Odds and Ends

The ocean dressed in grey today. I was out fairly early walking the dog and we ventured onto the sand so that he could dig, roll around and coat his nose. Quite the fool but the enormous grin and beating tail drew answering smiles from passers by.

Monday Dawning

I woke up early this morning and gazed out at the inky dark sky as the lights from Wilshire Boulevard twinkled and the palms swayed, caught in a balmy breeze. The siren song of Los Angeles shimmered in the blue pre-dawn light and the enchantment of the city that we call home beckoned me afresh, as it often does when I’m least expecting it.

When Knowledge Comes Knocking

It’s been a week of standing on either side of the desk and playing the role of both teacher and student. Yesterday, as evening approached, I drove south  in the light sunshine after a grey and silvery blue day, listening to the opening chapters of Enlightened Vagabond by Matthieu Ricard. I was headed to a regular tutoring client and wearing that particular set of clothes is always reinvigorating.

View from a Window

I’ve discovered a new children’s illustrator recently. Her name is Kinyuko Craft and her creations are exquisite. My daughter is discovering the magic of fairy tales and reading these wonderful stories accompanied by such a depth of visual wonder is a beautiful experience. 

Musings from the Land of Sunshine

It’s a comfortingly domestic evening. My son sits practising piano chords while my daughter bustles around wearing fairy wings and the dog lies gazing soulfully into the near distance. I sit with my mind training text on my lap, musing happily on the weekend just past. It occurs to me that memories of my young family will consist of many moments such as these; when we were together and the world of childhood was all around me.

Candles, Cuddles and Wishes

It was our daughter’s fourth birthday this week. With a hop, skip and a jump, it seems, we arrived in the wondrous realm of the little girl. From Poppy Troll birthday banners, confetti balloons, gigantic rose gold helium creations to tiaras, mermaid costumes and cuddles, it’s a glorious place to spend time.

A Heart as Big as the Ocean

Birthdays are in the air in our house at the moment. Our daughter turns four in a couple of weeks and talks of little else but parties, friends, balloons and presents. It so happens that our canine family member, Duke, also has his birthday in March and while he will be turning six in human years it is also very nearly five years since we first laid eyes upon him.

Family Footsteps

My husband and son left early yesterday for a soccer tournament in San Diego. The noisy haste with which they departed left an unexpected stillness in its wake. Living the speedy dance of family life the weekends often pass in a blur and so I’ve spent quiet moments sitting on our balcony watching the rain as our dog gazes territorially at passers by and offers the odd ferocious bark.

The Fire of Time

I’ve been wandering alone in this beautiful town of dreams recently during the times of day when my children are happily occupied at school. There’s a song that’s been on my mind for weeks now that tells a tale full of the bitter power of memory and the bone shaking timeless grief that the loss of a loved one can brings.

Lost in Space

We headed out last night into the freedom of an evening without children. From the frazzled normality of busy Saturday afternoon parents we were transformed into a carefree couple thanks to the magic only a trusted babysitter can bring. As we drove in the slow moving twilight traffic towards the restaurant my husband had chosen I remembered just how essential regular evenings such as this one are. It’s almost easy to forget that the two of you exist outside of your identity as parents without them.

When Magic Came to Town

It rained in Los Angeles this past week. The city finds it impossible to behave as usual in the wet weather. Everything is suddenly difficult- and this place is not built for hardship.  Water is everywhere as the rainfall has nowhere to go and venturing outside of one’s dwelling place suddenly becomes an expedition into the wilderness. 

California on a Winter's Day

We watched the Holiday one evening last week during the strange period that is the hiatus between Christmas and New Year. I’d seen this movie at least twice before but was spurred to watch it again after a conversation with my sister who commented that she had particularly liked the character of Arthur, the octogenarian screenwriter, played by Eli Wallach. So, when I settled down with my husband and teenage son for an evening viewing, it was to Arthur’s story that I paid particular attention.