Sunday, April 25, 2010


Yesterday afternoon, I find myself once more looking intently at the little birdhouse that hangs right outside our kitchen window. We have had this birdhouse for years and until now, I had never thought of it as anything more than cute and decorative. The whole "bird" part of it somehow never made it into my brain. 

Until this week.

This week, all week, there has been a huge amount of activity around this thing. And I have been riveted. 

Day after day, I have watched birds fly in and out, really busily and carrying ... stuff. Also, there has been a bunch of little bird noise shrieking from the inside of this mysterious place. I have been fascinated and distracted and as Chris was in Seattle, have told him about it over and over again. By phone and by email. I have even brought the phone to the birdhouse for him to hear the little sounds.

Yesterday, as he and I sit on the couch, I interrupt our conversation (again) to tell him "look! look! look at what they are doing now!" It seems that there has been a lot less noise and a lot more fluttering. 

I know that I am way more affected by this whole thing than makes sense.

Chris looks at me, sweetly amused. 


No answer. 

"Well, what is it?" 

And that is when he lets me see, gently, what may be going on for me.

It is 5:00 on a Saturday afternoon and in the last few hours:

- My daughter Tanissa has FLOWN from Seattle to Boston to visit her friend. Talks of buying her airline ticket to Brazil have not been far from my thoughts, either.

- My son Marco has been talking non-stop about my upcoming 16th birthday present to him: I have promised to buy him a SKY-DIVING session. 

- My son Costa is  - as we speak - FLYING a little airplane over the San Juans - one more hour to the flight log book he has been keeping for the last year.

They are ALL flying!!!!

They are all on their way out of the nest.

Ok, honey. I get it.  

Thursday, April 22, 2010


My friend Julie is slowly saying goodbye to her mom and I am slowly saying goodbye to my daughter.

Different goodbyes, for sure. 

This morning hurts.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Essence is the disappointment antidote.

So there we were, Chris, Erin and I spending the evening "together" while staring at our respective laptop screens. Tanissa was in her room, worshipping her own laptop.

I mentioned the craziness of it and everyone agreed, spent a couple of minutes reminiscing about the good old days of a few years ago when there were no laptops in the house and we would spend evenings doing art and talking. Then we all went back to our screens.

But we still talked to one another, the way people talk maybe when playing cards, a sort of background conversation that has a strange meditative feel to it, maybe specifically because it is not the main focus. An artist might think of it as "atmospheric conversation."

At one point, Erin mentioned a friend of his who had made a huge amount of money (think 30 million dollars) by  being involved with Amazon at the very beginning. The amount of money blew a little circuit in my mind and we started to talk about the usual "what would I do if I had that much money." 

Erin said that if he had tons of money, he would run a "scholarship" foundation, one where he would give money to people who wanted it for special projects and could convince him of the validity of their vision.

I liked that and loved how excited he looked as he talked about it.

Then Chris, who is usually the quieter  of the bunch (Erin and I can yak for hours), looked up from his screen and mentioned ""


Within seconds, I was looking at a site that offered almost exactly the same essence as what Erin had just  wistfully been talking about!

Never mind 30 million dollars. For 30 dollars, you and I (and Erin) can make a huge difference in the vision of entrepreneurs in other countries. Today. 

I will let you take a look the site as I believe you may find it fascinating (the repayment rate is a heart lifting and humbling 98.5%)

I went to bed feeling blessed by having witnessed such a pure - and instantaneous - example of Essence vs. Form. 

When we speak in Essence, we are often able to take action today, to go from "if I ... XXX, then ... XXX" and go straight to today.

To me, Essence is the disappointment antidote. 

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Hair and Hairs

So, it is only 8:02 on Thursday morning and I have:

-blown dry

various hair and hairs of my body. 

If this is too much information, please forgive me although I believe many of you will relate. 
We want more hair here, less there. Curlier here, straighter there. Darker here, lighter there.

Holy Moly. 

