Thursday, February 21, 2013

A Meet in the Middle of Reflections and Shadows

How far is a shadow's reach?
ON Monday, Celie was introduced to her shadow.  That's a loaded concept and a metaphor; complex for anyone, let alone for a toddler.  I'm speaking of course of the shadow in the psychological sense.  I think she sees MY shadow more than any other human being, even more than the sun, so I suppose it is only right she learn how they are made, starting with the 'physical' ones, if you will.  I also gained some insight into "A Meet" and it's identification.  A Meet has been a character in the family for going on 3 months or more now.  We have no clue as to its true identity, aside from the many cryptic descriptions we are given almost on a daily basis.  It's a mystery, much like all of life, but one that we are determined to get to the bottom of.

Celie first started talking about A Meet around the holidays.  She was watching You Tube videos with her Grammy and Aunt Kate.  This one video was just a scene of Christmas lights going on and off backed by music.  On this one spot the lights didn't go off because it appeared to be lights from a house in the distance that wasn't part of the lights display.  Celie began to say "A Meet! A Meet is onna spot!!"  We didn't know what she meant, but figured it to be that "spot" on the video she pointed out, which was weird and perplexing.  She has since then gone into an "I'm scared!" stage of sorts where often times she is scared of areas, or the dark, or "things".  She hasn't liked the dark since she was young but had never verbalized being scared of anything until 4 to 6 months ago.  She started saying A Meet was "onna win'ow" at my parents' house.  They have a large bow window in the kitchen and she didn't like it while sitting in her high chair.  Was it a reflection in the glass?  She has also always said "A Meet is sad!"  So far we knew A Meet to be "sad", "onna win'ow" and "onna spot" but had no clue what it really was or why it was so damn melancholy and creepy.

Celie has since then brought up A Meet many many times.  She has said it was on our windows, usually at night, which leads you to believe it is a reflection of sorts she is talking about.  But, still. WHY is it sad?!  Plus, it is very odd to hear the things she has been telling me are "like A Meet".  So far it is apparently like the goat in Green Eggs and Ham as well as the little heart shaped pillow the blue haired pet sits on in One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish?  What in the hell does this thing look like?!  No wonder it's scary!  She will also just start telling people about A Meet even when she doesn't say she is actively seeing it, just a random "oh by the way..." in conversation.  Last week when my mother-in-law was visiting, I was blissfully using the bathroom alone when I heard her up in the living room telling her about A Meet.  It's quite the popular oddity with her lately.

While in the living room on Monday, the sun was coming through the window and throwing a shadow on the floor as it often does that time of day.  The tassels of the valance style curtain were forming a dark visually interesting shape on the carpet.  Celie pointed at it and said "A Meet! A Meet!"  I looked at the floor and wondered what it was she saw in the shapes.  I realized she didn't really understand the concept of what a shadow is, how it is made, or where it comes from.  She was scared of the shadow, so I moved the tassels on the curtain, being the part of the shadow she was pointing at, showing her how they and the shadow both moved, hopefully showing her how the shadow came from the sun on the curtain.  We had played with the sunlight in this window using dangley shiny streamers before, shaking them and playing with the light reflected on the ceiling.  She had seen the light, and I hoped that would allow her to understand the dark.  (That's a metaphor!!)
After moving the curtain and it's shadow I extended my arm into the light, pointing out my arm moving and the new shadow form that was moving.  She seemed to understand and immediately declared, "I needa try it!"  She climbed up onto the couch in front of the window that was creating the magic, and began moving her arms, seemingly satisfied that the movement was hers.  She extended individual fingers, playing with the changes and locating her shadow hand.  She got onto the floor and started stepping on it and walking around.  This calmed her fear, and she moved past it not mentioning A Meet again for the moment.

Celie learned that she makes her own shadow and can control it.  I learned just how scary reflections can be and how they can be interwoven with shadow, and used to help us to understand the dark spots.  She is afraid of A Meet.  Reflections can be scary, so can your shadow.  It's a different form of yourself that follows you everywhere, but you can control it if you can see it.

Reflections are sometimes intimidating.  To the human mind programmed to find order in chaos,they tend to take on forms and shapes...symbols, if you will, and therefore have meaning.  They change.  Perspective changes them.  The image is always different; sometimes it's a horned goat in your face, sometimes it's a cushion to sit on.  Reflections come from objects throwing the light source back out onto another object.  A passing of the light, in a way, letting the light shine.  Reflections should then, theoretically speaking, be positive.  They are a vicarious source of light.

