Fire and Ice


The Backdoor

Originally uploaded by ein feisty Berg.

Hello, come in. Please wipe your feet and stomp your feet twice. Doug’s shoes and boots have bigger treads than mine or those of the kids. Consequently when he brings in firewood and tends the fires we end up with lots of little cookie cutter snowflake patterned clumps of snow on the satillo kitchen floor, the parquet sitting room floor, and the area around the stone hearth. Today I was in a hurry to remove the snow before it melted into ice water and mud; so I grabbed the brass handled fire place shovel and went to work. Andrea commented, “They should call it a fire and ice shovel.” True. It is the season of FIRE and ICE. And messy floors. Sure a crackling fireplace is cozy and romantic; but, have you ever seen all the bark chips that litter the floor every time you stoke the fire?
Spring will eventually get here. Today it is snowing again.

I keep a pair of shoes in the car

Recently it has come to my attention that the definition of a girly girl has to do with how many purses and pairs of shoes one owns or acquires.  I keep a pair of shoes in my car 365 days a year; so, what does that make me?  A girly grandma? Or just an aging boy scout of the female variety?  Probably the boy scout.

  • My pair of shoes in the car fall in the same category as the measuring tape in my purse

  • the sleeping bag in the hatch of my Alpine Subaru

  • the bottled water and crackers in the trunk; the dog leash in the storage container with the jumper cables and windshield washer fluid

  • grab-and-go hiking first aid pack.  I live in the mountains.  I must be prepared. For the last five years I have carried my hiking boots in the car six months of the year and then traded them for my waterproof duck boots in the summer when I am more apt to need the leather boots for hiking and walking each day.  Keeping a pair of weather worthy boots in the car is as essential as having a cell phone.

This year the habit has changed drastically.  I still keep a pair of shoes in the car, but they are dress shoes. I really like my dress shoes and my dress boots.  They match my new purse perfectly. I also enjoy the warmth and security of other boots. Because of all the snow we have accumulated at the cabin, it is impossible to get from the car to the door in anything but the snow boots and sometimes the addition of no-slip-grips. When I arrive at the professional city job each morning I shed my duck boots, peel off the boot socks and slip into my topstitched, 2 inch heeled, leather office mocs –or my black
Wellington boots with the cowboy shanks. After leaving the office at night I reverse the process before heading up the mountain.

   

On my lunch hour today I found an irresistible pair of grey patent leather open toes on the clearance rack. I’ll probably keep them in the car too.  Even in the summer it will be difficult to navigate from cabin to car in 4 inch wedges. Somebody needs to design a shoe rack that fits in my Subaru!  A good girly grandma is always prepared!

ABC About Me

Thanks to DIL, Sarah, at Sermon on the Mount of Laundry; I won’t have to wait for literary inspiration to post today.  She has tagged me for ABC About me.  Here goes:

A– Available or Married?  Available for what?  Driving taxi, cooking, dishes, housework, making music?  Yes, I am available for music.  Been married to the same guy for 19.5 years.  Maybe that explains my confusion with the question.

B–Best Friend?  Hmmm.  My daughter Andrea, my SIL Lisa.  I am available right now for a local bosom buddy, but you’ve got a lot to live up to.  Have had fantastic friends in the past: Sherry, Evelyn, Coni…

C–Cake or Pie?  Pie, cream pie.

D–Drink of choice? Apple Carmel Cider; Almond Sunset tea with soymilk; Cold spring water.

E–Essential Item? Money!  And right now, Yak Tracks (think snow chains for boots and dress shoes)

F–Favorite Color?  Black!  followed closely by Scarlet.

G–Gummy Bears or Worms?  Red Gummy Bears.

H–Hometown?  Anywhere in Colorado with mountains on one or more sides.

I–Indulgence?  White Chocolate to dip in my hot tea of choice.

J–January or February?  February

K–Kids and names?  Kev, Andrea, Philip

L–Life is incomplete without?  Music, Writing, Reading, something to look forward to (vision).

M–Marriage Date?  June 1987

N–Number of Siblings?  One little brother whom I look up to in more ways than one.

O–Oranges or Apples?  Apples

P–Phobias and Fears? “We have nothing to fear but fear itself,” and boy do I fear….not doing the right thing, being rejected…

Q– Favorite quote? “I have studied war….so that my children might study…art, music, poetry..” paraphrase of John Adams.

R–Reason to smile?  I have raised 3 creative, responsible, children. 

S–Season?  Fall and Spring

T–Tag Three People.  Qui, Pretending Sanity (she probably won’t take the tag, but you’ll be glad you visited her site!) and Phil or Andrea (you can respond in comments).

U–Unknown fact about me.  I have no desire to get up and go to work everyday; I just need the money and it brings me joy to provide nice things for myself and my family.