Being a woman ain't for sissies (but I sure like it) 

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

The Anniversaries that Hurt

I sit across from a dear client.

She had said that she needed to see me because she was "spinning into a vortex."

As we begin to talk, I sense that her pain is way stronger than "makes sense." I can feel the sharpness of it in my own chest and along with it, a deep sense of despair. 

We talk some more. 

The pain takes over the room. 

Pretty soon I ask her what this calendar time represents for her.

And then we both know.

We both know that her heart has shown up to acknowledge the huge, excruciating pain that came into her life four years and three weeks ago.

Her heart - as our hearts do - is having an Anniversary. One of those Anniversaries that really hurt. 

And the kind that, even if we don't let our minds, daytimers or even words acknowledge ... is still an Anniversary. 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

My WAY Cool Friend

During our road trip, a couple of weeks ago, we stopped by my friend Joanie's and had a wonderful meal with her.

As we left, Costa forgot his guitar and since Joanie is coming up in a week, she has agreed to bring it up with her. 

I just received this email from her: 

"...i was just thinking that i can't wait to be a 62 yr old woman carrying a guitar case that says fuck war!"

I love you, Joanie.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Vitamins to Share

As I was paying for my goji berries at a local health food store yesterday, the woman behind the counter commented on the brightness of the colors I was wearing. She said that they made her happy.

I said that colors made me happy, too and that in fact, they were like vitamins, to me. 
They are vitamins for my soul. Whether I wear them, paint them, eat them or walk amongst them (think Skagit Valley tulips!), colors just lift me up in a huge way.

Standing amongst shelves of health supplements, I believe she knew just what I meant.

And she said: "Yes, and these vitamins you get to share with us." 

I love this.

Friday, April 9, 2010

Blunt words from a warm heart

I just saw this on Al Turtle's website and wanted to share:

"While I've been sharing and watching what people do with my writings I have come to certain simple conclusions:  

He/she leaves you cuz the relationship you have with them sucks.  If it takes someone leaving to get your attention, so be it.  Learn quickly.  Fix it. 

  • If you don't learn how a) to PreValidate, b) remove MasterTalk c) learn the verbal sharing skills taught quickly by Mirroring then you are screwed.
  • Use skills that build safety and get rid of habits that threaten.
  • Make sure you have easy skills of being together and being apart.
  • Take turns being appropriately selfish.
  • Learn to like your beliefs and make plenty of room for others to disagree."

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Guess What? Having more options decreases happiness.


According to Dan Gilbert (Stumbling on Happiness), contrary to popular belief, having more options generally decreases happiness because we get stuck in second-guessing all our choices. All these options can cause us to keep looking outside of ourselves for the next trend and lead us to lose touch with that part of ourselves that knows what we uniquely desire and value, and that’s when the internal conflict sets in.

See his Ted video (and then, sign up for my Moving Up! program)

Monday, April 5, 2010

Thank You, Julie

I received these precious tidbits this morning and wanted to share them.

It's absurd to look at a three year old toddler and say, "this kid can't read or do math or even string together a coherent paragraph. He's a dolt and he's never going to amount to anything." No, we don't say that because we know we can teach and motivate and cajole the typical kid to be able to do all of these things.
Why is it okay, then, to look at a teenager and say, "this kid will never be a leader, never run a significant organization, never save a life, never inspire or create..."
Just because it's difficult to grade doesn't mean it shouldn't be taught. 
Never mind a teenager. I think it's wrong to say that about someone who's fifty.
Isn't it absurd to focus so much energy on 'practical' skills that prep someone for a life of following instructions but relentlessly avoid the difficult work necessary to push someone to reinvent themselves into becoming someone who makes a difference?
And isn't it even worse to write off a person or an organization merely because of what they are instead of what they might become?

From Seth Godin.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

From the Mouth of Babes...

From Costa (11) as I talk to my kids about my complete lack of sense of direction: "It's just because you're in the present. You don't think about where you're coming from or about where you're going."