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Saturday, December 31, 2011

Last chance to speak out

Ever notice how the time flies by when you are having fun and how it drags when you have allowed anger and negative energy into your life? This year has flown by and I note today is my last chance to speak out before 2012 rolls in. Since I never miss an opportunity to speak here goes!

This morning I was thinking back to the last time I actually celebrated a New Years Eve. I believe it was 1972. The path since then has provided many interesting experiences for my growth and evolvement. Some of them were opportunities to learn the hard way what not to do in the future. I didn't always learn the lesson offered the first time so there were many repeat performances. It is very fortunate for me that God/Source is a patient entity.

The most outstanding New Years Eve was 1999. I didn't go anywhere, but my oldest son came to spend the weekend with me. I believe I even went to bed before midnight and left him to watch the ball drop on TV. Many people had been convinced that terrible things were going to happen on that night. I knew a man who ran a convenience store and also had a rather disturbed mind. At the time I counted him as a friend. That was one of my long hard learned lessons. For months this person enjoyed attempting to instill fear about what was going to happen to his customers. I refused to buy what he was promoting and I do believe it made him angry. It was through him I began to learn to rise above the crap and think for myself!

Sliding from one year into the next is not really a big deal in my book. A new year is simply a way to keep track of events. Although I won't be celebrating tonight and most likely will not stay up to witness the ball drop in New York I do send my sincere wishes for a year of peace, love and personal fulfillment for everyone reading my words.

That's all I have to say except Happy New Year!

Friday, December 30, 2011

Angel communication

Last night I watched the youtube video 2012-The Sacred Union. Messages from Archangel Michael were said to be channeled through Ana Jones, an angel medium. When my awakening journey first began my opinion of such a thing would probably have been- yeah right there is no such thing as angel communication.

I have learned a lot since then, mostly through personal experience, and although I still question new concepts I believe a whole lot more than I did in 1999. Anyone who has read my published works will attest to the fact that I have had some very unusual angel experiences. Angels, spirit guides and yes even Archangels have made themselves known to me, especially when I have directly asked for their assistance. Although I do not see them or hear their voices in the same way I would hear a human voice I know they are present.

As this hour long video began I picked up a pad and pen and began taking notes. I not only listened to the words being channeled from Archangel Michael, but I observed the manner in which the medium was receiving them. I saw no reason not to believe what I was hearing.

It began by explaining the very large cycle of time (millions of years) that will be coming to an end in 2012. The fact that the end is not the end but the beginning was stressed. We will be entering into a new cycle of healing where the universal soul and individual souls will truly become one. This will create a conscious union with the Divine Source/the light.

Listeners were advised to focus on their own soul, their inner light, and to learn to control their own mind. Everything will be amplified including our thoughts. Evolution is speeding up and there is no way to measure it. Another golden age is coming and all will explain and feel it differently. We are advised to explore the differences and oneness and honor them for it will bring healing through love and respect. Open yourself up to intuition awaken and remember.

I think the most important message was that it all begins with you. Respect yourself and do not give your power over to anyone. There is a union coming creating oneness with the body, mind, heart and soul.

I don’t think it matters if anyone believes that the messages in this video came from the Archangel Michael or not. They came from an entity much more enlightened than a human being. Why not an angel trying to communicate?

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Egoless?

As trouble making as an ego can be, “only an ego will try to get rid of an ego.” What a great quote. When you try to get rid of anything negative you are consciously enhancing it. You are giving it fuel.

An ego isn’t even real. It is an accumulation of society’s rules and what others have thought of you, from birth to your present state of confusion. It is energy that attaches itself to form and gets bigger and bigger until you believe that is who you are. You can never get rid of the ego you just have to learn to rise above it.

When you really look in your mirror and see the real you apart from everything else you will find your true center. You will feel the pristine goodness that was present before you were born into this body and is eternal. Your soul needs “no… thing” to make it work, as Rev. Mary M. Morrissey said many years ago.

Consciously connecting with your soul frees you from having to fit in to anyone’s idea of who you are and what you are supposed to do with your life. When you tune in to that guidance you are listening to your personal GPS. It is on the same frequency as Source and it is never going to steer you in the wrong direction.

At this time of year when people are thinking of ways to make their lives better I have a simple suggestion. Before responding or making decisions simply ask yourself- is this ego based or soul based? Good luck with that and Happy New Year!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

A harrowing experience

For six days I hadn’t driven into town because of snow packed road conditions. About noon I decided to make a trip to the grocery store. I was assured by a person who works in town that the road I needed to take had thawed from the last snow storm and was drivable.

As I turned the corner to the road all I could see was a white sheet of fresh ice. Apparently the road had thawed the day before, but because it got so cold last night the water left behind froze again. There was absolutely nothing I could do except take a deep breath grip the steering wheel and drive slow. My trip was about two miles, but it seemed like fifty. I dreaded each stop sign and pretty much ignored them after making sure nothing was coming from either direction.

By the time I arrived safely at the store my back and neck were stiff from the stressful situation I had endured. I don’t think I have ever been so scared. As I sat in my car trying to relax I didn’t know how I was going to get back home again.

The first person I saw inside the store was my son-in-law who works there. I stopped to talk to him about my ordeal and began to feel a little better. Although he sympathized with my situation there was obviously nothing he could do to help me. Even in his pickup he said he had trouble getting to work.

I spent as much time in the store as possible before returning to my car. Maybe I was hoping an angel would wave a magic wand and make the ice just go away while I was shopping. Dream on!

As I pulled out of the parking lot I paused for a minute dreading the thought of driving back over that ice covered road just waiting for an accident to happen. Following my intuition I turned right instead of left and decided to take another route home. I didn’t know what I would find, but decided anything had to be better than going back the same way I had come.

I found myself repeating over and over, “guide me to a safe way home”.

Although the roads I was led to take had some snow none were snow packed or icy. Before long I was on a main road that had been plowed. Getting home from there was a straight shot. I was very grateful for my unseen guide.

I later called my son-in-law and passed on the information of a safer route home when he got off work.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

The big C is here

The big day finally arrived- Christmas is here!

This morning I spent some time thinking about that first Christmas so very long ago; about the mother who gave birth in a stable. In some ways I don't think that birth was anymore special than the birth of any other child since that night. We all came from the same source and that pretty much makes us brothers and sisters. I also believe we all have a mission to spread the love of our Creator. We all posses unique tools and a path to accomplish that mission. Some souls just become a little more elevated than others because that's the way it was meant to be.

Probably the tradition of gifts originated with the three wise men bringing their simple offerings of gold, frankincense and myrrh. In today's world the gifts have gotten way out of hand, in my opinion at least. It makes me very sad to see what is piled under the trees when so many would be grateful for a simple meal or a warm place to sleep. I wish I had lived in the days of old when gifts were all hand made with love.

As I look out on my driveway still covered with a foot of snow everything is beautiful and peaceful. The untouched snow is sparkling from the light reflected by the sun. It is going to be a quiet day of reflection for me. Perhaps it will be a day of focusing on what I can personally do to make 2012 a more loving positive year.

Seven more days and it all begins again. It has been a traumatic year of devastation for so many and if the people of the world have not learned their lessons there will be more to come. I hope that I will live long enough on this planet called earth to see the positive changes that are possible when love becomes the mantra to live by.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

My snow bound adventure

On the day before Christmas I am still snug in my warm house unable to travel further than I can walk. Yesterday morning I dug a path for my grandson, Colin to get from the street to my house. He's only 4 feet tall and the snow is about 2 feet deep. This time it was very dry and powdery so it didn't take as much effort to remove it. It did finally stop snowing, but the roads were in such terrible shape I called my dinner guests and postponed our plans until Monday. There was a huge sigh of relief on the other end of the phone line. I would have felt terrible if anyone had been in an accident just coming to dinner.

Colin had been one of the invited guests and he still wanted to have dinner with me. He was dropped off at my house and that is exactly what he did. We had our very own pre-Christmas dinner served on TV trays while watching cartoons. It wasn't what I had planned to eat, but he was happy with ham, shell macaroni & cheese and Italian green beans. I almost forgot cookies and cream ice cream for dessert. He's coming back on Monday for the vegetarian chile etc.

Around 10:00 AM this morning I heard footsteps on the porch and knew it was Colin, coming to pick up his Christmas gift and others for his family. He already knows what his gift is as he helped pick it out. It's a Lego Alien Star Wars kit. I'd be willing to bet he isn't going to wait until tonight to open the box.

He made a second trip back to my house to bring me my gift, which he made himself. He insisted I open it now. It is a set of painted plaster stepping stones for my yard. I believe I'm going to have to wait awhile before placing them though. I love getting things from him that he has made. Below is a view of my gift.


