Posted in Abundance, Acceptance, Appreciation, Awareness, Blessings, Gratitude, Thanks Living

Happy ThanksLiving!

Namaste Gorgeous Glimpses Of Gratefulness Expressed!

Happy Thanksgiving! Happy ThanksLiving! I greet you in the name of all that is holy this holy-day holiday of our November celebration post. November! The month that beckons us to remember our abundant blessings. When we live gratitude as a way of life, we are Thanks Living. Thanks Living Is Gratitude Giving! Let me sing that for you … ~!:

So the principle of trusting “that all of life is gifting me” is often easier sung than done especially when the ‘gifts’ of life don’t feel like that and can even feel like anything but! And this month, I personally, and we collectively, have had PLENTY of practice … in seeing the gifts and being in that trust. And yet when we give thanks for every little thing, it makes it easier to see the gifts in the yuckies. Life is always offering us opportunities to heal our wounds and fears opening and allowing more Love & light to live through us. Last month, we talked about the zealous yes ever calling us to be Creation’s breath of Love expressed. When our world and personal lives get increasingly heavy with pain body, rising up can be challenging at best. That’s why it is vital to secure a spiritual practice that keeps us tethered to our inner wisdom, strength, and innate ability to live on purpose, in passion, in happiness.From the national collective of mass shootings, environmental protection rollbacks in favor of cooperate greed and unsustainable dirty energy sources to the increasing threats of injustice towards the majority of people under the millionaire mark, and the #Me Too movement, there is a volume of yuckies we could dive into. For my part, I have too many #Me Too stories that have been shared in various measures over the decades yet my November moments have been reckoning with increasing overwhelm and over commitment that finally starting taking a toll physically and mentally. For weeks I have been striving for a “To Don’t” List as a means of self preservation. I will share the biggest story from this out picturing as an example of being in ThanksLiving in the midst of turmoil and pain.

So! As told here, I opened a Creative Spirit Families studio a few months ago and have had some magical moments singing, playing, creating with kids and families. The demands of doing the classes, keeping the refrigerator stocked and all supplies flowing in the studio on top of caretaking the elders, shepherding my busy teen applying for colleges, designing and implementing Sunday programs for SLC + doing the supplies and admin there, left zero time and energy for the production work I had intended and the necessary marketing to get more participation in the classes to cover the rent, much less my time and talents. Whew! If that run on sentence left you in the least confused or overwhelmed, welcome to my breakdown! 🙂
Still, to get to the point of letting the studio go, the universe (and my ‘human behind the curtain’ co-creative subconscious) had to gift me with a very low turnout for the second session of classes. My ego was doing major tangos trying to dodge the blame and shame I was directing towards me instead of graciously accepting the clarity of the definite ‘To Don’t”! It culminated before school one morning fixing Jeremiah’s breakfast and getting a text from my ‘biggest supporter’ that had very real life conflicts resulting in her saying they were only doing the first half of the session. I started crying and at Jeremiah’s request spilled it all out with the spoken understanding that I knew it was for the highest and he replying, “Sorry you’re disappointed mom but I’m glad you’re taking it on the chin.” I thanked him and emoted some more which prompted him to come and put his man size arms around me and start singing the 3rd verse of Kate Wolf’s Give Yourself To Love. I tearfully joined in and we sang the 3rd verse and chorus together:

Love is born in fire. It’s planted like a seed.
Love can’t give you everything but it gives you what you need.
Love comes when you’re ready, Love comes when you’re afraid.
It’ll be your greatest teacher, the best friend you have made.

So give yourself to Love if Love is what you’re after.
Open up your heart to the tears and laughter.
Give yourself to Love. Give yourself to Love.

~ From Kate Wolf’s song, Give Yourself To Love

I thanked him from the depth of my being. We told each other “I love you” and my 17 year old man cub left for school. I breathed in a deep breath of divine order ThanksLiving feeling infinitely blessed that I had helped raise this human ~ I’ve done something right! And the truth is the studio was/is right in many ways and it is also right to let it go now. I will fully enjoy the next few weeks of classes being in my fullest ThanksLiving possible!

And so it is that all parts of life are working for good. The more we can focus on the good, all the little things, the more appreciation flows through us and the happier we feel! ThanksLiving, like all of our spiritual practices are just that … a practice that we nurture daily. Thanksgiving and ThanksLiving EVERY day!

At Spiritual Life Center, our youth program has been centered on abundance this November with Buffalo, Hummingbird, and Turkey as our Feature Creature Teachers. One of our activities last Sunday was to write some things we are grateful for on each finger of our foam hands ~ with more time, and as a home activity, it’s great to trace and cut your own hands for this. The added time and attention to your own hands opens up even more awareness and gratefulness for the lives we are thanks living! And yes, of course, big hands too! As pictured, the hands work as a wonderful turkey tail! Like always, we had plenty of options for the turkeys including feathers and paint dotted with fingertips or spread with a plastic knife for the feather effect. It is fun to be us! At SLC, at the studio and even at today’s family Thanksgiving celebration, I have been offering creative opportunities like this … just some crafty, shiny somethings to put heart and hands to, to express. Through creativity, we let our divinity and spirituality flow!

And so I go with a mix of new co-creations, traditions, To Do’s, To Dont’s, Ta Da’s, calendarizing with lots of trust, patience, forgiveness, allowance, and remembrance. Yes, we remember in November ~! This Sunday, Advent begins and so we sing with angels! Angels all around us and inside us, always ready and able to help center us!

12 Thoughts of Christmas
Sing THIS right here and now! (Tune, What Child Is This?):

“What child is this who lives in me …
In my busyness lies sleeping.
Whom angels greet, singing so sweet …
The truth of the child they’re keeping.
This, this is consciousness.
Christ light awakening, shining bliss.
This, this is consciousness.
I wake up and I shine who I am.”

Our November Free Shelf for Leaping Literacy Library is up for another week with  lots of ThanksLiving invitations celebrating traditional, creative, and spiritual family literacy!

Whatever To Do’s and To Don’ts call to you this holy season, may you be aligned with your angel guidance for days and ways of true ThanksLiving! Namaste, Love!

PS!
I am making some progress on a long time vision and though this is a poor sample … I’m grateful for infinite possibilities!

