Archive for July, 2010

Tasty Treat

Thursday, July 29th, 2010

Summer heat has sent me in search of a cool, refreshing, low calorie dessert.

To my surprise I recently rediscovered an old favorite that seemed to disappear. Right here in townóTCBYóThe Countryís Best Yogurt.

Iíve been taking the three minute drive at least twice a week these days.

And believe me itís oh, oh, oh sooo yummy.

This soft serve yogurt is creamy, delicious and good for you too.

Itís loaded with probiotics; the live active cultures that enhance your immune system and help regulate digestion.

They even have sugar free for those on special diets or with diabetes.

Now take a minuteÖThink yogurt at its best:

White Chocolate Mousse with Chocolate sprinkles.

A swirl of Vanilla & Chocolate in a nut-dipped waffle cone.

Canít you taste the goodness?

What's your favorite?

All things? Really?

Monday, July 26th, 2010

"You must have the capacity to endure all things."

My meditation prompt this morning seemed a bit large to wrap my consciousness around.

It is so easy to endure joy ñ such as the excitement I felt at the Colorado Women of Influence Women of Vision Gala last Wednesday night. I saw Heather Janssen honored as mother, publisher, woman. I saw Heidi Olinger honored for building a business model that creates self-awareness and self-esteem in young girls and tweens. I saw Temple Grandin honored for inspiring us to greater heights as human beings in our treatment of animals Ö and one another.

It is so easy to rethink those moments and smile to myself, happy for them.

Ah, but to endure sorrow, that is another matter.

To hear my Friend say she has stage 3 cancer and see her go through surgery, tests, chemo and radiation. To hear my Friend say she has discovered a lump and see her go through a surgery, checking lymph nodes, chemo and radiation. To hear my Friend's 4 year-old daughter has died, knowing the heart-rending ache she and her husband must now bear.

These pains are much more difficult to shoulder. Endure? How? I know hearts are breaking all around me - how do I face this carnage?

I force myself to breathe in-2-3-4. And then to breathe out-2-3-4, just as I learned in childbirth classes a lifetime ago. Slow down my breathing. Slow down my tears. Slow down the wild beating of my heart.

Do I have the capacity to endure all things?† Really?

I must. How else can I help those dear friends, than to continue to accomplish the day to day tasks required of me? Of what good is it to collapse now?

No, I must accept what cannot be changed and go forward.† Be at the ready in case I may be of any small assistance.

Nothing says this will be easy or without doubt.

But one step at a time ... forward I go.

I write to honor sweet little girl Samantha Schichtel.

A Feline Guide to Stress-free Living

Tuesday, July 20th, 2010

Flash here. In case you were wondering, Cindy came up with a new book idea since the last time I wrote. Oh, sheís really excited about this one, and has spent many hours at her computer, typing away with a smile on her face.

Iím sorry to report that this story is also missing Flash, Feline Extraordinaire, the best, most amazing, character ever. If she would only stop long enough to think about what sheís doing, maybe sheíd realize the error of her ways.

But no.

And itís not just Cindy. Humans in general have no idea how to live their pitiful little lives. You people continually have to DO, DO, DO. You never take time to BE.

On the other hand, your average feline is born knowing how to BE. And look at us, we donít suffer from any of the stress related ailments you humans do, now do we? Let me give you a few pointers. Read and learn:

Lie in a sunny place and watch an ant crawl across the ground. Whack it with one paw. Take a quick power nap to get your energy back after so much grueling exertion.

Amble to your food bowl. Itís important to keep up your strength with proper nourishment! Flop down for another nap.

Wake up and yawn widely. Lean back on your haunches and s-t-r-e-t-c-h, this really gets your blood flowing.

Stalk one of those infernal squirrels scampering across the lawn, chittering insults at you. Yowl, ìYouíre going DOWN, Tail Flicker!î and chase him up a tree. Slide down the tree trunk while your quarry escapes, laughing hysterically. Curse your humans who insist on trimming your claws down to little nubs.

Sorry. Forget that whole squirrel thing. I meant to say, close your eyes and meditate on the grass growing and the sounds of worms working underground.

See how easy it is?

Of course, there are situations where BEING isnít enough. Situations where you have to make a stand and DO something. Something like creep to the computer and get certain peopleís attention by hitting the delete key on any stories without yours truly in them.

Ahh. I feel better already.

Return to Handwriting Analysis

Friday, July 16th, 2010

by Phyllis Kennemer

When my friend Lynda contacted me about giving some lectures on handwriting for some groups in libraries, my first impulse was to say ìNo.î My years as an active handwriting analyst were far behind me and I had tossed all of my materials when I moved from my house to my apartment about three years ago.

