Friday, March 26, 2010

Light and Shadow

"Our lives improve only when we take chances ... and the first and most difficult risk we can take is to be honest with ourselves."
-- Walter Anderson

I’m at this point in my life change / goals…whatever you want to call it…I have to brutally honest with myself and face my shadows. I find this the hardest step of all.

I find after years of taking care of everything for my self and my family to a large degree; I find that don’t like to not be holding the reins in regard to my destiny. I continually have to bite my tongue to stop the “word vomit” from saying things I don’t really mean.

And this is hard for me to admit but it is happening more and more where I just feel so argumentative over the stupidest things because suddenly I’m afraid of not being in control of a situation.

"There are no guarantees. From the viewpoint of fear, none are strong enough. From the viewpoint of love, none are necessary."
-- Emmanuel

I don’t even know why this is so important…being in control. I do know from my essence work that it is a fear of something…but I’m not sure what.

So that is a big shadow that looms over me right now and I’m not sure what to do about it until I know where it is coming from.

The thing about shadows is they can’t exist without light. This weekend was full of sunshine and blue skies.

I think that I’ve finally gotten over last year where our weekends were dedicated to my parents and the house. These last two weekends have left me feeling rested and fulfilled at the same time.

We’ve cleaned and gotten rid of old things...especially clothes...and recycled or gifted them. We’ve made strives to create a home for two families where both have more places to put things like shoes and gloves. We’ve rearranged and let in more good chi and light into our living room.

This weekend we welcomed in Ostra as the evidence of Spring is everywhere around us. I pretty much just reinforced my New Year’s goals. I was happy to see that last year’s goals pretty much came to fruition…even if I didn’t record that fact here.

I usually prepare a big feast but DH wanted to go and eat BBQ outside and honor the day that way and really…it was a great idea. We then built a fire outside on the slab and had ritual on the deck. It was a huge change from having it inside at the hearth…but this is probably the first warm Ostra we’ve had like this in years.

My herb garden seemed to survive the winter better then I’d thought it would. I have new shoots and green leaves bursting forth. Smelling the aromatic fragrances of all my beloved green friends was a wonderful blessing indeed. My son has taken an interest in herbs and he helped me clean out the beds and prune the dead branches.

I have spent a lot more time with him now that we have time to spend; and he is turning into a wonderful young man. I have watched him really blossom this year in so many ways. I am so proud of all he has overcome and his compassionate nature. He is such a blessing to my life.

DH and I have had more time to talk again…which is something that I missed last year. We even got in some morning snuggle time on Sunday which made the whole day even better.

There seems to be a little time for everything again. And there is a balance being restored that is stronger then the chaos trying to pull it apart.

I know that there will always be shadows in my life; but as long as there is plenty of light as well…I will be okay.

Bright blessings and warm sunny hugs,
Ruinwen
:)

Note: The cherry blossoms are from my childhood home. They would always herald spring's return for us. Our street would be lined in sweet pink and at the first rain or wind we would be surrounded with pink snow. I will miss them this year as they join a list of memories dear that will be held forever in my heart.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

PROMISES KEPT

"Joy is prayer - Joy is strength - Joy is love - Joy is a net of love by which you can catch souls. She gives most who gives with Joy."
Mother Teresa

I made a promise that I couldn’t keep for one reason or another last year. This year I intend to make good on it.

There is a wonderful blogger friend of mine who always has a kind word and sympathetic ear (actually that sums up most of you *hugs*) who got together with me on a spiritual exchange of sorts. I picked out a pretty purple mohair to cast on the Athena Smoke Ring from The Knitting Goddess by Deborah Bergman.

Athena the Goddess of wisdom, warriors, spinning, harmony and a bunch of other things, would many times follow her heroes around invisibly. As I’ve knit this I have envisioned this cowl protecting my friend…inspiring her and allowing peace and harmony to enter in when times are stressed and hectic.

Each stitch has been made with love and respect for a wonderful, beautiful human who enriches my life just by being in it.

I find this knit flying off my fingers…working on it seems to be blessing me with a deep inner peace. The purple changes to violet at times and reminds me of the chakra progression. I can feel the fiber hum with delight as a connection is made as I spiral around again and again.

