Saturday, September 4, 2010
Last week I went out with my girlfriends for dinner. They are both newly single and it has been a long time since we've all been together. We had a lot of catching up to do. We had a beautiful dinner and had lots of laughs. They shared stories of all of their dating adventures and how exciting it was to be free again. They talked about how they don't know who they are and how fabulous that was. At the end of the night, they wanted to keep the night going by going out some more. I had worked all day and it had been a busy week. When the server came to bring us the bill and asked what we were up to, I told her that they were going out and I was going home. She asked me why? and I told her that I was tired and the thought of coming home to my family and having a hot bath sounded more delightful to me than going out to a loud bar. The server gave me a sad look and said "oh that's so sad" and for a moment I actually felt lame for not going out with my girlfriends. I thought "I must be getting old". However, when I got home and cuddled with Lucy my dog and my daughter while my husband ran my bath, I thought this is so much better than going out - for me. I didn't have to validate, or explain or make anyone wrong for the choice that I made. Just as my friends didn't have to for the choices they made. This situation made me think...why as human beings do we always feel like we have to validate our choices in life.
Life is for living, however we choose individually to experience that. All of our experiences will be different as we all have different wants, needs and goals in life and isn't that fabulous? However, on this night I was reminded to be in the moment and be so grateful for the life that I have and all of the people in my life that I am fortunate enough to be loved by.
Sunday, August 1, 2010
Ah...Summer has finally arrived in lovely BC. It's hot and sunny...and every Summer, we all start to think about being outdoors and camp season. However camp season for me means something a little different. As some of you know, that I used to work for a personal development company for almost 5 years. Every season, they have 4-5 day camps outside. These camps were truly amazing, it was like going to Summer camp when you were a kid, but with many life changing kick ass lessons along the way. I've personally taken many of these camps and they have changed my life. So its very exciting when I think of all of the new participants every season that are beginning their journey.
Some people say, "well why do you have to take a course to learn something or to personally grow" and I think it's like anything in life. You don't have to "do" anything, you don't have to choose to learn, grow or understand. life is all about personal choices and even learning or not learning is a personal choice. We are always given oppurtunities to learn from every situation whether in the moment we percieve it as a good or bad situation. I try to live my life with this philosophy, and see the lessons that are presented to me. But was we all know if you don't get the lesson, guess what...you'll have to take it over again just like in school, you get Summer School, so I guess in a way that is what camps are all about, a reminder of the lessons you may have forgotten in life. For those of us that have been fortunate enough to have taken the camps, I wish you all the best in your lives. To keep yourself challenged, stay within your integrity and have honour within yourselves and your spoken word. For those that have no idea what I'm talking about, it's okay...you'll get also get your lessons somewhere in life. Because that is the the real beauty in living, its all about learning and getting back to who we really are but forgot long ago.
Our Deepest Fear
Our deepest fear is not that we are inadequate.
Our deepest fear
is that we are powerful beyond measure.
It is our light, not our darkness,
that most frightens us.
We ask ourselves, who am I to be brilliant, gorgeous,
talented and fabulous?
Actually who are we not to be?
You are a child of God.
Your playing small doesn't serve the world.
There is nothing enlightened about shrinking
so that other people
won't feel insecure around you.
We are all meant to shine as children do.
We were born to make manifest
the glory of God that is within us.
It's not just in some of us; it's in everyone.
And when we let our own light shine,
we unconsciously give other people
permission to do the same.
As we are liberated from our own fear,
our presence automatically liberates others.
- Marianne Williamson
Wednesday, June 23, 2010
I've been married for over 21 years. I know....it's a long time and it rarely happens anymore. There are very few people I know that have that much history together. I've heard that many times. It's one of my most proudest accomplishments actually. It's not that its been always a piece of cake but it is our success and we've worked together to make the relationship successful on our own terms. So you can imagine all those years, that I've seen my share of Christmas presents. Pajamas, work out videos, you name it, I've seen it. Many Christmas's ago my mother in law Jean, gave me her silver flatware set. It was actually her mother's so Brent's grandmother's original set. So not only was it an antique but passed on from his own family. It really touched me as she said she wanted to give it to someone that would appreciate it. Who would have know how much I came to appreciate that silver, many years later.
