Posts Tagged ‘happiness’

I’ve taken a lot of dog photos lately, mostly of Trooper, our new foundling dog, but Zephyr at the spry age of  12 1/2  is still my number one guy. I can’t imagine my life without him. xo

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My kitchen is collecting old stoneware bowls:  heavy, earthy, a bit raw. I love mixing oatmeal molasses batter in them, or sipping bok choy soup.  My new favorites. 🙂

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70 degrees in February. Out walking Zephyr in the neighborhood, this is what I saw:

1. Gardeners trimming, racking, digging, planting.

2. Neighbors out  chatting on street corners.

3. Skirts, shorts, lots of white legs.

4. Kids swinging in the playground.

5. Dogs walking their owners everywhere.

6. Camellias blooming; pick your color!

7. Grass covered in daisies.

8. A couple, stripped down to skivvies, napping on a picnic blanket.

9. Two separate women with their dogs lounging on blankets, reading books.

10. A woman on a park bench, her face held up to the sun, her pant legs rolled up to her knees.

11. Basketball game, tennis games, thwack of balls and cheering.

12. Big blue sky. 🙂

d, xo

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I wandered past a magazine shop today and remembered ReadyMade Magazine had used a quote I gave them about living in small spaces. Low and behold, Oct. was out and here it is.

REady Made

Written under my aka even, Dahlila Found, it reads:

” At age 36 I took my dog on an extended road trip though the Southwest, living in my jeep for eight months. I had a small tent and, for three months, I pitched it behind an outdoor shop in a small mountain town on the remains of a sand volleyball court. I bartended, worked in the gear shop, and showered at a local campground every three days–$3 for 8 heavenly minutes. I was clean, well fed and content with very little.”

That was actually an amazing time. I traveled alone with Shadow, my Australian Heeler all around the Southwest on mostly back roads, some even dirt. I rarely really knew where I was and I tried to always eat where the locals ate. No fast food, no interstates. Blue roads the whole way.

I landed in southern Utah just because I met some nice people and why not. I lived in my car, threw down my tent nearly anywhere–down a dirt road, up on a mountain. One morning I woke up in Arizona to discover I was about 40 feet from a grave marker on the side of a hill.

REady Made2

Love the picture! My tent was actually about that size.

The best part was I was rarely afraid. I had Shadow, who gave a good growl. And the people I met were always kind, generous and helpful, whether I was lost in Navajo territory–which I sometimes was–or my car broke down in mormon country, which it did. Strangers always helped.

It scares me to think about it, but I know if I lost everything I could survive out there. Maybe, not here in the city, but out there–way out there, I could.

Thank you ReadyMade!


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I love Myers lemons. I mean, I really love them. My neighbor has a tree smattered in yellow like polka dots. They never eat them. I take them away in full bowls. I squeeze them in water, baste salmon, stir lemon thyme pasta and occasionally make lemon squares.

Three years ago I properly planted seeds I had squeezed from one such lemon, although my compost pile is filled with them.

First lemon

The seeds took root upon my kitchen window sill, grew larger until I moved them outdoors. They battled winter, bugs and various other attacks of nature that descended on them like locust.

After a year,  I had three plants left, one barely hanging on. They vary in shape and size, like siblings perhaps, but this year to my absolute surprise one blossomed an aromatic flower and then two.

The weather, being particular balmy, urged them on and this is the fruit of my labor–my very first lemon. It’s only an inch and half long yet and as green as a lime, but still, it feels like magic.

This winter when the rest of the garden as fallen asunder I have this to look forward to, one–maybe, more–delicious homegrown Myers lemon. 🙂

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I’ve been working on my cards for Dahlila. They’re fun but they aren’t photographing well. They don’t pop–but then they are typed, HAND typed on an old Olympia manual. The fun is fading, as is the ink ribbon. My fingers hurt and I don’t think the antiquity of it all is appreciated, really. The computer printer is calling my name. . .

See, you can’t SEE the writing. This one says, ” Sharon discovered her family’s rantings were much less grating when she mixed the Adivan into her afternoon tea,” Dahlila 2008.

Now, that’s my kind of sentiment, which is why I wrote it. 😉 d.

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I woke up this Sat. morning to see my burgundy wrist warmers smack in the middle of the Etsy homepage treasury. How very cool is that? And I sold a bracelet. I’d love to sit around and be very proud of myself, but I’ve got work to do. Still, I’m smiling inside.  d.

