Sunday, October 28, 2012

Gratitude Sunday

Joining Taryn again this Sunday, over at Wooly Moss Roots for 

G r a t i t u d e  *  S u n d a y
{Sunday's heartfelt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful. A list of gratitudes.} 
glowing calendula
This week I'm grateful for

- Watching all my plants grow glowy and full with 4 days of rain. It's been a long time since the last good rain.

- The healing power of plants. Making some medicinal honey to ease a scratchy throat fed my soul and helped me feel better.

- A lesson learned and relearned and learned again. In the words of a friend, "Invitation not expectation."

- The cradle of loving-kindess that gives me such rest and healing.

- Some warmer than usual weather after the rains, making the early dark skies much more enjoyable.

- The moonlight these past few nights. Brilliant and bathing. Keeping me present.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Under the Weather

It's cold and rainy here, and somewhat abruptly. That usually leads to sniffles and coughs. Both the families I work with are feeling a little under the weather. While I feel okay now, I do have a little scratch in the back of my throat, and my body isn't completely loving the vitamin C capsules I usually take at this point. It's craving something a little more... whole.

So I thought I'd share some DIY medicine.

First, a medicinal honey. I left the herbs in, but you can strain them out if you like.

You need
About 2 inches of ginger root, peeled and diced or grated
About 1/2 cup of rose hips
About 1/2 cup hibiscus flowers
4 TBSP local raw honey
Filtered water

Place the herbs in a saucepan and fill with enough water to cover the herbs generously. Bring to a boil, then reduce to a simmer and cover. Let simmer about 30 minutes. Add the honey and let simmer about 5 more minutes. Remove from heat. Take by the spoonful. If desired, strain out the herbs. Store in a glass jar.

Excellent immune booster, source of vitamin C, and throat soother.

Next, a vinegar cure.

You need
1 TBSP honey
1 TBSP raw apple cider vinegar
Boiling water

Add the boiling water to a glass with the honey and ACV. Let it dissolve, and drink. Preferably 2 times a day. Great immune booster.

And finally, rehydrate with fresh juice.

You need
2 carrots
2 apples
2 stalks celery
1 inch ginger, peeled
3 springs mint
slice of lemon

Run all but the lemon through the juicer. Squeeze lemon juice on top. This is an excellent source of electrolytes to help your body rehydrate when you're sick.

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Gratitude Sunday

Today, I'm joining Taryn over at Wooly Moss Roots for 

G r a t i t u d e  *  S u n d a y
{Sunday's heartfelt tradition. A time to slow down, to reflect, to be grateful. A list of gratitudes.} 

This week I've been grateful for:

- Enjoying this season with some children who truly appreciate the magic of it. Autumn, harvest, Halloween, dia de los meurtos- all of it.

- Finding transformation- realizations that come from the greatest difficulty- or finding energy and motivation out of a painful situation.

- Using that energy to get my new etsy shop back up with some salves listed, and to finish my website.

- Truly understanding the adage "it takes a village to raise a child." It's always been hard for me to ask for or accept help, but these past few weeks my village has really come through for me. I've found so much support and been able to admit that I really need it right now. So gratitude for my village as well.

- A beautiful moment after introducing a child I care for (who just turned one) to a gingko tree. He spent the morning under its branches, not wanting to leave, and continually walking up to its trunk and just holding his hands there looking up. It was love. This was special to me because I find I have a strong connection to the gingko tree.

- Perspective. This lesson has come to me in every facet of my life, from a plane ride to a yoga class to a conversation, the space to find perspective has been granted to me in abundance.

- Lessons learned about myself- my own fears, motivations, and expectations. It's never easy to admit or embrace the fact that we often act unskillfully or have reasons for doing things that are not aligned with our heart. It's freeing to see this, and love ourselves as we are.

-Witnessing a vow. My stepbrother and his wife got married, and being able to watch that intimate moment between them where they formally committed to being life partners was very moving.

Saturday, October 20, 2012

The Proverbial Opening of the Other Door

You know how they say that when one door shuts, another one opens? It does. Some things happen in life that devastate us. And they are absolutely difficult. But somehow, from that space, the motivation arises for movement. A different direction, perhaps. Tending to loose ends. Figuring out where you are and how that compares with where you want to be.

This past week or so has given me the brain space for some hefty realizations. And also the energy to move forward with some projects I've been neglecting.

