Sunday, 30 December 2012


I have a new (quite old) mac laptop that I recently bought from my friend. My daughter tells me that I have a mac brain. She saw how I understand the ipad. So, my computer is slowing down and this lovely mac landed on my lap :)

Today, I synced all my photos to it. It is so easy to move them and email them now. I love iphotos.

I learned that AirPort and Airport are two totally different things. This took a while.

I kept tapping on the screen to no avail. Many times.

It beeps in the cutest way when I do something when I keep doing the same thing over and over and still not getting what I want.

I sat so long on a hard kitchen chair playing with my mac that my bum got stiff and sore.....but the view of the backyard and the tea close by was worth it.

I don't understand how it could be so easy to understand this mac compared to the "other" one.

Awwwww, Mac! You are my new best friend.

Saturday, 29 December 2012

It is a magical world

The world is such a magical place if only we had better senses to see it. My daughter has been telling me to watch Touch, a T.V. series starring Kiefer Sutherland. I finally did. I love it! There is a little boy who is autistic but a genius with numbers, the shapes of the universe, and a clear seeing how everything is connected. Okay, so I watch a few episodes of this show and the next day I am looking for a book to read. I have lots. It took a while. I picked The Bone People by Keri Hulme, a book that a friend has loaned to me. I love it! And yes, it's about a little boy who doesn't speak but also appears to be a genius and also is raised by a single dad. I love the synchronicity. It happens more often than we realize. We usually don't notice. But if you look......everything is truly connected. There isn't anything you do that doesn't affect the whole world. Even every breath you take. Now, how magical is that!

Thursday, 27 December 2012

What the heck does the mind know?

We watched the 3rd episode of the 2nd series of Sherlock Holmes. Hmmmmm. It was a head scratcher. I think I know what happened at the end. For me, the episode was about how the mind will try to build upon one thought. The more you build upon one thought, each consecutive thought confirms the validity of the first thought, whether it is true or not. One person is given the thought that someone is the bad guy and she or he finds other thoughts to prove the validity of it. And tells another person. And that person believes it too and tells someone else. And pretty soon everyone believes that the bad guy is a bad guy. It only started with one thought and may have no validity. Who knows? My mind does just the same. Anything can be confirmed. The mind is just doing it's job......making whatever you think to be the actual truth. Therefore, it is very important to choose what to think.The longer I think about some one thing, the less chance I have of knowing what the truth of that one thing is. It solidifies into something that may not be the truth at all. It can be apparent truth just because it has twirled around in my head so long. Spooky, isn't it? Thanks Sherlock!

Wednesday, 26 December 2012

Spa afternoon

I had a spa afternoon with my Christmas gifts. It was most delicious!

Monday, 24 December 2012

Santa Claus

When I was a little girl I totally believed in Santa Claus (we called him Joulupukki). One year just before Christmas, my parents sat me down and said that they have to talk to me about something. We sat at my little set of table and chairs in the basement. My dad's knees were practically in his chest. He looked like a little big boy. My mom was serious and did all the talking. They told me that they regret to tell me that there is no Santa Claus. They said they were telling me because other kid's were getting more gifts and they didn't want me to think that Santa liked them more. I was so upset. I cried and told them they were wrong. i just couldn't believe it! Then I was mad at them for telling me. I really wanted to believe in Santa Claus. Funny thing is that I always thought I got the best and most gifts of all my friends, if I thought about it at all.

I still like to believe in Santa Claus......whether it is the spirit of giving and sharing, or the eating of milk and cookies.

Friday, 21 December 2012

December 21

Winter Solstice Celebration. We all went to Prince Arthur's Landing tonight to the Lantern Festival. Tiina was our lantern bearer. The last day of darkness for the year and let the light shine forth. Supper and IPA's and eggnog at The Sovereign. Wow! Was it a wonderful evening!

Thursday, 20 December 2012

Christmas stars

It has been a cooking day. These are my favourite pastries. Finnish Christmas stars, rich butter pastry with prunes for filling. I am now stumbling to bed with my full belly.