Your shadows are dark reflections of your soul in a psychological sense, that you can see if you are backed by light.  They are areas of blocked light, where the source can not move through us.  Shadows are also intimidating.  They show a distorted version of ourselves; a taller tale or a stretched truth.  Perhaps if we become more reflective we can better understand our dark side and become more shadowless, bending the light in accordance to our shape and movement, adding our own twist, and then sending it back out to space, rather than blocking the light and creating darkness.  Learning to control your darkness, your own shadow, is a milestone at any age.

How far is a shadows reach?

Musing Through,
Missie Sue

Saturday, February 16, 2013

The Map to My Sweet Heart

My Valentine came home with a lovely heart shaped box of Russell Stover fine chocolates for me this week.  My initial reaction to candy is always "Great, you brought me five more pounds of ass fat! You hopeless romantic!"  I do, however, like it, of course, and find it is more worth my time and gluttony session if it comes in a cliche red heart shaped box.  I'm a sucker for staples, and symbols...and presentation, and, oh, hell, they're just fun!  The candy box heart is a good symbol and metaphorical gift.  It says, "Darlin', take my big, fully-loaded sweet heart!!  OH!  AND, here is a helpful map so as to avoid your least favorite parts and likewise find all the best pieces in me!!"

The idea of mapping out your heart makes much sense.  It almost seems like that should be an initial part of all new relationships.  Forget vows, celebrate the exchanging of your heart maps.  Think of how much heartache and time could be saved if it were that easy?  The truth is, I guess, that everyone HAS a heart map, per say, it just isn't laid out as simple as it is in the chocolate world.  A lot more gets lost in translation.  So we spend months, years, and decades getting to know our partners and find the best route to the different chambers of their heart.  Sometimes we devour what we find, sometimes we spit it out.  Sometimes we just put it back in there and hope whoever finds it next likes it better...and doesn't so much mind the bite marks and lip stick ring we left?

I wish I could be as helpful to my husband as a heart map is for chocolates.  I wish I could warn him beforehand which pieces have been all eaten up, which have been picked at, and which have been left for the next.  I could warn him about the maple nut butter, or the maple nut cream.  How many chocolate truffles are left?  Am I only nouget and coconut cream in there?  My heart map, like a trail of emotional bread crumbs I have left over my lifetime, is there.  Like everyone else's, it is continuously being drawn and presented over time.  It resides in cues and stories and reactions and gazes and habits and passions and words and embraces.  I'm no cartographer, but I do my best to maintain a legible heart map for my husband, because let's face it, man can easily become lost in the deep forest of woman, and likewise.  Understanding and finding your way is a team effort.  Joey does a pretty damn good job at finding his way through my heart, and doesn't seem to mind being left with my discarded fruit and nut clusters.

Do you give good directions?

Musing Through,
Missie Sue

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Still...My Valentine

My Valentine

I loved you yesterday.
I'll love you tomorrow.
You held me through heartache.
You held me through sorrow.

I struggle, you lift me,
Above all my troubles.
I stumble, you grab me,
You lead when I wobble.

I missed you yesterday.
I'll miss you tomorrow.
I'll fight hard to keep you.
I'd beg, steal or borrow.

I'm balanced on tight ropes.
Try not to upset me.
I'm aiming for high hopes,
Lets see where that gets me.

Your hands tell the story,
Of a hard-working man.
one hell of a lover,
Who does all he can.

I believed in you yesterday.
I'll believe you tomorrow.
You guide me through darkness.
Wherever, I'll follow.

I break down, you listen.
The weight makes you strong.
You show me new insights,
Whenever I'm wrong.

We're team mates, we're partners.
We share all our strife.
We're friends and we're lovers,
Together for life.  

[February 9, 2011]

Sunday, February 10, 2013

The Control Spectrum: Nature's Dramamine

WHILE on the way home just now from Philly after Christal thanked me for letting her drive my car down I had a muse about car sickness.
Christal is an in control chick.  I'm not saying she has control issues, I'm just saying she is her most comfortable when in control of things.  I like that about her.  She also gets very car sick.  She thanked me because had she had to ride shot gun as I am or in the back of the car she would have become horribly ill.  She is okay or at best in a vehicle when driving and is doing an excellent job, I might add.  I thought about my sister and how she gets ill in cars as well.  I mused about myself.  I am not so bad, but I do tend to feel nauseous and unwell at times unless I am either A. Driving or B. Riding shot gun.  The back seat makes me sick.  I wondered if it could be a control issue.

