Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Mary had said last night that she would be up by 9:30 and wanted to go out fairly early, so by that hour I had coffee, juices, breads and condiments ready for a continental breakfast. Mick and I did our Morning Offering, and then he went to work for his customer with the forested lawns full of leaves and finally finished bagging them for her. I believe his final total of leaf-bags was 271!

Imagine his surprise when he came back by Camelot to eat lunch at noon and no one was up but me! I told him, “If I’d known, I could have finished my UPI article this morning!" He commiserated with me before leaving to drive to Shelbyville and spend the afternoon cleaning the last of the season’s leaves from Steve F’s estate.

Gary blew in from his Christmas vacation while Mick and I were talking, full of great energy and ready to work at the L/L Research helm. After a full eight hours, he was still massively behind, he said, and he will work again tomorrow. It’s fine indeed to see Iss!

In the event, the last Rueckert awake and stirring was Mary! I think the whole family was just exhausted! So it was good that they slept in. We eventually got on the road to Lynn’s Paradise Café, since Mary had requested a “fancy breakfast place”. Lynn’s takes the cake for that! We all had delicious breakfast dishes there and lingered at table until 3:00 p.m.

Then we stopped by Margaret’s Consignment Shop, since Ted wanted to shop for clothes as well as the girls. I had good luck, finding a purple velvet skirt and a matching top with some pretty bling to add to my closet. I used some of Mom McCarty's gift - cash! Thanks, Mom!

I am grateful for the goodly number of purple and lavender garments to wear with my purple hair. Actually, it is a very dark purple and in dimmer light it just looks dark. However in sunlight, it’s truly purple! I am enjoying the jazzy look and feel of the outrageous color. Every time I see myself in the mirror I grin.

Mary and the kids dropped me back by Camelot and then they went to the malls while Tommy went for a run. Mick and I had a bath and settled in for the evening with the generous dose of football games available today. Everyone arrived back at Camelot by 8:30 and we dined on the delicious ham dinner Mel and Mick prepared last week. Romi joined us and we had a very convivial party of it. It was terrific to see the Ro Man back home!

Then the Craver-Rueckerts and the Rueckert-McCartys played a round of a game called “Imaginiff”. Its silly antics left us all laughing.

It was midnight when the game ended, and Mick and I excused ourselves from the group and went upstairs to bed. We shared a very late Gaia Meditation, with the closing prayer also shared. The Rueckerts stayed up to watch an episode of The Office before calling it a day.

The obvious strain that accompanied their last visit here, two years ago, is nowhere in sight! I think everyone is having a really good time. The vibrations are loving and happy, with no shadows. Praise the Lord! Tomorrow we enjoy a second installment of Christmas giving, combining subjective Rueckert Christmas with New Year’s Eve. And Melissa's coming! We shall ring in the New Year in wonderful company!

Tuesday, December 30, 2008


After Morning Offering Mick went out for errands while I came up to finish my journals, have chapel time and start work on a UPI article on a new difference-maker, Chris Jordan. He is an artist, a photographer who shared my experience of seeing inadvertent beauty in things like a garbage dump shining in the sun. He began taking time to create images of this wabi-sabi beauty and then headed towards activism by creating photographic images of plastic bags or contrails en masse.

Mick and I had lunch together and then I worked further to gather my information for the article while Mick continued with detailing his truck. We broke for a bath at 4:00 p.m. and the Rueckerts – Tommy, Mary, Rosie, Ted and EJ – arrived just as we were dressed again, perfect timing. I popped Melissa’s Artichoke and Spinach Dip in the oven to warm, sliced the French bread and our guests got settled and then joined us in the living room for a nosh and our first chance to talk together in two years as a family.

At 6:00, most of the Rueckerts went out for a run, came back and showered, and we went to the L & N Bistro, which is a restaurant owned and run by Tommy’s long-time friend, Nancy – the N in ‘L & N”. Her brother, Will, also one of Tommy’s oldest friends as they went to school from grade one onwards through high school, joined us with his wife and their two children, a four-year-old and a babe in arms. We had delicious food and a long, rich conversation. Lots of laughter and reminiscences later, we came home replete.

On the way we drove through Lake Forest, a ritzy subdivision nearby which runs its own Christmas home exterior decorating contest, so the houses are fun to look at, with their many colors of lights and fanciful lawn and roof decorations.

When we came back, Tommy got out a game called Sniglets and we had fun with that until about 11:30. Finally the party broke up, and Mick and I came upstairs for a late date, an amazingly powerful energy exchange that left us in awe in the afterglow. And for once, I got to go to sleep immediately thereafter! I barely recall saying our final prayers together. Ah!

Monday, December 29, 2008


I awoke with significant nerve pain still creating a challenge for me and decided to spend another indolent day recuperating and hopefully eliminating this type of pain in my neck and shoulders. Otherwise I shall make an appointment for a cortisone epidural on Monday.

Since I did not go to church, Mick and I made our Morning Offering. Then I subsided into puzzles and reading for the morning while Mick cleaned the house. We enjoyed lunch while we watched The Duchess, an opulently produced film set in the late 18th century. The modest-looking Ralph Fiennes walked away with by far the most masterful performance in the piece as a British aristocrat, the most powerful peer in England and a cold, autocratic and insensitive man. In his middle age he marries 17-year-old Keira Knightley, a beautiful young girl who then must cope with an increasing number of injustices.

Knightley does well at expressing the mixture of outrage and the reluctant acceptance that is her only option if she wishes to avoid hurting others. She is costumed and styled magnificently and the settings are memorably rich. The couple is surrounded by an excellent ensemble of players. Charlotte Rampling is especially good as Knightley’s lady mother. Dominic Cooper and Hayley Artwell are also notable as Knightley’s lover and Fiennes’ live-in mistress. What a tangled set of relationships and emotions! The gossip-mongers of the day must have enjoyed this true story!

Michael O’Conner’s costumes have already garnered awards in Britain and should sweep American awards as well. His work is truly outstanding.

Later in the afternoon, after Mick accomplished some needed office work relating to Jim’s Lawn Service, we took up Hancock, a whacky comedy with no particular point except to make us laugh, starring Will Smith in an enjoyable performance as a disenchanted superhero. He’s still saving innocent victims and preserving the peace, but he’s become a bit grumpy and acts out his malaise, damaging the pavements upon which he lands and allowing a good deal of collateral damage during his derring-do.

Jason Bateman, under Peter Berg’s excellent direction, coaxes the recalcitrant superhero into mending his ways, while Charlize Theron is particularly tasty as another superhero(ine) who helps pull Hancock into shape. The silliness is delightfully played and I enjoyed the film tremendously.

We heard from my brother Tommy in late afternoon. It seems that the family got away at 1:30 p.m., so there was no chance of their arriving in Louisville until 2:00 a.m. So he, Mary and their children, Rosie, Ted and E.J., will stay with Mary’s aunt in Beckley, Virginia tonight and arrive at Camelot sometime tomorrow afternoon.

This was dandy news! Much as we will enjoy their visit, it was delicious to have another full day of alone-time. We have had more company than usual, with Tobey and family visiting just before Christmas and Mel, Eric and Phell sharing our Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. It has been delightful! But we enjoy solitude as well. Now we have another day of it!

Tommy and the family plan to stay through New Year’s Day so that Tommy can watch a day of football with Mick. Tommy tells me his family has not been so excited about a Christmas visit in years! I think the work that Mary and I did beforehand has made all the difference for us all.

We’ve smoothed out the glitch of Mary’s having to spend too much time with Tommy’s old school friends and have made some fun plans for urban and rural recreation. I am certainly looking forward to it far more than in previous years. And we have moved Mary and Tommy to the basement room where no cats have ever been, which will hopefully alleviate Mary’s allergies.

Mick and I concluded our Sunday by enjoying some episodes of House. Mick offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Sunday, December 28, 2008


Awakening at 3:00 a.m. with interstitial cystitis symptoms that kept me in the bathroom most of the rest of the night and continued arthritic symptoms of nerve pain in my neck and left shoulder, I found myself ready to accept Mick’s suggestion that I rest completely for the day. So while Mick and Melissa swirled around the house having a very productive day, I worked my new Christmas crossword puzzles from Mel and read the new Nora Roberts romance that Mick gave me and took it easy. By bath time, my symptoms had calmed down and I was able to channel tonight.

The two finished cooking the food in advance of my brother, Tommy’s visit with his family, which will begin tomorrow evening. We now have two complete meals of the normal sit-down kind, plus a wiener-and-chili meal to eat while watching football on New Year’s Day. We have salad and deli meats for lunches and bacon and farm-fresh eggs for breakfasts. We’re ready!

Mel packed away the turkey hash, herbed parsnips and curried wild rice that were left over from Christmas Eve and will eat that up on Avalon. We finished the work day with newly organized refrigerators and a feeling of readiness that's sweet indeed.

Melissa spent the afternoon shopping with her Wal-Mart gift card, given by Gary, laying in her supply of winter underwear and new socks and shopping around for other items on her list, to no avail.

Mick whiled away the afternoon hours doing his annual clean-up of Sibyl, his JLS truck. The truck is used hard all year for lawn work, and gradually his four carefully filled boxes of tools become jumbled and the truck gets dirty. By bath time Sibyl was all cleaned out and the inside scrubbed with 409. The four boxes, which cleverly fit the truck bed, were replaced, all organized again, and secured by the space bar. Mick’s ready to go for another year!

Daniel from Bowling Green, Kentucky, joined Melissa, Mick and me for our L/L Research meditation and study meeting at 8:00 p.m. We had our round-robin discussion and then chose a group question on whether we can learn wisdom from our teachers or whether we can only learn by our own experiences. It was an interesting question and I look forward to editing the transcript and learning more about Q'uo's response.

