Kristina Furey

Romance? Yes, it is the thought that counts!

 

With Valentine’s Day coming up, I’m putting on my “Maurice” hat and speaking on the pompatus of love. 

Some weeks back, I found myself in a discussion on romance.  Basically a friend was telling me that they didn’t think someone else’s idea of romance was romantic.  I had gotten the gist of what the person found romantic and understood that it just didn’t translate to my friend’s idea of romance.   

As I’ve said before, “I believe that, romance is a love of self and an appreciation for life, extended to the world beyond and then bringing that world into your consciousness through all of the senses, embracing it and experiencing its pleasures and then returning those pleasures back into the world. We can have it with a moment, a person, or anything alive and receptive. It's spiritual. So being romantic is consciously sharing the beauty of that world we have experienced by pleasurably exciting the person we are being romantic with and allowing them to do the same for us.  In order to do this we have to slow down life a bit, take moment and focus on that person or the attempt at romance turns into something synthetic and then people are just going through the motions, which leads to feelings of disconnect, not romance.”  ß This last part, the synthetic part, is why I think there are so many people out there that are turned off by the idea of celebrating Valentine’s Day and why some find it cliché. 

While romance can be connected to an action or gift, it is more than an action or a physical gift.  It’s that pleasurable feeling shared between the giver and intended recipient.  Certainly we can fail at this attempt when the other person is unable to experience the same pleasure, can’t or won’t.  This could be an early sign for a new relationship that you are mismatched and may be a reason to rethink your relationship or a sign for more a mature relationship that maintenance is necessary (Can happen when careers, children and other things in life hijack your relationship.  Also relationships, like life, have their phases.)  Before you concern yourself with any of that, try this.  If you don’t get the intended result, communicate!  That’s right use your words and explain what about the experience is romantic to you and explain that this is something intimate you wanted to share with the person you want to be romantic with and then open the conversation to, “So what brings you this kind of pleasure?  What’s romantic to you?  What kind of memories do you want to make?”  You don’t have to be able to come up with the winning romantic gesture all on your own.  You don’t need to read someone else’s brain and surprise them with the perfect romantic surprise.  Many people find the gesture of someone’s attempt to be romantic, a romantic thing all on its own.  Even if what you came up with wasn’t something they find romantic.  Go figure…   easier than we think sometimes.  The loss is the win.  Why?  It’s the effort.  It goes back to “It’s the thought that counts” thing.  So, just asking someone what they would find romantic and then trying to give them that gift, that experience, is actually romantic. 

 

4 blogs and 1 post

 

I've been struggling trying to write my blog this week.  My father took ill last week.  I've written three blogs and not been able to bring myself to post one, out of concern for his own privacy and knowing there is still a family member that needs to be told.  This is blog four.  I do feel like I've gotten my own head in order, through the three renditions of blogs, prior to this, I was able to get it out of my head.

I will say it is just like me to almost at the exact moment I got the news about my father, drop my phone into the toilet and been unable to communicate.  FRUSTRATING.  Dan quotes to me, when I get this way, "Slow is smooth and smooth is fast."  He wasn't around at the moment my phone took the dive but anxiety was, in a mighty big way!  I do feel confident in my father's doctors and hopeful all will go well with his impending surgery.  If you pray, please say a prayer for my father.  I would greatly appreciate that!

Emily Dickinson-"Hope" is the thing with feathers

Hope is the thing with feathers-That perches in the soul-And sings the tune without the words-And never stops-at all-

And sweetest-in the Gale-is heard-And sore must be the storm-That could abash the little Bird that kept so many warm-

I've heard it in the chillest land-And on the strangest Sea-Yet-never-in Extremity, It asked a crumb-of me.

 

The Hook

 

I love that song by Blues Traveler, “Hook”.  For years I thought they were saying “The heart brings you back,” telling of me, Freud would say.  Give the song a listen and read the lyrics and you’ll realize how cleverly it was written, brilliance on John Popper’s part!  He did “hook” me or his reuse of Pachelbel’s “Cannon in D” did…  Either way, I was trying to sing along for years, before one day, I finally looked up the lyrics and was astounded to realize what John Popper was saying and how precisely he proved his stance.  I realized I’d been playfully wooed into a deeper realization of a thought he was trying to get out, that sly man!  Considerate, not to come off bitter and bring up the walls of his listeners, he delights us instead, pulling us in until we understand him not as a bitter singer/songwriter but as someone with a definite point.  By the time you realize what he’s saying you’ve already been duped by exactly what he’s concerned about, so it’s not really his opinion (which could be construed as griping), it’s fact, irrefutable, if you just fell for it. 

