Eat like a bird…

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Eat Like a Bird, but Hold the Worms, Please!

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Life is crummy sometimes, yes, we know. But, there are some things in our control. One thing that has helped me to feel good is… (don’t hold your breath!)…

Breakfast.

That is where I start my day, healthy but in an easy-going manner.

In my family, I get teased for eating “like a bird”(referring to What I eat more so than the quantity) or “like Euell Gibbons”.  I think he did a Grape-Nuts commercial years ago and is known for eating tree bark. No, not really, I don’t think, but he was an early advocate of natural foods.

Breakfast kick-starts your metabolism and I have been eating it every day since I was a kid. I look forward to it because it is the easiest of creative meals. While I do eat eggs sometimes, I more likely have them for lunch, or maybe an omelette for brunch on the weekend, or dinner if it is just for me. Oh and I do like grainy blueberry pancakes! They are a good brunch sort of thing.

This is my morning routine:

Listen to the news while waking and stretching. I like to know what is going on in the world, don’t like to miss anything. And then I let the news go for awhile, wash it away in the shower.

This is quick and easy, once it is a routine:

I always have berries on hand, either frozen or fresh. Blueberries and strawberries are two foods that are often in the top-ten fruits and veggies recommended to have organic, so I go for organic with those. I also always have plain low-fat yogurt and non-fat (or you might want low-fat) milk on hand.

Then, I have an assortment of jars of nuts and seeds and grains. Ground flax is one of my favorites of late; sprinkle a couple of tablespoons or so on top of your yogurt and washed berries. Then, depending upon what you feel like eating (here is where the creativity comes in) sprinkle in any combination of these things, or these sorts of things:

uncooked oat meal

almonds (slivered work well)

pumpkin seeds (unsalted and without the shells)

sunflower seeds (same as above!)

walnuts

organic raw coconut, shredded (can be dehydrated and low fat)

sesame seeds (roasted, unsalted)

hemp seeds* 

You can put in any other berries that strike your fancy, whatever are in season in your area. Or even organic goji berries; you get those dried. And–any other fruits, nuts, or grains that you prefer.

For instance, add chopped apple or banana, grapes, raisins or a little honey if you want some sweetness.

Add milk or more yogurt or even a little water, for desired consistency.

If you have a gluten or lactose intolerance or any other dietary need, of course delete or substitute accordingly: this is so flexible.

Sprinkle some cinnamon on top; cinnamon is supposed to help control blood sugar. I know people who have diabetes in their family and their doctors have prescribed cinnamon to help stave off that disease. Not that I am a medical person or nutritionist, but I figure it can’t hurt. Tumeric is good for you too, I hear, but it is not the easiest thing to eat on grains, nuts, and berries. Still, I sometimes do.

Eat in layers or creatively mix!

There. Now you have energy for your morning.

This works well as a snack, too. You can adjust the quantities and contents any old way that your little heart desires.

If you are in an elegant mood, make your concoction in a parfait glass, layering the fruit and yogurt (and maybe a layer or two of nuts) and then top with slivered almonds or strawberries, for example.

For added loveliness or to begin your day in a rockin’ way, put on some music. It’s always relaxing and/or fun (depending upon the music) to waltz or dance around the kitchen while “cooking”. Then, listen and relax while eating.

Be creative, eat well, be healthy and happy!

~ Lily

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*Thank you ever so much for the reminder, Valerie! : )

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Reverie…

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I have in my window

the setting sun,

the last of the day’s warmth upon me.

Light and shadows play

on linen tablecloth, tile floor,

plant leaves and enamel sink,

sun on my shoulders as I sit at the kitchen table

and think

of what I gave up,

what I gained,

where I am,

and where I’ll go,

and what I think is

I do not know.

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Survivors.

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I miss him

because he knew me,

knew my soul and its depths,

knew my pain and my strength,

saw the outer trappings:

smiles, poise, conversation

and let me be

as I am

which was

much like he

after the war:

liberated

but never free.

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The Moon Knows.

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The moon is a sturdy glow.

I am less sturdy

below;

frailties, humanity

fit me so perfectly

and yet I dance

and smile I

carry a glass half full

balancing carefully

gracefully;

elegant is a good way to

be.

I should like to hold onto

the

unique and quirky

essential

aspects of me.

The world does not have

enough creativity to

paint the blues away

nor colour

every grey or dismal day,

enough

appreciation,

enough self-deprecation.

The moon smiles,

glows.

The moon knows.