Yes, I have a looooooong way to go with production quality, let’s smile anyway in some Turkey Talk ThanksLiving with the Piccolos! Thank you ALL for the blessing of you being part of holy Creation’s ThanksLiving!

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Posted in Abundance, Acceptance, Awareness, Blessings, Children's Books, Co-Creation Manifestation, Creativity, Grace, Gratitude

Equinox Blessings Of Balance

Namaste this Equinox & Rosh Hashanah New Year Day!

In the Jewish New Year tradition, the ram’s horn is blown and apples are dipped in honey to intend and affirm a sweet life. In the Wicca celebration of Equinox, here it is the first day of fall with a Mabon harvest celebration and on the other side of the world, Ostara shines the birth of spring. This is the day of equal dark and light when the sun is directly above the equator, a balance point marking the turning of the wheel. From our New Thought Families Inspiration & Calendar pages, this marking of time has other cultural and religious manifestations and celebrations including these:

Shinto Shinto Shuki-sorei-sai
A memorial service similar to the March equinox service (Shunki-sorei-sai), this day is marked by the cleaning and purification of gravesites and the reverence of ancestors as kami, or divine spirits.

Buddhist Buddhist Ohigon
A celebration of the equinox that is of particular importance to Japanese, Korean, and Tibetan Buddhists.  During this festival, the six Paramitas [virtues] are emphasized: generosity, morality, wisdom, honesty, endeavor, and patience.

Judaism Native American Autumn Feast
A day to honor the harvest end and the coming and going of the seasons, including prayers, songs, and the telling of tribal stories. 

Ritual and holi-days are ways we can re-align with the shine of our divine design. Even just taking a bird’s eye view like this of traditions that belong to others can help to inspire us. We all share the same sky and this equal time of sun and moon so it is an optimal time … to look at time. And BALANCE! And choices. Who do we give our time, talent, and treasure to? What energies are we feeding?For those of us who celebrate the New Year on January 1st, there are 100 days left now in this 2017! Those of us who live mindfully, awake and aware, this blessing of balance and the turning of the wheel is an opportunity to re-evaluate and intend for that sweet life. Sometimes this means making needed adjustments. Revisit the resolutions, if you made them. For those, like me, who do a lot, always good to take a grateful stock of what is & what has been, as well as what’s ahead. As parents, of children, (and some of us) of our own parents, milestones and markers are based on them and their lives. Tonight, my 17 year old Jeremiah is in the homecoming court at school. We are in the midst of college application preparations and Jeremiah is taking a crazy load of courses + drama and band. I am that mom helping with all of it as I also do for my parents, especially my dad, as well as tend to many of the facets of work that call to me, in part preparing for the big job of mom that comes with the child support paycheck to be past me in the circle of time. To that aim, our new Creative Spirit Families local studio began it’s first Creativity Classes & ChildSing this week, YAY! And! I have gotten back to my list of new alliteration titles that inadvertently got put on hold. Yay for Letter T! I am also in the midst of digitizing a re-illustration of a vintage Laurie Story about Hazel the tree to be shared at Spiritual Life Center this Sunday and onto the Free Shelf of the Leaping Literacy Library for the last week of September!Getting back to my Laurie StorEBooks needed to happen though, admittedly, juggling all that I do can be physically exhausting. For all of us, in this abundant culture, our fast paced lives compounded by the stresses of our global family, can really be all too much. Sooooooooooo … balance beckons! Doing what we can for our loved ones, our global family, and our own heart’s desires is a balancing act. We pray for so many devastated by hurricane, fire, earthquake. We give financially or otherwise if possible. There’s the other insanities of humanity playing out through world leaders, rebels causing genocide, hundreds of thousands of new refugees just in the last few weeks … whoa! BREATHE! BALANCE! As my Mabon song sings, “We rest in the dark, we renew in the light …”

Somehow … we find our balance in the turning of the wheel. For each of us, it is different. As Abraham Hicks and others teach, our feelings are a compass. Generally, when we feel stressed, we are out of balance. We either:

  1. Think something or someone should be different than they are.
  2. Think the way the situation is dictates what or how we are.
  3. Think we do not have the power to change it.

We are well served to bring Byron Katie’s ‘The Work’ to any or all of those thoughts beginning with the question, “Is it true?”

In taking on the new studio, I have had to re-align with the pace of grace and the art of allowance. As a spiritual being, this is the only way to do so much and still be … Truly, “It is not I but the Spirit within me that doeth the work.” Of course, there have been many moments of messiness yet the more I allow grace, the more I am gratefully and abundantly flowing! In this balance of do and be, I am living my best me! At Spiritual Life Center last Sunday, our celebration of oak trees looked at how oaks, like no other tree allow insects of all kinds to breed upon them. Some of the oak balls or galls come from wasps laying their eggs in the bark. The tree forms the gall to protect itself and in turn protects the eggs. A beautiful blesson of oneness! For our art trees, we had puzzle pieces and the little turning of the wheel pastas to add ~ all of our beautiful children created very different, gorgeous trees.

And so it is that we create from the balanced blessings of our lives; integrating all we can of the good and the bad, the dark and the light, the sweetness and the bitterness, all found on the wheel. Here’s hoping that each of us and all of us are able to keep coming into the allowance of grace so we may indeed live the highest heart of humanity ~ no matter what the calamity! Namaste, Love!

Posted in Acceptance, Affirmations, Awareness, Blessings, Love, Nature, Oneness, Prayer

The (9/11) Legacy Of Living Love

Namaste Blessed Breath Of Love Expressed!

This week marked the 16th American anniversary and remembrance of the 9/11 tragedy. As with many national occasions, our streets were lined with American flags and many POVs (points of view) were flying about in live and digital conversations.  I felt compelled to re-tell my own recollection of that day and how it was to be on an airplane at that moment with 18 month old Jeremiah on my lap. I found a version of that retelling here in this blog voice from 2011. Our New Thought focus that September was the same as this September (and most in between!) ~ Oneness. I find myself in oneness awareness at this time of year for many reasons … for one, September as our season shifter, Spirit lifter, is often home to many interfaith celebrations. Our current Inspirations page is loaded with them! Next week I will speak to the sweet Jewish New Year Rosh Hashanah and Fall Equinox. Yay for the blessings of balance and new beginnings! For today’s mindful moment musings, consider the apple below and how it’s cut influences what/how we see.

