agnestirrito

"Whatever you think you can do, or believe you can do, begin it, because action has magic, grace, and power in it." Goethe


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Friday’s Five

This week I am thinking about America. The election process. The aftermath. How can I still see the good, you wonder?

Well, this is how:

First on the list today: veterans. I salute you, I support you, I thank you. Without your service and sacrifice, I would not be able to speak freely and live freely here. On this Veterans Day 2016, I sincerely thank you.

Next, reminders. Reminders to open my eyes. Think for myself. Read. Listen. Watch. Question. Act. Be part of a solution to the problems I see. How?

By realization. When we realize that small, intentional acts have a ripple effect, we become empowered. We empower ourselves. Choose to make a positive difference and act on that choice.

Education. I was talking with a few of my college students at the end of class last night. We are knee deep in research and plodding through all of the rules for formats, sources, documentation. But the reward! The reward of learning something we did not know. The reward of answering a question and discovering a new one. The reward of taking ownership of and for our own learning. 

Power. We have more of it than we use. We have the power to decide what we will accept and what we will not. We have the power to change our circumstances. We have the power to turn off the tv some days. Disconnect from the noise of technology. Connect with who you are at the deepest level. The very fiber of your being. Listen. Breathe. Decide. 

And walk on in the light of you. 

Peace, brothers and sisters. Protect it.


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Friday’s Five

1. I’m trying to make a consistent  return to blogging, dear people. That counts as my first “grateful thing” on the list tonight. This is more complicated than it sounds…getting a few words on a page some days. So, it gets top billing tonight. 

2. Free Starbucks coffee in a cool green cup. First of all, the barista claimed I had to wait too long, so no charge. I didn’t think I waited any longer than normal, but her gesture improved my mood. And I mention the green cup because…

#3…it is artsy. A continuous line drawing of humanity. I read that there is some controversy over said cup. So I list it because of that, too. It is a cup. I’m grateful that a lot of things do not bother me at all.  Chill.

#4. The red present. Ever since my mom died (ten years ago this month) I shop each holiday for something “from her”…it is a way to keep her memory alive and works for me. Tonight, the red present appeared. It always does. Every holiday season.

#5. Wrinkles. I know. Everybody I know seems to be obsessed with masking them. I used to be like that, too. Now I am honoring them. I see them as a map of the places I’ve  been. God willing, I’ll get to add a few more lines before all is said and done. No blank slate required here.

Happy November, dear readers. Be thankful with me every day… Xoxo.


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Friday’s Five

Fresh cut flowers in an antique glass bottle at a modern restaurant. 

Brakes. And quick reflexes. Yay.

Leaving a decent tip and walking away.

String lights…is that the right name? The big ones that are clear and look like light bulbs…those.

Opening this blog to see that a lady I only know virtually shared my words. They mattered to her. Thank you, Dawn. ❤️

Little moments…remember.


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Friday’s Five in Photographs

It’s #worldphotographyday I am told. So, tonight, I’m going to look at my camera roll and post five images that I shot this past week. Five images that capture my heart and say this is good. Because we need as much good as possible. Amen.

New art processes–bundling papers to dye and create new papers.

New art companions with easy grip crayons–plus they taste good, too.

Visiting geese and egrets…surprise.


Old barbed wire fences still standing–a nod to a beautiful history.

Finding the perfect resting place after a busy morning of block stacking and story land. Naps are bonus! My sis knitted this blanket for my husband during his hospice time and  Sofia connected with it today. 
It was hard to choose five. What’s on your camera roll this week? What images made you pause and smile? 


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Friday’s Five

To the person who posted on FB: My weekend’s gonna suck. Geez,woman. You’re mid-forties. Did your daughter die in a wreck today? At some point, it helps us all if you would shut up.

Shameful. I know. But I’m sick of whiners.

 And this: I love you all but you shouldn’t post if you have a drink because an alcoholic might see it and be tempted. You should be a witness.

Really? What about the posts of family parties for folks who lost their family? Why post wedding pics? It might upset a widow. What about those cute baby pics? Does that harm the infertile?

You may sense a different voice today.

It’s still me. I’m just weary of people who still refuse to realize: This. Moment. Is. All. We. Get. For. Sure. 

Not the next one. This one. So for heaven’s sake, try/attempt/make some kind of effort to see a glimpse of good.

Here are mine, in the midst of a sorrowful, heartbreakingly sad week for friends I know…still, I was present to see:

1) a friend gave me a stack of art supplies and, at the last second said Wait. I have one more thing if you even want this. This turned out to be an Infant Jesus of Prague statue…He is my favorite, unbeknownst to her until that moment.

2) instant coffee dyed art papers. This led to clothesline stringing and more art making. I need this in my life.

3) lighting a candle in a church on my one- year-old granddaughter’s birthday. Holding the match with her. Watching her eyes widen at the light. Knowing in that moment we each get that chance to witness. Don’t miss it…

4) a publication called womankind. Look it up. It is the real deal and a place of ad free inspiration for creatives.

5) knowing. The greatest gift of all…realizing we can lose it all in an instant. Cherishing the people (ourselves included) that we see each day. 

Love and mercy. I still have a way to go, but I’m trying.


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Friday’s Five

You know those moments you realize you didn’t record in any form? No photograph, no scribbled phrases in a journal, nothing but you and the instant of knowing this is real and beautiful. I had a lot of those these last weeks. I’m thankful.

And, for these moments with people I did not know 12 days ago:

Zee, a shuttle driver, who spoke to me about Ethiopian coffee ceremony; I can still see his mother dressing for the day and preparing for the family…and I’ll likely never meet her. Or see him again. But now I want that coffee, that ceremony, that experience. 

Mike, a member of Ketchikian’s Holy Name parish, who drove us back to town and offered to take my daughter and me out to see the totems in Saxman. He waited while we reveled in the artistry and then gave us insights into the area as we made our way back to Creek Street.

Marida, a California resident who was at Medusa’s for the free champagne (like me) and who danced with me for hours as we led other ladies and one appreciative man to the floor for the joy of moving to music.

The young guy on the plane to Seattle who was a theology student, a honeymooner sitting apart from his bride of eight days, talking with me and exchanging smiles and gestures with Sofia; his flight was delayed. They might miss their cruise. He laughed with us and hoped for the best.

The older lady on the plane from Seattle who rejoiced in the expressions of my grandchild; who shed tears as she told me of her trip to witness the burial of her brother-in-law; who listened as I told her  the realities of a widow’s journey.

Those five people are my five (of countless)  blessings  this week. Five I’ll probably never see again. Five I’ll always remember for their essence, their truths, their humanity.

We are so blessed to connect with one another in this life. It is never as random as we might think. 


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Friday’s Five

Time with family.

Laughing with strangers.

Larson. I’ll always remember that you memorized our names.

Glaciers. 

The Pacific Ocean.

The wonders of this world are many. The choice to live looking for the light is a choice I have never regretted.

May you always find it, too.