Thursday, December 26, 2019

In the Heart of Winter I Have Memories of Summertime


♫♬♪♫Summertime-summertime-sum-sum-summertime, summertime-summertime-sum-sum-summertime-SUMMERTI-I-I-I-IME…Does anyone remember that ditty?  I found it buried in the recesses of my brain, a commercial from my childhood.  Lemonade? Fruit? No? Anyway...It's not your anticipated yuletide carol, but as promised, I will pay tribute to my summer, the summer of 2019.  Consider this our video Christmas card since I didn't get any paper cards in the mail this year. Where has the time gone? Christmas day has been here and passed. Where have the years gone? 2020 is just around the corner.

Friends and family, sweet memories, blessed and beautiful times... Great God, You dress the world of summertime and paint the sky with stars.  You write your story on our lives and guide the ways of all. Give us a wider sense of wonder, that we may unwrap the world like a gift, always thanking you for your goodness and living in love with our neighbor.

Father Creator of all, thank you for summer! Thank you for the warmth of the sun and increased daylight. Thank you for the beauty in all I see all around me and for the opportunity to be outside and feel the sun and enjoy your creation. Thank you for the longer days of light. Draw me closer to you this summer. Teach me how I can pray no matter where I am or what I am doing. Warm my soul with awareness of your presence and light my path with your word and counsel. As I enjoy your creation, create in me a pure heart and a hunger and thirst for you. Amen.

(From my book of prayers. I collected these prayers and have prayed them for so long.  I don't remember who the authors are, but I thank them and have been blessed by their words. May their words also be a blessing to you in these darkest days of winter. May they instill hope and anticipation of the warmth and light that will surely return. May they bring the comfort of Eternal Light that was born into this world, that which surrounds us this day and always.) Amen again.



Peace,
Ronda


Monday, December 16, 2019

A Technological Threesome

Here I am. I'm working on my next blog post, because I am being faithful. I'm thinking about summertime and the living is easy. Songs, memories, smiling and reveling, relaxing into what it is I need to say. What it is I need to do.

So I start. I'm writing and getting the ideas flowing. Good. Now some pictures.  Where are they? On my phone? But I thought I shared them? I set up the new sharing features and downloaded the app and it said sharing.  But it also said I needed to do some updating.  On a new computer, updating?  I was in love with my new computer...I am feeling betrayed.

Last night I opened the box.  It emergerd into my world, that wonderful, delicate piece of technology, staring at me. Endless possibilities.  A blank slate.  Beautiful!  I hand it to my husband.  Set it up, I say.  He hands it back to me.  No words.  I moan.  No words.  Noooo, that's your job, I say.  PLEASE set it up, I say.  Do it FOR me, I say.  No words.  I roll my eyes.  I sigh.  I growl.  I huff.  I act like a 5 year old...it's painful. I keep going.  I'm delighted. I'm devastated. I'm confused. I don't quit.  I persevere. He makes me. I resist. My brain twists. I press on. I ache. I feel hope. I need help. I search. I succeed. I set up my computer. -  I SET UP MY COMPUTER! (CAPLOCKS JOY!!)

Yay!!!  I feel SO accomplished!  I feel so new!  I feel so capable! I love my computer!

 And then, I get bold. I get brave. I stay up late. I use my computer. I explore new features.  I think, Yes I Can!  I can be a friend of Technology and I will allow Technology to be my friend.  A good friend.  A faithful friend.  Then BAM!

A feature does not work and I am brazen now, almost cocky.  Ok, I think.  No problem.  CORTANA!  How do I fix this? Step 1...OK, I do it.  Step...Oh no, now I stepped in it. Already? Again?..  PSYCH, the computer says.  You should not be doing this! I KNOW! Your printer is experiencing a problem! Traitor! Not again!  Your computer won't shut down! I hate you!

Is this regret I feel? My husband holds out his hands. He takes the computer from me. Let me see it, he says.  OK.

Moments pass.  He is gentle.  He is composed. Restart.

"Here you go...It works."

"Thank you!" I say. " I love YOU!"

Time

Time. It goes. Tic. Tock.
Tic. Tock. Gone. I have plenty.
Use it wisely. Time.

