Thursday, November 18, 2010

filling, filled, FULL.

♥filling a suitcase, care~full~y, choice~full~y, hope~full~y.

♥a filled ipod, filled with fun, joy, peace and movement inducing beats.

♥a full heart...a floating island, a trio of non~floating islands surrounded by crystal clear Caribbean waters and a week surrounded by love and light and laughter and drinks with umbrellas...just in case it rains.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Why I should have never started watching TV series...

Tonight I cried at the season finale of TWO shows.


Years and years went by where I hardly even turned on the I'm a TV crier.

First it was Weeds. Seriously, Nancy Botwin! Whose "plan c" ever involves a baby strapped to their chest, a Mexican kingpin husband who is going to kill them standing to the side with his evil henchman, with the other two sons and soul mate on board a plane to Copenhagen? What now? You're lives are running out, cat lady! I cried for her boys who are screwed with her and screwed without her. And the baby just kept joyfully kicking his feet in the snugli completely unaware...lucky baby...that rocked me. I cried just a little for this one.

It was Adam, Cathy Jamison's son from The Big C that totalled me. He's been a bit of an ass. Pretty much the poster child for this entitled, detached, spoiled, self-centered generation we are raising in this instant feedback, continual easy gratification, technologically over-communicated era of expectation and demand. Is it him or is it just how things are now? Then while his mom is in the hospital getting treatment that is probably as bad as death, he swipes her last $20 from her unattended purse in the kitchen and opens an envelope marked "don't open until I'm gone." He opens it, takes the key and heads to the mini-storage where he finds a birthday present for every year of his life. I fell apart. Seriously...AND IT'S A TV SHOW FOR CRYING OUT LOUD! But I somehow knew what he was feeling...all these THINGS representing all the years he would be without his mother. He cried and I cried and I so want her to not die. Why do I watch this stuff when I live it in my profession??? He finally felt and it renewed a small bit of hope in this generation that I'm so frustrated with lately.

Before all the crying, today had it's beauty~full moments...

♥Working with an intern, spending an exhausting morning doing orientation...all the explaining every nuance of how we do what and why with the intention of what end...realizing I know a whole lot of stuff about a lot of stuff...and even some stuff that really really matters!

♥New things...packages in the mail, contacts that make my eyes look freaking awesome, a petsitter who ROCKS, lip gloss, car battery, online bill pay, a pair of books, an enormous refrigerator and a big ole back door on order.

♥Crushed that stuff.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

This weekend's beauty~full~ness

♥ Global warming. Oops, that's SO politically UNCORRECT to be naming as a beauty~full thing...but I defend my stance that flip-flops, spaghetti straps and the top down on the convertible mid-November is odd...and beauty~full. :) Silver lining, baby!

♥ Painting things white. All sorts of things...walls, furniture, odds n' pure and blank and clean looking.

♥ A weiner in a squash...or a dachshund in a pumpkin-shaped dog house...depending on your perspective.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Cleaning House...

Lately I've been de-cluttering, donating, downsizing. Deliberately and with a completely non-Gemini-like precision.

The area I hit today was my box of school papers...from day one of Junior College through my Master's Program. I had a nice fire in the fire pit tonight. :) All that information, the copies and handouts, chapters copied out of books I refused to purchase, notes and resources, stories and vignettes...all things that contributed to my learning but don't have to be cluttering up that corner of my office any more. The things I turned into toe-warming tonight were all the things that now clutter up a corner of my mind.

Save one. This one made it be commemorated, reflected on and shared.

I don't recall what class it came from or why it was even taught to us...but the lesson it taught me tonight is that some seeds they planted were very very powerful.

10 Characteristics of Physio-psychological Health:

~Positive self-esteem
~Internal locus of control
~Aggressive pursuit of mental health
~Believe in own usefulness
~Development and maintenance of strong emotional support system
~Viewing problems as challenges with potential for positive outcome
~Investigation and pursuit of alternative approaches to challenges
~Able to discuss problems with openness and lack of ego
~Feeling of purpose and meaning to life
~Proactive participation in all aspects of life and self development

I like this list. I like it very much. It's not a "to-do" list where you can check things off as if they are done. It's a "strive for" list that encourages constant forward movement in life...constant change and evolution with hope and promise as the fuel.

I like it so So SO much. You can be anywhere on any given I was about 90% of those things. Yesterday probably about 60% and maybe tomorrow I'll be somewhere in the middle of those two...some days I'm at about 20% and even that is okay. It's all subjective and dependent on circumstance...mostly. The list is the skeleton that never goes away but experience and circumstance flesh out.