I could go on and on in many directions with this.  However today I’m asking, “What is the hook for you?”  I ask myself this same question.  For me, it’s the heart, mine and other peoples.  It’s what I knowingly  will go through pain and discomfort for, it’s what will have me dropping everything, to turn around when I’m this close to where I want to be or what I want.  By this close I mean a half of half the distance, half, of half of that, then half of half of that etc…   which becomes that infinitely small space that never resolves because my heart won’t allow it to and that has me needing to be honest with myself about the direction I will and can’t take. 

I’ve been chasing my own tail with ideas of what I need or more likely, what is “success”?  It’s funny how many times I find myself relearning what I already knew/know.  When it’s quiet, when I find my distance from societies idea of what is a successful singer/songwriter, I realize that I’m no more a singer/songwriter than I am many things, a wife, a mother, a daughter, a sister, a friend, a member of my community, the list goes on and on but I am also a very small working part of a very vast universe, that has been very giving to me, since before I had thoughts in my head and the experiences it has offered me, has taught me that I want my music to be able to support itself and be giving too and hey, it has!  When times have been good financially, I’ve even been able to use some of the money for my love of people, by investing it in their welfare.  My short history in the professional side of music has taught me, I don’t need to be larger than life and I don’t need to spend more money than my music has proven its worth to be, on some great CD recording and I don’t need to be funded from some outside source.  I simply need to keep doing what I can, when I can and how I can, as that has proven to be the route of my success.  For me, my “hook” has helped me realize my path, as well as, who I am, who I’m not and what I naturally need to be content and happy with myself.  Turns out that being true to those needs gives me the most satisfaction!  “Because the hook brings you back.  I ain’t tellin’ you no lie.”---Blues Traveler

 

January News Letter

 

Hello!

I hope your new year is off to a good start. If not, take heart, every
day, every hour, every moment, is a new beginning and chance to take what
you've experienced and put it to good use. I wish you all passion that
excites the mind and stirs you to your toes this year! Along with that, I
wish you the energy to push you in the directions you want to go, until
the gravity of passion takes over and pulls you along on a path greater
than the one you had in envisioned in the first place. I also wish you
love. I wish you to be surrounded by love and be able to recognize it in
all the forms it takes, so you can feel the blessings of life in all its
abundance and so that you can become its, (life's and love's) advocate. I
think this year has a lot of possibility to offer us all, so drink it
up!!! :-)

As far as performances go, Dan and I have taken this and next month off.
We have been trying to record since November and just as soon as we
stocked up our recording studio, Dan got sick, followed by me getting
sick. Then we tried to find time during the holiday season to get back on
it, adding a very rough vocal track (as I did not have use of my full
vocals) and a pretty decent rhythm guitar track to add to our drum track.
The learning curve of our updated equipment and some new equipment has
also had us trekking along at a slower pace than what we had hoped. After
many hours of recording, many scratch tracks revised and re-recorded, we
do currently have our first rough recording of our first song for our next
CD. AND THE WINNER IS. "Here We Are Again." We just need to re-record
the vocals. I'm waiting for my new insurance cards so I can schedule an
appointment and do something about finally getting rid of this sinus thing
that started with a cold 2 days before Thanksgiving. I'm aggravated with
that but looking forward to being able to put the finishing touches on our
song. Here's a link to our Youtube performance of "Here We Are Again" if
you're not sure which song that is:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=c3wOVUoETXM

I'm sure you have challenges facing you this year and I'm sure if you take
some time each day to think about what those challenges are and brain
storm on them, the answers will come. I'm a fantastic brain stormer,
should you find you need some guidance there. I'm feeling a little
overwhelmed with the task of how to balance our recording, our performing
and Dan's love of sailing this coming spring and through the warm seasons
but as I said, I do believe the answers will come and this year has a lot
of possibility, so I'm nervously, excitedly, looking to see where the
answers come from and where the passion takes us!