Tuesday, 18 December 2012

What to worship continued......

There is no such thing as not worshipping.
Everybody worships.
The only choice we get is WHAT to worship.
"And an outstanding reason for choosing some sort of god or spiritual-type thing to worship---be it J.C. or Allah, be it Yahweh or the Wiccan mother-goddess or the Four noble Truths or some infrangible set of ethical principles---is that pretty much anything else you worship will eat you alive."
"If you worship money and things---if they are where you tap real meaning in life---then you will never have enough."
"Never feel you have enough."
"It's the truth."
"Worship your own body and beauty and sexual allure and you will always feel ugly, and when time and age start showing, you will die a million deaths before they finally plant you."
"Worship power---you will feel weak and afraid, and you will need ever more power over others to keep the fear at bay."
"Worship your intellect, being seen as smart---you will end up feeling stupid, a fraud, always on the verge of being found out."
And so on.

These forms of worship are unconscious. David Foster Wallace calls these default settings. We slip into them and they feel real.
To be free of it all, we need to be attentive and aware. We need to put some effort into looking at what we worship. And be free.

Monday, 17 December 2012

What to worship

You get to choose how you see life. You get to choose how you feel inside by the thoughts you keep. Throw away the thoughts that don't serve you. Better yet, don't even allow them into your awareness. As you get a whiff of a thought that isn't how you want to see the world - drop it and fast! I don't mean to put your head in the sand either. Definitely not.

If you have really learned how to think - how to use your own mind rather than have your mind use you - then you know that you have options.

David Foster Wallace who delivered a speech "This is Water" (now in book form) said, that is, if you've learned how to think, "It will actually be within your power to experience a crowded, hot, slow, consumer-hell-type situation as not only meaningful, but sacred, on fire with the same force that lit the stars - compassion, love, the subsurface unity of all things."

You get to decide how you are going to see things. Wallace says that this is what education is about......"you get to consciously decide what has meaning and what doesn't. You get to decide what to worship.......

Sunday, 16 December 2012

Bare Boughs

In Winter the bare boughs that seem to sleep
Work covertly, preparing for their Spring.

Jalil al-Dim Rumi (1207-73), Persia

When it is dark enough you can see the stars.

Charles A. Beard (1874-1948), USA

Saturday, 15 December 2012

Almond shortbread (gluten free)

1 1/3 cup rice flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly grated nutmeg
1/2 cup butter
1/2 cup raw cane sugar
2 large egg yolks
1 tsp vanilla extract
3/4 tsp lemon or orange zest
blanched almonds

Preheat the oven 350 degrees. Line cookie sheets with parchment paper.

Stir together rice flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg.

In another bowl beat butter and sugar together until fluffy. Beat in yolks, and vanilla, and zest. Fold in the flour mixture until blended.

Shape into little balls 3/4 inch balls and place them 2 inches apart on cookie sheet. Press each ball flat with the tines of a fork. Press an almond into the center of each cookie. Bake for 10 minutes until golden. Leave to cool on cookie sheet for 10 minutes and cool on rack.

These held together really well. But careful on the nutmeg, vanilla, and zest......I used less and I still found the spices overpowering.

This recipe is from the most recent Yoga Journal. It's a recipe by Rebecca Wood.

Friday, 14 December 2012

Christmas has begun

I put my tree up today. And I baked Karjalanpiirakoita with friend and neighbour, Arundel. They are wonderful fresh and with good old cheddar and a yum yum pickle.

Phoebe and Don playing with homemade dijerridoos.

Thursday, 13 December 2012

12 days of Christmas

"On the twelfth day of Christmas my true love gave to me........."

Give your family and friends the 12 days of Christmas gift with your own flavour (and theirs).
Start today and every day for the next 12 days give someone in your life a wee little gift. Just in time for Christmas.
Perhaps you could phone a relative or a parent or a child for 12 consecutive days.....something you don't usually do. Or bring your true love coffee in bed every morning (or lemon juice in warm water). Or bring home a little gift every day. Or write each day in a journal something that you appreciate about them and give it to them on Christmas. Use your imagination!

