Posted by adalamar on July 14, 2014
Sometimes it is good to just take a few steps away. And many times it really doesn’t matter where, it could be a walk in a park, a trip to get away, or sometimes just a car ride and a bit of exploring. That is what is was for me today. I have been here about 4 months, and between work and family, I have not had the opportunity to just step away for a bit. Sometimes we just need to get out of the house and away for a break. I have been writing, job hunting, cleaning, getting the HVAC, roof and pool taken care of and the four walls were about to close in on me. SO when the invitation came up to get out of the house, drive around and explore the area a but came up, I jumped on it.
Amazing how much a little break can have an affect on you. It was a simple ride, just down the main road with all the “stuff.” We drove into every little strip mall, all the stores, all the restaurants to check them out and see what was in the neighborhood. Great places, mom and pop shops and then there was the antique place.
I love this little antique place, except it’s not so little. Full of strange things from old times and far off places, eclectic findings, new smells and fabulous fabrics. I found a ton of things that I wanted to buy, so many ideas for decorating the house. Nice, fun, super feminine pictures to hang in the very masculine master bath. A panel to slide over and be the door for the bedroom downstairs, some pillows for the couch, great chairs for the master screened in porch, some great towels and some paintings.
And as I was walking through the wonderful mix of strange items, I realized that there is life outside of the house, outside of the family, outside of the HVAC, outside of the leaky roof, outside of the jog hunt.
And there was a spring in my step as walked out.
Sometimes we just need to step away to remember there is life outside of our immediate struggles. So take time to step away.
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Posted by adalamar on July 12, 2014
It seems I have had a bit of writers block recently. Though when I look around there should be plenty to write about – the new house, relationship happenings, looking for a job, visits from my parents, Mom and Dad’s health, visiting an older sister. It’s not that there is nothing about which to write, just rather things have been so crazy and so busy, it is hard to get it out of my head and onto paper…or screen.
Yes life has been a bit of a DIY-Dramedy-AcMysterfan-Raventure (trying to do things myself, drama, comedy, mystery action and adventure). Yes, the past few months have had it all. But mostly, it’s had the house.
Yes,, I am not sure if other first time home buyers wonder what they have gotten themselves into, but that is definitely the case here. There is the HVAC, the leaky roof, the closet shelves, the green pool, the bad toilet handle, the leaning dishwasher, the step, the ice maker attach-thingy (yes, that is the actual scientific name), the skylights…and I think that’s it. And there is me. And the boyfriend and my parents.
And everyone says that is just what it is like when you own your won home. I swear it should come with instructions. A warning label. Because even when you read all the books, articles, blogs and such…you are never really prepared for all that is owning your won first home. And all that is required.
My life is a series of sitcom moments as I try to get the dishwasher to stop leaning or re-attach the toilet handle that keeps falling off. Or the part of the roof that is leaking. Again.
And then I smile. Because all these little (or big) house issues are, at the very least, mine. Because it comes with owning your own home. And no matter what, I have a home. That is safe. That is secure. That is loving, and beautiful, and strange, and eclectic, and mine. A place to build memories and laughs, and moments, and tears, and smiles, and days and nights. A place to build a life.
And in the end, our lives are always a little “under construction” because we are never truly done. We should always be learning, living, doing, seeking, finding and experiencing. That is how we grow.
And at the end of this, I should have learned a great deal about home improvements, with many clumsy sitcom moments and stories to tell. And I’ll have many repairmen on speed dial.
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Posted by adalamar on July 10, 2014
I have always said that no matter what, you should always give back. No matter where we are, what we do, who we are or how much or how little we make, there is always a way to give back. I was raised with this belief and was surprised to hear it again at a formal holiday dinner party for a bank worked for several years ago. I was surprised to it because of the man who was giving the speech at the dinner – no other than Jerry Springer. Yes THE Jerry Springer.
The bank headquarters were in Cincinnati, OH, where Springer was at one point the mayor and a practicing attorney before that. Then he was fired as mayor after the paid a “Lady” with a city check. I know that because he actually told the story right before he talked about why we should always give back.
This past week I helped a friend with an animal rescue fund raiser. Giving back and volunteering is often not very easy, and this was no exception. The fundraiser was an all night adopt-a-thon what started 5pm and went until 6pm the next day. We all arrived, got the animals situated, grilled hot dogs and then attempted to sleep. We had sleeping bags and inflatable mattresses in one of the temporary buildings set up around the event.
The next day was a brutal 97, hot and sunny. I think we all thought we might melt. But, we washed dogs to raise money, so we did get to cool off a bit. It wasn’t glamorous, it wasn’t easy, it wasn’t always fun. But it was for a good cause and a good friend.
The bottom line is that there is always a way to help out, always a way to give back. And it doesn’t have to be a non profit agency. It can be helping out a neighbor by watching her kids while she goes on a job interview. Or encouraging someone who has had a bad day, making a cake and delivering it to someone who is sick, or who doesn’t get many visitors. It can be many things. Just give back and make a difference.
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Posted by adalamar on June 28, 2014
“The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that hold your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter’s oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?”
I once read this and it made an impression. After a particularly bad break up, my mother also explained it to me. She said that when you fall in love and it doesn’t work out, it hurts and burns your soul. And each time you get hurt, and it carves out a little bit more of your soul. And each time you hurn, you hurt a little deeper and a little deeper. And each time you love, because of how deep your soul and heart have been carved out, you love a little deeper each time too. And so is the cycle. My mother is a very wise woman.
And the past few years have been so very hard with so very much pain and betrayal. And now when I love, my soul and heart have been carved clean by the pain, and all that is left is deep, and pure, and all of it. Yes, at the end of the carved out heart, is the all of it.
And because of the all of it, I can love my family, my friends, my lovers, with so much more than I ever could before. And while I wold never want to go through the past few years again, I realized that all that pain and emotion was not in vain. It was simply burning out the impurities.