On another occasion, Jean gave me her mother's entire China set. All the dishes that her mother used and then gave to Jean. At first I didn't want to use the dishes as I didn't want to ruin them. They were so beautiful and delicate, same as the flatware. I used to take it out on special occasions such as Easter and Christmas. Then one day I came across an article that was about a daughter that had to clear out some of her mom's personal items when she had passed away. The article said that there were many beautiful things that she never knew her mom ever even owned and for sure never ever used. She came to the belief that her mom was also saving it for the "right" occasion and unfortunately that never came for her mom. The article made me think, why wait, what am I waiting for...these beautiful things that have been passed on to me to use! not to bring out twice a year from my pantry. So I took the dishes out to use as my regular everyday dishes. I use them for every meal and when I use them I often think about the meals that Brent's grandmother would have prepared for her family. I think about their hopes and dreams and what kind of life they had. I hope that by using these dishes at every meal, my family is also incorporating our energy and our lives in to these dishes. I doubt that the entirety of these dishes will be passed on to my daughter as they are starting to chip here and there. However, I do know they will be well used and loved in our time. And if for some fortunate reason, there happens to be one or two pieces left over, like a special tea cup or a gravy boat, I hope that Sofie will remember all of the wonderful meals we had as a family and know that her mom sees each meal with her family as a special day and thinks every day should be celebrated.
Friday, May 21, 2010
I recently bought a beautiful red velvet chaise lounge for my special room that my husband designed for me. Its where I go to meditate, read and just be. I love the space and energy of the room. The only problem is that I have a ginger colored cat of 11 years named Butterscotch aka Butters that also loves my red couch. I would often find him napping on my couch or find little wisps of orange fur indicating Butters was there. This made me very annoyed, so I would shoo Butters off the couch and eventually I had to put a slip cover on the couch to ensure Butters wouldn't sleep there or at least leave little batches of orange hair.
Unfortunately Butters has been missing now for over a week and I don't think he'll be returning home or sleeping on my red couch again. I think he's gone forever and I can't tell you what I would do just to see him sleeping on my couch for one more time. I dedicate this month's blog to Butters, as a way of saying thank you and good bye. Butters was a part of our family.
We all have experiences and things in our lives that we may like, even love such as our families, friends, pets. Sometimes we have things we dislike to do such as dishes, laundry and cleaning windows. The thing is there will always be a last time where it will be your last experience and you won't know when that will be. You can't know, that's not how life works. There is no schedule or crystal ball we can look in to the future to see that final last time.
We all know the quote "Live every day as if it were your last and then some day you'll be right. .." but do we really take that approach? I like to say that I try but I don't always. If you knew that the next time you went to the gym would be the last, would you really moan and groan about having to go? or if you knew the next family reunion that you didn't really want to go to would be the last time you saw your relatives, would you complain about wasting your time? I've been blessed with a beautiful family, including our four legged kind as pets. We've laughed, argued and grown as a family. I would have never thought that I would learn such an important lesson from Butters. Thank you Butters, you will be missed and we love you.
Consider some of the things and experiences that you may like or dislike in your life and then really think of how you would feel if its your very last time. Enjoy all the moments that make up your life.
Saturday, April 24, 2010
I have a very full life. I am a mother, partner, and a daughter. I live with my husband, two teenagers, a dog and two cats. Enough said. I decided I needed some time for myself.
I recently reintroduced myself to yoga which I take at my local community centre. I have been taking it religiously twice a week for two months now. Something very special started to happen besides the calming effect that yoga has for me. I started to feel new space, space between my ribs, and along my muscles, and especially in my mind. I started to think about all aspects of space and how it affects us. As a society I notice the tendency is to be unapproachable, closed off and indifferent. It seems somewhat difficult to engage people in conversations or to connect. In today's world, our teenagers, have cell phones, ear buds, Ipods and they graduate to adults who have blackberries and bluetooths. We text and instant message each other in the same building. We tweet instead of speak. All of these tools we have to communicate instantly are great for the sake of progress, but at what cost? It takes away your ability to connect at a deeper level spiritually and consciously with everyone including yourself. It creates the opposite of space - anti space. It creates, chatter and distractions. It closes you off to the possibility - endless possibilities to connect with people, nature and spirit. We have an army of citizens closed off, unattached and unconnected. Space can give you the opportunity for beautiful things to happen, if you let it. If you are open to creating space wherever you can, just see and observe what happens. Whether you create space to have conversation with a stranger, or create space in your body or mind, just notice what happens when you give your self a chance. Try it out and let me know what you notice.