I offered the prayer for the Gaia Meditation at the end of our channeled meditation.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


The weather warmed up all day, but from dawn until dusk it remained overcast and lowering. After Morning Offering I spent a fruitless half-hour on the telephone attempting to make an appointment at the Spine Institute for an epidural injection of cortisone to alleviate a particularly painful flare-up of nerve pain in my neck and left shoulder but it was impossible to get off “hold”. Another half-hour in the afternoon produced the same results. It’s too bad, because the weekend is upon us, and I will not be able to get even an appointment, much less the injection, until Monday. Ah well!

My brother Jim sent me some photos of my youngest nephew, his and Kai’s son Wills. I thought Wills had inherited his Mom’s Asian eyes, but the new photos show no epicanthic folds. He’s a big baby! I teased my brother as to where the baby inherited that size! The Rueckerts are a small-boned, slightly built family. Jim is 5’ 8” and Kai, a native of Thailand, barely clears five feet. I am 5’ 4” and my other brother, Tommy, is 5’ 7”. Wills will dwarf us all someday!

Jim seems very happy indeed, for which I am profoundly grateful to Kai, a strong woman with excellent values. She is just what he has needed for decades! She is half his age, but contains more drive, energy and nerve in her little body than my amiable brother ever had. So the match is well nigh perfect. I think they have found true love.

Jim reports that Kai’s restaurant, now a year old, is solidly in the black and gaining momentum. This is super news, for they went deeply into debt in order to procure the building and start up the business. I suspect that Kai will eventually do so well with the business that Jim might even be able to go to work for her instead of teaching electronics. He loves to chat up the customers with his usual outgoing, genuinely friendly personality and good cheer. I am so thrilled that their gamble paid off for them!

I wrote half a dozen personal e-mails and then responded to Buke T’s latest questions. Then, feeling distinctly below par, I relaxed into a deep afternoon nap. When I awoke it was time to greet Morris, our L/L Research vice-president, who came over during his all-too-brief yearly visit to his Dad to be with us for the annual meeting. We had a quorum with Gary, Melissa, Steve T, Morris, Mick and I on the line. Jim had created a solid agenda and the meeting only took an hour! And we covered everything well. We will send the minutes of the meeting to the rest of the board next week.

We reported that our fund drive had netted $17,000+ so far. So we shall extend the drive into next year, since we need a good bit more than that to do business for all of 2009. And we were thrilled to report that is launched!

It was wonderful to be with Morris, a most beloved friend and partner in service to others! He is such an inspiration to us! He had all sorts of family obligations today and had to leave way too soon, but he promises to stop by for a strictly personal visit on his way to the airport as he leaves town. We shall look forward to that!

After Morris left, Mick and I indulged in a long whirlpool and then a sweet, slow, very exciting energy exchange. I went to sleep in the afterglow as usual, and Mick awoke me later for a late supper and the Gaia Meditation. Mick offered the closing prayer.

Friday, December 26, 2008


Christmas came gently to Camelot, with cloudy skies and temperatures chilly enough to make snuggling into a sweater feel good. We slept late and gathered around 9:00 for our Morning Offering. Mel and I were still in our jimmies as we listened to the readings for today and offered up hymns and prayers along with some silent meditation.

Melissa and I changed into day wear and I had my ice treatment – Mick massages my back and neck with ice for 2 minutes twice a day to take down the level of arthritic pain – and then we reassembled for the great unwrapping! First we opened the stockings which Santa Mel had made, retrieving nuts, tangerines, candies and small gifts like a crossword puzzle book for me and a yo-yo for Mick. The stockings were generous and opening each little gift took us until almost 11:30.

We took a short break, Melissa for a smoke, Mick for a Christmas snuggle with Dan D. Lion and me for a call to Gary to figure out how to launch! Don’t ask me how, but the carefully pre-set image on the computer had shifted to the right. I could see where the ribbon which I was supposed to click on ended, but it was basically off-screen to the left, nor could I move it into view. Gary set me right soon enough, and voila! The work of Steve E’s many sleepless nights and commuter trips was unveiled! I shall have to go on-line tomorrow, log in and play with the site’s features. Kudos to Steve for a wonderful job!

We three had expected Eric and his Mom, Phell, yesterday evening, but the rain was too heavy for them down in Marion County yesterday, with lots of ponding and flooding on roadways, and they stayed safely home until today. They arrived as we were beginning to open presents, and fell right into our Christmas schemes. We happily opened presents around the circle until we were all out of bows to untie and ribbons to cut and subsided into conversation, replete with lovely presents and each others’ company. It did seem like a shame to tear up Mel's beautiful and artistic wraps, which featured natural decorations like rose hips, oak-leaf hydrangea blossoms and sedum!

Melissa brought out her baked artichoke-heart and spinach appetizer, with crusty French bread to slather it on, and we feasted on that while our Christmas dinner was heating. In time, the biscuits were popped in the oven and I made the gravy. We laid out meat loaf, mashed potatoes and green bean casserole – comfort food indeed, and a nice change from the traditional foods. Mom McCarty’s chocolate cake and ice cream topped off the meal. Yum!

These celebratory times always go too fast! Eric and Phell left at 4:30, wanting to drive home in daylight, and Melissa left soon thereafter, hearing her chickens and kitties calling. Mick and I did a bit of clean-up and put-away, and then I relaxed with my Christmas puzzle book while Mick washed the linens from Tobey’s family’s visit and got the beds ready to receive Tommy, Mary and their three children on the 27th.

We reunited for a late supper and the Gaia Meditation, at which I offered the closing prayer. I hope that each who reads this little journal had a most blessed and beautifully meaningful day as well!

Thursday, December 25, 2008


Christmas Eve! The magic of it swirled around me as I sat in Morning Offering and beheld the day! Delicious! Afterwards, Melissa, Mick and I descended upon the kitchen. First Mel went through our freezers and fridges – we have two of them, for use when we have a Gathering – to make space to store the food we were to cook. She pulled out a package of beef that was past its eat-by date.

So before we got started on the cooking for today and tomorrow, I cut some onions, carrots and celery and stewed the patties to make beef broth. I firmly believe in keeping homemade broth handy. It makes a good recipe better when you can use broth instead of water to cook rice or make gravy or soup.

Then we pitched in! Mick created mashed potatoes for Christmas Day dinner. Mel created the meat loaf for the same meal. I tackled the chicken chili for late-night supper tomorrow. Mick re-potted the curried wild rice and the parsnips with herbs which Gary made last Friday for the occasion tonight while Melissa finished up tomorrow’s meal by making green beans with French-fried onions.

Mick finished his good work by going to the grocery for yet more things we forgot – biscuits for Christmas Day’s feast, potato chips and deli meats and cheeses for late-night sandwiches tomorrow. I, who kept having to rest between stages of cooking, took on the turkey hash for tonight and at last finished it. Mel and Mick manned the kitchen clean-up. And we were ready to relax!

Melissa sat down with Traitor, a film which Mick and I had viewed last Sunday. I came upstairs to read and, hopefully, nap and Mick eventually joined me to invite me to a bath. We came back upstairs after we got all scrubbed and napped together until time for dinner, a meal which we thoroughly enjoyed!

We three conversed until the Gaia Meditation, at which Mick offered the closing prayer. Then it was time for me to go to St. Luke’s for the practice before the midnight mass. The choir worked its way through the many pieces we were to sing tonight, and then, all at once, the wonderful service began. Melissa and Mick came to hear all the music, which tickled me no end!

I felt present with Christ tonight, and I felt also that Christ was present with me. I was lifted to a spacious, glowing place of light where every sensation of ear and eye registered with supernal clarity. My throat opened and I was able to sing the high notes of my parts in several baroque anthems surely and cleanly. Praise the Lord! The service was riveting and sparkling but long, lasting until 12:30, so when Mick picked me up at the chancel steps in the wheelchair, we could say, “Merry Christmas!”

I will sleep well tonight – no sugarplums, just thanksgiving and joy dancing through my head!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


I awoke early today, which was a signal blessing! I had my chapel time, wrote my Camelot Journal and Holly Journal entries and penned my UPI article for this week, all before it was time to join Mick for a wake-up cuddle and our Morning Offering. I decided to write about my childhood memories of Christmas for today's column. It was fun, looking back and remembering!

I got a call from Dianne S, who planned to go with me to Images Salon for her cut and color, as I was preparing to drive to the Salon and become a purple-haired lady. She said that she was concerned about the weather up her way and had canceled. The great thing about that is that just after she cancelled, a client called up Images with a sob story about a relative coming to their home for a visit with a horrible haircut. The client was in tears. “No problem,” said Jazz, bring her right in!”

Dianne’s concern may well have been accurate. Later in the day, Romi and Gary left to drive up I-71, which is how one gets to Avalon from here, to travel to Ohio together. Romi is having car trouble, so Gary volunteered to drop him off at his brother’s home on his way to visit his Mom and sisters. They got halfway to Cincinnati and were stopped cold on I-71. For four straight hours they moved about 100 feet per hour. Finally they saw a chance for a U-turn and drove back to Camelot where they will spend the night. They will try again tomorrow. It is supposed to continue warming up and will be in the fifties tomorrow. That should be better!

It rained all day, in 33- to 35-degree F temperatures. There was no ice in the rain. However the ground and roads had been frozen solid by sub-zero temperatures for the past several days. As the rain hit, especially on some exposed surfaces like bridges and overpasses, it turned to ice. People were driving too fast, and they got into trouble in record numbers.

I had no trouble at all, thank you Lord! After I became purple-haired – which I love! – I had a slow and delicious lunch all by myself in the bar at KT’s. There was a long wait for a table, and I like bar booths just as well as dining room tables. Fortified with good food, I went on to the grocery, got myself an electric cart and foraged for a picnic butt half-ham, a stewing chicken and lots of items for creating the meals for Christmas Eve, Christmas Day and the eventual onslaught of Rueckerts on the 27th.

I was very fortunate that the grocery people kindly helped me put my groceries in Stanley, and when I got home, Gary ran out, sprinkling calcium chloride on the walk and back deck for me. He got me into the house safely and then got the groceries in. What a guy!