I thought about the different powerful metaphors in the symbol of the vehicle.  Seeing it as a means of viewing reality, and a spectrum of control, I mused it was like this. 
While driving we are in control and at our best.  Christal is uneasy unless in the driver's seat.  She needs to create her circumstances and retain control of her vehicle to remain at ease.  I am the most at ease with controlling the vehicle, or with at least a driver's side view of the matter.  I can see what's coming at least and brace myself.  I am still at ease with this position on the spectrum.  The back seat, however, makes me uneasy.  I have been known to get head aches and feel nauseous and just basically out of sorts.  I'm not as okay with having vehicular blinders on, with not knowing what is coming at me or what I am heading towards.  I prefer to be aware, as opposed to back seat driving, following the chauffeur's intent, putting my full trust into their decisions and steering.  The chauffeur.  Who the hell is driving  this car anyway?

The more control we have over our situation the more at ease we feel.  But is the point to accept the lack of control?  If it is, then I fail.  Letting go, of anything, is one of the hardest tasks in the world.  We want to know, that we are either heading in the direction that we want, have hold of the reins, or at least are aware of where we are going.  It makes us physically ill to give up control and sit in the back seat, only aware of certain turns or attractions and able to see less of the road ahead.

But isn't that the point I'm always trying to make?  That we are to learn to accept chaos in all of its forms, to go with the flow of the river, limp through the air like a drunk thrown from their vehicle.  If you are slack and limp when you hit the ground you have a better chance of a soft landing.  We are not in control, but in a mutual free fall of sorts with our vehicle.  We are back seat driving off the cliff as I say. We need to let go and flow with the chaos.  This trip has taught me much. Sometimes you miss your exit and you have to move mountains to find your way home.  'If you never get lost, how will you ever find yourself?'

You're either the driver, the passenger or the back seat driver in life.  Perhaps there is a time to be each.  What seat do you prefer for the journey?  Are you okay with being lost?

Friday, February 8, 2013

Philadelphia Freedom!!

I am sitting here waiting for my snack, crackle, pop at the chiropractor with the family.  Celie is playing with toys at my feet actually being an angel tonight.  I'M SO GLAD.  I have to pack and prepare when we get back home for my LADIES TRIP to the 15th Annual Philadelphia Tattoo Arts Convention at the Pennsylvania Convention Center!!  An overnight adventure outing with grown ups!  Well, mostly. He he.  Just four girls hitting the road for an epic adventure and experience!

I haven't been out by myself for a very long time, and I can't remember if I have left Celie for this long with Joey before? Possibly once.  This is going to be the ultimate girls' night out, girls' day out, girls' trip out, party out, drink out, black out?! Let's hope not.  ....mostly.

I am traveling in the company of the fabulous Ms. Black List Tattoo herself and her entourage. We are the entourage!  Woo!  She will be having her unique new head tattoo judged in one of the categories at the convention.  It's a big deal!!!  We are pretty psyched.  We got a room only a few blocks away.  It should be a good time.

Back home now and I have everything pretty much packed and ready.  Throwing a load of my pants in the dryer for morning then heading to bed.  Big day tomorrow!  I am anxious for some kid free social time!!  We leave at 7:45.  Let's do this!! 

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Magically Suspicious Erasing

I was introduced to the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser probably over 5 years ago.  I can't even remember when I used it for the first time, but it was a magical moment indeed. I was in disbelief for the longest time.  I was attacking my house's stains and grime just for a chance to witness its power.  I was in shock and awe.  "I can't believe it!"  "Oh my god!!"  "No way!!"  This thing defied all laws of nature.  Nothing on Earth removes these kinds of stains with so much ease!  Nothing!!  Not true.  At one point I wondered if it was covering UP the stains somehow?! (I know, but I just couldn't believe it.)

If you have never used a magical Magic Eraser, I suggest you give it a try.  I actually gave one to my brother for Christmas this year.  I jokingly say that they probably cause cancer or are made out of a raw chunk of cancerous tissue themselves, for nothing fights grime and saves time like this product from the clean man himself.  At first it almost seemed like cheating. It makes you feel pretty spoiled; imagine the hours of labor required of women back in the day.  As if all of our luxuries as women today don't enough already, this makes their continuous work seem like slave labor compared to our duties.  Thankfully we live in the Magic Eraser Age.  Not that it is effortless, some types of stains still require a bit of elbow grease and really break down the eraser, but it makes a lot of jobs a LOT easier.  It really does erase dirt!!  I'll be damned.