Saturday, March 20, 2010
I went for a run this weekend, I saw a blind man giving his daughter a piggy back ride. He clearly knew where he was going and they were both in the moment and having a great time together. This made me think, he didn't need eyes to tell him where he was going or that it was a beautiful sunny day outside.
I saw a young child, about 1 year and half old toddling about. I thought, well this young boy sees the world through his innocent eyes and only at his height level which is about 2 feet. Just try and imagine yourself when you were two years old and what you saw and felt. Things like bad news and concern are just not a 2 year old's reality.
Sometimes we are physically forced to only see certain things, that are within your optic view based on our own physical limits. But what I know is we always have an option to choose what we see. Do we want to focus on the imperfections of each situation or look at the beauty instead? How do you interpret the world, what do you choose to see in every moment? It is possible to reframe the way you see things.
Today my friend's daughter, Lauren Cummins is having a fundraiser put on for her and her family. Lauren has lost her vision since she's been 2 and she's had quite a challenging 4 months in and out of ICU. Yet Lauren stays positive and strong and inspires everyone she meets. Lauren chooses to see with her heart. I read Lauren's blog daily, as she inspires me to be grateful and live in the moment.
I write this month's blog and dedicate it to Lauren. Lauren is a trailblazer and she knows what is important in life and celebrates it every minute. We could all learn a lot from Lauren.
So the next time you are out for a walk or at work, take a look around your environment and consciously think about what you are choosing to see. See if it serving you and if its not see if you can create another view or way of looking at it. Remember life is beautiful - if you choose it to be.
I choose life in all of its incredible splendor.
Sunday, February 28, 2010
It's a very exciting time in my city. It's opening ceremonies for the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver. Our city and country has banned together to represent and share in this monumental lifetime event. Its almost impossible not to feel pride to be a Canadian and why should we not? we are so blessed to be Canadian and all that it represents. Last night I had the opportunity to be invited as a guest to one of aboriginal shows featured for the Olympics. The band's name is Black Arm Band from Australia. http://www.blackarmband.com.au/ They played along with the 33 members of Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and Canadian Jazz section. It was an amazing storytelling emotional evening. The whole night was featured around aboriginals and indigenous communities and their stories. The Australian band was invited by our Four Host Nations people. It was so beautiful to see the four different First Nation's bands all connect together in the spirit of the Olympics and to invite another group to share their story. It was a beautiful web of connecting and sharing as a community.
The topic of community has come up more than a handful of times this last month and I knew I had to write about it. I have a friend at work that is in a drumming circle and every time she has class, she comes back re-energized and full of life. She feels connected and part of her drumming community. I have another friend that has committed to a 30 day yoga challenge and she loves it so much that she's going for her 2nd month now - so she's going for 60+ days of yoga. I see the light in her face by participating in her yoga community.
We are all connected in one way or another. By work, friends, family, the variables can go on endlessly, however how we CHOOSE to connect as a community is a by conscious choice. What I have learned is that we all need to connect and feel like we are a part of community, no matter how big or small. Its part of our ancestral ties, we yearn to be connected. I think this is part of going back to basics and getting connected again with our brothers and sisters, however that may look like for you individually. This is what the world needs right now. I ask you to take some time to ponder your connections and community and see how you can expand on your current ones and maybe step out of your comfort zone and grow your community and then tell me about it! I'd love to hear all about it.
I'm personally expanding my community this week. My good friend Cheryl and I will be leading our very first vision board workshop for a group of young women ages 10-16. My 13 year old daughter and 2 of her friends will also be participating. I'm very excited to connect with these young women.