By bath time, I had baked the ham and stewed the chicken until the meat was off the bones and the carcass had disintegrated. The chicken and chicken broth will become chicken chili for the Rueckerts. The ham will be their entrée on their first night here. I found an interesting recipe for apple, pineapple and orange salsa which will go over the sliced ham.

Then I pulled the recipes for the other groceries out of our database – corn pudding, mashed sweet potatoes, peas with Portabella mushrooms, meat loaf, turkey hash and green bean casserole. I made a grocery list of the things I had forgotten and called Melissa with them. She will stop at the grocery tomorrow morning on her way down from Avalon. We’ll have a grand time together cooking in the morning and afternoon, at the end of which we should be all set for Christmas food. On the day after Christmas, Mick and I will punch up the other recipes in readiness for the Rueckert clan's visit of the 27th through January 2nd.

In the cracks I took a couple of gifts I ordered for Melissa that had come in today, just in time, whew!, and put them in gift bags. We're all ready under the tree now!

I never did get back to the computer today! Bath time came late as it was, but it felt super great to have our plans for hospitality so far advanced. I marvel at how we seem to slip into Christmas, with so many chores and errands on our minds, all of which get done somehow. It will be sweet indeed to come to the end of the afternoon tomorrow, have a bath and then proceed into the peace of the actual events of Christmas, starting with the Midnight Mass. I will sing my heart out!

I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight. Then Mick went into the kitchen and sliced the ham to freeze until after Christmas. And he cut up the turkey for the turkey hash and the chicken for the chicken chili. We’re ready for tomorrow’s cooking! Here comes Christmas!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Melissa and I sat down after Morning Offering and chewed over the logistics of Christmas Day and Rueckert Family Gathering food. We caught Gary on his way out the door to spend his work day serving at The Cracker Barrel and asked if he might lend Mel his bedroom for New Years Eve night, since he will be at Valerie’s. Mel is giving up her usual room to Tommy and Mary for their visit, and wants to spend New Year’s Eve with us. We have the Christmas Day cooking figured out, but are still scratching our heads over the family visit’s food. I think we will eat out a good deal during their visit, or call in some take-away food.

Mel finished her present wrapping and then took off to see to her chickens and the cats on Avalon, who have been braving the cold weather upriver at the farm. She left behind some presents for me to sign the "to and from" tags and place under the tree, and a container of homemade cookies which I immediately hid, as per Mick’s firm instructions. He cannot contain himself around cookies! And we want them to serve our guests on Christmas Day!

I spent my morning and early afternoon at Absolutely Salon, getting a much needed massage and a manicure-pedicure. I got home at almost 2:00 p.m. and had lunch. Most irritatingly, in prying a recalcitrant omega-8 pill from my pill holder, I scraped the brand new enamel on my right thumb. Rats!

I came upstairs intending to work on my UPI column for this week, but found three separate e-mails from Mary, my sister-in-law. She has been thinking about our time together and making lots of good suggestions for how it will go. She wants to attend a couple of concerts, and for the next ninety minutes I came to discover that if there IS a source of such community information available, I can’t find it! Then I spent the rest of the afternoon writing her back on the dozen or so topics she covered.

By the time I had finished, I found that she and I are beginning to fill in the blanks of our days together in ways that will be relaxing and enjoyable for us. We now have a trip to see “Light Up Louisville” planned for one night, where we’ll walk down Fourth Street and Main Street - me in my wheelchair - and see all the lights before eating somewhere downtown. We have one night at Nancy’s restaurant, the L & N Bistro and the reservations are made for that. And we have pizza planned for New Year’s Day’s football glut. There is a trip to walk the old trails at Spring Mill planned as well, with a meal at the old inn there afterwards.

This is the first time in all our years of shared holidays that Mary and I have sat down ahead of time and collaborated together to make our time more fun. It’s time well spent, I think.

Mick and I had a refreshing bath together before coming upstairs to enjoy a date! Yum! Our sharing had real fire, and I reveled in it. Soon Mick was awakening me out of my somnolent afterglow for dinner and the Gaia Meditation, at which I was supposed to offer the closing prayer. However my prayer began and ended with zzzzzzzzz so Mick offered the prayer instead! This was not my best moment!

Monday, December 22, 2008


Happy Winter Solstice! It was certainly a cold one here, with wind chills below zero. But what a treat it is to see the sun shining! It is the first sunny day in a week or more!

I know that just before Christmas is a nutty time to start slimming, but this is when my personality shell agreed to do that so I have started. Today I cut my Sunday treat in half – one Sausage McMuffin instead of two! And for lunch, one half-sandwich instead of two. I am glad that my personality gave way on this and agreed to cut back, because I have reached the magic weight of 175 pounds. I call it magic because it was at that weight that I decided to slim down in 2001 or so. I did the same thing then, cutting my portions in half. Hopefully it will work and I will have an uneventful time losing again.

I do have an additional challenge this time, and that is that I cannot exercise any longer. Exercise resulted in three stress fractures in a row to my right foot, so I had to stop walking several years ago. My difficulty in exerting myself at all is absolute, currently. If I try to garden or do the stretching exercises I used to do, the symptoms of nerve pain in my back and shortness of breath are acute. My doctor gave me pain medication so I could garden, but as with all pain meds, I am sensitive to it and in this case got a really nasty itch which was worse by far than the pain it was supposed to eliminate!

Ah well! Fat or thin, well or ill, my heart is the Lord’s and I can still work for Him each and every day, both by what I do and by who I am and how I live. I hope only to serve my Beloved, and that prayer is answered daily with a resounding YES! So I live in gratitude and thanksgiving!

The service at St. Luke’s was delightful today. We sang carols and lit the fourth Advent candle on our big chancel wreath. The very last candle will be lit on Christmas Eve! I love this church and its people so much! They are so quick to help and so loving in every way!

We sang at the chancel steps today, which required me to move my stand, music and myself. I could not do that by myself in the time allotted, and at my previous parish, which I attended for 37 years, I would not have been able to sing. At St. Luke’s, one person moved the music stand, another took the music, and I had more arms to hold on to than I had hands for getting down those stairs. Praise the Lord for good people!

When Mick brought me home, we sat down to lunch along with the first of our two films, Traitor, with Don Cheadle and Guy Pearce. It was both written and directed by Jeffrey Nachmanoff, who created a rich, thick, varied texture of derring-do and spy-versus-spy. Cheadle was excellent as the man who is far more than he appears and Pearce and the surrounding ensemble supported his twists and turns beautifully. Who is the terrorist and who is the hero? Watch it and see!

Mick napped for an hour between shows while I read and finished working the Sunday puzzles. And Melissa arrived, intent on working on her Christmas gift stockings. She went down to the basement to do so, while Mick and I watched Wanted, another action film starring James McAvoy and Angelina Jolie as student and teacher in a school for assassins called The Fraternity. Seldom have I seen a film fuller of brutal violence. Still, the plot had legs and we enjoyed seeing the complex film unfold.

It has to have been a great deal of fun to work on this movie, because they filmed all over Europe, one beautiful location after another as the backdrops for the relentless action. And the sound track was excellent, as were all the production values. Was the story far-fetched? So what! It was most entertaining.

In the break, Mick and I went to the grocery, where I bought the food ready-made which I had neglected to make from scratch, not feeling well enough to cook. Melissa came upstairs to help me get the baked beans in the oven and re-pot the slaw and Gary, who was just in from a very brisk walk in Bernheim Forest, got the trays ready and cut the cheese to go on the kielbasa and bratwurst which Romi always brings as our traditional fare for the Winter Solstice ceremony.

With the supper preparations in hand, we poured wine for everyone and had the ceremony. It is short and sweet, but meaningful. We were inside because of the severe cold, so instead of the bonfire, we lit a candle and turned off all the lights. Then we chanted,

“This is the night, the longest night,
The longest night of the year.
What shall we give to the night?”

Then someone would shout out, “Hunger” or “Violence” or “Politicians”. And we would reply, “Hunger – BAH” and push our hands and arms up and out to banish hunger into the night. We repeated the little chant until we were all out of things to give to the night. Then we gave thanks for all the good things that reamin to gladden our day.

I sang “In the Bleak Midwinter” for the ritual. I love the last verse of the hymn,

“What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb.
If I were a wise man, I would do my part.
But what I can, I give Him – give my heart.”

We were still eating our dinner when Tobey arrived with his wife and two children. They are on their way to Kansas to spend Christmas with relatives. We were delighted to see them.

They had a miserable journey here, first stuck in traffic because a semi had overturned ahead of them and then rear-ended during the traffic jam, so that they had to wait for the police and report the incident. That and the cold made the trip from Virginia to here a long one!

Jim and Gary went out to help Tobey get his maimed trunk open, and miraculously it both opened and would close again! Thank you, Lord. Melissa did some quick moving around, putting herself in the compass room, which has one bed, so that Tobey and Jennifer could sleep in her room, which has a double bed. The children will sleep in the upstairs guest room.

Tobey has long been one of L/L Research’s best friends and volunteers. He has graced many of our Gatherings and he started the Relistening Project some time ago, his aim being to create an on-line record of the exact text of all the 106 Ra sessions, without any of the deletions of personal material which the printed books have. He is almost finished now, with only eleven sessions to go! Tobey has also been working with Jeremy, Gary and Steve E to get our activist site,, ready for its Christmas Day launch. So it was wonderful to be able to offer him and his dear family hospitality.

Romi offered the prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


It was cold and then colder today as arctic air moved our way. Consequently, Mick did not adorn our roof lines with lights, but instead he lit our front hedge and the fir tree next to the front porch. It looks very festive indeed!

After Morning Offering I settled into working on Buke T’s question on distortion. By bath time I had sent off my response to Gary to send on to her. I greatly enjoyed working on that question, as I was able to steep myself in TLOO material all day! It makes for good company and provokes many a thought.

I also wrote three more thank-you notes, hoping to stay even with that seasonal honor/duty as Christmas nears. I have only four more notes to write to catch up with the bounty of gifts which has already come my way this Christmas. People from all over send me gifts – sometimes complete strangers to me physically. But if they read and enjoy my work, they can’t be strangers!