"Find a way to give, and then give more"
Maharishi Krishnananda Ishaya

Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Uncaused joy

If I am not in joy......not feeling joyful, then I am resisting something. To trust the moment and not wish to add anything to it or to take anything away from it - is what is required. Then joy feels uncaused. It just appears. I have spent so much of my life trying to improve myself and to improve or fix situations. It's time to stop. It's time to allow. It's time to let go of wanting things my way. I'm on my way to joy in every moment!

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Time for a fire

The woodstove is on. I love this time of the winter with clean snow and soup in the pot. I get to put on layers of clothes and take hot saunas and drink hot toddies. My cheeks are mostly rosy. In a few months I will be absolutely fed up with it and waiting for warm days but now it feels good to curl up inside. I think I am a northern chick!

Monday, 10 December 2012

Sunday, 9 December 2012

The eye

Exercises for the eyes and for better eye sight.

I found these exercises on a tape recording by Deepak Chopra.

Any sensory input changes the body's chemistry in less than 1/100 of a second. How you see and what you see instantly influences the systems of the body.

The following exercises improve vision, sense of colour perception, improve memory and creativity, and allows you to experience and access different states of consciousness.

These should be done without glasses or contacts.

1) Look at the sun with closed eyes for 15 seconds. This stimulates the rods and cones of the retina. If you have a cloudy day use full spectrum light (they have all wave-lengths of the sun).

2) Gently massage the eyeballs and look again at the sun with eyes closed for 15 seconds. You may experience different colours (which are generated from your body since eyes are closed). Hold the colours in your awareness for 30 to 60 seconds or longer. You may see only one colour or many.
This exercise stimulates the cones of the eyes for greater colour perception. Colours in your life become much more alive as sensory perception is richer.

3) This 3 part exercise is for the lens of the eye. As we age, the lens becomes less flexible and our eyesight deteriorates and we may develop cataracts. This exercise helps to improve vision and even correct vision.

a) focusing near and far: look at your hand or finger about 15 centimetres away from your nose and then look at something farther away. Go back and forth, look near and look far, for about 30 seconds.

b) distant reading: pin a sheet of written material on the wall. Stand as far as possible for comfortable reading. And everyday move a little farther and farther away to read your sheet.

c) close reading: use the same sheet of paper and go as close as you can comfortably read it. Every day go closer and closer.

4) Fixed positions of the eyes. This strengthens the extra-ocular muscles of the eyes, strengthens memory, learning ability, and increases attention span.
a) look up and left
b) look up and right
c) look down and left
d) look down and right
e) look horizontal left
f) look horizontal right
g) look up
h) look down

All these are held for 15 seconds each.
Do not move the head. Only the eyes.

To finish look between your eyebrows at the third eye center to open up to heightened intuition. Intuition = heightened sense of awareness. The eye exercises increases intuition.

Saturday, 8 December 2012

A Cinderella Pumpkin

I bought a Rouge Vif d'Etampes a.k.a. a Cinderella pumpkin, of French heritage, at the market today from the squash queen. It is huge and gorgeous and apparently red inside. I am going to feed my family this wonderful voluptuous thing during the Christmas holidays. Yum! The squash queen says you can roast the whole pumpkin and then freeze it in the portions you want to cook with.

I love the market on a Saturday crowded......coffees in most hands, meeting friends, hugs and interesting pumpkins.

Friday, 7 December 2012

Less and more

I really like the Christmas season. Today, I've pulled out the Christmas decorations. I bought a real tree yesterday which is still leaning on the deck. This year most of my gift ideas came together easily, just the way I like it. I keep everything pretty simple and do shopping early.

I have been so busy today that I have no new ideas and no new thoughts. It's funny how I can think all day about something while I am doing things and yet nothing new comes of it. And the days I don't think as much and usually am not as busy, then all kinds of inspirations flow in. So - I guess I need to do less, think less, and create more.