In a little while I am going to pop a small marinated pork roast in the oven for my dinner. The marinade is one I usually use on a 3-4 lb pork loin and I want to share it with you because it makes the meat juicy and just yummy.

mix together
1/2 c. orange or apple juice
1/2 c. soy sauce
1 tsp. dry mustard
1 tsp basil
1/2 tsp onion powder
(place meat & marinade in a plastic bag and let sit in refrigerator for at least 2 hours or longer) I usually do it overnight.

P.S.
I expected to have a quiet Christmas Eve by myself, but it didn't work out that way. Colin ended up at my house while his mother went shopping. Together we shared the delicious roast I had been cooking. He told his mother it was really good so I made her a plate for him to take home.

I wish you all a safe and peaceful holiday. Merry Christmas to all my readers!

Friday, December 23, 2011

Our best laid plans...

Not thinking about snow didn't help much. It snowed from about noon to midnight yesterday and this is the view from my front door this morning. It doesn't look very inviting to the guests I have invited for dinner tonight. The icicles look menacing and the shrub bent over by the new snow is blocking the steps to the entrance. We probably have as much snow as we did before the roads were plowed a few days ago. Now what am I supposed to do?


Yesterday I heard a quote that pretty much sums up my situation this morning. It was stress happens when things don't go the way we expect them to.

The way I see it is that I have two choices either accept what is or get upset about it. I am going with the flow.

Unless a miracle happens and the roads and my driveway are cleared (melted) today I will not be having my little get together this evening. It is sad because it was going to be a replacement for Christmas eve and day, when I no doubt will be home alone with my two kitties.

Yesterday I baked the cake for desert and the New Mexico corn bread. Today I have no choice but to put the ingredients for the vegetarian chili in the crock pot because I had already cut up the raw vegetables that are part of the recipe, before the snow came. I see two possibilities here. Either the party can be postponed until Monday or my freezer is going to be full of yet to be consumed food. Either way nothing will go to waste.

This is my life in little old Grants, New Mexico on this December 23, 2011. It is what it is and there isn't much I can do to change it. Our best laid plans are quite often screwed up at the last minute. Is this a test?

Thursday, December 22, 2011

No more snow please!

In my little town in western New Mexico we don’t get a whole lot of snow. We almost never see a white Christmas, even though Grants lies at the base of Mt. Taylor. This year the powers that be are trying their best to rectify that situation.

Five days before Christmas Eve we had between 1 to 2 feet of the white stuff deposited everywhere. If that doesn’t make all those young souls wishing for a white Christmas happy I don’t know what will. One good thing about snow coming this week is the kids are already out of school for Christmas break so they won’t have snow days to make up later in the year. That should make the teachers happy too.

For me I am very glad I listened to the weather man and his predictions. I stocked up on things one wouldn’t want to be without when forced to stay home. In my case it was cat food, water and toilet paper. Fortunately there is plenty to eat in my freezer and pantry. It may not be my first choice under ordinary circumstances, but sometimes you just have to do what you have to do.

Driving on ice is something I avoid at all cost. My little Hyundai Accent and icy road conditions combined with a nervous driver loudly proclaim stay home! I do my best to comply.

Monday night just as I was thinking about how I was going to remove the foot of snow covering my driveway I heard a loud motor noise outside. It sounded like someone was driving a four wheeler back and forth under my window. My reaction was that’s pretty stupid it’s dark out there. What kind of a jerk would do such a thing I wondered as I opened my blinds to check it out?

I couldn’t believe my eyes as I caught sight of my son-in-law on a small snow plow and my grandson joyously riding on the back waving to me. They were plowing the snow in my driveway. I’ve heard about immediate answers to requests, but that was something for a book listing miracles. I later told him that was my Christmas present. In addition to this miracle someone else plowed all the streets in the vicinity of my house the next morning. I have lived here since 1980 and nobody has ever done that before. Our streets are always the last to thaw, making it difficult to get into town

The best thing about this unexpected white surprise is that my young grandson was at my house for two days while his parents were at work. He helped me clear a path to my front door and had a ball making footprints all over my white front yard. It’s like he was announcing to the world, “I was here!” Yesterday he was invited to go with a friend to go tubing on Mt. Taylor. He was overjoyed to say the least.

Christmas Eve is two days off and we have another wave of the storm predicted for today. I’m trying not to panic as I have guests invited for dinner tomorrow night. I’m going ahead with my plans as if I didn’t know the storm was expected. Maybe if I don’t think about it the snow will drop somewhere else and leave us alone.

What is that I see out my window? No it’s snow!!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Who needs resolutions?

In all of my long life I don’t recall ever making a formal New Years resolution, kept or unkept. I don’t think I have missed anything. I tend to do things to suit myself not to follow a trend set by the rest of the world. I have made many life changing decisions, but I wouldn’t exactly call them resolutions. I think they are more the result of inheriting very stubborn, one might even call them, controlling genes.

To start with I have removed two husbands and their life long negative addictions from my life. Twelve years ago I ended a 40 year addiction of my own to nicotine. I mistakenly thought cigarettes were my best friend until I woke up. Who in the world wants a best friend who is 3 inches tall, smells bad and can lead to serious health problems and even death? That took a little more then resolution. It took determination and a desire to care about myself and live a healthier life.

I think desiring to live a better life is at the root of any resolution. It simply requires a really good mirror to see your life in a different light. Next you need to become a surgeon and skillfully play the game of operation, carefully plucking out any offending debris that is causing you to live an unhappy life. Whether a person or a thing, you need to stop dragging it around as if it were an anchor, because it really is. Just think how much lighter your load would be just carrying yourself around. Maybe there would be no need to go on that diet you were planning.

My latest thing, okay just once I’ll call it a resolution, is to shed any remaining negative energy that is holding me back. I’ve been working on that one for several years I just didn’t know until recently that it was my entire life goal. You see the mirror I had been using had become a bit fogged up from other people breathing on it. I was given a new one recently and the view is now very clear. Perhaps I was right all along, resolutions are not for me. All I ever needed was a better mirror.

Sunday, December 18, 2011

A new tradition

Christmas for most people is a week away. Many houses will have living room floors covered with colored paper and bows purchased to be torn off packages and tossed in the trash. In addition there are trees that will also be disposed of. What a strange and wasteful tradition that is. I am opting for dispensing of it all in favor of a less dramatic get together say on Friday December 23.

School is out and everything will be closing down toward the end of the week. Most people, including my own family will be focusing on their big day, falling on Sunday this year. I wouldn't want to interfere with their plans as they have earned the right to do as they wish. I thought and thought of how I could have a quiet celebration of my own without interfering with plans that I am not part of.

My thinking produced the following: I gave them all Christmas cards yesterday with an invitation to come to my house on December 23 for an informal pre-Christmas dinner. I have one gift for everyone. I also will be serving a healthy meal of vegetarian chili with mini fusilli, a simple fruit salad, cornmeal muffins and for dessert a chocolate cake to celebrate the 51st birthday of my oldest son, currently working in Kuwait.

That should about do it for my plans. If it works out I just might continue it as a new tradition. Instead of Christmas I am going to call it Family Appreciation Day.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

Just let it go

I am so excited about the way my writing group is developing. After all this time it looks like I have finally learned to just let something happen of its own accord, without setting rules or anticipating how it should happen. In other words just let it go.

Our group added three new members this week, all sharing their unique interest in writing based on their own life experiences. We don't even have a name for our group and that may never happen. We all posses a love of words and what can be done with them. It is so interesting to see how that simple fact is shared by each person.

The only rule I am going to insist on for the group is respect. It is the only rule I had when I started my children's group last year. When someone is speaking or presenting their work listen. If you have feedback on what they have offered make it positive not negative. We are gathered to help and inspire not hurt and destroy.

I can see that this group is a learning tool for me. It is my MO to make lists, be prepared and see the end result before beginning anything. On the giant screen of life I can now see that this writing group just needed my original idea of inviting people with a common interest to join together in the same place at the same time. All I really had to do was provide the tools to allow that to happen. Now all I have to do is let go and let it be.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Charity a gift of love

Several years ago when my grandson was just a little guy I spent Christmas Eve at my daughter’s house. There was food and gifts exchanged, but I went home without feeling the spirit of Christmas. I went to bed that night and prayed that Christmas day would bring what was missing. The following is an excerpt from my second book, A Gathering of Spirit.

On Christmas morning after eating breakfast I cleaned things up a little for whoever would be coming later in the day. After preparing the roast to marinate I decided to take a little time for myself. I had a few slices of bread that I wanted to get rid of and decided to take them to the park to give the birds a treat. It was a very cold and clear morning.

As I began tossing out the breadcrumbs I noticed a young man sitting on a park bench. My immediate reaction was that he was homeless and probably cold and hungry. I thought, maybe I should ask him to have dinner with us. My second thought was that in this day and age maybe that was not very smart.

I continued to feed the birds and as I was leaving the park I couldn’t stop thinking about the young man on the bench. As I started my car I made a decision to try to find some place that was open to get him something hot to drink. I began to drive down the near empty main street.

