S is for....
S is a big list for me so let's get started.
Sam - his name came to me suddenly one day as I was driving on a country road in rural Marin County. When I was pregnant with my second child, everyone thought I'd have a girl that time. I was the only one that thought it was a boy. It was. It was Sam.
Sheilah - my very first dog of my very own - part Irish Setter and part Golden Retriever. She was the prettiest, smartest dog on the planet. She was hit by a car sometime around my 21st birthday and my mom had her buried in a valley of sand dunes that she loved to run in.
Shanna - my next dog. She was a real sweetheart, an Australian Shepherd mix. During my divorce she was taken from my home or ran away when I was gone too long one weekend. I've always felt responsible for her disappearance.
soccer - I did my years as a soccer mom
shrines - I'm fascinated with shrines of any kind
Sonoma - one of the towns I consider "mine". Two of my sons were born there. After my divorce, the bottom line was I simply couldn't afford to stay there. The home I used to own there is now worth about three times that of the home we currently own here in the boonies. Of course, ironically, Sonoma was still considered the boonies when I first moved there. I missed the geography, the community, the local culture, for a very long time, but I was also busy dealing with rebuilding my life at the point at which I was "forced" to leave it. Now I doubt I'd move back even if I could afford to because it represents a certain time in my life as much as a place. In that respect, I can't "go back."
Sacramento - another town I've called home although I don't remember it as fondly as other places I've lived. I didn't live in Sacramento proper actually, but in the outskirts of the Sacramento metropolitan area. There are some nice things to say about the area and I collected some happy memories there, but mostly it's a place I associate with the stress and sadness of coping after a divorce and bitter custody battles during the early years of my second marriage. Nowadays I don't usually dig down into the emotional memories but I still don't think of it without thinking about traffic, congestion, valley heat, safety concerns, noise, and light pollution. If I have to pass through or visit, I always feel like I can breathe better whenever I leave the area once more behind me.
Stockton - another California town I've lived in. I liked living near the Delta and it's a town with beautiful sweeping lawns and landscaping and great shopping, but I never ever read the newspaper when I lived there because I couldn't handle reading about all the violence in the area.
Susanville - home sweet home now. It's beautiful here. It's been a great place to raise a family. The isolation of the area is both one of the advantages and the disadvantages of living here. I love having four distinct seasons. I love the friendly people. I love the big starry skies, clear skies and clean water. I love the mountains frosted with snow. It's not a perfect fit, alas. I have issues with the conservative nature of the community and the dry, short growing season.
Subie - my car. Her name is Tink, like Tinkerbell, because she "tinks" at you when she wants your attention. My husband named her as she was originally his car but he abandoned her for a big ol' Bronco. So now she's mine. She's a good girl.
Shakespeare - when we moved here, we discovered we lived close enough to regularly attend Oregon's Ashland Shakespeare Festival. I'd always loved the theater and to that I added a newfound love of the bard. Late into the game, I'm trying to see one or two plays a year. This year we didn't manage to see any Shakespeare, although hubby is still holding out hope that we'll squeeze in an overnight trip there before the season ends in October.
storm - I'm a storm junkie. I love to hear the wind, watch the snow or rain coming down. Obviously I'm not happy about weather so severe that it causes loss of life, limb or property, but it's tough not to be fascinated and awed by it regardless.
Steve - two brother-in-laws, and one of my best friends
Shelly - another dear friend. I suspect she and I would both be impoverished by pychiatric counseling bills if we couldn't get together for our regular girl's night out to bitch, moan, whine about things big and small and to applaud each other's joys and accomplishments.
Spanish - I can only speak a smidgen of Spanish despite years of Spanish language classes in elementary school, high school, and college. But at least I can speak a smidgen. Un poco.
serendipity - just a great word, and a great phenomenon
synchronicity - ditto the comment above. I think a lot of what we call coincidence is really synchronicity at work
San Diego - another of my hometowns. I didn't live in San Diego, I lived in a microscopic community in the mountains of eastern San Diego County. Still, San Diego was our city. I loved the whole area. The only negative for me was the feeling of being boxed in - desert to the east, Mexico to the south, ocean to the west, and L.A. to the north. I'm saddened by the way the once compact cities and towns have grown, continue to grow, and sprawl over the coastal hills. I still enjoy visiting the area whenever I visit Joe and Lisa. Joe will likely be stationed there with his Navy job for the next five or six years.
snakes - SNAKES ON A PLANE!!!!! Okay, I just had to say that. But seriously, I like snakes. When I was a kid I used to catch them, enjoy them, and then release them back into the wild. Fortunately I grew up in the Midwest where there are no poisonous snake species.
sacred - I think it's important to find and honor the sacred in everyday simple things. Sure, there are impressive places and events, both natural and human built, that inspire a sense of sacred awe. Those are great too! But I also try to remember and appreciate the small sacred moments/rituals/places in my life. A prayer of thanks when a loved one walks back in the door each evening. A moment of appreciation before the first sip of tea. Time to talk with my flowers. Time to listen to wind and the stars and clouds. The mantra of typing, washing a dish, stroking my fat Charlie cat's soft golden fur.
salmon, spinach, shrimp, scallops, szechuan, squash, stew - all foods I love
scrappy - I love all things scrappy. Scrappy quilts, scrappy decorating, scrappy kids.
selfish - I have a selfish streak. Sometimes I feel guilty about it but most of the time I'm thankful for it as I suspect it keeps me from going completely insane in my busy family filled life. Yes, I might spend my last $10 on a new book for me instead of buying something for someone else, but it's usually after I've spent all the rest of my money on everyone else. And I'll admit it - if there's only one cookie left - I'll eat it in private instead instead of offering to share it. I guess it's only selfish if I look at it from a mother's perspective. From a bigger angle, it's only taking care of myself as well as I take care of everyone else in my life.
