Wednesday, March 23, 2011

  Some people collect shells when they go to the beach...I collect sand. I noticed years ago that sand wasn't just sand; in Tulum Mexico the sand is like sugar, granular and white. While in Kitty Hawk North Carolina, it is chunky, less like sand and more like shell fragments. On the other end of the outer banks in Jockey's Ridge, the sand looks like it came out of a huge sand box, uniform in shape and yellow, (Jockey's Ridge has sand dunes 16 stories high!). In San Juan Del Sur, Nicaragua, the sand is black due to the large amount of volcanic material mixed in with the sand. Recently I received a postcard from a pen friend who had been to the Sahara Desert, she incorporated some of the redish orange sand into the art on the post card. It was very interestingly done and it gave me an idea...
  Why don't I put some of my sand collection to good use and send some of it to my pen friends. So I am going to do just that. I am at the moment in Wilmington, North Carlina, my husband has a business meeting and I decided to tag along so that I could collect some sand from Wrightsville Beach. I think I will start by sharing the sand from this trip. It will be fun to work out a way to send the sand on a post card, since it would be too easy to send it in an envelope. If you aren't on my mailing list and would like to receive one of my sandy post cards, please e-mail me your snail mail addy and when I get them done I will send you one!

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Humbling Thoughts

Dear Friends,
    I woke up this morning with a sinus headache. I had to get up at 5:45 to get everyone breakfasted and off to work, but since it is a rainy day, and moving my head really makes it thump, I decided to go back to bed and catch up on letterwriting and my blogs. Our dog Tagg got up on the bed to nudge me out as if to say,"Hey Mom, it's light outside what are you doing in  bed ?" When he realized I wasn't going to get up, he flopped down resignedly at the end of the bed, but kept looking wistfully over his shoulder as if to say, " Mom, your worrying me...". He is such a good companion, sweet and funny and annoyingly persistant when things don't run on his schedule... (as he gets up from his spot at the end of the bed and tries to flip the laptop off my lap with his nose, so he can assume its place). I guess before long I will have to get up since I'll have no peace if I don't.
  In the early morning quiet, I have been contemplating a great many things, our lives since we came back from Costa Rica, health challenges and questions about the future. But while I was thinking about all these things I felt more palpably the newest ache in my heart, the sadness I feel for the poor people of Japan. The tragedy that has befallen them makes my troubles seem like inconveniences. First the earthquake, then the tsunami, and to add insult to injury, one nuclear reactor after another in the middle of a meltdown. How hopeless and helpless they must feel. In some ways I can empathize, everything but the front two rooms of our house was destroyed by Hurricane Hugo in 1982. My husband, seven yr. old son, six month old infant and I lived in one of the two remaining rooms while my husband and I began the slow process of rebuilding our lives. It took us 6 years to get back to "normal", but we didn't have to worry about our children being washed away by an ocean surge the height of a 3 story building, or being made sick by radiation from not one but three reactors melting down.
  The task ahead of the Japanese people will be a difficult one: To survive all that has befallen them and then to find the courage to face the future, bury their dead, clean up and start over. It is my job to help how I may, with my finances where we can, with any practical things I can do from here like collect clothing and toiletries to send to refugees and most importantly to keep their plight before God, petitioning for His intervention and mercy.
  Reflecting on hard days ahead of the Japanese people is helping to put my personal life challenges into perspective. I have much to be grateful for: today I woke up with my husband beside me, I know where all my dear family memebers are, I have a roof over my head and shelter from the cold and rain. I am truly humbled.
  If any of you have thoughts on how we might be a comfort to those who are now finding themselves homeless and in danger please leave a comment. I am sure if we all put our heads together we can come up with some ways to really be a help!
  I am off to start my day, I hope that you are all safe , happy and healthy. Until next time, I will see you in the mail!

Early March Outgoing Mail

Coffee Bag Envie to Angelia
Dr.Suess post card to Garci

Back of postcard to Garci

Dr. Suess envie to Misty

Back of Dr. Suess envie

Joss Paper post card to MIM

Back of post card to MIM

Watercolor collage post card to Pamela

Back of card to Pamela

There were other things that I mailed out as well, but I absent-mindedly dropped them in the box before I took pictures of them. Hope all is well and that everyone is having a good mail day!


Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Well, it looks like me getting away isn't going to happen right now. I could go and leave my family to handle all the things that we have going on right now, but I don't think that would be fair. We have been working hard to restore order to the gardens and to make repairs and improvements to our house, after our year in Costa Rica and there is still much to be done. Too much for me to feel peaceful about time away. Sigh.
 The weather is warming up and soon I will be able to spend lots of time outside in the sunshine with my hands in the soil. Gardening has alway been very healing to me so I hope that before long I am feeling like myself again.
  So, for now at least I am not taking time away. I'll do my traveling in my thoughts and dreams and take the opportunity to make some progress where I am. Thank you all for your thoughts and prayers, I have felt them.