Fall down. Get up. Fall down. Get back up.
Fall down. Stay down. Get back up girl.
Fall down. Get back up. Fall down.
Get back up girl. Fall down.
Moan... Inhale. Exhale.
Inhale... Exhale...
Sigh. Stay down...
GET. BACK.
UP!

So here I am blogging again. I don't feel like I have permission to start again without an apology and an explanation. Why do I even see it as starting again? Why not just continuing? Moving forward? Life, a happy life, a successful life, is, I believe, about reframing. Sometimes restarting. Sometimes getting back and getting up. Sometimes moving forward. Sometimes, moving on.
Dramatic. So dramatic. And, so, I took the liberty of writing some poetry, to share, with you.

The first is a haiku, technically speaking 5 - 7 - 5 syllabic construction.  The second is a nonet.  9, 8, 7, 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 syllables in each line respectively.  Fun.  Poetry is fun! Or at least I can say that I had fun writing these poems to share with you. I hope you enjoy them as much as I enjoyed writing them , on my new laptop, I might add, with a touch screen, woohoo! and a bamboo pen for drawing, yippee!!  So grateful! Merry Christmas to me!  Merry Christmas to you!!

And tomorrow, perhaps I can fill you in on what went on this summer. Some pictures.

Now it's fall. More pictures. But almost Christmas, and winter, chilling...More to come!

Today. No promises. Tomorrow. Moving forward. Because...life is too short to be anything but happy! Thank you for being here. ❤️

Peace and Love,
Ronda

Friday, April 5, 2019

Keeping the Peace

Today is a rainy Friday.  I have the luxury of playing catch-up on my life at home.  It's been going well.  I caught up on e-mails in only an hour and 20 minutes. I filed all of my paperwork from the past 3 months.  I did chores, I did dishes (in my new dishwasher - LOVE! LOVE! LOVE!), I did a healthy salad for lunch.  And I WAS enjoying spending time quietly putting together a list of recipes for easy reference and menu planning so we (Chris, Sam and I) can all stick to the new slow-carb diet plan we are following for at least the next month.
New Kitty - Anniebell
Then I exit the room to get my computer, leaving dog and new kitty inside, laying quietly in their assumed positions, kitty on the couch, dog somewhere planning out her next sneaky move.  It's my fault I know. I'm as guilty as anyone who gets snacky in the afternoon, 3:30ish you know, after a lunch salad and before dinner protein and vegetables.  But I prefer a snack of, oh let's say, baked kale chips and green tea with some turmeric, coconut oil and soymilk, sweetened with a little bit of stevia and topped with a sprinkle of black pepper to get the full benefits of the turmeric.  I do NOT choose to eat CAT POOP!  But my dog does!!!  UGH! GROSS! DISGUSTING!!! 

Entering the den, I hear a rattling coming from the bathroom where kitty spends her nights and alone time when I need to be gone and still want to keep the house from getting broken up. What is tha…? Oh, it's the crate. It's the cat litter! IT'S THE DOG GETTING A CAT POOP SNACK!  My peace and quiet flees as I tell her (the dog) to "Get OUT!"   "GET OUTSIDE!"  Sprinkles of litter on Dogs nose confirm my suspicions. (Granted it is the natural kind made with corn fibers, baking soda and plant extracts, but I digress...and it's still GROSS!)

Open door, bells clang! Dog runs out! Chickens on the back stairs, hiding from the rain, scatter and squawk!  Rooster run and crow! Door slams! Bells clang. 
Chickens escaping the rain
Deep breath...Barking, squawking, crowing!  Oh no, massive chicken poop on the back steps. UGH. In dog's mind another opportunity to snack...NO.

Door opens, "Get inside!"  Calming down.  "Go to your bed!"  It's like doggie jail sometimes, like her favorite place to hang out most of the time, a place where she usually gets a treat...Not today!  (Not at this moment anyway).  It's jailtime for a while.  Until I finish this blog post anyway.
Dog in Jail

It's quiet again now.  Kitty laying by my side.  Trying to help me type every once in awhile.  That's ok.  Animals will be who they are.  They will be what they are and I can only do my best to work with them to garner mutual respect, promote the best behavior as possible as often as possible and to keep the peace.  

