Spirit of Dragonflies, LLC

Kripalu Mindfulness Outdoor Experience Guide & Life Coach – Get Outside. Go Within.


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Vision Board – International Dark Sky – Bryce Canyon National Park

My cousin and I have been planning a camping trip through Bryce Canyon National Park and other locations in southern Utah for over a year with Bryce being our first stop. I wasn’t sure what Dark Sky was until my cousins shared that we would be staying somewhere with we could enjoy it. She told me to look this up online and when I did it surprised me. On my vision board is a photo of the Milky Way taken on the new moon at Dark Sky. It was something that I have been wanting to witness but was not sure the name or where to see this. Also, I have photos of Utah with the word Travel over the top.

When she picked me up on August 28th at the McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, NV we witnessed not one but three rainbows. Unfortunately I didn’t capture the rainbows that appeared when I arrived but we both felt this was a good sign for our trip.

The first night was spent in a hotel in Cedar City and in the morning we traveled to Bryce Canyon National Park. When we checked in at Bryce they weren’t sure if there were any open tent areas. We rode around and the first three they thought were still open had been taken. It is a first come first serve area so we continued on and found the perfect spot.

After setting up our tent and camping area we went to the visitor center to see what events were occurring during our stay. They shared that Bryce had just received it’s International Dark Sky certificate and they were going to have a astrophotography walk on Saturday night. It was Thursday, we were told to arrive by 8 am on Saturday morning to request one of twenty tickets to reserve our spot. I had my camera and a couple of camera lenses, my cousin was using her cell phone. My plan was to arrive at 7:30 am and wait for them to open so we could be the first in line.

Saturday morning came and we arrived at the building at 8:01 am. We went straight to the counter and were given two tickets. I spoke with the ranger to ensure that I would be able to take the hike slowly as my atrial fibrillation causes me to slow down at times. He said it would be a slow pace and there would be three stops along the way to take photos. Luckily I had purchased a small tripod in case it was needed – it would be on this venture.

Saturday we hiked along some of the trails, then I took a nap to prepare for the evening’s adventure scheduled from 8 – midnight. My camera batteries were charged and at 7:30 pm we headed over ready for whatever happened.

This is a picture of the trail we would walk on once darkness set in. As you can see we had quite a way to hike before setting up on below on the other side of the formation. Our group stood at the top getting to know one another and our photography experience. We were amateurs to experienced photographers coming together to share an experience.

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This picture of the sun setting and in the center behind the distant trees you may notice the smoke from the forest fire that was active in Bryce Canyon during our visit.

We didn’t actually start walking into the canyon until around 9 and found our way to the perfect sight as darkness was setting in and the stars were filling the sky. What a beautiful sight. An amateur with my camera, I wasn’t expecting too much but listened to instructions and was ready for any assistance our group members wanted to provide.

Not only did I capture the Milky Way and the Hoodoos but even captured a shooting star or two throughout our time in the canyon.

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We were told to take at least five of the same shot so we could stack them later but I am still not quite sure what that means. I am sure someone has posted on YouTube exactly how to do this and I’ll check it out when there is time.

Being in nature with a dark sky filled with planets and stars is amazing. The night lights up with so many stars you can actually see the paths you are walking on however we did use head lamps and flashlights – mainly with red filters – to make adjustments to our cameras. Here are some more shots taken during out walk.

As the night sky darkened the stars did their magic and we were in awe.

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Tried to use more white light in this pic

If we could be aware of our effect on Mother Earth and the Universe by dimming street lights, turning off lights that are not being used in buildings and homes, changing the way the lights filter into the night, and allowing more areas to be certified as Dark Sky more people would witness this amazing natural event. Isn’t it time to realize how insignificant petty arguments, obsession with material possessions, and other things and focus on all of the beauty in the world. Life is short in the grand scheme of things and there is so much to enjoy. We should spend more time in nature and more time lifting one another.

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While we are here living life on this planet we can take action to save this beautiful planet for ourselves and generations to come. Being with this big dark sky made me feel small and insignificant, yet, it also made me feel large, energized and worthy of being in the midst of all this beauty. I don’t want a trip to Mars and wouldn’t want to live on another planet – Earth is my home and we all need to figure out a way to live here peacefully with everyone else who shares our home.

This year I have been able to visit California, Colorado, Arizona, Nevada, Utah and have seen several sights that have been on my board to either see for the first time or see again. I will continue to share stories and photos of my trip and let you know if they were on my vision board or written in my journal. Nine days of traveling disconnected from internet, cell, television for the majority of that time was wonderful!

If you are ever in Utah do yourself a favor and visit Bryce Canyon National Park. You will not regret it.

My questions to you is:

Do you have a vision of something you want to see or do? Do you have a vision board placed where you can see it daily? Or, have you written down your dreams in your journal? Please feel free to share your experiences.

Light and Love!

 


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I’d rather be . . . – WPC

Although I am quite content to be doing exactly what I am doing in the moment, whether that be washing dishes, vacuuming, dusting, mowing the lawn, shoveling snow . . . Each daily task brings a sense of being in the moment, enjoying life. This week we are asked to share what we would rather be doing, which is a bit hard when I sit here doing exactly what pleases me, so I will think about a nice sunny day and what I would rather do given the choice on such a day.

I’d rather be . . . sitting on my front porch with a glass of iced mint tea reading a book or, if the grandchildren were here, playing with the toys on the other end of the porch. There is nothing better than sun, sheer curtains dancing in the breeze on a nice warm, sunny day.

