Wednesday, January 27, 2010

winter weather warning

wednesday, jan 27: i stop quietly, suddenly. i am outside the library, in the park. people are walking, running, playing all around me. i close my eyes and savor the feel of the cool, damp breeze flowing over my face, through my sweater, caressing my neck, my arms, my legs. i open my eyes slightly, just enough to see the clouds racing across the sky, my half-open eyes drinking in the sight of gray and white, a change from the normally bright blue sky, before i quickly move again, ready to continue with my day.

an (almost) daily joy journal

words, words, words

tuesday, jan 26: i bathe in words, in possibilities, in ideas of "what if". i adore my short story writing class and can feel my heart blossoming as i contemplate how to approach my first assignment. i've opened a door that has remained closed for a number years and i am cleaning out the cobwebs, dusting off the surfaces and reminding myself of what it's like to create using words.

an (almost) daily joy journal


monday, jan 25: it's done. i drop the report on my boss's desk, finished. after receiving and analyzing 719 comments over the course of a week, knowing i have only a short time to collect and process the data, i have summarized the results and am finally ready for internal q&c. i walk out of her office with a lightness in my step and joy in my heart.

an (almost) daily joy journal

Monday, January 25, 2010


sunday, jan 24: i find myself once again drowsily ensconced on my couch with purring kittens draped over me, softly kneading my pink fuzzy robe, listening faintly to the jets game in the background as i give in to the urge to let my eyes slowly close and let my body just rest, even if only for a moment.

a daily joy journal

Saturday, January 23, 2010


friday, jan 22: i sink down at the end of a long day. the soft mattress embraces my weary bones, the pillow ensconces my head. the stress seeps out of my neck muscles and i take a deep breath. a cat pounces on the bed, attacking my head, attempting to subdue me. i have just enough energy left to lift my hand and pet her head before my eyes close of their own accord and i fall asleep.

a daily joy journal

Thursday, January 21, 2010


thursday, jan 21: i look around the table and smile at glasses clinking and laughter spilling out over our table and beyond. i see people from different aspects of my life mingling together and enjoying each other's company. it may be stormy and windy and dark and rainy outside, but inside, we are warm and cozy and happy.

a daily joy journal

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


wednesday, jan 20: it's been a long day and my brain is fried eggs. words aren't traveling from my brain to my mouth very quickly and i find myself snapping my fingers impatiently as though that will help me sort through the mess inside my head to find the appropriate sounds and syllables to convey to my seven-year-old exactly what it is i mean. he just looks at me blankly. dammit, why can't he read my mind?? i give up trying to tell him what i want and just reach for him and tug him up on my lap. sometimes i miss his tiny body as a baby, how he just fit in my arms and i could hold him to my heart's content. now, he is more than half my height, and heavy to boot. i can't carry him around the living room anymore to get him to sleep, nuzzling his ear gently while singing coldplay's ticking clocks. i can't say i love him by just picking him up, nestling him in the wrap and going about my normal household chores with him sticking out my side or front as though he's an additional appendage, as necessary as a hand or arm or leg. i miss that, so i drag his child-size body up next to me. he reads, silently mouthing the words he is unfamiliar with, while i watch american idol and savor the weight of his body against mine and caress his head with my nose, breathing deeply of his earthen, windblown smell. i read once that have a child is like having your heart walk outside your body, and that is so true to me. i cherish him, i hold him, i hug him and i think, i never want you to stop being okay with me hugging you.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

tuesday, jan 19: i get an e-mail out of the blue from a friend, t: want to meet for a slow wog tonight? yes!

i bring ash, who decides baby z, mama p and t's mom j are the coolest people ever. he tells me to keep doing laps with t around the park. more, mom, more, he says. do three more laps!

t fills me in on the ultra and we talk about skiing and snowboarding and running while he limps beside me. the combo of his long legs and my short legs usually means that his walk is my jog, but not tonight. he is still recovering from 38.5 miles on sunday. i don't mind. i just like being out, in the evening, moving my body, while talking. it's wonderfully delightful.

baby z laughs and giggles and squirms and claps and ever so tentatively walks around the park. ash is delighted with him. ash also decides mama p and j are awesome, too, and when we go to the library after the run, he drags j in and shows her all the awesome books.

we part with loud, cheery good-byes and can't wait for the next time we get to get together.

Monday, January 18, 2010

sushi cho

monday, jan 18: agedashi tofu, pan-fried gyoza, sticky white rice, sake and good conversation at the end of a chaotic day of answering the never-ending phone calls and e-mails (miles or kilometers?).

go jets!

sunday, jan 17: sleeping off the dehydration from the previous night while faintly hearing the jets game in the background, then waking up in enough time to watch the jets win.


saturday, jan 16: i go bar-hopping on a busy saturday night on 4th ave and downtown with him and an old friend of his. i'm not normally a bar-hopping kind of girl, but the energy and good beer and wonderful vodka tonics topped off with a song at karaoke at a favorite place leaves me with a warm, fuzzy feeling of happiness.

Friday, January 15, 2010

the park

friday, jan 15: the late-afternoon winter sun slants through the pine trees, warming the sentinels just enough for them to give off the slight scent of nostalgia. i walk gently, softly, and then jog, floating on air. children's shouts are faint in the distance; dog owners whistle and chase after their charges on a rare, wide expanse of green lawn. i am free, unbound. i am alive. i am joy.

