Intentions Review for June 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I’ve lost 6.2 lbs this year so far.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – Since I got my release from the surgeon, I’ve been averaging almost 14,000 steps per day. I’ve been working up to it by taking longer and longer walks. Yesterday, I walked through the woods and down the hill next door (complete with up the hill to get to the place where I could go down and back up to the house.)
  • My post-op appointment was June 6, and I was released with no restrictions except a 15-lb limit on lifting anything and no core work. Those restrictions will be lifted July 5th.
  • My personal trainer is working on a 360 Wellness trainer certification, and I’m being one of her Guinea pigs. It focuses on physical health, emotional health, intellectual health, spiritual health, and the balance in all those things. (I didn’t know it when I started this monthly blog series, but she must have been reading my mind.)

Emotional Health

  • I AM trying to remember “empathy” in my interactions with people I meet.
  • I still haven’t been billed for anything from my month with doctors and hospitals, but I have seen the statements sent to Tricare and Medicare. If I didn’t have this medical insurance I would have had to pay upwards of $50,000 for three emergency room visits and day surgery. I have more and more empathy for folks who have less than adequate health insurance.
  • Early in the year I started posting Five Things that Made Me Happy Today every day on Facebook. Earlier this month I moved those posts to this blog because it’s hard to go back and find things on Facebook. I started doing it because I realized I was spending a lot of my time focused on the awful stuff (and there’s plenty of it) going on in this country and the world right now. By forcing myself to write about five good things every day, I have to 1. keep looking for them, and 2. remember them for several hours. If you are subscribed to this blog, you should have been getting them in your email. If not, go ahead and subscribe.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this year.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – finished
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – finished
    • The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor – finished
    • Entering the Passion of Jesus by Amy-Jill Levine – finished
    • Silent Night by Danielle Steele – finished
    • Autumn by Ali Smith – finished
    • Winter by Ali Smith – finished
    •  A Good Year by Peter Mayle – finished
    •  Magnolia Nights by Ashley Farley – finished
    • The Tale Teller by Anne Hillerman – finished
    •  Wife of Moon by Margaret Coel – finished
    •  Cleaning the Gold by Karen Slaughter and Lee Child – finished
    •  Beyond the Garden by Ashley Farley – finished
    • Everything is F*cked – a Book about Hope by Mark Manson – finished
    • The Invention of Wings by Sue Monk Kidd – finished
    • The Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford – reading
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • I subscribe to Mediumand have read several articles of current interest.
  • I also subscribe to The New Yorker magazine, digitally. I keep up with the east coast scene through it, as well as some pretty decent profiles of political figures.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • The Poetry class is finished for this quarter. I finished my little book with illustrations, collages, and poetry this week. It was as much crafty as it was literary, but it was interesting.
  • I don’t think I’ve mentioned that Big Al and I are members of a Great Decisions discussion group here at Franke Tobey Jones. We’ve been doing it for a couple of years now. The topic this month was Nationalism in Europe and I was the discussion leader. It’s sponsored and published by the Foreign Policy Association, and does a really balanced job of talking about hot topics in world affairs. The only problem is the workbooks and DVDs are done in the fall, and often, as was the case this month, events in the course have been superceded by actual events in the world today. Nevertheless, it’s interesting and enjoyable.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. We’re finished with our 6-week break from Bible Study and will resume in July 2. I managed to attend worship every Sunday, including serving as Lay Leader for three Sundays, two of which were while the pastor was on a well-deserved vacation.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation. I’ve subscribed to several email “prompts” that arrive in my inbox every morning. The Upper Room has a couple of short reflections and/or devotionals every morning, and A Network for Gratefulness also gives me something to think about as I go about my day.
  • I’m lobbying for my church to become an Earth Care Congregation with PC(USA). My current focus is with Plastic Free EcoChallenge as a member of the Presbyterians for Earth Care. Environmental action is near and dear to my heart, and I understand that we MUST solve these problems if we expect to leave a decent planet for our children and grandchildren.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.) I also participate in the Wellness Center activities like the Owen Beach walk most Fridays.
  • Because most of the staff here at FTJ have holidays off leaving the residents with no family in the area with little to nothing to do except vegetate, every 4th of July I organize a potluck evening meal in the Gazebo. Anyone on campus who wants to come is invited. I don’t do much except arrange for extra chairs, an extra table and a big garbage can that the maintenance folks bring the day before and pick up the day after.
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I will return to Bible Study when it resumes in July. Coffee Hour is between the services, and it is held upstairs (adjacent to the Sanctuary), so I’ve been going pretty regularly.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. I’m making an effort to avoid posting or reposting political articles, although I do still try to call out blatant racism, sexism, misogyny, etc. when it comes to my page.

