Spirit of Dragonflies, LLC

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


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Connecting With Nature – A Welcomed Retreat for Our Eyes

“In the presence of nature, a wild delight runs through the man, in spite of real sorrows.” –Ralph Waldo Emerson

In the winter do you hibernate? Do you spend too much time indoors on the computer, texting on your cell, answering a barrage of never ending emails, watching television for hours at a time? Or, do you get outside and enjoy the beauty of nature and the fresh air?

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After sitting at a computer all day, responding to texts, traveling in my car for work and being cooped up inside my body, mind and soul call out for time in nature. For me, being outside in the cold fresh air is invigorating. Taking long walks in the woods, in the summer walking barefoot, sitting near a tree, on a bench or in the winter lying in the snow letting the snowflakes tickle my cheeks is an awakening experience.

During my last eye exam the Ophthalmologist asked if I spent time in nature and I said, “Yes, as often as possible.” Even though I’ve had glasses since 2nd grade (didn’t really wear them as prescribed until I was 19) my eyes have been improving over the last several year. This time he shared that my eye muscles are very healthy and my prescription was reduced once again. That was the first time I learned that being in nature can strengthen our eye muscles.

I’m not a doctor but have read, spoke with doctors and through my own experiences noticed that when sitting at the computer all day I don’t blink enough, my head and neck are bent for long periods of time, and there is little movement as my eyes focus on the screen or my cell when answering texts. This effects my posture and the constant typing and use of the mouse effect my fingers, hands, arms and shoulders.

What better way to counter act this daily strain than by taking a break from sitting at the desk and taking a walk outside. Or, stopping on the way home for a nice walk in nature. The varying colors of nature benefit the eyes. I found this article on the benefits to children’s eye health to be interesting:

https://opto.ca/health-library/playing-outdoors-can-help-maintain-childrens-eyesight

Here are some pictures of two of my grandchildren enjoying nature. Whether picking blueberries (eating more than what went into the bucket), sauntering through the woods, hugging and/or talking to trees, walking barefoot in the grass they all enjoy spending time in nature.

Part of the benefits to the eyes is due to the color green which is soothing and another reason is the eyes relax while in nature and benefit from a workout just like the muscles in our legs. Here is an article I found on the effects of a green environment:

https://www.cnn.com/2017/06/05/health/colorscope-green-environment-calm/index.html

When walking or sitting in nature we look up, out in the distance, and close up at nature’s gifts, giving our eyes a work out. (You can also stop throughout the day and do a figure 8 movement with your eyes for additional exercise.) We also give them a workout as we check out the movement of the little critters skittering from here to there, busy no matter the season. By sitting still in the sit-spot I noticed that they seem to have little roadways to and from their nests. You can also watch rabbits on their adventures. They stop a little longer here and there along the way. If you are still and down wind they may not even notice you. I’ve had this happen with deer. They walk by without noticing if you are still and they can’t smell you.

Don’t get too close to the squirrel or you will hear them shriek like this little guy. I was sitting in a sit-spot at the bottom of a tree in Congress Park in Saratoga Springs, NY when I heard a shriek. I looked out to the trees around me but couldn’t find where the noise was coming from. Thinking it was a bird I looked up. There a few feet above my head, was this squirrel running up and down the tree. I stood up slowly backed away from the tree. She ran up the tree trunk to the branch above. The shrieking did not stop. Look at her tail giving a warning signal. As I looked around in the next tree I noticed a nest. She must have been warning me to stay away from her nest. She finally quieted down and jumped to the other tree. I quietly went on my way so she could relax and found another tree.

I could not share my own recording as my recordings have recently disappeared from my cell but found this video on YouTube. This is what the squirrel alarm sounds like:

 

The shrieking can last for quite some time and become very loud. Once again, watching the squirrel and checking out the area gave my eyes a nice workout and I learned a little more about nature. It was the first time that a squirrel has come that close to me in a warning stance. Guess I chose the wrong tree for my sit-spot and she was not willing to share.

Along with observing squirrels, mindfully sitting in my sit-spot just before sunrise allowed me to witness the awaking of the forest. There is a slow illumination along the tops of the trees which gently seeps through the gaps in the trees eventually illuminating the forest floor. As it casts it’s light the yellow leaves of the Aspen trees appear to glow. Some of the leaves slowly hitch a ride on a slight breeze, spiraling round and round until softly landing on the branch of a Hemlock tree. There were so many decorating some of the trees  it resembled a Christmas tree.

