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Mid Life Crisis-sing

4 Oct

Just so you know, right off the cuff, I am not near my mid life, therefore I cannot be crisis-ing about it!  It so happens that the women in my line live forever.  Therefore at a mere, 42 years of age, I am not even close to the mid-line.  I am, however, in a mid-of-something cri-song.  No, I have not been studying Dr. Suess in preparation for this post.  I am, I suppose, a natural devotee, of sorts, to the great doctor and my method of thinking probably reflects my “Hop on Pop” view of things.

The Foot Book by Dr. Seuss

Not “Hop on Pop”, but worthy material just the same!

Now back to my Cri-song…  Within my not-so-mid-crisong is a new state of poverty (not an actual state, merely a line on a governmental census).  It is the happy reliance upon a benefit check which tides the family budget over, “just enough.”  This is not so bad, the state of “just enough.”  For I find, actually just discovered this morning, that my silver jewelry is shinier within the present state.  I even think I have MORE jewelry now that we qualify for assistance (not really, it is just that I have opened my jewelry box to investigate its contents).  In fact, I have re-discovered jewels that were previously considered, by me, not worthy of my standard.  However, they now present themselves within a new light.  And with this new perspective comes sparkly goodness upon my fingers, my ears, my neck, and my wrists.  Oh La Lah!

Silver and Crystal Necklace

I do believe this was a gift I received for my Bat Mitzvah, a sliver and crystal pendant.

In my previous jewelry wearing persona, I carefully and simply would only congregate like metals.  Thus, yellow gold with yellow gold, and silver matched only to other silver–or white gold with white gold only.  NO MORE…  The new Cri-song demands all sorts of metal be mixed and interwoven (or twined) with other metal.  And what I considered, beforehand, to be gaudy and overbearing, is now placed upon my appendages and worn with triumphant fervor.  I am resurrecting jewelry from my Bat Mitzvah days, and wearing it with the gargantuan Granny rings that have somehow made it into our repertoire after loosing Brian’s mom and Granny to the call of Heaven (through Brian’s mom we inherited a few Granny pieces).  I have even rediscovered a Cartier bracelet I was given “way back when”, which might boost me into a more affluent social class should I have it on.  You know, it might help the nouveau riche overlook the fact I carry around a vintage, patent leather purse which I recently purchased for $12.oo from the Discovery Thrift shop.

Vintage 1950's Purse

Nice and Shiny

Yes, the Cartier I must begin to wear again.  Which means I need to find the golden, flat head screwdriver which came with it (Heaven forbid I utilize anything other than the golden screw!).  Wow,  I did a Google search, just now, for a bracelet like I described, and I learned that the bracelet has “been seen on all the hottest celebrities”.  Oh no…and now I just looked up the value of said bracelet and my husband and I looked at each other and said, “MY oh MY, we must sell it!”  And then we laughed, for which is more important, to follow the example of “all the hottest celebrities”, or to have cash in hand to buy some fresh milk…  Decisions, decisions, decisions! 🙂  Ok, now that I’ve taken you (and me) for a ride, the truth of the Cartier, as I remember it, is it is a “knock off”, not the real thing.  Which means I would probably have to pay to have someone even look at it!  Aaaahhh more Cris-songing.

“So what is the point of all of this rhetoric?”, you may ask.  Well you might not ask, but as I write I am most certainly asking myself, “Rivka, what is the point of this post?”  The point of this post is to illuminate my best intent on blooming where I am planted.  It is merely one in a series.  For example, the post about my Raleigh bicycle and me, is to showcase my utilization of what I have, where I have it, and the fulfillment which comes from investing in my imagination.  As opposed to bemoaning the loss of travel opportunity I am currently enduring (used loosely, enduring is a bit too heavy handed an adjective).  Blooming where I am planted means waking up thankful.  It means my little world of Southern California can fulfill my hearts desires, if my heart and mind are in the right focus.

