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Thank you Miriam! May 29, 2008

Posted by solangek in Gracias! Merci! Thank you!.
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Miriam is my mother’s cousin. I’ve never known her very well but my mother and grandmother often talk about her, saying wonderful things. She inspires a kind of awe in me, I think because I don’t know her very well. She has recently returned from working against AIDS in Africa for the past … few years. She has been doing her master’s degree (or doctorate?) at university too, at the same time. She has just had a beautiful baby, and an operation on her foot, which seems (fingers crossed) to have been successful. She sure has a lot going on. Oh, and she is also a yoga teacher. And she’s pretty. Radiant!

I’m writing about her because last September she asked me to help her polish her French in time for Christmas, and I accepted but… I did not check my email enough; I didn’t get back to her quickly enough and we lost touch. Now I’m worried that she didn’t get her paper because of me, and I disappointed her and perhaps messed things up for her. Hopefully, she followed through with some classes that she was taking at the Alliance Française and got her French in order.

I just wish her the best in her recovery, the best with her baby, and the best in life. I know she is a great mother and will take life by the horns to do graceful acrobatics, just like the Ancient Minoans did with bulls. Miriam is calm, caring, and has a positive attitude like few other people I’ve met. She is a role model for all the stressed out people around them.

Thank you Miriam! You inspire more people that you are aware of…

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Gracias Tita! May 29, 2008

Posted by solangek in Gracias! Merci! Thank you!.
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La Tita de mi Paris es una mujer maravillosa. Es bella, generosa, cálida y cariñosa.

Ella ha cuidado a muchos niños, y la ironía es que ninguno era su propio hijo. Qué gran corazón tiene! No conozco a nadie mas que cuida tanto a los niños como Tita. Yo creo que tal vez algo le pasó, a ella o a alguien que conocía, cuando era chiquita, porque se preocupa mucho mas que los demas por los niños. Si supiera qué fue, le daría un gran abrazo, muy apretado, para que supiera cuanto lo siento y cuando la amo.

Ha trabajado mucho toda su vida, en buenos puestos y en buenas oficinas. Ha conocido personas importantes, famosas y mas. Ha guiado y cuidado a sus hermanos y a su hermana. Tambien se ha cuidado mucho a si misma, manteniendo una cara y una actitud juveniles y frescas, siempre pareciendo mucho mas joven de lo que es. Es coqueta, energetica y bien arreglada. Le encantan las reuniones, el cafecito con cigarro en las mañanas, y nunca se pierde su horóscopo. Nunca sé si toma la vida en serio o a la ligera, pero como sea, es muy sabía.

Lo malo es que como ya no vivimos con ella. Yo no le puedo dar abrazos como quisiera, ni platicar despues de la comida. Antes de mudarnos a Canadá, viviamos con ella, y ella hasta nos mantenía a mí y a mi pequeña familia, aunque trabajaba yo como maestra, y ella ya se había jubilado. Todos la extrañamos muchísimo; a su alrededor, nuestra pequeña familia en la Colonia 20 de Noviembre se reunía : tíos, suegros, y nosotros.

Ah, y ademas… NADIE puede planchar mejor una camisa, ni preparar calabacitas a la mexicana tan bien como ella, ni comer pastel de chocolate con tanto gusto. Tampoco se me olvida que ella vendió su hermosa casa en la Ciudad de México, mudándose a un pueblito cerrado de Chiapas, para pagar el trasplante de mi querido esposo. Como la extraño, y tengo muchas ganas de ir a visitarla lo mas pronto posible.Tita

Gracias por todo Tita! Mi vida es infinitivamente mejor gracias a ti.

