Saturday, September 15, 2012


Tomorrow marks my 47th birthday!  WOW!  I don't feel 47 but then again, how is 47 "supposed" to feel?

A week ago, I developed a debillating migraine.  Yes, migraine...not headaches.  I've had a few headaches in my life time but what happened to me last week made me take notice.  By Sunday, I couldn't see straight so I went to have it checked out ONLY after reading the metaphysical meaning behind migraines.  Long story short, I was NOT trusting the Universe/my Higher Power to take care of me.  That certainly fit the bill.  I found my meditations and my meds and finally got rid of it the migraine.

So...I made no plans for my birthday.  The repeated request from my beloved of "what do you want for your birthday?"  "what do you want to do for your birthday?"  I have no idea what I want and I do not want to aggravate my head by spending time at altitude flying BUT I have the wisdom to not be selfish and do something like prepare a meal.  I am giving myself the best gift ever...TIME!  I plan to allow myself to be treated like the Goddess/Queen I am and the one my beloved recognizes I am everyday.

So...I'm off to begin my birthday celebration!

Sunday, August 26, 2012

Do what you love...

As I am sitting here watching Julie & Julia...the passion in this movie excites and ignites me like nothing else.  So often we go through the motions and never have or feel any passion.

No matter your matter what you matter what you do...pour yourself into it.  LIVE!  FEEL!  BE!!!!

I cook and I'm a great cook...a new friend of mine heard about my business venture and bought me a Julia Child cookbook.  I have to admit that initially I wasn't interested.  My friend is a fabulous cook.  When we retreat to her (and her husband's) house in the NC mountains, we are treated with homemade bagels, brownies so rich they melt in your mouth, roasted and succulent meats and the most heavenly pastries ever - always coupled with a cup of coffee.  She advised me to watch Julia and Julie - I looked for it in Redbox but didn't see it and my local Blockbuster has closed.  Last night as I was surfing the television channels - I groaned as the movie had 10 minutes left.  I checked for more show times and found another showing.  I am taping it so I can watch it again and again.

When I received Julia's massive cook book in the mail - I could think of several other cookbooks I'd rather have.  I took the book to bed with me and read it.  In that brief time, I remembered watching Julia Child on Public Television with my Mother.  I remembered Julia's accent, I remembered my Mother flipping food (successfully for the most part) out of a pan and some of the recipes she made and I turned my nose up at them. 

As I read - a brand new world opened up to me.  I had severely dated Julia Child to the 70s.  Aspic...really who eats it and why?  Yes, there are several things in her book that I would never make BUT without a doubt, Mrs. Child was ahead of her time.  She was passionate and efficient...the things that I seek.

Her cookbook was a lesson in passion for me...for my business and for my life...

For years I watched passionate people being passionate about everything from running to sports to music...but where was my passion?  Quite simply, it had been murdered.  By me and by anyone I'd let get close to my passion. 

I made a pledge that I would go wholeheartedly into every task I could and would's time consuming.  Sometimes I get frustrated and angry.  Sometimes I hate it and want to run away or blame someone else...anyone else. 

When I passionately move forward things go better and go faster.  Things look better and I develop more confidence to take on more things.

Never in a million years would I have tackled the projects I tackled - I painted my downstairs, I am organized, I took a class on organization and in one short month...I'm amazing.  I made a bow for my new front door wreath.  I bought cushions for my wicker chairs and didn't care if the colors weren't appropriate for fall...I liked them.  I bought a pair of purple suede's that for passion?  I lost 35 pounds and am still losing. 

What you love, being passionate and doing it - only need you and your time.  I promise you - the journey to passion is easy once you take the first step.  Ask yourself what it is that you love...then do it.

That is all there is to it..


Thursday, July 5, 2012

Independence Day

I hope everyone had a wonderful 4th!  I also hope everyone spent some time reflecting on what Independence day means.  July 4th holds a special place in my heart for several reasons.  It was 12 years ago on July 4th that I locked my hair.  Even then I mused how symbolic is that?  I always viewed dreadlocks as a symbol of freedom (most people view it as a symbol of rebellion).  That was such a liberating day when I decided to loced my hair. 

I never viewed myself as a patriotic person.  July 4th was nothing more than a day off for me.  A day to rest and sleep.  That vision changed several years ago when I became keenly aware of what the United States Military does for us.  I worked for a company that "dedicated" a space to some Veterans and spending time with them really shook my belief to the core.  I had a new found respect for our service men and women and I have an even deeper respect for them now.

Fast forward to Independence Day 2012 - I made the decision to free myself.  I live in the land of the free and the home of the brave and I am far from free and brave.  I have created a jail cell within my mind.  My error thoughts hold me in captivity.  My wrong thinking, my fears, my concerns about what people think...all hold me captive.  Outwardly, I normally don't care what people think about me but internally I twist, shake, churn and worry.  The behavior isn't worth it.  The feelings and emotions aren't worth it.  I decided that I would shake off the learned behaviors that do not serve me.  In essence, I decided to free myself.  To claim MY independence from everyone and everything.

