Friday, October 29, 2010

Comfort food and time

What's comfort to me? Like lots of other people, I'm sure, comfort partly means food. When I'm feeling I need some TLC the food group at the top of the list is rice. Rice in many forms: mushroom risotto, congee with pork and thousand year egg, arroz con pollo, rice pudding. Second on the list? Chicken soup. I'm happy to enjoy the chicken soups of many cultures: my mom's Chinese herbal chicken soup, Salvadoran chicken soup with huge chunks of vegetables and fresh lime to squeeze over the fragrant broth, good old Jewish deli style chicken soup.

And the simplest, but also hardest, comfort to me? Time off. I've been working hard the past couple of weeks, and the greatest relief and comfort have come from those things I do with "time off." That's a funny phrase. It sounds like we can turn time off. Or that we can turn ourselves on and off. With pressures mounting I made sure to listen to the little voice inside, crying out for some time on the couch watching Dancing With the Stars, with my knitting in my lap. Resting. Without that I don't know how I would have had found energy for the next demanding day.

I'll have more time to stretch out in comfort this weekend, and here's what I might do with it:
  • Take a walk and see the changing colors on autumn leaves
  • Bake a fresh loaf of bread
  • Sing an improvisation
  • Dance in the living room
  • Take a nap
I'm looking forward to surrounding myself with comfort. Enjoy what brings you happiness and join in the fun at The Happy Book book blogging group.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Dreamboard for the Full Harvest Moon

It's been a really intense period lately and I've been feeling it all in my knotted stomach and achy shoulders, neck, head. In one day, 10 days ago, I learned I need to have knee surgery and I arranged an interview with a freelance assignment. I have been a ball of stress lately, and I've been pulling out anything from the tool bag to try and help myself, hoping for quick relief. Almost nothing seemed to help, but I have to admit a couple of things did make me forget about my pain for a moment.

I performed with Mark Lamb Dance last Saturday, in the full storm of intense stress. I arrived at the venue exhausted, but by the end of the evening I was feeling energized by the inspiration and artistry all around me. Performing improv forces me to be completely in the moment -- and that means temporary relief from my worries about health or work. But it also gives me another perspective: there is more to me than whatever I am experiencing at the moment. I know these troubles will eventually be worked through, because I am committed to taking action. But also I am reminded that my soul needs dance and play and art. When I pay attention to what my soul needs, I'm able to jump, soar, transform, and kick ass. Red is such an important part of this board, and I think it symbolizes the energy that will help me move through a challenging time. I feel a whole lot better today, so perhaps the energy of the full moon has helped me release some stuff.

If you're interested in making a dreamboard yourself and sharing it with others, check out Jamie Ridler's Full Moon Dreamboards Online. Check out what others are dreaming for themselves for this full moon here.