Miscellaneous

  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. Next meetings are scheduled for an on-line meeting in November and a face-to-face meeting in March.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.

 

Intentions Review for May 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I’ve lost 5.2 lbs this year so far.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – I didn’t do very well in May, but I was hampered by my health. I intend to walk more, adding a short walk every morning, until I get clearance from the doctor to get back to more strenuous exercise.
  • Wednesday morning (May 1), I was released from the hospital with instructions to find a surgeon when I got back to Tacoma. I took an Uber to the station, and got on the Empire Builder for Seattle. I arrived back in Tacoma May 3rd. Big Al had made an appointment with my Primary Care Physician for May 10 for a referral to a surgeon to fix my hernia. I kept that appointment, and the first time the surgeon could see me of a consultation was June 3. By May 20th I was in bad shape, and basically bedbound. I went to the emergency room that night, and they sent me home with instructions on how to reduce the hernia externally. I started trying to get to a surgeon to do something sooner than June 3, and couldn’t get a call back. On May 22, I was back in the ER and threatening to camp out. The on-call surgeon came in a talked to me and she understood that I couldn’t spend the next week and a half flat in bed because of something that could be taken care of with day surgery. She scheduled me for surgery on Friday, May 24. I was in a 9:00 am and home by 5:00 pm. I took it easy over the weekend, and by Sunday morning I felt good enough to go to church. I took my last pain pill on Tuesday evening, and I’m feeling much stronger, and ready to get by to my life. My post-op appointment will be June 6, and I expect to be released with no problems.
  • My personal trainer is working on a 360 Wellness trainer certification, and I’m being one of her Guinea pigs. It focuses on physical health, emotional health, intellectual health, spiritual health, and the balance in all those things. (I didn’t know it when I started this monthly blog, but she must have been reading my mind.)

Emotional Health

  • I AM trying to remember “empathy” in my interactions with people I meet.
  • My spell in the hospital reminded me of how necessary kindness and empathy are when someone is ill. Also, I thank God for Medicare and TriCare (military retiree health care). No one has mentioned money to me yet. I’m a little afraid to see a bill, but so far everything is taken care of.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this year.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – finished
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – finished
    • The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor – finished
    • Entering the Passion of Jesus by Amy-Jill Levine – finished
    • Silent Night by Danielle Steele – finished
    • Autumn by Ali Smith – finished
    • Winter by Ali Smith – finished
    •  A Good Year by Peter Mayle – finished
    •  Magnolia Nights by Ashley Farley – finished
    • The Tale Teller by Anne Hillerman – finished
    •  Wife of Moon by Margaret Coel – finished
    •  Cleaning the Gold by Karen Slaughter and Lee Child – finished
    •  Beyond the Garden by Ashley Farley – reading
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • I’m also writing things for the Poetry class that meets twice a month. This quarter we’re working on short poems – one stanza or haiku. I hope to finish a little book with illustrations, collages, and poetry this month.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. – Check. We’re taking a 6-week break from Bible Study and will resume in July. I managed to attend worship every Sunday, including teaching an adult class on foundations of Presbyterianism.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.)
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I will return to Bible Study when it resumes in July. Coffee Hour is between the services, and it was held upstairs (adjacent to the Sanctuary) this month instead of on the lower level. I’ve been going pretty regularly.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. – I try to keep up with people I call my friends on Facebook. I’m trying to post “Five things that made me happy today” every day on Facebook. It really helps me to concentrate on things than make me happy instead of feeding my angst.

Miscellaneous

  • I’ve backed off from People Power. Life has interfered with my work there. Maybe I can resume when voting in the 2020 election heats us.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. – See above.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.
  • Al and I went to a Community Iftar in May on one of the weeks I was not ill.

