Me, A While Back


small stone #26
I did not look up
once today.

Today I wasn’t so hot. I got up, stretched and worked through my yoga, sat meditation, prepared my shrine and took refuge in the Three Jewels. Then I got on my knees and made a private and earnest prayer, all of my own. I made up my medicinal herbal remedy for my kidney. I spoke with civility to my children (mostly) and I brought my husband coffee. I pet the animals in my home. I put forth some correspondence, writing the ones I love.

My mind raced most of the day and I had to breathe deep many times to return to myself.

Ralph, the children and I visited the newest restaurant in Aberdeen where, as promised, we selected from a very limited opening-night menu. I was very tired and my daughter, across from me, seemed the same. Tall and willowy and her coarse-honey hair in two sprigs of pigtail.

My son sat next to me, smiling up at me, smelling good and warm in his flannel shirt. He chattered along near-incessantly, cupping a ludicrously-blue beverage in a white wine glass and freely discussing the food. He looks a lot like I did at his age. But he smiles more than I did. He’s tough. He has this wolfpup-thin little body but he’s tough.

And it feels like a long time ago I was his age. A lifetime ago.

Me, A While Back

tired tired tired

small stone #27
fresh bread
a plate, with olives

outdoor weasel therapy

This morning we were recovering from a late night. Ralph’s show in Olympia was a challenging one; the organizer didn’t put the first band on until well after midnight when what crowd was available, many of them smudgy and drunky, was petering out. And Ralph and Liights were on fourth. So the band, myself and our well-meaning and loyal and awesome friends and fans had to sit around until after 1:30 until Liights went on. This was kind of annoying but do-able: worse of all the set list had to be cut short (bar curfew), as in cut nearly in half.

Now that? Was just: Ass.

I mean the band played well enough but I think Ralph, Flo and Geoff were rattled. And me – just speaking for myself – I’m pissed because the whole thing shook out that way thanks to an inexperienced?/naive?/flaky? show organizer (who also didn’t get them paid, surprise factor: zero percent).  Now I’ve been with Ralph thirteen years and attended all his shows and involved with all his music projects and sadly this kind of thing happens. This person is probably a “nice” person and just doesn’t know what they’re doing. And not getting paid? Well that’s not that much of a big deal to us as far as I know, it’s just kind of icing on the shit-cake. The thing that bothers me is that my husband – who works so hard, puts in so much support for the bands he plays with, makes posters and distributes them and brings fans (who bought the show organizer’s album incidentally) and does everything he can to support other acts – my husband is sitting here today asking himself if he should be doing anything differently. I tell him look, we’ve done this, some shows just end up sucking. He’s still down about it though and I know he feels he let down his bandmates.  < le sigh! >

Hogaboom regroup.

Today we were gifted with perfect outdoor weather, warm but subdued and a bit ominous, so in the evening we took a walk in the Bowerman Basin nature preserve. It’s a lovely boardwalk, something around these parts that hasn’t been swallowed up by our cold swamp.

Bowerman Basin

The kids are incredible. They are never bored, seriously finding so much fun in hunting for and devouring berries, spotting and comparing slugs, jumping over little culverts and balancing themselves on driftwood and dozens of other joyful diversions.

Lurve 4

(Here’s a picture of the same two in the same spot, about two years ago – on a sunnier afternoon!)

Kids, RunningIt was perfect walking weather.

Lovely Flora


Walking back Ralph had the camera and snapped a picture of me making a VERY IMPORTANT DISCOVERY:

A STOAT! (with her dinner):
This little lady ran past us, bold as brass, tidily carrying her lunch. She clearly preferred using the boardwalk to making her way through the long grass and underbrush. I was pretty excited about this. I kept saying in loud stenorous tones, “That is the cutest goddamn thing I have ever seen.

Later I ran across a slug but that wasn’t quite as exciting. Hey slug, wassup?
Well, Hello

A good Father’s Day hike. I almost forgot here and there how much I miss my own father, gone almost two years now.

But still. It was a lovely day.


spaceship earth, circa 1983

In part in response to my previous post, a friend sent me “The Bitter Homeschooler’s Wishlist” from  I must admit I laughed a bit (although in general I do not consider it a part of my mission to spread snark) which was then replaced by fervent noddings at numbers 21, 22, and 23. In reading this I also felt quite grateful to be surrounded by friends and family who are generally supportive and don’t say too many silly things regarding my kids’ exemption from school.

