
A Buddhist nun on a bus
Trying to stay dry for the night
A woman leader speaking out against
The repressive government
A young woman traveling with her boyfriend
One lost her voice
The other her following
The last one her life
This could have been anywhere and was
Pink wooden crosses
A stack of stones
Red wilting carnations
Empty chairs in a square
Ribbons flying in a sultry wind

 I ask Anna Nighat Kamla Monique Tanisha Emily
Why Why
Porque Eran Mujeres
Parce qu'elles ├ętaient des femmes
Because they were women
Because they were women

This could have been anywhere
And was
Where she got fired for being too beautiful
Fined for drinking after she was raped
A serious offer to marry her rapist
Got told it was legitimate but not forcible
This could have been anywhere
They do such a thing
When the girls go for fire wood
Step into the lonely man’s car
Drink a little too much at the college party
Wake up with her uncle’s fingers inside
Run from the screaming machete and guns
Be taken at sunrise
Get a bullet in the brain for learning the alphabet
Be stoned for falling in love
Be burned for seeing the future

I am done
Cataloguing these horrors
Data Porn
2 million women raped and tortured
1 out of 3 women
a woman raped every minute
every second
one out of 2
one out of 5
the same




 I am done counting
And recounting

Its time to tell a new story
It needs to be our story
It needs to be outrageous and unexpected
It needs to lose control in the middle
It needs to be sexy and in our hips
And our feet
It needs to be angry and a little scary the way storms can be scary
It needs to not ask permission
Or get permits or set up offices
Or make salaries
It wont be recorded or bought or sold
Or counted
It needs to just happen
It is not a question of inventing
But remembering
Buried under the leaves of trauma and sorrow
Beneath the river of
semen and squalor
vaginas and labias
shredded and extracted
body mines
mined bodies
It is not about asking now
Or waiting
It is about rising

Raise your arm my sister my brother
Raise your one
Your one heart
Your one of us
I used to be afraid of love
It hurt too much
What never happened
What got ripped away
The rape
The wound
And love
I thought
was salt
But I was wrong
I was wrong
Step into the fire
Raise your arm
Raise your one








- Eve Ensler

Saturday, April 13, 2013

April 13

We had a freak hail storm today that was a little uncalled for and a lot exciting. Apparently 1300 people lost power - us being five of them - and we were a little nervous that it would put our V-Day performance in jepordy. But all is, in fact, well that end's well. We had a cozy little afternoon, watching ice slash against the windows and the neighborhood turn white, and then it was off to the races. The show must go on, come hail or high water. And it did.
* * *

The Snow Arrives After Long Silence

The snow arrives after long silence
from its high home where nothing leaves
tracks or stains or keeps time.
The sky it fell from, pale as oatmeal,
bears up like sheep before shearing.

The cat at my window watches
amazed. So many feathers and no bird!
All day the snow sets its table
with clean linen, putting its house
in order. The hungry deer walk

on the risen loaves of snow.
You can follow the broken hearts
their hooves punch in its crust.
Night after night the big plows rumble
and bale it like dirty laundry

and haul it to the Hudson.
Now I scan the sky for snow,
and the cool cheek it offers me,
and its body, thinned into petals,
and the still caves where it sleeps.
- Nancy Willard

Friday, April 12, 2013

April 12

We did it! Happy Friday! Go out and live a little.

* * *

 When I am an old woman I shall wear purple
With a red hat which doesn't go, and doesn't suit me.
And I shall spend my pension on brandy and summer gloves
And satin sandals, and say we've no money for butter.
I shall sit down on the pavement when I'm tired
And gobble up samples in shops and press alarm bells
And run my stick along the public railings
And make up for the sobriety of my youth.
I shall go out in my slippers in the rain
And pick flowers in other people's gardens
And learn to spit.
You can wear terrible shirts and grow more fat
And eat three pounds of sausages at a go
Or only bread and pickle for a week
And hoard pens and pencils and beermats and things in boxes.
But now we must have clothes that keep us dry
And pay our rent and not swear in the street
And set a good example for the children.
We must have friends to dinner and read the papers.
But maybe I ought to practice a little now?
So people who know me are not too shocked and surprised
When suddenly I am old, and start to wear purple.
- Jenny Joseph

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

April 10

I am so very thankful for my two big little brothers.They are hilarious, they are talented, they are taller than 6 feet. They are handsome, and big hearted, and driven. And also opinionated.
Thank you for great company on long trips, thinking taking pictures of sleeping people is funny, snake hunting, dying several deaths during every christmas prayer ever, the joint effort of getting mama to react to anything really, musical dish washing sessions, loud arguments, not killing me for being late to school every morning, working together to take out other siblings who dare offend  Rubesh pride*, letting me sleep in the top bunk when I was scared, and also, more importantly, your wise words and constant support.
I do love you a whole lot.
*Only a pair of overalls was ruined in this particular story. And she deserved it.

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

April 9

Today was a day that bucketed - it feels like winter is back for round two. Which would be fine if I could stay cuddled up in my pillows and drink lazy cups of coffee. But I can't. And I suppose that's fine, because it'll make coming back to my pillows just that much more delicious.

* * *
Hold fast to dreams
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird
That cannot fly.
Hold fast to dreams
For when dreams go
Life is a barren field
Frozen with snow.
- Langston Hughes

Sunday, April 7, 2013

April 7

We took a rainy little walk today, my honey and I, and it was quite pleasant. We perused a book store, and took in the fresh air, and I had my red umbrealla.

* * *

Last Night the Rain Spoke to Me

Last night
the rain
spoke to me
slowly, saying,
what joy
to come falling
out of the brisk cloud,
to be happy again

in a new way
on the earth!
That’s what it said
as it dropped,

smelling of iron,
and vanished
like a dream of the ocean
into the branches

and the grass below.
Then it was over.
The sky cleared.
I was standing

under a tree.
The tree was a tree
with happy leaves,
and I was myself,

and there were stars in the sky
that were also themselves
at the moment
at which moment

my right hand
was holding my left hand
which was holding the tree
which was filled with stars

and the soft rain –
imagine! imagine!
the long and wondrous journeys
still to be ours.

- Mary Oliver

Saturday, April 6, 2013

April 6

 Starbucks, Alisa, Greek food, puddle jumping, littles, cousins, monsoon downpours, and sunbreaks.
Followed by a wonderful little Bulthuis evening and Chronology.
What a day.

* * *
New beginnings
A myriad of colours explode as spring comes to visit,
The ice queen is finally dethroned with her batallion of grey,
New life shoots up from every corner of nature's garden,
Brothers and sisters wake from their slumber embracing the birth of a new day.
- Simon Thorpe

Friday, April 5, 2013

April 5

SPU said goodbye to my dear Kwirl today - she is off on a new adventure over at UW helping struggling people find their footing, as is her way. So we got Thai food and a little office and shared merry stories of her time here. I will miss car pooling and lunches and whiney early mornings with her, but I am excited for this new step in her life. UW doesn't even know what's going to hit them!

* * *

The Road Not Taken
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;
Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear,
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,
And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I marked the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way
I doubted if I should ever come back.
I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I,
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.
- Robert Frost