Wednesday, 30 November 2011


He's up!?

Each alone and together.

I have some alone time. Yippee! It's 8 am. I was woken up by Don at 4:30 am so we could walk along the beach. We saw the sun come up. It's amazing how people are walking, jogging, jumping in the water at that time of the morning. On the walk back we went through the bird park where the male peacock did this awesome dance, shouting and twirling, and it sounded like he was yelling painfully ouww, as in ouch. The female thought he was acting a little ridiculously and walked away pretending she didn't even notice him. I told Don that if he wants my attention I wouldn't mind a bit of similar display. Anyway, alone time is precious to come by. There is such beauty in sitting alone and being able to just watch the breath and let the body relax. No one that I need to listen to. Just to pause and write a few the lizard down below (it feels safe up on the balcony) sip some juice and feel the coolness flow down my throat.........notice the breath again.......
It's more difficult to feel and see the beauty of the moment with lots happening around me, especially interacting with people.

Here is a photo of the newest shark biscuit ready to go surfing.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

The beach.

The sand here sings as you walk, especially up hill. We couldn't understand who was whistling behind us and it was us! We really stand out like tourists.The sand feels like sifted flour under the feet. It's quite amazing! Don (shark kibble) has been surfing everyday. Soon, I think, he will be able to stand on the board. He does fine on his belly right now.


These male birds love to pose. They got my attention at 4 am by calling "help, help" so I had to find them. I've been mooned by a peacock!

Monday, 28 November 2011

I'm as cross as a frog in a sock!

I think I must have kangaroos loose in the top paddock..........I forgot my camera cord at home. So, can't put photos from camera onto iPad which means you won't get photos unless I carry my iPad around.

I'm heading out with my togs, sunnies and thongs.............later, mate!

Sunday, 27 November 2011

Early morning!

5:30 am
We just returned from a morning walk and this is my view from me mum's balcony. Coffee tastes great this morning with the warmth on my body, bare feet, 24 degrees and a soft breeze. No worries!

The longest flight!

I have been on this flight for 7 hours. I have watched a movie, had dinner and slept for nearly 3 hours. I'm done now. But I have 9 more hours to live in this little space. It is dry, dry, dry. And hot. I have bare feet and my pant legs pulled up to my knees and bare arms. I guess they are acclimatizing us for Australia! Don is watching the comedy channel and occasionally laughing hysterically. No one can hear him except me. I don't see anyone else as happy looking. Some people look like they've done this before: eye masks on and pillows tucked in all the right places; others look like ER doctors who haven't slept in weeks, disheveled but still hanging in there; a few look like they can't believe they paid for this experience; and me, I look like I've been at home all day sick with a cold and pretty tired of it, in my pajamas (and yes, literally, though they don't look like it), and eyes watering and puffy (it's the air conditioning). Did I say my nose is plugged and I want someone to rub my feet and bring me juices? only choice seems to be to wiggle my arms and legs for a bit........ meditate for the duration..........Hey! As I've been writing i've totally cheered up! I love when that happens. I've stopped arguing with the moment and everything is lovely. My daughter said that the best thing about sitting on an airplane is that there is nothing she HAS to do!
Don's line: this flight is so long you could have a whole relationship; meet, get to know each other, and even break up.

Friday, 25 November 2011

Every day is great.

After the rain the sun shines and the world is clear and beautiful. Isn't that the same with humans?

Thursday, 24 November 2011

Raincity Vancouver

Starbucks is the first place we headed when it started to rain so I could blog. We are waiting for Legendary Noodles to open for lunch. It's on Denman Street right near the beach and has fresh noodles that they twist and whip around and then cook it right there. Fun to watch and fun to eat.

We were squeezing under one umbrella as it poured all day........a street person was pointing at us......laughing........"no sex, no feeling!".

We went from one eatery to another. The Gorilla on Richard Street is a raw food place where we had Hempnotiks!

Wednesday, 23 November 2011

Green Mungbean Soup Recipe

1 cup green whole mung beans (soaked overnight)
1 tbsp oil
1/2 tsp minced garlic
1 1/2 tsp chopped ginger
1/2 tsp mustard seeds
1/4 tsp hing (asefoetida) hard to find so I often leave it out
1 bay leaf
1/2 tsp turmeric
1/2 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp coriander
1 tsp sugar
1 1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 pinch garam masala

Drain mung beans and rinse well. Boil them with the ginger, garlic, and some salt until tender and the beans are broken. It takes about 45 minutes.
Heat the oil in a deep saucepan and add mustard seeds. When they pop add hing and bay leaf. Mix well.
Placed the cooked beans and the cooking water into the saucepan. Add more water to get consistency of soup. Bring to a boil and add all remaining ingredients. Simmer for a few minutes.

