Monthly Archives: January 2011

Intention – Calm/Peace

It’s Monday again, and time to set an intention for the week.  Thanks Andrea!!

From ABC Creativity, Andrea’s creative and inspirational site.

Every Monday, I share my intention for the week and welcome you to do the same.

This is not about setting goals or creating to-do lists and working our tails off to achieve them. This is about taking some time to be quiet and still and ask “What do I need this week?” and setting an intention from there to align ourselves with that. It’s about paving the way for success, joy and dreams come true to find us throughout the week.
Last week, my intention was to “plan”–plan what to do with my extra time now that I had turned my cable TV off.  But…what I found was that I was unsettled as having a TV has been such an integral part of my life–almost addictive, which is the reason I wanted to turn it off.
But…it takes time to settle down and get used to the idea of not being with a TV, so this week, I’m actually going to give myself a break and just try to be calm and at peace with the quiet in my home before I try to fill it again.
I’m also going through a huge lifestyle shift with my eating habits changing to just “real” food (no bad fats, no sugar, no white flour, etc.–only fruit, veg, and “real” foods).  This is also a HUGE shift for me and I know it’s right for me.  But, just like the TV, it takes time to adjust to the change.
And peace and calm is exactly what my mind, body, and soul need this week while I’m in this transformative place in my life.

Wishcast Wednesday – What do you wish to enjoy? #2

Jamie Ridler asked this week – What do you wish to enjoy? 

This question was asked in November too, and when I went back and looked at my post, I thought it still relevant, so decided to repeat it–but add updates and a few new quotes.

Such a great word, “enjoy”, I just had to do some research on it. It’s synonyms are: experience pleasure, relish, savor, undergo improvement…

I wish to “enjoy”…

– rich, restful, re-energizing sleep (I’m being tested for sleep apnea and my hope is this will happen really soon!) – *Update – I have now been provided with a CPAP machine and my restful sleep is slowly coming back and so is my energy!!  (yay!!)
– my continued path of improving my life so that I may “be” the person I am meant to be. – *Update – Interesting that “BE!” is my One Little Word for 2011– I will be doing a post on that really soon.
– the walks I take with my dog–right now with my weight being so high it is a bit of a struggle, but as I walk daily I get stronger and more capable of enjoying it (she loves the walks so much that it’s a shame not to be as happy as her).  – *Update – After a recent health issue, I have started to lose weight – down 16 lbs from my highest around the time of this post!
– my family – sometimes our relationships can be strained but we are working toward getting to know each other and accepting each other as we are–and in the end, love each other regardless where we’re at.– *Update – I do love my family.
– great health! – *Update – It’s getting better and better every day!
– a career with pay that more than supports my lifestyle and allows me the grace to give with ease to others who need it more than I. – *Update – As Karen Drucker sings “Money is coming to me easily and effortlessly, money is coming to me.”  I’m building a side enterprise to increase my income.
– a romantic relationship with a man who is loving and loves me for who I am.  – *Update – Sigh, no man, but I am loving me for me!

Watch your thoughts; they become your words.
Watch your words; they become your actions.
Watch your actions; they become your habits.
Watch your habits; they become your character.
Watch your character for it will become your destiny.
– Hillel
The best way to get people to think out of the box
 is not to create the box in the first place.
– Martin Copper
Not everything that is faced can be changed,
but nothing can be changed until it is faced.
– James Baldwin

Have a great week everyone!  As you all wish for yourselves, I also wish for you!!

Intention: Plan

Every Monday, Andrea at ABC Creativity asks, “What do I need for this week?”

She states, “This is not about setting goals or creating to-do lists and working our tails off to achieve them. This is about taking some time to be quiet and still and ask “What do I need this week?” and setting an intention from there to align ourselves with that. It’s about paving the way for success, joy and dreams come true to find us throughout the week.”
This week, I feel I need to plan. I finally took the leap I discussed about a month ago (or longer) and turned off my TV channels as of last Friday.  So, I have more time on my hands to do the things I want to be getting done, but I don`t want to find another way to waste that time so I need to do some planning on how to spend this new precious time I have.
I know that some of the things that I want to be doing are:
– Reading
– Taking a bit more care of my home (I do keep it mostly okay, but maybe a bit tidier)
– Cooking `real`and `clean` foods – after my gallbladder attack I am cooking more and making salads, salad dressings from scratch, etc.  I will need to continue to do that.
– Listening to books on tape
– Walking or exercising — with my precious dog, Ruby
– Spending time on my creativity — I`ve actually had a few `commissions`of afghans to make so need to make the time to complete them (I would have normally worked on them while watching TV so will  now probably work on them while I listen to books on tape)
– Explore my creativity more–I like to try  new things
– Collaging and dream board(ing)
– etc.
Have a great week everyone!