After Mick and I had our bath, we welcomed Romi and John F, a new visitor to our group, who drove up from Bowling Green, Kentucky, a two-hour drive away. He is a college student with a very good understanding of our work, having studied it intensively on line. Gary also joined us. We enjoyed our round-robin talk around the circle and then a peaceful, powerful silent meditation.

Gary worked on the B4 web site today with Steve E, its webmaster, and we set the time of high noon on Christmas Day for me to cut the ribbon and open the site! Please do log on to and sign up as a member! There are lots of ways to communicate all set up and ready to go. Gary is so stoked about it! I can’t wait to see the new site! He, Tobey W, Jeremy W and Steve E have been working with the site in test mode for the last month or so, and hopefully they have found each and every glitch!

I offered the Gaia Meditation prayer at the end of our silent meditation tonight.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


This was a most unusual day! We broke a weather record over 100 years old by topping 70 F. And Mick was out in it all day, bagging leaves. He is up to 209 bags of leaves for this customer, and still has her back half-acre to clear. He will definitely break his record, which was 230 bags last year, when he completes the job tomorrow!

It was raining to beat the band for much of the day. Mick said he was bagging snow, rain and leaves!

I stayed inside and kept dry, except for going out to cuddle Dan D. Lion McCarty-cat, who prefers his front porch “house” when the weather is wet. I wrote 5 thank you notes for gifts already received. Then I finished my research on “distortion”. I am ready to respond to Buke’s question now.

I realize that I could answer these questions off the top of my head, and my response would be close to accurate. However I want to be fully accurate in representing the Confederation point of view. So it is worth it to me to do the research. I do not charge her for this research, just for the writing time.

In e-mail:

• I sent Gary notice that I was writing three friends for their new contact information. Their cards came back “unable to deliver”.

• I thanked Diane P for her gift of a very interesting book called The Magus of Strovolos. The ET info in it jibes completely with the Confederation message, which I find fascinating.

• I responded to Sydney S’s invitation to lunch together and share some girlfriend time soon enthusiastically and asked her to choose a day after January 6th. Sydney and I were friends all through college. She's remained an academic ever since, and teaches languages at U of Louisville.

• I sent Doris S’s list of open appointments to Mick and asked him to choose a day for us to meet with her. She is our business advisor.

• I answered Terry H’s question about distortion. Synchronistically, he had gotten stuck on that concept while translating the channeling session which was held on 12-20-1998. He will use that channeling – in Chinese – for his Christmas cards.

Mick and I had a lovely date tonight and then napped before coming down to dinner and some episodes of House. Mick offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Friday, December 19, 2008


We are moving fully into the glory of the Christmas spirit now! Today the house was filled with the tantalizing aroma of Melissa’s baking and Mick got up on the roof in the late afternoon rain and secured the lights that outline our gabled and complex roof lines to make our beloved Camelot light up like a gingerbread house!

Melissa also finished the present wrapping and put the gifts under the tree to make a very festive display. Her every package is a delight to study, with berries, rose hips, evergreen and pretty bows and ribbons on each package. It will be a loss to open them, for they are truly works of art. I am so grateful to her for this, as it brings my wonderful Mother back to me. Here’s a poem I must have written thirty years ago, when my Mama was still alive:

“Jesus Christ, come to life
Jeannie/Jason, Mother, Wife,
To both of you, Earth and divine,
Thanks for giving us Christmas time.

“The elegiac, somber tones of winter now draw nigh,
Yet in that deepest darkness, the Son of Man arrives,
Clothed in wooly blanket, the ox and ass nearby
Nurturing his human-ness, praising God on high.

“I used to take for granted all our Christmas spirits’ wealth
The mistletoe and Christmas lights, the gifts to wrap in stealth
And though I’m older, now I see she gives all of her self.

“One winter, Mama will be gone, and I shall be full sad
For Christmas in her house is all the Christmas that I’ve had.
All the glorious packages, all the moments sad,
All the potlatch sharing, with a heart so glad.

“It isn’t that my family neglects or rejects Love
But rather that my Mama outpaces all who move
While father and son-in-law “Bah Humbug” soft they prove
Though their names are on our presents their Scrooge-ishness disprove.

“We always go to midnight mass, to worship and to sing
Glad hymns of exultation, great “Alleluias” ring
Then up at dawn on Christmas day to see what Santa sends
Mama’s hands cut Danish—so Christmas Day begins.

“Now, dear Papa, I mean no hurt to Thee.
You make the house aglow with lights, a colored harmony
You stuff the festive bird with yet another recipe
And in your own way, sometimes you’re so sweet I want to weep.

“But Mama, you’re my Christmas. “

So, thanks, Melissa, from the bottom of my heart, for bringing all that back to me! You’re the best!

While Gary worked in the office and Mel in the kitchen, Mick slogged through the wet and cold to work with leaves and more leaves. He got about half of the work done on his biggest leaf-bagging customer, who lives amid a forest and wants all her leaves bagged. Last year, the total of her bags of leaves was 230. This year he is up to 160 and says he may well exceed the record tomorrow when he attacks her back acre. Imagine, after all that, soaking wet, he started on our outdoor lights when he finished maintaining his equipment!

I finished researching a question for Buke on parallel lives and sent that off to Gary to send to her. Then I continued to do research on “distortion”, which is her next question for me. And in the cracks, I cleared my desk writing e-letters to folks who have moved, whose Christmas cards from us have been returned, to ask them for their new contact information.

Mel left with her sweet breads in hand to give to the people who have helped her with our tractor and farm truck on Avalon as well as the solar batteries, around bath time. Gary said good-night after the Gaia Meditation, at which he offered the closing prayer. And Mick and I toddled off to bed with sugar plums dancing in our heads! I love Christmas!

Thursday, December 18, 2008


This was a hash of a day! After Morning Offering, Mick went out to do a couple of jobs for customers. When he returned, he wanted to do some personal errands. If my dear Stanley Outback is available, he generally uses it instead of his bulky truck and trailer. But Stanley could not start.

Fortunately, Melissa was here, and she and Jim figured out that there had been a rear dome light left on all night which had drained the battery. Neither of us knew that light existed, which was why, when Mick tripped it yesterday bundling the wheel chair out of the way to carry the tree home, he’d tripped it accidentally without realizing it. Oops! But a jump start set all to rights.

The crisis precipitated multiple visits by Mick and then by Mel to my office as they needed to know where the service book was, who sold new batteries and did they have one and so forth. Then there were more visits with Mel as we debated and then decided on some cookie, quick-bread and fudge recipes for her to use in baking some Christmas sweets, both for here and for those who have helped her this year with Avalon’s ancient and struggling tractor and truck.

It made for a distracted and unfocused day for me, although I did not mind the interruptions at all – we’re all in this together, and one job is equal to another.

I managed, in the cracks, to do research for two of Buke T’s new round of questions. I feel privileged to have these questions to answer, as she is paying the same rate as for counseling. When I work on them I get the double delight of immersing myself in the Confederation material and creating some income for L/L Research. I am working on her questions, “What is distortion” and “What if I met myself, living parallel lives?”

Melissa wrapped presents for most of her remaining afternoon, after helping with the Stanley crisis. We got together after Mick’s and my bath for a brief hour of conversation before I went to choir practice, where we are practicing Christmas music of the baroque era, lovely pieces indeed. Sweelink, Hassler and Scheidt join Bach and Rutter for a glorious ensemble of sound. Christmas Eve we will have brass and tympani also! Yum!

I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008


Our day started early, since the weather was varying between snow, sleet and freezing rain. Mick got all four of his “snow removal” customers’ walks and porches covered with a layer of calcium chloride. In late afternoon he again made his rounds, spreading the salt again where it was needed.

After a somewhat delayed Morning Offering, I finished my journal entries, had some good chapel time and then tackled the UPI article on Joyous Chee’s question as to whether we were not all wanderers, since we were multi-dimensional beings. I finished the writing just as Mick called bath time.

Romi wrote to say that he was donating a faster computer than Growler to L/L Research, since Growler was struggling to handle all the QuickBooks and other software on it. He asked what to do with the old Growler. I suggested that he set it up in Melissa’s room in our basement. That way, she will have her own computer when she wants it, no matter who else is working on the downstairs computers. She does a ton of research and deserves her own machine.

When I came downstairs for our bath at eventide, I saw with delight that Mick had gotten our Christmas tree up and trimmed! It’s beautiful! However there were perhaps half as many ornaments on the tree as before. Mick told me that mice got into the ornament box. Up until this last Christmas, we used styrofoam pellets to cushion the ornaments. Foolish moi purchased a fancy ornament keeper box last year with cardboard divisions. Apparently the mice in our garage loft liked the cardboard and then liked the ornaments as well. I imagine they made some festive nests!

As Charlie Brown so aptly would say, “Rats!” Ah well, we will eventually have a fully ornamented tree again! I always give the tree an ornament at Christmastime. This year’s is a pretty, handmade star. And sometimes we get ornaments as gifts, too. Meanwhile, less is more!

Mick also spread around our other Christmas things, treasures saved from my Mother’s lifetime collection. She died in 1991, but her crèches and wreaths bring her back for me each year. Mom loved Christmas! She was the best ever at decorating tree, mantel and each and every package! Each year, the effect was prettier than the last.

Romi joined Gary, Mick and me for supper and the Gaia Meditation. We talked more about Mel’s computer, the old Growler, and Ro said he had a surplus monitor screen to donate so she would have a complete outfit in her room!

We also talked about Ro’s coming over sometime during the week after Christmas to scan the rest of the pages for Dana’s Alphabet Mosaics’ appendices. I was thrilled to hear it!

I asked the assembled about our usual Winter Solstice bonfire and wiener roast. We decided to have it in late evening this year, since Tobey and his family will not be arriving at our house until the evening. Romi will bring his Czech sausages, which taste and look a lot like bratwurst, some dark bread and some sharp mustard. We’ll mull some cider or mead and create something to go with the meat sandwiches. They do taste wonderful, burned and smoked in the bonfire!

