Keeping an open heart

Share your own heart stories, my friends

The moon’s heart

One of the hardest challenges in life–I think–is cultivating and keeping our hearts open.

I don’t know about you, but I learned quickly in life that an open heart can be a big liability.  Often, when we speak and share what we really feel we’re open to the knives and guns and axes of other’s scorn, ridicule or contrary opinions.

Some people seem good at expressing themselves no matter what criticism comes their way.  They stand up for their personal free speech without locking off their heart with big metal locks.  Others of us struggle to express ourselves, and learn to wall away our personal challenges and enthusiastic engagement behind prison bars of our own making, just to keep ourselves safe.

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Posted in April, 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 38 Comments

In which I see my first UFO

pretty leaf 1

Before it flies away

I intended to write a nice calm environmentally friendly post about a lovely Sunday morning sashay around the woods with a camera.  About this very special time of year when the temperatures hover below freezing and the snow has condensed as hard as granite beneath the feet.

One can walk upon snow, feeling perhaps a little like Jesus walking about the water.  What usually remains impossible to traverse without snowshoes becomes newfound freedom on certain mornings in March when we can scamper hither and yon like our four-footed squirrel neighbors.

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Posted in April, 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , , | 54 Comments

Being abducted

chair

Here is a story that I remember hearing as a child.  I was walking uptown in my hometown, headed toward the library.  Suddenly my parents appeared in their car, insisted that I get in, and whisked me back home.

They later told me that one of my father’s employees–who lived between us and the library–saw a pickup truck following me really slowly along the back street where she lived.  Bea called my folks and they came to pick me up, to rescue me from the would-be abductor.

I do not know if this is a real story, or something I dreamed.  My 86 year old mother does not remember this happening.  But I have held fast to this story for more than fifty years.  It is as real to me as anything.  I was almost kidnapped.  I was almost taken.  I was–almost–abducted into the greatest horror ever.

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Posted in March 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , | 36 Comments

Time Marches On

This March afternoon–with about five to six inches of new wet heavy snow here in our never-ending snow country of the Upper Peninsula–I have been looking through old photos once again.  (Not that I look through them often.  Just every once in a while, and today was one of those whiles.)

march-141.jpg

Happily preparing to camp out in the patch of bare ground in the garden, March, 2009 (all for the year-long outdoor blog, mind you)

After awhile I became interested in March photos during the last decade, 2009-2019.  I have been blogging here at Lake Superior Spirit since then (on and off, and off and on) and decided to cull a photo or two from every year.

Just to think back.

Because, my dear readers, time Marches on…

The first photo is all the fault of the year-long outdoor blog.  For some reason decided to camp out in our garden as soon as enough snow melted.  I was continually thinking of fun & unusual outdoor activities to do–in order to better write blogs.  That’s one reason I look back on 2009 so fondly.  It was a year of so many interesting activities!

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Posted in March 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | 35 Comments

“Drop kick me, Jesus, through the goal posts of life”

Bears dancing during our recent blizzard, right?

Bears dancing during our recent blizzard, right?

Hi guys!

I am so sorry that my blog has practically flat-lined these days.  No excuses.  It’s just flat-lined.  And the line is covered with snow.

Snow, snow, snow.  That’s all we think about these days.  You can start a conversation talking about anything–politics, religion, friendships–and it all comes back to the same thing.   “How much snow you got?  Are you finished shoveling out?  How’s your plowing doing?”

The answer to the above questions are:

a)  We got 17-22 inches in that last blizzard, thank you very much, how much did YOU get?

b)  No. We are Not finished shoveling out yet.  Please come over.  Bring an extra shovel or two.  I will feed you cookies (not that they’re sweet cookies.  They’re healthy cookies.  If you’re interested in health, you can have one of those oatmeal cookies.  If you’re suspicious, I don’t blame you.  Please have a cup of tea instead. Or beer.  If you’re a beer drinker that drinks IPA’s.  We’ve got about six of them in the frig downstairs.)

c)  Our plowing is at a stand-still.  Kind of flat-lined, just like my blog.  Not for lack of trying, my friends!  We spent five hours yesterday plowing out that wet, heavy, unheard-of, crazy, wet-blue snow.  Five hours!  And we’ve only accomplished two-thirds of the driveway.    My car is still buried.  I will show you a picture of my buried car from two days ago.  Pity party welcome!

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Posted in February 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , | 44 Comments

Saying goodbye to the condo

Holy trees--like matchsticks

What it may look like

Tomorrow I’m going to fly south through (hopefully) friendly skies.  Over stick-figure tree skeletons way down below.  Perhaps the sun will set through our jet window.  We’ll pass across the snowy vista of the Upper Peninsula and head south across Lake Michigan.  I will peer from the afternoon window and imagine my blogging friend Cindy on Beaver Island.

Staring down through the window, perhaps watching the sun set out of the right side of the airplane, I will look for familiar landmarks in Lower Michigan.  Could that be Traverse Bay?  Could that be Houghton Lake?  Could that be my hometown of Yale in the Thumb out the left?

Of course, it’s all impossible to truly ascertain where a person might be from such an elevated vista.  That lake might be Higgins Lake.  When you think you’re in the Thumb–well, you might be passing Lansing.  Which is OK, because that’s where I graduated from journalism school a thousand years ago.  And where is Ann Arbor down there below this beautiful plane?  That’s where our son attended college a long time ago.  Yes, memories live below the airplane’s path.  Memories of corn fields, long-ago beaches, delightful coffee shops, Chinese restaurants.

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Posted in February 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , | 36 Comments

Deep January days in the woods

Outside my window right now

Outside my window right now

Good morning from our little stretch of woods and lake and snow and cold.  Sitting here at this computer I watch lazy flakes of snow silhouetted against black and gray tree limbs.  Yonder brown oak leaves dangle from branches that tenderly hold last years promise.  The snow dusts the branches of an evergreen.  Blue jays call.  The woodstove hums in the basement.  It’s deep January in Michigan’s Upper Peninsula.

The weather forecasters send chilly spikes into our snowy landscape as they predict plummeting temperatures for the next ten days.  From today’s high of 21F (-6C) we’ll plunge to -14F (-25C) by Sunday night. I plan to wear my long underwear, heavy winter coat and big warm boots until February, at least, every time I venture to town and beyond.

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Posted in January, 2019 | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 37 Comments