Then I talked to Lynda on the telephone and she quoted a generous honorarium, plus mileage, for the lectures. I reconsidered. How hard could it be to reconstruct something I had worked with so intimately for more than ten years. Of course those ten years were from about 1968 to 1981!

First, I needed to get some materials to review. I went online and discovered a website for the International Graphoanalysis Society. Since I had signed up as a lifetime member in 1969, I thought I would be able to acquire what I needed relatively easily. Not so fast! The new owner would not communicate with me via his website and hung up on me when I telephoned him. I found a used set of materials on and told Lynda I would do the lectures.

I prepared my talk on the letter ìtî. This letter represents the writerís goals and accomplishments and the letter is made in a variety of ways. I begin each session with writing a paragraph containing lots of ìtísî on the board and ask participants to copy it in a style of writing that is comfortable for them. Then they can analyze their own writing as we continue.

My first lecture was for a teenage audience. This was a new and interesting experience. The teenagers wrote the paragraph on their papers and promptly turned the papers over so no wandering eyes would discover anything about them. They sat almost expressionless throughout the session and I was afraid I was boring them, but when I finished each one had personal questions for me. They had taken it all in!

The next two lectures were given for adult audiences. They were attentive and interactive ñ asking many questions as we went along. A common question began with ìDoes this mean anything?î The answer is always ìYesî. Every stroke placed on a surface means something.

When I reflected on my return to handwriting analysis, I was glad I had reacquainted myself with something of significance in my life. And I was glad that I had once again come to the realization that, ìYes. Everything we do, write, or say does have meaning.î


Saturday, July 3rd, 2010


Easier said than done when your heart is filled with trepidation; when every thing you have worked for has vaporized and there is no job, no hope of earning enough to pay the mortgage and are facing foreclosure. I know three women, ages 40 or over, that are dealing with this.

Last week, a neighbor was evicted from her home of 35 years. She is mentally ill, not adequately medicated, and is a ìrevolving door patientîódifficult for her family and professionals to manage. She was out in the driveway, muttering and weeping to herself as she attempted to sort the piles that the eviction moving team had left of her home. Here were her bookcases, there were her clothes, and somewhere in the maelstrom was the food from her cupboards. We tried to usher her into a local shelter, but she announced that she was going to sleep out there to keep away the thieves. I watched her make a nest†in the†laundry as her cats curled up†beside her.

Every homeless woman, man, child, or family starts this wayóevicted, alone, stuff in piles and no where to go, no more medication or resources to call upon. This was quite frightening to me. "But for the Grace of God went I" or every other person I have met this year at the Larimer County Workforce Center classes.

Breathe. Try to remember that you are working, that you are helping friends every way you can with job leads and supportive conversation. Hope will prevail. But, breathing in the face of that †womanís hopelessness is hard.

She eventually rounded up the most dear treasures and staples, and left the rest on the driveway. Yesterday, the bank sent another crew to pick it all up and put the dregs into a† bin. She was not there; I truly donít know where she is. SomewhereÖin Loveland. Starting over? Alone, dying? Frightened? Mad? Drenched? Hurt? Homeless.

I find myself breathing, with tears streaming down my face.

Breathe. Cry awhile. Breathe, again.

Monday Blues

Thursday, July 1st, 2010

I wonder, sometimes, about my work attitude. I am like many people on Sundays who complain that they donít want to go to work on Monday. And then I go to work on Monday and get caught up in the work and start enjoying the accomplishing of tasks. Friday arrives, and I think, yes, I will write and work my way toward being a great American novelist. I may do some writing, but I tend to get caught up in doing errands and whatever social things Iíve got going on for the stretch of two days.

I think on Sunday, where has my time gone? If only I could write all day Monday, that would be ideal. I think, I do not want to go to work, and the cycle starts all over again.

I find that either I have to be my good-girl worker self that does what she is supposed to do, something I am fine with as long as I get caught up in trying to accomplish my work duties. But as soon as I let my inner squall, the one I try to ignore and push away, come up into where I can feel it in my mind, I start to ache. I realize I am being who I am not, and then I wonder who I am if my outlines are colored all wrong. I feel starved trying to shift from being who society tells me to be to what is tapped down from the fear of risk and losing and being too poor to pay bills. In the process, I feel my squall become sharper, more resistant to my ignorance as it tells me yes, you can. There is the Serenity Prayer. And hope. And what if. There is yes, there is being real. Chance it.

Oh, I need that push.