All the best!
Kristina :-)

PS-For more of my life epiphanies and general inspiration check out my
blog @ http://kristinafurey.com/blog/ where in the past month, I've
covered the topics of how much better we feel when we take a moment before
reacting to take a look at the big picture, also,how expectations can be
lies that lead to disappointment, and how I pushed my own awkward feelings
aside and got comfortable with a lifestyle that makes me feel very
uncomfortable.

PSS-I finally figured out how to enable blog comments. :-)

 

A Deep Freeze-2 experiences of mine from the past 24 hours

 

It was 2:30am this morning when I awoke to the fear that I had forgotten to leave the kitchen faucet dripping before I went to bed.  I ran to the sink and turned it on.  A little water came out and then I heard a sputtering sound and there was nothing more.  Into the bathroom I ran for hairdryer.  Dan woke up and followed me into the kitchen, fiddled with the faucet and then quickly got to work with the hair dryer.  A little later, our son joined us in the kitchen asking if he could help in any way.  By that time I had found a very sad space heater (I had meant to get rid of) and I pulled the extension cord from our music gear.  Three hours later, our pipes were defrosted.  I was so glad our one and only hairdryer did not burn out in the process of trying to defrost the pipes. 

I almost called to cancel my meet up with some friends this morning at Starbucks and surprised myself by showing up a little early.  I saw a lady there I recognized from around and had correctly assumed was homeless.  It was an answered prayer to see her and her companion.  The two of them and some other folks have been heavy on my mind since I heard about the deadly freeze.  I had never spoken to these particular women before as it had never seemed natural to me to strike up a conversation with them.  They mostly just keep to themselves.   Today, I pushed away my awkward feelings and anxiety aside and stepped up, asking the woman (she was alone, her friend in the bathroom at the time of my arrival) if she would like some coffee or something to eat.  She had just finished what appeared to be coffee. 

We chatted for a bit, some things she said, I couldn’t really make sense of but I got the gist of it.  They had a decent, heated place, to sleep last night.  When her companion walked over and she and I got to talking, I got the sense that she was more the caretaker in this relationship.  She was easy to understand.  She said she had hoped to be out of this area by winter and certainly did not expect things to be as cold as they’ve been.  She spoke of some places where there was shelter for them, explaining the hard part was getting to those places as she asked me for a ride.  They had food stamps and were off to get groceries and then If I wouldn’t mind…   I didn’t.  I took them where they were headed.  We shared some personal information, which I think reminded each of us how similar we are and calmed each of our nerves about our choice of getting into a car with a stranger/strangers.  I saw each of these women as me, who I might have been, could be even.   I wished, I could have done more for them and wondered if I could have, after dropping them off and heading back to be with my friends.  I took comfort in knowing I had saved them what would have been a freezing, cold walk, as I headed back to join my friends at Starbucks and drink my warm coffee.

 

End of the year ponderings...

 
WARNING:  I've been feeling introspective... ;-)
I'm a dreamer, have been, all my life. I look at things and I see possibilities. I look at people and I see potential. I'm also a realist. This part of me came at the price of investing my time, money and efforts, where I saw potential and learned it's very draining to pour yourself into what could be, without taking into serious consideration, what is. The most painful of lessons for me continues to be expectations. I have witnessed people whose expectations are met at every turn. Some may call those people successful. I have heard other names used for these people too... I also believe you can find success without it coming at the cost of another living being. I've learned that I personally, can't impose my will on another without chipping away at the love I have for myself. So for me, expectations are fragile, like glass and not something I knowingly choose to put my weight on. Most of my broken expectations in life have come from naivety and most expectations were shattered by the time I was 20. That's about the time I started to realize that expectations were lies I was telling my heart and with each broken one, my heart was paying a price and my ability to be open hearted was shutting down.
What really perplexes me is how all these years later I'm still picking out shards of the fragile glass that was my expectations? Sometimes, this has me facing the truth that all these years, I have continued to hold onto some of those broken expectations tightly, as if for dear life, even as it had me bleeding away the joy of life. Try picking up some sharp glass and squeezing it tightly in your fist to see what I mean. Actually don't, that would be self abuse and you'd only end up with shards that embed themselves in you and fester. Years later, I still occasionally find myself picking at those embedded, broken pieces. I tell myself, if I can get out all the shards and allow myself to heal with clean, open hands and and an open heart, one day I will be free to grab hold of something real and for me, that's a true goal to have something real that I can enjoy because I know I acquired it honestly and not through some form of war, emotional blackmail or other type of manipulation that robs someone else of their potential, leaving them clinging to shards of their own broken expectations. Every year, since I was about 26, this has been my goal and as I embark on 2014, I'll still be chipping away at it...
Extra thought on the subject: I also struggle with expectations of failure, therefore setting myself up for it. It's a shame that some experiences in life can be so painful or traumatic that we become blind to the truth, that possibilities are limitless when we have the courage to believe in something better for ourselves and our world. Again, I feel I can confidentially point out expectations as fraudulent, yet I still get taken in by them occasionally and hurt by other people wanting to bend me to their expectations.
 

