Be free-floating, allowing the situation to surround you, and be in it. Take in the full surroundings, including the temperature of the water.
This may bring incredible clarity, presence and focus. This is what is means to be a jellyfish.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Featured Artisan from the On Fire Team ~ The Sticky Wrapper

YUM. 'Nuff said.

The Sticky Wrapper

Featured Artist - The Sticky Wrapper

This week's Featured Artist on Share the Love, Blogger's Unite is The Sticky Wrapper! A world of delight for all you "Sweet Tooths"! Wonderful treats for your special some one, parties and more!

Come to your senses with The Sticky Wrapper, where we spend our time reinventing classic flavors. We love to push the envelope to bring you new and creative treats that are sure to become fan favorites. You will always find creative and classic treats that will bring you back for more. My candy is made to order and in small batches. I can customize any order and would love to make favors for weddings, showers, or any party.

You can find the Sticky Wrapper On: Craft Cafe   Etsy   Facebook Twitter   Pinterest   Blog

Are you On Fire for Handmade? Grab the code for your blog HERE

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Walking on Wednesday ~ All I Wanted for Christmas

I think I am officially in the 'Runner' camp now. I totally relate to this card here. In fact, that is all I asked for for Christmas. All I asked for was related to running. I asked for new running shoes, I asked for new running clothes, I asked for fun socks to run in (specified that the clothes should show off said socks as well), and I even asked for my son (the music encyclopedia) to make me a running playlist. 

I could not think of anything else I really wanted. I tried to think of other things, but these are all I could honestly say I really wanted. (Ironically, I repeatedly requested these things over the week before Christmas, the week I ran only 2 days.) Christmas came, and I got all these things, feeling guilty that I didn't even run Christmas day. 
But I ran today. My new clothes, my new music, saving my new shoes for a drier day (I have a thing about soaking new shoes when I first get them), and ran farther than my normal 2 miles. My goal now to reach 3 miles before March. 
I have become a runner. Sounds funny to me. Sounds a little crazy. I am not one of those thin, muscular runner woman types. (Hubby says the kind that run their boobs off...I am definitely not that type) 
I am the one who looks completely dorky running, breathes really heavy while mouthing the words to the music. I still jiggle, my left eye tears almost non stop when I run, and lately my nose keeps running right along with me. I know I am a full fledged runner because I don't care at all that I look dorky, that I am a bit chubby, that I wipe my nose on my sleeve. I could care less what I look like when I run. I find I like the sweat dripping down my face, neck, and chest. I am in my own world when I am out there running, and it is pretty nice there.
I am a runner because I run. 
I find it therapeutic, I find it necessary. I find I think more clearly when running, and I also find I run better when I am thinking. 
So yes, I am one of those runners who talks about running like it is the answer to life, the universe, and everything. I know it is not. 
But all I wanted for Christmas was related to running. I wanted to feel even better running, and I love all of what I got. 
Our humble and cozy decor this year.
And yes that is Sponge Candy from Kelly's Country Store next to the tree.
It is THE best, and a family Christmas tradition for as long as I can remember
I will need to run more........
It was a perfect Christmas. But really it was perfect because I spent it relaxed and with my wonderful family. No big tree, no lavish gifts. Just time with everyone together. What I want every Christmas to be going forward too. And of course, by then, I will need a new pair of running shoes and outfits to match, and undoubtedly will need an updated playlist.......

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Featured Artisan from the On Fire Team ~ The Loopy Chick

The Loopy Chick - Who doesn't love Sock Monkeys??

The Loopy Chick Feature Artisan

This weeks Featured Artisan is Stacy Lynne - The Loopy Chick! You will find darling Sock Monkeys and "Snuggy" Baby Blankets in her shop!  All made by hand and all made with love by Stacy! Beautiful Crocheted and Knitted Gifts!

 You can find the Loopy Chick on: Artfire Blog Website Facebook Twitter

Are you On Fire for Handmade?

Monday, December 17, 2012

Music Monday! That's Not My Name

All of a sudden, people think my name is Rachel.
Never before have I been called Rachel, until about a week ago. Then, day after day, I have been greeted as Rachel, people ask if Rachel is there when I answer the phone at the shop, even 5 minutes after introducing myself as Rebecca, I hear 'Nice to meet you Rachel'.

Well people, That's Not My Name.

If I were to change my name, it wouldn't be Rachel. Not sure what it would be....probably something poetic and unusual, since when naming our own children, we leaned towards names that were not so common. 

What would it be? Something people would REMEMBER. Or, come to think of it, I often don't remember REALLY unusual names, especially ones I can't pronounce. 

Maybe I should just give in. Call me Rachel then. Rachel Raige. 
(even tho that is NOT my last name - I do wish people would stop writing check with that as my last name too)

No, just kidding. That's not my name!