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The leaves were the decorations, with the sunlight reflected in the morning dew the lights. I didn’t have a camera in the morning to capture the dew reflecting the light because I was enjoying the moment. Some spiraled gently to the forest floor, greeting those who came before, layering the earth in a blanket of leaves.

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Looking up at trees towering above I witness the mighty tree stretching up into the sky above with its many arms reaching out in all directions. Bare in the Fall and Winter this is the resting period as it awaits a bursting of renewal in the Spring.

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My eyes wander far, then closer and closer until, once again, I witness the scurrying of the chipmunks and squirrels gathering acorns and carrying them back to their shelter.

We should not just saunter and enjoy the benefits of nature ourselves. Sharing a nature connection with children is the best way to keep them healthy and teach them about the benefits of nature and connecting with their environment. Plus, their little eyes are always scanning the environment which is a plus for their eye health because many of the children today spend too many hours in front of a screen, many times holding a device too close to their eyes. We are only beginning to see the effects.

“In every walk with Nature one receives far more than one seeks.” – John Muir

The benefits of nature are far reaching. It reduces anger, fear, and stress while increasing pleasant experiences and we become healthier, more creative, and more aware of our natural environment.

So get outside, saunter in the woods, near a stream, ocean, local park, garden, in your own backyard, take some children with you and explore. While outside look up at the stars, clouds, the tree tops, trails, the bark, flowers, the critters, dragonflies, and a little closer at the insects. Don’t forget to touch the bark, the leaves, the grass and bend down to smell the flowers. Walk barefoot and feel the earth beneath you. Sit for a while and take in your environment.

Remember while you are viewing the natural world and strengthening the muscles in your eyes you are also strengthening other muscles in your body, increasing your lung capacity by breathing in fresh air, expanding your mind and spirit. It is a win-win situation.

If you are interested in learning about mindfulness outdoor experiences and how to slow down and connect while in nature please email me or complete the attachment below. I would love to hear from you.

In my next post I will share some upcoming Mindfulness Outdoor Experiences that I will be leading in February and March.

Love and Light!


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Forest Bathing – Grounding – Connecting to Nature

I do not know whether it is possible to love the planet or not,
but I do know that it is possible to love the place
we can see, touch, smell and experience.
~ David Orr, Earth in Mind

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Nature is not a place to visit, it is home. 
~ Gary Snyder

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When we walk upon Mother Earth, we always plant our feet carefully
because we know the faces of our future generations are looking up at
us from beneath the ground. We never forget them.

~ Oren Lyons, Onondaga Nation

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It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men’s hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit.
~ Robert Louis Stevenson

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When in nature it is not a time to rush. Slow down, stop and look at the gifts nature has blessed you with. Take in everything in front of you, above you, to each side.

What are you smelling – the flowers, trees, dirt, earth? Take off your shoes and feel the earth under your feet. Let the energy of the earth revitalize you. Look up and watch the leaves dancing in the breeze above. Is the sunlight shining through the spaces between the branches? Raise your hands above your head and move your body like the leaves dancing in the wind. Release all that is holding you back. How does that feel?

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There is so much to see, smell, taste, feel, and connect with in nature if you just pay attention. When you are out, sit down and feel the earth. Let the dirt sift through your fingers. Feel the texture of the trees. Notice how each tree has a different shape, thickness and texture. Notice the trails – some are well worn while others are covered in moss or greenery.

Do certain sections of the forest feel like rooms? Maybe there are sections of trees protecting an area while other areas are open. What insects, little or big critters are scampering around through the trees, under foot, or along the dirt bath?

Pay attention to how the sunlight filters through and decorates the forest floor. Listen to the birds singing or sending out a warning signal. Sit and watch the dragonflies, butterflies and bees dancing from flower to flower. Can you find any edible plants along the path?

Forest bathing is learning to slow down and take in a section of the forest at a slow pace. There is no destination – just being present in the moment. Being mindful of life, of your surroundings. Slowing down to allow your body to heal. The forest has healing properties that are being discovered everyday. We have this beautiful gift if only we slow down enough to appreciate this blessing.

Last week I had my first experience facilitating Earth Walk with my client. After searching for several months I stumbled upon the perfect setting. A doctor had purchased a home and planted trees, flowers, and shrubs around the property. There are several ponds on the property and varieties of trees from around the world. There are many ‘rooms’ on the property with benches placed for a visitor to sit and contemplate the beauty that surrounds them. When he died the property was left for others to enjoy.

