Sis Boom Bah

Many trees along the Boise River lean way over the edge—toward the water—bringing to mind a cheer we used in high school:

Lean to the left
Lean to the right
Stand up, sit down
Fight, fight, fight

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It’s a wonderful feeling to know that you’ve got someone on your side; someone rooting for you!

Who are you cheering for? On the flip side (pun intended), who’s cheering for you?

© lauriebuchanan.com

En plein air

En plein air is a French expression that means in the open air and is usually used to describe the act of painting outdoors.

However, part of our son’s recent visit occurred in plane air as Len piloted us to one of the many adventures we had during his stay.

Aviation headsets allow us to communicate with the airport tower, other planes, and with each other.
Aviation headsets allow us to communicate with the airport tower, other planes, and with each other.

Cruising at an altitude of 9,500 feet and a speed of 140 knots in a Cessna 182, the whole family — including Willa — enjoyed a bird’s-eye view as Len flew us over many of Idaho’s gorgeous peaks and valleys.

Willa wears “mutt muffs” for hearing protection.
Willa wears “mutt muffs” for hearing protection.

Much of Idaho’s rugged terrain is threaded by blue ribbons of rivers — many of them tributaries of the mighty Columbia River — whose fresh water eventually makes it to the salty brine of the Pacific Ocean.

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What’s your most recent en plein air (in the open air) experience?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Geographic Bucket List

Our son is coming for a whirlwind visit — Woohoo! As we plan how we’ll invest our time together, we’re referring to the “Idaho Bucket List” we received when we met up with friends at “Story Story Night” in downtown Boise.

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Published by Boise State Public Radio, the lengthy list includes:

Spend the night in a forest fire lookout
Picnic at Shoshone Falls on the Snake River
Pan for gold
Bike the Hiawatha Trail
Catch an Idaho trout

What sights or activities would you take visitors to see or do in your neck of the woods?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Inside or Outside

The historic Warm Springs district in Boise has a plethora of beautiful, ornate gates and doors that we admire on our daily walks, but my favorites are the well-worn, rustic ones that look like they belong in a Hobbit shire. Seeing them reminds me of a song we used to sing when I was growing up:

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One door and only one
And yet its sides are two
Inside and outside
On which side are you?

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Do you feel like you’re on the inside or the outside?

© lauriebuchanan.com

Give and Take

We love Boise, Idaho. Absolutely love it! On one of our regular walks, we discovered a new addition to the neighborhood, a Take a Book — Leave a Book stand. Completely weatherproof and chock full of good reads, I could hardly wait to get home, find a book, run back, and trade it in.

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The give and take concept works beautifully in this context: Take one book. Leave one book. A delightful balance.

Their both important — give and take — yet sometimes they can be a bit unbalanced:

  • Some people giving while rarely taking
  • Others taking while rarely giving

What is your relationship with give and take?

© Laurie Buchanan

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Life Isn’t a Dress Rehearsal

Recently I attended a family wedding. The rehearsal — a great time to smooth out potential wrinkles — was beautiful and enjoyed by family and friends who’d traveled a great distance.

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You’re familiar with the famous quote:

 “Life isn’t a dress rehearsal.”
         — Rose Tremain

In other words, there are no do-overs; we don’t get a second chance at a first impression.

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There won’t be another opportunity to live the same life I’m living now, so I’m giving it everything I’ve got.

What was the last thing you rehearsed for?

© Laurie Buchanan

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The Intersection of Scotland and Zen

With seventy-percent of the earth’s surface covered by water, it’s no wonder the ocean is nature’s most spectacular force.

Colloquially known as Paddy’s Milestone, Ailsa Craig—a beautiful island just off the west coast of Scotland—is where the stones in our pendants were collected. The stones were smoothed by the tumbling waves of the sea, and are now worn by my husband, son, and self.

Scottosh Sea Slate

Symbolism

  • Simplicity
  • Inner peace
  • Strength to weather a storm

Reminder

  • Be calm and patient
  • Be yourself—down-to-earth, non-superficial
  • Flow—move forward with the natural current of life, don’t fight against the tides

In Scotland, it’s traditional to carry a stone from the bottom of a hill to place on a cairn at its top. In such a fashion, cairns grow ever larger. An old Scottish Gaelic blessing is Cuiridh mi clach air do chàrn — “I’ll put a stone on your cairn.”

Do you have a favorite tradition?

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are  choosing.” — Laurie Buchanan

The Book — Discovering the Seven Selves
The Experience — Life Harmony

© Laurie Buchanan 2014

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Bookends for Love

I recently shared with my friend Sandi that I view faith and hope as bookends—standing sentinel—on each side of love. In my experience:

Faith has a track record — it’s associated with something (person, place, thing, event, or opportunity) that we have confidence in; something we have reason to believe will come through for us.

Hope is brand new — somewhat like 2014, it hasn’t established a track record yet; it’s unfamiliar. Having no  previous experience with it, we hope everything is going to turn out all right.

Love outweighs everything else — a powerful ally in any situation, bar none.

© Laurie Buchanan 2014

What is your greatest hope for this newly minted year?

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are  choosing.” — Laurie Buchanan

The Book — Discovering the Seven Selves
The Experience — Life Harmony

© Laurie Buchanan 2014

Find me on Twitter @HolEssence
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Baby It’s Cold Outside

Many of you know that Rod Stewart and I spend a lot of time together — him streaming from the speakers in my truck while I drive.

With recent brutal temperatures  (we’ve flirted with 50-degrees below zero with windchill factored in), I’ve been listening to my favorite rendition of Baby It’s Cold Outside — a duet Rod Stewart shares with Dolly Parton.

In these frigid conditions, schools close, numerous employees telecommute from home, and some people become homebound. For many, the world can look downright dreary, even on the inside where it’s warm and toasty.

To beat the winter blues, do you:

  • Exercise inside — yoga, tai chi, hula hoop
  • Exercise outside — ice skate, snowboard, sled
  • Read books, watch movies, meditate
  • Bake, scrapbook, build a ship in a bottle

What boosts your spirits in the winter months and keeps you from feeling gloomy?

Laurie Buchanan

Whatever you are not changing, you are  choosing.” — Laurie Buchanan

The Book — Discovering the Seven Selves
The Experience — Life Harmony

© Laurie Buchanan 2014

Find me on Twitter @HolEssence
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