Merry Christmas

 

Greetings All,

Whether you celebrate Christmas or another holiday, warmest wishes for you, your loved ones and their loved ones, this holiday season and all through the new year!  I wish you all health, peaceful slumbers, energy to get you through in all you do,  success in your endeavors and that you always feel loved and supported! 

In the words of Dicken's, Tiny Tim, "God bless us everyone."

Kristina :-)

 

Take a moment, give a moment

 

I hope you are having a happy holiday season! I hope that your getting a chance to slow down and really feel the moments that you're having with those you love. I've had some real reminders this past week to take time and be thankful for the wonderful people that are in my life and all the blessings and good fortunes that I've had in my life. The first reminder came from Jennifer Hensel and Jeremy Richman, the parents of Avielle Richman, who was their only child and one of the students shot and killed a year ago in Newtown Connecticut. While questioning "why" these things happen, Jennifer and Jeremy set up a foundation, with the mission of studying brain pathologies in hopes of discovering what it is that leads people to aggression and violence. They hope to find ways of preventing future violence. I have a lot of thoughts on this subject but I don't always keep them in mind. I, like so many people, can be caught in the heat of a moment and find myself reacting to the moment instead of doing the thing we humans are equipped with the ability to do. That is to reason before we act. My ability to slip up in this particular area became very apparent to me later, on the same day that I heard Avielle's parents talking about their mission on NPR and I was slipping into that aggression feeling, only a few hours after hearing them talk about it. That was when bus 131, stopped in front of a car, in front of me, on my way home from the grocery store. I was hungry. I had frozen and refrigerator foods along with other stuff, I needed to get put away and a list of things to get done. So I found myself irritated as I sat there waiting for the bus. And waiting. And waiting. When I really started to pay attention, in my quandary of what was taking so long, I saw a person just chatting in the direction of the bus driver. I considered the horn but thought, "Eh, if the person in front of me hasn't hit theirs..." More waiting and then I saw the parent that had been talking to the bus driver start to back up from the bus and that's when I saw the child she was wheeling away in a wheel chair. Oh my! I was just really glad I didn't lay on that horn! It was bad enough I had gotten myself so worked up. I'm so glad I didn't react in such a way that would have adversely affected those around me, especially that young child who was having a happy reunion with their mother. I kind of feel like we owe it to parents like Jennifer and Jeremy, heck to ourselves and our loved ones, let alone the communities we live in, to just take a moment before we act and put ourselves or our loved ones in the position of the person we feel at odds with and just give them the benefit of the doubt. We may never know what took that bus driver in front of us so long or why anyone around us is somehow intruding on our ideas of how people should act or things should be but maybe if we all started to just take a moment, it would be like giving a moment and maybe that moment would equal a little more peace or happiness in someone's life. Maybe that moment would allow them to take a moment too and then they'd give someone a moment and moment by moment we would find ourselves with a little more peace in the world. Maybe, if people were a little more peaceful, people would feel less reactive and maybe that, along with more studies on the brain and finding more ways to cure mental health conditions, would eventually stop the sudden violent attacks like the one in Newtown.

If you're interested in hearing the interview with Avielle's parents and about their mission here's a link to the podcast: http://www.npr.org/2013/12/12/250287971/newtown-parents-seek-a-clearer-window-into-violent-behavior there is a link on that page to the Avielle foundation and I have it here for quick reference if you'd like to read up on it or get involved: http://www.aviellefoundation.org/

A link to my "Peace On Earth" song:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b4D0hQT1_Kc

Be kind to yourself and one another! <---(That's just as much a reminder to me.)

