Snowy Practice

A white Christmas is all well and good (especially here, where it is so rare – only the second one I have had in my life.) However, when a ‘40 year’ storm socks us in for about two weeks, it does have some implications. For the last while I have had incredible difficulty getting outside where I can practice my Tae Soo Do forms and work with weapons. I am intending to test for brown belt this January, and I need to have all my previous forms polished up and my staff form completely down.

Have you ever tried to swing a staff that is taller than you are in a house with low ceilings? It doesn’t happen. To be able to move with a staff, there must be enough room. The outdoors (or a gym) are necessary. It is decidedly not a close quarters weapon.

I had my first proper practice again yesterday. It is above freezing again, an after the snow was removed from the driveway there was no slipperiness or ice. It remains strange, though, to see the drifts of slowly melting snow that are still lying everywhere you look.

snow in the driveway

Gearing Up For Spring

Today I rummaged in the garage and opened up the disused lower hutch drawer, gathering all my seeds, some packets of them as old as 2005 vintage. I laid them all out on the floor and figured out the dates to get them started and made my initial schemes for the growing season.

In many years past, I have struggled to get a garden going. For the last four springs, I have been in the dorm at my Alma Mater, Multnomah Bible College (now Multnomah University). This has given me… limited resources, to say the least. Additionally, I am not terribly fond of deadlines. Thus, I have often waited longer than I ought to to get going on time-sensitive tasks. I’m hoping that setting a schedule this year will tap into the list making, planning side of my personality and keep me on track. I really want to have a riot of color come summer.

Classic Garden Post (2007)

Here’s a classic post from 2007.

My Garden Journal

My current big project is the garden. I decided this year to focus on flowers. My plan is to grow a number of annual flowers for cutting and enjoyment, as well as a few perennials that will bloom next year. (I’m looking ahead…)

March 4, 2007

It was just a few days ago that I made my first attempt (ever) at transplanting just-sprouted seedlings from their germination baggies. It looked really traumatic. I do know that I need a different type of coffee filter. I could only find these special organic type ones, and the roots stuck like velcro. My hope is that the cheapo ones will work better for this purpose. I also need to pick up more of the correct size bags. I don’t know a good place to find them, however.

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Musings on Highlander: The Series

Ok, ok. I’ll say it… My name is Allison Sattgast and I’m a Highlander-a-holic. What can I say? Is it my fault that Adrian Paul is hot? But seriously, I have found Highlander fascinating. It inspires me to ask myself hard questions about morality, about purpose, about life and death.

Perhaps the biggest thing I have gotten out of Highlander: the Series are the questions ‘What am I doing with my life?’ and ‘Would I live differently if I were cut off from the normal cycle of life in middle class America?’ People who literally live for thousands of years as unaging adults may not be likely, but the questions they raise are quite real. It’s so easy in life to fall into the pattern of the culture around you and its rhythms.

Birth, start school, graduate, go to college, get a degree, find a career and a spouse and start a family, go to work 9-5, take occasional vacations, save up and retire, die. It doesn’t seem so bad, but the culture fills in the holes between with things that we might not choose if we stopped to think about whether we want them or not.

Yet we are so steeped in it that it’s hard to see past it even when you try. The characters of Highlander move obliquely through the world, and there is a whiff of something alien about them. They’ve lost their script.

They train students (apprentices, really, often living with or near them for years). They don’t mind dropping everything for a while to do something else when they have to, or put a thousand miles on a pair of hiking boots when they need to get away. They think differently about time, people, and life.

And of course they fight to the death with swords. That too.