This recipe comes from Ayurvedic Medicine. It is highly detoxifying, very nourishing and easy to digest. It also tastes good. As a cleanse you eat only this soup for a few days. You can also eat it for any meal, even breakfast. It is important to make the soup with the exact spices since Ayurveda demands satisfying all 6 flavours in order to support digestion and to avert cravings. This soup should not be used after 2 days of making as it will create the very toxins you want to be rid of.

This soup came to me from Catherine (Homeopath Heilkunst)

Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Elk people

People born during the Long Snows Moon, November 22 to December 21st, have the obsidian as their totem in the mineral kingdom, the black spruce as their totem in the plant kingdom and the elk as their totem in the animal kingdom. Their colour is black.

Like their mineral, Elk people can be both shiny and translucent. When they are well developed in their natures, they have an inner glow that lights their entire beings. They also have the ability to let you see somewhat into their beings, but no more deeply than they wish you to look. Like their stone, they can be hard to shape to a new viewpoint or situation, but once they are there, they will be there solidly. Elk people can be good mirrors for other people. They have the ability to be clairvoyant and to transmit thoughts. They are protective of those with whom they are close.

Like the spruce, Elk people can be both antiseptic and loosening. They have an innate sense of justice, and they will try to clean out any situation that they see as unjust. They have an intuitiveness that can see into the hearts of others.

The Elk is the most regal member of the deer family and elk people look like they belong in a royal family. They can often be teachers and look out for the welfare of others. They are truly concerned about those around them. Like their totem these people like to go to high places. Their insightful minds can also go which others avoid. But they do need to occasionally come down to the valley to ground themselves for greater balance in their lives. Once an elk person has made up their minds it is very difficult to change.

The colour black is associated with the black of the night falling upon the earth. This black gives elk people the power of surrender that can allow their intuition, their inner knowing, to come through and guide their lives.

When people from other totems travel through this one, they can learn more about their own introspective and clairvoyant talents, the regal part of their own nature and their ability to share wisely the lessons that their trip around the Medicine Wheel has taught them.

Taken from: The Medicine Wheel: Earth Astrology by Sun Bear and Wabun

Monday, 21 November 2011


It's one of those mornings.......I don't know what to do first. I've done the basics so far.......meditated, ate breakfast, had coffee, brushed my teeth. I see there are lots of emails. I have a really long to-do list today because I am leaving on Thursday for a month long trip. I teach yoga this evening and because the classes are the last ones until the new year I want to plan something fun.

I remember when I was a stay-at-home mom, living in the country, with the kids, the husband, my father, and the dog. I loved it most of the time but on the rare occasion that I drove the kids to their in-the-city school I was filled with nostalgia for being a real working woman. I was usually in sweat pants and a parka with a toque on so that I didn't have to worry about how my hair looked. I looked at the other drivers and I saw women, all dressed up, hair done perfectly, and no toque, with probably their briefcase beside them, and a delicious packed lunch........ah......and they get to talk to people and explore wonderful ideas and ........ah, what a life they had. Oh, too funny! And I also remember being one of "those" women. And the rushing in the mornings, getting everything done, the slow-cooker put on, or at least an idea for supper, and what to wear, and on and on..........When I had one kind of life, I wanted the other. I am settling in to my life now with contentment but there are those mornings......when I wish for something else. Today, I would like to have another coffee (but my body can only handle one cup) and I would like to just look out the window or read one of the novels on my super big pile. It's a sunny, blue-skyed day which looks cold but I'm toasty warm at the bright kitchen window. Well, the Blog for the day is done. I can cross that off. Start soup for lunch. Okay, the day begins and it is such a wonderful day. I'm no longer wishing to be anywhere else.

Sunday, 20 November 2011

Thoughts on listening

A problem we have with listening is that we set limits on what we want to hear.

Silence gives us plenty of opportunity for listening.

We have to tune in to give God a chance to get through.

When someone speaks aloud try to hear what God is telling you through that person.

(from a Quaker pamphlet)

Saturday, 19 November 2011

Island Pottery by Tim Alexander

I was Christmas shopping at the artisan's fair and, as usual, came home with something for myself :)
I bought this plate today. I already had the other pieces from other excursions and other years. Pottery is just so irresistible. So earthy. So decadent and luxurious to hold and to eat from. Island pottery is a wonderful place to stop when driving through Rossport, Ontario in the summer. Tim's pottery is available during the winter season at 807-345-9073.