Thank you Angela! May 27, 2008

Posted by solangek in Gracias! Merci! Thank you!.
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Angela: a person in my life who reminds me of rosemary, pickles, butter and Metallica. She is a wonderful girl and a wonderful woman. She has a strange softness about her like an aura… or is it a haze of smoke? She definitely smokes too much (but then in my humble opinion, any smoking at all is too much). Actually, she is the sweetest girl, but full of sharp corners like elbows, knees and occasional loudness. She doesn’t hide emotions, but she sure hides thoughts. It is so hard to write about her, because thoughts, emotions and memories tumble all over my mind, like Angela’s beautiful golden hair on a windy day.

I will organize my thoughts. When she was young, we often played together, especially roughly. Then when we were teenagers I admired her slim athletic shape as she took diving lessons. Her parents had a pool and she lived in her bathing suit. She tans beautifully, too. And her mother always measured how tall we were… a race I lost a long time ago (I even came in behind my younger sister). Then her parents broke up… and I guess she did too. She had a hard time as any as a teenager, but for some reason, I feel like she hasn’t completely overcome her teenage disappointments and mistakes yet. Now, she is a mother of two wonderful, smiley sticky babes: a big blond boy and a little sprite of a girl with blond wispy hair. Lately, Angela has lost all her baby weight, looking great again – cheers to you for that!

Very carefully now: I personally feel that her man doesn’t treat her as well as she deserves, but then again, I don’t know him very well. I just know Angela, and I haven’t seen her properly in a few years, only once or twice. But watching them together and spending time with Angela on her own, I sense something has changed… her spark. I suspect she may be slightly oppressed, if I may use the term. She reminds me a little bit of my mother, who has grown bitter from oppression and depression, but Angela isn’t bitter yet. I’m just afraid she may be wilting before she fully blooms. Maybe she isn’t the type of flower that survives a long time in a vase, like chicory, or Johnny-jump-ups. The problem is that they are so fresh and colourful that you can’t help yourself from trying to pick them and bring them home.

I wish I could see her more often, but our respective economies don’t really allow us, especially with the rising cost of gas. I know that seems a little bit pathetic, but she also works strange hours and lives at least 2 hours away by highway. I just hope she knows that I often think of her and wish he well all the time. I wish her the best; I send her imaginary hugs and hope she is happy in spite of the day-to-day stones in her path.

Thank you for everything Angela! The world is a better place because of you.

Dr. Jane Goodall May 27, 2008

Posted by solangek in Levez les yeux!.
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Dr. Jane Goodall

One of the people I admire most (without actually having met her) is my hero, Dr. Jane Goodall. She represents to me many important values: intelligence, compassion, hard work, observation, critical thinking, beauty, leadership…

Remember in school, when your teacher taught you about the difference between humans and animals? In sociology class, they teach us the evolution of the definition of being human. A human can use a tool. Well, Jane showed the world that chimpanzees can also make and use tools, so then we said that a human can love, or have emotions. She showed us that chimpanzees are just as loving as we are. Desperately trying to be “more than animal”, we thaught that if they are good beasts, at least we can be cruel and cunning. But she showed us that just like humans, chimpanzees can be cruel for the sake of being cruel, can gang up and fight wars like the worst of us. Think about that… So where is the famous difference? Some argue that animals don’t actually have emotions: weak people have projected their emotions onto animals to make them seem cute, or more accessible to us. But can you really believe that?

I think that the only people who say that animals don’t have emotions are people who must use them in ways that if they thought that they were hurting animals, they would stop what they were doing; people who must use animals in experiments, or people who must use animals for food. If a person wanted to find a cure for a disease, or a way to save a life and had to somehow use a non-human… it would be traumatizing for them to see all the suffering they inflict. So it is easier to say that animals don’t have feelings.

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Jane Goodall sugests that instead of not using animals at all for the advancement of science, it is better to properly treat the ones we do use. The Aztecs treated their human sacrifices wonderfully: choosing only the most beautiful, the strongest, the most pure. Then they fed them the best foods and gave them the best homes and clothes. Why shouldn’t we treat our animal sacrifices the same way, if they are giving us everything and more? It is the least we can do… And that is also my justification for choosing organic meats, eggs and dairy products. Enjoy your food, and let it also enjoy it’s life. It is the least we can give!