My journey has been a slow one with many setbacks but I've never been in a better place.  All my friends marvel at my growth (even though I don't see it).  I'm making my own decisions and mistakes and it's okay.  I have always loved people where they are but now it's amazing.  I am free enough and secure enough to allow people to make their own decisions and think their own's independence.

Be kind to yourself today...and do whatever you need to do in order to be truly free!

Lots of love!

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Welcome Steven and Ru

Awwwww!  I have three followers and I am extremely happy and grateful that you decided to come along for the ride.


Today's Lesson

My Mini Cooper is sick…the transmission is falling apart (exact words of the service manager). Fortunately, I purchased an extended warranty and she’s covered. The transmission is $5,000 and with labor it will run approximately $8,000. I have to admit that I was nervous about the warranty. What if I read it wrong? What if this part isn’t covered? What if I can’t get it fixed? This is the chatter of the monkey mind that I mentioned (if thoughts are things) yesterday. I called the dealership where I purchased the car and they told me that I had to take my car to a Mini/BMW dealership because they don’t repair them. My mind leaped into all possibilities. What if, How come…etc. The service manager gave me the warranty number and I called the Mini dealership. They said they were busy, there was no way they could service my Mini and I would have to make an appointment for another day. I said okay and hung up. Told my significant other and he drove the car to the dealership and lo and behold my Donald Shimoda got them to take the car AND give us a loaner. I was speechless. This bought a new awareness to me… “Donald” is a manifester.

While he doesn’t “believe” in the LOA or is not “into metaphysics” he’s a natural with this. So I began to analyze (cause that’s what this Virgo does) and so many things came to mind. I believe the worst will happen. While “Donald” believes that as well..I love his thought pattern “he say prepare for the worst but expect the best” and he often asks me “what’s the worst that can happen?” and he plans from that point to the best. Reaching the best scenario – he dwells on it. He also doesn’t let anything stick to him. He “appears” to never worry. Why should he? “Donald” has me to do the worrying! His concept lets me see that the worst that can happen isn’t as bad you think it is. For instance, I don’t ride roller coasters. Why you may ask? I’ll be the one in the car that flies off the track and I’ll die. “Donald” says “how many times has that happened? Why do you think it will happen to you? Do you really believe that you are that special? Out of 20 roller coaster cars YOURS will derail and fly off the track? How realistic is that?” “Donald asks. I stand there feeling silly, laughing nervously and calculating that it will still happen (this is what I spoke of yesterday – thoughts become things…I am always thinking the worse – what if I cross the street here, I’ll get hit…these things NEVER come anywhere near fruition – thank God!).

I, on the other hand, plan for the worse and stay there. Now this is a powerful belief system for me. As the response was this morning: a belief is a thought that you think over and over AND I admit, I never viewed it that way but I like that idea. My beliefs are not my beliefs. They are my Mother’s beliefs – I just latched onto them or acquired them over time. This fear has been programmed and I allowed it. This is code within me. My life coach encouraged me to take a look at my beliefs and those that did not serve me or no longer served me needed to be eliminated. This goes back to comfort zone. Oh but it is so glorious to think these thoughts…I have always thought them and it is so familiar. As my 12 step program says “If you always do what you've always done, you'll always get what you always got, and you'll always feel what you always felt.” I’m tired of feeling this way yet I gravitate to the same feelings AGAIN.

So today…I have taken the time to sit in each “odd” feeling and see where it comes from. BTW, I am surprisingly calm right now. As each feeling/emotion came to the surface, I asked why? Most of it was inherent, inane imaginings. As I mentioned, my Mother was/is in a constant state of fear. I know a lot comes from her. As each situation presented itself, instead of allowing fear to rule, I asked a series of questions: Where did “you” come from? What is “your” purpose? What is it “you” want? What, if anything, are “you” attempting to teach me or to prove? Some answers came immediately – others lingered, went away and then came back. This process is time consuming but it kept my mind engaged in the present – not the murky fearful mistakes of the past and not the uncertain fears of the future. Today’s Daily OM was great confirmation for me!

All day I have been trying to visualize and reach for the next best feeling and nothing worked. I know LOA is like everything else in our lives – we have to see what fits/resonates with us. Trial and error isn’t a bad thing. I didn’t have the luxury of making mistakes growing up or in my adult life so this is an interesting concept to be able to say “this doesn’t work for me and I am not going to try and make it work. I shall move on to something else.” I always viewed that behavior as failure.

I am having a blast learning today. Thanks all for allowing me to discover, learn and share!

I am a member of several Yahoo groups and when one member posts something she almost always says "if it resonates with you use it..if not let it go." This was MAJOR for me. I grew up with a mindset that if it is here in front of you - it's for you. Spirit put it here and it is a sin not to take it and use it. This resulted in being inundated with information, information overload and chronic forgetfulness. Who wouldn't forget when you have so much stored? Especially items stored that aren't for your use or edification - just useless stuff stored for party/game trivia or for the appearance of being a know-it-all (and yes...that is what I wanted).