Of course you really cannot see that, when you are in the middle of the thick of it, knee deep, heart sick and soul troubled. But then the fog clears, and the sun peaks out. And you realize that life isn’t over, it hasn’t killed you and you can go on. But the heart must be carved out first.
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Posted by adalamar on June 28, 2014
Everyone has those great trips, where memories are made, where there is laughter, thoughts, wine and good times. I went to Washington DC recently to visit one of my older sisters. It had been a long time since we really spoke and talked of things, of both little and great importance. We have not been overly close, though I do suspect a mutual curiosity. It was the perfect time.
Friday was delicious home made dinner followed by wine and conversation and the family dinner table. Saturday was venturing into the city, seeing the monuments. Jefferson was my favorite, though the Vietnam Wall had the biggest affect on me. To actually see that many names, to take your finger and touch the wall, touch the names of the young men, was very powerful. Lincoln and FDR Memorials were my favorites too. The history of these monuments, and that of these men, and of this country. They truly loved and believed in this country, something that is surely lacking now.
There was the jump on and off buses, the Zen of the FDR and why it is her favorite. There was the Capital Building and the National Archives. There were different people walking, laughing and touristing, just like us, though my sister lives in the area. She made sure that I read the history and saw cool things, that she herself had seen many times. She was patient with me, as I looked around, wide-eyed and reading so many of the quotes and inscriptions. She was just like a big sister. And it was very nice.
Next was the Smithsonian Museum of Space and Air. And again she was so patient as I looked and read everything. She had been there too many times to count, because that is where everyone wants to go, including me. Her favorite was the Natural History Museum (hope I have that right). I wanted to go not only to see space suits and things like the space shuttle (which is not actually there, but they do have pieces of it), but to see part of what our father worked on so many years ago when he lived in DC. He worked on ballistic Missiles called Nike-Zeus, Atlas and a few other things. They really didn’t have much there that he worked on, but it was very interesting to see the things that he might have worked on, things his friends might have worked on. The day came to a close over a funny movie and Chinese take out.
We went to church the next morning, something I needed, my should needed and my heart needed. Going to church together was a quietly sweet experience.
And I left with so much than with what I came. In addition to great conversations about life, love, family, faith, God, new experiences that are coming, some recipes and instructions for prayer and meditation, I left with wonderful memories and a new appreciation for someone I am so glad I had the chance and took the time to get to know better. My only regret is that I did not make the trip sooner.
In this day and age of bigger, better, faster and the flashier the better, we cannot forget to spend time with family. To take the time to build relationships, to talk about things that that matter and to not forget from where we came, and what we have in common.
When I talked to my Dad about going, his face lit up and talked about how much this trip meant to him too. What we do has an affect on those around us. When we operate with love, love is returned to us, and to all those around. When we operate in fear and lies, the same is returned and damages all those who come in contact. Treat your family well, with care, with love and with tender handling. Because they are the only family you have.
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Posted by adalamar on June 28, 2014
It is this night, this eve, this moment in time, after which my life will not ever be the same. And on this is eve, there is excitement, fear, happiness and calm. There are lists of things that need to be done, and the desire to just relax and enjoy the fireflies.
It is this eve that marks a new time, a new chapter and new life going forward. It is an eve to treasure each. and. every. moment. Because this is the last eve that everything will be the same.
And after this eve, I will look back at tonight, and all those that came before, and be thankful for it all, the good and the bad.
And so it, on this eve.
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Posted by adalamar on June 17, 2014
I wrote this about my Dad several years ago. It describes how I see him and the man he is. Every Father’s Day I post it on several sights. It’s a few days late this year, things were busy and I did not make it to the computer to post.
He is doing much better now, My father. He is feeling good, more energy than he has had a quite a while, and is in very good spirits. He was s out working quite a bit this weekend, enjoying being with his family, laughing, kissing Mom and the cheek, saying those funny one liners with his incredible dry sense of humor. So here is my Father’s Day tribute to my Dad:
My Dad is like one of those men from the old movies. The hero. A man of few words rides into town, stands up for what he believes in, and touches everyone around him.
He leads by example: Loyalty, honesty and spirituality. Always keep your word. Hold family close and God Closer.
My Dad has worked very hard to make a business and a reputation many would envy. He’s worked hard to give his family the kind of life and opportunities where we would want for nothing. He has integrity and honor, and those are not easy qualities to find these days.
He has been a wonderful example of a man, a father and a human being. From quietly asking mom about our dates to sharing boiled peanuts and beer, to watching thunderstorms and lighting with us.
He has taught me so many things about life, just by example. And he is the best father a girl could ever hope to have. I have so many wonderful memories of him growing up, and as an adult. Like him, try to read fairy tails to me and mispronouncing the names – like “Ra-pun-zel”, or reciting the bedtime story of “Once upon a time, a deer drank wine…”
Then the is “Piddles Jumping Spunker” and Chief Beer Fetcher in Charge (CBFC), can’t forget being the Cowstail, or all the lessons on the bottom shelf.
He taught me how to change the oil in my car, how to rotate my own tires, change the break pads and calipers, check the spark plugs (when cars actually had spark plugs). I remember going out to dinner with him, and how he opened my doors for me, pulled out my chair, found out what I wanted to eat and ordered for me. Always wanting to make sure that I was happy.
I will always love his voice, his hands, the way he smells and his little smile. Yes, I will always love my Daddy. The first man to make me feel safe and secure, the man who has always been the example of how a man should treat a woman, and how I should expect a man to treat me.
And he gave me the best Christmas present I have ever been given. One he hand made a wonderful case for my Barbie Dolls, complete with a little mirror for them, a place to hang all their little clothes, and he even hand made these little wire hangers for all their clothes to hang. I still have it and it is one of my most cherished possessions.
For these and so many reasons, too many to list, I am proud to call Jim Burch my Dad. If I could have looked out and chosen who my father would be, I would have chosen you.
Love you Dad. Happy Father’s Day.