Let’s look at Love expressed from point of view. We all have POV operating all the time both consciously and unconsciously. Lately personal and collective perspectives have seemingly put a spotlight on fear and lack ~ the opposite of what we know to be spiritual truth. From a knowingness of oneness and abundance, we can align with each other as global family. To quote Mama T again this week, “If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other.” Mother Teresa

To return to the remembrance of 9/11, I find my heart hurting that 16 years later, terrorism has increased to epic proportions with the numbers of worldwide refugees reaching past the point of a humanitarian crisis. And yet this country that I love is not responding yet rather from the governmental stance is threatening deportations of our dreamers, disallowing rather than increasing the intake of refugees and still planning to build … the wall. In a time of evolutionary expansion, fear is still calling for walls … even though it is true that we are one family who belongs to each other! (BTW, American DIY super store Home Depot wants to help build the wall so you may choose not to support their business.) Our individual and collective POV‘s are in a widespread range of fear and Love. I, like many, remain somewhat conflicted about how and when to speak up and out.While it is essential that we decipher for ourselves how we see things and what is ours to do about it, we do well to return to our center as spiritual BEings in the midst of our action or non-action DOings. In New Thought, the surest pathway to this (re)alignment is prayer. Unity was founded on prayer and this evening marks the beginning of the 24th annual Unity World Day Of Prayer :
Unity Christianity
Unity Annual World Day of Prayer. A 24 hour vigil & celebration held the 2nd Thursday in September. 2017 theme is Peace In The Midst Of All Matters affirming: I am peace in the midst of all matters!

No matter how you center or pray, it is always a comfort and support to do it with others. There is always someone praying in this world; at Unity village they do it 24/7. Prayer can be a lifeline to peace as we release our individual and collective burdens to a higher Source of infinite Love and potentiality. I am deeply grateful that my 17 year old Jeremiah and I still pray in and out our days. Hopefully, prayer will indeed be a lifeline for my son throughout his years as it has been for me and for us!

Ultimately, how you pray and align with your divine design is uniquely up to you. Remember the eye and the star of the apple and to check your points of view. Remember the Access Consciousness tool to ask, “Who does this belong to?” We are sovereign beings even and especially in the truth of our oneness. It is from this place of sovereignty, we most effectively live our divinity while simultaneously embodying life and Love as One. May we continue to be blessed in Living as Love expressed! Namaste, Love!

 

 

Posted in Awareness, Blessings, Energy, Family, interfaith, Presence, Quiet

Reflection & Death, Resurrection & Breath

Namaste Spring Renewal of Blossoming Beauty!

Happy April Awareness! Happy Easter ~ Monday! Happy Passover! Always so much to celebrate as our New Thought Families’ interfaith calendar honors and we will briefly explore here and now. I trust your holy days are filling you wholly in happy ways; that you are, indeed, finding heart filled conscious ways to rise from the dark places into bright light shining full expression of the true you! For my part, I continue the swirling dance of being woman, mom, daughter, artist, Leaping Literacy Librarian, and child of Creator ever evolving and emerging from the egg of life’s potentialities, possibilities, endless energies. I have been through some bumpy health and relearned the power of vibrational healing and energy clearings ~ spring cleaning at it’s best! We are energy beings after all. As an empath, I SO take on the energies of others ~ lately that has been prevalent with my parents and their failing health. Like small children who unconsciously try to “fix” their loved ones by taking on the family pain patterns, we can continue to carry them on … and on … and on! Yet! The transformational tool box beckons! We have only to reach in and grab those tools! I was reunited and re-amazed by the simple transforming power of Dr. Bradley Nelson’s Emotion Codes as I implemented them recently to shift physical pain from my body and seemingly from my mother’s body as well! AHmazing!Reflection & Death

The art of contemplation & reflection is a transformational tool often overlooked and under-utilized in this busy culture. It requires quiet, stillness, surrender. It requires an openness to listen and receive. Sometimes what we receive, demands further surrender and even death. Death of old patterns perhaps. Death of old habits or ways of being. While death can be a peaceful, deep breath release, it is more often a full on, knock down, drag out battle! My Lenten desire to release doubt was definitely tumultuous at times.  I was reminded that the roots of doubt are deep and long. As I weeded through some of the dark places, I gave more space for the ever present, omnipresent light of Love to shine. My relationship with doubt feels more like a dance now and much less like a battle. It did not die completely yet a good deal of my addiction to it did die leaving my soul freer to rise and shine!

For the past 10 years, I have had an annual writing about Holy Week and Easter …  from the celebratory ride Jesus took on Palm Sunday to the Garden of Gethsemane, to the cross, the tomb, and ultimate Spirit rising. This year, for a myriad of reasons, my reflections in writing are simply this:
The human journey of the soul incorporates great heights of celebration and deep depths of despair often fueled by betrayal and the cruel crucifixions of judgment, doubt, blame, shame, fear, that we inflict on ourselves and each other. Religion, ritual, holy remembrance serves us all by helping us move through the lower energies back into the higher ones. It is a cycle and a circle like that of our sacred mother … seeds sown in darkness reaching for the light to embody divine essence expressed.

This year, from several different sources, I really got how Jewish Passover is the same holy celebration as Holy week and Easter. Jesus was a Jew and the last supper, a Seder. How great is that?! Across traditions, the same themes of humanity have their intersections. Even though I have been doing our New Thought Families’ interfaith calendar for ten years, just this year it came to my attention that on April 9th, the Chinese tradition of Qingming or Tomb Sweeping Day is a day to honor one’s ancestors, visit their grave sites while also welcoming in the new spring season. Birth and death, memory and breath!