You can sit on a bench near a pond and watch dragonflies chase one another for hours. My client took her time and with my guidance she was able to release something that has been holding her back in life. We would walk to the various ‘rooms’ and she would sit on the bench and write in her journal. Then we would sit in silence until it was time to move on to another area. Sometimes after experiencing this type of walk you can feel melancholy for several days. After my first experience in New Mexico I traveled home and wasn’t sure what was happening to me. I felt sad but not depressed, a bit quiet and wanted to be alone, it felt like a loss or death. Which it actually was – a loss of what I had been holding on to for a couple of decades. We had buried something I had brought along and had a little ceremony to release. The night after our our ceremony I felt so upbeat and excited about the future it surprised me how melancholy had set in once I returned home. I reached out to Mary to share this experience and she said this was normal. You have to go through the stages of grief after releasing. After the week was over the scene from my memory could still rise up however it was like a movie that I no longer had any attachment to – it was someone else from long ago. It was a wonderful feeling to release that emotional connection. Two years later and I am still unattached to what had been a painful memory. Think about what you will be able to release while in nature? You can have your own ceremony.

When in nature give yourself the privilege of spending an hour or two in a state of relaxation. The beneficial effects will stay with you for days after the visit. If you can manage to experience this two or three times per week you will begin to notice the physical and mental health benefits. If you take someone with you try not to speak to one another during your walk – only to point out something that you are seeing, smelling, feeling – a shared experience. It is fine to bring a journal to write down what you are experiencing. If you are with another person after your experience sit down and discuss what you noticed and share your personal journey with one another if you wish.

Please let me know if you decide to experience this journey. I would love to hear from you.

Love and Light!


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Nature, Trees and Grandchildren

“Hope is the tree that holds the world”

Pliny, the Elder

“Most people never listen.”

~ Earnest Hemmingway ~

“Trees are sanctuaries. Whoever knows how to speak to them, whoever knows how to listen to them, can learn the truth. They do not preach learning and precepts, they preach undeterred by particulars, the ancient law of life.”

Hermann Hesse, Wandering ~

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Silly Tanner climbing a tree

“Childhood is, or has been, or ought to be, the great original adventure, a tale of privation, courage, constant vigilance, danger, and sometimes Calamity.”

~ Michael Chardon ~

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Baby Colt checking out the flower on the Magnolia tree

“If man is not to live by bread alone, what is better worth doing well than the planting of trees?”

~ Frederick Law Olmsted ~

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Checking out a very wise tree at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health

“Between every two pine trees there is a door leading to a new way of life.”

~ John Muir ~

“A tree is beautiful, but what’s more, it has a right to life; like water, the sun and the stars, it is essential. Life on earth is inconceivable without trees.”

~ Anton Chekhov ~

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Hugging Trees at Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health

“The forest is a peculiar organism of unlimited kindness and benevolence that makes no demands for its sustenance and extends generously the products of its life and activity; it affords protection to all beings.”

~ Buddhist Sutra ~

Teaching children to connect with nature at an early age has been a very important part of my life. First with my own children, nieces, nephews, and their friends taking them for hikes, sleeping in lean-tos in the forest, and playing outside daily. Now with my grandchildren – Taylor, my eldest granddaughter, Tanner (5), Colt (3), and soon the youngest, Lainey (10 months) and Abram (6 months). Sharing the love of nature with children gives them a lifelong love and knowledge of our interconnection with the nature and all the life it maintains.

Whenever I get the chance I am outside with others learning about our environment, forest bathing, enjoying the sounds, smells and sights. Living mindfully in nature allows time to reflect, to take in fresh air, exercise the body, feel the spirit, and relax the mind. I have been very fortunate over the years to have attended classes with other like minded people, belong to groups, and volunteer at locations that allow time outdoors.

If all goes well and I am accepted into the class I will be spending 9 days outside in October of this year learning more about forest bathing, mindful outdoor meditation, group facilitation skills, and more. This will be truly a dream come true. After the class I will be a certified instructor and will begin to share my knowledge and experiences with others. What a blessing it will be to bring a sense of wonder and share this knowledge with the next generation.

“The nation behaves well if it treats the natural resources as assets which it must turn over to the next generation increased; and not impaired in value.”