The lovely part is that somewhere in some classroom during a class I can't even recall, some teacher had me write it down and in that writing it became my emotional skeleton...what I believe to strive for. It held me responsible for my experiences in this life. It planted a seed that grew into unflagging optimism that life can be an amazing, safe place full of responsible learning, growing and loving.

I'm heading out to toss that paper in the fire pit too...the skeleton is part of me and the information, the seed and the endless possibility are right here, right now for YOU.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

100th post...100 things!

In honor of my 100th blog post, my list of 100 interesting things about me:

♥ My childhood favorite books were Charlotte’s Web, Horton Hears a Who and Robin Hood…is it any surprise I turned out to be a social worker???

♥ I will watch every Robin Hood movie or TV show. Same for the Three Musketeers. I don’t care how corny it might be, I will love it.

♥ The coolest places I’ve lived have been in apartments above a stationery store and behind an auto tune-up shop.

♥ I attended three grade schools, two middle schools, one high school, two junior colleges and two Universities. Six states and 10 cities. I liked all of the changing and newness…in fact, I miss it. I might be part gypsy. I could move constantly and be content.

♥ My third grade teacher recognized that I had dyslexia and used the informal teaching method her mother used to teach her when she was my age. To this day I still see yellow and a lion walking forward when I see, hear or imagine the letter L…as a matter of fact, all letters have colors to me from this…meaning I was cured of dyslexia but given synesthesia. Fair trade, I say!

♥ I am a voracious reader, thank you third grade teacher.

♥ I have a Masters Degree, thank you third grade teacher.

♥ I prefer sunrises to sunsets…takeoffs to landings…beginnings to endings.

♥ I’m of Sicilian descent and am fiercely allergic to mussels…does NOT fit.

♥ I’m also Irish, Polish and Russian. I am not a mean, stupid drunk who thinks her way is the only way. I rarely get drunk.

♥ When I decide to try a new recipe, in invariably turns out fabulous.

♥ I once pulled off three simultaneous 5 course authentic French meals, started cooking at 2:30 and served at 7…for my friends and family to celebrate Beaujolais. Beaujolais wine is terrible…but the story of it is awesome.

♥ The only time I ever sang karaoke was in a hotel bar far from home, it was Gloria Gaynor’s “I Will Survive”.

♥ The song “Come On Eileen” by Dexie’s Midnight Runners makes me smile without fail, every time I hear it. There should be more songs with fiddles in them. Yes, I know it’s about hallucinogenic drugs and sex. It’s also sort of rock and roll. The holy trinity. Even though it’s crap.

♥ The song “Yeah” by Usher makes me dance no matter where I am. Luckily they don’t play it much anymore. Again, kinda crap.

♥ A good piano riff can bring me to tears…and they use them way too much in commercials.

♥ I tend to cry inexplicably at commercials, unless you know me and know the above fact, then it makes sense.

♥ I’ve learned more history from fiction than from school…authors usually toss in some facts that intrigue me and have me searching for more info wherever I can find it. However, I know literally NOTHING about any of the wars. NOTHING.

♥ I have a strange little round flesh colored raised area on my nose…turns out it’s a wart…which may or may not mean I’m a witch. I do float.

♥ I love Monty Python and the Holy Grail, if you couldn’t guess.

♥ I believe in “sleep on it” because often the answers are really there when I wake up or things are clearer and make more sense. Sometimes things that seemed so very important don’t even matter anymore after a night of sleep.

♥ A misplaced apostrophe will make me cringe. If you are someone who has hurt me and you misplace an apostrophe, I will likely allow myself to feel superior for a split second.

♥ I totally believe there is other intelligent life in the Universe, lots and lots of all different types, but most science fiction bores me to death.

♥ I was frisked by real police at the Mustang Ranch.

♥ My name is not Tar-uh. It’s Terra, like the earth. If you get it wrong, I might ignore you, correct you, sigh deeply and do one of the above or sometimes smile and let it go…but seriously I hate being called Tar-uh.

♥ I rarely wear necklaces…and when I do they are long. I think this is because I was strangled in a previous life.

♥ I believe in reincarnation and collective consciousness. I believe we are all divine, born from a collective divine energy and we return there to be reborn again and again for eternity. I believe this energy is everywhere all the time.

♥ I was raised Catholic. I am not now. I’m not anything in particular other than connected to you with an obligation to do good and be kind.

♥ Reality TV bores me as much as science fiction does.

♥ I love roller coasters.

♥ I will forgive anything, even a lie. But there is a subjective limit to the number of lies I will forgive. I can handle your truth. I can’t handle that you don’t feel you can trust me with it. I’d rather you invoke your right to privacy, that I will respect wholeheartedly.