Discover Yourself: What is your philosophy of life after death?

Years ago, I gathered up hundreds of journal prompts and put them on labels and into a cute little box for my “Discovery Journal Prompts”. I would then, put my hand into the box and pull out a label at random and that would be the perfect prompt for me for that particular day. Great plans, right???

I haven’t done a thing with them since…until now! Welcome to my Discovery Journal Prompt! If you’d like a badge to put on your page, please go here.

Here’s today’s…

What is your philosophy of life after death?
Okay, a deeeeep subject this week.  Interesting that today is my birthday and were looking at life after death on a day that I am celebrating my life.

The answer to this question is so subjective and I think there must be as many answers to this question as there are people on Earth.  I, myself, have believed a few things in my life–depending on which religious faith I was following at the time.

At this point in my life, I am not following a particular religious doctrine because there is not one that I have found that seems to teach what I believe about spiritualism.  I believed that after death people are reincarnated on the Earth again to live another life.  I have believed that we go to Heaven after we die and that we live a perfect life after we pass on–if we lived a “good” life on Earth.  If we did not life a “good” life then we go to Hell for all eternity.  I absolutely do NOT believe that any longer!!!  I actually do not believe in “Heaven” or “Hell” as I was taught when I was younger.  I do not believe in “Hell” at all.  I do believe in a form of `Heaven` but only on this plain of existence, not in the hereafter–it`s what you make of your life here on Earth that determines who you live; in `Heaven` or someplace darker.

I think there is a part of me that still believes in reincarnation to some degree.  I like the thought of us being “humans having a spiritual existence” and that each time we come to Earth we learn more an more about true spiritualism (whatever that is–wink).  I like the idea that if we live a completely unconscious existence on Earth and are about victimhood then we live a very unhappy life and we get a chance to have a “redo” and get it more right. 

I do believe there is something after we pass, that Earth is not all there is, but the fact is I don’t have a true belief in what really happens.

I can tell you the one experience I had when my father passed away and how close I felt to him after he passed away.  I felt him with me while I was grieving–not in human or ghost form, just his presence near me.  I talked to him a lot and felt (didn’t hear) him talking back to me.  I can still feel him with me when I think of him and call him to mind, `what would dad think of this?`

The last religious philosophy that I followed teaches that we all return to the Universal Energy that everything is created from.  That’s probably the closest to what I believe happens–that explains to me how my father was so close to me, he was all around me and he was me to some extent.  If that makes sense to anyone I’m not sure but it does to me.

Have a great week!!

Wishcast Wednesday – What hunger do you wish to feed?

Thanks so much to Jamie Ridler for creating Wishcasting Wednesday–it has been one of the most healing experiences of the last year for me.  If you’re looking for a place to do some soul searching and have a wonderfully supportive group of creative and loving people behind you, check it out!!