Romi offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


The day started out warm and dry but concluded with freezing rain and the promise of arctic air by tomorrow. Mick worked until the weather closed him down in mid-afternoon.

After Morning Offering I wrote my journals, luxuriated in chapel time and then spent my work day collecting quotes to use when writing my UPI article of the week. I am still going through Joyous Chee’s questions. His third one is on Wanderers, so I was steeped in what Ra said about them all day.

I had an appointment with my GP at 3:00 p.m., and Mick found the time to drive me through the worsening weather to it. What a treat! We enjoyed the chance to talk. We stopped in at Louisville Tractor on the way home to purchase calcium chloride for Mick’s four snow removal customers, and Mick spread it for them after he dropped me off.

After completing all of his customers’ jobs, Mick put in some time here, maintaining his equipment and cleaning the dirt off the eaves which landed there while he was removing the leaves from the gutters the other day. Our yard looks so pretty! It is ironic that it is only when winter comes that Mick has the time really to clean up our little acre!

I wrote Romi, who had sent me an e-mail concerning Dana’s book, thanking him for letting me know when he would be able to persevere on the scanning for The Alphabet Mosaics. He will spend a day right around Christmas doing the needed work! This is good news. He has been stymied for a while now, but has solved the problem of shrinking margins and is ready now to go forward.

I also wrote Ba, who wrote in with her Christmas news. Ba will have a family Christmas, with her sons and their families coming for almost two weeks! Ba has had a heavy teaching schedule all fall, but after Christmas, she will again go to Brazil to be with John of God, and this time, her husband will be with her! What a treat!

Lorisa had sent in a request for our permission to print a study guide for The Law of One. I was eager to give it, but discovered that she had quoted massively from TLOO without ever giving the first reference. By massive, I mean that almost the entire text of the first four volumes of TLOO was hashed up, divided into subjects, and all without a single footnote that led the student back to the work itself and the precious context that gives the quotes their larger meaning. I suggested that she apply the quotation marks and footnotes that would render her work a true study guide, for only then can I give permission for her to print that work.

I also wrote Gary concerning his idea of a section on B4 which would contain collections of quotes on topics from our archives. I think it is a great idea, and when he is ready, I offered to send him all my quote collections. I have a good many, collected while writing UPI articles and 101.

Lastly, Romi wrote concerning our equipment. One of our computers, whom we fondly call Growler because of his deep buzz when turned on, is still slow after he made his improvements, so Romi will most generously donate a slightly used computer with more memory to replace the Growler. I wrote to thank him, and to suggest that he, Gary and I sit down and figure out whether we want to keep Growler or donate him to charity. My guess is that Mel would enjoy having a computer in her room when she comes to town.

Mick offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Monday, December 15, 2008


I went to church this morning amidst very warm breezes as our area prepares for a big clash between these southerly winds and a big arctic front coming our way tomorrow. It felt a bit eerie to feel the 60-degree F warmth while dead leaves scuffled across streets lined with bare trees.

We sang Mendelssohn’s “How Lovely Are the Messengers” this morning and enjoyed a good sermon on getting right with our neighbors before Christmas comes. I love St. Luke’s services! There is such a festive and loving atmosphere there.

After Mick finished his cleaning and I my church-going, we settled down over lunch to watch The Dark Knight, the umpteenth sequel to Batman. It is the best episode of that franchise for a long time – perhaps ever. Christian Bale was a fine, gravel-voiced Batman and Heath Ledger will probably receive a posthumous Oscar for his portrayal of The Joker. It was a subtle and nuanced performance which made Jack Nicholson’s turn some years ago as The Joker look overdone and naïve. Aaron Eckhart, playing a good guy gone bad, was also excellent and the ensemble of Michael Caine, Gary Oldman, Maggie Gyllenhaal, Eric Roberts and Morgan Freeman was superb.

It was a long film! After 90 minutes Mick put the movie on pause and we snoozed for an hour or so before finishing the last hour of it with some popcorn. Then we took a break until dinner. I found Gary’s additions to the Gatherings Newsletter waiting in my Inbox and read through them, editing the copy and turning it back around to him. Now Gary can send the newsletter to our “send” list for that periodical. I am excited to see the response to our addition to the schedule of a Gathering in memory of Bob Riedel.

Wynn F wrote to let me know that the Las Cruces group wanted me to join them by telephone on January 15th. I added that to my schedule. They will be asking questions about The Law of One.

Over supper Mick and I watched our second film of the day, The X Files: I Want to Believe. David Duchovny and Gillian Anderson, both looking as pretty as ever, were again the doughty duo of Mulder and Scully, searching for the answer to an enigmatic series of killings. It felt like a very enjoyable, double-length TV episode.

We offered the Gaia Meditation, with Gary praying at the close, before finishing our day with two beautifully rendered episodes of House. Hugh Laurie is surrounded by an excellent ensemble as he puts on a terrific portrayal of the offbeat doctor-genius in consistently well-written and sharply directed pieces.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


What an enjoyable and unseasonably warm Saturday! After Morning Offering, Mick cleaned the kitchen and then did errands while I came upstairs to continue my office clean-up. By the middle of the afternoon I had finished the e-mail. I wrote:

• Gary, checking a couple of people who may not yet have gotten our Christmas cards because they were not in our database.

• Ian, thanking him for letting me know that Michele, our 101 cover artist, is currently moving and looking for a job, and consequently will be slow to finish the cover art.

• Tobey, arranging his family’s visit to L/L Research at Christmastime.

• Melissa, thanking her for sharing an e-mail from Michael Shane in Canada, who has been attempting to create a Law of One Community there. He ran into insurmountable obstacles with his first gambit and is now working on a second effort. Check it out at Shane recently gave our Avalon Farm enough mushroom plugs to try out mushroom farming in Kentucky.

• Wynn Free, thanking him for inviting me to speak on line by telephone to an Edgar Cayce group in Las Cruces, New Mexico in January and asking for specific dates.

• A dozen fans of my articles and friends, both personal and L/L-Research oriented, thanking people for kind words and/or sharing thoughts on personal issues.

It was terrific to see my Inbox empty for one shining moment! Then I finalized my Christmas Gift worksheet for 2008. I can put the Gift Booklet away now until 11 months or so from now! Whee!

I finished my afternoon by creating a new to-do list, intending, after I write my UPI article on Monday, to finish up the office clean-up by writing some thank-you notes and other snail mail.

Melissa spent her entire day wrapping presents, and one was prettier than the next. It means so much to me to have the presents we are giving so beautifully wrapped! And Mick spent his afternoon bringing Camelot's gardens to a fine state indeed! i took a walk around with Dan D. Lion McCarty-cat and enjoyed the beauty he had created.

Meanwhile, Gary spent much of his work day dealing with the site, testing it before its Christmas Day launch. He is very psyched about the site!

Mick and I shared a bath and then greeted Romi, who joined Gary, Mel and me for supper and the weekly L/L Research public meeting. Gary asked an interesting question on faith. I look forward to reading it when I edit the transcript. We included the Gaia Meditation prayer in the closing prayer of the channeling meditation.

Saturday, December 13, 2008


Some days go otherwise than planned, and this was certainly one. Mel blew into town full of good energy, down from Avalon to help me with the present wrapping. I found out from Ian yesterday that Michele M, creator of the cover art for 101, had gone silent because she was both in the middle of a move and up against a deadline on a graphic art project for a client. This means that 101 will not be printed until after the New Year.

And that means that I cannot give that book to a number of folks on my gift list. Mel and I sat down right after Morning Offering and sorted out the dozen or so people for whom that book had been the intended present. We debated where to go to find these recipients alternative gifts and settled on Just Creations.

Just Creations is a store founded on the idea that many third world countries have beautiful, hand-crafted products but no good retail outlets. They cultivate relations with such handcraft makers among native populations and offer them an outlet. The store sells everything from hand-knitted clothing to pottery, stone work, jewelry, cards and everything in between, with a huge emphasis on Christmas items, this time of year. We prowled the store for about an hour and found whimsical and practical gifts for everyone. and each gift was unique and handmade.

We stopped for lunch at a tiny shop that sells panini and homemade soup, where we had the shrimp and corn chowder with our Panini American. Then we were off to Lowe’s, where Mel collected Mick’s big gift – a really good 17’ ladder – to Walgreen’s, where Mel found candy for our sanitation crew and collected some ribbons she needs, and finally to Garden Ridge, where Mel finished her collecting of Christmas bows and do-dads like berries and fir sprays with which to dress the packages. Our gifts have not looked so festive since my Mom died in 1991! Thank you, Mel!

We came home after 4:00 p.m. bearing our booty. While Mel organized things I managed to get upstairs, make my journal entries and have my chapel time before Mel needed me to sign the ”For/From” tags on the packages she had set out to wrap first – the packages to be mailed out of town.

In the cracks, I called the Subaru dealership and told the parts department what was amiss with Stanley. Stanley had suffered because of our encounter with the dog on our Nebraska trip. We are looking forward to adopting our future kitten, this dog’s soul, through reincarnation. That collision had damaged a plastic under-skirt to the front left fender, taken the bottom out of the windshield washer container and smashed the left front parking light. Subaru said they’d order the parts and have the Service Department call to make a repair appointment when the parts came in.

I wrote Doris, our business manager, by e-mail, asking for a pow-wow. And I fielded a call from Jan E, my nurse-practitioner who treats my interstitial cystitis. She wants an appointment with me, as it’s been a year since I saw her. I created a reminder to call her Monday in Outlook.

Meanwhile Mick worked solidly from Morning Offering until dark to tend to his customers. He is constantly being surprised this week at how many more leaves have fallen than he expected. “Where do they come from?” he asked me in wonder at bath time. “I see no leaves on the trees!” I had no answer! But I am thrilled at his extra work, since we need to pay our bills, and often the off-season is low on work to do, so we scrimp. So far, not this year!

