oxygen mask

Tonight, a wise friend sent me a message that I really appreciated: “I want to remind you that you should put on your oxygen mask before assisting others.” I have been spending a lot of hours the last couple of days thinking of ways that I can do more to help more people. So many people are hurting and scared right now. But I shouldn’t beat myself up for taking a bit of time to regroup and recoup. I can only help others if I have not passed out for lack of breath.

Tonight I am grateful for friends. It has been immensely helpful to me to talk with like-minded friends (and family members) in the shock of these election results. And I appreciate that friends, even those who don’t share my political views, have checked in with me to express their compassion and concern. I am very lucky to have so many wonderful people in my life, near and far.

Still processing.

I’m still in shock about the election results. I have oscillated between feeling defeated and deflated, and feeling resolve to roll up my sleeves and get back to work and do more. I think I will need a bit of time to recover.

Today, I was very grateful to have my children here with me. Really, I am grateful for them in so many ways. This morning they helped me to pull myself together, because I didn’t want to pass on to them the levels of fear and despair that I was feeling.

I voted.

I voted today. I didn’t have an appropriate pantsuit to wear, but I did carry my Woman Card in my back pocket. Now, watching the election results roll in, I am sick with worry. I am baffled that things are this close. I’m going to have to go to bed and hope for the best.

Today, I am grateful for the right to vote. It was a hard won right, and I don’t take it for granted.

these legs were made for walking

I’ve been doing a lot of walking these last few months. Mostly, I take my two legs on a daily morning walk with my four-legged companion. Yesterday, I went on a walk around a neighborhood in a neighboring swing state. Tomorrow, my legs will help walk me into my local polling location, where I will cast my vote for the first woman president of the United States.

A photo from a morning walk.

Me at the Manchester, NH Democratic Party headquarters, getting ready to canvass.

Tonight I am grateful for having legs that can carry me places, and for the ability to walk for health, enjoyment, and working towards social good.

perchance to read

I have a confession to make. One of the things that has kept me from blogging this past year is that I have reconnected with a past love: reading books. Before I started grad school, I used to always be reading something for enjoyment. Once I was in grad school, I felt like if I had time to read, it should be dedicated to reading journal articles or dissertations and other papers related to me studies. I would occasionally indulge while traveling, but I read very few books for fun. Fast forward to last fall, when my graduate studies were finally finished, and I picked up a book for fun. And then another and another. If I didn’t have so many real-world obligations, I’d happily sit around and read 12 or 14 hours a day. But, the reality is that I have the real-world obligations, and I feel obligated to tend to them. So, I mostly only read at night. So, tonight, instead of writing more here, I will keep this short, and go to bed and snuggle up with a book.

And because I hate to post without photos these days, I will leave you with a few images from my visit to the Trinity College Library in Dublin from May, 2014.

Tonight I am grateful for reading and for books.

How do you like them apples?

Third day in on my attempt to resume daily blogging, and I nearly forgot to post. This does not bode well…

In any case, I remembered. And I found a photo on my phone to share. These are some apples that the kids and I picked a couple of weekends ago on an idyllic weekend afternoon. We picked quite a few varieties of apples, and it’s interesting to see how varied they still appear, even after being peeled. (We also bought an apple-peeling gadget, that also slices the apples into spirals. It was quite fun, and made a cool tangle of peels. It was also fun to snack on the peels.)

Tonight I am grateful to have access to an abundance of healthy food for myself and my family.

perchance to dream

An oversized and stately but uncomfortable looking mattress-less bed from Stirling Castle in Scotland. Photo taken in August, 2015.

Today, I was feeling quite tired much of the day, due in part to a bit of sleep deficit from a hectic stretch. Tonight, I find myself feeling especially grateful that I can anticipate a decent night’s sleep. I am grateful that I have a bed to sleep in, and grateful that I am able to sleep.

a new leaf

It is November once more, and I find myself reminiscing about my daily November blogging of yore. I have much to say, but don’t know whether I will manage to find the time and motivation to say it. However, as with many things in life, if I don’t try, I know I definitely won’t succeed. So, I will start. And I’ll start with a leaf, because fall in New England brings many leaves to my path. (Also to my lawn, my driveway, and my gutters…) This particular leaf was striking in its colorfulness.

I have also been thinking about how I would like to take stock of the many things in my life for which I am thankful, and share them here. I’ll start by saying how thankful I am for the fall, and for living in a place where the fall brings dramatic and dynamic displays of color and light.