V–Vegetable you hate?  Canned spinach, brussels sprouts, anything slimy.

W–Worst habit?  Picking up after people angrily instead of having the patience to wait until they pick up after themselves.  (Used to be crunching ice but that took a heavy toll on the teeth).

X–Xylophone or Marimba? Marimba, of course.  I always favor wood.

Y–Your favorite food?  Chinese  or hot, homemade bread.

Z–Zodiac?  Well, I am a split personality Gemini, which might explain why I have two answers to every question.  But I don’t feel bound at all by the stars.  I may choose what or whom I allow to control my life.

She’s a lumberjack and She’s OK!

On Blogging verses Logging.  Potato, Potahto; tomato, Tomahto; Blogging or Logging.  We be logging, folks. Sorry I did not write today.  We were running low on firewood so I helped the spouse haul several sled loads up the hill from a neighboring property where he felled trees.  Our icicles have grown and the snow has melted down; yet, while keeping that sled on track and supporting the logs from rolling WAAAAAY downhill I sank into the drifts so far I felt a lot like the wishbone of a Thanksgiving turkey before I extracted myself, crawled and trudged on up the hill.

Love of the Game; Music, Mentoring, Writing

Paul Harvey, or
Chuck Swindoll, or some well known radio speaker once said, “Find something you love doing and do it so well you make a living at it.” That was several decades ago and I am still striving toward that goal. I have been paid for musical performance or accompaniment, paid for individual music lessons, and paid per piece for newspaper articles, but never has any combination of these resulted in the stand alone income that might be called “a living.” It takes a relationship with the incorporated world to provide security. I have made enough to live on while pursuing the teaching and performance of music in the organized public school system. I am making enough to pay the bills and keep food on the table while organizing, managing, and getting other people where they need to go, via the university setting.So, what does one do with these other naked dreams and unfulfillments? I will take as a model the family of my good friend in
Texas.  Like me, she has three children; two male, one female.  The two boys are in college and the girl, a senior in high school.  My friend works in the public school system because she loves helping children grow and her own are nearly grown.  Her husband has faithfully worked a computer related corporate job for years.  She writes in her yearly Christmas letter that he, “still plays basketball every opportunity he gets; usually with friends at 6:00 A.M.” Two of the kids play on a co-ed soccer team together.  None of these adults aspire to be professional athletes.  None nurse broken dreams of million dollar sports contracts and the easy life.  They rise at six and practice and train – FOR THE LOVE OF THE GAME.

Love of Fame or Love of the Game


Andrea Senior Pictures 001

Originally uploaded by ein feisty Berg.

Andrea, my high school senior, also struggles philosophically with balancing the fame of success with the independence of obscurity. In her quiet, independent, way she has racked up a bit of applause.

When school reopens in January she will play the part of Malcolm in MacBeth. Why not? In the 1600s all of Shakespeare’s female leads were male; turn about is fair play.
All of my offspring are stage (or at least performance) struck. Is it any wonder? Their maternal grandmother was a High School Thespian and has continued to direct church plays and solo acts right through her retirement years. The paternal grandmother of my oldest is a best selling author, speaker, and personality. The paternal grandmother of my younger two children once participated in Colorado Opera and had her sites on the stage.

Andrea’s other stellar performances include:
• State Championship Color Guard performance with marching band.
• 2006, CCU production of Carousel: Carnival gymnast and swordsman, daughter of Enoch snow, dancer, and chorus member.
• Lettered in gymnastics, 2004
• Chorus and Dancer, Once Upon a Mattress community production
• MVF (Most Valuable Freshman) award in gymnastics, 2003
She is a budding writer, loves to cook, designs and constructs her own costumes for theatrical play. Andrea is also an artist (primarily 3-D at the moment) and musician, playing piano when the mood hits and drums with the fledgling rock band that meets in our basement. At present, her plans for the future include a Spanish major and teaching – preferably in a foreign country.

Perhaps the delicate balancing act boils down to “love of the game, not, love of the fame!”

Fame is the Pitts, but it can be a bit Jolie

So, how does one achieve the precise amount of notoriety to keep all the jolly and avoid the pits?

I have been musing on this dilemma much lately; not only as I construct this Blog, but also as I search for the optimum job, make efforts to get my books published and marketed, and balance conflicting desires:  Stage and Studio verses Cave and Quiet; Retirement and Leisure verses Aspiration and Acquirement; Security verses Adventure.  I am too conscientious to throw care to the wind and be a free spirit; too responsible to retire and leave things undone; too fearful and conservative to take unnecessary risks. In the end, as always, the final word is survival; and hierarchy of need triumphs.

Yet; one must remember the intent of Carpe Diem. One must be reminded of Emerson’s fine admonition:  “Sail into port grandly, or be content to sail with God the seas!”

Putting One Foot in Front of the Other, Hiking for Life!