Thursday, December 23, 2010

Peaceful Holidays to You

In the quiet stillness of a snowy morning, in the calm before the storm of Christmas day, before the unwrapped presents litter the floor and the smell of turkey wafting from the oven, I allow myself to rest.

In the busy finished shopping days and wrapping wrapping Christmas Rap wrapping days, I allow myself to sit in stillness.

In the baking, roasting, cooking prep days of thawing and stirring and toasting nuts, I slow down and allow myself to take a breath.

What does your heart want to feel today?

What does your love of sharing the feasting and giving and drinking with family need you to do to stay open?

What do you need to really Feel like Christmas today?

Enjoy this spirit-filled time, allow yourself the gift of presence
today, tomorrow and all through the New Year.

nameste and Merry Holidays
a peaceful New Year to you


Wednesday, December 15, 2010

I Love being a Girl TED talk in India

This is an incredible video - please watch and be inspired!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Ten Ways To Reduce Holiday Stress

It's countdown time - less than two weeks until December 25. How can you enjoy yourself during this mad rush to get all the shopping, baking, cooking, wrapping, parties etc done? Start here:
  1. Remember, you’re only human; discover on-line shopping. Get it delivered.
  2. Trying to be everywhere at once is impossible. Do one thing at a time.
  3. Relax and breathe; be happy with getting less done in one day.
  4. Enlist the elves and ask for help: don’t allow yourself to be spread too thin.
  5. Rediscover the word "no" and say it meaningfully.
  6. Make space for yourself on the agenda, and not just a pedicure.
  7. Allow yourself some down time to do nothing when you need to.
  8. How can you make “less is more” work for you?
  9. Simplify, re-use, re-gift; scale down the celebration.
  10. Never compare or contrast yourself with what your best friend is doing. This is your Holiday Time.

"You do not owe anyone your time. When you realize that, others will respect your time much more." – Martha Beck. 

Inspired by a list found on the Flourishing

Happy Holidays


Friday, December 10, 2010

Sacred task of honouring Self

So you may have read the blurb above about the sacred task of being a woman, honouring the feminine. But what does it mean?

If you browse this blog and the labels/titles of pieces written, you may see a theme emerging.  My interest in finding out what the feminine is started years ago, before the birth of my two children (now 18 and 20). But it has been a slow unfolding to really make all the links, put it all together. I don't have any great theories about it all, but I know it has a lot to do with Slowing Down, honouring my feminine intuition, listening to the very subtle inner coach inside who whispers more than yells, and sometimes sends messages through the body, like this frozen shoulder I'm dealing with, or a broken leg (10 years ago).  That broken leg really lead me on a search for understanding the mind-body connection, and a desire to listen in more honestly to my self-talk. I was stuck, immobile and had to ask for help.  I spent a lot of time with myself and my journal.

Where do we start to honour the Self? The only place we always have with us, by sitting and grounding, and getting in touch with our breath, with centering, and calming the nervous flutter and the outside noise. By getting quiet, and trusting that voice that calls for Rest.

It takes a great deal of courage, and a lot of chutzpah to put yourself on the agenda. To push away all the items on your to-do list that make you feel worthy, useful, dutiful, responsible, self-less, and take time for Just You, for your creativity, for your sanity, for your inner peace, for your sense of balance.

Why wait till the body forces you to slow down, is the question. Listen to the gentle urgings to treat yourself with tenderness and compassion instead of pushing, striving, and running over your Self with steel-toed boots.

It isn't about what you do, as Jen Louden put it recently in an interview with Amy Bloom, but more about a shift in mental attitude.

Get in touch with the desire to be present, to be with yourself, to be your own best Companion. And feel a sigh of relief as you do.  Come home to your Self.

Welcome home.


Monday, December 06, 2010


Eavan Boland

My window pearls wet.
The bare rowan tree
berries rain.

I can see
from where I stand
a woman hunkering--
her busy hand
worrying a child's face,

working a nappy liner
over his sticky, loud
round of a mouth.

Her hand's a cloud
across his face, making light and rain,
smiles and a frown,
a smile again.

She jockeys him to her hip,
pockets the nappy liner,
collars rain on her nape
and moves away,

but my mind stays fixed:
if I could only decline her--
lost noun
out of context,
stray figure of speech--
from this rainy street

again to her roots,
she might teach me
a new language:

to he a sibyl,
able to sing the past
in pure syllables,
limning hymns sung
to belly wheat or a woman

able to speak at last
my mother tongue.

Wednesday, December 01, 2010

Treading Air like a Seagull

You should see them r ight now - if I was handy with the camera I'd show you - they are hovering in heavy winds right at the shoreline, waiting for fish, I guess, and holding their wings steady, flapping, falling, rising, essentially in the same spot. 4 of them with white tail feathers and grey wings, playing with the wind.

What I was thinking of earlier this morning was the way the dark brooding skies and white-capped grey water were cut by a bar of light just between the tree tops and clouds. Now that light is gone, and we're moving towards more darkness.

What I was thinking of last week (and re-reading today) was the way the rain floods down the zinc roof and pools on the black earth in the empty flower beds. It overflows the gutters so that it feels like water is dripping from everywhere - the grey of the lake and the grey of the sky are depressing, if I allow it, but since the weather is unusually mild for November it isn't so bad. It's the lack of light and sunshine in winter, that gets me down.

What boosts my energy, mood and immune system - as we head into the dark season - is seeing wonderful white Christmas lights wrapped around the trees in my front yard, and along the outline of the house, transforming it into a fairy-lit land. It finally occurs to me tht we decorate this way because we need the light; it feeds us and since we're still scaredy cats most of us, even adults, and don't like the darkness in winter, we  leave the lights on to comfort ourselves.  Divali, Christmas, Hanukkah candles, it's all about lighting a lamp against the dark.

I am thinking of Christmas also in terms of having to prepare the house, decorate, make food - comfort food to welcome the family hordes and the brand new baby we all are looking forward to seeing, and hopefully to hold - all 28 of us. What will that be like? First Christmas also without Jacqueline, Ninine, great-grandma for the first time, who passed away this July.

In the meantime, I am treading air in time and space, like the seagulls, healing a sore shoulder, resting and napping more than usual, waiting for the creative Festive energy to brighten me up again.

To follow my own advice, I must go with the flow, even in the down times, and accept the resting is needed. The only way out and up is to go down and in.