Thursday, 6 December 2012

Life of pi

Life of Pi, the movie, was really good! I loved the book and I loved the movie. The scenes of the ocean are great in 3D. I was mystified with the book, a little less mystified with the movie, but still mystified. It's like taking and English literature course and knowing I'm missing some major point of the book. And maybe it's okay not to have everything figured out.

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

New cookbook - Spiced chickpeas & fresh vegetable salad

My daughter had this new cookbook and made dinner for me from it. Yum! I went and bought it today. I love the flavours in the book though some ingredients might be difficult to find. I am used to substituting. I bought a red onion for the recipe and then forgot to put it in. :)

Spiced chickpeas and fresh vegetable salad

1/2 cup chickpeas, soaked (with 1 tsp baking soda) and cooked and drained
2 small cucumbers
2 large tomatoes
a handful of radishes
1 red pepper
1 small red onion
handful cilantro leaves
handful parsley leaves
6 tbsp olive oil
grated zest of 1 lemon plus 2 tbsp juice
1 1/2 tbsp sherry vinegar
1 clove garlic, crushed
1 tsp fine sugar
1 tsp ground cardamon
1 1/2 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cumin
salt and pepper

Chop cucumber, tomato, radish, onion pepper, cilantro and parsley and toss in a bowl.

In a jar, mix 5 tbsp of the olive oil, the lemon juice, zest, vinegar, garlic, sugar, and mix well to form a dressing. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Pour the dressing over the salad and toss lightly.

Mix together the cardamon, allspice, cumin and 1/4 tsp salt on a plate. Toss the cooked and well-drained chickpeas in the spice mixture to coat. Heat remaining olive oil in a pan over medium heat and lightly fry the chickpeas for 2 to 3 minutes, gently shaking the pan so they cook evenly and don't stick. Serve beside the salad on a plate.

You can drizzle some Greek yogurt on top to make the salad creamy.

Monday, 3 December 2012


Traveling by plane is very discombobulating. I feel like I am buzzing all over. I spent 10 hours getting home yesterday.

I practiced being absolutely still and silent for 5 seconds. Strange how that seems like a long time. The past disappears. Actually I disappear. It is so peaceful and spacious.

Sunday, 2 December 2012

In transit

I am trying to leave beautiful Montreal. I have been at the airport for hours. There is a "server" down in Toronto so all Porter flights are grounded. I wish I was in the city instead of here. Oh well, here I am.

Minna's home below, far right, cute!
I had a bit of lunch and a latte, it came in a bowl and was really fun to drink with 2 hands.

Best Sign

This is the best washroom sign I've ever seen. In where else but Montreal!

Saturday, 1 December 2012

The old port of Montreal

I walked all over the old part of Montreal today. I love the old buildings, the doorways and the little windows and the cobblestone streets that look like alleys. The old town square was all decked out in Xmas trees. I window shopped (rapidly because it was a frigid day) looking at beautiful québécois art. Cafes and restaurants were getting ready with white tablecloths and wine glasses for the evening crowd.

I went to Notre Dame Cathedral and meditated there (and warmed up). The spaciousness was just amazing. It's the empty space I like most about churches and cathedrals. We sure put a lot of effort and beauty into buildings in the past. There was so much to look at and admire and be amazed at. It was such a change walking back with the stark square black and grey clean lined buildings with plain windows and glass doors. It was easy to walk by. But I've always liked the old parts of the world with it's essence of life lived.

Whiski dude and I went for a coffee at Pourquoi Pas Cafe on rue Amherst. The fellow behind the counter remembered us from the last few days and chucked Whiski under the chin and said hiya Whiski. And the little pooch falls asleep at the bar every time.

Thursday, 29 November 2012

Leonard Cohen

I saw Leonard Cohen in concert in Montreal (his hometown) yesterday. Amazing! Wow! Wow!

I have never been in a place with 30,000 people and it took my breath away. The huge spaciousness all surrounded by these loving bodies.