Sunday, December 16, 2012

The Rain Won Today

Enjoying my coffee this morning, checking in on the computer and preparing for my normal routine of running, showering, getting in as many chores as I can before going to work, I was just about finished with my one cup and heard a heavy rain falling.
No hesitation today - not running in this downpour. Okay, that doesn't look like a downpour, but it is enough to convince me not to run today. 

Besides, there is the laundry.....and dishes.......

Got plenty to do anyways. And I should probably cook dinner tonight so gotta figure out what to take out of the freezer to cook.
At lease our tiny tree is getting a good watering before we bring it in to decorate. Yes, this is our tree this year. My youngest started growing this about 5 years ago, and we decided this year to save the money and not buy a tree, but to use this one. Charlie Brown, eat your heart out.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Featured Artisan from the On Fire Team ~ Sea of Dreams

Perfect time to dream of the sea (it was 32 degrees this morning) Cindy of The Sea Of Dreams, today's featured artisan. 

The Sea of Dreams - Featured Artisan

This weeks Featured Artisan is Cindy Anderson Wilson - The Sea of Dreams! At the Sea of Dreams you will find Beautiful Creations from the Sea! In all of her pieces you will find The beauty and mystery of the sea...there is nothing like it in the world and there are really no words to describe the feelings evoked by the sea.
You can find the Sea of Dreams on: Etsy Facebook Blog Twitter Grab the Code for your Blog HERE

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Walking on Wednesday ~ You Might Be Getting Old If.......

I am a fan of Jeff Foxworthy's Redneck Jokes. They have seeped in to our culture, and we find ourselves referencing them when the slightest opportunity arises. I even uttered the phrase yesterday, on our road trip to pick up our son from college, when the conversation ended up discussing hubby's dream truck after passing a beefed up pickup truck.

He spoke with that dreamy longing. "I wanna get the biggest diesel truck, raise it up on the biggest tires, get those KC lights and a bar to put them on...." 

Hello....KC headlights, totally cheesy 80's hun. Wait a minute. 80's. That is over 30 years ago. ugh.

This screams redneck to me. I married a redneck wannabe. I should have realized this when I kept buying him flannel shirts, but I rationalized the grunge fashion sense was really what was going on here. But alas, the phrase that kept running through my head was, You might be a redneck want a pickup truck with KC headlights on it and dream of driving through the mountains hunting deer with it.

Well the drive continued, we were going to pick up our son from his first semester of college. I thought about the 'you might be....' jokes, and realized I had an angle. You might be getting old if......
You might be getting old if the highlight of your week is a 5 1/2 hour one way drive to pick up your children from college.

We continued driving, searching for a decent radio station. We have not embraced the MP3 Players and iTunes stuff. Finally, we found the radio station whose tagline is "We play everything", meaning they play everything from the late 1970's and 1980's. Even My Sharona! (gratuitous video for you, since I missed Music Monday this week)

Yes, we are 80's products. 30 years ago, dang we are getting old. You might be getting old if your idea of enjoyment is listening to the terrible cheesy music of your teenage years. That is twice I used the phrase cheesy, too. Like, Valley Girl anyone?

About half way through the trip, it started to hit me. My legs hurt. Really hurt. We stopped for gas, and I waddled stiffly into the gas station convenience store to use the restroom. I was walking like a crippled old person, to use the bathroom because I couldn't wait until we got to campus. You might be getting old if your knees creak so loud on the way to a gas station bathroom the nice gentleman behind you rushes to hold the door open for you......

I noticed at the shop the other day too - I make noises when I get up from a seated position. My body gets so stiff when I sit, I make noises when I get up. And last night, after 11 hours of driving, I realized I might be getting old because I had to take painkillers to ease the pain in my legs from sitting so long.

I also realized I might be getting old when my son was telling us about his Biology final exam, and how one question really got him. He said it took him 3 tries before he got it right. He had break DNA down into RNA, then assign the corresponding Amino Acids, and then something else I can't comprehend because I was lost at the RNA step. Suddenly I feel like I can't teach him much more. He is a full fledged adult, studying things well beyond my little ole brain.
You might be getting old when your child is suddenly much, much smarter than you.  

It was bound to happen, I just am not ready for it! I will pick up some more hair coloring, hide those pesky grays, and go for a run. To feel like I am not as old as I really am.

Later, I will have to take some pain killers, and probably fall asleep on the couch at 8pm. I might be getting old, but I still don't have to admit it just yet, do I?

Friday, December 7, 2012

Walking on Wednesday ~ now Running on Thursday?

I am starting to think I should rename Walking on Wednesday - I have not been very good at actually posting on Wednesdays. Plus, I am running now for most of the route. So maybe Running on Thursday? 

