Spirit of Dragonflies

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


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Mindfulness in Creating Wind Chimes

Creation of any type is an individualist endeavor even when in a group.

The sticks all have the same 6 holes – 4 for the beads and chimes with two on the end to hold the wind chime. Everyone has the same choices and sometimes will bring a few of their own. All have the same fishing line and crimpers. We take a few minutes to breath, I show them some techniques – many times only one or two listen because others are in their minds thinking. Then they are set to create.

It is always interesting to step back and watch the process. The perfectionists have the most difficult time creating. They want everything to line up, they are generally the same  people who were in their heads while the instructions were being shared. They want to know where to start even though the first step is always to go and browse the beads and trinkets. When done correctly, they will have looked over the beads more than once. Stopped to breath and visualize, taken a little paper tray or cup and filled with some of their choices.

Seed beads are a must because most of the beads have a larger hole and when tying a know in the fishing line – even if knotted twice – the bead will slide over the knot. The tiny seed beads are not really seen on the end product but result in success.

Once back at the table they will try to start stringing – they are reminded to design their wind chime, maybe go back and grab a different color or size and play with it a little before stringing. The perfectionists want to get started and have a difficult time waiting and designing. I’ll remind them this is a fun time, breath, play, there is no perfect creation and yet all will be perfect in the end.

I spend the next two or three hours running from one to the other, restating the process, assisting with knotting, and reminding everyone to breath and have fun. Two hours is never enough time especially if someone arrives 20 minutes late. It takes time for them to select items from the table, to figure out how to knot, where to place beads, and toward the end I am in a mad rush to assist with finishing their creations without actually creating the entire wind chime.

Truthfully, I love the process the most – guiding, slowing people down, sharing that this is a mindfulness practice, and to know in the end it will be perfect. Throughout every workshop those who struggle always love their end product and sometimes they are quite surprised at how long it took them to settle in and enjoy the process. It always amazes me that there are never two final products that are the same given everyone has the same selections. Their unique personalities shine through.

What do you do to bring mindfulness and peace into your life?

Love and Light

 

 


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WPC – Well-Rounded – Living Mindfully

This week, share your take on “rounded.” it’s a broad theme, so I look forward to your personal interpretations, whether you choose to focus on a curving street, limbs caught mid-way through a dance, a bowl of fruit (think of all the round shapes!), or any other object, landscape, or texture that fits within your definition of the theme. As always, less-literal takes are equally welcome.

“When you live on a round planet, there is no choosing sides.” ~ Wayne Dyer ~

Today I challenge you to slow down and notice the shapes, smells, size, taste, color, and texture of everything you come into contact with. If you have children, help them slow down long enough to ‘see’ the world. The energy in your home, car, or wherever you are will change to a more relaxed and enjoyable environment. If each one of us learned to slow down and enjoy living in the moment – while taking small steps to reach our goals – others in our lives would also be able to feel the shift and bring that energy into their own interactions.

Whether in the field picking blueberries or enjoying a latte, round shapes can be found everywhere if you stop to enjoy. Love being able to slow down and ‘see’ the world through the camera lens and through the eyes of my small grandchildren.

 

The Round House Bakery in Cambridge, NY has delicious food and wonderful treats along with a perfect latte. If you are ever in the area I would recommend stopping by whether on your own to read a book or with family or friends, it will be worth the visit. On one visit I enjoyed capturing photos of the reflection of the house across the street captured in the glass of the frame on the wall. On another visit, it was watching the small children deciding on a treat and tasting the Maple water they were sharing with guests.

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My glass of water is sitting on the round table. There was a slight taste of maple but mostly refreshing water and the owner shared some information on how this water was collected. Slowing down allows you to connect with others and learn from them as well. While visiting the Round House take a walk down the block to view the interesting architecture of the historic buildings and the little shops that share this block. Walk around the village and notice the wonderful historic homes as well.

On another adventure, I captured two photos of round treasures in nature. In the garden or hidden in the woods, Pumpkin Hollow Retreat Center is the perfect place to slow down to enjoy peaceful moments. If you visit the Retreat Center a walk in the woods to the Labyrinth is a must. Such a peaceful location to get in touch with nature, spirit and your inner self. A very healing experience.

