Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Keeping the Memories...

My imagination has been such an active part of who I am. I'm fascinated by what may come. What could happen? What will happen? The past has always called to me as well. I've imagined hundreds of different lives and wondered what it would have been like to be one of those interesting women.

In recent years, I turned that imagination about the past into actual research about my own ancestors. It's been fulfilling and fun. There's still so much I haven't been able to uncover, so my search continues.

My home is filled with bits and pieces of memories. I've been reluctant to part with items which trigger such strong imagery and feelings, but I've done quite a bit of parting over the past year or two. Yesterday I began going through some boxes of things. Odd assortments of photographs, vintage valentines, jewelry, knickknacks... junk to many, treasure to me. I still find it hard to separate the memories and the imaginings from the items. Is this what triggers all other keepers of things? Those labeled hoarders. Those disdained by the very neat and tidy masses? Thankfully, for me, it's not food or animals, but it's a wild assortment of so many other things.

My mama saved my first grade artwork, my dresses, shoes, even books which were left behind when I was sent to live with grandma and grandpa. She tucked them away in old suitcases and boxes, saving them for a day when we could look at them together and share a laugh and a memory. I don't know why I'm saving her treasures. I'll never get to sit with her, holding one in my hand and say, "Remember when..." or hear her giggle over any of it. When I do hold one of these things, I am transported back in a way nothing else can do. I'm there again, and she is with me, and my world seems a little more complete.

© 26Jan2016 ajj

Monday, January 25, 2016

Poem for This Day...

I will not be dissuaded from hope.

I will get up when I've fallen. Every time.

Step by step, pushing my limits. Spiritual, physical, emotional.

If I suffer loss, it will not beat me down.

Roll, roll, roll with the punches.

Rise, rise, rise again. And again!

Not to just survive. To overcome!

I will not be dissuaded!

© 25Jan2016 ajj

Thursday, January 21, 2016


There was a time, a long while back, when I dreamed of living on an acreage with plenty of space. Far from people, filled with animals of all kinds. Maybe a log home or an old two story farmhouse with a big red barn. I would have a huge room with a grand piano and floor to ceiling bookshelves...

These days I dream of a Paris or New York apartment with all the amenities or a little cottage near the Oregon Coast. The dream mainly requires I must be close to restaurants and shops, especially cozy book stores.  I will have at least one cat and maybe a little dog.

I'll wear hats. I've never worn hats much, because I was told I didn't have the head for them. Maybe I don't, but why should that stop me? I'll wear expensive perfume and silky scarves, but I won't wear make-up ever, unless the mood should strike. I'll say exactly what I think, without feeling like I must apologize for my opinion. I will stop wondering why this old friend, or that other one, never calls anymore. My address and phone books will reflect those who maintain connections. All a person really needs is the love and friendship of a few true friends, and the love of their life partner and children, of course.

I'll write my truth. In writing it, I'll try to be kind, but even if the truth is unkind it may have to be written. I saw a quote somewhere... if you didn't want it written about you, you should have behaved better... something to that effect. Oh my, the things which could be written about me. Things which may well be cruel, seen in print. I have to remember every truth is tempered by circumstance, what we knew then, what was the trigger, and how we addressed it or changed from it.

So, the dreams... new location; simpler life; be myself; hold those who love me close, and let the rest go; be honest, tempered with kindness; accept my truths and my failings, but don't linger there; read; write; and pets... yes, I must have pets!

© 21Jan2016 ajj

Tuesday, January 19, 2016

Friend Connect...

I've still been using Google Friend Connect, and just spotted an update which says it's really going away for blogger. I'm not sure how I'm going to be able to follow my favorite blogs. I need to make a master list, I guess, and try to check in now and then. I feel like I'm slipping quickly behind on technology changes. I'll have to ask my sons if they have any recommendations.

My "joy" theme is struggling a bit today. I've been too preoccupied with computer issues to find my moment. I'm getting ready to head out to the mailbox, maybe there will be a surprise waiting for me. I feel a little "joy twinge" just thinking about that!

Until tomorrow...

Sunday, January 17, 2016

While Searching for Joy...

A new focus for this year, is to seek joy. I believe it can be found in all the moments of our lives. Joy isn't a mood, it's a state of being.

A little bit ago, the James Galway version of Somewhere Out There began to play. There was a time when any version of this song immediately reduced me to tears. It was a favorite of my mothers. She requested it to be sung by one of her grandchildren at her memorial service, but in the overwhelming planning of it, I forgot until some months later. After she passed, the song would evoke so much sadness I couldn't listen to it without weeping. I didn't see the joy in her choice. It took me a long time to realize it was mom's message of comfort to us, that she would still be "somewhere out there" and loving us just the same, as she always had. There's joy in believing that, in knowing her love crosses all barriers between her former life here and the new life she is now part of.

I'm still learning to look for the joy in every situation. It isn't always easy, but it can be found when we open our hearts and our minds to it.

As always, wishing you Joy!

© 17Jan2016 ajj

Saturday, January 16, 2016

My Thought for Today...

Life sometimes gets rough. We're left wondering why, and we are often left without answers. Once in a while the answers are right there waiting to be found.

In the midst of suffering, a new revelation may appear; in the midst of pain, healing may be happening; in the midst of loss, hope can be found. Loving the word "midst" today! I'm looking for JOY, because if you seek it, you will find it in the most surprising places!

Wishing each of you a large measure of JOY today!

© 16Jan2016 ajj