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Posted by adalamar on June 13, 2014
There is nothing quite like experiencing life as a Klutz. Take it from me, nicknamed The Pinktank since I was a child. Life is a series of missed steps, wrong-in, bad outs, embarrassing moments, almost disasters, slippery treads, delightful trips, spills and fumbles…and that’s just for starters.
For much of my adulthood, I have been banned from using my parents riding lawn mower. It’s much like my eternal ban from snow-skiing – there are just certain things which in which a klutz should never partake.
So a few weeks ago when I was at my parents house, helping out because my father was so sick, the idea of me mowing the lawn came up. And it was passed that yes, at the tender age of 41, I would finally be allowe3d to used that elusive riding lawn mower. As my father shgowe3d me how to use it, where the gears where, what they did and when to shift, I was almost giddy I was so excited.
And then, it was time. My father handed me the keys, smiled a half wistful, half OMG-I-hope-she-does-drive-this-thing-iunto-the-water look. And as I climbed up on the powerful machine, I felt like an adult. I turned the ignition and felt the horse power. this was going to be fun.
And indeed it was. That little lawn mower could go, fast. I remember watching the TV show Home Improvement with Tim Allen. There was one episode where he and his Tool Time co-host did some kind of race with riding lawn mowers. I did not understand how this could be fun or exciting until I got on one myself. And it was full throttle. I was zipping around the yard, mowing the long over grown grass, having a blast. I was doing donuts around the trees and loving it.
And then something happened. I thought I left enough space, but I didn’t. I felt a jar as it happened, then I turned around to see it. And t here is was…the water pump I had just run over, water spewing out of it about a foot or so high. I couldn’t believe my eyes. I just sat there, lawn mower running, for just a moment, staring at the water pouring out of the broken pipe.
Crap. (not the word used) I ran over the water pump. I will never live this down.
I ran in and got my Dad, his immediate question of “what did you do??” ringing in my ears.
“Well, at least I didn’t drive it into the water,” I said, smiling sheepishly.
And hour and a half later, with the help of my wonderful father and amazing boyfriend, the water pump was fixed. We had to turn of the water to the house – during the hottest part of the day – saw both ends of the broken pipe to make sure it was a smooth “Break”, get new piping, put glue-stuff on it, and attach it to the old piping. Piece of cake. Thank goodness my dad was around to tell us how to do it.
And that is what happens when a klutz mows the lawn.
I did gt back up on the mower and finished the yard, without incident. I went slow and did no more donuts around the trees…but man it was worth it, having all that fun. And sometimes you just have to have fun anyway, live a little, enjoy the moment and do donuts around the tress and such. Make a fool of yourself, laugh out load and just say the heck with the rules. Just make sure you don;t run over the water pump in the process!
I can hear you laughing.
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Posted by adalamar on June 12, 2014
In adulthood, there are very few things that are still magic, that still capture our imagination and remind us of childhood and the time when you could still fly to the moon on your bike. One of those things for me are fireflies. Since I was a child, these magic little bugs seemed to come from the mythic places of legends; where dragons, fairies and mermaids lived. They were left over from king Author’s gardens, somewhere between Narnia and Neverland, and everywhere magic and mystery lived.
And yet here they were, these fireflies, in the yard flashing their magic beauty. Yes I was fascinated by them as a child.
I remember the first time I really saw them. I was at my grandmother’s house and maybe about six or seven. And they were everywhere, hundreds of them. My grandmother asked if I wanted to capture them in a jar, but I decided not to after find thing out that they would die if kept in the jar. I wanted them free, out in the fresh air.
When I lived in Ohio many years ago, I would see them in the woods next to the apartment complex where I lived. My then boyfriend and I would sit on the fence, watching them dance in the evening air, like little diamonds flashing on the horizon when it finally got dark.
And just a few nights ago. I saw a tiny flash out of the corner of my eye. My heart skipped a beat – it is the right time of the year…I stopped what I was doing and ran to the back yard window. And there they were, dancing and sparkling in the night sky. A little army of fireflies, my little army of magic. And I had to stand and watch them, as they performed their nightly ritual, with a grin on my face from ear to ear.
It’s truly the little things in life. And you must always take the time to stop and notice, listen and see. For the little things are what makes life worth it, what makes the bad bearable and the good even better.
And now every night, I take the time to notice these little miracles, that seem to dance just for me, putting on a private show in my back yard. And just for a few moments, I am taken away from all the troubles and thoughts. And I just smile. If these little bugs can light up the night sky, certainly I can raise above and shine bright as well.
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Posted by adalamar on May 20, 2014
When I was a child, my father and I would sit outside during storms and watch the lightning. We always had covered back or front porches, always lived in the country, so you could see the sky for miles. And we would sit out there, sometimes for an hour or more, and watch the lightning dance across the sky. The air would crackle with the electricity of the storms and I would be thrilled to see the beauty play out before my eyes.
Maybe that is from where my life of storms comes, or my desire to capture lightning on film. Because it’s like capturing those memories, as I think of my father every time I see lightning in a storm. And I remember feeling so very special as we sat and watched, my father and I.
It’s these wonderful precious memories I have of my Dad that often make me smile. I have always been a Daddy’s Girl, and will always be. While my Dad is sick and recovering, it is these memories that somewhat ease the pain I feel.
Never underestimate the memories someone may have of you. Sometimes the simplest of things will be the best of memories for those you love and who love you. And When I pray at night, for his quick recovery from this last chemo treatment, so many memories come to mind. Indeed, I am a lucky girl.
My Dad, a good storm and two chairs. Yes, that’s the good stuff.
And I am lucky enough to have found a man that my father respects. That means the world to me. And to my heart.
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Posted by adalamar on May 9, 2014
In our life we all have a lists of firsts – first dates, first kisses, first job…this next month is going to be about several firsts for me. This weekend, my parents are coming up for their first visit to see my first house. Next month I am going to have my first visit with one of my sisters that I am getting to know (I am the youngest of five) and in about a month, there will be some first moments with someone very special who has re-entered into my life.