I love being able to sign up for a blog, for information, and when it doesn't speak to me, I don't feel "obligated" to continue receiving or reading it. Very liberating for me.

The mistake "thing" flows over at work. I have four people I deal with (heavily) and they all have four very different opinions and motives. I will give them something to review and all four will have four different comments. Initially, when I saw the mark ups I felt inadequate. No, I didn't ask myself why but I suspect it was an expectation, which my "Donald" says "expectations are resentments waiting to happen." I expected myself to know what each person wanted to say or how they wanted to say it. I expected that the document was perfect with no mistakes. I expected that I knew better than my other colleagues. I treated these mark ups as personal attacks and this belief kept me bound. I'd be sick to my stomach when I submitted items to the team - just knowing they would rip it apart. Some of the comments are "controlling" and I just laugh them off. Sometimes they comment to get "back" at each other. It has become a game to me and it is humorous to see adults behaving this way.

I always preached this to my daughter "you are not a failure if you learn something from the experience." It's easier to say it than to believe it. I obviously didn't believe it or worse...I never learned from failure of mistakes. I kept pounding my head against a brick wall. "Ouch that hurts" or as "Donald" says "if it hurts when you move your arm like that...stop moving your arm like that."

Pretty simple stuff, hunh?

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Meditative and Mindful Baking

Many people have written about baking bread as meditation. Just google it and lots of things will come up - from cookbooks to blogs.

I admit that I am not a baker. I love baked goods but I can't bake. Years ago I realized my baking skills were lacking due to a lack of patience. I am the baker that opens the oven door, that stands there tapping her feet, sneaking small pieces of bread, cake, brownies, cookies, rolls well before they are done. I end up tossing the whole lot because they weren't good enough. Well...that says something about me and my need for perfection.

I recently began honoring and loving myself on a level deeper than surface love (looking good, buying expensive products and items). I have always meditated but now I do it with ease and peace because I love myself and I need to take care of me.

This self love and self care spills over to the meals I create as well as my baking skills. I spent yesterday relaxing and making sticky buns for my beloved. Today I created pumpernickel bread - an homage to the man I love.  The deliberate measuring of ingredients, the proper placement, the clean up, the patience, the love and the simplicity all put me such a peaceful state of mind.

I used this recipe and it was a breeze: I used my bread machine and all I had to do was set and forget it.

Look at the finished tastes as good as it looks.  I have to pick my beloved friend up from the airport and I shall make his favorite sandwich using this fresh baked bread.  What a treat to the mind, body and spirit.

Who says baking can't add a dimension to your meditation?

Sunday Musings

Good morning all!

Sunday is my favorite day of the week. It's something sacred and wonderful about Sunday and I am not sure why but it just my favorite day.  I can remember running around the house as a child (and as an adult) to get ready for church (which was never a favorite for me - it was always a production).  My Mother would put my Father's clothes out for him, inspect what I had on, make breakfast, clean up, get dressed, do hair and make a mad dash to the car for an hour and a half worth of "preaching."  Sunday is the day before Monday and Monday means back to work for most of us so why would this be my favorite day?  I have no clue.

This Sunday stands out for me because it is Father's day.  My Father has been in spirit form for 17 years yet it seems just like yesterday to me.  My Father is a truly wonderful, gentle man (and yes I used present tense because he is always with me) and I love him.  So, Dad, wherever your Spirit form is - I love you and miss you!  Happy Father's Day to my Father!  And a very Happy Father's Day to all the Fathers out there.  Don't underestimate your worth and power.  If your children don't tell you they love you for awhile or if they utter that dreadful "I hate you" - keep loving them...they need you and you need them. I just LOVE this version.  I adore Lionel Ritchie!  Even though this song is about leaving - it is just so peaceful and beautiful.  This man's voice is amazing.  Here is a longer version (although not the version with Wille Nelson) -

Perhaps I love Sunday because biblical it is the day of rest and I honor that and myself.  Sunday is often a day of reflection for me - how did my week go, what does my upcoming week look like, what did I accomplish, what lessons did I learn?

During my adult years, Sundays have always had a nice, slow and relaxing routine for me.  I make sure that there is absolutely NOTHING I have to do on Sunday.  When my Daughter was an infant, Sunday morning was grocery store shopping.  I'd get her dressed we'd head to the grocery store.  That was my peace, my meditation and my time to connect to with her.  I always feel like Sunday is the ultimate relaxation day because everything mandatory has been done.  Sunday - is about me!   I can bake (which is what I am doing now), meditate, walk, relax, sleep late, sip coffee on the porch and rejuvenate.

I do believe in God but I don't frequently go to church, but I spent everyday in some form of worship - I don't have to set aside one day to praise, pray or recognize my Higher Power.

For the most part, I am alone.  My best friend in the entire world is home about once a month, so my routines are not set in stone - sometimes we attend church, sometimes we walk, sometimes I walk, sometimes I stay in bed all day, sometime we go to brunch, you get it.

