Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Sunday, September 28, 2008

what i did not do this weekend

The Carpinteria Triathlon was Saturday.

I lOVE this event.

And i can't do it anymore.

I did some really dumb things to myself. Dumb and frustrating. Injuries that resulted in surgeries that lead to rehab. and serious outofshapeness. errrrrrgggggg.

First i stepped on a stingray. followed by surgery. then i fell and tore my knee on a trail run. then surgery. next it was my wrist, another tear and more surgery. This has really cut into the running, biking and swimming.

And up until today, i thought my motivation too.

Watching these athletes giving their all is incredibly inspiring. I made a vow today to try again.I found this pic of me to put up on the refrigerator. From when i got to do the Carpinteria Triathlon. Maybe it will help remind me to try again. Maybe a little harder this time.

God my feet look huge.

have a lovely happy week ahead...

xx lori

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Is this wrong??

We made a little joke. it was only meant in fun.

There is this certain antique shop, there are several lovely dealers that rent space and fill it with wonderful things that they've collected. Then they carefully and lovingly arrange all their things into an tasteful, artful, display.


sometimes, something like this comes along. a large glass vessel which must have seemed too lonely with nothing inside so the creative antique dealer tossed in some little doll heads to fill the void.

i saw it. did she not? what is wrong with me, thinking such things.

then, my friend jon comes in, looks at the jar and says it. How bout a little head? hahahahahahaha! oh hey, I'm not alone. Jon says "i'm going to make a sign and stick it on there!" i say "oh no!" he says "i'll do it with my label maker, that way no one will know who did it".

But he doesn't' come back. so i, who really should know better, make a sign and i do it in jon's writing. then i photo my deed and email him, with the subject saying : Look what you did.

Of course he finds this hilarious and says leave it. so i do.

later...owner of jar comes in and demands "who did this?" dealer in shop says, "its jons writing but he says he didn't do it (he didn't right?) and lori would never do it! jon overheard this while busying himself in his space, trying to suppress giant laugh.

so owner of jar crumples up sign, clearly not seeing the humor.

and the best part...

the mystery remains.

Monday, September 22, 2008

One way to see the world

Sea-Side Gardens, Carpinteria

I had a sudden inspiration. Partly because the sun finally came out. Partly because our yard looks like a field (of weeds). And because it was my day off. I am going to garden!
We are lucky to have several really nice nursery's in this area. I have 3 favorites, but this is the best i think.

The thing that makes this place so great is the gardens are layed out just like you would find them in various places around the world. See map above.

First i have to look in the gift shop. i might need something.
Here's what gardener's do when they have too much time on their hands.

First stop Australia...

oooh, South America is next...
Look at the size of this fern...
This looks like it could bite.
I'm getting all turned around, i think i'm on the border of Cottage garden and the Mediterranean...

This is definitely South Africa...i'm pretty sure.

And here are some succulents,

Pretty aren't they? i can see that i have entirely missed the California natives, the Wetlands and All of Asia.

You really can get lost in here, it's paths wander all around and there are all these nice little nooks and crannies to duck into.

My favorite thing about this place is no kids EVER want to go. So i get to go all by myself :)



Hannah went to Morp saturday nite.

Posted by PicasaMorp is Prom. Backwards.

It's everything prom isn't. The Senior asks the freshman. The girl asks the boy.Everyone pays for their own ticket, which is like a tenth of the price. The best part was the dress code. There isn't one. Hannah said it was just about the best dance she's ever been to...

You are the dancing queen, young and sweet, only seventeen,

Dancing queen, feel the beat from the tambourine

You can dance , you can jive, having the time of your life.

See that girl, watch that scene, dig in the dancing queen.

Mom , you see, she took after you,

after all.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Surf and The High Seas and Pirates

He left again.

He has to. It's his job. My husband the photojournalist. He's off to Northern California, The Lost Coast. The plan is to kayak the entire length while towing surfboards. The reason? to see if they can. Oh, and to get photos and make a story.

