Growing Pains

When I was a high school sophomore, I started fainting. Frequently. Inconveniently. Embarrassingly. Sometimes, painfully.

I tried to explain it to my folks. Perhaps I was less than convincing while upright and coherent.

My classmates were really supportive the day I fainted in World Religions, fell out of my chair, and got everybody an extra day to study for the exam.

Then, one day, I fainted in gym class. It might have seemed like simply a good plan to escape a context that made me feel uncomfortable, except for one detail.

I was on the top bar of the uneven parallel bars when I fainted.

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Life Lessons from the “Chopped” Kitchen

I watch a lot of Chopped on Food Network. Not as much Chopped as West Wing, but it fascinates me. First, there’s the whole process of opening up a basket of random-esque ingredients and figuring out in 20 or 30 minutes of TV time how to turn them into something past edible and headed in the direction of delicious.

I cooked a couple of meals like that in San Diego last summer. Unfamiliar kitchen. New friends with a tangled web of food needs. Five big bags of groceries purchased by someone else who was, blessedly, a great deal more benevolent than the Chopped folks. A grill I didn’t know how to use. And, on the first night, about 2 ounces of olive oil to feed 12 people!

Amazingly, it all turned out great! And I have to admit, I felt a bit like I’d just won Chopped.

Then again, the whole mystery basket – vs – clock thing isn’t the only thing that intrigues me about Chopped

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Different Can Be Safe!

Today, Squirrel came to visit.
And yesterday.
And the day before.
And, in all probability, tomorrow.
At first, I barely noticed.
Mostly because Squirrel is same.
When Hawk came, he was different. Novel.
Today, Squirrel came to visit.
He brought no missing puzzle piece.
No sudden insight.
Just a reminder.
With, perhaps, an old truth for this time.
And, oddly, with a call to action.
Help heal the world.
Today, Squirrel came to visit.
Chattering and sorting the bounty of the winter garden.
This to keep.
That to toss away.
Choosing same over different,
As we learned at the beginning of time.
Squirrel. And you. And I.
Today, Squirrel came to visit.
Living both the beginning and the healing of fear.
Of racism and other stubborn plagues of our world.
Same is safe. Different is not.
Deep in our DNA.
Our history.
Our stories.
Today, Squirrel came to visit.
And so I went,
The Fiercely Compassionate Grandmother,
Having a blast, waving at babies.
Becoming more familiar.
More safe.
Smiles, too, of course.
Today, Squirrel came to visit.
In case you missed him,
Won’t you join me, waving at babies?
A little more fun.
A little less serious.
Through new eyes, different can be same!
Different can be safe!

Read more at Grandmothers Are In Charge Of Hope, pg. 73-74.




Sue Boardman, Certified Intentional Creativity®
Color of Woman Teacher & Coach