Cleaning Broken Things


I’m cleaning all our broken things, in hopes they’ll spontaneous un-break themselves. I’d settle for a temporary reprieve, just time enough for me to decide how to replace them. So wiping, washing, vacuuming and polishing I whisper, C’mon you’ve got a few more miles or days in you…but my reeks-of-coolant car and my warm fridge don’t answer back.

Our car, a 2003 silver Civic, has been overheating (periodically) for months, even though I frequently top off the coolant and tighten down its shiny new radiator cap. The original diagnosis—a blown head gasket—a grand-plus repair job. Eek. Really? That’s about the car’s trade-in value. So, armed with the mechanic’s bad news and the knowledge of my meager retirement account, I suggest less expensive possibilities. After all there’s no white smoke coming out the tail pipe or tell-tale clacking sounds, as skeptical friends have pointed out. The nice gray-haired mechanic with the grease-stained hands and smart-as-a-whip eyes only nods at my alternate realities, while dropping the new cap into my hand. He knows I’ll be back.

Then there’s the refrigerator, which creeps up to a balmy fifty-five while the freezer sinks to a frigid twenty below. After YouTube-ing the situation we diagnosed the problem as a bad defroster coil, but that doesn’t explain the ice in the bottom of the freezer…so I poured boiling hot water into the freezer’s drain and later that evening the fridge got a little cooler, 48-ish, and the freezer crept slightly above temperatures found on the scientist’s Kelvin scale. Remember absolute zero from science class? Alas, like the car, the fix only sort of worked.

So I wipe the smudges of the glass shelves of the Hawaii-warm fridge, which may be festering a hearty strain of kill-you bacteria. At least it’s clean. Reminds me of the advice: “Always wear fresh undies, because you never know!”

Cheers lovelies.

Love and Lettuce,

Reaching for Great The Last Ten Pounds: The Last Two Weeks

Kathryn in Yard 082013

So, I’ve been at this nearly two months, this losing the last ten pounds; stepping up the fitness game and “reaching for great” with more muscle definition and cardiovascular endurance. So, I did accomplish SOME of that. And, I also brought some unexpected surprises into my life.

Since I started this journey, subtle lifestyle changes have emerged: I am lighter about food. I created an exercise habit. I am leaner and stronger. My mental/life outlook got more grounded. And, somehow it all feels a little different here than I would have thought.

I am not so attached to food. I’m doing less mindless cramming of sugary things into my mouth. I found I was able to stop eating chocolate, drinking green tea and Kombucha. I spent four days on that little foray, then, decided I wanted that yumminess back in my life. I played with doing without. I experimented with what it felt like to abstain.

And well, in the end I took the hedonist’s route: I love my green caffeine, so I whip my tea nearly every morning, lace it with rice milk, and savor every frothy, slightly bitter gulp. I lust for 85% dark chocolate, so I break off a hunk and let it melt in my mouth, just about every time I crave it, except not after lunch, so I sleep like a baby and have energy to dream of my next project! And, my Kombucha, with it’s fizzy effervescence, that leaves me feeling like a rock star (a very healthy, happy, take-on-the-world, rock star) I drink it and brew it like crazy. It’s my life, and this feels fantastic. We all need to find what really works.

On this “Going From Good To Great” path, I also created an exercise habit, a passionate yoga practice actually. I have always dabbled in yoga, but now I am throwing down my mat and tipping over into crow pose about five times a week. I would say I am strong, flexible, skilled even.

My state of being shifted. I feel even happier, even more confident, and really content with where I am at right now, even though I didn’t “lose” as much as I originally set out to do. I feel worthier (is that a word?) than I ever have. I have a deep sense of peace, that all is how it is supposed to be. I feel emotionally flexible, with an ability to roll with whatever is in front of me. There’s no arguing with reality over here. I feel like I am a blessing to those in my life.

This “Reaching for Great” really has been an amazing time for me. I hope my story inspires you.

Whew, okay, tell me your story. What keeps you on the path? What knocks you down? I would love to hear your comments.

BE very well.

Photo credit: Sarah

A Different Kind of Brew

In my hands every morning: Smooth. Hard. Warm. Filled with heated amber liquid. Laced with white. I draw the enlivening fluid into my mouth and swallow. The black and white, bird and flower cup holds my morning beverage: Dragon well green tea with rice milk; matcha whipped to a froth, topped with coconut milk; coconut oolong brewed strong, then diluted with viscous almond nut milk.
I wake in the early morning hours, throw my legs over the side of the bed and make my way across the plush carpet, then down the cold, hard, wood floor of the hallway, to the kitchen. I flip on the light. Golden-white floods my favorite room. I open the dishwasher and reach in to grasp the mug. I smile at its whimsy. The winding pattern makes its way around the cylindrical porcelain, even, refined, almost European in its sensibilities.
The water rumbles to a boil. The electric kettle clicks off. I pour the heated water over the shriveled dark green leaves, in the Chinese teapot stained with past brews. I stop filling when the water reaches the bottom of the filtering mechanism, a half globe perforated with circular holes.
I pivot to face the stove and click on the gas. As the white fluid reaches a near boil, I switch off the flame. I choose a miniature metal whip and whisk in elongated thrusts, incorporating air into the colloidal fluid.
When the liquor has reached its full strength, I decant into the black and white tall mug and lean down to take a nose-ful of green aroma. On top of the flavorful fluid, I add the frothed white and swirl the micro-bubbles into soft peaks.
I escort the cup over to my spot at the dining room table. With closed eyes, I warm my hands on the smooth surface. I count my breaths; recede into my body. I keep breathing. As the heat transfer slows, I open my eyes and draw the barely sweet, tannic brew into my mouth. I swallow and smile: The perfect beginning to my day.

Good Morning