As I weave in the final ends a fleeting mantra dances in my mind. “There is no beginning…no end…there is only now.”

I’ve been so worried about making all the pieces fit...I’d forgotten that the glue that binds it all together is Spirit dancing between the moments in my life.

What makes us forget the things that are really important? Why do we momentarily forget who we are?

There is a story about the Gods hiding in men’s hearts because They knew that no one would look for Them there.

Overwhelming emotions so easily can destroy our sense of balance and distort our well being. Thank the Gods that Spirit stays waiting patiently within us until we can once again see the light.

My journey right now is still in the crawling stages. When you start out everything is shining and beautiful. The scenery is new and exciting and I am full of hope and good cheer.

I am starting and finishing things…which, is a lot for this Aries.
I am staying true to my WW points and the weight keeps slowly coming off.
I continue to work out and my body starts to enjoy it more and more.
Slowly I’m paying that one big bill down and there is an end in sight…it may be a many months down the road…but it will happen this year.
I am balancing chores with the things that are really important like time with family.

For now this is enough.

Bright blessings to you and yours,
Ruinwen
:)

Note: I wrote this post a while ago when I finished the cowl since this was to be a secret project I didn’t want to post it yet so the emotion woven through it is quite different even if the message is the same.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Erin Go Bragh!

May the blessings of the green isle and the "good neighbors" be yours today.
*hugs*
:)

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Musings in My Shower

"The body has its own way of knowing, a knowing that has little to do with logic, and much to do with truth, little to do with control, and much to do with acceptance, little to do with division and analysis, and much to do with union."
-- Marilyn Sewell

So, I’ve been sick since last week with a cold that is really hanging on. Despite that I’ve only missed one day of work and have kept up with most of life.

In my quasi blurred state I’m having trouble tracking my thoughts so this may not be my most poignant post. But the act of posting is very important to my well being. I find that expressing myself through this blog is helping me to heal and become a better person.

After writing about “staying true to one’s beliefs” in my last post I began thinking about bath scrubbies. *yes you heard me right*

My little scrubbie is made of plastic and I really haven’t thought about it before. But really, I should be using something that I can wash easily…that is gentle on the skin…yet abrasive enough to do the job that scrubbies are faced with.

So my next big task is to make a scrubbie that is eco-friendly and kind to the skin as well. Something that can be thrown in and washed with the towels and at the same time will help my soap become good and lathery.

Life is made up of little things that make a difference on such a small scale that by themselves they might seem to barely matter. But if you piece together all these little things they form a greater cohesive whole.

Saving money is like that…one dollar might not be much but keep putting away a dollar here and there and it grows to a much larger sum.

I had trouble saving in the beginning because I felt guilty that I was paying myself first…yet, that is what all the money gurus tell you to do. Also, I thought it would be better to pay off my credit card rather then save money but I was wrong there too.

I was lucky enough to have a money guide that taught me that doing anything with money is like dieting…it takes time, commitment and diligence. My guide told me that you should always pay more to the card then the minimum payment calls for…even if you can only do it by a few dollars.

This gets you in the habit of adding in a little more and as the money frees up those extra dollars add up. The habit is just as important as the money itself.

At the same time he told me, you should put away a little. I could only do $25 a month at first. So I opened an ING account because the money was out of sight and out of mind. But again the amount was not what was truly important…the habit of saving was.

When I started this financial serenity plan four years ago I wasn’t sure I could stick to the budget I had created which also included day care, charities, a UTMA and 529 for my son and all the little behind the scenes things I pay for each month.

A budget is much harder then a diet. In a diet you can say, “No, I won’t eat that,” and go on with your day. You can’t say to your budget, “Sorry, I’m not fixing the car this month…or no, I won’t take my child to the doctor.”

That is what I found out the savings is for. So when life hands you lemons you can say, “Well, I’m glad I had an emergency fund for that.”

That moment of clarity when you realize your financial serenity isn’t some far day in the future…instead it is now…this moment. And for me that was a beautiful feeling.

Was there a point to this ramble of disjointed thoughts that I had while using my plastic scrubbie in the shower?

Actually…yes.

