Is this mine?

By the good graces of time management and an uncanny ability to change from dress pants to yoga pants mid stride, I made it out of the office and onto my mat by 6pm. Tonight’s class was taught by a newbie but goodie, especially on the eyes. Holy hanumanasana this scruffy-faced teacher was all sorts of distracting, especially when he nonchalantly threw out phrases like, ‘lubricate your hip joints.’

Sure, no problem. Right after I wipe the drool off my Manduka.

Anyway, after I remembered that I set an intention for my practice that did not involve making eyes at gorgeous gumby man, I hit a rhythm. Breathe, sweat, balance, down dog and repeat.

Until Warrior three came along like a big bully. I stared down at my planted foot; it was teetering wildly, the veins shaking like needles on a polygraph. Normally I’m unattached to the outward expression of my unstable core, and quickly find a focal point to help sturdy myself and carry out what feels like the opposite of an impermanent pose. This time, though, I couldn’t look away. I was hung up on the fact that I didn’t recognize my own foot.

Maybe because I hardly ever see it during the winter months, being all wrapped up in socks, boots, blankets, and the like. Maybe because I’ve been running so much that the muscles are altering its composition, or maybe because I neglect toe nail polish like the world neglected Hotmail in 2005.

Regardless, I got to thinking then and there about this foot I did not recognize, which lead me to wonder about aged and aging people. How their faces and bodies rarely resemble what once was. How  we are every day, every hour, every year, a different version of ourselves.

There I was: out of the pose, and into a different subset of mindfulness.

Micky Allan

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‘Old Age’ – Micky Allan.

George’s Girl Takes 5

Here we have it: The First Edition.

A recap of the week’s sounds, smells, sights, touches, and tastes from a girl who lost her father but not herself. 

Let it be said that I had my first date with Photoshop this weekend. These images are my notably novice creations. What’s the phrase, Rome wasn’t built in an hour?

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Taste

See

Smell

Feel: 

  • Grateful. Under a grey sky, someone new took me somewhere new.
  • Surprised. A beautiful stranger left this anonymous note, and a book titled “50 paintings you should know” for me. Whoever you are, Thank You.

Nicole, You inspire me everyday. I hope this brings you some more inspiration to fuel your mind and soul.

  • Able bodied. Started my running regiment for my Israel half marathon. The lungs and buns are burning.
  • Shocked. It’s been almost sixth months since I’ve seen/heard/spoken to the greatest man I’ve ever known.
  • Progress. I finished the prelude this week – now to polish, and polish some more.
  • Relaxed. Been going to acupuncture. I haven’t a clue if it’s working, but if it’s wrong, I don’t want to be right.

Taste: 

  • Gluten Free Chocolate Lavender Cupcakes with Cream Cheese Frosting. I spent Friday night baking these bad boys. They tasted like a somersault, back rub, sun salutation, and bear hug all in one.
  • Gin. Which is one letter away from grin. Which is what happens to me when I drink it.

See:

  • The skies in San Luis Obispo. They explode at sunset.
  • The hills, the valleys, the stretches of road, the glittering tides, the rows of vines.
  • More chances to grow.

Smell:

Scentless Sunflowers,

when I close my eyes, my nose

detects your brightness.

  • Stables. I visited a friend in Atascadero this weekend. Helped her feed the horses (!!) and enjoyed a night in with plates full of salmon, and ears full of John Coltrane.
  • America. Beers, Bean dips and everything in between, Super Bowl XLVII wasn’t won by the Ravens, but by Pinterest. Thank you, pretty little push-pinned site for exposing so many finger licking good recipes to taste and taste and taste some more.

Hear: [this week’s repeat offenses]

  • Beethoven’s Appassionata
  • The Head and the Heart
  • Kendrick Lamar
  • Gregory Alan Isakov
  • Blue Foundation
  • Gustav Holst
  • Trampled By Turtles
  • Passion Pit

And there we have it, friends. An overview of a week in the life of a girl who plain and simply is not fatherless.

If you’re so inclined, a sneak peak behind the serious curtain:

February 3, 2013

It dawned on me yesterday as I was driving down the grade.

Foot off the gas, heat expanding my pores and drying out my hands. It’s February, I thought. I’m entering the sixth month without my father.

Alone in my car, plunging into the valley, my breaths became shallow and my shoulders caved. I realized I didn’t cry once in January, and I panicked.

Was I forgetting about him? Am I okay without him? I don’t want that; I can’t possibly be.

And as if cued in by an omnipotent conductor, tears fell, dropping in time to a song I had on repeat. Some shot down like pellets, some lazily serpentined down my cheeks. Some stung more than others. All blurred the construct of reality I had unintentionally crafted for myself during the previous month.