~ Theodore Roosevelt ~

“What we are doing to the forests of the world is but a mirror reflection of what we are doing to ourselves and to one another.”

~ Mahatma Gandhi ~

Do you take time to hug trees? Do you teach children about their connection to nature? If we each take on the responsibility to protect nature we will be blessing our children and their children with a life sustaining gift. More precious than all the money in the world. 

A few things that you can do to help our environment:

  • Use cloth bags when at the grocery store or any store
  • Pick up garbage from the ground and throw it in the trash
  • Carry your own reusable water bottle
  • Purchase reusable sandwich bags – wash and reuse
  • Bring your own reusable lunch bag
  • Make your own meals from real food – not boxed or canned
  • Try to have less trash
  • Donate any unwanted items
  • Compost
  • Grow your own food in a garden
  • Walk, ride a bicycle, take public transportation or drive a Hybrid
  • Ride share
  • Use your towels / wash clothes more than once before washing
  • Turn off the lights when not using, use energy saving light bulbs
  • Unplug your equipment when not using (laptops, computers . . .)
  • Have your furnace cleaned before cold weather
  • Carry all trash out of the woods when hiking or camping
  • Don’t write on trees or carve your initials in them
  • Plant trees every year
  • Call your representatives and senators to request more green space
  • Spend an hour or so outside daily connecting with nature
  • Hug a tree or two
  • Read books on nature – educate yourself
  • Take an outdoor class
  • Remove all chemicals from your home – inside and out  – find natural alternatives
  • Don’t purchase Round Up and don’t hire anyone who uses chemicals on your yard
  • Purchase only organic foods and grass-fed beef, free range chicken

Do you have something to add to this list? Please share.

Love and Light!

 


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Finding Peace During Stressful Times

My daughter was staying in Ohio with her family when their 12 day old daughter, Lainey,  was taken to the emergency room. She had stopped breathing while my daughter was purchasing diapers. Miraculously when my daughter asked for help, a woman standing behind her in line was a pediatric nurse and someone else immediately called 911. As they were raced to the emergency room in the ambulance, their rental left in the parking lot at the store, her husband and 4-year-old son were in the hotel unaware of what was happening.

I was home two states away with life moving forward as normal and no way to be of support to any of them. Work still called me away during the day and the miles between kept me from jumping in my car – even though it was offered. My daughter thought they would release Lainey the next day, then the next, then the next.

On Friday, day 4 of her hospital stay, I was ready to fly out and rent a vehicle to drive back with my grandson. At lunchtime, my coworker suggested we take a quick walk – even though it was one of those hot muggy September days. Once out, we decided to go a little further so we started over the bridge toward the Amtrak station. On the way a large dragonfly flew around our heads. My coworker laughed and called me the dragonfly queen. The dragonfly flew down and bumped the top of my arm. Then she hovered in front of me so I laid out my arm.
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She landed gently and sat on my arm for the longest time. My coworker said, “You do attract dragonflies.” I laughed because this is the truth and has been for a very long time. Yet, this was the first time I have actually witnessed a green dragonfly, and a first for one to bump me as if wanting to share a message.

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We made eye contact and I said, “What are you telling me? Is Lainey going to be fine? Will they be traveling to stay with me soon?”

She remained on my arm longer without movement. We were conversing without words and I began to feel very confident that all was well with baby Lainey and they would be heading my way soon. I relaxed and felt very comfortable with all of my focus on the dragonfly. It was as if she understood I had received the message because she began to move a little on my arm and then flew off to her next adventure. We stood and watched as she made her way gracefully through the hot and humid air.

Before we turned to walk away I noticed she was returning. My coworker and I stood at the cement rail watching and waiting in silence.

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Then Ms Dragonfly stopped by to share one more goodbye.  My coworker and I felt uplifted and knew deep in our hearts that Lainey was going to be fine.

(Look closely – it wasn’t until after I uploaded the photo that I noticed she had something in her mouth. Maybe a fly or some other insect she caught for lunch.)

On the way back to the office I texted the photos above to my daughter. She responded with a smiley face and shared Lainey was being released. They would spend one more night in the hotel and head my way the next day.

Sometimes we need to get out of our heads and allow nature to speak to us. There are always signs if we just slow down and pay attention. Whatever your beliefs, I think miracles happen everyday and we receive messages from many sources when we quiet our minds.

