Friday, November 28, 2014

a light filled morning

there was a moment yesterday,
sitting at the table, fire going, looking out at the woods that surrounded my son's house -
feeling like i was in the coziest of woodsy cabins -
i was overwhelmed with all there was to feel grateful for.

and then later that evening, sitting on the floor at my other sons' house,
right by their beautiful christmas tree, bent over with my head on the rug
laughing so hard it was hard to breathe....again, that feeling of overwhelming
gratitude filled me.

today i'm on my own.
which is kinda nice.
i get to hold it all quietly.
and put my tree up as i do so.
there's something really magical about that this morning.

i'm feeling a bit in awe of all that surrounds me.
and feeling like it's such a holy thing to open to it and let it fill me.

i know it's black friday.
i'm even getting a kick outta calling it that lately.
not sure why.
but truthfully, it's anything but black, isn't it?
my entire being is filled with light right now.......

i'm gonna go spread some of that around my living room......

Thursday, November 27, 2014

happy thanksgiving....

she closed her eyes
and thought of her year.
it couldn't be just the "good" she was
thankful for.
it had to be the "all"...
the fullness, the depths, the journey.
the dance of Life.
for these she gave thanks.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

showin' up at the party

i've used this kinda visual in my head before,
but this time i seemed to go a step further with it,
and it really is workin' for me.

thought it was good timing, right before the holiday to share -

it's about how you participate with life.

think of life as a party.

your thanksgiving gathering, yes.
your going up to the grocery store to get the food.
your taking a walk.
your decorating your house for the holidays.
your raking your leaves.
everything in your life is its own little party.

how do you show up?

think of all the different ways you can -
it was easy for me when i just started thinking about gatherings.

there's some gatherings i go to that i'm a big part of so i come and help set up,
bring food, bring create it the whole atmosphere. i am totally
involved and engaged.

there's some that i feel shy at and bring a little something to offer.
i stand on the sidelines feelin' awkward.

there's some i drag my feet to. and leave as fast as i can from.

this started making me smile......and think.

then i started thinking about different gatherings i've been to and different
ways i've seen people show up.

there's some who come empty handed wanting to be entertained.

there's some who bring food but never put it out because there's enough out already.

there's some who know you're vegan, bring a cheese dish, then looked shocked
that you won't eat it and claim they didn't know cheese was dairy.

there's some who bring a bag of potato chips and a scowl.

some who look at their watches the whole time.

there's some who laugh and talk and share stories.

there's some who try to make everyone feel okay.

there's some who are too loud.

there are some who are so warm and inclusive.

there's a million ways to show up.

and every single one of us can do every single one of these things at different times.
because we don't always think about it.

but what if we started being more aware of it?
what if we kept asking ourselves what is it we want to bring to the party this time?

when i started thinking about this, i could see how great this worked -
i got really excited.
so much of a personality is evident in how you show up.
so much of a relationship is evident.
is it stressed and strained?
is it joyful and happy?
is it something you like?

i am loving this.
it's such a fun and easy way to see if you're living the life you want to live.
being with the people you want to be with.

and i figured the day before thanksgiving was a great day to post this.

cause really, what are you bringing to that table when you sit down?
and is it what you REALLY want to be bringing?

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

still dancing

i don't even know how to explain this.
but i'm gonna try!

yesterday i was wrestling with something.
it was discouraging because it's something i'd like to be done wrestling with.
but apparently, there's more growing i gotta do.

and so i was workin' on that, and actually doin' okay - well -
doin' okay in the sense that i wasn't beating myself up over it,
or blaming myself all over the place.
i was just tryin' hard to figure it out.

i didn't doubt my heart.
but just cause you don't doubt something,
doesn't mean you're still really seeing it.
ya know?

that's one of the parts i'm not sure how to explain.

i've been in bad places where i doubted my heart.
this wasn't that.
but i've also been in great places where i totally knew and saw my heart.
this wasn't that either.

i'm not sure i even focused on my heart.
i was distracted.
and definitely struggling.

and then brene brown posted a picture of my quote in her book on her facebook page.

in my circle, brene is a huge celebrity.
so this is really big news for me.
it means a lot of exposure and new people checkin' out my work.

in the past when she's done something like this,
THAT was the thrill.
but this time....something different happened.

this time a friend shared the post on my facebook wall.
and then another.
and then another.
and another privately wrote me and asked if i saw the posting.
and another friend wrote and asked.
and another.

