Primitive Brain – Fight or Flight – and Homework

  Because Ben and I are both artists, and experience a large range of emotions, we’ve had to learn about anger and how to handle it, manage it, subdue it, understand it and live with it. We each have a tendency to fly off the handle and we’ve had to study the Primitive Brain otherwise known as the Fight or Flight part of the brain that … Continue reading Primitive Brain – Fight or Flight – and Homework

Endless View from Rocking Chairs

What a completely blissful day. These are the new rockers we picked up at a garage sale this weekend, and this is the view looking out onto our back field in Southern Oregon. It goes on and on and we end up with stunning sunsets all summer long. I sat out here and read the first chapter of The Conscious Parent for a new reading … Continue reading Endless View from Rocking Chairs

Magic Dragons and Refusing to Grow Up

Today, Bean and I had some errands to run, and I chose the Pandora Station “Peter, Paul and Mommy” for our musical background. We sang along to Feed the Birds, from Mary Poppins, and some Simon & Garfunkel, a little John Denver, songs from The Sound of Music and we sang Puff the Magic Dragon (twice) and I cried. I have always cried every time … Continue reading Magic Dragons and Refusing to Grow Up

“But The Kettle’s on the Boil and We’re so Easily Called Away”

We’re so sorry Uncle Albert But we haven’t done a bloody thing all day We’re so sorry Uncle Albert But the kettle’s on the boil and we’re so easily called away This song popped into my head when the boys arrived home from school, and I realized that I hadn’t done much today, but read blogs, and look at things on the internet. I’m wanting … Continue reading “But The Kettle’s on the Boil and We’re so Easily Called Away”

Another Going Nowhere, Just for Show

  Somehow, the other day, having lunch with Bean, the idea of Tevya singing If I were a Rich Man, from “Fiddler on the Roof,” popped into my head. Bean was telling me about a dream he had with lots of staircases going in every direction. Some of them didn’t even actually Go Anywhere, he was saying. I am a product of my childhood, watching … Continue reading Another Going Nowhere, Just for Show

The Brain Sport of Chess

In 2007, a computer “solved” checkers—that is, went through every possible move to determine the optimal game. The number of possible moves in a chess game is dizzying, more than the number of atoms in the universe; no current computer can “solve” chess. via The Prince’s Gambit – The New Yorker. (Bold highlight mine)   Two weeks ago, my dad and mom came up to … Continue reading The Brain Sport of Chess

Curvy Roads and Short-Cuts

  Just the other day the thought hit me that I would rather take a curvy road any day over a straight shot. On a long, straight road, there is no mystery, no surprises. It can become monotonous. A curvy road keeps you on your toes. You have to be alert to the swiftly changing road conditions. There is a spike in adrenaline around every … Continue reading Curvy Roads and Short-Cuts

Because Cleaning is so Distracting

  Or rather, we have a friend coming over this afternoon, and so the boys are cleaning, and I am cleaning, and we are all getting distracted by the things we are supposed to be putting away. I’m straightening my bedside table, and finding books of poetry that should be leafed through if only for a moment after I’ve dusted them, before stacking them neatly … Continue reading Because Cleaning is so Distracting

A Really Long Downhill toward Freedom

Ben gave me a 20-week Fitness Challenge which will take us right through summer and hopefully become so habit forming, that we never stop doing a little something every day that is good for us. Together, we have walked, and ridden bikes and even tried a little running. We are building up our hearts and lungs with longer walks to get ready for even more running. We live … Continue reading A Really Long Downhill toward Freedom

Say Yes

  What would parenting be like if we used the Rules of Improvisation in our interactions with our kids? I’m not suggesting this entirely. I’m just wondering. Right now, I’m reading Amy Poehler’s book, “Yes Please.” I’ve always liked her – but didn’t know what a pivotal player she has been in the world of comedy. I didn’t know that she was a part of the … Continue reading Say Yes

“I Will Not Pretend That My Hands Don’t Work”

When Scott and I were first married, and setting up our home together, I was unpacking boxes of files to put into the office, and came across an envelope full of sentences he’d had his boys write as a consequence for behavior that got them into trouble. I sat on the floor flipping through these pages, laughing until I cried. Scott didn’t ever just have … Continue reading “I Will Not Pretend That My Hands Don’t Work”

Muzzles, Snouts or Beaks

  Yesterday, on the way to music lessons, there was a lively conversation in the car between my six-year old and my nine-year old about whether the word muzzle and snout could be used interchangeably. Ben is a huge reader, and he was saying that a writer will use muzzle instead of snout sometimes, and then other times talk about a snout. At first I … Continue reading Muzzles, Snouts or Beaks

Complicating Simple

Here’s how the conversation went with my husband earlier today… “I’m afraid I complicate things,” I said. “No, Really?” he laughed. “But first you simplify your complicated, then that seems too easy, so you complicate it again, and add layers and extra buttons, and some fancy widgets, then you scrap the whole thing and go for simple again, but only if it can be in … Continue reading Complicating Simple