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Oh, Dark Winter November 30, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart — heartwriter @ 11:34 pm
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Oh, glorious winter.

As we huddle indoors from the chill outside, we seek warmth and comfort in food, a good book, conversation, a hot cup of tea, bad TV, more chocolate.

In these early days of our new season, we are surrounded by darkness. The day ends early as the sun sets before supper is on the table. Leaves lay fallen to the earth, leaving the trees naked. We feel naked too as these months bring on anniversaries of the deaths of loved ones, anxiety over the upcoming Christmas season. Just last night a neighbor’s home was nearly burgled and two blocks away from them, more break-ins have been reported. With the heavy cloud cover many experience sadness as they dream of warmer days and long to see the sun.

Oh, glorious winter.

I love to be huddled indoors with candles lit, soup on the stove, NPR chatting in the background. But I still have to remember to look for the light behind the darkness when the view out my window is grey just too long.

And that’s it. Those little reminders of light.  A letter in the mail, a call from a friend, a funny email, an extra hug from your kid, a smile from a stranger passing by your front window, a caress from your spouse.

I can’t just wait to receive light from others, I have to be the one giving it, that’s the best part. Baking cookies for the family on a Wednesday, just because, reading ten books aloud to the children before starting supper. Asking my daughter to help me unpack the snowmen collection. Challenging my husband to a game of cribbage, when we’re not even away on vacation.

We reach out, we try, and in these little efforts we see the dark isn’t that bad for it reveals light in places you thought only saw shadows.

Oh, glorious winter.

by J.G. McGlothern


Full November 24, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart — heartwriter @ 5:13 pm
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Let’s be honest for a second. Beyond the grateful spirit of this holiday, way past our reflection of our bounty and counting our blessings, today is really about the food.

Personally I’m all about the potatoes. Pass the mashed ones please. Then send the sweet ones down my way. Bring on the gravy, serve up the stuffing, let me have the turkey skin and you can have the rest of the bird. Save me a slice of pumpkin pie after I have room and please, please let me share the last brussel sprout wrapped in bacon with you. You don’t want it? Okay, I’ll take it.

It wouldn’t be the same if I ate this food alone. Indeed those gathered around the table with me make the food even more savory and delicious. The conversation, the thankfulness, the laughter, yes, the love expressed with one another is definitely the gravy of it all. Then there are those I love not gathered around the table with me, who are somehow with me throughout the day. In my thoughts and silent prayers as I peel potatoes, whip the cream and help in the kitchen, laughing with the others.

The food is just a tangible way of expressing our thanks in a weird round-about way. We make our favorite dishes for our family and friends, offerings of love.

As I write this, I am sitting at my sister-in-law’s table and her just made last night apple pie is staring at me. With its perfect homemade crust, I swear Paula Dean must have been here.  Frost covers the grass outside, my children play, my hubby sleeps and I pour myself another cup of coffee doing the thing I love best, playing with words, filling a blank page.

Although I will have seconds on the potatoes and make room for more when I am stuffed on stuffing, I am aware that I am already full. This life is nourishing, sustaining and blessed and I am full to overflowing.

 But please before you go, could you pass over that bowl and let me have just one more dollop of potatoes?

 by J.G. McGlothern


Monday’s Random Thought: Voice November 21, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart — heartwriter @ 7:36 pm
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Sometimes it takes awhile before we find our voice – building confidence or figuring out our stand in the mean time.

During our time of reflection, weighing different sides, trying out our voice and wondering what it would sound like if spoken out loud, others have spoken their words hundreds of times with ease.

Learning from each other – inspired. The ones holding back teaching the outspoken the gift of discernment and observation.  The bold just doing what comes natural, teaching the power of using your gifts.

It’s a joy being in your forties, discovering new voices within and not giving a damn about what it sounds like to others and at the same time making a difference.

by J.G. McGlothern


Bending to Fear November 17, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart — heartwriter @ 8:19 pm
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Today in yoga the instructor gave us a new pose I hadn’t done before. As everyone moved forward to the next phase of it I sat motionless, catching eyes with the instructor I said, I’m really scared of this pose for some reason, I’m really afraid to try it.

You should be, they way you are approaching it would be scary, bend your leg instead of keeping it straight, she gently told me with a smile.

Oh, this isn’t scary, I discovered and said out loud as I correctly moved into the pose.

After lots of laughter from the class I sank even deeper into the pose realizing how good this one was for my hips.  Releasing and letting go and all I had to do was bend one leg.

Fear is real, fear signals so many things, but sometimes it is just about listening to all the words, gathering all the information before moving forward. Then it’s about surrender and just doing it.

by J.G. McGlothern



Hard Lesson November 16, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart,motherhood — heartwriter @ 5:03 am
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Tonight my son asked if you can tell on a teacher. He wasn’t referring to his teacher, another teacher. He told me the story of how this teacher spoke to him on the
playground in a way that didn’t make him feel so happy. I know who she is, she
has her sassy moments and I was glad he didn’t get her as his teacher. But I
know she has a good heart, she just yells sometimes, kind of like me.

So ensued the conversation of how telling on her wouldn’t have done a damn thing. I was good and left out the damn part, (this time) but I thought it for sure.

Here is this innocent kid trying to figure out his way in this world and then bam here comes the part about all adults not always being that nice. But I phrased it more around the words of letting it go would have a more positive result than bringing it
up to her.

Oh, dear God, I have to chuckle sometimes, you really gave me the male version of myself in my second child didn’t you?  We want to correct everyone, change the world and scream out from the top of our lungs, Why can’t we all just get along?

by J.G. McGlothern


Monday’s Random Thought: Change November 14, 2011

Filed under: From The Heart — heartwriter @ 9:06 pm
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Why is it so easy for a leaf to change color and fall to the ground only to be swept up or turned back into the earth?

The leaf makes change look effortless and so beautiful.

Perhaps it is us humans that make it so difficult. What if with the falling from the tree we were guaranteed a beautiful landing, would we still do it?

by J.G. McGlothern


Cover Up – Color Part II November 9, 2011

Filed under: Observation — heartwriter @ 10:14 pm

Every room in our house is a different color.

When we bought our house over thirteen years ago the word on the street was that the previous owner was a stripper.  Every room had some sort of animal print on the walls. Zebra border wall paper in the living room, leopards jumping out at you as you walked down the stairs to the basement, little bunnies in the kitchen.  The first night we slept in our new home, the zebra and leopard wall paper didn’t make it through the night. I promptly ripped them down, talk about stripping.

Over the next months the white walls were transformed with a bit of paint. Color adds so much, reflecting warmth, personality and a bit of life. Never mind that it covers up past sins, hides imperfections and is a cheap way to decorate.

You may find dirt on our walls or dust bunnies, not the other kind of bunny, hanging from the light fixtures but you won’t find white walls in our house. It’s against my religion.

by J.G. McGlothern