After planting an entire packet of seeds, only 4 sunflowers have survived to this point. Only one of the four is as straight as a pole, pointing to the sky. The others have been beaten down by heavy rains and storms. Some of the little guys gave up, but others have persevered in amazing ways. These guys didn’t let the storms win them over, nope! They just kept creeping and growing along the ground until the wounds were healed and they were ready to get vertical. “Let’s get vertical! Vertical! I wanna get vertical!” (I’m singing this to the tune of “Let’s Get Physical” by Olivia Newton John.) Anyway, here are the photos!
Tonight I did something that isn’t fun or comfortable, but it was necessary. I attended a “Not Me!” safety training class. One in five women will be assaulted in this lifetime. It’s not fun to think about the possibility of being the victim of assault (or worse) but now I have the knowledge, skills and belief that I will never be a victim.
The class teaches how attackers think and provides stories and statistics. Additionally, it’s important to keep your awareness in the moment in order to listen to your intuition (your personal threat alarm). For example, it’s important to stay off your cell phone if you are in public by yourself because your ability to observe your surroundings is severely stunted. And if you get attacked, the person on the other end of the phone call is powerless to help you. Dru Sjodin was on her cell phone with her boyfriend as she walked from her job in the mall to her car. Her boyfriend called the police, but Dru was long gone by the time the police arrived.
The most important part of the class was learning only four self defense moves. It’s important to limit the number of maneuvers learned in order to remember them. Everyone in the class was able to practice them, repeatedly, creating muscle memory—meaning we each will know how to react, should we need to.
The class should be taken by all women, all ages. If you’re interested in taking a class or having Not Me! teach a class at your work/place of worship/home, contact Alison James at 612.483.4783 by email: email@example.com
After an amazing sunset walk around Lake Calhoun on Friday night, Jesse and I drove home to our St. Louis Park abode. While pulling into the driveway, I spied two gray, fluffy creatures on my deck, flanking the steps. I immediately thought it must be squirrels facing away from me with their poofy tails pointed toward the sky.
(Now, you need to understand that I have a hate/hate relationship with the squirrels who live in my tree because they dig up my potted plants and pluck leaves off my maple tree!)
While Jesse took a photograph of the symmetry of the animals to our deck stair case, I was determined to chase them away. As I moved closer to the deck, my eyes adjusted to the dark. And to my surprise, I realized that I was staring into two sets of owl eyes!! The birds flew into the maple tree. I curiously observed the maple tree and spotted another owl. After about 5 minutes of playing “Where’s Waldo,” Jesse and I counted five little owls in our yard!
I think (but I’m not sure) the owls are adolescent screech owls. Photos below by Jesse.
My $10 Target cowboy boots served me well. I wore them for a good 3 years. I say goodbye to the boots not because I no longer like them but because they have simply worn out. I wish my $10 Target boots were made out of leather instead of faux man-made materials, because I still love the style, but I don’t like how the faux material is crumbling off the surface.
I’ve been wanting to replace the Target boots for a while, in fact I received birthday money from my parents with the intention of purchasing some good quality leather cowboy boots (which don’t come cheap). Last night Jesse informed me that he noticed Ragstock in Uptown has a huge window display showing off their collection of cowboy boots. Naturally, it was our mission to find some new boots tonight after work.
I had my doubts about finding a good pair of boots for a variety of reasons:
- My feet are size five. I have a hard time finding new shoes in my size.
- Do I want to wear boots that have been broken in by another?
- And finally, will I even find a pair that I could love as I have my beloved Target boots?
Amazingly, Ragstock had a few pairs of boots in my size! And when I laid eyes on this pair, they spoke to me. Two-toned leather. Awesome stitching. While the boots are definitely broken in, they look awesome. In a similar way to how a $200 pair of jeans can look weathered and ripped up in a cool “I broke these in,” kind of way. But these boots were not $200, they were $20! If you are pining for a pair of awesome cowboy boots but don’t have $200-300 to drop on a new pair, go to Ragstock Uptown. STAT!
I imagine that my “new” old boots have an amazing back story. Living on a ranch in Wyoming near to Yellowstone National Park was a charmed existence. Roping goats, riding horses, feeding pigs. Planting the summer garden and frolicking in the fields. These boots have done it all. As I washed away the caked-on wild west mud (or worse, manure?), I thought to myself, “Welcome to the city, cowboy boots.”