One of the first things I discovered the eraser was good for was rust rings.  Ever sit an empty tin can on your counter and get that ring?  The Magic Eraser takes them right off! POOF!!  Another thing it works great on is soap scum.  It wipes rings on tubs and shower walls right off.  It removes dirty hand prints off of walls and ceilings.  It is harmless to most surfaces too. 

The only surface I found it messed up was wood paneling.  It actually is very abrasive, it rubs a fine layer of the surface off, I think.  DO NOT CLEAN YOUR KIDS WITH IT.  By watching how it works, it is OBVIOUSLY abrasive.  A woman apparently scrubbed her child's arms with it, "burning" their skin.  People freaked, acting like the thing chemically burned the kid's flesh or something, but I think what it would have been was a really bad burn from friction.  After hearing about that story I slightly rubbed the eraser on the back of my hand to see how much pressure or rubbing it took.  It obviously started to turn red and give me a rash type of irritation after a few scrubs.  I couldn't imagine scrubbing my kid with it, the abrasive nature of it alone, but who knows exactly what it IS made of.  It could even chemically burn too.  Who knows?  Bad news.

Tonight while cleaning the bathroom counter, which also doubles as my dark room for my screen printing, I found that the Magic Eraser easily removes dried emulsion from formica counters.  Wood stain, however, is a lot harder to remove and took a lot more elbow grease and it didn't even entirely come off.  I wonder what that says about those two chemicals in comparison to each other.  I also found that it removed dried latex paint from my plastic sink facet knobs.

The Magic Eraser should be tried, get it wet and rub it on all of your stains and gunks.  They cost 2-4 dollars each, come in multi packs, and even a heavy duty version now.  I don't know if it's made out of cancer, or toxic waste, or heavenly clouds.  I don't know what all surfaces it is safe on, but it is for most.  I do know this thing works like a charm!  The Magic Eraser is certainly worthy of its name; it is truly magical.

Have you ever tried the Mr. Clean Magic Eraser?  What type of stain amazed you the most?

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Crystal Growing: Blogumentary Pt. 6

Lastnight I had a dream that I took the crystals down to look at them and they were white melted puddle-looking mounds on the plate.  I was obviously disappointed. I have no idea what this could represent, other than disappointment?  They almost appeared to be a white mold type of deal, as if they had started to rot and had "gone bad" in a way.  Spoiled.  That's what they were.  Molded over with a fuzzy coat.  I remember wondering why they would have gone bad, like so much rotten food.  Maybe they represent my creative aspirations?  Maybe in a way, I feel my creative side, the part of me that creates projects just like this crystal growing blogumentary, has gone sour or like so much of my molded food, has laid unconsumed so long it has been taken over by fungus.'s what grows on things and eats them away when we don't.  Time.  Dormant fruit and time grow mold.  Mold is a growth, but a stagnant growth.  A growth in the wrong direction.  Either this project, I feel, is wrong or something about it.'s right, and my fear of my creative side rotting away is what it should teach me?

Upon inspecting the crystals today, I am fairly certain that I did something wrong.  The stones look dead, lackluster, and spent for some reason.  Maybe they've exerted themselves as much as possible.  I think their growth period is over.  They are FAR from the crystals in the picture on the kit.  I either took too much liquid out, didn't dissolve the powder enough, or just got a dud kit.  It is possible it takes longer than a week to grow?  You would think maybe they'd grow on.  I have no idea, I don't know crystals.  Mine actually look more like warts than crystals!  Glorified WARTS. Wart gem stones, I could maybe make wart wear?  Classy growths.

I don't know crystals.  I do know that I enjoyed having an experiment, I liked how easily I was able to share my phone pictures with my blog and create a post.  I liked doing a blogumentary style set of posts.  I liked getting back into the swing of my blogging after the crazy end of 2012 and the beginning of the new year. I was able to start the year off with something a little easier and more playful. 

All in all, with this experiment I have determined that I am not a scientist.  Not only that, but I apparently can't even grow a set of crystals from a kit from the dollar store.  But, I have also found that I can document it not working, express the physical change from rock to crystal or lack thereof. THAT is the power of playful creation.  I can track my progress, reflect, change, and continue.  I have the desire to make crystals out of rocks, and that's enough. a metaphor.

From Rocks to Crystals,
Missie Sue