 

Intentions Review for April 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I was doing really well, and then Easter came along, followed immediately with a trip to Detroit on the train. I have no idea what the final weight for April was (I wasn’t where I could weigh myself) but I think it was probably the same weight I came into the month with.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – Riding on a train from 4/23-4/25, followed by day-long meetings from 4/26-4/28, followed by a spell in the hospital from 4/29-5/1 left me with not a lot of month to work with.
  • Continue to work with my personal trainer for strength, balance, and endurance. – Again, me being out-of-town, and her being ill got in the way. I intend to return to gentle exercise until I get clearance from the doctor to get back to more strenuous exercise.
  • On Sunday, April 28th as I sat down to breakfast in Detroit, I had a really strange feeling in my lower abdomen, kind of like a pop. I didn’t think anything about it, so I checked out of the hotel, took an Uber to the train station and got on the train to Chicago (5 hour trip). I got to Chicago the middle of the afternoon, and I was beginning to hurt, back and abdomen, but I checked into my hotel, washed enough clothes to get home, went to dinner with Ray, Kathy and Kyle, and went back to the hotel. I didn’t sleep well – I couldn’t get comfortable and my stomach was really hurting. Monday I had zero appetite, but I ate a croissant, and drank some orange juice and tea, and went to the train station to wait for my train back to Seattle. By 10:30 or so, I felt so bad that I took a cab to an Urgent Care place several blocks away. While I was there I threw up (nothing in my stomach, but dry heaves). The PA came and examined me and told me I had an umbilical hernia, and I should go to an emergency room at one of the local hospitals. She checked with her supervising physician, who told her to call an ambulance and have me transported. The Chicago Fire ambulance came and took me to Rush University Medical Center emergency room. I called Ray and he was able to retrieve my luggage from Union Station and bring it to the hospital. There the attending physician was able to reduce the hernia externally, (thank God for morphine) and then I had a CT scan, and a consult with a surgeon (by this time it was 5:00 pm). The surgical resident admitted me to keep me overnight for observation. The pain was significantly less once the MD reduced the hernia, and I had a good night’s sleep (except for being waked up every 3-4 hours for vital signs). I intended to check out of the hospital, go to a hotel, and take the train home on Wednesday. The hospital let me stay a second night and I was able to get some rest, begin to eat normal food (although I wasn’t very hungry, at least I was no longer nauseated). Wednesday morning (May 1), I was released from the hospital with instructions to find a surgeon when I got back to Tacoma. I took an Uber to the station, and got on the Empire Builder for Seattle. I realize I’m now in May, and will leave the rest of the story for next month.

Emotional Health

  • I AM trying to remember “empathy” in my interactions with people I meet.
  • My spell in the hospital reminded me of how necessary kindness and empathy are when someone is ill. I can’t say enough good things about Rush, and Chicago Fire. They really took great care of me. Also, I thank God for Medicare and TriCare (military retiree health care). No one mentioned money to me from the time I got to Urgent Care, to today. And I had all the services I could have asked for at Rush – social worker, two physicians, several interns and residents, nurses, patient care techs, x-ray techs, etc.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this year.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – finished
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – finished
    • The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor – finished
    • Entering the Passion of Jesus by Amy-Jill Levine – finished
    • Silent Night by Danielle Steele – finished
    • Autumn by Ali Smith – finished
    • Winter by Ali Smith – finished
    •  A Good Year by Peter Mayle – finished
    •  Magnolia Nights by Ashley Farley – finished
    • The Tale Teller by Anne Hillerman – finished
    •  Wife of Moon by Margaret Coel – reading
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • Keep writing midrash poetry, as I’m inspired by the Sunday sermon or weekly Bible study. – I’m working on one about the Daughters of Zelaphahad.
  • I’m also writing things for the Poetry class that meets twice a month. This quarter we’re working on short poems – one stanza or haiku. I’ll have 3 haikus ready to go for the next class.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. – Check. I’m a regular at the 9:00 o’clock service.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation.
  • I just returned from a trip to Detroit for General Assembly Nominating Committee Retreat. The training focused on cultural proficiency, and we were fortunate to have Jessica Vazquez Torres as one of our trainers.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.)
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I also regularly attend Bible Study. Coffee Hour is between the services, and it was held upstairs (adjacent to the Sanctuary) this month instead of on the lower level. I’ve been going pretty regularly and continued as I was Lay Reader at 9:00 am.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. – I try to keep up with people I call my friends on Facebook. I’m trying to post “Five things that made me happy today” every day on Facebook. It really helps me to concentrate on things than make me happy instead of feeding my angst.

Miscellaneous

  • Keep up with People Power as an Admin. – A new group of people has become very active as admins, and I’m allowing them to take the lead.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. – See above.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.
  • Al and I will be attending a Community Iftar in May.