I try to focus on my fledgling blog on Sunday too.  I have a chance to catch-up on any blogs I didn't have time to read earlier in the week and to just surf the Internet. This is the ultimate indulgence!

I am going to grab another cup of coffee and finish the pumpernickel bread and sit quietly with my thoughts until I feel the urge to do something else.

I leave you with this...The Secret of Life is enjoying the passage of time." - Enjoy your Sunday!

Saturday, June 16, 2012

Self Care

I spent last night nourishing my inner Diva and watching chick flicks. I wanted needed to feel girly, sexy, seductive, glamorous and pampered.  I believe in pampering.  I believe in taking care of myself but I notice that I neglect the most important part of me - the spiritual part. 

It has become so easy to allow myself to get bogged down in the unglamorous day to day that I not only appear frumpy, I feel frumpy.  Is this because we look to the external to make us feel a certain way?  In the immortal words of Billy Crystal (portraying Fernando Lamas) "It is better to look good than to feel good."  If you are too young to remember this SNL skit - look it up on Hulu or YouTube - it's hilarious.  To a certain extent I do believe that looking our best helps us feel our best.  It's just that we have taken this concept too far.  We doll up the outside and have an inside that looks like a monster and we feel that is okay.  We think we can fake it.  Yes, most of us do fake it, but there are enlightened beings that realize - I look marvelous yet I feel awful.  I was that person and if not careful I can still be that person.  Life does NOT have to be unglamorous.  You should feel and be glamorous whether you are baking sticky buns, having a mani and pedi, sipping coffee or knee deep in the hoopla of the day.  Glamour comes from within.  It has nothing to do with what you have on or whether your makeup is impeccable.  It has everything to do with how you feel!

I have worn the most expensive of items, have purchased the top of the line of everything and I kept purchasing.  I was looking for the next best feeling.  I always managed to find it but I always kept looking for bigger, better, faster...this quest became endless and I was still empty.

Recently (within the past two years), my focus and reality shifted.  I pared down the physical - lost weight.  I donated, sold, freecycled many of my possessions and started paying attention to what the hungry spiritual part of me needed (not wanted) and things fell into place.

The key is REMEMBERING!  Remember who you are.  Remember your purpose.  Remember why you are here.  Remember to nourish your body, mind and soul.  Remember that your outward appearance is not who you are.  Remember to allow the beautiful, magnificent inner light to shine for all to see.  Regardless of what you have been through, what you have or have not done or what others have told you...let that light of beauty shine.

Do whatever it takes to nourish your inner Diva - take time for you.  I recommend morning and evening long, slow and relaxing meditations and short meditations throughout your day.  This keeps the glamour going.

Try this one on for size, my beautiful spirited friends:


I am a member of several yahoo groups and one of my favorites is the group on the Law of Attraction.  We are a fun group of great people that encourage each other.  Today's message (that was sent to the Group) was A Secret Scrolls message from Rhonda Byrne, Creator of The Secret.  Here it is:

From The Secret Daily Teachings

Isn't it great to know that you cannot control your world from the outside? To try and control things on the outside feels impossible because it would take so much work, and in fact it is impossible according to the law of attraction.

To change your world all you have to do is manage your thoughts and feelings on the inside of you, and then your whole world changes.

May the joy be with you,

Rhonda Byrne

This is another good one. Control! I am a self confessed control freak. Even amidst the chaos and fear - I fearlessly try to control EVERYTHING!

I hate not being in control yet I am smart enough to know that control is an illusion.  Okay already. 

I am a control freak - in the worst sense. I am addicted to control.  This is yet another facet of growing up in an alcoholic home.  You can't control anything so you try to control everything.  I am especially good at controlling things I cannot control. The lives of others, the emotions of others, the desires of others, the amount of time I'm given, what people think of me and the list goes on.  I try and control...control.

Once I had the opportunity to sit back and really look at things, I knew I had to relinquish control.  No, I haven't totally mastered this but I am trying.

What is your addiction of choice?  We all have them - be it control, fear, eating, shopping, worry...

Take some time today to get to know you and how you "attempt" to control your life or the lives of others.


Monday, June 4, 2012

Know it all

For years I’ve lived in the shadow of needing to know.   I had to know everything about everybody.  I had to know everything about every subject.  As you can imagine, I was exhausted.  I needed to know every nuance, every minute detail, every piece of information must come through me or be known by me.  Woe unto me for not knowing something.  If I didn’t know something this meant two things:  1.  A surprise attack – someone could spring something on me without my knowledge and 2. I was inadequate.  I spent the need to know years in turmoil and in fear of being found out.  Not being smart enough.  Not knowing enough.

Number 1 taught me a very valuable lesson.  I worked for a major corporation for over seven years.  I was good at my job but wasn’t “popular”.  I was pleasant to work with, friendly and fun and I always got the job done.  I attended the company functions and knew all the employees at our location.  I was well liked by many and I played the corporate game.  There was one gentleman, Dave Ullman, who didn’t care for me.  He thought I wasn’t qualified for the position I held and he felt I had too much authority.  My manager, the VP, traveled frequently and relied on me to keep our office going.  My position, at one time, was held by Dave, before he left the company.  My VP and I talked several times during the day and he trusted me.  He had every right to trust me.  I worked my way up from receptionist to this position.  I made lateral moves and upward moves making sure to never burn bridges.  I was happy.  I knew my job and I was good at it.