♥ People hurt each other, it’s just the way it is. If you hurt me and can own your part, we’ll be just fine. Forever. I vow to do the same.

♥ In 5th grade when the teacher was asking what we wanted to be when we grew up I answered with “a prostitute.” I still think that courtesans in the 1500s had it made.

♥ I fall in love many times a day. Sometimes with myself but more often with other people and mostly with men. If you’re reading this, I’ve probably fallen in love with you more times than you know.

♥ I think the mind can cure the body.

♥ I recycle, reuse, never buy paper products except toilet paper, compost, garden, use my greywater and mostly eat only plant based foods.

♥ I don’t think my lifestyle makes me superior or inferior and I don’t care if you eat newborn baby seal meat…I probably won’t cook it for you though.

♥ I drive an SUV. I know that’s a contradiction but there are far too many people, kids and animals in my life for me to drive something smaller.

♥ I recently owned a 26 foot sailboat. I could sail it alone. I sold my sailboat while making this list to a professional freestyle snow skier who invited me to crew his larger sailboat from San Francisco to New Zealand in the next year or two. I just might.

♥ I also drive a convertible muscle car. Rawr.

♥ My mother, my daughter and I make up three generations of Geminiis. Believe me, it matters.

♥ Erica Kane was my hero even though I hate soap operas and drama queens…that was one woman who knew her mischief! I used to tape her shows on VHS and fast forward to her parts. Drama porn.

♥ If I watch a band perform live, I will leave with a crush on one of its members. Usually the bass player. Especially upright.

♥ I have freckles and I adore them. There are even freckles on my irises.

♥ I broke a bottle over a man’s head once. He left his wife for me. Twice.

♥ I saw all three Pirates of the Caribbean movies in full pirate garb. Authentic, period appropriate garb that my Captain would have been proud of.

♥ I was a pirate in the SCA and loved each and every minute of it. Our ship was called the KMA Defyant, KMA standing for Kiss My Ass. We rocked piracy before Johnny did.

♥ Movies that make me cry are the ones where people make decisions or do things that are right despite how hard they are to make or carry out.

♥ My favorite adjective is “bizarre”.

♥ My favorite moments are the surreal ones.

♥ I think being kind is better than being anything else.

♥ A smile from the soul will steal my heart.

♥ Halloween is my favorite holiday. October is my favorite month and Fall is my favorite season.

♥ I believe that not being political is a political stance.

♥ Of the many many forms of intelligent life I believe exist in the universe, I think some of them are here. The octopus, for instance. Dolphins. Savants. Bill Gates. Marie Curie. This list goes on and on…

♥ I have a cousin who is a princess. She’s not really my cousin and not really a princess, but that’s beside the point. She IS a real person, that’s what counts.

♥ Patchouli is my favorite scent. It’s Dad and Fall and Halloween all at once.

♥ I have one HUGE pet peeve, it’s when people say “I’m sorry” and follow it with “but…” and an excuse, explanation, or accusation. The accusation part really gets me.

♥ The only grudge I am capable of holding is against someone who does the above.

♥ I think the two most ridiculous things in the world are pest control companies and mini-storage facilities. Why not attract predators and downsize instead?

♥ I have a HUGE vocabulary, meaning that I know the MEANING of many words…I don’t, however, know how to pronounce many of them.

♥ Tinkerbell is my muse. Rivaled only by Lucille Ball.

♥ I snore. This embarrasses me.

♥ My first crush ever was on Schroeder from Peanuts when I was a little girl. Next was Elton John when I was 12. Knowing this about me should make total sense of my love life…it started with an imaginary character and proceeded to a flamboyant gay man. When my mother broke this news to me, my response after a deep breath was “I can change him!”

♥ I have great memories of high school.

♥ I love accents. Even pretend ones.

♥ I threw a baseball through OJ Simpson’s window when I was nine. He yelled at me. I yelled back. I figure I’m lucky to be alive.

♥ I only got one spanking in my life. I was nine. My step-monster insisted and my mother cried the entire time. OJ would have done worse.

♥ You can tell how tipsy I am by which accent I regress to…first Texas then Jersey.

♥ My name is Tara, my firstborn is Ashleigh, and I wanted to name my son Rhett but was forbidden. I think Daddy was afraid I’d then want a Scarlett. I probably would have. My son is glad to not be named Rhett.

♥ I love to wear flowers in my hair and do it as often as possible.

♥ I think that the phrase “if only” should be followed by action. Anything is possible. Everything is possible.