Resurrection & Breath

Here on our side of the pretty plant, April is the AHsome awareness of spring renewal and life, sweet life ever regenerating with beauty, color, vibrant vitality. We celebrate Earth Day April 22nd ~ and YES, Earth Day every day and everyday green living, thank you! Arbor Day is always the last Friday in April in the States with each state having its own Arbor Day corresponding to planting times. Globally, many nations have their own Arbor Day ~ trees are indeed an international, interfaith celebration! Our own everyday Green Living is indeed a way of life. The winter is always increased dedication for me doing laundry having given up using a dryer 10 years ago. Our Living Green videos in the Leaping Literacy Library document there are so many ways we can step more lightly and reverently upon our sacred mother who gives so much and asks so little. I invite you to review your ways of being, perhaps add a new habit of sustainability, celebrate every step of recycling or green living you engage in as well as be in deep reverence to our earth’s beauty and sustenance. Breathe in this life giving home and the way she is constantly resurrecting into more and more beauty, more and more life!Yes, we are always in choice, balancing the infinity of callings within us and all around us. Our calendars and ancestral traditions can help guide the way tempered by our own inner reflections to choose to engage with them ~ or not! April is also home to National Library Week ~ this year it corresponded with Holy Week. I spent the last few weeks as Leaping Literacy Librarian working on making the online Library a more user friendly place. Like all else, made good headway on a loooooooooong journey! April’s Free Shelf is a full spring and earth celebration: In wrapping up this April Awareness, I harken back to the first day of this auspicious month … April Fool’s Day. In all of my reflections and detections over the last few months, I have done a fair bit of mindful musings over mental illness. President Trump, to many of us, is clearly mentally ill. Yet, his supporters continue to see him in a positive light. The dropping of the “Mother of all bombs” on Syria last week is a devastating step back for humanity. Yet, unbelievably, some see it as a good thing. Can it be we are all merely fools on this stage of life? The joker card in the deck is sometimes referred to as the ‘trump card’ meaning it thwarts all others. Many card games, discard the joker disallowing it from play. Sometimes the joker or trump card is the wild card meaning anything goes. An interesting ponderance in our current game of life, yes?!

Ultimately, my blooming beauties, we do get to reflect on what we give our breath to and what we assign death to. My pathway to peace continues to be through prayer … reflection, breath, renewal, energy management through the transformational toolbox … A simple walk in nature is always a wonderful reset! Our beautiful planet that we celebrate this month is ever awaiting our reverent alignment with her beauty. For all of the craziness ~ our own, our families’, our culture ~ there is ALWAYS divine order! You may want to affirm and anchor this in by hugging a tree … today … on Arbor Day … every day?!!!  Any day and every day is a great day to hug a tree! Thank you so much for pondering and breathing with me. Namaste, Love!

Posted in Abundance, Acceptance, Appreciation, Awareness, Blessings, Children's Books, Co-Creation Manifestation, Creativity, devotion, Divinity, Energy, Freedom, Grace, Gratitude, Presence, Reconstructurist, Thanks Living

A Disciple’s Decisions

smilecircleNamaste Mindful, Mystical Manifestations of The Mystery!
In the Circle of Time, I greet you with a smile of Love and well wishes for a bright, bountiful, and beautiful New Year!

With 2017 well under way, I am reaching out today with various video messages you can choose to peruse ~ or not! In the sea of offerings that call to our minds, hearts, and souls, we definitely have to choose only those that serve us best! ‘The Mystery’ linked above and here remains some of the best advice I know in choosing how we can live a meaningful life ~ basically by choosing to be happy and be with the ‘Mystery’ every day ~ of any year, any life!

So! How are you living your ‘Mystery’ this new year? This new moment of being? You are HERE! And I, for one, am grateful.  For all my intentions of being here in this blog space to ceremoniously ring in the new year, it is simply here and now that I am showing up with scattered greetings of epiphany, burning bowl and the shine of solstice shadows. The following 3 videos came about on December 21st, December 31st, and January 6th. I suppose the way any ‘real’ person shares such things is in real time like on FaceBook. Somehow, I save things for this space because it feels more sacred and sanctified. And yes, we get to make it all up, whatever meaning we assign to whatever we do … for who … when!

This Epiphany video shares my intention/resolution to DIG in this 2017 as a disciple as well as a new song, “Free To Leave” that sings to the spiritual parenting journey I have been on with my son, my father, and myself. My big epiphany of 2017: Just keep showing up however you are called! DIG in and do it! Be a devoted disciple to the divine callings of your heart with discipline. Not too sexy or exciting yet the discipline will allow me more structure and ultimately more freedom! Too much freedom can lead to chaos. And in my case, the lack of structure and devotion to my own callings in the wake of serving everyone else led to some extreme end of the year exhaustion I am just now recovering from! Inward Investments invite innate inspirations! Intuition! Imagination! I am a disciple of these! And in being a devotee of this infinity of divinity, I gratefully live in the glow of grace. Gratitude garners grace! So it is that I am a disciple of my divinity infinitely inspired by intuition ad imagination as I gratefully grow in grace!

43.CoCreateDreams
Our Creative Spirit Families’ ‘For Humanity’ year did indeed make it’s way co-creating A-Z in 2016. This co-creator rolled over into 2017 with extra ZZZZZZZZZZs to catch up and replenish in the Circle Of Time!


Ultimately, especially this time of year, we can look to our dreams for the solutions and resolutions we seek for our happiness. Yet, we all have failed resolutions. In fact, the odds are with us that by year’s end we will find ourselves in a similar place in the circle from where we started. YET! As spiritual beings on this human path, we have SO many transformational tools to transform our dreams into realities. Habits can be shifted and changed to support us. Being mindful and proactive in releasing the old and embracing the new is one that comes up this time of year. Setting intentions, using a burning bowl for release and centering into what we are embracing is a ritual that serves us on holy days, calendar milestones, and ANY time the energies beckon! From the small to the tall, there are always milestones along our path …

Breathe deep in blessed, bountiful, beautiful balance! Affirm change with any and every mindful breath ... releasing the old and embracing the new!
Breathe deep in blessed, bountiful, beautiful balance! Affirm change with any and every mindful breath … releasing the old and embracing the new!

Our year always ends and begins with Folk Music Camp; a few hundred of us sing, ring, play, dance out the old and in the new. This was my 25th+ year and Jeremiah’s 17th (counting in utero) so quite the long standing tradition. This was the first time in all those years, I didn’t have kids for a youth chorus. the tradition started when I first joined because there were SO many kids and a need. For the last bunch of years, the kids have been few and the need diminished. This was the year to let it go. So I released that and many other things with some tears and a beautiful burning bowl ceremony with some lovely ladies who joined me. Rather than do it alone, I invited others on the workshop board and The Invitation was beautifully met as shared in this brief Camp video:

And since this is a video sharing day, let me issue one more invitation. Let’s just simply say shine on from the lost and found camera, barn song video, Shine Through The Shadows here!