I cannot begin to express the devastation I experienced one Friday as I sat in my office and Dave came in, shut the door and announced that I was being laid off.  I was in shock!  I didn’t see that coming.  I felt betrayed, I felt slighted, I felt this decision had been made in an unethical and unfair manner and I was hurt.  I was a single parent of a six year old what was I going to do?  She depended on me.  How would I manage?  How could you do this to me.  I was young and resilient.  While I didn't like the decision or  understand the decision - I didn't stay down for long.  I spent a long time questioning why I was laid off.  I spent a long time wondering about the fairness of life.

Let me assure you that the months ahead were fantastic.  I accomplished more in the time I was laid off than I had ever done and I seemed to have more money than imaginable.  I reflect back on that time and can smile.  My nephew (who was married to my middle niece) and I were good friends and when I confided in him, he stood up, looked me in the eyes and said “For Chrissake, how many clues did you need that it was time for you to move on?”  I sat there stunned.  A man, five years younger than me, who had no belief system spoke words of truth.  I still play those exact words to this day.

There have been many layoffs (especially in my field) and I can’t say that I don't feel pain when it happens because I do.  I can't say that I always handle the situation well.  I would love to say that I instinctively know that I will be okay but I don’t.  It takes time for me wrap my head around it.  There have always been fields of opportunity for me after layoffs, there has always been great growth and joy but as with anything – it is hard to see when you are in the midst of it all.  I have learned that there is always a blessing in everything – regardless of what it looks like or what you think.  There is always a bright side.

Are you faced with a “layoff”?  It doesn’t have to be employment.  It can be any situation of familiarity that is changing.  How is your current belief serving you during this layoff?  Most of the time our current belief system does not hold us.  That’s okay.  We tend to like tried and true and safe.  Sometimes we have to break out of the ordinary in order for the extraordinary to manifest.  Take a couple of deep breaths and then trust the process.  Trust yourself and trust that your Higher Power is working it out – because He is.  No doubt about that!

Sunday, June 3, 2012


Oh my!  FEAR!  This is something I am intimately familiar with.  Many years ago, I enlisted the helpful of a wonderful life coach, Vedam Clementi.  I have known Vedam for years.  We used to attend his meditation center and services.  I was seeing a traditional counselor and just felt like I needed more (whatever that meant).  I talked to Vedam and made my appointment.  He had a questionnaire I needed to complete and I meticulously took my time to ensure I had all the "right" answers - after all, I didn't want him to think I was crazy!  I answered the last question this way "I am afraid of almost everything."  As we talked he said "This is a good answer"  and he pointed out that there are no absolutes.  I wasn't afraid of EVERYTHING.  I laughed at how Source/Spirit/God pulled this out of me even when I was trying to be "correct."

I've battled fear my entire life - afraid of butterflies, afraid of thunderstorms, afraid of lightening, afraid of the dark, afraid of ghosts, afraid of authority, afraid of too much sun, afraid of big trucks, afraid of people, afraid of what if, afraid of being wrong, afraid of being get it.  I carried this with me into adulthood and developed even more fears.  Even with all these fears I still managed to function.  As I look back in retrospect - that is all I was doing...functioning.  I possessed no joy, no passion, no love, no desire...nothing.  I was the walking wounded..the walking dead.  All I could feel was fear.

My fear involved more than just physical fear - it was emotional (fear of commitment, fear of feeling, fear of loving), spiritual (fear that God would punish me, fear that God's wrath would encompass me and punish me for something I did or didn't do), mentally (fear of illness, fear of remembering, fear of forgetting).  I was I functioned but it was all driven by fear.

I never really tried to figure out why I was so afraid until recently.  I started looking back at family and trying to analyze - my Mother who portrayed herself as a strong woman, my Father who was passive and kind, my Grandmother who had NO fear and my Grandfather who was strong and silent.

Many people say we chose our experiences and I wonder why I chose fear.  I plan on delving into figuring out why so much fear.

My Mother seems to be the most motivating thing I can come up with as far as wanting to know who I am.  I always viewed my Mother as strong.  She always appeared to take control and move forward.  It wasn't until several years ago that I realized her motivation was fear.  She was afraid if she didn't do it - it wouldn't get done.  She was afraid of what others thought.  Clearly - she was frightened.  Last year my friend and I were having dinner with my Mother and I proudly announced that my Mother had a minor in French.  I am sure you are thinking "so what?"  Well, my Mother is 85!  What black woman had a minor in French back then?  My best friend stopped in his tracks and said "so, what happened?"  I sat there dazed and my Mother made an excuse.  He then responded "Ma'am, no one minors in French and doesn't want to travel and explore the world."  My Mother stammered and I wondered.  What did my Mother really want to do?  What stopped her?  What happened?  My guess is a case of the fears.  It opened a whole new world to me.  I have yet to ask her what this is about but I surmise, my Mother is like me.  She will say that the minor was just something to do or that she doesn't know why or she may chose to ignore me - as she often does when the questions become to hard for her handle.

