Something Good

1. A Tiny House Like A Zen Forest. (video) I want to go to there.

2. Japan Cherry Blossoms 2023(video)

3. The Kō Strategies: Shunbun | Spring EquinoxI love what Lucian has to say in this installment about balance between compassion and courage.

4. Mental Health Benefits of Spending Time Alone as an Introvert.

5. Craft Tip: Be a ______ in your ______ from Maggie Smith.

6. Resistance to Atlanta’s Cop City Ramps UpIn related news, Why Fatal Police Interactions Are Avoidable.

7. The answer to every question from Seth Godin.

8. The Dewdrop Podcast Episode #1: Turning Words With Hozan Alan Senauke“Vanessa Able talks with Hozan Alan Senauke, Abbot of the Berkeley Zen Center in California and author of the new book Turning Words. In Zen tradition, ‘turning words’ are words that can help one turn towards awakening or change a person’s direction. Alan shares various examples of turning words he has encountered in his life, including a powerful encounter with his teacher Sojun Weitsman Roshi, whose lasting teaching has been to ‘let things fall apart’.”

9. Wisdom from Kerri Kelly: In the latest newsletter from CTZNWell, Kelly says that we must cultivate “a capacity that inspires us to go beyond pessimism and despair towards courage and creativity. We can appreciate small steps in the right direction while also holding healthy dissatisfaction for what more needs to be done to reduce harm. And we must practice every single day becoming who we need to be in order to meet the moment and shape the future.” There are also some great links in this edition, such as Woke Is Just Another Word for Liberal and The High Cost of Being Poor.

10. Wingspans, a gorgeous post from Gretchen Schmelzer about our shadows and cultivating a state of awe.

11. The World Is Not Better Off Without You from Andrea Gibson. 

12. GoFundMe: Patrick & AMML Diagnosis.

13. Essay Camp with Summer Brennan starts today.

14. Good stuff from Lion’s Roar: A Spring Prayer (“Shozan Jack Haubner presents a prayer for the chaotic awakening of nature that is spring”) and First Light (“Diane Ackerman, best-selling author of A Natural History of the Senses, offers a series of meditations on dawn and decay, koans and creation”).

15. Wisdom from Danny Gregory: “Becoming an artist doesn’t mean quitting your job or renting a studio or buying supplies or taking a workshop or getting a degree. It doesn’t mean slogging or suffering either. It means showing up. Day after day. Step after step.” Read more from Danny’s Essays here.

16. Planning a garden? Here’s a step-by-step guide to start off on the right footIn related news, Tips for Sowing Seeds Indoors This Spring.

17. Recipes I want to try: 7-Day No-Sugar High-Fiber Meal Plan and Lemon Cupcakes. Because it’s all about balance.

18. Slow Learning from Austin Kleon.

19. Poetic Sculptures by Valérie Hadida Cast Composed Women with Coiffed Hair in Bronze.

20. Whatever the Problem, It’s Probably Solved by Walking on The New York Times.

21. The seven types of rest: I spent a week trying them all. Could they help end my exhaustion? I’m almost positive I shared this when it was first published, but for me it was worth a second look.

22. We asked to see your pet artwork — you unleashed your creativityThe black dog curled up in the leather chair could totally be my Sam.

23. The Making of the Cranberries’ Haunted Farewell“Dolores O’Riordan’s band and family talk about her troubled last days, the songs she left behind and the creation of the band’s final album, ‘In the End.’”

24. Manlinessa hilarious Instagram Reel from Nicolas Lacroix.

25. The rise of the TikTok scold“Why advice-peddling influencers are so into shaming you right now.”

26. 24 of The Best Coming-of-Age NovelsOne of my favorite genres.

27. 20 Things You Need to Stop Wasting Your Time On

28. 6 things to know about U.S. teacher shortages and how to solve them.

29. Our Film Critic on Why He’s Done With the Movies on The New York Times. “After 23 years as a film critic, Mr. Scott discusses why he is done with the movies, and what his decision reveals about the new realities of American cinema.”

30. A photographer’s intimate view of Denver’s ever-changing landscape.

31. What if we exist exactly as we are supposed to exist, and we don’t need to spend our precious time on this planet trying to change(Instagram Reel) In related news, another similar reel, Heal It Up.

32. Queerness Is Messy, I Am Messy and That’s a Very Good Thing.

33. Honoring the Full Range of Grief: staying open to meet the moment with Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer on the Breathing Wind podcast. “In this week’s episode, Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer cries and laughs her way through an expansive and nourishing conversation about grief, creativity and love. We talk with her about poetry as a practice for meeting each moment, her unfolding journey through devastating loss and where those experiences of creativity and grief intersect. She also shares how she’s been carried by an immensity of love since the death of her son Finn, in the same year that her father died, and how grief has deepened her trust in that love while inviting her, over and over again, to say yes to the world.”