Shining our light and living our dreams is not about being shadow free but rather a continuous process of bringing our light to the shadows. And! If you’re anything like me, taking the time to shine the light in celebration of all that HAS changed, HAS gone right, HAS manifested is paramount! We can always take time to honor what has come to be! Like water over stone, we are constantly evolving and changing … With each turn of the wheel, we are always in a different place on the circle.

At Camp, I had a little workshop to sing the 36 A-Z Short Spirit Songs created in 2016. I am excited and delighted to be resolved in producing those songs in CD and digital release this year ~ whoopee! I also published in the Leaping Literacy Library, 44 new alliteration titles in 2016! You can get online pictorial & audio samples of any or all of them here:

2016newSo my 2017 is still working on the missing letters and a WHOLE lot more as a disciplined disciple of my muse. One day, one page, one title at a time … at the pace of grace … from my winter zzzzzzzz slumber of rejuvenation ~ resolved not to repeat the exhaustion of 2016! Our January Jubilee Free Shelf is stocked and we are smiling on the New Thought Families daily Play and Pray Calendar!

freebies

Whatever mix of new and old you are in this mindful moment, may you breathe in ease and grace in the circle of time knowing that you, and all of life are absolutely fine and divine. And yes, absolutely, continue to release, embrace, and SHINE! “Let the cracks allow more light to shine through your heart.” Thank you, thank you, for the infinity of divinity that is the smiling you. Namaste, Love!Mountain Flowers bloom thru granite

 

 

Posted in Advent, Awareness, Blessings, Children's Books, Co-Creation Manifestation, Family, Hope, Light, Love, Prayer, Presence, Spiritual ABCs

Exhilaration, Expectation, Exploration ~ Expressions!

 

330-expressexistence

Namaste Exuberant Expressions Exploring Existence!

Yes, our alphabetic year has us wrapping up, X-Y-Z with today expressing some thoughts of the Season in an exploration with the expansive Letter X ~ coupled with the seen and not heard silent e! Gentle readers, were any of you raised with the silent e? A generational thing, my father, in particular was of the mind that children were to be seen and not heard. An interesting placement for an expressive word girl like me! Our current exploration and examination looks at some of the gifts of past and present as we continue to consciously co-create our personal and collective realities. In the Christian tradition, the second week of Advent is underway, celebrating Love or Peace depending on your tradition with the super energized power of Hope as week 1 of Advent and the pink candle of JOY being lit for the 3rd week. As we center in these expectant energies, we experience more of them in our consciousness.

 

The Power Of Prayer & Expectation!

As in the last few posts, I find myself compelled to be more politically outspoken than ever before. First, great gratitude to the Army Corp of Engineers and President Obama for (finally!) halting the Dakota Access Pipeline on Sunday. YES! #NODAPL nodaplThank you to the thousands of peaceful, prayerful water protectors who stood the (freezing!) ground under illegal, militarized force. Thank you for the thousands of veterans who showed up over the weekend to protect and stand with the people and to say this is not acceptable in the country we fought for. The power of feet to prayer! The tide was turned … for now. The prayer continues to let the black snake sleep and to harness the clean energy of the wind and sun that promises prosperity and sustainability … for all our relations. Aho.

Examination  & Excavation!

336-exceedexpectationThere is a definite correlation with what has been happening at Standing Rock and the rest of America as we stand divided over the Presidential election. Like racism & sexism, the oil industry should be on it’s way out but not without an uprising of resistance. Environmentally evidenced with the CEO of Exxon being interviewed as the potential Secretary of State, there is a definite eye on turning back our environmental headway and sustaining the greed of big oil companies; talk of reinstating construction of the Keystone pipeline is also in the air. As our wise indigenous people call it, the ‘black snake’ is still very much a threat. So! That is just one aspect of why I ~ and millions of others ~ are harboring hope for a different outcome in this Presidential election.

There is still hope. The Electoral College officially votes in the President on December 19th. With Green party Jill Stein initiated recounts in WI, MI, and PA, there is hope of a different outcome. Stein is maintaining that the integrity of our voting system needs to be checked, hear, here! And! The Electors are free to vote their conscience. The Electoral College was, in part, designed by the forefathers like Alexander Hamilton to be a protection valve to keep someone unfit from being our commander-in-chief. Electors were initially formed as a group of citizens bound not by party, but by their responsibility to this nation. Unfortunately, there has been some loss of this vision as expressed by one Elector from FL who said she campaigned for Trump and would of course vote for him. So much for not bound by party! YET! Let us expect more from other electors given so many red flags about the president elect. Let us expect that the exasperating normalization of his sociopathic behavior all through the campaign and through his cabinet selections, tweets, and ‘Victory Lap’ rallies of late will STOP with the sanity of humanity guiding the Electors to vote for the popular vote winner (by 2.5 million votes), Hillary Rodham Clinton. I am choosing to expect this! Yes, I am along for the ride of divine order in all of it, no matter what. AND! Just like with Standing Rock, it takes prayer to feet, voices raised ~ in Loving expectation for the highest good to execute change! You can write the Electors with your voice through an easy peasy website HERE! An excerpt from the he letter I wrote reads, “We have an extremely experienced and capable President in Hillary Rodham Clinton; the people’s choice by popular vote. No matter what your party affiliation, which of these two candidates do you truly see as able to lead? Able to responsibly hold the nuclear codes? Able to sit with other world leaders? Able to reach across party lines? Which would you like as a role model for your children and grandchildren?” Should you be interested, my whole letter is HERE.
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This great nation was founded on an experiment. We must follow human evolution to continue to experiment and expel what doesn’t serve the highest good. My hope is that justice and sanity will prevail in this election as well as our government’s decisions going forward. At the least, let this be the end of the Electoral College which was founded on some good tenants but also on the indigestible, inexcusable back of slavery which equated a slave as 3/5 a person. That’s hard to type. Some parts of our executive history must be expelled. Especially with so many different views in this diverse country, every person and every vote should count equally. We must raise our voices for justice! Again, write the Electors  HERE! And if you want to know all about the Electoral college, the government’s site is HERE.