If you can learn to find your still point in the midst of chaos you will begin to discover the path to a joyful, peaceful life. There will always be bumps in the road, it is how you decide to travel the road that will make all the difference. It took me over thirty minutes to capture this dragonfly in flight a few years back but this photo always reminds me that we can find stillness in chaos. Even though the dragonfly is in flight it appears that the world is in movement and she is still. That is how I want to learn to live my life. Finding a still point within no matter what is happening around me. To be the peace I want to see in my life and share it with others.

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Have you ever been in a low vibration and felt uplifts by an insect, animal,  or something in nature? Do you notice miracles throughout the day?If so, please share your experience. Just think of all the factors that must come together for you to be born – to breath, digest, see, smell – for you to be the person you are, living the life that you live. That is a miracle.

Love and Light!


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Favorite Place – WPC

What’s your favorite place, near or far? Share an image in a new post!

Everybody needs beauty as well as bread, places to play in and pray in, where nature may heal and give strength to body and soul. ~ John Muir ~

This weekend I was fortunate to visit one of my favorite places, Pumpkin Hollow Retreat Center, where I volunteered to help out in the kitchen and share in Karma Yoga (the discipline of selfless action without being attached to the outcome – being in Union with God.) This is the place that I go to for healing, to strengthen my body and soul.

When not helping out in the kitchen I had the opportunity to wander through the woods on my snowshoes. This was the first time this year that I had the opportunity to use them.

Let me take you on a little tour and you can check out Pumpkin Hollows website: http://www.pumpkinhollow.org

Living simply and in tune with nature’s rhythm is my favorite place to be. Add in some wonderful people living in a healing community and it all makes life a little more pleasant. This morning’s meditation was very powerful and a great start to the day. On the way to meditation there was a fine snow falling and it was a beautiful site from the windows. At the end of the meditation the snow and stopped and the sun came out to say hello.

The meals are vegetarian and always delicious. If you have a group that would like to visit give them a call. If you would like to get away on your own, give them a call. Remember, this is not a resort where you will be waited on, all who visit give willingly and share in activities. Love gardening, they are always looking for volunteers to help out in the garden. Do you like carpentry, plumbing, cleaning? Give them a call. If you would like to walk through the woods to the labyrinth, sitting by the waterfall, exploring nature in between helping out and/or participating in group learning sessions then this is the place for you. All who come return as this will become your second home just as it is for all those who have visited before you. Day visitors are welcome to explore, just check in at the desk to sign in before taking a walk.

If you are interested in learning more about Pumpkin Hollow Retreat Center and the history of this wonderful location please check out their website. All are welcome.

Love and Light!
If you are interested in viewing 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/favorite-place/

 


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Everything is Temporary – Embrace It

For this week’s challenge, share a photo that says “temporary” to you. As always, you can take the theme in any direction you see fit — from the natural world to the human, and from the concrete to the abstract. I look forward to browsing your photos!

Opportunity often comes disguised in the form of misfortune, or temporary defeat. ~ Napoleon Hill ~

Imagine a world where nothing was temporary – scary right?? Life is just as it should be with everything temporary and evolving. This is why it is important to live mindfully and enjoy life’s every moment. Don’t focus on what you don’t have. Be happy with what you do have and strive to be a better person.

If we are content with life in the moment and slow down long enough to really communicate with family and friends, coworkers, and others in our lives think how rich your life will become. If we slow down while we eat and truly enjoy nutritious food and drink, think of how our bodies and minds will respond and gift us with good health. If we nurture our spirits with meditation, prayer, yoga, walks in nature, laughter . . . imagine how our unconscious will respond in a higher more compassionate vibration.

If you are ill, remember what it felt like to be healthy. If you are healthy, think about what that means and how it feels – cherish this time in life. If you are sad, remember what it was like to feel excited, happy, content. If you are loving life, enjoy and pay attention to how it feels in this moment. If you have lost your job, stop for a moment and give thanks to the job you had then feel what it will be like to have a new position.  If you lose your home, stop to remember what it felt like to enjoy your space then give thanks and be ready for your new home. When in your new home give thanks daily for your blessings. When one door closes another opens – if you are paying attention opportunity awaits you.

Just think about the temporary stages of a child’s life. It seems as if in the blink of an eye their childhood innocence is over and they go out on their own. I feel childhood is temporary so each stage should be honored and cherished by all. The same with adulthood – honor each stage of your life. It is a gift!