 

Intentions Review for March 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I’ve hit a plateau and am only down 3 pounds so far this year.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – Again, I’ve done well.
  • Continue to work with my personal trainer for strength, balance, and endurance. – Check. We worked regularly until last week when she got sick – so I’ve been on my own for the last week of the month. I really miss her.
  • Return to weekly Tai Chi classes. This is a non-starter.
  • March was better than February, except I was out-of-town from 3/18-3/20, and Sarah was ill from 8/25-present. I was making progress, but now I fear I’ve dropped back.
  • Nevertheless I Persisted” has been discontinued. WordPress in it’s great wisdom decided to start charging me, and I figured I could keep those stats on a spreadsheet just as easily as on a blog.

Emotional Health

  • Practice empathy by taking a picture a day of someone who crosses my path. – The picture a day this has also gone the way of all good (?) ideas.
  • Tribes” is no longer active.
  • I AM trying to remember “empathy” in my interactions with people I meet.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this year.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – finished
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – finished
    • The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter by Hazel Gaynor – finished
    • Entering the Passion of Jesus by Amy-Jill Levine – reading all through Lent
    • Silent Night by Danielle Steele – finished
    • Autumn by Ali Smith – finished
    • Winter by Ali Smith – reading
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • Return to writing.
  • Keep writing midrash poetry, as I’m inspired by the Sunday sermon or weekly Bible study. – I’m working on one about the Daughters of Zelaphahad.
  • I’m also writing things for the Poetry class that meets twice a month. I wrote five or six “narrative” poems this month. A couple of them may be worth keeping.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. – Check. I’m a regular at the 11:00 o’clock service.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation. – Keeping up with the “photo-a-day” from #RethinkChurch is forcing me to spend some time in the Bible every morning.
  • I attended NEXT Church in Seattle, and reconnected with many of my PCUSA friends from around the country. I also got a “pick-up” roommate who is a sister of one of my on-line friends from Centralia, WA. It was a small world thing. She put a notice on the board asking if anyone had an extra bed, and I had one, so we hooked up for two nights. We got along fine.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.)
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I also regularly attend Bible Study. Coffee Hour is between the services, and it was held upstairs (adjacent to the Sanctuary) this month instead of on the lower level. I’ve been going pretty regularly and will continue next month when I am Lay Reader.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. – I try to keep up with people I call my friends on Facebook. It’s hard when so much of the stuff there is political.

Miscellaneous

  • Keep up with People Power as an Admin. – A new group of people has become very active as admins, and I’m allowing them to take the lead. I keep up with what’s going on, though, and support if and when necessary. I’ve been more active towards the end of this month because the ACLU is starting a new initiative called “Right for All.” The kick-off was today and we sent 200,000 texts inviting people to attend the on-line initial meeting.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials. – Attended a town hall in East Tacoma with all three of the District 27 legislators.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. – The first meeting is scheduled for the end of April. I have my train tickets, and plans are made.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.
  • I attended the second Interfaith Women’s Conference here in Tacoma. We had most faiths represented there and it was nice to meet with women who were interested in that collegiality.
  • I attended a vigil at the local mosque after the horrific shooting at the mosques in New Zealand. It was well attended by elected officials and people from local Christian and Jewish congregations.

 

Intentions Review for February 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

When Facebook sent me my “Year in Review,” the thing that stood out for me was that 90% of the pictures I posted through the year were of landscapes, seascapes, and skyscapes. There were VERY few pictures of people, and very few posts about people. I suppose that’s not unusual for an introvert like I am, but I also realized that I tend to flit through life without getting really close to other folks. It’s part of the shell that I’ve built up to keep from suffering the grief that comes from separation. After the nomadic life that I’ve lived (27 houses in eight states and three countries), I realize that I’ve always just found new friends, and forgotten to tend the old ones. But I’ve never had a BFF. The closest thing I’ve had is my family – siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles, parents and children. I try to keep up with them, but I do a poor job of it. The ones I’m reasonably close to are now living in Washington, California, Texas, Arkansas, New York, Illinois, and Alabama. We gather for weddings and funerals and are able to take up where we left off. Anyway, I’d like to change a little of that this year, and, with my Star Word, try to become closer to the people who matter to me, and closer to the ones near to me.