So next time you go and buy your eggs and milk, think about the slightly higher price of organic food as a gift back to the animals who give you their best, and to the people who work hard for the health of the earth and the happiness of their animals. Imagine those animals were your children, or that your children were those animals, and you will feel more than justified in choosing organic eggs once in a while.

That is an act of compassion. Imagine all the good you can do around you, and how good you will feel, when little things you do spread compassion around you, reaching far and wide: those eggs might come from around the corner, or the other side of the country. And then the farmer who grows the organic chicken food…

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This post was originally written and published onhttp://chanfainatv.com

Gracias Tere May 26, 2008

Posted by solangek in Gracias! Merci! Thank you!.
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La primera persona en mi lista es mi querida suegra, tal vez porque quiero que lea mi blog. La verdad fue una elección impulsiva porque anoche estaba pensando « Quien será la primera persona en mi lista? »

Es una persona muy artística, creativa y bella. Cuida mucho a su tía, aunque se pelean mucho, lo que es una gran pena porque las dos se quieren mucho y deberían de tener una relación mas allá de los detalles. Pero bueno, mejor ya no digo mas al respecto.

Tere es una suegra ideal que es fácil de abrazar y de querer. Cuando se arregla, llena el cuarto de luz, y cuando está triste y fachuda… todos nos apachurramos. Ha tenido muchas pérdidas recientemente y necesita mucho amor – muchisimo amor y paciencia. Ay! La quiero tanto! Es mas fuerte de lo que piense (as are thy days, so shall thy strength be), pero se pierde tan fácilmente como los demás en el quotidiano.

Tambien es una de las personas mas estudiosas, curiosas e inteligentes que conozco. Tiene mucho que compartir, es buena maestra tambien. Tiene muchos conocimientos; lee como si fuera un camello sediente y los libros fueran agua!

Cuando pienso en ella, me la imagino de dos maneras : primero, caminando en el terreno bajo el sol con nosotros y con Oscar, con sus zapatitos blancos. Tambien en las reuniones, riéndose atras de su tragito, o agregando su opinión a la conversación ruidosa del comedor. Hace la mejor sopita de verduras picadas que he comido en mi vida, y tambien plátanos cuadrados en el micro, con crema y queso. Mmmm!

En fin – Tere te quiero mucho mucho mucho y te mando una bola de abrazos!

Tere & Mumfi

10 choses à faire tous les jours pour une meilleur expérience de vie May 25, 2008

Posted by solangek in DOWN TO EARTH.
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1. Me lever de bonne heure (vers 06:00) et aller me coucher de bonne heure. C’est incroyable comme la journée passe rapidement si tu te lêves tard, et c’est si difficile se lever tôt quand on est fatigué.

2. Faire au moins 1 heure d’exercice, à 06:00, avant de faire autre chose. Si je ne fais pas mes exercices en me levant le matin… je ne peux pas le faire. C’est tout.

3. Jouer avec les petits. Ca devrait être la première chose sur la liste, mais si je ne fais pas mes exercices, la journée me donne de la misère.

4. Mettre de la crême spéciale sur ma peau deux fois par jour… pour mes vergetures. J’en ai pas beaucoup, mais mon nombril est devenu bizzarre après mes grossesses. Tan pis.

5. Laver mon visage avant de me coucher le soir, et prendre une douche! Je dormirai mieux.

6. Bien manger.

7. Lire… Ah! Si seulement j’avais le temps!

8. Prendre soin de mes dents comme il faut: brush & floss & mouthwash.

9. Faire quelque chose de beau, ou penser à quelque chose de beau… et passer du temps avec Paris. J’aime tellement nos conversations la nuit avant de dormir. Dans l’obscurité, dans ses bras, quand la journée est finie, on rit ensemble…

10. Écrire mon blog! Comme ça, je peux partager tout ce qu’il y a de beau dans la vie.