Friday, 18 November 2011

Authors unknown

What is a friend? I will tell you.
It is a person with whom you dare to be yourself.

If you treat an individual as he is, he'll stay as he is, but.....if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be or could be, perhaps he will become that.

The trick is not to rid your stomach of butterflies, but to make them fly in formation.

Nothing is easier than fault-finding; no talent, no self-denial, no brains, no character is required to set up in the grumbling business.

Hate is like an acid. It can do more damage to the vessel in which it is stored than to the object on which it is poured.

Inspiration Journal

I've had an inspiration journal since I was about 17 years old. I write down quotes and stories from books I've read or from things I've heard people say. It's interesting to look back at old journals and discover what inspired me then. There are some themes. Love is a theme flowing throughout the years. Sometimes I have a quote written twice but many years apart. Some authors seem to inspire me forever like Krishnamurti.

Here is a quote I found twice in different journals:

There is a way of living without effort, without the constant strain of achievement and struggle for success, without the constant fear of loss or gain; I say there is a harmonious way of living life that comes when you meet every experience, every action completely, when your mind is not divided against itself, when your heart is not in conflict with your mind, when you do all things wholly, with complete unity of mind and heart. Then in that richness, in that plentitude, there is the ecstasy of life, and that to me is everlasting, that to me is eternal.
Krishnamurti 1933

Thursday, 17 November 2011

My first yoga experience.

I remember my very first yoga class. My daughter and her friend who were about 12 or 13 years old wanted to try yoga. I went with them to the teacher's apartment for a private yoga session. I had no idea what to expect. This was before yoga clothes and yoga equipment etc. We put three blankets on the floor and sat with our arms in the air for a very long time and said namaste. We did some strange breathing that felt pretty good. We started to move up and down and sideways and every which way. Thank goodness there was no one my age there. I assumed that the girls would be flexible because they were young but I had no idea how I was doing. It didn't matter. The girls were laughing and having fun. I remember rolling my way into the shoulder stand and coming right back down. None of this would have brought me back to a yoga class. It was the final relaxation, savasana, or what we popularly call the corpse pose, that ultimately got me hooked on yoga. We lay there going through our whole body, bit by bit, relaxing, letting go of holding, and wow! I had never been so relaxed in my life. Actually, I didn't know it was relaxation that I was experiencing. I thought it was some kind of out of body thing happening. Now, I can not imagine life without that experience. It was and still is absolutely magical. And I have become a yoga teacher because of that first time. I still do yoga to experience that. For me, the final relaxation is the icing on the cake. I wholeheartedly wish relaxation for everyone!

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

Inner "editor" turned off.

Last night I was at our weekly meditation meeting and some new folks arrived. I wanted to be a really good group leader and say the right things and still be authentic and professional. I sat for a moment and prepared myself by sinking into presence and stillness.......all prepared to speak from that space. And then the "editor" voice, in my head, disappeared and I started to talk. I said things I wouldn't have said if my "editor" had been operating. I blithered on and started getting confused about what I was saying. Not good. Okay, let's meditate. That always helps. Thank goodness it was a meditation group. One can always fall into meditating :) Well I spent the first bit berating myself for being out of control of myself........geez, can't I just think first?! why do I have to say everything that pops into my mind?! .....alright, I'm hard on myself......yeah, I know,.......but I deserve it.....I should know........then I spent the next bit talking to myself some more.......awwww, I know I can be an ass but I completely love and accept myself.........I know I often say too much and not the "right" thing but I completely love and accept myself. Yes! I completely love and accept myself. And I was free of the voices in my head. The rest of the meditation time was spent in a fairly emptiness dancing kind of space. Today, I know that it's "controlling" myself that often is the problem and that having an editor that is on "off" mode can be really wonderful. What if we all switched our editors off and walked around saying what we really meant. I would then hope that we be in a kind and loving space so that each word comes out with compassion. Since beginning a meditation practice and committing fully to it every day, my inner experience is more loving and joyful. If my inner landscape is that, and the editor is off, then joy and love will flow effortlessly. I can just relax. Joy. Love. Trust. Relaxation. Flowingness. Simplicity. These grow from inside.

Tuesday, 15 November 2011

Pretend to be who you are!