Leonard started just after 8 pm and went on until 11:45 pm. There was a 20 minute intermission. (Younger performers could take note of this).

His accompanying singers and band members were absolutely fabulous. There was a guitarist from Barcelona who could have had a concert of his own and same with his keyboard man, I think his name is Neil Larsen. Two sisters from Kent, England and Sharon Robinson, were the three singers and they had solos which were awesome. And the violin player.....! I love how Leonard stood with hat in hand and eyes closed with reverence as each member of his troupe shared their own magic.

Leonard went down on his knees to sing many of his songs which felt like he was expressing service to us, how he wanted to surrender to the divine and share his gifts so we could all be loving and kind.

Every time he went off the stage he skipped and danced waving his arm. Such beauty and grace in this 78 year old icon. I felt privileged to be present. I have never been to a concert that I loved so much. It even brings a tear to my eye thinking about it.

The little dude

This is Whiski - otherwise known as Whiski Dude. He is 13 weeks old. He had his first walk in the park (he has been in the park but until today has stood terrified instead of exploring). We wandered in the neighbourhood, his little head bobbing up and down in his carry bag. He fell asleep at the coffee shop. I definitely felt like the proud grandma.

Minna, my daughter, and the dude.

Tuesday, 27 November 2012


I love the Porter airline lounge at the Toronto Island airport. I've had roasted almonds and a latte in a real china cup. They have a little store now. Lots of leather goods.........really nice! WANT Passport is the name of the store. It began with two Canadian brothers (twins), and there are four people running the company now. They have their main store in Montreal.

So, I've arrived in Montreal. Minna and Jon, (daughter and her boyfriend), have an awesome home right downtown, it's too dark for good photos on the iPad tonight.

It is wonderful to have adult children who live in amazing cities. I can visit!

Monday, 26 November 2012

Pumpkin Soup

I have modified this soup from a recipe in a Canadian Gardening magazine Fall 2012.

Olive oil
chopped onions - 1 to 2 cups
some minced garlic
1 tbsp grated ginger
2 tbsp curry powder
2 tbsp soy sauce
4 cups vegetable or chicken broth
a bit of cream or milk
cut and chopped pumpkin - I used a whole small pumpkin but you could have less or even pureed pumpkin
roasted pumpkin seeds and sour cream for garnish

Heat the oil in a pot. Saute onions and garlic and cook until they begin to soften. Add ginger and stir a bit. Add curry powder and stir until smooth. Add pumpkin chunks.
Add broth. Simmer until pumpkin is cooked. Puree.
Add some cream or milk (or evaporated or condensed milk). I usually just put in a dollop, or 1/4 cup but you can put more if you like. (I bet coconut milk would taste great too).


Sunday, 25 November 2012

Little time for great benefit

I love to do yoga before supper. I usually do this on the weekends. I get supper started or partially prepared so that after yoga I can just sit down to eat. Today was wonderful. I only did slow yoga postures for a very short time but it was enough to get into a peaceful, slower mode. And I lay down on the carpet and listened to Will Blunderfield's music (a Vancouver yoga teacher and musician). It was heavenly. Such a little amount of time for such a large amount of peace.

Saturday, 24 November 2012

Getting up in the morning

This business of getting up in the morning: I've been exploring it.

I remember my dad (who worked 2 jobs) getting up around 5 am every morning. He drank a pot of coffee and played solitaire until it was time to go to work. He loved work! I never remember him grumbling about "having" to do anything. Maybe that's why he had an easy time getting up in the mornings.

When I was a kid I got up pretty early too, school days or holidays, I read a book before I got up to get ready for the day. And I liked school and holidays. But the days we were going fishing or to the dump, well, I got up even earlier. If it was just my dad and I going we left before 6 am. It was always an adventure.

So, yes, I am a morning person.

I have noticed though, that getting up in the morning isn't like it used to be. Perhaps because I am not usually home in the evenings until 9:30 or 10:00 pm and I can't get to bed early enough or maybe getting up now isn't like to go to school, or fishing, or the dump.