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I am talking to my goldfish.

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Photo: Lily sitting in the dark.

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I have been babysitting, well–fishsitting– for a fish that one of my children won at a fair eight years ago. Eight years. So, Fishie (not his real name, just my nickname for him) and I are well acquainted and of course he is well cared for. I spent yesterday evening scrubbing his abode and replenishing it with aged and de-chlorinated fresh water.

I don’t talk to Fishie as in telling him about my day or pouring out my woes. I just say things like, “I’m going to feed you Fishie, don’t worry,” when he comes to the side of the glass to greet me, or I wave with my index finger and say, “How are you doing, Fishie?”

But–

It occurred to me last night that he is the only living being I talk to some days with whom I have any acquaintance, and that I actually felt happy to see *A Fish* when I came home last night.

Last night I went to the grocery store. I needed groceries. I bought nothing.  Why? Because, as serendipity would happen (as you regular readers know), I walked into the store and directly into the man I had been (past tense) dating on and off for a year. He was overjoyed to see me. He told me that he Cared about me. (Cared? Two days ago it was Adored and Love You So Much. But, upon reflection, maybe Care was actually a progression of thought as his idea of  love didn’t exhibit much of the caring that should go along with actual love. He should have Cared.)

“Do you want to shop with me?” he asked.

No. Thank you.

“You know I care about you,” he said.

I paused. “Your words say so.”

“And I show it too,” he replied.

I raised my eyebrows.

“Sometimes!” he amended. “Sometimes I show it!”

Heh. Give him a medal for the sometimes.

I nodded and smiled.

I wondered if he’d think about what he had just said.

I left feeling very wistful, at first because I had wasted so much time on someone who would never really be able to love me. I had given him–us–so many chances, and listened to so many pleas for forgiveness and second chances. And twentieth and thirty-fifth chances. I was sad because we had such fun times, given our many common interests.

There must be a lesson: the place that your heart, mind, spirit, and soul are in is more important than any interests or worldliness.  I realize that I had more or less outgrown him, grew strong enough to move away from his selfishness.

But, my strength has left a gaping hole in my social life. An affectionate, loving, giving person needs someone to love, or wants someone. Life feels so much better with companionship: sharing good times and sad, conversations and laughter, walks and dinners and hugs.

I suppose this sense of loss was compounded because I waited until my children were grown and doing well on their own before getting a divorce, so I had empty-nest syndrome on top of divorce guilt and upheaval. I *should* be used to Alone from my marriage. One of the reasons I decided not to endure that forever was so that I could Perhaps find love someday…

Not too much of a romantic idealist, am I??

All around me I read of strong, beautiful, giving, intelligent and amazing women who are Single. Why??? OK, some may be happy as they are, and we always have God to talk to (or at least I do) and then there is Fishie… and I have friends, neighbors, colleagues, and relatives. It may seem as if there are a lot of people in my life, but they all have significant others. All of them. Where are the good men? Or, let’s back up a bit: where are the single men? Good, loving, caring, single men?

Do I sound anxious? Over zealous or overwrought? Hmm, tone is difficult to discern sometimes. I am happy, busy, healthy, into my hobbies and my community and busy with my life. But, I did wait a long time–decades–to be single. I am about as patient and contained as humanly possible, or was. All I did recently was to (finally and with finality) remove one undeserving self-serving guy from my life and now I feel at such loose ends: do I move? Do I stay? Do I  just keep keeping on, going to films and concerts by myself? Joining more groups, meet-ups, more volunteering? Having dinner with married friends?

Talking to goldfish?

This has been a vent. Thank you for listening.

Have a good weekend!

~ Lily


Waking

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I wanted to go to the wake.

It was the only way

to ensure that he was actually dead.

I explained, pleaded,

but did not cry.

Nevertheless

they said I was too young,

waking wasn’t allowed.

So I looked for him

in my dreams,

in the stores,

on the streets

where he must be

silently watching me.

Any face that passed,

any that walked behind,

any

any

any where

would a father be?

And when

would he look for me?

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Paths…

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The path down to the lake

is steep and uneven and

winds through woods

of evergreens and maples

so that you cannot quite

run

you more careen and sometimes

slide

and grab a tree trunk

unless mincing your steps

feeling the soft loam

under bare feet

stepping on tree roots as

some semblance of steps

well worn and well placed,

you catch through the trees

a view of the lake calm

and mirrored, sky reflected

as a lone canoeist

glides

in early-morning

sunshine.

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