This is the cutest thing! This pajama set can be purchased on: www.cafepress.com/risaspieces. It's on sale for only $39. I know that sounds like a lot and you can get PJs for a lot less. Yet, this is the season of giving, giving gifts and giving thanks. A way to show appreciation is to give something unique.
You won't find this design in stores. There are other items with this design in my cafepress shop, RisasPieces. Start a collection! Everyone needs a buddy.
Having food readily available is almost something we don't even notice. If you've never gone camping, it is not even something you think about. I go to my fridge, or the cabinets and just reach out my hand and the food is there, wrapped nicely and clean.
It's actually a fight to keep it that way. We have an exterminator. I'm a vegetarian so there is no meat grease left anywhere, but my neighbor is a meat eater and if her dishes or stove are not spotless, not only does she have roaches, but they come over here, too. They don't last too long, though; anything that moves is of interest to the cats. They are the terminators here.
Then there are the ants. It is the rainy season now and there are lots of ants. I have to put the cat dishes on top of other dishes filled with water or the ants will take over.
In the big picture, there are many more insects than man. By myself in the apartment, I feel powerful, independent, and in control of my world. That is such an illusion. I am in the minority, and becoming careless, I'd be overrun with weeds, bugs and other creatures that want to survive. There's a Hindu saying: "we are food."
I was listening to Osho on the needs of people: physical, mental and spiritual. Osho said that a starving man is not interested in art; he has to attend to his physical needs. Once those are met, he can then be free enough to develop his intellectual needs, then those satisfied, he can turn his attention to his spiritual needs.
I originally started my working career as an art teacher. I believed and still believe that art is for everyone. Recent studies have shown that art activities in many cases calm people, bring them happiness and satisfaction. You don't have to be a Picasso to be happy doing something artistic.
In Japan, many people pursue artistic activities. I saw businessmen attending flower arranging classes. Children in schools routinely learn origami, the paper art. I felt respected as an artist when I lived in Japan. I wasn't looked at as weird or strange. This was very refreshing for me.
Art classes have happened and more often not been included in our children's education. It all depends on the budget. Too often, it is one of the first subjects cut in school curriculum. Of course, this has long term affects. Children whose parents can afford 'enrichment' studies find private art teachers.
Which brings me to my topic: art is for rich people. Art is actually expensive. The materials. The frames. The entrance fees into shows. And if you are struggling economically, art is the last thing on the list of where your money will go.
Personally, I can attest to the destructive power of economic challenges. It has taken me almost nine months to finally rebuild my client base and start making money again. During these nine months, I felt like a thief had stolen my creativity.
Then again, I came to realize that although I was not making art, creativity was and is still part of my way of life. Using my ability to find a solution to my work situation was part of my success. I've heard people say, oh, I am not artistic. And yes, in many cases that is true. A better way to look at this is to recognize that we can be creative in other ways. Our best resource is still our ability to use our minds and find solutions! Art itself may be for those who can afford it, but creativity belongs to all of us!
I've trained cats to walk on a leash. They hated it. Cpt January was the first. In the beginning, he would like down dead and refuse to move. The other, Puddy, would do the same. Eventually, they got used to it and whenever I would jingle the leash, they were eager to go out. I had told them if they didn't cooperate, they would never go outside.
Recently, I changed my approach. I found this backpack/stroller on Chewey for carrying/transporting your pets. It is the coolest thing. I really needed to get more exercise myself and this was a good excuse. I stuff the furbaby in the container and go out on the property for a stroll.
Of course, they are new to it and sit inside crying. I know they will get used to it. These two furbabies of mine have never been outside. It is time! And I am not just sitting in my corner at the computer. I have joined the pet walkers!!!!
.There was a notice posted at the clinic that they would no long offer opiates for pain to their pain patients, but rather, recommend a pain management option.
This brought up the time I found my neighbor passed out and bloody on his floor. He was an ex-military man and had gotten addicted to pain medication somewhere along the way. His doctor had cut him off from the medication and in desperation, my neighbor began dealing with the thugs in our neighborhood. I guess one day he made some mistake with them and they beat him up. That's how I found him when I came to walk his dog in the evening.
