Wednesday, March 28, 2012



Not just because it's my birthday this month....not even that reason actually.  I don't like thinking that there is one particular day each year that is dedicated to me.  I like having the mindset that I can celebrate myself. every. single. day!

In my quiet little way, I feel delight that I have given myself the gift of Health and Awareness.  I even feel as though my eyesight has become clearer.  I've been waking up with energy in my body, excitement in my mind and a stronger connection to my Spirit.

...just deepening the thoughts behind some of my previous posts...
In recent months, I feel as though I haven't always been living in alignment with Who I Really Am.  I am not proud of some recent behaviours. Not just the post about alcohol, but a few other things too.  I have felt a swirling, undercurrent, pulling me back and forth, testing me, teasing me, confusing me.   I have felt a shifting all around me - with some of our friends, our activities, with things the children are interested in now, new business ideas, and just a lot of big and small changes.

I have felt myself withdrawing in order to ponder, to try and put my finger on what is just not working and what does not feel right to me.

Now I am coming through that tunnel, I am seeing the Light and I am grateful for the period of contemplation.

I am clearer in my priorities.... which is still strongly focused on our free-spirited life.  But I have renewed passion to improve my physical health, add to my mental strength and deepen my Spiritual connection.  Rediscovering this felt so right that I am celebrating every day!  It seems as though, after having the intention, these things are finding ways to weave throughout the fabric of my days - all of those aspects, working together.  Which is probably because I'm aware of the opportunities to take seemingly ordinary events, and add a new dimension to them.   I am growing in all areas, and feeling the joy of that.

For me, the deep joy in each moment mostly stems from gratitude - for each breath, for the sun, the warmth, connection, playing...every. thing!  I feel such a giddy delight in living simply!  Some people don't understand the attraction we have to this lifestyle.  They infer that they are superior because they have more material stuff.  That's okay, we're happy for them.  And we're happy for us.

You know, what other people think of me is none of my business.  I just need to feel Right about being with myself.  When I can walk proudly because I know that I am Being the Best I Can Be, then I can be grounded in my own confidence, and I can ripple out the Love and Joy that I feel.  The Love and Joy that comes from within and from taking time to connect with Spirit and it all just gets better...deeper...stronger...

Friday, March 23, 2012

I Give Up


I've given it up before, for over 12 years.  I started having an occasional "one or two" sometime after we moved back to Australia.  We would get together often with friends and, well, it just seemed to be a part of the Aussie culture...what I had grown up with...old conditionings surfaced.

I thought I had a handle on it and I would usually stop after one or two.  For some reason...those old conditionings... drinking made me feel kind of grown up / part of the crowd / like I was interesting.  Thinking about it now, they are probably the exact reasons that I started drinking as a teenager and through a lot of my 20's.  If I wasn't being the 'party girl', I was on the opposite side of the spectrum being the 'health nut'.  Back and forth swung the pendulum.  After too much partying, I'd vow to stop and get healthy again...but the call was strong.  From the time I was a young child, I witnessed the "grown ups" around me drinking and partying.  A lot.  Why did I think that I needed alcohol to join the party?  Why did I think I wasn't interesting enough on my own? 

OK, I admit, when I was younger, it certainly helped me act wild and crazy and ...stupid.  It helped me feel as though I was part of the crowd.  I had often felt kind of on the outside.  The double edge to that is that, through observation, I often didn't even want to be a part of the crowd and some of their petty ways.  But I always kind of wanted to feel as though I fit in somewhere.  I don't enjoy a lot of small talk, but with alcohol, I could handle talking about any kind of rubbish that I sometimes didn't even remember the next day.

The kids and I were out camping this week.  In tents that is, because we kind of live the camping life anyway.  We went with a group of homeschool friends.  Someone brought red wine, which is the only alcohol I've been drinking when I do have "one or two" lately.  I hadn't eaten much that day.  For some reason, I didn't stop at one or two.  I didn't have too much more than that, but without much food, it hit me.  Hard.  Ugh.  During recovery, I kept feeling my Dad around me trying to help me - not with the physical recovery, he didn't seem to mind that I was having a hard time as it might help me to get the message.  The message that I don't need to drink in order to join in the crowd or be more interesting or more relaxed or the life of the party or whatever trigger might have been interfering with my ability to say to myself "that's enough".

I don't have to be super chatty, or dance around, or tell funny stories in order to have a good time.  I can have the best time just being deeply connected with myself, and letting that light shine through in all interactions with others.      ahhh...nice revelation...I think that was part of the problem too - I was not feeling very connected within.  You know, that's probably the reason this post was getting me out of bed in the middle of the night to have some quiet time to ponder all of this.  To remind me of how important it is to Be Connected to my deeper self...the one that knows she's okay, just how she is and doesn't need to prove a thing...the one that feels comfortable being silent when others are talking a lot...the one that doesn't need a wine glass because her inner cup is already full...the one that remembers that authentic connection is really what she is all about...the one that can dance freely just for the joy of it...  Now this is what it feels like to be a "grown up"!

...PS...I am not passing judgement on anyone else who chooses to drink alcohol.  It just does not work for me.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Love is all that matters...