For today, take some time to live in the moment. Here are some ideas to try:

  • When preparing meals and eating notice shapes, colors, textures, taste and smell of your food. If you have children, share this with them and ask what they see, hear, smell, taste, feel . . . as you share a meal.
  • When outside look at the ground and notice the shapes and colors (if you live in an area with changing leaves it is a perfect time). Pick up a rock and look at it closely. What do you see?
  • Walk barefoot in your home.  Notice the sensations on your feet as they touch carpets, hardwood floors, socks and/or shoes.
  • Rub your fingers along your clothing. Pay attention when zipping or buttoning clothing. Notice how the zipper works, how the button slides through the hole depending on the usage of the item you are wearing. If you have children, slow down while helping them dress and have them share what their clothing feels like. Maybe they enjoy a certain fabric and you were both unaware before asking them.
  • Pick up a leaf and examine the lines. Do the veins of the leaf resemble the veins in your hands?
  • Turn off all sounds in your home and sit in the stillness. Is your home still noisy from the outside environment? Do you notice the sounds of the purring refrigerator or the humming of the furnace/air conditioning?
  • When walking, pay attention to the way the weight of your body shifts from one side to the other with every step. How do your arms move – with the rhythm of your legs or do they remain still? If still, move them as you walk. If moving, see if you can hold them still while walking.
  • Breath in and feel the temperature of the air as it flow into your nostrils and/or mouth. Breath out and do the same. Is it the same air? Whose air are you breathing in?
  • While traveling in your car instead of focusing on the traffic, notice the different colors, shapes and sizes of the vehicles traveling along with you. Look out at the sky – are their clouds, sunshine, rain . . . Notice the sounds inside the car. Turn off the radio and listen to the sound of the car engine, tires hitting the road, noise from other cars.
  • Visit your home as if you were a guest. What smells do you notice? What you would say about the person living in this home? Look at all the belongings and where they are placed. Does anything pop out that you hadn’t noticed in a while. Visit each room as a guest. Would you want a guest seeing your bedroom? What does this room say about your beliefs, mood, life, energy? It should be a reflection of you – the inner you – the person you want to share with the world.
  • Add to the adventure above by having another family member visit your home as a guest with you and ‘see’ your home through their eyes. Home is your sanctuary – a place to go to reenergize. Shouldn’t everyone in the home be able to feel uplifted in their shared space.

Do you have other ideas on living mindfully to add to this list? If so, please share.

Enjoy your day – live mindfully – share your adventure with others. Learn to become well-rounded and connected in your own environment.

Love and Light!

If you would like to view other photos or submit your own for this week’s challenge, click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/rounded/


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WPC – Edge 2

“A lake is the landscape’s most beautiful and expressive feature. It is earth’s eye; looking into which the beholder measures the depth of his own nature.” ~Henry David Thoreau ~

Take a seat at the edge of the water, release anything weighing on your mind, breathe in the fresh air and enjoy Mirror Lake. Some run by quickly, others drive by, and some go into their houses never to notice the beauty. On this bench one only has to sit and hear the call of the loons, look to the right and left to absorb the beauty of the mountains. When its time to get up you will feel like a new person.

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Mirror Lake in Lake Placid, NY

“A human being is a part of the whole called by us universe, a part limited in time and space. He experiences himself, his thoughts and feeling as something separated from the rest, a kind of optical delusion of his consciousness. This delusion is a kind of prison for us, restricting us to our personal desires and to affection for a few persons nearest to us. Our task must be to free ourselves from this prison by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature in its beauty.”
~ Albert Einstein ~

If you wold like to see other posts for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own please click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/edge

Love and Light!

(I submitted this photo for WPC – Mirror however I thought it was a perfect fit for this week’s edge as well)


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WPC – Edge

“Something will have gone out of us as a people if we ever let the remaining wilderness be destroyed … We simply need that wild country available to us, even if we never do more than drive to its edge and look in.” ~ Wallace Stegner, The Sound of Mountain Water ~

The first time I stood at the edge and looked out at the frozen lake I didn’t really notice the house. The house is built at the edge of the rock formation and made with stone to resemble the natural habitat. The occupants must have a wonderful view of the mountains and lake below. Across from the home a tree grows on a rock, almost in competition with the home as it shouts out, “Look at me.”

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If you would like to learn more about Minnewaska Preserve click thee link below: http://hikethehudsonvalley.com/minnewaska-state-park-preserve/

In winter the Preserve is quiet. The roar of the waterfall could be heard from quite a distance while hiking through the woods. Once you get a little closer your heart beats a little faster in anticipation of seeing the rushing waters. As you walk down the stream you will first reach the edge of the falls. The water is so powerful that you don’t want to get too close the edge.

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A trail that leads down the mountain to the bottom of the falls. The photos above are a mix of two visits. As you can see one is later in the year when the I’ve has thawed and the other is in the midst of the freezing weather. It was breathtaking.

This location is a perfect place to slow down and enjoy the winter weather. Sitting on a rock listening to the falls is a great place to meditate, get in touch with nature, and just allow your mind to quiet for a short period of time. Time seemed to stop for a while as we sat enjoying the sounds of nature.