I notice that I have many "faces" or "hats". Sometimes I am wearing the "teacher hat". Sometimes the "mom hat" or the "important person" hat. Yesterday it was the "good girl hat". All of them are only a part of who I am. They are the conditions I put on myself so I can feel good about myself. They are put on when I think I know how I should be or act. They are contrived but rise up in a sneeky way so I think they are real. They are hard work to keep on and up. I think I am going to pretend to be who I really am! Hmmmmm........
I think it was the baseball player, Patchel Saige, who asked......"who would I be if I didn't know who I wuz?"

Monday, 14 November 2011

Fall Afternoon Walk

No matter how big the to-do list is, a walk outside in the fresh air is essential to my well-being. After coming home I feel like I've been aired out like an old quilt and now am much refreshed! Felix feels the same way :)'

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Homemade Toothpaste

This takes just two minutes to make. Really easy and is good for you. No aluminum tubes to worry about.

The recipe is taken from Adria Vasil's book, Ecoholic: Your Guide to the Most Environmentally Friendly Information, Products and Services in Canada.

6 tsp (30 ml) baking soda
(your whitener)
1/3 tsp (1.5 ml) salt
(your mildly abrasive antiseptic)
4 tsp (20 ml) vegetable glycerine
(your gel)
15 drops** of an organic essential oil  ....wintergreen or spearmint
(for fresh flavour that comes from the earth)  
** I use only 5 drops when it is a really good oil

Everyone in the family needs their own little jar of toothpaste in which to dip their toothbrush.

Saturday, 12 November 2011

Monkey shine

A quick and easy breakfast drink or just a fun snack!

Put a banana in a blender and pour orange juice on top. Blend until frothy and enjoy :)

Friday, 11 November 2011


I see the numbers 11:11 often. On my clock radio, the stove clock, license plates and so on. I once looked up what it means and can't retain the information. I just remember to take a breath and notice this moment purely as it is when I see the numbers.

Today, I remember my dad who was in WW II. His whole life changed with his experience in the trenches of life. I choose to remember that peace is in every step and it begins with me right now.

Thursday, 10 November 2011

Drop the story.

I was dreaming last night. I was with my daughter when she was younger and we were at a playground on the swings. I put my keys on the ground along with my wallet. And then we left. We had walked quite a way and I remembered that I had forgotten to pick up my keys and wallet. Oh, the panic! And the scenes in my head of disaster. Someone now had my money, address and my keys! We were running back and for some reason we got lost and people were trying to talk to us and we never seemed to get there. As I was dreaming I had the sense that I was dreaming and that it wasn't real at all. But I could feel this enormous stubbornness wanting to hang on to the dream. I tried to say to myself, that hey, it's only a dream but I couldn't drop it. Actually, I wouldn't drop it. I was unwilling to let go of my dream. It's mine, it's about me! This is how we are in waking life too. We hang on to a story like a pit bull with the story clasped in it's teeth. Even when someone tells us that we don't need to hang on anymore we still do! We even defend the story! This is where a path of growth and healing (a.k.a. the spiritual path) is the path of heroes. We need to notice the first whiffs of the story of  "me". The moment we sense it is just a story to drop it. Our poor egos hate this! It is a very courageous thing to do. It does it easier with practice. Life is lived less seriously and with more joy. :)

Wednesday, 9 November 2011

The best vegetarian chili recipe

This is a wonderful recipe, full-bodied, and spicy!
It's from the book Vegetarian Planet by Didi Emmons.

Tomato and Lentil Chili
1/2 cup butter or other oil
4 cups chopped onions
6 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp ground cumin seeds
1/4 cup chili powder
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp chile flakes
1/2 cup flour (I didn't put any flour in and it was fine)
4 to 5 cups water or vegetable stock
2 carrots chopped into cubes
2 green bell peppers or poblano peppers, seeded and cut into squares
3 1/2 cups (1 28 oz can) peeled plum tomatoes
3 ripe medium tomatoes, chopped
3 cups dried brown or French lentils
1 to 2 chipotle peppers (I used a few scoops of the canned kind in oil)
1 cup light-coloured beer
1 to 1 1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper
1/4 cup chopped cilantro
1/2 cup sour cream (for dolloping on the top in the bowls)

In a big saucepan, melt butter and cook onions for 5 minutes. Add garlic, cumin, chili powder, cinnamon and chile flakes and cook 2 minutes more. Add the flour if using and stir. Whisk in the water or stock slowly. Add the carrots and peppers. Then add the tomatoes, squeezing them with your hands to mush them. Put a little looove into them. Add the fresh tomatoes, lentils, chipotles, and beer. Add salt and pepper. Bring to boil and let simmer for 40 minutes or until lentils are tender. Add the cilantro. Serve with sour cream.