LaPorscha in Burgundy Wrist Warmers

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It’s Saturday and our impending storm is still . . . impending. The clouds are high and dark, chilly, light wind. I’m tickled. The big storm hits tonight. And as I sit here Psycho is playing on TCM. Janet Leigh just got it in the shower. I love it when weather matches a movie. The first time I saw The Shining was a blizzardy, snowy night in Tahoe, piled on the couch w/friends trying to scare the bejesus out of each other.

I walked Zephyr before the storm hit. It was lovely. The neighborhood felt rather empty, muffled of sound. I got coffee, went through the park, traversed neighborhood alleys. Good alleys are disappearing, blocked my security gates to keep out transients. I love a good dirt alley, the backs of old garages, the overflow of unmanicured vines and hedges. It’s a glimpse behind the curtain, how a person keeps their alley passage. One house keeps a secret garden, another grows spiky cactus to keep intruders at bay. The houses that keep immaculate front yards and dumpy alleys are the curious ones. You just know their hiding something.

 I’ll leave you w/this photo I took last week. You don’t see moss for very long here–too dry, too hot. I thought this was lovely, sticking out of an exposed root of a Sycamore tree.

mossy stump

Stay warm, drink hot tea, curl up with a good book or movie, enjoy the weather!


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I’m very excited. I just made my first Etsy sale. The lemongrass wrist warmers pictured in yesterdays post. I promptly mailed them off and am very pleased.


On our way home from coffee today, Zephyr and I ran into ANOTHER stray dog. That’s THREE in five days!


He’s a handsome guy, but he and Zephyr weren’t melding so we left him sniffing in the park. He looked pretty healthy, older, a bit of limp, well fed, but no collar!!!!!! Universe, what, what, WHAT????


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So much for the sun. It made a small visit, then left in a whirl of wind and cold drizzle. And I bought cafe flowers! Now, they are huddled beneath a bench, wishing, surely, they were back at Target nestled between their seedling siblings.

So, I had to get Zephyr outdoors today, even for a short trod in the muck–which the park really was. My motivation was gas station hot chocolate, my latest addiction. Starbucks be damned! The gas mart is where it’s at. For a $1.29 I get the whizz drip of the automatic cocoa dispenser, and I get to press the buttons. (I love pressing buttons: elevators, stamp machines, semi-automatic door openers, the triple choice, hot drink machine. It’s 5-10 seconds of childlike fun. What will happen if I press this button? I know what’s supposed to happen, but. . . .

So, my mocha/h.c./vanilla cafe mix choice was stellar, and oddly satisfying, especially post-mud romp. Zephyr, of course, waited in the driver’s seat, muddy paws, everywhere. I have a towel, but really, after a gazillion dirt road wanderings, my jeep is quite the dirty, furry, road weery machine. I sometimes envy those sporty little city cars, vacuumed, polished, shiny, a car you could wear a black cocktail dress in w/o a snit of worry; no fur roller needed, no snagging your nylons on the dog torn seat cover–but then it goes away. 🙂

* * *

And this. . . just as we were leaving the park, I noticed a little white card w/a stamp lying in the gutter. A fairly clean street, I stared at it for a minute then got out and picked it up. It was a letter from a house one block over, going south (CA). The envelope was soaked, dirty. The postman had dropped it. Awful!

And yet I was a little thrilled.  (see cocoa dispenser happiness, above.) I found a real letter, pen written, hand stamped. I was so grateful it was return addressed, otherwise, I might still be out there, door-to-door, looking for it’s sender. . . OR! I could have mailed it onward adding the story of the letter’s adventure. Ooh, that would have been good too.

Anyway, I found the house, the owner. He was very pleased w/his goodfortune, my find, but had the grabs on a Doberman Pincher in the doorway, rather anxious, it looked, to eat me, so we waved our quick goodbyes.


So, on the tail of dreadful night’s sleep, it was a good day. (R even brought me warm banana/Nutella nut bread at the cafe today. 🙂 How sweet is he?

Now, I need to feed Zephyr, finish my 3rd man scarf, and finish typing little love notes on my old Olympia, a treat w/my Valentine’s Day showcase.

Today’s word: Optimism. 


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