My mission was accomplished when I purchased cappuccino and pastry from a convenience store in the neighborhood. I noted that the total came to $2.01 and probably was not a coincidence. The biblical quote, “What you do unto the least of my brethren you do unto me” ran through my mind.

Returning to the bench I approached the young man, who was wearing a backpack and appeared to be well kept for a homeless person. I asked if he wanted something hot to drink and he said he did. After setting my offering on the bench I wished him a Merry Christmas and he returned the greeting.

A nearby church would soon be having services and I felt that he could find help there if he needed to. After all it was Christmas day!

As I was driving home I recalled reading a story about a minister who had dressed in rags and placed himself outside his church just prior to services. He wanted to see what his congregation would do. They walked right by him. When it was time for the service to begin, the minister still in rags went down the center aisle to the pulpit and used the experience to wake up his congregation.

The life story belonging to the young man on the bench is not for me to know. I believe our meeting was meant to be. I am very happy with the decision I made and I have a feeling that whoever was watching was too. I found what was missing from Christmas by simply following my heart.

Charity to be fruitful must cost us. …to love, it is necessary to give; to give it is necessary to be free of selfishness. ~ Mother Teresa

Faith, hope and charity; the greatest of these is charity. Charity means love.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Did I do that?

I had an interesting experience this morning that could be considered a miracle. It left me asking myself, "did I do that?"

For several weeks I had been unable to get a dial tone on the phone I use for my office. At first I assumed it was the phone so I purchased a new one. That wasn't the problem. Then I tested the phone cords. That wasn't the problem. I finally decided there was something wrong with the phone jack. I thought it might be dirty so I cleaned it with a small brush. I still had no dial tone on the phone.

I came to the conclusion that I would have to make an appointment for a service call, but I was in no hurry to spend the extra money. The phone in my living room has a long cord so when I was in my office I moved that phone close enough to hear it ring. It was a bit of a nuisance, but at least I didn't miss any calls, providing I remembered to move the phone.

This morning a strong something told me to plug the office phone into the "wounded" phone jack one more time. First I blew on the jack just in case there was dust in it then I literally said, "I invite a miracle to happen". I picked up the receiver and yes I had a dial tone. At first I didn't believe it and expected it to stop working at any moment. Eventually I began to trust, but wondered what had happened.

About fifteen minutes later the phone rang. It startled me as I hadn't had a phone in my office for weeks. The man on the other end of the line was calling for information about the writing group I recently started. I knew who he was and after talking to him I also knew he would fit into our group very nicely.

I am still in awe of the new phone connection. It caused me to look up Mercury. I found that today it is moving out of retrograde, where it has been since November 24th. Is it possible that is what happened? Looking back over the days since Thanksgiving I saw that it has not been a very pleasant time for me. I have been having communication problems as well as other problems that could be attributed to Mercury's behavior.

There is also the eclipse that happened a few days ago on December 10th. It signaled a big change for me, especially in my attitude. I had read that what you focus on for three days before and three days after the eclipse will make a huge difference in what happens in your life. I decided to focus on love and good health, not consciously thinking much more about it. I even sent daily love and light to a person who has refused communication for over a year. Suddenly I began to feel lighter and stopped worrying about my health. It felt like a huge amount of negative energy had been lifted.

Taking all this into consideration I do still wonder if the planets caused my improved reception or did I do that with my change of focus and simple faith of inviting a miracle to happen?

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A Mirror Image

I have heard that when you encounter a person that you have a problem with they are reflecting something that you need to work on in your own life. In contemplating that thought this morning I finally got it. A Mirror image!

I started making a list of those people who have passed through my life and have left for one reason or another. I was feeling very sad about the loss of some of them until I realized what they all have in common. They are negative controlling souls who have a serious need to be in charge of everything in their environment. Why didn't I see that before?

The fact that they are no longer in my life is not a bad thing it is a very good thing warranting a major celebration. It means that I have moved up the spiritual ladder and am no longer attracting these kinds of people.

The people who I am now attracting are loving, kind, compassionate souls whose entire being is about sharing love. When I look in my mirror I no longer see a negative controlling person who has a need to control her environment. I rather like the new mirror image that I see looking back at me.

Friday, December 9, 2011

A Christmas Gift

I missed being a Christmas gift for my parents by a mere three weeks, but at least I was responsible for my mother losing some weight before the big day. Hey thoughtful me I even came in the morning so I wouldn’t interfere with her lunch!

My first born began announcing his arrival very early on Christmas morning. I always told him it wasn’t my fault. He was due on the 19th of December. The present he got that year was the gift of life. The present I got was assuming the role of a mother.

I have been around for a lot of Christmas events. In all that time I really don’t remember anything I really set my mind to that I wanted for a gift. Whatever I got was just fine. Growing up our family didn’t have a whole lot of money, but we never seemed to lack anything important like food. My mother spent a lot of hours making gifts with her trusty sewing machine. Her creations for me and my dolls were one of a kind.

I remember a Christmas when I was in high school. I had a part time job and decided to save up my money to buy my family a special gift. At the time we lived in a rather ratty apartment above my grandfather’s second hand store. It wasn’t a place I comfortably brought friends to. The gift I bought was a whole set of pastel plastic dishes. Dishes are dishes and I couldn’t afford china! That was also the year I decided it was better to give than to receive. I have no idea what my gifts were.

I think that Christmas set the tone for a path I would take in my adult life. I have always found it difficult to receive and only recently have begun to accept the fact that I am worth every single thing that the universe has in store for me. Oh don’t get me wrong, I still give because it makes me happy, but I now also accept not only at Christmas, but all year long.

In closing I would like to share a poem I wrote several years ago for a Christmas telethon for St. Vincent de Paul. It expresses the simple fact that love is the best gift you can give or receive. Isn’t that why God became man?

One Gift

If you could have one gift for Christmas
tell me what would it be someone asked.
Seriously pondering the question awhile,
the gift I choose wouldn’t be under the tree.

What I really want for Christmas
I told the person who had asked me
is the most precious treasured gift of all;
LOVE, pure and simple and completely free.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Thanks for the memories

Birthdays are a great time to look back at your life from the view of an observer. It is also a great time to review the lessons that have been offered and notice how many times that had to happen before they were learned. Some are still works in progress. I hope I learn them before the pebbles being dropped on my head become boulders.

There are people who believe we are supposed to have a life full of only good memories. I totally disagree with that assessment. It would be like reading the same fairy tale over and over until every word has been memorized.

Personally I am grateful for the shit that has happened in my life. It gives me something to compare the good stuff to. I do believe that we attract what we get in the form of relationships and experiences, but how can we know what is good for us if we have nothing to compare it to? I say bring on the shit because now I know what it looks and smells like and I can side step it before it hits me in the face.

Live and learn people have said; well now I have learned and it is time to live. No more wasting time tending other’s shit. I have had about enough of my own. If anyone desires to live their life as a negative human I’m just going to let them. Perhaps someday they will take the time to look back at their life experiences and take stock of the lessons that were provided and ignored.

Memories are a useful tool when we care to use them properly.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Gifts do not need a box

Yesterday was my birthday, never mind the number, but I am old enough to have a married granddaughter who has a child; making me a great grandmother. You figure it out!

This year I received some interesting gifts and not all of them arrived in a box. I spent much of the day happily responding to birthday wishes from almost 60 friends from all over the world. It made me wonder how loud Happy Birthday would have sounded if they had all been in the same room at the same time.

This wondrous gift of friendship could never have been possible if I had not made the move to check out Facebook a couple of years ago. Many people my age wouldn't touch it with a ten foot pole. The online friends I have attracted mean a great deal to me and they offer as much love as anyone living right here in my own little town. Friends of any kind are the "bestest" gift the universe could offer.

In addition to these wishes I also received some other very nice gifts that didn't all come in a box.

The first was a luscious assortment of chocolate truffles sent by a special friend in another state. It didn't take me long to taste the treat. Someone had to open the box and once it was opened well...!

The next was a beautiful Christmas cactus loaded with buds about to bloom sent by my fabulous son. Since he is still working in Kuwait I emailed him a photo so he could see what he had paid for. I hope the blooms will open by Christmas.

Last night a friend took me to dinner as a gift. I ordered my favorite, lobster and pasta. It was wonderful! Although it didn't come in a box, some of it came home in a box and I had it for lunch today. It was still just as good as it was last night.

My last gift was a phone call from my young grandson wishing me a happy birthday and inviting me to go to his first basketball game of the season this morning. His team lost but it was a good game. He followed up with spending several hours at my house today. He admitted he had forgotten it was my birthday and didn't have a present. He then decided his special gift to me was himself. He said he just wanted to spend some time with grandma.

I believe I have proven gifts don't always need a box to be very special!

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Adventures of a writing group

I am happy to report my new writing group is making progress and moving in a positive direction. I have to admit that I was hesitant about forming a group, but I am very happy that I did. Even though the holiday season may not have been the best time to try out my idea we are slowly picking up people who have an interest in writing. I am confident that after the chores, traditions and joys of Christmas and the New Years have passed people will be looking for a new focus.