This is what I have discovered about alarms, mornings, and morning practices. The most important part is the night before. Before going to sleep I have to "input" that I will happily and eagerly get up in the morning. I set the time, put the alarm on, and "input" that I will wake up just before the the sound doesn't "alarm" me. This works when the habit is formed. Really!

However, I must never press snooze. I must never roll over onto my side.....or I fall asleep instantly. I have to kick myself out of bed the first few times and right now as the mornings are dark, I have had to kick myself out of bed for a good week. And that's only because I have been off track.

When this works and I don't miss a single morning for a while it is heavenly to wake up. Another adventure!

I have started to also allow for one morning a week to sleep in. I usually wake up as usual but then I remember.....ahhhhh......this morning is the sleep in morning. It is heavenly to roll over and not have to feel I have to keep a promise to myself.

I want to get up so my morning practice is done first. Right now I mostly meditate. And if the day is busy I still feel accomplished because I did what I am committed to doing. There is an amazing feeling of power in that. In doing what I set out to do.

If there is a practice you want to do daily, and daily is best, even if it's not long, you must commit to it. You must consciously find the time, whether it's morning or afternoon, or evening. Once you decide, really decide, then you just follow through, no matter what. Just do it!

Wednesday, 21 November 2012


My family loves Ikea furniture. Only my daughters know how to build them.

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

Out the kitchen window.

I am looking out the kitchen window.
I feel free - out there.
Over the tops of the trees.
The seagull soars in absolute silence, or so it seems to me from my windowed, closed box of a house.
Another gull flies overhead. I feel the silence of it.

Sunday, 18 November 2012

A man's chili

Today was warm and soft. It was a great day to walk, clean the garden, and turn on the bbq.

I made Steak and Ale Chili. A real man's chili.
(from Weber's Time to Grill cookbook)

2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp salt
1 tsp ground black pepper

1 pound steak, about 3/4 inch thick, trimmed of fat
vegetable oil

1 1/2 cups finely chopped onions
1 tbsp minced garlic
2 tbsp chili powder
2 tsp ground oregano
2 cans (16 oz each) beans, such as pinto or white kidney beans, with liquid
1 can (28 oz) diced tomatoes
1 bottle stout beer
2 tbsp cider vinegar
1/2 tsp worcestershire sauce

2 cups grated cheddar cheese

In a small bowl, combine the rub ingredients. Brush oil on steak and then rub in dry ingredients on both sides. Let sit for 15 to 30 minutes before grilling. Heat up grill to 350 to 450 F. Cook steak on grill for 4 to 6 minutes turning once to medium rare. Let sit for 5 minutes and then cut into 1/2 inch chunks.

In a large saucepan heat 1 tbsp oil and cook onions and garlic for 5 minutes or so. Add spices and cook for one minute. Add the rest of the chili ingredients along with the steak and simmer covered for 20 minutes. Then simmer for about an hour without the cover. 

Enjoy with the grated cheese.

Saturday, 17 November 2012

No longer

To be no longer content to pick up what is floating on the surface of life, and to want only the pearls at the bottom of the sea, this is grace, welling up from deep inside.

Eknath Easwaran

Friday, 16 November 2012


Recently, it was suggested to me to be more bold. More bold? How? I am to do one bold thing this week. I usually wear a lot of grey or muted clothes colours so I bought a bright turquoise jacket from Joe Fresh and I have been wearing it with an orangey scarf. I love those two colours together. I even work a lime green, yellowy shirt today. Yahoo! Bold here I come.

Next week I plan to do something else bold - not what I'm wearing, maybe what I can do to BE bold.

Playing small isn't helpful to anyone.

