Bears and Barry Manilow

You know when the same theme keeps popping up in your life?

 About a month or so ago, every time I turned around I was meeting a dog named “Bear,” encountering pictures of bears, receiving postcards of bears, and noticing bear decorative items in people’s homes, including sitting on a chair that was designed to look like a bear.  

“Huh,” I thought, what’s with this bear trend? Maybe it will be my new animal totem.  I know, I know, I’m getting all new-agey sounding again.  

Anyway, I thought, I’ve never seen a real bear. Maybe it will be my summer to see one!


Last week, for the fourth summer in a row, we stayed in a cabin in a state park near Deep Creek Lake in Maryland.  Black bear sitings are common there, even though we’ve never encountered one. 

Do I really want to see a bear – a real bear, isn’t that a bit scary? Just don’t think about it too much, I tell myself.

We spent a lovely week in Herrington Manor State Park, we hiked the trails, kayaked on the lake, visited Swallow Falls… but saw no bears. 

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So, as our week at the park concluded, we were about twenty minutes along on our drive home and I said, “Wow, I really thought this would be the time I would see a real bear. Oh well, guess not.” 

Not three minutes later, a momma bear and her two cubs crossed the road.   Holy cow, that was so awesome! For real people!  I kid you not, my husband can back me up on this, and at least one of my kids.


Photograph by Dean Conger National Geographic

 The bears I saw moved quickly across the street and down the hill into the woods.

Of course, when I got home, I looked up what it means to have a bear as your totem… I’ve had a book called Animal-Speak for a few years now, so I looked it up… stuff about discernment, inner knowing, intuition, leadership, power etc.

If your really interested in totems, just Google it – you’ll find plenty on the topic. In my book it says, “Anyone with a bear totem should keep the cub in themselves alive and occasionally climb trees–if only to get a clear perspective.


 So, neighbors, if you see me climbing trees, this is my new excuse. Of course, you already think me a bit odd, because I tend to jump on the trampoline in the back yard – without my kids. 




Moving on to Barry Manilow.




I read a hilarious back-to-school post from Wide Lawns and Narrow Minds, maybe you’ve seen it too:

Back to School: The 70s vs. Today, A Lot has Changed

Her post is spot on for a girl who was in elementary school in the 70’s. Thus the Barry Manilow reference, it was what your mom put on the record player after you left for school.   In my mom’s case it was more like Luther Vandross or Marvin Gaye –when she got home from work and was making dinner.



Anyway, if you need a laugh, enjoy her post, that is if your not too busy running to Wholefoods because you’ve run out of organic, non-gmo, gluten, dairy, and tree-nut free  items to pack in your kid’s lunch box.  

Speaking of lunches, ughhh, I’m barely thru the first week back to school, and the lunch making is a grind… ha, maybe I should just fire up some old 70’s songs for inspiration.  Sounds like a plan. 









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