Mother Nature’s Marvel

by Ilinap on April 23, 2015

 

buttercups

We don’t need Earth Day to remind us that Gaia herself rules the world. Have you ever stopped to marvel at nature? It is particularly striking this time of year in North Carolina. There’s a rainbow bursting in every yard, between the sidewalk cracks, and peeping through fence slats. A carpet of yellow buttercups brightens the stretch of park in front of my house. There are shades of pink and purple and green that neither Crayola nor Opi nor Pantone has quite captured. To look into the frail billows of a blossom is to see Mother Nature’s way of saying life must go on. There are there brittle branches reaching upward, peppered with buds, holding such promise. It is the promise of hope and beauty and what-ifs. Have you stopped to truly appreciate the crunch of the leaves underfoot? It’s so very satisfying to simultaneously feel and hear that sharp cruunnnnch when stepping on the wind blown seeds and nuts littering the sidewalk. The chirping of birds fluttering amongst the brush is nature’s wake up call to beckon a new day. The blooms popping through the mulch and soil, the epitome of delayed gratification from winter’s planting. The smell of a fresh spring rain or the season’s first mowed lawn is sweeter than any perfume. Look up, look down, look around. Colors abound. Light dances. Inhale. Earth’s richness unleashes in marvelous ways as the damp soil prepares to unlock her bounty. Open your eyes wide, shades off for even just a moment, to squint at the sun and feel its light warm your lids. Close your eyes. Feel the touch of Mother Nature, a simple brush across your cheek that leaves you awestruck at her brushstrokes fine and large.

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It’s Hard to Be a White Man

by Ilinap on April 16, 2015

The other day a guy was lamenting to me about how hard it is to be a white man these days. At first I thought he was being ironic. I mean, he was saying this to me, a brown woman. Hearing these words uttered from the lips of a white man left me feeling perplexed. Was he expecting sympathy from me? Was he seeking an empathetic fist bump, as if I feel his pain?

I didn’t even know what to do with this.

I wanted to laugh in his face. And I wanted to kick him in the nuts.

Instead, my mouth hung agape. My eyes possibly rolled to the back of my brain. And I cocked my left brow in a show of bitchy snark.

And then I turned away.

What exactly is so hard about being a white man these days? I know there are companies all over the US with “white male employee networks” where men can break bread with their ilk and not feel left out of all the other employee networks, you know, the ones designed to give minorities some representation and voice in Corporate America.

Look, I’ve got nothing against white males. I’m married to one after all. But to profess some sort of victimization to prejudice is simply bullshit.

 

 

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Thankful for Shots

April 14, 2015

We have a long-standing family tradition to say our thank you’s before dinner. Instead of saying grace, we hold hands and each share something we are thankful for from our day. The only rule is we cannot say we are thankful for a material object. Last weekend, oddly enough, we all said we are thankful […]

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Eyes Up, Phones Down

April 8, 2015

I’m going to say something very unpopular here. Prepare for a get-off-mah-lawn rant…I’m tired of kids with cell phones. I’m tired of seeing kids with their fingers pushing buttons or their faces in a screen all the time. I’m tired of the lack of eye contact and reliance on a screen to communicate (or avoid […]

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Come to North Carolina

April 2, 2015

If North Carolina had a state vehicle, it would be a hand basket. And we’re on the highway to hell. North Carolina has been in the national spotlight plenty of times, and I’m not talking about basketball. We have a GOP-run legislature emboldened by its Pope and Koch ties. They don’t believe in science, yet […]

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Writing Prompts for Family Travel Abroad

April 1, 2015

There’s a tin sign perched over a door frame in my family room. It reads “Home — Where your story begins.” I’m heading home, in a sense, though I’ll be a stranger in my homeland. We are about to embark on an epic journey. Unlike kids these days, I don’t use the word epic lightly. […]

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Goodbye to a Life Too Short, Yet Very Sweet

March 30, 2015

She griggled when I met her. That’s a grin + a giggle. She pointed to her foot and said, “Shoe.” I knew I liked this kid. She was two. She was awaiting a bone marrow transplant. I spent ten years volunteering with pediatric bone marrow transplant patients. They gave me more than I ever gave […]

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Sloe Gin Fizz – 5:00 Fridays TM

March 27, 2015

Ours is a friendship of firsts.  First… Crush Car School dance Broken curfew Car accident Date Fashion disaster All-nighter Boyfriend Period Taste of liquor F Heartbreak Job She knew me back when my parents were married. She’s known me by three different names. She knows my ugly habits, antics, and such but loves me anyway. […]

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Peacemaker – 5:00 Fridays TM

March 20, 2015

I’m certain neither the song nor the sentiment “Let There Be Peace On Earth and Let It Begin With Me” has nothing to do with beer. The song’s sheet music includes this story: “One summer evening in 1955, a group of 180 teenagers of all races and religions, meeting at a workshop high in the […]

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Be Someone’s Safe Person

March 18, 2015

  “Mommy, even though it’s a different time now than when you were a kid, I don’t think kids today would say if they are gay.” And so began one of our typical car pool conversations. Mac Daddy and I have always been candid with our children. We talk about myriad issues at the dinner […]

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