Thursday, June 4, 2015

Dancing Mark's Graduation



Mark graduates today, in just a few hours. No matter which continent I might be on, I promised myself I'd be there for that moment. An unexpected visit, however, the flight to see Ryan off to Army Boot Camp four months earlier (wouldn't have missed that, either, for the world) and consequent work commitments upon my return kept me homebound.
Photo courtesy Lisa Montgomery
Photo courtesy Milena Kentera
Sometimes you move, you just move, because if you sit still and your mind dwells, you go crazy. So, you move, you breathe and you allow yourself during these minutes, when the longing is overwhelming, to embrace and stretch and feel the beat of your heart. Your and the troupe's hips and feet respond to the pulse of dance all around the class. Tribal dance practice tonight, new steps. I imagine you, son, can feel our movement and joy. Heavy rain clouds stretch across a full golden moon in anticipation. It's my boy's graduation night.


Of course, I'll be in bed asleep tonight when my sweet son crosses the field and receives his diploma. Nine hours difference makes his early California evening my middle of the Spanish night. I close my eyes and our first summer rain begins to beat a strong steady rhythm against the attic bedroom windows.


Mark, do you know we're dancing and celebrating you?  See you soon, son. Congratulations with every beat of my heart!

Photo courtesy Lisa Montgomery
Quoting favourite graduation read:
"You grew up — and I want to go back and I want to go with you, but I can’t do either.That’s a hard thing to sit with...
You have been given now. Romans 12:1. Seize the Day.
Just go do that: it’s never too late to love and there is always time to love and what else is a lifetime for?"

Thursday, May 14, 2015

El Vergel


If you've ever traveled to Spain you know that you can safely say that it's all about the food. The day is planned by where you'll have your morning coffee, where you'll have the mid-day big meal, lunch, and finally, where you'll dine.
Si alguna vez has viajado a España ya sabes que con seguridad se puede decir que todo gira sobre la comida. El día está planeado por el lugar donde tendrás tu café de la mañana, dónde tendrás la comida de mediodía, el almuerzo, y por último, dónde cenar.




So, picking the finest restaurant, especially while vacationing is a great priority.
Por lo tanto, elegir el mejor restaurante, especialmente durante tus vacaciones es una gran prioridad.


Of course we knew about El Vergel, and I, being vegetarian, like to seek out new places for healthy cuisine whenever possible.
Por supuesto que sabíamos acerca de El Vergel, y yo, siendo vegetariana, me gusta buscar nuevos lugares de cocina saludable siempre que sea posible.


Once in Tarragona while asking for directions to El Vergel we were told by a young couple, who by the way weren't vegetarian, that El Vergel is the BEST restaurant in the city. They were right.
Una vez en Tarragona, mientras preguntábamos por la dirección a El Vergel una pareja joven, que por cierto no eran vegetarianos, nos dijo que El Vergel era el mejor restaurante de la ciudad. Tenían razón.


The atmosphere was calm and beautiful, shabby chic white with good taste exuding from every corner. The menu was complete, portions generous and tastes so exquisite that I wanted to make each bite of my meal last. Even the tea was extraordinary.
El ambiente era tranquilo y hermoso, blanco shabby chic con buen gusto que exuda de cada esquina. El menú era completo, porciones generosas y gusto tan exquisito que quería que cada bocado de mi comida no se acabara. Incluso el té era extraordinario.

Even Sombra had a wonderful time relaxing there before her meal.
Incluso Sombra tuvo un tiempo maravilloso relajante allí antes de su comida.


Sunday, May 10, 2015

La Catedral









La Catedral de León, is the Cathedral I'm referring to, of course. Her splendour is unsurpassed when it comes to minimal stone and maximum light.

My Mother's Day Gift This Year - When It Can't be Mimosas and Brunch

Powerscourt, County Wicklow, Ireland
You all know, I have four wonderful children. You can't know me without knowing that. They are the best of the best, my favourite people in the world. And, I have one wonderful, intelligent, eccentrically fabulous and artistic mom, who is also the best in the world.

And, if you know me, my values and heart, you know, too, that I tried, with everything that was in me to make a home that we could share as a family to last throughout the years.  That refuge, however, a no-matter-what-else-in-life-happens place, a home to come back to, and where to grow old together, didn't last.
Instead, we're dispersed; we're all across the country and globe.

Logically, then, Mother's Day looks a lot different than how I imagined it some years ago.
It certainly isn't Sunday brunch. No bouquet of roses on a lace tablecloth. No going out for the day together. No, not one single mimosa coming my direction.

My Mother's Day Gift, instead, is going to be expensive, really expensive, more than ten truckloads of flowers, more than fifty brunch experiences at our favourite restaurants, more than a whole aisle of Mother's Day cards. More than we can afford, really.
Still, there are gifts that you don't look at their price-tag.

"Somebody, how about just more time — and internal permission — to surprise with more spontaneous “Mommy-Holidays!” in the middle of the week and go for ice cream and the park and the beach and the woods... just more time slow down, smile into them, simply enjoy being... "

Yes, I'm giving myself that permission.

"What you really want, desperately, wildly, in spite of everything — is for them to remember the good…. to remember enough of the times you whispered, “I Love You” … to know how many times you broke your heart and how how hard you really tried."
Have you ever read 1000 Gifts?


It's a gift to myself,
from me to them, my kids and mom,
It's a gift that I give, that we give, I with Enrique, my beloved accomplice, companion, and sweet husband.
Flights. Four of them, maybe five. To travel, travel here to us.
Four flights to Spain, to come and hang, to cook together, surf the internet side-by-side, take picnics, pictures and bike rides, and do all the things together that the rest of the year won't permit.
And we can't wait!

Mark, HS graduate, arrives the beginning of June.
Sara leaves her vanwelling to arrive in July. Both will be gone by August, but we will have soaked up as much love and hugs and essence of one another, intensely.
Mom comes here to celebrate her September birthday. We're making it happen, wheelchairs are magical, wonderful things.
Then Risa, candy-cane girl, comes in December.
And, finally, my Army man, Ryan, will join us if military miracles happen.

We will remind each other.  every day.  how much we love and support the other.
We'll champion one another while we're together. Then we'll promise to do the same thing all theyear  long in-between-our-visits times that are now part of our family's fabric.

A Journey of Firsts

Love that transforms forever is born.

My real home - Mom, look what I found *grins*
My treasures and my hopes are all beyond the blue
Where many many friends and kindred have gone on before
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Over in Glory land, there is no dying there
The saints are shouting victory and singing everywhere
I hear the voice of them that I have heard before
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Oh, lord, you know I have no friend like you
If heaven's not my home, oh, lord, what would I do
Angels beckon me to heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Heaven's expecting me, that's one thing I know
I fixed it up with Jesus a long time ago
He will take me through though I am weak and poor
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Oh, I have a loving mother over in Glory land
I don't expect to stop until I shake her hand
She's gone on before, just waiting at heaven's door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Oh, lord, you know I have no friend like you
If heaven's not my home, oh, lord, what would I do
Angels beckon me to heaven's open door
And I can't feel at home in this world anymore

Sunday, April 12, 2015