Sometimes I just "get" life!  The reason for it, the grand design.....then the ridiculous pettiness we waste time on makes me just want to laugh!

I remember that the only thing that is really Love.

How we relate to each other and ourselves.  Does it really matter who is "right"?  That's ego.

I remember to Trust....that everything is unfolding as it should...that everything I need will be provided. 

I let go of attachments and I feel lighter and brighter.

I let go of having to Do anything in particular....and it frees me up to just Be Who I Really Am.  In that state, I feel more productive if I choose to be.  Operating from a center of Love makes all tasks joyful.

Now if I could just remember all of this!! 

Saturday, March 17, 2012

living label-free!

I no longer consider myself "vegan".  The fun thing about that is that I no longer have a label for the way I eat!  Due to life-long sensitive digestive issues, eating simply became something I just needed to do.  I tried so many different diets and often got caught up in the "rules" that go with them.  Vegan, raw vegan, low-fat raw vegan, vegetarian, watching the food combining 'rules'...I've done them all.  After over 17 years on a mixture of these diets, I wasn't feeling as though I was thriving or even close to that.   I eliminated wheat, gluten, and sugar to see if that might do the trick.  Not really.   I was open to change.

I re-read the book about the blood-type diets.  I was surprised when some of the foods it suggested I avoid, were foods that I ate a LOT of - bananas, mangoes, oranges and tomatoes especially.  I resisted at first, but then, out of desperation and a desire to feel at least good consistently, I decided to give it a go.  I did not eliminate those fruits entirely, but I did cut them way back.  I rediscovered other fruits that I had not paid much attention to - pears, nectarines, plums, apples.  I noticed a slight change for the better in how I felt.  I looked at the foods on the "highly beneficial" list for my A blood type.  I was not surprised to see that most meat was on my "avoid" list, with chicken and turkey okay occasionally.   Some fish though, were listed as highly beneficial.  I'd never been a huge fan of fish, so I just opened myself up to that possibility.  One day, Cary was having some red salmon.  I caught the smell and was like lust...I HAD to have some!  That night I slept well, and I woke up the next day feeling energetic!  I couldn't remember the last time I had woken up like that!  

I've had salmon and tuna a few more times since then, and I had some barbeque chicken another time.  I've been enjoying poached eggs and even a little cheese.  The trick I've found, is that if the food smells and looks good to me and has me wanting it, then there is probably something in it that I need.  I no longer disallow any food because of a rigid dogma.  My body needed a change, and I needed to be open to receiving the intuitive guidance that is within. 

I found some of the other recommendations for my blood type interesting, such as a strong suggestions that I incorporate regular yoga or tai chi instead of pushing myself in other sports.  I always feel much more balanced when I do yoga and I feel irritated when I push myself to work out aerobically or with weights every day.  I still go for a walk on the beach most mornings and swim some laps most afternoons, but I do those things much more mindfully.  It's no longer something I do so I can cross it off the list and forget about it for the day.  It's a gift to myself.  I walk barefoot on the beach, feeling each footstep on the sand, feeling all the way through each step from the heel until my toes lift off.  I'm more in touch with the sights and sounds around me, the solo seagull walking next to me (Hi Dad!), the surf, the sun, the clouds, the smell of the salt water, the sounds of the waves rolling and crashing....I feel gratitude for the's meditation in motion.  Sometimes the children join me on my walk and even as they chat, I am still aware of the underlying meditation within myself.  When I swim laps, I become part of the water and again, it is very meditative. 

Even though it may look as though I am doing the same exercises that I was doing a month ago, my internal focus has changed, and it feels very different to me.  The other thing is that if I really don't want to exercise, I just don't...and I no longer make myself feel guilty for taking the day off!

I've been reading spiritual and self-help books most of my life.  Intellectually I 'know' that I am supposed to live more mindfully, and to be more in touch with how I move and feed my body.  I see now that I had limited myself by labelling myself.  By insisting that I was vegetarian, I cut off other possibilities that may have helped me sooner.  By insisting that I was following a fitness program, I was not always in tune with what my spirit needed as I pushed through a workout because I thought I had to in order to stay physically fit.

I really get it now.  Ha!  So many books and people telling us that we have to do or eat or move in a certain way in order to get certain results.  Ha!  What we really need are more people just encouraging each of us to get in touch with our own inner guidance.  Then the biggest ourselves Permission to do that!  Allowing ourselves to break free of rules.  If your body is saying that you need to rest instead of going to the gym, allowing that.  If your body is saying that it wants (something you would usually have for dinner) for breakfast, then allowing that.  It's about being gentle with yourself, respecting your inner voice and following through.  The more you do that, the more in tune you will be.

I don't follow the blood-type diet.  I took their suggestions under advisement and I now let my body lead the way to what it wants.  That can be different things on different days, or it can be the same thing for three days straight. 

I love being free of labels and rules!  I love being more deeply in touch with my body.  I'm still fine-tuning the process, but overall, my body is happier and so is my spirit!

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

And now for something completely different...