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I’ve done well with the weight loss, and am down 4 pounds so far this year.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – Again, I’ve done well. According to my Fitbit, I’ve walked 167 miles this month.
  • Continue to work with my personal trainer for strength, balance, and endurance. – Check. She has added more core training, and we do both stairs and ramps, in addition to single steps up and down without a railing.
  • Return to weekly Tai Chi classes. I’ve dropped out of Tai Chi again. Sorry. It just doesn’t fit into my schedule. Maybe later in the year.
  • I’ve been following #NYTWellChallenge. I’m in the third week, and if you are following this blog, I report on what I’m doing with it every day.
  • February was almost a lost month. We were house-bound with the snow for two weeks, and locked out of the Wellness Center for another week because of illness in Assisted Living. I did the best I could, but I feel like I lost ground on my steps and endurance.
  • You can follow my success (or not) on my blog “Nevertheless I Persisted.”

Emotional Health

  • Practice empathy by taking a picture a day of someone who crosses my path. – I’ve almost dropped the picture a day because (see above) I was not out in the world for most of the month. The people I saw were usually people I had already taken pictures of.
  • Try to learn the story of each person I take a picture of. – Again, this is a fail. Maybe next month.
  • Post those on a new blog “Tribes“.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this month.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – finished
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – finished
    • The Lighthouse Keeper’s Daughter – reading
    • Entering the Passion of Jesus – reading all through Lent
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • Return to writing. Try writing a story about each person I take a picture of. – See above.
  • Keep writing midrash poetry, as I’m inspired by the Sunday sermon or weekly Bible study. – I don’t have one going right now, but I think I may do the Daughters of Zelaphahad.
  • I’m also writing things for the Poetry class that meets twice a month.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. – Check. We will be expanding to two services the beginning of February. I’m still going at 11:00.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation. – I’m not doing very well with this, although my midrash poetry and Wil Gafney’s book are driving me deeper into my beliefs.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.)
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I also regularly attend Bible Study. Since Coffee Hour is now between the services, I am missing it, but I will be Lay Leader at the early service in April, so maybe I’ll develop a new habit there.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. – I try to keep up with people I call my friends on Facebook. It’s hard when so much of the stuff there is political.

Miscellaneous

  • Keep up with People Power as an Admin. – A new group of people has become very active as admins, and I’m allowing them to take the lead. I keep up with what’s going on, though, and support if and when necessary.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials. – Attended the Environmental Priorities Lobby Day at the State Capital in January. The Lobby Day with Faith Action Network was cancelled because of weather, unfortunately.
  • Our City Council representative was here and met with the residents this month. He was able to slip through between the snow and the illnesses.
  • I will be attending NEXT Church next month in Seattle.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. – The first meeting is scheduled for the end of April. I have my train tickets, and plans are made.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.

 

Intentions Review for January 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

When Facebook sent me my “Year in Review,” the thing that stood out for me was that 90% of the pictures I posted through the year were of landscapes, seascapes, and skyscapes. There were VERY few pictures of people, and very few posts about people. I suppose that’s not unusual for an introvert like I am, but I also realized that I tend to flit through life without getting really close to other folks. It’s part of the shell that I’ve built up to keep from suffering the grief that comes from separation. After the nomadic life that I’ve lived (27 houses in eight states and three countries), I realize that I’ve always just found new friends, and forgotten to tend the old ones. But I’ve never had a BFF. The closest thing I’ve had is my family – siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles, parents and children. I try to keep up with them, but I do a poor job of it. The ones I’m reasonably close to are now living in Washington, California, Texas, Arkansas, New York, Illinois, and Alabama. We gather for weddings and funerals and are able to take up where we left off. Anyway, I’d like to change a little of that this year, and, with my Star Word, try to become closer to the people who matter to me, and closer to the ones near to me.

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year. – I’ve done well with the weight loss, and am down 1.4 pounds for the month.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit. – Again, I’ve done well. According to my Fitbit, I’ve walked 191.55 miles this month.
  • Continue to work with my personal trainer for strength, balance, and endurance. – Check. She has added more core training, and we do both stairs and ramps, in addition to single steps up and down without a railing.
  • Return to weekly Tai Chi classes – Check. I was out of practice in both balance and stamina, but I’m doing better with each session.
  • You can follow my success (or not) on my blog “Nevertheless I Persisted.”

