Thursday, January 29, 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Palais de Justice - Paris



We went to Paris in 2002. I've been looking through old pictures. The picture of the sculpture Winged Victory of Samothrace was also taken by me. I wish we had had our good camera back then.

Monday, January 26, 2009

Your whole self


I was talking with someone the other day about the health of a close, aging relative who has actively ignored his mental health resulting in, I believe, a greater number of physical problems. "If only he had taken care of his mental health and his physical health, he wouldn't be where he is today." The next day, I was replaying this in my head, when I realized I am not practicing what I preach at all.

I do take care of my mental health, and to some extent my physical health, but I have some big illnesses looming in my future if I don't actively work on my physical health (type 2 diabetes, heart disease and diverticular disease). This got me thinking about what a whole person is, and what would one have to do to take care of my whole self. What does that mean and how is it defined? Some would say taking care of your emotional and physical self and some would include spiritual as well. Then I feel like I fall down the rabbit hole finding all sorts of little niches to take care of to prevent a precipitous decline. Of course I'm just running away from the fear of what changes I need to make in my life.

I need exercise. I need to eat more fiber, more vegetables and fruits, and fewer pastries, lattés and pints of Ben & Jerry's. I need to get more consistent rest.

I've started working on the fiber by eating more oats, adding flax seed meal to things and remembering that the fruit on the table isn't just for Fiona's benefit. I haven't been to a Starbuck's for five days (and before that it had been weeks since the last time). I've practically bankrupted my family with my stupid latté and pastry habit. Really. I'm just throwing this out to the world that I am thinking about this and trying.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

One of the gifts I gave Fiona for Christmas was a book of poems by Langston Hughes. It is called Poetry for Young People: Langston Hughes.



The poems are powerful. Fiona keeps coming back to this book over and over again. It is difficult though, because the book has made me have to explain segregation to my five year old, to talk about the pain that people feel because someone thinks they are different. My husband explained what the word "negro" means and why we don't use that word. She is just five years old, and yet the son of one blogger I read was called the n-word when he was five.

Barack Obama has called for a national day of service on Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. In the morning, Fiona and I are going to go and buy some groceries to donate to HopeLink. There will probably be several boxes of mac and cheese that will go in, because that is Fiona's favorite thing to donate. We are also going to each go through our clothes, books, etc, and find items to donate to a shelter or Goodwill. I asked Fiona to think of something we could do to help people or to celebrate Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. She thought for a moment and then said, "I know, we could draw a bus, and in the front would be a person with a dark face and a person with a light face and in the back we could draw a person with a dark face and dark hair and a person with a light face."