My place is coordinator and making sure everyone has a chance to shine during the hour that we spend together. Actually I am finding that role rather fun. We decided at our first meeting that none of us desire to sit for an hour writing about a given subject. We have agreed to use the time to encourage, share and critique our work and most of all inspire each other to write about their chosen subject.

We have a varied group which makes it fun and gives each person a chance to learn about something they may not have known before. Some of us are published authors and some are waiting for work to find the right outlet for their finished project. Gerald has written a novel and several children's books, which he also illustrates. Patricia has had a medical research paper published and is in the process of doing further research. Vicky is the most unusual member as she has been receiving detailed information on a book for several years through her dreams. At the moment she is experiencing a writers block. Perhaps her source is tired! Then there is our newest member,Joyce, who in the past has written poetry and short articles. I hope we can encourage her to pick up her pen and write again. Of course, I write about things that happen in my daily life and also try to be inspirational.

I am so far very happy with the direction our little community of like minded individuals is headed. Although we are not going to sit in a room writing we did agree on going home with an idea to write about and share the next time we get together. Today's suggestion was Christmas. I will admit it is sort of a no brainer at this time of year, but it is the first thing that came to my mind.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Life can hurt

If you are involved in a manipulating relationship, either as the manipulator or the person being manipulated, life can hurt.

Although any form of manipulating is an attempt to control someone else it often expresses a need to be in control of one’s own life. It can be the result of low self-esteem caused by a traumatic experience that hurt deeply. The manipulator simply has a need to be in control again. They are not mean people, just confused.

There are many ways to manipulate. There is the person who uses money/education/degrees to intimidate another and make them feel stupid. There are those who threaten to take away their love/support/attention causing fear of abandonment in another. There are the martyrs who eternally give to and help others expecting them to like/love/appreciate them because they are so generous. There are those who constantly play the victim/poor me role inviting others to feel sorry for them. There are those who use put downs in the form of a joke or are overly critical causing the other person to feel inferior to them. The list goes on and on. There are no doubt as many different methods as there are people.

One curious fact about manipulating is that it always requires a partner. It can’t be done in a vacuum. The other fact is that you can’t change the manipulator; you can only change your response. You can disable the relationship by making a change in yourself. Waking up to realize that you are a manipulator or that you are allowing another to manipulate you is a giant first step to taking back control of your life. It is necessary to admit your contribution to the problem.

Until I did a little research on the subject it never occurred to me that I have spent a good portion of my life manipulating in an effort to gain love/respect/appreciation. What a shock it was for me to see myself in that role. I have always been a martyr, giving and doing and helping others. Until now I didn’t realize I had a subconscious motive. I truly thought I was just a very generous person. When you give with a motive it is not truly giving. Today I know I developed this method of control because of an early trauma in my life. That is not an excuse, simply a fact.

I also see that all of my adult life I have attracted the poor me souls who fed right into my chosen method of control. If I have not accomplished anything else during 2011 I am through playing this game. The biggest noise I can make is to quietly walk away. From this day forward I am in control of me and I no longer choose to manipulate anyone else. Life is full of enough hurts and I am no longer contributing!

Saturday, November 26, 2011

After the Big Event

As I said in a previous post the best part of Thanksgiving for me is the cooking. After the big event I came across a couple of interesting recipes that I want to share and try myself. Follow me if you will.

Leftover turkey & stuffing enchiladas
1 1/2 cups turkey gravy
1/4 cup sour cream
1 1/2 cups chopped turkey
1 1/2 cups leftover stuffing warmed
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese, divided
10 corn tortillas warmed
1 can diced tomatoes with basil, garlic and oregano drained
non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Spray a 13x9 inch baking dish with cooking spray. Combine gravy and sour cream in small bowl, spread 1/2 mixture in dish. Combine turkey, stuffing and 1/2 cup cheese in bowl. Top each tortilla with 3 tablespoons turkey mixture. Roll up and place seam side down in baking dish. Spoon remaining gravy mixture over enchiladas, sprinkle with drained tomatoes and the remaining cheese. Cover dish with foil, bake 25 minutes until hot and cheese melts. Remove foil and bake 5 minutes more.

Sounds good, but I am going to add some chopped green chile, eliminate the gravy and mix the sour cream with whole cranberry sauce instead.

Next from my Facebook friend Lois Middleton we have:
Pumpkin Waffles
1 cup canned or pureed pumpkin
1/2 cup almond milk
3/4 cup flour
1/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves
1/4 tsp salt
Or use 2 tsp pumpkin pie spice instead of cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger cloves.

Wisk pumpkin and milk together. Add dry ingredients. Spoon into hot waffle iron leaving room for expansion.

It's always fun to mix things up a bit and try something new. Enjoy!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Memorable Holidays

I've had two very memorable family holidays in my life that were not celebrated in the traditional way. Although neither was planned, both resulted in weight loss.

The first occurred on Christmas 1960. I woke in the middle of the night with stomach pains and headed for the hospital. Several hours later my first born son, weighing 7 lbs 3 oz, arrived. He was the most special Christmas gift I have ever received. Nothing else has compared as it gave me the title of mother. I didn't even have time to open the gifts under the tree, but I forgave him for arriving six days late.

Through the years we always opened gifts on Christmas eve and celebrated his birthday on Christmas day. The traditional dessert was birthday cake. This year he will be able to celebrate his special day separated from Jesus because I don't think Kuwait does Christmas!




The second occurred on Thanksgiving 1989. A couple of weeks before the holiday I had been diagnosed with endometrial cancer. I was admitted to the hospital on Monday and my surgery to remove a cancerous mass was Tuesday morning. Of course, I was hooked up to an IV and was not allowed food of any kind. So Thanksgiving consisted of listening to the nurses as they gave me a blow by blow of their wonderful dinners. I, on the other hand, was on a diet of chipped ice.

To make the situation worse I was not allowed to lift anything over 5 lbs. when I came home from the hospital so cooking a late turkey was out of the question. My husband's cousin felt sorry for me and brought over a complete cooked Thanksgiving dinner. Food never tasted so good!

I absolutely do not intend to spend another major holiday in a hospital bed no matter what! Memorable or not there are better ways to loose weight!

Sit back and relax

I have a terrible habit of trying to force things, especially relationships to happen when if they did it would lead to a whole lot of unpleasant experiences. It is hard to see that outcome when I believe getting what I want is the only path to my happiness.

When I look back at some of the people and possessions I thought I couldn't live without I utter a silent prayer that it didn't work out. Is it possible the universe knows just a little more about what I really need than I do? Desires are often tainted with the desires of my ego. I usually don't take the time to consider the consequences or the fact that something much better might just be past what I am asking for.

Two days before Thanksgiving I am still harboring a few hurt feelings that I will no doubt be spending the day alone. It is a whole lot better than spending it with people who don't even see me and have invited me because they think they should or even worse out of guilt. I have concluded that if I do not receive a sincere invitation for my company this year I am much better off staying with my own turkey.

I heard a wonderful quote this morning attributed to Tama Keives via a Facebook friend. In part it was. "Stop knocking on doors that are not your doors. You do have your own people." That is so true. We wear ourselves out trying to get others to see us when all we really need to do is relax and we will attract all the positive souls we need.

Some other pertinent quotes I have found are:

Accept what is, not want you want it to be.

I am who I am your approval isn't necessary.

It is a privilege to be in my inner circle, only those who treat me well get to enter and remain in that circle.

Trust that all is just the way it is supposed to be and everything will work out for your highest good.

And finally this one, which I am sure was written especially for me, You can't keep doing the same things and expect different results.

In closing I hope you will all have a very happy Thanksgiving and that you will spend it with people who really enjoy your company.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Here we go again!

Here it comes another family holiday is just around the corner. I am trying to convince myself I don't mind celebrating it alone. Last year my oldest son was here from Colorado. This year he is working in Kuwait for another nine months. The rest of my family no doubt have plans that don't include me. When put that way it does sound a bit cruel. I have learned to accept things as they are, so I will poke around until I find the good in this situation.

The thing I like best about Thanksgiving is the cooking. I have never found it to be a chore. I truly love preparing holiday meals.

I remember the first turkey I ever cooked. Newly married, I had no idea what I was supposed to do with the bird. I had invited the entire family, including my grandparents for dinner. My father, who probably thought I might kill everyone off, came to help me get it ready for the oven. As I recall he also carved it. In all the years I have cooked turkeys I have never had to carve one. This year will be my first experiment. It is probably just as well that I will have no audience. It should help that I purchased an electric knife last year and I can always Google directions if I get stuck.

Even if I am eating alone I will still have all the trimmings except my daughter's favorite, the green bean casserole. I don't know how that ever got so popular. I'm sure the Pilgrims and Indians had plain old corn and I recently heard they did not eat turkey. They most likely had fish, which would have been just fine with me.

