Tuesday, March 31, 2009

44 - Being More

A year ago when I turned 43, I declared that it was "time for ME to just BE". It was an excellent year. Lots of breakthroughs and releasing which brought me to an awareness of how to BE.

Now that I'm 44, my focus is on "BEing MORE". Going deeper....staying in the state of Being longer...bringing that awareness into even more areas of my life.

I am calm, I am strong, I am excited.

Birthday hike

Last Saturday was my birthday and my only wish was to go hiking...so we did. We went to the Burleigh Heads National Park and hiked around and up to the lookout. Nicholas had a little bit of a cold still, but still walked most of the way. I love this hike. It's like we're in the bush /rainforest but we're right next to the ocean as well. Some pics:

The view looking south from the lookout. The entrance to Tullebudgera creek is at the front, then Palm Beach and further down at the little headland in the distance is Currumbin.
The kids all had various stages of mild colds last week so we didn't go to any theme parks or do much at all really. We've just had my Mum here for a few days which was good - a very nice visit. She just left this morning and it looks like we'll have rain all week so we may not get to a theme park this week. Whatever we do, I'm sure we'll have fun.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Picnic at the Dam

A few weeks ago, we met my Aunt & Uncle for a picnic at a local Dam. We didn't end up going to see the actual dam, we just hung out in the picnic area. It was so quiet and peaceful and the kids were having a great time exploring around some water there.
Showing off their recently painted shirts.


What's that you found?

A frogpole! Summer and AJ both found dozens of tadpoles at various stages and lots of tiny frogs too. AJ has a huge amount of patience to watch and catch tiny critters for a closer inspection.

These Morton Bay Fig Trees are excellent for climbing! I started up this one but it had a ton of ants all over it so I jumped off. These were nasty looking biting ants. Usually they don't have ants and are super fun.

Fun day at Movie World

AJ, Scooby & Shaggy

Stunt show, the cars all drving on two wheels

While Summer & AJ went on some of the kids rides that Nicholas wasn't in the mood for at the time (he did go on some of them later), he hung out with a few wild friends.

Nicholas on the Yosemite Sam train ride

AJ, 3rd from left, Summer on the right

AJ & Summer on the kids dodge 'em cars. They went on these about 10 times.

Tweety Summer.

Nicholas finally joined the others on the dodge em's and loved 'em!

Nicholas & Daffy.

Beautiful and fun days

The chilly weather I wrote about recently didn't last long at all. We got back into the upper 20'sC / low -mid 80'sF which has been lovely. We've had some beautiful soaking rain too - sometimes all night long which is great to lull us to sleep and to have those negative ions coming through the open windows.

It is getting lighter later so the kids are sleeping in a bit more which is good for them. I keep waking really early though.

We had a state election here yesterday. Voting is compulsory in Australia for all aged 18 and over. I went to vote at the local public school. As usual, there were lots of people standing out the front handing out pamphlets showing you how to vote for their candidate. We walked up to the big shed where the cardboard booths were set up. As we approached, I asked the greeter if the children could come in with me. He was very friendly and enthusiastic and said "Certainly - show them how the electoral process works!". Wow, I hadn't been able to bring the kids in with me in other places I've voted. They saw the big roll for our area that has everyones name on it and helped the lady find my name and make sure it was checked off so that I did not get a fine for not voting. They came with me to the booth and I told them why I was voting the way I was. And then the workers there were fine with the fact that Nicholas helped me "cast my vote" by popping it in the box. The kids did feel more involved with the process and now have a little more understanding of how that works.

We love living in this state - "the sunshine state". It's currently celebrating its 150th birthday. One really great thing about that is that 3 of the big theme parks near us are doing a special deal - for the price of entry into one of them for a day, we can get a special pass that will allow us unlimited entry into all 3 of them anytime until the end of June. Too good to pass on that! Last week we went to WB Movie World and Wet'n'Wild Water World. Oh we had so much fun - and one of the best things was that we didn't feel rushed to get around and try and see everything in one day. At Movie World, we mainly hung out in the area where the kids rides are though we did see some shows. The car stunt show was very good. Nicholas didn't like the Batman street show, thought the Scooby street show was ok (the ghost guy running around was a bit scary) and after being a bit nervous at first in the 4D theater, he quite liked the Shrek show. I went on a roller coaster by myself. Not the super fast one that goes up really high and then very steeply down at about 60mph. no no no no! Not yet anyway. Compared to that one, I went on the tame one. It was still a blast!

Another day we met some homeschoolers at an ambulance station for a tour and then on to a playground. Seeing as we were only 10 minutes away from Wet n wild, we decided to go there afterwards. We hung out at the wave pool for about an hour, floated along the lazy river for another hour then played at the big kids playground with climbing and squirting things and slides and big fun. Until Summer was told she was too old to go down the slides there, it was meant to be for the little kids. She was really sad. Growing up and not ready. So we looked at some of the big long water slides for the "big kids" (yeah that's me too) and she picked out some she wants to try 'next time', that don't look too fast or scary.