I wasn't invited this time...darn. I guess I'll just have to be satisfied with the pics. I can't imagine anything worse really. Here is what is said about the area:

"The rugged and remote Lost Coast offers the largest span of pristine beach and shoreline on the US West Coast, most of it preserved in the King Range Conservation Area and Sinkyone Wilderness State Park. The landscape there is so rugged that highway builders gave up. Of the four roads that reach this wild coast, two are one-lane dirt and all are twisting and steep. There is only one organized community the 100-mile stretch of wilderness, Shelter Cove. "

This isn't the bad part. The bad part is the fact that it's northern california, which isn't bad either, it's incredibly beautiful...BUT the water is cold. and rough. and there are currents.and wind. and rocks. and sharks.

So picture this: you are out in the ocean, paddling your boat and its choppy windy cold yuck. You would like to get out of this situation except when you look at the shore all you see are rocks. Big giant rock mountains that come right down to the water. Big vertical cliffs of ominous rock.

So you have no choice. You have to keep paddling. And paddling. and paddling. Until you can find a spot that will allow you to beach. But it must be a big enough spot for 4 men and their boats plus surfboards.

Once you are on the beach you are still not out of the dark. Because this is an extremely remote area, legend has it that there is certain "illegal" activity going on. Remember "The Beach", with Leonardo DiCaprio? Grumpyscragglydropoutsfromcivilization with rifles, protecting their crops of pakalolo. Sends shivers through my spine.

I remember reading about this in the news when d.h. first told me about his plan for this trip. 2 backpackers sleeping on a deserted beach were shot in coldblood, still in their sleeping bags. There are more stories. I would rather not know really.

And that's where he is. right now. i should be so used to this. all the adventures. and really i am. it's great 99% of the time.

But it's like i tell my kids when they started driving, it's not you i don't trust, it's the other people i worry about.

Please keep away from the pirates honey.

xx l


Was it really 27 years ago??! I feel like maybe I've added wrong. Where did the time go?

27 years ago I gave birth on our living room carpet to first born son. Oh he wasn't actually birthed on the carpet, husband did manage to spread/throw out the sheets I had so carefully prepared several weeks before.

But Kyle wasn't aware of my plan. It was going to be this really lovely home birth. Our bed carefully made up, candles burning, soft lights, like it was when he began life.

That's what i thought anyway.

uh uh. Nope. no candles, yes chaos. Kyle's agenda was to arrive as soon as he could. I had gone downstairs at the start of LABOR (really deserves to be capitalized). Never realizing that I would not be able to make it back up the stairs in a few short moments. Panic ensued as former husband frantically called The Midwife. I am doing my best to stay calm as we both realize this baby is on the way and there is no one here but us (and one year old upstairs asleep). Midwife instructs f.husband to prepare bed on floor of living room. First big lesson in always have a PLAN B.

The Midwife's assistant arrives in time to assist. She order's f.husband to boil water! This was always a big mystery to me, what were they planning to do with that water? i didn't want to know. Well, it's for the rags they use to apply hot compresses to the baby exiting area. So you won't tear. That's all. Nothing scary here.

From start to finish it was over in about an hour. The Midwife never made it in time, but her assistant was lovely. As i was pushing she told me to look. Open your eyes now. She said watch your child come into the world. Then she took my hands and placed them around his shoulders as I helped guide him out.

This is like in the Grinch That Stole Christmas, when your heart grows Ten Times its size. Like Nirvana.

My Son. What a baby. What a boy. What a man he's become.

I am so lucky.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

It's all about these guys

In all there were about 12 boats, 50 paddlers and countless volunteers and supporters.I don't know yet how much money was raised, it's still coming in.
The energy and emotion on the beach was palpable as they neared the shore. The paddle took them over 30 miles across the channel and in all it took about 8 hours. I was trying to pick out faces I knew, looking for my husband. He had called me from the boat right after they left the last oil derrick. He said they would be in between 3:30 and 4:00p.m.
Tom was brought down to the oceans edge in a wheelchair outfitted for the sand. One by one each paddler stopped in front of him to say hey, give a hug, hold his hand. He can't talk or move. I can only imagine what he was thinking. His wife stood behind him, she's an ambassador of optimism, hope, peace and humility. She is everything one would hope to be. She humbles me to my core.

I see him. Finally. He held me. He said he had a lump in his throat. And then that's when I cried.

