August 30, 2009

Worry Harvest

Every year in Santa Fe
a large flammable puppet
(around 40' tall)
representing "Old Man Gloom"
is build and brought
to a local park.

The puppet ("Zozobra"), is filled and stuffed with contributions
of frightening drawings
and worries
and gloomy thoughts
and dark ideas
and sad memories
and anything bad
that is needed to be rid of.

On Thursday, September 10th
following a fun-filled and rowdy day
of dance and music and general merry-making
just around sunset...
Old Man Gloom
is burned,
and along with his image;
all of the gloomy thoughts
are removed from those lives
they were troubling.

If you wish to contribute;
I will be delivering
any and all gloomy thoughts
that need to be erased.

I'll be dropping off a collection of
on Wednesday, September 9th.

For a more complete history
check this site at:

August 23, 2009

August 21, 2009

August 20, 2009

First Tomato

I started a tiny garden
(from seed packets!)
back in mid March;
planted tiny individual seed-starter pots
placed the trays in the sun of two indoor window boxes
carefully sprinkled drops-of-water-at-a-time
on almost a daily basis,
moved the trays outside in late May,
and nursed the little plants into the ground in June.
Watering once to twice-a-day since then...
And now
on my kitchen windowsill.

Waiting for other tomatoes
and peppers
and two types of lettuce
to join the harvest.

If I bring the plants
(because it is getting cool at night)
put the plants in sunny
indoor window boxes...

we will have a harvest.

We slice into the

August 11, 2009

We Still Have...

Great clouds
Roasted Hatch Green Chile
Glorious Weather
Water in the Santa Fe River
Did I mention the great views - in all directions?

And yes,
We Still Have Magic.

Care to join us?
The Howlin' Dog Bunkhouse
has a few autumn and several winter reservations available.
We love to share the magic that IS

August 09, 2009

Cleaning the Porch - With Help...

was "let's clean the porch day".
I spent the day
hauling everything off our porch,
(2 bikes, 2-3 boxes of tools,
art supplies, art easels, paint cleaning supplies,
litter box, bike supplies, cat supplies, hiking supplies,
car supplies, 2 very large suitcases filled with "stuff",
shinkendo equipment, watercolor supplies,
camping equipment, gardening equipment,
"Obama for President" sign, lawn chairs,
clip lights, flashlights, light bulbs, extension cords,
2 of the 3 shelves,
... And on and on)

As as I was making my third or fourth trip from inside
to outside with arms-full of stuff,
I had a sweet friend
stop by to help.

Bob the cat
whose real name is "Edghar the Great" -
at least that is the name
engraved on the tag
of his new harness.
He was not a huge help,
but his "mom"/owner was amused ,
when I called her,
that he would come back to visit
that mean lady who had thrown him in a carrier
and hauled him off to the Humane Society
for a week-long adventure.

He stopped by again today
but he decided he would not help me this time:
Bob/Edghar does NOT do windows.


August 08, 2009

Luck In My Eyes

Beautiful day yesterday
(after visiting the doctor
and the pharmacist,
and spending $45
between the two...
Good health insurance
was a relief).

I had my car windows down
and was singing,
(probably badly;
by the other drivers' estimations)
this K.d. Lang song:

I can feel a mountain rain
that'll wash away and shine again
empty my pockets

that were weighing me down

sift through my soul

to see what's lost and found

gonna walk away from trouble

with my head held high

then look closely
you'll see
luck in my eyes

All my troubles,
all my troubles,
with luck in my eyes
all my worries
all my worries,

I can hear a howling wind

that sweeps away
the pain that's been
take all my sorrow

and I'll cast away

the worries tomorrow

that I had today

gonna walk away from trouble

with my head held high
then look closely
you'll see
luck in my eyes

All my troubles,
all my troubles,

with luck in my eyes

all my worries
all my worries,

K.d. Lang "Luck In My Eyes" lyrics

August 07, 2009

Awake, Again - Naturally

A warning to my readers:
If medical conditions
(and stories about blisters)
make you uncomfortable;
please do not read this post.

1-1/2 weeks ago
I was exposed to poison ivy;
no big deal to most people,
but I have severe allergic reactions to the stuff.

Most who have allergies
will develop an obvious reaction
within 1 week of exposure ("check").
Raised blisters will appear in curving lines
from brushing up against the leaves of the plant ("check").
These areas will itch like a sun of a gun ("check").
Sometimes Benadryl will help ("nope"),
and sometimes it will only make the person drowsy
with no relief ("check").

The good news?
A person with an allergic reaction to poison ivy
is NOT contagious to others.
Poison ivy can not be spread from person to person.
Only the direct contact
with the oil of the plant
can cause the reaction.

The bad news?
If the exposed areas are thoroughly washed
in the first few minutes
you can remove up to 90% of the oils
before they are absorbed by the skin...
But a 10 minute wait before washing
may only remove 5-10% of the oils.
-I (my dear readers) washed my hands
within about 5 minutes;
I was wearing gloves
a hat
3/4 sleeves
long pants
and it was not enough.

Calamine or Caladryl will usually dry the blisters,
but needs to be applied 2-3x/day,
may take more than a week
for the areas to dry
to finally heal
and for the itching to stop ("still waiting...").

Cool compresses may help ("nope").

Then again the blisters may be slow to heal
very slow to dry out
may continue to itch like
convention-sized groups of several
sons of a gun.
(Is that the correct term? Unsure at 4:01 in the morning)
Where DO convention-sized sons of a gun
hold their conventions, anyway?
And where exactly did the term
"son of a gun" come from?

The blisters may be evident
all over both forearms ("check"),
all over both ankles and calves ("check")
and near my eyebrows ("check - but healing the best so far").

I itch
and therefore
I bitch.

And I also wonder; (at 4:02 in the morning)
if Universal Health Care
(AKA "socialized medicine" in the USA)
was currently available:
Would I have been carefree about
visiting a doctor
or a dermatologist
a week ago,
(when the blisters first came to visit),
with no worries of co-pay cost
if I had the "correct" insurance,
and no really big worries about
the "whole enchilada of cost"
if I was without insurance,
... Had received a prescription for Prednisone;
also free or at a very low cost with
"socialized medicine",
but somewhat expensive
with prescription insurance,
and probably very expensive without insurance,

would I be sleeping right now?


I may visit a doctor
this weekend.
I am a health care worker
who works with
doctors, nurses and pharmacists
every day of the week,
with health insurance provided through my employer,
(at a moderate cost to myself),
and I am concerned
how much money I may have to spend.

I will let you know.


August 02, 2009

Father of Waters

There was a marketing ad
used in the late 70's and early 80's
about my hometown.
I lived along the Mississippi River
and the story went like this:
When the Father of Waters first formed this river,
he created it in a straight, strong line
running through the middle of the nation
from northernmost states
to the southern states;
but along the area of my hometown
the Great Spirit was so taken with the beauty of the area
that he stopped, and turned for a second look...
And it is at this point the Mississippi River
turns from its north-to-south route
and flows from east -to-west;
formed by the beauty of the countryside.

and yes -
the beauty of my hometown
forces one to stop and turn
for a second look...