It said in the paper that old man winter is coming. Like that's news!?! This will keep ya warm :)

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

It's a magical world.

There are only two ways to live your life.
One is as though nothing is a miracle.
The other is as though everything is a miracle.

Albert Einstein

It truly is a magical world. Every day is magical if you have the eyes to see it. Look for it. Expect it even the moments that appear to be all the same old moments.
Here is a video clip that is amazing. It's only 1 minute and 59 seconds long.

Monday, 7 November 2011

Marjorie Clayton - Photographer

Marj is a superb photographer as you can see from this photo of Ama.  She has spent a lot of time living in Ghana and Bolivia making wonderful photographic art. She has just produced some really great posters of a her photos. A great idea for Christmas presents.

Check out her photoblog:

You can order posters, either framed or unframed, from myself, Mayama
or Marj at

Sunday, 6 November 2011

Buckwheat banana pancakes

These pancakes have no gluten (buckwheat isn't a wheat) and they are quick and easy.

1/4 cup buckwheat flour
1 banana
2 eggs
3/4 milk and 1 tbsp lemon juice
    (or 3/4 cup buttermilk)
butter for frying

Put all ingredients in a blender to mix well.
Let sit for 30 minutes.
Fry like thin Finnish pancakes. This means that a cured cast iron fry pan works best. You heat the pan and put in a dollop of butter. Yes, you must use butter and don't be too cheap with it. Pour in some batter in center of pan and then roll the pan around a little to spread the batter. When little holes start appearing in the middle then flip pancake. With buckwheat flour you have to be careful as they fall apart easily. It just takes a knack so the first pancake is usually not pretty but still edible. Then repeat with rest of dough. Serves 2 but I can eat the whole batch by myself.
These are wonderfully sweet on their own or with a little maple syrup. Enjoy!

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Have a happy default thought.

Sometimes you can just feel sad. Or angry. Or you whine.
You can stay there if you want. Or you can choose something else. I have a default happy thought. It's really an image in my mind's eye. I see my dog, Felix, running around in figure eights around some bushes in the backyard. He is so joyful! That thought carries me up or forward into feeling just a liitle better and then my mood spirals upwards from there.

Friday, 4 November 2011

You are beautiful!

There is a poem by Hafiz, the Sufi Poet, who writes:

Do you know how beautiful you are?
I think not, my dear.

If we could know this one thing: that we are good enough, beautiful, and perfect just as we are, life would be more joyful and more wondrous. Just right now, just right now, know that you are beautiful and worthy of every good thing.

Thursday, 3 November 2011

Each day is new.

Go inwards right now. Breathe in. Exhale. Appreciate this moment. Appreciate this day even though it may seem like every other day with it's routines or lack of routines. Every breath is brand new. Every day is brand new. It has never happened before. Appreciate each moment as it comes. Really look at the work before you. Really look at the scene outside your window. Really look at your hands. Really look and see the people right in front of you. They are different today too. Breathe and feel. Live and feel. Listen and see the details. Make this day a truly alive one!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Can I learn to live with myself?
I think I must live with myself to really know myself. Day in, day out, staying alert to every little thing. Awareness of movement, sound, thought, feelings, and how they all change. I can not have preconceived ideas about myself.

Krishnamurti said, "you can face a fact only in the present and if you never allow it to be present because you are always escaping from it, you can never face it". Hmpf! We are always squirming, escaping, and denying so we don't have to feel the moment as it is, the pain, the fear. The truth is that it is easier to feel now. Just to slip into the moment now and be done with it. The next moment arises fresh and clear. Look something straight in the eye!

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Day of the Dead or El Dia de los Muertos

I took this photo at the hacienda I was staying at in Mexico a few years ago. It was taken on November 1st, the Day of the Dead. There were marigolds everywhere! It is their biggest celebration of the year and the Mexicans know how to celebrate. This celebration is a time to remember and honour deceased relatives and to acknowledge and celebrate the cycle of life. The altar had photos of relatives and gifts for them. Gifts like cigars if they liked to smoke or candies and chocolates. There lots of skulls and skeletons made of chocolate and a special bread was made for the occasion. That evening we had skits about the relatives and stories of what they used to do. It was a really fun, joyful, and also sacred evening. We stayed up all night. One I won't forget it was so unique. My father had passed away only a few weeks before and the evening was especially full for me. I thought wonderful, happy thoughts about my dad and how he would have laughed at all this. It was so different from the sadness I thought I was supposed to feel. It was such an embrace of life moving on to another form.

So, today, remember with love and joy your loved ones that have passed from this realm.

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