I measured my route last week, before the Jingle Bell run (my first public run!) and found the distance was 2 miles. So this is now my standard workout, and I am concentrating on keeping it as much 'run' as I can.

Yesterday (Thursday), I noticed that the run didn't hurt as much as it had the previous 3 days. The 5K run did have it moments of pain, so I treated myself with a day off Sunday. Then on Monday I went for my normal run, or so I thought, but when I actually ran it was not smooth, it was HARD! I ended up walking most of the time. Tuesday, a little better, but still much walking. Wednesday, I ran almost the whole time, but it was not easy. At my turnaround spot in the middle of the run, I gladly walked a wee bit until I could catch my breath. Then I took up to a run again, but it hurt, and all I longed for was to be done.

I was getting worried that my one public race would be the end of this running thing for me. Did I really want to run? Did I really need to push myself that much? It was hard, and 'walking is good for you too', I reasoned.

I nearly accepted this, too. Thursday, I had no expectations of running. I started with a brisk walk, down my long driveway and up that first doozy of a hill. At the top of the hill, I felt different. I ran, and it felt natural. 'Okay', I thought, 'run then!' I ran to the turnaround, and was surprised that I didn't need the walk at that point, I kept running. I made it all the way to my driveway running. There was even a sprint at the end there, thanks to LadyJ (my Cocker Spaniel) chasing a squirrel I wasn't prepared for. (Running suddenly fast downhill is very hard to do without falling down at the end of a 2 mile run. Just sayin.)

It was walking up the driveway for my cool down that I began to really believe that I could keep running. I could train for the Shamrock Run in March, and by then I could even add the extra mile into my daily routine to make that run even better than the one I had just done.

It started raining by the time I got to the house. I stood in the rain, loving the cool wetness on my sweaty head. It felt great, I felt great. Me - who looks really goofy running (I discovered this looking at the pictures my daughter took at the race on Sat!). Me - who gave up running in middle school in favor of the pool. (I did much better on the swim team than I ever would have done on the cross country team) Me - with the bad knees that normally swell to the size of elephant legs after running. I felt great after running 2 miles, no problem!
Life is funny that way. It has a way of reminding us we can accomplish things when we put a little effort into it, and let ourselves succeed. We can do things we once thought were impossible. We can make the impossible possible.

I never thought I would want to join races at age...well at this age. I never thought my knees would let me be a runner. I just kinda fell into it really. Back when I started walking everyday, I started with no expectation other than to walk every day. It evolved into this - running and feeling great about it! 

I even still have bells on my shoes, reminding me of what I can do.
See how you can surprise yourself when you just let yourself do things you never thought you could?

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Featured Artisan ~ Handmade Fuzzy

My dear friend, Frauke, is the featured artisan today. She has THE BEST little mice, and unique Stethoscope Socks/Covers. She is always expanding her lines as well, so stop by and she the vast array of fuzzy, and not so fuzzy, items she creates with loving hands.

Share the Love, Blogger's Unite

Featured Artisan - Frauke Avent -  Handmade Fuzzy

This week's Featured Artist is Frauke Avent of Handmade Fuzzy! A wonderful artisan and Lady!

At Handmade Fuzzy you will find Unique handmade Gifts for everyone. She makes wondeful, personalized Stethoscopes and her Mice are just way too cute!

All of her items are truly works of art and made with Love! Knit, Crochet, Felt... you will find something for everyone!

Her one-of-a-kind items are ready to ship from my smoke-free home.
Find Handmade Fuzzy On:     Zibbet   Facebook   Blog     google+
You can grab the code for your blog HERE

Monday, December 3, 2012

Music Monday! December

It's the first Monday in December. 

That about says it.
December ~ Collective Soul
Poetic, beautiful, a bit mellow, a nice song for a Monday.
Hope your day is beautifully mellow and poetic.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Jingle Bells ~ the Jingle Bell Run

Well I did it. I ran in my first public race - for a good cause. The Arthritis Foundation's Jingle Bell 5K Run.

When I heard of this 5K run, I thought 'that really isn't much further than my usual route' so I thought this was quite do-able. I wouldn't say I have been working up to this, in fact it was a spur of the moment decision to enter. I never really thought of running with a huge group of people with bells on my shoes.  I only discovered a few days before the exact distance I had been running, well and walking mixed in. It was right at 2 miles. A 5K is 3.14 miles. I was nervous - would that extra mile really do me in? Just one more mile really, not bad, right? 

A very festive walker!
My 'festive' feet, 
complete with bells
and number.
My Festive Ears
So I joined, and day of race got my Christmas Spirit going. I wasn't the only one - in fact I was dressed rather conservatively. Just my festive feet and Santa Hat. Oh yes, and candy cane earrings.