Every day is a new day!  Thank you God for the opportunity!  Thank you for all that I love!

Peace,
Ronda 

Friday, March 22, 2019

Meet the Artist at Sacred Garden

I have been fortunate to be able to revive my relationship with the Sacred Garden Bookstore in Greensboro.  They have been a wonderful outlet for my sacred pieces and we have recently begun having a meet the artist day at the bookstore.  It allows me a chance to work on my art pieces and it allows those interested in my art an opportunity to ask questions and chat with me, the artist.

It has been a most rewarding experience for me and the people who have attended have enjoyed themselves as well.  I look forward to doing more events.  The next, meet the artist day at the bookstore is scheduled for April 9, 2019 from Noon- 2pm.  I hope to see many of you there!

Peace, 
Ronda

Saturday, March 16, 2019

RIP Little Fritz

Work on a farm, even a mini urban farm is always present and can get wearying after awhile, especially in the rainy, cold days of winter.  But by far, the most difficult part of being a caretaker of animals, especially animals that you come to respect and to love, the hardest part of having them, is losing them.

While doing my morning chores one day a couple of weeks ago, I came upon our precious little kitty guy, Fritz, lying dead at the edge of our woods. It took me aback, made me gasp and broke my heart.  We buried Fritz at the edge of our woods where he had died and laid a stone and an angel kitty
upon his grave.  Even three weeks later, I am saddened and teary when I pass by the place where he lays.

But this is life and life goes on.  I will give my last respects to him here and share it with the world of cyberspace.  I will remember his sweetness and companionship always. RIP little Fritz.

Love,
Ronda




  

Wednesday, March 13, 2019

Opera at the Carolina and Coffee - February Review

It is a pleasure to be actively involved in the Greensboro Arts community! I love it! 

Since becoming a part of the Greensboro Opera Board in the fall of 2016 I have had the fun of experiencing Gypsies (Carmen) and Hair (The Barber of Seville) and Japanese Lanterns (Madame Butterfly); and now Sweeties and Witches (Hansel and Gretel). 

As a member of the Opera Board I have had the pleasure of serving on the special events committee all three years. The special events committee is a wonderful group of creative people that devote their time and energy to planning numerous events throughout the year including the EMF collaborations each summer, meet the artist receptions for each opera, our main fundraiser, the fall gala and the event we are currently working on, our annual end of year meeting.  Fun, fans, feasting, fantastic! 



Flashback: On Monday February 4, the Special Events Committee, in conjunction with the Opera Board's Education Committee hosted an early morning reception at the Carolina Theater to honor Opera at the Carolina sponsors and to introduce and announce the winner of this year's Barbara Peter's Write Your Own Opera award, Neveah White. Neveah is a fifth grader from Brown Summit Elementary School.  She wrote the winning script, The Showdown which was transformed into an opera by David Holley, Greensboro Opera's General and Artistic Director, and UNCG faculty member Alexander Rutty. 


The Showdown is a play about overcoming bullying and building teamwork. The Showdown premiered the morning of February 4th, followed by excerpts from Hansel and Gretel, this year's  Greensboro Opera's spring opera. The Showdown will be performed again at this years Greensboro Bound festival at Scuppernongs Books in May of 2019. Greensboro Bound 2019

The coffee for this year's Opera at the Carolina reception was provided by The Philosopher's Bean. Yes, Chris and I were able to provide the coffee for this year and last year's event! Yay! The new 2 kilogram Besca roaster helped us in getting the beans roasted to perfection, but we still need to come up with a more efficient way of brewing large amounts of supremely delicious coffee. Coffee urn pour-over tastes pretty good but it's messy and takes a lot of time. (This too shall pass.)

People at the reception really liked the coffee. Some even LOVED the coffee, which seems to be the usual response when people taste Chris' coffee. We also had some wonderful cheerleaders and sales ladies there making sure that everyone at this even knew who brought the coffee and where they could get some.  Yum! Thanks ladies!
Peace, Ronda