Of course, I called the hospital and had him attended to.
Then, when he came home, he enlisted me to convince another doctor to prescribe the pain medicine.
We have an opiate plague here in South Florida. And part of the problem seems to involve doctors who prescribe these meds, then cut people off.
I find it all amazing. Living with constant pain is really debilitating. Getting addicted from prescriptions is criminal. Having doctors cut you off is criminal. There are alternatives and not just pain management plans. There is such a prejudice against acupuncture which is so helpful. I don't understand. There is such a prejudice against cannabis which is helpful, I don't understand.
When I am faced with a problem, I do look for answers. The internet is very helpful in finding them. We talk a lot about thinking outside the box. I really wish people would.
This is one of my personal favorites. I am into hearts this year. This has the shape of a heart and I often put my pink heart earrings here to find them easily.
Somehow or other, I thought it was illegal to ask your race. Then again, every form has race and gender boxes. I was watching a video by a young Latina who described her dilemma when filling out these forms. People from Spanish speaking countries come from many mixes of people, so...what then is Lationo/Latina?
I fill out the form as a 'white', although I am never comfortable with that. It always rankles me! Didn't Hitler make it a point to kill all those Jews because Jews weren't white? So, when did I become white? When I moved to Florida? In fact, the only time I have ever been white was when I moved to Florida.
Instead of focusing on 'race', people can ask: what makes you human?
I don't really celebrate holidays. But the Fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays. The one memory I keep close to my heart is when I lived in Jersey City. We were in the Heights, on the ridge so you could see across the Hudson and watch the NYC fireworks. People rented their rooftops!
This was an old historic district of the city with some houses dating back to the 1700s.
This particular Fourth, I went outside my apartment to join everyone on the cobblestone road leading to Hoboken. When I looked around, people were standing together, in joy and peace, watching the fireworks. People from everywhere. This touched my heart, and I hold it in memory and return to the feeling each Fourth. People were just being themselves, relaxed with their families and sharing this holiday together.
I try to recreate this particular event for myself throughout the year. United under the stars. Just humans sharing life together.
I was 10 the first time I ran away from home. I was full of distress. I wasn't thinking at all. I didn't take any clothes, any money, and I didn't have a plan. I just walked, and walked till I got to the next town. It wasn't far, really, just over the dividing line between my town and the next. When it started to get dark, I had calmed down enough to realize that I couldn't go anywhere. I turned around and went 'home.'
When I got home...my dad was so angry...he literally bounced me off the walls of my room. I didn't know a body could bounce off walls.
What happened? Can I blame society? I don't know. Mother was going through women trouble and needed a hysterectomy. She was in pain, frightened, and most of all having, what I realized years later, an identity crisis. Womanhood was defined by your body. Not by your brains. Not by your talents. Your body. And mother's body was about to be violated.
After the operation, mother went to a rehabilitation facility called Kate Macy Ladd. She stayed there a while. I took over the dinner preparations. Simple stuff, like opening a can of vegetables, boiling potatoes, and grilling meat. Nothing complicated. Mrs. Shuster, a kindly elderly woman, would look in on me and my younger sister. She was soft. Physically soft. She taught me how to darn socks.
My father's second wife had breast cancer. When I visited her in hospital, her behavior towards me stung as much as my mother's had all those years ago. Sheila had once been the beauty queen of her town. Still...that attachment of our identity to the body. Still the same response. And she was educated, too, a Radcliff girl I think.
Looking back on this, it still baffles me. I've survived cancer, too. All my female innards are gone. All I felt and feel is deep gratitude. Towards the co-workers who helped me find a clinic. To the doctor and nurses who got me to the oncologist. To the oncologist. I get up in my apartment everyday and breath deeply, taking in the air, listening to the birds, saying hello to my cats and the neighborhood cats, looking at the sky, walking around the apartment with such happiness at how it is my home and how much I enjoy being in it. I truly can't imagine how mother or my step-mother felt. When I look in the mirror, I smile.