Fear is also one of my addictions and we will explore that in the coming weeks.


In this journey of self discovery, I am learning to not place as many labels on things as I used too.  I was and am good at labeling.  Matter of fact, it used to be a game for me. As I was labeling other people, I was ignoring my own labels and issues.  As always, it is easier to point out the speck in someone else's eye and not notice the beam in yours.

As I continue to travel and assess myself, I am not always happy with what I see in myself but at least I see it.

I was invited to attend a military ball.  This was going to be my first ball and I wanted things to be perfect (okay...mistake 1).  I found the "perfect" dress.  I found the "perfect" shoes ($400 shoes that I scored for $100).  The dress arrived and I tried it on.  There was a split in the front that hit the upper part of my thigh.  I had a meltdown.  I called the seller and in a nasty tone I said "I asked if you this dress had a split and you told me it didn't!  I have to attend a ball in a week and I can't wear this dress."  The seller apologized and offered to refund me the money.  All I could think was "where am I going to find a dress in less than a week."  True to form, I tried the dress on and took pictures in it with my leg sticking out (like the infamous Angelina Jolie picture).  I called my date to the ball and pulled the ultimate chaos move "I'm NOT going to go!"  To which he responded "okay...I'll go, show up and then come back to the room and we can go to dinner."  I sat there - shocked and stunned.  The best chaotic move I had (and had seen many people use before) didn't work.  I got mad.  I then complained that I had another dress I could wear but it was matronly.  He told me "I don't think that dress looks bad but if you aren't comfortable in it you don't have to go."  I hung up and sent the picture to my friends.  My friends didn't think it looked bad, one friend said "Heavens, you won't be standing like that.  No one will notice."  I was still not happy.  Another friend suggested alterations.  I had one word for that "DUH".  Yet I continued to spin and weave chaos.  "Alterations never work out.  How much will it cost?" and question after question arose.  I found a seamstress and drove to the shop.  Chaos had so consumed me - it took me 20 minutes to find the shop.  I was a bundle of nerves when I walked in.  As fate would have it, there was a soldier there and I asked him if he thought the dress was appropriate for a ball and he said "very appropriate and whoever's arm you will be on will be amazed."  Those words spoke volumes but moments after I left - chaos returned.  What if this man can't make the dress work?  I spent many hours in chaos over an alteration that turned out to be affordable and perfect.

I was then headed to Louisiana.  Considering my procrastination, my *need* to get the best price for airfare, I believed and felt that this was a well planned trip.  I bought my ticket in advance, packed perfectly and rested well.  I woke up at 4:30 a.m. the day of my flight and got ready to head to the airport.  I arrived at Atlanta Hartsfield Jackson airport at 5:30 a.m.  I waltzed in like I normally do and my mouth dropped.  The line for checking in was snaked around the corner.  This had never happened to me.  I always made it to the airport in time enough to check my bags and the lines were never this long.  Immediately, I thought "I'll never make my 7:00 a.m. flight."  My next thought as I stood in a line that didn't move until 6:15 was call United and complain.  I ran through every scenario in my head.  The small still voice inside me realized that if I didn't make the 7:00 a.m. flight nothing would happen.  I wasn't going to miss the event if I missed the flight but I was still frustrated.

Someone at United had a brilliant idea and called the people that had tickets for the 7:00 a.m. flight to the front of the line.  I checked in, dashed through security and onto the plane.  Took my seat and was off.    Interesting...problem solved without my help.

I arrived in Houston and found coffee as I made my connecting flight.  A message came in on my phone from my office.  My leasing director looking for something.  I went into a spasm - acting as if this was an all out emergency, I behaved as if the world was going to stop.  I called his cell phone, he didn't answer, I called his office he didn't answer, I called our admin - told her where the tickets were and then left him a message and sent him a text.  I'm on the phone to my significant other explaining to him how much of a train wreck my leasing director was.  I was spinning over baseball tickets that were easily accessible.

I arrived at my destination and had some time to rest.  I began to write in my journal...It became apparent to me how I thrived on chaos.  This is a typical syndrome for people raised in alcoholic homes.  If there is no chaos...I can create it.  I realized that this was an addiction.  I was addicted to chaos.  I created a chaotic situation out of something that was as simple as leaving my leasing director a message.  I spun this into an hour long event.  The only person spinning or caring about this was me.  I talked about it for at least an hour and spent even more time writing in my journal about it.

This was really eye opening.  I began working on getting to the bottom of why *I* created this event.  Everything was smooth, all was well.  I guess the realization of my office needs me YET they don't need me fueled my addiction.  I had explained to everyone and showed them where I kept the tickets.  Why did they call me?  They called me to help me create the chaos I needed.  I looked back on my life at all the chaos I created because I needed it.  I found the reason for creating the chaos buried in my childhood.