The great things about firsts is that they exciting. Filled with promise, hope and excitement of the unknown. My Mom and I have been talking and planning this first visit since I first moved into the house. We have so much do together in this new place. She has a green thumb and she is bringing plants and flowers to help me with my gardens and figuring out the landscape of my first yard. There are many conversations to be had, much wine and coffee to drink together.
And I can’t wait for Dad to see my new place. I have a to do list all set up of small projects we can do together while he is here; connecting the water line to the refrigerator, putting up shelves and such. I love working with my Dad. We used to work on small projects with my car, like changing out the break pads. But this is different, this is the first time we will be able to work on projects for my house. There is something wonderful about that, to have those memories of working with him. It’s part of what will make this house a home.
Family means so much to me, and with everything imploding with my closest sister and my parents health not being that good, I released that there were other members of my family that I want to know. The visit with one of my oldest sisters is beyond exciting and there are few words to express the emotions attached. There is so much curiosity and I only wish there was more time to get to know her. I wonder why I waited so long. I should have done this a lot sooner.
And then there is Love. There is another chance, a new chance with someone trusted, known and who knows me, down to my bones. So many years, and yet, the core is still the same. The first time at a second chance. And when we are in the same space, there is a sense of calm, a sense of comfort, a place where I can relax. And in my head I hear what so many have said for years: “There is no need to look. You already know him. He is already there.” I have often said when so many say the same thing, chances are it is true.
And so it is, this season of firsts. As the days get hotter and longer, the air is thick with the promise of the unknown and to move into this season with my parents, sibling and loved one is truly amazing. I knew that 2014 would be a new year of new things, and that the wheels would starting turning once I got into the new house. And indeed all the love I wanted in my life is here and all the dreams are coming to fruition. There is Peace, there is happines, there is a great life right in front of me.
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Posted by adalamar on May 5, 2014
Everyone has that one place for them that is safe, sacred, that is Peace. For me that is my home. In many ways it still has not sunk in that this beautiful place is mine. As I sat on the back porch this past weekend, enjoying the light evening air, hearing the crickets and frogs and leaves rustling in the breeze, I realized how peaceful my home could be. I love my porch time, my house time, my “Me” time. There have been many changes and life events over the past few years. Some have been good, some bad, some sad, some small, others life changing.
And I am making Peace with everything. In the end, life isn’t a popularity contest and doing the right thing often is not the most popular choice. If you have standards, mortals and character, you have to be OK with that. You have to be OK with being lonely sometimes. You have to be OK enough with yourself that you can sit alone on your porch, and enjoy the sights and sounds around.
It helps to be someplace you love. And I love my house, my home.
In the future, I hope my home to be a gathering place for friends and family. I want people to feel as welcome and peaceful as I do, sitting there on my porch, looking out at the yard, watching the birds and haring the crickets. My parents will soon be here, Dad getting further cancer treatment, Mom helping with planting the garden. Friends want to come by to see them again, or meet them for the first time. An invitation will be sent to my sister and her boys, that they are always welcome to visit Mom and Dad when when they stay here. And Peace will remain.
Do I regret any decisions that have been made? No. I do regret having to make them, and I regret that cost. But I can never regret standing up for what is right, I can never regret doing what needs to be done to have a healthy life.
And so I sit on my porch, quiet and still, listening to the life around me. Listening to God. Knowing in my heart, that life is about to burst open with more hope and promise than can be imagined. And it is at this house, on this porch, in this yard, that is all happens. Yes, I have found my home.
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Posted by adalamar on April 21, 2014
All of us, as some point, feel overwhelmed. The To Do list seems to laugh at us, as we feebly try to cross things off. And it grows, and grows, like Kudzu during a hot a wet summer, taking over our lives. Until we release it;s time to get a machete and cut that list back. <Maybe even burn it. Wouldn’t that feel good?
The only way I know to get through being overwhelmed, which is how I have felt since buying the house, is to just put your head down and work through it. And just like walking a tightrope – don’t look down. Just keep plugging along, don’t worry about how much you have to do, how for you have to go, or what you have already done.
And I have felt oh so over whelmed. Moving into a huge new house, myself. Working like crazy and not having any time to finish unpacking, looking around and mentally going through the ever-growing to do list. Dealing with the leaky skylight and the fact that Friday, water was dripping from the skylight, the ceiling and all down my walls. I just had a moment and just cried as I looked at all the water, though I am pretty sure more was rolling down my cheek than down the wall.
I felt defeated, overwhelmed, and just a mess.
The funny ting is that somehow, the shape of my house seems to reflect how I feel about the shape of my internal self right now. As my house was/is a mess, so am I. . My house is not fully unpacked, I have trouble finding things, there are boxes everywhere and nothing looks put together. And that pretty much sums up how I have been feeling – very not put together.
A year of not taking care of myself has taken it’s toll, as I try to squeeze into a pair of my favorite jeans. They obviously shrunk in the dryer.
So I took this weekend off to put my house together, to get unpacked, organized, do things like set up my guest bathrooms, finish unpacking my my office, getting the guest rooms set up and cleaning out the garage. To dust, disinfect, sweep and mop…and even to plant a few flowers in the yard. I have politely turned down many invitations so I can get things in order, so I can stop feeling overwhelmed and start feeling put together. And sometimes you just have to do that – take time for regular maintenance and eradicate that To Do list. Sometimes in all the rush duplicity of life, you have to slow down, take a breath and un-overwhelm yourself.
And now, I look at and see that while there is still work to be done, I will be just fine. The house is slowly getting put together and organized, as am I, deep down in my soul. And deep down, as I lay down to sleep after a full day, my soul feels just a little more at Peace. This Lenten Season has not been as Spiritual as i had wanted, due to working so much and being exhausted. But it’s never too late to pick up where you left off. And no doubt, the rest, putting my head down and working hard, and prayer, and that to do list, both for myself and the house, will be completed before I know it.