Thursday, 15 November 2012

Bloomers and the Brownhouse

I finally went into this new little shop on Archibald St., in Thunder Bay, called Bloomers and the Brownhouse. It's an old home that looks happy, cozy, and inviting. I loved it. They have fresh flowers, potted flowers, candles, some knit cowls, purses, lots of xmas decorations right now, AND chocolate! And they know about chocolate, so I had a bit of a lesson and I bought some ginger smothered in chocolate which was super good. A fun shop to check out for gifts for others and a treat for yourself.

I bought this "everyday" bouquet too. There is something decadent about fresh flowers in the house. I often move them around to the room I am hanging out in.

Wednesday, 14 November 2012

Less work, more time

This fall I made two of my work days really long, Mondays and Wednesdays. So it always feels like it's a bit of Friday night on those evenings. I still work on Tuesdays and Thursdays and Fridays but they are not as long. And I love that! Some Fridays I have completely off. I truly think it would be a much healthier world if everyone only worked no more than four days a week. And I mean the same 8 hour days not longer. I'm sure it could be figured out. More people would have jobs. We can learn to live with a little less money if we have more free time to cook, and walk and put our lives in order.

Tuesday, 13 November 2012

My earthquake

My computer is slow and working very poorly........and my iPad never ceases to amaze me. I would love to learn more so maybe I would never need an actual computer. I can't yet write my blog in colour or change font.......or make a group contact list ( which is really important for me). Anyway, I feel sad that I might have to get a computer as I don't have that in my budget.

I am still feeling an inner earthquake and know that something is about to change radically in my life. I have an inkling of it and I am excited now. Life is meant to be lived full-on! But in the meantime I am discombobulated. Isn't that just the greatest word!

The most amazing thing is - I've stopped listening to the voice in my head that tells me what my experience is about. My mind is always concerned with reasons, why, what........I guess I will know soon enough. It is wonderful to trust that everything is already okay. Sometimes I would love to start life over again, all the way from the beginning. And isn't that what we do? It might be. We learn all these lessons in this life body and return again in another life body (and hopefully retain the life lesson knowledge from previous ones). Yeah! We get to do it all over again. Or maybe, just maybe I can press the reset button and start fresh right now. I think this is my earthquake.

Monday, 12 November 2012


Epictetus (circa 55-135 CE) taught in Rome until the year 94 CE, when the Emperor banished all philosophers from the city. He kept teaching in exile, one of his notable students being Marcus Aurelius. This is an excerpt from The Art of Living: the Classical Manual on Virtue, Happiness, and Effectiveness. (Interpretation by Sharon Lebell).

Happiness Can Only Be Found Within

Freedom is the only worthy goal in life. It is won by disregarding things that lie beyond our control. We cannot have a light heart if our minds are a woeful cauldron of fear and ambition.

Do you wish to be invincible? Then don't enter into combat with what you have no real control over. Your happiness depends on three things, all of which are within your power; your will, your ideas concerning the events in which you are involved, and the use you make of your ideas.

Authentic happiness is always independent of external conditions. Vigilantly practice indifference to external conditions. Your happiness can only be found within.

Stop aspiring to be anyone other than your own best self; for that does fall within your control.

Hmmm, could have been written today.

Sunday, 11 November 2012

Mind can fool

Today I feel like I have an earthquake happening in me. I woke up with the feeling. I can't even describe it. I feel like something in my life is changing and I don't know what it is. I was a bit distressed with this feeling and looked for reasons: it's because I don't like to do this anymore or because I don't have enough time to do this and that, etc. It was just my mind looking for reasons and I have already discovered and needed to remember today that I can't trust the mind to know what is real and what is false. So, I've stopped looking for answers and am just riding the wave. And of course, I feel enormously better. I keep doing what I need to do and breathe and be easy with everything that happens. This sounds cryptic but it's all I know at the moment.

Saturday, 10 November 2012

Wild woman

I am going through some kind of change. It feels like a birthing of something new and I don't what it is. I was telling a good friend about it and she asked me if I had read Women Who Run With the Wolves by Clarissa Pinkola Estes. I have not I said. In fact I have had two copies and tried to read it at least once but got bogged down by all the verbiage in the long introduction. This friend has mentioned to me before (at least twice) to read this book. So I checked my books and I still have the copy so I read the introduction again and had the same feeling about it but I finished it. And now am looking forward to reading more. Perhaps it is the wild woman in me that needs birthing.