and i was completely and totally taken with the joy that the people
around me were having WITH me and FOR me. they were so tickled i
got recognized like that. and they were right there with me surrounding
me with the most joyful love ever.

while i can't say i don't care about the exposure, because of course i do -
i can say, that it wasn't my focus at all.
i was so moved with the outpouring of support.
i was so moved with the love in my life.

and somehow all those notes and comments and postings all
formed this great big shining mirror where i could see my heart.
i could see it was a good heart.
i could see it was something that needed my attention right then,
and my honoring of it.

the love all around me reflected in such a way that i could
see the love inside of me and i could see the love that was part of me.
and i could see the love that was calling to me to pay attention.

and THAT was why her posting meant the world to me yesterday.

it was an incredible experience.
i'm still moved.
and still tickled.
and still dancing.....

Monday, November 24, 2014

a little reminder....

the day got away from me today!
but i wanted to run thru with a reminder -

seemed like a good one for thanksgiving week -

what if we just all tried to listen a little bit better this week?!

just listen.

to stop assuming and just listen.

i've felt unheard more than once lately.
but to be totally honest -
i've done the same thing as many times myself - if not more.

so i'm just as guilty of it.

i think it's when i don't feel heard, i remember.

and i cringe when i see how many times i wasn't really listening either.


honest to pete, let's stop talking at each other.
that'd be nice, wouldn't it?

Thursday, November 20, 2014

sharing light

we sat at lunch and talked.
just the two of us.

'i got really sad this morning' he said.
'i did too,' i answered back.

and we talked about it.

when someone gets your sadness and shares it,
and their eyes well up right along with yours....
well, sometimes that in itself is healing.

i just read his blog.
and wanted to share it today.

i love my sons.
and their hearts, my gosh, their hearts blaze light.

holding a bit of that light today....and sharing it with you.

you can find the blog here.
i hope you'll consider joining in the kindness exchange.
it matters.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014


i got to spend a little time with my son, noah, last nite.
when he first came over, he showed me this picture he just took.
i was stunned with its beauty.

it makes me tear up.

for me, it's a symbol of what every single one of us is.
when we open -
when we genuinely open -
it's the light that fills us -
it's the light we give back -
it's the fact that we vibrate light -
it's the fact that we are the light.

this image completely resonates with an image of a white tree i use for
myself and my essence. i believe with all my heart, that we are all this tree.

i asked noah's permission to post this here.
i wanted to share.
to me, this is such a reminder of what we're reaching for -
of what we already are, if we could just let go.

with any luck, noah will be adding more and more work to his offerings
for sale......and maybe this will be included! for now, though, you can find
his other wonderful offerings here.

thank you for letting me share this, noah.
your heart and your talent take my breath away!

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

healing into softness

i did a double take.

it was said it so fast, so matter of fact, and the conversation just kept going.
well, until i stopped it and backed it up.

it was about being healed. least, well into the journey of healing.
realizing that the world 'healed' is kinda a loaded thing -
are you ever really healed? but you get the idea.

and how you couldn't be hard if you were well into the journey of healing.
how healed is soft.

as i type that i think it must sound obvious.
you see someone hardened, toughened....well, their heart's pretty closed up
and they're protecting themselves. not open. not trusting. not healed.

makes sense.

i guess it was the way it was just whoosed out there in a paragraph.
there was more -

something about you have to get strong, then you heal, then you get soft.
it was a little different than that...'hard' was in there.
but i can't remember where it goes in the string of things. it must be
the first thing in the list -

you get hard, then you get strong, they you heal, then you get soft.
something like that.

if you're lucky.

you gotta get strong to heal.

or....maybe you gain your strength as you go along.
maybe both.
i'm pretty sure that's how it went for me.

you do have to gather up some strength to go try to find healing.
but as it was pointed out in the conversation - strength and hard are two different things.

(that's important)

so why did this truly stop me in my tracks?

i think because it was so beautifully simple.
and so easy to turn back onto myself and work with.

where am i hardened?
pretty fast way to see where we need some healing huh?
just ask ourselves that -
where the heck am i hardened?
and go from there.

that is......if you want to be soft.
and if you want that open heart.

which all brings me back to my favorite bone sigh -

'strength likes in the opening of the heart.'