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Posted by adalamar on April 17, 2014
Flew Southwest when I went out to Vegas. And while the attendants were funny, this lady is hysterical! Enjoy!
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Posted by adalamar on April 16, 2014
I am ready to remember winter and start spring, new like a green leaf on the tree outside my window. Ready for the yard to be green and the pool water to be blue, for sunscreen and tea, and lazy days on the deck. I want home to be home, happy and carefree, with music, food, wine and laughter.
I am ready for friendships and smiles, fresh air and long walks, midnight conversations, face to face rather than screen to screen. To exhale, and relax, work hard to play, rest and do it again the next day. I want to feel the sun on my face, the breeze on my skin with the windows down and the radio up. Walk barefoot through the grass, my car in the driveway, meet the neighbors and make new friends.
I am ready to be a part of a community, a group, to get to know, grow and share.
I am ready for first dates and kisses, movies and dinners. Ready to try again, blinders off and wade in. Ready for a hand to reach to and take mine, a door to be opened, and smiles given. Ready for p[picnics in the parks, concerts after dark, enjoying the festivals of the Spring and being treated like the lady I have come to be.
I have been dormant this winter, the soul freezing cold. Now it is time for the great thaw, to come alive again, so much to do, feel and hold. The harsh winter is over, finally, the seasons change and I want to embrace the newness of the new. I am ready to be given to, treated well and see the world with unspoiled eyes, optimistic of the future, shedding all the broken and leaving it behind.
I want margaritas on the patio, listening to that song I know, creating memories of this life, this moment in time. Ready to feel my heart beat again, as life begins a new, ready to feel arms around my waist, and happiness.
I am ready to start my life, with hopefulness, carefulness, optimism and baited breath. I am Springtime ready.
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Posted by adalamar on April 13, 2014
While surfing the net, waiting to be able to test out website again, I happened upon an article that talked about how birth order affected your relationships. I am the youngest of 5 and they got me all wrong in this.
Lastborns: Ah, the little sibs of the family. Beloved, treasured, and in many cases babied for much longer than their older siblings (and often by their older siblings), the stereotypical youngest of the brood tends to be less responsible and more devil-may-care, with less of a hankering to take charge. “That can be different if the baby of the family came after a gap of more than a few years, though,” says Dr. Salmon. In that case, the baby of the family may act more like an only child or an older sibling—as though the family had started all over again.
For the baby of the family, I have a lot of the responsibility…I am more like the oldest. I have always taken care of my nephews, even paying for my oldest nephews college. I last year I worked and supported all of Rita’s family. My parents also depend on me for a lot. I have never been spoiled, any more than the other kids in the family. My parents were much more strict on my than any of my siblings (I had a curfew and had to tell them everyone I was with, everything that we were doing and everywhere we were going).
Rita (older sister) has always gotten everything (several cars, a house, lots of money, etc) because she always had the kids, so I was pretty much on my own. Whatever it was, I heard “Well, it’s just you, so it’s not as hard, but Rita has a boys, so she needs more.” Which I suppose is true.
I am a risk taker though, but it’s always calculated. Most of the time the risks pay off, but not always. I am a free spirit, but a responsible one (yes, it can happen). I was the first one to get a tattoo, the first one to really move away, I have always been the most independent, always the one who traveled. I have always been the one who spoke my mind, set things right, told the truth and did what needed to be done, regardless of what anyone else thought. Everything I have done, all that I have, I have done it on my own.
All my older siblings come to me when they need to get in touch with the others, they all call me when they need to find out information about what is going on. I often seem to find myself in charge, yet I have no desire to be, as others would be much better at it.
And no one takes care of me, I take care of myself, always have. Sometimes I think it would be nice to have someone take care of me for a bit. But then I quickly banish that thought from my mind.
Moral of the story: Sometimes birth order has nothing to do with it. Sometimes it’s just who you are. And sometimes, who you are cannot be contained, quantified or categorized.
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Posted by adalamar on April 9, 2014
We all have those times were we feel as if we are climbing out of a big dark pit. And we all have that moment where we realize we can finally feel the sun on our faces and have managed to climb out. This recently happened to me, when I took a trip to a place called Las Vegas.
While I can’t really say that I came back rested (it was Vegas after all), but there was much more peace when the plane landed, than when it took off. Sometimes, just having the chance to step away, gain some distance and perspective is the key. Sometimes, just being able to relax and not be surrounded and submerged in all that was is enough to wake us up.
For me it was a combination of all of that, and the company I was with. First, it’s hard not to have a great time in Vegas, it’s just a fun place to be. My friend and I have traveled together before, and we always have a good time together. Even though we had not seen each other in a few years, we seemed to fall into our easy rhythm within a few minutes. There is something very comfortable with him, and he is one of the few people I trust. I feel safe. Maybe it’s his gentle, unassuming way of things.
After the past few months, it was wonderful to just be. To laugh, explore, gamble a bit (am am terrible at gambling, unless it’s with fake money), drink a bit, enjoy some food and people watch. There was a show Cirque De Solie (I know that it’s misspelled and I’ll care after the next cup of coffee), front row seats. You really get to see great detail when sitting that close, and as a stage and theater junkie, I loved it.
Hoover Dam was next and that was fascinating. When you see the enormity of it, of what they did and how they did it, without any of the modern technology, the risks they took and how well done it was, you feel really proud. I felt proud of your country, of the men who worked on it, and the ingenuity and vision it took to make it happen. Wow. And it was just cool. We walked across it, on a beautiful day with clear blue skies. I felt free, for the first time in a long time. If those men could do all of that, then my life can be just as magnificent.
Then there was downtown Vegas, which is different from the Strip. It feels more like a fair than anything else, with the scent of food from the street vendors, people walking around in costume (You take their pictures for tips, lots of people, loud 80’s rock music and a laser light show on the outdoor ceiling. I love the Golden Nugget Casino and the buffet there is quite yummy.