My Mother loved chaos and she still loves it.  She was also living in expectation - but not a good expectation.  She was waiting for the other shoe to drop and guess often did.  A simple conversation with her turns chaotic.  You can't tell it is chaotic but it is.  Mentally there is must confusion.  There is triangulation.  There is defense and manipulation.  All of this creates chaos.  Chaos was all I ever knew.  This was the only way things got done.  Create a diversion of chaos and look busy.  Ignore the real problems and issues and focus on the chaotic moment.

I can now ask myself what can I do to avoid or not create chaos?  It's simple.  Breathe!  Take the time to watch and look at the situation.  I can tell within a few seconds if this requires action.  I can tell if I am creating chaos - my body betrays me, my mind betrays me.  The feeling I have during a chaotic episode zaps me and a few months ago I realized the rapid heartbeat, the flushed skin, the adrenaline pumping was not good for me.  I don't have to act.  I don't have to respond in that moment.  There is an old saying "Don't just do something...sit there!"  I know it sounds out but it works.  Take the moment to reflect.  To check in with yourself - how do you feel?  What do you feel?  Then proceed with love.

I would love to tell you that I "get" it all the time but I don't.  I have to employ the Watcher and step outside myself and my limited knowledge and trust the process.

What have I learned from all this?  Most importantly - trust the process.  There is always a Divine Out and it is always in front of us.  We just don't see it.  Secondly, I create my own chaos and as easily as I can create it - I can create a better situation that will serve me much better than chaos.  I learned that I am NOT my family of origin.  I can learn from them, respect them but create my own reality and life.  I learned that there is a better way...

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Food for the soul

I wanted to share something that moved me today.  Most of us get to bogged down and worked up in our own dramas that we do not take time to stop, smell the roses, relish the fragrance and begin thinking from a fresh perspective.

I received an email from a local restaurant today.  I do not frequent this place as much as I used to (due to schedule demands and my location) but it has a soft spot in my heart.  A great co-worker told me about this place over seven years ago and I have watched this place grow in popularity, size and location. 

The restaurant owner is a phenomena – she is bubbly, fun, exciting, beautiful, loved, daring and just a great person.  She places a basket of daily thoughts and affirmations (all printed on vibrant colored paper) at the front of her restaurant.  There has not been a single time that I did not walk away with something that “spoke” to me.  Most of the times, I depart with a soul warming soup, sandwich/salad, cookie, piece of fruit, drink and tears in my contemplative eyes.  I would be exhilarated, I would smile and in that fleeting moment all was well.

Jenny challenges me to THINK, to meditate and above all to realize that we live in a powerful and friendly universe.  Another challenge is to take what we feel in a moment, any given moment, when we feel hope, joy, peace, love and we feel as if we can conquer the world and that all our dreams can and will come true.  The final challenge is to bring that feeling into existence ALL the time.

Going back to the first paragraph, it is so easy to allow ourselves to become downtrodden.  To wallow in our sorrows, to allow these feelings to shape us and make us someone that we are not.  We must remember – we are all children of a Higher Power/the God of our understanding and that means we are cared for, loved, protected and provided for.  We must only believe.

Jenny is a consummate chef – she feeds and nourishes the body, the mind, the soul and the spirit.


Thursday, May 24, 2012

What's in your wallet

I know we are all familiar with this question.  It's all over the Capital One credit card company's commercial.  PLEASE NOTE:  I am not affiliated with Capital One nor is this an endorsement or sponsorship.

I often look at my wallet and I hope you do as well.  I'm relearning some important things and my lesson has been hard.  I hope my blogging can alleviate some of your lessons learned.  My wallet is often empty.  We have become accustomed to using our debit or credit cards and we very seldom carry cash.  My wallet has a myriad of cards, receipts and loose coins.  Kind of  a tragic end to the wallet.

I am learning that what's in my wallet is akin to what's in my heart and my mind.  I have been a student of metaphysics for many years.  Now, it works for me and has always worked for me BUT has it been as effective as I want it to be.  The answer to that is no.  I use the law of attraction to meet a need and it does BUT I have yet to see that windfall.  And this lack of windfall is what has led me to where I am and where this blog is today.

It has caused me to have a deep introspective look of who I am.  Two years ago I went through the ending of a almost 10 year relationship.  It was the best thing I could have ever done and I can't believe I hadn't left sooner.  I feel so much better about myself, my life and what's going on within me.  No more judgement, no more living under someone else's viewpoint of how life should be lived.  It wasn't the other person's fault - it was mine for not remembering who I was.  That part of my life is dead and buried and I'm grateful for the lessons I learned from it.