What is it about seeing men cry? Here were all these beautiful, strong, athletic men hugging each other, fighting back tears . Powerful stuff.

If I could have taken all the love, friendship, community spirit that was on the beach this day and put it in a bottle...

And then if I could take this bottle and fly over the earth sprinkling it everywhere on everyone...

It could heal the world.

It could.

Friday, September 12, 2008

A Different Anniversary

The Dalai Lama

13 September, 2006

This is the day 2 years ago that I had the chance to meet His Holiness The Dalai Lama.

I shouldn't say meet, but rather be, in his presence. I was lucky enough to get a ticket to an intimate setting and I did this alone. I still don't know why it was so important to me to do it this way, I didn't tell anyone I was going until the day.

Most of my adult life I'd wished to meet The Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu, both recipients of the Nobel Peace Prize, 1989 and 1984 respectively.

It's hard for me to talk about the meaning this brought to my life, no amount of reading, studying or practicing Tibetan Buddhism prepared me for the soul shaking LOVE I experienced on this day. It's hard to put it into words, in fact, I hardly talked at all that day. I think I just wanted to keep hearing his voice in my head.

And nothing else. I wanted to make sure it was permanently imprinted in my memory so I would be able to recall for the rest of my life...his voice, his message...after all I was sure this was my one chance...and I got my wish.

And Then. Almost one year later. 21 September, 2007. I met him again.

This time it was just luck.

Here is what happened. I went to Germany to visit my good friend Anja. I met her and her husband, Christoph, 5 years before here in Carpinteria. They were on vacation and I was running the Beach Store/kayaks for the City of Carpinteria. I helped them with their boats, they thanked me, we had an immediate connection ( i found out later they were Buddhist), we exchanged email/addresses and stay connected.

So... I finally got to Germany to see where they lived and meet their new daughter Mila. Anja said to me You know the Dalai Lama is in Germany. She said he is about an hour away in Munster. It is too late to get tickets, she said they tried but they are all sold out. She said to me, would you like to go anyway and just try. Just be there. I said YES. Maybe we could get a glimpse of him as he was leaving the building.

So we drove to Munster. On 21 Sept. It was a big place. Alot bigger than the place I saw him before. We didn't know where to go so we found a security guard and asked him. He pointed there. We asked if we could go in. He said "Nein" no chance. So we looked for another way in. We saw another entrance with 2 more guards. We approached them with the same request. But this time it would be me asking. Anja reasoned that maybe they would take pity on me knowing i had come so far from America. So i made my best sorry expression and walked up to the guards. They were ever more serious. "NO.NEIN!" they said. So we said thank you and walked back outside.

But we refused to leave. yet. There were posters of the Dalai Lama on a glass wall and I tried to take a photo of it but couldn't. So Anja walked back in and asked the same guards if we might have the poster. I think he felt sorry for us because I watched Anja and the guard walk over and took the poster down. I was thrilled when she handed it to me.

We waited still. In a while a door opened and out walked 2 young girls. Through the lobby and out the glass doors. Anja looked at me and asked " Should I ask them for their tickets?" Of course! The girls looked startled, but I didn't know what was being said- i don't speak any german. The next thing I saw was the girls handing tickets to Anja and Anja is giving them 5 euros.

Now, with tickets in hand, we marched back up to the guards and handed them over. They said "Nein" again. and although I couldn't understand I knew what was going on. These tickets had already been used. Anja's face dropped. She was clearly devastated. She said Oh no! this cannot be! We turned to leave.

Then the guard got a new look on his face and said Ok. Come in. But you must be very quiet. Of Course! we said. Anja put her arm around me and we were escorted in.

I saw the Dalai Lama speak to almost three thousand Germans, in English, with his Tibetan interpreter. Incredible.

Afterwards we walked around the old city of Munster, 15th century old. I tried to take it all in but we were so dazed, i guess is the right word, from seeing the Dalai Lama, we left soon after.

A shop in old town of Munster.

Anja and Christoph at home. Christoph stayed home with baby Mila while we went to Munster. And then he had dinner waiting for us. With wine. And candles.