Upon return I felt lighter, albeit tired, but much happier. I just needed a little trip to bring me back to life, so to speak. To remind me that life is to be enjoyed. The past year is over, all those struggles are done, my tasks are complete. Now I move forward building my life, my own Hoover Dam.
Work hard, play harder, love completely, and laugh often. So thank you to my friend, for inviting out to play, thank you Vegas for being such a gracious host and playground, and thank you life.
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Posted by adalamar on April 4, 2014
I have many times said that my is a sitcom. And nothing seems to prove it more than traveling..
Sunday morning I slept a little elate, got up, made coffee, cleaned up and got everything ready for the trip. There were some last minute things to throw into the suitcase, but I was actually 10 minutes ahead of schedule. Until….
The plan was to get gas, catch the Marta train to the airport and head out of town to Vegas. I would have an easy hour to roam around the airport.
Moment #1 – Since I am in the new house, I had to plug the Marta station into the GPS…But it could not find the satellite. Try Google Maps. And Waze. Neither of them worked. Crap. (Not the word I used)…After fiddling with the 3 GPSs (what is the plural of GPS…GPI?) I unpacked my laptop, go back in house, turn on laptop, get address, get and print directions. I grab a cup of ginger ale on the way out (this is important for later). Only 20 minutes behind schedule.
Moment #2 – Go back out to the car, packed up laptop again. It’s beautiful outside, so open the sunroof for the drive…COLD cup of ginger ale that I placed on top of car, is now in my hair, in my lap, on my favorite jeans and green shirt and all over the car. Crap! (not the word I used). Run back inside, change shirt and pants…except everything that currently fits is packed in suitcase. Finally find something. Go back to car. 45 minutes behind schedule.
Moment #3 – Go to gas station, only to see that purse was left at home. Get $6 worth of gas with cash I have in car, go back home, find purse under seat of car where it landed when took out the laptop. Finally leave the house an hour late. Go directly to airport.
Arrive and fly out without incident. Land in Vegas 1.5 hours ahead of my friend and travel partner. After his flight gets in, we spend another hour tracking down his suitcase that arrived on another plane. After getting into hotel, we decide to have a drink in the bar. It’s good to see him after so long and catch up before going to bed.
Moment #4 – Get up to use the bathroom. On the way, I fumble around in the very dark room…and SMACK my nose on the corner of the wall. Crap. (Not the word I used) The noise from the smack is so loud, it wakes up my friend who asks if I am OK. “I’ll tell you in a minute.” Go into bathroom, discover nose is bleeding profusely. Crap! Crap! (not words used). Come out ?? minutes later after bleeding stops. Then upon returning, I cannot stop laughing at how ridiculously humorous the situation is.
The next day I fully expected two black eyes, but thank goodness, all was fine, though my nose was very sore. What is it about me breaking bones while traveling?
Moment #5 – Manage to go the entire day without incident, until walking in botanical gardens filled with cacti…and loose my balance while reading one of the little plagues….fall into a small cactus. Thank goodness there were no spears.
The rest of the trip was great, and will write about that later. Yes, my life is a sitcom. I can hear you laughing…
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Posted by adalamar on March 27, 2014
The To Do list is growing daily. Let’s face it, when you buy a new house, your first home, there are a ton of things to take care of. The screens need to be put on the windows, my ice maker/water thingy needs to be hooked up the refrigerator, the yard needs to be mowed, the pool guy called, the outlight light by the street needs to be fixed, laundry to be washed and folded, vacuuming, mopping, and more unpacking.
Boxes are still in corners and closets, hiding their secret contents. And I look around and notice certain things are missing – those shoes, that brush, the other nik-naks…could they be in the unpacked boxes? Or did that bag/box get placed in the throw away pile when it should have been kept? Hmmmm….
The guest bathroom is not set up yet, the guest bedrooms and still littered with misc items that have yet to be placed. Pictures have yet to be hung.
It can be a little overwhelming with all there is to do. And there is an inner slave drier constantly saying to be “get busy. Rest when you are dead, too much to do now.” But yet everyone else that I know is telling me to rest, take it easy, relax because there is no hurry. I am not going anywhere, I can relax and take my time. My friends are telling that I have been through a lot and to just do nothing for a little while. But when have I ever listened to others?
When they are right, and in this case, I truly think they are. It feels good to relax and recover from the last while. It feels good to do nothing, but just take care of myself- to laugh, dink some wine, love, eat, catch up with friends and paint my nails, take long baths and let the emotions flow out of me, cleansing my soul as they go.
So maybe there is something to this do nothing thing…and while it is not going to last forever, my friends are right. There is no hurry. I am home. HOME. And for the first time in a few years, I can just be. I have no where to go, no one to be, nothing but the gentle sound of my own heartbeat…and the sound of the rain against the skylights, and the light of the moon through the windows. For the first time in a long time, I can breath. Exhale.
And it is lovely. Pass the win,e will you?
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Posted by adalamar on March 26, 2014
Upon looking back on my life…I release that my life resembles that of a movie…not, not Armageddon. No, not Sex in the City (it’s more like Zip in the City) .No, it’s more along the lines of Bridget Jones’s Diary. Minus the Blonde hair.
While I have never “bonked” my boss, I have dated co-workers. (Never do that. Really.) I have worked in media as a reporter, DJ, traffic person, etc. No, I have not dressed in a Playboy Bunny constume (yet), I have been known to do and say the wrong thing at exactly the wrong time and make an idiot of myself…pretty much on a regular basis.
I am extremely clumsy and can find myself in embarrassing moments at any given time (stay tuned for regular tales of chaos as I try to concur the fix-up “To Do” list on my house – Ada vs. the yard, the lawn mower, ladder, the paint can and brush, the calk gun, the leaf blower, the what-ever-the-is-in-the-dark-corner-of0the-garage….).
And my tales of romance, except for one major disaster, have been quite entertaining. There have been many moments of “Really?” not to mention uncomfortable moments with my doctor as he advises me that if I want to have a child I need to “hurry up,” as it’s not good for a woman of my age. (Never thought my doctor’s biological clock would be ticking harder for me than my own).