34. The State of Women… Isn’t Working“Our 2023 State of Women Report, a study of 4,500 women conducted by The Harris Poll on behalf of theSkimm, discovered that, while women are exhausted and disappointed, they have not given up. They have simply given up on the illusion of external support. The findings show that women are making seismic changes to how they live, finally prioritizing their own needs because no one else will. Instead of resignation, they are exhibiting agency, and a willingness to make tough choices to secure their own futures. Here’s a glimpse of just how disenchanted women are with the unfulfilled promises of equity and societal support, according to our study.”

35. The Average Woman Is No Longer A Size 14.

36. How to foster your purpose wherever you are in life“A non-stressful approach to figuring out what guides you.”

37. The Signature Story Quilts of Artist Faith Ringgold“An appreciation for the 92-year-old African American mixed media artist, activist and role model who continues to live creatively.” In related (quilting) news, Pieced Together—African Quilts of India. “Learn about the tradition of Siddi quilts and how well-worn and discarded clothing becomes the visual history of a family and helps provide a source of income for women of the Siddi communities in India.”

38. Monday Meditationfrom Jena Schwartz. I don’t know which I love more: the picture, the words, or Jena herself. Yeah, who am I kidding — it’s Jena.

39. A wise reminder from B. Alan Wallace: “The problem is that when we focus on mundane concerns as a means to happiness, life becomes a crapshoot. There are no guarantees. If you aspire to material wealth, you may not get it, but if you do, there is no guarantee you will be happy. If you aspire to pleasure, once a stimulus is over, so is satisfaction. There is no lasting happiness in scurrying after praise. People who are respected and famous tend to have the same personal problems as everyone else. The fatal shortcoming of the eight mundane concerns is that they are counterfeit Dharma, misguided ways of seeking happiness, and by habitually mistaking mundane concerns for genuine Dharma, our efforts to achieve genuine happiness are continually undermined.”  The eight mundane concerns are also referred to as the eight worldly concerns (or truths, winds, preoccupations, attachments, or dharmas) or the eight hardships or the eight vicissitudes. They are: gain and loss, pleasure and pain, praise and blame, and fame and disgrace.

40. This Is the Most Surprising Trait Introverts HaveIt’s a good one. 


1. Morning walks. Some of what was seen on this week’s morning walks: foxes, raccoons, beavers, herons, and a set of trash cans that are clearly a message for someone but in a very isolated parking lot that seems an odd place to leave it.

2. Making art, with and for people. Janice and I hung out on Zoom and I made a collage and did some painting. My small group fitness training class instructor had told me she’d had a dream that I showed up at her house with a beat up yellow hippie van covered in flowers and gifted it to her saying, “Thanks for the training.” So I painted her a tiny one, handed it to her before our next session and said, “Thanks for the training!”

3. Spring snow. We woke up to a surprising amount this morning. On Tuesday it snowed much of the day, but only about three or four inches and the ground was so warm it didn’t stick to the sidewalks or the road and the sun came out on Wednesday and melted it all. When I saw we were supposed to get more snow overnight, I expected more of the same but instead we got six inches. Things are really started to turn green because of the moisture, the sun and warmer daytime temperatures.

4. Reading and writing. It was a really good week for both.

5. My tiny family, tiny home, tiny life. I love it here. Ringo had a visit with his physical therapist and fourth favorite person this week, (yes, there’s a ranking: Eric, then me, then Teri, and then a tie between Chloe’ and Jeff). He doesn’t really need therapy anymore, is doing really well and back to running, but he loves seeing Teri so much and the work they do together is play to him, a working dog, so I make sure to take him once a month. It also helps me to know just how Ringo is doing physically, as Teri can tell me if anywhere is particularly tight or stiff and I can work on that with him at home. I usually let him go back on his own because with me there, he gets too distracted. However, this week I wanted to see the space where they work with different eyes because I’m going to start teaching yoga for their doctors and technicians and staff again and they are in a new building, so I went back for just a few minutes at the beginning to take a closer look. I noticed then, as I had when she came out to get him and then when we left, that even though he loves Teri so much, I can tell he loves me even more. For a dog I wouldn’t really call affectionate, that makes me really happy.

Bonus joy: sitting with Eric on the couch doing nothing, making each other laugh, watching Antiques Roadshow together, tax refunds, cooking together, the birds in my feeder, the way Ringo noticed the giant Northern Flicker in the feeder and stood up on my desk to bark at it, the way he’s been following me into my office in the mornings and napping on the floor behind me while I write (there’s a whole bed set up under the desk but he’s my only dog who won’t lay there if I’m sitting at the desk), two of my house plants in bloom, glue stick and paint, raspberries, Dot’s Honey Mustard Pretzel Sticks, that Eric was able to hit the brakes and swerve into an empty turn lane instead of getting smashed by a giant truck that pulled in front of him, walnuts, gingerbread, stickers and magnets, my bed, flannel sheets, down blankets and pillows and coats, when I’m in my office blogging while Eric and Ringo are napping on the couch to the sound of the XM Chill Hop station and washing machine, how bright it is at night or early in the morning when it snows, plans to get dinner at Chili House with Chelsey and Jon, other people’s dogs and kids, how much people like the pictures I take, reading in bed at night while Eric and Ringo sleep.