Boston Marathon 2

gloves-1700-by-ericbaylinWhat heartache and sadness we see over and over as the injured are removed from the site. The very same woman who doggedly pushed her daughter up the hill, is on the screen before my eyes running through the finish line with two friends just as the blast occurs in the background. Her startled expression expresses the same surprise and astonishment of all those around her as they struggle to make sense of the noise and smoke.
Today I received a message from the Courage And Renewal Center with an invitation to reflect on an image. Here is the accompanying text:

“At Courage & Renewal, we use “third things” — images, stories, poems, music, objects — as metaphors for reflection. At a recent retreat in New York facilitated by Eric Baylin and Ann Myers, this display of gloves became an impromptu third thing about community.

Come with us on a mini-retreat for a moment. Print out this image, or zoom in on it here. Write about it, if you’d like. Then share the photo with someone and have a conversation.

What do you see in this photograph?
What do these work gloves say to you about your life today, where you are or where you’d like to be?
Where does your life fit like a glove? Where does it not?
Share your reflections at Facebook or our blog! And send us your photos that evoke a courage and renewal moment. ”

I’ll save my reflection for tomorrow and let you form your own thoughts about this picture.

http://www.couragerenewal.org/courage-to-teach

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Hard at Work

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Boston Marathon 2013

I lived along the marathon route during my teens and twenties, when the runners numbered under 500! We would walk up the corner of Speen and 135 and hand out water cups and clap for the men as they ran past. One of those years, a woman decided to join the group. She ran without a number, as women were unable to qualify. Here’s her story.
http://www.runningpast.com/gibb_story.htm

Today we made a pilgrimage to the same area where we used to watch the runners. We arrived in time for the wheelchair participants to start rolling up a small incline on 135. Here’s the inspiration for me. These men and women surmounted tremendous physical challenges to demonstrate to themselves, and the world that anything is possible. Watch a young women power up a hill with her arms bulging… Hear a man dance along, tap tap tap, with two prostheses …. a sight impaired runner and his guide put one foot in front of another and plod the miles. Blink back the tears as the mother pushes her 18 year old daughter up the hill.

Just amazing.

Post script

What a horrible end to the Marathon. Injuries and deaths hang a pall over what was a celebration of spirit and determination. My thoughts and prayers are with the injured and the families of all of those waiting to hear, waiting to find their loved ones in the medical care facilities, and all the locked down businesses in Boston. God bless.

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The first men runners

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Cameras roll for the elite runners

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Forsythia enjoys the warm house!

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The forsythia only took a week to blossom once I brought them inside. The first whisper of spring.
This week we have Blu, the golden lab. He’s a big pony of a dog with droopy jowls and a pair of golden honey brown eyes that make your hands weave toward the dog treats because he looks so pathetic.
Tomorrow he heads to doggie camp for the day. Tim, our oldest, assures us that Blu loves doggie camp and will be very tired when we pick him up. Tim and Lynne are enjoying the sun in Mexico while we supervise the pup. These short intervals are perfect for us, especially when we find ourselves weakening and thinking about adopting a dog!
Tim has fostered several dogs, giving them a home until the right adoptive family arrives. But Lynne fell in love with this big glunky dog and so, he has joined the family. He does grow on you, though!

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April Fools on Me

We have a small library in our town, but it is a lovely piece of history with a  great staff and a liveliy group of Friends. The Friends, like the PTO in school, bring programs to the town for adults and kids alike. To cover the costs of the programs and the  children’s summer activities we have a variety of fund raisers, but, like most libraries, we count on the Book Sale for a good portion of the budget.

Throughout the year we collect previously read books and sort through them. Sad and tired books go to Reading Tree or recycling. Other books are boxed and put out for our bi-annual book sales. This year we decided to have the Spring Sale a Bake Sale as well. As a good doobie I got the signs for the sale and changed the date yesterday. I buzzed around town and stuck six in the ground, fastened with those little plastic ties to sign posts at the intersections.

We had our meeting last night and I wondered why we didn’t jump immediately to the upcoming sale this weekend. I mentioned, finally, that I had put the signs around, and hesitated at the sudden silence. All eyes were on me, quizzically.

“This weekend ?” three members said as one.

I opened my calendar and pointed to this Saturday “BOOK BAKE SALE”

“But the sale isn’t until May,” the president said.

“May!”

 

What an April Fool! On April 2nd I had to run around in the brrrrrrrr wind and pull them up!

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The Bunny Delivered!

We have finished our ham, asparagus, carrots and roasted potatoes. The pans are done and the guys have moved off to a round of golf on our little 9 hole course. I am just about to walk the pup, but decided to sit for a few moments and enjoy the quiet.

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This photo illustrates why one should not browse the candy aisle when one has eliminated sweets for a period of more than a day!

I’ve included a very easy recipe for traditional Irish bread, made from whole wheat, that is light and tasty. It’s a baking soda bread made without yeast. Do mix in the baking soda well, as a little lump in the baked bread will not be pleasant!
Time to walk the dog! May there always be a rainbow at the end of your path. See you on Tuesdays!

Irish brown bread

Makes 1 round loaf

Brown bread, leavened with baking soda and made mostly with whole-wheat flour, is said to be the real Irish bread. The familiar cross cut into the top of the loaf allows heat to penetrate the center so the bread bakes evenly. This version, from Theodora FitzGibbon’s “A Taste of Ireland,” cools on a rack so the crust is crisp. For a softer bread, wrap the hot loaf in a clean dish towel until cooled.

4 cups whole-wheat flour (I use 2 cups whole wheat and 2 Cups White Whole Wheat)
1½ cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon salt
2⅔ to 3 cups cold buttermilk ( I added about a tablespoon of molasses in one of the cups to give it just a hint of sweet)
All-purpose flour (for sprinkling)

1. Set the oven at 400 degrees. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

2. In a bowl, whisk the whole-wheat and all-purpose flours, baking soda, and salt to blend them. Make a well in the center and pour in 2⅔ cups of buttermilk. Using a wooden spoon, stir the mixture lightly and quickly to blend fully. The dough should be soft and moist but not too wet. Add a little more buttermilk if needed.

3. Dust a counter lightly with all-purpose flour and set the dough on it. With floured hands, form the dough into a mound, but don’t knead it; too much handling will make the bread tough. Flatten it into a round about 1½ inches thick. Place the dough on the parchment. Using a wet knife, make a deep cross in the top of the loaf (do not cut all the way through to the bottom, but cut to the edges).

4. Bake for 50 to 55 minutes or until the loaf is nicely browned, firm in the center, and sounds hollow when tapped on the bottom. It is better fully baked than underbaked. Transfer the loaf to a rack and cool for about 30 minutes. Serve with soft butter. Adapted from “A Taste of Ireland”

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