After our bath, Mick and I came upstairs for some energy-sharing, Mick having most romantically made a date with me this morning. Ah, the wonder of that “old black magic”. As is my wont, I fell fast asleep in the afterglow and Mick had to awaken me for a late supper, after we had the Gaia Meditation. Mick offered the closing prayer tonight.

Then we caught a TV version of Mission Impossible 3, which we thoroughly enjoyed. Cruise produced this film and did the stunts himself, and he is both an excellent producer and an impressively athletic stuntman. I have a soft spot in my heart for him, since at one time, when he was in high school, he attended our weekly meditation meetings.

Friday, December 12, 2008


As the cold and gloomy skies lowered, after Morning Offering Mick started in with his customers of the day to clean up the last of their leaves, clean gutters and otherwise winterize their yards. He had expected to be finished at 5:00 p.m. but found himself, at 6:30, cleaning the last of the leaves from a customer’s yard in full darkness. He said he’d gotten the leaves in piles and could see them as light against the dark ground, so he was able to finish. Power to the Mick!!

Meanwhile I consulted with Gary on good dates for two upcoming L/L Research Gatherings, Channeling Intensive 4, which we will hold from February 5 to February 8, and a special Gathering in memory of Bob Reidel, which we will hold April 17-19, 2009, here at Camelot. The Reidel Gathering will have the theme of “Get Ready for 2012”. It was the subject of the Williamsburg, Virginia, Gathering which he was trying to put together when his final illness overtook him.

After getting the dates squared away, I wrote the text of the next issue of our Gatherings Newsletter and sent it on to Gary for his additions – Gare keeps track of the many study groups around the world that are focusing on TLOO.

Still intending to polish off the old e-mail before moving ahead, I continued responding to older e-letters. I wrote to:

• Ian, letting him know that Micheline, in translating 101 into French, found a misspelled word. He wrote back immediately saying that he would correct that.

• Gary, letting him know that the announcement of the launch of on Christmas Day which Ian put up on our archive web site looks just fine. BTW, please do log on then, or thereafter, and surf around to see all the goodies! I think there are greatly enhanced opportunities there for folks to write in and join in the community of seekers who have a love of TLOO in common. It is good to have friends to whom you can talk about the things that interest you!

• Aaron T, asking her if she would like to do a project of formatting my poetry and talking about service to others.

• Rachel Christenson, assuring her that her video, which you can see at, was great and offering, when our site is up, space for her to blog or join in the forums and talk about “Be Yourself”, another song which she and Peter Wale have composed.

• Dianne S, thanking her for sharing a very uplifting video of “Stand By Me” at Try it if you’d like your heart to open wide!

• Janet, Anne and Juls, thanking them each for keeping me posted when Bob Reidel was ill and letting them know about the Gathering in his memory.

• John Player in Britain, congratulating him on the acceptance of his book, This Troubled Earth: A World in Crisis, by a publisher and saying that if he really wants to ask about the reptilians, he can form a question for Q’uo, but that the Q’uo group generally refuses to answer specific questions or questions which are an active part of a seeker’s process. I suggested that he ask what spiritual principles to invoke when thinking about this issue. That reference to spiritual principles generally gets the best possible response.

Mick, Gary and I had a most pleasant, quiet evening. Gary worked late, having a ball using features of the new site in its test mode, trying to break it if he could, so that any glitches will be repaired before the site's l/launch. He was enthusiastic about webmaster Steve E's work on B4 in the extreme, about as stoked as I have ever seen him!

Gary offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Thursday, December 11, 2008


My first full day back home was spent, much more than I intended, in napping in my chair! After Morning Offering I came up to the office, sat down and was out like a light until lunch. After lunch I repeated the snooze! Fortunately, I was awakened by Romi’s call in mid-afternoon – I had called him just after Morning Offering to ask for help.

He guided me through the procedure for taking the computer settings off dial-up connection and back to recognizing the DSL. So I spent the rest of my work day posting my Camelot Journal entries from 11-30 to 12-09.

Mick blew in full of good energy at dusk, having put all of his Monday customers’ and one of his Tuesday customers’ lawns to bed for the year. He will come back just before Christmas for any touch-ups needed for party season, but all the leaves are down now except the stubborn oaks’, so his lawn care for the year is drawing to a close.

He has lots of other work to keep him busy, still, but this will probably be his last full week of lawn care. Mick says he’s already missing mowing! It's OK, Mick - spring is coming!

My one remaining relative on my mother’s side, Aunt Louise, sent her usual Christmas wreath from L. L. Bean today, and Mel has the icicle lights up across our porch, so we’re looking more festive by the day! Mick will add the rest of the house lights and the Christmas tree when he has the time.

After our bath, Mick took me to choir practice, where we are awash in Christmas carols and other special music of the season. It is all lovely! I am struggling to hit some of my higher notes – time for some vocal exercises before singing, I suppose.

I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


It was misting and mizzling when we left The Isle of Capri Hotel, and so it continued all the day, sometimes storming or coming on to a steady, soaking rain, but always wet. Stanley was happy, driving in the wet, and we were happy moving along back to Camelot, our kitties and our own beds! Again I read Mick the paper as we drove, then the readings for our Morning Offering.

We drove straight through to Anthony’s Steak House east of Omaha, enjoyed a fine lunch there and then aimed Stanley for Louisville and drove the rest of the way home, arriving just as dusk was falling. We celebrated our arrival with one last restaurant meal, at the local Red Lobster, and then drove through the sweet, wet evening to Camelot.

I sat and patted kitties while Mick sorted out our traps, did the washing and in general got us unpacked and settled. We came together for the Gaia Meditation, at which Mick offered the closing prayer, and dessert. Then we said good night to Gary and came upstairs for a date, the second one in two days, but we were both more than ready to share some energy to celebrate arriving home! It was lovely, and we sank down into afterglow and then bedtime, offering praise and thanksgiving for a trip accomplished, an honor-duty well done and most of all, having each other as companions with whom we could see things through in the happiest of styles.


I had a tough night and was glad to see the dawn shine in! I tried to alleviate the stifling heat in my little guest bedroom by turning on the overhead fan, and awoke at four in the morning with a bad headache and parched throat. I gradually felt better as I wrote my journals and packed away Jennie Traveller for her trip home.

Mom and Mick both arose at seven, and we enjoyed Morning Offering together and said our good-byes to Mom. Then Mick packed us up and we headed down the road, rejoicing! We picked up rolls and juice for breakfast and then I read Mick the newspaper for about ninety minutes. As we passed the state line into Iowa, Mick said, “Escape from Nebraska! A new film starring Jim McCarty and Carla L. Rueckert! Their torture is utter boredom! And it kills! But, oh, so slowly!”

Laughter is so good for the soul!

We had pleasant weather, overcast and fifty-ish F, and no real traffic problems, except that between Lincoln and Omaha there was massive road work and we had to take care and go more slowly. As full dark fell, we arrived at Boonville and The Isle of Capri Casino and Hotel, our destination. We had a fine evening – baths and then dinner, and for dessert, each other! We shared some lovely energy and rested in the afterglow before spending the rest of the evening reading and watching some junk TV. I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.


We played hooky and stayed home from church today, which surprised me a bit since Mom is a regular church-goer. Today she wanted to stay home. So our morning and afternoon were all of a piece. After Morning Offering, I took a shower and then devoted myself for the rest of the work day to catching up on e-mail.

It was a very heartening and healing task, since I responded to eleven letters written by those who had written in to thank me for one or another of my UPI articles. I felt bathed in love and support!

In other letters I wrote:

• Steve M, who told me that he was contemplating salting his local book store with TLOO, and asked about a celebratory get-together for his study group in Chicago. I invited them to come to Camelot over a weekend when we had a channeling session.

• Monica L, who would like to sell her Kangen water ionizer in our on-line store. I assured her that we would like to do that, and after www.bring4th.or is launched on Christmas Day, I’ll talk to Steve E about the “Friends Of” section of our store. He may have gotten it up and running as he comes to launch; I don’t know and cannot check that until we get back to Camelot, since this dial-up connection here at Mom’s will not permit me access to the internet. I think the “Friends Of” section of the store will be fun. Lots of folks who enjoy our material are involved in fascinating and varied interests and we should develop a very interesting boutique of good products for the seeker who is shopping around.

• Jude, my beloved Aaron/Q’uo editor, telling her that we’ll have to shake Hampton Roads' tree soon, but I have a little hunch that says to wait till after New Years’ Day to do that. It is hard to wait and wait when we so wish that project to see the printed light of day. It is such beautiful material!

• Pupie, whose wedding I attended in 2005 in Britain – I turned that occasion for travel into a speaking tour and Vara and I had the best time going all over England. I spoke in Newcastle, London, Forest Row, Bath and St. Albans. Pupie appointed me her counselor during the ceremony, and wrote, concerned that I could no longer fill that role because of my health issues. I assured her that I can easily do anything that does not require moving around. She had suggested switching over to Mick as her counselor, and of course he would be wonderful. But Mick prefers that I continue. And I think I am probably a better fit.

• Rob Schwartz in Ohio, agreeing with him that we MUST visit in person one day – but not on this particular trip he is taking. Rob wrote me a very kind blurb for the back cover of 101 and is the author of Your Soul’s Plan: Discovering the Real Meaning of the Life You Planned Before You Were Born(

• Reverend Ruth Ann M, who asked about the Hadron Collector. I had not heard of that. I’ll have to get home before I can investigate it for her.

• My brother, Tommy, thanking him for his material from our song-and-story tapes and asking him to bring anything else he can find when he comes to Louisville for our Rueckert Family Christmas, over New Year's. I wrote those stories and lyrics back in the late seventies and early eighties, and we have moved twice since then. My own copies have gone missing. Tom suggested that we might consider re-doing them at some point, to get better performances down for posterity. I agreed, given that we can both find the time, and told him that Rick C, in Maine, who is a retired, Emmy-winning sound man with an illustrious career in Hollywood behind him, has offered to record me for free any time I wish, and he’d be glad to do the sound work for Tommy and me.