This week’s prompt…

What hunger do you wish to feed?
When I first looked at this question, I had to kind of laugh because I’m actually going through a medical situation where I am hungry but can’t feed it…
It seems that’s all I’m talking about.  I had a gallbladder attack last week and have had to seriously curtail the type of eating I have been doing–no fats, sugar, processed foods, dairy, white flour, etc.  All of the types of foods I have been eating in my unconscious lifestyle.  So, I’ve been eating lots of fruits and vegetables, rice, oatmeal, etc.  The attack is mostly over, near as I can tell, the pain in my stomach, back, and shoulder is gone and I can move around without pain. 
And, I’m very, very grateful for my body for letting me know just how unhappy and unhealthy it has been.  I’m sure it was telling me in so many subtle and not so subtle ways and finally had to resort to something big to finally get through to me.  “you need to take care of me!”
I have been hungry for and have cravings/desires for the junk but I know I cannot do that to my body, mind, and soul any longer–one of the reasons being that if I do, I’ll have to have my gallbladder out and I do believe we’re created with organs for a purpose and I don’t want to have anything removed that doesn’t HAVE to be. 
Since I’ve been eating so many clean foods I actually am feeling better, have more energy, feel lighter, mentally clear, and am sleeping better (even without my CPAP machine).  Amazing how we can be so conscious and unconscious at the same time…
Okay, so on to Jamie’s question, the hunger I really, REALLY want to feed is to create my best life…I have been doing a lot of work towards that but I am definitely a work in progress.  But I am finally starting to set my life up to succeed.  This week, I finally decided to pull the plug on my cable TV (as of this coming Friday). I’ve said it before, I spend waaaaaayyyyy too much time in front of the TV mindlessly watching life happen on the TV and not participating in mine.  I wish and hope that my stopping sitting in front of the TV screen will provide me with the energy and desire to do things such as:
  • Going for walks with my sweet, beautiful dog–Ruby (picture below)–she loves to walk so much and is such a great dog she deserves to have the best life too and she deserves more involved attention too.
  • Just move my body more, period.
  • Spend more time reading so many of the books I have purchased over the years–the knowledge has not come to my through osmosis so must read them ;o)
  • Do more creative work–I have so many started projects that are not completed.  They weigh on my mind.
  • Explore my creativity more.
  • Have space/time for my mind to be creative about my future–make plans/have goals.
  • Stop procrastinating about the things that need to be done around the house.
  • Spend time with friends–what a novel idea, getting out in public.
So the hunger I wish to feed is to be a participant in life–my life and the life around me.
If you do not take care of your body, where will you live?  – Unknown
A high quality/authentic life has more to do with what you take out of your life than what you add to it.  – Cheryl Richardson
(isn’t she the cutest???)

To all Wishcasters:  As you wish for yourself, I truly wish for you as well!!

Discover Yourself – How, when, and where did you learn to drive?

Years ago, I gathered up hundreds of journal prompts and put them on labels and into a cute little box for my “Discovery Journal Prompts”. I would then, put my hand into the box and pull out a label at random and that would be the perfect prompt for me for that particular day. Great plans, right???

I haven’t done a thing with them since…until now! Welcome to my Discovery Journal Prompt! If you’d like a badge to put on your page, please go here.
Here’s today’s…
How, when, and where did you learn to drive?
Even though this is not a really “deep” or internal subject, I was delighted when this prompt came up because my learning to drive is, what I think, a funny story.
We have a cottage property about 2.5 hours southwest of the city I live in and we spent every weekend and any holiday there from May to October every year when I was growing up.  We started going there when I was about 6 or 7 and so a lot of my history happened there.  One of the major things was my learning to drive.
Like most people, I am a people watcher and I learn a lot by watching what other people do–either to do what they are doing or not.  I used to love to watch my father drive from the backseat where us kids would be sitting.  And my father was a good driver.  I could hardly wait until I could learn to drive.  I am the youngest of three children, two older boys, and I’m the youngest by 5 years so it seemed like an eternity until “my” turn came.
So…I decided not to wait until I was 16 and one day when I was 14 and my parents were out for their daily walk after supper, a friend and I decided to take the car out for a drive.  Now, our cottage is on a road with a base of shale so it’s very slippery and gravel is added on top.  When the gravel is new the pebbles disperse under feet and tires pretty easily and our cottage property is on the bottom of a VERY steep hill…
Well…Jay and I jumped in the car, she would drive down the hill and turn around and I would drive back up and we’d park the car and no one would know the difference, right?  The plan was working fine until I started to go uphill and found the tires spinning, and spinning, and smoke coming from the back of the car, and the car felt like it was just going closer to the ditch and I was getting scared, and then I looked up at the top of the hill and there were my parents, walking down…
Busted!  I turned the car off where it was and started walking up the hill with my head bent down knowing I was in deep, deep trouble–and deserved it.  My father walked passed me and said “wait in the cabin”.  Jay and I went to the cabin with my mom and we sat there waiting for my father to come in and give the punishment–whatever that would be.  When he finally came in, he sat down and looked at us and asked what happened?  I told him how I thought I’d be able to drive the car and I didn’t mean to cause any trouble and how sorry I was.  Well…then he surprised the heck out of me and asked, “how do you think you did?”
I shakily answered, “fine, until I got stuck”.  And my dad laughed and that’s when I found out about car gears and new gravel.  My parents must have talked after that because they decided that I should learn how to drive properly and both of them would take turns taking me on the old farmers roads in the area of our cottage property to show me how to drive.  And they taught me how to drive up steep hills with fresh gravel.  I am really grateful for them for letting me learn so early. 
At 16, I got my learner’s permit with my first attempt, although I missed some items and was in the “grey zone” where I could have passed or failed, the driving instructor told me I was a strong driver and could tell I was just nervous.
I haven’t stopped driving since.  Driving to me is one place I feel the freest, especially on the highway.  I have a sense of control, and know I am a very, very good driver in many different road conditions.  I’ve had my share of accidents, and speeding tickets (okay, I do love to drive fast too), but it’s been over 20 years since either of those has happened, thankfully.