Friday, 9 November 2012


This is a wonderful book to help you understand (both men and women) how relationships can go askew without either person doing anything wrong. Don and I have been reading it together and we both like it. It's great to know about our hardwiring. We have laughed together and I shed a few tears for men. It is so worth reading this book - for everybody for any relationship. Don't worry about the title.

How to Improve your Marriage Without Talking about it.
By Patricia Love and Steven Stosny

Thursday, 8 November 2012


Introducing Hank. I found him today in the store, Finnport. He is handmade in Canada, an original by cate & levi.

Hank and I played for about an hour this evening, bantering back and forth. Stay tuned.

Wednesday, 7 November 2012

Notice what you think

Try this:

Sit down. Close the eyes. Notice your your breath flows in and out and how your body feels.

Then visualize yourself in your favourite place in nature, maybe at the beach or in a forest, wherever you love to be. Notice your breathing. How it flows in and out and how your body feels.

Now visualize yourself walking down the road and a driver swerves in front of you, scowls at you, and shows you the finger. Notice your breathing and how the body feels.

Now visualize yourself lying in a warm bubble bath. Notice your breath and your body.

Now visualize yourself looking at a beach that has an oil spill, this goopy stuff with a seagull lying dead on it's side. And again notice your breath and your body.

Now one last visualization: see the cutest little puppy, wagging it's tail, running towards you ready for a scratch under it's chin. Notice your breath and body.

Did you notice a difference in your breathing? Did the breathing change as you thought of different images?

It really is important what you think. If you spend your whole day thinking of things that bring on feelings of sadness, or anxiety, or angry, or make you depressed then that is what happens to the cells of your body. The body slumps, contracts, and you can't breath fully.

You can change your life by what kind of thoughts you think. Choose for the thought that lets you breathe well. Choose for the thought that relaxes the body. Choose for the thought that brings peace and spaciousness.

Think of having a default thought: whenever you find yourself having thoughts that are not allowing you to feel your best choose your default thought. A default thought is a thought you come back to that always makes you smile and feel just a little better. My default thought is visualizing my dog run in figure eights around two bushes in the backyard, with his ears flapping wildly with joy. It sets me up to think of something more and more positive with each following thought.

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

Nothing in the mind to say....

I want to write something but there appears to be no topic waiting in the wings.

Someone at our meditation meeting tonight talked about just talking, that nothing needs to be in the mind to say something. It doesn't need to be rehearsed and figured out before hand. When it's your turn or my turn to speak, it happens. Hmmm, I always can talk but if I check carefully as to what happens just before I talk, it seems that the words and thoughts appear, just appear. Slowly they form on the periphery and start to become clearer and clearer until they are fully formed and come as the spoken word. The thoughts aren't ever "mine". They appear to be mine because they have my flavour, probably because of my conditioning, and they bump against the personality of me - then they appear to be "me" and "mine". But where do they come from? Are all these loaded up in my brain somewhere? Or do they appear from source? Are thoughts little bits floating in the air? Thoughts or emotions which come first? Either? I find it amazing that I can see (actually I feel them more than see them) these thoughts forming and because they appear to be inside my head I take ownership. This is what I think. The word's an interesting thing that we capitalize this word "I". We capitalize all words to do with the divine when we are indicating the Divine....He.....Self.....God......Source (at least it's done in the spiritual books). And we always capitalize I. So, whose words are these? I's.

Monday, 5 November 2012

An evening with Felix

It's a dog's life. Felix has been on the couch all day, under the blanket. He is feeling the cold. He just poked his head up to say welcome home. I think I was a dog in a previous life. When I was a kid I connected better with my dog than any human being. I find it so amazing that humans live so closely with animals at all. An evening with Felix is quiet and restful, a scratch and a belly rub, and it's perfect.