Monday, November 17, 2014

the lessons of the opposites...

i just recently got a great yin/yang lesson in life.
i love those.

the lessons of the opposites.

don't take yourself seriously.
take yourself seriously.

that's what i got.
and i smiled.
that sounded about right to me.

in part one of the lesson,

i was so inspired by an artist friend of mine.
he does art i just completely love.
i love what he creates -
and at the same time i equally love HOW he creates.
he creates with joy and happiness and fun.
he creates because he wants to.

he's not proving himself,
he's not tryin' to make a buck.
he's not out to show the world he struggles
or to release a darkened soul.

he creates for the darn fun of it.
and it shows.
and it delights my entire being.

and i remember oh so clearly - don't take yourself seriously.

that was one part of the lesson.
and a pretty darn good part.
that made a pretty darn big impression.

part two consisted of being reminded to take myself seriously.

when it comes to understanding that our actions create our life.
our choices in food, exercise, thoughts, activities, life style,
whether we work on healing our wounds or stuffing them  down -
all of that directly affects our every moment.

it is up to us in so many ways if we want to have a healthy life.

and that is ours and no one else's.
and how sincere we are about it, makes all the difference in how
we will live. and in that way, i want to take myself seriously.

i've been holding them both today.
wishing for more time today to play with both ideas....
and knowing that lessons in both will come for sure.

Friday, November 14, 2014

starting the day out right....

i headed out in the early morning to go rake a little bit and to say
hello to the world.

as i walked to the shed, i looked up at the trees -

it was dark, but still some kinda light as i could see the
bare arms of the trees reaching out for the sky.

dark against dark.

i stopped.

first time this season i've seen that.

they're just now bare.
not even all of them.

but there they were.
those arms.

reaching up.

even when i was really young i thought that was profound.
it has always moved me to see that.

it brings forth a whole buncha things inside me at once -
every time.

it's like a gigantic ball of different profound threads that just
rolls thru me and overtakes my insides....all from seeing bare
tree branches.

kinda cool.

somehow it reminds me to be mindful,
and to try to stay calm and steady in the hard parts,
and to always reach for god.

i grabbed my rake and dug in,
thinking of all of that and saying good morning to the world.

not a bad start to the day.....

Thursday, November 13, 2014

our newsletter!

my gosh, it's been a wild day!

we sent out our newsletter today.
sometimes there's a lot behind getting those darn things out!

this was one of those months.
we've been hoppin' on it all week.

so i had to share it here as well.

if you're not on our newsletter list and haven't seen the newsletter
over on the site yet, head on over and check it out.

want to thank both zakk and noah for their hard work this month
getting us ready for the holidays!
be sure to check out the home page of bone sigh arts!
we're rockin' it!

you can find the newsletter here.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

feeling like it really matters....

i happened to be in dc over the weekend when they were setting up
for the concert for valor for the veteran's day celebration.

i knew it was gonna be a big thing when i saw the stage, the massive
generator trucks, trailer after trailer after trailer after trailer, and more
porta potties than i had ever seen.
my gosh, there was a lot to it.

so having seen that, and having one of my sons go down to it,
i was interested in it. more so than i think i normally would have been.

i tuned in a little.
but kept tuning out.

it's one heck of a complicated holiday.

and sometimes i think when things are just offered too simplistically,
well........i just worry about that kinda thing.

i wish we could be more open to the complicated.
i think that would help us out as a country in a very big way.

so i would tune in, be unimpressed, and tune out.
i did tune in at one point to see a vet get honored and i could see how much
it mattered, and i knew that was a great great thing. i was moved for him.
and grateful he had that moment.

so, yeah....even my feelings about it being simplistic were complicated.

i set it all down, figured it didn't matter, that i was being just too in my brain,
and to let it all go.

but i was curious about a couple of things.
i was curious how many people actually did show up -
and i'm curious how they estimate that and how they come up with the final
number. i think all that must be really cool.

and i was curious if anyone thought about the PTSD factor in the show
with all the loud drums and flashing lights.
was it really just me that wondered if that was hard for anyone?
i wondered if that was an outlandish thought.

i was just curious.
was gonna just take a quick google on those things and move on.

but as i did that, i saw an article on why eminem was a bad pick for one of
the line ups.

i stopped and read it.
it was about the violence and hatred towards women in his music.
and the high rate of domestic violence in military families.

and bam.
i was back into the whole 'wow, is this ever complicated' stuff.

