One step at a time

Creating an enjoyable journey for myself and my family.

Friday, December 23, 2011


My life has been less than balanced lately. Name a major aspect of your life, anything that brings you peace and happiness. Chances are good that any aspect you can think of is in upheaval in my life. During this time of major transition I've been feeling stressed, afraid, nervous, anxious, even depressed. There has been a general overarching "stuck," feeling accompanied by confusion about what I should do. I've been managing all of that, as well as I could, and then Adam and I got sick. (Sinusitis and Bronchitis I now know.)

So yesterday I finally broke down and went to a lovely new community health clinic in Seatac to see an M.D. My appointment was brief and productive, my doctor was kind and helpful. While I was waiting I read all the information posted around the clinic and I learned that they have an acupuncturist on staff every Thursday. I discovered that he was in the office, and available!

After just 5 minutes of paperwork the receptionist lead me back to a large, dim room. There was cello music playing on a small CD player. That music immediately made me feel calmer. I was seated in a zero gravity chair, along with 3 other silent patients. The practitioner, Paul Griffin, quietly talked with me about me while he softly checked my pulse on my wrists and ankles. He inserted tiny, painless needles in my ears, wrists, ankles, knees and toes. When the second needle was placed in my ankle my right eye started twitching, it soon stopped. When he was done I laid back in the chair and thought.

My mid was so clear. Maybe clearer than it has ever been. I thought about myself, my family, my life, and my future. I was calm, peaceful, relaxed, focused, motivated, energized and completely clear about what I needed to do. The entire process took about 20 minutes. This clinic I went to is open to anyone. They charge people based on a sliding scale of income, the lowest bracket pays only $10 and the highest bracket pays just $35. I set another appointment for next Thursday...for me and Adam.

They say that acupuncture is about energy, freeing energy to flow more naturally within you. That is exactly how I would describe the way I feel. I know I'm not the first person to discover the awesome wonder of this experience, but I wish more people knew about it. I wish I had had the chance to participate in it sooner.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

Christmas in the Northwest

With Christmas only a week away I would like to say Merry Christmas! I hope this has been a season of peace, love, hope and new beginnings for your family; thankfully it has been for mine. Every time I'm tempted to be discouraged that we are in Seattle rather than spending this year in Japan I stop myself and think of my daughters simple prayers. Each night they kneel beside Adam and I and say things like, "Thank you that we could play with our cousins," and "Thank you that we can spend Christmas at Grandma's." Their gratitude reminds me to be grateful.

We decided not to send out many Christmas cards this year, 10 to be exact. (I think I sent out 100 last year.) I added a simple photo that I took myself in those ten cards. It shows Mia and Teryn merrily swinging on a tire swing. I included this photo because it typifies what our family is focused on right now, simplicity, family, fun and uncomplicated love.

Wherever you live, whatever you are up to this season I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

P.S. If you would like to send me a Christmas Card my address for the moment is 10831 SE 190th PL, Renton, WA 98055.