For instance, Brian and I went sailing about a month ago.  Out at sea, I turned toward our shoreline and the area south of us looked just like the photos of a little town in Greece I have always longed to visit.  And in the spring, when the hills are green and the air still crisp, I take a ride in our 1927 Oakland, alongside my beloved, and the picturesque beauty of nature is reminiscent of the green hills in Ireland I have admired from photographs featured in my favorite Atlas.  So you see, the jewelry bit is merely my funny way of having fun…not to be confused with “having funds!” 🙂  It is blooming where I am planted.  And the blooming part equates to:

  • an attitude of thanksgiving
  • utilization of current possessions
  • resourceful inclinations
  • perspective alterations
  • imagination expression

So practically speaking…

Today I will utilize the above formula and transform a “shit load” of ground beef, which was given to me by a dear friend (by way of a charitable food organization), into several, and I might add, very palatable, meal choices.  In all honesty, I have never…let me restate that…NEVER, purchased so much ground beef in one sitting, as I have awaiting my, “good attitude,” on my kitchen counter.  For it, I am most grateful.  And who knows, I might even have a moment to spare to head over to the Pacific Ocean, which if I do have time to do, will double as the Carribean Sea (this time).  Enjoying life, where I am…today.

1927 Oakland Racer P.s. I must give credit to Kana Tyler who, by way of her own blogging style, has inspired me to insert photographs into my posts.  Her blog, http://www.kanatyler.com, frequently has “eye candy” in between her prose.  And I find, for an ADD type girl like me, the photos help guide my way through the words.  “Thank you, Kana.”

It’s Only 8:30!

26 Sep

The Scene:

Last night my husband, Brian, helped me put the clean sheets onto our behemoth of a bed.  After one month of not being properly made, he helped me configure my TWO down comforters and ONE cotton blanket into their rightful position (as opposed to the mountain style they were resembling this last month of summer), and we arranged our six pillows according to our liking.  My face was then washed and my teeth were brushed.  My son was taken care of and my daughter was still occupied in her nighttime French class.  My jammies were on and my blanket arranged on the couch, ready for my descent into its strawberry print lushness (a leftover from my teenage years–the coziest of blankies, especially with the warmth of the, still lingering, summer air).  After all had been arranged and accounted for, I sat back on the bedecked couch and let out a big sigh.

SIGH….

I had made it through another day.  It was dark outside.  Not on the brink of evening, but completely dark.  The night had come and I had made it through a full day of parenting, secretarial-ing, taxi-ing, cleaning, dog walking, spider killing, cooking, counseling, and dealing with the effects of a stiff neck.  I felt I had deserved the long sigh and the right to exhaustion, especially as it was late at night and I had been fighting the yearning for a nap since 2 in the afternoon.  Whew.  I then opened my laptop computer, and as the screen came into view so did the clock.  It read loud and clear, “8:30p.m.”

“It’s only 8:30 PM!,”  I exclaimed.  How is that even possible?  It must be wrong.  It has to be closer to midnight!!  And then it hit me…I am exhausted as if it were midnight, yet it hadn’t even hit the elementary-aged bed time hour.  Sad, sad, sad.  And so I quickly opened my “Bentrivka” portal to document my title, “It’s Only 8:30!” and then logged out because just the effort it took to even conceive that my exclamation would provide a reasonably good title for a post was the last ounce of energy within my tired mind and body.  And with that, at 8:35p.m., I sat back and allowed the mind numbing effects of television (as provided through Netflix.com) to release me from my connections to reality.  Thank you “Hot in Cleveland”, thank you!

Moving On:

In my last post titled “Living With No”, I hinted at having more to my bicycling adventure.  This is true.  But first I will introduce you to my bike.  She is a British Raleigh circa 1970’s.  Actually, early 1970’s, and she is a folding bike.  I have seen similar photos, online, but they indicate that my lady is a Raleigh Twenty, yet my girl doesn’t bear the “Twenty” verbiage that the others seem to possess.  So who knows what she really is!  What I do know is we enjoy a few jaunts about town periodically.  This is a pastime I typically enjoy.  However, with exhaustion (emotional or physical), it is difficult to pursue even that which brings forth joy and happiness.  But I am gaining ground in this area.  As mentioned by me previously, one mili-step at a time!  Or in this case mili-pedal.