Thanks for reading!!

Intention – Heal

A big THANKS, as always, to the visionary Andrea from ABC Creativity for the reminder to set an intention of where we need to focus our energies for the week.

This week, it’s very clear what I need to do for myself and where my focus needs to be–I need to heal.
Last week I had back pain and stomach pain that turned out to be a gallbladder attack.  The pain was not the worst I’ve felt but it was up there–and it’s still with me a bit, but getting better each day, each hour.
I take this very literally as a wake up call from my body telling me that I need to take much, MUCH, better care of it than I have been–no more quick meals made up of over processed foods, no more junk food, no more fattening dairy (I’m already lactose intolerant–why I was pushing it, I don’t know!), sugar will need to go by the wayside as well.  Now, it good, whole, nutrient-filled, REAL foods – vegetables (that you actually might need to peel–not prepeeled), fresh fruits, foods that come from nature and still look like it!  I’ll even start cooking again–which I love to do, but have been procrastinating about– “I’m tired!” (imagine whining child there)
I really look at this as a blessing, it really could have been a worse reaction from my body.  And…it’s not like my body hasn’t been telling me in many subtle and not so subtle ways already to “TAKE CARE OF ME!”  So…the kick in the ass…
And, as I said, I am very grateful for it!
So, here’s to healing physically, but also spiritually, and emotionally which will lead to my continued thriving in this life!

Wishcast Wednesday – What do you wish to renew?

Jamie Ridler is the fabulous creator of Wishcast Wednesday (as well as many, many other talents).  This week’s wishcraft prompt is…

What do you wish to renew?
Although I know the meaning of the word, I wanted to look it up in the dictionary to see what it said there.
renew – 1. restore to original state, make new, revive, regenerate  2.  patch, fill up, reinforce, replace  3. get, begin, make say, or give anew, continue after intermission, grant or be granted continued validity of , recover
I loved when I read “continue after intermission” because I feel like my life is so many intermissions followed by the “play” again–I have often had to take a time out to regroup.  Thankfully, I usually come back better than ever.
I also feel like so many times in my life I am patching, filling up, and reinforcing myself–repairing myself.
But what I like best from the description is “to be granted continued validity of…  Who wouldn’t want to be granted continued validity–to know that you were always valid no matter what your inner voices had to say.  What would we all be able to accomplish if we knew we were always valid???
So, that’s my Wishcast wish this week…I wish to “renew” my validity so that I may be able to always know that I am valid–no matter what my inner critic (or outer critics) have to say.  I am valid!
As you all wish for yourselves, I also wish for you with all my heart!
Life is a Do-It-Yourself project.  – Unknown
Creativity flourishes when we have a sense of safety and self-acceptance. 
– Julia Cameron

Be patient with yourself.  Self-growth is tender; it’s holy ground. 
– Stephen Covey

Thanks for reading, as always!

Intention – Prosper

Andrea at ABC Creativity sends out a weekly reminder to set an intention for your week–but that is only the tip of the iceberg of what she does.  Check out her site, she’s fabulous!!

