Update in pictures, two weeks ago.

I meant to post this two weeks ago, and then the mass shooting happened and I wanted/needed to post about that.

Here are bits and pieces from my life approximately two weeks ago…

life is beautiful signProbably a sign related to the Life is Beautiful music festival. Good reminders of ways to seek beauty in everyday life.

iPad proofreading

A makeshift workstation for proofreading transcripts. My husband supplied the book and encouraged me to remember my posture. It did help. 🙂

united way shirtOn September 29, I volunteered at the local YMCA as part of the United Way’s annual Day of Caring (hence the shirt above) . There were volunteers at many different sites throughout the city. I had fun. It was good to remember how much I like woodworking.

Jenga

Part of what we created at the volunteer project: a full-sized Jenga set!

fall color 17JPGWe went up to the mountains that Saturday to see some fall color. Hurray for aspens!

 

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Friday link roundup 10/13

The Boy Scouts has announced that it will soon start admitting girls.

After 20 years, AOL is shutting down AOL Instant Messenger. Ah, all the memories of good chats….

About the “mystery box” aspects in television shows  The Good Place and This is Us.

From the New York Times: stories of several of the women coming forward about their experiences with film producer Harvey Weinstein.

From the Merriam-Webster dictionary online: better ways (or more effective ways) to say, “This sucks.”

Friday link roundup 10/6

Therapy dogs bring comfort to the survivors of the Las Vegas shooting.

Here is a link to one of the major GoFundMe donations campaigns for victims of the Las Vegas shooting, the Las Vegas Victims’ Fund. You can find other related campaigns (including individual campaigns for specific people for medical costs, funeral expenses, etc.) here.

Lin-Manuel Miranda releases a new single to benefit hurricane relief efforts in Puerto Rico.

Self-care and social media. This has some good insights and tools. The almost incessant access to online material — news, posts, etc — can affect our mental health, and it’s important to know when to take a break, step away, and how to best take of yourself.

Holding space through Nia

Someone asked me if I was willing to reschedule my Nia class yesterday because of Sunday’s shooting. She was going to a vigil at her church.

I understand her wanting to be able to do both, and how other events have come up in the aftermath of the tragedy, and how it has disrupted people’s lives (especially locally). Aside from the logistical aspects, like the class was in three hours and rescheduling a rental space is easier said than done, my thought was:

No. I need this. We need this.

In some ways teaching and going to a Nia class after a tragedy is a reprieve from the updates from the constant news cycle; the local press conferences; the updates from friends; even the pain of grief, shock, dismay, and other emotions. For me, it was like taking a long deep breath after a day of short, shallow breathing.

It’s also an opportunity to come together, to process emotions, to be with what has happened. Sometimes it’s direct; at other times, it’s indirect. It’s holding space for people to be where they’re at, to feel how they’re feeling, and move through it.

At the end of class, I felt calmer and clearer than I had all day. All the emotions I’d been experiencing were still there, but I felt less tense. It was a blessing to have this space, this Nia class, and to share the experience with others.

Las Vegas.

Las Vegas

Last night, there was a mass shooting on the Strip in Las Vegas.

I woke up to the news today. I suppose if I had stayed up later, I might have heard it before going to sleep (assuming I could have slept after learning that) — but I didn’t. Some people I know heard sirens or snippets of information on police scanners or social media last night. There are more headlines this morning. It’s hard to look away.

This mass shooting happened about 15 minutes away from where I live. I feel less safe here at the moment, even though I know logically that I’m probably no less safe than I was yesterday. This is one incident of an increasing many, in this country and in the world. I feel heartbroken, sad, and scared.

Perhaps I will write a post that includes more opinions later.

But for now, I’m sending love and light for all those affected.

Odds and ends

 

Some odds and ends, thoughts and moments from this week:

*Sometimes the line between looking forward to something and dreading it is very thin for me. I have moments where I’m like, “I’m excited for this but I really wish it wasn’t happening today. How many hours do I have before I have to go do it?”

*After telling someone “I messaged them [photos] to you,” I realized that in today’s nuances of technological communication, ‘messaged’ could be interpreted as “Facebook message.” What I really meant was that I texted them to her.

*Sometimes, add another few moments of mindful meditation to my day can be really helpful. I generally do a few minutes in the morning; one day this week, I also took a few minutes in the afternoon. When I’m feeling anxious, reconnecting with my breath can be so important.

*I tend to forget that I enjoy woodworking and working with power tools. Granted, I don’t have the opportunity to do it much anymore. I volunteered yesterday at the YMCA as part of a city-wide volunteer event, and we were making playground equipment and a full-size Jenga set out of wood. And even though it was warm, it was nice to be outside, doing something physical, and creating something.

Friday link roundup 9/29

The U.S. government announced a waiver of the Jones Act for Puerto Rico. The Jones Act is generally meant to regulate shipping goods in U.S. ports — but is limiting goods and aid that the people of the island need after the hurricanes. The waiver of the act should be helpful. However, they’ve only waived it for 10 days

Want to contribute towards helping the people of Puerto Rico yourself? Go here.  More links of places to donate and other ways to help here.

Celebrities agree to post pictures of themselves at the age of puberty…along with donating funds to help the relief efforts in Puerto Rico.

On Sunday, the region of Catalonia is planning on voting on independence from Spain.

This week is the American Library Association’s “Banned Books Week.