Whether temporary stages in a child’s life, stages of nature or manmade items (think telephones-cellphones, telephone cables – wi-fi, televisions, computers, automobiles over the last five decades compared to the last two years) everything is temporary.

Knowing this doesn’t mean we should become stagnated by fear – rejoice in transitions and remain open, each moment in time is temporary. Why let life’s journey frighten and stress you. Take a deep breath in – rejoice that you are alive, breath out – feel love and compassion for the world. The temporary stages of nature are quite breathtaking yet we don’t want to get stuck in any one for too long. The people living in locations where the weather remains pretty constant sometimes take it for granted until someone brings it to their attention or they visit another location. I remember when living in California I would mention how beautiful the flowers were along the walls surrounding communities. My coworker asked what flowers. She had lived in California her whole life and didn’t realize their were colorful flowers growing along every wall in the neighborhoods. The next time she took a ride away from the highway she noticed them as well and enjoyed riding with me to different locations. She was able to see through my eyes.

To visit my location you would want to visit at different times of the year to see all of the beautiful gifts of each seasons.

Today as I sit to write in my blog, it is cold outside and the windows are decorated in frost. Several black ravens are on the ground checking out the grass and flying up to sit in the trees. I sip on a cup of warm herbal tea listening to Enya on YouTube while a blend of Frankincense, Myrrh, On Guard, Breath, and Purify are diffused. It smells lovely.

Be The Light

Message of the day.

My home feels peaceful and calm. I have learned to pay attention to the energy of my surroundings, knowing that I can always shift this energy from rushed to peaceful with a meditation and a blend of essential oils in the diffuser. Some will say the oils are costly. I say, if they can help me maintain a sense of calm and peace it is well worth the pennies per drop. Stress is a killer and although life is temporary, I want to live everyday as if I have forever.

Once we embrace the fact that everything is temporary, it is best to remain active, learn and grow so when one door closes it doesn’t find you blocked. Keep a foot out the door with other interests, keep up to date on new discoveries, remain open to new ideas and opportunities, pay attention to your health – eat higher quality foods, drink plenty of clean water, exercise in nature, hug or sit under a tree, laugh and find joy wherever you are. Do something silly like jump in mud puddles, dress up for Halloween, wear that favorite outfit hiding in your closet, dance in the rain, run along the beach kicking the water into the air, sing loudly while riding in the car, call an old schoolmate, write a letter to an elderly relative, purchase a coloring book with crayons, create something fun, experiment, collect rocks.

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Life is like play doh. Once you make something if left too long without being touched it becomes stiff and dries up. Better to take it apart and create something new so it stays fresh and flexible. It’s the same for our lives. If we sit too long we become stiff, if we don’t  keep in touch with our loved ones the relationship stagnates, if you don’t stretch your mind you will dry up and become obsolete.

Be ready for endings and new beginnings – embrace the temporary as an awakening of your spirit preparing you for a new journey.

Wishing you a life filled with possibilities, movement, laughter, joy, fun, adventure, creativity, health, financial well-being, and spiritual awakening through all your temporary life events.

Love and Light!

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

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


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WPC – Layered in Nature

This week, share with us a layered image of your own. The topic is wide open, as long as you focus on the interplay of depth, density, and texture (or just choose one of these elements if you’d like). Strata of clouds, a shirt collar peeking through a sweater, a cross-section of an onion: you can keep your interpretation as literal or as figurative as you wish.

 

As a single footstep will not make a path on the earth, so a single thought will not make a pathway in the mind. To make a deep physical path, we walk again and again. To make a deep mental path, we must think over and over the kind of thoughts we wish to dominate our lives. ~ Henry David Thoreau ~

We succeed in life by repetition of new ways, new thoughts, new actions that lead in the direction of where we want our journey to take us. See the world with fresh eyes, like a child, and your world will open up to new possibilities, adventures, discoveries of what you are truly capable of accomplishing. Get in touch with nature, open your senses and experience the mental, physical, and spiritual healing properties of nature. Sit still in a natural environment and listen to your inner guidance – you know the way – you just have to be still, listen and then take small action steps.

If your mental pathway is deeply set and leading you in the wrong direction, start today to take the first step along a new path. One small step everyday in the direction of your dreams will begin to open new pathways to reaching your goals.

Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal; nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong mental attitude. ~ Thomas Jefferson ~

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

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

Love and Light


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WPC – Lessons from Manmade & Natural Structures

Today, take a moment to notice the structure of everyday things around you. Note the lines, freckles, and tiny hairs on your arm, and imagine the biological blueprint that created them. See the bricks of a building, and realize that they were individually placed there by another person. Then, share with us a photo of the structure of something wonderful. We’re eager to see details through your lens.