September - an emotional month with both Joshua and William's birthdays falling back to back in the middle of it
shabby - I tend to like things a bit on the shabby side. It's feels more comfortable for me. You don't have to worry about making the first dent, the first scrape or smudge. Too, shabby things are probably shabby because they've been so well loved - they have a story and a history behind them. I can remember discovering the Shabby Chic decorating style and thinking - hey! I've been decorating like that for decades before it ever had a name!
spiral - a wonderful image, full of meaning and beautiful and peaceful to look at. Life is a spiral. Time is a spiral. DNA comes in a spiral. Learning moves in a spiral.
shorthand - I might only speak a smidgen of Spanish but at one time I considered myself fluent in shorthand. I could not only write in shorthand but I could think and dream in shorthand images as well. These days my shorthand skills are rusty, but it gives me confidence that I could learn another language if I ever put my mind to it.
sign language - another language I know a smidgen's worth. My kids know a lot more ASL then I do because they all have deaf friends. Sam and Kyla are fluent. I've always wanted to increase my skill but unfortunately there's no local classes in sign language and like any language, if you don't have a way of practicing it, you can't maintain any fluency.
San Francisco - no, I've never lived there. But I've lived nearby. I've had friends who lived in the city. If I had to live in an American city, San Francisco would definitely be high on my list of favorites. I think for an American city it has a lot of "European" flavor to it.
Sierras - I've spent a lot of time in these mountains. I currently live tucked in between the top of the Sierras and the bottom of Cascades. I don't know if I would call them my favorite mountains, they're dryer then other mountain ranges I've known personally. But they're definitely the mountains with which I am the most familiar.
Sandias - the first mountain range I ever got to know on a personal level, I lived in the shadow of it's crest. Before my mother moved our family from the Midwest to Albuquerque, I'd only seen mountains once, on a summer trip out west with my grandmother and great aunt. The Sandias are a beautiful range. When the sunset paints it's face in shades of pink and red, they indeed look like a giant slice of melon. (I was told Sandia means "watermelon" in Spanish although I can't find a translation for it anywhere oneline.)
Sleepless in Seattle - one of my favorite movies. If I'm clicking around on the stations and I stumble upon this movie, no matter how far along in the movie I catch it - whether they're just driving to her parent's house for Christmas or whether she's looking out the window at the Empire State Building and saying "I have to go. It's a sign. I have to go." - I get sucked in and watch until the closing credits.
sleep - I love sleep. I love my bed. I love my pillow. I love my nightstand. I love dreaming. I love my flannel sheets. I love my Witchy Quilt. I love tortilla chip crumbs on my side. Rosie cuddling under the covers. Cats fighting for the corners of the bed. A breeze in the window. The moon peeking in early in the morning. I love drifting off to sleep. I love that half state when my mind is awake and my body is still slumbering. I love making a nice warm nest in the covers. Sleep, sleep, sleep. Ahhhhh. You'd think being a woman who loves sleep I'd go to bed a lot earlier then I ususally do.
snow - snow makes the whole world look fresh and new. It gets rid of all the grime and noise. It's like having a clean canvas on the world, if but for a brief moment.
socks - I love silly socks. I know, I know. If I was on What NOT to Wear (which there's no way in hell I would ever consider it), they'd make me get rid of all my silly socks as completely non fashionable. Well too bad - they can stuff a sock (or two or twenty) in it. HA! I like my socks with otters/cats/pumpkins/chihuahuas/monsters/stripes/polka-dots/roses/coffee cups.... on them.
Solstice - got two of them each year. The longest day and the shortest day of the year. Or you can think of it as the shortest night and the longest night of the year. Two sides to every coin. Two sides to every story. Two sides to everything. The yin/yang of life. The older I get the more I can't see one without the other, can't celebrate or honor one without celebrating and honoring the opposite.
spoilers - I hate them! I know, usually I define myself in my Worldplay lists by things I love, or at least lovingly acknowledge about myself. But my aversion to spoilers is somewhat infamous. I've been known to literally put my hands over my ears and sing "Lalalalalalalala!" in order to avoid the buggers. And when something big comes out - like a new Harry Potter book or a hit movie - I am in fear of the internet or television until I can read or see the story first.
stubborn - there's a song on Tom Petty's album Full Moon Fever called I Won't Back Down. Jeff teasingly says that it's my theme song. Eh. There might be a small kernel of truth in this joke.
suburbs - like spoilers, I'm well known for my aversion for these midway places. They're not country and they're not city and although I'll concede that they do have some advantages unique to themself, mostly I think they incorporate the disadvantages of both without the advantages of either. Give me the country, a small town, or the heart of a city.
stoled - The past tense of steal is stole. This I know. Yet for some reason I always "double" it's past tenseness and say "stoled". This drives my husband slightly nuts and it drives William completely batty. "Stole! It's not stoled, Mom! It's stole! There's no D! GRRRRR!" I get a perverse pleasure in making no effort to correct the habit.
skeletons - I'm fascinated with the Mexican Day of the Dead skeleton art
Whew - that took forever. And for some reason I feel sure that I've forgotten numerous important S words. But it's late and I'm restlessly thinking of getting up, getting a snack, picking out a new book, and heading off to my tangle of quilts so, I'll call it a night.