Back home. And here is the poster. All the way from Germany. Happy in my Granma Rose corner. And I have met Desmond Tutu, but that will have to wait for another post.

xx L

Paddling for Life

This morning my husband left Ventura Harbor with a group of several other's to take part in The Friendship Paddle. The journey will begin at Forneys Cove, which is situated on the west end of Santa Cruz Island, and will end at the beach at Holly Avenue (third beach as the locals call it) in Carpinteria.

I'm not sure of the numbers yet, only that there are are a few boats and many paddler's. Tommorrow morning the men will form into teams that will alternate with the support boats, in a kind of relay (the boats acting as escorts) and they will make their way across the channel. 30 miles. Of open ocean.

They are doing this for a friend and fellow Carpinterian (and neighbor of ours) who is battling brain cancer. It's a way to raise funds to assist individuals and their families who are suffering from life threatening illnesses.

A beach barbeque will follow the paddle with sponsors providing food and drink, it's sure to be a great time for friends, family and the community to come together in a time of need.

My daughter Kimberly wrote a story about this (i took alot of her words here cause I coulden't get the thing to copy and paste, i am sooo slow) you can read about it at http://www.deepzine.com/ and go to archives, its in the August issue, page 9. And for more info about the paddle you can check out http://www.friendshippaddle.org/.

We love you TomStrong.

I'm proud of you D.H.

Here's to good health, good friends and family.

x L

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Big and little

Just because I don't have anything to write about...yet.
Ok, the truth is I only want to write/remember uplifting spiritually enriching positive things. And really funny things.
But life happens and try as i might I can't put a positive spin on today. Hannah cried her little eyes out, her first broken heart, it broke mine too...and watching over Sadie as she bent over the toilet, the flu perhaps? She coulden't understand what was happening to her. These things happened today. And I felt a little like a counselor/nurse/therapist as I tried my best to soothe tender feelings and grumpy tummys.
At the same time work has been going through some schedule changes and it is my job to coordinate. I am feeling like maybe my opportunity to raise a 6 year old again is coming in handy as I use the same skills in a professional manner.
But this blows my mantra "little people little problems, big people..."you know how it goes. Here is my new mantra: Big People, Big Babies.
I hope my girls feel better soon.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Oregon is green and wild

We saw alot of deer. We have deer here too in the foothills and mountain range where i live. But the oregonian deer seemed so tame. Either that or they were just so friendly, like this girl here. She was snacking on a bush when we drove by. She didn't run away when we stopped. She didn't even back up. She kept on eating only stopping to look up and acknowledge me and my camera.
And then i think she posed.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Oregon is Fun

Our reunion was a smashing sucess! Nine of us made it to Bend from all parts of the country. We had a huge house with something like 25 bedrooms and 20 baths.Maybe not that many, but it felt like it. There was a hot tub and pool table and about 15 bikes in the garage.

We met at my friend Joni's house, well, some of us, and we waited for the rest to show up. There were 3 more girls coming from Portland, in a rental car. Portland is about a 3 hour drive from Bend. 6 hours later we were getting worried and then, there they were!

Loading up the truck and car with food and kayaks was easy, unloading it was another story. We were anxious to see where we would be staying for the next 5 days. We spent another hour running all over the house choosing our bedroom/roomie. As we were looking and weighing our choices, luggage started appearing on beds so those rooms were claimed. Finally everyone was settled and we got on to more pressing matters...where did we put the wine?

It was fabulous. We kayaked and hiked. We biked and hot tubed. We ate and we drank. And drank. Alot. We talked until the wee hours of the morning. We laughed until our sides ached and sometimes we cried. We took a million photos. And we promised we woulden't wait so long before we do this again.
What is it about old friends that makes everything ok? Maybe because they knew you before. Before grown-up life and everything that goes with it. It takes you back to 16. When the biggest problems in life were what boy to like and how to get around curfew. Or maybe we were just lucky, growing up in the 70's, life was pretty simple. And i guess that's it, suddenly we were all teenager's again. And tho we talked about kidshusbandsboyfriendsworkcareersmoneyetc. we were all back, for a time. We weren't momsgirlfriendswivesemployees that um...are grayingandweighingafewpoundsmore...we were bestfriends. That was all. Mates for life.
Lucky us.