Structure (google search result)

1. (noun) the arrangement of and relations between the parts or elements of something complex

2. (verb) construct or arrange according to a plan; give a pattern or organization to.

Some manmade structures build today are not as sturdy as those of the past. All you have to do is check out the construction of some of the newer homes – slapped together with cheap material under time restraints. Nothing can last under those conditions.

Many older structures from the 1900s and earlier are still standing and will remain standing unless a natural disaster or humans destroy them. If you look closely you can see how each piece is needed for the whole to have survived this long. Many people came together, sometimes generations of family members, working for a purpose. There was a pride in creating some of the buildings that remain standing. Some structures, like the ice castle below, are meant to serve a short-term purpose.  They are meant to return to nature. Yet, watching the men and women creating the structure you could see the pride in their eyes knowing the pleasure this temporary structure would bring to all who witnessed their results.

 

I find it amazing how each individual piece balancing with a neighboring piece becomes a support of the whole. If we, as humans, could just do the same imagine what we could accomplish. Compassion, Understanding, Cooperation, Joy, Love, Peace – all building blocks for an harmoniously structured world.

Maybe we could take some clues from these old structures and begin to create our own lives with a focus on mindfulness – creating joy for ourselves and others. Beginning with eating healthy, exercising regularly and meditation/prayer to develop a strong core structure. Mindfully taking steps to develop strong character and strengthen our belief systems may assist in building lasting relationships, careers, and financial security. Imagine not following trends of the day and instead learning to remain true to ourselves by taking positive steps to develop a strong core and community to weather life’s stormy seasons. Now stop to imagine how this change will affect our children and grandchildren. It is never to late to shift your life journey in a new direction.

When nature is left untouched by man, the results are quite beautiful. What if we were to focus more on what is working in life and not fight against everything natural. Maybe we could learn to live in harmony with others as well. We could make better decisions about growing food locally and living with less stuff to allow time for the natural beauty of nature to heal, sooth the soul, and bring peace to our lives.

 

How does a mushroom know how to become a mushroom? Who decides the shape, size and color? How does a seed know to grow into a tall oak? How does the sperm and egg know how to crete a human being? Natural structure is amazingly beautiful. Just look at the skin on the top of your hand, it isn’t just one solid piece of skin. There are many layers some dying off as others are newly formed. Amazing isn’t it?

Is this God’s hand at work? Is there a Higher Power creating all? No one knows for sure but I believe there is an Intelligent Force (Spirit) creating all. That is my belief – not one you must share.

What an amazing Creator. We have all been blessed with our own unique creative gift. Being out in nature allows us to become Grounded and Centered with the Universal Energy – the healing force of creativity. We can see this Creative power in the pine cones, seeds, designs in flowers, and in every human being. No two entities are exactly alike in anything in this Universe. whether that be people, trees, rivers, or planets. What if we embrace our difference and discover how we can all bring balance to a chaotic environment. One need only to look at our natural environment to see the cooperative balance and diversity in life.

 

“I am satisfied with the mystery of the eternity of life and with the awareness and a glimpse of the marvelous structure of the existing world, together with the devoted striving to comprehend a portion, be it ever so tiny, of the Reason that manifests itself in nature.” ~ Albert Einstein ~

Thank you for viewing my post. 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/structure/

Love and Light!


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WPC – Security

For this week’s challenge, show us something that represents “security.”

“The hope of a secure and livable world lies with disciplined nonconformists who are dedicated to justice, peace and brotherhood.” ~ Martin Luther King ~

When I am sitting on my meditation pillow in front of my little shrine I feel secure and grateful for all of my blessings.

create-you-meditation-space

“The only person who is going to give you the life you want is you.” ~ Robert Kiyosaki ~

If you would like to view more photos or enter your own, click on the link below:

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

Love and Light!


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WPC – Solitude 3

This week, show us what being alone means to you.

DSC_0993 (1).jpg

Late Autumn in Lake George, NY

“Silence and solitude, the soul’s best friends.” ~ Henry Longfellow ~

 

If you would like to view more posts for this week’s challenge or would like to enter your own, please click on the link below:
https://dailypost.wordpress.com/photo-challenges/solitude/

Love and Light!