• Scott Mandelker, author and counselor to seekers, thanking him for the blurb he sent me for 101 and telling him that it came in after the back cover text was finalized, but that I will use his very kind words in the letter we send out to our mailing list when 101 is published. Scott has been teaching and traveling in Japan and Indonesia and did not get my request for a couple of months, until he arrived home to San Francisco at Thanksgiving

• Vara L-R, sending her the next Mosaic and Wisdom Poem from Dana Redfield’s Alphabet Mosaics so she can publish them in the next issue of Planet Light Worker ( Vara moved to Alaska recently with her husband, who is a soldier now deployed in Iraq. She shared tales of shoveling mountains of snow off her flat garage roof and feeding the grosbeaks and many other birds which thrive in the far north.

• Talitha L, thanking her for her absent Reiki healing.

• Gary, who sent me recipe changes for a recipe (Peas Creamed with Artichoke Hearts and Mushrooms) of which Micheline D in France had requested a copy. I incorporated Gary’s changes and sent him the recipe. Gary often creates changes in the recipes from my database as he cooks them, and I try to catch them in order to refine the recipes.

• Lorena L, thanking her for her news and telling her I looked forward to seeing her in January, when she will visit in order to get out the next Law of One for Prisoners (LOOP) Newsletter issue compiled, printed and mailed.

• Mel, thanking her for her newly compiled Avalon Contact and Avalon Solar Power worksheets, as well as for so very many wonderful things she has done lately, such as the great help at Thanksgiving and her present-wrapping, which she’s doing while Mick and I are away from home.

• Marcia McMahon, channel for Princess Diana and John Lennon as well as Jeshua, commiserating with her because at her recent speaking engagement in Chicago she was allowed only to talk about Jeshua. She said Princess Diana was miffed!

• Micheline D, thanking her for some very kind words and also for her translation of TLOO into French! She has finished that and it is available on now, in the Library section. She is now translating 101!

• Tom C, thanking him for his streusel muffin recipe. It looks delicious! I reworked it and formatted it and sent him back a finished copy of it.

• Daphne K, congratulating her on her recovery of health and her move to Alaska and thanking her for her kind words.

• Cynthya J, who wrote to offer to send a copy of her book, The Journey, for our Library. I told her we’d be delighted to receive that, and encouraged her to continue her writing. She is partway through a prequel to The Journey now but had gotten away from the writing for a while.

Meanwhile Mick and Mom enjoyed a Sunday’s worth of pro football and especially the announcement of the BCS placements – the big news of the day for those who love college football.

Mom took us out to P J’s Restaurant in Cozad, eleven miles west of here, for our last dinner together. The food was absolutely delicious! I had a prime rib sandwich – minus the bread for me – that was rare and tender, with some of the best French fries I have ever eaten. I was in food heaven tonight!

As I continued to work at responding to the e-mail in my Inbox, Mick got us packed and ready to go tomorrow morning. He also offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation.


Mick loves football, and this is a Saturday at the height of the football season, so our main activity for the day was to watch lots and lots of football! The air was filled with commentators’ debates on which Heisman Trophy candidate was most deserving and how the BCS choices would pan out on December 8th, as well as the roar of the crowds in the many games of which we saw at least a part. The glorious glut did not end until Oklahoma finished soundly thwacking its opponent around eleven p.m., making it later than Sooner!

However, the games did not start early, so after Morning Offering, Mick and I decided to go downtown and have some authentic Mexican food, having espied a sign announcing the Esperanza Café. We entered the place to find it mostly bare, with half a dozen round tables along the sides of the store, and a wide open expanse of bare floor in the middle. Off to the right and perhaps 30 feet away from the front door stood a man of color tending to a series of chafing dishes on a table. There were some Spanish-looking decorations, dusty and tatty, here and there along the walls, and wonderful music was playing on a CD player – not Hispanic but African.

We found out that these men – and there were only men in the place – I supposed that I was fortunate to be served – were Somalis. Somehow, perhaps through a church group, these men had been brought over to America, to Grand Island, Nebraska, a town halfway between here and Lincoln, Nebraska to the east, expecting to find employment waiting. However the employment was not forthcoming, so the men were sent to Lexington to work here at the meat-packing plant.

A very pleasant man came to us almost wringing his hands, concerned that we might not enjoy their food. We said we’d like to try it – could we see a menu? No, there were no menus. Instead he gave us a sample of some nicely spiced chicken with every fresh vegetable in the grocery stewed with it. We assured the man that we liked it just fine, and proceeded to have an adventurous hour eating chicken stew with herbed rice, listening to the wonderful music and dropping in on a completely different culture, where people ate with their hands from a common bowl and had lively conversations – in Somali, I imagine - amid much laughter.

While I was out and about, I called Gary to let him know that I cannot get e-mail here, so when the book cover for 101 is finalized, to have Ian call me, not e-mail me, with the news, and for Gary to do likewise if anything comes up. The Bean Man reported that all was quiet on the home front, but that we have great news – our webmaster, Steve E, is now counting down to launching the site on Christmas Day!

Finally! Steve and his wife had their fifth – and last – child recently and is sleep-deprived as well as working two jobs, so we are fortunate indeed that he has managed somehow to get the site up and ready. Steve told Gary that he got a vasectomy last month in order to stop him and his wife from “going forth and multiplying” any more.

The features of our spiritual activism site are many and include live chat as well as forums. There is a calendar and I will post to it the times when I can answer questions live, something I’ve wanted to offer for years.

I spent the forepart of my work day readying the session which Mick had chosen for the winter 2008 Light/Lines Newsletter for publication and then writing the Comments section we always put at the end of the channeled session. It took me until mid-afternoon. It is a very interesting discussion of the dynamics of the priestly or initiatory self and the everyday self, stemming from one of Gary’s excellent questions. I think it will make a good newsletter.

Then I started in on the backlog of e-mail. I have not been able to receive any e-mail since we arrived in Nebraska. I suppose that the available dial-up is too slow to allow the mail to come through in the time I am willing to keep Mom’s telephone line hooked into the computer. She has no “minutes” plan, so Romi gave me a dial-up number that charges eight cents a minute, hopefully a better rate than she would get otherwise – but that cost mounts up, and apparently I’d have to leave the connection running all day in order to receive my new mail.

But that’s OK, since I have a big backlog from before November 30th, when we left Louisville. I wrote

• Rick in Maine, to thank him for his minestrone recipe, which included some potato and pasta, both ingredients which seen to me like good additions to the recipe I have. He also included some interesting spices, which I also added to our recipe. I sympathized with him over his grape harvest, which was entirely eaten by deer. And I sent him in return the recipe for the breakfast casserole we had served on Thanksgiving Friday, as it was very good. Rick is an inveterate cook and makes wonderful food!

• Barbara B in Michigan, to send her a reference from The Law of One which she needs for the book on healing which she is writing.

• Elihu E, to respond to his request for an evaluation of channeling from a group called Cosmic Paradigm ('s_Corner/). I told him that I found the channeling quite mixed in polarity and did not recommend that he give it serious consideration. When a channeling source promises to appear in our skies and fix our troubles, it is happily interfering with our free will, which is not a mark of Confederation sources.

• Frank O, to thank him for his new e-mail address and to talk about the Kirking of the Tartan service which St. Luke’s has annually on November 30th, St. Andrew’s Day. Frank was reminiscing about his years as a bagpiper for the police force of which he was a part for many years.

I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.


The Nebraska skies warmed today into the thirties F, a fine relief from the single digits of yesterday. However the sun never broke through thick clouds as weather passed to our north, so it was a gray old day. After Morning Offering I wrote my journals and had chapel time aplenty. Then I spent the remainder of my day editing two recent channeling sessions. I am beginning to catch up the backlog now, having only a Channeling Circle session and two song-and-story tape transcripts left to edit.

Mick and I did a bit of shopping today, enjoying the cosmopolitan feel of Spanish spoken all around us. I had the need of two changes of clothing, since part of the clothes I had gotten out to bring did not get packed, and I found a great cowgirl blouse at the farm store and a turtleneck and a couple pairs of jeans at Chez Wal-Mart.

Mick found winter work gloves to replace the pair he has now, which are decorated along four of the fingers with duct (duck) tape, since the leather had cracked (quacked).

I also did a bit of shopping for Mom McCarty, successfully hunting down undergarments that matched the ones she likes from the veritable jungle of thongs, bikinis, tap pants and high-tops. If there is one thing Wal-mart excels in, it is its vast selection of panties!

I think there tends to be a cultural difference between Gringos and Latinos in that the Hispanic people in Wal-mart were quite conscious of me in my wheelchair and moved away gladly, smiling a greeting, so Mick could push the chair where we needed to go, whereas the Caucasians tended not to see me in the chair.

This is also true back home, on Sundays, when Mick tries to push my chair from the chancel steps to the ramp, which is halfway down the nave. Sometimes we wait for several minutes for people to become aware of our need, as they clump in groups and enjoy each others’ company. It speaks well for the Hispanic culture! In terms of Plotkin’s book, Nature and the Human Soul, they are more soulcentric, whereas the white culture is more egocentric.

We scouted out the three blocks or so of downtown Lexington for a Mexican restaurant, since I figure this is a great chance for me to eat some authentic Mexican food. Seventy percent of the population of Lexington is Hispanic. We found a promising café downtown and will go there for lunch tomorrow. My store of Spanish is small – I know to ask where the bathroom and the airport are and can say hello, how are you – but you need no words at all to enjoy good food!

Mick offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.


This was the coldest day yet, hovering in the high teens for much of the day. After Morning Offering, I went through my Inbox with an eye to deleting spam and already-handled business and had a good morning hitting the delete button. Whee!

I had just started on editing another recent transcript when Mick suggested we go visit Dad McCarty’s grave. We got a single white rose and also Mom’s artificial wreath with a big Christmas bow, which she likes to put out each holiday season at his grave. It is mounted on a holder which is designed to spike into the ground on each side.