Those projects involve what I want to be doing with my life. What I've been in school for, and what my life experience has been teaching me. The healing arts. I've been making and selling herbal products off and on for a few years now, and I've been officially studying Holistic Health for two years now. My experience has brought me to work very closely with other people in order to help them find their own path to healing. Wilde Moon has been this project for some time now, but I'm coming to the place and space to start taking this more seriously. I eventually want to open a Healing Center that will incorporate all sorts of modalities and create a welcoming, peaceful space based in mindfulness and compassion that will invite anyone who needs it to explore their own healing potential in a non-threatening, open minded environment.

The first steps toward making this a reality involve putting myself out there. With that, I gratefully present to you the first fruits of this next step: my official website, and my new etsy shop (that will host herbal products only).

Wilde Moon Healing Arts

Wilde Moon Herbals on Etsy

Please let me know if I can be of service to you. I genuinely look forward to making my dream a reality.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

On Joy and Sorrow

Das Schweigen by Fussli
 This week has been pretty difficult for me, and these words are giving me lots of comfort.

From Kahlil Gibran's The Prophet:

Your joy is your sorrow unmasked.
And the selfsame well from which your laughter rises was oftentimes filled with your tears.
And how else can it be?
The deeper that sorrow carves into your being, the more joy you can contain.
Is not the cup that holds your wine the very cup that was burned in the potter's oven?
And is not the lute that soothes your spirit, the very wood that was hollowed with knives?
When you are joyous, look deep into your heart and you shall find it is only that which has given you sorrow that is giving you joy.
When you are sorrowful look again in your heart, and you shall see that in truth you are weeping for that which has been your delight.

Some of you say, "Joy is greater than sorrow," and others say, "Nay, sorrow is the greater."
But I say unto you, they are inseparable.
Together they come, and when one sits, alone with you at your board, remember that the other is asleep upon your bed.

Verily you are suspended like scales between your sorrow and your joy.
Only when you are empty are you at standstill and balanced.
When the treasure-keeper lifts you to weigh his gold and his silver, needs must your joy or your sorrow rise or fall.

Thursday, October 4, 2012

opening and upward

Lines from e.e. cummings poems have carried me through life like a good friend. A word here or an image there have made me feel less alone, or more alone- depending on what I needed. Now I think of the line "here's to opening and upward," which comes from this poem.

Really, the word that first came to mind when I wondered what to call this post was "space". This word has been resonating strongly with me for the past few months, and more intensely, over this past week.

Last weekend (and into the beginning of this week), I was able to take a last minute trip back to Tucson, where I used to live. Since the first time I set foot in the Sonoran desert, I have been madly in love with her. That's a love story for a different time. But needless to say, a visit there is a healing journey.

Lately in my life, I have felt more and more... constricted. And my attempts to let go have yielded an even tighter grasp. We often get stuck in these cycles or stories, right? I even convinced myself a time or two that I was successfully letting go of my need to manage everything, to know what the next moment would bring. And in a sense, I was able to let go of that control in the context of the moment, but all the while I was holding on to my idealized expectation of the bigger picture. Which is not letting go at all.

Letting go involves letting go of ALL expectation. It's that really free place where it doesn't matter that you don't know anything except for that your feet are on the ground, your skin feels warm, the birds are calling for each other, and your right hip is aching.

What the desert gave me is the space to let go. Being there feels open, just physically. The horizon is vast, the sun is vibrant, the world is visibly breathing. There is nature everywhere. You are not disconnected, not crowded, not shuffling through a thousand other people's spaces to get somewhere. It helped to have no agenda there. Just being with friends, I was able to totally let go of the need to be anywhere or do anything specific. I could simply relax into myself.

And I felt free for the first time in... oh I have no idea. I thought I had been free all along. The mind is really great at convincing us that we've already done the difficult task- so that we can put it off a little longer.

Opening up around that constriction allowed the truth to rest in all of my being. The deeper reality of my self and my life. And an acceptance that settled around my bones like soft blanket on a cold winter's night.

Now, I feel more honest. And stronger, too.

Sometimes giving something a little space is all you need. You can give your day some space by taking the time to simply breathe and be. Give your emotions some space. Or your friends. Or a difficult situation. Or a fear. Or an expectation. A little space will lead to a wonderful opening and upward. Now if only I could remember to do this every time I needed to...