...well not really, I was being sarcastic,'s raining!!  We lived in the desert for 8 years, and rain was rare.  I know we have made up for it now!  We've had rain here for 10 days in a row, with a couple of short breaks.  We have been though soooo much rain in our time here.  I have enjoyed living on the coast, next to the beach, with lush greenery around us.
But I'm over it now.
(I started writing this several weeks ago and since then we have had some sunshine...and more rain!)

In 2009 when we were all in the USA, Cary said to me then that we may have to stay there.  I freaked.  I wasn't ready.  I was still attached to needing to be in Australia.  I felt as though I had unfinished business there (here).  I am so very grateful for our family and friends here and for every single experience we've had here.  It's been an intense learning curve.  If we had to leave the country now though, I can honestly say that I'm Ready. 

I am ready to move to another part of this country, or another country entirely.  I do like this area for many reasons, and it's a good place for a base, but it's almost time to experience other places again.  We are starting to get that "stagnant...itchy feet" feeling.

I left Australia just before my 29th birthday.  I lived in the USA for 12.5 years, always feeling a little (or a lot) homesick, always with some longing for the life I knew in Australia.  Maybe it held me back from fully embracing life in the USA.  I embraced it a lot, but I often felt as though I didn't really fit there.  I think that was just my mindset though.  Maybe I just felt as though something was missing.
I do not regret leaving the USA, I needed to go full circle, back to Australia.  I needed to reconnect with my roots.  I needed time and space to see how much I had grown, how living in the USA had allowed me the time and space to expose ME, without the conditions of my past surrounding me.  Meeting all new people, with no preconceived ideas of who I was or what I was supposed to be...I was free to totally just Be Me!  I didn't realise how much I had grown until I came back and found that I no longer fit into my old life here.  The conditionings didn't stick, I acted differently and that made some people that knew me years ago, uncomfortable.

I am grateful for the people that embraced the shining me, that accepted and did not judge.  I am grateful for the new friends that I have made.  I am grateful for the chances to risk hurt and rejection because I know that to NOT risk those things, is far more painful.  The joy that comes in consciously connecting with new people reminds me to appreciate that connection for that moment, and for as long as it may last.  Some friendships don't last as long as we may want them to, and that can be so sad and disappointing.  Believe me, I know that lesson all too well.  Other friendships and connections have an energy of being forever, even though you may not be in touch for several years, you can just pick up where you left off as though no time has passed at all.  Thankfully, I know that lesson as well!   It's all a part of the smorgasbord of experiences at the buffet of life.  As we tell our kids - yes, life, and people, may disappoint you, but it's how you react to that that will make the difference in your experience.  You can choose to let it stall you, or spur you on to move through that to a new place of joy.  Yes kids, life is tough, and messy and wonderful and exciting and confusing and sad and amazing and.....oh so worth it!

Monday, March 05, 2012

Sassy me...

I gave my boys a haircut last week and then decided that I should have a trim as well.  AJ offered to cut my hair for me.  It's been pretty warm here lately and we don't have air conditioning in the caravan or in our car.  In order to stay cooler, I needed to tie my hair back all of the time...and I was also getting too many headaches. 

I told AJ that I wanted to go a bit shorter and he figured that chin-length would be good so he snipped away.  Summer evened it out a bit and now we have a new-look me!....

I love it!  I don't just look a little different, I feel different too...Much sassier!  (and my headaches have stopped!)  But this feeling is not just because of the haircut.  (It would be the other way around.)

I wrote recently about some of the pre-menopausal symptoms I've been experiencing. I haven't had the hot flushes for several months, I just feel like my whole body is running warmer than usual. Maybe that's partly hormones and partly, or mostly, the extra pounds I'm wearing. This is the first summer that I've had a challenge with the heat of the season. As I'm entering my own autumn years, I'm actually looking forward to the season of autumn and the slightly cooler weather. Even my wardrobe now has some autumn colours in it.

I like this feeling, it feels like a new, stronger power brewing, creating a more Sassy me, not willing to take any crap from anyone. No longer willing to put myself out for others. Not selfish as such, just making sure I take care of myself and my family first. With a fiery, passionate determination to back it up. Very fiery. It's almost like adolescence again only more directed and with the wisdom of experience backing it.

Several things have happened lately which have led to me feeling a little taken advantage of.  I take full responsibility for my part in that. 
And now I take full responsibility in ensuring it never happens again! 

I claim my right to speak my mind and defend my needs!  I know that I am valuable and worthwhile!

When I logged on here this morning, this is the daily affirmation from Dr Wayne Dyer that I was greeted with:

My destiny is mine to control.

When you acquire enough inner peace and feel really positive about yourself, it's almost impossible for you to be controlled and manipulated by anybody else.

It was such a great reminder and affirmation of where I am right now.   Who said getting older was a bad thing?  Right now, I wouldn't trade it for anything!

boys and bagels

Part of Cary's American lifestyle included bagels on a regular basis.  Over there, they are easy to get.  Over here, they are very limited in range, and much more expensive.  So, we made our own:

so easy....and now we never have to buy them again!

Our first batch were smaller than the store-bought ones, but we were experimenting.  They were actually really good as a snack size.

AJ, aka Xander, cheeky smile!

Nicholas toofers