Kristina :-)

PS: Dan and I will be at the Lost Rhino Brewery 12/18/13 from 6-9pm.

 

 

Curious dreams

 

I’ve been sick, miserably, like can’t get out of bed for two days sick! Whenever I’m sick like that I have the weirdest dreams. As a child I had this recurring dream of being out in space, similar to Sandra Bullock in “Gravity,” except I would be flying around while passing stars, planets and beams of light, at an incredibly fast pace. I remember feeling motion sickness from my dreams only to wake up and find I had gone sideways in the bed and my head was hanging over the side or I’d wake up ready to vomit. It was as if dizziness caused the dream… Sometime, before my teens, I stopped having this dream.

Even when I’m not sick I have some pretty strange dreams…

I once had a dream that I was biting into a kiwi and began to think, “I’ve been poisoned.” I felt my head start to expand, while the sound in my head was something like that of a latex punching balloon being blown up to its limit and being stretched extremely taut and right as I thought my head would explode, I found myself traveling inside of some living thing, which I realized was the kiwi! Then I just had this knowing feeling in my head that I was part of the kiwi, one with it, connected. I remember it so vividly because it was incredibly realistic and at the point I realized I was one with the kiwi, I had this realization that I was in my bed sleeping, at the same time and when I made the realization, I woke with a startle and a thumping heart. That’s not the only time I’ve felt like I was having an out of body experience while dreaming.

The dreams that have continued to unnerve me over the years are the ones I call my coma dreams. I would realize I was paralyzed and just laying there in bed. I would think I was stuck somewhere between a dream state and being awake. Sometimes, I would see figures around the base of my bed. Sometimes, I would hear them talking to me. I’ve wondered if I was viewing my future and if I would one day be in a coma but on occasion they told me specific things that it seemed they wanted me to tell specific people. That freaked me out and I barely ever passed on the messages. There was one place, whenever I slept there, I would end up in that “comma” state and hear what sounded like a dog with tags jingling, coming up the stairs sitting at my side and panting. It scared me the first few times until I realized it was nothing to fear because I would realize during these dreams that “Yes, this has happened before and maybe I’ll wake up soon.” When I was really young, I remember telling myself in my dreams to open my eyes, so I could wake up when I was having the same scary dream and recognized it.

I also used to fall asleep in the car or in a room where other people were conversing and I would hear them but not be able to answer. Sometimes, I could answer. On a family trip we took by car, I remember, hearing my family talking about me and later I discussed with them what they had been talking about and they were surprised because they thought I was asleep and I explained that I had been asleep and awake at the same time and unable to communicate. Interesting thing about these family trips we’d go on. I would normally sleep in the car to avoid car sickness and then at night while everyone would be sleeping, I’d be in the bathroom, dizzy and sick to my stomach. This happened enough times that my parents would have me bring my sleeping bag on our trips and have me sleep right outside of the bathroom door.

I mostly slept while I was sick but when I was awake, I had plenty of time to think about all my weird dreams over the years.

 

 

Confessions of a liar

 

Hello,

Are you sitting down? Okay, I told lie. Not on purpose but it just so
happens that right after I sent out my letter saying The Mad Horse Brewpub
would be our last performance of the year, we received an unexpected gig.
So, the bad news is I lied, the good news is, it's at The Lost Rhino
Brewery and what makes it extra special is that it will be on Wednesday
12/18 from 6-9pm. "WHAT???" you say, "A week night!?!" I know, not
something we normally do but Dan thought, "Okay, I will put in my days
work and still go out and play for the people that need just one more
chance to gather with friends or escape the traffic and holiday madness."
So stop by after work or after a little last minute shopping! Give your
honey the night off from cooking. Better yet, how great would it be to
invite your friends unbeknownst to your honey and then surprise them with
a holiday gathering? While you think about this, check out this menu:
http://lostrhino.com/downloads/fall_menu_web.pdf
OR AT THE VERY LEAST, this one!: http://lostrhino.com/web/beers#1

So this Saturday(12/7), we'll be at The Mad Horse BrewPub from 6:30-9:30pm
and Wednesday December 18th, we'll be at The Lost Rhino Brewing Company!

Hope to see you!
Kristina and Dan