All things truly worth having take time and effort. You can’t put into effect big changes in a day…but you can make little continual changes that in the long run enrich your life.

*germ free hugs and bright blessings*

:)

Notes:
First of all, I only wish that was my shower.
Second, I know that everything I have is a blessing.
Third, I'm not suggesting my financial guidelines should be followed by anyone but me...I'm just writing my process to financial serenity. It has been a long hard road for me...but I think I can see a light at the end of the tunnel. But that may just be an oncoming dragon. ;)

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

The Path We Choose

Ishbel




"More important than finding the teacher is finding and following the truth of the teaching...."
-- Sogyal Rinpoche

Walking Your Talk is a New Age buzz phrase that you hear a lot of these days. But what does it really mean?

There is a story told about Mahatma Gandhi:

A lady brought her son and said he ate too much sugar. She wanted Gandhi to tell him to stop. Gandhi said to bring the child back the next week. The next week she brought the child and Gandhi said “Stop eating sugar child”. And the child did. A month later the lady came back and said “My child has done what you asked, but why could you not have spoken to him the first time I came.” “Lady”, said Gandhi, “a week earlier I was still eating sugar”.

“Walking Your Talk” is living what you say. It makes you accountable for actually following your personal beliefs, tenants, laws, commandments or rules that govern your life.

It is a hard path to follow. And it makes you think…a lot…about every choice and each thing you say and do.

For instance, when I realized that my son was being subject to a toxic soup of bath and shampoo products…I felt that I had not followed my healing path. It was a horrible awakening and I threw everything away from cleaners to beauty products.

Now we only use natural products. Natural products have a shorter shelf life because there are no preservatives in them. There are no separators to keep the product looking good; so many times you have to give your product a good shake before using. But who cares? It was so worth it to switch!

It is like my diet. I am dedicated to it. I track my points. I eat on points. End of story. I made a commitment to myself and that is that. When someone says, “Go on eat it; it doesn’t matter,” I get upset. It really does matter to me.

Ask any recovering addict if taking one (fill in vice of choice) will destroy all they have worked so hard for. The things that we believe in, that shape the way we live may be personal but they have meaning.

I am watching the pounds fall away and a new me take shape inside and out. And it feels really…good. Today I wore a top that I haven’t been able to fit in for two years…last night I slept on my stomach for the first time in two years. Yes, they are two little things that don’t mean much in the grand scheme of things…but to me they are gems in my crown.

And these things are only possible by staying true to my beliefs and walking my talk.

Isbhel

This is Ishbel done and blocking. I love her. She was a struggle...but well worth it in the end.

On the craft front I’ve been knitting from stash. My stash…like my WIP list…is huge. I keep thinking I have a handle on everything and then I find another poor project tucked away and forgotten. I’m trying to round up all these orphans and either finish them or frog them.

I’ve been working hard to finish things up and not start up a project until another is done. And that is going really well. I have finished up more projects already this year then I had finished all of last year. I’m working on making things for fair too.

All this has a deeper meaning because if the projects are under control then I will start designing again. This is not an easy process but it is one that I enjoy. Taking an idea in my head and getting it to adhere to gauge is always very challenging for me. I am horrible with math and I end up having to ask DH to check my calculations.

Everything flows into something else and all things have meaning if one takes the time to look.

When I started to think about walking it made me ponder each step. Steps seem so insignificant by themselves but without each leg of a journey we would never get anywhere. Without each foot following the other; we would stand still.

Each goal is like this. Each one has steps to achieve it. To try and do all the steps at once will spell disaster; but to do the best you can in working towards your goals each day will bring forth a satisfying journey. And before you know it you will be at your goal.

But you must be dedicated and true to your purpose. It doesn’t have to be a grandiose goal…just important to you.

Felted Mice

I'm sorry to reuse a photo...but my mouse stuffer is not feeling well. The ones I made this week were magenta and a heathery blue that changes color with the light.

One of my craft goals is to have 20 mice made by the end of the month. I’ve got 7 knit up already. :)

Little steps…each one leads to another…and one of these days I’ll find myself somewhere…all I know is that I intend to enjoy the journey.

*hugs*
<3
Ruinwen
:)