This week....Sea World. I have a feeling we'll be riding the monorail for at least a few laps of the place. Maybe Wet n Wild again too while the weather is still so good for it.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

To Cary

Mister Man,

I want the world to know how much I adore you.

I thank you for your strength - your physical strength that makes me feel so secure when you hold me; your emotional strength that is always there, so calm and sure; and your spiritual strength that inspires me.

I thank you for your sense of adventure, for your willingness to leave relative certainty behind in order to move across the world, to travel, to try new places and people and all the time see the excitement of doing so.

I thank you for your sense of fun and cheekiness.

I thank you for being a free thinker, for not always following the mainstream, for seeing how things could be, for knowing how things can be if we have the courage to be different.

I thank you for your encouragement. Though it hasn't always been what I wanted, it was always what I needed in order to get unstuck or stretch myself or grow. You know me better than I know myself. You see me as so much more than I see myself.

Thank you for you.

It just doesn't matter

It doesn't matter if other cars speed past me on the highway.

It doesn't matter if I put the sheets on the bed upside down.

It doesn't matter if I buy the wrong butter one week.

The necessary paperwork in life is not important. It is needed in order to function in this life and get things done, but there is no need to stress over it. You either want the thing at the other end of the paperwork (a loan, a passport, a business deal, taxes accounted for, etc), or you don't. Just figure out if not having those things would ultimately create more discomfort down the track.

It doesn't matter if other people have more money / power/ eloquence / style / etc than me. There will always be people with more and less of everything compared to me. It does not matter. If I compare myself with others, I will create unnecessary discomfort within myself which will hold me back from Being the very best that I can.

The very Best I can Be.

Being in touch with my essence, following my dreams and my instincts of what is right for me. Living and enjoying each moment like it is the most precious thing there is. Appreciating this breath that makes it all possible. Expanding my heart and love for this life. Living with detachment from the material possessions and problems. Such lightness comes and joy explodes from my core to the stars. Such a beautiful day, such a beautiful moment, such a beautiful breath.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

round and round..

A week ago there was a funeral for a 9 month old baby girl. A little girl that I had held and played with.

A few days ago we received news that Cary's brother has died, two months before his 60th birthday.

Cary and his brother spoke at least once a week on the phone. They enjoyed sharing opinions on the state of the world, finances and unique humour. So sad, and unexpected.

Cary will still leave here on Tuesday, but will fly to Indiana instead of Nevada. I wish we were all going so that I could be with him at this time. Thankfully though, he will meet his sister and stepdad there so he won't be alone.

When I heard about the baby, I felt incredibly sad. I wondered about the fairness in life. Cary's brother had at least had some time to live life though it still seemed too soon for him to go.

But then I was reminded of the incredible joy too. How looking at one extreme can give a much greater appreciation for the other side of the coin.

It is in touching the depths and feeling the darkness in life that we can really know and really live the highs and feel the lightness of Being that comes when we choose not to stay in those depths.

I am not saying to ignore the depths. I've been there and I can say that with every breakdown, there came a breakthrough. There is a purpose for everything, though at times, it is very hard to understand that. Gratitude for the things we do have helps to lift me up. I have found Trusting God to be a huge lesson too.

Although death, or any deep loss, can be painful, and a period of grief is necessary, it can also inspire us to live - really live each moment. To live our own lives fully and deeply. To love freely - ourselves and others. To speak our own truths with confidence. To not put things off. To live in joy.

photo help please

Can anyone help me figure out how to change the size of the photo in my header here? Previously I had just loaded the photo and it automatically went all the way across the screen. With the new photo above, it chopped it short on the sides. I'd also like to make it shorter in height. Thanks in advance.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

I want...

It's chilly here now, according to my cold blood. I soooo want to go to Vegas with Cary next week. I want to see my best friend who has had TWO babies since I've been gone. I want to hang out with the lifelearners again...it's challenging not having unschoolers close here. I want to shop at Whole Foods and Trader Joes. The kids want to do all of that too as well as go to the Children's museum and some of the playgrounds and when it gets warmer there, to the water parks. We miss all of those things from Vegas.

It's just weird when he goes back because I feel like a part of me is there too and I feel torn. I love it here - the natural beauty really fills my soul. But it doesn't pay the rent. And is it worth it to stay here when he needs to go back there several times a year? To separate the family like that?

Lots to think about...

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

the seasons roll on..

Autumn starts here on 1 march. The first week of the month was still like summer but now we are getting some cooler wind and rain. Some are the effects of the cyclone further north, but very much fall weather. I always get a little sad at the end of summer. Even though I know it's going to come to an end, I don't like it. Perhaps that's why I enjoy it so intensely. If it was spring and summer all the time, would I take it for granted and not live it so joyfully?

This time in one week, Cary will have left the house on his way back to Las Vegas for two months or so. Even though I knew this was coming, I am sad. But perhaps that's why we have enjoyed the past few months so intensely. If he was here all the time, would I take him for granted and not live so joyfully with him?

Isn't that true about life? We all know it's going to end one day. Summer has a t-shirt which has on it "don't take life so seriously...it isn't permanent". When I do remember that, life seems much lighter and more joyful.