We spent hours at the edge of the waterfalls capturing ice melting, green life poking through the snow, leaves caught in the rocks and other amazing gifts of nature.

“We need the tonic of wildness…At the same time that we are earnest to explore and learn all things, we require that all things be mysterious and unexplorable, that land and sea be indefinitely wild, unsurveyed and unfathomed by us because unfathomable. We can never have enough of nature.” ~ Henry David Thoreau, Walden: Or, Life in the Woods ~

If you would like to view other photos from this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own, click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges

Love and Light


8 Comments

WPC- Frame

“A cheerful frame of mind, reinforced by relaxation… is the medicine that puts all ghosts of fear on the run.” ~ George Matthew Adams ~

Try looking at objects from a framed reference point to see the world a little differently. IMG_5594

Try looking through something to see objects through a new frame of reference. I discovered looking through an opening in a cross on a cemetery stone allowed me to focus in on the engravings on the cross. Framing the deer within the trees provided a nice photo of the deer peering back at me.

If we learn to slow down and see the world around us through new eyes we can change our life by enjoying every moment a little bit more.

If you would like to participate in this week’s photo challenge or would like to view other photos please click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/frame/

Love and Light!


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WPC – Morning

An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day. ~ Henry David Thoreau ~

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If you are interested in viewing other photos for this week’s challenge or submitting your own click on the link below:
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/morning-2016

Love and Light!


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Living Simply and Enjoying Life

For today, think about what truly makes you happy. Is it really hanging out in the stores in the mall spending money that you don’t have on items that you don’t need? Or, do you vibrate and feel wonderful in the garden, sitting in a swing hanging from a tree, walking down a path in a wooded area, sitting by a pond, lake, or ocean? Do you find pleasure listening to the sounds of nature, instrumentals or playing an instrument – watching children play, someone dance or dancing yourself? What is your pleasure??

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Give your mind, body and spirit a break from the material world and enjoy the moment. Enjoy breathing in the air, seeing others smile, laughing, smelling flowers, feeling the the breeze on your face, sitting near water, listening to bird songs, the feel of dirt or grass underfoot, swimming, walking, or sitting still.

When your are overcome by mind chatter about what you don’t have, bills, responsibilities, health, choices to be made – allow the thoughts to flow without reacting, without emotion view them as you would a movie you are watching. Remain in a peaceful place allowing the thoughts to flow through the unconscious mind. As you sit in peace, you will realize that mind chatter is a mindless waste of time and useless for the betterment of yourself or anyone else. Living simply and enjoying life does not mean being useless or lazy. It is those who understand this lifestyle that learn to live in a peaceful place no matter how chaotic the world around them seems because we live in a world of flux with good and bad occurring every moment of the day. What you see depends on how you view and react to the world around you. We all have a choice, choice wisely and change your life.

If you are unsure how to bring this peace to your life contact me and we can discuss daily small steps to take until this becomes a natural part of your experience.

Wishing you a peaceful day filled with simple pleasures.

Love and Light!


9 Comments

WPC – Details

For this week’s challenge, try to look past the big picture and take a more intimate approach. Zoom in on details in unexpected places — it can be something from the natural world, or it can be human-made. We’re excited to see what you find with your lens.

“The true secret of happiness lies in taking a genuine interest in all the details of daily life. “ ~ William Morris ~

“The details are not the details. They make the design.” ~ Charles Eames ~

Live in the moment. Pay attention to the details that make up the design of your life. What are you paying attention to the most? Is it the chatter in your own mind or the drama in your environment?

For today, take time to breath in the beauty around you. It’s every where. Not only in nature, look around your home. There are designs in the shadows dancing on the walls, floor and furniture, and on the ceiling from a candle or light. Looking at a marble, table setting, food, pets . . . Open your eyes and notice a new world. This world is peaceful, beautiful, loving and compassionate. If we begin with ourselves to see the world in a new light, then we will begin to share this with our family, neighbors, community and the world. Love and compassion spread like wildfire. It is after the fire is put out that people forget. Let’s not forget.

“Every man’s life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another.” ~ Ernest Hemingway ~

“Be the change you wish to see in the world” ~ Mahatma Gandhi ~

See beauty in everything and everyone. Sometimes it is hidden right in front of your eyes.

If you are interested in viewing addition posts for this week’s challenge or would like to submit your own, click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/details/

Love and Light!


8 Comments

WPC – Look Up

For this week’s challenge, take a moment to look up. Whether it’s the fan above your head at work, your bedroom ceiling, or the night sky, what do you see? Is it familiar? Or does it show you a new perspective on your surroundings? Looking forward to the peeks into your worlds!