January was busy. Filled with progress and opportunity, newness and fondness, it arrested my time and attention in such a way that I hardly noticed the handcuffs. If not people, then things. If not things, then thoughts, if not thoughts then work, if not work then something. I was always surrounded.

But in my car, with this song on a relentless loop, the message drilled into my every cavity and I found my solace.

I realized how in grieving, my mind demands expansive time to itself. That crucial exploration of self via sensations or wonder or the complete absence of the two.

I cried for my father’s short life, for mine, and for the uneasiness I feel when my alone time is chipped and chiseled away.

Tonight I am reflective about my week. About this month, about my father. About the way I choose to spend the time I’m gifted. It appears as though this little series is becoming my own little prescription pad. Just by seeing the writing on it, I already feel better.

The two together

American photographer, Diane Arbus, captured deviant and marginal people whose normality seemed ugly or surreal. Her favorite subjects were dwarfs, giants, transgender people, nudists, and circus performers.

Swedish-Argentine specimen of perfection, José González, created this addictive listen with side-project-band, Junip.

His lyrics fold into her photographs like flour overlapping eggs beaten and sugar stirred.

Play. Scroll. Wonder.

No one else around you
No one to understand you
No one to hear your calls
Look through all your dark corners
You’re backed up against the wall
Step back from the line of fire

 

 

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source

Getting Up

This morning, somewhere between hitting the snooze button for the eighth and ninth time, I began to believe I would never make it out of bed. I sunk deeper beneath the sheets; wrapping my legs tightly around each other I touched cold toes to warm calf. Then switched.

I visualized myself playing hooky, and embracing a Day in the Life of my pillow. After all, from its perspective there lies no adversity, no conflict, no turmoil – only a heavy head expecting nothing but silent comfort.

I got up, though. I went to work, ate a fine meal, hewed to my mother’s thrifting ways and got a helluva (is that you, Holden Caulfield?) discount on a Banana Republic necklace, sang some Russian, played some Russian, and vanquished the frenetic mold that ever so rudely invited itself into my apartment. I lived my Monday. I am alive.

The theme below still applies, especially with Anna Palma’s brilliant photographs as visual support.

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And a couple to tout something other than the tots. Man, she’s good.

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My Better Half

Well, um, there’s no way around it – these shots and blurbs, accompanied by their respective love stories had my heart a pitter-pattering. Amanda Jane Jones, you may be chipping away at my disbelieving shell here — if you can make a believer out of me, fair chance that you can resolve world hunger, abolish illiteracy, and juggle fire while hula hooping. Put those talents to work, girl, and keep making these warm and fuzzies. Maybe I’ll just have to fall in love about it.

^^ Not even a morsel of my being believes that petite polka dot wearing yoo-hoo shovels anything but  a 1/2 cup of Kashi light and lean into her mouth for breakfast.

[thanks miss moss for pushing these into my line of vision]

Kinfolk

Every so often I fall asleep on my own arm. This is good and fine, normal even,  until five or six hours pass and I wake up in a panic, aware of only three of my limbs. First things first, I try to move it. Inconceivable. With my functioning arm, I grab the heavy piece of flesh that is not receiving any signals from my brain and fling it fiercely across what feels to be the entire apartment. It’s still at my side. At a place where tingling meets burning, I feel the blood start to move like hundreds of tiny red spiders. I start to believe this state is permanent, and have already begun mourning my left arm.

It was the most unbearably perfect dream that was disrupted by the sudden awareness of my lifeless ghost-arm last night. Spain. Ocean view. Horizontal sun rays streaming through a kitchen window. The beginning of a dinner party, warm with conversation and intimacy.

It must have been because I was looking at these photos from the latest Kinfolk dinner in Philadelphia before falling asleep. These people are living my dream.

[images via Parker Fitzgerald]

All I Own

4 years and 4 homes later, I’m keeping consistent with my moving tradition and unhappily shlepping my every belonging across town. If Sannah Kvist were to photograph me like she did these subjects in a series called “All I Own“, mine would be the only panoramic series as I’ve somehow managed to accumulate more space wasters than a consignment store.

Things I’ve found in the move thus far: 1,863 bobby pins, $18 dollars in pennies, enough hidden highlighters to complete a Crayola rainbow set, and a handful of things that would make my mother cringe with either shame or confusion.

What would the snapshot of All You Own look like?

Pia Ulin

Pia Ulin is a photographer based out of Stockholm. He puts the style in lifestyle.

If you’d like to see how he put the sting in nesting, tap here.