Assuming I can actually remove all the meat from the bird the carcass is going in a big pot with vegetables and pasta to make soup. Most of the leftovers will be divided and end up in my freezer to be enjoyed on other days.

On this family holiday I refuse to feel sorry for myself just because I will be alone. I am going to spend the time counting my blessings and just being grateful that I am alive. I intend to be as kind to myself as possible no matter what happens.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

One two three...go

This morning I am heading into a new adventure. It is the first meeting of the creative writing group that is my brain child. It is not a class, but rather a gathering of like minded individuals who have an interest in writing. We are starting with a small group and hope word of mouth will attract more as we go along.

I don’t really see it as sitting in a room writing as much as supporting each other and offering information each of us has acquired through our own experience. Every writer has a different approach and their own style of writing. Some prefer fiction and others non-fiction, while some like to write poems. I know at least one interested person loves to edit and is a stickler for spelling and correct grammar. I see the potential for the group as a melting pot of ideas, possibly creating a combined effort of some kind in the future.

As any writer knows writing is only the first step. A really big problem is promotion. I hope our little group can share information on this subject too. Today there are so many new ways to get work out there for others to read. Some of them do not require an editor or a lot of money.

It is my personal desire to inspire others to write. I really believe it can be very therapeutic. Writing things down allows the conscious mind to see what the sub-conscious mind already knows. Often writers don’t even know they have talent until someone pushes them in the right direction. Someone did that for me several years ago and now I want to return the favor.

Our first group meeting will be very informal, just getting together to talk about things such as: where we want to go from here, how often do we want to meet and especially learning what each participant desires to draw from joining such a group.

As an ice breaker I thought it might be fun to give them a little writing prompt just to see what happens. The prompt is: Imagine you wake up in the morning, go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and the person looking back at you isn’t you. Who is it and why do you think he/she is there?

Looking back in my mirror would be my young grandson making one of his famous funny faces and he would be telling me to relax, have fun, only do things that make me happy and most of all stay far away from people and situations that don't.

I’ll check back with you later after I know if my latest idea has wings and will fly. One two three…go!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A True Soulmate

For several years I have been looking around for my true soulmate and was about to give up when a real connection became apparent to me. There was no need to look any further. I now believe after searching and praying and checking out everyone I met that my true soulmate is my very own soul.

My soul, although not a visible being, is the one entity who knows me better than anyone else. It is the pristine connection to all that is; a guide to a cleaner way of living my life. Several years ago people were going around thinking and asking what would Jesus do? (WWJD) I tuned into that only briefly. I think a better question is what would my soul do?

A conscious connection with your soul tends to keep your ego at bay and gives one a choice of how to respond to life’s little challenges. Those tests are still going to be there because that is how we learn and evolve while living on this planet called earth.

Granted there are many souls that cross our path that cause us to feel we have a special connection or that we are so close that we feel we have always known them. I believe they are the members of our immediate soul family and are here to support us or sometimes be supported by us on our individual journeys.

I could be wrong, of course, but I now believe our only true soulmate is our very own soul and I am grateful that I have achieved a conscious connection with mine, for I will never feel alone again.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Forgiven

Refusing to forgive is no doubt the worst act you can inflict upon yourself. If not careful it can destroy an otherwise perfectly good life. It can cause phobias which in turn lead to life long dysfunctional behavior, affecting relationships with everyone on your path to your own evolvement. The most important being who needs to be forgiven is you.

For true forgiveness you must recognize your part in the conflict, accept your responsibility and forgive yourself for any intentional or unintentional wrong doing.

You cannot forgive another until you first forgive you. It often requires going back to the scene of the “crime” and looking at it from a bystanders view. It gets the ego out of the way. Often the imagined offense will be so silly you just have to laugh, not only at the situation, but at yourself for participating in the first place.

My mother was a very negative being who criticized everything I did until she died in 1987. Because of information I received in 2007, which allowed me to see a trauma in her early life, I finally forgave her- I thought. It was only recently that I realized I still held onto a grudge for something she did when I was a child.

The supposed wrongdoing led me to never being able to trust anyone or anything again. Because I couldn’t trust I became a controlling adult who had to do everything myself. I thought it was the only way things would work out. Well I was wrong!

My ego intentionally attracted people, especially men, who I knew in advance I would never be able to trust. The ego was saying, “See I told you so.”

I went on to do and say things that I knew would alienate others just to hear the ego again chant, “See I told you so.”

A chain of events has just occurred in my real life that has allowed me to step back and view the root of this problem. It all began many years ago and it had to do with the fact that I had never forgiven my mother for something that she did way back in 1942. It was not even a conscious act on my part, but it had caused negative things to happen all of my adult life.

I had experienced an extremely painful earache in my left ear for a couple of days. My grandmother finally convinced my mother that I needed to see a doctor right away. She was right. I was immediately scheduled for surgery and my mother was told that if she had waited another day I would not have lived.

A couple of months ago I experienced a similar situation, but this time I was in charge. I had been in excruciating stomach pain for two days and in the middle of the night finally went to the ER for help. I was informed the next day that if I had waited for another day I would not have lived.

I am now able to forgive both myself and my mother because I realize that we both simply made a human mistake that could have resulted in my death.

So mom on this November 12, 2011 you are finally forgiven and I love you!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Wars never solved anything

I have found that the universe always gives us opportunities to take a positive path. The decision to accept is always up to us. Where there is a will to do good there is a way.

Last night I had that opportunity to show my grandson that it is not necessary to carry negative feeling around forever. My husband and I have been divorced for several years and although we no longer care to be married we have made peace with each other. I am sure his family of cousins would be amazed if they just took the time to notice.

Last night our high school band had a concert for Veterans Day. My grandson and I have been going to these events for some time. He enjoys the band and especially loves watching our award winning ROTC group perform.

Something led me to suggest that Colin call his grandfather and ask if he wanted to go to the concert with us. He did and he did. He doesn't get around much anymore because he doesn't have a car. We had an enjoyable time, except sore bottoms from sitting in bleacher seats above the gym so Colin could have a better view. There was a funny moment when he had decided to sit on his jacket for padding and then remembered he had a bag of doughnut holes in the pocket. Whew the munchies were safe!

This morning I was happy to have had the opportunity to teach Colin that positive energy comes from forgiving not fighting. Wars never solved anything.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Comfortable Place

Totaling up my life less than a month before my birthday I have concluded that I have survived:
73 years on earth
20 years living with parents
13 years in Masonic organizations
25 years in Catholic church
40 years with husbands who had negative addictions
40 years volunteering
3 major surgeries
2 non communicating children
numerous friends who have moved on

No wonder I am looking around and thinking it is time to put all of this stuff behind me and find a new reason for being.

At the moment I feel somewhat like Alice in Wonderland as she tried to find a seat at the Mad Hatter's tea party. No room no room is all I can hear as I try to find a place of my own. I had an interesting experience at Senior Citizens yesterday that could have come right out of this book. I had decided to find another table to sit at to give a former friend her needed space. I sat down at a table to talk to a man I knew. The woman next to me said, "You do know someone is sitting there?" They must have been invisible!

A few days ago I was led to read Up Island by Anne Rivers Siddons and I am laughing at the contents because changing a couple of details it could have been written about my life. In a brief moment a woman who thought she had a family found it was all a fantasy. Her husband finds a younger woman and wants a divorce, her domineering mother suddenly dies, her father moves away, her son goes to school in another state and to top it all off she and her best friend find they no longer have much in common. It was time for her to find another place to be. I can't wait to see how the book ends.

Intentionally attracting new people to your life as it continues to change is not the easiest thing to accomplish. Maybe the first step is to think about what makes you happiest and go from there. For me it is writing and so I have decided to form a creative writing group and see what happens. Perhaps it won't work, but perhaps it will. At least it is a first step into a place that I might comfortably fit.
Every journey begins with a single step.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Communication a two way street

What does one do when an adult who is supposed to be a friend suddenly stops answering her phone and refuses to talk to you? This happened to me over the weekend and I found out from the friend’s sister that I apparently did something to make her angry and she no longer cares to communicate with me. She would not tell me what that was. I was told to figure it out. I have no clue what her problem could be.

I think “her problem” are the important words. As far as I know I have no problem with her. It pretty much reminds me of a child throwing a tantrum. I believe the best advice most parents get in that situation is ignore the behavior the child will get over it.

I was telling another friend at lunch today about this experience and her advice was just let it go. Why is that always so hard for me to do? My ego is saying “it must be your fault you must have done or said something to offend her.”

My logical mind and guidance is saying “the more you focus on it the more negative energy you are creating. If this grownup wants to act like a child let her it is none of your business”.

I know my only part in this scenario is how I am going to react. This is what I did; I sent her a simple Hallmark card telling her she is a special person who deserves only the best the universe has to offer. I extended an olive branch, whether or not she accepts it is her choice.