I actually have a dream of living in an area where I would not require a vehicle at all.  All of my destinations could be reached by walking or riding my bike.  I do not currently inhabit my dream town, but I do utilize this fantasy to my benefit when the time frame allows.  Such as the other day.  I had errands to run (the bank, the other bank, and the new to our town used furniture store).  If time permits, I take the back roads and travel under the freeway where the atmosphere is serene and the route runs through a historical neighborhood.  I then have to pass by the Mission.  Yes, one of father Junipero Serra’s Spanish feats and the central beacon of our city.  Several years back the Mission became a Basilica and adopted the “open door” policy (this is actually the new Mission church, not the adjacent historical-must pay to enter-attraction).  With the new policy in place, the doors are unlocked and the grand, yet very peaceful, church provides sanctuary from the bustling of the outside world.  Though I am not Catholic, I have spent many hours within the non-protestant walls.  I have appreciated the simplicity of the hand paintings and the majesty of the arched, vaulted ceilings.  More recently, for reasons I cannot fathom, a golden alter was installed.  I suppose its gaudy position and magnitude against the simple wall paintings is a reflection of the truth from its past.  Echos of the ruling empire dominating the natives with the two coexisting as one.

I do not like the alter as it is difficult to ignore.  And when I take the time to visit the Mission church I like to pretend it is a peaceful place, built with peaceful intentions, and present because it welcomes all kinds of people.  I like to ignore the truth history provides regarding the slavery of the indigenous people, and I battle the teachings I have had through my own education and from that of my children, as I approach the open door to the quiet structure.  The golden altar, in a sense, screams “Remember the truth!”  And though I do manage to find my inner quite, it now takes a bit longer for me to get there.

So my Raleigh is my accomplice in quiet adventure.  She takes me places with speed and she doesn’t say a word.  While on her seat I imagine I am riding through the streets of London, and the country sides of Europe.  I pretend I am free.  And while I am free, I am being replenished.  Which is why it is ironic that when exhaustion hits, I fight her call.

Well it is currently 5:00p.m. in the evening.  Brian is home, Esther is on her way to another nighttime class, and Cole is holed up “saving a world” in some extra-terrestrial video game.  I do believe I have a window of opportunity for a ride.  Cheerio…

Raleigh circa 1970’s

25 Mar

I want to introduce you to my bicycle.  I can’t remember how we (Brian and I) acquired it, but I do know that I have had it for many, many years.  When my son and daughter were little, I had a child-seat bolted to it and as they were big enough to ride on their own two wheeler, the bolts were removed (along with the seat).  Additionally, it sported a small, white basket attached to the handle bars which had a blue license plate on the front with the name, “Dorothy”.  This bike has been a friend to me all these years, getting me to and fro and back again as I so desired.  Its little basket has held more weight than it should because I would load it down with treasures from the store or the farmer’s market.  It accompanied the children and I many a times to our local California Mission, and waited patiently outside as we contemplated man’s adoration of G-d as painted on the chapel walls.  The Raleigh has doubled as a dirt bike, beach cruiser, mountain bike, and exhibition parade rider.  It is small but perfectly sized to me.

Now this past Christmas my loving husband totally, thoroughly, and completely bombed on his gift to me.  That is right, I did say “bombed”!  He bought me a pair of Jessica Simpson brand pumps.  They were water colored and extremely high.  So high heeled, in fact, I could have put them on and just stood in one place…that is all.  Not to mention my style is rooted in influences OTHER than Jessica Simpson, so needless to say I made no qualms about my complete disdain with his erroneous purchase.  My husband now stands corrected.

And in all honesty, the only thing I really wanted (besides a Clarisonic, Yves St. Lauren dress–or Dior for that matter, an excursion to the Greek Islands, five million cash, or a house on the beach) was to have my little Raleigh bike spruced up and new tires put on it.  …after a year spent land locked to my feet, I am ready to feel the ocean breeze in my face as I ride, ride, ride.

So after belittle-ling the multi-colored street walkers I had just been given I told him my bicycle could use some lovin’.  His response was, “well geez, that is easy…I can do that right now!”  And you know what?  He did.  …what a guy, the best in the west–for me!!  So here I am with my shined and ready Raleigh.  The basket was too sad to keep, but “Dorothy” is patiently awaiting her new replacement.

“Vive le vélo”

P.s. Let me introduce you to a very cool bicycle blog.  Here is the url for an entry written a couple of years ago but with a similar subject matter:  lovelybike.blogspot.com

My “new” Christmas gif
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