And then there is the now infamous 20lbs that has attached it’s self to my thighs…and stomach, and underside of my arms, and chin. Seriously, what’s up with that? The upside is that the Girls are looking full and fabulous. I don’t diet, and eventually when (if) it ever gets warm, I’ll be outside running, jogging and hiking those extra pounds away.
All I need now are two fabulously handsome British men fighting over me. No? Well, there’s always the next chapter. Until then, I will enjoy my Bridget-esc like existence. And write the tales of this life for all to be entertained.
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Posted by adalamar on March 25, 2014
In this world of rush, hurry up and wait, slam it down, cram it in, do it now, bigger is better and faster is best, we get a little rough at the edges. Sometimes we need to take a breath, cherish our memories and just slow down a bit.
This past weekend was that for me. Ever busy, ever checking things off the “to do” list, I took the time to slow down and meet with a dear friend I had not seen in many years. There was catching up, talking, laughing, a little crying, lots of memories and some confessions.
And as I sat there with my friend, I remembered the Me of days past. It reminded me of how both of us had grown and changed in good and bad ways. I saw how in the years I had softened on some things, hardened on others. And it is always comforting to be around someone who knows you, has known you, through all the pretty and ugly. Who knows the truth of you and your history.
Funny thing is that since that visit I have felt more myself than I have in a long time. More confident, happier, lighter and more settled, with just that little reminder, that little look back. Sometimes taking a look over your shoulder is the best thing you can do when figuring out the future.
And sometimes it is also conducive to keeping us grounded in this world where it is so easy to get off track in the rush to fit it all in. Just that gentle visit to say- these things, don’t change, they are great qualities. Because no matter how much time has passed, we always remain, at the heart of it, who we are. We always return to what we know, what is in our bones. Even if we forget, it is never too late to remember.
What is that for me? One word: Truth. No matter what happens in life, if I know the truth, then I can deal with it. Truth is concrete, trustworthy, solid. You can build on truth, it won’t crumble. We get into trouble when the foundation upon what we have built is quicksand. I’ve been caught in that before too, and it’s not pleasant. It’s hard to be settled when the ground underneath is shifting. And we struggle to find footing.
Then we take a little look back. And sometimes, that is where we can find the best footing – To where the to where the truth was and build from there. And that is what I will do – build my life on that solid and fertile ground now that all the untruths have been weeded out. No matter how confusing life can get, a little look back, a lot of prayer and faith, you can find the guidance you need…and make the leap to where your future is waiting. In this life, right now, it’s the new house, my job and career, new chances, new possibilities and… Me.
Hello future, nice to meet you. I have a feeling this is going to be the start of a beautiful friendship.
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Posted by adalamar on March 21, 2014
Dedicated to all the lovers and dreamers out there…my favorite song in all the world. :) Enjoy and Happy friday!
Posted in Ada Burch, ada lamar burch, adaburch, ADALAMAR, Building a life, friends, happy, honesty, honor, hope, human spirit, humanity, Lent, sassy, sassy girl, summer, the future, thoughts, wisdom, women, Writing | Tagged: ada burch, ada lamar burch, adaburch, adalamar, dreamers, happiness, kermit, love, lovers, rainbow connection, thoughts | Leave a Comment »
Posted by adalamar on March 21, 2014
“We all experience doubts and fears as we approach new challenges. The fear diminishes with the confidence that comes from experience and faith. Sometimes you just have to go for it and see what happens. Jumping into the battle does not guarantee victory, but being afraid to try guarantees defeat.” – Brian Goodell, Olympic Gold Medalist
As I sit pout on the screened in porch on a beautiful cool spring night, listening to the crickets and evening sounds, I wonder about the choices we make in life. What motives us to make the choices we do, take the chances we take to go the directions and take the roads on which we travel? When we have a fork ion the road, what makes us choose one over the other?
And I look around and wonder about the choices that I have made. Why did I buy this house? Obviously, because I fell in love with it the moment I saw it. And when love enters, all reasoning exits. I am a single girl, what am I doing? Why do I need a house this big, with a yard and pool and skylights, and marble floors, and…? And all the little handyman things that need to be done, that I have no idea how to do? Why didn’t I just rent another place?
I believe we make the best choices we can in that particular moment. No one wakes up and says “I am going to make bad decisions today!” No. We get up, get dressed dressed, brush our teeth, and go out each day to do the best we can, be the best we can and make the best decisions we can. Sometimes we do good. Most of the time actually. Though sometimes not. And sometimes, we just have to let others think what they want, if that is what is best at that moment. I think most of why we do what we do, is based on emotions. What we feel at the time. Sometimes emotion must match against reason. And that is where it gets hard. And fuzzy.
And we take risks, if we think it will work out. Sometimes it does, sometimes it doesn’t. It has so far with this house. And it was huge risk to say the least, when I made the offer. No money really, no savings, no place to live after a certain date, just the sheer belief and faith that it would work. That the third time I bid on this house, everything would line up just as it should. And it did. I wanted this house because I want a place for my family, for my friend and for my life. A place that is mine, to do with as I please - to love, live, plant, grow, party…LIVE. I wanted something to pass on, someplace permanent to call home.
And here it is. As I sit and watch the lights through the trees in my backyard. And I decide to go for it, and see what happens – with my life. All that I want. And that is a decision to keep. With wobbly knees, and a lump in my throat, I’ll move forward with everything I have dreamed. So, let me live, love, work, kiss, cry, read, write, ride, plant, move, climb, clean…even make mistakes, as best as I can, with my whole heart. Join me, won’t you?
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Posted by adalamar on March 19, 2014
Technical skill comes easy for some, others, like me, have to work at it. I love technology, work in the industry, and can make the internet sing. However, some of the more basic hardware issues, like which cord, adaptor, plug-in thingy (yes, that is the proper technical term, at least in my dictionary) works with what, is beyond my capabilities.