After all communication is a two way street.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Help is on the Way

Yesterday was a very enlightening day on my journey to healing. After asking for help from the Archangel Jophiel, who never lets me down, I was led to two souls that I had not met before. If you remember, in my previous post I said I was going out to meet my spiritual family.

My story begins with the fact that for several days my blood pressure has been elevated to the point of causing anxiety. Since my surgery on 9/20 it has been wonderful and I was thrilled that my medication had been reduced to a very low dose and was working. On 11/30, the day before I was released by my doctor, it began to creep up for no apparent reason. It scared me to the point of making an appointment with my primary care facility because I was no longer my surgeon’s patient.

Enter the first of my helpers, Carol, who is a Physician Assistant. Strangely it was her first day at this facility and I am quite sure it was no accident that I was to see her. Her manner was unlike any medical person I had ever experienced. She actually listened and checked my heart, which was fine. Her first question was, “What has changed in the last few days?” I told her I had been released by my surgeon a few days earlier, I was having relationship problems and I still had medical bills to settle. She observed I was under a lot of stress. I agreed with her. In our conversation I told her I wrote inspirational/spiritual books. She almost laughed when she said, “Then you know that you are fine and the universe will take care of you.” It is something I am supposed to know, but did not really believe until it came from her mouth.

She did not increase my medication believing it would cause my blood pressure to be dangerously low. Instead she suggested I try to relax. Where have I heard that before? Interestingly, after sharing my problems my blood pressure came down. I began thinking perhaps it was a big clue to what was really going on. Did I just need a compassionate ear? Although that seemed rather childish I did feel better after leaving her company. She even gave me a hug on the way out.

After returning home I thought about what could be wrong. For some reason the word abandonment raised its head. I contemplated that and decided to go to the Senior Center for lunch. If I was feeling lonely perhaps talking to friends would help.

As I approached the table where I normally sit I observed a woman sitting alone. None of my friends were there. I sat down and introduced myself. She said she had heard my name and knew I had just had surgery. Gerie introduced herself as a retired OR nurse. A light went on and I knew she was there for me. As we began sharing bits and pieces of our lives a question formed in my mind that I felt she could answer because of her job experience. I asked if she thought that being released to my own care by my doctor could be causing my blood pressure to be elevated. Without hesitation her answer was, “Absolutely!”

There it was- the answer I had been seeking. A fear of abandonment had followed me all of my life and I knew exactly when it had started. I shared with Gerie my memories of a surgery experience when I was about six. My first vision, as if it just happened, was of being left all alone on a gurney outside of the operating room, next I was on the operating room table and the doctor was at my feet yelling because I was not asleep yet I no doubt thought it was my fault, next a big black thing was placed over my face and I thought I was being smothered. That’s an awful lot of stress for a six year old to deal with. No wonder it caused a fear that has lasted all of my life.

After lunch I checked out fear of abandonment online and discovered it is a phobia. The symptoms fit like a glove; low self-esteem, clinging to others for support, exaggerating the importance of other people, seeking anyone for companionship, even those who are cruel and abusive. It made me think of women who stay in abusive relationships with men and inmates who keep going back to prison because they can’t deal with being free. What an eye opener!

Now that I know what the real issue is I trust I will be led to further healing. I am determined that I am no longer going to be that little child, afraid to live my life. I am grateful for the help offered by my spiritual family members Carol and Gerie and to Archangel Jophiel for listening to my plea and flying in to help.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Family Ties

When I was a child my family was small. It consisted of parents, one brother, a paternal grandmother, maternal grandparents and an uncle, two aunts and six cousins on my father’s side of the family. Except for my maternal grandparents we spent very little time with the rest of the family. One might say our family ties were pretty weak.

Eventually, I moved away from Washington State, where I grew up (sort of). My parents and grandparents died and I lost track of any biological family members who may still be living. It makes me sad when I observe the huge families that others have.

My first husband had no siblings and my second had a brother who died before we were married. When I married my second husband I did obtain a connection with his large family of aunts, uncles and cousins. Of course, when we divorced in 1999 they all went with him. I think it is strange that when a couple divorces the relatives find it necessary to take sides even though they were not part of the marriage. I think it begins at the church when the usher asks, “Which side do you want to sit on, the bride or the groom?”

As the result of the two marriages I did produce three children who produced four children of their own. Because of my past experience I have tried hard to keep them all connected. I have provided email and physical addresses and phone numbers, but my efforts simply have not worked. They barely communicate with each other or with me. Of course, it is normal for me to blame myself. After all if it were not for me none of these souls would even exist.

Due to a conversation I had with my recent visitor, Lois, I finally realized I am not alone nor am I at fault for the behavior of others, even if they are family members. Many people apparently deal with this same issue. What others choose to do with their life is their responsibility. If family ties are not important to them that’s just the way it is!

I have found, and temporarily forgot, that family is much more than biology. We all did come from the same source and are therefore brothers and sisters. Taken from that view family ties takes on a whole new meaning.

I think I am going to go out and look for the rest of my spiritual family now! Perhaps they will recognize me from an earlier photo.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

When the Time is Right

Today was a special day I have been waiting to happen for some time. A Facebook friend that I had never met until recently took the time to visit me in the hospital. She was passing through town on her way to spend a month with a longtime friend in another part of the state. I have been waiting for her to come back through town on her return trip home to San Diego. Today the time was right.

I had a chance to tell her how grateful I was for her kindness. We also had a chance to share the lunch I enjoyed preparing and take the time to get to know each other. I was very surprised as we talked at how much we have in common. Although there is some difference in our ages we share similar experiences and have learned many of the same lessons. I believe #1 is that we need to take care of ourselves first. It is really surprising just how long it takes to learn that little/big lesson.

Looks like everything happens when the time is right. If it didn't none of us would ever move on. Thanks for the visit Lois!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Moving On

I survived the Halloween Carnival at our family center and looking back I am thinking this could be my last year. Maybe it is time for someone else to take my place in volunteering to help. How about one or two of those parents who are getting free after school child care? It might be nice if they gave a little back.

Although last night was fun and the little ones were adorable my muscles are sore this morning from doing the same thing over and over for three hours. It reminds me of the many years I was a product demonstrator at Wal-Mart, standing on a cement floor repeating the same motions and speech over and over for six hours at a time. Thank God I don't have to do that anymore either.

Most of my life has been about volunteering. Whether it was schools, organizations or civic groups I gave my time to others. Someone once said I had volunteered my life away. Perhaps it is time to stop and move on to something else.

This 11/1/11 seems to signal a new way of life. Now if someone would just point me in the right direction I would have no further problems. The Native American advice, "Look at your feet", when wondering what to do next just popped into my mind. At the moment my feet are sitting quietly on the floor under my computer desk. Next question: what is that supposed to mean?

Well Ms. Barbara it seems to mean that you are supposed to keep writing about the challenges that come up in your life. A new step might be to actually make money from your gift someday somehow. Wow what a concept!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Playing with the Ducks

It's Halloween again. Some people are going to spend the night wondering around the streets with little ones and some are going to stay warm and simply answer their knock on the door. Not me! Been there done that with both children and grandchildren. I get to play with little plastic ducks swimming in a wading pool encouraging all sorts of creatures to win a prize at our family center Halloween carnival.

This is my second year volunteering and I am looking forward to the side show of creative costumes. I love the ones that are home made because they are the product of the minds of the kids and their parents.

I also love helping out at Future Foundations Family Center. In my opinion it is the best thing that has ever happened to Grants. It's mission is to keep our children off the streets and safe all year round.

It also provides a safe place for adults to walk and exercise without having to deal with the elements, unattended dogs and uneven pavement. It is my home away from home most mornings and volunteering is my way of expressing my gratitude.

Keep swimming little duckies I'll be there soon to play with you and in the meantime I wish everyone a Happy Halloween!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Journey of Abundance

For some time I have been holding my breath waiting for my surgeon’s bill to arrive. Everything else had been dealt with and this was the last expense from my recent emergency surgery. I knew it was totally my responsibility to pay it.

As I sorted through my mail yesterday there it was. I slowly pulled the tab on the intimidating envelope and exposed the anticipated bill. Taking a deep breath I slowly took in the amount. My reaction was oh wow!! In shock I called my doctor’s office to make sure there was no mistake. I was told the amount was the total bill.

The journey begins or ends.

Last spring Social Security put a large sum of money in my checking account, which I immediately put in a savings account until I was sure it was mine. As it turned out they had made a mistake and wanted it back. I decided to give them a hard time because I could and challenged their decision right up to the point of needing to send bills and documents etc. to them. Then I said take it back. The last payment was in August.

About a week later they plopped another large amount of money into my checking account and also raised my monthly benefit. Was this some kind of joke I wondered or do they simply hire idiots who can’t add?

