1. Morning walks. I’m there, I take the pictures, and yet sometimes when I get home and look back at what I captured, I can’t even believe it’s real. This week the light and how everything was turning golden was epic. On the morning pictured above, a dad and his about nine year old daughter were both out with their cameras attempting to capture the glorious sky. His camera was super fancy and complicated and she had a small digital point and shoot. At one point, they were both crouched down taking a picture of the way the light was hitting a foggy field full of grazing cows when she looked at her preview screen, leaned towards him holding out her camera so he could see too, and said, “I got a pretty good one.” It was so sweet! On that same morning, we met up with a dog we’ve seen a lot on that particular trail. He’s a bit older and bigger than Ringo with a big blocky wrinkly head (my favorite). He’s always off-lead (it’s on technically private property so that’s “allowed” or rather not regulated) but so sweet and Ringo likes him, so we always stop, say hello and play a bit. This time his person was on the phone, but once she got off the call, I asked her, “do you realized how awesome your dog is or do you just think he’s normal?” She responded, “oh, I know exactly how great he is.” His name is Diego and I love him.

2. Wild writing with Laurie. Our fall session started this week. It was so good to be back with the group, even as I missed those who weren’t there and the one who isn’t joining this time around. I love that practice so much, love doing it with a small group of the same good people. It’s magic and medicine.

3. Texting, family and friends, books. That may seem like an unrelated list of things, but as a highly sensitive introvert who leans towards agoraphobia, they are all the things that keep me connected in a gentle but constant way.

4. Ringo. This bed used to be under my writing desk and both Dexter and Sam would use it when I was writing or on the computer but Ringo was never interested. I took it to a friend’s recently to see if her dogs would want it but they didn’t so it rode around in the back of my car for a bit. When I finally remembered to bring it back in the house, I dropped it on the floor in a random spot while I unloaded groceries and just never got around to moving it. Ringo has added it to his living room lounging rotation so it may live here now. Even though it can drive me crazy, I love how he is never anyone but himself, doing things his own way in his own time. He has a sort of confidence in who he is and what he wants and what he won’t tolerate that I’m jealous of, even though I sometimes think the very same makes him a real jerk.

5. My tiny family, tiny house, tiny life. Everything I need and want is right here. It feels way more full, much more spacious than “tiny” implies.

Bonus joy: peaches and vanilla ice cream, grapefruit bubbly water, dinner and then leftovers for dinner the next night from Mt. Everest Cafe, vaccines (got my bivalent booster last week, the first day they were available), true crime (although I may be watching and listening to too much of it, as I explained to my brother after he finally texted me back after the text I sent him this morning that I needed to know he was still there, still alive because he hadn’t texted me back yesterday and he usually texts right back), reading, writing in the morning with a cup of hot coffee (+cocoa and tiny marshmallows), my weighted blanket, down pillows and blankets, my Oovoo slides which are my “house shoes, ” good neighbors, hanging out with Mikalina, other people’s kids and dogs, clean sheets, dog rescues and fosters and adopters, sunshine, the meadowlarks and chickadees feeding on our fading sunflowers, the seed pods on my golden raintrees that look like tiny lanterns, twinkle lights, origami cranes, that picture of me in my straw cowboy hat holding baby Dexter in our backyard with Obi photobombing us, listening to podcasts, watching good TV, reading in bed at night while Ringo and Eric sleep.   

I'd love to hear what you think, kind and gentle reader.

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