Last week my intention was to “move” into “being”.  Start to do some of the things that are going to serve me best as I move into my yearly intention of BE!–more on that in another post coming out this week.
I had set up a couple of rooms in my house to inspire my creative juices to get flowing–and they have.  I went swimming this week, had a friend over and we did collages together–and gabbed about…everything and nothing.
This week, my intention is to prosper.  I’ve done my budget for the next few months and it didn’t look good at all, so I’m cleaning out some items out of my house that I no longer use or need — and selling on kijiji
Plus I decided to sell baby blankets and afghans, other crocheted items.  I’ve had this plan for a long time but finally put up at least one ad here for baby blankets.  I’m going to do up some other posters and put them around as I love to crochet and people may want to buy them.
A friend and I are also pursuing doing Dream Board classes–we have a few times already lined up and we’re looking at other options too.  All of this has been practically filling my mind the last couple of days but I feel like I’m accomplishing things and “moving” in the right direction.
Thanks as always for listening/reading!
Have a wonderful week!

Discover Yourself – What are the things you love and admire most about your mother?

Years ago, I gathered up hundreds of journal prompts and put them on labels and into a cute little box for my “Discovery Journal Prompts”. I would then, put my hand into the box and pull out a label at random and that would be the perfect prompt for me for that particular day. Great plans, right???

I haven’t done a thing with them since…until now! Welcome to my Discovery Journal Prompt!  If you’d like a badge to put on your page, please go here
Here’s today’s…
What are the things you love and admire most about your mother?
Ahh, mothers.  The women we are most attached to and yet, can push our buttons like no other person on the planet.  Today, though, I only want to focus on the positive side of this relationship–sometimes it’s just too easy to forget how much we love and admire our mother’s as venting about them (or anyone else for that matter) is so “normal” in today’s society.
My mother, Rose, IS someone I truly, truly love and admire.  She has overcome personal struggles and let-downs and even with advancing age, remains vital and an important part of our family and the community she lives in.
One of the reasons my mother remains so vital is that she is tenacious (I had to look up a synonym for stubborn because it isn’t always bad–wink).  Once my mother sets her mind to something, there is virtually nothing that can disuade her.  This, I beleive, has served her very well.  A few years ago, she had knee replacement and she was home and mobile by herself within 2 weeks after the surgery.  She stayed in the hospital for one week, with me for one week and then refused to stay any longer–she just wanted to be home.  My brother’s and I tried as hard as we could to keep her here–she lives 2.5 hours away from us–but she was determined.  And, she did great.  Totally floored us and had us eating our words that she wasn’t ready to take care of herself.
One of the other things I admire so much about my mother is how involved she is in her community.  When I was growing up, both her and my father were very much involved with the Boy Scouts of Canada–they started when I was a toddler when both my brother’s were involved and they both contributed to this organization for well over 35 years.  They had their own Boy Scouts “troops” that they ran each week as well, they trained regionally other leaders, my mother wrote some of the training material–she’s published!  When they moved to the town they live in now–after their retirement in 1992–they brought life to a failing Boy Scouts area.  Both were still involved to some degree with the provincial groups until my father passed almost 8 years ago.  An interesting side note, at my father’s funeral, it was very cheering for us children to see the honor Boy Scouts provided my father by the number of people who wore their Boy Scouts uniforms to his funeral.
My mother is no longer involved in Boy Scouts, but she is very involved in her community in other ways–she is on the board of the Healthy Community in her town, she is on the board of TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly), she is on the board of the Communities in Bloom.  She also writes at least 2 newsletters that I can think of–the sorority she belongs to and one other place that I can’t think of what it is now.  All this and she volunteers at the local library 2 afternoons a week sorting and shelving their books, a one hour walk every morning with  her dog, coffee chats with the ladies in the morning, singing at the Personal Care Home Monday mornings, and…I think that may be it–but that is a whole LOT!  My mother is 78 years old–and I know that one of the reasons she remains so vital mentally and physically is because of how involved she is in so many areas.
Add to all of this (and I’m sure I’ve missed a lot–all of the above was just off the top of my head) I can tell you that my mother is very generous, she has a very warm heart, a ready smile on her face, and she’s cute as a button!!
I’m sure you can sense my obvious pride in my mother and how much I truly love her.  She has been a stable force in my life and I am so very, very glad she is my mother.
We are not born at once, but by bits.  The body first, and the spirit later.  Our mothers have the pain of our physical birth; we ourselves suffer the longer pains of our spiritual growth.  – Mary Antin