♥ I despise the word “disappointment.” As a matter of fact, I despise the concept. The state of “being disappointed” is a personal, internal issue.

♥ I think Christmas is a state of mind that should be practiced year round.

♥ I don’t think consumerism and holidays should be paired.

♥ I ask for what I need. It was a hard thing to learn how to do. It’s okay if I don’t get what I ask for…that was even harder to learn.

♥ Rejection and abandonment used to be as scary as bridges and spiders to me…not anymore. The only thing that scares me now is someone stepping out in front of my car and not being able to stop in time. I’m very aware of pedestrians because of this. Pedestrians seem to appreciate it.

♥ San Francisco never ceases to amaze me in lovely ways. There is magic there.

♥ I start my new year on my birthday and each month on the 16th.

♥ Every year on my birthday I write a list of things I want to do/see/become/learn/obtain before the next one, the number of things on the list is the age I will turn at the end of that year. This year is 39 by 40.

♥ I was born on the East Coast but now live on the West Coast. I’ve been here many years and it still mixes me up a bit when I try to figure out which way is north and south. I swear it’s because the ocean is on the wrong side of me.

♥ I don’t say things I don’t mean. Ever. No matter what.

♥ I cry when people do nice things…even if it’s for someone else and I just happen to observe it. I also cry when people I think are apathetic show their humanity.

♥ When a sweet love song comes on the radio, I imagine it as my wedding song for the first dance as man and wife. The “man” part of that always has his back to me…I don’t know him yet.

♥ What I want in a marriage probably doesn’t exist, so I don’t see that dance ever happening.

♥ I think a warm horse on a sunny day is a great smell.

♥ I will scrimp and be thrifty in many areas but not when it comes to my bed. My bed has to be a fluffy high thread count cloud of padding, down and scented softness.

♥ I think “having your shit together” doesn’t mean how many square feet your house is, how successful you are in your career, what your credit score is or what your stock portfolio says about you. I think it means liking yourself, being committed to living your life fully and being intimately acquainted with your integrity.

♥ I think that being given room to make mistakes is the only way to truly develop and define your personal boundaries and integrity. Every mistake I have ever made has been beauty-full and wonder-full in the end because of this belief.

♥ I don’t think cell phones have a place at a table or any time you might have to interact with another person like a drive thru or a checkout stand. I think it is insulting to the person and robs the cell phone user of a valuable moment of connection to a person standing before them.

♥ I will not sing in a group. Caroling and choirs make me run away. I sing in my car and in my shower, period. If you happen to be in either place with me, cover your ears. It is not pretty.

♥ I was raised an only child. My father had another daughter when I was 5 years old. He wanted to name her Tara. Thankfully, someone talked him out of it. Her name is Shaleen and she is beauty~full and amazing and wonder~full…and wants nothing to do with me.

♥ I love black licorice.

♥ Big dogs are my thing, there is usually at least one Great Dane in my life. Little dogs do nothing for me, little dogs in clothes confuse and trouble me.

♥ I will pick simple over fussy almost every time. Cotton over satin, 60 second dry polish over fake nails, flip flops over high heels, silver over gold, generic over name brand…okay maybe high heels when the outfit or occasion calls for it….I did say almost.

♥ I went all the way to pre-calculus in high school but seriously, I have no clue how…I faked my way all the way through and can NOT do any kind of math…and when it comes to doing math in my head, no way.

♥ At a time when my self-confidence hit rock bottom, a man I have never met who lives in a city that I have never visited helped me fall back in love with myself by letting me see myself through his eyes. This man will forever be my hero.

♥ An elf proved to me that I'm not of the lesbian inclination.

♥ I think red roses should only be given once…long-stemmed and in a long white box tied with a ribbon…because she said yes.

♥ I was allergic to watermelon for almost 16 years. Anaphylactically allergic. Carry an Epi-pen allergic. Impending death allergic. I used to buy anything that would make me smell like a watermelon. The allergy finally mysteriously went away. I have been eating watermelon pretty much nonstop since then. I love watermelon.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Hump day beauty

♥ Learning that sometimes it's better to just not take some things personally...and smile. Some comebacks need no words. :)

♥ A clean house, a back room full of laughing teenagers, holiday-scented candles, comfort food, momma and TV series catch-up night.

♥ A big ole greying great dane curled up on my lap like she's a teeny little thing...and the great big snores that don't let her get away with the pretense of teeny-ness.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Tuesday's Three Beauty~full things

♥Warm, crusty french bread.

♥Red wine in festive holiday eggware.

♥Fellini...nothing beats Sylvia in a fountain.