Look up or you will miss some of life’s beautiful gifts. Bubbles floating into the air, tree canopies, vibrant reds in autumn, birds in flight or flying in circles protecting their large nest hiding in the tree.

When sitting in a traffic jam or driving down the road are you focusing on what you are going to do once you arrive? Or, are you living in the moment paying attention to what is before you? Do you ever look up and notice the rainbow after a storm? The moon looking down in the daytime or filling the night sky?

I am always amazed to learn when people have become oblivious to their surroundings. When living in California I was always amazed at all of the flowers. They were every where. When driving in Irvine, Costa Mesa, Laguna – flowers of all colors and sizes. Walking into my shared office I told my coworker how lucky she was to have grown up where flowers grow year round. She said, “What flowers?” I shared where I saw the flowers and couldn’t believe she hadn’t noticed. The next day she came to the office and said that she had never noticed how many flowers there were. I bet she is still noticing those flowers years later. Sometimes, a visitor needs to refresh your senses to all the beauty and hidden treasures in your community. Tomorrow when you leave your house, pretend you are visiting the area for the first time. Maybe visit a local site that draws visitors or walk around your neighborhood as if for the first time. Then write down what you noticed that you had ignored or not noticed before. Walk slowly around you neighborhood with a baby or a dog. Both the baby and dog bring new things to your attention because they are living in the now and paying attention to everything in their environments. Have fun with this.

Have you ever noticed how often children look up to notice the world around them. My grandson was on guard while walking through the corn maze. My daughter held him as he looked up at the scary masked scarecrow. Once he noticed all the scary decorations hiding in the corn he was ready to leave. While sitting in the swing he would point up to show me the birds, leaves dancing in the breeze, and, most recently, sunsets. He loves to watch the sunset. My 9 month old grandson is always looking up because everything is above him. He loves to watch the fan spinning or the shadows dancing along the ceiling.

Be childlike, look up. Notice the world around you and live in the moment. Pay attention to the shadows on the ceiling, the rays of light shining through the clouds, or the leaves dancing in the breeze. Enjoy the different phases of the moon and its varying sizes and colors throughout the year. Look for the hidden birds nests, look up when under the tree canopies, and discover other treasures hidden right in front of your eyes.

May tomorrow bring you more joy, fun, and inspiration. Do yourself a favor and notice the beauty in nature and in your home. Learn to live mindfully. Look up, down, to your right and left. Pay attention to the things children are looking at. Get down low and look up without judgement. Look for a new perspective on your surroundings and notice the miracles that exist in your world. Stop the constant mind chatter. Learn to live in the now because that is all we have, might as well add some playful living into your daily life.

If you are interested in viewing more entries for this week’s challenge or would like to enter your own photos, please click on the link below:

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/look-up

Love and Light!


4 Comments

WPC – Partners

Whether two of a kind or ten, give us subjects that are in sync with one another — show us partnerships.

 

When my granddaughter was small we were partners in crime. Whether having a tea party, exercising, or visiting special locations such as the one in this photo we had a great time together.

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Rafting at Ausable Chasm located in the Adirondacks in New York State

Two of our favorite places to travel were to visit Natural Stone Bridge and Caves in Pottersville, NY or Ausable Caverns located in the Adirondack Mountains. Being a very young grandmother ‘Mimi’ at the time made our time play dates even more special and fun. Being a grandparent at any age is a blessing.

At my son’s gallery opening I caught these two young ladies in sync with one another both deep within their own thoughts as they contemplate the painting before them. Any guesses on what they were thinking?

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Partners can be found everywhere. In nature, families, work . . .

What about the partnership between the light of the full moon and darkness of the evening sky. They complement one another. While walking in the woods I spotted a pair of Turkey Vultures and both landed in the same tree. That was quite a treat because it was the first time I had witnessed seen them. There size is quite impressive.

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What about a partnership between two people whether that be in a couple holding hands walking in nature, a partnership between uncle and nephew watching someone open presents, or my grandson, Tanner, and Olivia riding on a train at a carnival. Check out their expressions. Now I wonder what they were looking at, neither one looks very amused. They both did laugh while riding on the train however this one shot caught them in a moment of what looks like possibly uncertainty about what they were seeing.

 

Watching people having fun and enjoying life raises my own sense of joy, happiness and love. Capturing this extends the feeling because you can return to the photos to witness them enjoying life in the moment. I remember my son and grandson on Christmas morning at my daughter’s home. They were watching my granddaughter open her presents and trying on all of her clothing at the same time. Even baby Colt seems amused.

While you were viewing this post we were in partnership. Some partners last a lifetime while others are fleeting. I hope that you have enjoyed this partnership.

If you would like to view more photos for this week’s challenge or would like to enter your own photos click on the link below.

https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/partners

Love and Light!