Monday, December 1, 2008

Traveling giraffe goes to Greenville

After much protest - not from Tess, but from her Uncle Greg - Traveling Giraffe left its first stop in Columbia, where it had found a loving home at the Maxwell's. I think it really liked the fine view of the lake from their back porch, and the constant little girl sounds echoing throughout their beautiful home. But it was time for a new adventure, and just before Thanksgiving, I went by the Maxwell's to claim Giraffe, promising them that Giraffe would certainly make its way back to a place where it was once so well-loved.

And so we were off - Giraffe and I - on a road trip to Greenville. I think it enjoyed listening to the iTunes mix I made for the trip: an eclectic assembly of Deanna Carter, the Troggs, Calexico and Iron and Wine, Gnarles Barkley ... good tunes make for good travel.

My friend Amanda - the next unawares recipient of Giraffe - met me at the Place of Peace at Furman. If you need renewal, go there. It has magical powers. Much like Traveling Giraffe has powers of spreading cercie love and joy wherever it goes.

First – renewal, second – serendipity ...

After the Place of Peace, Amanda and I headed to downtown Greenville and I surprised her with Traveling Giraffe. We took him to lunch with us. Turned heads. Smiles. Friendly commentary. Envy. "I want a Giraffe!" exclaimed the grown man at the table beside ours.

Amanda took Giraffe home that day and surprised her daughter Stella with it. As you can see from the photo capturing the moment, Stella is quite enamored of Giraffe. So enamored, in fact, that she's given it a name!

Say hello to Georgie Giraffe.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

The perfect guy cercie

I spent time this week at the Museum of Natural History in D.C. The T-Rex replica was particularly exciting. If only my friend's son Noah could have been there with me. He's a two-going-on-twenty-year-old dinosaur buff. Can name 'em all. So I went by the museum shop on my way out and bought Noah the Encyclopedia Prehistorica Dinosaurs pop-up book by acclaimed pop-up artist Robert Sabuda. When I delivered Noah the book today, I also promised his four-month-old brother Liam that he'd get one, too, some day ... as soon as we figured out exactly what he likes besides breast milk. "A pop-up boob book!" his mother quipped.

The perfect guy cercie [giggle].

Friday, November 7, 2008

Annabelle and Peppercorn

Annabelle and Peppercorn were all dressed up for Halloween.

Two basset hounds - fat ones. It's hard to tell them apart, and rarely are they. Two peas in a pod you could say. Or in the case of Halloween night, two 'bees' in a pod. Each has black and white spots, droopy ears, short legs, a long tail -- and on October 31st, bumble bee wings. "If Annabelle and Peppercorn could fly ..." we teased later.

My friend Tonya is a true Cercie Lover. Annabelle and Peppercorn are her babies. She dresses them up every year for trick-or-treaters. For the past two years she's had Halloween photos made of the 'kids' dressed as bumble bees. She leaves the photo with a tiny little bag full of candy at my doorstep on Halloween. A little BOO! cercie.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Save the date

I got a little save-the-date cercie today.

How can a notice about something in the future be serendipitous, you ask? Easy, when you're saving the date for a baby-on-the-way! Two of my dearest friends today sent word that each is expecting her first baby in the Spring of 2009.

Kelly made the announcement by posting a picture on Face Book of a Carolina Gamecocks 'onesie' with a note on it that said: Save the date! May 4, 2009. Karen sent out her daily e-mail poetry snapshot - this time with a special poem attached by Nan Cohen called “A Newborn Girl at Passover" (though she's actually expecting a boy). Congratulations, Kelly and Jeff, and Karen and Jim! And thanks for sharing your joyous surprise news with me. It gave me my cercie rush of the day. I'm starting to get addicted ... more - more - more!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Later Gator

Lucky for me, my aunt and uncle decided on a coastal retirement. Uncle Bill likes big toys, to boot - RVs, waverunners, motorcycles. His latest: a Hurricane, the one we took out to the marina on Sunday. "Later Gator" is a 300 hp bright and shiny deck boat.

"Want to drive it Little Aimmer?" I couldn't believe he was going to let me behind the wheel of his brand new, very expensive water baby. Pull up on the throttle, adjust the trim, plane out ... watch that wake!! Sharp right around that buoy! Pull into the marina ... are you kidding??

Well, I didn't go all the way into the marina, but I came close enough. And what's better, I got a cercie rush on the intercoastal waterway!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Traveling giraffe

One of my friends has a little silent auction fetish; she shows up to every fundraiser armed with a blank check and ready to do some bidding.

This night was no exception. We were elbow to elbow with the other guests at the gala, all admiring the options set out on tables inside the auction room ... an authentic Japanese dinner, a hiking weekend getaway, a piece of original art. And a hand-carved and painted GIRAFFE. With unbridled excitement I shrieked, "I love that!"