Dressed and ready to go, I started getting more and more nervous. I had my trusty walk-man, convinced that this was the thing that would get me through without killing myself. Just keep pace with the music, and I would be fine.

Outside before we all lined up to start, I overheard some runners talking about the course.
'Whaaa?? hills??'
'I ran this course the past 2 years', one said. His friend said, 'Oh yes, didn't you finish in 18 minutes or something like that?' He said, 'Yeah, but that last hill is a real doozy, I ran up that one last year asking the people on the sidelines 'we are almost done, right?' '

'Remember, keep
your own pace....'
My jaw dropped. A runner that can do 3.14 miles in 18 minutes was saying the last hill, the hill you have to take at THE END of the race, was a hard one? 'GREAT! I am in trouble', I thought. 

So I was adding a full plus mile to my normal routine, PLUS a killer hill. 'Wait a minute', I thought seeing the map of the route complete with a topography graph at the bottom, 'those are ALL HILLS?'

My Daughter had bells
around her neck
Thank goodness my daughter was there, also with bells on, to cheer me on and comfort me.   'Mom, think of where we are ~ you thought there WOULDN'T be hills?' Yes, she was right. I was in denial really, living in  he middle of the mountains, thinking it would be a nice flat run. Well there was no turning back now. I just kept telling myself, 'keep your own pace and you will be fine! You can do this, just keep your own pace.' 

The Starting Line
So off we all went ` it was a strange start, I felt. Just a huge crowd all taking off at once, some slower than others (me), old and young, and lots of kids. I had my headphones in, music going, my nerves were now running too. I was running my usual pace, I thought. 

Off we go!
But I was getting passed left and right! Young, old, in between, they all were flying by me! My mind, racing, thinking that I better not join the crazy's that were sprinting now. But I doubted myself. How SLOW WAS I running? 'This is my normal pace', I thought, the music helps me keep pace. My mind wouldn't stop, I kept thinking,'but am I REALLY that slow of a runner?' Oh, stop!', I said, 'Run your pace and you can finish'. But this was hard! 
I was working hard to just keep my normal pace. Nerves. All nerves. I remembered that the beginning is usually hard on my normal daily runs too. It doesn't start feeling easier until at least the 2nd or 3rd song, so I comforted myself that I would be fine. 

So I kept on, comforted in the thought that my groove would soon kick in. When the 3rd song was starting I thought, yeah I am good now, falling into a comfortable place. 
But wouldn't you know it - HILL. Crap. Ok, more mental talking to myself now. 'Just keep the pace up the hill, and when you reach the top you will slowly recover as you take it your own pace.' So run up the hill I did, breathing heavy, going pretty slow, but still running. And wouldn't you know I did end up passing many of those folks that passed me at the beginning. Yay me! But dangit why is there a shooting pain in my shoulder?!?  

So I tried to keep pace and recover for a bit at the top of that hill, but before I could fully get rid of that pain, another hill. And so it went. I had to walk a wee bit, but I walked fast. When I ran again, I just ached for that 2.2 mile water station. Wouldn't you know it, the mile 2 marker was another hill. So I walked into the water station, and grabbed a cup of water thanks to a wonderful family that was handing it out, but could hardly drink it because I was trying to still walk fast and breathing so hard it was difficult to drink. But I did as best I could, and I still felt bad throwing the cup on the ground, but that is what you do...

Once finished with the water, I knew I was in the home stretch now, so back to running. It was uphill, a nice long hill, but I kept running. Then I see my daughter who had run down the course to cheer me on! She rocks. Snapping pics, and running along side me, seeing her gave me energy I didn't think I had. 'You can really do this', she assured me, 'You are almost done!'

The end was near - but wait - that is a steep hill to the finish, dammit. This hill wasn't a long one thank goodness, and it was to the finish, so I started to sprint! I gave it all I had and realized that I can do this! YAY the finish! 
To the finish I ran, 34:10 the clock said! I did it in less time than I thought I would! Not bad. 

Tired, but proud.
Yes I want to do another.
I couldn't help feeling like I could have done a little better. I could have started sprinting sooner at the end there, maybe I could have run more instead of walk up those 2 hills. Maybe this, maybe that, oh who was I kidding? I DID it, and did it in a better time that I thought I would. This feeling of should have done better, well I can save that for the next race, and actually do better. 

Jingle All the Way!
Because I do want to run another race. It is a great way to push yourself, a great way to measure your abilities This one rewarded me with little bells to wear on my shoes, (I am definitely keeping them on my shoes you know....) and I got a nice tee shirt too. Not to mention the satisfaction of knowing I can run 3 miles. Something I could have never accomplished last year. All in all, not bad. AND the Arthritis Foundation raised a good bit. All in all, pretty GOOD. Jingle all the way!