and i didn't feel any more that i was too in my head or that i was making
too much of our simplistic approach to so many things.

i wouldn't have a clue how to change anything.
i know that.
but i do have a clue that this needs to be thought about -
that there seems to be a phobia to complicated.
that we want things simple, easy, and with definite right and wrongs,
or with things that we can just ignore.

and that just doesn't lead to growth or health......

and that matters. my mind, that would have to be one of the most beautiful
and honest ways to honor the sacrifice we keep talking about with vets -
to become more aware, to strive for growth and health, and to walk our
talk in every way we possibly can.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014


taking a moment today and thinking of peace.

it seems so impossible to get - on the outside around us,
and sometimes on the inside as well.

PTSD comes to mind today as it's become such a problem for vets.

and i think of the peace on the inside they must long to have.

this day holds so many thoughts, so many complicated opposites,
that i don't know how to honor it in the way i feel it should be honored.

and so i will just pause and think of peace.
and keep praying for it.
on the outside.
and on the inside of those who can't find it anymore.

Monday, November 10, 2014

friends, prayer and the beauty of life's mystery

i have a friend who prays.
like REALLY prays.

i guess i know a lot of people who really pray.

but there's something about this friend and her heart and her prayers
that stand out for me.

i see such goodness in her.
i see her walkin' her talk.

and ya know, the whole walkin' your talk stuff -
not everyone does that.
not everyone does that for REAL.

so when i have a friend
who walks her talk
and prays with her heart
and her heart glows naturally -

well.......i put a lotta faith in that.

i was wrestling with something big time.
i mentioned it to her.
and just told her i was off to go work on it.

and at some point,
it took a turn.
the wrestling took a turn.

and a breakthru that really needed to happen,
something that took a long long long time to happen finally happened.

now, no.......everything's not perfect.
i think now the work really comes in.
but the door that needed to open to enter to do the work opened.

it was after i felt the door open i saw an email from her.
she mentioned she prayed for me the nite before.

i smiled and nodded.

of course she did.

i think the thing i love most about prayer is the way it connects us.

someone miles and miles and miles and miles away can be right there
in my heart, in my confusion, in my wrestling.

and something mixes us all up together and opens doors.

i do believe that.
and i love that so much.

it reminds me today to keep my heart open to  life today
and all its mysteries.......

Friday, November 7, 2014

an answer

i guess it's part of my aging process.
i wonder what life is all about a whole lot more than i used to.

i wonder about what i'm doing with my time here
and i wonder what's the point of it all.
i just plain ol' wonder about living.

i never really get any answers.
i just wonder a lot.

today.......i got an answer!
at least an answer that works for today.

it may only work for this one moment in my life,
but i love it and it lit up my heart.
it just lit me right on up.
and i'm holding it right now.

so i thought i'd share.

maybe the point is to soak in every bit of beauty that is around us.

maybe it's to open our eyes to all the different places beauty bursts forth.
and maybe it's to open to that and to soak it in, to be washed with it....
and to dance with it.
to dance and dance and dance with it.

wouldn't that be amazing if that was the point? the deal? the goal?

i sure like that idea.
and at least for today, i'm absolutely taking it to heart.

Thursday, November 6, 2014

a great guy i had to share!

i saw this on fb,
posted it on my wall,
and still want to share it everywhere.

so this is my blog for today.
this incredibly beautiful vid.

i hear so many stories where men are major huge awful problems.
and i have to stop and remember my guy and my sons and all the
wonderful men i know just to keep things in perspective sometimes.

i think that's another reason i loved this vid.
this man is beautiful.
and i totally wanted to shout about him everywhere i could.

check him and his new sons out!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

love, life and lessons

one of my artist buddies was asking for lessons learned in love over on fb.
she was gonna take some that people offered and try to illustrate them.
she's always up to something cool!

so i tossed a few out there.

and have been thinking about the whole topic ever since.

lessons learned in love.

so i sat back and thought about the lessons.
and the lessons have all seemed to come AFTER my marriage.


that's a bit of a weird feeling.

but the cool part of that is when i look back i see so much of how we
reinforced our dysfunction together in our marriage.

no blame.
no he sucked, she sucked.
it's where we were.
it's what we knew.
it's what we were unaware of.
it's a ton of things.

why is that cool?

because somewhere along the line i stopped and said i want healthy.
and i really wanted it.
and if there had to be a price, i certainly paid it.

