Got the Time?

Posted Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 @ 6:07 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Buddhism, Journal, Quotes

Where is time’s home?

Where does time live in all its cosmic mystery of millions of years and billions of sunrises? Were does it reside? Where is it, shall we say, most comfortable?

The answer, I think, is within us. That’s because we are the unfolding place for time. We are saturated with time. Right now, as you read these words, it’s rolling out from you. It’s filling space with your awareness of this one precious present moment. That, after all, is all the time we ever know. The past is a memory and the future an idea. But this moment, this breath, this deep sigh of relief or exhaustion, of care or concern — that, really, is all there is to time. The rest is nothing but words on a page or equations on a blackboard.

-Adam Frank, NPR


Posted Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 @ 4:49 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Education, Humanities, Journal, Recreation

Here is my self-talk: “I’m done. I’m done with so many books on my shelves that I’ve owned for decades and not read yet. Done with books I’ve read once and have no intention of reading again.”

I’ve purged two grocery bags of books from my shelves. I engage in a little dance with the books that remain, telling myself that some of them I will probably use sometime (they number in hundreds). It’s an interesting experience to look at a book and decide whether it departs, and why.

Books represent security to me — the idea that if I read enough, learn enough, I can control life. I can create safety. The idea that I don’t know enough, and that words and ideas will impart wisdom. I’m not judging myself for having spent the money on the books. They will find their homes. Yet it is time — Life is telling me — to interrupt this impulse and learn to BE with whatever arises that makes me uncomfortable.

Sometimes I tell myself I need to purchase a book because I cannot borrow it from the public library even via interlibrary loan (I like to read somewhat uncommon titles). At the root of this story, however, is again, the reflexive movement toward the familiar role of student. I delay action and avoid discomfort by returning to a role I know so intimately.

When I moved from Syracuse to Austin, I owned a personal library of 800 books. I couldn’t afford to move them all. I culled them severely and shipped only the books that generated the strongest connection within me, about 100. Over the years I’ve had the space and means to accrue more books. I want to engage with life differently. I own 1,311 books. It’s time to unburden myself.

Nobody Knows, But…

Posted Saturday, October 17th, 2015 @ 12:31 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Journal, Spirit

Love this. I have always loved Patty Griffin.

Link is this.

It Had to Happen Sometime

Posted Saturday, October 17th, 2015 @ 12:22 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Arts, Journal

Earlier this year, my husband and daughter joined a program sponsored by the YMCA, called Adventure Guides. It’s a father-child activity. In this case, it’s fathers and daughters. They have meetings, do crafts, play games, and go camping.

Right now, for the first time in eight years, I am at home — alone. For two nights! I’ve been away for a couple nights before, and that’s great and all… but being able to stay home uninterrupted for 48 hours is a luxury. So, what am I doing with this time? Creating. More specifically, I’m playing with acrylic paint and various techniques. It’s bliss.


Using the floor! Gettin’ down!

autumn trees

Autumn Trees / 18″ x 24″ impasto acrylic on stretched canvas


Green Abstract / 18″ x 24″ impasto acrylic on stretched canvas


In progress

Recent Art

Posted Wednesday, October 14th, 2015 @ 5:54 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Arts, Journal

I’ve been playing with paint the last few days. Here are the results. I do love the way I feel when painting, how place and time disappear.


“Bandwidth” / 12″ x 24″ acrylic paint on canvas


“Shattered” / 14″ x 18″ acrylic paint on canvas

And Time Flies

Posted Tuesday, October 13th, 2015 @ 12:56 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Arts, Journal

Has it been a month since I last posted?

I’m getting ready for Halloween these days. Claire wants to go as a wolf. I’ve decided to be a national park ranger. Did you know that you cannot purchase the badge (or the hat) unless you can prove you are an employee? So I’ve made my own. Not an exact replica, but pretty respectable!

National Park Service Badge

Sometimes You Get What You Need

Posted Monday, September 14th, 2015 @ 10:52 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Journal, Motherhood

Sometimes when you’re eight, and you’re worried about people you love dying, and you feel small and vulnerable, and you’re congested and tired and not quite SICK sick but not feeling great, you start Monday saying, “I’m not ready for school! I can’t face it.” And sometimes Mommy listens to her intuition, and instead of worrying that she’ll set a bad example by saying yes to a day off, she decides instead to give her daughter a day of her full presence. To fill her bucket with cuddles on demand, silly hand games, book reading, exploring a tree in the front yard, and whatever she wants for dinner. And at the end of the day, when the girl turns out to have a low-grade fever, the mom feels vindicated for having followed her wisdom.


Posted Saturday, September 12th, 2015 @ 11:41 pm by Kathryn
Categories: Journal, Nature, Spirit

There is a vibrant core of intuitive sacredness in me; when I pay attention and listen to it, and move in collaboration with it, I live in wholeness. My actions are true. I find myself more patient, receptive, loving. When I allow my mind to come in, thinking about all the things I could or should be doing to make my life unfold — then I get distracted, and my living becomes disjointed and fearful. It’s becoming clearer that the priority above all else is to stay connected to that core of sacred presence.


Posted Friday, September 11th, 2015 @ 9:51 am by Kathryn
Categories: Journal, Quotes, Spirit
old homestead

And whatever your labors and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world.

–Max Ehrmann

How to Handle Worksheet Homework

Posted Thursday, August 27th, 2015 @ 9:38 am by Kathryn
Categories: Education, Journal, Motherhood

When your child greets you at the end of the school day crying, “I’m stressed! I have yesterday’s worksheet to finish and today’s and the spelling homework! I hate school!” — that is disquieting. After six hours of sitting (with 35 minutes of total recess) and doing what one is told, to end the day with anxiety is a recipe for learning to hate school.

I did not push Claire to do the worksheets, but she decided to complete them. They were easy — tracing and printing the letters C, D, E, and F, on two sides of a paper. Could that time have been better spent? Could she have played, or helped make dinner, or gone for a walk? Yes, but Claire was worried about submitting blank sheets. I asked more about how homework is collected. In past classes, all the folders were put in a bin, and a parent helper or the teacher looked at it. In this year’s class, the folders are kept on the students’ desks. At mid-morning, a student helper collects the pages from each student to bring to the teacher or adult helper to review.

This requires producing papers on the spot, in front of everyone; it will be obvious when a student has nothing to turn in. So, I created a document that we’ll staple to any worksheets, and Claire will have something to submit. (To save paper, there are multiple forms on one sheet.) We’ll circle all the applicable activities for that day.

Worksheet Alternatives

This post is also related to yesterday’s post, To Do Homework, or Not to Do Homework?