It was done. Fetish friend had already written in #78 with her bid, and it went unmatched. I tried to talk her into bidding on something for herself, but she insisted. "You got the giraffe!" people shouted after me as we were leaving. Yes, I thought - the perfect cercie - given by a good friend eager to spread some cercielove.

I'd love nothing more than to keep the giraffe all to myself, but if it's going to continue to spread cercielove, then it needs to be circulated among friends. We agreed we would pass it around, surprising friends with it, sending it often on adventures. First stop: Columbia, South Carolina. Giraffe is staying with two of my dear friends, and I'm hoping their little niece will name it, and share with it lots of adventures before it goes on to its next destination.

Keep watch - Traveling Giraffe cercie might end up on your doorstep next!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Cemetery cercies

I was standing in front of the Arlington Cemetery map and had just located the 'You are here' arrow, when two elderly gentleman walked up to me. "Do you know where you are?" one of them asked. It wasn't a rhetorical question. "We're trying to find our tour." I knew they didn't mean the one from WWII.

Dallas proudly wore his blue VFW hat. He showed me his tan. "I live in Florida," he boasted. Bud was shy; probably not as shy when he was dropping bombs on Okinawa. That's where the two made friends. This visit to Arlington was a reunion of their unit, and they'd wandered off during the changing of the guard at the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier, losing their tour group.

"If you'll go with me to see Arlington House, I'll let you escort me back to the visitor center," I offered. It was a deal. We had a Scottish woman take our picture at Arlington House. Bud to the right of me, Dallas to the left. Little me between two Veterans of War - arms around each others' backs, Arlington vista in the background. Behind us you could see all the way beyond the Potomac to the Capitol. This was the same view Robert E. Lee took in every morning over coffee, before Virginia ratified an alliance with the Confederacy and seceded from the Union, forcing he and Anna from the mansion. We were linked there - Dallas, Bud and I - with our backs to the vast history of America, and our faces to the camera, attempting to preserve the present.

The picture didn't take. But for me, the memory did. I will not forget Bud and Dallas. They are my Cemetery Cercies. Out of a landscape of graves they were sent to bring me a moment's joy. Delightful, cheerful (somewhat forgetful) living Soldiers among the honored dead.

Bang the drum slowly
My Rhapsody Playlist
- Lyrics by Emmylou Harris

I meant to ask you how to fix that car
I always meant to ask you about the war
And what you saw across a bridge too far
Did it leave a scar

Or how you navigated wings of fire and steel
Up where heaven had no more secrets to conceal
And still you found the ground beneath your wheels
How did it feel

Bang the drum slowly play the pipe lowly
To dust be returning from dust we begin
Bang the drum slowly I'll speak of things holy
Above and below me world without end

I meant to ask you how when everything seemed lost
And your fate was in a game of dice they tossed
There was still that line that you would never cross
At any cost

I meant to ask you how you lived what you believed
With nothing but your heart up your sleeve
And if you ever really were deceived
By the likes of me

Bang the drum slowly play the pipe lowly
To dust be returning from dust we begin
Bang the drum slowly I'll speak of things holy
Above and below me world without end

Gone now is the day and gone the sun
There is peace tonight all over Arlington
But the songs of my life will still be sung
By the light of the moon you hung

I meant to ask you how to plow that field
I meant to bring you water from the well
And be the one beside you when you fell
Could you tell

Bang the drum slowly play the pipe lowly
To dust be returning from dust we begin
Bang the drum slowly I'll speak of things holy
Above and below me world without end

Sunday, September 21, 2008

The Mother of all cercies

The South boasts a long line of cercie creators, whose little bundles of joy have surprised and delighted friends, family, coworkers, customers, clients, caretakers, and fellow creators for generations. But in my mind the Mother of them all is mine - Sandie Love.

Mom has the gift of gifting, an exquisite timing and attention to detail. She has always said that 'presentation is everything,' and she's serious. I used to get 'cercied' often when I was in gradeschool. A little note, a fun napkin, a special drink straw tucked into my Scooby Doo lunch box. My classmates often made fun of me, but even then I knew that was just Cercie Envy. I got cercied all the way through college, too. Even today I'll come home to a fun little package in my mail box for no reason other than to spread a little Cercie Love around.

I say keep the cercies comin' !

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Kite-in-the-sky serendipity

When I caught sight of it, I was floating on my back in the pool. Just floating ... thoughts floating, clouds floating ... ah, a kite! Triangular, with tail trailing. Way up in the sky. Half a mile up. Was it free flying? Look how it silhouetted against the soft blue sky and cotton ball clouds. "A kite!" I shrieked, pointing to the sky. It was a discovery I just couldn't keep to myself. "Wow, that's not something you see every day," said someone sitting by the pool. "Yeah," I thought. "A little Sky Cercie. How delightful."