and ever since then i've been workin' my butt off to get healthy inside
and to have a healthy relationship outside.

if you're gonna pay for it, you might as well really try to have it.

and there have been lessons after lessons after lessons.

i'm kinda thinking that might make a fun blog once a week.
throw in a lesson i learned or am learning.
may do it......
may not.

but the thing on my mind today with it all is how it really rotates
around how i am on the inside. how strong i am, how healthy i am,
how open i am, how grateful i am. how much i believe in myself,
how much i love myself.

all of that.

our selves.
how we are with ourselves.

and of course, that goes both ways. with both partners.

which probably explains a lot about my marriage.
and so many marriages.

lessons i've learned in love?
maybe the same thing that i've learned in living -
the stronger and healthier we become the stronger and healthier
all that we touch becomes.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

droppin' the stress, pickin up the treasure

there's a couple different things that can stress me out in a particular way
that feels all crawly and awful.

two of them popped up big time for me this morning.

something that needs fixing that i can't fix on my own,
i don't even understand it, let alone come close to being able to fix it.

and then what usually comes hand in hand with that -
taking up other people's time having them help me with something i can't do.

that's cause i want to take care of everyone,
don't want to be any trouble,
i end up dancing around painfully worrying about everyone else and feeling terribly guilty.


it hits one of my big issues.

the 'i'm in the way' issue.


i have that one big time.
i know it.
it comes out all the time.
and my gosh, i certainly need to work with it.

it occurred to me that this is the perfect chance to look at it and work with it.

and i see how hard i try to make everything okay for everyone else.
and in the process, i don't recognize everyone else's ability to take care of themselves.

that's not good.

and actually, i don't recognize a lot of things.

so i sat with that.
and breathed and pondered and let go of some stress.

i decided to tell everyone involved that i'm gonna not get stressed like normal,
and i'm gonna ask them all to work with me in letting go of the taking care of them.
i am asking them to do what's best for them so i don't have to.

i could feel so much tension leave my body when i figured that out.
then i had to sit and look at the whole 'in the way' thing -
the way i undervalue myself.


there's a lot there.
and i'll keep looking.

but even seeing the tiny bit that i did, i could feel more stress leave.

i bet there's a book out there somewhere that talks about stress being a way of your
body trying to tell you to look at stuff.

cause it sure seems like when i looked, and acted on what i saw, it left.

and it gave me the space to say -and mean - i know darn well i've got everything
goin' for me right now and there really is nothing to stress about.

all these crazy moments.....they've all got treasures for us, don't they?
if we could just remember that - and look!

Monday, November 3, 2014

a pretend tea party

i saw a post on facebook today that got me thinking.

it was a post from a completely different viewpoint than my own.


the kind that's so different from your own that normally your eyes would roll
as you closed every door inside of yourself and walked away without looking back.

you know those.

thing is....
i want to learn right now.
i want to stretch my thinking.
and it's the totally different viewpoints that can really help me do that.

sometimes i'm aware of that.
and i remember.
a whole lotta times i forget.

this time i remembered.

so i didn't roll my eyes,
i put my foot in the way of the quickly closing inner door,
and i read the post three times thinking about what they said.

and it puzzled me.
i didn't understand how anyone could really think like that.

i went to make lunch and ponder.

i realized that if they heard my view, they'd roll their eyes and close their inner doors.

and that intrigued me.

some of our opinions have us so sure of them, we just so feel they're the correct
ones to have - it's hard to imagine they'd make anyone's eyes roll.
unless of course, the other person is daft.

that makes me smile.

that's so true, isn't it?

the other person is a moron or daft or just on another planet.

has a whole nother viewpoint i can learn from.

and the more i thought about it,
the more i saw how similar our thoughts were.

we just have completely different vocabularies to describe them.
we come from completely different angles.
but way down deep - we had a lotta the same stuff goin' on.

i had to really sit with it before i saw that.

and i realized how cool it would be to really sit and talk about it.
how cool it would be to put things out and ponder together.
and just let them all be so we could really look.
maybe see new things together that neither one of us had seen before.

that's not part of the other person's philosophy tho.
that was part of their thinking - the fact that they're right, don't question it.

so that won't happen.
but maybe i'll do it for us in my own head.
have a pretend tea party for us.
pass the cookies, munch a bit, and ponder.

there's so much to learn.
i really don't want to forget that......