I again put the money in my savings account. I also called our local Social Security office to seek advice. I was told to write a letter asking how they came to their conclusion. While I was in the hospital I finally received their response stating that when my first ex-husband died in 2008 S.S. made a mistake in my benefit calculations. The check I had received was money owed me from then to now. It was mine!!

Now for the WOW part!

This amount still sitting in my savings account is $15.10 less than my surgeon’s bill.

Friday, October 28, 2011

Temporarily Confused

I am beginning to wonder if while I was in the hospital for two weeks the rest of the world suddenly went crazy. Everything is falling apart and it seems to me that the entire world is dysfunctional, arguing and generally pissed off. Even with the negative experience I just survived I am happy. What's going on with the rest of the world?

It is not unusual for me to be out of step with my peers. That has been the story of my life and I have now accepted it as God's little joke. At an age when most women become grand mothers I had another kid. That started an avalanche I have not been able to stop. For the last thirty years I have had trouble convincing people that I am as old as I am. I guess I could start lying but then my 50 year old son would have to find another mother or lie about his age. It just isn't worth it!

One of the first things I noticed when I started driving again was that several streets in my little town were torn up that were drivable when I entered the hospital. Remember the old quote, "You can't get there from here?" That pretty much sums up Grants, NM right now. We only have a couple of main streets to get from here to there and now that is literally impossible without a detour. I quickly found a new path. It didn't make me unhappy, just temporarily confused.

That seems to be where my life is right now. I have figured out that the reason people and the universe in general have left me alone for almost six weeks is so that I would finally realize that I am quite capable of taking care of myself. It has also taught me to really like who I am and to truly appreciate everything that I have been given. Some souls in my situation would not be able to come to that realization. I am not one of them nor do I want to be. It would not make me happy.

I have been trying to reinvent myself, but again I have been temporarily confused. Since I am aware that I could have died as an end to my recent surgery experience I got the message that I still have more to do. I certainly don't think that is an invitation to continue to drag around anyone or anything that was previously causing me to be unhappy. I can almost hear a very soft voice somewhere up there uttering, "Oh shit not again! How many chances does she need to be happy?"

I am trying to cut out the garbage I really am. Bad habits are hard to break.

Checking out the things that really make me happy, besides my relationship with my grandson, first would be my passion for writing and sharing the lessons that the Universe/Source has so generously provided. I have reached the point of believing in my gift and not needing validation, even though positive feedback is always welcome and appreciated. If I were to take the next step it would be to use every means I am given to inspire others to follow their own passion, whatever that may be.

Even though I am still a little confused I know I am taking positive steps that will keep me on a happiness path. I have decided to leave the rest of the world to fight their own battles.

Monday, October 24, 2011

An Unexpected Guest

Well as it turned out I did have a guest today, but not the one I had expected and this one is only here for the day. It started last night when my grandson called rather late and asked, "Grandma can I come to your house tomorrow?" His mother forgot there was no school because it was Labor Day. What do you think I told him?

After his second breakfast of cereal this morning Colin watched cartoons while I took care of some morning chores and got dressed. When it warmed up we headed for the Riverwalk, our favorite place in all of Grants. The first stop was to feed the geese and ducks.

Then because I am supposed to be walking that is exactly what I did while Colin rode his scooter that he got for his birthday. I think he had more fun!

When we were tired we got back in the car and had an interesting experience that caused us to shake our heads, laugh and wonder if we had attracted a spirit with a unique sense of humor. I had opened my car door so Colin could put his scooter in, opened the trunk so I could retrieve my purse and got in the car, attempting to insert my key in the ignition. It wouldn't turn. Inspecting the key I had just used to open the doors and trunk I saw that it was seriously bent. Now this is a very sturdy car key and bending it would take a heap of strength. I couldn't bend it back with my hand. I might have panicked except I knew I had a spare key in my wallet. I have no explanation, but thought I would share it because it spices up our little adventure.

The rest of the day was pretty normal. Colin spent some time on my computer playing games and generally amused himself. After a bowl of chicken soup, his favorite, we attacked the large pile of leaves I had previously raked up in the backyard (don't tell my doctor). We took a guess at how many bags it would take and neither of us won. The total was 7.

Our work was done and we each enjoyed a dish of tin roof ice cream. The rest of the afternoon is just for relaxing and enjoying my unexpected guest.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Guests Aren't Always Necessary

Up until an hour ago I thought I was going to have a house guest starting Monday. My guest's plans have changed and she won't be coming after all. Even though I looked forward to her visit I am actually a little relieved that her plans changed. I really am not quite physically ready to have a guest.

This last week I have done everything possible to get my house ready for company. I have made every effort to stay within the guidelines that my surgeon set up. Okay I probably fudged a little, but my house looks great. These last five weeks have not been easy for me to manage alone. For some reason the rest of the world has not noticed that I could use some help.

The experience of getting ready for a guest reminds me of advice I heard years ago. It was: don't save the good china for guests.

I am just as worthy as any guest who would visit to have a clean house with things in their proper place. I have never been known as a Martha Stewart type, but I absolutely hate clutter. My house usually has the warm feeling of being comfortably lived in. If you live in New Mexico there will always be dust! Along with clutter pretense doesn't impress me.

Now that my expected house guest is no longer coming I am left with a reasonably clean house to enjoy all by myself and I have decided I deserve the experience. Guests are not always necessary.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Honestly Honest

For the last month I have pretty much been left to fend for myself and I don’t understand why. What is God/Source trying to get me to see? I get it that nobody is going to take responsibility for me but me. That really is not a new concept. What am I missing? What has been different in the last 30 days?

I guess I have been focusing on me and have not been involved in the issues that others have. I have backed off of things and people that do not make me happy, no matter what or who they are. Perhaps I have finally realized that I have enough to do just taking care of myself and to intentionally drag negative energy into my life at this point is plain stupid.

When I have concentrated on my well being and happiness good things have happened. Last week I kept an appointment with my dermatologist even though I already had plenty of medical bills. Knowing that I do not have insurance he again reduced my bill by more than half. He knows that with my fair skin and history I need to make regular appointments or I could be dealing with skin cancer. I appreciate his kindness and generosity and have often recommended him to others.

One of my friends took me to Albuquerque for this appointment and I thanked her with a delicious lunch at Olive Garden. It turned out that it was the first day of work for our waitress. She was so helpful and friendly that she earned a generous tip.

A major issue this week was making a phone call to Xray Associates of New Mexico and asking them if there was any possibility that they could reduce my bill. I just honestly stated my situation and hoped for the best. I was told there was probably something they could do since I was paying the bill myself. Today I was told that they were willing to reduce the bill by 50% if I met their requirements. I agreed and happily sent off the first check.

Honesty has always been my # 1 good quality even though it gets me into trouble now and then. I don’t know what other good things are going to happen, but perhaps all I ever had to do was honestly focus on me. Since I seem to be on a roll I am sticking to this path.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Labels Matter

I'm sharing a recent experience that caused me to be a little smarter today than I was yesterday.

I had an appointment with my chiropractor to get my body back in better shape because of my recent surgery. We thoroughly discussed my experience and I also shared the fact that I have been having some anxiety issues. My surgeon believes it is normal considering the trauma my body went through and encouraged deep breathing as a means to deal with the problem. He did not offer medication nor did I expect him to. Been there done that and do not want to do it again thank you very much!

Now back to my chiropractor whose opinion I trust, partly because she has been through a similar surgery experience herself and she is very up to date in her general methods of treatment. She stated that she believes my adrenal glands have been out of whack for some time and I would benefit from adding an herbal supplement to assist them in working better. Although I thought it was a good idea I decided to ask my surgeon what he thought. After all he did just save my life and I am trying to follow his post surgery instructions as best as I can. I definitely do not care to end up back in the hospital.

I left a message stating what I thought was sufficient information at his office and requested that he call me with his opinion. The first thing he said was "I can't give an opinion unless I know what is in the product". This is where my lack of education comes in. My answer was, all I know is that she has it in her office and it is herbal. I'm sure I heard a chuckle.

How was I supposed to know that the word herbal didn't necessarily mean that it only contained herbs, which he said he approves of, but if it contained minerals such as zinc and magnesium no way. My instructions for self-education were find out what's in it.

This experience reminded me of walking through "Trader Joes" the other day with a friend. Noticing the number of products in the large store that said organic my friend said, "How do you know what is really organic?"

It was a good question which along with the herbal lesson led me to do a little online research. An herb is any plant used as a medicine, seasoning or flavoring.

Organic means "related to or derived from living organisms" They are products grown with no pesticides. To be truly organic they contain 95% or more organic ingredients and bear the USDA organic seal.

The best advice I found in all my research is read the label for ingredients and pertinent information, which I plan to do in the future.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Who is in Charge of Karma?

This morning one of my Facebook friends posted the following: "Dear karma I have a list of people you forgot." After a good laugh I immediately came up with my own list of souls I feel that karma apparently forgot. Then my brain kicked in and I remembered I am not in charge of karma nor am I the judge of anyone's behavior other than my own.

