CHARITY PANCAKE BREAKFAST (Austin, Texas)

CHARITY PANCAKE BREAKFAST – Feb 5

WHAT:         Austin SERTOMA Club’s 6th Annual Pancake Breakfast

Proceeds benefit the Austin SERTOMA Club’s sponsorship programs for Texas’ deaf and        hard of hearing community.

WHEN:         Saturday, February 5, 2011 – 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM

WHERE:         Texas School for the Deaf (TSD) cafeteria

1102 South Congress Avenue, Austin Texas 78704

(use Elizabeth Street entrance)

SERVING:      All-U-CAN-EAT Pancakes, Bacon, Eggs, Coffee, Juice, and all the trimmings

Tickets:          $5 advance

$6 at the door

Children 6 & under – FREE

Door Prizes & Live Music by “Last Train Out”

Sponsored by: I-HOP, Dominican Joe & Guero’s Taco Bar

CONTACT:        Jim Hull

Keena Miller ; ,

or visit: www.austinsertoma.org.

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Herbs

One of my husbands charms is that if it’s my birthday, or a holiday, or some other gift-giving event, he’ll sneak in a surprise present – a little something extra that wasn’t on my list that he thought of completely on his own. For example, one year he gave me a handheld Ms. Pac-Man game because he knew I used to love Ms. Pac-Man s a kid (one time we came across the video machine in a restaurant, and I went nuts, challenging my husband to round after round until I had blisters).

So this year – after reading and observing me write the Wasa blog, and noticing my developing interest in cooking – he gave me an herb garden. Well, sort of. We don’t have real garden space in our city place, so he gave me a kit that you can assemble right on your countertop.

Mint.
Basil.
Dill.
Cilantro.
Thyme.
Parsley.
Chives.

My mom and I put together this afternoon.

We snapped a light onto the “garden” and popped in the seed pods.

“Can it really be this easy?” I said.

It was.

We added some water, feed it some nutrients, and left it to grow.

It takes about five weeks until the herbs will be ready for harvesting.

First recipe? I’m thinking a garden herb omelet.

Soul Food

It’s been raining ever since I arrived in Los Angeles. Pouring, actually. The weather reminds me of the 1997-1998 El Nino. It’s all good though. I’m here at a university working on a book project and the rain is keeping me indoors where I’m squirreled away in the library.

The last time I was out here to “work” I got a wee bit distracted and spent my days catching up with friends, visiting my old haunts, eating at my favorite places, etc. This time I’m being good.

“I picture you in a dark, dusty room all alone as you sort through archives,” my husband said to me on the phone the other day. Well, sort-of. I take the documents out of the dark, dusty room to a bigger, lighter conference room. And that’s pretty much where I’ve been the whole time – the exact same spot I was ten years ago as a grad student, typing notes on my laptop (do you ever have the feeling that you’re making no progress in life whatsoever? Anyhoo…)

Last Friday the weather channel called for rain Saturday and Sunday, so I planned to push through the weekend and continue working. But when I woke up Saturday morning, I felt sunlight on my face. I jumped up and ran to the window . . . sure enough it was a bright, shiny morning. The Pacific Ocean sparkled. I had to enjoy the sun while it lasted.

I was starving, so I gobbled down a veggie sandwich (tomato, California avocado, cucumber and sprouts on toasted whole wheat). Then I dashed to the bike path, buckled my rollerblades and – Zoom! – I was off. I bladed all the way to the end of the path, turned around and bladed back, and then turned around once again. I was like the Energizer Bunny . . . I kept going and going and going (‘cept for the part where I rounded a curve way too fast and hit an unexpected pile of sand).

It was the best. The veggie sandwich was certainly a tasty beginning to the day. But I tell ya, its sunshine that feeds my soul.

Care of the Human Frame

“The doctor of the future will give no medicines, but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet, and in the causes of disease.”
–Thomas Edison

Yoga. Acupuncture. Herbs. A Clean Diet..

As I learn how to take care of myself naturally, all are becoming part of my life.

It’s a slow process. And a process that needs a ton forgiveness (the other day before the going to the movies I ate a “healthy snack” so I wouldn’t be tempted to eat candy – and ended up munching on a box of Jr. Mints anyway!).

Tonight for dinner it’s chicken tacos. Organic corn tortillas, free-range organic chicken, and a variety of vegetable toppings to choose from: tomato, avocado, black beans, dark green lettuce, salsa, etc. Also, some steamed spinach on the side (sprinkle the spinach with a little apple-cider vinegar and it is delicious).

I’m not some fancy chef, but I find myself cooking, thinking, and caring about food a lot these days.

Healing Waters

I sink into the water.

Outside, at the hot springs, the air is cool and river still. It smells like sulfur, but after a few minutes I don’t notice. I’m simply lost in the “healing waters.” That’s what they are called because supposedly the minerals in the hot springs help with a number of ailments. Personally, I enjoy the way the heat releases the tension in my body. I especially like soaking my feet – they cramp easily. I also like the heat around the middle of my body – a source of pain between a miscarriage, a surgery, and fertility frustrations over the past 12 months.

I lean back against the stone wall of the bath and watch.

There is a man standing under a waterfall. The water thuds against his back. What is he healing? Tight shoulders? Work stress? Or something deeper . . . the loss of a family member or friend?

In another pool there is a woman with her eyes closed. Maybe she is washing away the pain of divorce. Or abuse. Or a dog named Marley.

I don’t know. I’m just guessing. But when I start thinking about all the different types of “loss” people deal with, it’s clear we all need healing. One of the professors at the university I attended in Southern California just lost his house in the fires. One of my friends just gave birth, a joyful event . . . and a loss of personal time.

Loss of age . . . loss of a job . . . loss of a breast . . . loss of mental agility . . . loss of a city after a move . . . loss of a child who goes off to college . . . and on and on and on it goes.

I read a paragraph in a book the other day about the importance of taking time to heal. The author said that when we step back and heal ourselves we become aware of a world full of people in need. My time of retreat is coming to a close. I hope I don’t go back home and get too wrapped up in schedules and deadlines and the frustrations of city traffic. I hope I can heed the author’s advice and help heal the world in little personal ways. Š

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