Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Wally and his honeys...

We spent some time with our friends on Sunday afternoon. They recently adopted 3 children whose mother was killed by a hit and run driver.

The youngest, Leah, is a darling dumpling and she is foot-charmed by Wally's tickley beard.  His overall pockets are just right for little hands to go searching for treasures.  Those pockets occupied her with their zipper and snaps.

And not only a charmer of black haired, brown-eyed girls, blonds love him too! 
This is Honey.  She's a dog we brought back from near death.  She had parvo and simply wanted to be left alone to die, but Wally would not give up on her and kept her hydrated round the clock.  After 5 days she got her will to live back and now she loves him with a passion.  She is one of many dogs that we have rescued and found homes for that love, love, love us.

Last week, another rescue dog which we found a home for went missing and her owner found her in a well uncovered and hidden in tall grass.  She had been treading water and clawing the walls trying to climb out for many hours.  When we heard that she had been found we went to check on her.  She climbed into Wally's lap and buried her head in his arms to be comforted.  He was the medicine that did her the most good and he knew she needed him.  

We treated her with homeopathic remedies for trauma and her feet. She had worn her toes nails to the quick.  We thought she probably took in bad water too and so we treated her for that as well.  She will be fine.

It's really nice that we can see our dog friends when we visit our people friends.  Inter-species friendships make everyone richer.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Origami-dog pack...

So, this is my latest art project:  

Origami thank-you cards for contributors to our spay and neuter clinics for area dogs and cats. 

Most of my friends know that this is a project near and dear to us and our way of promoting inter-specie friendships.  Through donations and volunteers we fund and run monthly clinics free of charge through our group, Bahia Matanchen Animals.

This is an origami dog that I learned to fold while visiting my mother and joining her in Tucson's Japanese Culture and Origami Meet-Up Group.  

Origami is the Japanese art of paper folding. But you knew that...

I first learned folding from my grandmother.  When my sisters and I were young she made us a bound book filled with origami animals, flowers and birds.  It's one of my treasures.

One Christmas many years ago my son and I folded cranes by the dozens to hang on our Charlie Brown Christmas tree.  It is one of my fondest memories. 
It is a wonderful craft which still inspires me.  

I don't live near a Michael's so I had to make my own envelopes.  I took an envelope apart and re-sized it to fit folded A-4 paper, made a template and cut and glued them.  They turned out very cute, don't you think? 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

People ask me what slow living is.

Each day on the farm there are chores and they are the same every day.  It would be easy and natural to resent doing the same thing each day unless you view it as practice towards something you desire to be good at.  This is what slow living is teaching me.

For example, one chore is to sweep the front courtyard of the house.  The house is covered in bougainvillea and flowering vines.  The falling leaves and flowers are strewn everywhere.   There's a satisfying feeling when the walk is swept clear but it only lasts a few seconds.  Why bother?  Because when I sweep I see things, wonder, have illuminations of insight, commune with God.  Not always, but that is what I open myself to.  The commitment of keeping God central to everything makes sweeping the bricks an exercise in listening and expecting God to meet me in that task, in every task.

I sweep to welcome who-ever might come, to create a transition from a place of busy-ness to refuge, a place of beauty, rest and re-fresh-ment with friends.

My broom is my co-worker.  She fits my hand and task and we move together in tandem having a quiet conversation- whoosh, whoosh, the sound of twig-bristles on brick.  I too am a tool in a work I cannot always make sense of yet I can yield to it like a dance partner.  I sweep to be on cue to that connection that holds all things together. 

I pull the weeds daily that sprout between the bricks to show that this is the path, the well-worn way to the front door.  And I re-member this morning before the Eucharist, bowing down to weed my conscience of the past week, checking my course to stay true to the way of peace in myself, with others and with God.

I stoop again to look at petals, even the back side of a flower has a pattern that is a marvel.  Each petal of the papaya is furled and reminds me of a child's wind-whirler toy on a stick...God's design to propel seeds plants seeds in me. 

I sweep hot-pink and yellow petals not cigarette butts. That makes me smile thank-full.  My work is playful wonder.

Each moment leads me further into conversation with the present.  And so it goes when living slow...the mundane becomes sacred, the routine is practice in the faithfulness required of artistry.