Emotional Health

  • Practice empathy by taking a picture a day of someone who crosses my path. – I’ve done a pretty good job of taking the pictures.
  • Try to learn the story of each person I take a picture of. – I don’t always get a story to go with each picture, but I’m trying.
  • Post those on a new blog “Tribes“.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels. – Books read this month.
    • The Library Book by Susan Orleans – finished
    • Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens – finished
    • Becoming by Michelle Obama – finished
    • Womanish Midrash by Wil Gafney – reading
    • The Nightingale by Kristin Hannah – reading
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting. – I scan the headlines and read articles that interest me.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve. – Check
  • Return to writing. Try writing a story about each person I take a picture of. – My stories are usually pretty short and of the newspaper “who, what, when, where” variety. I’m trying to expand them.
  • Keep writing midrash poetry, as I’m inspired by the Sunday sermon or weekly Bible study. – Currently working on one about Gabriel the Archangel. I’m also writing poems that fulfill a bi-weekly assignment for my creative writing class.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship. – Check. We will be expanding to two services the beginning of February. I may try to go to the new early service just to be supportive.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation. – I’m not doing very well with this, although my midrash poetry and Wil Gafney’s book are driving me deeper into my beliefs.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones. – I still regularly attend the Gazebo Group (the folks who meet on Monday evenings for Happy Hour.)
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church. – I go to Coffee Hour after church to talk to people I don’t see often. I also regularly attend Bible Study.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media. – I try to keep up with people I call my friends on Facebook. It’s hard when so much of the stuff there is political.

Miscellaneous

  • Keep up with People Power as an Admin. – A new group of people has become very active as admins, and I’m allowing them to take the lead. I keep up with what’s going on, though, and support if and when necessary.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials. – Attended the Environmental Priorities Lobby Day at the State Capital and talked to my state senator and one of my state representatives. The other state representative was busy in a committee meeting, but I met with her intern about my environmental wishes.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually. – Not active yet this year.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements. – I donate regularly to MoveOn, the ACLU, and the Southern Poverty Law Center. I attend rallies and marches if I’m available.

 

Intentions for 2019

My Star Word for this year is “Empathy”. The internet defines empathy as the ability to understand and share the feelings of another. Merriam-Webster says, “Empathy is similar to sympathy, but empathy usually suggests stronger, more instinctive feeling.”

When Facebook sent me my “Year in Review,” the thing that stood out for me was that 90% of the pictures I posted through the year were of landscapes, seascapes, and skyscapes. There were VERY few pictures of people, and very few posts about people. I suppose that’s not unusual for an introvert like I am, but I also realized that I tend to flit through life without getting really close to other folks. It’s part of the shell that I’ve built up to keep from suffering the grief that comes from separation. After the nomadic life that I’ve lived (27 houses in eight states and three countries), I realize that I’ve always just found new friends, and forgotten to tend the old ones. But I’ve never had a BFF. The closest thing I’ve had is my family – siblings, cousins, aunts, and uncles, parents and children. I try to keep up with them, but I do a poor job of it. The ones I’m reasonably close to are now living in Washington, California, Texas, Arkansas, New York, Illinois, and Alabama. We gather for weddings and funerals and are able to take up where we left off. Anyway, I’d like to change a little of that this year, and, with my Star Word, try to become closer to the people who matter to me, and closer to the ones near to me.

Here are my intentions for 2019.

Physical Health

  • Continue to eat real food, and, hopefully, lose about 20 more pounds this year.
  • Continue to average 150 miles a month on my Fitbit.
  • Continue to work with my personal trainer for strength, balance, and endurance.
  • Return to weekly Tai Chi classes
  • You can follow my success (or not) on my blog “Nevertheless I Persisted.”

Emotional Health

  • Practice empathy by taking a picture a day of someone who crosses my path.
  • Try to learn the story of each person I take a picture of.
  • Post those on a new blog “Tribes“.

Intellectual Health

  • Expand my leisure reading from fluff mysteries to more substantial novels.
  • Continue to read the Washington Post and the New York Times for reasonably non-biased reporting.
  • Continue to watch the Rachel Maddow Show to feed my angst and resolve.
  • Return to writing. Try writing a story about each person I take a picture of.
  • Keep writing midrash poetry, as I’m inspired by the Sunday sermon or weekly Bible study.

Spiritual Health

  • Continue to participate in weekly Bible study, and weekly Worship.
  • Try to carve out time daily for intentional prayer and meditation.

Social Health

  • Tend the relationships I have at Franke Tobey Jones.
  • Tend the relationships I have at Bethany Presbyterian Church.
  • Tend the relationships I have on Social Media.

Miscellaneous

  • Keep up with People Power as an Admin.
  • Participate in Town Halls and face-to-face meetings with elected officials.
  • Attend GA Nominating Committee meetings, both face-to-face and virtually.
  • Support #BlackLiveMatter, #Me,Too, #ThePoorPeople’sCampaign, #ClimateAction, and other social justice movements.