I love computer gadgets and power tools, I just don’t know how to use them. I go to the tool section of the hardware store and my mind just whizzes with all of the possibilities…it’s like going into a magic store. These things make other things work. OOoooooooo, ahhhhhhhhh……
Don’t get me wrong …I can change my own oil, change my own brake pads, calipers, spark plugs (when I had a car that actually had them), change and even rotate my tires, and a few minor tasks like that. I can paint a wall, use a big monkey wrench to take apart the pipe thingy under the bathroom sing to fish out a lost contact lens (not that that has actually happened…just hypothetically speaking). I even changed out the plug on my dryer, hooking up the red, green and red wires….
But don’t ask me to change to ringtone on my iPhone, or set up my wireless router, or get my TV to connect to my wireless network…Or, know which connector/chord/adapter thingy is required to tether my two monitors together at work. It is simple, I was told…just get this one kind of adapter…
Apparently it is hard for the guys at the computer store too…because I now have to go back for the third time to get the right connector/cord/adapter thingy. I hate going into computer stores because most of what’s in there looks like ancient torture devices. I start getting dizzy, can’t breath…I think I may be allergic.
The first thingy was a DVI-A, when I needed a DVD-D. Except the store doesn’t carry those. OK, could I connect one through the port and one through a USB? Yes! This made me very happy…until found out that the USB<->D89 adapter is the wrong one. Again.
So, I am actually going to carry the cords that the two monitors would be connected with if they went that way…and maybe that will be easier…And hopefully my next trip to the torture device, eerrrr, I mean, Computer store, will be the last one for this task.
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Posted by adalamar on March 18, 2014
Getting into the groove
I remember helping my Mom in the garden a few years ago. We were sitting, taking each one of the little bean plants she planted, and slowly winding them up on a string, so that they would grow up on the string and be easier to pick. We started in the morning, as we drank coffee, each of us working in peaceful silence next to each other, in complete comfort.
After s o many plants, you actually get a rhythm going. And gently, without breaking the tender baby vines, you wind them up and move on to the next. All day we did this, breaking only for more coffee. And it that gentle morning, I was deep in thought. And it occurred to me that life is very much like winding those little bean sprouts up the string. There is a process for everything, and it takes time to naturally unfold.
This past week is the first I really feel like I have my rhythm and groove back. I am taking care of myself, getting rest, unpacking, eating healthy(ish). As soon as it’s warm and not raining, I’ll take a good run/walk in the hills of the neighborhood. I have been taking the time to enjoy and relish in those little perfect moments, taking time to cry when the emotion hits me, and being honest enough to say I am a bit vulnerable right now, so handle with care. It feels good to admit that, it’s actually very freeing to not have to be tough all the time, to allow myself to be “soft.”
And surprisingly, at least to me, it is received well. There are hugs, holding hands, kind thoughts and words, well wishes, and sincere smiles.
And the result, is more laughter, more smile, more feeling alive than I have in about a year. To really allow myself to just be, whatever it is I am at that moment, is wonderful.And in doing so, I let go, with each heartbeat, all that I have carried. Yes, I am getting my balance, my rhythm, my life and spirit back. Yes, the spring in my step has returned. It is spring, and just like those little bean sprouts, it is time to grow, to bloom and to be magnificent. I am coming alive again. I am returning to my life, returning to enjoy all accomplishments my hard work has brought to fruition. I have come back to have what is mine.
All I l have to do is trust, believe and follow the natural process.
And that is how this girl gets her groove back. I am a new morning.
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Posted by adalamar on March 13, 2014
There is a reason she has been one of my heroes since I was a little girl.
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Posted by adalamar on March 12, 2014
It’s forty days every year, between Ash Wednesday and Easter, that many stop and reflect. Every year I celebrate Lent by giving something up (chocolate this year…can’t wait to eat my Cadbury Crème Eggs!) and taking something on. It is a time to rededicate myself to all that is important spiritually. A time to reconnect with inner self, God and my inner voice. And to really listen.
This year is a special time for me, as so many new and wonderful things have entered into my life as of late. I have so very much the be thankful for. But yet there has been a lot of struggle to get here, and there are a lot of emotions left over.
My career has skyrocketed, with more to do now than every before. In addition to my full time job, I am interviewing someone this week for an article I am writing for the AJC. I have had articles published in magazines, but never the ADJ – a notionally circulated newspaper! It’s very exciting.
Agents are calling me wanting me to update headshots, resumes and classes for acting. And then there is the business of my book….I put it down a while ago to support my sister. Now it is time to pick it back up, along with many other things…like eating right and exercising. Things that got out of whack over the last year.
So this year, my Lenton Disciplines are a little different. They are more about taking care of myself and getting myself back up and running, so I have more to offer the world and those around me. The old saying is true, to give to others you must first take care of yourself; because if you don’t, you will not have anything to offer. I have learned this the hard way.
Taking care of everyone else last year, has left me torn and ragged this year. And my Lenton Disciplines also involved what to do about all those left over emotions from everything that has taken place. All of the loss, betrayal, lies and shape shifting.
What do I do with all the anger I have for my sister and her husband? What do I do with the feelings of betrayal concerning my former friends and landlords; all that they did, all the lies that were told? How do I dissipate the disappointment, resentment and aching from walking away from the only sister I have ever really known? How do I deal with the fact that because of her psychological condition, I have had to keep her out of my life?
I don’t know the answer to these questions…but I do know that this year, this Lent, I am to have faith, put one foot in front of the other, work as hard and as good as I can to be the best writer I can, to tell the stories in the best way possible, and to take the time to listen to God’s voice on the stillness. The stillness of the quiet in the night, the sunrise and it comes through my bedroom window in the morning, the silence that is in those moments. And I am to find joy in my life, and the good things that are coming forth. And in those things, in that stillness and silence, in that Faith, in that joy…I hope to find the Grace which I seek. The fullness of God and what he wants for me and the opportunities which He has given me.
And if I put my whole heart into it…there it will be. And I hope to let go…
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