The realization led me to search the web for some insightful quotes about karma and I want to share them with my readers. Make of them what you will.

"Karma isn't fate.Nor is it punishment imposed on us by some external agent. We create our own karma. It is the result of choices that we make every moment of every day." ~Tulku Thondup Peaceful Death, Joyful Rebirth

"Karma is our teacher. It teaches us to refine our behavior. One way to tell a young soul from an old soul is to observe how quickly he learns karma's lessons in life." ~editors of Hinduism Today

"Karma is the destiny man weaves for himself." ~L.H. Leslie-Smith Karma, Rhythmic Return to Harmony

"As no cause remains without its due effect from greatest to least from a cosmic disturbance down to the movement of your hand, and as like produces like, karma is that unseen and unknown law which adjusts wisely, intelligently and equitably each effect to its cause, tracing the latter back to its producer." ~H.P. Blavatsky The Key to Theosophy

"Karma is the universal law of cause and effect. You reap what you sow. You get what you earn. You are what you eat. If you give love, you get love. Revenge returns itself upon the avenger. What goes around comes around.~ Mary T. Browne The Power of Karma

"The law of karma is the principle of cosmic justice that holds that all good actions will be rewarded and all wicked actions will be punished. Sometime. Somehow. Somewhere. ~Chanju Mum Buddhism and Peace

To sum things up, the most important lesson I hope I have taught my young grandson, Colin, is that you are only responsible for yourself. What others do has nothing to do with you.

Monday, October 10, 2011

A Different View

I have a friend who recently stated that she doesn't believe we are meant to be ill. I hold a totally different view of this subject.

Real life isn't supposed to be about cotton candy and puffy white clouds floating in a vivid azure sky.

In my opinion we don't learn much from living a perfect life. Our important lessons come from how we deal with things that do not seem fair. We always have the freedom to choose the road paved with negative energy or the one leading to spiritual evolvement. I know we also have personal cheerleaders in the form of guides and angels pushing us in a positive direction. We don't always listen to them.

This past weekend I was given an opportunity to make such a choice and I am extremely proud of myself for the decision I made. It led to emotional freedom I have not previously experienced.

I desperately wanted to see my grandson play his soccer game Saturday, having missed the one last week due to my hospital captivity. Noting it was a little breezy I found an ideal place to park my car with a perfect view of both sides of the field. My view also included the backside of my new son-in-law, my estranged daughter and my ex-husband, none of whom turned around when I parked.

As I took in this view I felt nothing but negative energy from the three of them. It reminded me of "Pigpen" in the Peanuts comics. I was acutely aware that my next move was very important for my well being. Because they chose to abandon me during my hospital experience I had every right to wish them all kinds of bad stuff in return. Without hesitating I simply raised my view to the soccer field above their heads and let them be. I am only responsible for what I do. Nothing else that happens is up to me.

I was rewarded for my decision. During half time my ex-husband came over to my car and sincerely asked how I was doing. Oh, and Colin made the only three goals for his team! I love watching him play because he is a great little athlete who proves that size doesn't matter when you are doing what you are supposed to be doing. Go Colin you make me proud to be your grandmother!!

So this is my view, it may not be what everyone sees, but we all have free choice to make of our life experiences what we will.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Angry Vibes

In attempting to heal from my recent health scare I am trying to find the lessons offered through the entire experience. It is no doubt easy for those not involved to see the big picture. The first thing I am realizing is that I need to get rid of all the anger that was brought up and focus on the good things that happened.

Going back to the beginning, none of this would have happened if I had followed my strong intuition and refused to have radiation in 1989. I had the best GYN/Oncologist in the four corners area and my cancer had not spread. For six weeks I endured the treatments realizing that it was killing perfectly normal cells. If I had known that it was also causing scar tissue that would lead to life threatening surgery years later I would have screamed so loud that I would have probably been locked up.

It makes me angry, but I can’t change what happened. I need to let it go and refocus on healing and doing everything possible to keep my body in the healthy state I thought it was in before my latest adventure.

A big chunk of anger goes to my estranged daughter who did not take this opportunity to reconnect. It was pretty sad when asked for a contact person, not to give them Christina’s name. It was even sadder in the hours following my surgery to know she chose not to come to the hospital or even call as far as I know.

It was probably the biggest hurt I have ever experienced in my life and yes it made me angry. I need to let it go and focus on the people who were there for me.

Many friends and hospital staff went out of there way to let me know they cared. My friend June was by my side offering support before surgery and was there to take me home. Oh and she also ran errands and took care of my cats during my absence. My ex-husband brought our grandson, Colin, to visit which made my day. One of my Facebook friends called long distance and another, on her way from California to Los Lunas, NM, stopped by the hospital to meet me and say hello. I received many cards, prayers and positive thoughts from friends I have never met and those I see every day.

I’m thinking my main lesson from this experience is cut out the anger because it doesn’t matter and focus on the good stuff because it does. Apparently shit is only good for growing flowers and does not aid in healing the body or the mind.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

#22 the Human Gueina Pig

For years the #22 has popped up in my life again and again. Until September 19, 2011 I couldn't figure out what it meant. Landing in our local ER in the middle of the night made it crystal clear. Two hours later I was in the operating room being prepped for emergency surgery. Ex rays showed a blocked small bowel. It was caused by radiation scar tissue from cancer treatment in 1989- 22 years ago.

My body had been under so much stress trying to function that it couldn't take it anymore and put forth such excruciating stomach pain that I had no choice but to seek help. I asked my surgeon the next day what would have happened if I had not come to the ER when I did and he bluntly answered,"You would have died." It appears that I was the only person in the operating room who didn't receive the message that I was close to death.

I spent two weeks in the hospital while we waited for an 8" section of injured bowel to recover and begin functioning. My doctor never gave up believing that it would open. He said if it didn't he would have to go back in and remove it.The night before he was to make his decision I stopped resisting the possibility of a second surgery and simply accepted whatever was going to happen.

The next morning began with a final ex ray showing positive progress. The nurse came in and removed the hideous tube that had been inserted through my nose to my stomach for almost two weeks. I have never felt such freedom! No more surgery!! It was still another couple of days before I was released because my doctor had told me I wasn't going home until I was 100%. I think he cheated a bit, but on the afternoon of October 3 after consuming two tacos, a mound of rice and a slice of pumpkin pie without throwing up, I was released to my own care.

Today it seems ridicules that I could feel so healthy and yet be so sick inside. Who said "you can't judge a book by its cover?" You just never know.

All summer I had been having problems with my blood pressure going up and down and I couldn't convince anyone that something was causing it besides the obvious stress in my life. Doctors just kept giving me more medication, which made me angry. My intuition said that wasn't helping. Now we know the blood pressure was a symptom of a greater problem. Since the surgery it has come down. One good thing about the BP fluctuation is that it caused me to try to eliminate stress and learn deep breathing techniques, both of which aided in a more positive hospital stay than I would have otherwise had. When I got anxious I would simply breath.

As doctor Oz says "check out your poop"! I had been having problems for some time, but just thought it was part of getting older. Women tend to accept stuff as normal when they really should be seeking a professional opinion. If the first person ignores you knock on another door until someone listens to you. Follow your intuition- it is Source/God knocking on your door.

I want to end my post with a great big thank you to Dr. Karl and the entire staff of Cibola General Hospital in Grants, NM. You all took wonderful care of me and I truly appreciate everything you did to make my stay comfortable!

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Connecting the Dots

Source/God seems to be playing a game with me and a close spiritual friend. For some time we have been given similar experiences which we have shared with each other. We have talked about them at length, finally realizing that our unusual connection was meant to help us both evolve. Connecting the dots is a lot more fun when you can see the big picture.

Last night my friend, Maria, sent me an email with a photo she had taken in her yard yesterday. She wanted me to see the image of a very happy spirit on the body of a bright butterfly. He was so clear my reaction was, "Wow his message is obviously meant for you." I believe it was,"We are proud of the way you are living your life and sharing what you have learned." I of course, passed my interpretation on to Maria. She had the same feeling, but wanted confirmation from someone else.

Her butterfly reminded me that earlier that day I had a similar experience with a tiny little winged messenger. I had opened my car door preparing to go to my grandson's soccer game. When I closed the door I noticed a very small blue object on the door window. At first I thought it was a bug, but then I realized it was the smallest butterfly I had ever seen. Its wing span was about 1/2" and to me it resembled the pattern on Royal Doulton English china.

When this memory returned I emailed Maria. I also checked my copy of Betty Bethard's The Dream Book to see what butterfly meant: "Rebirth to higher form; transmutation of energy, the process of growth through all its ups and downs, emerging triumphant in new awareness." I also looked up blue since that was the color of my messenger. It means spirituality.

After comparing notes and connecting the dots Maria and I decided our messages were the same, just personally gift wrapped by the universe.