Thursday, January 14, 2010


thursday, jan 14: dinner at pei wei. my only companion, a delightful book. my legs are pleasantly shaky from a second strength-training session in a week and my shoulders, while sore, are finally releasing pent-up stress. the scent of ginger and scallions wafts up from my now-empty plate and my stomach acknowledges its satisfaction. the ultralight beer glides down my throat, crisp fizziness floating ever so gently down, down, down. i sigh, placing the beer down on the table and diving deeper into the book, a quiet respite from the white noise of daily life.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010


wednesday, jan 13: rough day. where's the joy? reaching out to friends. snuggling in my pink fuzzy robe and curling up with the cats and ash while watching the fizzy bubbles rise to the surface and pop in my tonic water. it's the brief moments in time, a breath, and, to paraphrase a friend, they start to piling up on each other, creating more and more and more.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010


tuesday, jan 12: meeting a friend for lunch in the park and trading food, just like in elementary school. feeling the sun on my neck and back, warming and energizing my tired bones. watching tennis players practice and high schoolers wander the park, picking up trash. taking the time out of a busy day to just sit and relax.

sleepy time

monday, jan 11: falling asleep in his bed while he sits on the dresser, listening to him talk about work and life and family and thoughts and ideas.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

sunday, jan 10: deep-cleaning and decluttering the house, in and of itself, is not joy-inducing. it's headache-inducing, perhaps. overwhelming and tiring, for sure. but there is no 'joy' in the process. i am exhausted and yet still feel the compulsion to finish the job. it can be soul-cleansing and i have joy when i am finished and survey the house, organized and clean (mostly; i ignored the art table/filing bin) -- no more piles of paper and books falling over the place (mostly), no more toys piled up in precarious towers.

after taking out three trader joe's paper bags full of recycled material to the recycling bin, three giant trash bags to the trash, two giant trash bags and one box of clothes/toys, plus a bike, to twice as nice, a box of books and magazines to bookman's and another, larger box of books prepared to be taken to friends of pima county library, along with sweeping, mopping, scrubbing, dusting and vacuuming almost every available surface, i thought i'd feel a little more joyful; instead, i see everything i missed. but that's not the point of this resolution. the point is to see the joy.

so, i will turn my focus from the small section of house i didn't clean today and i will look at the rest of the house -- sparkly, organized, clean.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

where to begin?

saturday, jan 9: eating lunch on the top of a hill after hiking 2.5 miles with three kids and a friend in perfect weather...scattered clouds, light breeze, plenty of sunshine...savoring the turkey, hummus & provolone in a pita with lettuce while savoring the expansive view of the catalina mountains.

watching his delight with a $10 gift certificate at bookman' many books to choose from! where to begin?

making dinner. yes, making dinner. i love to cook. the texture and smell of the food, the creation of something new from disparate pieces. not only do i get to create, but then we get to eat it. best of all worlds.

snuggling during the bedtime story.

Friday, January 8, 2010

the little things

friday, jan. 8: the good-night bear-hug. the weight of pi as she snuggles deeper into my chest, purring her contentment. the softness of my pink robe as it ensconces me in its warm fuzziness. the bursting flavor of tonic water with a hint of clementines as it washes the stress of the day away. settling into my bed and turning out the light.

Thursday, January 7, 2010

clouds + breezes

thursday, jan. 7: i walk out of the dark building. the late afternoon sunlight slides across my face and the breeze caresses my cheeks as though she hasn't seen in me in ages, although it's only been an hour. i smile and stop and my eyes close. i inhale the sweet scent of the sycamore tree and listen to the kids across the street tumbling out of their classrooms and into waiting cars. i open my eyes to watch the clouds. i see painter's strokes, smearing and sorting and streaming and bunching and highlighting. who knew how many different shades of white and gray could exist?

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


wednesday, jan 6: it's late. he comes out of his bedroom, scared there's a black widow in a jacket lying on the floor. silly boy. i tell him we have a bug guy that comes every month and sprays down the house, so there's no way any bugs -- even black widows -- can get inside the house. he hesitates -- can he trust me? -- and decides it's okay. he comes over and gives me a huge hug, just hugging and hugging and hugging, before clambering back into his house, thoughts of a black widow vanquished.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

try again

tuesday, jan 5: dusk falls as je keeps falling off his bike. he growls and stomps away, tears threatening to spill out of his baby blue eyes. this bike is big for his seven-year-old body; he's just learned how to ride without training wheels. he is discouraged. i sit down on the curb and ask him to do the same -- and to listen to me. i tell him that you fall off a bike, it's ok. you just take a deep breath, say "man, that was scary," and get back on to try again. he doesn't believe me. i promise him that if he can do that to the end of the parking lot -- just get up and back on the bike every time he falls, i'll carry his bike the rest of the way home. his eyes light up. "but, mom, what about this deal. i make it all the way over to where we started from without falling, and you get me baskin-robbins." oh-ho! we have ourselves a negotiation. "nope. i don't care if you fall or not," i tell him. "just make it to where we started from without throwing and fit and with getting back up on the bike each time you fall, and i'll take you to bto yogurt. deal?" "deal." and he does it. with confidence and joy.

Monday, January 4, 2010

running + beer

monday, jan 4: it's nighttime downtown and a little cold and we got off-course, but now we are running where we should be and being passed by a multitude of other like-minded people. we finish and head to her house for pork sandwiches made by her husband and i enjoy a beer. life is good.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


sunday, jan 3: football. no homework. bliss.

Saturday, January 2, 2010


saturday, jan 2: the band plays jazz and i enjoy a manhattan with friends at a swanky bar in the lower foothills. we laugh and share stories from a recent ski trip. afterward, he takes me to in-n-out burger, the best place to absorb a buzz. mmm, chocolate milkshake!

Friday, January 1, 2010

go take a hike

i know, i know. blogging is so last decade. i don't care. this suits my new year's resolution: find one snippet of joy each day and write it down.

friday, jan 1: it's the middle of the day and the parking lot is packed. i circle around and around and around before i finally snag a spot. i throw on the camelback and head out for a hike. i stop often, photographing random details. the sun is shining and i am smiling.