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If I were not home, I’d rather be . . .

Exploring woods and nature with my children and grandchildren . . . Hugging trees . . . meditating at the ocean, lake or stream while listening to the water . . . walking barefoot . . . Earthing . . . anything outside in nature . . .

I’d rather be . . . creating – taking photos, making jewelry, preparing blends of essential oil roller bottles, facilitating Vision Board classes . . .

I’d rather be . . . Sledding with my family at the golf course . . .

I’d rather be . . . Always with camera, book, and notebook maybe enjoying a latte and treat . . .

I’d rather be . . . Anywhere on the water enjoying my kayak, nature, birds singing, quiet of the evening . . .

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Enjoying simple pleasures – feeling very blessed. LIFE IS GOOD!

Now, it’s your turn. What would you rather be doing? If you’ve got more than one hobby, don’t be shy — you’re welcome to share the myriad ways in which you’d prefer to be spending time.

If you would like to view other photos submitted for this week’s photo challenge or would like to submit your own, click on the link below: https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/rather/

Love and Light!


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Be Like A Tree – Overcoming Obstacles

For a tree to become tall it must grow tough roots among the rocks. 

~ Friedrich Nietzsche ~

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Trees always amaze me. They can grow under any environmental conditions, overcome obstacles and find a way to survive.

When we look at trees we don’t criticize, condemn or complain about their shapes, the gnarly roots, the way roots grow over and around rocks or cling to the sides of mountains finding their way to support themselves. We don’t focus on their imperfections – we are generally impressed with the way they have overcome. We are in awe of their brilliance (many people I know feel this way).  Then why is it we don’t look a little closer at the people around us. We all have a story hidden within us. Sometimes that story is told to others through our face, body, health, financial situation . . . without any words. Just as the tree tells a story in its physical appearance.

“Rocks in my path? I keep them all, with them I shall build my own castle.” Neo Nox

We all have over come obstacles along our path in life, some easier than others, and yet in order to live we must all find a way. People live all over the world under some very harsh conditions and survive. We all are born under various circumstances – wealthy parents, poor parents, educated, no formal education, live in small mansions, inner city slumlord homes, rural trailers, homeless, raised by teen parents, adopted, fostered, wealthy neighborhoods, dangerous neighborhoods, healthy food choices, poor for choices, loved, neglected, abused . . . Yet most survive and continue to pursue a better way.

No matter your circumstances you have choices – especially those living in countries with public school, public services, public organizations, and people willing to listen and help. You have a choice to reach out and ask for help. Reach out and provide help – make another persons day a little brighter, allow another person to feel supported – be the rock.

This is why I love Life Coaching. Anyone can change their life and situation. Maybe not today, maybe not tomorrow but with commitment and dedication we all can change our circumstances one step at a time, one day at a time. Just like these beautiful trees, we too can learn to survive and thrive using what we know, the resources available, and the support of those around us.

One person’s success may not look like success to another yet it doesn’t mean you aren’t successful. Success can only to be determined by your own personal opinion of what success means to you.

If you look at where you were last year, five years ago, ten years ago; or look at where your parents or grandparents were at your age you may just see success differently. Don’t look at what the media tells you is success through television programs, advertisements, or movies – that is not your reality. Base your success on how happy, joyful and content you are in the present moment. That is the true indicator.

Youth of a couple of decades ago would base their value on the popular kids in school. What made them popular? Those kids in school who allowed themselves to see other kids as ‘popular’ made them so. They wouldn’t have been popular if the other kids didn’t envy them. Today, with internet, cable television, reality TV shows, and such our youth are comparing themselves to a wider web. How can anyone compete with ‘reality’ television or the media telling them what is important? It is a lose, lose situation if one falls into this fake reality. Be the tree and stand strong, don’t let others determine your worth. Be unique and allow your imperfections to show without shame.

I see young families purchase a home and within a year they are disappointed in their purchase because someone they know has a larger home, bigger kitchen, pool, better neighborhood. There is no way to stay in this competitive lifestyle without losing your true spirit and life purpose. Getting back to nature and living a simple lifestyle brings more happiness, contentment, joy, and friendship. If you are always racing for what others have you will lose any sense in what you truly want for your own life. Who exactly are you competing with? As each tree is unique, we are too. There is no need to look like everyone else.

We are only competing with the person we were yesterday. That is the truth. Are you a better person today than you were yesterday? Are you a better neighbor? Friend? Are you a more loving and compassionate parent, sibling, child than you were yesterday? Are you kinder to yourself today than you were yesterday, last year, ten years ago?

That is the true indicator of your success. You have to live with yourself for your entire life – not with those on television, in advertisements, or anyone else. If you are not happy with yourself, you will never be happy with a different car, home, neighborhood, vacation, spouse . . .  Only measure your life by how you feel deep within. If you can peacefully sleep at night feeling secure that you did the best you could that day, that is a good indicator of your success.

Start today, be like the tree overcoming all obstacles to stand tall and be the best, healthiest tree you can be not worrying being held back because a rock is in the way. Go around, over, or under the obstacles and become a shining star, standing tall and be proud of yourself. Only you have to live with your inner thoughts – living in happiness, joy and contentment is a great success in life. All the money, cars, homes, vacations in the world will give you a fleeting feeling of happiness and success until you see someone else have newer, bigger, better. Learning to love your life – where you are at this moment striving to reach a state of happiness and contentment is the highest reward in life.

If you are interested in learning how you can overcome obstacles in your life, please email me or leave a message below.

Love and Light!