Of course, there is so much to take in these days. We must align with what resonates with our own heart and mind. Ultimately, every part of our existence is up to us to prioritize our own truth. I know of no other way than turning within for deep listening.335-examine

Excited Expectation & Exhilaration!

This month of de-LIGHT ~ FULL December, at least some of our children teachers are exercising their expanding extreme excitement for the arrival of Santa or other gift giving, light filled traditions such as Hanukkah (December 25-January 1, 2016). Our New Thought Families Inspiration page lists some of the light filled celebrations and traditions going on around the world this month like St. Lucia Day on 12/13 and Solstice on 12/21. We are having an intergenerational Living Light PlayShop on the 21st in a sharing celebration with some of our local families. Here our Inspiration page’s celebration THIS day!
St. Nick Christian ~ December 6th ~ Saint Nicholas Day
Christian celebration of the birth of Saint Nicolas, patron saint of children and role model for gift giving. Many churches named for this saint who is also the Dutch version of Santa Claus. It is thought that over the centuries the legendary St. Nicholas was merged with similar cultural and religious figures. Significant among these were the pagan Knecht Ruprecht and the Roman figure of Befana, as well as the Christ child (Christkind, or Kris Kringle). In parts of northern Europe, particularly the Low Countries and some German-speaking areas, St. Nicholas Day has remained a time when children are given special cookies, candies, and gifts.

 

santae

Expressing Expectation!

Yes, letters to Santa are something many of us, in this culture have done; back in the 1960’s, my letter here was written at school, I’m sure. I found it this year in cleaning out one of the cluttered corners at my dad’s ranch. I got to see how similar the 7 year old me is to the 54 year old me ~ wordy! Heartfelt and expectant of the good. We must keep the flame of hope and expectation alive for the expanded heart to stay healthy and hearty!santaletterl

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Exploring Expansion!

Feeling exuberant excitement and exhilaration sometimes eludes us as adults caught up in the workaday world. Let’s look to the young children again as our teachers when we need to reconnect with the wonder of what it is to be alive ~ for the awe of existence … our own and the life that surrounds us. It is through the now moments of aware, grateful celebration, we allow our hearts and our happiness to expand.  I recently celebrated the last red leaf on our beautiful dogwood tree, clinging to the bare branches as the last expression of fall beauty. Whether it was fear of falling or simply extended, expanded expression, this beautiful lone leaf hung in there for days lending lots of contemplation of existence for me. I was reminded of the short story by O Henry, The Last Leaf,  that can be read quickly and easily HERE through the wonders of the world wide web. Though published in 1907, it’s timeless message speaks to how our expressions can expand or even extend each others’ lives. Like the best of Christmas movies (think, ‘It’s A Wonderful Life!), it is exactly fitting in this season of light.

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The traditions of each family are handed down to our children. Some are ancient, some adapted, some relatively new. The candle lighting celebration of family, culture and community that is Kwanzaa (December 26-January 1st, 2016) began in 1966 so is 50 years young this season.  A 500 year old tradition of Las Pasadas is a procession reenactment of Mary on the donkey with Joseph looking for lodging for the birth of Jesus. In our little town, Las Pasadas began 10 years ago and this year was my 8th to participate; 4 in the walking choir, 4 as a singing musician. The sea of voices and candle lights spread out through our little town always feels holy to me. I am grateful for the ways we can connect to story, ancestors, our inner light and the collective light that is the best of humanity. When we explain to our children who we truly be as shining lights, tradition is part of what makes up the explanation of our existence.


Expressing Exclamations!

Our daily Play & Pray Calendar as well as our Free Shelf in the Leaping Literacy Online Library are all about the Letter Y the first half of December ~ lots of yesness and yoga! With Laurie StorEBooks and songs featuring yelling, yes, and yellow, we spotlight Yogi Keith Lickey and Yogini Marsha Therese Danzig with their yoga explanations and invitations. Coming sometime this week, is a long overdue bit of fairy yoga on the beach with Marsha. Due to bad sound and a replacement soundtrack I just couldn’t sync, I had abandoned the project but with renewed faith and acceptance of what is, I think we can still do some sparkling yogic yesness with marvelous Marsha ~ YES!freebies

Exuberant Exhilaration!

Oh, exploring existence of goodness, I wish you so much illumined exuberance … or at the least, a full measure of comfort and joy ~ this moment ~ and all throughout the season! Thank you for the gift of you and your presence here. Whether you express yourself through Christmas cards, a letter to the Electors, to Santa, to Creator, to yourself … may you know you are exactly in the right place in your/our expression and expansion.

May we all keep examining what needs saving from extinction and what needs to be expertly extinguished so that the light and Love of our full expression can shine ~ this season and always! Namaste, Love!334-extinction

P.S.
Sing transformational expressions with us this season!

12 Thoughts of Christmas
 
Posted in Acceptance, Awareness, Blessings, Forgiveness, Grace, Gratitude, Hope, Humanity, Justice, Spiritual ABCs, Thanks Living, Transformation, Truth, Wisdom

Waiting, Watching, Wondering, Wishing

superbeavermoonnov2016Warm Welcome Wondrous Wishes of Wonderfulness!

Thanks for joining me here; let’s begin with a group hug! From the depths of shadow, let us align with full moon light reminding us of the Love we are. Deep breath. When we are stressed individually, collectively ~ both! ~ shadows, aka dark side, sabotage, negative patterns can grow incrementally feeding on the energy. Are you wrestling with shadows or rising up to shine? Most likely, some of both? My shadows and risings are showing up here after at least a week of repeated attempts as I show up over and over … overthinking, overeating, overdoing, overwhelming! Yes, I have been sitting in extras with some of my shadows as I navigate the intense energy that has been of late for most of us here in the States. Ultimately, I also believe in divine order and the omnipresent good that is always speaking to our hearts. The personal & collective shadows are just the things to call us home to the best of ourselves.usa-598261_640

What a wild couple of weeks it has been since the last voting voices blog post here … today, as we honor the whimsical, wise Letter W in keeping with our alphabetic year, we will also speak to the current climate still swirling since our U.S. election. The discussion here includes the usual spiritual living applications mixed with  history, the Electoral College, witches, wounds, words, grace, gratitude, ThanksLiving … weaving it all through Spirit & shadows! There are 3 new songs embedded in this post ~ woo hoo! And I know, I know, overwhelm, whew! 😦 Deep breath … and full permission to skim through this absurdly long offering to whatever part(s) serves you!