Oh and:

From the archives: I grew up in a bus.  I used to call myself “So Cal hippie trash” before I decided I should not use the word “trash” to refer to anyone, my own roots notwithstanding.  My parents smoked pot and sort of parented all groovy (which means: assily), but they fed us and loved us pretty good.  So here I am, rockin’ the raspberry beret and breaking the hearts of my brother and some other boy we met at Yosemite Park.

El Autobús Mágico

It’s hard to see, but beneath the white wave-like motif on this bewheemoth drift the words “Inner Space”; this must be before my mom added planets as well.  Yes, that is a real wooden door with stained glass (my mom handcrafted that too).  Click on the photo if you’d like to read a bit more about our exodus from sunny CA to rainy WA.

ETA: Ralph told me this post made me sound like a hippie who was kind of proud of being a hippie.  I pulled out my cloth menstrual pad and slapped him across the face. And then I went and ate some bark, or something.

so i’m at least not a horrific goblin, or at least not all of the time, despite my occasional lapses into Suck

I received two emails today, hard upon the heels of one another. They read, in part, as follows:

you happy? For the week following your email, I haven’t been able to do a lick of email work – AND IT’S YOUR FAULT. Engrossed as I’ve been with reading your stuff, I’ve kept wondering if there is an end to this wonderful tunnel of love & freedom. Lovit, lovit, lovit! Where did you get the devotion-to-kids, the insights, the compassion, the courage to be so open and vulnerable and brave the brickbats that are inevitably visited upon anyone as free? I’ve worked on it for more than the last half of my life (I’m 81), and I just get stronger and more dedicated. But then, I’m a trained Buddhist (Bodhisattva), with 40 years of daily meditation practice, so slings and arrows are just slings and arrows, nothing personal, nothing more.

I believe I love you. (So much for training in detachment.)

and then:

I am writing because I want to say thank you. There is no way for you to know how much you have inspired and uplifted me simply by being you and sharing it. I love to read your blog. At first, it was just out of curiosity. A friend or another directed me to it. I honestly don’t remember where, how or even who. (As a former Hoquiamite myself it could have been any number of people.)

I was deeply impacted by the realness, the simple beauty of life through your expressions. It has helped me challenge myself to be a better person. I find myself re thinking so many things because of your perspective. Thank you for putting yourself out there. For sharing pieces of your heart and soul. It has made a difference in my life. I just wanted you to know. 🙂 Have a great weekend!

Yeah.  So, there’s no downside to these missives. Thank you, readers – those who write, yes, but also those who read here and in any way find themselves helped, or pleased, or laugh. I know I can be so terribly dark-sided and I am glad to know that is not the only thing people find in me.

So, thank you Universe.

My daughter has been a solitary animal of late, little satisfied with her lot in life despite our (for the most part) compassionate acceptance of her difficulties.  She is quick to disappear into a book, sitting out in my mother’s old pickup truck in the afternoon sunshine.  I am both sad for her sufferings and impressed by her ability to be alone with herself, her autonomy.  She comes in a half hour later and is calmed; she seeks me out.  During the day, as busy as I get I try to lay down or sit down and, like our male cat, she comes to find me and be next to me. This is when she opens up, when she heals from whatever has been hurting her.  We lay in bed together and I feel her hands gently patting at me and I smell her hair (sweet or creepy? you decide!) and I know she is finding something in me that helps her find her way.

Mi Niña Sophita Y Yo

I am seriously so glad my kids got their looks from Ralph, or someone else.  Seriously, it’s no big deal being homely.  Just, it’s boring.  Come on, you know what I’m talking about.

Oh, and don’t be all commenting that I’m pretty or whatever. Or I will roll my eyes so hard you’ll hear them clicking.


This video is RIDICULOUS because it sums up a little too much our life. All off-script, including Mable’s screech and my pathetic succumbing to Harris’ begging-for-food charms.

Anna Dell Geckaboom, with my daughter, who is not only an experienced and loving lizard-custodian and would-be herpetologist, but is also getting pretty good at handling crickets as well.

Our Newest Member Of The Household