I had intended to stay by the grave while Mick set the wreath in place, but I had foolishly neglected to wear my hat and gloves, or the underskirt to my skirt, and I got cold fast! So I stayed in the car while Mick got Dad all fixed up for Christmas. It’s interesting that Mom does not put up any Christmas decorations at the house – only by Dad’s grave in the cemetery.

I looked out over the field of gravestones and my eye was caught by the festive atmosphere there. The people around here have the custom of placing artificial bouquets by their loved ones’ graves, and the field was alive with color. I flashed on Our Town, which is set in a cemetery, and visualized the inhabitants of those graves floating around chatting and passing the time together most enjoyably.

When we returned I went back to the editing and sent in the finished transcript near suppertime. It was an excellent session, mostly because it was such an intriguing and good question by Gary, who is the best questioner we have had since Don was alive. He is a natural scholar, reading and re-reading the LOO texts and forming questions as he goes. Consequently his queries are always ad rem and give the Q’uo group lots to chew over as they respond.

This question had to do with the seeming disconnect between the Ra’s description of the initiatory attitude of leaving all except the love of the Creator behind, and the instruction elsewhere in the material to experience all things desired. It may well be our next newsletter.

I have continued to be unable to coax Jennie Traveller into recognizing the fact that I am on line. I can send e-mail but cannot access the internet – I do not know why! So I cannot post my Camelot Journal entries. I apologize to those who are used to reading these daily entries about the life and times of L/L Research and its little family! When I finally get back to Camelot on December 10th, I shall post them all, but they will be too much to read, I fear, at least at one go!

Mick’s cousin Shirley and her husband, Babe – not blue, but somewhat of an ox – are very good to Mom. Shirley calls in once a day just to be sure Mom, who is now 91, is OK. And if anything is needed, they drive Mom where she needs to go. So Mick and I are very grateful, and we always make a point of asking them to dinner when we are here in Nebraska. Tonight we took them to The Vet’s Club Steak House, a very nice restaurant here in town, and enjoyed a lovely dinner together.

I offered the prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.


Stiff winds overnight brought through a cold front here in the middle of Nebraska. Lincoln got its first snow of the season, but we stayed dry, thank heavens. After Morning Offering, Mick got back to the Christmas card project, finishing the stuffing of the envelopes.

I spent most of my day working unsuccessfully to clear the computer glitches that are currently bedeviling Jennie Traveller. I got my journal entries made and decided to do some editing, but then the Outlook software seized up and I could not get into the Inbox to retrieve the transcripts I was preparing to edit. All of nature seemed to conspire to keep me off the computer today.

Romi called at lunchtime to guide me through the set-up of the dial-up function and that was accomplished, which is a blessing indeed! However the software does not recognize the connection for some reason, so I cannot post to my Camelot Journal blog or use the internet for searches and so forth. I shall try again tomorrow. Eventually I stopped struggling with poor Jennie, gave her the rest of the day off, and thoroughly enjoyed reading a couple of silly romances instead!

I offered the closing prayer at the Gaia Meditation tonight.


Our first full day in Nebraska dawned cold and moody, sunshine one moment and overcast the next. After Morning Offering, Mick set up the card table in the far corner of the living room and began the long job of putting together the Christmas cards – folding the cards, folding the Christmas letters, inserting the letters in the cards and the cards in the envelopes, sealing the envelopes and stamping them. He got most of the cards in the envelopes by the end of the day.

I occupied myself by dozing the morning away despite my efforts to stay alert and be useful. Eventually I got the Camelot Journal entry written, had my chapel time and wrote/channeled the Holly Journal for today. Then I tried to get on the internet. First the mouse would not work in the kitchen, and then – and this was the stopper – I could get a dial tone but did not have the right number for accessing my dial-up connection outside of Kentucky.

I put in a call to Romi in the evening. Hopefully he will call me tomorrow and talk me through the process of configuring the software to work here for dial-up.

Mom, as is her wont, enjoyed a day of television. She likes the soaps, the game shows and those talk shows where people talk over each others’ sentences and out-shout each other. Sigh!

We took Mom to the best steak house anywhere around, Grandpa’s Steak House in Kearney, Nebraska, for her birthday dinner. She and I both enjoyed the country-fried steak, while Mick opted for a pork chop that looked as though it came from a six-foot pig! The food was delicious and Mom opened her presents from us – a pair of earrings with a matching necklace and a lush red velour “sweat suit” in which one is clearly not expected to sweat.

After I put in my call to Romi, we settled into watching Thunderheart, a film starring Val Kilmer and Sam Shepard. It was a good FBI mystery, set on a Sioux reservation and featuring some authentic Native American faces and accents as well as a good plot and atmospheric cinematography and direction. Kilmer did a fine job of portraying a man torn between his Native American roots and his current urban lifestyle to the point where he tries to ignore a vision. An Indian friend says to him, “Some people go all their lives without a vision, and you had one!” How true it is that we must pay honor and attention to our visions!

Mick offered the prayer at the end of the Gaia Meditation tonight.

2008-11-30 and 12-01

Mick and I awoke early and began getting ready for the trip to Nebraska, having decided to do our Morning Offering in the car. So we satisfied ourselves with just the meditation and prayer before Mick began finalizing the packing and I wrote my journal entries, had my chapel time and packed up the computer and printer for travel.

It is always a wrench to leave home. We snuggled with Chloe, Pickwick and Dan D. Lion and got away by 9:30 a.m. There was a chilly rain to bid us good-bye as we left Kentucky for Indiana, then Illinois and then Missouri. The air was heavy with rain and the skies were lowering, with the cloud cover too thick to permit any sense of the shapes of the clouds. This made all the colors dark and sober. It felt, as we approached the plains after crawling though St. Louis in heavy traffic, as though we were driving on the floor of a great sea, through water instead of air.

Stanley, like all cars, enjoyed driving in the wet and Mick and I were conversing and enjoying our morning when a young dog about the size of a greyhound but with the look of a golden retriever ran straight at our car from across the expressway. He was looking neither right nor left but had an air of gaiety and excitement as he impacted our left front wheel panel and instantaneously ended his physical life. It was a real shock to us both, not to mention to the beautiful dog. We were so grateful that he had no time to suffer!

Jim and I both meditated on his death, praying for his immediate retrieval into blessed light. Mick got the distinct impression that this dog had chosen Mick as his instrument for changing from this life to the life to come because he wanted to be with Mick. We decided to begin looking for a little kitten with this sweet dog’s gaiety and brightness of nature as soon as we get home from Nebraska, so that we can bring this sweet and gladsome soul into our home and give him – or her – lots of love and perhaps invest him for graduation into third density.

We enjoyed our first meal on the road at a Denny’s near Evansville, Indiana. We love that place! We always stop there and always get the same thing – a senior country-fried steak for me and a Belgian waffle and strawberries and whipped cream for Mick. I swear by Denny’s country-fried steak as being the best prepared anywhere.

We saw the rains finally stop for a while near St. Louis, but we were delayed a good bit in holiday traffic and off our schedule by over an hour even before we hit a massive foul-up on I-70. We stayed with the stop-and-slow cars for an hour’s time before deciding to try to find a way around the snarl.

After that, things fell apart fast! We tried twice to outrun the traffic jam on side roads and then rejoin the expressway at an exit down the road, but traffic was still stopped even a half-hour down the road. So we decided to try an alternate route, but got lost. We ended up taking a room in O’Fallon, Missouri and canceling our reservations in Boonville.

We were exhausted! We rested for an hour and then hunted up a fine dinner at a nearby restaurant that was entirely local and home-grown, where we enjoyed a beautifully cooked steak sandwich (me) and a generous half-rack of ribs (Mick) before coming back to the room and conking out, most grateful for good pillows and firm mattresses.

Today Mick awoke early and got me up for a shower after he had bathed. By the time I was finished, he had all our traps packed away and again we made our Morning Offering in the car. We breakfasted well on juice and rolls en route and then I read Mick the paper. By 11:00 a.m. we had made back our lost distance and felt as though we were back on track.

The weather sweetened and the skies gradually cleared as the day wore on. First came “sucker holes”, small openings in the overcast through which one could see blue sky. Elkins used to tell me that inexperienced pilots would often take their planes up through those holes, only to find that they had no way to get back down through the overcast – hence the name.

We stopped at the Red Lobster in St. Joseph. Missouri, for lunch, enjoying a lobster pizza (me) and a mixed seafood grill (Mick). When we got back in the car, the clouds had began to have definition and separate shapes, and the sun began to peer through the clouds in Sunday-school rays. The rest of the trip was simply lovely. The sunset was long and beautiful with notes or orange, aqua, mauve, yellow and red. We hit full dark as we came into Nebraska at last, having slid up into Iowa briefly near Council Bluffs before heading west on I-80.

At Grand Island, we stopped at Bosselmann’s Truck Stop, which boasts a restaurant well-known to Nebraskans like Mick, and there we enjoyed a quesadilla (me) and a smothered burrito (Mick). My quesadilla wins a blue ribbon as the best I ever tasted! We’d been saving our leftovers all along and will enjoy several good leftover lunches at Mom’s!

At the last of the trip, we were entranced and enchanted by the sky’s gift of a sliver of moon with a huge nimbus glowing golden around it, and lower and off to the right, Venus glowing brightly with Jupiter, dimmer and smaller, to its right. I have seldom seen a lovelier night sky. The new moon with two stars away! It is the stuff of fairy tales, a magical and healing sign for us.

Mom welcomed us close to 10:00 p.m. with cake and ice cream and lots of hugs. Mick got everything put away while I, pretty much at the end of my stamina, sat down to relax and fell fast asleep. Mick roused me for a late Gaia Meditation, at which he offered the closing prayer, and we fell into sleep around midnight, our time – 11:00 p.m. Nebraska time.

The impact of the dog broke out our parking light on the left front side and punctured our window washer container under the hood, so we shall be seeking out a good repairman at Mom’s.