Perhaps the volume of what I am sharing is best said in this brand new song that speaks to the shadows and how we are called to shine through them ~ indeed, rise above them:

Shine Through The Shadows © Laurie Story Vela

How long is your shadow today?
Have fear and darkness placed you in harms way?

Ya feelin’ angry, scared, sad and low …
Nowhere to go … can’t run from your shadow.


Chorus:

Rise up and shine! Darkness is at the door.
Answer with your light; shine brighter than ever before!
Shine more … explore the shadows ….

Shadows tall and long are all around.
Even ones you love have let you down.

Feelin’ dismayed, betrayed, broken apart …
Let the cracks allow more light to shine through your heart!

(Chorus)

How deep is your shadow today? Do you feel ancestors alive in your DNA?
Painful blame, shame, name casting games …
Justice grows and knows how to chase all our shadows away!
So rise up and shine! Darkness is at the door.
Answer with your light; shine brighter than ever before!

Shine the light that seeds your soul! Shine the Love that makes you whole.
Shine the Love … that shortens your shadow …

Shorten your shadow … Shine brighter than ever before!
Shine more … explore the shadows ….  

How long and deep … your light … your shadow …
Hear the song here:

Waking Wounded

The volume of voices we spoke of last time has been turned up with many engaged in a war of words crisscrossing the world wide web and the concrete streets themselves. America is experiencing some of the biggest birthing pains we’ve felt in a while … maybe since 1968?! This election and the president elect have given rise to a wealth of voices spewing intolerance and hate. It’s as if the sleeping giant was awakened with voices ringing out in every corner. Of course, there are so many examples out there that I will not feed energy to by repeating them here. The spotlight is on the shadows so we can see better who stands where. Families refusing to sit together at Thanksgiving, FaceBook friends unfriending each other are some of the more benign yet prevalent fallout. The clock seems to have been turned back as a backlash against the inevitable global family we be with all people treated fairly; freedom and justice for all! Ultimately, it is all a cry for Love and healing. So many of us felt truly heartbroken at what seems to be a victory for racism, misogyny & demagoguery. I have been experiencing heartbreak yet at the same time the incredible rising that is the formidable human Spirit. Yes, the good is always present and Love always prevails. We are all of us the walking wounded and all capable of and willing for wellness. 319-woundedtowellnessThe pain body shadow we all carry is like much of our lives, largely unconscious. We carry the pain of our ancestors, as well as the sins of our fathers. The word sin is an archery term that means to miss the mark, to make a mistake. As human beings, we certainly all make mistakes individually and collectively. We all have the scars of oppression. Our souls remember it all. One of the reasons I kept crying and feeling betrayed was the shadow of my own sexual abuses and harassments that had been green lighted in this campaign. So many men ~ and women! ~ were willing to accept Trump’s behavior and “locker room” talk. Indeed, they gave him their vote for the highest office in the land with a willingness to turn away from that and all of his other hurtful, hateful talk and bullying demonstrations. At the least, we have all seen manners were given a backseat when the biggest bully on the playground was elected to the highest office in the land. And again! Coming out of the shadows into the light, is part of transformation!321-watchforwarnings One of the positives that has arisen is the willingness to be a warrior or warrioress for any of the disenfranchised people the Trump campaign targeted. Included in the positive stirrings are personal calls to action for so many of us along with the expanded education and awareness of the election process itself. Voter fraud and suppression are real and being investigated in many states. Hillary Rodham Clinton won the popular vote and the % numbers continue to rise. In case you don’t know (I didn’t!), our President will be elected on December 19th. I am among millions with the hope that history will once again be made that day.

Electoral College

 

318-worktogetherThe President has not been elected yet. This will happen with the Electoral College Votes due on December 19th. If you have been wondering how it works when someone like Clinton (or Gore) win the popular vote but lose the Election, that’s due to the Electoral College. That is also how a race with so many millions of voters is called within hours while weeks later, votes are still being counted.

For all the reasons we know ~ and then some! ~ there is at least some chance the Electors will change a vote from Trump to Clinton. There is a petition with over 4.5 million signatures so far. Let’s get as many people to sign as we can and once again change history on December 19th! At the least, the Electoral College needs to finally be abolished so that truly, every vote is counted equally in our great nation. If you are interested in all the rules, history and anything else about the Electoral College, here is the government’s site.

If you want to skip the legalize of the government site and/or add to your overall education, there is an article by Douglas Anthony Cooper worth reading as well as the YouTube videos embedded below. Cooper linked to a flip the 37 site that lists all the Electors state by state who will be casting the actual votes for President on December 19th.

There are indeed some great YouTube videos explaining the Electoral College ~ and more being made by the day! Here are 2 by a sharp lawyer, CPG Grey  who describes everything in detail. In this 1st one, he talks about the December vote starting around 3:00 min.

This one is also by Grey with more detail about how the electoral college actually works:

 

What’s Wise?

As spiritual beings having a physical experience, is it wise to be caught up in all the workings of government and social injustices? As someone who lived in a spiritual bubble for a long time, and still do to an extent ~ it is much easier to be at peace and joyful in living when you look the other way or la la la it away out of earshot. Yet! We belong to each other. To fully take care of each other, it requires speaking up and acting as necessary. We must always figure out what’s ours to do ~ I didn’t start or run the petition above but I am choosing to share it. Like everything else, there are layers to this. The hope of a different outcome (however small) helped me move on from heartbreak into action. Truthfully, Jeremiah showed me videos about the Electoral college earlier this year and I remarked how messed up it was but did not engage with any amount of passion or action ~ until now.

What? When? Where? Why?

Many on this New Thought path say to just ignore and rise above it all. We each must decide for ourselves. At one point Jeremiah said, “Mom, you function much better in your bubble.” My teenage son had never seen me so sad and undone. I explained to him that I feel called to balance being aware of (some of) the unfair without allowing it to tear me apart. I am called to speak up and do what I can while also being in joyful ThanksLiving as much as I can. I have been wearing feathers in my hair as I affirm, “I stand with you Standing Rock”. As told last post, I hold the wise buffalo energy for the water protectors as I can from where I am.