As I walk into the realm of change I have to stop and think.  I attend a 12 step program and we often say "if you always do, what you've always done, you'll always get, what you always got."  Recently I saw this added to it, "and you'll always feel, like you always felt."  POWERFUL!  One would think that this was common sense but sometimes something is lost in translation.  For me, I tend to stick with what's comfortable.  It's not necessarily right for me but it is comfortable (which explains why I stayed in a relationship as long as I did).  Comfort isn't always right.  :)

I am using the wallet as a metaphor for what we carry things in.  I could easily say "What's in your mind?  What's in your heart?  What's in your thoughts?  What's in your body?"  We carry so much "junk" with us and we don't realize it is junk.  We view as something that is a part of us.  We carry learned behaviors, learned responses, we like what we like because we were told to like it, we don't filter out the junk - we carry the worst within us.  I focus on the one negative thing and let it weigh me down.  I negate the wonderful things about me and obsess on my lack. 
It is time for me to think for myself and the goal of my blog is to get me to the next best feeling, not to worry about things I can't change and to live my life fully.  I will pepper my blog with my life experiences, my revelations and my changes.  If I can help motivate or uplift uplifts me.

I'm glad you joined me and I hope you stay for awhile...

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Muse Changes

Initially, this blog started off one one and now I've changed directions.  It's time.  There is so much growth here.  So much love, so much joy, so much change and so much learning and enlightenment.

I hope you join me and enjoy my take of the path I am on.


Friday, February 10, 2012

Larger than Life

I have always been a substantial woman – in presence, in attitude and in beliefs. I grew up with the belief that BIGGER is better. As I age, gracefully I might add, I find that livin’ large isn’t all it has cracked up to be.

Large homes, large SUVs, large purchases and large consumption is what has run this country and many of us into the ground. Two years ago as I said the most powerful word known to man. This simple word had more impact on my life than anything else I can think of…I said the word “NO”. As 10+ years of relationship came to a screeching halt with that simple word – my life blossomed like never before.

A friend of mine says “Move a muscle, change a thought” and I did just that. With that word, my world came to a screeching halt (or I thought it did). I moved out of my home with my possessions. And I had possessions!!!! My poor movers just stood there. I moved a HUGE bedroom set, a HUGE sofa and living room, HUGE appliances and a HUGE collection of extremely high end clothes, sheets, gadgets and everything in between from 3,500 sf into 2,300 sf. OH THE HORROR!

I adore my little home but it took me awhile to find my authentic self and to realize what was important and exactly what I could survive without. As I moved my items into my home, all I could do was laugh. There were boxes and boxes and boxes of memories, fun, sadness and possessions. I laughed so long and so hard that I ended up on a heap on my sofa. Boxes were everywhere. Not only am I a victim of excess, I am also a victim of service. I have always had others to do things for me and now I had the daunting task of unpacking. Oh…the horror!!!! As I made my way through these boxes I chuckled even more. I gave away things, tossed things and had a lot of WTF moments when I asked myself “WTF was I thinking when I bought this”. I mused to my friends that I would write a book and entitle it “My life in boxes”.

In this resurgence of self I realized many things. My friends asked me why I was so agitated in my new space. I had no idea. Then it descended upon me like a ton of bricks. At 46, I was alone! ALONE!!!! By myself!!! OH THE HORROR!!!!! I went to college, got married, had a child, got divorced and was always in the presence of someone (lover, daughter, etc.) Now I realize I am only responsible for myself. do not have to worry about my daughter. She is an adult and on her own. I don’t have to worry about school districts or cart her or her friends to movies, to school, to practice (and while I miss that – a part of me is relieved). I can live wherever I want to live. OH THE HORROR. This means I have to be responsible for MY actions. I can’t blame you if something goes wrong!!!!!!

I realized that I had never lived by myself! I live in this lovely home alone (because my SigOt, short for Significant Other) is on a short assignment in another state. This was the first time and the first place where I could be me (whoever that was). This is the first time in my 46 years that I moved into a place and made it MINE. With much encouragement, love and support from my SigOt (“Honey, this is your home, if you want it” he said sweetly) I took off like a spinning top. I moved, I rearranged, I sold, I gave away, I mused, I cried, I pondered, I wondered and I changed. I painted the entire downstairs – the colors I wanted – burlap, yam and I finally had my red (Claret) dining room. As I sat on my sofa, a few nights ago, I heard a small still voice say to me “This is YOUR home” and I cried.

Because of a bitter ex – I relinquished (not without a fight) my 4WD, 6 cylinder, 15 mpg, beast master Jeep. To think, this was a gift from someone I planned to spend the rest of my life with and she wouldn’t give me the title to the vehicle – instead she demanded it back. My attorney intervened and she went silent. Driving home one night with expired tags, the vehicle was impounded and guess what? I had NO feelings about it. It was no longer a symbol of love. It had become just a car. As I stood in the parking lot of a Big Lots calling cab companies, an Angel appeared and gave me a ride home. My Angel, Kimberly, in her youth, imparted so much to me. I took her words and still hold them close.

I stand here two years later – wise, smarter, healthier, authentic, happy, blissful, smaller, humble, patient, and glorious. To complete my downsizing – I moved (with much resistance) into a Mini Cooper. I love my little car. I know present to you…My Mini Cooper!!!