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I spent some blessed birthday beach time this week for a much needed heart re-set!

Witches Were Wise Ones

Also mentioned in the last post, and saved for this W discussion, the week before Halloween, I was part of a church service about witches with an interfaith minister friend.  Most of us have no clue about the true history of what a witch is, what really happened with witch trials, etc. It is explained beautifully and succinctly here:

From Kate Marks in Circle Of Song:
woman-1558340_1920It is important for us to reclaim the word witch; to associate it with true wisdom, positive power and healing. Witch originally comes from the Celtic word Wicca. It means the wise one, the one who practices the craft of the wise. Witches (predominately women) worshipped nature and the Goddess. With the rise of Christianity, especially in Europe, witches came to be seen as heretics, as a threat to the power of the church and the growing patriarchy, many were persecuted and murdered. The height of the witch hunts occurred from the 14th to the 18th centuries, killing between nine and eleven million people. It was not until 1951 that the last anti-witch law in England was repealed.

Part of what happened in this unprecedented election, was that for the first time a woman ran for President. The unconscious shadow was not ready to accept this possibility. It is still widely held at least in the subconscious ~ that a woman should not have this kind of power. The media ran story after story about how untrustworthy she was and people believed it all though it was mostly speculation ~ some see it as a witch hunt. Obviously, we all see the world and have our truth the way we do ~ I’m pointing here to some of the subconscious programing that makes up our truth. I have been reminded of Mary Magdalene who is disputed throughout Christianity for who she was and who she was to Jesus; Prostitute? Disciple? Bride of Christ? Ultimately her message is about unconditional Love; showing up as you are in all your good despite what others think of you or say about you. I believe that Hillary Rodham Clinton is a very wise and strong woman who does indeed live by the beautiful Methodist creed her mother taught her,  ‘Do all the good you can, for all the people you can, in all the ways you can, as long as ever you can.’ She will keep doing that good ~ as will we all!

So! Spiritual teachings! In the church service I led Bonnie Lockhart’s wonderful “Who Were The Witches” song as part of our education. I led a meditation speaking the words of the new song of mine that follows here. The calling of this song is to holy restitution ~ as we know that we are all in the circle of persecution as both persecutor & victim … at different points in our lifetime(s).  Song MP3 and lyrics are here:

Holy Restitution © Laurie Story Vela

Chorus:
Fires are burning, yearning for justice.

Our hearts are timeless flames of forgiveness.
We’re all in the circle of persecution.
We meet in the center … now … for holy restitution.

For all of the wise ones burned as false witness.
For all of the witches, we beg your forgiveness.
For all who’ve been enslaved. For all who are brave.
We honor you now for the lives that you gave.
Chorus

We wipe all the tears cried in times of trial.
We sift through the ashes of fearful denial.
We won’t be afraid of all who are wise.
For all who were denied, we bring justice to the lies.
Chorus

And so we go with the wisdom we know.
In memory of the wise, Love won’t be denied.
We honor the divine, in the circle of time.
 Chorus
We are the center … NOW … of holy restitution.

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And so it is that we can continue to expand the circles of time, within our own hearts and minds. We can be the holy restitution right here, right now. And we can reach back in the circle of time for all of the wounded ones in our ancestry … especially as the backlash reminds us to do so.

Working it out! Our Leaping Literacy Library alphabetic expressions have crossed into the Letter X, who, for our purposes is inseparable from silent e. We’re going to keep the W offerings on the Free Shelf and add the (e)X’s in there tomorrow! Beautiful UK mum and spiritual teacher/healer Kate Beddow has a wonderful adventure in the SoulPlay section ~ a full 30 minute video, Wishing In The Woods ~ woo hoo! One of the brand new alliterative Laurie StorEBooks is there too.  freebieswThe work of Leaping Literacy Library & Creative Spirit Families is looking toward 2017 with expansions and perhaps a few omissions … Continue the daily Play & Pray Calendar after 8.5 years? Keep showing up to this blog after weekly or bi-weekly posts for nearly 6 years? For who? You?! Blessed to have so much freedom of decision and expression! Change is always an option for new good to rise up and shine from the shadows!

ThanksForgiving & ThanksLiving

274-thankslivingSo, since my processing and beach time bring this ridiculously long sharing up to a few days before our (U.S.) Thanksgiving, lets settle in the good grace of this holi-day and what it offers us before I close. In giving thanks, we are able to raise our vibration and appreciation for this sacred gift of life. We all have incredible blessings to be thankful for! In reaching for gratitude, we can invite our hearts to let go of whatever is in the way … practice some ThanksForgiving at the table as we allow all the judgments that keep us in our righteous anger to soften into compassion … Allow ourselves to let the grace of goodness bring us home into unconditional Love with the trust and knowing that the higher good is ~ always ~ unfolding. Living the art of ThanksLiving is to be in a grateful flow of appreciation for ALL that is! Look to our youngest teachers … very young children are in the joy and wonder of the now. They burst into anger or tears when they feel it and they just as quickly let it go to return to Love and joy. We ARE so blessed! Let’s sing it! Here’s one of the simple, alphabetic Short Spirit Songs of 2016:

Yes Blessed © Laurie Story Vela
Yes, I am blessed! Yes, I am blessed!
Blessings fill my life and I say yes, yes, yes!

Yes, I am blessed! Yes, I am blessed!
I receive, I give thanks, I pass it on, I am blessed!

Yes, we are blessed! Yes, we are blessed!
Blessings fill my life and we say yes, yes, yes!

Yes, we are blessed! Yes, we are blessed!
We receive, We give thanks, We pass it on, We are blessed!


May your Thanksgiving be full of blessings, ThanksForgiving as needed and lots of ThanksLiving moments of Love, joy, and goodness. May all of our wistful wonderings and wonderful wishes find their truth in the shadows and in the light of Love that we are made of. The Light Of Love that is … always …  and in all ways. Namaste, Love!

PS! 4th Song ~ For Humanity!
Our 2016 theme song got a bit of a tweak this week ~ check it out here! Thanks for singing … for humanity!